Let me start by saying that this is NOT a ranked list of my favorite songs. What it is though is the result of an exercise I performed where I tried to document my all time favorite song from each letter of the English alphabet, using each letter to represent either the singer or the band. I could find no other example of this exercise on the internet. Some of these were no-brainers for me, for example the letter “G” – Garbage is a band I really love. A few letters gave me heartache, for example the letter “B” – no Beatles song? Am I crazy? Don’t worry, there’s a Lennon song here for you die hard Beatles fans. I just had to count in the classic by Blue Oyster Cult. The letters “X” and “V” were difficult because offhand I could not think of a group or singer beginning with X and the only ones I could think of for V were Bobby Vinton and the Ventures. The entire exercise must have taken me a good 6 hours of effort as I’d make a short list for each letter and then I’d have to imagine hearing each one, trying to figure out which I ‘really’ loved. Then I’d come back to the list the next day and maybe change a letter – “P” was a good example as I think I had a Pink Floyd there for a long time before remembering how much I loved the song Roxanne. Most of these songs have a special memory attached to them for me and I’m sure there are a few in here that you’ve never heard. Maybe give some of them a listen – you might stumble upon a new sound you enjoy. Oh, and I’d challenge you to do this exercise yourself. You’ll find it as difficult as I did, I’m sure. I’m a rock and pop guy – your list might be classical or jazz. That’s ok; music is like food – beauty is in the senses of the beholder. Enjoy:
My stepfather Joe could sleep anytime and anywhere. I used to think that was a special skill. Now that I’m older, I realize that it’s an acquired skill given to father’s as they are beaten down by years of sleepless nights and endless days.
Back in my junior high school years, there were only two kinds of boys – those who sang in the junior high chorus and those who considered themselves too cool to sing in the junior high chorus. I wasn’t yet at the ‘I’m too cool’ stage of teenagedom and I’ve always loved singing, so on to the junior high chorus it is! Besides, taking chorus meant that we didn’t have another class where we had to take a written test. Continue reading →
I’ve written a few stories that mentioned our local west side Hamiltucky skating rink. The stories mentioning early interactions with my wife and with my then best friend Terry represent important memories for me. If I’m comparing to today’s teens, for a lot of us high schoolers, the skating rink was our ‘mall’. It was THE place for social interaction, whether it be friendship, love or a number of any other dramas. Friday and Saturday nights had to be spent at the rink if you wanted to get away from the boring adults and wanted to be a part of that weekend’s kid drama.
I have a lot of notes on my iPad for future stories; things that happened or topics I want to document, basically everything I can remember and anything I think my kids might like to enjoy reading after I’m gone. This story is being started the night before a Wailin’ Jennys concert in Grass Valley, California. California has a lot of small towns whose residents support the local arts and artists. Grass Valley does a decent job of attracting a few major names, (oh, and it’s home to Kenny Bania of Seinfeld – we saw him open for Paul Reiser there). We also saw the Jennys two years ago at The Crest in Sacramento and fell in love with their voices.
Music means a lot to me. I’m sure it doesn’t mean as much as it does to people who make their living in the business, but according to Marilu Henner one of our senses are dominant in that it the dominant sense aids our memories. When I read her book, (Total Memory Makeover), there was a test that helped me determine which of my senses was the guiding sense. My son Tim’s was smell and my wife’s was touch. Mine was sound. My taste for music is wide, but not necessarily what you might call eclectic. I like most from Bluegrass, like Alison Krause, to Eminem. I confess that I don’t like most rap, but I do like Eminem.