Posted tagged ‘music’

Playing Favorites 10/14/2022

October 14, 2022

leahytooYears ago my wife Muri and I used to take a mini-vacation every Valentine’s Day.  I’d pick a place that wasn’t too far from home then search the web for things to do there: museums, concerts, tours … and, of course, restaurants.  This all stopped when our first grandson, Reed, was born on Valentine’s Day and Valentine’s Day became Reed’s Birthday.   The year before Reed was born, we spent a long weekend in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  In searching for entertainment for Saturday night, I found a group named Leahy performing at the Lensic Performing Arts Center.  I’d never heard of the group, so I navigated to their website to find that Leahy is a Canadian folk group made up entirely of family members from Lakefield, Ontario.   The eight member band features fiddle-based music that ranges from traditional jigs and reels to their own folk-rock compositions.  All the members play multiple instruments and all step dance as part of their act.   We discovered before the show that Leahy had a large following of people who had seen them before and traveled a long way to see them again in Santa Fe.  It was simply one of the most enjoyable concerts we’d ever attended, made better by the fact that it was a complete surprise.   And so, Leahy qualifies as today’s favorite. (more…)

Playing Favorites 7/16/2022

September 17, 2022

amy_guitarMy daughter Amy is visiting today from Texas, where they recently moved.   After having them only a few miles away in Utah for three years, it is good to see her … even if two of the grandkids are still in Texas and the oldest is off with his Utah friends until Sunday.   Having her here makes me nostalgic, and given my nature, being nostalgic brings my attention to the soundtrack of my life, Amy edition.  Today’s favorite could be Jon Denver’s Sunshine which I sang for both of my kids, back when they were little and I played the guitar.  But I think I’ll choose a song that reminds me of just Amy. (more…)

Playing Favorites 8/26/2022

August 26, 2022

The_Opera_Band_album_coverI’ve missed posting Playing Favorites for a few Fridays in a row now. Given how rarely I post these days, it is hard to believe that I posted every day for two years, 2011 and 2012.  Oh, to be sort-of-young again.  But here I am, ready to post another Favorite. I decided I’d post something a little more eclectic than the rock and pop I usually post. According to Wikipedia, Amici Forever is a quintet of classically trained musicians, comprised of sopranos Jo Appleby and Tsakane Valentine, tenors David Habbin and Geoff Swell, and basso Nick Garrett.  Nick Patrick, who had produced albums by the Gipsy Kings, Tina Turner and Marvin Gaye produced the band’s first album The Opera Band. The album mixes opera classics such as “Nessun Dorma” with pop standards such as “Unchained Melody” and “Requiem for a Soldier”. It charted at number one in New Zealand and number two in Australia in 2004 but hardly made a ripple in the US. It did, however, it did make its way to Borders (a place I still miss) where I listened to it on one of their listening stations. I bought it immediately.  (more…)

Playing Favorites 8/6/22

August 6, 2022

 

cakeI seem to have fallen into the habit of posting Playing Favorites on Saturday the tagging it a Friday Favorite. At first it was write a draft on Friday, then revise and post it on Saturday. Well, this post is written, revised and posted on Saturday, so I suppose I can’t tag it as a Friday Favorite. For the sake of honesty, I’ve dispensed with the Friday tag in favor of calling it simply Playing Favorites. This is a four-layer favorite, a beautiful song, written and performed by my favorite pianist for one of my favorite movies, which happens to have the most beautiful opening titles of any film I can remember. Add performances by Katharine Hepburn by Henry Fonda and you have a four-layer favorite with frosting. If you have not seen On Golden Pond you owe it to yourself to track it down. Yes, its old (1981) and a little dated, but if you are reading Bud’s blog, you are used to that. Henry Fonda is the perfect curmudgeon and Katherine Hepburn the ever-optimistic wife taking care of him as he slows down. The cinematography is, including the opening title, is done by Billy Williams. (more…)

Playing Favorites 07/30/2022

July 30, 2022

I wonder if anyone in my small cadre of readers watches Rick Beatto on You Tube.  According to Wikipedia, Rick is an American YouTube personality, multi-instrumentalist, music producer and educator. He is known for his YouTube channel, Everything Music, where he covers different aspects of rock, jazz, and popular music, and interviews well-known musicians and producers.  Watching Rick, I know he loves music like I love music … and understands it as I never will.   One of his features is What Makes This Song Great in which he dissects the performance of a song both literally by playing different instrumental and vocal parts separately and figuratively by talking about the chord progressions, playing styles, and instruments.  The latter is far beyond my limited music education but I still enjoy it and hearing the way a performance is put together is fascinating. (more…)

Playing Favorites 7/22/2022

July 22, 2022

larryMy plan a few weeks ago was to post a song on Oldereyes-Bud’s Blog every Friday.  Good intentions?  Yes, though my Mom probably would have said, Good intentions are the road to hell.   A most peculiar saying … without good intentions would we ever do good deeds?  It just seems as I get older, absolutes like every and always and for certain seem, well, a little TOO absolute.  Posting on Oldereyes every week may become every other week or once a month.  In this case it is three weeks since I posted Playing Favorites.  But here I am, ready to grace your speakers with another one of my favorite songs.   The odds are pretty good that my weekly favorite will be either rock or jazz, depending on what playlist or what Sirius XM station has provided the current earworm as I sit down to write. (more…)

Playing Favorites (5/20/1944)

May 20, 2022

wpid-happy_birthday_to_you.jpgNo, that’s not a typo in the title.  In spite of my advanced age, I know what year it is (2021, right?).  But I was born on this date in 1944, making this my 78th birthday (2022-1944=78.  See?  I is still good at math).  So the question of the moment is what a music loving septuagenarian music lover will play on his birthday.  The obvious (if not original) choice is the classic Happy Birthday we been forced to sing since we were kids.  My favorite version:

Happy birthday to you,
You belong in a zoo.
You look like a monkey,
And you act like one too.

