Playing Favorites 4/22

borders1Do you remember Borders? Back in the early 2000s, it was one of the three largest bookstores in America. It featured not only books but music and specialty items. You may recall the store had a coffee shop and cafe as well as comfortable chairs and sofas sprinkled around among the books, inviting you to not just buy but to stay and read. They even had light entertain on weekends. Our local store in Anaheim Hills became a hangout for my wife Muri and I. Borders declared bankruptcy in 2011 and our beloved Borders is now a Sprouts grocery store (not a good place to hang out). My favorite feature of Borders were the listening stations that were set up along the top of the CD racks. Each station had its own set of headphones and featured a new release CD. You could skip through tracks or stand and listen to the whole album. Borders sold me quite a few CDs that way.

There is one in particular I remember. I was meeting a friend for coffee and had arrived early to stroll through the music section. On one of the listening stations was a CD featuring three pretty women circling a black cover with the interesting title Lullaby for My Favorite Insomniac. By the Ahn Trio it said. I hadn’t heard of this The Ahn Trio classical trio composed of three sisters: Angella (violin), Lucia (piano), and Maria (cello) Ahn. According to Wikipedia, Lucia and Maria are twins. Born in Seoul, Korea, they moved to New York City in 1981, and began their training at the Juilliard School. The sisters formed a trio while they were earning their master’s degrees at Juilliard. The Ahn Trio is known for its performance of new classical music, genre-crossing programming, and collaborations with other artists. I was listening to one piece, Magic Hour, as my friend strolled up. Mesmerized by the music, I asked him to wait a minute while the piece finished. Listen to this, I said hoping he’d appreciate it. He listened for fifteen seconds then said, That’s nice, with a puzzled look. I’m used to it. People love music, like music, like it as background and just don’t get it. I think he was number 4.

I carry so much music on my devices that sometimes my favorite go unplayed for months. But this week I was building a play list of Peaceful Music on the Poweramp app which I use to play music on my phone (excellent app, by the way) and Magic Hour came to mind. It is just as beautiful as I remember it and it also my favorite for this Friday. Enjoy and have a good weekend.

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