Showing posts with label #BestSongiHeardToday. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #BestSongiHeardToday. Show all posts

Monday, January 01, 2024

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 28 • Tom Smothers and 49 Bye-Byes

 Happy New Year my friends! 

This is the beginning of another 52 week musical adventure where I post a Monday morning music blog with an embedded playlist. Sometimes, I wander from music in the writing, but the playlist itself is mostly music unless a scene from a movie or a TV show grabs me, or I include a comedy bit or two, as I will do today.

So here we go, let's keep the streak alive and thanks for your click and read!

This past week, Tom Smothers pasted away at age 86. I loved the Smothers Brothers growing up in the 1960's as The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour played an important role in bringing the counter-culture or the 60's into our mainstream living rooms. The Smothers Brothers had this fantastic musical/comedy act duo that was highly entertaining and totally disarming. Tommy's genius as the leader of the Comedy Hour was to bring the whole family together and embed topics of the day like the Vietnam War, religion, politics, and even drug references.

Tom and Dick Smothers

The Smothers Brothers also introduced many up and coming pop and rock 'n' roll bands in their short run from 1967 - 1969 before CBS cancelled one of it's highest rated shows as being too controversial. 

The series showcased new musical artists that other comedy-variety shows rarely gave airtime to, due to the nature of their music or their political affiliations.George Harrison, Joan Baez, Buffalo Springfield, Cass Elliot, Harry Belafonte, Cream, the Who, Donovan, the Doors, Janis Ian, Yank Barry, Jefferson Airplane, Peter, Paul and Mary, Spanky and Our Gang, Steppenwolf, Simon and Garfunkel, Ray Charles, Hello People, Pete Seeger and Ike and Tina Turner were showcased during the latter years of the show despite the advertiser-sensitive nature of their music.

Seeger's appearance on the season two premiere which aired on September 10, 1967, was his first on network commercial television in 17 years since being blacklisted in 1950. His performance of "Waist Deep in the Big Muddy" was dropped from the broadcast after his refusal to comply with CBS's request to remove the sixth verse. The song, its story related to the present by the controversial stanza, was a metaphor for President Lyndon B. Johnson and his Vietnam War policy. Seeger was eventually allowed to reappear on the show to perform the song again on Episode 24 later that season.

In 1968, the show broadcast several promotional films (later known as "music videos") for the Beatles' songs "Hey Jude" and "Revolution" and several songs of the Bee Gees. Before a rowdy crowd at the Los Angeles Forum, Jimi Hendrix dedicated "I Don't Live Today" to the Smothers Brothers, as heard on The Jimi Hendrix Box Set.
from Wikipedia

In 1969, Tommy was invited by John Lennon to play acoustic guitar on Give Peace a Chance, and I have included that song here in the playlist this week. (In the video, look for Tommy to the left of John). Thank you Tom Smothers for all the joy you brought to Americans of all stripes. 

I wish you all peace and sanity in 2024 because we're all going to need it! 

Enjoy this crazy eclectic playlist my friends as the Smothers Brothers just kind of took it over by the final omits and inserts on Sunday night. The late 60's win again! (Now is he talking about the era or his age?) The only cohesive bit here is 49 videos that end with 49 Bye-Byes

Monday, July 31, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 25 • Here, There And Everywhere

On The Ed Sullivan Show there was this guy named Eric Brenn who had a fabulous act of "plate spinning." Everybody loved him and Ed had him on many times. This act became so popular that you've probably used a variation of this line- "Well, this week's really got me spinning the plates." I know I've said it over the years, so here I just put up a video clip of Mr. Brenn on Ed Sullivan. I guess it's been that kind of week, and managing my own balancing act...

Well nothing like a song to right the world. For me it's been The Beatles' Here, There And Everywhere, one of Paul's best. I first heard it on a run several weeks ago, then it started playing in my head, I then found three different versions of it on YouTube. Nothing unusual about that, as I often will fish up several versions of a song, keep one for the playlist and throw the other ones back into the sea of songs. This week in the playlist, I've kept all three. 

Here, There And Everywhere serves as a meditation, a musical potion to calm the mind, therapy for my soul. Thank you Mr. McCartney.

Then, I couldn't leave John out, so I paired him next to Paul, and there, everything is balanced here, there...

Enjoy the playlist my friends.

Monday, July 10, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 24 • AI Squirrel

Okay, What's an AI Squirrel? For me, it's the right side column on YouTube populated with what YouTube thinks I might like to click on based on my most recent clicks. My typical pattern is to go to Youtube after listening to a good song I've recently heard on Amazon music. I'm listening to that video to determine if it's going to make my new playlist, and low and behold on my right there's another video by the same band or artist that looks even better than the video I'm currently watching, SQUIRREL! 

I think maybe this technology is making me attention deficit, I don't remember ever being so easily distracted. In any case maybe it's actually making for a better playlist. So a new pattern is emerging. I hear a great song on my trail run, come back to find a version of it on YouTube, and now about 40% of the time, pick something else from YouTube's right column. So, someday if my monthly #BestSongIHeardToday blog series gets renamed to AI Squirrel, you'll know that I've completely gone up that tree.

