Tag Archives: music

The Music Challenge #14: The Wedding Weekend

Still celebrating the approach of 10 crazy years of marriage with the man I love. There was so much good music that weekend. Again, I went the cheap but smart route having little sis play DJ. As I mentioned before, some of these may be totally cliché, but it doesn’t make them less awesome or less appropriate for someone’s big day.

Adding to The Music Challenge …

Before every wedding there’s always a rehearsal dinner. For ours, we invited anyone that was in town back to the lodge for a lovely brai. People were mingling on every floor. I was with the younger adult crowd laughing and sharing on the lower level with the pool table and bar. THIS moment was one of the BEST moments of the entire weekend. My great friend, and wedding stylist extraordinaire, serenaded us with an acapella version of this little ditty. It was AMAZING.  Well, probably because HE is amazing. He blew everyone away. And I felt like it was this sweet little gift only he could give me for my wedding weekend.

90. Tim Curry, Sweet Transvestite (1975)

My brother made the wedding party announcements as we arrived back to the lodge. He introduced each bridesmaid and groomsman; then it was our turn. One of the few requests I gave my DJ. Clifford and I were going to walk into this one as a married couple so help me. Because, you know, it’s Billy Bloody Idol.

91. Billy Idol, White Wedding (1982)

My little sister had compiled a fantastic mix of genres. My sisters, Chelle, my Stylist Extraordinaire and myself sang and danced all night long. We were on the top floor literally shaking the house at times, but there was no stopping us. We crooned, we belted, we bopped and we boogied until the wee hours of the morning. Here are just a few that made my wedding reception the most incredible party it could have possibly been.

92. Fred Astaire, Just The Way You Look Tonight (1959)

93. Sister Sledge, We Are Family (1979)

94. The Cure, It’s Friday I’m In Love (1992)

95. The Temptations, My Girl (1965)

96.  Journey, Don’t Stop Believin’ (1981)

97. The Chiffons, One Fine Day (1963)

98. Blue Swede, Hooked On A Feeling (1974)

99. The Reflections, (Just Like) Romeo and Juliet (1964)

100. Billy Joel, Uptown Girl (1983)

101. The Tokens, The Lion Sleeps Tonight (1961)

102. John Travolta and Olivia Newton John, You’re The One That I Want (1978)

103. Louis Armstrong, What A Wonderful World (1969)

104. Ben E. King, Stand By Me (1962)




The Music Challenge #7

When I was writing my pen pal post the other week, it reminded me a lot about my various travels over the years. There are certain cities or locations where music played quite a role in my experience, or at least in remembering my experience there.

Adding to The Music Challenge – songs from around the world. Or rather songs that remind me of being around the world. Continue reading


The Music Challenge #1

I am not exactly sure how I’m going to structure The Music Challenge. So forgive me if it changes a bit from post to post. The one thing I do know is that they will not be in any particular order. I’m not ranking them. How would one even begin to rank 365 songs?

Also, I have changed my Thursday-Thank-Yous page (no one seemed particularly thankful on Thursdays) to The Music Challenge to keep my ongoing list of one year’s worth of songs that transport me or remind me of something special.

Kicking things off – today I share with you my beloved Billy Joel. I’m sure he’ll show up a few more times (big fan). However, there was one song that always throws me back to my tween years.

I watched the video a thousand times. It was pretty iconic for a music video in the day. It was also one of those songs, as a naïve tweener, where you know this musician is totally hitting the nail on the head. He’s calling out the man and sharing a killer message everyone should be listening to. I was being told by Billy Joel himself (in 4 minutes and 49 seconds) 40 years of newsworthy history that had brought us to the world as we knew it then (1989). Mind. Blown.

Every time I hear the song now, I’m reminded of a conversation I had with one of my uncles over dinner in Savannah. We were at Churchill’s Pub eating fish and chips. I remember that part as clear as day.  I don’t know how we got on the topic. I was probably being some idealistic college student talking about changing the world because it’s so tragic now and that’s what you do in college – swim in idealism. He took in what I said, listening to me rant with a knowing look in his eye, and then proceeded to tell me how every generation thinks theirs is the one that’s messed up and destroying the world. They think every other generation had it so much better than theirs does. Maybe the 80s had things like The Cold War, but the 50s had things like the Korean Conflict. It wasn’t all poodle skirts and house fraus waiting on their husbands and children like some Leave It To Beaver episode. Yeah, my uncle is pretty smart. I loved that dinner with my uncle. I think it was the only one-on-one with him I’ve ever had.

