February 28, 2011

Day 165: Buck 65 ~ Wicked and Weird

"Will I still be at it when I’m 50 years old? I guarantee you that I will. There may not always be an audience, but that didn’t stop me in the beginning…"

Buck 65's latest release, "Twenty Odd Years" marks a significant amount of time to be in Canada's Hip Hop scene. Sadly, I didn't hear about this artist until last year, his twentieth year of recording. Regardless, I've come to appreciate his merit at this time, and, in the end, that's all that will ever matter!

It's Day 165...I had to feature Buck today ;-)

February 27, 2011

Day 164: Meaghan Smith ~ It Snowed

I look out my window on a foggy-white world. If I look close enough, I realize it's not fog, but small snowflakes falling on a late February ground. Really, spring is still a month away, but many people are still confused by this white world we're forced to be a part of still.

Why can't we all embrace the wintry weather, as this song does, all winter long rather than just in November and December? Can't the romance of it all last more than that magical month of its novelty?

I can only ever speak for myself and my opinion of the world. So, I'll tell you that this is great! I'll take freshly fallen snow over muddy ice and thirty below weather any day! Would I take it over growing puddles, sunny skies and dripping roofs? Hmmmm....well, I'm just as excited for spring as you are ;-) but if it's gonna be cold, it better be snowing!

February 26, 2011

Across The Universe: Carol Woods And Timothy T ~ Let It Be

I'm typeless...

I wish I could put into words the feelings I have right now. I wish that all of the words in the English language would be enough to express my gratitude for synchronicity. I wish I could explain it to you right now...

It's not the right time, though. I wouldn't do it justice at this moment. Another day, another time, I'll be able to explain it in a way that you will understand.

Unless, of course, you already understand.

If so, congratulations! If not...

when the student is ready, the teacher will appear

Maybe I'll be your teacher one day...

February 25, 2011

Natalie Imbruglia - Torn

This song takes me back. I used to love Natalie Imbruglia. I would play her cd OVER and OVER and OVER...and this was always one of the favourite tunes...

February 24, 2011

The Sunshine Underground - Put You In Your Place

For all those Sunshine Underground fans out there, I will begin with an apology...I'm sorry I have nothing more to add to your extensive knowledge about this band other than the fact that I think this is a fabulous song!

Also, I have had them on my iPod for about six months now...and I finally made this my fav new running song...

Ah, the beat! You have to love the beat...

"I'm on top, and you're trying to stop me now/ I'm on top and you're trying to stop me now..." filled me ears as I stared at the speed of the treadmill. It kept me going. I kept going. Faster. Faster. More and more mountains overcome. More and more plateaus pushed through.

I am in love with this song...almost as much as I've fallen in love with running...but my ears won't be stiff tomorrow ;-)

February 23, 2011

Nelly Furtado - I'm Like A Bird

I know I've been very positive lately about staying in one place, remaining focused and dedicated to the path I want to be on right now, and continue to "stay the course," "trust the universe," and view any distractions as tests to my character rather than the "big opportunity"... but I still just wanna fly away somedays...

February 22, 2011

Dishwalla ~ Counting Blue Cars

This evening, I commiserated with a colleague on the abundant discussion surrounding spirituality.  "So many people have brought up religion to me lately," she commented.  I agreed with the sentiment, but expanded it to include the whole winter.

Like most theological discussions, the one that ensued answered fewer questions than it raised.  That, in my opinion, is the purpose of life: to continue to be more curious than you are certain.  When I meet God, if I haven't already, I'll be sure to ask Her about it...

February 21, 2011

Norah Jones - Sunrise

I wrote recently about a similar artist, with a voice almost as amazing as this young woman's.  Luckily, the two are different, so we are blessed with twice as much beautiful music to listen to!

February 20, 2011

blink-182 - What's My Age Again?

Over the last month, I have been having a few issues with feeling "old."  Not that I am, oh no!  At 25, I am the happiest I have ever been in my life, with the most responsibilities I have ever had (a cat, an apartment with a lease agreement, working for myself, trusted with specific responsibilies at the jobs that pay me enough to survive, etc.), and the most care-free attitude I have ever wanted.  It is that attitude, perhaps, that makes me feel like the young men in this song...and wonder if, at twenty-five, I should perhaps care just a little bit more about who, what, where and why people respect me...

