Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘music’

“Dear Santa, Can I cook microwave popcorn on the stove-top?,” and other preposterously absurd questions.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, November 1, 2019

Some years ago, while attending university, during the Christmas season, I portrayed “Santa” on a local television station.

The show was aptly called “Letters to Santa,” and was a LIVE TELEVISION BROADCAST PRODUCTION, which aired, appropriately enough, in the late afternoons after grade-school children were out of school for the day.

The show’s tenet was simple enough, children would send their letters to Santa, care of the television station – some of which would be read during the show (live, on the air), in conjunction with live participants who would attend with their parents to tell the Jolly Old Elf if they’d been naughty, or nice, and what they’d like for Christmas.

The show’s Executive Producer (who has long since gone to the great broadcasting center in the sky) did his best to prepare me for the role, which included off-the-air role-playing scenarios, and other tips and tricks for how to handle the attendees, and studio viewing audience, which also included how to effectively deal with children who might be fearful, belligerent, timid, crying, or demonstrating any other of the numerous emotions for which they’re renown for demonstrating – including their parents, who can sometimes also act like their children.

Fortunately, such a topsy-turvy scenario didn’t present itself… as best I recollect.

Because it was important to him, to the station (for community relations purposes) – and to the parents – to not place the parents in a untenable scenario by being perceived as an anything-you-want wish-granting jolly old elf (whose promises to children the parents might not be inclined, or able to keep), it was crucial to give as non-committal an answer as possible when the children sat on Santa’s knee to make their requests – however scant, or numerous they may have been.

While most children were reasonable in their requests – and honest about their year-long behavior – some children (very few) were not, and had lengthy lists with seemingly endless self-centered wants. Again, like standard normal distribution in statistics tells us, those children were very few, just as were the ones who had no requests for themselves.

Of course, there were a few occasional socially-related requests such as getting mama, or daddy out of prison or jail, wanting family members to get well (some who had terminal illnesses), and the like.

Not very many wanted world peace, or any such thing.

And naturally, there were a few who, for whatever reason, simply didn’t “believe in” the Jolly Old Elf.

I guess for some parents, it easier to tell their children a lie, than it is to present a simple truth – there is NO “Santa Claus” who flies around the world in a reindeer-driven sleigh delivering toys to children. Besides, Jolly Old St. Nicholas might get arrested for Breaking & Entering if he was able to scoot his corpulent carcass down a soot-laden chimney… which might be in use during the winter.

That wouldn’t end well.

But the 1952 song “I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus,” written by native Mississippian Jimmy Devon Boyd (1939-2009), does a well-enough job of explaining the truth about the matter, anyway.

Speaking of which, the song was banned in Boston by the Catholic Church the year it was released, which claimed it was overtly sexual.

Of course, that only made the recording by the then-13-year-old boy sell better.

But… if you stop to think about it, Santa Claus is banging your wife!

And, it gives an entirely new meaning to “Ho, ho, ho!”

There’s a reason that Jolly Old Elf is so jolly!

And, that’s exactly what the Catholic Church taught. (Never mind the pedophile priests.)

PRO TIP: Write a Christmas-themed song. It’ll provide money to you annually, and for your heirs – 70 years after your death. Not a bad deal, eh?

Anyway… back to the Santa story.

It took me aback to Read the rest of this entry »

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Donald Trump And The Republican Party Are Like A Bob Seger Song

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, October 8, 2019

The unhinged surreality made-for-television game show world that is the Current White House Occupant’s mindset is now laid bare.

Amidst the debacle that is playing out on the world’s stage in the open air of the Washington, D.C. Beltway, Donald J. Trump, the President of the United States has unilaterally taken it upon himself to rule as an authoritarian demagogue, and – as much as possible (legally, or not) – to fire, discharge, or force the resignation of seemingly countless honorable career public servants; to compel the engagement of numerous Federal agencies to perform his private political dirty work, and to stymie Congress as much as possible by claiming either Executive Privilege, or unlimited Constitutional authority under Article 2, despite the fact that the Congress (the House and Senate) is significantly and Constitutionally charged with oversight of the governmental operations.

He has played friendly with America’s enemies, including Russia, China, North Korea, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and others, while making enemies of America’s long-standing allies such as Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada, Mexico, and others.

