Showing posts with label Music Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Music Reviews. Show all posts

Friday, February 23, 2018

The Voice of Josh Groban Touches Deep into the Soul

https://www.reviewthisreviews.com/2018/02/the-voice-of-josh-groban-touches-deep.html
By watchwithkristin (Josh Groban & Emilie de Ravin)
[CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)],
via Wikimedia Commons
Exceptional talent, gorgeous tone quality and inspiring song selections all contribute to why Josh Groban is my favorite current day male vocalist. 

If I close my eyes and just listen to him sing, I feel transported from this world to a higher plane of existence. To say he has a heavenly appeal would not be an exaggeration. I believe his voice is truly the voice of an angel.  His ability to smoothly sing notes with an unparalleled vocal strength is amazing, beautiful and touches deep into my heart and soul. 

When I feel anxious or have work to do that doesn't exactly thrill me, I turn on my Josh Groban cd and let his voice raise my spirits. Before I know it, my housework is done and I am happily breezing on to my next responsibility. 


Josh Groban Songs


The first Josh Groban song that caught my attention was "You Raise Me Up".   I suspect that is true for most of us.  However, that is far from his only song that touches deep into the soul. 


Ironically, my favorite Josh Groban cd is "Awake".   I say that is ironic only because "Your Raise Me Up" is not on that cd.  I love listening to him sing is different languages.  You may wonder why a vocalist would sing in foreign languages.  In my personal experience and opinion it was always about perfecting the notes, the tone of the voice and the deliverance.  While the words and message are always the most important part of a song, a vocalist needs to develop a song beyond enunciating the words.  I have heard vocal judges say a soloist makes love to their audience.  I've never particularly liked that phrase, but I understand what they mean.  

Listen to this song and I think you will understand too.  You may even find you know the song already.  If so, I feel sure you will have a new appreciation for it after you hear this performance.  Of course, I must give credit to those fabulous string instruments, which include the piano, that introduce his voice.  They truly set the tone and the feeling for the song.


Close Your Eyes and Just Listen!

 

In case you do not know, Un Giorno Per Noi is the Italian version of "A Time for Us".  It is the love theme from Romeo and Juliet.
 

All Time Best Musical Song Sung by All Time Best Male Vocalist


For those of you who know me well, you know "Les Miserables" is my all time favorite musical.  I have seen it in several opera house theaters and even in a few different countries.  I still cry when
Jean Valjean performs this breath-taking, heart-wrenching musical plea to God.

 


Josh Groban is Limitless


Josh Groban is a "star" by anyone's equation, but he doesn't come across as arrogant in any way.  He has preformed duets with a variety of other soloists who are popular in their own music genres, including Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Kelly Clarkson, Brian McKnight, Faith Hill and the magnificent Andrea Bocelli.  

And just to show his wonderful personality and why everyone loves him, watch this performance with Ellen Degeneres. I admit, this leaves me cracking up!  

 









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Friday, January 12, 2018

Reviewing Within Temptation Band - Music That Speaks to My Soul

An Accustic Night at the Theater by Within Temptation
available on Amazon.com

My Constant Companion 


Music has been my loyal and constant companion my entire life. It often sets my mood, changes my mood or soothes my soul. If I want to grieve, it will grieve with me. If I want to rejoice, it will join my celebration. If I want to dance, it will set the pace. If I want to love, it will put my feelings into words and express what I do not have words to say. 

My mother is an extremely talented pianist. She can play anything without music and in any key. She is every vocalist dream of a perfect accompanist. No doubt, I owe my love for music to my mother. When she plays, her music resonates throughout the house, in our hearts and in our souls. Because of her influence, I don't just hear a string of notes, I feel the song and it's message. 

Every decade or so, I hear a musician who just has that touch. One who takes my breathe away by their sheer natural talent.  I would like to introduce you to a talent that I originally discovered in my son's vast collection of cd's. I was searching for a current day song to recommend to a promising soloist and I found a real treasure. 


"All I Need" by Within Temptation

This song has a haunting melody and lyrics! 

Ever since the first time I heard it, I find myself humming the tune or even singing it out loud at some of the strangest times.  This is one of those songs that crosses two areas of emotion for me. It will cry with me when I am depressed or it will sooth my soul when I am hurting. It isn't the lyrics to this song, although they are beautiful, but the melody and her comforting vocal quality that just calms me. 

I love the idea of making "my heart a better place."  A phrase from this song is actually my cell phone ring.  I hope you enjoy this song as much as I do. 



Lyrics to "All I Need"
I'm dying to catch my breath. Oh why don't I ever learn? I've lost all my trust, though I've surely tried to turn it around.  Can you still see the heart of me? All my agony fades away when you hold me in your embrace.

 

Within Temptation ~ The Band

 Within Temptation Poster 18" X 24"Check PriceThis group has actually been performing together since 1996. Because they were all still in college, they took a hiatus in 1999 to finish their studies, but returned in 2000 to the stage to become not only Holland's biggest selling musical export, but also one of the fastest growing new rock acts internationally. 

I am extremely impressed with the longevity and commitment of this group. As usual, in the beginning "Within Temptation" had to replace a few band members for various reasons, but nothing reports that they had any volatile splits or dissension within the group.  Most often a band will split several times due to internal differences and squabbles. These young people seem to have been able to handle fame and a rigorous schedule together without all of the petty jealousy and fighting that usually destroys a group on it's way up the charts.

