Monday Melodies – Guilty Pleasures

I consider myself to have pretty good taste in music… Doesn’t everyone? Most of the bands I like are universally accepted as “good”. You may not like all of them, but many of them you can’t argue with the fact that they make good music, even if it’s not your cup of tea.

Well, I’m going to share a few songs that I’m a little ashamed to admit that I like. Guilty pleasure songs of mine, if you will. I’m not ashamed of ALL of them, but some of them.. Well.

I’ll just let you see for yourself.

All the Right Moves, OneRepublic
I jam the hell OUT to this song when it comes on it the car. I can NOT explain why I love this song so effing much but I will BLAST this song when it comes on.

Alejandro, LadyGaga
I love me some Lady GaGa. I actually think that she is CRAZY talented, and this is another one that I blast in the car.

Bed Rock, Young Money
Okay, I’m a little ashamed to admit that I like this song. Because.. Come on. It’s ridiculous. But I blast the hell out of this one in the car. I don’t know what it is!!!! I love this song.

I think this last one is my ultimate shame.

*hangs head*


So what about you? What are your guilty pleasure songs?

Monday Melodies – Hair

She asked him why..
Why… I’m a hairy guy.
I’m hairy high and low.
Don’t ask me why..
(‘Cuz he don’t know!)

This week I have another 60s throwback for you. I am relatively certain that I was a hippie in a previous life. When I was ten years old, I became obsessed with Woodstock, bellbottoms, and tie-dye. I am also a huge musical theatre dork, and I just freaking love this song to pieces.

HAIR (from the Wiki page)

Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical is a rock musical with a book and lyrics by James Rado and Gerome Ragni and music by Galt MacDermot. A product of the hippie counter-culture and sexual revolution of the 1960s, several of its songs became anthems of the anti-Vietnam War peace movement. The musical’s profanity, its depiction of the use of illegal drugs, its treatment of sexuality, its irreverence for the American flag, and its nude scene caused much comment and controversy.[1] The musical broke new ground in musical theatre by defining the genre of “rock musical”, using a racially integrated cast, and inviting the audience onstage for a “Be-In” finale.[2]

Hair tells the story of the “tribe”, a group of politically active, long-haired hippies of the “Age of Aquarius” living a bohemian life in New York City and fighting against conscription into the Vietnam War. Claude, his good friend Berger, their roommate Sheila and their friends struggle to balance their young lives, loves and the sexual revolution with their rebellion against the war and their conservative parents and society. Ultimately, Claude must decide whether to resist the draft as his friends have done, or to compromise his pacifistic principles and risk his life by serving in Vietnam.

Please excuse the YouTube vid, lala is shutting down (SADFACE) so I can’t put the regular, cute, teensy little MP3 button. Le sigh.

Why do I love this song? I can’t really pinpoint it. It’s funky, it’s fun, it’s got fab harmonies.. It’s just.. groovy.

Monday Melodies – Baby You’re A Rich Man

How does it feel to be one of the beautiful people?
Now that you know who you are
What do you want to be?

The featured artist on this week’s Monday Melodies really needs no introduction. They are made of awesome, they were trailblazers in the music world.

They are the Fab Four.

The Beatles’ Wikipedia page is full of way too much info, so I’ll just post a little bit.

The Beatles were an English rock band, formed in Liverpool in 1960 and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music.[1] From 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon (rhythm guitar, vocals), Paul McCartney (bass guitar, vocals), George Harrison (lead guitar, vocals) and Ringo Starr (drums, vocals). Rooted in skiffle and 1950s rock and roll, the group later worked in many genres ranging from folk rock to psychedelic pop, often incorporating classical and other elements in innovative ways. The nature of their enormous popularity, which first emerged as the “Beatlemania” fad, transformed as their songwriting grew in sophistication. The group came to be perceived as the embodiment of progressive ideals, seeing their influence extend into the social and cultural revolutions of the 1960s.

