Tuesday, September 29, 2009

(#10) The Song(s) Remain the Same

Five of my favorite songs, in no particular order. In interest of fairness, I'm only using one song per artist.

1. "Ain't No More Cane" by The Band
I don't think I can even pick a favorite Band song, but this is as good a place as any to start. It captures the spirit of the band perfectly, with its weird timelessness and the feeling of a ragged communion between all the members. The verses are divided between everyone but Garth, but the shared choruses are all-for-one. Besides the stellar vocals (Rick's "ooohs" are particularly great, with his soaring, quavery voice), my favorite part of the song has to be Richard's drumming. I don't know if all piano players have some kind of innate sense of funk or what, but I love songs where Richard drums ("Rag Mama Rag," "Jemima Surrender," "Don't Ya Tell Henry," "Evangeline," etc.). You can't separate The Band into individual parts, though. When one is missing, it's just not The Band. When they're all working together, it's pure magic.

2. "My Generation" by The Who
The Who, to me, means a lot of exclamation points. Explosive! Loud! Brilliant! Raw! The Who! Townshend's written a million great songs, and I don't even know if this one's my favorite Who song, but it's definitely up there. It sums the band up rather well to me. There's Moon beating the hell out of the drums, Roger singing his heart out, Pete doing his thing, and John's amazing bass solo (those are always a high point of Who songs for me). I feel like this mixture of defiance and talent is what's made the band so loved over three generations. If you haven't seen their performance on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, shown in The Kids Are Alright, you should do so as soon as possible.

3. "Kashmir" by Led Zeppelin
I dig a lot of Zeppelin, but this one stands out to me particularly. You've got the strings and horns, not to mention the four members at the center of it. Middle Eastern music always fascinates me, and "Kashmir"'s got this exotic vibe to it. Robert Plant is not always my favorite vocalist, but he nails it here (as he does on pretty much everything; just because he's not my fave doesn't mean boy can't sing).
"Like Shangri-La beneath the summer moon, I will return again." Sigh.

4. "He Can Only Hold Her" by Amy Winehouse
I love me some Amy. If you've heard Back to Black in its entirety, you can never again judge her solely on her (undeniably unwise) life choices. Her jazzy blues-soaked vocals are such a welcome relief from today's auto-tuned "singers" who are more parts plastic than actual flesh. All of the songs on this album convey genuine emotion, and her voice on this song in particular, about a girl unable to get over her former lover even though she's with another man (yes, it sounds soap opera-y written out like that, but trust me on this) is so beautiful to me.

5. "Blackbird" by The Beatles
The quiet simplicity of this is just so beautiful. Paul had the civil rights movement in mind when he wrote it, which makes it all the more meaningful. The intricacy of the guitar part and the birdsong at the end, and Paul's fabulous singing...ah. It's just perfect.

Obviously, I am no music writer. But I kind of like doing this and probably will include more posts along this line, as there is in no way this is a good representation of all the fantastic music out there, and really isn't even a good representation of my top hundred.

Monday, September 28, 2009

(#9) Daddy Rolling Stone

This is my favorite picture of me and my dad. As you can see, from an early age I got my love of music from him.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

(#8) See Me, Feel Me

Dear Roger Daltrey from the years of 1965-1974,
We should probably get married.

Really, I adore all four of these guys.

Friday, September 25, 2009

(#7) Who Do You Love?

There are not enough words to describe how much I love The Band. So I'll let these pictures do the talking.

R.I.P. Rick Danko and Richard Manuel.

Monday, September 21, 2009

(#6) (A Few of) My Favorite Things

Upon a few reviews of other folks' (very superior) blogs, I've decided that mine needs more pictures.
We've got another list on our hands, people.

Here are some things that I love:

Summertime. Most Floridians I know are not fans of this season. Not me, baby.

Uh, duh.


This crazy painting of The Band in Civil War-era clothes I found while searching for actual photos of them. I kind of want this in my house.


Stephen King's books. Well, most of them. Especially when he's not being super weird or gross. I need this bookshelf and its contents. Seriously, if you haven't read The Stand, I recommend doing so as soon as possible. I love that book so much that I'll probably do a separate post on it one day.

Puppies. Is it lame that sometimes I just type that into the Bing image search and let the cuteness roll in?

Danville, IL.

