About Why We Listen

Every day, we discover more music in more places. It’s everywhere. But we are sacrificing quality for quantity. The consequence is that we spend more time hearing music and less time listening to music.

I’ve become increasingly interested in other people’s listening habits. How they listen, when they listen, why they listen. Quietly lying on the floor in the middle of the night, in headphones at the airport, in the car on a long road trip. Meaningful moments with the music we love is subjective. I think about that relationship a lot and want to know how it works for other people.

In each podcast, I sit with my guests and listen to the music that moves them, and evoke personal histories, production techniques, idiosyncratic preferences, emotional resonance.

At worst, these podcasts can sound like two curmudgeons ranting arrogantly about so-called “important” music. At best, I hope that our passion for music is contagious, and that we get to hear a unique side of my guests that we wouldn’t access in a regular Q&A interview.

My preference is to record in people’s homes and studios – their preferred listening environments. Consequently, we’re often interrupted by roommates, family background activity, traffic, neighborhood gardening … capturing a bit of how people live with their music.

If you enjoy the music you hear on these podcasts, please buy them in the highest quality available as directly from the artists as possible. No excuses.

Thanks for listening.
Marc Kate.


2 Responses to “About Why We Listen”

  1. Hi Marc, I enjoy your podcast and believe I have listened to every episode. The most recent one, with Holly Herndon, was one of my favorites( along side the one with Bob Ostertag). On it, you asked for feedback about how much commentary listeners want to hear. I’ve got nothing against commentary, when it’s information based, and I don’t think I’d just assume all your listeners know everything you do. For example, I’m an Eno freak and wouldn’t mind hearing what I already know about him, with the possibility of learning a new, inspiring snippet. On the other hand, I know very little about My Bloody Valentine. I do understand how too much commentary can get obnoxious, especially when it’s just about the host’s opinions, a bit like an MC rambling on too long between live acts he’s introducing. Ultimately, I like the format of your show and feel you should stick with what inspires you. The responses I’ve gotten to my own music have mainly showed me the intense subjectivity of people, so that’s it’s impossible to please them all. If you’d like me to give you my CDs and give me an address, I’d be happy to give them to you. Either way, thanks for your devotion to spreading the listening! jim e sparkle pants ….sparkekljim@gmail.com

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