Write Music Worth the Wait

This November marked the first in seven years of participating in NaNoWriMo that I did not purchase a new album to use as writing inspiration.  Last year, I added some Doctor Who to my Write Music playlist.  This year, I listened to the soundtracks from Rome, Last of the Mohicans, Game of Thrones, and Lord of the Rings.

Over the past two days, I decided to re-watch the first eight episodes of Starz Outlander.  Not only is the acting great, the scenery magnificent, and the story one I adore, but the music is one of the most stirring scores for anything on the screen – big or small.

I’ve been scouring the internet in hopes of finding Bear McCreary‘s score since I originally watched the first episode, but without luck.  The opening title is available, but not the entire score.  Apparently, like other soundtracks for television series, the release occurs at the conclusion of the season.  Given that we have to wait until April 2015 for the season to continue, it appears I must wait to listen to the score in its entirety.

I find this score emotionally evocative.  It resonates with me in a way that raises the hair on my arms with its penny whistle and strings, at other times, it echoes in my chest with the sounds of pipes and drums.  The music is sweeping, layered, and haunting.

I definitely want to add this score to my Write Music playlist – hopefully in time for NaNoWriMo 2015.  The wait will provide me ample time to dream up my next story!


Fabulous Freeze

Took the opportunity to spend a little quality time with my step-grandson tonight.  After he finished his homework, and we finished our dinner, I surprised him with “Frozen“.

Utterly Amazing!

Utterly Amazing!

He was lucky enough to see it in the theatre, but tonight is my first viewing.  I bought the HD movie through Amazon and have been super excited to see it.

I do not need an excuse to enjoy animated films – or any form of musical – but it is so lovely to share the experience with my grandson.  At 11, I’m not sure how much longer he will want to spend time with me, let alone think cartoons – especially musical ones – are cool.  For now, he thinks “Let it Go” is fantastic and we’re belting it out together!

I’m so glad that I made the decision to purchase rather than rent this movie – the animation is lovely, the songs are wonderful, and there are no words to describe the soul-stirring beauty of Idina Menzel‘s voice.

For a girl who loves the warmth and sunshine, watching the stunning animation in this frozen world stops my heart.  There is so much artistic talent evident in this film that you could watch it a hundred times and not see all the gorgeous detail or tire of the music.

Tonight is magic – music, laughter, and time with my favorite little dude watching a fabulous film – life is good.  If you haven’t seen it, buy or rent “Frozen” now.


Music and Movement

Excited to join a friend of mine for a couple magnificent events this month.

Wednesday, we are seeing Ladysmith Black Mambazo perform at the Crest downtown.  My excitement has bubbled for weeks – for the great company, amazing performers, and the venue itself, which I’ve not yet been to since moving to Sacramento.  All told, Wednesday should be an amazing, memorable night.

Later in the month, we’re headed to see the Sacramento Ballet.  Originally, we thought we’d be seeing the company’s production of “The Great Gatsby”, but late last week we discovered that the performance had been replaced with Carmina Burana!

Today, the following announcement arrived in my mailbox.  These images make me even more excited for the performance!

Ballet Announcement

Ballet Direct Mail Announcement

I love this dark, brooding piece of music; in fact, I’ve seen the Detroit Symphony Orchestra perform it several times, but I’ve not seen it performed with dance.  This upcoming performance, in addition to the amazing dancers, will feature a 100-voice chorus!

My March will be magnificent!

Old and Busted

I joke (mostly) about being lame and getting old.  Last week, I did something unpleasant to my knee and have been using a brace in my Zumba classes for a little extra support.  When I get out of bed in the morning, my body sounds like Rice Krispies with its snaps, crackles, and pops.  I see laugh lines around my eyes and mouth that even a month ago did not appear as pronounced.

I am introverted, a loaner, and living in a city where I have very few friends nearby so I tend to spend a lot of my time when I’m not working walking the dogs, taking classes at the gym, or  hanging at home to read, rock out to good music, or watch movies.

