Archive for the ‘the beatles’ Category

Love Actually IS All Around Us

December 7, 2013

loveactuallycover

*
It’s that time again. The time of year when we dust off the old classic Christmas films and view them again as if for the first time. There is a reason for the season of classic Christmas movie watching, it makes us feel festive, it harkens (Harkens! Like in “Hark, the herald tribune rings, advertising wonderous things!) to an earlier time of Christmas joy and good cheer; peace on Earth, goodwill to bargain shoppers. They remind us of a time when Christmas made a special memory in our lives… or not. But still, Christmas movies are not about reality, they are about a FEELING. And what better feeling is there than love? Love your neighbor, love your family, love your church, love your political party (wait! separation of church and state nullifies that last one, sorry). So imagine my surprise when I got this message:

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2013/12/-em-love-actually-em-is-the-least-romantic-film-of-all-time/282091/#disqus_thread

Now, you know, we are not talking rocket surgery here. Movies, especially Christmas movies, suspend belief in anything tangible and real as we know it. Christmas movies are meant to make us FEEL GOOD, not make us feel depressed. If we want to be depressed, we’ll watch the news or glance inside our checkbooks. Reality does not need to be part of our Christmas movie watching because, well, let’s face it, Christmas is not about reality. Christmas is about the hope of something better though not yet realized. It is no different than the hope of some political figure making the world a better place with no actual ways or means to go about it. But still we hope and continue to do so each time we vote. Hope sells us on an idea and as long as we never run out of hope, people like Rob Ford will lead us. But let’s get back to the non-reality of the movie, Love Actually.

Love Actually is not a movie that promises to do anything but make us believe that love actually is all around us. How we find it varies from person to person and each situation is different, but it is love and only love that holds the human race together. Christmas reminds us of that, even though it has been diluted to mean nothing more than finding bargains on Black Friday after giving thanks for what we have the day before. That doesn’t diminish the impact that the Christmas message has if a person cares to take a look. Love Actually takes several different accounts and ties them all together under one theme and that is, No matter who you are or where you end up, love makes the difference and circumstances being what they are it is best not to fight it, analyze it or try to explain it. When you have love, give love or are IN love, the world is a better place. No one will argue with the fact that we need more love in the world.

So I defend the movie, Love Actually AS a romantic, Christmas comedy. The movie I saw said that in spite of all the sadness in the world, the mishaps, disappointments and unpredictability of life… Love Actually is all around us. Granted there are things in this movie that are not put in there to cheer for, in the end the lesson is All You Need is Love. It isn’t a reality flick, though the situations can be very real. It is a message for all of us, admonishing us to have faith, hope and to endure. Love Actually is a Frank Capra film for the new millennium… It’s a Wonderful Life retold and reaffirmed.

Enjoy it!

Advertisements

Hey! It’s 2011! Scroll Back, Ya Varmints!

January 2, 2011

2011.  A new me and a new you.  WordPress was kind enough to summarize the previous years posting for AMRFP… check it out!

~

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 6,200 times in 2010. That’s about 15 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 51 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 408 posts. There were 162 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 4mb. That’s about 3 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was October 12th with 56 views. The most popular post that day was John Lennon Sat Here….

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were en.wordpress.com, facebook.com, google.com, stumbleupon.com, and WordPress Dashboard.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for socially unacceptable behavior, 27 club conspiracy, 49 bye byes, how to succeed in amway, and advantages of respect.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

John Lennon Sat Here… September 2010
3 comments

2

rude, crude, lewd and socially unacceptable behavior October 2007
8 comments

3

The illegal immigration solution, conclusion… a.k.a Illegal Immigrant for President! (he’ll do the work George Bush won’t) June 2007
9 comments

4

songs to play at your funeral April 2008
16 comments

5

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Lying April 2008
10 comments

~

I’d like to thank WordPress for hosting such a cool site which in turn enables a writer’s whimsy to see daylight on the Internet and finds audiences such as you whom I otherwise might not have met!  (Hey! a little rhyme there!)

So from the bottom of my heart to the top of the apple cart…(I can’t help it)  thanks for reading!  I look forward to adding future posts in 2011 here at Advantages of Mutual Respect and Fair Play. 

There really are… you know.

Peace.

What I Have Written, I Have Written

October 9, 2010

I can say to my BB a dozen times, “I love you” but it seems to have more meaning to her when I write it down just once.  Whether on a card, a note, or a letter, the sentiments I vocalize many times a day pale in significance to the scrawl of my hand.  Those very words, I love you… etched in that moment of time are held like an official document or a piece of evidence that makes the hearing of it circumstantial but the tangible proof more credible somehow.  The written word is more eloquent and she never tires of reading it.

Which brings me here, to the writings of my blog and the past four years of sporadic entry.  Many things have changed since May 2006 and the whimsy that placed me at the keyboard in the first place.  I re-married.  I re-located.  I re-considered my politics.  Through all of those months and thousands of words stretched into 400 entries here at AMRFP, I learned something about myself.  She reminds me of it every day… 

But there is more to it than that.  Do the entries I have posted stand the test of time?  Did I think or say something here that proved false?  Were my convictions misplaced?  Are there inaccuracies here that have somehow misled?

