04.13.11 – a wednesday

word

remunerate [ri-myoo-nuh-reyt] v. 1. to pay, recompense or reward for work, trouble, etc. 2. to yield a recompense for (work, services, etc.)

birthday

Thomas Jefferson (1743), Butch Cassidy (1866), Don Adams (1923), Paul Sorvino (1939), Al Green (1946), Christopher Hitchens (1949), Caroline Rhea (1964), Rick Schroder (1970)

standpoint

Recently, a relatively new friend of mine and I were discussing music and, during the course of that conversation, he said something like this to me: “Yeah, but no one gives a shit about lyrics anymore.”

I definitely respect the guy’s opinion and I told him I disagreed with him but I quickly moved back to the topic we’d been laboring on. But, later, I thought back to what he said and it kind of irked me and mostly because he was kind of right.

Once again, I find myself in the minority when it comes to the popular (or unpopular, depending on which is deemed cooler, I guess) opinion in regards to current music.

A song’s lyrics are as important to me as everything else going on. Otherwise, I’ll just pop in some Béla Fleck or John Scofield. Disregarding the lyrics of a song is, to me, the same as dismissing it. Even if the lyrics are haphazard or nonsensical. It might be the English lit nerd in me talking here but words are always gonna be words and they have meanings and those meanings are subjective on an individual basis despite the artist’s intent.

I’m sure Sean Kelly has my back on this one.

quotation

Every true genius is bound to be naive. ↔ J.C.F. von Schiller

tune

Getting back on the subject of song lyrics, Joshua Radin is pretty awesome when it comes to that. (For the record, I don’t care if Radin is more popular with soccer moms than hipster music enthusiasts. True story.) As most of you know, my best friend Harvey passed away a few months back. The night I said goodbye to him in the hospital, I went home and – surprise – I couldn’t sleep. I grabbed my iPod and my headphones and decided to walk around my neighborhood until I got sleepy. After an hour or so, I found myself sitting on the steps of the train station by my house, looking up at all the fake, yellow lights illuminating the parking lot. And then “Streetlight” came on and I heard “I don’t know where to go/So I think I’ll sit and stay here a while/’Til I figure it out.” I listened to the song about 34 more times before I walked home and collapsed into my bed. I’m still sort of lost without Harvey and I’m sure it wasn’t Radin’s lyrical aim that I make his song about losing my best friend but that’s what happened.

gallimaufry

This was the most popular story on Yahoo! News yesterday and had almost 10,000 shares on Facebook. Stuff like this makes me hate everybody.

This Saturday, April 16th is Record Store Day. I’ll be down at Main Street Music in Manayunk. You should be too. I’ll let you buy me a beer. It’s true.

→ If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times: When you’re robbing a little girl’s lemonade stand, don’t drive off and leave your girlfriend behind to get arrested because chances are she’s gonna crack under questioning. Why doesn’t anyone ever listen to me?

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04.07.10 – A Wednesday

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word

extant [ek-stuhnt, ik-stant] adj. 1. in existence; still existing; not destroyed or lost: There are only three extant copies of the document 2. Archaic.  standing out; protruding

birthday

Francis Xavier (1506), William Wordsworth (1770), Allen Dulles (1893), Walter Winchell (1897), Percy Faith (1908), Billie Holiday (1915), Ravi Shankar (1920), James Garner (1928), Wayne Rogers (1933), Jerry Brown (1938), Freddie Hubbard (1938), Francis Ford Coppola (1939), David Frost (1939), John Oates (1949), Janis Ian (1951), Jackie Chan (1954), Christopher Darden (1956), James “Buster” Douglas (1960), Hugh O’Connor (1962), Russell Crowe (1964), Bill Bellamy (1965)

standpoint

Instead of working on today’s standpoint, I decided to do some other writing. Come back tomorrow for some more.

quotation

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, day and night, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. e. e. cummings

tune

I used to have this really great collection of live songs from The Samples. And the best one was this live version of “Feel Us Shaking” from a show in which this genius threw a beer can at the head of the bassist. (Who does that?) Lead singer Sean Kelly did the song acoustically while his bandmate got his head checked out. I haven’t been able to find it since but below is the closest I’ve discovered.

gallimaufry

Couldn’t have put this better myself. My favorite reason? #35 – Phillies aren’t rude enough to chant P-H-I-L-S during Eagles games.

