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Posts tagged ‘iTunes’

Under the Influence – #4

No inane introductory chat!  Figure it out or go back to the beginning.   😀

Song #4 is…..

Tusk –  Fleetwood Mac

I love this song. I don’t have a good story about this song. I don’t associate it with anything or anybody, I don’t know what it’s about, I’m not sure what the words are. I just really, really love it. I can listen to it over and over and over again, loudly – and I usually do.  It makes me want to learn to play the drums.

I like to use music to promote and/or enhance a good mood. If I’m already in a good mood, I enjoy music that I really love, music that makes me happy. If I’m not in a good mood, I chose to listen to happy songs to try to offset the mood, rather than finding something to wallow in. I’m not a wallower by nature. I have a playlist in my iTunes library called, amazingly enough, ‘’Happy’’. I was perusing it when I was trying to select my five songs to see if anything seemed like a good choice; Tusk is on it, and I was mulling it over as a selection, and I started thinking about the origin of my happy playlist.

A long time ago, boys and girls, back before iPods and playlists, before CDs even, we made mix tapes. My happy playlist is a direct descendent of a mix tape I made about twenty years ago called….’’happy mix’’.  I had broken up with a boyfriend (or rather, he had broken up with me) and I was bumming hard, and trying not to be. We had “’our song” and the damn thing was following me around – it seemed like it was constantly on the radio. So one day I said enough! I wanted to control my environment better than that, rather than being subjected to the whims of the radio. I made a tape of songs that didn’t make me think of anything that made me blue. And this technique has served me well for half my life now. So while contemplating my song choices, I went looking for the original tape. The handwritten song list was faded and hard to read, but there it was, on the very first happy tape I ever made: Tusk.

I loved it then. I love it now.


Who knew Stevie could twirl a baton? Must be the precursor to swishing her skirts to and fro.

This was a short one! See, not much story, just dig the song…and apparently I really do love marching band music, even when they’re from USC?

Under the Influence – part deux

OMG, I just listened to it! It was soooooo much fun!!!!!!!!! I’m high on radio right now! Thank you to my friends near and far who listened – it was a blast hearing from you.

(later)

What the hell is she talking about?

As mentioned previously, I recently had the opportunity to be a guest on a local radio program, Under the Influence, to talk about five songs that have left their mark on me in some fashion. There’s no podcast available at this time so you don’t get the fun banter here, but I did promise to share a recap.

It was tricky, picking the songs. I love music. (That seems like a really stupid, obvious thing to say –  I mean, doesn’t everybody? Except I’m not actually sure everybody does; I’m always sort of surprised when I discover that not everyone listens to music all day long. Talk radio? Pass. Books on tape/cd/other? Never listened to one. Silence? What’s that? Music. Music in the car, in the office, at night to fall asleep. Music always. Oops. I just digressed all over the place.) I have about 5000 songs in my iTunes library, so limiting myself was a bit difficult. The flip side being, a lot of my very favorite tunes don’t have any particular significance to me – I just like them. You can’t really spend an hour talking about, ‘Yeah, that song sounds cool. I like piano.’ Or I can’t, anyway. Plus, my memory is abysmal. My parents have two daughters. One of them remembers every detail about every thing that has ever happened, ever. The other one is me. So remembering something that moved me twenty or thirty (or forty) years ago proved to be a big challenge.

And, of course, there was self-imposed public pressure – this was for a radio show. Did I really want to subject people to listen to things like a marching band or a Broadway show tune? (Um….apparently!!  🙂 ) But yeah, I want you to think I’m cool, so I had to consider that factor also. Although as I said before, there also were no wrong answers, so I tried not to get too hung up.

We’ll talk later about some that almost made the cut, but now let’s get on with it!

Song 1:  Free to be you and me – The New Seekers
A looooooooong time ago, back in the early 1970s, Marlo Thomas pulled together a groovy project called Free To Be You And Me. It is a compilation of songs and poems and stories gathered in a book and recorded on a record (a RECORD!) and there was a TV program as well but I only remember the book & the record, which lived in our house. And according to the foreword, a book was Marlo Thomas’ original objective; the rest was gravy. She wanted a book to read to her niece that didn’t tell her what she should be, but rather, “a book of stories and poems and songs that would help boys and girls feel free to be who they are and who they want to be.”  There’s one about a boy who wants a doll. And one about not judging a book by its cover. And one about how the moms in commercials on tv look happy when they’re cleaning because they’re in a commercial, and NO ONE likes cleaning (except my friend Heather and she is CUCKOO) and so everyone should pitch in and help out.

And I have these super cool, liberal parents who also wanted that for their kids. I grew up thinking I could be or do anything, and it’s not just because of Free To Be You And Me, but I can remember sitting with my sister on the floor in our brightly colored basement listening to the record and reading along in the book over and over again. Hey, here’s my book!