"Stand My Ground" by Within Temptation

This song speaks to a totally different side of me altogether. A side that my family is very familiar with and probably wish I would hold back sometimes. I am a warrior at heart and I will fight for what is right.  I definitely "Stand My Ground." 
 


WITHIN TEMPTATION LYRICS - Stand My Ground
I can see when you stay low nothing happens, Does it feel right? Late at night Things I thought I put behind me Haunt my mind / I just know there's no escape/  Now once it sets its eyes on you But I won't run, Have to stare it in the eye / Stand my ground

 

Awards for "Within Temptation" 

There are multiple notable awards worldwide.  Some are internationally known.  Others are perhaps more regional or genre specific, but the list is quite impressive!
 
2002
* Silver Harp (Dutch Music Award)
* TMF Award in Holland - Most Promising Act
* TMF Award in Belgium - Best Rock (International)

2003
* Edison (Dutch Music Award) - Best Live DVD: Mother Earth Tour
* Conamus Export Award now known as the Buma Export Award
     (given to Dutch artists who have sold the most records abroad)

 
2004
* Conamus Export Award aka Buma Export Award
 
2005
* Edison Award - Best Band
* TMF Awards Holland - Best Rock National
* Conamus aka Buma Export Prize
* World Music Award - Best-selling Dutch Artist
 
2006
* 3 FM Award - Best Rock Artist
* Golden God (Best Video: Angels)
* Buma Culture Export Prize

2007
* 3FM Award - Best Rock Artist
* TMF Awards Belgium - Best Live Act (International)
* TMF Awards Holland - Best Live Act
* TMF Awards Holland - Best Video
* MTV Europe Music Awards - Best Dutch & Belgian act
* World Music Awards  - Best Selling Dutch Artist

2009
* Golden Harp
* 3FM Award - Best Live Act
* Female Metal Voices Fest Awards – Best Album for The Heart of Everything

2011
* Loudwire Music Award - Rock Album of the Year - The Unforgiving
* Loudwire Music Award - Artist of the Year
* Loudwire Music Award - Rock Goddess of the Year given to Lead Singer, Sharon den Adel  

2014 
* Metal Hammer Award (Germany) - Best Live Band
* Loudwire Music Award - Rock Goddess of the Year given to Lead Singer, Sharon den Adel

2016
* Buma Export Award


Confirmation Source: Wikipedia

 

"Somewhere" by Within Temptation 


This song has a double meaning to me and it depends on my mood which meaning I embrace at the time. One part is romantic. The one that says "I will wait for you. You are a part of me now and always." 

The other is introspective and very personal. I sometimes search inside myself for the "whys." 
 


By MrPanyGoff (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0
(https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Band Members of Within Temptation

* Sharon den Adel - vocals (since 1996) 
* Robert Westerholt - rhythm guitar, death vocals (since 1996) 
* Ruud Adrianus Jolie - lead guitar (since 2001) 
* Jeroen van Veen - bass (since 1996) 
* Martijn Spierenburg - keyboards (since 2001) 
* Mike Coolen - drums (since 2011) 
* Stephen Helleblad - rhythm & lead guitar (since 2011)

 

"The Truth Beneath the Rose" by Within Temptation

This song is a combination of all of my emotions. It evokes my passion to right every wrong. To stand my ground until I reach my own final destiny and it certainly speaks to the seeker in me. It also touches another part of me. The one that seeks forgiveness for any wrongs that I have ever committed, knowingly or unknowingly. It is the hardest for me to easily dismiss.

 


By Olarcadia (Own work)
[CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)
or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)],
via Wikimedia Commons

The Choice

It was really difficult to choose only a few songs by "Within Temptation" to share with you. Every song possesses and exudes great passion and depth. 

This band has the unique and rare combination of a songwriter with the heart of a poet, a band with remarkable musical ability and a vocalist with an unbelievable range, clear voice quality and tremendous breath control. I even like the background death vocals. They are not overused or out of place in this music. 

This is easily one of the best groups recording today!





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Reviewing Within Temptation Band - Music That Speaks to My Soul Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Music to Prepare Your Heart for Thanksgiving: A Review

Thanksgiving and Praise Music Go Together


When our hearts are especially thankful, we can often express our thanksgiving and praise best with music. Even when our hearts are heavy, music can remind us of all God has done for us and help us remember his faithfulness during times stress. Songs of praise can often bring gratitude back to our hearts. Today I'd like to share some music and verses that help my own heart give thanks for God's many blessings.

Prepare Your Heart to Praise the Lord with Music - Photo Courtesy of Pixabay

Let's get started with a song I first heard back in the seventies when I had many albums by the St. Louis Jesuits. I think I had all of them. Even though I'm Protestant, the Catholic Church was more innovative in writing music that expressed what was in  my young adult heart. Here's a sample I found on YouTube so you could hear the complete song, "Glory and Praise to Our God."




Even though  I'm now old, I still appreciate the simple melodies and beautiful harmony of many of the St. Louis Jesuits' songs.


