Archive for the ‘Song’ Category

Who They Be? Well They Be Us!

May 9th, 2010

I added new songs to my home page under “Songs On Repeat.” I’ve been really digging these songs lately, and continuously hitting back on my ipod or car or itunes (too bad you can’t hit repeat on Pandora). I hope you enjoy them too. And in case you weren’t aware, there is a little “play” button next to the song on the home page where you can listen to the song.

If you recall, the last time I did this, my site was basically hijacked by China.  Ok, that’s a little dramatic, but I started getting so many downloads of the songs, that my hosting company had to warn me.  I am going to try a new naming convention this time, we’ll see how it goes.

Phoenix RemixesRome
Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix (Remix Collection)
Neighbours with Devendra Banhart

The band Phoenix is extremely hot and trendy right now.  Deservedly.  Their latest album is the best album, at the very least, from the last 2 years.  Because of this, many other artists wanted to remix their songs.  So Phoenix provided the layers, and these other bands went at it.

One of my favorites from this is the track called Rome.  It is very chilling moody song.  One night I kept it on repeat and listened to it over and over for over 4 hours.

The cover starts at the bridge of the original, and doesn’t really leave.  The bridge has such emotion behind it, it excels on it’s own.  Below is a video of the actual band playing the song, to compare.

Always and forevermore
I call to say I’m on the way
2000 years remain in a trash can
Let burn the cigarette somewhere
Ashes till it falls , falls, falls

XXVCR
XX
The XX

I have been discovering and as Joey would say, inventing a lot of new bands and new music recently.  I have found them from television shows, the inter-webs, or in this song’s case, friends (Thanks Annette!).

Even though the guru disagrees, I think this song falls under the category of “lazy rock.”  It is very melodic and easy to listen and groove to.

It also has a very cool sentiment.  It is a song that talks about having a lover who is your best friend, that you can talk to about anything at all.  In this song’s case, they both feel that they will be together forever, cause they “just know.”

I wanna find myself by the sea
In anothers company
By the sea
I wanna go out to the pier
I’m gonna dive and have no fear
Cos you, you just know
You just do

Freestyle Friday'sHampden Parks
Freestyle Friday’s
e-dubble

This song and artist was one of those completely random discoveries for me.  I even passed it along to a friend who wrote about it on their blog, and the artist went and commented on it!

It is a mash-up of the theme song from the TV show “Parks and Recreation” by an artist named e-dubble.  This artist, does freestyle raps and provides the audio for free on his website.  So far I like his style.  This song is very catchy and one day at work recently, found myself listening to it on repeat for about 60 straight times.

speak when necessary
no i’ve never been a loud mouth…
im a business man
and a buisness, man
obstacles made me who I am…
yes you know the name
young english, black paisley…
who they be, who they be, who they be, who they be,
well they be us

Empire State Of Hackers

February 3rd, 2010

I came into work on Monday morning, and I had an email waiting for me from my web hosting company.  It read:

Please be advised that your account, andymorales.com, is approaching one or more resource allotments. Details are provided below…In the last 30 days, your account used 73GB of 75GB. If, on 02/26/2010, your rolling 30-day bandwidth total exceeds your bandwidth allotment, you will be automatically billed $12.00 for every 1GB over your allotment.

I was caught off guard.  My website, though it is very robust, does not take up a lot of space on my server.  I also don’t have many items on my site that could be downloaded or that could cause that much traffic.  So I examined my stats, and it appeared that I was getting slammed.

I first looked up the stats from the previous day, January 31, 2010.

Mixture of stats from January 31, 2010

85 Thousand Times!

The first thing I noticed was the amount of KB’s transferred.  That is a ton!  Other stats that I found interesting were that the majority of people were using the outdated and troubled IE6 browser.  I clicked on the link in the stats for the top two referring sites, to only get blocked at work by Websense, for “mp3 file sharing.”  And then I saw what was being transferred–Jay-Z.  Now its a great song so I certainly don’t blame them, but cmon, almost 5 thousand downloads in the one day!  Why is China, chinese search engines and file sharing sites locking on to me and a song that I had on my site.

