Let’s Take A Moment Day 493

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

Sam Cooke released the single “Chain Gang” on July 26, 1960.  It reached the #2 spot in the country later that year, the second time he was in the Top Five following the success of his #1 hit from 1957, “You Send Me” (Day 261).  Three years later he was in the Top Ten with today’s song. 

Cooke had so many things going for him:  his silky smooth voice, his suave debonair good looks and his ease & confidence in front of an audience to name a few.  But another important talent that set Cooke apart from other performers of his day was his songwriting ability.  He was succinct, eloquent & expressive with both his words & music.  Today’s track is no exception.  It also contains a bit of levity which only adds to its charm.    

“Another fella told me he had a sister who looked just fine 
Instead of being my deliverance 
She had a strange resemblance 
To a cat named Frankenstein”.

Sam
Sam Cooke circa 1960.  (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Sam Cooke: “Another Saturday Night” (1963, written by Sam Cooke).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 492

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

John Lennon & Paul McCartney met as teenagers 64 years ago in Liverpool, England in July 1957. Both were from the same city, both had already lost their mothers, both wanted to play music & eventually both were in the same band. They became songwriting partners, their group morphed into The Beatles which turned into that whole redefining music & culture thing and they all became legends. But that is where the similarities ended.

One listen to the songs they co-wrote together and it was obvious which one was the primary songwriter. And it had nothing to do with who was on lead vocal. Lennon’s music was deeper, spiritual, insightful & intellectual. McCartney had his moments with that approach as well, as evidenced on songs like “Let It Be” and “Hey Jude” to name two.

But McCartney was a master at catchy tunes, pop lyrics & storytelling. If there was one album that showcased both men’s’ distinct qualities, it was 1968’s showpiece, The White Album. And like most of The Beatles records, I found myself completely enthralled with Lennon’s songs, especially today’s pick.

The sun is up the sky is blue
It’s beautiful and so are you
Dear Prudence
Won’t you come out to play
“.

The Beatles

The Beatles circa 1969 (L-R): John Lennon, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

The Beatles: “Dear Prudence” (1968, written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 491

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

On July 8, 1998 Frank Sinatra’s songs & movies were given new places of honor-The Smithsonian and Library of Congress. Today’s song was included in that group and it was played on two space missions: Apollo 10 and Apollo 11, which landed on the moon 52 years ago today on July 20, 1969. Sending a huge thank you out to all our rocket men & women-past, present & future-for having the courage & desire to take us all higher and higher.

Fly me to the moon
Let me play among the stars
Let me see what spring is like on
A-Jupiter and Mars”.

Sinatra

Apollo 11 Astronauts

Top:  Frank Sinatra album cover photograph circa 1960.  Bottom:  The three crew members of NASA’s Apollo 11, May 1969 (L-R):  Commander Neil Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin Jr. (Bottom Photo by Space Frontiers/Getty Images).  (Images found online.  Original sources unknown).    

Frank Sinatra: “Fly Me To The Moon” (1964, written by Bart Howard).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 490

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

In November 1972 Steely Dan released their debut album Can’t Buy A Thrill. It hit the Top 20 on the Billboard album chart the following year & produced three of their best known songs: “Do It Again”, the group’s first single which was a Top Ten hit in 1973, “Dirty Work” (Day 130) and today’s track. It was their second single & another hit reaching #11 the same year. In the nearly 50 years since the group released their first album, their music is a fresh, innovative & evocative today as it was then. Walter Becker and Donald Fagen were an incredible team.

You’ve been telling me you’re a genius since you were seventeen
In all the time I’ve known you I still don’t know what you mean
The weekend at the college didn’t turn out like you planned
The things that pass for knowledge I can’t understand
“.

Thrill

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Steely Dan: “Reelin’ In The Years” (1972, written by Walter Becker and Donald Fagen).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 489

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

Singer & piano player Billy Stewart was born in 1937 in Washington, D.C.. He started singing gospel music with his brothers by the time he was 12. In the early 1950’s he switched to secular music where he met fellow performer Bo Didley. He hired Stewart to sing back-up which led to a record contract with Chess Records in 1955.

He had his biggest hit in 1966 with a cover of the Gershwin tune, “Summertime”. Sadly, Stewart died in 1969 at the age of 32 in a car accident with three members of his band. Today’s song, a Top 30 hit from 1965, has always been my favorite of his. It never fails to reminds me how much talent this man had as a singer, songwriter & musician.

Why don’t you decide to be
I’ll tell you all of my dreams now
Oh, I love you, I pray for your love
Would come to me a someday
“.

Billy-stewart-1

Billy Stewart circa 1965. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Billy Stewart: “I Do Love You” (1965, written by Billy Stewart).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 488

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

A couple of days ago Yusuf/Cat Stevens announced on social media that the soundtrack to “Harold & Maude” is being released today in the UK with a new cover in honor of Record Store Day. He was only in his early 20’s when several of his songs were chosen to carry the dark comedy and it was an overwhelming success.

