Running with Rufus

Maybe it was the Boston Marathon in the air, but something about Monday just felt like the start of my running season, though I could still feel my lingering cold.  I decided I could go for a long walk instead, so I set about freshening up my iPod Shuffle’s playlist.  I use the Shuffle almost exclusively for running, and I do not run much at all through the Chicago winter, so the battery was dead and I wanted some new songs.

I have a tiny list of favorite musicians, and I don’t even follow my favorites closely.  One of them is Rufus Wainwright – I really enjoy his crooning voice and his interesting instrumentals.   His lyrics are also a treat, and imaginative, though for whatever reason lyrics have always tended to be the last things I’ve noticed about songs.

I knew Rufus had a new greatest hits album out, so as the Shuffle charged, I grabbed the album off of iTunes.  It’s called Vibrate and it features 18 of his favorites.  I’m a sucker for a double entendre – the title is a track on the album, one I’ve always loved, and of course “vibrate” has quite a bit to do with music in general.  One thing that downloads don’t afford is a browse through the liner notes.  While there’s a great pic of Rufus in a tux on the cover, laziness (I assume I could find them online) has me ignorant about what else might be inside.

But the music is the music; I’ve known Rufus’s since I saw him opening live for Tori Amos at The Fabulous Fox Theatre in St. Louis probably a dozen years ago.  You could definitely say I fell in love a little bit.  His music comes from a deep and personal history – his family is the well-known Wainwright folk-crooning clan.  He plays the piano for himself, and he also brings in a casual demeanor and a passion for music.  And let’s face it – his adorable mug does not hurt!   All of it came together for me that night in St. Louis, and all have continued to improve, to my ears and eyes, year after year.

My Shuffle duly loaded, I set out to walk.  One problem was that I wore my running shoes, another is just that I’m a runner, not a walker – about two blocks into the walk with Rufus in my ears and Boston on my brain, my legs got the best of me, and, lingering cold be damned, I just couldn’t help but start running.

All’s well that ends well – I’ve been humming Rufus and rubbing my sore legs and feeling generally awesome ever since.

Thanks for reading.


One comment

  1. […] As I set out to run yesterday, I thought my iPod Shuffle was all set – its battery tends to be pretty remarkable.  I wrote about refreshing my playlist for the new season a few days ago, and yesterday I was excited to get out on the gorgeous though slightly chilly Chicago lakefront path to do some more running with Rufus. […]

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