Music Monday

Kathy Mar

Kathy Mar (image from Last.fm)

Kathy Mar has been making folk and filk music longer than a lot of people have been around.  She was a professional folksinger and street performer in Denver before she discovered filk, the music of science fiction & fantasy fandom.  She’s gone on to record several filk albums and won awards in filk music.

And yes, she is a woman of size.

One of her songs from 1988 is still as timely as it was then.

We are surrounded by technology a flood that’s rising still
And we are praying we’ll survive it or we’re sure we never will
And all our speed and skill and reach will soon be taking us to space
It’s a great day in the morning for our funny human race
But we’re frightened of our future and we’re scared to move along
So we scream that our technology is dangerous and wrong
Back-to-nature cannot save us but the stars could be our crown
If we can drink up this river before we drown

Last.fm has a great version of “Drink Up The River” and other songs of Kathy’s.

A more recent image of Kathy (via Wikipedia).

A more recent image of Kathy (via Wikipedia).

Try Some New Music

Several indie artists put together a sampler of music — over 70 tracks — to try.

Some of it is music I’ve loved for years.

“Firebird’s Child”

“Light Heart”

“Salad of Doom”

“Tam Lin”

“The Cthulhu Colada Song”

“The Holly & The Ivy”

“Two Guys Kissin’ Ruined My Life”

“WinterTide”

“Witches’ Rune”

Others are new to me, or new interpretations.

“Close Your Eyes”

“Do Virgins Taste Better Medley”

“How Was The Show Last Night”

“Jedi Drinking Song”

“Mingulay Boat Song”

“XLibris”

There are links to all the performers’ websites as well.

Love Song for Internet Trolls

From The Doubleclicks:

It is snarky and silly and fun.

I love you, even though you’re a commenter from hell
the predictable way you don’t know how to spell
and you’re hateful
disgusting, ungrateful
like you don’t understand, other people have feelings

I feel like you don’t even know
if you don’t enjoy a youtube video
you can stop it. you don’t have to watch it.
your ignorance is just amazing.

it seems like you’ve never heard
that if media doesn’t speak your words
you can make something new, express your view
it’s a delight how you’re so darn LAZY

the internet makes you feel so empowered
you almost forget you’re a stupid coward

Full lyrics & download at thedoubleclicks.bandcamp.com.

Music Monday: I Made My Bed & I Sleep Like A Baby

This song’s been around for quite a while now, but given the ongoing death threats going around the net it seems a bit timely.

And how in the world
Can the words that I said
Send somebody so over the edge
That they’d write me a letter
Saying that I better shut up and sing
Or my life will be over.

Yes, that verse was written in response to a death threat.

(I also just love the line “I made my bed & I sleep like a baby.”)

“Not Ready To Make Nice” was written by Natalie MainesMartie MaguireEmily Robison and Dan Wilson.

Labor Day

I created this blog 5 years ago.  Thanks for reading :)

Today is also Labor Day in the US.  I work in a field that is very un-unionized and I know unions aren’t perfect, but I was raised by union members and I support organized labor.  Growing up I didn’t see much like my family in the media — fathers who take steel-toed boots and overalls to work, to wear at work?  Who don’t own a suit?  Then I discovered this song.

Through the mansions of fear, through the mansions of pain
I see my daddy walking through them factory gates in the rain
Factory takes his hearing, factory gives him life
The working, the working, just the working life

— “Factory” by Bruce Springsteen; lyrics are here.

Nothing to Prove

The Doubleclicks made this video for their song “Nothing to Prove” using video clips submitted by friends and fans.  (Some of those clips are also being posted at http://geekgirlvideo.tumblr.com, with more being uploaded.)

“Nothing to Prove” song lyrics are on their Bandcamp site, and The Doubleclicks talk about making the video on their main site.

The song “Nothing to Prove” is on their new album “Lasers and Feelings,” which you can also listen to (and read lyrics and buy) on their Bandcamp site.

(The song is also on YouTube. You may want to skip the comments on YouTube.  Just sayin’.)

Update: The writer in the video holding a “I have to use a gender-neutral pen name just to be respected” is J.M. Frey, author of Triptych.  A followup is on Tumblr.

Some Good Things

Photos have surfaced on Flikr of Integrity Puget Sound & various Episcopal parishes in the Seattle Pride Parade.

Things that happen in Seattle: Officers assisted a man who took an early morning office chair ride.  (No one was hurt.)

A new Donna Andrews book, The Hen of the Baskervilles, has arrived.

A new Stop Paying Attention comic!

The Doubleclicks’ new album is out and includes their song “Rock Star Life”

How’s with you?

Music Monday: A Talk With George

“A Talk With George” is a song by Jonathan Coulton about the journalist George Plimpton.  Plimpton was known for writing about what it’s like for a “layman” to take on a pro boxer or go out for the NFL.  He also co-founded The Paris Review.  The song starts out with “what if George Plimpton wanted to give you some advice about life?” (Although of course some of it is probably “Jonathan Coulton giving advice about life.”)  An example:

So enjoy yourself, do the things that matter
Cause there isn’t time and space to do it all
Love the things you try, drink a cocktail, wear a tie
Show a little grace if you should fall

Now, parts of it are preposterous.  Even if Hemingway were still alive, the chances of just hanging out a lot with Hemingway would be pretty slim for most of us.  That’s how I think of the first part of the song — it sets the stage.  And then comes this verse:

Be ringside at the Rumble in the Jungle
Make friends with Hunter S. and Jackie O.
And when they shoot poor Bobby down, you wrestle Sirhan to the ground
Love your friends and miss them when they go

That’s the 5th verse of this 9-verse song, and it earns its place in the middle for the line “Love your friends and miss them when they go”.  What else is there, really?

The free download is on Coulton’s website.

Music Monday

This week some mentioned the anniversary of Jim Henson’s death, which reminded me of the song “Storyteller.”  In concert it’s been stated it was written in response to Jim Henson’s passing.

Song credits: Performed by Alexander James Adams; lyrics & music by Heather Alexander.

Music Monday

From NASA’s Commander Chris Hadfield comes a revised version of the song “Space Oddity”.

From the credits:

Guitar and vocals: Chris Hadfield, recorded on board International Space Station

Video produced by Evan Hadfield, edited by Andrew Tidby

Music (recorded on Earth) produced and mixed by Joe Corcoran, piano arrangement by Emm Gryner

With special thanks to David Bowie, NASA, ROSCOSMOS and the CSA.

When home’s not home

We cannot bring you back when home’s not home
We can’t make you pay debts you will not own
We cannot reason with the unforeseen
We can’t compromise when there’s no in-between

— Marian Call, in her song “In The Black”. She’s released both studio and live versions.

This reminds me of my parents; making my own life meant that my home wasn’t theirs anymore, that I didn’t own the obligations they thought I had, and there wasn’t always a good in-between. (And, of course, with Mother’s Day in May and Father’s Day in June, I’m getting reminded of my parents a lot.)

Full lyrics are at this page.