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The Avocado Jungle is a source for current events, politics, arts and culture on the web. Editor In Chief David P. Kronmiller, along with a talented staff and guests, bring you news, commentary, analysis, interviews, humor, music, art and more. Our deeper mission is to seek truth in understanding, offering current events, arts and culture as paths to that understanding. We value and promote creative thought, intelligent dialogue, elevated debate, and informed action. If you see something that interests you on the site, please take the time to leave a thoughtful comment. Thanks for visiting.

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David P. Kronmiller, Editor-In-Chief
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Dan Rickabus
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April 2, 2010, at 11:15 am — Arts and Culture | Music | music blog / / / / / /

Tasty Tunes

Soundtrack to this post: “Cornbread” by Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds, from Live at Radio City.

You Ain’t Never Had My Cornbread…

Before I get into the meat of this week’s food-related post (I can’t decide if the pun was intended or not), I’d just like to pose a simple challenge. Try to think of the number of people in your life who straight-up don’t enjoy eating. Can’t think of any? Now try to count the number of people in your life who straight-up don’t enjoy music. Coming up short? I thought so. Coincidence? I think not! Anyway, onto the main course…

Two of my best friends, who I might as well call my brothers, serve insanely well as the inspiration to this post. Alex Atkin and Ben Darcie can both play a mean guitar, and the number of total hours we’ve jammed together probably runs somewhere into the thousands. We connect on some kind of cosmic level when we play together — the kind of connection that jazz players develop with one another, only not nearly to that extent. One of the best things about playing with them is our collective awe toward other musicians and our resulting dumbfoundedness at how relatively un-talented we feel. With that kind of mentality, we’re constantly teaching one another and constantly learning.

Through my relationship with these two gents and a handful of my other friends I’ve also learned that when passion and meaning are applied to human expression and creation, the lines between the arts start to blur. Alex, along with 3 or 4 of my other long time buddies, is an inventive brewer of delicious beer. In fact, he was recently hired by Founder’s Brewing Co in Grand Rapids, where his passion is sure to send him skyrocketing up the ladder of employees. Ben, on the other hand, is quite the phenomenal cook. He’s worked his food-crafting magic at various restaurants, and the way he talks about food is astounding. The man could sell Ghandi a McDonald’s double cheeseburger. They both have occupational roots in the creation of food and beverage, and the three of us create music together. Over time, we’ve slowly started to realize how cooking food, brewing and music are essentially the same both in creative process and in enjoyment.

There are, of course, the obvious links, such as word usage like “man that was a tasty lick!” “ooh, what a crunchy guitar tone” or “what a beefy rhythm.” However, we seem to go far beyond these simple comparisons and just drop subtlety altogether. Alex once actually challenged me to describe one of his beers in musical terms. Somewhere in the process I remember talking about how the lemon flavor he added was a smooth violin crescendo of flavor as opposed to a snare drum hit. I’m not sure how much sense my response actually made, but at least it gave us some laughs.

The point is, I feel like I could’ve written a post this week about what food keeps musicians going, or what famous rock stars eat before they play… but I love thinking about the connection between the arts. Whatever your personal art is, whether it be food, music, beer, painting, dance, or even math, if you’re passionate enough about it, you’ll never be alone. You’ll always have someone to talk to who’s sitting on the other side scratching their head about where to go with their latest project, musing about some new development, or just generally geeking out about something they’ve made. We’re all artists if we care enough about something, and that seems to be a message that this whole site promotes and loves to see flourish. So, for example, if you’re a music lover, try eating your food like you listen to a new album of your favorite band. Man will that meal be delicious!

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1 comment to Tasty Tunes

  • Jeremy Olsen

    “If you’re a music lover, try eating your food like you listen to a new album of your favorite band.” Then my meal would be loud and full, and I’d have a heated conversation about it with a friend. And I might eat it over and over again for days.

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