Yesterday, I made a comment on Facebook about having Billy Joel’s “Captain Jack” in my “Old and Busted” playlist.   A friend from college asked me what else was in this playlist, so I thought I would share the group of songs I compiled awhile ago – there is no rhyme or reason other than these are songs I love.  Some are old, some are newer, but all appeal to this lame old gal who occasionally likes to turn the volume up to 11 and dance around like no one but the doodles is watching.




Across The Universe Rufus Wainwright I Am Sam Soundtrack
Alberta Eric Clapton Blues [Disc 1]
All Souls Night Loreena McKennitt Live in Paris and Toronto Disc 2
All The Way To Reno (You’re Gonna Be A Star) R.E.M. Reveal
American Dreaming Dead Can Dance Dead Can Dance: 1981-1998 [Bonus Track] [Disc 3]
And She Was Talking Heads David Byrne   Sand in the Vaseline: Popular Favorites [Disc 2]
Anemone The Brian Jonestown Massacre Their Satanic Majesties’ Second Request
Angel Mine Cowboy Junkies Lay It Down
Angel, Angel, Down We Go Together Morrissey Viva Hate
Aniron Enya The Very Best Of Enya (Deluxe – Amazon Exclusive)
Annie’s Song John Denver Definitive All-Time Greatest Hits [Disc 1]
Any Sense Of Time Inbreds Kombinator
Anything For Your Love Eric Clapton Journeyman
Ashes To Ashes David Bowie Changesbowie
Avalon Bryan Ferry & Roxy Music Street Life – Greatest Hits
Babylon II David Gray Greatest Hits
Be Back Soon Justin Nozuka Holly
Beg Steal Or Borrow Ray LaMontagne & The Pariah Dogs God Willin’ & The Creek Don’t Rise
Big Bad Wolf The Heavy How You Like Me Now EP
Bittersweet Big Head Todd & The Monsters Sister Sweetly
Blackbird The Beatles The Beatles (White Album) [Disc 1]
Blackbird Sarah McLachlan I Am Sam Soundtrack
Blessed Elton John Love Songs
Blue On Black Kenny Wayne Shepherd Trouble Is…
Bodies Soul Miner’s Daughter The Sacred And Profane
Brokedown The California Honeydrops Spreadin’ Honey
Broken Hearted Savior Big Head Todd & The Monsters Sister Sweetly
Buddy Holly Weezer Weezer
Burning Down The House Talking Heads Sand In The Vaseline: Popular Favorites [Disc 1]
Can’t Find My Way Home Blind Faith 1969 Soundtrack
Captain Jack Billy Joel Greatest Hits – Volume I & Volume II [Disc 1]
Cecilia Simon & Garfunkel Simon & Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits
Chain Of Fools Aretha Franklin The Best Of Aretha Franklin
Chasing Pirates Norah Jones The Fall
Clobbered Buffalo Tom Sleepy Eyed
Clocks Coldplay A Rush Of Blood To The Head
Closer Nine Inch Nails The Downward Spiral
Closer Riley and the Roxies LOLA
Come On Eileen Dexys Midnight Runners Classic MTV: Class Of 1983 [Disc 1]
A Common Disaster Cowboy Junkies Lay It Down
Courage Sarah Polley The Sweet Hereafter Soundtrack
Crazy Life Toad The Wet Sprocket P.S.: A Toad Retrospective
Crossing Muddy Waters John Hiatt Crossing Muddy Waters
Crunchy Granola Suite Neil Diamond Hot August Night (Disc 1)
Cuts You Up Peter Murphy Deep
Default (Tom Furse Remix) Django Django Django Django
Dice Behind Your Shades Paul Westerberg 14 Songs
Don’t Know Why Norah Jones Come Away With Me
Don’t Tell Me Madonna GHV2 – Greatest Hits Volume 2
Don’t Wake Daddy The Tragically Hip Trouble At The Henhouse
Drunken Lullabies Flogging Molly Drunken Lullabies
Elegy Lisa Gerrard & Patrick Cassidy Immortal Memory
An End Has a Start Editors An End Has a Start
Everlong Foo Fighters The Colour And The Shape
Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime Beck Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind
Falling Slowly Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova Music From The Motion Picture Once
Feeling Good Muse Origin Of Symmetry
Flash Joan As Police Woman The Deep Field
Gentleman Kim Logan Kim Logan
Giftshop The Tragically Hip Trouble At The Henhouse
Gimme Shelter The Rolling Stones Hot Rocks (1964-1971)
Girlfriend Matthew Sweet Girlfriend
Give A Little Bit Supertramp Supertramp – The Very Best Of
God Only Knows David Bowie Tonight
Gold Dust Woman Fleetwood Mac Rumours
Got To Give It Up Marvin Gaye The Complete Collection
Gray Justin Nozuka Blue Velvet Sea EP
Greenman XTC Apple Venus Volume 1
Gun Emiliana Torrini Me And Armini
Happy For You Lloyd Cole Love Story
Hard Sun Eddie Vedder Into the Wild Soundtrack
The Hazards of Love 1 (The Prettiest Whistles Won’t Wrestle the Thistles Undone) The Decemberists The Hazards of Love
Heavy Collective Soul Dosage
Heroes David Bowie Changesbowie
Hold On, Hold On (Album Version) Neko Case Fox Confessor Brings The Flood (Bonus Track Version)
Holly Holy Neil Diamond Hot August Night (Disc 2)
Hotel California The Eagles Hotel California
How Soon Is Now? The Smiths The Best Of The Smiths
I Got A Name Jim Croce Photographs & Memories – His Greatest Hits
I Like You So Much Better When You’re Naked Ida Maria Fortress ‘Round My Heart (Deluxe Edition)
I Never Loved A Man Aretha Franklin The Best Of Aretha Franklin
I Walk The Line Chris Isaak Beyond The Sun
I’ll Stick Around Foo Fighters Foo Fighters
I’ve Got A Woman Ray Charles Ray!
If I Didn’t Know Better The Civil Wars Live at Eddie’s Attic
If You Were Here Thompson Twins Love, Lies And Other Strange Things: Greatest Hits
Immigrant Song Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, Karen O The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
The Impression That I Get The Mighty Mighty Bosstones Let’s Face It
In The Evening Led Zeppelin In Through The Out Door
In Your Eyes Peter Gabriel So
Is This It The Strokes Is This It
Is Your Love Strong Enough? (feat. How To Destroy Angels) Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
It’s Still Rock And Roll To Me Billy Joel Greatest Hits – Volume I & Volume II [Disc 2]
Kandi One eskimO One EskimO (Deluxe Edition)
Kind & Generous Natalie Merchant Ophelia
Kiss Them For Me (Single Version) Siouxsie And The Banshees Very Best Of Siouxsie And The Banshees
Landslide Fleetwood Mac Fleetwood Mac
The Last Worthless Evening Don Henley Actual Miles
Late In The Evening Paul Simon Negotiations And Love Songs 1971-1986
Lay All Your Love On Me Erasure ABBA-esque
Learn To Fly Foo Fighters There Is Nothing Left To Lose
Leave R.E.M. New Adventures In Hi-Fi
Leaving On A Jet Plane John Denver John Denver Greatest Hits
Let’s Go To Bed The Cure Staring At The Sea: The Singles 1979-1985
Let’s Spend The Night Together The Rolling Stones Hot Rocks (1964-1971)
Lifetimes Sheryl Crow Wildflower
The Lion Sleeps Tonight R.E.M. The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite [Single]
Living On A Thin Line The Kinks Come Dancing With The Kinks – The Best Of The Kinks [UK]
Loneliness & Alcohol Jars of Clay NoiseTrade Eastside Manor Sessions
Lotus R.E.M. Up
Love Will Tear Us Apart Joy Division Substance 1977-1980
Loving The Alien David Bowie Tonight
Low Cracker The Perks Of Being A Wallflower (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Lucky Man The Verve Urban Hymns
Mad World (Alternate Version) Roland Orzabal Donnie Darko Soundtrack