Monday, June 12, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 23 • Time to Space

The alleged perpetrator (or "sniper") of a recent trip and fall.

Recently, I changed up my running routine. After one trip and fall, I decided to slow my running pace down. I already was a slow jogger or what I call, a "slogger," so how is that even possible? 

You may ask, "Are you just walking fast?" It's actually still a jog, but before the slowdown, I noticed I was so focused on watching the ground for jutting up stones that I was losing my most cherished aspect of running, the time to space, to let my mind wander. 

So I slowed my pace down to 4 miles a hour and increased my run from 5 miles to 6.25 (10K). Team Tortoise forever baby! It's great, I'm not any more tired, and burn a few more calories. Most importantly, I re-routed my course so that I'm now on the dirt trail for 5 miles and only 1.25 miles on the grassy parkway next to the speedy fossil fuel cars in my little suburbia. 

You might ask, "Why would you increase time on the part of the run where you're most likely to trip on one of those 'sniper' jutting up rocks?" Well, it all has to to do with the time to space part.

The trail is located in a small canyon between two mesas that's just deep enough that for most of the 1.25 mile length, I can't see any houses. On the trail my mind just goes off in different directions as my streaming music shuffles in different artists and bands. I've written about this little trail many times here in the blog, but I continue to marvel how important this wanderful place is to me, and so close to my house.

So here's another playlist my friends created this spring while mostly spacing out.

And rest in peace Tina Turner, you inspired many people to simply be their best!

Monday, May 01, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 22 • It's Only Rock 'n' Roll

The book on Amazon

This playlist has been shaping itself for the past couple of months after I discovered that I was picking a lot of songs with "rock," "roll," or "rock and roll" in the song title. 

I then started stripping out the straight up "folk" or softer stuff, and started alternating bands and artists between the 60's-70's classic era with rock 'n' roll songs from the 80's on. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers are always the exception for me, as that band is one of the best five bands of all-time and stand next to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and The Who. (I'll let you pick the other band.) I'm not a huge Bruce Springsteen fan, but Bruce and Tom carried the torch through the 80's and 90's and helped keep rock 'n' roll front and center until it wasn't. 

As the playlist progressed, I just stopped my natural selection process of hearing songs on my trail runs and just started thinking about songs with "rock," "roll" in the title, or songs that struck me as the essence of rock 'n' roll. For example, The Doors Light My Fire certainly does that for me. The video I picked from their 1967 performance on Ed Sullivan must have shaken "the establishment" to the core with his, "I don't give a f*** attitude." Jim Morrison's performance of that song on that show is quiet memorable from my 7th grade brain. 

The Byrds are one of my favorite bands and perfect to start this thing off as they were pioneers in blurring the lines between folk and folk-rock, psychedeliaand then, country and country-rock. If you love rock 'n' roll, you can never forget The Byrds.

A last note of sorts- You may say, "Why didn't he pick ____________, or for example, Bob Seger's Old Time Rock & Rock? Well, that particular song doesn't move me, but Fire Lake sure does. Well, it's only rock 'n' roll, and as the old saying goes pertaining to art, "I know what I like."

Monday, April 03, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 21 - Analog Man

So much of everything we do these days is digital. When Joe Walsh's Analog Man came on the other day, I thought about my most enduring analog task, handwriting outline notes and
___To Do Lists
___To Do Lists
___To Do Lists.

My wife and I share a Google Calendar, but she likes her spiral notebook style calendar too. She says if she handwrites an event in, she remembers it much better than entering it in the app. The calendar, not a bad wingman for the mind.

People who handwrite a self-journal most enjoy a worn beat up cover and tattered pages. The physical vessel itself is like a broken in baseball glove, it just fits the owner.

My favorite pen of all-time is the Uni•ball Air. The pen shown here is the Uni•ball Vision Elite as I've been giving that a test run. My penmanship is crap, always has been. Sometimes I have to squint at my own chicken scratch to see what the hell I have written. 

When I was young, I feared the moment of pencil in hand staring at lined paper... what to do next? Now with a lot of years hanging over my belt, I sit in front of my laptop keyboard and the writing comes easier. I like the ying yang of shifting from the keyboard to picking up the pen and jotting down some notes, doing a doddle, recycling the blank backside page from using my printer to print something almost instantly useless.

Near the bottom of my current (pictured above) To Do List, I have listed ___ Blog Vol. 21. From the looks of things here, scratch that one off.

Enjoy the playlist my friends.

Monday, March 06, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 20 - I Hear Dead People

I was thinking about Brian Jones the other day when The Rolling Stones song, Around and Around came on. He drowned in his swimming pool in 1969 and it was described in the coroner's report as, "death by misadventure." Brian Jones was 27 years old and kicked off the whole modern era of the 27 Club of deaths by misadventure.

Now you might think that's an interesting blog post to write about, but I just wasn't in the mood to write about a drug related death this week, or next. But, Brian did get me thinking about musical artists who have recently died and basically made it well into their 70's and beyond.