The Music in This Thanksgiving Album Has All I the Qualities I Want

When I started searching Amazon for some of my favorite songs of thanksgiving and praise, I wanted to find an album with a variety of styles and artists. If I'm going to listen for a while, my attention wanders if the voices or music styles don't change periodically.  It's especially important to me that the rhythm changes. Even creators of albums by a single artist try to vary the rhythms as they put an album together.

I also wanted music with understandable words. All you need to do is listen to YouTube for a while to know that some choirs and smaller groups enunciate their words more clearly than others. It's wonderful that some videos show the words as they are sung, but most of us aren't able to watch our music on video when we are driving or doing the dishes. I don't know about you, but I normally listen to music to keep from getting bored while I'm doing some physical task

My personal music preference is songs with strong melody that beg me to sing along, and at least some harmony as the music flows. I want music that will lift my spirit, and tunes work with the words to do that.




This album meets all my criteria. There are a few songs included I wouldn't buy separately, but they work in the album to vary the styles and rhythms.  Click through to see a complete listing of all the songs and sample them right from the page. Although the thumbnails featured on the videos show different covers, the songs are the same ones by the same artists you will find on this video. OCP puts many of the songs in several different albums. If a song is only from a different album, I will tell you.



What's in the Glory & Praise: Third Edition, Vol. 26 Album?


Here are some of the videos I've found that will let you hear more complete recordings of some of the artists featured on the album. Most of the traditional hymns included are sung by the OCP Session Choir. Here is their YouTube presentation of one of the most popular Thanksgiving songs you will find in the album -- "Now Thank We All Our God." It dates all the way back to Pilgrim times and I grew up singing it every Thanksgiving.



I'll be the first to admit that the cover of this album is not very exciting, but one isn't going to listen to the cover.

There are also many songs associated with the St. Louis Jesuits which you can stream or still get on CD's.  Among them was the song in the first video I showed you above. This next one, also on the album, is by Bob Dufford and the St. Louis Jesuits. I'm giving you the visual version here. It's prettier than the album cover.






The album also features another of my favorite Thanksgiving songs: "Let All Things Now Living." It's sung to the popular folk tune of "The Ash Grove" by the OCP Session Choir.







Now let's vary the style and the rhythm a bit. This one is bilingual:
"Alabaré / O Come and Sing" by Manuel José Alonso and  José Pagán. It will start you dancing. It's also on the album.





The songs by Grayson Warren Brown are a bit slower and reflect a different cultural style.  Here's "Been So Busy." This artist was new to me.



If you'd like to sample more of this artist, which I did, you can not only steam his music, but also buy his CD. I like that, because I don't have an MP3 Player. Actually, I do, but it's ancient and I never figured out how to work it.


While checking out all this music, I see that to get the music I really want to buy and play it in a portable form I may need to invest in an MP3 Player. I'm checking out this one.


Still More Songs to Check out from More Artists on this Album


"Grateful" by Tom Tomaszek is also included in the album. Here it is complete. It's yet another style.




All these new styles are getting to me. I need to calm down a bit with another traditional hymn by the choir. Here's another of my favorites: "All Creatures of Our God and King." It dates back to St. Francis of Assisi in 1225 and was translated into English by William Draper in 1926. It appears some of the words have been modernized since then. The tune dates back to 1623. This version is from the Cambridge Singers and a different album, but the song is also sung by the OCP Session Choir on the Glory and Praise Album linked to above. I put this version here because I like the extra organ and trumpet music in many of the selections.



The O Praise the Lord of Heaven album it comes from features only a couple of the Thanksgiving hymns in my featured album. Most of the selections in O Praise the Lord of Heaven will appeal more to those who are "high church" or who enjoy classical music. If that's you, try the downloads from this album.



Let's change the style again with "Lift Up Your Hearts" by Roc O'Connor - a song that comes from our featured album:



Now we'll bring in a female vocalist, Sarah Hart.  She sings "Hallelujah is Our Song" in our featured album.



If you enjoy this artist and style, you can buy the CD or stream the songs by clicking the link below.


We've almost got this album covered. I haven't shown you all the songs, but you can sample the rest on the Amazon site. I do want to leave you with one last song from the album by an artist who was new to me and I'm glad to have met. It's another song I love, "Alle, Alle, Alleluia" by Richard Ho Lung. It will wake you back up if the slower songs were making you drift off.



If you enjoyed that song, you might want to check out others by the same artist and a couple of others on Working for the Lord. Most feature the faster rhythms, and some of the songs include female vocalists.


We've Come to the End of the Album


At least we've reached the last song from it I want to share with you in video. This is the version you will find on our featured album. The hymn has been around  with many different tunes. The English translation by Jane Campbell has been around since 1861. This version of "All Good Gifts" is by Kevin Keil.




I hope you've enjoyed our video tour of Glory & Praise: Third Edition, Vol. 26. If you'd like to purchase the album or individual songs just click the link to see the Amazon listing where you can listen to parts of each song. You can stream 13 of them for free if you Try Amazon Music Unlimited 30-Day Free Trial. That membership will also allow you to listen to many of the songs in the other albums featured here. If you'd like to do that, I'd really appreciate it if you'd click the affiliate link above to look at the offer instead of the one on whatever Amazon page you land on if you go to look at the music.