Hmmm… think back. http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/05/27/in-the-begining/

I  still love that song…

and I still believe that original, first post of May 2006 and with each entry I tried to remain true to that theme of Advantages of Mutual Respect and Fair Play because I truly believe that is what the world needs and if you live it, it will come back to you. 

Or perhaps, out live you…

http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/06/22/9/

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/10/09/earlyshow/saturday/main6942465.shtml

I know that some bloggers use this tool as a bully pulpit and I tried not to do that, but sometimes it was just unavoidable…

http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/07/22/blinded-by-foresight/

Oh, I’ll admit that I have had my share of theories, but I don’t think they were all that far-fetched, considering the subject matter.http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/08/26/the-rock-and-roll-conspiracy/  And you must agree with me to a certain point, because this topic remains one that still receives a multitude of hits.

Wow.  Wild Thing I think you move me…

Anyway, for what purpose was AMRFP started and why should it continue?  I mean, hasn’t it all been said? many times over? by someone more capable and profound than myself? http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/09/28/life-begins-at-wd40/

and it is lovely to see you each and every time.  Walk along with me to the next bend.  But when and where does the next bend lay (or lie?)  And what was AMRFP originally?  A celebration of truth, justice, freedom of speech, mom’s apple pie, Jesse Winchester and the lifestyle of a free radical thinker (don’t tell your mother, she knows)

So maybe that is what this blog needs, to get back on track.  Perhaps its original destination has detoured a bit, http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/10/13/irrefutably-44th-avenue-south/ but it’s intentions were good.

 https://lifemadedelicious.ca/en/Recipes/P/Perfect_Apple_Pie.aspx?&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=Apple%20Pie%20Recipe&utm_content=164731333&utm_campaign=.Pies

Honest.  Sometimes I just needed something to lift me from the doldrums and a random piece just tumbled out, http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/11/14/53-studebaker-goin-for-broke/  which in turn led to some interest by you, the reader.  It was all quite fun and not to be taken too seriously.  But then, what happened?

http://advantagesofmutualrespectandfairplay.com/2006/12/05/sacred-words-sung-to-beatles-music/

I guess I got a little cynical… is that a bad thing?

I remind myself of the Bible’s description of the betrayal of Jesus found in the book of John.  You remember, how Jesus was left by his disciples and condemned by the religious leaders of the day?  They were supposed to be on the watch for the Son of Man but gave in to their own interpretations of what he should be.  And when Jesus clearly did not recognize the religious leader’s hierarchy, they gave him over to the authorities to be put to death as a fraud.  While Pilate could find nothing wrong with the man, as a king Jesus was a threat to Caesar and Pilate had to act.  He washed his hands of the matter and sent Jesus off to be impaled, placing a sign over his stake in Hebrew, Latin and Greek that read: Jesus the Nazarene – The King of the Jews.   Of course, the priests and rabbis took immediate offense at this and declared, ” Do not write ‘the King of the Jews’ but that he said, ‘I am the King of the Jews.’ ”  After which Pilate famously declared, “What I have written, I have written.”  John 19:22

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39397251/ns/us_news-life?gt1=43001

I have tried to stay neutral on some subjects, but it has been difficult.  Sometimes you just gotta let it ride…

So, starting with post 401 and from this day forward I will try to remain true to what I originally set out to do with this blog.  There have been many fringe benefits along the way.  There have been some repercussions, too.  I will make every effort to place as a priority mutual respect and fair play.

After all, isn’t that what we all want?

Peace.

the deliberate incident

March 27, 2010

It was like I had sold my soul to the Devil…

“The devil went down to the beauty salon, he was lookin’ for a soul to steal.   He was in a bind cos’ he’s way behind, he was willin’ to cut a deal… ” (sung to the tune: The Devil Went Down to Georgia by Charlie Daniels)

I’d turned my back on a whole generation…

“Went out ‘n’ cut my hair, happened earlier today… it was gettin’ kinda long, could have said it wasn’t my way.  So I did it, now I wonder why.  I feel like bein’ this meak ‘n’ fag lookin’  guy…” (sung to the tune: Almost Cut My Hair by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young)

and become this responsible adult…

“Get a haircut, you’ve got a real job.  Clean your act up, you look like a slob.  Get it together you’re older than God.  Get haircut, you’ve got a real job.”  ( sung to the tune: Get A Haircut by George Thorogood)

while losing my identity…

“Gimme a head without hair.  Short, buzz-cut hair!  Butchin’, clean ‘n’ crew-cut ‘n’ waxen.  See me without hair, where?  Over my ears with white walls, glare!  Gone, baby!  Smooth, mama!  See your reflection, daddy! Where?  Comb it, foam it!  Long as I’m chrome dome ‘n’ my hair!”  ( sung to the tune: Hair! from the American Tribal Love-Rock Musical)

Okay, okay.  You get the idea?  I got a hair-cut today.  And as I sat there looking at my reflection with the protrusion of my cranium becoming more apparent; these parodies of songs began taunting me, like I was giving in, selling out and becoming (ugh!) respectable.  I tried to recall how many times I have sat in a barber/stylist’s chair and second guessed my decision to lose my Samson like appearance and become a weak-kneed mortal…