Burt Bacharach's recent death at 94 hit me this past week. It was a bit of a delayed reaction on my part, but I started playing songs by famous people like Dionne Warwick and Jackie DeShannon who were made famous by the sheer splendor of Burt Bacharach and Hal David songs. So I thought what a great blog that would make, and then, didn't have the writer's drive to do it, probably some day.

I then thought about David Crosby, but then, nah. Although through it all, he still had the sweetest singing voice ever, right up to the end. How was he not in the 27 Club? Second only to Keith Richards to dodge that distinction.

Then, I thought about Christine McVie and how she was always my favorite Fleetwood Mac member of the second iteration of the band starting in 1975. Then I thought about Peter Green and Danny Kirwan in the first iteration of Fleetwood Mac and how I loved those guys too!

Oh, and I can't forget Jeff Beck and what a wonderful playlist that would make, or Jimmy Seals from Seals and Crofts, or the wonderful wonderful Tom Petty, I'm still not over that one.

Then, I started listening to my almost finished #BestSongIHeardToday Vol. 20 and thought, "hell that will do" as half the people I listen to in my 30,000+ Amazon Music app are already dead. All I have to do is switch out about 10 songs and put some more dead musicians in, and I'm good to go!

and this just in, and now a regular event for us rockin' rollers

David Perry Lindey (March 21, 1944 - March 3, 2023) 

Bonus this week, all songs are videos! Enjoy the playlist my friends.

Thinking about Gary Hill thinking about Duane Allman.

Monday, February 06, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 19 - Another Team Tortoise Episode

I love to run and have been doing it fairly consistently since I was 18 years old. Now it's a slow jog, I call it "slogging." I can't remember when I created this graphic, but it was back when I was still running half marathons. I don't do that now.

But, I still pick em up and put them down at about 4.3 miles per hour. See, I had some foresight with this Team Tortoise concept. Not that it was something I would grow (or slow) into, I was never a hare. It's more of a lifestyle thing, Team Tortoise... in the long run of life. I even still have the website I created way back when, Team

What brings me back to another Team Tortoise episode is my latest slogging gear item, something I never heard of before until I did an Amazon search... a bump cap.

A bump cap is a light-weight plastic skull cap helmet hiding inside a baseball style hat. (Here's a link on Amazon $21, I got the blue long-billed one.) It's used primarily in industry jobs where a hard hat isn't required, like this mechanic working under a car in a repair shop. Or, like when you're working in your attic with a sloped ceiling, and the language you use when you bump your head on a wooden beam. Bet you wish you had this appropriately named cap on your head in that kind of situation.

I bought one like the fellow here, but it's not for working on cars, it's what I'm calling, my "joggin noggin." See I run in a canyon trail near my house filled with embedded rocks sticking up from the dirt that every now and then act like little snipers, tripping me up and taking me down.

So now my Team Tortoise get-up is complete with a protective-like tortoise shell, just like my slow mascot friend. I've taken it out on a couple of runs and it breathes fairly well, but with a bit more sweat too. I don't care, it has an adjustable safety snug fit with a little more of a conehead look than I'd like. From the vanity perspective, it beats wearing a bicycle helmet and some wiseguy on the trail saying, "Did you lose your bike?" This weekend, with the sun at my back and my shadow ahead of me, I looked like an oversized (Laffit Pencay Jr.) in a jockey helmet riding a retired Budweiser Clydesdale. 

Wait, I hear trumpets and an announcer over a PA... 
"And now for the 3rd race at this year's Del Mar Boomers Cup is Dough Boy slowly lining up in the last stall... And they're off with a lively field getting a fast start... Oh and I must say, they're leaving poor Dough Boy in a cloud of dust and YouTube music videos."

In talking to buddy Ron Zieman about this a couple of weeks ago, we both  agreed that our future official old man walking outfit might look something like this.

Shut up and enjoy the playlist my friends.

Monday, January 09, 2023

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 18

Influencer my ass.

Actually, it's my lower left back this round.

Friends, have I got a solution to help in these cold winter days (says the guy from San Diego) to keep you warm and help your lower back stay loose and seizing up in pain.

It's a mix of something old with a little technology thrown in there too.

Introducing my new little friend, the Sunbeam GO HEAT, USB Powered Heating Pad.

What's nice about this heating pad is its portability, I can take it anywhere! Lately, I've been working long hours in front of my computer and my lower back has been paying the price. I have an electric sit/stand desk that's a tremendous help but not enough to prevent my old lower back pain from roaring back to say, "Ha Ha, I'm still here!"

It has a male USB plug to plug in a variety of power sources. It comes with a 4ft. USB male/female extension cable, but I bought another 10ft. male/female extension cable so I can stand up and move around a little bit without unplugging. 

Note- Woman not included

I also have several USB portable power banks for my phone, so I've even worn it on walks outside too.

I shopped around on Amazon and found this Sunbeam heating pad to be the most affordable solution for my situation ($27.99).