He has abused the power of the Office of the President to unilaterally reveal National Security secrets to the world, and to America’s enemies.

He has treacherously abused, mocked and belittled America’s Intelligence agencies, including the National Security Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Director of National Intelligence, and by so doing, harmed the morale of those revered agencies, but by so doing, has compromised American National Security in the world.

America is not respected in the world any longer. And, it is exclusively because of Donald J. Trump.

This bizarre presidency is like no other – literally, in every way – and despite his campaign sloganeering to Read the rest of this entry »

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I.G.Y. (What A Beautiful World) – A Timeless Classic

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, August 8, 2019

I don’t always think about politics.

Sometimes, I think about music.

Or, more accurately, I sing, or hum a few lines of a song which melody happens to pop in my head.

This morning, it was Donald Fagen’s – of Steely Dan renown – tune known as “What A Beautiful World,” which is properly titled as “I.G.Y. (What a Beautiful World).”

Released as a single on his first solo album “The Nightfly” which was certified Gold, and then Platinum by the RIAA based upon sales volume in 1982, and 2001 respectively, the single never reached above 8th position on Billboard’s U.S. Adult Contemporary chart, while on Canada’s RPM Contemporary Adult chart, it topped out at number 2, both in the 1982-83 time frame.

The tune and melody of the song is its most powerful attribute, while the rhythm and bouncing dotted-eighth syncopation is Read the rest of this entry »

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Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 7, 2018

Baby, it’s dumb inside.

Has anyone banned “Dixie”?

Remember:
Libraries celebrate “Banned Book Week” by encouraging EVERYONE to read books that were once banned, like “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” or, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” because “it highlights the value of free and open access to information.

Why shouldn’t we do the same with music?

https://www.npr.org/673770902

Citing the #MeToo movement, and pointing to the line in the song “say, what’s in this drink?,” some radio stations have moved to “ban” the 1949 Academy Award winning song which was featured in the motion picture Neptune’s Daughter, and sung by Ricardo Montalbán and Esther Williams.

Critics decry it as an inference to “slipping a mickey” – an old, colloquial term for a date rape drug – into the woman’s drink.

However, I can’t count the number of times folks have asked me what’s in drinks I’ve made. One of the most notable ones being Read the rest of this entry »

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Saying Ciao to Chau

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 3, 2018

Increasingly, it seems highly unlikely that the mortal remains of John Alan Chau will ever be repatriated to the United States.

Chau was the 26-year-old missionary who illegally invaded North Sentinel Island in the Andaman and Nicobar Island chain east of India in the Bay of Bengal, then was killed while trespassing by the Stone Age tribe members who are thought to have resided there for 60,000 years.

John Allen Chau

So far, police have arrested 7 people, including the 6 fishermen who ferried him to North Sentinel Island.

Chau still didn’t act alone.

Dependra Pathak, Andaman Director General of Police, said “We are investigating the role of at least two Americans, a man and a woman, who met with the man who went to the island. These other two, who have since left the country, were reportedly into evangelical activities and encouraged him to visit the island.”

Though he neither identified them or their organization by name, Police Director Pathak said the two Americans who had Read the rest of this entry »

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Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin passes musical scepter and crown to Candi Staton

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, August 16, 2018

Aretha Franklin (1942–2018)

On this day in which we mourn the passing of the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, it seems fitting to acknowledge a similarly renown 78-year-old soul singer from the tiny north Alabama town of Hanceville whose new album will be released soon.

Aretha Franklin at FAME Recording Studios, in Muscle Shoals, AL. Her first Number One hit “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” was written for her by her friend Ronnie Shannon, produced by Jerry Wexler, and released in 1967 – was recorded at FAME Studios with the guidance and direction of Rick Hall. It almost didn’t get cut (and was the only song recorded at that session) because of tensions between her then-husband Ted White and a member of the Muscle Shoals Horn Section, and Jerry Wexler and FAME owner Rick Hall.

The two artists share numerous similarities, and could – for all practical purposes – be considered musical sisters by virtue of their musical upbringings. The producers, musicians, engineers and others – including their families – in whose orbit they traveled, are similar, if not identical, as are their life stories.

The other to whom I refer is Candi Staton.

Linked below, NPR previews the album (linked on the page) which will be released August 24, and supplies a brief story about her 30th album which is entitled “Unstoppable.”