I won't change, though...I'm enjoying this free spirit lifestyle!  And as my dear friend warned me when I told her I had to stop closing down the bars, "Oh, Jodi...we're just getting started...."

It's odd, though, that as I begin to start feeling my age, it is songs like this, from my youth, that I flock to.  I really am having a Quarter Life Crisis.

February 19, 2011

Singing in the Rain - Good Morning !!

I hate to post ANOTHER unavailable video, but this one is just so great.  View it on YouTube here.

This is my Saturday song...or at least, on Friday nights, I always think this is going to be my Saturday song. This morning, I was not at all that cheerful to be awake in the morning (Friday night, I may have been...), but alas, this song still had to be sung at some point today!

Singing in the Rain was the first musical I ever saw. I remember the extravagance of it all like it was last year, but it was more like seven years ago this winter! I went with a fellow appreciator of the arts, my dear friend Kira, and we sat in the front row of Vancouver's Stanley theatre. The special effects were the best part - we caught a few splashes from the dance moves when they were singing in the rain. It was a delightful experience!

I kept the poster from this show as a reminder of that first year in the big city. When I hear this song, talk about musicals, or even just see a bright yellow raincoat, I am taken back to that time. It was a really good year...

Once again, there are lyrics along the bottom of the video, so you can sing along, learn the words, and serenade me the next time you see me on a Saturday morning (or Friday night)!

February 18, 2011

The Dandy Warhols - Bohemian Like You

Believe it or not, this song has been on my "to post" list for quite a few weeks, let alone days. Today finally felt like the PERFECT day for it.

Reasons I love this song:

* the beat
* the mention of "vegan"
* both characters are servers
* the "ex on the couch" reminds me of one of my top five movies, Reality Bites
* I have this unbelievable urge to twirl like a dervish whenever the tune randomly appears on my iPod. :-D

This video ROCKS as well. Karaoke, anybody? L-O-V-E IT!

February 17, 2011

Peter Bjorn And John ~ Young Folks

This song, like many others, reminds me of my first summer in Edmonton. Of course, it had come out the year before, but with many other things in my life, I'm never very up-to-date on music (yes, even with this music blog I'm doing!).

That was an interesting summer that I've been thinking about a lot lately. It's only fitting, then - considering today's song - that that summer marks a change in the friendships I make. Before living in Edmonton, most of my friends were older than me. Afterwards, most of my friends became younger than me. I'm going to take a paragraph or two to ruminate on that...

I remember this discussion I had with my aunt, a year or two before that summer. I was talking about feeling out of place because the friends I was making were all older than me. This was not something to be overly concerned with, she reassured me. For most of her life, she has been attracted to people of certain ages. In her twenties, her friends all seemed to be thirty-five. In her thirties, she spent her days with twenty-seven-year-olds. By her forties, she gravitated back to the thirty-five-year-olds.

This is a rough description of a conversation that had quite the impact on my life, and for that I apologize. The idea of being attracted to a certain age of a person rather than the personality or common interests of my friends took some time to adjust to. Once I was comfortable with it, though, I clung to this notion and allowed it to shape my perception of friendship. There was less questions about favourite bands or the latest book some one had read and more or an emphasis on, "so...what year were you born?" I'm not sure if either of those two questions can a good friend create.

A year after the conversation, I began to make friends with people my age. They were all still a few months older than I, but at the same stage of preparation for the "real world." It was a relief to finally find a group of peers I had SO much in common with, and I began to worry less about lacking the life skills of the people I hung around with. In fact, I may have brought many life skills to the social group I corrupted in university...but that's a different story altogether. Our time together may have been short - a mere two years - but I made some friendships there that will last a lifetime. As I've written about before, it's nice to have a solid group of people to go through different life stages with.

Suddenly, I was thrust from that world - the Land of Lotus Eaters, nights of writing and rewriting, reading and researching, chatting and wheelie-chair racing - and into the "Real World." Or so I thought I would be. I took a job working for an outdoor museum in the largest city within a day's trip to my hometown. Ah, back to the dry air, brown ditches and hot summers of the prairies. I was excited to have a job outside of retail and thought it would be great to finally make some money!

Me, the university grad with my older sister's connection, walked into the first day expecting to find like-minded historians and perhaps a few fellow closet-thespians. While we all had a passion for the arts, and became quite attached to the historical accuracies of our characters and the buildings we showed off to visitors, I quickly realized that I was among the older group of employees...and not overly attracted to making friends with the rest of the people in the older group. (Of course, my older sister's connection will always be a dear friend to me, and I have love for everybody I worked with at the museum.) Instead, I gravitated to the group of individuals who had a)finished their first year in university b)hadn't even started university. Why this attraction? ...

I took this temporary position because I was leaving for England in the fall. My friends from university were all talking about grad school and academia and I needed to take a break. A long break. A decade break. But school was the only thing I had ever known. School was the only thing I thought I had ever been good at. Academia was my thing. I was, for the most part, beginning my quarter life crisis...

I remember bawling the day I realized I was leaving Vancouver. I must have spent four hours just sitting in the study lounge, unable to concentrate on real, important school work because I was so distraught with this realization. I tried walking around campus, trying to calm down, but I couldn't. Vancouver was where I had found myself. Vancouver was the first place I felt at home. How could I leave a place once I finally felt at peace with it? I had known for several months that I would leave after my degree, but actually coming to terms with it brought me to tears.

So, here I was, two months later in Edmonton, starting a new life that I thought would only be temporary. I was only supposed to be here for four months, and it'll be the fourth anniversary of my arrival this spring. The girl who sat beside me in our training course will convocate. Other dear friends have already left this city to continue their education. And I remain, stuck in this rut...making new friends who are just starting university now. I continue to get older, but my friends always stay the same age...

The other night I was talking with two of these new friends. The one is in her first year of uni, the other in his third. I made comments to shows that were on television when I was in junior high, and they have no idea what I'm talking about! I share my opinions on life and they remind me of how I, too, used to be so convinced that there was one truth, and that my mentor knew all the answers. In a moment of frustration, I told them I couldn't do this. How could I explain to these "young folks" all the things I have learned so far? It doesn't matter, even if I could put it all into words, because they're "young folks." They don't really care about them "old folks"...

I wonder what great adventure lies next for me. What age will I gravitate towards in my next city? And how long from now will that new story begin?

February 16, 2011

Danny Michel ~ Feather Fur and Fin

As if being an amazing musician wasn't enough, Danny is also concerned with the environment. This song is featured on David Suzuki's Playlist for the Planet. And, well, it's an amazing song...and video.

Find out more at http://www.dannymichel.com/

Also, he'll be in Edmonton in two weeks... I'm stoked!

Danny is one of my top ten favourite artists, as I discussed in my Top 25 of 2010., where he was number three!  Somedays, he's definitely number one...

February 15, 2011

David May Feat. Max Urban ~ Facebook Love

I've been a cynic on love recently, both on this blog and on one of my other blogs. I've also embraced it and and its beauty - on Valentine's Day, of course. And, now, I'm tempted to laugh in its face:

This is a REAL song. I heard about this song over the satellite radio at work, not just as a spoof somewhere online. The artist isn't some boy in his basement, whining about some hot girl he saw online....well, the boy in the basement doesn't exist...

People actually enjoy listening to this song. Now, I like R&B, and certain parts of this song sound very good...but, seriously?!? There is a song out there about finding your love on Facebook. We really have become the "Social Network" society, haven't we?

Whatever happened to serendipity and meeting people in real life? I have seen it happen!  Like I tell all my besties: "don't worry about me finding love...it'll happen one day in the market. I'll just be reaching for some tomatoes..."

February 14, 2011

Bright Eyes ~ First Day Of My Life

If you are looking for the best love song ever written, you need look no further than Bright Eyes.