I hope this music will help you nurture a grateful heart and teach you more songs to help you praise the Lord.


Photo Adapted from Pixabay Photo


For more Thanksgiving music, check out what our contributor Heather Burns, wrote: Thanksgiving Canon, A Hymn for the Ages




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Friday, November 3, 2017

Thanksgiving Canon, A Hymn for the Ages

Thanksgiving Canon~Wondrous Thanksgiving Music!

Thanksgiving Canon worship hymn
Why I am reviewing Thanksgiving Canon: It's my favorite Thanksgiving Hymn and I love to play it this time of year

It's great to play any day you feel like singing a praise song! The notes of Thanksgiving Canon are on the  pentatonic musical scale that is very pleasing to the spirit at the cellular level. Science has now actually  proven this. (with brain scans) So if you listen, you will feel better.

Photo is Autumn Leaves by Pixel Anarchy on Pixabay and can be found here

The Thanksgiving Canon is an old standby and we sang it as a round, ending in a sustained Amen when I was in choir growing up . When I went looking for a video of it for you, the best ones were from the Girl Scouts.

How funny, but understandable, as we sang lots of wonderful uplifting songs in my Girl Scout troop. But I did not know that the Girl Scouts have their own CD's now! So had to spend an afternoon listening to some of their renditions of some old Camping favorites! 

Below is the original sheet music that I saved from an old Choir book. I think it was from 6th grade. 


Thanksgiving Canon sheet music

Enjoy the Thanksgiving Canon and Happy Thanksgiving!


For thy gracious blessings,
For thy wondrous words,
For thy loving kindness,
We give thanks, O Lord.
~Thanksgiving Canon



About Thanksgiving Day

Thanksgiving Day is a holiday celebrated mostly in the United States and Canada. It is celebrated each year on the second Monday of October in Canada and on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States. Thanksgiving in Canada falls on the same day as Columbus Day in the United States. In ancient times, This was the Autumn Equinox festival. Man has always thanked the Creator for the harvest.

And man has always sung to celebrate everything. The Thanksgiving Canon is not only beautiful, but the sound tones are very soothing to your ear and soul. I always play it on Thanksgiving day. 

The Thanksgiving Canon Performed
Listen to This Stunning Worship Song


Thanksgiving Canon is On This Album
Thanksgiving Canon

I was a lifelong Girl Scout, who camped out every month for years, singing campfire songs into the late evening under the moon and stars. Those are some of my favorite memories. Lots of faves on this CD.




Thy mercies have been numberless;
Thy love, Thy grace, Thy care,
Were wider than our utmost need,
and higher than our prayer.
~O King of Kings



Here is the Thanksgiving Canon by Itself to Download
Thanksgiving Canon






With grateful heart
My thanks I bring,
Before the Great
Thy praise I sing;
I worship in Thy Holy place
And praise Thee
For Thy truth and grace;
For truth and grace
Together shine
In Thy most Holy Word Divine,
In Thy most Holy Word Divine.
~ Psalms 138


Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday and I wish it would be adopted worldwide. How wonderful to be thankful, if only for a day!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!





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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Music Reviewed on Review This Reviews

Treasures from the Archives of Review This Reviews!


 Music Reviewed on Review This Reviews!
For most of us music is a way we express ourselves. The songs we choose to listen to on any given day, are often a reflection of what we are thinking or feeling at that moment. Sometimes, we even turn on music to brighten our mood and lift our spirits. Other times, we want music that will cry with us or express that deep sense of loss that we are currently experiencing ourselves. Many couples have "their song" because the lyrics of that song say exactly what they think and how they feel. For couples who have been together for decades, just hearing the song play takes them back 

Preference in style or music genre is as varied as humans themselves.  Actually, even an individual's preference can change somewhat as they age, or experience major life changes.  For instance, someone who has always enjoyed listening to smooth love songs, doesn't want to hear the first note of a love song if they are in the midst of a break-up.  They are going to be much more likely to wish to listen to songs about revenge or moving on happily without someone.

Not only do tastes vary in style of lyrics and voice, but some people prefer instrumental music.  The beat is what touches them, or the cry of a string instrument is what soothes their heart and soul.

Like anyone, the contributors of Review This Reviews have their own personal preferences and we love to write about them!  We invite you to join us when we listen, then review our favored songs or artists.   If you see something that appeals to you in the articles shown below, simply click the image to read our review.  Pinterest automatically redirects you to the published review.  

Review This Reviews! is the very best resource for wonderful music reviews on the web!


Welcome to Our Music Library!




A Preview of the Pinterest Board - Music Reviews 


Music Reviewed on Review This Reviews!

For a written list of the music reviewed on Review This Reviews, please visit our Site Directory and select "Music" from the "Fast Click" category tabs on that page.



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Sunday, May 14, 2017

Country Songs that Celebrate Mom - Don't Miss These Beautiful Songs

The Garden Lesson - A Reminder of Life's Simple Joys
It Doesn't Have to Be Mother's Day to Let Mom Know She's Special

If you're looking for a nice tidy list of songs that tell stories about how wonderful mom really is, you'll want to scan this growing list.

To make it easier, listen to the playlist featured below. It includes songs from being thankful for mom, reflecting on life as a mom, to honoring mom's incredible strength.

