Saturday, May 19, 2012


Heroes is the title of the newest Willie Nelson album, which I discussed in an earlier blog as coming out on May 15th.  I was unable to procure it on the day it came out, but made up for it today.  I am soooo happy that I was able to snag it.

I will admit, Willie's voice has deteriorated a bit over the years.  However, considering it's never been the best voice on the planet, it's still a good voice.  He manages to put a lot of emotion behind his traditional vibrato.  And his son Lukas, who sings duet with him for much of the album, is the same tone, if a slightly higher pitch.  I posted "Breathe" in an earlier blog.  That was a duet.  Go listen again.

So, we already knew that he covered a Pearl Jam song.  He also covers Tom Waits and Coldplay as well as some older C&W songs (heavy on the W).  The Coldplay song - "The Scientist" - is one of my favorites and got zero play in D/FW.  I understand that it was recorded for a Chipotle Mexican food commercial for last year's Super Bowl.  I don't mind, it's a great cover. 

Willie co-wrote several of the songs.  His son Lukas wrote about as many by himself.  I don't know what else Lukas has done, but I approve of his song writing.  He's very much a chip off the old block.

And, yeah, Willie does a song with Snoop Dogg, Kris Kristofferson and Jamey Johnson called "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die".  Snoop Dogg actually SINGS, not raps.  He's got a decent voice.  According to Wikipedia, they were originally going to use this song as the title to the album, but were afraid the more conservative outlets would be offended.  Pity one has to take that into account.  So, the following video shows pictures of Mr. Nelson partaking in marijuana.  If that offends, close you eyes and just listen.  Or, no, just don't click as the lyrics will probably offend as well.

Here's the cover of "The Scientist".  It's a beautiful song, even if it was used for a Chipotle commercial.

I'm definitely not a Christian, but I kinda agree with the sentiment of this song. "Come on Back Jesus"

Okay, enough.  I'll let you go find the rest for yourself.  Or better yet, go buy the album.  The old man still has It.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Celtic Rock

As I've mentioned before, I love it when traditional music is played in an untraditional way.  There is a very healthy Celtic music following in the D/FW area - despite the small amount of venues - and we're friends with several folks who perform.  One of the gentlemen pirates who used to sing with my husband in The Corsairs is now lead singer for a group called Irish Blind.  They play Celtic rock and it is a wonderful thing.  A mix of rock instruments - electric bass, electric guitar and a trap set - with Celtic instruments - penny whistle, mandolin - and a stray accordion on occasion.  They've got a few original tunes thrown in with the traditional tunes and they play with a great deal if energy.  Oh, hey!  They're on YouTube.  Who knew?

And because I titled this post as Celtic Rock and not Irish Blind, I shall share a few of my other favorites when it comes to this kind of music.

The Drop Kick Murphys - Shipping up to Boston.  The video has nothing to do with the lyrics, but that's not unusual with professional videos these days.

Flogging Molly - Seven Deadly Sins

The Tossers - Good Morning Da.  This is a very fun video and actually follows the story of the song.

Mumford and Sons - Little Lion Man.  Yes, I count this as Celtic rock.  They are part of a movement in the UK to bring folk music back into the mainstream.  Pretty much exactly what the Celtic rock groups here are doing except for us it's imported folk music.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find any videos of my favorite Celtic rock group - an Australian group named Brother.  They broke up before the advent of YouTube and cell phones with video, so nothing has been posted on them.

Other groups you might look up - Seven Nations, The Blarney Brothers, Six Mile Bridge, Blackmore's Night.

Who's your favorite Celtic rock band?

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Seriously? Cool!

I occasionally resort to Stumbleupon when I'm bored.  I've got a lot of music likes listed on it, so, it often gives me little gems.  Today I got two really sweet ones.

This guy built a pipe organ.  A PVC pipe organ.  I'm not sure what he's using as sticks - they look suspiciously like leather paddles (don't ask how I know). 

And I don't know anything behind the making of this video other than it is priceless.  I absolutely love well done a capella covers of rock songs.  Not only is it a good cover, it's beautifully choreographed.

I'm having a good music day, how about you?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

You know how I love mashups...

...and live ones are even better.  Got this from our friend Devin who is definitely a MBLF.

Pure Genius!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

One Year Anniversary!

One year ago today, I purchased my ukulele!  Okay, I'm still not an expert, but I can make my way through a few songs.  Also, I got to spend some of the weekend jamming with my fellow ukulelian, Erin.  I think I need more jam sessions.  Playing with other people, makes all that playing alone worthwhile.

The other thing I did this weekend was go to the Denton Arts and Jazz Festival.  Erin lives right across the street, so it made for a good place to hang between ventures into the - unfortunately - quite dusty venue.  Heard a lot of music in passing, but settled down to actually listen to a Texas Swing Band, which I unfortunately never caught the name of.  Also, finally got to see Brave Combo live for the first time since the late '80s when I was catching them at a hole in the wall bar called The Library.  This was a little before they became semi-famous.  So, I think I'll spam you with a bit of nuclear polka.

Did I mention that I played clarinet in Jr High and High School band?  Yeah, I was pretty good, but I'd never have been asked to sub for the guy in the above video.

The Denton in the title is, of course, Denton, Texas where they started out and the only place I've seen them live.  Bonus points if you realized that the line "Denton, the home of happiness" came from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show".

And one last one, because you know I can't leave you without trying to break your brain.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Willie Nelson

I'm not terribly vocal about it, but I'm definitely a fan of Willie Nelson.  He doesn't have the greatest voice in the world, but he knows how to use what he has to his best advantage.  He writes good songs and he covers good song.  He is probably my favorite C&W performer (Johnny Cash being his only rival for the #1 spot in my heart).  So, today I was listening to KXT on the way to work and they played a song off his upcoming album for New Music Monday.  I nearly squeed when I realized what he was covering:

Why, yes, that is a Pearl Jam Song.  Bit of a mind-bender, no?  Want an even bigger mind-bender?  I went to his website and read up on the new album.  Among the artists he recorded with is Snoop Dogg.  Yeah, that one was hard to digest.  Other artists on the album are Merle Haggard, Cheryl Crow, Kris Kristoferson and his sons Lukas and Micah.  It's not going to be out until May 15.  Guess what I'm going to be purchasing on May 15.

So, here's some of my other favorite Willie songs.  I suspect you've heard most of them, but I still want to share.

(Oh, and I can play this on ukulele now.  Hee!)

Two great musicians who sound great together. 

Okay, I'll stop there, or I'll be linking to a bajillion songs.  Although, there is still "Pancho and Lefty" and "Crazy" and....

Friday, April 13, 2012

Lyle Lovett

I have been aware of Lyle Lovett for a while, mainly because he married Julia Roberts, but I until quite recently have never heard his music.  That changed a couple of years ago when KXT came into being and became my only radio station.  They play him on a semi-regular basis.  I have discovered that I like his brand of rocky country (or perhaps countrified rock) quite a bit.  So, I keep saying I need to get some of his music.  I'm thinking the first album I pick up needs to be Pontiac which came out in 1987.  Specifically for the following song.  Because every time I hear it, I HAVE to crank up the radio and sing along.  I suppose I'm very fortunate that KXT plays it so often, considering it's age.

Seriously.  How can you not smile listening to that song?