My brother Richard used to have a Kim Wilde album, Kids in America, which he listened to a lot, and so I listened a lot. I’d like to say that I was really into her, but I was too dorky for that, and at the time was more likely to be listening to Air Supply.
Then a few years later, she covered “You Keep Me Hanging On“, which I loved loved loved. Is that dorky of me, to get into a cover? (Ted’s answer…yes)* Anyway, a year or so after that, when Ted and I were dating, he made me a mix-tape (a sure sign of 80s love…the mix-tape gift), and he had “View From a Bridge” as one of the tracks. Gotta say, I really love this song. And watching the video is such a blast back to the 80s, with that hair and the little lace gloves. Remember those? Sure you do.
*Ted acknowledges that this comment is likely to get him a lot of crap, but in his defense, he was a big Kim Wilde fan, and wanted her to be popular here in the U.S. for her own songs, not a cover.
I have a soft spot for this song. I had kind of forgotten it, but a few weeks ago it came on while I was driving around, and it brought back memories of when Maya was a toddler, and a HUGE Jewel fan. She especially loved this song, though Foolish Games came in as a close second. Look closely at the picture above, and you’ll see that she’s holding a printout of the cover to Jewel’s Pieces of You album. She would carry it around with her, sleep with it, everything with it. One copy would get torn or wet or lost, and Ted would print out another one. We got her to relax and enjoy the fireworks by pointing out that some of them were streaming down and looked like Jewel’s hair. We went to a concert, and she thought that Kenny Wayne Shepherd was Jewel, because of his long blond hair. To her, women could have two types of hair. Jewel hair, which was long and preferably blonde, or Carefully hair, which was short, and reminded her of her other favorite singer, Sarah McLachlan (there’s a phrase in Building a Mystery when Sarah says, “Holding on so carefully…” which is where the carefully hair comes from). Actually, she sometimes had a printout of Jewel in one hand, and Sarah in the other. Ted’s aunt would take her to Target, and she would go visit the CD, and Maya would hold it throughout the store, and then say goodbye and leave it there until next time. Good times.
Anyway, from the time Maya was 1 until she was about 3, Jewel could do no wrong, and Maya loved to play You Were Meant for Me on her little toy piano, and sing along. She used to also emote really well to Foolish Games. So as you may have noticed, the song brings back a lot of smooshy memories of when Maya was a toddler. Wish I could go back for an hour or two sometimes…
I remember when I worked at my college job, in a big San Francisco hotel, one of my coworkers is a German girl named Denise. We were talking about music one day, and she said something to the effect of “you know that group, INXS, with that skinny little singer…he’s so sexy.” Yeah, he’s too skinny, but Michael Hutchence was indeed a sexy singer, with that sort of Jim Morrison vibe going, but better. I think “Need You Tonight” is probably my favorite of their songs. Enjoy.
I always liked this song…it’s a little different from Human League’s earlier hits, notably Don’t You Want Me and (Keep Feeling) Fascination. It’s that Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis influence. Don’t you kind of expect Miss Jackson to pop out and start dancing at some point?
When I was deciding which “G” group to use for this weekly feature, the three that came to mind most readily were Green Day, Garbage, and Goo Goo Dolls. I chose Garbage to make Ted and Maya happy, because Shirley Manson is the lead singer, and she was a recurring character (evil Terminator type…or was she really evil?) on The Sarah Conner Chronicles. Which of course brings up bitter feelings around here, because Fox cancelled Sarah Conner, but kept Dollhouse. What’s with that? Idiots.
Any Bjork fans out there? We used to listen to a lot of Bjork, both on her own and as a member of The Sugarcubes. Frou Frou reminds me of a cross between Bjork and the electronica songs by Everything But the Girl. I think the first song I heard them perform was a remake of “Holding Out for a Hero”, which I believe was on the Shrek 2 soundtrack. I immediately recognized the song as being from “Footloose”, because I not only saw the movie a million and one times way back when, but I owned the “Footloose” soundtrack. I went looking for a youtube video, and couldn’t find one, probably because it’s just a soundtrack song and not something that was made for their one and only album. I like the song, though, so I kept looking. There are a lot of versions set to anime cartoons, but between the background dialog bleeding through into the song, and weird anime nudity (not much, but it’s still weird), I decided to go with this version.