Each mom is different, each life story it's own, and thus finding the right words makes song hunting a unique and personal search. In fact, choosing a song for mom can be a time consuming proposition, so be sure to scan the Playlist to save yourself some of that precious time.

This list was put together to shorten the song hunting process. Songs are always being added, so be sure to check back.


Mom may appreciate the simple thoughtful gift of a song posted on Facebook in her honor. If mom has a sense of humor, add a funny comment in the post to lighten things up.

A Song For Mom from Dad

If you're looking for a song to honor the woman in your life, here's the winner: "In Case You Didn't Know" by Brett Young.

Today, Mother's Day, my husband heard "In Case You Didn't Know" on the radio in our kitchen for the first time. He was cleaning up dishes when out blasted the words to this gorgeous song. I was sitting in the backyard when he unexpectedly popped his head out to tell me this is his song to me, then added, "the words say exactly how I feel about you".

He's generally not one to listen intently to the words of a song (quite the opposite of me), and I can't put in to words how surprised I was to hear him say this. You see, we've been together for 36 years, married for 32 of those next week, and in that one split second, I loved him all over again, in a new way if that's possible. So guys, don't underestimate the power of the little things, because it's those little things that hold the greatest value.

It was a lovely Mother's Day for me - dinner with our sons, and a quiet waltz to this song with my husband in the kitchen.



Our kitchen has heard a lot of songs, and it's floor felt the feet of a great deal of dancing over these passed 30 years - I hope yours has as well.

Happy Mother's Day




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Sunday, February 5, 2017

A Song About How Delicate Love Really Is - We Are Glass

(Lyrics) - "We may shine, We may shatter, We may be picking up the pieces here on after, We are fragile, We are Human, We are shaped by the light we let through us, We break fast, Cause we are Glass"

Glass by Thompson Square speaks to the delicate nature of a couple's love.

In this life our ability and willingness to love is constantly being tested.

Whether it's the love we have for our significant other, or love for people we don't know, love is constantly under attack. There's a battle between darkness and light and life's complexities often pull us in one direction or another.

"We Are Human, We Are Shaped by The Light We Let Through Us"

When we're unsure whether someone deserves our love, often that's our test. It's not easy, but who in this crazy life can say the journey from cradle to grave is easy.

What does it mean to love?

The answer may be as simple as the question.

We simply choose to.

We make that choice.

It's safe to say that very few people, past and present, have successfully pulled off unconditional love towards the human race.

What is unconditional love? It excludes the word 'But':
  • He loves me but...
  • My love is real except for...
  • I can love, but I don't forget....
  • Your love is real, but let's face it....
  • I love them when...
  • I'll forgive you but...
  • I Love you but...
The ultimate test in living our human life is to master ourselves.

There isn't a greater battle than our battle with self.

When we choose to live with love, really make that choice, it's a peace filled life.

But .... we are glass, we break fast.

(Lyrics) "We might be oil and water, this could be a big mistake, we might burn like gasoline and fire, It's a chance we'll have to take"








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Sunday, January 22, 2017

I Didn't Fall in Love With Your Hair - Proceeds Donated to the Canadian Cancer Society


"I Didn't Fall in Love With Your Hair, Up or Down Girl, I Really Don't Care" (Lyrics)

Standing in my kitchen last Fall with the radio blasting life's lyrics from my favorite country station, the ache in these words filled the air. After hearing them, the topic of the song was clear.

Perched along side the radio, the tears flowed.  So much circling my mind from those sixteen words ... thoughts of loved ones I personally know battling cancer, and memories of those passed on.
"Phone call came in from her doctor back home
The cancer had spread and she threw down the phone
She looked in the mirror, tears running down her cheeks
Said if it all falls out, baby what would you think?" (Lyrics)
For me, there's also a personal aspect. Going through some medical challenges, the loss of my hair was a real possibility. Although I've been blessed with my dad's very thick hair, I started to lose it by the handfuls last February.

Despite this, I was one of the lucky ones. I'm managing things much better, and my hair is as thick as it's ever been again. However, the choices I had to make and am still making will forever be a part of my life. And that's ok now, for now.

There are so many levels to medical challenges. With broad smiles, or as many as we can muster, we try not to let it be an all consuming time in our life. However, the waiting hurts .. The waiting to find out; the waiting for treatment results; the waiting for procedures to be completed, and so it goes.

Strength we thought we never had, we somehow find.

And thoughts of those we love ....

What will they do if? ... how can I tell them .... circle our mind more often than we can block them.

Then yes, the thought of our hair. I cried. It isn't shallow. It's just a part of the process.

Whether the fight is cancer or a chronic disease, we know medication plays havoc on our systems, and on our hair.

But those we love and who love us, remind us:
"The heart that's inside is why I stopped and stared
I swear I didn't fall in love with your hair" (Lyrics)
To those suffering much greater battles than mine I want to hold you so tight, and make it go away.

How can we take the pain away for you? We know we can't, but we want to.

If granted one wish, mine would be magical powers to take it all away, for everyone.

I Didn't Fall In Love With Your Hair by Canadian Country Artists, Brett Kissel  & Carolyn Dawn Johnson

A Collaboration with Philanthropist W. Brett Wilson for Cancer Awareness Month in September 2016.