“Unstoppable” is Candi Staton’s 30th album.

That woman, of course, is the unstoppable Candi Staton, whose previous album “Life Happens” released in 2014, was also the very last one her early mentor Rick Hall of FAME Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals – who guided her career change from gospel to soul, including that of Aretha Franklin with her first Number 1 R&B hit “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” – produced before he died of prostate cancer on the second day of this new year aged 85. On that album, she collaborated with other Alabamians of musical renown, including Jason Isbell, and Read the rest of this entry »

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Walk Into The Desert

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, February 11, 2018

Fans of Maria Muldaur recall the song “Midnight at the Oasis” and its incongruous line about Read the rest of this entry »

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Green Pastures

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, August 12, 2017

As I awakened this morning, in my mind, I was hearing the refrains of this gentle song… “Going up home to live in green pastures, Where we shall live and die nevermore. Even the Lord will Be in that number when we shall reach that Heavenly Shore.”

Troubles and trials
Often betray us
Tempting the wearing
Body to stray
But we shall all meet
‘Side the still waters
With the Good Shepherd
Leading the way

Those who have strayed were
Sought by the Master
He who once gave His
Life for the sheep
Out on the mountain
Now He is searching
Bringing them in
Forever to keep

Going up home to
Live in green pastures
Where we shall live and
Die nevermore
Even the Lord will
Be in that number
When we shall reach that
Heavenly Shore

We will not heed the Read the rest of this entry »

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Give Me One Reason

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, August 11, 2017

In a November 18, 2015 interview with Tavis Smiley, singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman talked about her forthcoming “Greatest Hits” album and the remastering of her songs for it, and said in part about that process that, “Often turning the volume up means compression. And when you compress things, it’s great in a way because it’s louder, but it also takes the dynamics out. So we were really careful because, when you start to do that too much, you lose all of those little low and high moments, and a lot of those things matter in the sparse arrangements that, you know, are represented on some of these songs.” 

In audio recording, the term “compression” means that Read the rest of this entry »

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“Gotta’ Travel On” Was Early Cross Over Hit

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The song “Gotta’ Travel On,” written by by Billy Wayne Grammer (August 28, 1925 – August 10, 2011), is perhaps among the most renown songs in modern recorded history, and for good reason. It was one of the very first songs to have ever had broad “crossover” appeal.

The song’s melody is a traditional one, and the lyrics are thought to be based on a fragment of an unnamed song found in the archives of the Virginia Folklore Society entitled “Done Laid Around,” though there are versions of the song with the same title which typically use a different set of stanzas.

February 22, 1958, Pete Seeger became the first musician to have recorded it and the lyrics with which most are now familiar – which were written by Paul Clayton, David Lazar, Larry Ehrlich, Fred Hellerman, Pete Seeger, and Lee Hays. The BMI Award Winning Song is BMI Work #503008 in the repertoire, and is 100% controlled by BMI.

Pete Seeger performs “Gotta Travel On”

It was only very shortly thereafter, in 1959, when Billy Wayne Grammer recorded and released that song, that it charted on the Country (ranking 5th), Pop (ranking 4th) AND R&B (ranking 14th) music charts! That was no small feat! While not the very first such crossover song,”Gotta’ Travel On” was certainly one of the first. And in the years since, many songs have increased popularity among wider audiences by artists whose interpretations have brought nuance, and even complete change to a song.

Of the numerous musicians have since lent their interpretations to, and re-recorded “Gotta’ Travel On,” which include musical luminaries such as Read the rest of this entry »

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Playing Piano With Grandmother In The Rain

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 5, 2017

As a child and youth – even later in life – when visiting my maternal grandmother, I would often play her baby grand piano.

As a child, when a summer thunderstorm would approach, she would tell me to stop playing, because, as she said, lightning would strike the piano because of the metal wires in it. She falsely supposed it to be an attractive force of some type.

Of course, at the time, I thought such an idea to be preposterously absurd… and still do. And in retrospect, I saw my obedience, then rebellion, and later obsequiousness, more as a reflection of my love to, and respect for her.

