Welcome back, music lovers. This is diary 101 in the series. Last week I focused my attention on the career of Brian Eno, an individual who did a great deal to popularize ambient music, and prior to his decades-long stint recording ambient tracks (some intended for visual art installations), he was a progressive rocker in his own right. Eno is also known for his numerous collaborations over the years, starting very early on in his solo career following his split with Roxy Music. Those projects run the gamut from prog rock one-offs to more experimental offerings. Some of those collaborations were part of or the aftermath of some work he’s done as a producer. I stumbled on to his rather unusual musical world as a teen when I bought my first Bowie album. Anyone whose credits include playing instruments with names like cricket menace is bound to get my attention. Just the way my mind works.

In digging through the record bins and so on in my teens, I continued to find various gems that included Eno as a collaborator. I’d bring back whatever I could afford at any one time. Usually I was lucky to walk away with a single record at any given time, and then had to save up to get the next one. In the process, I learned of work he did with members of Cluster. Honestly, I had no idea who Cluster were until I picked up an album that had Eno on the credits. The songs ranged from electronic instrumentals to tunes almost akin to death disco. An example:

I always loved this track. It is dark, and in some sense its content seems fitting even four decades hence. Really I could listen to the work he did with members of Cluster endlessly. And learning about Cluster opened up a whole musical world to me at a very early age. But that’s another story for another time.

I will post a bit more as time permits, just like last week. If you enjoy this series, please rec, and make sure to tip the posts. There are facets of what we call popular music for which I have a nearly encyclopedic knowledge, or at least that is what I get told by family members who probably find the amount of trivia I can recall boring or exasperating. So it goes. Still, it did come in handy when curating sets for a radio show (back when I did college radio) or even just finding something fitting for a party that would be just a bit off the usual beaten path. And you never know what questions might be asked at a trivia night. Enjoy!

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