Life of Tunes

Posts Tagged ‘rock and roll

Today was a busy day! I commented to a family member this evening that I am not sure I even listened to any music at all today but music has still been on my mind. Tonight I have been thinking about how lucky I am to have great friends in my life and it got me to thinking about great “friends” songs. One of my favorites ever is Joe Cocker’s version of A Little Help From My Friends. So hey you friends out there, this goes out to you!

joe

LISTEN HERE

Enjoy!

Artist: Joe Cocker
Album: A Little Help From My Friends (1969) 
Track:
A Little Help From My Friends
Website:
www.cocker.com

Enjoy!

  1. Last night I watched a movie that shall remain nameless for the time being so that I don’t spoil it for anyone. In this movie there was a plane crash. I had a song pop into my head for like a millisecond and then “poof” – gone. It was driving me crazy but I could not think of the name or tune of it no matter how hard I tried.
  2. The movie ended with a scene that reminded me of another movie I saw in the 90’s called Fire In The Sky. This is a pretty good movie which had the desired effect as I recall. My friend and I who saw it were both feeling quite “anxious” as I recall on the drive home.
  3. This reminded me of my family’s 1987 GMC Safari that I was driving that night and how much I loved cranking tunes in that van when I was a teen. I clearly remember blasting 13 Engines, a fun Canadian 90’s band in that van. There is no reason for me thinking of this in particular, it was just a flash.
  4. This first vehicle of my youth reminded me of when I bought my own first car, a 1983 Volvo GLT. Man I loved that car. This morphed into a memory of my friend and I driving at night with the moon roof open in the mountains and singing Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd at the top of our lungs.
  5. Pink Floyd made me think of when I travelled to Toronto in the late 90’s to see them live with a few friends and what an amazing show that was.
  6. Pondering this trip made me recall a good friend of mine at the time and how I haven’t talked to him in many years now. He had a Renault Alliance, burnt orange or reddish or something if I remember correctly. For some reason this car made me think of Credence Clearwater Revival. I am not even sure if he liked CCR but this was my memory nonetheless.
  7. CCR made me think of another movie that I really enjoyed (for the soundtrack and the scenery) called Indian Summer. This made me start to sing “Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah” by Allan Sherman for some reason. I am pretty sure that this track was in the movie but I am not absolutely certain.
  8. “Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah” made me think of camping when I was a kid.
  9. Camping made me think of the brand of trailer that we had when I was growing up. It was a Travelaire I am pretty sure.
  10. Memories of camping with my family in my childhood made me think of all the great trips we did growing up. This was the first thing that I thought of when I woke up this morning and the train of memories continued from there.
  11. A specific memory of my Dad backing down a narrow mountain road while towing our trailer then popped into my head along with the recollection that this took place somewhere on the east coast.
  12. East coast travel made me think of travel there with my own family in recent years.
  13. This brought about a recollection of a trip where the Lenny Kravitz 5 CD was played over and over again. Great CD!
  14. Traveling, music, east coast, family, driving, singing at the top of your lungs, overplaying great CD’s and a realization that music really is the most prominent part of my memory reminds me of a specific holiday I took with my girls. The soundtrack of this journey included Mr. A-Z by Jason Mraz at great length.
  15. Thinking of this CD made my favorite song from it pop immediately into my head. The title of this song is “Plane”. Great song.
  16. Plane by Jason Mraz is also the song I was trying to remember the name of while I was watching that movie last night. I have been stewing on that for over 8 hours and finally I have my answer. Man my brain is messed up! The good news is that 8 hours later I am no longer obsessed and using 80% brain capacity to try and remember the name of the friggin song that was on my mind during that plane crash scene.

mraz

Today’s Life of Tunes keeper is Plane by Jason Mraz. As I mentioned this is my favorite track of the Mr. A-Z CD. I have included the video of a pretty good live version that I stumbled upon. Of course as always I have posted the original studio version of the track as well and you can listen to that below.

LISTEN HERE

Artist: Jason Mraz
Album: Mr. A-Z (2005) 
Track: Plane
Website:
www.jasonmraz.com

Enjoy!

I realized a long time ago that I am a sucker for a great pop/rock chorus. A real sucker.  When I listen to Warm Me Up by The Audition I catch myself laughing a bit, remembering my head-banging days of the 80’s. As soon as they launch into the guitar solo it’s really etched in stone. It just sounds so…predictable or something. That said I catch myself singing along every time. Warm Me Up off of Champion by The Audition in particular has a few of those key elements that I love in many songs. It’s got some good high energy guitar riffs, some catchy harmonizing vocals, and a lot of layers of music culminating in a little bit of a crescendo. Is a little crescendo even possible?? Throw in those humdrum lyrics a somewhat commonplace vocals and a lack of overall variety to the music of the entire CD and you might wonder why I am even blogging about The Audition.

champ

For some reason I love cranking this song in the car. This one song always leads to another and then another and every time I found I have listened to the entire CD and enjoyed it. With every listen I pick out one or two little unique things that I hadn’t noticed before and for some reason I keep coming back for more. Listen to the original studio track here and watch the video below.