This second video does a better job of capturing what Frou Frou is about, and has been featured in several movies, including “Garden State”. Here is where you might hear the comparison to Everything But the Girl, and perhaps Bjork as well. Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x52w8txtiQs
We’re up to E on our A to Z Music Monday Meme. There are plenty of great options for ‘E’. I thought of Evanscence, Eurythmics, and Everything But the Girl. (The links all go to the songs I probably would have chosen, on Grooveshark) But instead, I decided to go for Emmylou Harris, even though I don’t really know her music. I do know she worked with Alison Krauss and Gillian Welch on this very sexy song that the Sirens used to draw Ulysses and his mates to the rocks in “O Brother, Where Art Thou”. He wasn’t smart enough to have himself lashed to a mast, so I guess he got what he deserved, huh? Enjoy.
I was having a hard time with picking a ‘D’ here…I mean, David Bowie was my first husband, so of course, loyalties should go there. But I also love Depeche Mode, and Dire Straits have always been a huge favorite. What’s a girl to do? So I was toying with the idea of blowing them all off, and putting up David and David’s Welcome to the Boomtown. Went searching for “David and David” on YouTube, and came across this live duet of David Bowie and David Gilmour performing Comfortably Numb at the Royal Albert Hall, and I couldn’t pass it up. The Wall was such an amazing, amazing album, and I remember going to a late night double feature with the film version, doubled up with Fast Times at Ridgemont High, which seems odd except that The Wall pretty much had the audience of teenagers curled up in our seats, looking for a quiet way to go open a vain or something. I think it was almost half way through Fast Times before we unclenched enough to smile, and by the end, we were no longer suicidal. So good job, midnight movie people.
I’ve noticed that since I added the Groove Shark buttons to my blog, the page has been loading a LOT more slowly than it used to. At least on some computers. So instead of adding buttons here, I’m going to add links to songs, so you can go there and listen to the songs if you want to. Because I’m not sure I want to deprive you of the other excellent selections I would have made. Right? So, here you go, in no particular order:
Some music hits you with its beat, or the melody, or the way the guitar and the bass work together…and sometimes a song hits you because of the absolute poetry of the lyrics. I’m not talking “Jump” here. But there are a handful, at least, of artists who can truly paint a picture, a beautiful picture of real life and honesty and pain and loss and love, something that touches your heart. A few examples, for me, are Simon and Garfunkel, Aimee Mann, Bob Dylan, Elvis Costello, and Texas. Another is The Cowboy Junkies. This song, especially, evokes a certain feeling. The bittersweet feeling of loss at the end of a relationship. You miss having someone there to hold you, but at the same time, you enjoy being alone as well.
Sun comes up, it’s Tuesday morning
Hits me straight in the eye
Guess you forgot to close the blind last night
Oh, that’s right, I forgot, it was me
I sure do miss the smell of black coffee in the morning,
The sound of water splashing all over the bathroom,
The kiss that you would give me even though I was sleeping,
But I kind of like the feel of this extra few feet in my bed
Telephone’s ringing, but I don’t answer it
’cause everybody knows that good news always sleeps till noon
Guess it’s tea and toast for breakfast again
Maybe I’ll add a little T.V. too
No milk! God, how I hate that
Guess I’ll go to the corner, get breakfast from Jenny
She’s got a black eye this morning, `Jen how’d ya get it?’
She says, `Last night, Bobby got a little bit out of hand’
Lunchtime. I start to dial your number
Then I remember so I reach for something to smoke
And anyways I’d rather listen to Coltrane
Than go through all that shit again
There’s something about an afternoon spent doing nothing
Just listening to records and watching the sun falling
Thinking of things that don’t have to add up to something
And this spell won’t be broken
By the sound of keys scraping in the lock
Maybe tonight it’s a movie
With plenty of room for elbows and knees
A bag of popcorn all to myself,
Black and white with a strong female lead
And if I don’t like it, no debate, I’ll leave
Here comes that feeling that I’d forgotten
How strange these streets feel
When you’re alone on them
Each pair of eyes just filled with suggestion
So I lower my head, make a beeline for home
Funny, I’d never noticed
The sound the streetcars make as they pass my window
Which reminds me that I forgot to close the blind again
Yeah, sure I’ll admit there are times when I miss you
Especially like now when I need someone to hold me
But there are some things that can never be forgiven
And I just gotta tell you
That I kinda like this extra few feet in my bed
I don’t have much of an ear for Country music…this is about as close as I get. But man, I love this song, even though, thankfully, I haven’t gone through these feelings in just about forever. If the 80s hair in the video gets to you, click below and listen through Grooveshark. Actually, I think the sound is a bit better here than on the YouTube bit.