Cute but hardly appropriate … monkeys rarely life beyond forty.   Or, I could find a page like 33 Best Birthday Songs Of All Time and choose one of the dozens of birthday songs that were recorded by various artists.   I could reach back to my youth and choose The Crests Sixteen Candles, but that would be about 55 candles short (see?  I is still good at math).  Besides, the song is about heartbreak and I am a happy old goat today.   I could choose Happy Birthday songs by The Beatles or Stevie Wonder, but as much as I love both artists, their birthday songs feel like half-hearted efforts.   I could go modern with 2 Chainz – Birthday Song featuring Kanye West and the lovely lyric, All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe.  Not a freaking chance … we’re talking music here.  And it’s crap like that that makes me feel even older.

So, I’ll pick a birthday song with a brain by one of my favorite singers, Carly Simon, who tells a story in every song.   In her Happy Birthday song, Carly talks about all the things growing old has cost her, including caffeine and dessert.  It’s a great birthday song, but it’s also a reminder of all the things you have to do make it to your seventies.  And appropriately enough, she’s also a septuagenarian.  Be sure to listen to the lyrics (or read them here).

Playing Favorites 4/29/2022

April 29, 2022

roy and kdI try to be scrupulously honest here on Bud’s Blog … except, of course, for those times where my tongue is firmly in cheek or my Inner Curmudgeon has taken control of the keyboard.  So I have to admit that when I decided to post my favorite duet, I knew exactly where I was headed.   That’s probably a bit surprising since I’ve been listening to pop music for over sixty years during which I suspect hundreds … if not thousands … of duets have made it to the charts.  And thousands more have appeared on duets album by artists like Frank Sinatra and Kenny G that featured an assortment of vocal stars singing with the top-billed artist.    There were duet groups like Sonny and Cher or Peaches and Herb, and one-time duet hits like Endless Love by Diana Ross and Lionel Ritchie or We’ve Got Tonight by Kenny Rogers and Kim Carnes.   One of the most famous duets, You Don’t Bring Me Flowers by Barbara Streisand and Neil Diamond was manufactured from solo performances by an enterprising program manager before it was released as a duet by 1978 … and performed live a the Grammy Awards Show in 1980.  Online there are dozens of greatest duets list:  there’s a Top Forty from Billboard Magazine (with Endless Love as number one) and a Top Fifty from the UK’s Telegraph. (with Lee Hazelwood’s and Nancy Sinatra’s Some Velvet Morning as the winner.  Those Brits.  Go figure.). Rolling Stone’s 20 Best Dramatic Duets of All Time selects Kenny Rogers’ and Dolly Parton’s Island in the Stream as number one. (more…)

Playing Favorites 4/22

April 22, 2022

borders1Do you remember Borders? Back in the early 2000s, it was one of the three largest bookstores in America. It featured not only books but music and specialty items. You may recall the store had a coffee shop and cafe as well as comfortable chairs and sofas sprinkled around among the books, inviting you to not just buy but to stay and read. They even had light entertain on weekends. Our local store in Anaheim Hills became a hangout for my wife Muri and I. Borders declared bankruptcy in 2011 and our beloved Borders is now a Sprouts grocery store (not a good place to hang out). My favorite feature of Borders were the listening stations that were set up along the top of the CD racks. Each station had its own set of headphones and featured a new release CD. You could skip through tracks or stand and listen to the whole album. Borders sold me quite a few CDs that way. (more…)

MyTube

April 18, 2022

radio

If you’ve been coming around here for a while, you know I am a music lover (there are 88 posts under the category, music).  I have often said that we live in a marvelous time to be music lovers.  My old-fashioned stereo now lives in my office, ready to play any of the hundreds of CDs and small collection of LPs that I kept when we moved to Utah (I sold most my record collection before moving, keeping mostly the classical recordings).  Amazon Alexa sits on the shelf in the office and at my bedside, ready to play music on request.   Digital media allows me to carry my entire music collection (some ripped from CDs or from vinyl) with me whether on my cell phone or on my portable high-resolution player that delivers near audiophile sound.   Streaming media and the ubiquitous availability of wi-fi gives me access to practically any song by any artist anywhere through resources like Prime Music, Spotify and Sirius XM.  Wherever I am I can listen on high quality portable speakers, my Bose noise cancelling headphones, Bluetooth earbuds or high-resolution wired earbuds.  In my car, I can access Pandora, Sirius XM or play my music from my phone via Bluetooth.   It is pretty remarkable when you consider what I had in my teenage years, like my not-so-portable radio at the top of the page. (more…)