As most everyone knows, every year I make a CD for close friends of my favorite songs of the year. Since 2012, it has been 20 songs and just a little less than 80 minutes. The hard parameters set in place by a CD, plus the chance to do a Photoshopped album cover, force me to make sometimes heartbreaking cuts. I will never forget having to cut Cher’s “Woman’s World” or Christina Aguilera’s “Your Body.” I think I cried a little bit when I did it. Each year has had cuts like that. In the long run, they are good because it really makes me choose the cream of the crop.
But this year is fucking brutal.
It is September 12th in the year of our Lord 2018 and I already have 20 songs. 75 minutes. So even if I wanted to fill the CD to 80 minutes I can add AT MOST one more song. And 21 songs? Forget that noise. It has to be a round number. I have made some cuts already, but looking at this list of 20 songs I cannot see where I can cut and still feel good about it. I have three artists that are double represented, and that will be where I start cutting next, but it will hurt so much. Heidi keeps telling me to make it a double CD, but damn, I’m not sure that I can do that without sacrificing quality – that is to say, there may be a lot of good music out there, but I’m not sure I can get to 40 songs. However, the year is young and Madonna has not released new music, and neither has Marina & the Diamonds – both of which are supposed to have new albums out before year’s end. The plus side is I could add back in all the songs I wanted to cut and perhaps three-peat a few of the artists that really deserve it.
I know that there are more pressing things in the world than my year-end best-of CD (which is going to have a killer cover this year.) But I really enjoy doing this and I’m always so proud of it when I’m done. I do worry that if I did a double CD, no one would listen to all of it. Hell, I have no idea if people listen to it now, but would it be way too much of a good thing?
I have no idea what I will do. But I will carry on, just as I always do. And for those wanting a hint of what’s on it or whaat the cover is – you’ll just have to wait for the grand reveal in December.