Sunday, May 11, 2008

Notes/Twisted Every Way

May 11, 2008

It’s Mother’s Day. Or, as we call it in my company, Sunday.

I stole that joke from Dennis Miller, who said, after it was revealed Texaco had settled a lawsuit over executives who used racist comments, that they released the news on Martin Luther King Day, or, as it is more commonly known at Texaco headquarters, Monday.

There was an article in a professional journal I was reading about the Top Ten Signs Of Burnout. I was 10 for 10-I displayed every one of the ten signs. I wonder if I get a prize?

I am sick of being yelled at for rules I don’t believe in and didn’t impose but must enforce.

I am sick of people who insist that I respect their time while refusing to do the same for me.

I am sick of being alive, more or less.

There was a great History Channel show on last night about the history of mission control that was excellent. There was also an excellent Bill Moyers’ Journal that I listened to the audio of this morning about torture and the lack of outcry over it. That was echoed by John C. Dvorak and Adam Curry on No Agenda, talking about the lack of outcry about many things-the wretched economy, legalized usury by banks, massive government misconduct.

“Go back to bed, America. Your government is in control.”
-Bill Hicks

I finally ran out of podcasts I feel like listening to-the rest are either comedy, which is not work friendly, or baseball, which I’m just not in the mood for right now.

Boston plays Minnesota tonight on ESPN. Fortunately, the Twins are unlike the Red Sox in that they don’t take 77 pitches per at bat, so the game will probably not be 7 ½ hours long. Hopefully.

-U2, “Bullet The Blue Sky”-the live track from Rattle and Hum

There’s some other live U2 on my IPod, which I think I’ve actually never heard before. That’s one thing about digital music-unlike a CD, unless you go and dig it out, it hides in your collection. And given the size of mine, I may never find it unless I do that.

-Mudcrutch, “This Is A Good Street”

Tom Petty’s first group, before he was TOM PETTY. They recently reformed the original lineup, I am told, and recorded an album. Good, decent, shuffling R+B type music.

-Eagles, “New York Minute” (Live)

Love this song. LOVE this song. A Don Henley solo track, actually, but the only version I have is this one, from “Hell Freezes Over”. (That was a cute title. Supposedly one of them was asked once if the band would ever reform, and the response was “When Hell freezes over.”) One of the best “West Wing” episodes starts with this song over the opening scene, and the title of the episode was “Somebody’s Going to Emergency, Somebody’s Going to Jail”.

“The wolf is always at the door…”

“ ’Baby I’ve Changed, Please Come Back.’ ”

-Paul McCartney, “I Saw Her Standing There”(Live)

3 loudest noises I’ve ever heard:

1) Crowd reaction after Paul McCartney began “Can’t Buy Me Love”, Worcester Centrum

2) Crowd reaction after Billy Joel comes out for final encore, Boston Garden

3) Iron Maiden live, Worcester Centrum

-Beatles, “Glass Onion”
-Metallica, “Ain’t My Bitch”

This is the third day in a row, I think, this has come up on shuffle. Metallica is not as loud, in concert, as most people probably think.

-Simon and Garfunkel, “A Most Peculiar Man”

A finely crafted song, which is almost a Raymond Carver story in the amount of its precise detail and emotional ending.

-“Yer Blues”, John Lennon (Live)

A Lennon-performed Beatles tune, live from the Toronto Music Festival, 1969. Of course, on the White Album, they were almost separate members at this point, guest starring on each other’s tracks. IIRC, Eric Clapton plays on this track.

“I’m lonely/Wanna die….”

-“Walking In Your Footsteps” (Live), The Police

I bought “Synchronicity” along with everyone else, but honestly, I always thought The Police were a bit overrated. Not bad, by any means, and certainly better than being poked in the eye, but not world changing.

-The Beatles, “Words of Love”

A cover, I think. Not their best work. Which is kind of like saying “This is the worst Rembrandt ever!”

-Miss Saigon, “The Sacred Bird”

I don’t know why this is so unlistenable for me now. I guess I’m a lot less impressed by the main character’s sacrifice than I used to be.

The star crossed lovers in “Miss Saigon are reunited in the end, and the boy’s mother commits suicide so that he can have a better life with his father and his father’s new wife in the West. At the time when I saw it, her sacrifice overwhelmed me, and looking at it now, it’s more like, “Well, of course she did.”

-U2, “Pride (In The Name Of Love)”
-Rush, “The Way The Wind Blows”

My wife still hates Rush because she thinks they broke up her friend’s marriage.
Yeah, I know.

-Crowded House, “Don’t Dream It’s Over”

I thought this song was the worst thing ever in high school. It’s pretty, though. My wife downloaded it from ITunes, so since we share a library, I bogarted it.

-REM, “Airliner”

A bonus instrumental from their great new record, “Accelerate”

On SModcast this week, it was all about Catholicism, and, as an outsider, I couldn’t really relate to it. Two things I really don’t get is why Catholics stay-if you want to hear an earful about what’s wrong with the Catholic Church, just ask one-and why they seem to assume that all churches are just like theirs. They’re not.

I went to a Catholic church service once, at the behest of a friend, and noticed the differences, but didn’t feel the need to make a big deal about them. The way you were raised was the way you were raised, not the way everyone was or should have been raised. Catholics seem very tribal to me-I guess centuries of discrimination will do that to a church.

