Like Jane Austen writing about television

Today, I’m listening to Jethro Tull on Pandora, the virtual radio station site. I’m often disappointed by Pandora because it seems their collections don’t go very deep. And sometimes they don’t even touch the surface in the spot where I want them to. For instance, I created a 10cc channel that keeps throwing Queen songs at me on the grounds that they are “like” 10cc. On my Donovan and Elvis Costello stations, they keep playing Beatles. Hey, I love the Beatles, but when I want to listen to them I’ll tell you.

Then there was the time that I had a hankering to hear Roger Miller’s “Dang Me,” so I created a station by that name. And it played me a couple of Roger Miller songs that I didn’t want to hear, and then other songs “like” Roger Miller. But so far, no “Dang Me.”

I strongly suspect Pandora to be a subsidiary of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation, famous for its drinks machine that produces a substance that is almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea.

But I’m enjoying the Tull station a bit more. Not that I’m getting pure Tull, of course, but the stuff that Pandora judges to be “like” Tull is mostly enjoyable. Led Zeppelin’s “Rain Song.” Some live Who. And, I’m happy to say, quite a bit of Tull.

Including recent Tull, which is a bit of a shock, because I didn’t know such an animal existed.

For instance, did you know there was a Jethro Tull song titled “Dot Com?” Seriously; I’m not making it up. This is a surprise coming from a band that I associate with “Aqualung.” And no, not the one that the kids listen to. To me, Tull is quintessential 70s. I hadn’t even thought about them in years. It was only when a real radio station (94.3) played “Thick as a Brick” this past week that I was reminded of their existence, and created the station just to, shall we say, do a little living in the past.

The Jethro Tull of my memory lived in a universe that had not thought of, and could not even have imagined, anything called a “dot-com.” It was, I don’t know, like finding a previously unknown Jane Austen novel that’s about television. You know, like:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a sitcom in possession of a laugh track must be in want of a joke.

I’m picturing Mr. Darcy earning his “ten thousand a year” hosting “So You Think You Can Dance,” on which he repeatedly refuses to dance with attractive young women on the grounds that they are “tolerable,” but not “handsome enough to tempt me.”

Anyway, what I’m saying is, it was weird.

4 thoughts on “Like Jane Austen writing about television

  1. Lee Muller

    The last Jethro Tull album I heard was their album with all the social songs, about how the liberals were destroying the countryside with development. I guess that was in around the early 1990s.

    Ian Anderson has had crippling arthritis since he was in his 30s, so that limited their touring. But the rest of the band had other gigs, coming from classical backgrounds, knowing a lot of musicians in an genres.

  2. Lee Muller

    “Pop” means popular, what is happening now, not 20 years ago.

    I hate to use the word “culture” for anything that is a step back from where cultural advances have taken a society, but it is part of the vernacular.


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