 
My book!

 

I had kind of forgotten about all of this and then Marlo Thomas came to speak at Tapestry and I was planning on attending, and I thought how cool it would be if I could have my old book signed….if only I knew where it was. We had a house fire when I was growing up. And then in early adulthood I was storing a bunch of stuff in my mom’s basphoto 2ement and we had a flood. So I wasn’t even 100% sure I still had the book. But lo and behold, I did, on a bookshelf with some other surviving remnants of my childhood. (I’m pretty sure my sister has the record.) Anyway, finding my book and getting it signed put it all back on my radar. It’s available on CD now, so I bought a copy for myself and another one to send to a friend’s kids so I know another generation will learn to love it.

I didn’t realize at the time that not everybody growing up in Indiana was listening to this. Not everyone had hippie parents who raised them to be open-minded, idealistic, and full of GIRL POWER. I’m so thankful that mine did. And Free To Be You And Me is part of the solid foundation that made me the optimistic, idealistic, independent, badass chick I am.

Here, for your listening pleasure: Free To Be You & Me. I’ll be singing along at my end.

 

So, I was reading a really, really long blog post over the weekend and maybe I have a short attention span, but I lost interest and started skimming. To cater to my fellow OOH, SHINY! Syndromers, we’re going to split this up. Telling four more stories like that all in one post just seems too long. So that’s all you get for tonight.  See you back here soon  for song 2! 🙂

Sometimes I am an idiot and sometimes I get it right.

In 2011, Mumford and Sons and The Avett Brothers and Bob Dylan all performed together at the Grammys. It was amazing. (Except for Bob Dylan, because he is really not amazing at all, ever.) It was the first time I’d heard Mumford & Sons (and probably the first for The Avett Brothers) and they knocked my socks off. The whole performance was killer, but I focused on Mumford. And I still love them. Yes. Muchly. My point, however, is that I did not fall in love with the Avett Brothers that night. I was too blown away by Mumford.  And sons.

I have several friends who like The Avett Brothers. They’re generally people who have respectable taste in music, but I never ventured into Avett territory to give it a listen. For some reason, however, I decided I should go see them when they come to town next month. The Avett Brothers, that is, not my friends. Although I’m not opposed to seeing my friends. In fact, I quite like some of them.

This scenario is peculiar, because I don’t usually to go to a concert when I really have no familiarity with the music. Not completely unheard of, however; 3Names convinced me to go see the Zac Brown Band with him a few years ago, even though I’d never heard of them, by paying for half my ticket, and he was right, it was a fun show. I do like to support things here in town, especially when they are uncommon, special, not your usual past-their-prime or not-yet-famous acts that pass through these parts. A few years back Ben Folds performed with the philharmonic and even though I dig him, I dig the Phil, and it definitely fell into that atypical for Fort Wayne category, I didn’t go. (This is the part where I am an idiot.) I had some legitimate reasons for not going, but mostly they were just stupid life things that I should have worked around. Everyone who went absolutely raved about how amazing it was. And I missed it. I could kick myself, still today. This is one of my biggest concert regrets in life, second only to missing Florence & the Machine open for U2. That was something I actually WENT TO, I just didn’t allow adequate time to get there. In my defense, East Lansing does not know how to move traffic. Jesus, people. It’s not like you have football games there all fall. Oh wait, it’s EXACTLY LIKE THAT. Learn how to move the freakin’ cars!

Anyway, I am determined not to have the same kind of concert regret again, and somehow I got it in my head that the Avett Brothers show would be something not to miss. I don’t know why exactly I thought that. But I bounced it off Klondike and he was game, and the tickets weren’t outrageous by today’s concert standards, so ok, let’s go. And the concert is Valentine’s Day. Klondike, act surprised by your present of concert tickets. 😀

So then I decided perhaps I should check them out ahead of time. By good fortune, Santa just gave me an iTunes gift card (I know, I’m Jewish, but iTunes! – who am I to say no?) so I downloaded “I and Love and You”. Oh, sweet Jesus, what took me so damn long?? I can’t remember the last time I loved a CD this much (even though it’s not a CD, it’s a collection of digital files, but I don’t know how to deal with that; I’m in the digital age, but reluctantly). Album. That might be the right word. Of course, that conjures up an image of a vinyl record. Whatever. Call it what you like, I’m in love.

I get to see them in concert in six weeks? Oh hells yeah. I’ll report back, but I fully expect it to be awesome.

This is the part where I get it right.

Oh yeah, and I just downloaded “The Carpenter”. Might as well keep going.  🙂

P.S. I tried to find the amazing Grammy performance for you, but no such luck, unless you want to watch a shitty video of someone watching it on TV. Seriously WHY do people shoot videos of their TV screen and post them on the internet?