I then reviewed my stats for the past month, and not just the one day.  The Jay-Z song was downloaded 85 thousand times.

Every fews months I put on my home page 3 songs that I have been listening to often.  It is a way to share both my musical tastes with people,  but also an easy way to listen to the song when away from my ipod.  A user can go to my home page and click the play button and find out what I am currently digging.

If you go there currently, you will see that I removed the mp3 files, and that if you currently click on play, nothing will play.  I had to do this because of this traffic issue, and these sites.  Hopefully I can figure out an alternative way to post these items since this has been one of my favorite features of my site.

Im not sure what was sadder though.  The fact that I got slammed by China, or the amount of times the different songs were grabbed.  Jay-Z was grabbed almost 5 thousand times.  Phoenix only about 600.  And sadly, Belle and Sebastian only about 60 times.  Poor Belle and Sebastian.  Its a genius song however.

Welcome To The Melting Pot

December 29th, 2009

I added new songs to my home page under “Songs On Repeat.” I’ve been really digging these songs lately, and continuously hitting back on my ipod or car or itunes (too bad you can’t hit repeat on Pandora). I hope you enjoy them too.  And in case you weren’t aware, there is a little “play” button next to the song on the home page where you can listen to the song.

Phoenix UnitedIf I Ever Feel Better
United
Phoenix

Lryically this song is a sad yet redemptive song about someone that has gone through a terrible heartache.  He knows that this pain that he feels, however devastating, will some day fade away.  He is confident in that.  However, you can also feel the deep sadness that doesn’t want to believe that.    There is courage in this song.  There is perseverance and faith.

Even though this song has such heavy lyrics, the beat of the music is really catchy and always makes me happy when I hear it.  To me, its a happy song.  I cannot help myself but to dance around and sing to this song.  This song makes me happy.

Dark is the night, cold is the ground
In the circular solitude of my heart
As one who strives a hill to climb
I am sure I’ll come through I don’t know how
They say an end can be a start
Feels like I’ve been buried yet I’m still alive

The Life PursuitDress Up in You
The Life Pursuit
Belle & Sebastian

This is a beautiful, serene sounding song that takes a wallop with its lyrics.  Every verse is a power punch to the gut.  Its going along all pretty sounding and then you hear the F bomb, and have to rewind to make sure you heard it correctly.  The more you rewind it, the more it stands out as brilliant and genius.

I love it when the horn section comes in as well.  I wrote a pensée from this song not too long ago.

Blow up in the face of my rivals
I swear and I rant, I make quite an arrival
The men are surprised by the language
They act so discreet, they are hypocrites so fuck them too!

 

The Blueprint 3Empire State Of Mind
The Blueprint 3
Jay-Z (with Alicia Keys)

I recently posted two videos of this song.  Its a great song about the city of New York.  However, I truly love the lyrics that Alicia Keys sings.  Lyrics that give you hope and that pump you up to believe that anything is possible.  Jay-Z meanwhile takes you through his memory of the city and all that he has experienced there.  Looking back on his life, he is grateful for all he has seen and done.

Sometimes we have to pinch ourselves in life about how much we are blessed.  At the same time, we have to always believe that we can accomplish anything, no matter how difficult a belief that might be.

Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
Theres nothing you can’t do
Now you’re in new york
These streets will make you feel brand new
The lights will inspire you

Here We Are Now, Entertain Us

December 22nd, 2009

This application on facebook I first found really fascinating.  It takes all your status’ of the year, and forms them into a new year’s card collage.  What an interesting way to sum up a year. 

However, it wasn’t.  It had a VERY limited amount of space.  I started eliminating all long status’ and started choosing mainly the really short ones.  And since I speak mostly in lyric or quote, mainly chose those.  This is what I came up with.

mylifeaccordingtofacebook2009

Empire State Of Mind

October 6th, 2009

This is Jay-Z and Alicia Keys performing his song “Empire State of Mind.” I love this song for Alicia Keys. She nails her part and sings a very motivating line. Although, what’s with the one big earing?

