I apologize for not yet posting an update to the "Cold Civil War" post. It's been a combination of ADD, being busy and not feeling well. Every time I get some thoughts together, a new absurdity or outrage emerges as this whole election enters the homestretch. The craziness and WTFness of this election is making me feel like I'm living in the bearded Spock universe.
Anyway, until I get my you-know-what together, how about some humor and then some music.
Even Peggy Noonan -- the Grand Dame of Gipperism -- has succumbed to Obama's undeniable conservative charms. Just last month I listened to her wax poetic about the Adonis of Chicago between chukkers at the Newport Club polo tournament final. "Why Peggy, you old dowager," I quipped, "I believe you just had an orgasm."
Next, a cool song from my childhood. I was really surprised when I watched this video because I always thought a woman sang this song:
The Ozark Mountain Daredevils - "Jackie Blue"
I think this song is just pure fun. I also like that the video makes fun of American Idol:
The Dollyrots - "Because I'm Awesome"
Finally, the fantastic Sugarplastic with an appropriate song for the season:
Well, I'm not the kind to talk of another
But I know a girl as nosey as mother
And all I'll say is, Gladys Kravitz
If she doesn't know, it isn't worth knowing
The waiter just smiles cause she thinks she's ordering in Italian, Gladys Kravitz
Gladys is so special in so many ways
Her mind is set on madness, her mouth tooth decay
With her passport picture she proudly displays and says
"I've been round the world before"
Up in the air the rumors are flying
As high as a kite the fingers are pointing
Around the town, Gladys Kravitz
Narrow the mind, the wider the tongue, it's said
Wished you had done all the things
That she said you did, Gladys Kravitz
Nosey and petty and two-faced and feisty
Completely Miss Informed
Endlessly phoning the venom is flowing
The umbilicle cord
Sowing the seeds that are sure to displease
When they come back to haunt you
Sooner or later
Also added: Matt Mahaffey's band Self's fantastic cover of They Might Be Giants' "Ana Ng"; a cool, trance like song by Maps called "It Will Find You"; and a nice, somewhat obscure oldie by the Remains called "Why Do I Cry", which I originally heard on the Little Steven's Underground Garage channel on Sirius. That channel, First Wave and Chill are my favorite channels on Sirius.
I added the same songs to my Radio Blog widget on the sidebar. I upgraded to the new version, so I don't have everything working the way I would like. However, you can play the songs...it's just going to go to a new page instead of opening up a window and the colors haven't been customized. Also, you have to click a song to start playing it.
I hope to add some more music to both the Live 365 station and the Radio Blog in the near future. Enjoy!
Not long ago, I decided to replace my hinky old iBook with a new MacBook. I just got it today and I'm getting the basic setup and software updates done. Then, tomorrow evening, I will move all my stuff from the Maxtor external firewire drive I've been running the iBook off of (since the hard drive doesn't work properly) to the new MacBook. It will be nice to have a truly portable laptop again -- the iBook has not been portable for quite some time because it had to run off an external drive. After the move is complete, I will see if I can sell the iBook for parts or to someone who would be interested in fixing it. I didn't think the iBook was worth the money it would take to fix it.
I love what I've seen of the MacBook so far...the Leopard operating system looks really nice. And it's so much faster than the iBook. I had no problems connecting to my wireless network. I've had some problems getting my PC and iBook to connect to each other consistently. Maybe the newer operating system and network card in the MacBook will have less problems with that.
So, while I'm busy, here's some music in honor of my new toy:
This weekend I added around forty songs to my Live 365 station: LilacRose Radio. I added most of the new songs last night -- I stayed up far too late, but got a lot done. The playlist is now a little over eleven hours long. I still have room for about 14 songs (give or take a few). You can get an idea of what I added here and here. I'm also going to update my Radio.Blog on the sidebar pretty soon as well. I will include some songs I added to the Live 365 station. I also put a link to my Pandora station on the sidebar.
Anyway, if you are a Live 365 member and if you enjoy my station, please rate it five stars. Thanks!
Hello there again. Yes, I'm still on kind of a sabbatical and yes, I still owe everyone that lengthy post I've been promising. I will post it eventually...I still need to do some fine tuning on it.
Until then, how about some music? I've been meaning to link this for a while...it's my Pandora station: LilacRose on Pandora. It's still a work in progress...I listen and add more artists as time permits. Not everything that comes up is necessarily something I would like. One time, it played a song by Loverboy (blech!) and I hit the "thumbs down" as fast as I could. Also, here is my Pandora profile page.
Meanwhile, my poor Live 365 station has been suffering from neglect. They now have more room for songs on my current package, but I haven't taken advantage of it yet. A few months ago, I took a few songs down and prepared to add some new ones, but I never got around to it. I will get around to it eventually...hopefully sooner than later. I have a whole bunch of good stuff I want to add.
