The ways in which people listen to music always fascinates me. Everyone has his or her own ritual. Some people still only get a chance to find out what’s going on by turning on the radio. Others live on the Internet, downloading all of the latest leaks while at work or school, and giving everything a preview on their lil’ computer speakers
Some of us, though, literally plot out our listening experiences. If there’s a new disc dropping that I’m really looking forward to, you better believe I make sure I give it the attention it deserves. And the best way for me to fully digest new records is on the train. People constantly hit me during work hours to find out my thoughts on the recent offerings of the day. “Gotta give it the headphone listen,” I’ll say.
I have a nice 45-minute ride on the R Train back to Bay Ridge, Brooklyn during the workweek. That gives me plenty of time to soak up the sounds pouring out of my rotating cast of affordable ear buds. (Anyone wanna buy me a pair Beats By Dre?) Yeah, I’m that guy sitting in the corner seat, zoned the fuck out, bobbing my head, tapping my feet, drumming along with my fingers on the railing or whistling (out of tune) to the melody. At times I’m even laughing to myself or mouthing along to the lyrics. Yeah… I know, but if the music is that good, I could care less (don’t worry, I’m not as bad as that dude in the picture).
Another way I really enjoy connecting with music is at the gym. When you find that right record that puts you in the necessary mind state, it can undoubtedly make your workout that much more intense. It can motivate you as you begin your first set, drive you to finish those last few reps and cool you down as your heart rate begins to return to normal.
The shower listen is always fun, too. Since I was 13 years old, I always had a radio in my bathroom. Selecting the right playlist can sometimes be a tedious process, but hey, these are important decisions.
Now it’s your turn: what’s your favorite way to listen to music? —Jesse Gissen