2011 in Lists

It’s the last day of the year, so it’s time for looking back with one huge post with a lot of lists. This year, the format is different, but you’ll manage.

First up: books. This year, I started in 31 books, and finished 28 of them. I stole the idea of keeping track of when I read those books from Art Garfunkel.

  1. Stephen King — 11/22/63 (2011-11-12—2011-12-26)
  2. Joseph Campbell — The Hero with a Thousand Faces (2011-10-29—2011-12-24)
  3. Mary Haley Bell — Whistle Down the Wind (2011-10-27—2011-10-28)
  4. Monaldi & Sorti — Versluiering (2011-10-19—2011-10-24)
  5. J.R.R. Tolkien — The Hobbit, or There and Back Again (2011-10-05—2011-10-18)
  6. J.D. Salinger — The Cather in the Rye (2011-09-24—2011-10-04)
  7. Kevin J. Anderson — The Key to Creation (Book Three of Terra Incognita) (2011-09-09—2011-09-23)
  8. Jonathan Friesen — Rush (2011-09-05—2011-09-08)
  9. Mitchel Scanlon — Fifteen Hours 2011-08-29—2011-09-05)
  10. Penn Jillette — God, No! Signs You May Already Be an Atheist and Other Magical Tales (2011-08-25—2011-10-07)
  11. Gerard Reve — De avonden (2011-08-07—2011-08-29)
  12. Joe Hill — Horns (2011-08-01—2011-08-11)
  13. Jordan Sonnenblick — Drums, Girls & Dangerous Pie (2011-07-30)
  14. Michael Scott — The Warlock (Book Five of The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel) (2011-07-25—201-07-29)
  15. Carlos Ruiz Zafón — The Prince of Mist (2011-07-13—2011-07-22)
  16. Neil Gaiman — Anansi Boys (2011-07-05—2011-07-11)
  17. Stories: All-New Tales Edited by Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio (2011-06-04—2011-07-05)
  18. F. Scott Fitzgerald — The Great Gatsby (2011-05-27—2011-06-03)
  19. Neil Gaiman — Neverwhere (2011-05-16—2011-05-26)
  20. Aldous Huxley — Brave New World (2011-04-17—2011-05-15)
  21. Jeffery Eugenides — The Virgin Suicides (2011-04-09—2011-04-17)
  22. Niels Aalbers — Doorbraak! Zero Budget Marketing op internet (2011-03-20)
  23. Justin Cronin — The Passage (2011-03-18—2011-04-09)
  24. Nescio — De uitvreter / Titaantjes / Dichtertje / Mene tekel (2011-02-28—2011-03-17)
  25. Terry Pratchett — The Witches Trilogy (Equal Rites, Wyrd Sisters, Witches Abroad) (2011-02-11—2011-08-07)
  26. Gibson, William — Neuromancer (2011-02-07—2011-02-28)
  27. John Green and David Levithan — Will Grayson, Will Grayson (2011-02-01—2011-02-11)
  28. H.P. Lovecraft — Against Religion: The Atheist Writings of H.P. Lovecraft (2010-12-29—2011-02-05)

Currently, I’m still reading two of the other three (Christopher Paolini’s Inheritance and Anne Frank’s Diary), and I’ll pick up Stephen King’s Nightmares & Dreamscapes again when there isn’t a brick of book waiting to be read. Plus, I already read that one in Dutch, so I’m in no hurry.

The books I would recommend are Horns by Joe Hill, 22/11/63 by Stephen King, either of the Neil Gaiman novels. Feel free to skip the Monaldi & Sorti one.

