Relaxedly rambling

I’ve been lazing all evening. My older two children are at a concert in Brixton, the youngest is in bed, my wife has her church group over, and I’ve been left to myself. Which is a good thing sometimes, especially when it’s the end of the week and i’ve spent most of it travelling. I like companionable silences. And, occasionally, I even like companionless silences.

So after reading the papers and listening to Gabriela Montero playing Bach (absolutely amazing), I went for a gentle ramble around the web. Started with Christian Cenizal and visualisation, someone I’d bookmarked and written about recently and wanted to investigate a little more. And he led me to this Melbourne tourism video.


Which in turn led me to wanting to listen more to Joanna Newsom, and on to this video.


She’s one of these singers you either love or hate. I enjoy her. I first came across her in an ad a few years ago, to do with New York and blackouts and This Side Of The Blue. Her voice is quirky and unusual, it has a Melanie-like quality that combines really well with her harp-playing: I find the effect mesmerising. See what you think. [Incidentally, I’ve just realised that Melanie is over 60 now. Wow.]

5 thoughts on “Relaxedly rambling”

  1. I like Joanna Newsom too, and discovered her from two different directions.

    1. She dates Bill Callahan, the artist sometimes known as Smog, who is a poetic and musical genius (,

    2. Ys has string arrangements by Van Dyke Parks, who wrote a bunch of songs with Brian Wilson for the slated-in-the-sixties, acclaimed-in-the-teenies, Beach Boys album SMiLE. Van Dyke Parks 1968 album Song Cycle is a rare and visionary work. His soundtrack to the Disney Movie, The Brave Little Toaster on the other hand, is not…

  2. She is the cutest person I have ever seen in concert. She played in Dublin last year and tore the house down in her charming way. She’s a pixie on stage making us all fall for her with her enchanting music. I was 11 minutes into hearing her first song before I thought “is this song longer than normal songs?”. Very much worth traveling to see her play.

  3. This is the first time I’ve heard the term “companionable silences” – Wow. That is SO what I crave when I need to relax. To know there are others there — milling, thinking, working, being — with me, but to be alone in their ambient presence.

    I think that was also my initial attraction to blogging and the conversational web — my friends are always “thereable” – not quite there but there enough. ;-)

  4. :-) jeneane, you’re commenting on one of my favourite terms. I first came across it when I was about 10, and I feel privileged, privileged in the sense that I have a number of friends with whom I can share companionable silences; I feel even more privileged when I know that my wife is one of that number.

  5. I love this post…this is the power of word-of-mouth marketing and the social network. Read this post – checked out the Victoria Tourism ad (as I’m originally from Melbourne) and then as you suggested checked out the Joanna Newsom video on youtube.

    Result: I’ve just purchased the CD and booked a trip home to see my parents in Melbourne. Genius.

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