Friday, July 13, 2007

Doing the Shuffle

I got my iPod (Shuffle) very recently, but it has already revolutionized my running and trips to the gym. In a later post I plan to give you my "Stuff To Run To", which I'm still working on. It's going to be timed so that you can actually run to the tempo of the music, because I read in Runner's World that regardless of whether you are a world-class marathoner or pathetically slow, you should aim for 180 footstrikes per minute when running. I tried it out and realized that (a) that is really fucking fast, and (b) it is hard to find decent songs at that tempo. So I went on a quest to find some, and I found this cool website where you can pick a tempo range and a genre and it will give you a list of songs. The pickins in the 180 range seem kind of slim, but I'm investigating.

Those of you who did time in the Ohio State marching band will instantly be able to come up with at least one song at 180 bpm (for those not in the know, Buckeye Battle Cry, the song the band plays when doing its famous pregame ramp entrance, is played at 180, in theory... but getting the tempo exactly right is difficult to say the least, so the band gets to spend a lot of time agonizing and obsessing over 180). But I don't know about you -- I'm not a big fan of running to marching band music. I'm not saying that everything on my playlist is as cool as what the kids are listening to these days (whatever that might be), I'm just saying it's a little less pathetic than marching band music. I'm still working on the running playlist, but in the mean time I give you my "Stuff To Go To The Gym To", which I do listen to while running, even though the songs are too slow for (even) me to run to the beat. Click "Full Text" below to look at the playlist.

In other music news, I just learned today that the Daily Show theme song (which apparently is called "Dog on Fire" -- charming) was performed by They Might Be Giants. I had no idea! Did you all know this already? I feel like that dork who writes "The Outside Scoop" on The Onion. I always thought the song sounded kind of like TMBG in their ska period, but figured I would have known if it was them. Then today I was reading the review of TMBG's new album on Amazon, and it mentioned in passing that they performed that song. I thought it was so cool that two things I liked independently, the Daily Show and TMBG, had this historical connection that I didn't know about. It is almost as if I found out that John Hodgman used to be Bruce Campbell's literary agent or something. (OK, I already knew that one, but don't you think that's cool too?)

Anyway, on to the playlist...

Stuff To Go To The Gym To

1. Washin + Wonderin' -- Stroke 9 (From the Malcolm in the Middle soundtrack, and it turns out to be a good tempo to run to, though not quite 180. Sometimes I just run to this one on repeat even though it's not the world's greatest song.)
2. Jaan Pehechaan Ho -- Mohammed Rafi (From Ghost World soundtrack)
3. Daddy Don't Live In That New York City No More -- Steely Dan
4. Lucretia MacEvil -- Blood Sweat and Tears
5. Lithium -- Nirvana
6. Soundtrack to Mary -- Soul Coughing
7. Monkey In Your Soul -- Steely Dan
8. New Age Girl -- Deadeye Dick (From Dumb and Dumber soundtrack)
9. Back in 1999 -- John Oszajca (From Mystery Men soundtrack)
10. No Way -- Freakpower (From Mystery Men soundtrack too)
11. All Star -- Smashmouth
12. Raspberry Swirl -- Tori Amos
13. Swing -- Ani Difranco
14. Charlie Freak -- Steely Dan
15. Gravel -- Ani Difranco
16. Unexplained -- Meat Puppets (From X-Files "Songs in the Key of X" soundtrack)
17. Rev -- Perry Farrell
18. End of the World -- REM
19. Firefly -- Enigma
20. Not a Virgin -- Poe
21. Snail Shell -- They Might Be Giants
22. The Sweet Escape -- Gwen Stefani
23. Money -- Pink Floyd
24. Mambo No. 5 -- Lou Bega (Did you know why it's called that? Lou Bega has explained that it is named for all the ladies on all five continents. Uhh...)

So there you go.


meg said...

I have the Stroke 9 cd if you want to check out their one other listenable song.

"Mambo No. 5" is a cover, of a hit from back in the 1940s (I forget by whom -- Pepe Pedrazo or something like that). There are mambos of other numbers as well, apparently.

Mary said...

I won't ask why you have a Stroke 9 CD... anyway, yeah, I'd like to check it out, thanks.

I didn't know that about Mambo No. 5 -- are the lyrics original too? If so, then I guess old Lou just imposed his own geographically challenged explanation for the name.