Thursday, September 14, 2006

To Spoil or Not to Spoil...that is the question


To spoil or not to spoil.

I'm one who likes surprises, as long as they are good. I don't like to know the score of the game before I watch it. I don't mind surprise birthday parties as long as I look thin that night. It's kind of odd because usually I'm a total control freak. It probably all depends on how I feel about the overall situation. If I'm excited about it, the surprise is OK. If I am ambivalent, I don't care if I find out something out before I was supposed to. If it is bad news, I want to know. If someone says "I've got good news and bad news", I always want the bad news first.

I have always loved The West Wing. I never read any spoilers about it until the seasons after Aaron Sorkin left and I thought the show lost its focus and it's zest. But in the final season, it was reborn and so was my love of the show. I knew there would be a lot of loose ends tied up and this time I wanted to enjoy them as they happened.

The last few days of the long wait for Clay's new album is upon us. A Thousand Different Ways has felt like a thousand different days of waiting. The album is now streaming at many Clear Channel Music stations before it goes on sale on September 19th. I chose to let myself hear one song and that's it. It's hard when so many have chosen to listen to the whole album and the reaction is so incredibly positive. Words like Masterpiece, a work of art, raising the bar of what pop music should be. Someone described his version of Broken Wings as sex while floating on air.

I listened to an incredible remake of Dolly Parton's Here You Come Again that has Clay moving effortlessly from falsetto to baritone in just a few seconds. I've played it on my ipod on repeat. And I'm told this isn't even the best song on the album.

So why don't I just give in and listen? I really want to hear the song he co-wrote called Lonely No More. Many are saying it is one of the best on the album. Yet, still I resist. It was a lot easier on the last two albums. The music was leaked just a day or so before.

I guess it's because I don't open my presents on Christmas Eve. It's because I'm an ESTJ, a planner. And this plan has a specific end date that calls for jubilation leading up to midnight September 19th. I'll be attending one of over 80 parties being held in the US and Canada in an international celebration of love and the joy of music. See CD Release Parties Homage to the voice that has no equal, wrapped in a 6'1" tall, lanky frame with a model's profile, a comic's wit and a clown's feet. Not to mention a humanitarian's soul.

I want to hold it in my hand, turn it over, struggle with the shrink wrap that requires a nuclear weapon to open. For his first album, Measure of a Man, I broke the case as I rushed to open it. (I finally spent the 99 cents at Barnes and Noble for the little CD opener thingie.) I want to look at the liner notes, read about his journey and struggle to make the album. Read his notes of gratitude to his "musical family", his notes of thanks to his real family and his notes of love to his Clay Nation family.

Yeah, I may stop a minute and look at the poster of this picture.

But then I will wave goodbye to the other bleary eyed but joyful Clay fans and hope into my car with the 9 speakers for the 50 minute drive home. I want to let the music envelope me.

Why would anyone want to spoil that feeling?

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2 comments:

Vox Vixen said...

I'm a planner too, but unlike you I do open my presents Christmas Eve because that is when we always celebrated. *g* I guess I'm a bit of a fatalist. What if it were my fate to go run over by a bus on Monday? No way I am going to take that chance of never hearing the CD. Heh.

VV/EE

kfc..Red Deer, Alberta Canada said...

I commend you on your fortitude and self-sacrifice in denying yourself the guilty pleasures of listening to Clay's wonderful love songs.

These songs are like chocolate; they tempt us beyond belief and they contain millions of calories but they nourish our soul like nothing else ever could.

Every song has its own flavor but Lonely No More, Everything I Do, Everything I Have, Here You Come Again, Because You Loved Me and Broken Wings are especially lovely and tasty; those songs remaining have been left in the box for a sinful midnight feast.

I have no will power when it comes to chocolates..or to Clay's new love songs. Forgive me Clay. You are sooo delicious.