Here is the link - 
Sunbeam USB Heating Pad for Back, Shoulder, Arm, and Leg Pain Relief with Power Bank Pocket and Auto Shut Off, 12.5 x 7.5", Grey

The music this week is still mostly from my trail runs. But it's funny, sometimes I come home from a run to review and pick what's going to be in the playlist, and it doesn't play like I heard it on the trail? Not that it's so different, just that it doesn't move me like when I was running. Must be the "endolphin rush" (old mispronunciation joke from Postcards From The Edge), I mean endorphins kicking in. Anyway, I'll go to YouTube, be unimpressed with the song I think is going to make the playlist and get pointed to something else... Squirrel!

Stay loose my friends and enjoy the tunes.

Monday, November 14, 2022

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 17

Oh, the hours we'd spent inside the Coliseum
Dodging lions and wasting time
Oh, those mighty kings of the jungle, I could hardly stand to see 'em
Yes, it sure has been a long, hard drive

Train wheels are running through the back of my memory
When I ran on the hilltop following a pack of wild geese
Someday everything is gonna sound like a rhapsody
When I paint my masterpiece

from When I Paint My Masterpiece, Bob Dylan

I'm currently working on something for work that might be something special, at least for me. I've worked in education as a teacher since 1979, and now in the education market since 2014 as a learning environment designer. There have been lots of ups and downs like with any job, but one can often sense when something big in their world is about to happen. 

It's a great feeling creating something new. It depends on you and the people around you. Like the song says, I've been in the lion's den, but I've also had wonderful periods working with people who love to collaborate and work together as a team. Right now, I'm with the latter group. 

Some people may wonder, why am I still doing this? Well, I keep on tryin'... to paint my masterpiece.

Monday, October 03, 2022

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 16

On average, it takes my wife about two years to adopt one of my ideas. I'm patient, I'm in it for the long run. 

Recently, I mentioned to her that my right knee pain had disappeared, and for some reason she was all ears when I told her about my new running shoe inserts. You see, for the greater part of six months she has also been having right knee pain and suddenly the typical "yeah, yeah yeah" response was replaced by... "Really!"

Maybe she has a history and good reason not to listen to me. For example, I was the one who talked her into spending $400 on orthotics that really didn't work out for either of us. 

In fact, I came to the conclusion that my orthotics were actually working like a permanent foot cast, perpetually preventing my feet from naturally healing. I eventually had surgery for plantar fasciitis on my left foot, then later, started developing plantar fasciitis in my right foot.

After reading the book, Born To Run by Christopher McDougall I began to change my patterns with regard to exercise and my feet. 

My stupid grin meeting Christopher McDougall 
at an author talk/book signing 10/19/18

I started walking barefoot in and around the house letting my feet feel the earth again. It was a start. I ditched the orthotics. I ditched all my running shoes designed with the curved back heel which force you to strike your foot on your heel when running. Thanks Chris McDougall, that was a big tip along with wearing flat running shoes (see Zero Drop Altra)!

I lost 40 pounds.. no that didn't happen... eventually down 20 then up 10, constant f***ing battle. Born to Eat.

Eventually, my right foot plantar fasciitis pain started to go away and now its gone, for now. As you know, "it's always something" and that pain may one day again say, "not so fast buster."

No magic here, but lots of problem solving in the quest to keep moving forward.

"What about the inserts McIntosh?"

Oh yeah. After great research on Amazon... and now another attempt to be a social media influencer.

I found a pair of Dr. Scholl's insoles for $15. These insoles come in size 14 and you just cut them around the cheap ass inserts that came with your shoes and insert The Dr. Scholl's in their place. Doesn't matter if your shoes were $150, they all come with cheap ass inserts. Tip- Use a good pair of scissors to get a clean cut with the new insoles. 

What makes these insoles a keeper? They come with three bottom foot pads: one gel pad for the landing foot pad area, a flexible arch support, and a gel heel pad. Simple and durable. My insoles are currently about 8 months old and still feel new.

And most importantly, the little missus loves them! Her knee pain is now down several pegs on the 10 point pain scale, and my status is up!

Here's the men's Dr. Scholl's Insole on Amazon- 

Dr. Scholl’s Running Insoles // Reduce Shock and Prevent Common Running Injuries: Runner's Knee, Plantar Fasciitis and Shin Splints for Men's 10.5-14

Price: $15.19

Here's the women's Dr. Scholl's Insole on Amazon- 

Dr. Scholl’s Running Insoles // Reduce Shock and Prevent Common Running Injuries: Runner's Knee, Plantar Fasciitis and Shin Splints for Women's 5.5-9

Price: $13.56

I will say 90% of the songs on this playlist came while running in these insoles, and that's Rubber Soul on the go! 

Lotta mid-60's and jingle-jangle this week. 
Thank you for being a friend.

Monday, August 08, 2022

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 14

A 1965 Santa Maria postcard I found on the Internet, and my longstading MMM Facebook & Twitter header.

Your musical taste came from somewhere, born at a time in a city or town that shaped you. 

The popular music that came into your life as a child and teenager is like a date stamp for your generation. For boomers like me, that is most emblematic in one date, Sunday 9pm February 9th, 1964, The Ed Sullivan Show. I think you can guess the band that were the musical guests on that night, The Beatles.

