Lets Take A Moment Day 30

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?

music heart

(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.

I am someone with a highly repetitive nature.  I can listen to a song I adore for days at a time and watch the same show or movie I love for weeks without getting bored.  Sometimes I watch something so many times I am afraid I will need an intervention to stop.  One movie I have been watching a lot recently is 2001’s “Saving Silverman”.  I knew nothing about it the first time I caught it on a movie channel except that Jack Black was in it, and that was all I needed to know.  I had fallen in love with him after I saw “High Fidelity” and “School of Rock” because not only is he good singer/musician, but he is also hilarious.

What I did not know about “Silverman” was that at the heart of the movie, Black and two of his buddies are in a Neil Diamond cover band.  I love that man, too, so I was thrilled to see him make an appearance at the end of the movie when the guys in the cover band not only meet their hero, but also sing with him onstage at one of his shows as well.  Diamond is very funny in the film and even quotes lines from his own songs.

I grew up listening to his music, but then again who didn’t?  From the Monkees to “Shrek” to a variety of artists covering his songs (Chris Isaak with “Solitary Man”, UB40 with “Red Red Wine” & Urge Overkill with “Girl You’ll Be A Woman Soon”) to his movie debut (in “The Jazz Singer”) to his E.T. inspired song (“Heartlight”) to the Boston Red Sox adopting “Sweet Caroline” as their unofficial official anthem, to Diamond’s reworking of that song in an Instagram post by changing the words from “touching hands” to “washing hands”  to match our new normal, Diamond is omnipresent.  Basically if you have been alive in the last 50 years there is no way you cannot know who this unbelievably talented artist is.  He has won every award and accolade out there and is undoubtedly one of America’s greatest songwriters of all time.

With so many fabulous enduring songs to choose from, it is hard to pick just one as my favorite.  I sort of shuffle them around depending on my mood so that what I am listening to at the time determines what I like best at the moment.  Right now I have rediscovered how much I love the string arrangement introduced in the second verse of today;s song.  It underscores Diamond’s voice beautifully and increases the happy feel of the song, at least it does for me.  It was his first number one record in America and put him on the music charts in several countries around the world as well.  The lyrics are fabulous, too.  I am proud to bow at the altar of the Diamond.

Hitchin’ on a twilight train
Ain’t nothing there that I care to take along
Maybe a song
To sing when I want“.

Neil Diamond

(Image found online.  Original source unknown.)

Neil Diamond:  “Cracklin’ Rosie” (1970, written by Neil Diamond).

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

Stay well.

Third One’s A Charmer

Hello, dear Vixens!!!  We have arrived at song #3!!!

woodland-christmas-tree

This legend from my home state of NY just announced his 50th world tour, and getting tickets to one of his shows will be this year’s Christmas gift to myself (he will be in CT next June).

During those 50 years he has sold over 120 million records (including the Monkees hit “I’m a Believer”), has had eleven number 1 hits, is in both the Songwriters Hall of Fame & the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, appeared in one of the greatest concert movies ever made (“The Last Waltz“), starred in the 1980 blockbuster, “The Jazz Singer” and was the focus of idolization in the movie “Saving Silverman” where he appeared as himself.

last-waltz

Courtesy of IMDb.

SAVING SILVERMAN, Neil Diamond, Jason Biggs, Jack Black, Steve Zahn, 2001

                                                    Courtesy of Cineplex.com                                                                                

Total aside…..hilarious movie!!!

With Steve Zahn & Jack Black starring in it, how could it not be, right???

But I digress.

Over the summer I went to several games at Fenway and loved singing the stadium staple “Sweet Caroline” with the rest of the crowd for the 8th inning sing along.

I have always been a believer that less is more, and sometimes an acoustic performance is so much more powerful than a full band sound.  This is so true on “Acoustic Christmas“, his newest release that features 10 simply gorgeous Christmas songs including today’s pick, which features a stunning string arrangement.

Neil Diamond:  Hark!  The Herald Angels Sing.

I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing some things that I love with you.

Until next time, fellow Vixens, happy listening!!!

day-3

 

“And The Stars Look Very Different Today…”

Not even two weeks into the new year and we already have a devastating loss in the world of music.  David Bowie, the 1970’s rock icon who transformed himself over and over throughout his illustrious career, died after an 18 month battle with cancer on January 10.  He was 69 years old.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Richard Young/REX (100574d) David Bowie DAVID BOWIE AT THE CANNES FILM FESTIVAL - 1983

        Photo by Richard Young 1983

Born David Robert Jones in London on January 8, 1947, he changed his last name to avoid confusion with the other Davey Jones in The Monkees.  Bowie’s  musical career began with his break through album “Space Oddity” in 1969 and he spent the 1970’s establishing himself as a glam rock, art rock musician like no other with songs like “Changes“, “Golden Years“, “Rebel Rebel” and “Suffragette City“.  He easily segued from his Ziggy Stardust persona of the 70’s to the suave, well dressed gentleman in a string of 1980’s videos for hits like “Modern Love“, “Let’s Dance“, “China Girl” and “Blue Jean“.

Not only did Bowie do great work as a solo artist, but his collaborations were stunning as well.  Aside from his ground-breaking work with the likes of Lou Reed, Brian Eno and Iggy Pop, Bowie also worked with John Lennon on “Fame“,  covered the Motown classic “Dancing In The Streets” with Mick Jagger, joined Bing Crosby for a wonderful collaboration of “The Little Drummer Boy/Peace On Earth” and teamed up with rock group Queen for “Under Pressure“, to name a few.  These collaborations showed how innovative, versatile and truly unique Bowie’s musical genius was.

David-Bowie-by-Frank-Micelotta-Hulton-Archive-419x6301[1]

Source:  ultimateclassicrock.com

Bowie also had several acting roles, most notably in the movies (he played Pontius Pilate in Martin Scorsese’s film “The Last Temptation Of Christ” as well as roles in “The Man Who Fell To Earth” and “The Linguini Incident“) and on the Broadway stage (he played the title role in “The Elephant Man” in 1980-1981).  He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and in 1996 he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame by David Byrne of The Talking Heads.  On January 8 2016, on what was Bowie’s 69th birthday, his last recording “Blackstar” was released.

My two best memories of Bowie after his collaborations are when the TV series “Without A Trace” used “Space Oddity” in Anthony LaPaglia’s signature episode entitled “John Michaels“.  The second was Bowie’s performance at the Concert For NYC in 2001.  He was humble and grateful to the men and women who kept his adopted home of Manhattan safe and showed that with a stand out performance of “Heroes”.  I cannot seem to find that performance online, so here is that song from his “Live By Request” show a year later in 2002.

Rest in peace, David Bowie.  “And may God’s love be with you”.

david-bowie-august-8-2002-photographer-adam-bielawski[1]

Source:  livinglifeboomerstyle.com

Please note that I do not own the rights to anything.  I am just sharing some of my favorite music with you.