Favorites of the Lonely (2016May20)

One is the loneliest number…

XperDunn's Poetry Graphics

Friday, May 20, 2016                                                         11:17 AM

Favorites of the Lonely:

Van Gogh

T. S. Eliot

Barry Manilow


Joni Mitchell


Auguste Rodin

Jane Austen

Kurt Vonnegut

Air Supply

Edgar Allan Poe

Randy Newman

Glenn Gould

Emily Dickinson

Salvador Dali

Charles Schulz

Why are these all such magnets for the socially-challenged? Are they lonely themselves? I don’t think that’s necessarily true. More likely, they all represent a unique, stand-alone vision that finds no parallel amongst its peers—because if we must be alone, then the best case scenario is that we stand above, rather than to-the-side.

Also, there’s an aspect of introspection to these artists’ works—and the lonely spend most of their time inside their own heads—so it’s very homey in that way. And that brings up another side of the ‘Favorites of the Lonely’—they have many detractors—for what makes them attractive to the lonely is often what makes an A-type…

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2 responses to “Favorites of the Lonely (2016May20)

  1. Good list, although I’m not sure about Barry Manilow. I’d add Freedy Johnston and the late, lamented Sandy Denny.

    • It’s funny you should mention Barry Manilow. Back when lovers were encouraged to emulate “10”, making love to Ravel’s “Bolero”, Barry invented the ‘power ballad’—giving the lonely the same sort of extended, slowly-building music with which we could daydream about the lovers we didn’t have.

      While writing the list, I was tempted to detour into the subset of ‘unpopular music for the lonely’—musicians who appealed to the lonely, but only made their loneliness greater due to the music’s wild unpopularity. I only included Barry Manilow and Air Supply as a compromise to that temptation, but there are many more—Joni Mitchell and Randy Newman were often derided by ‘hard’ rockers, as were James Taylor, Bread, Donovan, The Carpenters, Neal Diamond, et. al. Needless to say, they are all favorites of mine—and I suspect ten or twenty others will occur to me throughout the day, as my memories percolate up into my consciousness.

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