I will also eventually change the songs in my Radio.Blog. There's some good stuff there right now, though...mainly songs by The Sugarplastic, who unfortunately are not yet included in the Pandora library (although I have requested that they be added).
Have fun and happy listening!
Update: Well, I was afraid this would happen...the Pandora station managed to embarrass me. This is why I prefer something like Live 365 because I can have complete control over what gets played. Anyway, I will keep working with the station and trying to decrease the possibility of it playing a crappy or offensive song.
I have a lot of new favorite artists, but one old favorite is The Cars. Benjamin Orr, bassist and lead singer of many Cars songs, died of pancreatic cancer six years ago today. As a tribute, here are some live performances by The Cars featuring Ben on lead vocals. I saw some of these performances when they were originally broadcasted.
First off, I'll start with The Cars circa 1982 on Fridays performing "Think It Over":
There's more after the jump...
Also circa 1982, The Cars perform "Cruiser" on the Tomorrow show:
Circa 1979, "Candy-O" (I think this is from the Midnight Special):
Also circa 1979, "Let's Go" (Again, I think this is from the Midnight Special):
And finally, circa 1978, "Bye Bye Love" on Musikladen:
I just recently started getting into searching YouTube for videos and live performances from various artists I like. Below is one that's beyond awesome...16 Horsepower performing "Strong Man" live. It starts off slow, builds and totally rocks out by the end!
(I'm planning a very special musical tribute tomorrow to a performer who is no longer with us. He was in a band that is as different from 16 Horsepower as you can get. Barb, you may be able to guess who he is, since he came from your neck of the woods [Cleveland].)
A while back, Dawn Eden wrote about how a member of the band The Sugarplastic, by introducing her to the works of G.K. Chesterton, was responsible for putting her on the path that led to her finding Christ and her eventual conversion to Catholicism. I decided to check this band out, so I listened to the stuff they have available on iTunes. I was so impressed and intrigued, I bought both albums that were available on iTunes at that time. (Since then, another album is now available as well as a solo album by one of the band's members. I plan to check those out very soon.)
Now, if I can't stand a certain band or type of music, I have no problems expressing myself. However, I'm terrible when it comes to writing reviews about music I love, because it's hard for me to put into words why I love the music. The Sugarplastic is one of the most unique and wonderful bands I've discovered in a long time. The music is poppy but yet complex. Strange and beautiful at the same time. I don't think I could ever thank Dawn enough for turning me on to this band.
Rather than try to describe them, I'm going to put a few songs from them on the Radio Blog. I'm also going to put some other stuff in there too. The Radio Blog is on the sidebar, but I'm going to make it extra easy for you to listen by putting the player right in this post.
As a tribute to Dr. Moog, who was profoundly influential on modern music, I have put three tracks from Autobahn by Kraftwerk in the radio blog. This album was released in 1974. (My Dad had an 8-track of it when I was a kid.) Included is the title track in its complete 22+ minute glory.
After several months, I have finally put some more songs in the radio blog. I have a few songs from the new Beck album Guero, a couple from the latest Woven Hand album Consider the Birds and a lot of other stuff. Also, I have a very special long-distance dedication for a blogger who recently called me "narrow-minded" -- ostensibly because of this post.
"Life unwinds like a cheap sweater
but since I gave up hope I feel a lot better
and the truth gets blurred like a wet letter
but since I gave up hope I feel a lot better
"While the world winds down to a final prayer
Nothing soothes quicker than complete despair
I predict by dinner I won't even care
Since I gave up hope I feel a lot better"
This is a song that satirizes academia, cynicism and corrupt philosophies. I think that it may be even more relevant today than it was when it was written in the late-80s.
If you are interested, you can listen to both songs by going here (but only for a limited time).
Incidentally, I've finally changed the songs in the radio blog.
And one more thing...while I haven't had a chance to add more songs lately, there are over five hours of music on LilacRose Radio. I'll add more songs soon. I'm also putting together a website for the radio station. I'm really happy that people are actually listening to the station and presetting it.
It's been on the sidebar for a few days but I haven't mentioned it. Somebody liked it enough to preset it, so I thought I would go ahead and mention it. I now have my own Live 365 radio station: LilacRose Radio. It has about four and a half hours of music right now. I'm going to add more, since I still have more room, but I have to decide what to add. Because of licensing rules, you have to be careful not to have too many songs from the same artists or albums within a certain time frame, so that makes programming the station a little more challenging.
I was reluctant to say anything about the station because I've never gotten any comments about the music in the Radio Blog and very little feedback about the off-site downloads I've offered in the past. I figured that people just thought my taste in music sucked. But, if you're inclined, give the station a listen and rate it.