“Snip, snip, snip, Delilah!  Clip, clip, clip, Delilah!  So before my curly blond locks hit the floor.  Forgive me Delilah, could you just remove a bit more?”  (sung to the tune: Delilah by Tom Jones)

Did you ever notice that when you have made the decision to let a part of your life be shaved off and you climb up into that chair suddenly everything looks in place and you begin second guessing yourself as to whether you really need a haircut?  I mean, I remember my very first hair-cut.  At least, I think it was my first.  I wondered where the ribbon of the barber’s pole went as it spiraled around.  I recall the kindly barber had to place a slat across the arms of his chair so I could sit up “big and tall” while he pumped the car jack to raise the seat as high as it would go.  Still I remember feeling really small as I looked into the mirror across the room with a parson’s collar tight  around my neck and a reversed Superman cape blanketing my knees down around my shoes.  I watched the terrified little guy that looked like me bawling his eyes out while his identity fell in fragmented clumps and mingled with the discards of countless other heads, all braver than me.   

“Make me feel at home, upon that barber’s chair.  Slap my back and run your burly fingers through my hair.  You know I’ll sure behave, if you ask me to.  But if I must be brave  I’ll walk right out on you.  Be gentle as a dove and take my advice.  Treat me nice.”  (sung to the tune: Treat Me Nice by Elvis Presley)

I also remember one time (back in the days of my flaming youth) I was walking past a barber shop as the gentle breeze filtered through my radiant adornment while the sun was shining warm and bright.  The proprietor beckoned to me with a kindly gesture, patting the seat of his chair like a used car salesman opening the door to a classy convertible.  I grinned broadly and respectfully declined, seeing my image reflected in the glass as I passed.  Freedom is allowing yourself to sprout… 

“Morning has broken, like the first morning.  My hair is growing, freely it’s spread.  Praise for the growing, praise for the morning.  Praise for it springing, fresh from my head.”  (sung to the tune: Morning Has Broken by Cat Stevens)

I’ve always preferred myself in longer hair ever since I saw the Beatles perform on The Ed Sullivan Show.  Like millions of other youngsters I stood in front of the mirror and pulled my hair down my forehead and said, “Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!”  Longer hair meant being cool.  Longer hair meant freedom of expression.  Longer hair meant rebellion,  individualism and non-conformity.  Longer hair meant you no longer cared what other people thought and marched to the beat of your own drum.

“Whoa, whoa I should have realized alot of things before, if this hair ya gotta give me more.  Give me more. Hey, hey, hey!  Give me more!”  (sung to the tune, I Should Have Known Better by the Beatles)

So today I sat in the chair and a pretty girl named Dawn E. asked me how I wanted my hair to look.

“Like George Clooney.” I respond.  Not like George Harrison from the album, All Things Must Pass…?

“My sweet Lord, ooh my Lord.  I really want to know you, I really want to grow with you.  I really want to show you, Lord, that it won’t take long to grow my hair long.  Hallelujah.” (sung to the tune: My Sweet Lord by George Harrison)

“Really?”  she asks, “That short?”  I was relieved she didn’t laugh at the impossibility of making me look like George Clooney.

“How does it feel? Hey, how does it feel?  To be on your own? With no direction home.  A complete unknown.  Like a roamin’ comb?”  (sung to the tune: Like a Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan)

“Yes.” I say with resignation as I look into the mirror, the drums are silent now…

“…and freedom, oh freedom.  Well that’s just some people talkin’.  Your hair-cut is stalkin’ you through this beauty shop throne.”  (sung to the tune: Desperado by the Eagles) 

 “We all have to grow up sometime.”  

.

.

peace-love.

It Was 40 Years Ago Today

August 8, 2009

600px-Beatles_-_Abbey_Road

.

http://music.msn.com/music/article.aspx?news=425216&GT1=28102

Abbey Road.  The Beatles last album together after Let It Be. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Let_It_Be

Paul is dead, remember?  The Fab Four representing a priest, (John dressed in white)  a pallbearer, (Ringo in a suit) the deceased, (Paul, out of step and barefooted) and the grave digger (George in work clothes) walking across the street with a volkswagon in the background bearing the license plate: 28IF?

Today is the 40th anniversary of that famous album cover.  I guess we can only guess at what might have been had the Beatles survived being themselves.

Don’t get me wrong, I admire them collectively as well as having gone on solo, but I think that they still had some oompf! left in them and might have made some great contributions to the world if they would have continued as a  band.

Remember, the war in Vietnam was still going strong.  We had just landed a man on the moon.  Disco hadn’t been invented yet, nor had rap.  There was no Internet or cell phones, no text messages.  No satellite imagery or GPS. People still thought that Love was the answer. 

Maybe we were too naive back in them days, you know… looking to our rock stars for the answers with lines like, “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”

But that walk across the street on a hot August afternoon in England signalled an end to an era.  Up until then, we really thought that change was within our grasp because the lads from Liverpool said it could be so.  As they walked away, so did our hopes.

peace.