On to music then. According to my Last.fm profile, these are the artists I played most:

  1. Meat Loaf (282)
  2. Bløf (255)
  3. Daniël Lohues (232)
  4. Dream Theater (216)
  5. Solo (175)
  6. Bruce Springsteen (168)
  7. Within Temptation (122)
  8. Boudewijn de Groot (119)
  9. Jim Steinman (109)
  10. Acda en de Munnik (108)

The top four all released new albums this year, and apart from the first one, they’re all quite good. In March I ‘discovered’ Michiel Flamman’s work, which explains Solo. In fact, if I would add the plays for Flamman’s solo record, he’d be in second place. Boudewijn de Groot probably should have been higher, ’cause apparently, I didn’t quite make it to the end of the box set with all his albums yet.

But speaking of new albums, my favorites:

  1. Bløf — Alles blijft anders One hell of a record. It’s loaded with songs with big, strong hooks. It’s hard to pick a best track, but I’d probably go for either Wachten op de dag or Hou vol hou vast.
  2. Daniël Lohues — Hout moet After doing four albums completely by himself, Lohues asked two friends to play along. The songs are as good as ever, but just a tad more uptempo, like the first single, Prachtig mooie dag.
  3. Dream Theater — A Dramatic Turn of Events The first album with Mike Mangini, after Mike Portnoy left the band. As a result, it’s less metal and more prog. There are no real stand-out songs, it’s all good, and I’m quite looking forward to their show in Zwolle.
  4. Eefje de Visser — De koek Singer-songwriter with electropoppy touches. Afdwaalt is fun.
  5. Within Temptation — The Unforgiving The two preceding albums didn’t really stick. This one does. Catchy pop songs with a heavy edge. Even some you can dance to.

Honourable mentions go to Symphony X (Iconoclast), Opeth (Herritage), Lorrainville (You May Never Know What Happiness Is) and Howard Shore’s Lord of the Rings Symphony. If I would make a list of my favorite old albums that were new for me this year, I’d probably include James Taylor’s Greatest Hits, J Perkin’s Exhibit (especially part A is gorgeous) and all Solo albums.

This year, I saw 36 shows on stage. I think that’s a new record. First, the musical acts I saw:

  1. 2011-12-21 — BLØF + Ed Struijlaart, Paradiso, Amsterdam
  2. 2011-12-18 — Charlie Dée, Stadsschouwburg (kleine zaal), Almere
  3. 2011-12-12 — Lorrainville, Hedon, Zwolle
  4. 2011-11-18 — Hanson + Meiko, Paradiso, Amsterdam
  5. 2011-10-28/29 — “Vampyyrien Tanssi”, Seinäjoki Kaupungingteatteri, Seinäjoki, Finland
  6. 2011-10-21 — Dotan + Anneke van Giersbergen, Tom Pintens & Krause, De Kelder, Amersfoort
  7. 2011-10-09 — Eefje de Visser + Laura Arkana, Hedon, Zwolle
  8. 2011-10-01 — mr. a balladeer, “Save Your Drama for Your Mama”, Stadstheater, Zoetermeer
  9. 2011-09-30 — Brooke Fraser + Cary Brothers, People’s Place, Amsterdam
  10. 2011-07-21 — De Parade: Het Monica da Silva Trio + Hade, “Part One”, Moreelsepark, Utrecht
  11. 2011-07-19 — Orkest van het Oosten, Consensus Vocalis, Jan Willem de Vriend (conductor), Ronald Brautigam (fortepiano), Annemarie Kremer (soprano), Wilke te Brummelstroete (alto), Marcel Reijans (tenor) and Geert Smits (bass), Concertgebouw, Amsterdam
  12. 2011-06-11 — Torenpop: Memphis Maniacs + Dazzled Kid + Handsome Poets, Eemplein, Amersfoort
  13. 2011-06-05 — Singer/Songwriter Sunday: Rachel Louise + Yori Swart, Podium-cafe De Vorstin, Hilversum
  14. 2011-06-02 — Neal Morse, Hedon, Zwolle
  15. 2011-05-27 — Rush, Ahoy’, Rotterdam
  16. 2011-04-24 — mr. a balladeer (lunchconcert), Stadsschouwburg, Utrecht
  17. 2011-04-16 — Cortez, Velvet Amersfoort (instore Record Store Day)
  18. 2011-04-13 — Acda en De Munnik, “Ode II”, Carré, Amsterdam
  19. 2011-03-31 — Het Monica da Silva Trio, De Lieve Vrouw, Amersfoort
  20. 2011-03-28 — Solo, “This is Solo”, Theater Kikker, Utrecht
  21. 2011-03-26 — Trans-Siberian Orchestra, “Beethoven’s Last Night”, Heineken Music Hall, Amsterdam
  22. 2011-03-16 — Devin Townsend Project, Tivoli Oudegracht, Utrecht
  23. 2011-03-12 — The Steel Breeze (Pink Floyd tribute), De Schuur, Hoogmade
  24. 2011-03-09 — “We Will Rock You” De originele musical van Queen en Ben Elton, Beatrix Theater, Utrecht
  25. 2011-03-05 — Daniël Lohues, “Hout moet”, Kleine Komedie, Amsterdam
  26. 2011-02-28 — BLØF + Handsome Poets, Paradiso, Amsterdam
  27. 2011-01-26 — Charlie Dée, “A Tribute To Joni Mitchell”, De Vorstin, Hilversum