“There’s nothing you can’t do…these streets will make you feel brand new, big lights will inspire you.”

Dress Up In You

September 4th, 2009

I always loved you
You always had a lot of style
I’d hate to see you on the pile
Of “nearly-made-it’s”
You’ve got the essence, dear
If I could have a second skin
I’d probably dress up in you

-Belle and Sebastian

Now The Days Go By So Fast

August 19th, 2009

track_sm

My Grandpa Joe recently came out from Florida for a visit and I enjoyed my time with him.  I had to pull some crazy hours at work to try and fit in all the fun but it was well worth it.  We went to the Del Mar Track one day, followed by dinner at Tony Jacals in Solana Beach.  I blame my Grandpa (and Grandma, but more gramps) for my enjoyment of the races at Del Mar (and maybe gambling in general).  I have vivid memories of walking around on the infield with him, looking at the horses.  He would ask me who I would want to bet on in the next race, and then he’d place a bet for me.  Living in Solana Beach they would go often.  I don’t really know how many times I was able to go with them, but I will always picture myself with him, walking around the infield in what seemed to be the early foggy morning.

On Thursday we played afternoon twilight golf at Carmel Mountain.  The following day, still sore, we played golf out on Coronado on the Military base.  We all played absolutely rotten on the friday at Coronado.  It was during this round that I got to thinking.

group_sm

However, after waking up at 4:45 AM this day, my thoughts were not really sinking in.  I started to think back to my Rhetoric classes and the lesson that I hang onto the tightest.  We studied about making communication effective sometimes requires one to create an illusion of the first or last time experiencing something.  Anytime you do something new or fresh, the experience takes on a more vivid feeling.  Likewise, if you realize that an experience might be the very last time you will experience it in your life, you appreciate every bite, every laugh just a little bit more.  In all, it comes to appreciating a moment more vividly, and creating a deeper sense of awareness of life.

bench_smThe golf course this day was one of those golf experiences where you ask yourself “how many holes left” over and over because you are playing so badly, you can’t wait for the round to end.  I caught myself doing this repeatedly and it was troubling me.  I wanted to break this thought pattern, and appreciate the moment more.  After all, could this be the last time I possibly play golf with my grandpa?  I practically learned the game from him going to the driving range with him as a 5 year old.  I attribute any and all of my golf playing to him, as my teacher and mentor.  Could this be the final round I ever play with him?  How many years of golf does he have left at his age, and with him living on the other side of the country we only see each other every couple of years.   The day before in Carmel Mountain, I think might have been the first time I ever shot a lower round than him.

cart_smI wanted to focus on this, but I was just too worn down and playing so poorly, that I came away disappointed that I hadn’t had that vivid experience that I was hoping for. 

Regardless of these thoughts, I had a great time this week with my grandpa.  I hope and expect that this was not my last time golfing with him, or being active with him.  I’m continually trying to appreciate life each day.  Viva La Vida.  Life goes by way too quickly.  Another one of my favorite bands has a lyric that rings true for me in my attempts to viva la vida, and to experience things through the perception of it being my first or last time:

Now the days go by so fast…
I can’t remember all the times I tried to tell my myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass

I love you Grandpa.

outback_sm

Smother Me With Words

July 31st, 2009

My friend from college, Annette Richards, wife of Andrew-who once wrote a guest snide– recently made a list on her facebook.  Her list was of different musicisans she had come to like, because a friend of hers shared them with her. 

annetteslist
I thought it was really cool, and at the same time, I wanted to be on that list.  So I was determined to come up with some good songs or artists that she might not have heard of.  I sent her a list of songs and artists, and she had heard of a few of them.  So I took the remainders, and along with my great birthday cd of 2006 (I should post that one too), I sent her 2 cds with artist samplers.  Maybe she will fall in love with one of the artists (I predict Phoenix), and I can make her list.  Here are the cd’s.