Released September 9th, 2016, proceeds for the song between September 9th and October 28th 2016 were donated to the Canadian Cancer Society and matched by Brett Wilson.

You can find 'I Didn't Fall in Love With Your Hair' on Brett Kissel's sixth studio album, Pick Me Up.








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Sunday, January 15, 2017

A Moving Country Song About Time Passing By - A Song Review

"Living Like that Year Book Picture Wouldn't Fade" (Lyrics)

Do you remember this time in your own life?

Just starting out .... the entire world in front of you and not a thought on your mind about the 'end' of anything.

All of it new, all of it ongoing, all of it always there. You never doubted that the ones you love were just a room away, a few hours away or a few days away.

To you, at this time, a kiss goodbye was merely, 'a kiss until later'.

Your journey was new and the anticipation of the trip you were about to take consumed your travels: "I want to be this", "I want to go there", "I want to accomplish that". Your path always in your thoughts, and those you loved, well they would always be there wouldn't they.

"Student hire and a fancy job, big old house and a two car garage" (Lyrics)

Chapter two of your life is in full gear. You're achieving, or trying to. You're moving forward, or planning to, and most of all you're enjoying the freedom!

You love your parents, but this time in your life feels like the reward it should be for the countless hours of work you put in to get here.

You still see your family of course, and hug them and enjoy your visits, but if you're being honest with yourself, you're having too much fun building your own life.

On lonely days you pick up the phone to call mom; she makes you feel better and you're grateful knowing that if you want, you can call her again tomorrow.

"Teenage girl and her granddad, he takes her fishing he feels bad, cause she can't take her eyes off that 'ole Facebook page, someday soon, who knows how long, she'll look up from that phone and he'll be gone" (Lyrics)

Chapter three is here and you've been fortunate to have your grandchildren in your life.

However, you're now in that special club of people who understand what it's like to view life from the road looking back. You reflect back to your own grandpa, and with a knowing grin, you get what he felt.

The view from your chair in life can't be seen by young people starting out. You recognize your younger self in them, and part of you wishes they could see it all from where you sit to spare them life's costly lessons. But they can't, and you can't.

"The Trouble is You Think You Have Time" (Lyrics)

You want to explain time to your grandchildren, but how can you. They have to travel their path and with God's good grace get to be where you're sitting now so they too can pass along treasured words of wisdom that were spoken to you yesterday .... after-all, wasn't it just yesterday?

When you look back at the choices you've made, you forgive yourself for not harnessing those unrepeatable moments with those you love; for not hugging your brother one more time; for shrugging mom off when all she wanted was another kiss from her baby; for moving far away and for any other selfish act that robbed a little love from someone you cared about.

But you're grateful to have learned so much about this trip through life. If nothing else, you see clearly now.

You realize, the trouble was you thought you had time.

Enjoy 'Time' by Award Winning Canadian Country Music Artist, Dean Brody: - More on the song here




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Sunday, November 20, 2016

A Song for People Enduring Cancer

Brett Kissel, I Didn't Fall in Love with Your Hair
and More Here
'I Didn't Fall in Love With Your Hair' by Canadian Country Music Artist Brett Kissel & Featuring Carolyn Dawn Johnson

Written by Rachel Bradshaw, Kyle Jacobs and Billy Montana, this moving song was released in September 2016 for Cancer Awareness month with proceeds donated to the cause between the dates September 9th and October 28th 2016.

Philanthropist W. Brett Wilson, also played a role by matching the amounts earned and donating those funds to the Canadian Cancer Society.

Like most songs do for the artist, it struck a personal chord for Brett Kissel; his mom has battled cancer.

Why This Song Says So Much

Battling cancer certainly goes deeper than potentially losing our hair. However, when the news hits us that we could be facing this horrendous fight, some of us think of this superficial thing...our hair.

After first hearing this song blaring from the radio in my kitchen, the lyrics stopped me in my tracks. Listening to every word, the tears flowed.

The song speaks to the love of one soul for another; it reminds us what true love means and that our body really is our temporary home. The cliche 'beautiful on the inside' has greater meaning when you process these lyrics.

Love is an unseen force, yet the most powerful in the world.

How do we know we are loved by another?

We know because we feel this invisible energy. The feeling of love resonates in this gorgeous song. 'He didn't fall in love with her hair' - he fell in love with her soul, her being - This untouchable force survives all things tangible.

We are reminded that our love for each other cannot be measured by something physical, like our hair or our body shape. Love is a connection that survives the seen. This intangible force captures our spirit, and in doing so, gives us the secret to life.

We are all here perfecting that secret. 

Love is where we find the light and it's the only road that takes us home. Get out the tissues as you listen to this song.





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Sunday, November 13, 2016

A Moms Song for a Child Leaving Home

If I Could by Barbra Streisand
A Further Review about the Song Meaning Here

One of My Sons is Moving Out in Two Days & the Lyrics to this Song Say What We Moms Feel

I've been one of those lucky moms; all four of my sons still live at home.

Yes, that's right, and we love it that way.

But my second boy, a guitarist and artist on the rise in a band called Coldfront, is moving out on his own. He's anxious to fly, but I'm not ready to let him. I'll never be ready.

