Monday, 17 October 2011

Queen, Cash and Cooke

Woke up feeling as if I have too much sleep, which is odd as I forced myself awake until midnight last night before going to sleep.

I'd originally planned to go to sleep early, just wiped out, but then the house wanted to stay up. Kitty ran outside, J made herself a late dinner and things like that keep a person naturally awake. I finally calmed down to some Al Stewart and he puts me right over into the sleep zone every time.
I like this cute mini-movie

I also had an interesting talk with a woman on Twitter about the highlife in the New York City night clubs in the 70s through 90s. The CBGB and Studio 54 through the Palladium. very interesting chat and so glad I stayed up for it. I also saw a Johnny Cash documentary that BBCFour aired a few years ago. You know, of all the things I miss from home I never thought television would be on my list but I've been watching so much of the BBC Four lately on YouTube. Anyway, I posted it on my Facebook last night but if you didn't see here it is. 

Ah, the Cash Man. One of his sons at the beginning says that you can be a fan of punk or rock and still own Johnny Cash albums. How right he is. I wish I had kept my mother's Cash album collection. I miss those old LP's.

Here is Johnny at 23. He hasn't even filled out his features yet.

This second video was recorded in 1969. There is an interesting story in the documentary. Two guards were talking to each other, and remarking they felt there wasn't enough guards here. The warden said everything would be fine. Then Cash breaks out in this song, after the first chorus the warden says maybe it was mistake not to have more guards. After Cash ends the song the warden says in relief something along the lines of "If he had gone a third verse 100 more guards wouldn't have stopped the riot."

This morning I need a little energy to wake me up so with my cup of coffee I'm listening to what is arguably Queen's best performance. Here is Queen at Live Aide
Twenty-five minutes of pure bliss

The second song Freddy OWNED the crowd. Of course, being a radio head helps me feel that way. I mean, sheesh I still listen to BBC2 on my computer during the day. Radio here in the states sucks. All the stations are owned by one of several large companies who tell them what to play and when. What you get is cookie cutter radio stations. Even talk radio is like this. Still, I need my radio, even if I have to get it streaming. Radio, someone still loves you! 

BTW, my friends back home would tell you this is my favorite Queen song because its synth  heavy. They are wrong, I tell you, wrong! My second favorite is Bohemian Rhapsody and I dare you to find anything close to a synthesizer on that song. No, piano doesn't count.

To recap, you can have this

or you can have this
That is your choice.

The harmonies in this song break my heart-to have talent
enough to perform, much less write such a piece of genius.
The music here is so pure.

Now, if you want to hear piano and synthesizer together they sound like this

Ah the days when you could smoke in theaters
And yes I still smoke, yes I know its bad for me.
yes I know I can quit I did it for three years, and no
I don't want go through that again, thank you very much.
Just let me have a couple cigarettes a day, its not asking much
to be content.

According to YouTube if I like Chariots of Fire I'll like this song. Funny thing is I actually do. This is associated with the movie St. Elmo's Fire but was actually written for the Canadian wheelchair athlete Rich Hansen who was going around the world in his Man in Motion tour. That context makes a lot more sense to me.
St Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion) John Parr

Lately I've been living on YouTube listening to 60's artist Sam Cooke. A friend likes him a lot and I finally gave in wondering what I was missing. Now I realize what a genius he is and I'm trying to make up for missed time!

This man had such a wide range in his catalog from the commercial music like Twistin' the Night Away

You can hear his stage presence. Amazing.

to songs with a strong message like Chain Gang.

Chain Gang by Sam Cooke

The other thing I really appreciate about Cash, Cooke and Queen is that they have songs to fit all of my moods. Those suffering Huntington's know how our moods can change on a dime. Its amazing when I can play a best-of album and have songs to fit all those moods. 

As I write this I'm in an HD chat room and we're talking about the way HD rages through our family, taking our loved ones from us. This cheesy song really reminds me of that when I hear it so I'm going to leave you with Disney's Circle of Life from Lion King.

 In the circle of life
Its the wheel of fortune
Its the leap of faith
Its the band of hope
Till we find our place
On the path unwinding
In the circle, the circle of life
Here's hoping we both a good day.

Catch Paul Ware on Facebook or Twitter

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