A PERFECTLY IMPERFECT FAMILY HOLIDAY

Why am I still thinking about Thanksgiving more than ten days after the holiday? Because it was a fun day where our family didn’t try to live up to an idealistic picture-perfect holiday.

Our two grown children were coming over for a turkey lunch. And that’s as far as the plan for the day went. No football. No board games. And best of all, no unrealistic expectations of the holiday. And then a fun, spontaneous thing happened:  We launched YouTube Music on the big-screen TV and each of us took turns finding videos of some of our favourite artists and introducing them to the rest of the family.

My husband went first with “Nothing Breaks Like the Heart” by Miley Cyrus.  That he would even appreciate Miley Cyrus was the first surprise. He is not into main stream pop … at all. But he loves this song, the power of her voice and the lyrics.

Then my daughter helped us to discover Billie Eilish. We watched a few videos and – wow- this young girl can sing and has a maturity beyond her years!  (I can’t help but worry, though, that this much fame and success at 17 will cause her to go off the rails at one point. Think: Miley Cyrus, Justin Beiber, Britney Spears, to name a few. I wish her her the best!) I especially liked an acoustic version of a song called Copycat.

My son was up next and he presented an artist I had never heard of:  Dimash Kudaibergen. I have no words to describe his talent. You’ll have to listen for yourself.

Then it was my turn. My favourite music videos are performances. I’m not a huge fan of Taylor Swift but her performance of “Me!” to open the Billboard Music Awards, with Brendon Urie (of Panic at the Disco, and who I adore!), a marching band, a whole crew of dancers and mind-boggling sets was amazing!  Here’s the clip from the show. The sound isn’t great, but the visuals are – be sure to watch to the end  for the best part.

I also shared my other guilty pleasure:  The Jonas Brothers and the medley of songs they performed at the same show, ending with their smash hit “Sucker for You”. Again, you have to watch the whole clip as finish their performance in what looks like a stage ringed by fire.

We had a great time and discovered more about each other through music. If you’re looking for a new Thanksgiving tradition, consider music videos!

Song Lyric Sunday: Spanish Train

I couldn’t resist participating when I read this week’s prompt for Song Lyric Sunday :  Trains. Immediately, Chris de Burgh’s “Spanish Train” started playing in my head. It’s more than just a song – the imagery of the Devil and the Lord playing poker for the souls of the dead created by de Burgh’s delivery is like a play that unfolds in your mind. Listen and enjoy!

There’s a Spanish train that runs between
Guadalquivir and old Saville
And at dead of night the whistle blows
And people hear she’s running still

And then they hush their children back to sleep
Lock the doors, upstairs they creep
For it is said that the souls of the dead
Fill that train ten thousand deep

Well a railwayman lay dying with his people by his side
His family were crying, knelt in prayer before he died
But above his bed just a waiting for the dead
Was the Devil with a twinkle in his eye
Well God’s not around and look what I’ve found, this one’s mine

Just then the Lord himself appeared in a blinding flash of light
And shouted at the Devil, get thee hence to endless night
But the Devil just grinned and said I may have sinned
But there’s no need to push me around
I got him first so you can do your worst
He’s going underground

But I think I’ll give you one more chance
Said the Devil with a smile
So throw away that stupid lance
It’s really not your style
Joker is the name, poker is the game
We’ll play right here on this bed
And then we’ll bet for the biggest stakes yet
The souls of the dead

And I said look out, Lord, He’s going to win
The sun is down and the night is riding in
That train is dead on time, many souls are on the line
Oh Lord, He’s going to win

Well the railwayman he cut the cards
And he dealt them each a hand of five
And for the Lord, he was praying hard
Or that train he’d have to drive
Well the Devil he had three aces and a king
And the Lord, he was running for a straight
He had the queen and the knave and nine and ten of spades
All he needed was the eight

And then the Lord he called for one more card
But he drew the diamond eight
And the Devil said to the son of God
I believe you’ve got it straight
So deal me one for the time has come
To see who’ll be the king of this place
But as he spoke, from beneath his cloak
He slipped another ace

Ten thousand souls was the opening bid
And it soon went up to fifty nine
But the Lord didn’t see what the Devil did
And he said that suits me fine
I’ll raise you high to a hundred and five
And forever put an end to your sins
But the Devil let out a mighty shout, my hand wins

And I said Lord, oh Lord, you let him win
The sun is down and the night is riding in
That train is dead on time, many souls are on the line
Oh Lord, don’t let him win

Well that Spanish train still runs between
Guadalquivir and old Saville
And at dead of night the whistle blows
And people fear she’s running still

And far away in some recess
The Lord and the Devil are now playing chess
The Devil still cheats and wins more souls
And as for the Lord, well, he’s just doing his best

And I said Lord, oh Lord, you’ve got to win
The sun is down and the night is riding in
That train is still on time, oh my soul is on the line
Oh Lord, you’ve got to win

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Chris De Burgh
Spanish Train lyrics © BMG Rights Management

SoCS – April 27: Express yourself

Written for Linda G. Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday (SoCS) prompt for April 27th” This week’s prompt is:  xp.

Well, this week’s prompt sent me on a wild goose chase across the internet in search of a song whose lyrics included the words “Express yourself”.  I could hear the song in my head but couldn’t for the life of me put my finger on the title or artist.  I thought it might be by Sly and the Family Stone, so I googled the words “express yourself” with the band name. I got a whole list of entries for Charlie Wright, who wrote a song called “Express Yourself”.  I clicked on a video, listened for a few seconds then clicked out. Nope. That wasn’t it. Madonna’s song by the same title also popped up, but I knew that wasn’t it.

Now it was driving me crazy. I could hear the song  and the back up singers crooning in my head: “Express yourself, na, na, na, na, na, na, na.”  Do you know which song I mean? I tried googling combinations of “Express yourself song”, “Express yourself song lyrics”, “Express yourself lyrics”.  Nothing!  Why couldn’t I find it? Then it dawned on me – maybe I had the lyrics wrong.

I was pretty sure the word “yourself” was right, but maybe it wasn’t paired with “Express”.  So, I wasn’t hopeful but I just googled “…  yourself, na, na, na, na” and guess what?  I found it!  Isn’t the Internet a wonderful thing?  The title and lyrics are actually “Respect Yourself” by the Staple Singers. After all that, I took a few minutes to listen and enjoy it and am including a link to it here for your listening pleasure.