What do our musical choices say about us? Let’s find out, as we play...THE NEXT TEN SONGS ON MY IPOD!
My ipod shuffle, which has about 250 songs on it -- pulled from a fairly extensive playlist -- is set to random. And here we go:
One Day More -- Les Miserables Soundtrack (London Cast): I’ve been going through a bit of a broadway revival lately. I hadn’t listened to any musicals for some time, suddenly I had the craving. I love this song. It’s a turning point in the story, where all of the various story arcs come together (and where the intermission is in the play -- no that that’s relevant). Incidentally, the London cast recording of Les Miserables is far superior to any of the other versions out there, for one reason -- Colm Wilkinson, as Jean Valjean. Actually, I’ve always thought it kind of strange that it’s the English version of a French Story that everyone loves so much...
Welcome to the Jungle -- Guns ‘n’ Roses: Wow, that’s a good way to strip your gears. This is a pretty disturbing song, but man it sounds cool. The beginning of this song is one of the best ever. And the louder you play it, the better it sounds. What ever happened to these guys?
Ice Harvest, Miller’s Mill, New York -- Charles Kuralt: This is a recording from one of the On The Road segments that Kuralt used to do for the CBS Evening News. Charles Kuralt is one of my heroes. He spent his life traveling around the nation and telling us all about ourselves. His life’s work is the great epic poem of America. This particular story is about a community in New York that keeps the centuries old tradition of cutting and storing lake ice in the middle of the winter, to be used for the ice cream social later that summer. Vintage Kuralt.
Think of Me -- Phantom of the Opera soundtrack: There’s that broadway thing again. I actually haven’t listened to Phantom for a VERY long time. It’s nice to come back to it. There are some amazing vocal performances on this soundtrack. Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman defined these roles. I have to be honest, I like Les Miserables better -- it’s a better story and a better live production. It’s kind of like the Beatles/Rolling Stones thing, everyone has to have a favorite.
The Impossible Dream - The Man of La Mancha Soundtrack: I read Don Quixote several years ago, but I was unfamiliar with this musical, until last year, when we went to see it at the Hale Centre Theatre. It’s was amazing. The idea of this song gets a little lost on people sometimes, I think. It’s not about facing tremendous obstacles, and eventually triumphing. It’s about fighting the good fight even though you know you cannot win. It’s an impossible dream, not an almost impossible dream.
Through the Trees -- David Tolk: David Tolk is a local guy here in Utah. He plays piano for Peter Breinholt, but he also has several solo albums. I really like his music (oh it’s piano music, by the way) it’s simple and beautiful. And easy for a “by ear” piano player to pick up.
Wish You Were Here -- Pink Floyd: Pink Floyd used to scare the crap out of me. I had always heard of them as a kid, but had never actually heard their music. People described them as “acid rock” and I wasn’t sure what that meant (I’m still not sure it actually means anything -- no one even uses the term any more), but it sounded scary, so I wanted nothing to do with them. Then during my sophomore year in High School, my best friend Aaron came across this album -- The Delicate Sound of Thunder. It’s a live concert album. We listened to it. We weren’t seized upon by demons. And we never looked back. This is one of my favorite albums of all time. As good as Pink Floyd is, they sound even better live. That’s rare. I love this song -- and it’s fairly easy to play on the guitar.
Love One Another -- (Shameless plug alert!!) Chris Thornblad: Yes, I listen to my own music. Sorry. This is the classic primary song (known in some circles as “As I have loved you”). Sharon, my wife, asked me to record a version of this song for her, as a birthday present a couple of years ago. I wasn’t sure how to make it interesting, so I put a bridge in the middle of it with a portion of another primary song, Heavenly Father Loves Me (or Whenever I hear the song of a bird...).
Old Paint -- Peter Breinholt: I’m surprised that it’s taken this long for a Peter Breinholt song to come up. I listen to his stuff more than anything else. One of the things I love about his music is how rich and interesting it is. His lyrics are a little confusing (it gets a little “stream of consciousness-ish” occasionally. But, he uses so many varied instruments in his songs, that they are very fun to listen to. This song descends into a vaudeville style melody, complete with trombones toward the end. And there’s a really tinny, barroom piano too. Oh, and a banjo.
I’ve Got You Under My Skin -- Frank Sinatra: I’ve always been a fan of Bing Crosby, but I’m a recent convert to Sinatra. He is so smooth. Frank Sinatra just makes everything sound cool. In fact, you just feel cooler when you listen to him.
Well, there you go. I don't know what that says about me -- you'll have to be the judge. Thank you for playing THE NEXT TEN SONGS ON MY IPOD!