David Boreanz Night!!

I put this on in honor of my blogging partner .....

MP3 :School Is a Drag

He's coming to the Big Apple.
We'll make him blog.
Heh heh heh



This is pretty cool . I am 25 feet from my computer, sitting on the couch, watching David Boreanz (Julliard or Yale, girls?) and typing on my bluetooth keyboard. This is good because the cat meows a lot when I am sitting by the computer screen.

I think that you should listen to these two songs before you read this:

MP3: Beautiful

MP3: Guilty

Which one makes you feel more nostalgic? Interestingly it is the song from the 30's that does it for me. I love the Gordon Lightfoot song. And it does send me back to the age of A.M. radio, wood paneled station wagons and car heaters that really got hot. Oh yeah and vinyl seats. (Hows that for nostalgia?)
Music lesson 101. "Beautiful" is filled with major 7 chords. They are very prevelent in the 70's. Peter Frampton, Little River Band, America all used them to good effect. They definitely take me back to another era. And I love that era. I think the great thing about 70's music is the lush harmonics (major 7 chords for example), the funky, prominent bass playing ("Brick House") and the terrible, terrible lyrics. You would think that the baby boomers would have demanded poetry more rooted in the concerns of the world; unless of course the concerns were cocaine, hooking up and saying "baby" a lot. But this song really did impress me back in the day. I wasn't old enough to analyze the words, but on some molecular level I appreciated the harmonies. It is charming to revisit again after many years. It impresses.....but does not suprise.

"Guilty" , on the other hand, sends me into fits of reveries. The vocal is so imploring. And he has that crooner vibrato that is near impossible to do today without sounding like a clown. The song has great drama as it builds. When I heard it a month ago. I got a very comfortable feeling beacuse it reminded me of the end of a movie. I immediately started trying to think of what Woody Allen it must be. I knew it wasn't Hannah and Her Sisters or Stardust Memories. Too happy for Crimes and Misdemeanors. Rozzi said that maybe it was Alice. That sounded right to me because the song and the movie have a similiar eerie feeling, only cute-like. I came home and looked it up on the internets. The song is from Amelie, a movie that is just a few years old. I was overcome with the wash of nostalgia for a movie that is new to my life. The cultural vibe of the 30's is so ingrained in me that things that are not old to me can perfectly convey a sense of oldness and even oldness-emotional impact. It is as if I have lived though the Depression via music, movies and books. I thought this was intesesting to discover. I wonder if any of you who did not know these songs well had a similiar sense of cultural deja vu?


I Had No Idea

Harold Arlen wrote all of these songs....

MP3: I Got A Right To Sing The Blues

MP3: That Old Black Magic

Mp3: Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive

MP3: The Man That Got Away

MP3: Over The Rainbow

If you want to keep them you need to get quicktime pro.


I Like Them Too

The first time I saw or heard The White Stripes was on one of those MTV award shows. I couldn't concentrate on Jack because I was so preoccupied with how bad Meg was. Then I heard this song courtesy of Glycerin's husband (It was a twofer because I had pretty much forgotten about this classic Dolly Parton song). A little later I also saw two great White Stripes videos on the Michel Gondry retrospective.
All this time I just assumed that it Jack playing drums on the records because the drums sound good. But now, thanks to you , Alex, I see that I was wrong. She is good. Really, really good! I bet her monitor mix just sucked that night. Or she was on Quaaludes.

MP3: Jolene

Your homework is to contemplate music as nostalgia.


Your back is so broken....

I have not had time to respond to Jeff's brilliant last post, but in the interest of maintaining momentum, I'm lobbing an MP3 over the fence for y'all to talk about while I await the muse's intervention.

It's The White Stripes doing "You're Pretty Good Looking For A Girl" live on John Peel's show -- and while I do dig The Stripes, this version pretty much blew my head off. I think it's that Meg is pushing so hard (genius? or just a very primitive, unskilled drummer? and does it matter?) and the song just moves. Cymbals, chords, a proper tune.

It was track #2 on the ranh ranh mix I just made for my wife.

MP3: The White Stripes -- You're Pretty Good Looking For A Girl (Peel Session)


Where Do We Go From Here?

Alex ,
I am tempted to write about “which Rush song ‘Strange Ones’ reminds me of the most”. And believe me, coming from me, that is no insult. However, I will snarkily point out that the Weezer song you hail features Petra Haden and not Rivers Quomo, so that is a little bit outré in my opinion. I do, however, love that one too. And isn’t my desert island song overachieving?
I certainly think so.

I will now do my best Alex imitation and write an essay about my favorite desert island La-La song. La-La was invented by my sweetheart, and is usually sung in a baby doll falsetto. Frank Sinatra does not use that tessitura, but today it will suffice as a literary device, i.e. La-La is a lot less ranh ranh than ranh ranh is.

This song was previously announced to the world as a desert island song on the John Aielli show. It was also part of your Wedding Compilation. The winner is………. I’ve Got You Under My Skin. I became a fan of the man when I bought one of those $3.99 Sinatra’s Gold cassettes at Hastings. It had Three Coins in the Fountain, I Get A Kick Out Of You, Young At Heart, Witchcraft, Nice and Easy, a few more and I’ve Got You Under My Skin. It all grew on me so fast. I thought, how could I have missed this all these years? Why do people make fun of this guy? And the one I still ask: How could someone so bad be so good. Or: Can a cold hearted snake truly sing so tenderly? He’s a lover boy at play. He’s been telling lies! The guy is just so incredible at every aspect of singing (La-La). And his whole art is contained in this one track.

To wit:
1st Phrase-Breathing, Phrasing, Vibrato
2nd Phrase-He let’s you in on that Frank knowingness, there is more going on there than meets the ears. Plus he can sing some badass low notes.
3rd Phrase-He Swings!
4th Phrase-Building drama, He’s going somewhere
5th Phrase-Crescendo
6th Phrase-“Little Fooooool”!!!
7th and 8th Phrases-He continues to subtly emphasize all of the oo sounds and sings some beautiful, swinging, deft high notes.

Excellent Nelson riddle interlude follows and incredibly explosive trombone solo demands that Frank respond in kind! And boy does Frank. This section is Frank’s finest 45 seconds on record. He controls the excitement and his diction (so different from his speaking voice) during the bass pedal point for a couple of phrases before letting loose with the blue note to end all blue notes “DON’T!” It sounds a lot like a foghorn to me. Then he nails that line “Step up, Wake up to reality” like an air hammer. It really feels like the ultimate relationship ultimatum.

I don’t know what happens after that because I’m always asking who I am with if they can believe what they just heard.

It just is amazing that this person who has all these other aspects to his life, and I am tip toeing here, is capable of such artful singing. Maybe that is what he is referring to when he says that he is saloon singer. A saloon singer can gamble, drink, swear, romance and still give a great performance. I suppose. What do I know about it?
MP3: "I've Got You Under My Skin"(?)!