Friday, September 25, 2015

Musical Musings: Counting Crows

Musical Musings is a new feature where I'll be talking about music! There'll be two posts a month---the first of which (like this one!) will be about some random musical topic, and the second post of the month will be a recap of my month in music. To learn more about this feature and whatnot, click here to check out my introduction post! :)

Counting Crows

So far, I've made one list of my favorite artists. I really feel like that list only skimmed the surface, and I definitely plan on making another one to go with the first at some point in the future, which means I'm thinking about which artists I'll put ON that list quite a bit. And it came to mind only recently that Counting Crows totally deserves a place on the list.

I have this belief that a person can love a song without loving the band or artist. You can love "Wildest Dreams" without adoring Taylor Swift. You can actually enjoy a Kanye song without thinking he's great. Just like with books--loving one book doesn't necessarily always mean loving that author's work in general. For the longest time, I thought Counting Crows fell into this category where I loved a song or two... or three... but the whole band? Nah.

Hi, my name is Jessica and I was very, very, VERY wrong.

Fun fact for ya, "Mr. Jones" is my favorite song. And when I say favorite I mean... FAVORITE. It's my number one. For a good while, this was the only Counting Crows song I knew. Or, at least, recognized. I knew more than just the one, but I didn't know it. So at that point, it was realistic to think Counting Crows wasn't a favorite band. (But how ironic that my favorite song wasn't by one of my favorite bands, eh?)

Then I checked a Counting Crows CD out from the library. Which one, you ask? August and Everything After, of course. I needed to hear the album with my favorite song on it. So I took it home and I listened to this band pretty much nonstop until I had to return the CD. In doing this a few things happened:

- I became even more obsessed with "Mr. Jones."
- I learned how to recognize Counting Crows better. Like, WAY better.
- And my interest in Counting Crows grew.

Before, I was pigeonholed into that one song. It was my favorite and that was that. But then, I wasn't. I was open to listening to more. To clicking on other songs when they were suggested on YouTube because I thought I'd actually enjoy them. And you know what? I did.

And thus created the snowball effect that ends here, with Counting Crows a definite favorite of mine. It started with one song, and expanded to pretty much anything by this band. I love their sound and their words. I can listen and sing along and straight up enjoy.

So now here are a few of my favorite songs by Counting Crows (that fact that I can list some beyond "Mr. Jones" along with the fact that I'm kind of reining myself in as I choose these songs is a great example of how much my love for this band has grown, by the way)...

Mr. Jones

As I've mentioned, this is my favorite song. How that happened was totally by chance. In the summer of 2012, I listened to that radio ALL THE TIME. It was before I had a phone, so I couldn't stream music. Which meant it was the radio for me all day every day. That summer, the station I listened to most had Mr. Jones in their rotation regularly. Every single time the song played, it made me so freaking happy. And you know... the song just grew on me more and more until BAM. Favorite. This was also the same summer that I started my favorite series and finally started reading books by my favorite author (the Lux series and Jennifer L. Armentrout). Coincidence? I think not.

Round Here

In my mind, this song is so linked to Anna Begins for some reason. I mean, yeah. They're on the same album. (I know their August and Everything After album best), but I still think it's interesting how I can't think of Round Here without Anna Begins also coming to mind. I'm not sure which of the two I started liking first, though I have a hunch that it's Anna (thanks to Tamara Ireland Stone's Time Between Us and then the Time After Time playlist). But today, I'm listing Round Here first. I have such a soft spot for it.

Anna Begins

This song is near and dear to me for two reasons: it's on the same album as Mr. Jones, and it's on the Time After Time playlist for Anna. Considering I adore Tamara Ireland Stone and her books, that really gives this song a leg up. Which I am absolutely okay with. Just like Round Here, I have a soft spot for it. I know all the words, and can listen to it on repeat for a very long time when I'm in that kind of mood. Definite favorite. (Right along with--you guessed it--Round Here.)

A Long December

Oh, look! A song that's NOT on August and Everything After! I love this song first and foremost because I love the sound of it. Before I even considered it was by Counting Crows or anything, I was caught up in how beautiful it is. Then I learned the words and started singing along and now I am glad to be able to add it to this Counting Crows list. It's definitely one of my top go-to songs by this band.

Rain King

Speaking of go-to songs by Counting Crows... Rain King actually is on August and Everything After, but I didn't pay much attention to it until recently when I recognized it on the radio. I was ecstatic to hear a Counting Crows song! And one that wasn't Mr. Jones! This does not happen often. So I got all happy pants, and then of course, as songs do, it got stuck in my head. So, as I do, I listened to it on repeat to get it out of my system. And now, look where it is. A list of my favorite songs by one of my favorite bands. A win all around, if you ask me.

Big Yellow Taxi

It's funny because I JUST heard this song on the radio earlier. It's a prime example of a Counting Crows song that was always around but I didn't know was by THEM. Honestly, this song in particular is one I keep forgetting is by Counting Crows. I'm such a fan of this song, but whenever I hear it I'm always like "I KNOW who this is by! Ahhh, but who was it again?" And since I don't always recall, it sadly results in changing the radio station sometimes... and then later when I realize, I facepalm. It's a vicious cycle. But I so enjoy this song! And it's around so much! Gets a good amount of play time on the radio, which I'd gladly enjoy if I could bash the info into my head that this song is by COUNTING CROWS. (Now that I wrote this post, I'm sure I'll remember.)


I only started paying real attention to this song after reading Fangirl. Because Cath. (Well, LEVI, but Cath is the one from Omaha, so...) Any mention of Omaha has me thinking of that book, and I love that book beyond words, so if something reminds me of it there's a good chance I'll like whatever gave the reminder more. But beyond my word association, this is a good song. AND it's on... yep! August and Everything After! So many bonus points over here. But again, it's a good song. I have no doubt I'm going to be walking around tomorrow singing about "Omahaaaa." And I'll love it because I heart this song.

So that's a bit about my love for Counting Crows, and some of my favorite songs by them! I'm probably going to spend October in a very Counting Crows-ish mood now. I'm cool with it.

Now I'd LOVE to hear from you! How do you like Counting Crows? Had you heard of them (or realized you actually knew them) before this post? What do you think of my favorite songs by them--and do you have any favorites of your own? Let me know in the comments!

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