The Chaos Around Me
The Chaos Around Me Side Two
Smother Me With Words
Smother Me With Words Side Two

It Was The Sound Of A Crescendo

June 26th, 2009

As He Came Into The Window
It Was The Sound Of A Crescendo
He Came Into Her Apartment
He Left The Bloodstains On The Carpet
She Ran Underneath The Table
He Could See She Was Unable
So She Ran Into The Bedroom
She Was Struck Down, It Was Her Doom

billie-jean-jacksonYesterday afternoon at approximately 3:00 PM pacific time, the “King of Pop” passed away.  Michael Jackson was a tortured soul and must have lived both a thrilling and a stressful, worried-filled life.  While learning his A-B-C’s as a child, he seemed to take no greater joy than being on stage performing.  He was a smiling, dancing, happy kid.

After becoming “King of the World” you could see a person that both wanted to heal the world (perhaps as Captain EO), yet despite his success, he had to retreat and isolate himself.  He would have to remind himself that he was not alone.

He had odd moments with marriages, odd moments with his own children, and questioned moments with other children.

He was both one of the most celebrated and revered musical artists not just of our time, but in the entire history of the world.  But he was also a little off the wall, and confusing to the world.  The part that confused me the most, was the fact that by the end of his life, you really couldn’t tell if his appearance was black or white, human or alien.  He had multiple surgeries on his face.  He just couldn’t help it.  He could no longer recognize the man in the mirror.

mjgloveNo matter your perspective–whether your view of him is of a musical dancing genius, or whether you see him as a bad, deranged man– the fact remains that he was a global icon.  His popularity went further then just the girl named Billie Jean, but stretched throughout the world.  The girls were his, the men were his, the world was his.  At the height of his popularity, he could do no wrong.  He was invincible.  He could even walk on the moon.

He is gone too soon.

News of his death quickly passed around the eInternet and it even caused sites to go down.

News of Jackson’s death spread quickly online, causing many websites to experience technical difficulties under the unanticipated swell of users. Google announced technical difficulties after a sudden swell in searches for “Michael Jackson” led the company to believe it was under attack from hackers, while social networking site Twitter reported a crash after record numbers of users used the site to spread the news of Jackson’s death.  Wikipedia itself had temporarily experienced technical difficulties and crashed at 3:15 PDT reportedly due to excessive edits and user overload. Many news organizations were generally very cautious about the initial reports of his death.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Jackson#2009:_Death

mjleanAs I heard the news, and quickly reflected on his life and death I wondered if he would be remembered as Elvis or Buddy Holly are remembered.  Author Samuel Roy has argued: “Elvis’ death did occur at a time when it could only help his reputation. Just before his death, Elvis had been forgotten by society.”  You could probably say the same about Michael Jackson.  He had become an anomaly to culture.  Hopefully his death will make people remember the time when they danced, sang, and just couldn’t get enough of his music rather than the disfigured man, sharing wine and beds with boys, trying to free willy.  Will Neverland Ranch become his Graceland?

As I contemplated his legacy, I at first thought that although I viewed him as filthy (in the baseball sense–amazingly good), I didn’t have any sort of connection or tie to his music.  But then as I thought about it more, I realized that I have 2 (actually, just thought of a third) vivid memories of his music.

The first was when I was only six years old.  It was late 1982 and my family was renting a winter cabin for a week or weekend in the mountains.  When I was younger this was kind of a tradition.  We had another family come visit and share our time for a few days.  One of my brothers friends (I think it was Tyler Monroe), brought with him the new Thriller album.  We listened to the album non-stop and even pretended we were making a video for it.  I also remember being scared and having nightmares of the title track.  It was really a freaky song for a newly six year old boy in a dark musty cabin.