Where Have All the Flowery Posts Gone?

May 23, 2009

.

Okay, dang… just when I get to thinking I am a serious blog hack, someone comes along and declares I need reform.  Perhaps it is time for an overhaul, after all… this month marks three years of AMRFP!

In the past three years we have talked about politics, love, religion, music, books, and movies.  There has been social injustice, chaos  and anarchy.   We seem to teeter on the brink of disaster yet all in good humor and forced optimism because… what else is there?  We obviously cannot pack up our things and relocate to another planet because no one would have us.  We know we are the root problem and reason for disunity in the world but we cannot seem to eradicate this self-destructive urge.  We are constantly bombarded with information, yet how can we decipher it, knowing which is accurate and which is merely bunk?  Here’s another controversy…

arctic-non-warming-since-1958

My life has turned dramatically since I first fostered this blog on a whim three years ago.  I set out to discover if there was any use in my attempting to write, wondering if I  “had the goods”.  I found my audience to be somewhat sporadic and the subjects I held near and dear to my heart less popular than the ones I thought to be frivolous, so therein lies the paradox.  What I enjoy writing may not be what I am good at, what I am good at may be drudgery.

My most popular post to date has been;  Songs to Play at Your Funeral from April, 2008, which I wrote based on what had actually transpired between my business partner and I one day during a light conversation on death.  It has garnished twice the hits of the runner up;  The Illegal Immigration Solution Conclusion, from June, 2007.  While the latter post has had twice the exposure it has fostered less activity.  I have posted poetry, short stories, a screenplay and the rough draft of my story, Shades of Hemingway. I have progressed (slowly) in my ability to add pictures and video (thanks YouTube) to my posts while trying not to use them in place of good (?) writing.  And after three years, 340 posts, 333 tags, 96 categories, 1004 comments, 37,045 hits and 28,496 spam I am virtually right back where I started from, questioning my validity as a writer.

There has been one bright spot.  Actually, the greatest reward I can think of has come on to me while doing this experiment.  Like most things that we find to make life worthwhile it came unexpectedly, yet has been the difference between merely existing and living.  She sits at my side right now, not realizing I am writing about her.  My beautiful wife, Chantal.

I have proven myself by winning her attention,  admiration and love.  She has faith in my ability and confidence that one day, the world will see what she sees in me, though that confidence in myself wanes and falters.  Through our love of writing; whether via our blogs, to each other publicly or privately, or in our imaginations,  we have accomplished something that would not have materialized otherwise.  We have become each others hero and fan club.  We have become kindred spirits.  Chantal and I are glorious.  I have not failed as a writer, I have acquired a following of one, as she has found in me.

I am living in Canada now, which is quite the contrast from spending most of my life in Florida.  The economy has put a strain on my ability to make a living through my trade and I am still struggling to adapt to life as a foreigner.  But my beautiful girl has the utmost confidence in me so that is a hurdle I will easily overcome with patience.  I am learning to accept that I cannot always have things my way.  But I need to concentrate on making a living and right now it does not look like writing is the way of prosperity for me, at least not financially.

I started this blog in May of 2006 not sure of where it would go, how I would do or how long it would last.  But I feel it has served it’s purpose, at least for a while.  The archives will remain and comments will still be directed to me via e-mail, but I plan on taking a little hiatus.

This month, May 2009, is heading towards being my most active month ever, with seven days left it will easily accomplish this.   The second most active month was back in November of 2007.

I’d like to think that on that note, it is a good time to bow out gracefully.

Thanks for reading  Advantages of Mutual Respect and Fair Play…

there definitely are,  you know.

peace.

Rescued from the Depths of Obscurity, Part 1: the Beatles, 10 Songs from the Abyss

April 16, 2009

the_fabs

.

.
Part 1 of a series of articles dedicated to the resurrection of obscure tunes by the artists that made them famous for a time, times and half a time… if at all.
http://www.associatedcontent.comarticle/1656329/rescued_from_the_depths_of_obscurity.html

A new series of articles I plan to write for Associated Content and link here.  Hope you enjoy!

peace.

A Hard Day’s Night, Why Not Let It Be?

January 30, 2009

I love the information superhighway that we call the Internet.  It truly has inspired a myriad of responses from yours truly.  Of course, not everything we read is true and must be taken with a grain of salt, or can be out and out lies, for that matter… so the reader must use discernment.  But I am amazed and also amused at some of the things we see and hear.

One thing that mystifies is the constant craving for celebrity that our society seems to find insatiable.  Not the actual DOING of anything to justify such acclaim, just the desire to be famous for gracing God’s green Earth with their presence.  What a let down when we discover that we are mere mortals after all.

But sometimes with all this research and discovery something happens.  It is similar to looking back and seeing how quaint our beliefs were.  Remember when we were easily persuaded and gullible enough to be  believing in Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny?   Ignorance sometimes is bliss and the cold reality of knowledge a rude awakening.   We lose the charm of an event when we learn the mechanics of it.  Sort of like when learning the magician’s slight of hand isn’t really magic… then the thrill is gone.

