Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Final Thoughts on Alphabet Soup/ “What did we learn on the show tonight, Craig?”

If you’re reading this the first week I posted it, then I suggest you scroll down and read Letters Y & Z first. No skipping to the end, kids!

So... what did we learn? We learned that I’m borderline evangelical when it comes to Oasis. We learned that an inordinate amount of my music is at least ten years old. We learned that while we all may have weaknesses, there is always room for improvement. And I suppose the biggest thing I’ve derived from all this is that I have an even greater idea of just how much music has shaped me as a person overall. It’s been a great thinking exercise.

I don’t think I really hit my stride in this project until probably a third, even halfway through. The trouble with writing something in a matter of days and then posting it with very little revision is that I sometimes didn’t quite do enough with some of the songs, or didn’t do the right thing at all. I maybe would even reconsider a few song picks at this point. (Would probably swap out “Kingdom of Lies” for Oasis’s “Keep the Dream Alive,” for example.) Where I might have hesitated to get very personal in the beginning, by the end I pretty much just said, “Ah screw it. Give ‘em what they want cos it sounds better anyway.”

The whole project is just shy of 57,000 words. That’s book length, and I think with the right revisions, it could be one. However, that’s not really something I’m thinking about at the moment (there is, of course, that other book I keep mentioning that I’m working on now).

So, if you’re coming into this late, now that the project’s finished, I still recommend starting at the beginning. The way I talk about the songs gets better, and some of the things I mention sort of build upon each other as the letters go by.

There will be other music projects. There are so many other great songs I just didn’t have room to include even within the loose rules of this project. I’m not sure what I will tackle next, or when (a couple of months, at least), but I’ve been scribbling down ideas as they come to me. I love all sorts of things, not all limited to music, and you’ve all indulged me enough to where I don’t feel too self-absorbed talking about them. I’ll try to keep it participatory because I’ve really enjoyed hearing your own song choices and thoughts.

Thanks again.


  1. Obviously I'm biased. But I've really enjoyed this project as a whole. I think it's interesting that the last Frames song you talk about is about making mix tapes. This is the literary equivilant of a mix-tape. instead of being about how you feel about and individual, or what's going on at a particular instance in your life, or a specific type of music, it's the "This is Sara" mix-tape.
    with cd burners making a mix may not be as big a deal anymore. that being said you've more than proved that the literary equivilant is not only possible, but still just as powerful.

  2. Brava, homeslice. Admittedly, at the beginning, I was only reading about the songs I knew. I'm not a music geek. I listen to whatever strikes my fancy and I don't always think about why. Eventually, I started reading entire entries because of the personal stuff. Because soundtracks on their own aren't fun to listen to. Because when I listen to one, I replay the story in my head. Because now I know who you are instead of just what you think. So again, I say, Brava!