→ If you live in the San Francisco area, go check out my good friend Kevin Rolston in his newest endeavor, Noises Off. If Kevlo is involved, it’s bound to be worth your while.

→ Holy shit, as I’m linking to this, Stephen Colbert is talking about it on The Colbert Report. I’m not sure how I feel about the rule changes. But, really, isn’t a personal decision? Does anyone actually follow the official guidelines?

05.08.09 – Friday

Word: nomenclature [noh-muhn-kley-cher, noh-men-kluh-cher, -choor] n. 1. a set or system of names or terms, as those used in a particular science or art, by an individual or community, etc. 2. the names or terms comprising a set or system

Birthday: Oscar Hammerstein (1847), Harry S. Truman (1884), Roberto Rossellini (1906), Don Rickles (1926), Gary Snyder (1930), Sonny Liston (1932), Ricky Nelson (1940), Gary Glitter (1944), Alex Van Halen (1953), Stephen Furst (1954), David Keith (1954), Bill Cowher (1957), Melissa Gilbert (1964), Enrique Iglesias (1975)

Standpoint: It’s been a soaking-wet, rainy week here in Philadelphia and I’m really looking forward to a little sunshine this weekend. Just to help things along, I thought I do my version of a rain-dance and share some upbeat music to help you through these, and any future, rainy days. I give you 7 Sunny Rainy Day Songs:

Got better sunny rainy day songs? Tell us about it.

Weekend: Each Friday, I’ll provide you with 3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead – my list of activities for spending this weekend in Philadelphia as if it’s your last.

Have some fun out there this weekend and make sure to do something nice for your mom on Sunday – it’s Mother’s Day.

Quotation: The trouble with weather forecasting is that it’s right too often for us to ignore it and wrong too often for us to rely on it. – Patrick Young

Tune: They’ve been called “the new Smashing Pumpkins.” Personally, in some ways, I think Silversun Pickups might be better. Listen to “Well Thought Out Twinkles” – one of the best driving-fast songs in the history of music and cars. “Come join in the last hurrah!”

Gallimaufry: Manny Ramirez of MLB‘s Los Angeles Dodgers has been suspended 50 games for violating the league’s drug policy. The star outfielder claims he was given medication that, unbeknownst to him, was on the list of banned substances. He’ll lose over $8 million over the course of his suspension. This reminded me of a piece that Chuck Klosterman wrote for ESPN.com’s Page 2 concerning  Barry Bonds that I’ve been meaning to share. ∞ My friend Donika sent me a link to a cool new blog that seems to be more and more relevant as we trudge through this economic mess. Working for the Government describes itself as “a depot for funny, outlandish, touching (though NOT depressing) stories unique to the current unemployment and economic environment.” My favorite post so far is “Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow” but they’re all great. ∞ It’s getting pretty dicey out there in the world of music. Now that the Wayne Coyne-Win Butler Feud is history, it seems that Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor wants in on the action. While answering some fan questions online, he took shots at Prince and Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo. Here’s a sample of what he had to offer: “I’m not Prince or Rivers Cuomo, who brags about having hundreds of great songs,” Reznor replied. “And to that I would say, ‘Prince, if you have a hundred great songs or a thousand, how about picking a few and putting them on your record that you’ve put out, because your last several have sucked.’ Same for you, Rivers. I say that constructively, you know.” I’m siding with Reznor on this one.

Incoming: Next week will have lots of twists (and just possibly a few turns) as I’ll be attempting some new tricks, including my first-ever interview. Thanks for reading this week. Come back Monday for some more.