I remember being with our family friends, the Reyburn's that night and being with Steve Reyburn who was my age at 8 years old (both just shy of our 9th birthdays).

Now jump ahead to the summer of 1972. I'm in Steve's car somewhere along Highway 1 heading back to a beach camp location where both of our parents were camping together. Steve has an 8-track tape deck in the dash and of all things on this earth, he puts in a Jackson's Five tape! I nearly fell out of my seat in disbelief (A B C, It's easy as 1 2 3, as simple as Do re mi).

How could two teenagers from basically the same community environment be worlds apart in our musical tastes? Well by 1972, we both had a different set of friends, and obviously one was still married to AM radio, and the other had an album collection.

The older I get, I like to think that my taste spans many genres of music. But as I reflect back to that summer 50 years ago, when it gets down to it, it's really those very specific bands and artists from folk to rock, shared with my friends, that endures today with that beautiful date stamp.

So what brings you here to read this blog? And if I'm so fortunate, why are you taking the time to listen to some or all of the songs in my playlist?

Well, no matter where you came from, one thing's for certain, we have a connection. Maybe the first three songs in this week's playlist are good examples of some of the factors that bond us a little more together from the herd, and bring us a little closer to understanding what's this world's about. At the very least, we have similar tastes in music to help us along our way.

Enjoy my friends,

Monday, July 04, 2022

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 13

The Scream by Edvard Munch
A little more than two months ago, I tripped (yet again) while running as I was transitioning from concrete to grass. This is becoming a recurring nightmare as I clipped the edge of the grass with my left shoe, stumbled badly and not wanting to fall on the concrete somehow tore my left hamstring in some awkward fashion trying to right myself. 

I instantly knew I was toast. In my swirling head a six-week recovery awaited with 'waiting' being the operative word. The walk back home was depressing... Edvard Munch in Adidas. 

You may be screaming to yourself upon reading that the old man is writing yet again about another running injury. But it beats listening to Michael Flynn plead the 5th when asked if he believes in a peaceful transfer of power in the United States of America. My God it's fascists pleading the 5th on parade- Roger Stone, Jeffery Clark, John Eastman... Hey I even found a perfect song to describe these guys this week in the playlist. Do not even get me started on the five Supreme Kangaroo Court Justices driving their Keystone Cop car over the cliff over and over and over.   

Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett

Anyway, it's happy trails again as I'm back running with a new group of songs collected while picking them up and putting them back down, at 4.3 mph. Let's hope I can stay upright for awhile. My close friends probably have a running bet on the matter.  

Happy July 4th! Enjoy the tunes my friends! 

Monday, March 07, 2022

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume 10

 Volume I • II • III • IV  • V • VI • VII • VIII • IX • Team Tortoise Blogs •
Volume 10 • 

The #BestSongIHeardToday series is often centered around hearing great songs while exercising. These posts will tend to drift into health related topics but will always come back to the music that brought you here. This particular series is probably more about a self journal to help me stay on the path of healthy living that includes, listening to old and new tunes. If you're looking for a great mix playlist of 25-30 songs, just click on one of my Volumes above.

Ya Got Trouble. I think this post takes me over the line, the line into being officially old. First off, I think I'm being all hip on social media, being a real "influencer" here, that is until... I actually recommend a product. 

As I role into town here, I'm going to channel my inner Harold Hill and blast forward with a product that I've had some personal experience, as I'm here to tell you, right here in River City, that psyllium husk fiber really beats the band! 

There's nothing like having a personal rotor-rooter cleaning out the pipes for a consistent daily constitution guaranteed to deliver every morning. Now I personally recommend the capsules shown here found in a two-pack at Costco - typically located in the vitamin section just above the Metamucil® powdered drink mix. Now if you have tried the powdered Metamucil® before, you may have been turned off by the thought of drinking this grandpa cocktail every morning. I tried it and couldn't take it after a week.

Metamucil® also makes their psyllium husk fiber in capsule form too in a 300 count bottle, but you can get a 720 count for a better price with the two-pack at Costco ($19.99). If you don't have a Costco card, no worries as you can score natural psyllium husk capsules most anywhere, maybe even at the pool hall. Here's a link at Amazon.

You may ask (or have stopped reading at this point), how many capsules do I take a day? I will say, as in all my health related blogs, "that every body is different," including the standard line, "your mileage may vary." Both the Metamucil and Costco brands suggest 2-5 capsules four times a day. I personally take 6 capsules with breakfast and 6 more capsules at dinner and that works great for me. What you want to do is start small and work up to the total number of capsules that work best for your digestion system. Also the morning capsules go down most easily with a bloody Mary, (just kidding), water or whatever your drink is will easily chase them down. Anyway, my breakfast table now looks I own stock in a variety of pill companies. Hey who's being sold here?

I don't mind the ribbing from y'all on this one, but this is the best solution I've found for a light and easy source of natural fiber without having to eat bread and cereal carbohydrates everyday. So, if you're watching your weight and the carb intake, this may not be such an exclusive older person thang!


