“Don’t have two many records. If a man gets tired enough, he’ll bring over some new platters” Helen Gurley Brown, Sex and the Single Girl
1) I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again–go cook a radish, HGB. You can NEVER have too many records. I have a whole crate full of actual real vinyl, and I love all of it–that’s not even touching on my mountains of CDs and oodles of MP3s.
2) That being said, most of the music I love the most has been at the recommendation of men. My mom introduced me to Jethro Tull and Blondie, and my sister Shaun got me into The Smiths and Siouxsie and the Banshees, but it was my dad who introduced me to Cyndi Lauper, Steely Dan, The Vapors, Talking Heads and, of course, Warren Zevon. Ian introduced me to Tom Waits, Matthew gave me Duran Duran, JaR and Michael McDonald. Thor got me into Justin Townes Earle, and in exchange, I got him into the Replacements.
Why goodness, just the other day I was talking to Mr. W about music, and he recommended Richard Thompson’s “Dad’s Gonna Kill Me.” We had just been talking about The Magnetic Fields “All My Little Words,” (which I told him made me think of him and which he found very flattering) and he pulled out that recommendation, just out of the blue. I responded with Tenpole Tudor’s “What You Doing in Bombay” just to remind him that, yes, I am cool.
Music is a means of intimacy. In this age of MP3s, we don’t often make mix CDs anymore (or goodness, tapes!) but the art of doing so, of buying someone a record that was so dear to you, was a way of baring your soul. You took the risk that they would laugh at your choices, that it would reflect badly or that it just might not land. It can be a way to say “I love you” when the words won’t. I distrust people who think of music as just something to dance to or have on in the background.
So let a man bring you some new music. Have him tell you why he likes it, a memory associated with it. You might be surprised at what he has to offer. Or you might be horrified because he’s seen Nickleback in concert 15 times and in that case, aren’t you glad you dumped him sooner?