Why do I like the Beatles? Where do I even begin? From a very early age, my parents listened to the Beatles. I can remember my mom and dad singing “Don’t Pass Me By” to me one day when I was upset at something. My mom was a bonafied screaming, fainting, thrashing Beatlemaniac and saw them in concert twice. She had every single album they put out (including the infamous Butcher Cover) and countless pieces of paraphernalia until her dog whizzed on everything and ruined it. I was raised with this stuff. It wasn’t until I was twelve years old when the Beatles Anthology aired on TV that I myself became hooked on the Fab Four. I became obsessed; I had to have every one of their albums. I had to memorize all the words. I insisted upon learning all I could about the band and its’ members. They became my favorite band, and still are to this day. One of the things I love the most about the Beatles is the fact that each and every one of their songs is utterly unique and yet, when you hear a song you KNOW it’s the Beatles.

So today, I give you one of their lesser-known hits: Baby You’re A Rich Man off of the Magical Mystery Tour album. Lala doesn’t have Beatles music so I had to settle for a YouTube vid. Enjoy!

Monday Melodies – Sally Simpson

She knew from the start deep down in her heart
that she and Tommy were worlds apart
But her mother said, “Nevermind, your part is to be what you’ll be.”

Today’s Monday Melodies is from the rock opera Tommy by the Who.
From Wikipedia:

The Who are an English rock band formed in 1964: vocalist Roger Daltrey, guitarist Pete Townshend, bassist John Entwistle, and drummer Keith Moon. They became known for energetic live performances which often included instrument destruction.[1][2] The Who have sold about 100 million records and have charted 27 top forty singles in the United Kingdom and United States with 17 top ten albums,[3] including 18 Gold, 12 Platinum and 5 Multi-Platinum album awards in the United States alone.
Read more about the Who here

About Tommy, from Wikipedia:
Tommy is the fourth album by the English rock band The Who, released by Track and Polydor in the United Kingdom and Decca and MCA in the United States. A double album telling a loose story about a “deaf, dumb, and blind boy” who becomes the leader of a messianic movement, Tommy was the first musical work to be billed overtly as a rock opera. Released in 1969, the album was mostly composed by guitarist Pete Townshend. In 1998 it was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for “historical, artistic and significant” value.
Read more about Tommy here.

When selecting a song from a rock opera, it’s difficult because the thing is supposed to be listened to, and enjoyed in its’ entirety from start to finish. Much like Jesus Christ Superstar (which, believe me, WILL be featured on Monday Melodies) or Evita, I often feel to pick only one song from the whole is to do it some injustice.
I was introduced to Tommy when I was around 11. My parents saw how much I loved the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar and they gave me the album Tommy to listen to. As I was inclined to do, I became obsessed with the music. While my friends were listening to Salt N Pepa and popular music, I was jamming out to the Who.

Sally Simpson is the one song from Tommy that I have on my iPod. Most people have probably heard Pinball Wizard, which is also from Tommy but I love Sally Simpson. The piano (I’m a sucker for a good piano tune), the harmonies (those are a recurring theme here, ha!) and the story is just one I love. I picked this one to feature because out of all the songs (aside from Pinball Wizard), it’s one of the easier ones to single out.. And it’s much lesser know than Wizard.

So without further ado, I give you… Sally Simpson.

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Monday Melodies – An Innis Aigh

Yeah, I have no idea what that means, either. I do know that it’s Gaelic.
This song is from the Rankin Family, whom I first began listening to as a kid.
The Rankin Family, from Wikipedia:

The Rankin Family is a Canadian musical family group from Mabou, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. The group has won many Canadian music awards, including 15 East Coast Music Awards, six Juno Awards, four SOCAN Awards, three Canadian Country Music Awards and two Big Country Music Awards

The Rankins come from a family of 12, all of whom would entertain the neighbours musically every third weekend as part of a ceilidh.