I'm going to change the songs in the Radio Blog soon. I may do something a little different with it...I'm thinking of putting the audiobook version of The Screwtape Letters in the Radio Blog for this month. We'll see...
I've been really tired and sick feeling the past few days. I feel like I'm trying to catch a cold, but yet it's not fully what you could call a cold. I would rather have a real cold instead of this halfway cold. So I don't feel like doing much...including blogging.
One bright spot though...remember this post where I mentioned the Avion CD? Well, I've been listening to it the past couple of weeks and it's just awesome! It's a well-balanced combination of songs that rock and very nicely done ballads*. You can listen to songs from the CD at the Avion website. Also, I'm putting a song from the CD up on my radio blog for a couple of days -- "Bulletproof Glow". If you like what you hear, go buy the CD!
Another song I'm putting up there is "Hate to Say I Told You So" by the Hives. Why? Because it rocks, that's why. And because I picked it to be my "entrance music" in this Thinklings thread. (Come to think of it, "Bulletproof Glow" would also make an excellent "entrance song".)
I will probably change out all the songs in the radio blog in a couple of days. I think I will start putting up ten songs at a time and changing them each month. The radio blog is on the sidebar, under "Site Extras".
*Normally, I have a tendency to hate ballads. In the wrong hands, ballads can be treacly, overdone and bombastic. But that is not the case here. What makes a ballad work is simplicity and sincerity, and the ballads on Avion work wonderfully.
At work today, we were discussing this Worst Song List and we talked about songs we hated. I pretty much agree with the top ten. I always hated "We Built This City"...that song stinks on ice!
Now, I've talked about bad lyrics a long time ago, but now I'm just going to list songs or bands I really hate. If you like any of these bands or songs, please don't get all mad at me...after all, I may like something that you think is crappy.
Okay, the following are songs/artists I hate quite a lot in no particular order:
The Four Seasons -- that band from the sixties with the guy with the whiny voice who sings, "Walk Like a Man". As if...
Journey -- good Lord, how I hated this band in my teens. It seemed everybody loved them except me. Bleh!
Chicago or anything with Peter Cetera on vocals.
Anything sung by over emoting "divas" like Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston or Celine Dion...which brings me to...
That awful Titanic song. I've never seen that movie and don't want to. The song is part of the reason.
Bon Jovi -- Blech! Ptooi!
"Tubthumping" by Chumbawamba
Alanis Morrisette -- Michele has posted a song by Self (which is a good band) that makes vicious fun of her. (Be warned, the lyrics get pretty nasty, but they're no worse than those by the "artist" they're ridiculing.)
And finally, boy bands and Britney Spears type crap are a given.
If I come up with anything else I think is noteworthy in its suckiness, I'll add an update or two.
Update: Just thought of another one: Air Supply.
Update 2: Okay, I'm probably going to really offend some folks, now. Here are some artists I hate that I think are very overrated: Bruce StinkSpringsteen, Pearl Jam, Creed (the poor man's Pearl Jam) and Janis Joplin. Also, being from the South and having to hear this song ad nauseum, I have a very special loathing for "Freebird" by Lynyrd Skynyrd.
I added two songs, because they are just fitting right now: "Flying Solo" and "Wonderful Life" by the Tories. Sadly, the Tories only released two CDs (which you can buy here and here) before calling it quits. However, the frontman, Steve Bertrand, has a new band and CD just out: Avion. I've ordered it from Amazon and I'm really looking forward to hearing it.
The radio blog is on the sidebar under "Site Extras", in case you were wondering.
One cover song I really like is the band Self's cover of the Doobie Brothers' "What a Fool Believes". The song is from their CD Gizmodgery, an album in which the songs are performed entirely with toy instruments.
Via Dizzy Girl I found this: RADIO.BLOG.CLUB. When I get some time, I'm going to look into setting up my own little blog radio.
I tried this little experiment last week, and it didn't seem to generate much interest. (But I do appreciate the folks who did check it out.) I'm kind of skittish about this stuff because I don't want to get in trouble with my host. (This is why the experiment was not on this site.) I might be offering some more "surprises" in the near future, so stay tuned.
deeply shaken see I come that way
ill at ease in my own skin
I hum along to the down home drone
down in my soul to stay
ain't gonna listen to my own noise
even though I love the sound
it come back hollow on hollow
when it come back around
quick to anger and quick to speak
afraid to lose these things not mine to keep
the spirit is willing the flesh is weak
how long have you been standing there
only here a lonely man
I get behind myself
grieved in my spirit by my hands
seems he has turned his head
this collector of useless clutter
somethin now has caught his eye
now his words only stumble out in stutters
There are a few other songs I can think of that are pro-life. I remember hearing one by the Galactic Cowboys called "If I Were a Killer". And Steve Taylor has several songs that deal with this subject. If you can think of any other pro-life songs, feel free to post a comment.
