Monday, August 13, 2012

Rock Music from My Graduate Student Days

The last night we were in DC the family went to dinner with a couple of my graduate school classmates and their spouses.  We had a really good time catching up and reminiscing.  Afterward, on the trip back home and the slow days that followed as I regained my equilibrium, I thought a lot about that time in graduate school, not so much about the academics per se but about the people I met and some of the experiences I had.  For some reason that triggered thoughts about music.

While living in Chicago I was a regular listener to WXRT, which seemed like a big city equivalent of WVBR, the station I listened to as an undergrad in Ithaca.  I mainly listened to the radio while driving to and from NU or to go to dinner at somebody's house.  I remember listening to the radio in the car.  Perhaps I also listened in my apartment, but I've got no memories of doing that.  Below is a short list, of the songs I can remember that were played repeatedly. 

So Into You - Atlanta Rhythm Section
Werewolves of London - Warren Zevon
You're No Good - Linda Rondstadt
Radar Love - Golden Earring
Pigs - Pink Floyd
Midnight at the Oasis - Maria Muldaur
Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen
Do You Feel Like We Do - Peter Frampton

There were, of course, many others.  Thirtyfive years later it's hard to parse in my head what I listened to mainly in Ithaca and what was mainly in Chicago.  Billy Preston, Fleetwood Mac, Jackson Browne are each in that category as is a lot of earlier rock.  There must have been a fair amount of Blues music, especially Muddy Waters and B.B. King, but again I can't remember hearing it on the radio.  And I don't remember whether WXRT played the BeeGees and other disco.  Nevertheless, somehow I became aware of that and I do remember hearing a lot of the Captain and Tennille doing Love Will Keep Us Together, yet it doesn't fit in with the above.  It feels as if that song was from AM radio.

What I do remember hearing on FM then, I still like.  What does that signify?  When I first came to Champaign I listened to WPGU a fair amount.  But either their programming changed or as I aged I lost my taste for (then) current rock.  

You can't turn back the clock.  But sometimes remembering is a good thing.  It's got me wondering of how then connects to now.  I'm sure it does but that path remains murky for me.

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