It is the unknown that drive us, the mystery that entices us.  An explanation sometimes causes the belief to lose it’s luster.  This was well illustrated in one of my favorite movies,  Inherit the Wind.

I like both versions I have seen, but the remake with Jason Robards and Kirk Douglas has become my favorite.  The inspiration behind the film was the real life Scopes trial ( Scopes_Trial) that put the teaching of Darwinism to a court decision.  The State of Tennessee took the debate all the way to their Supreme Court.

But it is the movie version with Jason Robards as the defense lawyer that helps to make my point.  His character  talks of progress and enlightenment this way…

“Sometimes I think there is a man who sits behind a counter and says, ‘Alright, you can have a telephone… but you’ll lose privacy and the charm of distance.  Madame, you may vote… but at a price.  You lose the right to retreat behind powder puff or your petticoat.  Mister, you may conquer the air… but the birds will lose their wonder and the clouds will smell of gasoline.’ ”  With progress comes a loss of innocence.

When I read of the search for the lost chord that George Harrison played (apologies to the Moody Blues In_Search_of_the_Lost_Chord) that begins the song, A Hard Day’s Night and how it was done, I wondered a bit. The fact that the Beatles were geniuses (see: they-are-dumbing-down-our-rock-n-roll ) has been made even more apparent because nearly 45 years after the song was released we finally know how that chord was devised and struck.  Wow, that is a great revelation.  But I didn’t need a mathematician to tell me that.

SB123325321424929493

While filming the Beatles movie, Help! there was a bit of a controversy on whether they could use H-E-L-P or not since the word had been used in another movie title prior to theirs.  The legal department decided with the added exclamation point, it could be done without any lawsuit.  So the producers and director approached John Lennon and Paul McCartney with the news.  Okay boys, the name of the movie is Help! now write us a hit song.  They came back with the title track for the movie the next day.

Let’s put the powerful minds of the 21st century on that feat, shall we?

I am thrilled that the Beatles music is still relevant today, but that they had a unique sound was never in dispute.

This?

–                                                     –

or THIS?

–                                                     –

I marvel at modern technology and learning of the wonders and depths of the universe, but leave a little mystery and charm in the music, could you?

Suffice it to say it was a hard day’s night for some, but for the Beatles… it’s just another day in the life.

peace.

what?

January 16, 2009

music-fabfourfotos

very cool pictures of the Fab Four

music-rollingstonecovers

Interesting that the first cover was of John Lennon.

.

I read this article the other day and decided to include it here, as well as the two links above because they are all kinda connected.

I find it interesting that the Beatles continue to make the news, nearly 40 years since their break-up but I have a hard time blaming them for the slump in the music industry’s album sales. I am willing to bet that if the music is good the people will buy it.

I have written about this before. (see, They Are Dumbing Down Our Rock and Roll, posted on 5-10-08 -) but now there is a little twist. In the link below the author concludes that when the Beatles started producing hits then the public jumped at purchasing their albums and killed off 45 rpm records. Except for the fact that nearly every song recorded on those albums was worthy of an audience. I can only think of two songs that we really could have done without and might not have stood alone. Flying, released on Magical Mystery Tour and You Know My Name (Look Up My Number) which was on the flip (B) side of the 45 rpm single, Let It Be. Otherwise each song was a classic and garnishes airplay to this day.

I love the CD Live At The BBC and I would recommend it for any Beatles fan. Not only are there performances of their own songs recorded on the air “live” but they also cover other songs not heard of on any other albums, including Anthology.

I suspect the music industry is a lot like the publishing industry. I read recently that there are 60,000 books published every year. 60k! Of those published, it is hoped that some will become best sellers. Perhaps the music industry is trying for the same thing, producing an onslaught of artists in hopes that some will be hit makers. I suspect that the movie makers do the same thing but here is the glitch.

You read a book what? Once, maybe twice…? You see most movies what? maybe once or twice…? You listen to your music what? several thousand times? The public might forgive the book publishing industry for printing a rotten book. The public might even over look stupid movies. But music is something different. I don’t know how many times I have liked an artist’s “hit” only to rush out and buy their album (CD) and find that the only decent song was the “hit” that I have heard on the radio repeatedly to where I have it memorized.

Now that iTunes has enabled us the ability to download individual songs we can sample what we like and reject what we don’t. Very cool. I like the substance of buying a CD and having something tangible in my hands, but not at the risk of having mediocre music. I’ll download the tried and true every time.

And the fact that the music industry kept CD prices high over the past few years is another reason to not buy from them, no one likes to be gouged. It stands to reason that as the CD’s became more prevalent and more people were buying them the cost would go down. The major manufacturers kept the price up at a premium for way too long.

So here is a suggestion. Find some real talent. Don’t be fooled by thinking you are giving the public what they want because obviously you are not… otherwise you wouldn’t be in the doldrums right now lamenting sagging record sales. Too many lackluster artists are spoiling the stew.

The Beatles were truly a phenomenon, as have been others past and present. Cultivate more artists, stay away from that “star” formula that has permeated the conscious of young America, it is killing you softly.