There, I'm not such an old fart after all. However, I did trip and fall the other day on my run making the transition from concrete to grass while looking at a young woman. Okay, let me rephrase that. I was running around a bus stop on a sidewalk and moving back over to the grass which I prefer to run on. The young woman heading towards me was also simultaneously moving from the sidewalk to the other side of the parkway grass. We were both practicing the courteous behavior of giving each other space that most of now do as second nature without a thought in the time of the pandemic. Anyway, I'm looking at her (nice shoes) and my leading left foot catches the edge of the grass and sidewalk.

I go down hard on the grass that is actually more dirt than grass. I land on my left shoulder and ribs faster than Muhammed Ali hit Sonny Liston in their 1965 second fight. It literally was like I got hit with the infamous "phantom punch" from Ali. I rolled over on my back to catch my breath and make sure I haven't broken anything beyond my dignity. I then slowly roll over, get to my knees, then stand as the young woman is now just a few feet away. I say to her, "Well this is sure embarrassing." 

She immediately says, "Are you okay? Can I help you? You poor dear."

Actually... she says none of this. She's talking on her phone to someone, sort of looks up from her phone, gives me a half smile, and walks on not even breaking a word from her conversational stride.

I start to walk, making sure the body and mind are still functioning... feeling like Rodney Dangerfield in jogging shorts. Later on in the run, What Goes On comes on my Amazon Music shuffle and I say to self, "There's the lead song for the playlist this week."

Enjoy the playlist this week my friends, and be careful out there.

Monday, December 13, 2021

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume IX

 Volume I • II • III • IV  • V • VI • VII • VIII • IX • Team Tortoise Blogs •
Volume 10 • 

The #BestSongIHeardToday series is often centered around hearing great songs while exercising. These posts will tend to drift into health related topics but will always come back to the music that brought you here. This particular series is probably more about a self journal to help me stay on the path of healthy living that includes, listening to old and new tunes. If you're looking for a great mix playlist of 25-30 songs, just click on one of my Volumes above.

This is part of a text thread I recently had with an old friend of mine. Personally, I think
magazine lost its way in the 1990's trying to be all things to all music listeners.

First issue cover, 11/9/67
Rolling Stone started in 1967 when rock 'n' roll songs dominated the Billboard 100 popular music charts. It quickly became the gold standard for rock journalism and nurtured a dedicated following of readers. You knew you were in a rock fan's house if you saw Rolling Stone mags on the coffee table, if not in the bathroom.

Today, Rolling Stone still covers popular music it's just that now rock 'n' roll is not center stage. The magazine's name sake, the Muddy Water's Blues song Rollin' Stone is now a distant memory from the current magazine's musical focus. 

Is rock 'n' roll dead? NO, it's very much alive and even kicking along with– Folk/Americana, Blues and R&B new music releases coming out every month. The difference now is that you actually have to look, even dig a little deeper on the Internet to find it.

Rolling Stone still covers all the genres that sprang from the Blues to keep that older reader, but current pop music is a completely different animal in the 21st century, and thus my friend's text comment to me. 

February, 2021 issue cover
So with that in mind, I thought it would be fun to see if Rolling Stone's The 50 Best Songs of 2021 is anywhere close to YOUR personal tastes in music. I've often said, "Best" is a strong opinion when talking music and you'll see that I use the word, "Favorite" in making my lists. I would encourage you, younger or older, to click on their link above and check it out. Personally, I found only three songs that I have featured this year on my new release playlists - #29 Bleachers, Stop Making This Hurt; #23 Kacey Musgraves, Breadwinner; and #5 Lucy Darcus, VBS (Vacation Bible School). 

Next week, I'm going to present my Favorite Songs of 1971 to wrap up a year's worth of my Fifty Years of Music series.

In two weeks, I'm going to present my Favorite Songs of 2021 to wrap up a year's worth of my #NewMusicMonday series.

Now Rolling Stone as a brand is a powerhouse, but I think you'll find my Monday Monday Music™ 'the little rock 'n' roll engine' alternative if you're feeling neglected as a rock 'n' roller or folkie. 

For this week, I'm going to wrap up my #BestSongIHeardToday series for 2021 with a variety of songs that grabbed my listening ears recently that are indicative of my taste in music and hopefully yours too! Thanks for your support this year, and hey I'm only two weeks away from writing a blog with a playlist for every single Monday of 2021! 

Enjoy my friends & Happy Festivus...
for the rest of us!

Monday, October 11, 2021

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume VIII

  Volume I • II • III • IV  • V • VI • VII • VIII • IX • Team Tortoise Blogs • 
Volume 10 • 

The #BestSongIHeardToday series is often centered around hearing great songs while exercising. These posts will tend to drift into health related topics but will always come back to the music that brought you here. This particular series is probably more about a self journal to help me stay on the path of healthy living that includes, listening to old and new tunes. If you're looking for a great mix playlist of 25-30 songs, just click on one of my Volumes above.