Naturally, as a youth, I attempted to reason with her by asking her if she’d ever heard of, or knew anyone who’d ever had their piano struck by lightning while being played during a thunderstorm, and she said Read the rest of this entry »

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Beans So Bad Even My Dog Won’t Eat ‘Em

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, July 19, 2015

Dogs’ll eat anything.

Well, almost anything.

Yeah, they were are that bad!

You know beans’ve gotta’ be REALLY bad when even a 4-day hungry dawg won’t eat ’em!

Or, any food.

Bad Beans front s

You KNOW food is genuinely bad when even a hungry dog won’t eat it!

It’s summertime, and truth be told, folks and critters don’t do much eating.

‘Cept for bears. Bears chow down during summer. They eat up, meat up, and sleep it all off over winter.

But this was the case with Read the rest of this entry »

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Divining Jesus’ Humanity: Was He fully human? What does that mean?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, May 24, 2015

So one of these nights and about twelve o’clock
This old world’s going to reel and rock
Saints will tremble and cry for pain
For the Lord’s gonna come in His heavenly airplane

If God had a name, what would it be?
And would you call it to His face,
If you were faced with Him in all His glory?
What would you ask if you had just one question?

You’re probably not like me.
You’ve probably never given a second thought to the holiness of the Almighty.
You’ve probably never struggled with Jesus Christ’s humanity.
You’ve probably never given a second thought to the fact that His shit stunk just like yours.
You’ve probably never given a moments thought to the fact that He pooped His diapers like your kids.
You’ve probably never imagined that, like every normal Read the rest of this entry »

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Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson visits Alabama and advocates teen brides

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, June 24, 2014

In a town infamous for it’s bigoted, inglorious racist history, and “dry” Oktoberfest, comes this not-so-unusual item.

The north-central Alabama town of Read the rest of this entry »

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Sweet Soul Music Alive & Well in Muscle Shoals, Alabama

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, August 5, 2013

‘Paperboy’ hot off the press

By Robert Palmer Staff Writer | Posted: Sunday, August 4, 2013 11:00 pm

MUSCLE SHOALS — Eli “Paperboy” Reed isn’t 30 years old yet, but the singer and guitarist is steeped in southern soul as well as rhythm and blues in a way one would expect from a much older person.

Reed was at FAME Recording Studios last week, recording two tracks, one of which is slated to be on the soundtrack CD of the movie “Muscle Shoals.” He chose Jimmy Hughes’ classic “Steal Away,” one of FAME’s earliest hits, for the soundtrack.

Eli "Paperboy" Reed

Eli “Paperboy” Reed, left, sings along to a track Wednesday during a recording session at FAME Recording Studios. Reed, who is highly influenced by the Muscle Shoals music scene, recorded two songs at the studio. Photo by Allison Carter/TimesDaily

Wednesday afternoon, he was working with a horn section on a rousing version of the Violinaires’ 1960s gospel song “I Don’t Know What the World Is Coming To.” He said the song could be included as a bonus track on an upcoming CD.

For Reed, a student of soul, R&B, blues and gospel, the visit to FAME and Muscle Shoals was a dream come true.

“ ‘Steal Away’ has become my song” in live performance, he said of the 1964 hit that launched FAME Records. “I’d read Peter Guralnick’s ‘Sweet Soul Music,’ and I knew that was from FAME and Muscle Shoals.”

Reed grew up listening to his father’s record collection and playing harmonica to his guitar tunes.

“I discovered Muscle Shoals when I got into rhythm and blues and reading liner notes on record jackets,” he said.

As a teenager, he said, he Read the rest of this entry »

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Pussy Riot: Now that Putin’s in charge again, the gulags aren’t all that bad!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, August 17, 2012

People everywhere cry for freedom.

Oppression of political speech?

Or something else?

Putin asked the courts to go easy on them.

And yet, cries of ‘six more years’ was not heard after the verdict was rendered.

Either way, Putin‘s gotta’ go.

Reckon Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn is turning over in his grave?

Russia: Pussy Riot and the investor

August 17, 2012 5:28 pm by Stefan Wagstyl
Pussy-Riot-members-on-trial-2012

Members of the all-girl punk rock band Pussy Riot have been recently convicted in Russian court of “hooliganism,” for performing an impromptu song in a Russian Orthodox Church which was critical of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

On the face of it, there would appear to be little reason why foreign investors should worry much about Russia’s Pussy Riot court case.