This is such a sweet song, so I'll stop my recent romantic cynicism to share with you this song. If any one can take me back to being just another one of those hopeless romantics, it's definitely Bright Eyes!

And, well, this is the cutest idea for a video ever...definitely trumps Cake's Short Skirt Long Jacket.

February 13, 2011

Meiko - Reasons to love you

Since posting about Diana Pops yesterday, I've gone back to listen to Meiko, whose music led me to her.  Most of Meiko's music is more upbeat than that of Diana Pops, except for this song.  Both ladies sing so earnestly, and somewhat bittersweetly about a feeling that our society has put so much emphasis on...

And it is a great feeling.  It deserves to get more attention than other strong emotions, such as hatred, anger, sadness, etc.  All the world needs is love, right?

Okay, so now is when I get all cynical on you.  Of course, it's the day before the big V-Day - every single girl gets to eb cynical this time of year...

I watched a romantic drama with one of my best friends this week.  It was a sneak peak, and this may ruin the ending for you.  Although, with a romance, can you ever ruin the ending?  We've all seen enough of them to suspect the two star-crossed lovers will eventually end up together.  Which is exactly why I was so cynical after watching the movie.  The two had the choice of living their lives apart and becoming the next greatest thing to the world...but they sacrificed that all in order to be with each other, all because they enjoyed love so much...

Don't get me wrong, I'm a romantic person, and I love to fall in love (I'm still a socially-conditioned girl, after all), but why most there always be this grand sacrifice that needs to be made for the one person you pledge to spend the rest fo your life with?  And, if not, then won't society actually be better off if we all live up to our potential rather than working so hard to find that one person we can't live without?  If we put as much effort into making the world a better place rather than finding "Mr. Right," just think of what a difference we could make?  Plus, as a Romantic, I strongly believe that if it's meant to be, it will be (despite the amount of relationship books on my bookshelf).  And that moment of accidentally "falling in love" is much more magical if you're completely blind-sighted by it rather than trying to plan it out.

So, in conclusion, love is a many splendour thing, but we mustn't spend our days pining for it to find us, or changing ourselves merely to attract the objects of our affection.  When we're in love, we should enjoy it, 'cause it may be fleeting. And when we're not, we should love ourselves, 'cause we're all pretty awesome.  And, once you reach that point of fully loving yourself, you can do whatever you want in the world, and you won't need to make that sacrifice, unless that was the plan all along.

But, ask me again when I'm not a single woman and I'll probably tell you a different story ;-D

February 12, 2011

Diana Pops ~ Light My Cigarette

"Los Angeles is a city of orphans, all with something to prove, so many of which are the brightest stars of their former homes. We all come here to "make it", trading the security of our hometowns for the chance at a future where we can live our dreams on a daily basis. " ~ Diana Pops

Over the holidays, my mother shared a horoscope for 2011 with our family. I know that some people look at horoscopes as mere fun and games - and sometimes they are - but for me, I put more faith in them. They are not always accurate, but in the times when you really need to be encouraged, some part of the universe will provide you with what you deserve. Horoscopes have been my gift from the universe for many years, especially when I most needed to hear some encouraging.

According to the horoscope for 2011, this is the year when many people will find their success. I was talking to a musical friend the other day, and it seems like he's gonna make some progress on his dream this summer (more to come on that closer to the time, I'm sure). An old high school classmate will have her first album out this year (more to come on that as well). And as for me, this is a year of sea change for me and I'm pretty stoked for any success to come out of it, as it's already starting to.

The biggest steps I'm taking to reach that success is engaging with my creative soul. As I learn more and more about this Diana Pop, it is that search - a creative journey to find one's fate - that draws me to her melancholic tunes. She is not just music, she is art.  She's a painter, a remodeler, even a welder.  However she can create, she creates.  With her music, she creates emotions for her listeners.  Perhaps not always joyous ones, but the kind that soaks into your soul regardless.  In her writing, I know she is a positive person. She sees the silver lining in the grey-clouded days and this is what keeps her going...but the pain of life has inspired her to share her talent, luckily with the world.