...little aches and pains
I got 'em always now, sunshine or rain
Oh, these little aches and pains
I don't count my losses now, just my gains
–from Little Aches and Pains, song by Paul Kelly

This week I play the wannabe influencer, again trying to promote exercise related products that have worked for me even without an endorsement deal, much less any business acumen. 

Really I'm just sharing several solutions where I've gone through the trial and error process of buying and using several similar items in a product category before finding a winner.

First up, after buying a couple larger 'Uzi' style cordless massage guns for my chronically tight calves and thighs, I found this lightweight gem (or gym) that also conveniently fits in my day pack or suitcase. It charges easily with a USB port. I use the ball attachment for deep tissue pressure and the smaller size fits so much better in the palm of my hand. What's the line from John Mellencamp, "hurts so good."


Next up is my ongoing search for the ultimate joint pain relief supplement. In the past, I have posted a product that I described as the "kitchen sink" of joint support containing the four main ingredients found in the joint ache market today: Glucosamine, Chondroitin, MSM, and hyaluronic acid.  

My brother-in-law Roger turned me on to hyaluronic acid several years ago and I started to incorporate it combined with Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM almost like a multiple vitamin. About six months ago, I decided to just go with hyaluronic acid alone but take more of a maximum dose. For me, I think it's been more effective than the kitchen sink approach as I feel it has eliminated most joint aches and has minimized my knee pain. By no means is hyaluronic acid a miracle cure but I feel it does a good job in hydrating one's skin and joints. Here's an article that looks at 11 benefits of hyaluronic acid for the face and body  

Here's my current recommendation - 
NatureBell Hyaluronic Acid Supplements, 250mg Hyaluronic Acid with 25mg Vitamin C Per Serving, 200 Capsules, Supports Skin Hydration, Joints Lubrication, Antioxidant and Immune System, Non-GMO (Amazon). I take the recommended 2 capsules a day (500 mg).

If you're a walker, jogger, cyclist, baller or dancer you've probably experienced knee pain at some point. In the past couple of years, I have developed knee pain (w/no swelling) in my lower right knee below the patella. 

I then found this patella knee strap on Amazon and wear it for running and if I'm doing any work around the house that involves bending or working on my knees. 

This strap in conjunction with the hyaluronic acid (and icing) have significantly reduced my knee pain to more of an ache, again no miracles here but a big improvement to keep me moving forward and in the long run of life.

Best Songs I heard this past month while mostly on the move with my phone.
  1. Little Aches And Pains, Paul Kelly
  2. Don't Owe You A Thing, Gary Clark Jr.
  3. I Can't Let Go, Evie Sands
  4. Broken Spoke, Creedence Clearwater Revival
  5. Outtasite (Outta Mind), Wilco
  6. You Tickle Me, Jesse Winchester
  7. Just Because, John Lennon
  8. Hello Stranger, Emmylou Harris with Nicolette Larson
  9. Anna Lee (Sweetheart of the Sun), The Bangles
  10. Beautiful Way, Beck
  11. Just Can't Go To Sleep, The Kinks
  12. Sabra Girl, Nickel Creek
  13. About You, Teenage Fanclub
  14. Dreamboat Annie, Heart
  15. Hurts So Good, John Mellencamp
  16. Four Seasons In A Day, Crowded House
  17. No Milk Today, Herman's Hermits
  18. House of Pride, J.D. Souther
  19. So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad), The Everly Brothers
  20. Tug Of War, Paul McCartney
  21. Half A Human, Real Estate
  22. King Midas In Reverse, The Hollies
  23. I'll Remember, The Kinks
  24. Digging For Gold, Val McCallum
  25. Our Lady Of The Well, Jackson Browne with Val McCallum
  26. One World, Dire Straits
  27. Shades of Scarlett Conquering, Joni Mitchell
  28. B.S.U.R., James Taylor
  29. Dance, James Taylor
  30. Amazing Journey/Sparks (Live at Leeds), The Who

Monday, September 06, 2021

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume VII

  Volume I • II • III • IV  • V • VI • VII • VIII • IX • Team Tortoise Blogs •
Volume 10 • 

The #BestSongIHeardToday series is often centered around hearing great songs while exercising. These posts will tend to drift into health related topics but will always come back to the music that brought you here. This particular series is probably more about a self journal to help me stay on the path of healthy living that includes, listening to old and new tunes. If you're looking for a great mix playlist of 25-30 songs, just click on one of my Volumes above.

Graphic by - Kyran BerlinGolden Gate Xpress

West Seattle Junction
Easy Street Records & Cafe
It had been on my mind for about a month to buy Keith Richards' autobiography, Life. So I dropped into a book store in San Diego and found a copy that I thought would be a fun read for my upcoming flight and vacation in Seattle. The book in fact had remained in my backpack until the sad news of Charlie Watts death on August 24th. With that event as my kickstart, I began reading it the next day and it's been hard to put down. I don't remember the flight back home as I was completely absorbed into it until touch down.

Here's a passage from Keith Richard's Life (2011).

