DISCLAIMER: This blog contains BLATANT artist worship.
Back in 2005, I was working at my very first full-time job at Boston University. I don't remember if I saw the video or the iPod commercial first but either way I heard Feist's "1234" and thought, "Isn't that catchy?" I went to iTunes and the album cost $8 so I bought the whole thing instead of just that catchy song.
Isn't the video fun? I am assuming that all those colorful dancing people are all coming out of her blue sparkly jumpsuited self. I probably think this because I am pretty sure that a myriad of people of different races, ages, and body sizes wearing different colored outfits run around in my blue sparkly jumpsuited self too. Reason 1 of a thousand I love Feist.
So I bought The Reminder. And I listened to it. I had grown up listening to Phantom of the Opera and was obsessed with Showtunes through High School (I still maintain "One Day More" from Les Miserables is one of the most exciting musical moments in any musical EVER). I loved Radiohead (duh) but they were the only band I really listened to. The first album I ever bought was whatever Ace of Base album had "The Sign" on it. I would listen to the radio while driving around in my '85 powder blue dodge caravan so popular music to me was Britney Spears or that "Meet Virginia" song by Train.
Needless to say I didn't know pop music could sound like Feist. I didn't know lyrics could be that lovely and sad and wonderful and honest. So I listened to it again and again and again. I listened to it on repeat at my desk so often that my dear friend Caitlyn, who's job had her sitting 5 feet away from me and who had already heard of Feist, came to hate the album, something I still feel a bit bad about.
It is times like these I wish I had some sort of pop music vocabulary so I could talk about why I loved this album so much. If I were Pier or Maloneykins I would (as they are the smartest music lovers I know) but since I am me, all I can say is that it felt like my whole heart and body was engaged in listening.
While listening to this album on repeat, I met two people who knew pretty much everything about Indie music: a man who worked in the Art Gallery downstairs who burned me CD after CD (Vampire Weekend, Cat Power, and a mix featuring The New Pornographers and the Arcade Fire among others), and a dear woman named Alex who burned me Let It Die, Feist's first album, Shallow Grave by the Tallest Man on Earth, and the self-titled album of the Fleet Foxes. I MEAN, COME ON.
So, needless to say, when I heard she had a new album coming out, I was nervous. What if it wasn't good? What if I hated it? Could I EMOTIONALLY HANDLE THE DISAPPOINTMENT?!?!?
My worries were unfounded. Metals. Is. Brilliant.
Yesterday I read an interview with Feist in the New York Times. In it she says,
“I always think about how I’m in my room alone writing... and eventually most people listen to music alone. So there’s actually a quiet little direct line between writing and listening. It’s a strange bubble of solitude, because you’re linked, but you don’t know each other, yet you’re communicating.”
She. Is. Genius.
The point. Leslie Feist was the first artist I really ever loved, and I feel like myself and all those who get to listen to her music and experience her as an artist are so very lucky. Any knowledge or love I have of popular music is because I loved her first.
In conclusion, I love her. In an unapologetically idealistic, romanticized way.