"I dwell on moments and scenes instead of every day life and the bigger picture. Then I wonder why the world feels so small sometimes. I used to sit outside on windy days because it felt like the whole world was whirling around me, encapsulated in a single gust of north wind. Just like I used to think that love was actually encircled in a wedding ring.
I had an interesting conversation with a friend of mine tonight. We were talking about relationships (as people our age are apt to do). He's always pushing me to be me. Unfortunately, I'm always looking for reaction and happenstance to tell me who I am. I think that mentality is a reaction in and of itself. I'm mourning the loss of my years as a little girl and indignant that theres not much of an interim between childhood and womanhood. I don't feel ready to sufficently embrace being an adult. I haven't figured myself out enough yet. How can I be myself if the version of myself that I know seems so unfit for an adult world?
How can I expect a man to love me when I'm too afraid to unveil the real me until I "have it all together" ?
No one ever has it all together. And now I'm talking in circles.
I guess the fact is, I will always daydream, hopelessly overanylize, read into nothing and everything, hope for the best, and sit outside on windy days." ~ Diana Pops, 5 March 2007

This is just her writing, though, emotions read rather than heard. To get a true sense of her passion, you must listen to her! Sadly, no videos to watch....yet. She has an EP coming out on Feb 22 on iTunes. Until then, listen to her on MySpace or Facebook.

It was only a month ago, after posting about Meiko, that I had a reader of this blog tell me about this young woman from Winnipeg. She's been chasing her lifelong dream for years now, and it looks like things are about to start happening rather quickly for her. As with most Canadian artists, she has my support in every way!  Good luck, Diana!

February 11, 2011

Katie Melua - Two Bare Feet

Another song from my Running list this summer...

'Tis the month of romance, apparently, so 'twould be a shame not to include Miss Katie Melua this month. She is one of the most romantic singers I know. This is the least romantic of her songs, but I still feel the romance of it. I have this image in my head, while listening to it, of these two mice dancing together. Now that I've provided you with the video, you might not get that yourself, but these are good images, too!

February 10, 2011

Daniel Powter ~ Bad Day

I love that a song about a negative fraction of time became a "One Hit Wonder." If only those negative fractions of time could remain "One Hit Wonders" themselves...

My fellow Canadian, Daniel Powter, grew up in Vernon, BC. Like many other artistically-inclined little boys, he was bullied throughout school. Thank goodness for that, too! He began out playing the violin, but changed to piano after a group of children destroyed his violin. Music was where Mr. Powter could find his zen, though, and he continued to pursue it, even attempting to study it in university. Sadly, as a dyslexic, Powter struggled in university, and later dropped out. He chose, instead, Life University, which I'm currently enrolled in as a Masters students (and like my friends working on their Masters as well, I hope it takes me a long time to finish!). Powter knew his gift early on, though, and has used his time at the University of Life to learn music by ear and the business of the music industry by trial and error...

Powter's first album was released in 2000, to a small fanbase. He got some airtime on a small Canadian television show, Higher Ground, and things started to gain momentum. Then, in 2005, supported by Warner Bros. Records, Powter released this, his first single...and it exploded in Europe. Warner had submitted the record for some commercial production, and all across Europe, music lovers and pop addicts couldn't get the tune out of his head. Thank you, Coca-Cola, for continuing to support the capitalist growth of good talent... (and I'm serious about that. I like that artists can get through big breaks through capitalism just as much as they get it through socialism...as long as they don't get it through nepotism, I'm pretty much okay with it ;-D)

In December 2009, Powter was named as the decade's top One-Hit Wonder by Billboard Magazine. The magazine describes one-hit wonders as acts whose second hit did not reach the top 25...that was last decade, though...we'll see how the day following "Bad Day" goes...

February 9, 2011

Day 146: Royal Wood live on Mamma Yamma

Well, now that I recognize the sort of week I'm having:

And one more for those out there with children...or the children inside all of us...

Thank you, Mr. Royal Wood!