Totally biased I'm about to blurt out all the cliches moms say: He's smart, organized, gorgeous and talented. I guess that's suppose to bring a measure of comfort.

But really, how did all the moms of the world get through this part of life! It's hard.

He's turned out to be a wonderful young man, and he's ready. The high point is what he's given me; the proof that he's ready.

After our son explained his plans to his dad and I on how he's going to manage this big step, we were so proud. Later that night we were lamenting on how hard this is, and how much we would miss him. But then his dad said, 'he's just like you! he's so much like you, and for that reason, I won't worry so much'.
"I've Watched You Grow So I Could Let You Go" (Lyrics)
Most of my friends have had their children move out already.

Looking back, I know I'm feeling my own mother's heartache as my brothers and I moved out.

At 19, mom and I drove to Toronto where I would start University and share an apartment with a friend. Mom helped me set-up the place, spent two days with me and after hugs and kisses, I remember standing at that apartment door watching her walk down the hall towards the elevator where she waved a final goodbye.

This coming Monday, I will understand what my mother felt that day. I'll say goodbye to my boy, my life, and pretend he's just going away for the weekend and that he'll be back in a few days. Without doing that, I'd be a mess, and on such a milestone for him, don't want him to feel my pain.

Right now I'm lucky. I can hear the boys laughing and talking to each other from their bedrooms. My dad used to say to me that he was happiest when all of us were home safe and sound. I miss my dad. I sure could use a hug from him right now. Dad would be so proud of him, of all the boys.
(Lyrics)
If I could, I would try to shield your innocence from time
but the part of life I gave you isn't mine
I've watched you grow so I could let you go
if I could
I would help you make it through the hungry years
but I know that I can never cry your tears
but I would
if I could
If you're looking for lyrics that say exactly what a Mom wants to say to her children, this is the perfect song - Get the tissues ready - I'm spent after listening to it <3



Things I'll have to deal with in the coming days:

  • How will I handle walking by his empty bedroom?
  • Missing the big glorious mess he leaves in his room
  • His cooking for us once in a while
  • His smile
  • His hugs
  • His brothers will miss him too
That's it, we're going to visit him - did I mention he's moving 5 hours away.

Yesterday he was just a baby.



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Sunday, November 6, 2016

When You Have An American Heart - A World of Good

Find American Heart by Faith Hill Here
And More Inspirational Songs About America Here

Stand Beside Her and Guide Her

"From the small town Friday night lights, to the Broadway neon burning up bright, We're all the same and it's in our veins, A spirit that you can't keep down, A fire inside that'll never burn out if you are the owner of an American Heart" (Lyrics from American Heart by Faith Hill)

America The Good Representing a World of Good

The inspirational song by Faith Hill, American Heart, reminds us about not only the good in America, but also in people who proudly call themselves members of the free world.

Free speech, compassion, human rights and the collective good remain a constant work in progress and as a Canadian, like my brother and sister Americans, I'm blessed to be a part of it.

As people of earth, our diversity along with our sameness are the weights that create the balance. It's cliche, but it really is our differences that teach us and our common ground that unites us.

As an example, even with a physical border between Canada and the USA, the earth doesn't shift when you place a foot on one side or the other: Stand on one side, or stand on the other, I'll venture a guess our aspirations are fundamentally the same; those being prosperity, peace and the pursuit of happiness.

We all know Canadians and Americans share the longest peaceful border on planet earth. This speaks loudly about the people who inhabit both sides of this man-made invisible line.

The most successful friends on the planet have earned a few bragging rights and the Oscar should go to the people of both countries, not our governments. For it's the people who set the pace in a free country; it's people who push governments one way or another, and in a free world governments reflect who we are.

Belting out the lyrics of American Heart, Faith Hill sings these inspirational words 'We're all the Same'. The song is speaking to the soul that makes up America. Today I'll push these worthy sentiments forward to encompass my own country, and even further out to wrap these words of hope around the planet.

When times get tough, play Faith Hill's song American Heart full blast:

Cause it beats like a drum down in New Orleans
Sings like a Motown Melody,
It dreams like California,
Bigger than a Texas sky,
it Bleeds,
it Scars,
it Shines when Times get Hard,
and you can't break an American Heart..

(Lyrics from American Heart)



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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Reviewing Wham! Fantastic Album

80s pop group Wham!'s first album - Fantastic, containing some of the best Wham! songs from the 80s.
Wham! Fantastic Album
The early 80s saw two childhood friends become pop stars with their first album, they were known as Wham! and their album was simply called Fantastic.   As a teen I thought the album was summed up nicely with that name so here's my review of Wham!'s Fantastic album.

Anyone who loves 80s pop music would have heard of Wham! and would probably enjoy their songs, as a teen I thought they were fantastic and I had one wall in my bedroom dedicated to their posters!  That said I'm all grown up now and I still like this album!   Admittedly it's probably a case of nostalgia and the fact that it makes me think I'm still a teenager, but I believe this album has stood the test of time.

The Fantastic Album by Wham! was their first album and was a number one hit on the UK album charts.   The songs (written by George Michael) were part satirist and part social commentary which is why I think they were so popular.

As MTV had just been 'born' the group made also produced some great 80s music videos to accompany their singles.