I have loved rock for a long time and the old songs still do it for me, but I am also capable of learning new artists and enjoy their stuff, too. Music is like that, we can never get enough of it IF the music meets our standard criteria, what ever the individual’s tastes are. Don’t let artists get lazy. John, Paul, George and Ringo never rested on their laurels… and their music still sells at a premium, you never see it at the bargain racks.

The recording industry needs to embrace the new media and make it better. Like Bob says, “Your old ways are rapidly fadin’…”

Check out the link below and let me know what you think…

http://www.comcast.net/music/blindedbythehype/4509/blamethebeatles/blamethebeatles

peace.

It’s New Year’s Day 2009! (scroll back, ya varmints!)

December 31, 2008

Another year has passed and what have we learned? As AMRFP enjoys it’s 304th post we begin to realize this blog will not take no for an answer! (what was the question?) Some people just have more audacity than others and will not go away!

2008 will be happily placed in our rear view mirror as we look with infertile optimism to a new Democratic majority across the board in American politics. Has there been another year in recent memory that has been as foul as this one? Most people would be hard pressed to find one that was, causing them to look back with disdain and relief at 2008 passing.

But in reflection, there have been some fine posts for one and all to enjoy on this site (humbly submitted by yours truly) and I’d be remiss not to mention the fact that my life changed dramatically (and for the better) this past year because of this little blog. For that reason alone it shall continue… not to mention the sheer joy I get at ranting on like I do and of course, the pleasure I derive from the remote possibility of your company.

Despite the difficult time I had at being regular the past three months because of my move to Canada and the fact that I posted a short story, a screenplay and the continuation of the Shades of Hemingway series,… my readership actually increased. AMRFP approaches the 32,ooo hits mark which made it the best year to date as far as averages go. Akismet has blocked over 25,000 spam comments (mostly porn but some insurance quotes are trying to muscle in as well) While some friends have faded into the depths of the black hole of the blogosphere, new friends have risen up which makes this site a pure joy each time I acquaint myself with a different prospective on life.

I met my lovely wife through the postings of our blogs, and while some may view the online relationship with trepidation I must say it has been the most exhilarating experience I have ever known. We were married in March of this past year and I was finally able to relocate here in Canada in October. But future posts will address our relationship as it progresses, suffice it to say I am thrilled by her love each and every day. That in itself should provide some interesting fodder…

So without further ado and for your discerning review, from the latest entry to the first of the year… Advantages of Mutual Respect and Fair Play 2008.

Scroll back… ya varmints!

.

1) 12-23-08 – A Sand Road Christmas Card. Remembering the holidays of my youth back in Iowa. In the good ol’ days, when times were bad.

2) 12-20-08 – It’s Been a Long, Long, Long Time. Having just come off three months of creating and posting the third installment of the Shades of Hemingway series along with moving and adjusting to the climate of the North and making my excuses for being preoccupied with life in general and love in particular.

3) 12-16-08 thru 9-17-08 – Shades of Hemingway / Deja’ Voodoo. Parts 1 – 12 and Epilogue. My readership plummeted through the time I took to post this, which I knew it would. But I feel it also was because it generally takes about six weeks for the series to run through it’s entirety. When my circumstances dictated otherwise it took me 12 weeks and I feel I alienated myself from some of the faithful readers (both of them!) of AMRFP. But my own true love assured me from the beginning that it was MY blog and I should be able to go in the direction of my choosing, so I am glad I saw it through to the end. Now is the time to recapture our imaginations and I will do that to the best of my ability in the coming weeks… I promise.

4) 9-14-08 – Prelude to Shades of Hemingway / Deja’ Voodoo. You can’t say I didn’t warn ya. One day I’ll finish this story… and yes, post it here! Some people just will never learn… sigh.

5) 9-13-08 – Video. Elvis Presley Hound Dog, the complete performance. One of three videos I inserted for the post, Politics and the Billboard Top 100 Hits of All Time… pathetic.

6) 9-13-08 – Video. Elvis Jailhouse Rock. The second of three videos for the same post.

7) 9-13-08 – Video. Elvis Twist with Elvis. The third of three videos for the same post.

8) 9-13-08 – Politics and the Billboard Top 100 Hits of All Time… pathetic. You know the cool thing about these best of lists is that it gets our dander up. But picking The Twist because of the insertion some formula instead of just counting airtime play and sales smacks of favoritism. Too bad.

9) 9-11-08 – Born Laughing Out Loud. A little review I did of Steve Martin’s book, Born Standing Up, which I throughly enjoyed.

10) 8-29-08 – McCain/Palin? Bravo! (oh! bomb awed). I’m not much on politics, obviously. My beautiful girl and I go round and round about American politics (good naturedly) and it is an eye opener to think that we may be our own worst enemy. But I thought the picking of Palin was a good thing for McCain’s candidacy. While Obama landslided McCain in the electoral college, he only received 52% of the total vote per population input. Popular opinion not withstanding, I was sure nothing short of a miracle would put another Republican in the White House… and I was right.

11) 8-29-08 – return of the dreaded sequel, part 1. I had thought Deja’ Voodoo would have been up and presented way before this time, but you know… life gets in the way.

12) 8-19-08 – Spending the day with Tropical Storm Fay. Gosh I had fun with this one. I have lived in S.W. Florida for the better part of 36 years and you never get used to the weather in paradise.

13) 8-17-08 – you must remember this. Memorable movie kisses, what are yours?

14) 8-16-08 – Video. 1984. A funny thing happened on youTube… I meant this vid for another post and it somehow got crossed up in cyberspace then appeared sometime later on my blog. I don’t remember the subject or even if I posted it, but I liked the premise of 1984 knocking on your door (from Spirit) so I left it in… hm.

15) 8-16-08 – Video. Shawn Colvin – Catch the Wind. I chose this as one of two vids for the post, Catch the Wind, but it got lost in cyberspace at the same time I was foolin’ around with 1984. And since I am not all that great at shifting things around on my blog (lazy brained) I just left it in at the time it appeared. Yes, sometimes this blog takes on a life of it’s own.

16) 8-11-08 – Not your favorite cover. Another one of those “best of” lists and my opinion which you all hold your breath for.

17) 8-7-08 – don’t know much about the Hadron Collider. A little parody that just conjured itself up when I read of this multi- billion dollar effort to smash things together. Scientists on a controlled hissy fit.

18) 8-4-08 – oh the humanity! and the cost of celebrity… Paris Hilton’s mom decrying the media for it’s portrayal of her talented daughter.

19) 8-02-08 – Choosing a running mate. McCain can win if… Hey! he may or may not have listened to me on this one but you gotta admit McCain’s choice made the race interesting.

20) 7-29-08 – Hey… told you so! Senator Ted Stevens and his exploits have been discussed several times on this blog, glad justice was served on the jerk.

21) 7-26-08 – Catch the Wind. The things we can and cannot control cause me to wax on, wax off in contempt and sentiment… my favorite forms of expression.

22) 7-23-08 – Video. Donovan-Catch the Wind. The original that was meant to be accompanied by Shawn Colvin’s rendition, but perhaps better as a stand alone vid.

23) 7-12-08 – Let My Gonads Go! a.k.a. nuts to you, Jesse Jackson. Gosh, I loved doing this little parody considering the riff comes from a freedom song sung by the oppressed slaves during the Civil War. Jesse Jackson and his infamous utterance deserved to be ridiculed loud and long.

24) 7-7-08 – Where the light is, John Mayer. Occasionally cool things happen and I was thrilled to see this DVD/CD released. I bought it the very first day.

25) 7-5-08 – Quick Draw (Tim) McGraw and his rootin’, tootin’ wild west outlaw show. Got some negativity on this post but you know…

26) 6-29-08 – throw mama (and junior) from the plane! If any post could divide my sweetheart and I… this one could. I’ve looked at flight from both sides now.

27) 6-28-08 – the hippie dippy weatherman no longer sweats the ICBMs. The death of George Carlin caused a wee bit of reflection in my heart.

28) 6-28-08 – Video. Religion is bullshit. The late George Carlin expressing his opinion in true comedic form.

29) 6-28-08 – Video. the hippy dippy weatherman. George Carlin in less sarcastic form.

30) 6-17-08 – inner-mission. Left you to your own devices for a few days, did you break anything?

31) 6-15-08 – Happy Father’s Birthday. A slip of the tongue by my French speaking step-son tugs at my heart.

32) 6-15-08 – Video. Eric Clapton – My Father’s Eyes. Selected to go along with, Happy Father’s Birthday, I feel this is a song Eric did that could have gotten a little more acclaim but seems to be coming around again… which is cool, you can’t keep a good song down.

33) 6-12-08 – that’s right, you’re what’s left (screwed, blued and anti-socially tattooed). Gee, folks… just learn to live with it. Our government is not accountable.

34) 6-12-08 – Video. water as energy. We have the technology, we need the direction.

35) 6-8-08 – It was/is a Wonderful Life. The death of young “George Baily,” Bob Anderson, inspired this post. It was one of my favorites from the 2008 year simply because I got to review one of my favorite characters in one of my favorite movies of all time. “… you really had a wonderful life. Don’t you see what a shame it would be to throw it all away?”

36) 6-6-08 – Public Displays of Effection. What effect does PDA have on you? This post was inspired by a case of supposed discrimination… you be the judge.

37) 6-4-08 – Obama Surrender (Hillary concedes). I love these little parodies that just pop into mind. Funny how the resilient Ms. Clinton still has a place in her opponent’s heart.

38) 6-3-08 – Video. Jemima Surrender. Try as I might I couldn’t find a vid by the Band performing this song, but this rendition is still good.. in case you couldn’t catch the riff in Obama Surrender.

39) 5-31-08 – what goes around Karmas around? I’m not that sure of Karma. I mean… if it were true, why do the wicked seem to prosper while the good suffer? Sharon Stone is a dunce.

