My guilty pleasures

Time to own up to some guilty pleasures. Everyone has them, those little things you find giving unexpected joy that you would never admit to anyone. Your love of The Bold and the Beautiful, for example, or how Barry Manilow gives you the hots. Well in the spirit of liberation I will begin what will be an irregular series on guilty pleasures. I’m man enough to do it.

Now for me, most of my guilty pleasures will be related to music. I don’t watch a lot of TV and I think it’s fair to say that I’m a bit of a TV Nazi – you don’t watch that do you? That’s not to say I don’t err, though I may argue the erring part of it. I’ve recently been watching the adventures of Hollywood hairstylist extrordinaire Jonathan on Blow Out and greatly enjoying it. Am I guilty? A little, but I can’t help but like Jonathan, he’s passionate, warm, intelligent and has high expectations, as is only right. Going by my infallible rule, he’s a dude I could share a beer with.

Off the top of my head, I can’t think of anything too embarrassing that I’m passionate about. Except for some music. So here goes, one small admission, and one doozy, okay?

The small admission really is teensy weensy. When I haven’t got my iPod plugged into my car driving I listen to the radio. I’m a demanding radio listener. If I don’t like a song I flick. No good? Flick again. And so on. Anyway, I’m driving the other day and a song by the Veronicas comes on. Now the Veronicas are the sort of band I’d normally turn my supercilious nose up at. Lowbrow, commercial pulp I might say. Well, I might say that, but the truth is I don’t mind them. Sure there is nothing greatly memorable about their music, they’re certainly not churning out classics. But…the songs are catchy, there is a certain optimistic breeziness about them, and the girls have great harmonies. I’d never buy a CD of theirs, they don’t even meet my stringent iPod guidelines – but I won’t flick from them.

This second is harder to admit to. There was a clue earlier. Can you guess? It’s time to come out of the closet and confess that I actually don’t mind some of Barry Manilow’s music. What a relief! I’ve been trying to that admit that for years. If it counts for anything I grew up with my Mum playing his albums, so I kind of absorbed them via a process of osmosis. Still and all, there are songs I still like – and have on my iTunes playlist. That’s a brave admission. Fuck, I’ve just done a quick search, and found seven Barry Manilow songs! Seven, for god’s sake. And my favourite? A real tearjerker, Weekend in New England.

So there. I’m not ashamed but I think I should skulk off now.

So I’ve told you mine. What are yours?

4 responses to “My guilty pleasures

  1. The question that has to be asked is, are you one of those people who hides Barry Manilow under a more acceptable mp3 tag and hope no-one plays it, or do you let him sit there under his real name? 🙂
    My guilty pleasure is the `reality’ MTV shows like Laguna Beach and 8th and Ocean despite the fact that I’m almost 30 & married (aka hardly the demographic the shows are designed for!) All I can say is lucky we never got around to connecting to pay tv…I’d find it hard to look away 😉
    Oh – and I have two Hanson mp3s on my iPod…undisguised!


  2. No Tan, I go undisguised. I may be cringingly embarassed about some of my musical choices but I’ve got enough dignity to at least stand up for them. Viva le difference, I say!
    Now, to compound my felony let me make a further admission that my mates at the pub would find hard to let lie: I like Barbra Streisand too! Furthermore – yes there is a furthermore – furthermore I believe Babs has one of the greatest voices I’ve ever heard. I have to blame Mum for that too.


  3. Love it. There’s something to be said for being honest about music taste, it earns respect! Having said that, you’d have to pick your moment to queue Babs on the jukebox at the pub 😉 My sisters are still paying me out for buying the Celine Dion/Streisand CD single `Tell Him’ all these years later!


  4. Even as I write this Tan I am downloading old Neil Diamond tracks. He’s not so bad, though he had his moments, but I realise that much of the attraction of music such as his is pure sentiment. I grew up listening to him and Babs, Barry White and so on – it was the soundtrack to my home life as Mum would put a disc on the turntable and sing-along to it, or else at one of the near weekly parties either at our place or one of our friends – the Conolly’s and the Holton’s. I must write about those days sometime – they seemed pretty groovy parties, and as a kid, great times. So what is the intrinsic value of this music? I can’t say. What I can say is that hearing this music brings those days back to me, and that’s nice. I am transported, and so the value of themusic is in my memories and in the golden sense of nostalgia that washes over me with each listening.


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