Tag: music

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Ron DeSantis dropped facts and logic all over reporters, and suggested they were indulging “black helicopter” level conspiracy theories and so credulous as to be motivated buyers for a bridge in Brooklyn. That called to mind a few songs on this Wednesday.  Ron DeSantis was talking with reporters as he hosted Vice President Pence.  Preview […]

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The past week ended, and the new week started with birds singing and more sightings of beauty and beast-mode. Thursday, May 14, 2020, Maria Bartiromo got an extended interview with President Trump on the White House grounds. She asked 44 questions in a 55 minute interview and got answers to every question, from coronavirus to […]

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In which your humble correspondent breaks out the disco ball, and then things take a strange turn. The Bee Gees were an Australian trio of brothers: Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb. They could actually carry a tune and sing in three part harmony without computer assistance. Their signature falsetto lead was quite distinctive. One of […]

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Catching reports of protests here on Ricochet* and from a scan of YouTube, whilst stewing over Arizona’s Governor Doug Ducey, who is no Noem, songs started popping up out of my memory. Here are a few protest songs that are relevant once more: Let’s go back to Roy Rogers in 1944 for “Don’t Fence Me […]

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As we enter the Easter season, after the long Lenten season, and as spring brings some promise of brighter days ahead, how about another play list? We earlier celebrated spring flowers, in song. Here are a few tunes about April, or rain, or spring. April showers may bring flowers, depending on your latitude and attitude. […]

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My husband and I are isolating our household as much as we can.  Given this rainy day, we’re making enchilada soup and talking about the Covid-19 playlist I’m listening to as I stir. We ended up talking about one of the songs on the playlist, “Hands Clean” by Alanis Morissette.    Now, it was a […]

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It has been a weird and wild week on Zoom. My Russian tutorial went online, and I failed to think very much about anything in my background attracting attention, because by the standards of most college students my little room is fairly anodyne (I think the most scandalous thing you could find in here is […]

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I was observing a classroom of teenagers this morning. The lesson was on the American Revolution, and the students had a map quiz. While reviewing for the quiz, one student asked the teacher if there was also a Charleston in Virginia. The teacher answered “West Virginia.” At which point a male student quietly sang “Mountain […]

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My Advice: Pay the Band

 

The first time anyone paid me money for playing music was in high school. A little dixieland quintet of which I was the drummer played a gig for, of all things, a convention of parapsychologists. We played, maybe, half an hour. Then the band ate dinner with the host, who after dessert handed each of us twenty-five dollars. “What a world,” I thought. “Paid good money to do something I love.” And, considering that those twenty-five 1975 dollars would now be $123.75, some of the highest pay I’ve ever received.

In college I played for a polka band. Nearly every weekend we drove to what must have been every small town in eastern Nebraska, hauling amps and drums and the leader’s Hammond B-3 organ up (then down) narrow flights of stairs into dark halls, setting up on broken down stages or in barns and backyards, to play for wedding receptions, dances for Eagles, Elks, and Masons, and the occasional family reunion. And while the Beer Barrel Polka, Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain and various schattisches are not great challenges for drummers, I didn’t mind the pay, which sometimes included a place at potlucks or cut-rate chicken dinners. Nor did I mind the fellowship of rejoicing families and friends, or of the semi-drunken lonely hearts we ran across in those upstairs clubs.

How Sweet the Sound

 

What would Black Gospel Music sound like if it blended with Eastern Orthodox liturgical tradition? Though liturgical traditions have a reputation for their timelessness, or at least for not changing, the Eastern Orthodox liturgy of singing and chanting antiphonally has changed over the past 2,000 years, particularly when Orthodoxy has met with other cultures whose own musical talents and understandings are different.

Though the broad outlines of a Russian or Greek liturgy are substantially identical, with the same prayers, the same order of service, the same structure, they do not exactly sound the same, even setting aside the language differences.  Saturday night in Columbus, Ohio, Dr. Shawn Wallace, Director of Jazz Studies at Ohio State University, and an Orthodox Christian himself, presented a project long in his heart.  How Sweet the Sound was a concert that presented an Orthodox vespers service as blended with, and sung in the style of Black Gospel music.

Words are inadequate to properly describe the concert.  It was beautiful, joyful, and above all worshipful, weaving traditional Gospel and other Protestant hymns in and through the prayers, psalm reading, and hymns of vespers – a service sung and chanted to mark the ending of one day, and herald the beginning of the next.  Holy Holy Holy wove in and out of Psalm 104, Wade in the Water carried, like waves Lord I have Cried, and Amazing Grace brought Psalm 117 to a beautiful crescendo.

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Either Poles are too dumb to understand what’s ridiculous about a pornographic butter-churning contest, or they’re not. I’d bet they’re not, and they know a parody of eroticism when they see it. Too bad The Imaginative Conservative doesn’t. Apparently, there’s at least one writer out there lacking the imagination to recognize a parody when he […]

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Elderly Scottish Woman Suffering from Dementia Climbs UK Music Charts (Video)

 

OK, well, this made me cry. An 83-year-old Scottish woman who suffers from dementia is climbing the UK music download charts, singing a duet with her caregiver of Frank Sinatra’s 1969 hit, “My Way.”

Margaret Mackie and Jamie Lee Morley first performed the song at her nursing home, during last year’s Christmas karaoke party, and subsequently recorded it at Studio Sound, an Ingleton-based music studio. All proceeds from song downloads go to Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia UK. (Video below.)

Neil Peart, RIP

 

Neil Peart, drummer for the Canadian rock band Rush, died on January 7 from brain cancer. Saturday, the news caught up with us 50- and 60-something fans, as yet another hero from our youth passed on.

Peart was a drummer’s drummer, and people far more qualified than I will give him his appropriate tribute. I do have a couple of stories that reflect my own admiration for his skills.

In 2015 our family went to a St. Louis Cardinals game at Busch Stadium, against whom I forget. After the game, as we were walking to the parking garage, at the corner of Clark and 8th, there erupted a drum solo that drew hundreds of hearers. Someone had set up a kit, and was hammering away.

QotD: How the years ran away…the best is yet to come

 

Yesterday when I was young
The taste of life was sweet as rain upon my tongue
I teased at life as if it were a foolish game
The way the evening breeze may tease a candle flame
The thousand dreams I dreamed, the splendid things I planned
I always built, alas, on weak and shifting sand
I lived by night and shunned the naked light of day
And only now I see how the years ran away

Charles Aznavour (1966)

The Best is yet to come and babe, won’t that be fine?
You think you’ve seen the sun, but you ain’t seen it shine

Something Beautiful, and Ukrainian, for Christmas

 

Less than a year ago, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church was granted Independence from the main body of Russian Orthodoxy. There is now an independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, with its own hierarchy, free of the Russian yoke.

Even though I am a Jew, I love Christmas music, and one of my main favorites has a new meaning, in the light of the above news. (Actually, my maternal grandfather was born in Odessa, now a part of independent Ukraine, so I do have a connection.) Each year, I try to pick up a new Christmas CD, and a few years ago I found this disk of Kiev Christmas Liturgy. I love the sound of the male voices, singing in Russian. Sublime, and I hope you like it too.

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If you are a fan of rock in general and prog in particular, I’ve just finished the last of a series of 10 posts over at Spirit of Cecilia reviewing the musical highlights of the 2010’s. There were lots of amazing music from The Neal Morse Band, Devin Townsend, Glass Hammer, Steven Wilson, Sanguine Hum, […]

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