mjperformingMy next vivid memory (both of these memories I can still see very clearly in my mind’s eye), took place when I was in junior high school.  It was a Sunday morning, and I was waiting in our Volvo (Volvo for life), for my dad to finish chatting with people after church.  It was parked on Martincoit road, along the street, right outside my former elementary school that housed our church.  I was sitting there listening to the radio, and Casey Casem’s top 40 countdown.  The number one song that day was Man in the Mirror.  It was a spiritual moment for me, as I sang and cried to the song.  It inspired me that day, to want to make myself a better person, to want to help people, and to focus on my own problems, rather than the faults of others.  It’s a trait that I have hung onto and grown my entire life–within each problem, fight, scenario that I might encounter, I look to see where I could have blame so that I can attempt to change that pattern in the future.  I think this is sometimes a detriment to myself, as I too often claim more blame than I should.  But overall I think it is a good concept.  Why blame others and hurt them with anger, when I can find and fix the role I played and build up the esteem of the other person?

michaeljacksongloveThe third vivid memory that I have in my photographic memory (or would it now be called a videographic memory?), is my senior year in college.  It was a week before school started, and I was hanging out preparing for the year with the other R.A’s in my dorm–Erin, Erin, Angeline, Rebecca and Jon.  We were setting up our R.A office (does anyone remember “the Dugout?”), using bleach to clean out the mold in the refrigerator from a long summer.  We were setting up our pet miniature illegal turtles (what did we name them?  M.J was one I think), and getting the entire dorm prepared for the rush of students and the new year.  Our dorm,V.K, was shaped similar to how you might view a Motel 6.  It was two stories, rectangle in shape, that all surrounded a large green courtyard with cement walkways.  While we were busting our humps cleaning, laughing and enjoying new friendships and experiences, we were blasting in the courtyard Jackson’s album, HIStory.  We just couldn’t get enough.  It was a precious moment in my life, and along with laughter, love, and hope, Jackson was providing the soundtrack.

There are probably many other moments of my life that Michael Jackson provided soundtrack to.  But these 3 are the most vivid.  I remember them so crisply and can picture them on a loop in my head.  Whether I am 6, 12, 21 or now practically 33, his music and life have been integrated with mine.

Will you (if I have any readers) share any specific memories, moments, or flashbacks that you may have had with Jackson and or his songs?  How did he make you feel?

michael-jackson

mjreagan

President Ronald Reagan and Nancy in 1984 before receiving an award for his contribution to a drunk driving awareness program.

mjthriller

I Just Got Lost, Every River That I Tried To Cross

May 12th, 2009

May 12

We awoke to street noises and the st. mark’s bell and then got our day started around 9am.  We debated heading all the way back to the train station to check the schedule for our exit the next day, but instead decided to hit the internet cafe.  I also was needing to email our next hotel as they wanted notice a few days in advance, of our approximate arrival time.

We got to the internet cafe, and it was not due to open for another 15 minutes, so we found a nearby street cafe and had an espresso and a cappichino.  It was my first attempt (I think) at an espresso and I must say it was quite bitter, I think I eventually had a bigger sugar to coffee ratio.  However, I had most of lisa’s cappichino and it was the best one yet of the trip.

The cafe opened and we took care of buisness.  At that point we decided to get on a water bus and make our way across the backside of the canal and go to a few churces across the way.  But once on the bus, we had front seats in the air, we didn’t want to get off at the 3rd stop.  So we decided to stay on for all 15 stops and then get off at the last stop and do the Accademia museum instead.  We were enjoying our cheap bus ride, in the open air.  Part of me thought we should just go round and round all day.  It was that much fun.  Though, we got off at the Accademia museum, and before going in the museum, ate some pizza at a cafe right outside.  Mike would have loved this pizza because it was not very high quality and tasted like it was frozen pizza from back home.  Lisa barely made it through a slice, and I wasn’t gonna leave it.  

