What music are you listening to today?


This topic contains 22 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Rick Wallach 9 months, 4 weeks ago.

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  • 10 Nov 2012 at 6:00 pm #2338

    Richard L.

    Over at copywriter Peter Rozovsky’s blog for Nov. 8th:


    He talks about his talk on noir music before a panel at the convention of Noir authors, Noircon, and he lists over 140 noir songs, some of them unintentionally noir or ambiguious so that the listener can read noir meanings into the song.

    The usual suspects are there:  Mack the Knife and Stagger Lee, Tom Waits and Johnny Cash, etc.   I suggested a couple of the songs to him in the comments of an earlier blog, but just reading the list reminded me of others.

    For instance, he lists Cowboy Junkies’ “Murder, Tonight, In The Trailer Park,” which reminds me of one that he doesn’t list:  Billy Ray Cyrus’s version of the Paul Thorn song, “Burn Down The Trailer Park.”

    I borrowed some money, I sold my car

    I set an airstream trailer up on blocks.

    That satellite dish was my first mistake,

    She started watchin’ Oprah and Rikki Lake.

    She cut me down to once a week,

    At supper time there wasn’t nothing to eat.

    I was paranoid and scared to death,

    She came home with Aqua Velva on her breath.


    Chorus:  Burn down the trailer park

    Shoot the pink flamingoes out in the yard.

    I can’t live here since you broke my heart,

    I’m gonna burn down the trailer park.

    She hired the neigbor’s son to cut our grass,

    She gave him iced tea and a piece of ass.

    My landlord came while I was out of town,

    Our pipes got fixed and the rent went down.

    I fell asleep with the Late Show on,

    Now it’s 3 a. m., I wake up and she’s gone.

    I’ve got a strong suspicion she’s at it again,

    But since I don’t know which trailer she’s in…

    Chorus:  Burn down the trailer park,

    Shoot the pink flamingoes out in the yard.

    I can’t live here since you broke my heart,

    I’m gonna burn down the trailer park.

    Burn it down.
    Jenny Jones don’t understand,

    Geraldo don’t understand,

    Maury Povich sure don’t understand

    I got a can of gas and I’m a dangerous man.

    10 Nov 2012 at 8:13 pm #2339

    Richard L.

    Barry Eisler is an author I’ve not yet read.  He hits the bestseller lists too often to be taken seriously, but I do like what I read on his blog, just prior to the election.  Here’s the link:


    I also admire his list of little known jazz artists:


    I’m going to have to give some of them a try, and perhaps one of his political novels too.


    05 Dec 2012 at 9:26 pm #2613

    Richard L.

    RIP Dave Brubeck

    One of the most influential music men of my time.  We were just about to queue up A DAVE BRUBECK CHRISTMAS at our house.

    He’ll live as long as people remember his musical ideas.


    06 Dec 2012 at 6:34 am #2614

    Markus W.

    I only got my first Dave Brubeck album this year, Time Out.

    While I feel sad about this loss, I am also grateful for the music and the time I have and will still spend enjoying it.



    12 Dec 2012 at 10:51 am #2668

    Candy Minx

    Big loss and so many memories of both Dave Brubeck and Ravi Shankar. Loved them both!


    Here on a completely different sorts of music and culture is an article I think Rick will find quite hilarious. One may disagree with what she says but she says it in a fun and funny way…I thought it was a great article by Camille Paglia. Oh and btw…her book GLITTERING IMAGES is a must. I recommend parents give her new book to kids for the holiday season!



    17 Jan 2013 at 10:15 am #2865

    Richard L.

    Jennifer Lawrence has gone on to other things, winning a Golden Globe for her appearence in a comedy which we have yet to see.

    But last night I was thinking about her and listened to the soundtack of Winter’s Bone, which is lovely in itself.  Steve Peters, the man who made this soundtrack, talks about it over at Largehearted Boy.  Here’s the link:


    Some excerpts:

    When I first met with Winter’s Bone co-writer and co-producer Anne Rosellini, we talked about possible singers for the main title and/or closing credits songs. Many names were tossed about. Then she mentioned this woman in Missouri who was acting as a local music and folklore consultant on the project, and was also a singer who appeared in one scene in the film. Anne played me a sample of Marideth Sisco’s singing, and within seconds I was wondering why we were even having this conversation when the real deal was right there under our noses.

    The solo version of “Missouri Waltz” that opens the CD is not the same one heard in the opening credits of the film. Marideth had casually recorded herself singing it at home and sent an MP3 as a demo. But, thinking it was just a throw-away, she dumped the original file, and the sound editor ended up having to use the MP3 in the film mix. The nasty low-res artifacts were somewhat masked in the film, but as the very naked lead track on a CD it wasn’t acceptable. When we later started work on the album, we had Marideth sing it again in the studio, but it was hard to recapture the relaxed lullaby feel of the original. Many takes and many hours of digital editing later, I managed to assemble something that came fairly close, adding the sound of wind and crickets in the trees that I’d recorded at the land where much of the film was shot. This sets the tone and establishes a strong sense of place that resonates through the rest of the soundtrack.