Great white sharks, and more specifically, awesome pictures of them leaping out of the water. Wait, can something without legs leap? Probably not. Dang.

Oh, kitsch of any kind. How you make my heart smile.

Good night.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

(#5) Summer Skin

I am unfortunately having to make peace with the fact that summer is ending, which is sad. I know a lot of people in Florida loathe the period from April to September that bestows such sweet gifts as 100+ degree weather and oppressing humidity to us, but I'll take that over frigid air and runny noses any day. And yes, I realize that Florida is not exactly the Yukon, but cold is cold is cold to me, okay? 40 degrees or -5 degrees, it's all awful. (And before you tell me that I don't know cold, let me just say that I hail from above the Mason-Dixon line from the great white north that is Illinois, so I've at least, you know, seen snow.)

I am slightly excited to wear my sweet semi-bomber jacket I got from T.J. Maxx for like, $30, though. Not to mention the ton of scarves that I have to hide in the summer to avoid wearing them with my tank tops, à la hipster chic. I do love me a good cold-weather scarf, you know.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

(#4) Sister, Do You Know My Name?

I do not plan on having a child for, like, at least ten years. But I am going to be ready when that day does come, because I am thinking about cool names now. It's all about being proactive. Also, I like names in general.

Boy names I like (yes, they are mostly after '60s musicians):
Levon (this is a must. Levon Helm is the coolest man alive.)
Richard (I like The Band, okay?)
John (more after Entwistle than Lennon)

Girl names I like (yes, they are mostly from songs by '60s musicians):
Annalee, Anna Lee (but mostly the first one. I'm not that into two first names. ALSO: Annie for short, but only because there is a beautiful Ronnie Lane song with that title. Speaking of Ronnie, I kind of like Lane, but it is kind of weird for a girl/gay for a boy. But who knows.)
Sharon (I looove my grandma.)
Katie (Yep, both of those are my dogs' names. But they're cute, no? And from Beatles/Band songs, respectively.)
Speaking of The Beatles, I like Jude, but some people at my church already named their baby that. She is cute.

More on this later, surely.

9/16/09 edit:
I completely forgot about Gideon, a name that my boyfriend once mentioned in passing and I fell in love with. I don't know, I like it.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

(#3) Dogs

I've decided that I am going to own a Newfoundland dog that looks like this:

and name it either Garth or Hudson (or both) after this man:
This is a good plan, I think.

I'm also not doing the three-parter this time (or maybe ever) because
a) I don't feel like it all the time
b) no one reads this anyway, so I can do whatever I please.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

(#2) Love and Some Verses

I am a terrible blogger. I am neither interesting nor determined enough to get up the motivation to write/type every day. I don't like feeling like I have to do something on a regular basis and clearly this falls under the category of "something."
You know what I do like, though? Iron & Wine. It's not classic rock, but I'll take it! I don't know if you've ever listened to him (until proven otherwise, I'm pretty sure Iron & Wine is just Sam Beam's stage name, so from here on out, I will refer to this artist by the male pronoun. Cool? Cool.), but if you haven't, you should. I like his early stuff. I like his in-between stuff. And man, oh man, do I love his most recent studio album (yeah, it came out in 2007, but whatever). The Shepherd's Dog is absolutely beautiful. And you should check it out. Specifically "Lovesong of the Buzzard," "House By the Sea," "The Shepherd's Dog," and "Resurrection Fern." The whole album kind of flows together, though, so I recommend the whole experience. You will not be sorry.
That is, unless you only listen to the last track, which was featured in the Twilight soundtrack, ack, and really isn't that great anyway.

Life: is still pretty good. I am apparently going to two college football games this weekend. Football is not my favorite thing, but we'll see how they go. I'm pretty sure I'm actually going to get to go to church this Sunday. School is meh and no one wants to read about it anyway. I bought a necklace last week. Accessorizing and I do not mix well. I'm counting down the days until the fall seasons of The Office and Parks and Recreation start (15!!). I am deeply boring.

Love: Iron & Wine. And my boyfriend for coming to visit me last weekend.

Classic Rock: is still my fave. One of the guys on my floor has a ton of old records with a player and everything and I spent thirty minutes discussing how everyone else's music sucks. You know, the usual.
P.S. I don't really think everyone else's music sucks.