So what if three young female punks have been jailed for two years, as they were on Friday, for hooliganism after a noisy performance in Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral? After all, there are many western countries where such a provocative public display would also result in prosecution.

But that is to misunderstand Russia. In fact, the case should give even the most hard-headed international business people pause for thought.

First,  it’s a reminder – not that we need one – of the heavy-handed arbitrariness of the Russian courts. The three women could have been Read the rest of this entry »

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More music dies…

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, June 2, 2012

Change is inevitable.

Will things change for the better?

Doug Dillard, Bluegrass Banjo Virtuoso, Dies at 75

Doug Dillard sub-dillard-obit-articleLarge

Doug Dillard, left, with Gene Clark, one of the founders of the Byrds. The men formed their own duo, Dillard and Clark. (A&M Records)

By PETER KEEPNEWS
Published: May 27, 2012

Doug Dillard, a banjo virtuoso who began the 1960s by helping to introduce a generation of listeners to bluegrass and ended the decade as an early advocate of country-rock, died on May 16 in Nashville. He was 75.

The cause was a lung infection, said Lynne Robin Green, the president of LWBH Music Publishers, which publishes his music.

Mr. Dillard rose to fame with the Dillards, a bluegrass band that also included his younger brother, Rodney, on guitar; Dean Webb on mandolin; and Mitch Jayne on bass. The Dillards’ instrumentation was traditional (except for the absence of a fiddle player) and so was much of their repertory, but they occasionally played electrified instruments and sometimes used a drummer. This approach alienated some purists, but it also helped interest young listeners in a style that the country-music establishment had come to consider passé.

Mr. Dillard’s skillful banjo work, which has been cited as Read the rest of this entry »

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Legendary Finger Picker Guitarist “Doc” Watson dead at 89

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 31, 2012

“Doc” Watson was proof that no matter the difficulties, trials or tribulations that life throws your way, if you put your heart and soul to whatever your hand finds to do, you can excel.

May his memory be blessed.

Doc Watson, Blind Guitar Wizard Who Influenced Generations, Dies at 89

May 29, 2012
By WILLIAM GRIMES

Doc Watson, the guitarist and folk singer whose flat-picking style elevated the acoustic guitar to solo status in bluegrass and country music, and whose interpretations of traditional American music profoundly influenced generations of folk and rock guitarists, died on Tuesday in Winston-Salem, N.C. He was 89.

Doc WATSON-1-obit-articleLarge

Doc Watson performing in New York in 2005. (Jack Vartoogian/FrontRowPhotos)

Mr. Watson, who had been blind since he was a baby, died in a hospital after recently undergoing abdominal surgery, The Associated Press quoted a hospital spokesman as saying. On Thursday his daughter, Nancy Ellen Watson, said he had been hospitalized after falling at his home in Deep Gap, N.C., adding that he did not break any bones but was very ill.

Mr. Watson, who came to national attention during the folk music revival of the early 1960s, injected a note of authenticity into a movement awash in protest songs and bland renditions of traditional tunes. In a sweetly resonant, slightly husky baritone, he sang old hymns, ballads and country blues he had learned growing up in the northwestern corner of North Carolina, which has produced fiddlers, banjo pickers and folk singers for generations.

His mountain music came as a Read the rest of this entry »

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Satchmo! New vinyl of previously unreleased recordings to be pressed & sold.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fans everywhere of the “Ambassador of Goodwill” should rejoice!

Now, years after his death, his performance at the National Press Club will be released, AND on vinyl!

But… there’s a caveat.

It’s limited.

VERY limited.

How limited?

Only 300 pressings will be made.

But, if you’re into digital, you won’t be left out.

It’ll be available on CD & iTunes.

Louis Armstrong’s memorable National Press Club performance to be rereleased

By , Tuesday, April 24, 7:53 PM

Beginning in the 1920s, Louis Armstrong was the undisputed fountainhead of American jazz. With his bright, clear trumpet and his ebullient, gravelly voice, he more or less defined how jazz is meant to be played and sung.

Everything he did is of interest to musicians and scholars, and few American lives have been better documented. But until this week, little was known about a performance he recorded in Washington five months before he died in 1971.

