I've averaged maybe four hours of sleep a night in the last week and a half, and it's nearly turned me into a vegetable. Consequently, I spent most of my time on Spotify working on a hobby that requires little brainpower. The only thing I'm more obsessed with than listening to music is curating music. If I had a choice, I would put all my songs on one playlist so I could shuffle them all together regardless of artist or genre or theme, but I discovered years ago that Spotify has a 10,000 song per playlist limit that it never warned me about, so I've had to live with that and make a bunch of playlists based on artist or genre or theme. A few months ago I made my first one based on chronology because I just love the eighties so much. It brought me great pleasure but also frequent disappointments when I couldn't add a song from 1979 or 1990. I was very strict about following my rules. The only time I broke my rules was when I added L.B. Rayne's songs from the 2000s and 2010s, and I did that because they're not only pastiches of 80s music but also claimed to have been made in the 80s as proposed theme songs for 80s movies, so I'm just playing along with the joke.
A couple weeks ago I caved and made a 90s playlist. And then, to make a long story that's of little interest to anyone except me short, I ended up with ten chronological playlists. Unfortunately they created a feedback loop with my insomnia. I spent a lot of time on them throughout the day because I was too tired to read books or write books, but then when I went to bed my brain acted like a radio cycling through one station after another, and that didn't help anything. Here they all are in case of the unlikely eventuality that anyone besides my neighbor Mandy is really impressed with my taste in music and wants to stoke my ego by following any or all of them. And also to artificially make this post longer so I don't have to write very much.
The 10s: Music's Tenth Best Decade
The 20s: Music's Ninth Best Decade
The 30s: Music's Eighth Best Decade
The 40s: Music's Seventh Best Decade
The 50s: Music's Sixth Best Decade
The 60s: Music's Fifth Decade
The 70s: Music's Fourth Best Decade
The 80s: Music's Best Decade
The 90s: Music's Second Best Decade
The 00s: Music's Third Best Decade
The 10s: Another Decade of Music
The title of the last one is kind of serious and kind of a joke that doesn't really work if you don't see the playlists in the correct order, which you won't unless you read this post or use my Spotify account on the desktop app where I've arranged them into the correct order. On the one hand, I pay zero attention to the current radio hits and I could probably only name five of them from the last five years if my life depended on it. Ed Sheeran is a decent artist for sure, but I'm baffled and slightly depressed that he's the highest-streamed artist in the world out of all the artists in the world. On the other hand, the 10s witnessed a veritable explosion of opportunities for regular people with internet access to make music and make it accessible all over the world without all the bother of record deals and expensive recording studios. Many of them are very good, and most of those will never get the recognition they deserve, but in previous decades their creative genius wouldn't likely have seen the light of day at all. Songs are published in more genres, cultures, and languages than ever before in history even while globalization and commercial interests make most "mainstream" music sound the same. (Although I proactively seek it out, the lack of diversity is why I rank each decade of music preceding the 80s progressively lower.) So from that perspective, the 10s and every succeeding decade actually are and will be the best decade for music, or rather they would be if they were also the 80s, which sadly they are not.
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About the Author
C. Randall Nicholson is a white cisgender Christian male, so you can hate him without guilt, but he's also autistic and asexual, so you can't, unless you're an anti-vaxxer, in which case the feeling is mutual. This blog is where he periodically rants about life, the universe, and/or everything.