February 8, 2011

Day 145: A Little Lesson In History, In The Key of Canadiana

Just another evening around my apartment. Washing dishes from the morning, mixing vegan muffins on the counter across from my sink and, of course, tuning into CBC's Canadian Songwriters' online stream from CBC's website.

Suddenly, I was transported back to my father's shop, listening to classic "country tunes" he loved, while painting, building, or working on one of his miscellaneous projects.

BUT... this was not the tune coming from CBC's Canadian Songwriters' Channel? As fabulously as Mr. Johnny Cash was, he was no Canadian - sorry to disappoint you all (and that's supposed to be two words. :-D) And so, this was not the tune I was used to hearing. Who could be singing?

This song has quite the history! The original is, in fact, Australian - and I wouldn't recognize a single place in that song. Turns out, it was a Canadian-born Songwriter, Hank Snow, who changed the names and the opening line of Australian Geoff Mack's version to create the North American song we over here all know and love:

This was more likely the tune I would hear pumping from my father's ol' tape deck in his shop... BUT, this was still not the song I was listening to...

Luckily CBC encourages the promotion of fellow Canadian artists (with funding like that, it's kind of their "thing"). And so I was able to catch the name before the end of the song and search for the artist, Mike Ford.

Now, apparently, I'm on a theme of the younger audience this week... Completely coincidental and random, of course, 'cause that's how I roll. Turns out this artist tours the country, providing history lessons to young minds through song. And not necessarily the folky songs we've all come to expect from Canadian history songs...

Sadly, I could not find a video of Mike Ford and his lovely Canadian version of "I've Been Everywhere;" however, he was once in the same band as another gorgeous Canadian, who interviewed him this one time:

Although not entirely musical, I do reccomend watching this interview. Ford is quite eloquent in his self promotion, and I don't doubt he would be a fabulous guest to have in your classroom, if you're a teacher or student. Or, perhaps you're just a Canadian or history buff like me. Check out his website: http://www.mikeford.ca/pages/canada_song.html to order his music, have him come to your classroom or to just learn more about this educational Canadian artist!

February 7, 2011

Kimya Dawson - Alphabutt

This one goes out to all those mommies out there! I know you, I love you, and although I don't always care about what your little darling is doing, I still love both of you, and can babysit for you as soon as he or she is fully potty-trained!

Most of you have probably have heard of Kimya Dawson from Juno. Remember that film? It was amazing! This is one of the first songs of hers that I randomly stumbled upon. It has come to me after years of listening to the tunes from the soundtrack on my iPod. This one is just as delightful as the ones I already know all the words to!

Maybe one day I'll know the words to this one too...your baby might beat me to it!

February 6, 2011

Down With Love: Sherwood ~ Alley Cat and Advice from Dan Savage

So far, this month, I've been trying to avoid love songs... Why?!? you must be thinking. Especially in February? To be different?!?

No. I feel like there is a lot of pressure this month to be "in love." I feel like there is so much pressure in this world to be "in love." And, yeah, it's pretty awesome, but it's not without its dark side.

I was listening to Dan Savage - best known for his alt-newspaper column, Savage Love (if you're keen on liberal ideas re:sexuality, love and relationships, I highly recommend both reading his column and listening to his podcasts!) - the other day and was blown away by the best advice, as it generally happens when I listen to Dan Savage. There was a fifteen-year-young caller asking for advice on finding a boyfriend in his homophobic town. Dan's advice was very encouraging for this young man, which is not surprising coming from a founder of the "It Gets Better" campaign. The highlight, in my opinion, was not to worry about getting his fifteen-year-old self laid as much as he should worry about getting his twenty-yer-old self laid. Most people, a young Dan included, feel at some point that all of their problems will be solved if only they had a boyfriend/girlfriend/somebody to spend the rest of their life with. Once they find that person, though, maybe one problem is solved, but so many more problems have been created...

(Click on the title of this post to be taken directly to Dan Savage's website - and LISTEN to all his old podcasts; and READ all his old columns. This man is a hero of mine!)