On Friday, at a news conference at the site of Armstrong’s original recording at the National Press Club, the music he Read the rest of this entry »

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Alabama: I love my state, and despise her corrupt officials.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, March 7, 2012

This entry starts out in a wee bit different tenor, then points directly at the problem.

Read on to see what I mean.

Not many folks may recall Alabama‘s state song, which lyric reads, “Alabama, Alabama, I will aye be true to thee. From thy Southern shore where groweth, by the sea the orange tree.”

As a kid, I kinda’ thought it was Read the rest of this entry »

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Why don’t we do it in the road? Beatles’ photo site now historically protected

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 27, 2010

BeatlesAbbey Road zebra crossing given listed status

Actors play the part of the Beatles crossing a zebra crossing outside the Abbey Road studios
The crossing is described as a Mecca for Beatles fans
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-12059385

Related stories

The Abbey Road zebra crossing in north London – made famous after appearing on a Beatles album cover – has been given Grade II listed status.

The crossing – the first of its kind to be listed – is being recognised for its “cultural and historical importance” following advice from English Heritage.

The Beatles were photographed on Abbey Road in Ian Macmillan‘s iconic cover shot for the 1969 album Abbey Road. Read the rest of this entry »

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Steve Earle, Steve Earle, please write a song for me.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, November 12, 2010

Steve Earle
CCKMP

Cocaine cannot kill my pain
Like a freight train through my vein
Cocaine cannot kill my pain

Whiskey got no hold on me
Left them chains in …Continue…

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Who are You?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, November 8, 2010

East Lake Tahoe Nv; 1 sec exposure

The Eastern Shore of Lake Tahoe, also known as Galilee Image via Wikipedia

 

Some years ago, a good friend of mine had encouraged me to begin a blog.

“Why do I want or need a blog?,” I asked him.

“You write very well, and a blog would seem to be a natural outlet for your thoughts,” he said.

Never being one whom chronicled or maintained a “dear diary” in my youth, I was quite amazed to hear his words. I had, however, been periodically sharing thoughts with my kindred and friends via e-mail. Alan was kind enough to host my writing for quite some time, gently guiding me through the technical process.

As things go – at least according to the Law of Entropy – things tend toward deterioration, decay and chaos. In other words, they move from order to disorder. And in time, because of the age of his servers, the bulk of traffic and the increasing complexity of software, he began migrating his servers to another resource, at which point he also began encouraging me to move my blog, which I have, and which you are now reading.

I had purposed to republish my original writings – and inspired by a recent status update posting I’d made to FaceBook – piqued my desire to republish this one post immediately.

Some background: I was in Lake Tahoe, NV at the time of the writing, staying with an extended family member, having traveled West in response to a spiritual urging I sensed. The events surrounding the same are another story in themselves, which I shall reserve.

Without further ado, I give you… …Continue…

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“So Into You,” by Atlanta Rhythm Section

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 6, 2010

From the Summer of ’77, the “Boys of Doraville” brought us this easy-going Southern Rock genre tune that made it to the Top Ten, and which catapulted the band to fame.

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The South’s gonna’ do it again!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, August 6, 2010

Music lifts our souls and spirits, innervates and energizes us, soothes our weary souls, troubled minds and hearts. It is the veritable soundtrack of our lives, sometimes reinvigorating and re-energizing us to press on, to continue, to bear up under duress, and for a brief moment, forget about our troubles, to leave them all behind in an ecstatic abandonment of rapturous joy.

Every generation has their own music, those seminal and prophetic voices of the era. To some, it’s hated, while to others, beloved, and yet to others still, misunderstood and frequently mischaracterized, even demonized.

And through it all, we every one acknowledge our own depence upon music to be there for us, albeit if unconsciously.

And so, with a nod of the hat, I give you the following. I only wish you could hear it. And if you’re of that era, I’m certain you will.
Read the rest of this entry »

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Quincy Jones: “Being a good parent” is top priority.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 26, 2010

What’s it like to have your priorities in order?

Ask Quincy Jones.

At the recent American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers’ annual “I Create Music” expo at the Hollywood Renaissance Hotel last Friday night (23 April 2010), the 77-year old producer said while it’s been a “blessing” to have worked with “every major artist of the 20th century,” his most important jobs is “being a good parent.

