Many of you have written us wanting to know more about Jeff Walker, who writes the AGEIST music column every month. We are huge fans of his contributions (Michael Kiwanuka this month!), keeping us in the know with what is happening. How does he do his thing? Let’s find out.
“I only write about four albums I like”
How do you go about choosing your 4 albums every month for all the music that is out there?
First off, I only choose four but the feature each month is typically about what I have been listening to and not everything that has been released the previous month. There’s a lot that goes into it. I visit record stores regularly to see what has been released and I read online blogs and periodicals such as MOJO magazine, out of the UK, monthly. I have been an active subscriber for over 20 years. I only write about four albums I like. I don’t use this forum to be a critic; there are simply too many great things to take in to let that be my goal.
What is your favorite way of listening to music?
Most of my active listening is at home on my system there but I also find that I’m able to really concentrate on listening in other ways such as in my car or listening through my air-pods when I am on the subway commuting between home and work here in Los Angeles.
Weekly Live Shows
How many shows a year do you go to?
This is a hard question. I have slowed down a bit but on average I probably see at least one a week. I’m a bit of a fanatic and sometimes shows I attend are actually out of town. This weekend, for instance, I’m flying up to Oakland to see Brittany Howard. I missed her shows here in LA recently due to business travel.
How does seeing so much live music inform your choices of what to write about?
The live music never really informs the music I write about. I tend to see acts that I’m already familiar with that may be promoting a new record or I’ve heard something new by an act on record and it drives me to the show.
Best album of all time?
That is a question I don’t believe can ever be answered. Perhaps it hasn’t even been made yet. There are just too many genres and too many great albums to say. I certainly don’t have one.
Music in the Family
You have a teenager in the house. Does having your daughter around inform your music, or is her music a whole different genre? Is she keeping you informed, or is it the other way around?
Yes…I do have a teenage daughter but her influence only allows me to hear things that I would pursue on my own. It doesn’t really influence my tastes, although at times I have really liked things that she has played for me. One, in particular, was when I reviewed Tyler the Creator’s album “Igor” for one of the issues of AGEIST. We have attended shows together on occasion and there are certain staple artists that we still share a common fondness for.
A Question of Format
Vinyl vs CD vs streaming?
I’ll take the music in whatever format makes sense. I do prefer vinyl at home and tend to only collect vinyl now. I don’t remember when I bought a CD last. I stream at home and in my car. I use a digital-to-analog converter (DAC) on my home system so that the digital sound is warmed up a bit. Vinyl would typically win out if I had to choose one format. The packaging is far superior as well!