Not a bad show between them. The most memorable were Hanson (pure entertainment and joy), Solo (I went in completely blank, and halfway through the show I wondered why I hadn’t listened to them before), Beethoven’s Ninth (the melody of the choral part wouldn’t exit my mind for a month), Charlie Dée in Almere (very, very intimate) and the Finnish Dance of the Vampires.

The other half of the list contains the comedy and plays.

  1. 2011-12-30 — Dolf Jansen, “Als ik het niet do doet niemand het”, De Kleine Komedie, Amsterdam
  2. 2011-12-19 — Het Nationaal Toneel, “Midzomernachtsdroom”, Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam
  3. 2011-11-22 — Lebbis, “Branding”, De Kleine Komedie, Amsterdam
  4. 2011-11-05 — Brigitte Kaandorp, “Cabaret voor beginners”, De Flint, Amersfoort
  5. 2011-08-16 — Orkater, “Richard III”, Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam
  6. 2011-07-21 — De Parade: De Elite, “Once Upon a Time in La Mancha” + Rob en Emiel, “Close Up!”, Moreelsepark, Utrecht
  7. 2011-05-14 — Claudia de Breij, “Hete vrede”, De Flint, Amersfoort
  8. 2011-02-10 — Brigitte Kaandorp, “Cabaret voor beginners” (try-out), Theater Harderwijk
  9. 2011-01-03 — Zuidpool, “Lucifer”, Stadsschouwburg Amsterdam

For the first time I kept a list of museums I’ve visited, and I’ve seen quite a lot of great art, including Wim T. Schippers’ Pindakaasvloer.

Despite a week in Spain, short trips to Germany and Finland and a week of doing nothing at home, I still managed not to spend all my vacation time. Oh, well, there’s always next year. In 2011, I spend at least one night in the following places, and on multiple occasions in those marked with a *.

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance that you know of my List of 100 Things. Here’s a roundup of the items I crossed of this year:

  • #6: Climb the Onze Lieve Vrouwetoren in Amersfoort.
  • #15. I did not shave at all for at least a month.
  • #67. Books I’ve read from my list of 40 booksto read before my 40th birthday: Neuromancer, De uitvreter / Titaantjes, Brave New World, The Great Gatsby, De avonden, The Catcher in the Rye, The Hero with a Thousand Faces
  • #73: See a play by Shakespeare (Richard III, Midsummernight’s Dream)
  • #74: See Beethoven’s Ninth in concert.
  • #88: Museums visited in Amersfoort: Kunsthal KadE
  • #94: Visit the Prado in Madrid, Spain.

So, uhm, anything else? Oh, yes: mind your fingers and see you on the other side.