I’m sorry if winter — or this playlist — breaks your heart. It breaks mine, too. I’m the type of person that doesn’t ignore my emotions. I need to feel all of my feelings, just like I prefer to feel all of the weather. This is what the cold dark does to me. But as cold and dark as winter may be, there is a calmness in it. Here in New England, there seem to be less days of high wind, more days of heavy fog with nary a low breeze. Save for a storm, the woods are quiet, lacking the constant hum of insects and chattering of birds. Snow crunches underfoot and we lay in the heavy blankets of snow. Amid the cold air, the sun slung low in the sky, I remember that, though today may be the shortest day of the year, with the winter solstice, the days only get longer. These are the days that the halcyon times were named for, when the storms ceased to allow for peace. The cello, in its heaviness, reminds me of this. It is “lovely, dark, and deep.” Here is music full of snowfall piano, windy guitar, and bellowing cello that is perfect for winter. Remember the light.
Fall in New England is a very special thing, the turning trees creeping out into the expanses of the greater Northeast. It has a special look, smell, and sound.
This playlist is for the color of October. A certain kind of folk to match the softness of the foggy fall days that happen often in New England, accompanied by brass horns for the brashness of driving across the country, spurred on by the crisp, breezy, blue sky days.
Warm days, cool nights, dry air, clear skies. The kind of days you can get lost in.
Shot at The Gaslight Anthem’s ‘59 Sound Anniversary show, 13 August 2018 at House of Blues Boston. All photos on 35mm film, Ilford HP5 400 shot at 1600 and developed by Northeast Photographic.
I saw Brian Fallon perform three times this year (once with The Gaslight Anthem, twice solo). Most of my friends know that The Gaslight Anthem is my favorite band, Brian Fallon being one of my favorite musicians, but no one really knows that their music literally saved my life last year. I don’t say that dramatically or even as the cliche that it sounds. I went four months without listening to any music, save a couple songs once or twice. Those songs were Gaslight Anthem songs, and Get Hurt was the first album I listened to when I was ready. Seeing them play live for the first time in a few years, after what felt like the longest winter of my life, was incredibly healing. From being able to literally feel the music, to singing an extra chorus in time with the crowd. A thousand thank you’s to the best band ever.