Billy Joel is smart, too. This song is probably far from many a fan’s favorite of his, mine included, but it is memorable and it does remind me of an awesome moment shared with my uncle during a surprise dinner while he dropped knowledge bombs left and right. Backing up my uncle’s words, the song states, pretty boldly might I add, that the grass is not greener. Nor was it ever. A great song to kick off The Music Challenge.

  1. We Didn’t Start The Fire (1989)


I would love your thoughts on this song! Love it? Hate it? Does it remind you of something in particular? 


The Music Challenge

I’ve been delayed with my posts over the holidays. For that, I apologize. But hey!! It’s a new year!

This year I am pretty resolute about my resolutions – I made none. I have made resolutions of some kind every year since I can remember and as they don’t typically stick, I decided to try something different by simply ringing in 2015 as it was.

Clifford and I found ourselves playing a hand of two-player Euchre while watching the old ball drop. Again, I’m trying to think a little differently this time around. Perhaps not being as celebratory while 2014 came to a close will be far more fruitful than a silly list of declarations that get lost in the shuffle of day to day life a few weeks into the New Year. We shall see. That said, I still want to wish everyone out there all the best in 2015! May it be the ultimate year yet!

Moving into the New Year, I’ve spent the last few weeks bombarded with year-end retrospectives, Best-of-2014 lists, and other various nostalgic throw-backs to days gone by. Though inundated by music and media ad nauseam, I found myself inspired.

Now I was never that musically savvy. I myself can’t carry a tune. I never attended many concerts or bought that many cassettes or CDs. Movies were much more my thing. That said, I was a child born in the 70s (1979 does count as being born in the 70s), raised in the 80s, and living her teen angst-ridden years in the 90s… I’d forgotten how formative music was for me at one time and how some of the greatest music ever produced had emerged from those decades.

In fact, I’d gotten away from music almost altogether over the last ten years or so. Sure, it might have been on in the background while I was driving or on in the classroom when I was teaching, but I haven’t really been listening to the music. I tuned out when I was tuned in. It was white noise.

In the last several weeks, though, I’ve been listening again. I’ve been listening to the radio shows do their little flashbacks to whenever and almost every time a tune has played from my past, I’ve been completely transported. I know they say smell is the strongest memory trigger, but these songs of my youth have me remembering moments that have been long since forgotten. Okay, maybe not that long. I am only 35.

I’ve been remembering silly snippets and meaningful moments that I haven’t thought about in years. These flashbacks are fabulous. Even the sad songs have me smiling because enough years have now passed that time has healed whatever hurt way back when. Again, I’ve been inspired.

I have been inspired to find 365 songs that remind me of people I’ve met, moments I’ve shared, thoughts I’ve had through the years. I want to find 365 songs that trigger some sort of recollection, vivid or vague, over the last 30 odd years of my life.  This is not a resolution but rather an exploration – a challenge, really. We will see where it goes.

Music played a larger role in my life than I’d remembered or probably even cared to admit. Now it’s time to go back and appreciate all of those tiny (and not so tiny) no-take-backs set to the unexpected soundtrack of classic rock, pop and grunge music (with a little bit of The Beatles and 50s doo-wop sprinkled into the mix).

What songs take you back? Where do they take you? 

To kick things off – a 90s classic …




Never Underestimate The Power Of A Mixed-Tape

I remember my first mixed-tape.

Mixed-tape cartoon

Best. Gift. Ever. Completely customizable.

I had to record songs through a microphone held next to the television speakers to capture the latest hits on MTV (yes, they actually played music videos once upon a time). I had everything from Madonna to the Beastie Boys to NKOTB; I even had The Bat Dance. An epic tape and probably the best one I’ve made to this day. Continue reading