     This song [Bred and Buttered] was a sweet surprise. Actor John Hawkes, who plays the male lead role of Uncle Teardrop in the film, is also a musician whose current band is King Straggler. He apparently wrote and recorded this song, written from the point of view of the missing father who drives the film’s plot, as a gift to director Debra Granik. I hadn’t known about it until Jonathan played it in the studio one day on a whim: “Hey, wanna hear this song John Hawkes did?” Those of us present were instantly charmed, and insisted it would make a great addition to the album since we were already including some other songs that weren’t actually used in the film. I’m a sucker for actors who sing but aren’t really known as “singers” – Harry Dean Stanton, Tony Perkins, Jeanne Moreau, Jane Birkin – and I know I’m not the only one. So I was very happy that this tune made the final cut. It doesn’t sound like anything else on the album, but it adds stylistic variety and a certain kind of lightness that are important.

    29 Jun 2015 at 2:36 pm #7283

    Richard L.

    RIP James Horner, who wrote many fine movie soundtracks, dead at 61, found in the wreckage of his private plane.

    His haunting song from TITANIC, “My Heart Goes On,” sung by Celine Dion, is no doubt destined to be a classic.

    When I’m alone, if not listening to an audiobook, I usually have a soundtrack playing–Horner, Jerry Goldsmith, Elmer Bernstein, John Williams, Bernard Herrmann, Max Steiner, or other good ones. Music to match my reading, usually.

    A good match for the foray into darkness has been Philip Glass’s soundtrack to the movie adaptation of Joseph Conrad’s THE SECRET AGENT. In Glass’s new memoir, he says:

    “I have now made close to thirty soundtracks. There were others that I enjoyed working on, though perhaps not as well known. David Gordon Green’s UNDERTOW, Neil Burger’s THE ILLUSIONIST, and TAKING LIVES, directed by D. J. Caruso, are among them. My all time favorite is perhaps the least known of these–Christopher Hampton’s THE SECRET AGENT. I thought Hampton’s adaptation as well as his taut-no-nonsense direction totally captured the obsessive and sinister aura of the Joseph Conrad novel.’

    Another favorite is Errol Morris, wit whom I worked on three films–THE THIN BLUE LINE, A BRIEF HISTORY OF TIME, and THE FOG OF WAR.”

    Philip Glass says:

    “I was a big reader, and the two writers from Chicago who interested me were Saul Bellow and Nelson Algren, author of THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM, about a heroin addict’s struggles to stay clean, and WALK ON THE WILDSIDE, in which Algren tells us, “Never play cards with a man called Doc. Never eat at a place called Mom’s. Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own.”

    It’s no surprise that Glass also read the Beats, He read most of Herman Hesse whom he admired for his advocacy of a transcendental life, between east and west. He also read the existentialists, and no surprise there. But what does surprise me is Glass’s connections with Jean Genet and Samuel Beckett.

    Philip Glass says,

    “What I liked about Genet…was his exuberance and his complete disdain for all things conventional. There was a vitality to his writing that appealed to me, and it was certainly true as well of Beckett, an Irish writer who was most dire, the very grimmest of the modernists, but even so, had a joyfulness about him. . .a clearing of the decks. . .

    “For me, Beckett’s and Genet’s worldview was much closer to Hesse’s–being more radical in intent and closer to Hesse’s ideas of transformation and transcendence.”


    28 Jul 2015 at 1:33 pm #7390

    Richard L.

    Listening to Lana Del Rey, for her darkness. which is relatively blithe, but still…

    Sometimes she is more of the same, “Video Games,” and sometimes she is surprising, such as in “Fucked My Way To The Top.” She isn’t at the top, so it doesn’t quite apply to her. She says no one would take an interest in her early songs, saying she was too weird, too psychotic.

    She titles one of her CDs ULTRAVIOLENCE and another BORN TO DIE. I like her “Blue Jeans.” I like her other stuff when her voice is sultry, dusky. Some of her songs don’t fit her voice and on them she seems…well, whiney.

    Apparently the actor/writer James Franco likes her too, because at this link:


    it says that he has written a book about her, co-written by David Shields, which means that it might be well worth reading, even though she seems much too young and attractive for her darkness to be taken very seriously.

    I chanced to hear a couple of tracks by Donnie Trumpet with Chance the Rapper, from their free CD (which you can listen to on youtube) entitled SURF. A mixed bag, but I love the trumpet solos and was amused by some of the rap riffs, though not a rap guy at all. Just a jazz guy.

    Groovy summer sounds.

    24 Jun 2016 at 6:52 am #8364

    27 Jun 2016 at 7:21 pm #8368

    Richard L.

    O Death (on the soundtrack to O BROTHER WHERE ART THOU)
    by Ralph Stanley

    Won’t you spare me over til another year
    Well what is this that I can’t see
    With ice cold hands takin’ hold of me
    Well I am death, none can excel
    I’ll open the door to heaven or hell
    Whoa, death someone would pray
    Could you wait to call me another day
    The children prayed, the preacher preached
    Time and mercy is out of your reach
    I’ll fix your feet til you cant walk
    I’ll lock your jaw til you cant talk
    I’ll close your eyes so you can’t see
    This very hour, come and go with me
    I’m death I come to take the soul
    Leave the body and leave it cold
    To draw up the flesh off of the frame
    Dirt and worm both have a claim
    O, Death
    O, Death

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