1 - I love jazz, so if I go early, then I have to go back to Billie Holiday. The Lady knew how to make a song her own and left a permanent imprint on music that is still felt today. Strange Fruit is so evocative and wriggles its' way into your brain.
2 - I like clever people, and Eninem has impressed me since his first album. Yes, I play Eninem - and that is as far from classical music as you can think. But when I play his work and compare it to any other rapper, it is quite obvious who is the true wordsmith. The man is a modern Taliesin of words, and poetry with catchy meters comes so beautifully to him.
3 - Jim Morrison and The Doors were a major part of my formative years. In fact, I started getting into them around the same time that I was getting into Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy. Hmmmmm......
4 - Guitar player Joe Satriani - a phenomenal talent with an instrument. I started liking his work many years ago and have also seen him in concert. Truly amazing skills.
5 - Herbi Mann, jazz flutist. I remember when I first heard Herbie Mann. I was in college, living in a dormitory, and it was a warm, spring night. I heard this music coming from one of the other wings and I opened the windows to listen. I was enthralled with this magic music and went room to room to find out who had been playing it and what it was. I bought the album (yes, I'm that old that I still bought albums) the next day. I now have it on CD also and can't imagine being without it.
6 - Another one that is magic for me was Allen Parsons Project. I heard their Tales of Mystery and Imagination while visiting my cousin in Salt Lake City during a very stressful summer. The music caught me and transported me away. Truly magic.
Benny Goodman - what a talent. I still love listening to his music.
7 - Benny Goodman - going back into the past again for jazz great Benny Goodman. When I was growing up, my next door neighbor and I would spend hours in her home listening to her mother's jazz collection which had many of his albums in it. I just loved how he could make it sing and swing. Big Band era music is still a favorite.
8 - The Waltz King - Johann Strauss, Junior. Most kids I know were sung lullabies and children's songs when they were growing up. My mother sang waltzes to me. I grew up being rocked to The Blue Danube, the Emperor, and other fabulous waltzes. And the imagery that they place in my head of women in fabulous gowns and men dressed to the teeth, moving around a dance floor in precision like rose petals floating down a brook. Fabulous!
9 - Beethoven - the one and the only. I was introduced to him while at the Aspen Music Festival when I was a child. At that time the Pitkin County Library (in the old location) had a music department and, since I had no way to play music at my home, I went there every day and listened to the nine symphonies, and then listened to them again, and again, and again. One of the best gifts my father gave me was the full set of nine conducted by Herbert Von Karajan. When I went digital, I bought the set again, and now I own that one as well as the Minneapolis Orchestra's fabulous set.
10 - Only one more left, and I have to devote this one to Stravinski's Rite of Spring. I love this so much I own the libretto for it and have spent hours conducting it - at least when I was quite a bit younger with more time. The raw rhythms the clashing strings, the evocative melodies, it is powerful music. Magic music, if you will.
So as you can tell, my musical taste is quite eclectic. I love music, although I don't have large playlists on my i-gadgets. Music, as important as it is to me, is incidental to my life because I'm just as happy listening to the wind in the trees and the rush of water in a river.