Bowie

I wanted to post something about David Bowie. This isn’t for you…this is for me. I didn’t post anything last night because my very first impulse, after my involuntary “Aw, goddammit,” was to start listening to lots and lots of Bowie music. I actually hit YouTube before I hit iTunes; it’s so hard to separate…

Diana Damrau interview

“Princess Di“: Her voice drops a bit as she reflects on the life she has chosen. ‘Singing is such a whole experience for body and mind and soul,’ she says. ‘You have to have control over your body, but you must have the artistry to guide you, to go for the beauty. That’s what we…

Love and Hate and a CD

Due to a clerical oversight (related to the transition between the Bush and Obama administrations; just a guess), there are some albums that can only be purchased on CD. This is the brief tale of one such CD, and the two opposing emotions that it inspired.   “I love technology and all it stands for.” My…

On Letterman: “MacArthur Park”

Why did the CBS Orchestra pack the Ed Sullivan Theater stage with 33 musicians and play a five and a half minute version of “MacArthur Park“? Because recently, Letterman was driving around with his son and the satellite radio played this song so many times in a row that the kid screamed “No more caaaaaake!!!” So,…

Sondheim Week! Day One: “Getting Married Today”

Getting Married Today Original Broadway Cast Original Broadway Cast Recording Genre: Broadway All morning long, I’ve been reading blog posts about everyone’s favorite childhood Sondheim Week memories. I’m sure I had the same reaction as you did: “It’s that time of year? Again? But the stores have only just taken down their Jerry Herman decorations!”…

Fixing iTunes Albums

It’s been said that the iTunes destroyed the concept of the Album. Why buy the whole album, when it’s possible to just cherry-pick the hits, or just the one track that was used in the episode of “House” you just streamed? But subscription music services, Amazon’s insanely good MP3 album sales, and the iTunes Store’s…

Amazon Advent 04 – “Artistic Roll Call” (Bill Hicks)

Artistic Roll Call Bill Hicks Rant In E-Minor Genre: Comedy I’m going to wind down my “Comedy (But Let’s Acknowledge Them For Something Other Than Their Comedy)” thread by dropping the parenthetical. Bill Hicks died in 1994 at age 32 and he still looms large. His comedy was so very intense. But his anger wasn’t…

Amazon Advent 03 – “White Wine In The Sun” (Tim Minchin)

White Wine In The Sun Tim Minchin Ready For This? (Live) Genre: Miscellaneous Continuing my kickoff theme of “Comedians, And Please Give Them Their Full Due As Musicians,” we have this triply-appropriate and hugely wonderful track from Tim Minchin. (1) The album is filled with clever, funny songs; (2) but “White Wine In The Sun”…

Amazon Advent 02 – “Mr. Fancy Pants” by Jonathan Coulton

Mr. Fancy Pants Jonathan Coulton JoCo Looks Back Genre: Pop “Not many people know this…but the Führer was a terrific dancer.” So wrote no less an authority on European history than Dr. Melvin James Kaminsky, in his seminal work, “The Producers.” It goes to show you that typecasting is a widespread problem that extends far,…

Amazon Advent 2012: “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby” by Jerry Lewis

Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody Jerry Lewis Jerry Lewis Just Sings Genre: Comedy My BFF John has been simultaneously inspiring and shaming me with his Movie Year project. He’s watched and reviewed 1300 movies over the past four years — each one new to him — and has kept up a one-a-day pace…

Amazon Advent Calendar 2012: The Preamble

This can’t possibly be the first day of my annual Musical Advent Calendar, can it? First objection: “The Advent season doesn’t begin until Sunday, December 2.” I’m not sure why this is your first objection. If you’ve been sent here expecting additional guidance and insight about how to prepare yourself and your family for Celebration…

“Stop Forwarding That Crap To Me” by “Weird Al” Yankovic (Amazon Advent Calendar day 19)

Stop Forwarding That Crap To Me “Weird Al” Yankovic Alpocalypse Genre: Pop Last time, I talked about novelty versions of pop songs. I believe (checks notes) ah! Yes, as I suspected: I said critical, sweeping things about an entire genre, and dismissed it out of hand mostly because I, personally, have no taste for it.…

“Is There Anything Wrong With That?” by Helen Kane (Amazon Advent Calendar day 11)

Is There Anything Wrong With That? Helen Kane Betty Boop Best Of Genre: Jazz This is a fun song. Remember fun songs? No? Me, neither. I blame the fact that we all grew up eating regular, nutritious meals; we were guaranteed an education through age 18; there were laws prohibiting the use of child labor;…