There was no line for the museum and it was not very crowded.  It started with some byzantine art, but worked our way through art by Veronese, Bellini, Giogiorne, and some Tintoretto’s.  I recall from my trip in 1997, that my favorite two items from this place was The Tempest by San Giogiorne and The Feast in the House of Levi by Veronese.  I’m not sure why I included the Tempest, because on further review, there wasn’t much special to it.  Although, it had a long and complicated history, so maybe that is what I found so pleasing.  Veronese however, I think I really like.  I like many of his pieces, and The Feast I think is one of my favorites.  I also like the story and history behind it.  It takes up a giant wall and is full of details.  I think I could spend hours looking at it.

redentore_sm

Part of me wishes that there were some great museums with just one or two pieces of art.  I think I’d like to once, just sit for 2 hours in front of one piece, reflecting, praying, writing, and seeing what thoughts come to mind.  But in days of fast travel, and even quicker society, there isn’t time for that.  Maybe one day.

Speaking of speed, we made it through that museum in a mere 45 minutes.  Hopped back onto the water bus, with intentions and determinations this time of getting to the churches across the way.  The first church was called Il Redentore (the Redeemer).  This church is beautiful.  Not only is it pretty, but every nave seemed to have a great piece of art by Tintoretto.  I loved the arches, and the domes and the perked ceilings.  I snapped a couple of pictures, but then got reprimanded, albeit kindly.  Il Redentore has a cool background story.

sangiogiore_smWe walked a few blocks and then realized that we needed another water bus, and found our way to San Giogore church.  Lisa enjoyed the beauty of this one more than the last.  It is a gorgeous church with a large campinelle.  It housed great works of art, and we could take pictures more freely, and explore more depths of the choirs and main basillica.  We took the elevator up the campinelle for great views of Venice.  As Dr. Carlander would have said, “beautiful.”  Lisa must be getting at least slightly annoyed, as I keep reminicing about when I was here last, travelling with school, enjoy the friendship of Andrew.  Some things that we are doing, such as visiting these 2 churches, were things that I did and enjoyed so much before.

Along those lines, after San Giogore, we took a water bus to the San Salute church, which when I was here, was our stop.  I was attempting to find my way back to the hotel I stayed at before, so I could show her where we would climb in and out of the window, and how it was right across from where a famous poet once lived. We found the Hotel Messener, but despite going in every alley, could not find my window or the poets house.

tintoretto_smWe traversed over bridges, through alleys, across squares and then more bridges and found our way back to our room.  I did some Snide prep work and we rested.  Then, we went back to the itnernet cafe where I spent a frustrating 2 hours trying to publish my Snides.  The attempt to upload a video to youtube kept failing, I would get typed and insert a bunch of photos and tags, and then the computer or server would freeze and when I would re-enter into the right page, I’d find that I lost 20-30 minutes of work.  We kept buying 30 minute increments, and eventually I completed (all but the youtube video) of my posts up until Venice.

We then walked about 45 minutes looking for the perfect place to enjoy our last meal in Venice.  Sadly, we didn’t find the perfect place, but gave up  looking cause we were tired of walking, and energetic for food.  I had a caprese that was substandard and Lisa ate some very good minnestrone soup.  My next plate was Spaghetti Pomodoro which was very delicious, and she had a pizza Margerhita that was substandard.  All of this chased down by frizzante (Peligrino).

We made our way back to our hotel, stopping briefly to take some very nice pictures in St. Mark’s square, as the sky light was perfect.  We tried to set an alarm lisa downloaded for her computer as we were going to attempt to wake up at 5:00 am so that we could catch the 6:00 am water bus, that would get us to the train station by 6:30 so that we could catch the 7:20 train ride to the Cinque Terre.  This train ride would take approximatley 7 hours so we didn’t want to miss the early train as the next one was 2 hours later and wouldn’t get us to our destination till 6pm.

Needless to say, I was not expecting a great night of sleep, as I had my doubts on if the alarm would work.  Little did I know, that it was going to be an even worse night of sleep than I expected and would still end in failure, with slight redemption.

stmarksdusk_sm

This Week I'm Thinking About: Jonathan Wilt