Dear Auntie Soph,
Something bad happened in my life last week and I don’t know where to turn.
I was driving along listening to the radio and this song came on.
It was easy to listen to, catchy: I liked it.
I didn’t hear who it was by but it reeked of dairy products so I tried to put it out of my mind.
But the next day it was on again and, damn, I wanted more.
The next time I got into the car I started channel surfing to find it.
It got nasty. I ended up on Magic FM.
I turned it up loud- so loud I had to sing and close all the windows.
My son was sweating. He was asking me to stop.
The whole thing was Wrong.
Finally, I Googled some of the lame lyrics and, Holy God, it was James Morrison.
Worse than that- James Morrison with NELLY FURTADO.
It’s been less than a few months since I stopped knifing her in my dreams and replaced her with Amanda Holden.
I’m a mess and Broken Strings is only the half of it.
My finger slipped on Youtube (I was looking for ‘Two Girls One Cup’, honestly) and I ran into one of his love ballads, If you don’t wanna love me – hell, even the title knows what I’m saying.
Now I’m angry.
It sounds like Otis Redding and it’s O.K. to like Otis Redding.
Why can’t I like a song by that man too?
Who makes the taste rules anyway?
I’m guessing you’ll tell me to buy an album and try to get it out of my system.
But I can’t go fouling up my Amazon recent orders list with stinky artists.
Do I wear a hoodie to HMV? Book a long-haul flight and plug in?
musically compromised from hammersmith
Dear musically compromised from hammersmith,
Of all the mail I received this week, yours stayed with me the longest.
You’re struggling with a big issue here but some people touch children and that’s almost certainly more shameful.
It seems to me that your musical sensibilities may have been damaged when you were young.
Maybe your mother liked Richard Clayderman or there were a lot of pan pipes on in the house.
Either way, the most well-meaning of parents can unwittingly make it difficult to provide their children with the foundations for healthy musical appreciation when they reach adulthood.
Also, you’re trying to Google scatological porn so you probably went to a girls’ boarding school- the odds have been against you right from the start.
You don’t say how old you are but elsewhere you mention that you’re partial to a bit of a duet so I’m guessing you were a child of the 80s: Always by Atlantic Starr was probably a seminal moment for you.
If I typed in ‘D’ on your computer’s Youtube would ‘Dollar’ appear?
When I scratched the tippex off the bottom of the letter I could just about make out the word ‘Bolton’.
Just how much Mariah Carey is at the back of your C.D. cabinet?
In conclusion, I think you are asking for the wrong help.
You want to know how to rid yourself of bad musical taste because agreeable people disapprove of it.
In actual fact, you should embrace your true feelings and recognize this affliction as a part of you.
If you carry on listening to some good stuff this may eventually take a more natural place in your preferences.
But essentially you need a more rubbish crowd of friends, who will not judge you- ones who laugh at Russell Brand and wear t-shirts with hilarious slogans.
Then you can relax and indulge.
So James Morrison is lispy and wet and looks like Chris Martin’s weaker Siamese twin (the one who didn’t get the vital organs) but he’s not James Blunt, unless…
If you finger-tap to any of his stuff go to a door and repeatedly knock on it using your head.
Auntie Soph x