Category Archives: Music

Mix Tape: Dedicated to the ones I love

Remember cassette tapes? Remember when someone you love made one for you, painstakingly gathering meaningful songs from the CDs, the radio, or — gasp — record albums?

cassette tapeI’m going to begin sharing some songs I love, ones you may not be familiar with, ones that make me smile when they turn up on my iPod. Over the coming months I’ll be building a mix tape on YouTube, so you can follow along as it grows and as you wish.

The first entry consists of two songs I dig from the Mamas and the Papas. Why? Because they’re groovy, man. My dad was really into this band when the Mamas and the Papas first broke onto the scene, and I have fond memories of Dad blasting their music from his HiFi, which he designed and was most proud of. Oh, did he love those woofers that were bigger than I was. He still does, though they no longer outspan me.

The first clip is my own rendition (yes, this is me) of Michelle Phillips’ Right Somebody to Love, itself a take on an old Shirley Temple clip. It’s only 45 seconds long. Boo boop be doop.

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Which leads into Straight Shooter, characterized by a strong and catchy bass line and gorgeous harmonies by the hard-partying Michelle, Cass, Denny and John. See if you don’t like it as much as I do.

Stay tuned for more off-the-beaten-path music. I’ll be periodically adding to this mix tape, made especially for you, and the playlist will gradually grow.

You are also invited to click over to Jen Kehl’s Mix Tape Tuesday, 1960s edition.

Image courtesy of coward_lion / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Perfect Moment Monday: Love your interruptions

“Mommy, would you cuddle with me?”

My 9 year-old son, Reed, still asks me that at bedtime. It’s at the part of the day when I just want to open up my computer and finish that post, respond to that email, look up that fact I was wondering about earlier. In other words, I’m ready to be off duty for the day.

The voice of my dad, he of the oft-repeated Dadisms, speaks softly but powerfully in my head: Love your interruptions.

I take a deep breath this night and put down the laptop, deciding to make my son’s question not an interruption but, instead, a gift.

We read a few pages of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and I declare it’s time for lights out. He pulls out his iPod and says he wants to play a song for me. I curl my body around his while he finds the song.

It’s one we’ve both been singing loudly in the car whenever it comes on the radio. It’s a catchy tune and I’ve been known to crank up the music for the kids and me to sing along as loudly as we can. It’s become our anthem for us this winter. The song is, at its core, about resilience and relying on people close to you.

May your past be the sound
Of your feet upon the ground
Carry on

There are some songs, when they come on the radio, that transport me to another place and time. I’m sure you have some, too. The first song I slow-danced to at the junior-high Sadie Hawkins dance. The first time a boy told me he loved me, via Commodores lyrics. Any song on the mix-tape that my husband gave me shortly after we met. Your whole being goes there — your mind, your emotions, your body. You are, instantly, 14 again, 17 again, 30 again.

I know that this song, this Winter 2012/13 anthem, will forever take Reed back to the sensations and emotions we share this night, cuddled in his bed, sharing an intimate, loving, resonant perfect moment. When he’s a teenager at college, when he first gets his own apartment, when he’s  a new dad, heck, when he’s a grandfather (there I go, time traveling again), whenever he hears this song, he will feel warm, happy, loved through and through.

That thought makes me supremely happy that I chose to love this interruption.

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Perfect Moment Monday is about noticing a perfect moment rather than creating one. Perfect moments can be momentous or ordinary or somewhere in between.

On the last Monday of each month we engage in mindfulness about something that is right with our world. Everyone is welcome to join.

To participate in Perfect Moment Monday:

  • Follow LavenderLuz.com.
  • Write up your own Perfect Moment and post it on your blog (or other site).
  • Use LinkyTools below to enter your name (or blog name), the URL of your Perfect Moment post, and a thumbnail image if desired.
  • Visit the Perfect Moments of others and let the writers know you were there with some comment currency.

Once you make a Perfect Moment post , you may place this button on your blog.What Perfect Moment have you recently been aware of? Visit these moments of others and share your comment love.

The next Perfect Moment Monday event will begin February 25.

(Cross-posted on BlogHer.)


Perfect Moment Monday: On the piano bench

Tessa has taught herself  Heart and Soul on the piano, and we’ll often play it as a duet (“often” as in a bazillion times a day).

The other night she asked me to play her a different song, so I pulled out my sheet music from Edvard Grieg’s Wedding Day at Troldhaugen, which I labored over while I was in high school — the peak of my piano talent.

In moments like this, I am reminded how much I used to love the world of arpeggios and key signatures and smallish busts of old composers with weird hair. Music — piano and flute — was so important to my sense of self when I was Tessa’s age.

Let’s say there have been a few years of skill atrophy. This is how Wedding Day is supposed to sound. I did a respectable job playing it for Tessa, but I have been capable of so much more.

No matter. The song lasts longer than Tessa’s usual attention span, and she surprises me by not stopping to move onto something else. When we get to a particularly difficult part — the page filled with flyspecks (as Roger says of written music) and the sounds you hear at 1:30 — Tessa looks up at me with pure admiration and love in her eyes, as if I am Edvard Grieg himself, reincarnated as her mom.

Seeing myself through her wondrous eyes was pitch perfect.

Music can change the world because it can change people. — Bono

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Perfect Moment Monday is about noticing a perfect moment rather than creating one. Perfect moments can be momentous or ordinary or somewhere in between.

On the 4th Monday of each month we engage in mindfulness about something that is right with our world. Everyone is welcome to join. The next Perfect Moment Monday event will be on March 26.

To participate in Perfect Moment Monday:

  1. Follow Write Mind Open Heart.
  2. Between the Sunday night before and the Sunday night after, write up your own Perfect Moment.
  3. Use LinkyTools below to enter your name (or your site/blog name) and the URL of your Perfect Moment.
  4. Visit the Perfect Moments of others and let the writers know you were there with some comment currency.

Once you make a Perfect Moment post , you may place this button on your blog.Perfect Moment MondayWhat Perfect Moment have you recently been aware of? Visit these moments of others and share your comment love.