I take it that I’m unusual in at least one respect – most people I know seem to like it quiet when they go to bed, but I have always preferred to drift off to music. There are a number of CDs that I like, including things like Andreas Vollenweider’s Down to the Moon and Irish Heartbeat by Van Morrison and the Chieftains. I sometimes play Avalon by Roxy Music and The Lost Patrol’s Midnight Matinee is a good one, as well (to be honest, anything by TLP is soothing and dreamy enough to cue up at bedtime). I spent years flipping this one tape I had every night – on one side was a recording I’d pulled off of Music from the Hearts of Space and on the other I had Mike Oldfield’s Hergest Ridge. The sleepytime playlist has also included Enya, Enigma and Delirium (especially Sematic Spaces and Karma, but really, any of their older stuff works, too). Oh, and Vangelis. Bladerunner soundtrack. Duh.
Back in the ’90s I went through a period where I bought a lot of dark ambient – artists like Lycia, Love Spirals Downwards, Love is Colder Than Death, Lovesliescrushing and my absolute favorite, Sweden’s Raison d’Etre, aka Peter Andersson. This gloomy, lush music can be hard to describe, but think haunted medieval cathedral and you’re getting there. It creeps some people out, I have learned, but I have always found something transcendent in its cloistered desolation. Call me weird.
My two favorites are Enthralled by the Wind of Loneliness and the disc today’s selection is taken from, The Empty Hollow Unfolds (which I actually referenced in a poem I wrote not long ago).