This song captures that desire - the misled notion of finding peace in a relationship alone - in such an interesting way. For me, I see this girl he talks about as just one more of those lost souls looking for love for the mere joy of finding it. Now, I understand the fear of being alone for the rest of one's life as a serious concern, especially as our society still tries to figure out this marrying for real love rather than social protection. (As an ex-feminist, I've read extensively on society's persecution of the spinster, and the short timespan we have only recently spent marrrying for love.) But, have you ever thought about what's worse than being alone for the rest of your life?

Three years ago, around this time of year, I embraced the notion of being a spinster for the rest of my life. I had never been in love at that time, but I had wanted to fall in love for so long that I was just sick of constantly feeling like I was missing something. How great would my life be, though, if I was never in a serious relationship? If I was a spinster for the rest of my life, would I be any less of a fabulous individual? No. I'd be awesome. I'd be the fun auntie who spoils her nieces and nephews because she never had her own children to discipline. I'd go on holidays WHEREVER I wanted to go. I could move to a new place whenever I got sick of something. Basically, I could plan my entire future without thinking about what somebody else wanted for their future, too. Perhaps, these thoughts were selfish, but they were also amazing for my self esteem. I realized how fabulous my life could be if I had it to myself, rather than wasting my time looking for somebody to share with it.

Now, it'd be a shame to not tell you that within a month of making this decision about my life, I met somebody and had a taste of love. It was a lot of fun; I enjoyed the excitement of it all; and I'd love to tell you that when it ended, I picked up exactly where I had left off with my pledge to spinsterhood...but, we all have to struggle with something. And I don't know that I'm ready to give up on love just yet. I don't want it to be the focus of my life, but sometimes it is the necessary distraction to get through the other junk going on in your life...and one day, maybe magic will happen and I'll find somebody lucky enough to keep in my life for the rest of my life, or at least want to try to keep them in my life for the rest of my life. Until then, I'll just worry about being the best me...

February 5, 2011

Nellie McKay - Identity Theft

It's been awhile since I've posted some bluegrass, so I hope you enjoy!

Nellie McKay comes to me via a Regina Spektor mix created by YouTube...yeah, not that random, but a splendid discovery nonetheless! This is the second of two songs of hers that I heard this morning and fell in love with.

This song has the perfect combination of several things I love about music: fast speed; a good rhythm, that changes throughout the song; fab lyrics; and a political message. I've only begun to scratch the surface of Nelli McKay's work, but so far: me likey! I hope you do, too!

Click on the title of this post to go to her website, Nellie McKay, where you can buy her music, preview more songs, and learn more about how fabulous this bluegrass artist really is!

February 4, 2011

Metric- Wet Blanket

It's Friday!

I had a small dance party, alone, in my apartment this morning to this song. It's a great song for dance parties...

Luckily, tonight I'm going out dancing for a friend's birthday. I know I won't be dancing to myself...I hope they play Metric at some point...pretty stoked!

I hope you are too! Even if you're a Wet Blanket who only wants a folk song...or do you get something else from these lyrics?

February 3, 2011

P!nk - F**kin' Perfect

I had a conversation with a friend yesterday about reading "self help" books. She is currently finding them extremely helpful, as I have also found them in the past, and present. Within that conversation, we discussed the humility of "helping" one's self. I never had the chance to say it, but I do think we should change that genre from "self help" to "self improvement." In a sense, P!nk is right, we're already "perfect," but working on ourselves is part of being perfect, too.

Right now, I'm really trying to concentrate on just being happy being me. Of course, I have fifteen other projects on the go, but for me - my self - I am not listing the habits I want to change, the body parts I "hate," or even the character flaws I know exist. Instead, and for many years, I have been working on finding my strengths - the things about myself that I love - and flaunting them. As I venture down this Rabbit Hole, which somedays appears to be more like Narcissism than "Self Improvement," my strengths become even stronger, and my list is starting to include those areas that would have been on a "Weakness" List if I had ever wanted to create one of those despicable things. Me, I'm Perfect, Flaws and All!

