Category Archives: Sweet soundz

A Heart of Stone Could Turn to Clay

My friend Greta is a bit of a genius when it comes to unearthing the worst (i.e. best) music from the past few decades. Through her expert mix cds that she surreptitiously leaves in my car she gets me hooked on this stuff to the point where there is no hint of irony in my love for artists like Styx, Billy Ocean and America.

Hence my love for this masterpiece from the year of my birth. I think the video might be my favorite thing, if not for the song itself (which is my now and forever jam) then for the pastel shirts and tight jeans that stir memories from my early childhood of my dad and his garage band, and the fact that the singer is a spitting image of my favorite friend of my brother’s (though I’m afraid to show this to the friend as he might not get how much of a compliment that is):

Glorious

Good developments in my life: I’ve given notice at both my menial labor jobs, and found a new corporate one that is somewhat library related. I’m mainly excited to utilize the cute outfit section of my closet that’s gone untouched for the last 6+ months.

Even better, I’ve discovered Uriah Heep. They sing of wizards, birds of prey, and rainbow demons. They are my new style icons, musical inspirations and life gurus:

Chaos and Concert

My neighborhood has been quite the epicenter of late night activity these days.  Two nights ago I woke up at around three to the unmistakable sound of automatic weapon fire about a mile away, followed by sirens.  Last night it was the metal and glass crunch of a car crash right outside my window.  The whole neighborhood got together outside my apartment building to kibbitz, but I just watched through the blinds.  Some kid had managed to flip his car on its side.  Two other cars were partially wrecked, one of them up on the sidewalk.  The placement of the cars made no sense, nor did the flipping of the driver’s car.  Our street is barely wide enough for two cars to pass each other, and it’s a very curvy side street.  Luckily everyone was all right, but it kind of makes me wish I had better insurance for my car, just in case some other drunken asshat decides to try the same thing.

In happier news, Ted and I went to see ‘Unwigged and Unplugged’ last night at the Paramount in Oakland:

unwigged-3281If you’ve seen A Mighty Wind, This is Spinal Tap, or any of the other films in the great oeuvre of Christopher Guest, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  These guys are comedy heroes to me, not to mention that A Mighty Wind holds a special place in my memory of my early days of dating Ted, so it was pretty awesome to see them in person.  I wasn’t sure what to expect, given that they’re not professional musicians, but they put on a great show, both musically speaking and entertainment-wise.  They played most of the Spinal Tap and Mighty Wind favorites, and even some of the ‘B-sides’ like ‘Cups and Cakes’ and ‘Corn Wine.’  

They used a screen to project various funny clips through the set, including Spinal Tap’s ‘first tv appearance’ from 1979, and something from the early 80’s about a cheese festival, which, in addition to Christopher Guest, Harry Shearer and Michael McKean apparently starred a very young Jake Gyllenhaal.  The screen also came in handy during ‘Stonehenge,’ though I won’t say how… I’m sure it’s out there on the Internet somewhere.

The concert had me smiling from the first notes, and Michael McKean won my heart when, after they chose an audience member by seat number to experience one of the songs in a special way, some lady from the back shouted out an accusation of ‘class warfare.’  McKean shot back, ‘we must be near Berkeley,’ and Guest affirmed that they were indeed trying to keep her down.  I love these guys.

Mixing it Up

After doing the Shred for the last six weeks, most of the workouts are ingrained in my head, so I’ve been setting a timer, picking an artist, doing my exercises to YouTube playlists for about 30 minutes.  Yesterday was the Kinks; today was Beyoncé.

I can’t seem to embed today, so click on the images below for two of my favorite videos.  The common thread seems to be pets.

kinks

beyonce-kitty-kat

Added benefit: though I’m not usually one to be ‘inspired’ by other people’s bodies, I have to fess up that Beyoncé has helped me get through a few workouts.  The fact that she’s curvy but incredibly fit is at once impossible to achieve (it’s called genetics) and somehow inspiring to me, as someone with a curvy frame.  Maybe it’s just that she’s one of the few celebrities out there that I think embodies true sexiness and glamour.  Yes, I’m probably overthinking this, but isn’t she pretty much the queen of glam?  Even when she’s riding around on a cat?

p.s. on a stalker-esque note, I happened upon a site that told me Beyoncé’s height and weight, which happen to be almost exactly my own dimensions.  Hm, then why don’t I look like her?

Whatchu doin on your back?

Amazingly, I’ve never seen Saturday Night Fever. I kinda hate John Travolta, but I think I could get beyond the Pulp Fiction association long enough to enjoy his performance, especially because he dances like a fool and all the music is the effing Bee Gees.

Incidentally, I taught circus arts at a summer school for three summers, and I choreographed one of the group acrobatic numbers to this song. Twelve and thirteen-year-olds dancing, leaping and cartwheeling to this is pretty freakin great:

Just Stay Home and Play Synthesizers

By now, most everyone has heard of Flight of the Conchords. Season 2 is now on HBO, I hear. But for those of us who don’t have television or cable, Netflix is the way to go. I just got Season 1 in the mail, and it’s about the greatest thing in the world. Here are two of my favorite songs from Season 1:

Backwards and Forwards With My Heart Hanging Out…

… Is possibly one of the more awkward lyrics in pop music, but the song is great nonetheless. There doesn’t appear to be an official music video for this one, so hopefully these sassy album covers will suffice as a backdrop to the song: