Sunday, 22 June 2014

Dad Was Shazam

Sunday Mornin' Coming Down - A post about my Dad each Sunday, named after a song that he loved.

There is a smart-phone application called Shazam. "Shazam is a mobile app that recognizes music and TV around you." You just click a button on your phone and then it uses the microphone to gather a brief sample of the music being played. It creates an 'acoustic fingerprint' based on the sample, and compares it against a huge database for a match. Then it sends information such as the artist, song title, and album back to you. This is super helpful! Firstly, no one ever knows who sings a song or what the song is called and this tells you. Secondly, I have seen people use the app when they hear a song they like (and know its name and artist) but click Shazam so that it records it - then they use it as a list of songs they want to download when they are next at their computer.

My dad was the original Shazam. He loved to ask "Do you know who sings this?" whenever a song came on. I never knew, I never know. Sometimes I would guess but 98% of the time I was wrong. However, Dad always knew - this may have been in part because we mainly listened to songs that were on his mixed tapes/cds. In general though, he loved music and knew a solid amount of information about it - you could count on him to know who sang something. Unfortunately the person I drive with most at the moment is Jason, and he does not tend to know. (He also hates radio commercials so often changes the channel before the radio announcer gets a chance to tell me about the song.) I don't have Shazam but am planning on downloading it whenever I get my next smart phone. I miss having a person who could serve the same function - and serve it with so much joy, Dad loved music and sharing it and knowing about it.

Post inspiration: Hearing the song with the chorus that starts, "Superman never made any money..." and being able to sing all the lyrics but have no idea the actual title or singer/band. Turns out it is from the Canadian band Crash Test Dummies from the early 1990's and it is called 'Superman's Song.' My dad would have known most of that right away - he also liked that song, it was on at least one of his mixed tapes.

"And sometimes I despair 
the world will never see another man 
like him."


Sweeton said...

Last year at Give Me Liberty the band played a modern song that George didnt know and he asked one of the guys working at a booth. He used that app and George was very excited about it. I dont think he realized it would "put him out of business" with the family.

Hezabelle said...

I remember the last time I visited, your dad was talking about how he would go to the library every week to download his one (maybe two?) songs he was allowed to get for free from the library. I was so impressed. I think we were listening to Pink, actually... but I guess I should have asked. :)

Christine Sweeton said...

Haha Heather - Totally would have been Pink (he was a big fan.)

Mom - It wouldn't have put him out of businesses with the family, he was so fun about music that I would always prefer to talk to him about it than just find out. Though the idea of Dad having that app is a little scary.