What was the first concert you ever saw?
Milli Vanilli, with Seduction and Young MC opening. I was 10 years old, and my brother decided it was time for me to go to a concert. Evidently, Milli Vanilli was the band in town on that night.
What CDs are in your changer right now?
My CD changer holds most of my collection, but on heavy rotation on the iPod right now are Tom Waits, Soul Coughing, Bobby Bare Jr., Death Cab for Cutie and a mix of Mexican and Central American music including Macaco, Control Machete and Ojos de Brujo.
How many total albums do you own (CDs, vinyl, cassettes, 8-tracks)?
Roughly 350 CDs. Some years ago, a boyfriend who was cleaner and more organized than I ruthlessly convinced me that I would never listen to a cassette tape again, and as I no longer have a record player, that's the extent of my music collection.
Do you download music, and if so, legally or illegally?
When I download music, I pay for it, but friends often burn music for me.
What was the first album you owned?
Cyndi Lauper, She's So Unusual. I was 6, and my much hipper 7-year-old neighbor told me I had to have it.
What song would you like to have played at your funeral?
Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, "Time to Say Goodbye."
Musically speaking, what do you love that your friends don't know about? What's your favorite guilty pleasure?
Shakira--but only in Spanish. Somehow, I find her gushing melodrama quaint and charming in Spanish, but intolerable in English. But really, I'm pretty open about my sometimes-bad taste; I still talk about how much I love Erasure.
What band or artist changed your life, and how?
Queen, because they forced me to admit that my brother is always right--I was so sure that a musician as popular as Vanilla Ice couldn't possibly be stealing someone else's music.
Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?
The Essential Etta James.