February 2, 2011

Vampire Weekend ~ Cousins

I have almost hit the point of Obsession with Vampire Weekend! I think I'm still safe. I find them enjoyable, I will listen to them whenever possible, and I only know 3/4 of the lyrics to my fav songs of theirs...but I find I'm getting close to the point where I will be sick of their songs. And so, I MUST post this song today. I hope they don't fade in my favour as Razorlight did, because I miss how much I used to enjoy Razorlight - I just overplayed them. As a preventative measure, I think I'll take 48 hours now to not listen to Vampire Weekend (after spending the past 48 hours listening to their cd on repeat...). But you should enjoy them in that time!

February 1, 2011

K T Tunstall ~ Suddenly I See

Every time I hear this song, I feel empowered! It's beautiful

Nearly two years ago, I did some ruminating on the concept of "face is a map of the world." It began with a query on the phrase as it appears in 30 Seconds From Mars' song, From Yesterday. I posted the note to all of my FB friends, and there was only one response, from the friend who had recommended the band and the song to me anyways. His easy exit out of the discussion was that it changes with the mood you are in when you listen to it. I can call that a valid point, especially after many of my seemingly non-chalant posts on here. I went on, though, in the comments with my interpretation of K T Tunstall's song, Suddenly I See, and its use of "face is a map of the world." My comments follow:

I like your ideas. Yes, they're good. The thing about many lyrics and other forms of art is that they change so quickly based on your moods or what somebody has made you think about. To deny that fact would put you into the same characte...r as the scientist I left arguing about Star Trek with in the Eatery - now there was a close-minded scholar!

I don't know that everyone can have on their face a map of the world, but perhaps the guy in the song represents everybody. By that, I mean, he could be any one in the world: "He's a stranger to some" (we don't all know ourselves) "and a vision to none" (who want to be Mr. Ordinary?)

The question then becomes: Who is this guy? I think he must be a traveller, as he "can never get enough .... of this world." But in the same instance, he could be the devil because "On a mountain he sits, not of gold but of sin...He'll decide when he's done with the innocent."

The answer to this new question alters the answer to the first...

The phrase is also in K T Tunstall's "Suddenly I See":

Her face is a map of the world
Is a map of the world
You can see she's a beautiful girl
...She's a beautiful girl
And everything around her is a silver pool of light
The people who surround her feel the benefit of it
It makes you calm
She holds you captivated in her palm

Suddenly I see (Suddenly I see)
This is what I wanna be
Suddenly I see (Suddenly I see)
Why the hell it means so much to me

I feel like walking the world
Like walking the world
You can hear she's a beautiful girl
She's a beautiful girl
She fills up every corner like she's born in black and white
Makes you feel warmer when you're trying to remember
What you heard
She likes to leave you hanging on her word


And she's taller than most
And she's looking at me
I can see her eyes looking from a page in a magazine
Oh she makes me feel like I could be a tower
A big strong tower
She got the power to be
The power to give
The power to see


Once again, we have the reference to travelling. "I feel like walking the world / Like walking the world." The phrase has changed slightly though, from "on his face" to the literal image of "her face is." I think both lines are aiming for ...the same sort of imagery, though.

This song is much lighter, yet in both I am drawn to the character being sung about...perhaps merely because they are being sung about. I think there's something more to it than that. I hate to call a mango an orange, but there is something to be said about nasel-gazing; if it's an orange, we should not call it a mango. When you compare it to the other one, I cannot help but be reminded of the feminization of angels in the 17th century and wonder when the devil became masculinized? But that has nothing to do with her face being a map of the world, unless you follow the belief that to be human is to sin and to sin is human; therefore as part of the world, we are all sinners.

I think the phrase, on it's own, does refer to wisdom. This person has seen the world. You can tell just by looking at their face. In "From Yesterday," this wisdom is something to be scared of, but that is not inherent in the line in que...stion. In "Suddenly I See," this wisdom is something to be drawn towards, and I think that is important to the line. The former is much more negative about this wisdom, perhaps because it is a darker tune. Perhaps also because the wisdom is kept to himself rather than shared with "the people around her" who "feel the benefit of it."

I don't know. It's interesting to think about. Perhaps I should have done literature rather than history....

Now, I think this is the perfect song for my February resolution - be more me, less wishing to be me.