During the hour long conversation/interview with pop music entertainer “Ludacris,” Mr. Jones …Continue…

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Told ‘ya so! Big Spring Jam DOA

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, April 16, 2010

It wasn’t going to be a good festival this year.”

Front page, Huntsville Times, Friday 16 April, 2010

Duh! I TOLD YOU SO, nearly a month ago!

-Donn Jennings, Big Spring Jam co-founder, partner, promoter

Faithful readers will recall that on Tuesday, 23 March 2010 I wrote the following entry:

It’s official: No more Big Spring Jam in Huntsville

Today’s (Friday, 16 April 2010) Huntsvillle (Behind The) Times headline reads: 2010 JAM IS CANNED.

What would the Tennessee Valley do without their CON (Corporately Owned Newspaper)?

Perhaps they’d have to figure out where to get their daily dose of truth!

(Behind The) Times Entertainment Writer Chris Welch’s lame introduction to the uninformative article sparks no interest, “For the first time in 18 years, there will be no jammin’ this September in Big Spring International Park.” Then, he drones on and on, nearly boring the readers to tears with vis-à-vis remarks that, “… The Times editorial board…,” “… the Jam has brought in headliners…,” (isn’t that the stuff that’s stuck to the top of your car’s interior roof? How about some better adjectives and verbiage, Chris?), and more uninformative blather.

The only scintilla of information about what may REALLY be going on is contained in the second paragraph: “Organizers… told… that the 18th Big Spring Jam… will be canceled this year because of downtown construction at the Von Braun Center and Huntsville Museum of Art.” (The …s are omission of extraneous, useless information.) …Continue…

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“I never saw John Wayne on the sands of Iwo Jima.”

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, March 19, 2010

The Dirty South” by the Drive-By Truckers was written from a recollection of band member Patterson Hood.

The title of this entry is a line from the 2003 song, “The Sands of Iwo Jima” on the album “The Dirty South” by the Drive-By Truckers was written from a recollection of band member Patterson Hood.

In his album commentary about this song, Patterson said: “As a kid, I spent every weekend at my Great-Uncle’s farm (my family’s old homestead) where I rode go-carts and acted out my favorite movie scenes in the woods. George A. is an amazing man (still kicking hard at 84) and I have long tried to capture a glimpse of those times in a song.

“During World War II he was drafted and ended up on the island Iwo Jima in one of the bloodiest battles of the war. As a curious child, I’d often innocently ask him about all that. One night while watching the old John Wayne movie (The Sands Of Iwo Jima) on TV, he simply said that he “never saw John Wayne over there”.

“So many of the folks I’ve written about in this album feel forced into doing terrible things. George A. was no doubt, changed by his experience, but I know him to be easily one of the greatest men I have ever met, thus, making it a much trickier subject to write about.”

Patterson’s observations are about truth and reality, honor, dignity and service.. the giving of oneself for others esteeming them, their needs and wants greater than yours. Doubtless, we all, at one time or another, have met these unassuming quiet heroes, men whom are the backbone of our communities.

In his 1909 book Orthodoxy, G.K. Chesterton wrote, “Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of a readiness to die.”

Following are the lyrics to the song…

The Sands of Iwo Jima …Continue…

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What’s on my iPod?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, January 21, 2010

Well actually, it’s an iPhone 3GS, but here’s a partial list of who’s on mine! …Continue…

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Christmastime Blackmail & Terrorism

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 28, 2009

“We wish you a Merry Christmas… and a Happy New Year!”

So ends the traditional holiday song heard by most this time of year.

However, do you know the other lyrics?

“Oh bring us some figgy pudding, Oh bring us some figgy pudding, Oh bring us some figgy pudding, and bring it out now!

“We won’t go until we get some, We won’t go until we get some, We won’t go until we get some, and get some right here!”

“Bring it out now,” and “We won’t go until we get some?”

Sounds to me like a blackmail threat.

Please!

Call 9-1-1 ! NOW!

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Corporate Choir Crap

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, December 17, 2009

I sing in our parish choir. Though I’m a new member of the parish and choir, I’m not new to singing, having sung and been musical since a young child. As a matter of fact, I earned scholarship to attend university on the trumpet. So I definitely know my way around any musical rehearsal or activity.

