Music.

I’ve posted this video before but every once in a while I need to escape into some music and reset my center. There’s rarely a song that comes out these days that grabs my attention, but this track, released in 2013, nearly moves me to tears. Nostalgia? Perhaps. But it’s also a solid tune with amazing vocals.

Here’s Gary Barlow (from Take That) and Agentha Fältskog (from ABBA) with “I Should Have Followed You Home” from 2013.

Motivation.

How I enjoy the sexy vibe of this video. Formal wear, mischief, hotel rooms… all quite sensuous. Here’s a little motivation for your Friday.

Armin Van Buuren featuring Nadia Ali, “Feels So Good”.

Motivation.

Whenever I need a bit of motivation in the morning I always enjoy this music and video, “Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself” by Jess Glynne.

YouTube was kind enough to suggest a video interview with Jess from 2015 this morning and I watched it after enjoying the music video. We need more people like Jess Glynne in the world, especially her attitude toward love and sexuality. The interview is very interesting, in particular starting around 3:22.

The Fighter.

I have loved this song since first seeing it performed live on the Grammys a couple of weeks ago.   I’ve been cranking it up in the Jeep. It’s putting me in a springtime mood.

Enjoy Keith Urban with Carrie Underwood and “The Fighter”.

Hello, Piano.

The first time I went to college (right out of high school), I went to study music education. My plan was to become a music teacher. I went on an instrumental study, having originally auditioned as a vocalist but after being rejected by the school I went and tried again as a tuba player. It was easy for me to get into the music school as a tuba player, tuba players are rare. I had played tuba since the fifth grade. I wasn’t exceptionally good nor passionate about it, but it helped me fill in the “bottom” of a given band, so I was good doing my part.

As a Music Education major I took many music theory classes. In depth study of how good music is constructed was quite interesting to me. In many ways music is math. Musical passages are fractions of the song and a well constructed piece of music makes use of equal fractions. I was always interested in how classical compositions related to modern music, especially dance music of the time. The college had just constructed its first electronic recording studio in the summer of 1986 and was offering classes in music recording, editing and the like. Because I was a music education major and because the equipment in the studio was very expensive, I was denied entry to any of these classes. I sometimes wonder where I would be in life today if I had pursued that line of music instead of the more traditional music education track.

One of the best ways for me to get centered for a work week is to listen to a composition of well constructed electronic dance music. It’s not really EDM in the sense of going to a rave and getting hyped up on E or anything. The intensity of the track needs to be subtle. Lyrics should be minimal and actually I prefer vocalizations that are instrumental contributions rather than the centerpiece of the creation. The use of real instruments, are at least very accurate representations, soothe my being. The track needs to have a “flow”; a logical construction that tells a story.

Please enjoy “Hello, Piano” by Inkfish and David West. This track is near perfection for my ears. Someday I’m going to figure out what the vocalizations are saying but I don’t get lost on trying to discern their meaning. I just let them blend in with the other instruments, the flanging between my ears adding to the bliss I feel when I listen to this track.

Best enjoyed with headphones.

Save Some Love.

It’s very rare that I will forget about a song that I played during my radio and club DJ days. I was watching some early 1990s music videos while working and this song came up on the playlist. The artist’s name seemed vaguely familiar, like a suggestion of another time. I decided to watch the video and as soon as I heard the musicality surrounding the lyrics of “walking in and out, and in and out”, I immediately remembered the track. Memories of saying “Rock 107, Central New York’s Only Hit Music Station” several times an hour, and around announcing this track, flooded back into my memory. I also remembered the syncopated intro being very hard to beat mix into another record when I was spinning vinyl in the clubs. I used to try to follow Liza Minnelli’s version of “Love Pains” with this track.

From 1991, here’s Keedy with “Save Some Love”.

Live Goosebumps.

Very few pop music performances of the 21st century give me goosebumps. This is a delightful exception.

Here’s kd lang performing Joni Mitchell’s “Help Me” live in 2000. I hope you feel the goosebumps as well.

This Time.

This could easily be my theme song. Here’s an acoustic version of “This Time” by DJ Antoine. Vocals by MANU-L.

Just lay your eyes on the night
Don’t you stay there, don’t you
Seems like the world is the same
Right just as before

Why don’t we step out of line
Let’s just have a good time
Forget about the yo do’s
And open the doors

This time
You should take me away
To a new place
Where we just might
Keep an eye on the sky
This time
We’ll be crossing the lines
Take you somewhere new
Let’s do it
This time
This time

We keep on hitting the road
No excuses, No rules
We steal the show from the moon
And don’t you say no
We stop at nothing at all
Take a chance now, right now
‘Cause now I’m losing control
I’m ready to go

This time
You should take me away
To a new place
Where we just might
Keep an eye on the sky
This time
We’ll be crossing the lines
Take you somewhere new
Let’s do it
This time
This time

Sheena.

Browsing around the Internet this morning, I’m finding a lot of (well deserved) talk about the passing of Prince. While his music wasn’t always my cup of tea, I did enjoy many of his mainstream hits and I think the man was an excellent musician. His contributions to the pop world will definitely be missed.

In the mid 1980s he wrote a song for Sheena Easton called “Sugar Walls”. Quite risqué in its nature, this song was part of Sheena’s new image at the time, showing the young lass as edgy and daring. I have always liked “Sugar Walls” and sure played the heck out of it when I was a club DJ back in the day. It always mixed beautifully into Sheila E’s “Glamorous Life” (another Prince creation).

I was watching the “Sugar Walls” video when another of Sheena’s videos came up as a suggestion. This track reached the U.S. Top 30 in 1985. I had never seen the video before but I remembered how much I enjoyed this particular song. Look closely in the video and you’ll see Sheena’s boyfriend being played by actor Billy Zane (from “Titanic”).

From 1985 and her album “Do You”, here’s Sheena Easton with “Do It For Love”.