Amazon Books
If it hadn’t been for Charlie, I would never have been able to expand and develop. Number one with Charlie is that he’s got great feel. He had it then, from the start. There’s tremendous personality and subtlety in his playing. If you look at the size of his kit, it’s ludicrous compared  to what most drummers use these days. They’ve got a fort with them. An incredible barrage of drums. Charlie, with just that one classico setup, can pull it all off. Nothing pretentious, and then you hear him and it don’t half go bang. He plays with humor too. I love to watch his foot through the Perspex. Even if I can’t hear him, I can play to him just by watching. The other thing is Charlie’s trick that he got, I think, from Jim Keltner or Al Jackson. On the hi-hat, most guys would play on all four beats, but on the two and the four, which is the backbeat, which is a very important thing in rock and roll, Charlie doesn’t play, he lifts up. He goes to play and pulls back. It gives the snare drum all of the sound, instead of having some interference behind it. It’ll give you a heart arrhythmia if you look at it. He does some extra motion that’s totally unnecessary. It pulls the time back because he has to make a little extra effort. And so part of the languid feel of Charlie’s drumming comes from this unnecessary motion every two beats. It’s very hard to do — to stop the beat going just for one beat and then come back in. And it also has something to do with the way Charlie’s limbs are constructed, where he feels the beat. Each drummer’s got a signature as to whether the hi-hat’s a little bit ahead of the snare. Charlie’s very far back with the snare and up with the hi-hat. And the way he stretches out the beat and what we do on top of that is a secret of the Stones sound. Charlie’s quintessentially a jazz drummer, which means the rest of the band is a jazz band in a way. He’s up there with the best, Elvin Jones, Philly Joe Jones. He’s got the feel, the looseness of it, and he’s very economical. Charlie used to work weddings and bar mitzvahs, so he knows the schmaltz too. It comes from starting early, playing the clubs when he was really young. A little bit of showmanship, without himself being the showman. Bah-BAM. And I’ve got used to playing with a guy like this. Forty years on, Charlie and I are tighter than we could express or even probably know. I mean, we even get daring enough to try and screw each other up sometimes on the stage.
Richards, Keith. Life (pp. 121-122). Little, Brown and Company.

Charlie & Ringo
This got me thinking about the two greatest bands of all-time, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. As young bands, both had all the players except they lacked a really good professional drummer. I find it very interesting that both picked guys who were very similar in their simple straight ahead style of playing the drums. Ringo Starr and Charlie Watts were not showboats, but they were the anchors.


As kismet would have it, I started program surfing in Netflix last week and stumbled upon, Count Me In. This is a 1 hour and 21 minute documentary on the history of some of rock's greatest drummers. Both Charlie and Ringo are featured and I recommend it. 

The best quote from Count Me In is from Joe Strummer of The Clash, "The rule of rock 'n' roll says, 'You're only as good as your drummer.'"


Bill & Charlie (far right)
And kismet². Last Friday, I'm watching the second season of Modern Love on Amazon Prime. After I finish an episode, Amazon's AI suggests I watch the 2019 documentary on The Rolling Stone's original bass player Bill Wyman (from 1962-1993), The Quiet One. It was perfect timing watching this documentary for the second time as it filled in several key holes missing so far from Keith Richards' Life. I'm a little more than half way through Life as I write this, and it seems Bill Wyman has been mentioned like only three times so far! "Keef" does mention in his book, and also in The Quiet One how solid the rhythm section of the Stone's became once Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts started playing together. Up until that point, Richard's wanted Wyman only for his amp! What a complete group of characters, and as it turned out, the enduring band for the ages! 

The Stones' will be starting up their 13 date U.S. 2021 No Filter Tour beginning September 26th in St. Louis with drummer (and long-time collaborator with Keith Richards) Steve Jordan sitting in for Charlie. 


All Down The Line • Lincoln Park

When in West Seattle, I try to get to Lincoln Park. I usually can get (con) the family to go for a walk or play on the playground equipment (they have two great kid friendly zip lines), while I take off for a run on the trail that leads down to the water, and then loops back up to the trail again.

As luck would have it, a couple of Stones' songs came on during the run and seemed appropriate to complete this mix of songs.

Stay well my friends, and mask-up at public indoor locations, again. The folks in Seattle know how to do that very well!

Artists featured this week.
  1. The Rolling Stones
  2. Neil Young
  3. Peter, Paul & Mary
  4. Tom Petty
  5. The Jayhawks
  6. Danny O' Keefe
  7. The Youngbloods
  8. The Byrds
  9. The Smother Brothers
  10. Jackson Browne
  11. Ray Wylie Hubbard & Ringo Starr
  12. Mollie Tuttle
  13. The Kinks
  14. J.D. Souther
  15. Ricky Nelson
  16. Stevie Wonder
  17. Traffic
  18. The Cactus Blossoms
  19. Seals and Crofts
  20. Rosanne Cash
  21. REM
  22. Bob Dylan
  23. Gillian Welch
  24. Timothy B. Schmit
  25. Pete Townsend, Ronnie Lane & Charlie Watts
  26. John Belushi & Dan Aykroyd with Brian Wilson
  27. Todd Rundgren
  28. John Prine