When I was in Japan a few weeks ago, I really enjoyed my visits to various shrines in Kamakura and Nikko (and some day, I’ll get my Nikko pictures back up on the Web). Similarly, I always enjoy seeing Winchester Cathedral on my trips to Hursley. I can honor the sincerity of the believers who created these works, even if I don’t have those same beliefs, and I can enjoy the beauty of what they created.
I have a similar reaction to the Gospel music on Spirit. I don’t have to buy into the message to enjoy the music, which is beautiful and moving. This won’t be a frequent stop on the XM dial for me, but it’s definitely an “up” spot.
If you like opera, you’ll like Vox!. There are some operas I enjoy (or at least there are some excerpts from some operas which I enjoy), but I have to admit that my favorite operatic performance of all time is What’s Opera, Doc?, and so I think it’s safe to say that I fall outside of Vox’s prime audience.
So tuning in today was interesting, especially interweaving listening with work. I heard two acts of “Hamlet”, and part of “Anna Bolena”, but I don’t know either work well enough to know what’s going on, and I couldn’t really concentrate on listening.
If I knew there was going to be something on which I’d like, and which I had enough time to listen to in its entirety, I’d be willing to come back — but this isn’t a channel for casual, short-burst listening. At least not for me.
Caliente is Spanish for “hot”, and that’s a good description of the music on the channel — very high-energy, strong rhythms, lotsa bass. I liked it better than I liked the other surviving Spanish channel, Caricia, but it’s still not my cup of maté.
When I turned on Ngoma this morning, the song being played seemed vaguely familiar — after thinking about it for a while, I recognized that it reminded me a lot of Talking Heads’ Once in a Lifetime (which is not surprising, since David Byrne used a lot of world music in the band’s work).
But that was about the only familiar song I heard during my listening; I enjoyed the beat, but found the music to be more distracting than I wanted today. I might come back occasionally out of curiosity, but it’ll be a rare visit.
I liked Nashville the least of any of the country channels on XM. In many ways, the music there seemed very much like the country music I heard when I was a kid than the other channels — which is odd, since it plays music from the 80s and later — and I really didn’t like country music when I was a kid.
So maybe it was my mood, or maybe the programming really is different, but this is not likely to be a channel I’ll come back to very often.