We asked local musician Will Lindsay to pick his favorite year in music.
W.C. Lindsay the band (self-described as “Beastie Boys watching The Breakfast Club at Warped Tour”) released their new single “Hang Tough” earlier this month, and their song “Into the Night” was recently featured in a video with Kevin Hart. Cool! Read Will’s case for 2002 below and vote for your favorite year here.
Late in the summer of 2002, my mom impulsively purchased heavily discounted plane tickets for a last minute trip to England. I had just turned 11 and my hope was to spend the entire trip at the Bay Sixty 6 Skatepark in West London. I was far more interested in the character cast of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater than the Royal Family.
A few days into the trip we wandered into Virgin Records and I found my way to an endcap set aside for “Employee Favorites.” I asked an employee which CD he had chosen for the rack and he picked up a copy of Original Pirate Material by The Streets. It was Mike Skinner’s debut and had come out a few months prior. I bought it without a second thought (thanks mom), and tossed it into my Discman.
At first, I had no idea what I was listening to. To be honest, I had no idea for maybe 7 or 8 years. Original Pirate Material is a highly personal narrative professed in almost exclusively slang that I had never encountered and wouldn’t encounter in reality until my own UK tour 12 years later. The record is also rich with profane drug references and sociopolitical critiques that I still struggle to decipher.
All this aside, I was hooked. I became obsessed with this album. Even at that age, I knew I loved the fact that Mike Skinner did everything. From writing to producing to mixing, the record was all his. I have always loved highly personal music, and the fact that Skinner produces his work struck a chord with me – I knew I wanted to one day do the same.
I also loved that my favorite record and my favorite artist were largely unknown by my friends and family. To this day when I meet people who are fans of The Streets, we immediately find common ground. His art brings that out in people – if you get it, you get it. Lyrics from the album are a part of one of my first tattoos.
Without Original Pirate Material I have no idea what kind of music I’d be making today, but I think about the impact that album has had on me every single time I write or produce something. I can’t even really say what else came out in 2002, but I can say that music in general wouldn’t be the same for me if I hadn’t found Original Pirate Material.