30 Day Song Challenge #20

Day 20: a song that has many meanings to you.

Dream Theater — Hollow Years (live at Budokan)

One: This live performance totally destroys the album version.
Two: When I say I don’t mind extended guitar solos as long as they serve the song, this is exactly what I mean.
Three: James LaBrie is on.
Four: Once the stone you’re crawling under is lifted off your shoulders / Once the cloud that’s raining over your head disappears / The noise that you’ll hear is the crashing down of hollow years …
Finally: I am clearly not the kind of person to whom a song has many meanings.

30 Day Song Challenge #19

Day 19: A song that makes you think about life.

Savatage — This Is the Time (1990)

It was the year of nineteen-ninety
And the Berlin wall was down
And a thousand years regretted
Now laid buried in the ground

And the prophets read the future
And the omens all seemed kind
In the classic world of Dickens
It surely was, the best of times


We placed our years in the hourglass
They were never unearned
And we seemed destined to watch them pass
It was never our turn

But this is the time
And this is the place
And these are the signs that we must embrace
The moment is now
In all history
The time has arrived
And this is the one place to be

30 Day Song Challenge #18

Day 18: A song you like from the 70s.

The Osmonds — Crazy Horses

Picking a song I like from the 70s is harder than it should be, because there are so many of them. Arguably, acts like Rush, Aerosmith, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Kansas, Queen, Carole King, Joni Mitchel, James Taylor, Kiss, Bruce Springsteen, Elton John, Golden Earring, Blue Öyster Cult, Deep Purple, and Mike Oldfield (to name a just few) delivered their best work in the 70s.

“Crazy Horses” is a great 70s track. For starters, it has that whhhhaaaahhhh—whhaaaahhh keyboard thing, and it is heavy as something that is heavy and it swings and grooves, and it is done by the most unhip band imaginable, The Osmonds.

(Disclaimer: I swapped day 13 and 18 around, to be able to post a song from the years I was born on my birthday.)

30 Day Song Challenge #17

Day 17: a song you’d sing a duet with someone on karaoke.

Brooke Fraser & William Fitzsimmons — You Can Close Your Eyes.

James Taylor’s “You Can Close Your Eyes” is a drop-dead gorgeous little lullaby. (He’s quite good at that. See also “Sweet Baby James” and “Fire and Rain”.) I haven’t got a clue what the words are about, but I love it to pieces nonetheless. It wasn’t written as a duet, but he has performed it as such with Joni Mitchell and Carole King, among others. I went with this cover version here because I like how their voices sound together.

As for karaoke: I’d love to do it sometimes, as I love to sing along with stuff. I can’t sing (or so The Missus keeps telling me), but I don’t really care. And I think I should be just about able to pull this off.

30 Day Song Challenge #16

Day 16: a song that’s a classic favorite.

Grieg: Pianoconcert – Hannes Minnaar – Limburgs Symfonie Orkest olv. Otto Tausk

We have now arrived in the part of the list where the categories aren’t always clear. What is “a classic favorite” exactly? Is it an oldie that I like? Is it a piece of classical music? I don’t know, and because “classic favorite” and day 18’s “favorite from the 1970s” are fairly interchangeable, I am going with something classical.

I am not enough of a classical connoisseur/snob to know much about it, or which performance is the best, or arcane stuff like that, but I do know that I like Grieg, and especially his Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16, and that I was in the audience of this particular recording.