Archive | June, 2009

Song of the Day #32: “The Unwinding Cable Car”

30 Jun

This is a ballad by alternative rock band Anberlin off of their 2007 album “Cities”.  It is a very soft song which is a fresh change from their darker upbeat heartorn songs.  The best part of the song in my opinion is the prominent acoustic guitar throughout the song that matches well with lead singer Stephen Christian’s intense vocals.

 

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Ei1-vWL-t0

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Lyric of the Day #32: Daydream Believer by The Monkees (both literal and actual)

30 Jun

                  Daydream Believer

                   When I was first introduced into the world of literal translation of popular pop songs I sat laughing at the literal version of the youtube video of A-ha’s “Take on Me.” A “literal version” takes a video of a song and sings the song in the same key and melody but with different lyrics which jokingly poke fun at what the video is doing. Today I came across a video of The Monkees performing “Daydream Believer,” and the reason why this literal version is better then others is because the entire video is them playing the song in goofy ways. Here is the link for the literal version: http://www.fark.com/cgi/vidplayer.pl?IDLink=4476482.

                After you watch this how about checking out the actual song. Well, here the actual lyrics. Compare them and let us know which one you like better.

“Oh, I could hide ‘neath the wings
Of the bluebird as she sings.
The six o’clock alarm would never ring.
But it rings and I rise,
Wipe the sleep out of my eyes.
My shavin’ razor’s cold and it stings.

Cheer up, Sleepy Jean.
Oh, what can it mean.
To a daydream believer
And a homecoming queen.

You once thought of me
As a white knight on a steed.
Now you know how happy I can be.
Oh, and our good times start and end
Without dollar one to spend.
But how much, baby, do we really need.

Cheer up, Sleepy Jean.
Oh, what can it mean.
To a daydream believer
And a homecoming queen.
Cheer up, Sleepy Jean.
Oh, what can it mean.
To a daydream believer
And a homecoming queen.

[Instrumental interlude]

Cheer up, Sleepy Jean.
Oh, what can it mean.
To a daydream believer
And a homecoming queen.
[Repeat and fade]”

Fun Fact: The song was written by John Stewart (not the comedian) who was originally with The Kingston Trio

Song of the Day #31: “Girl In The War,” by Josh Ritter

29 Jun

                Champagne      

                   The jesters have reached 1000 views thanks to your views and support. So, let us pop open the champagne and celebrate. Hmm, champagne that reminds me of a tune (like most things do). No, not Champagne Supernova by Oasis. How about “Girl in the War,” by the talented Josh Ritter, singer-songwriter from Moscow, Idaho. A man who should also pop open the champagne for making the right career move. The son of two neuroscientists, Ritter originally went into school with the major of Neuroscience. But, his drive to revolutionize American narrative folk music caused him to switch his focus onto the performance of beautiful music. Great idea. His exceptionally creative and smart lyric continues to mix with his subtle melodies and guitar licks. “Girl In The War,” only portrays a simple taste of his musical intelligence. It also mentions champagne.

              Girl in the War

              “Girl in the War,” makes fantastic use of the most simple of verse chord progressions. Two chords that barely vary. The lyric writes of a conversation between Peter and Paul (both saints by the way). Both are talking about a girl in the war (whose eyes are like Champagne) and their conversation culminates into the lines, “Because the keys to the kingdom got locked inside the kingdom
And the angels fly around in there, but we can’t see them, And I gotta girl in the war, Paul I know that they can hear me yell
If they can’t find a way to help, they can go to Hell,” which maintains numerous religious undertones. The kingdom is Heaven which St. Peter guards. St Peter holds the “keys to the kingdom.” Yet, Ritter, who is fantastic with clever wordplay, makes mention that the “Keys of the kingdom got locked inside the kingdom.” The angels are in there but we cannot see them. No one can get in and no one can see inside heaven’s grand doors. Instead we get the image of wars, guns, violence, and blood that crowds our eyes and with no way to help ends up looking like hell. Yet, at least we can sees the eyes like Champagne. Interesting imagery and interesting song.

Check it out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqLssKusGzM

Lyric of the Day #31: “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane

29 Jun

One pill makes you larger, And one pill makes you small

And the ones that mother gives you
Don’t do anything at all                                    

Go ask Alice
When she’s ten feet tall

And if you go chasing rabbits
And you know you’re going to fall
Tell ’em a hookah smoking caterpillar
Has given you the call
Call Alice
When she was just small

When men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you’ve just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving slow
Go ask Alice
I think she’ll know

When logic and proportion
Have fallen sloppy dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen’s “off with her head!”
Remember what the dormouse said;
“Keep YOUR HEAD

 

Jefferson Airplane’s 1967 ode to the 1865 novel by British author Lewis Carroll about a young naive girl who is thrust into the world of psychedelia and wonder by following the White Rabbit down his hole.  The lyrics follow her adventure into the depraved world and her slip into seeming madness.  

Lyric of the Day #30: “Good Riddance,” by Green Day

28 Jun

        Graduation

              Today my brother graduated from High School and is eagerly awaiting attending Cornell in the fall. My brother thanks you for the internet round of applause. The ceremony was early but enjoyable and afterwards my family went out to brunch and I overate. What? My day’s events are not exciting. True, this is a music blog. I apologize let us get to the music. In honor of all those high school seniors who have/will be graduating high school in these past/future days, I have searched my scattered mind and bloated stomach for a song to not only encompass your accomplishments, but also to give you some great lyrics to guide you through the summer and onto freshman year. So, I have avoided being incredibly cliche with “The Graduation Song” by Vitamin C, and I have chosen to be just plain old cliche with “Good Riddance,” by Green Day.

“So take the photographs, and still frames in your mind    Time Of Your Life
Hang it on a shelf in good health and good time
Tattoos of memories and dead skin on trial
For what it’s worth it was worth all the while

It’s something unpredictable, but in the end it’s right.
I hope you had the time of your life.”

           – “Good Riddance,” by Green Day released as a single in 1997.

        These lyrics do an amazing job in extending the broad message that one must take the memories and hold them close because life is rather unpredictable but in the end stability is reached. While this song, according to its writer and singer Billie Joe Armstrong was written as a goodbye to a girlfriend who was moving to Ecuador, forcing their break-up, the message extends to everyone. So, whether one is saying goodbye to Ecuadorian chick or saying their bon voyage to one stage of their life, the song wonderfully explains that in all of these events, “I hope you had the time of your life”

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