The first Rankin Family band formed in the 1970s when siblings Geraldine, Genevieve, David, John Morris, and Raylene Rankin began performing at local weddings and dances in Cape Breton. As the older siblings went away to college and university, the younger siblings Jimmy, Cookie and Heather took their places.[1]

These five siblings – Jimmy, John Morris, Cookie, Raylene and Heather – released their own independent cassettes The Rankin Family (1989) and Fare Thee Well Love (1990), featuring original songs and a combination of traditional jigs, reels and Celtic folk songs. Their television debut was on the CBC variety show On the Road Again in 1989.

Their most successful album was EMI‘s re-release of Fare Thee Well Love in 1992, which went quadruple platinum, selling over 500,000 copies; the title track was one of the year’s biggest Top 40 hit singles in Canada.

You can read more about the Rankins on the Wiki Page.

Once again, I am a harmony-driven person. Give me breathtaking and haunting harmonies and I will swoon and fan myself like an over-heated Southern Belle on a hot August afternoon. Many of their songs are sung in English but more often; they sing in Gaelic. I can’t understand a word they are singing but it doesn’t matter. Their haunting vocals and talent with instruments is enough for me. If you ask my husband, you will learn that lyrics in a song mean very little to me anyhow. He often asks how I can ignore and turn my nose up at some of the music he listens to which are very bass and lyric-driven. Simply put: if it doesn’t sound pretty going in my ears, it’s not worth listening to me. I don’t care if a song has the most poignant, ground-breaking lyrics ever written. If it sounds like a garbled, growling mess I can’t get past that.

That’s it for this edition of Monday Melodies. I hope you enjoyed it, and maybe found a new song for your iPod.

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Monday Melodies – New Weekly Feature of HSE

Music is a huge part of my life and it always has been. I’ve decided to start up a weekly feature called Monday Melodies. Every Monday I’m going to post a song from lala to share with you all, and a little bit about the artist/band and why I love them so much. First up is Helena, by Nickel Creek.

About Nickel Creek (from Wikipedia):

Nickel Creek is an American acoustic music trio. Although the group’s music has roots from bluegrass, the trio describes itself as “progressive acoustic”.[1] Nickel Creek consisted of three permanent members: Chris Thile (mandolin), Sara Watkins (fiddle), and her brother Sean Watkins (guitar). The trio has always recorded and toured with a bass player, but no bass player has ever been an official member of the band. Chris’s father Scott Thile played bass with the group until 2000, followed by Byron House, and Derek Jones. Mark Schatz has played bass regularly with the group since 2003. In interviews, the band has stressed that they are not a bluegrass band, but a band that “incorporates bluegrass into [its] music”. Nickel Creek has covered songs by Weezer, Radiohead, Pavement, Coldplay, Elliott Smith, Bob Dylan, The White Stripes, the Jackson Five and Britney Spears.

I was fortunate enough to catch Nickel Creek in concert in October of 2007, before they disbanded. It was the best concert I’ve ever been to (granted, I haven’t been to many.). It was at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta; a small, old theatre so the acoustics were marvelous. Their opening act was Bela Fleck, and they played with him later in the show. I love Nickel Creek because of their genuine musical talent. They don’t need autotune, or tweaking in the studio. They sounded just as brilliant; their sound was just as pure live in concert as it is on CD. Their harmonies are to die for and they are such talented musicians. I’m a huge fan of Nickel Creek and hope, hope, HOPE that someday they get back together for another tour.

Funny story about this song: One summer day I was driving home from work with my windows down and I was cranking this song. I was singing loudly along, filling in the yet-to-be-sung third party harmony while stopped at a red light. I was sitting right next to a bar with an outdoor patio and after one of the verses ended and the soft instrumental kicked up; I heard clapping and hooting from the patio. There were two men sitting there, watching me and clapping. I immediately started to blush and they shouted how greated it sounded, bravo, etc. I laughed out loud and just then the light turned green so I gave them an embarrassed little wave and drove on.

That’s all for the first Monday Melodies on Hope Springs Eternal. I hope you enjoyed it!

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