The resulting project took me the better part of six months. I chipped away at it every night before bed, taking just 10 or 15 minutes before I turned in for the night to sit down in front of the computer, choose an album, and cast myself back in time to when it captured my world. Slowly, the list took form. Eventually, I realized that the list wasn’t just a catalog of music, but also an autobiographical story, told through albums that I loved in the most formative years of my life. As it turned out, writing about the music I loved between the ages of nine and 18 meant writing a lot about my life. Some of the stories told below are things I’ve revealed before. Some are things I don’t think I’ve ever told anyone. All form the backbone for a collection of albums that is completely “me.” I didn’t write these records, but there’s at least a song from every single one of them that feels like it came directly from my heart.