LISTEN HERE

Warm Me Up by The Audition is a Life of Tunes keeper of the unexplainable variety.

Enjoy!

Artist: The Audition
Album: Champion (2008) 
Track: Warm Me Up
Website: www.myspace.com/theaudition

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FV7thmQN_rk

There aren’t too many folks who sit on the fence with Rush. Like many hugely successful bands, people either love them or hate them. I have always been on the side that loves them though I have gone through stretches where I have not listened to them much if at all. Today I was moving some books on my shelf to dust (yes I do that occasionally!) and saw one of my yearbooks from high school. In taking a quick leaf through the tapered pants and big hair I saw a note from one of my friends about how obsessed I was with Neil Peart, the drummer of Rush. While I am biased to drummers often I always thought he was the biggest reason for their success. Neil Peart is an anchor behind the two front men, an amazing lyricist and one of the most talented drummers of all time. In order to avoid hate mail from all of the challengers I am going to move on quickly here, but of course that subject can be debated until the end of time, it’s a personal choice.

Rush - Grace Under Pressure (1984)This friend was referring to a particular day where a bunch of us were gathered around my encyclopedia sized bright yellow Sony Walkman trying to mimic the high hat beat of Red Sector A. Of course I was the ring leader and challenger. It went without saying that I had been listening to this “tape” to the point of exhaustion. It brought back memories of my feeling a little different from others around music and that frustrating feeling of trying to MAKE others love something as much as you do. “They just don’t understand how awesome this is” is along the lines of what I would have been thinking. A few friends were impressed by the seemingly random pattern of beats that I was referring to but they still kind of looked at me like I was the other glove that Michael Jackson never wore.

So I fully expect that many of you will hear this as just another song, others will relate and enjoy. Many of you I am sure will not even listen to Red Sector A because you think Rush is overrated or you can’t stand Geddy Lee’s hair or voice, or glasses or whatever.

I have included the studio track on Grooveshark as well as a live video. As is often the case the video quality isn’t great so to get the real experience I insist you listen to the original track. Don’t forget to follow along with Mr. Peart on the high hat!

LISTEN HERE

The bottom line is that Red Sector A by Rush is a Life of Tunes keeper. C’mon…don’t you get it???

Artist: Rush
Album: Grace Under Pressure (1984)
Track: Red Sector A
Website: www.rush.com

A good old fashioned Rock and Roll song is the best thing going when you are working around the house. Today there is a list of things as long as my arm that I need to get done and great tunes make the jobs that much easier. The Hold Steady is a band that slides quite nicely into the high energy Rock and Roll genre for my Saturday afternoon motivation. If I timed myself on household chores with or without tunes cranked I know there would be no comparison.

stuck

Stuck Between Stations off of the 2006 CD Boys and Girls in America is a great tune, nothing spectacular or unique but sometimes you don’t need spectacular or unique. Just a great rock song. Crank it up, and get off your ass!

Stuck Between Stations is a Life of Tunes keeper and a good kick in the butt.

Enjoy!

Artist: The Hold Steady
Album: Boys and Girls in America (2006)
Track: Stuck Between Stations
Website: www.theholdsteady.net

There is something exciting about new music. Something unheard or unknown but great, brings about an excitement that is rare so I am always on the lookout. Let me go on record right now as saying that some people are so eager to “discover” new music that they discover crap and label it great. I am disturbed by how often I see recommendations for music that I find ridiculous. It’s way too easy to criticize though and not remember that there are without a doubt many folks out there who thing the music I like is crap. So the message I guess, is to live and let live and try not to judge others for being ridiculous. Sorry, I got a little distracted there. The point is I love new music that I love. Clear?

warpaintIn my endeavor to find some new music yesterday I stumbled across The Black Crowes. The Black Crowes are not new music, of that I am aware. They are however a band that I remember feeling that excited new band feeling about when Shake Your Money Maker came out in 1990. I actually recall having a conversation with a good friend about how great it was to be around to witness the birth of a band that would be around forever. We were here to see it and to be able to follow and grow with them.  Naive I know, but real nonetheless. I never bought their third album and havent really listened to them much since their second CD Southern Harmony and Musical Companion. I’m not sure what happened but I just lost interest. Perhaps it was all the BS that seemed to surround them all the time or the immature antics. It’s a shame really because there was a lot of talent. I was browsing around looking for old notes on The Black Crowes and was amazed to see that they are back at it after their hiatus. They are on tour as we speak and had a new CD out last year called “Warpaint”. Who knew? For a sample of what their latest offering has for you, you can listen here. I actually like what I hear, perhaps they are back on the road to Life of Tunes keeper status again. Their newest CD Warpaint is in the pike of music to listen to this week.

So in the end I find some new old music. Perhaps I will fall in love with them all over again. For today I will celebrate my “find” with one of their old standbys off of their best and first album Shake Your Money Maker, “She Talks To Angels.”

She Talks To Angels is an amazing track and a Life of Tunes keeper.

Artist: The Black Crowes
Album: Shake Your Money Maker (199o)
Track: She Talks To Angels
Website: www.blackcrowes.com


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