Okay, fine. I give.
GIVE US AN EXAMPLE OR TWO OF AN ESPECIALLY GOOD OR INTERESTING:
1. Movie score: The Sweet Smell of Success, Elmer Bernstein. Yojimbo, Masaru Sato. Fargo, Carter Burwell.
2. TV theme: Hockey Night in Canada (original theme), Dolores Claman. (Perplexed non-Canadian readers click here.)
3. Melody: Mahler 9, mv. I, first theme. "In The Wee Small Hours of the Morning," Bob Hilliard/David Mann. "Peace," Ornette Coleman. "The Long Honeymoon," Elvis Costello.
4. Harmonic language: "Half The Fun," Billy Strayhorn. "The Barbara Song," Kurt Weill/Bertolt Brecht, arr. Gil Evans. "God Only Knows," Brian Wilson. "Dreams," Bob Brookmeyer.
5. Rhythmic feel: Charles Mingus and Dannie Richmond on "Fables of Faubus." Clark Terry and Bob Brookmeyer on "Tête à Tête." George Porter Jr. and Zigaboo Modeliste on "Pungee." Bootsy Collins and Jabo Starks on "Talkin' Loud and Sayin' Nothing" (14 minutes and 44 seconds of unstoppability). The Talking Heads on "Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On)."
6. Hip-hop track: "Check The Rhime," A Tribe Called Quest. "Blue Flowers," Dr. Octagon. "Virus," Deltron 3030.
7. Classical piece: Igor Stravinsky, Symphonies of Wind Instruments. Béla Bártok, Divertimento for Strings (second movement). Steve Reich, Music for Mallet Instruments, Voices and Organ. Frederic Rzewski, The People United Will Never Be Defeated!
8. Smash hit: "I Want You Back," The Jackson 5. "When Doves Cry," Prince. "... Baby One More Time," Britney Spears. "Hey Ya," Outkast.
9. Jazz album: Such Sweet Thunder, Duke Ellington.
10. Non-American folkloric group: Tom Zé (not really "folkloric," and, come to think of it, not really a "group," but... )
11. Book on music: The Conversations: Walter Murch and the Art of Editing Film
A) Name an surprising album (or albums) you loved when you were developing as a musician: something that really informs your sound but that we would never guess in a million years: Uh, yeah -- see this post for an exhaustive and embarrassing list.
B) Name a practitioner (or a few) who play your instrument that you think is underrated: Ran Blake. Paul Bley.
C) Name a rock or pop album that you wish had been a smash commercial hit (but wasn't, not really): Lewis Taylor's self-titled debut. The New Pornographers, The Electric Version. Also, while Sign O The Times was obviously a massive hit, I never understood why "Starfish and Coffee" wasn't a hit single.
D) Name a favorite drummer, and an album to hear why you love that drummer: Stevie Wonder, Talking Book (I'm happy to see that Jeff Ballard agrees with me that Stevie's drumming is underrated.) Mel Lewis, Make Me Smile.
Feel free to play along in comments.