Hi everyone. Hope you are all well and continue to stay that way during this global health crisis we are facing. But in addition to protecting your physical wellness, what are you doing to stay mentally healthy today?
(Image found online. Original source unknown.)
I know we are in a serious situation, but I need a break from the gloom, doom and bullying by way of hoarding. Music has always been my refuge and watching those beautiful Italians singing to each other from their balconies reaffirmed my belief that music is the answer. So until the old normal returns, I am going to share a song I listen to that helps me escape the current state of things, if only for a few minutes each day. And if this helps anyone else, even better.
Before we get to the music, let me offer a quick shout out to my girls-Dorothy, Rose, Blanche & Sophia. “The Golden Girls” pilot aired 35 years ago today on NBC and its four leading ladies made growing older look fun, feisty and fabulous. They also became my surrogate mothers who gave me sage advice about life, love, loss & laughter. I will adore them for all of eternity.
The cast of “The Golden Girls: Top (L-R): Rue McClanahan as Blanche, Bea Arthur as Dorothy. Bottom (L-R): Estelle Getty as Sophia & Betty White as Rose. (Image found online. Original source unknown.)
Today is also the birth anniversary for guitarist Paul Kossoff who was born 70 years ago today in England. If you think you do not know who he was, I have three words for you: “All Right Now”. Yes, he was the guitarist for the band, Free, who had a massive hit in 1970 with that iconic song. And one listen to that track, led by Paul Rodgers’ electrifying vocals and Kossoff’s unbelievably fiery & intense riffs, it was clear even upon its release that this song would achieve legendary status. Rounding out the group was the astonishing rhythm section featuring Andy Fraser on bass and Simon Kirke on drums. If there was ever a tune to qualify as a perfect song, it would be this one. I have been absolutely fanatical about this track from the first time I heard it 100 years ago, and that obsession continues to this day. And probably always will. I just cannot hear it enough.
Kossoff’s musical training started at age nine when he began classical guitar lessons. But at age 15 he saw a live performance by Eric Clapton with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers so Kossoff changed his musical direction to a more blues/rock inspired sound. By 1968 he met the other band members to form Free. They broke up temporarily in 1971 but reformed a year later, only to disband permanently in 1973. Kossoff struggled with depression & drug addiction which was only exacerbated by the break-up of the band. He died in 1976 at age 25 from a pulmonary embolism. But his staggering performance stands out on one of the greatest rock anthems of all time.
“There she stood in the street
Smiling from her head to her feet
I said hey, what is this
Now baby, maybe she’s in need of a kiss“.
Top: Paul Kossoff circa 1974. Bottom: Free circa 1970 (L-R): Andy Fraser, Paul Rodgers, Kossoff & Simon Kirke. (Image found online. Original source unknown.)
Free: “All Right Now” ( 1970, written by Andy Fraser and Paul Rodgers).
I do not own the rights to anything. I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.