Upon returning from a long backpacking trip to India and South-East Asia, everyone keeps asking you ‘What did you do there for 8 months?’. There is no good answer to that because ‘doing’ is something you do when you visit London for a week, or travel to Italy for 10 days. If you are fortunate enough to take a few months off and go on that one big trip, you find that you don’t ‘do’ anything. You read a few books, visit a few places, meet a few people along the way. Doing stuff is not the purpose.
While staying in the city of Luang Prabang, Laos in 2002, I spent a couple of days reading a book in a little bookstore called L’Etranger – Books & Tea. The following photo was taken there in an attempt to capture the magical feeling of that place:
[singlepic id=180 w=525 h=357 float=center]
Don’t worry if you can’t see the magic – that is probably because you are looking at it with your eyes.
Sitting on the wooden floor reading a book, it took me a while before I asked what was this enchanting music playing in the background. I was then taken to a side room and shown a binder filled with CDs, and the nice Lao guy explained the specific instructions left by the Canadian owner: “Tosca, this is what we play in the afternoon.”
This is how I came to know the Austrian duo named Tosca, and how I came to love downtempo and lounge music. I actually refer to these electronic styles as ‘harmless music’ (Muzika lo mezika) which might sound like an insult. It is not. You see, I need different things from different styles of music, and downtempo is music that you can listen to while doing something else that needs your focus. Reading, writing, whatever.
Playboy, the men’s magazine that never ceases to surprise, has just released its first CD in a monthly series titled ‘M*sic To F*ck To‘ – and lo and behold, the very first CD is by Tosca and is described as “a super-sexy 60-minute sample of their lush bedroom-ready sound”.
Have a listen: Playboy link is now defunct.