Young Guns (Go For It!)

Wham!'s First Hit Single


Although Young Guns was actually Wham!'s second single to be released, it was their first hit and the introduction to many teenagers to this 80s duo.

The BBC program Top of the Pops (TOTPs) is credited with this single taking off. The single Young Guns was still outside of the Top 40 when Wham! were scheduled to appear.

Now at this time in the UK TOTPs was still compulsory viewing for the younger generation as other music shows such as The Tube were not around just yet. I can remember sitting down watching TOTP when Wham! came on and I was hooked on the beat (and the boys!).

Everything about Wham! was perfectly timed for 1982. George Michael has said that he was inspired to write the song after seeing a number of their school friends getting married straight out of school.

The music video for this single shows George singing to Andrew and trying to get him not to throw his life away by getting married early. Referring to him as "Hey Sucker" he tells him -

"See me, single and free
No tears, no fears, what I want to be.
One, two, take a look at you
Death by matrimony!" 
And warns that if he marries now he's crazy and his future is going to be -
"Sleepless nights, on an H.P. bed
 A daddy by the time you're twenty-one"


If you've enjoyed that music video, download Young Guns by Wham! now.

Wham! Rap

Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley


With the success of Young Guns (Go for it!) Wham! decided to re-release their first single Wham! Rap.

Their first few singles and accompanying videos told stories which were part satirist and part social commentary. Wham! Rap was their first single, although it never broke into the top 40 initially. Their second single fared better and so they re-released Wham! Rap the following year and it was a top ten hit in the UK.

Wham! Rap is about youngsters living the high life on the dole chasing their pleasures and shrugging their responsibilities. Prancing about in their jeans and leather jackets George and Andrew seemed to embody the hedonistic values of the song.

From the opening line the Wham! boys seem to be thumbing their nose at people who work and glamorizing the idea of being on the dole (a stark reality for a number of young people in the UK at the beginning of the 80s).

"Hey everybody take a look at me,
I've got street credibility,
I may not have a job,
But I have a good time,
With the boys that I meet "down on the line"


If you enjoyed this hit Wham! song then download it from here and listen to Wham Rap whenever you like!

Bad Boys

One of the Best Wham! Songs


I absolutely LOVED this song when it came out. The rhythm and words are both catchy and appealed to the youth of the time. I still can't help singing along when I hear this song.

As with Wham!'s other songs from their first album Fantastic!, Bad Boy tells a story. Embracing the age of the music video Wham! told the song's story visually as well.

Bad Boys is about a rebellious teenager and his worried parents and was always going to appeal to Wham!'s young audience. The song starts off with the words

"Dear mummy, Dear Daddy,
You had plans for me, I was your only son."

and goes on as only a rebellious youth would holding everything 'bad' in high esteem and looking down on everything 'good.'

Parents asking - "Where were you last night?" were portrayed as being nosy busybodies as opposed to worried parents.

As a teen at the time I could really relate - as a mother now I shudder! I do still love the song though:)


If you want to be transported back to 1983 then download Bad Boys here and listen to it whenever you like!


Club Tropicana

One of the Top Wham! Songs

Club Tropicana is a musical send up of the Club Med scene. This scene was where 18-30 year olds could take a package holiday with other 18-30 year olds. The result was a booze ridden week of hook-ups!

"Club Tropicana, drinks are free,
Fun and sunshine - there's enough for everyone.
All that's missing is the sea,
But don't worry, you can suntan!"

This was the last of four singles released from their first album - Fantastic!. All four of the singles had made it into the Top Ten and Wham! were on top of their game.

The idea of every single telling a story and then the music video reiterating the story visually was a successful ploy of Wham!s.


As the song goes......" fun and laughter - there's enough for everyone. All that's missing is the ..." song - download it now and have a good time!


Fantastic - by Wham!

The album Fantastic by Wham! was released on 9th July 1983 and reached number one in the UK album charts.

Original Fantastic Track Listing

1. "Bad Boys" - 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" - 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" - 3:19 (Written by Pete Moor &, Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" - 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "Club Tropicana" - 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
6. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" - 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Come On" - 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
8. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" - 3:55(Written by George Michael)


Wham! Fantastic AlbumWham! Fantastic Album
In 1998 the cd was reissued and contained three bonus tracks –

1. "Bad Boys" – 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" – 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" – 3:19 (Written by Pete Moore & Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" – 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "A Ray Of Sunshine (Instrumental Remix)" - 5:40 (Written by George Michael)
6. "Love Machine (Instrumental Remix)" - 3:28 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Club Tropicana" – 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
8. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" – 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
9. "Come On" – 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
10. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" – 3:55 (Written by George Michael)
11. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light (Instrumental Remix)" - 6:40 (Written by George Michael)

I hope you've enjoyed this musical hop back to the 80s with me, now confession time.  Although I had a wall dedicated to Wham! I didn't actually own this particular LP. My brother had it, I just may have (purely in the role of big sister) commandeered it so much that you would think it belonged to me!

One of the popular albums of the 1980s was Wham! Fantastic album which hit the number 1 spot on the UK album chart.





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Review This is Dedicated to the Memory of Our Beloved Friend and Fellow Contributor
We may be apart, but You Are Not Forgotten

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