The music, like the singer, was insightful interesting & reflective. It is one of my favorite movie scores of all time & one of my most beloved movies ever. It is quirky, eccentric, funny warm & heartbreaking. Just like life. And it makes you feel like despite how different & alone you may feel at times, if you keep looking, there is a place where you can finally belong.

And here’s to an early happy birthday wish to Yusuf/Cat Stevens. He was born Steven Georgiou on July 21, 1948 making this year birthday #73. May he celebrate 100 more.

Well if you want to say yes, say, “Yes”
And if you want to say no, say, “No”
‘Cause there’s a million ways to go
You know that there are
“.

Cat

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Yusuf/Cat Stevens: “If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out” (1971, 1984, written by Cat Stevens).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 487

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

After The Gold Rush is one of my favorite Neil Young albums. Released in 1970, it contains some of his best loved songs including the title track, “Only Love Can Break Your Heart” (Day 241), “Southern Man” and today’s song. It is a simple succinct sparse track that hit me inside in the way only Young can. There is such an elegant beauty yet undeniable sadness to his music I get lost in it. I find it brings me to a place of absolute joy & heartache all at once.

Now that you found yourself losing your mind
Are you here again
Finding that what you once thought was real
Is gone and changing
“.

N Young 1970

Neil Young circa 1970. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Neil Young: “I Believe In You” (1970, written by Neil Young).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 486

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

Happiest of birthdays to the incomparable Linda Ronstadt who turns 75 years young today. Born July 15, 1946 in Arizona and raised on a sprawling farm, she started her career as part of a folk trio best known for today’s song. It was a Top 20 hit for them in 1967/1968 and it was written by Mike Nesmith of The Monkees three years earlier. She released her first solo album in 1969.

Ronstadt has sung nearly every genre of music in her career from pop to country to big band to Mexican to jazz and more. On her 34th birthday in 1980, she expanded her repertoire when she appeared in Joseph Papp’s production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance in Central Park in NYC. But I still love the song that started her career and introduced us all to her unbelievably fabulous voice. Here’s to 100 more birthdays for this legendary artist.

I ain’t sayin’ you ain’t pretty
All I’m saying is I’m not ready
For any person place or thing
To try and pull the reins in on me
“.

Stone Poney

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

The Stone Poneys: “Different Drum” (1967, written by Mike Nesmith).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 485

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

Time for another mid-week Motown break. Today’s song was released on July 9, 1968. It was written by the husband & wife songwriting team of Nickolas Ashford & Valerie Simpson. They started writing for the label two years earlier and wrote several other songs recorded by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell including “Ain’t’ No Mountain High Enough”, “Your Precious Love” and “Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing”. Today’s pick was a Top Ten hit on the main chart & #1 on the R&B chart in 1968. It was also the last song the beautiful Terrell ever sang in public due to her illness & subsequent death in 1970.

Darling in you I found
Strength where I was torn down
Don’t know what’s in store but
Together we can open any door
“.

marvin-gaye-tammi-terrell

Tammi Terrell (L) and Marvin Gaye (R) circa 1967. (Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell: “You’re All I Need To Get By” (1968, written by Nickolas Ashford & Valerie Simpson).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.

Let’s Take A Moment Day 484

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?

Tom Petty music quote

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

I know we are still facing a serious situation but a new year gives us hope for the new days, seasons, opportunities & moments ahead. Still, music is something that will never change for me. It is my refuge, the most comforting part of my life & the one thing I consistently count on. So until a more normal semblance of life 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.

Towards the end of 2017, I became completely absorbed in David E. Kelley’s HBO miniseries “Big Little Lies”. The soundtrack was fabulous and the actors were great. I was especially captivated by one of the younger actors in the show, Darby Camp. She played Reese’s youngest daughter-10 year old Chloe MacKenzie-and she was unbelievably impressive.  Her character’s intense love of great music reminded me so much of myself at that age!!!  I was her minus the ear buds. 

One of her favorite songs in the show introduced me to soul singer Leon Bridges who was born July 13, 1989 in Georgia as Todd Michael Bridges. His 2015 debut album, Coming Home, hit the Top Ten on the Billboard Album chart that year. It was nominated for the Best R&B Album at the 2016 Grammy Awards. One listen to this man sing, one look at his sweet young face and it is easy to see why he has been hailed as “the second coming of Sam Cooke.”. I have been a fan ever since. Happy birthday, Leon Bridges. Here’s to 100 more.

Oh, I wanna come near and give you
Every part of me
But there is blood on my hands
And my lips aren’t clean
“.

album-artwork

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Leon Bridges: “River” (Live performance on “Saturday Night Live, December 5, 2015. Originally released June 2015, written by Joshua Block, Leon Bridges, Austin Jenkins and Chris Vivion).

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing what I love and how I am coping with you.

Stay well.