Recently, we performed at “Santa’s Village,” a Christmas seasonal and decorative activity of Alabama’s Constitution Village in downtown Huntsville. As well, we’ve been “invited” to perform at “Bridge Street Town Centre,” a recently-constructed shopping center, er… excuse me, a “premier mixed-use lifestyle center,” adjacent Cummings Research Park.

Our choir director recently sent out an ‘oh, by the way…’ e-mail message stating in part that there was “some more info about… the release form that needs to be signed and returned” and that “you cannot perform without it.”

After browsing that SEVEN pages of corporate crap… I made the following observations and remarks.

  • “Performers are responsible for ensuring that their audience does not block customer traffic, access to vendor stalls, or cause a safety hazard.”

Should we bring our own bouncers, too? (Y’all keep in line, ’cause introducing…  “The St. Mary’s Bouncers!”)

  • “Juggling knives, swords, sharp sticks or other objects deemed dangerous are strictly prohibited. All dangerous activity will be stopped. Failure to comply will result in a call to Huntsville Police Department and removal from the grounds.”

Dang! There goes crowd control!

  • “Drinking of alcoholic beverages or performing while intoxicated or under the influence of controlled substances is prohibited.”

There goes having a beer with a sandwich, and wine with the meal.

  • “All signage displaying the name of the act must be professionally made or computer generated. They cannot be handwritten.”

For years, painters have hand-written signs all over this town and America. Would it be acceptable for a computer to print a hand-written font… say, Comic Sans or Chalkboard, for example, be acceptable? And what about Chinese or Japanese? That ancient and classic form of writing is one of the world’s highest forms of calligraphic art which is done exclusively by hand.

  • “I give permission to Bridge Street…. including… recordings or videos, without charge and without reservation, all or a portion of my story… I waive any rights…”

Nope. “Audemus jura nostra defendere.” It’s Alabama’s state motto, and means, “We dare defend our rights.” Women? Wanna give up that right to vote? Any non-white folks wanna’ voluntarily reduce themselves to the 1/3 person they were before Emancipation? Nope. I didn’t think so. I think I’ll keep my rights. Isn’t that what our troops are fighting for? Voluntary surrender our rights to some corporate mogul? I don’t think so.

  • “… will indemnify, defend with counsel acceptable to… Wells Fargo Bank…”

Wait just a dog-gone minute. Didn’t I pay for their bail-out? And now you want me to have legal counsel “acceptable to…” you? I don’t think so! What’s next? Perhaps my choice of breakfast food is not acceptable. We private citizens accept responsibility. Why can’t corporations?

You know, I’m all for singing and having a good time – such as what we enjoyed at Constitution Hall Village – and we weren’t required to so anything but show up and sing.

This is not fun.

Count me out.

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“…for the gravel in your guts and the spit in your eye…”

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, November 22, 2009

“And I know you hate me and you’ve got the right
To kill me now I wouldn’t blame you if you do
But you oughta thank me before I die
For the gravel in your guts and the spit in your eye
For I’m the son of a bitch that named you Sue”

Take notice of the songwriter’s name.

It’s none other than Shel Silverstein, the late, renown children’s author and playwright. Apparently, Silverstein was quite an accomplished songwriter as well.

While I’m no “fan” of Wikipedia, there is an interesting, if not enlightening article on him there. Sorry… no link. You can look it up. That’s my form of protest.

BUT! As a service to you, kind reader, I will provide a link to ShelSilverstein.com – his his official site.

Lyric excerpt from:
Boy Named Sue
(legal title)
Songwriter/Composer – Shel Silverstein
Affilitation – BMI
CAE/IPI # – 28738853
Publishers – Evil Eye Music, Inc.
Affiliation – BMI
CAE/IPI # – 53070412

Phone: (212) 594-9795
Fax: (212) 594-9782
Contact:
Evil Eye Music, Inc.
c/o The Richmond Organization
266 West 37th Street
17th Floor
New York, NY 10018
DLEITNER@GOLENBOCK.COM

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Today

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, September 19, 2009

Today, I have listened to music for hours upon end, all without interruption of any kind, commercial or announcement.

How pleasant.

I despise commercials.

Music soothes our soul.

Commercials scream and yell, and lie to us, telling us how much better our lives will be IF we buy their product or service.

Yeah… right.

I enjoy listening to music.

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