Finding good new music can be hard in the absolute ocean of contemporary tunes, but one of the best things about working the weekend shift at New Zealand's public radio station is that my local pop knowledge is going off the fucking charts.
The Music 101 show has been playing on RNZ for years, and I've always enjoyed listening to it while driving around town. But now I have listen to it as part of the job - for content we can highlight on the homepage - and it's been a excellent accidental primer for finding new music.
I love the old music as much as ever, but I'm also completely terrified of stagnating in my tastes, and am always looking for something new. I have various fucked-up ways of doing this, including watching pop music with the kid and finding out what she likes to dance to; and maintaining a weirdly strict system of listening to the CDs that British music mags put on their cover.
But I can't help the Music 101 stuff from getting through and it's so good. Over the Christmas break, while off work, I ended up listening to a lot of local pop tunes and they were generally excellent. Strong beats, killer melodies and something to say - good music just makes your life better. It just does.
I do have to stop myself from pop-splaining when the lovely wife says she doesn't know who Benee is, because I'll inevitably end up banging on about how vibrant the Gisbourne punk scene is looking, and nobody needs that. But finding new tunes that the kid and I can grove to is absolutely priceless.