Dean Esmay asks, "...can you name a song you have heard that no one else you know has ever heard, but which in your estimation is exquisitely beautiful?" My answer is "Every Hour Here" by The Innocence Mission. This song is on their 1991 album Umbrella. If you love gentle, deeply spiritual, beautiful music, you should give The Innocence Mission a listen.
We ride our bikes
around the circle in the cemetery,
I wave up to You on the Cross.
Am I to come upon You suddenly like this forever?
Happy, relieved that You are here
and I can see You, I can feel you?
You are like the ticket-half
I find inside the pocket of my old leaf-raking coat.
There all the time, all the while,
I so often seem to leave You
and other islands.
And on my beads
where I can see You, I can feel You.
I take the ticket-half
and put it on the table, saying,
This is God
and He's here through my comings
and my goings.
But I walk past the ticket-half,
I walk past the ticket-half.
I walk past the ticket-half
just as I've walked past the Cross on our wall.
Our self-importance grows so dazzling we don't see
But Gentle Jesus, aren't You always,
aren't You every hour here?
Strike this little pose
Chin up in the air
Lips together tightly
Nostrils in a flare
Now look like you care
Practice in the mirror
Brushing back a tear
A promising career could begin right here at home
If you've got that smug...
Hey mama hey mama lookee what your little babies all have become
Hey mama hey mama don't it ever make you wish you'd been a nun?
Vain and fickle, were we weaned on a pickle?
Is it in our blood?
Rome is burning
We're here turning smug
Strike another pose
Swallow their conventions
Get your power fix
We love to mud wrestle
We love to be politically Koreshed
Practice that smug
Post it like a man
One part Master Limbaugh
Two parts Madame Streisand
Now pretend you're in a band
My, my, we're looking smug
Very very very very
All you smug-starved millions in the thick of the search
Welcome to our church
Whatcha wanna solve?
We can help you evolve from merely self-righteous
To perfectly smug
Strike the proud pose of our country club brethren
Friendly as a tomb
Fragrant as the bottom of a locker-room broom
Now what's the matter?
Hey...get off your knees...that part don't come 'til later...
God will not be pleased...
ain't none ever seen the face of his foe no
he ain't made of flesh & bone
he's the one who sits up close beside you
an when he's there you are alone
every man is evil yes an every man is a liar
an unashamed with the wicked tongues sing
in the black soul choir
yes an no man ever seen the face of my lord no
not since he left his skin
he's the one you keep cold on the outside girl
he's at your door let him in
o i will forgive your wrongs
yes i am able
an for my own i feel great shame
i would offer up a brick to the back of your head boy
if i were cain
(I would post an MP3 of this, since I have ripped a bunch of songs from my CD collection to play in Winamp. [That's what you see in my playlist on the sidebar.] But I don't want to get unceremoniously tossed off my host, so I can't do it. Sorry about that.)
And then [guitarist Jeff] Sterzer, quite coolly, brings up Martin Luther.
"One of his new converts came up and said, ‘I’m a believer now; I want to serve God. What do I do?’ And Martin Luther asked him what he did for a living. ‘I’m a cobbler; I make shoes,’ he said, and Luther told him to make a good shoe and sell it at a fair price. There’s your reasonable service to God—it doesn’t have to be complicated. So that’s what we do: we make good shoes and sell them at fair prices."
Gotta love a band who quotes Martin Luther.
Go here and give “Something to Say” and their other stuff a listen!
I was supposed to blog about music, wasn't I? I've always been a big music fan. But for some reason, I just can't write long, drawn-out essays on why I like something or why I think it's good. Usually, the best I can do is say, "This is cool! Check it out!" So, I'm going to post the most recent 5 CDs I've bought that I'm really enjoying right now:
The Hives/Veni Vidi Vicious - Twenty-eight minutes of pure fun!
The White Stripes/White Blood Cells - Cool, stripped-down garage rock.
E-Pression recently had a contest looking for the worst pop song lyrics. When I read of the contest, my first thought was, "Anything by Bon Jovi!" However, I ended up nominating "The Warrior" by Scandal. I always though that song was stupid, especially the line "follow me stereo jungle child". What on earth does that even mean?
Anyway, Zorak posted the contest winners and runners-up. My nomination was posted under "Songs I like, while guiltily admitting that the lyrics are bad." A couple of the winners/runners-up are "guilty pleasures" for me, too: "Allstar" by Smashmouth and "A Horse with No Name" by America.
Thanks to Zorak for letting me play, and thanks for linking to me in the contest results. In return, I've added E-Pression to my "Blog-Oh-Rama" on the sidebar.
BTW, that Poison song has no relation to how I came up with the name of this blog. In fact, after being reminded of that song, I almost want to change the name.