Journalist of the Week: Ian Colley

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What would Campus Vinyl do with out Ian Colley!? Besides working as our copy editor, Ian is a graduate student in the Psychology Department focusing on music cognition. He graduated from Allegheny College in 2013 with a Bachelors in both psychology and music, plus two theses on neuroanatomical underpinnings of autism and Beethoven’s 9th symphony. Because of his incredible wealth of knowledge and exceptional writing skills, we are lucky to have Ian Colley on CVBU team. To recognize him for all of his hard work for the publication, we named him Journalist of the week. Check out my interview with him and his playlist of the moment below! If your life had a soundtrack and you could only pick two musicians/bands to play every track, who would they be and why?

The first one would have to be Beethoven.  Does that count?  It must.  I was a Music major in my undergrad and my senior thesis was all about his symphonies.  His music really resonates with me and he is very much my hero.  I also love playing his music.  Beethoven was perfectly split between the excess of Romanticism and the repetitiveness of Classicism (I'm generalizing, of course both eras had their great composers, too).  But yes, I am obsessed with Beethoven and could see myself going through life with his angst-ridden sonatas following me.

For something contemporary I wold pick Regina Spektor.  I think she is really talented as a singer/song writer and her piano playing is interesting on its own.  She tells really charming and thought-provoking stories.  Other singers do this too of course, but not with the quirkiness and weird vocal hiccups that she does.  While my peers were getting into emo/pop/punk in high school, I was listening to Regina and have followed her since.  I think everyone should hear an early album of hers called 11:11.  She really shows off her vocal abilities with a bluesy flavor.  The lyrics are often bizarre, but that's half the appeal for me!

If you could change/improve one thing about Bucknell’s music scene, what would it be?
 
It's been said before, but I would love to see an unstructured, truly open open mic night.  I get that people want quality and preparedness and so advanced signups and rehearsed bands are desirable.  But students need a space to be new to music, to mess up and learn from it without fear of future exclusion.  I may just be yearning for my undergrad school where there is a coffee shop that had that sort of thing regularly.  It can be done and it's fun for everyone!
 
What genre, artist, or group do you listen to when you need a good stress relief?
 
I have two big stress-relievers:  The Bach violin sonatas (back to my classical roots) and the soundtrack to the movie Amelie.  It's amazing what Bach managed to compose for a single, unaccompanied violin. It's so intricate and listening to the interleaving lines of music is somewhat meditative.  The movie Amelie is one of my favorites and I think all of its fans would agree that Yann Tiersen wrote a fantastic score.  His take on a Parisian sound puts me at ease and reminds me that if school gets to hard I can always run away to Montmartre. 
What’s the best concert you have ever been to?
Okay back to Beethoven.... my undergrad advisor took me to see Beethoven's 9th in Pittsburgh after I finished my thesis.  After writing 102 pages about it, it was really moving to see it live for the first time.
Besides that (no one can pick just one), seeing The Shins and The Black Keys in Toronto was great.  It was a cool,contrasting pairing and it started raining.  I love the rain!  The Black Keys were new to me at the time and I thought it was so cool what they could do with just two people.
 
Songs on your playlist right now?
 
Ugh, I'm so bad at playlists. I never remember the songs I like when it matters, haha.  Here are some good ones: