What music are you listening to?

I was in a Jussi Bjorling mood again last night: Handel's Ombra Mai Fu-Never Was A Shade

"Tender and beautiful fronds
of my beloved plane tree,
let Fate smile upon you.
May thunder, lightning, and storms
never disturb your dear peace,
nor may you by blowing winds be profaned.

Never was a shade
of any plant
dearer and more lovely,
or more sweet."

It's proof that you can create divine music even about a tree. :)

First, Bjorling's beautiful version, and then as sung by a counter tenor and thus perhaps closer to what it sounded like originally, as it was written for a castrato.


As sung by Philippe Jaroussky, a counter-tenor:
David Bowie-

Sorry to hear that, I liked few his songs.
"One"-Bono and Mary J Blige
I like them separately and I like them together.

Well, I'm not listening to him now, but I listened to him last night. He's more a late night, little light, kind of guy. Here's "I'm Your Man" by Leonard Cohen. I love him more now than when I was first introduced to his music. Maybe you need to have lived, and loved, and lost a bit before you can really appreciate him. One of the three great poets of "modern" American/Canadian music, in my opinion, along with Bob Dylan and Paul Simon. He's still going strong at 80 as you can see. I think he'd still be touring even if he hadn't been swindled out of most of his money. He always had "IT", and he's still got "IT". What a man.


I'm in a beautiful winter wonderland. Even spending an hour trying to locate and dig out a feral cat hasn't changed my enthusiasm for it. So...The Piano Guys doing their thing with Frozen and Vivaldi's "Winter" from inside some snow castle in Utah. I also added some fun local pictures:

Believe it or not this is Manhattan. They didn't fool around this time; you drive, you go to jail.


A New York State of Mind. :)
In honor of the arrival of a Broadway play ("Get On Your Feet") based on the life of Gloria Estefan, here are some of her best. These should melt the frozen! :) (I saw some of the promos and unfortunately, in my opinion, the star of the play doesn't hold a candle to Gloria, so this will be a pass for me.)

Conga, from decades ago:

A Spanish language song of hers that I really like:

Con los Años Que Me Quedan

After that, I was in a Spanish language mood so from the "Old World" I was listening to Piensa En Mi, by Luz Casal, which I've liked since I first heard it in the Pedro Almodóvar film " Tacones lejanos" (High Heels). There are better versions available for the sound quality, but on this one the English translation appears on screen. (His films are not for everyone but he's always interesting. My favorite of his films, and one of the least "out there", is "Volver" with Penelope Cruz. It's really wonderful, in my opinion.)

Billy Joel is playing Madison Square Garden again. I still listen to him regardless. This is one of my favorites. His diction isn't always great, so for non-native English speakers this is a version with the English lyrics on screen along with an Italian translation.

River of Dreams:

I tried watching the FOX Live Version of "Grease" last night. Can anyone spell awful? The performers all looked like they were over 35 with lined, overly thin faces, they weren't in sync, no energy; it was just sad. To get rid of the memory I went to youtube. This is what it's supposed to be like. I must say, this is one area where European teenagers miss out compared to American teenagers. No Homecoming Dance, no Junior Prom or Senior Ball, no pep rallies for the school football or basketball team. Those are good memories.

I think only Kevin Bacon in Footloose comes close to matching John Travolta in this.

Born To Hand Jive:

For the thinking man. Or woman. :) The lyrics are so important that I chose a video where they appear on screen. "Slip Slidin' Away"-Simon and Garfunkel. The studio versions have better sound quality, but there's something about a live performance, and especially this one where they were on home turf.

This is an excerpt from an Andre Rieu concert in Tuscany. Most of this clip consists of selections of classical music although it begins with Once Upon a Time in the West by Ennio Morricone.

Verdi : LA TRAVIATA ~ Libiam ai lieti calici
Bizet: CARMEN ~ Toreador
Verdi: NABUCCO ~ Va pensiero
Verdi: AIDA ~ Marcia Trionfale
Romance Anodyne
Inno di Mameli-Italian anthem ~ Novaro

The complete DVD also includes the following as well as more modern Itaian songs like Marina and L'Italiano.

"Nino Rota's Love Theme from "The Godfather". I adore this song, and have never heard it played so expressively. "Strangers in Paradise", which is the Borodin theme used in "Kismet".
"La Paloma".
"Puccini's "O Mio Bambino Caro", sung by Carmen Monarca.
"Franz von Suppé's "The Light Cavalry".
"Johann Strauss' "Lagune Waltz".
"Johann Strauss' rousing polka "Thunder and Lightening".
"Offenbach's "Barcarole" sung by Carla and Carmen.
"The Rose".
"Ode to Joy" from Beethoven's 9th Symphony.
" Rossini's "William Tell Overture".

It's a DVD that's more than worth the approximately ten dollar price at Amazon, not only for the lovely music, but for the setting and the wonderful audience reactions.


"Writings On The Wall"-Sam Smith, Oscar 2016 winner.

Can both Oscar and 101 million hits be wrong? So maybe I'm wrong...I don't like it very much.

"Writings On The Wall"-Sam Smith, Oscar 2016 winner.

Can both Oscar and 101 million hits be wrong? So maybe I'm wrong...I don't like it very much. I much preferred Lady Gaga's performance for which a link appears after the one for Sam Smith performance. I'm not crazy about that song either, but at least there was some fire and passion in it.

This is Sam Smith:

"Till It Happens To You"-Lady Gaga

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