Nickolepsy

Song of the Day — Cake

October 23, 2011
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Mahna Mahna

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Song of the Day — Beck

June 5, 2011
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Wistful day.  This is how it feels:

The Golden Age


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Happy 70th

May 24, 2011
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Choosing a favorite Bob Dylan song is impossible.  It would be wrong to let his 70th birthday pass, though, without a singing his praises.

Hmm…  My voice is even worse than his.  I’ll let David Bowie handle this one.

Song For Bob Dylan


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Song of the Day — Happy Music, and the Changing of the Guard

May 23, 2011
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Usually I play happy music to fan an ember of good feeling into bright blazing joy.  Sometimes when I’m lost and cold, I look to it for a spark.  (That usually doesn’t work.  Congruency matters.)

My song of choice for ages has been this:

Central Reservation (Spiritual Life _ Ibadan Remix)

I post it everywhere.  It still works.

~

The other day I was driving on the highway with my son, and an old happy song shuffled out of my ipod.  Oh yeah!  I forgot!  There are other happy songs!  This one by Rickie Lee Jones was IT for me 25 years ago:

Woody And Dutch On The Slow Train To Peking

He liked it.  Then he said, quietly, “I have a happy song, too, dad.”

I was skeptical.  I kept my eyes on the road, raised my eyebrows, and said just as quietly, “oh yeah?”  Glanced over at him with a no-nonsense expression on my face.

He narrowed his eyes and smiled.  Picked up the challenge.  “Oh yeah, dad.”

I shrugged my shoulders.  He turns 18 next month.  Thinks he’s a man.  I merged into the fast lane and said, quietly, “show me.”

He found his Otis Redding, and played this:

The Happy Song (Dun-Dum)

Yeesh.  Don’t tell him, but I think he won that one.  I have other happy songs, but they’ll have to wait.  Gotta go listen to some more Otis.


Song of the Day — Loudon Wainwright III

May 21, 2011
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“Heaven” was topical for today’s rapture (did it happen yet?  Traffic still looks pretty heavy on my street, but I live in Cambridge MA.  Life will stay pretty normal here either way.)  I like this one better, though:

The Shit Song


Song of the Day — Loudon Wainwright III

May 21, 2011
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Heaven


Song of the Day — Michelle Shocked

May 20, 2011
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Let me hold me in my arms…

~

Sleep Keeps Me Awake


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Song of the Day — Cowboy Junkies

May 10, 2011
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This cover (The Cowboy Junkies’ studio version of an old Neil Young song) haunts me.

I play it over and over, in a reverie, drifting into the narrator’s world, and humming along with the accordion and the mandolin.  The tone is so tender, the voice so matter-of-fact, that what should be a depressing story becomes noble and beautiful.

Life is short.  We get overwhelmed.  We see in a moment how far from perfection we really are.

And then we do our best, even when it’s not enough.

It IS a sad song, but it’s also beautiful, and — is it just me? I don’t think so — inspirational.

Powderfinger


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Song of the Day — Blues Traveler

February 21, 2011
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A harmonica solo usually is the perfect time for a quick bathroom break, or for a dash to the kitchen for a second helping of linguini, or for lowering your raised finger and saying to your child, “Ok, NOW tell me what your brother did to you.”  Harmonicas are so often screechy and distracting.

Yes, I’m talking to you, Bob Dylan.

Blues-oriented songs integrate the harmonica better than folk songs do.  Dan Ackroyd’s harmonica on those old Blues Brothers songs, for instance, was not merely a cue to empty one’s bladder.

I’ve been listening to Blues Traveler lately.  Despite the name, they are not particularly bluesy.  They are more CountingCrows-y, but with a tremendous rhythm section.  Technically proficient guitar, engaging singer, lyrics are fine but beside the point.  Then there’s the harmonica.  AWESOME.  MORE HARMONICA, PLEASE.

Like on this song:

Whoops


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Song of the Day — Elvis Costello

February 16, 2011
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Different Finger


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