Mercy Duffy Rockferry (Deluxe Edition)
Midnight On The Interstate Trampled By Turtles Stars And Satellites
Morningside Neil Diamond Hot August Night (Disc 2)
Mr. Brightside (Original Demo) The Killers Direct Hits (Deluxe)
Mysterious Ways U2 Achtung Baby
Nautical Disaster The Tragically Hip Day For Night
No Love Today (Live) Chris Smither Live As I’ll Ever Be
Norwegian Wood The Beatles Anthology 2 [Disc 1]
Oh Yeah Big Bad Voodoo Daddy Save My Soul
Once In A Lifetime Talking Heads Sand In The Vaseline: Popular Favorites [Disc 1]
The One I Love R.E.M. Eponymous
One Man Army Our Lady Peace Happiness Is Not A Fish That You Can Catch
One of These Things First Nick Drake Way to Blue: An Introduction to Nick Drake
One Tree Hill U2 Joshua Tree
Palaces Of Montezuma Grinderman Grinderman 2
Paper In Fire (Album Version) John Mellencamp The Best That I Could Do 1978 – 1988
Peace Frog The Doors Morrison Hotel
Perfect Circle (2006 Digital Remaster) R.E.M. And I Feel Fine…..The Best Of The IRS Years 82-87
Perfect Day Lou Reed Trainspotting Soundtrack
Poets The Tragically Hip Phantom Power
Preparedness [Explicit] The Bird And The Bee the bird and the bee
Promises Eric Clapton The Cream Of Clapton
Psycho Killer Talking Heads Sand In The Vaseline: Popular Favorites [Disc 1]
Put Your Hands On Me (Album Version) Joss Stone Introducing Joss Stone
The Race Johnny Edward Perfect Sense to Me
Rakim Dead Can Dance Toward The Within
Regret New Order Republic
Remedy The Black Crowes The Southern Harmony And Musical Companion
Ring Of Fire Chris Isaak Beyond The Sun
The River Song Soul Miner’s Daughter Hallelujah
Rocket Man (I Think It’s Going To Be A Long Long Time) Elton John Rocket Man -Number Ones
Rocky Mountain High John Denver John Denver Greatest Hits
Run Collective Soul Dosage
Sax And Violins Talking Heads Sand in the Vaseline: Popular Favorites [Disc 2]
Say Goodbye Dave Matthews Band Crash
Seasons Chris Cornell Singles Soundtrack
Sex The 1975 HGTV/Paste SXSW 2013 Sampler
Sex On Fire Kings of Leon Only By the Night (Deluxe Version)
She The London Suede The Best Of
She Walks The Night (Acoustic Version) Matthew Sweet Acoustic & Live NoiseTrade Sampler
She’s Waiting Eric Clapton The Clapton Chronicles
Shelter from the Storm (Album Version) Bob Dylan Blood On The Tracks
Shotgun Down The Avalanche Shawn Colvin Live ’88
Shower The People James Taylor Greatest Hits
Shut Up and Let Me Go The Ting Tings Shut Up and Let Me Go – Single
Sick Of Myself Matthew Sweet 100% Fun
Situation Yaz Upstairs At Eric’s
Sleepy Maggie Ashley MacIsaac Hi™ How Are You Today?
So Hard Done By The Tragically Hip Day For Night
So Much to Say Dave Matthews Band Crash
Son Of A Preacher Man Dusty Springfield Pulp Fiction Soundtrack
Soolaimon/Brother Love’s Traveling Salavtion Show Neil Diamond Hot August Night (Disc 2)
Sour Girl (LP Version) Stone Temple Pilots Thank You
Stand Back Stevie Nicks The Wild Heart
State Of Love And Trust Pearl Jam rearviewmirror (greatest hits 1991-2003)
Stay Young, Go Dancing Death Cab For Cutie Codes and Keys
Steam Peter Gabriel Us
Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around Stevie Nicks Bella Donna
Strip Adam Ant Classic MTV: Class Of 1983 [Disc 2]
Suck My Kiss Red Hot Chili Peppers Blood Sugar Sex Magik
Sunshine Of Your Love Cream The Cream Of Clapton
Suspicion R.E.M. Up
Synchronicity II The Police Synchronicity
Tangled Up In Blue Bob Dylan Blood On The Tracks
Teardrop Massive Attack Mezzanine
Thank You Tori Amos Crucify [EP]