40) 5-28-08 – double checking reality bounce. One cannot be too careful, or so I thought…

41) 5-21-08 – Blogging for Dummies (what was Scarlett Johansson thinking?) Sometimes you just gotta wonder…

42) 5-21-08 – Video. Falling Down by Scarlett Johansson. You decide…

43) 5-16-08 – “Jawbone” George Bush and the Saudi Oil Shriek a.k.a. the Blame Game. Hey George, just tell them to open up the spigot a little…

44) 5-16-08 – Video. Shirley Ellis – the Name Game. Bush, Bush, bo-shush, sittin’ on his tush.

45) 5-16-08 – creative foreplay. I find that looking for inspiration comes with no effort at all… really.

46) 5-10-08 – they are dumbing down our Rock and Roll! Who is the greatest recording artist of all time? The answer may surprise you.

47) 5-10-08 – Video. Mariah Carey – touch my body. For your comparison.

48) 5-10-08 – Video. Eric Clapton – Layla (live). For your enjoyment.

49) 5-7-08 – God’s Yard Sale. The world is in chaos… does God really care about us?

50) 5-5-08 – Waiting for Zed. An expose’ on why the term “zed” was removed from the American lexicon. A real eye opener… or perhaps not.

51) 4-30-08 – friends. There are many forms of friendship and those we choose as best.

52) 4-30-08 – Video. The Hollies – He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother. Chosen to accompany the post, friends.

53) 4-20-08 – How to Succeed in Business Without Really Lying. One of my favorite posts of 2008.

54) 4-17-08 – The Great American Boycott. I think we as consumers deserve better.

55) 4-12-08 – Why Obama? Sometimes these little parodies play so well in my mind…

56) 4-12-08 – Video. The Knack – My Sharona. For those of you who could not catch the riff in Why Obama?

57) 4-11-08 – Cheney’s Sunglasses – Not a Rosy Reflection. Your imagination runs wild.

58) 4-8-08 – Video. The Beatles – And I Love Her. Follows the post, Songs to Play At Your Funeral because I do.

59) 4-7-08 – Songs to Play At Your Funeral. This post has been on my blog for less than 9 months but it has become a runaway best topic since it’s inception and continues to pull away from the rest of the crowd at a rapid pace. I realize it is more the topic than the content, but even so it has become an easy #1 post for 2008 and the all time winner for top post so far at AMRFP. A distance second is, Let me call you sweetheart, posted on 1-6-07. Bringing up the rear at 7th is, the Rock and Roll Conspiracy, posted on 8-26-06. So it is quite the accomplishment in comparison. The fact that the conversation actually happened in the way I recorded it makes it all the more enjoyable for me because it is real life and that is the best sort of living.

60) 4-7-08 – Video. Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman – Time to Say Goodbye. For my fair Chantal.

61) 4-6-08 – Goodbye / Charlton Heston. 2008 saw many great stars passing, this was one of them.

62) 4-1-08 – Why are we here? The question of the ages, I found my reason.

63) 3-29-08 thru 2-20-08 – Indiana Jones and the Dance of Aldebaran. I had written this screenplay ages ago, but when the new film Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was about to be released I thought perhaps Indy might enjoy a sort of renaissance and an interest might be piqued in this tale. Too bad their story didn’t live up to the hype while mine didn’t live up to expectations… but oh well. It is preserved for prosperity.

64) 2-17-08 – Free Indy. The story behind my writing, Indiana Jones and the Dance of Aldebaran. I liked my story better than theirs, didn’t you? (please say yes)

65) 2-13-08 – Economic Stimulus Plan. You know, I still think my idea would work and I have not met any opposition to it.

66) 2-9-08 thru 1-20-08 – My Dog Sam. I don’t remember what caused me to write about that dog of mine, but I’m glad I did. I have thought about taking several of my recollections and compiling them into one story. Funny how things work in my mind, but I began the year with thoughts of Sand Road and my dog, Sam… then concluded the year with A Sand Road Christmas Card. They say you can never go home, but I think home never goes.

67) 1-18-08 – An Evaluation of the Bush Administration (2000-2008). Not too favorable to ol’ King George and my apologies for that. Will history be kind to him? With the worst rating of any sitting president… it is difficult to say.

68) 1-15-08 – …so you wanna be a Rock and Roll star? Rethinking some music and impressions of artists.

69) 1-15-08 – Video. The Byrds-So You Wanna Be A Rock And Roll Star. To accompany the post of the same name.

70) 1-7-08 – New Year… knew you. I met my own true love twice in a lifetime.

.

So there you have it. 70 different topics posted in 103 segments. While we may have had some bumps in the road of 2008, it has been a year that I have realized it is not the miles but the destination that makes the journey tolerable. It is not the smoothness of the pavement but the direction we are headed in that make the traveling light. It is not the degree of difficulty to proceed, it is the strength of our resolve to begin. It is not the complexity of the task but the undertaking with the commitment to see it through. Life indeed goes on…

And it is my sincere hope that whatever you may have had to endure, whatever your losses may have been, whatever your disappointments and fears… and we live in a world governed by and propagandized with fear, that you may face 2009 with optimism and hope. We may never understand the powers that be, but the power to be you and me holds the key to our happiness… it all comes from within.

Have a joyous and safe 2009… and thanks for reading.

peace.