I was a late adapter to The Cure, discovering them 6 years after they released their first album, Boys Don’t Cry (Three Imaginary Boys in England, but Boys Don’t Cry had several different, superior, tracks.) My first Cure album was The Head on the Door, which I loved loved loved. After playing the hell out of that album (casette tape in the boom box in my VW Bug), over and over and over, I started looking at their older work. My favorite was Boys Don’t Cry. I loved “10:15 Saturday Night”, “Fire In Cairo”, “Killing an Arab”. I don’t think there’s a single song on that album that I don’t love. Such an awesome album. Maybe the best of their early years. The Cure were amazing, especially to a girl desperate to escape radio in the Valley in the 80s. They led me to another love of mine, New Order. Loved them even more.
Anyway, here, a hit from 1980, though I didn’t find it until quite a few years later, Boys Don’t Cry. But really, the whole album is awesome. Dated, but really, really awesome.
Anybody else remember when MTV used to play actual videos, and some of them were actually cool, and maybe, just maybe, they had songs on them that you hadn’t heard before but actually liked? Yeah, me too. Sigh. Now you have to subscribe to super premium expensive cable to see videos that aren’t “I LOVE THE X’s”, and full of really annoying people commenting on the songs. Hate that crap. Anyway, way back in 1993, MTV used to play some music sometimes, and a group that got into semi-heavy rotation, that I really liked, was Belly. Liked Belly. Liked Blake Babies. The 90s gets a reputation for being all grunge and Seattle sound, and while that was actually better than people made it sound at the time, there was a lot of other good stuff as well.
I have a soft spot for Tanya Donelly, the lead singer for Belly. She went on to record on her own, and when Maya was a toddler, she had a big toddler crush on Tanya. We’d get in the car (where the Donelly CD was), and she’d start barking out the orders: “I wanna hear Goat Girl, and then I wanna hear Pretty Deep, and then I wanna hear Bright Light and then I wanna hear Goat Girl“, and sometimes she’d want to hear “Matter of Fact” (as she called it…listen and you’ll know why), though that wasn’t by Donelly. Pretty cute, though I do confess that while I sometimes miss those times, I also enjoy not having to listen to the same three or four songs over and over again every day.
Check out this video, tell me if you remember that time, this video. Feed the Tree, by Belly. It’s a bit choppy from time to time, but I couldn’t find a better version on YouTube. Happy ABC Music Monday! 🙂
And, in case you’re interested, here are Maya’s favorites, via Groove Shark. First, Goat Girl:
Now, Pretty Deep:
The Bright Light
Walking After You (aka, Matter of Fact, by the Foo Fighters)
New feature here at Thinking About. I did an ABC Meme last week, which got me somehow to thinking about Gina’s Music Monday feature, and then somebody put peanut butter in my chocolate, and the next thing you know, I decided that for the next 26 weeks, I’ll post videos. I’m going to go through the alphabet, and I think I’ll stick with the name of the band/artist, but I can’t promise to be consistent on that.
So, Happy ABC Music Monday! Our first group, of course, is ABC, with their fabulous song, “All of my Heart”. I love this song. It’s about eleventy billion times better than their more popular songs, “Poison Arrow”, “Be Near Me”, “The Look of Love”, or “How to be a Millionaire”. The only other ABC song that’s as good is “The Night You Murdered Love” (Awesome song, btw). Back when Ted and I were dating, he used to make me really awesome mix tapes, and I remember both songs being on them. I can almost figure out what song comes next on the tape….
UPDATE: The video was disabled, so it wasn’t working. I’ve replaced it with another version. The video is kind of lame, though…if you just want to listen, you can do that too! Just click and enjoy. 🙂