-Rent, “Tango Maureen”

Brilliant, brilliant song. Dancing a tango, Mark Cohen, Maureen’s ex boyfriend: “It’s hard to do this backwards.” Maureen’s new girlfriend: “You should try it in heels.”

-Billy Joel, “Honesty”

I heard someone playing this song, over and over, really late at night, in my college auditorium, on a piano. I have always regretted not going in to see who it was. I certainly knew all the words.

“Anyone can comfort me with promises again…”

That’s another thing I love about Billy Joel-his lyrics are so bittersweet.

-Lou Reed, “Foot of Pride” (Live)

I don’t think it’s an original thought, but a great Dylan lyric.

“You know what they say,
About being nice to the right people on the way up,
Sooner or later you’re going to meet them on the way down.”

The Red Sox have apparently just dealt right handed reliever Brian Corey to San Diego for a player or bag of batting practice baseballs to be named later. This was probably a waiver move-they were planning to demote him, so they traded him so they could get back something instead of waiving him and getting back nothing.

Do you suppose, if the next time someone asks me to do something, then makes faces at me while I do it because I’m not doing it fast enough, I just punch them in the face, I’ll get fired?

-Metallica, “Tuesday’s Gone”

A GREAT version of a song I really didn’t appreciate until Metallica did it. It’s not the sort of song you’d expect them to do, and they do it pretty much as it lays-not really Metallica-izing it at all. Nice.

-Led Zeppelin, “Stairway to Heaven”

Was it “Wayne’s World” where they’re in a guitar store, and when someone tries to play the opening notes, they point to a sign on the wall that says, “No Stairway To Heaven” ?

-REM, “(Don’t Go Back To) Rockville”
-Velvet Revolver, “The Last Fight”

With all the talent in this band, they should really be better than they are.

Why do men wear flip flops in public? It has always looked stupid. It will always look stupid.

-Johnny Cash, “The One On The Right Is On The Left”

This guy was a genius. Johnny Cash could wear flip flops in public if he wanted. Except he wouldn’t. And he’s dead.

-Counting Crows, “Rain King”(Live)

This is probably the last CD I actually bought-shortly after Christmas at a Best Buy. I had the original somewhere, but I got a live version instead, because it had all of the songs I liked.

When you see a group of women together, it’s fun (for you, anyway) to play the Margaret Cho game. In every group of three women, she posits, there is the smart one, the cute one, “and then there’s the ho”.

-Billy Joel and Elton John, “Come Together”

From a bootleg. I’d feel guilty about it, except for the fact that I’m a fan, and if there were some way to pay them for it, I would. I actually wrote Billy Joel a fan letter, way back when, in which I suggested that devoted fans would probably pay him for unmixed soundboard tapes of his concerts. And the digital age has made it even easier for artists to do this. If he acted like Pearl Jam or the Grateful Dead , releasing dozens of concerts on CD, I would have bought them all, no question.

Cartoonist Scott Adams (I think) makes the argument that an artist deserves the right to not only profit from his creations, but to determine how they will be enjoyed. I can understand that, to a point, I suppose. But essentially, I disagree with it. Especially when there’s a way for everybody to win-just release the darn things. Plus, as Pearl Jam discovered, you essentially kill the bootleg market because there are so many real ones out there.

-Elton John, “Levon”

I had never heard this song until Jon Bon Jovi covered it for “Two Rooms”.

-Jesus Christ Superstar, “Herod’s Song”

I think I could perform this song on stage. It’s kind of a half dream of mine to do that.

-Gavin Rossdale, “Mind Games”

From the Darfur benefit album of John Lennon covers. A pretty good job, but Gavin Rossdale is better known as the better half of the singer from No Doubt, who is insanely, unearthily pretty. I can’t think of her name at the moment. But you know who she is. She always wears bright red lipstick, and when not pregnant, is absurdly thin with abs you could play handball on.

Gwen Stefani, that’s her name. Like Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas, with fame and beauty that really outshines the band she used to be a part of.

-Billy Joel, “You Look So Good To Me”

From his real first album, “Cold Spring Harbor”. I spent many a teenage hour riding my bike, thinking about girls, listening to this album.

-Led Zeppelin, “Your Time Is Gonna Come”

I believe this was the first song on the first Led Zeppelin album. Imagine hearing it for the first time, the wandering organ beginning, then the thunderclap of the first drum. Wow.

1 comment:

  1. wow! That was a twist, but fun to read. I got hung up on the comment, "I am sick of being alive" because I have felt that so many times. SAid it out loud. Questioned the heavens, Buddha, Ra, anyone who might be listening. And I always wonder if it's because I've been through too much or too little? Or if it is totally outside of me at all, if it's looking around, feeling helpless, not wanting to take up the sword. I'm not sure which. To be the perfect guilt-clad human, I bear on the side of "I've not been through enough", although that is frightening. I have even been "near death" from a horsing accident, and still I question live-ability. And I've really never had anyone else do you intrigue me. I never say it out loud, because even the fringes of the thought scare people close to me.

    I love the music notes. I chased Jon Bon JOvi around for a bit in my early 20's. I'm certain that he smiled at me once when he was playing guitar for Southside JOhnny at the Jersey fair. Damn, he's cute! I want to think back over the music that claimed me...and one of these days, I'll just do that.

    Thanks for sharing.


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