There's this great meme/questionnaire spinning around from Do The Math where Ethan Iverson has been probing musical opinions around the blogosphere:
GIVE US AN EXAMPLE OR TWO OF AN ESPECIALLY GOOD OR INTERESTING:
1. Movie score: The Battle of Algiers.
2. TV theme: Knight Rider.
3. Melody: "Lonely Woman" by Ornette Coleman. A painfully obvious choice - but a great melody. Some less obvious choices are: "A Portrait of Hank Williams Junior" by Wayne Horvitz and "Dust Devil" by Bill Horvitz. Great melodies from the brothers Horvitz.
4. Harmonic language: Ben Johnston's string quartets. Not to mention the entire Harry Partch catalogue (the portion that he didn't destroy by fire).
5. Rhythmic feel: Unspeakable by Bill Frisell.
6. Hip-hop track: "Television, The Drug of the Nation" by Disposable Heroes.
7. Classical piece: Twill by Twilight by Toru Takemitsu, Symphony no. 4 by Charles Ives and Socrate by Erik Satie.
8. Smash hit: "Burning Down the House" by the Talking Heads.
9. Jazz album: "Ah Um" by Charles Mingus, "The Jazz Messengers at the Cafe Bohemia Volumes 1 and 2" by Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers and "Live at Tonic" by Medeski, Martin and Wood.
10. Non-American folkloric group: Ivo Papasov and his Orchestra.
11. Book on music: Meta Hodos and Meta Meta Hodos by James Tenney, Sounding the Complete Violin by Malcolm Goldstein and Jazz: Its Evolution and Essence by Andre Hodier.
A) Name an surprising album (or albums) you loved when you were developing as a musician: something that really informs your sound but that we would never guess in a million years: Tarkus by Emerson Lake and Palmer.
C) Name a rock or pop album that you wish had been a smash commercial hit (but wasn't, not really): Tocsin by Elliott Sharp/Carbon. Why can't everyone be whistling "Raptor" on their way into work in the morning? Am I the only one?
D) Name a favorite drummer, and an album to hear why you love that drummer: Joey Baron. Especially on Where in the World? by Bill Frisell.