Think Aretha Franklin The Best Of Aretha Franklin
Thinking About Tomorrow Beth Orton Daybreaker
Thugs The Tragically Hip Day For Night
Time Stand Still Rush Chronicles [Disc 2]
Tiny Dancer Elton John Rocket Man – Number Ones
Tonight David Bowie Tonight
Torch Singer Buffalo Tom Big Red Letter Day
Trouble Cat Stevens The Search: Box Set [Disc 1]
Try Not To Breathe R.E.M. Automatic For The People
Trying Your Luck The Strokes Is This It
Tuesday Morning The Pogues Waiting For Herb
Turn You Inside-Out R.E.M. Green
Two Points for Honesty (Live) Guster Guster Live With The Redacted Symphony
The Ubiquitous Mr Lovegrove Dead Can Dance Wake
Uncertain Smile The The Soul Mining
Under The Bridge Red Hot Chili Peppers What Hits!
Undone (The Sweater Song) Weezer Weezer
Until The End Of The World U2 Achtung Baby
Venus In Furs (Album Version) The Velvet Underground The Very Best Of The Velvet Underground
Walk On The Ocean Toad The Wet Sprocket P.S.: A Toad Retrospective
Warehouse Dave Matthews Band Under The Table And Dreaming
We Are All Made Of Stars Moby 18
What Difference Does It Make? The Smiths The Best Of The Smiths
When I Go Dave Carter When I Go
When You’re Falling Afro Celt Sound System Volume 3: Further In Time
Where Did You Sleep Last Night Jim Oblon Curse of the Telecaster
While My Guitar Gently Weeps The Beatles The Beatles (White Album) [Disc 1]
Whiskey In The Jar Thin Lizzy In The Name Of The Father            Soundtrack
White Room Cream The Cream Of Clapton
Wicked Game Chris Isaak Best Of Chris Isaak (Remastered)
Wide Lovely Eyes Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds Push the Sky Away (Deluxe Edition)
Wild Honey U2 All That You Can’t Leave Behind
World Leader Pretend R.E.M. Green
Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald (LP Version) Gordon Lightfoot Rhino Hi-Five: Gordon Lightfoot
You Made Me The Thief Of Your Heart Sinéad O’Connor In The Name Of The Father            Soundtrack
Your Song Elton John Rocket Man – Number Ones
Vamp of New Orleans Red Skunk Jipzee Swing Band Hot And Haunting

Maybe there is a tune or two new to you – give it a listen.  Heck, listen to some old, busted favorites, too.  And don’t judge me too harshly – great thing about music is that there is something out there for every mood and taste.  Enjoy!

Dance is Life

Finished listening to an Audible audiobook of Stephen King‘s “11-22-63” yesterday and I confess the two quotes from the novel that continue to haunt me are not the kind of words for which the master of horror is known.

The first is “love is a uniquely portable magic”.  The second is “dance is life”.

I think dance is among the most powerful antidepressants available.  Zumba is one of the activities I employ to return to a healthier, more fit body.  I jokingly call it my happy dance, but really, every kind of dance makes me smile.  I love the feel of my body in motion, losing myself in music and movement.

I do not have a dancer’s body – and I know that I’m not graceful or terribly coordinated.  None of this matters when the music takes me away – whether in a dance or Zumba class, or swinging to some big band tunes, or shaking it up at a concert.  It does not matter that I don’t always know the choreography or the right moves.  To use a quote from “Scent of a Woman,” “if you get tangled up, tango on”.

Isn’t that the key to happiness?  Life tangles and snarls and trips you up, but if you make the stumble and missteps part of the dance, things seem to work out in the end.