My 2016 Reflections
Jerry Lucky Commentary January 2017
Copyright Jerry Lucky © 2017 All Rights Reserved
As I scribble this post, despite its title, the new year has not yet arrived, however it will soon be upon us and despite what some folk think about the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States, I’m quite sure we’ll be fine. Here in the Lucky household we don’t do a huge spread at this time of year. For the most part it’s just the two of us, my wife and I, joined by our daughter who stays over a couple nights. Still it’s a time of year we look forward to celebrating. In any case the inevitable “march of time” means that 2017 is upon us and after seeing all those 2016 in Review news programs I’m feeling in a reflective mood. For all its ups and downs I have to say that 2016 was a pretty decent year. I hope you found it that way.
Musically there were a good number of releases that I totally enjoyed. The short list of some of my faves would include in no particular order: Circa-Valley of the Windmill, Frost*-Falling Satellites, Evership-S/T, Huis-Neither in Heaven, Karmakanic-Dot, Neal Morse Band-Alive Again, Anderson Stolt-Invention of Knowledge, Lee Abraham-Seasons Turn and Kansas-The Prelude Implicit. It’s a pretty subjective list I know. A good number of the ones here I rated 5-out-of-5 in my website reviews. Actually there were a large number that got a 4 that on any given day, depending on my mood, could have easily been bumped up to a 5. Without question some absolutely wonderful music was released in 2016.
On that note, it’s been a full year using that 1-out-of-5 rating system and I’m still not sure if it works or not. I always feel bad using the 1 or the 2 because even though I’ve created a system that hopefully isn’t indicative of quality, but rather taste, I still wonder if people look at the number and say, “oh that must be crap” or “what’s the matter with this Jerry Lucky.” I guess part of my dilemma is not knowing what you “out-there” are thinking.
Which leads me to another thought I had during the latter part of 2016 and that is/was – “Does anybody actually read this stuff?” There are those moments, usually Monday mornings at 8AM where I’m struggling with what to say in a CD review I’m trying to write where in a moment of self-pity I ask myself, “why am I doing this, nobody’s reading this anyway.” At least that’s the feeling. In my heart of hearts I HOPE somebody’s looking at jerrylucky.com but I can never tell. We’re all busy doing stuff, living life so I totally understand that sending an email comment to some music review site has got to be pretty low down the list of things to do. That said, there are a few of you out there who have sent an email or two, and let me say seeing those emails in my inbox does provide a moment of joy. Thanks for taking the time to do so.
In other news 2016’s Cinema high-lights for me would be Batman v Superman and Rogue One a Star Wars Story. There were others, sure, like Star Trek Beyond, Doctor Strange, Hacksaw Ridge, Captain America, Suicide Squad, Deadpool, X-Men: Apocalypse, etc. but those first two were easily the best of the bunch for my brain. You may have detected a theme in my viewing – lots of sci-fi and superhero stuff – well what can I say. I did see a few others along the way, a few good British films but without question the oddest of the bunch was a film starring Rachel Weisz and Collin Farrell called The Lobster. If you haven’t seen that one, you might want to check it out.
In closing, let me take a few lines to mention those who we lost this year. You know, as one gets older there is something ever more personal in looking back at those individuals who have died during the past year. Unlike in earlier years where you hear names but they hold little significance there comes a time in everyone’s life where that changes. Now the names are ones we’re all very familiar with. Names like David Bowie, Keith Emerson, Greg Lake, George Martin, Carrie Fisher and Alan Rickman. There were others: Prince, Glenn Frey, George Michael and a pair oddly passing away on the same day Jefferson Airplane founders Signe Toly Anderson and Paul Kantner. It’s easy to go on…there were many who passed in 2016…they will all be remembered for what they contributed to my life and they will be missed.
Lastly then as we head into a new year, somebody gave me a piece of advice that I’ll pass on to you and that is don’t let anyone tell you you’re on the….”wrong side of history.” This is a phrase that was unfortunately popularized by U.S. President Obama to, I guess in some way, shame ideological opponents to various policies he continues to evolve on. As was pointed out to me, history isn’t finished, and until it is there is no way of knowing what side of history you are on. That actually made a lot of sense. At least that’s what I think.