Hanspostcard has a song draft challenge. This is my Round Eight pick.
I remember when I heard Possession on the radio the first time. I was driving home from work and I was immediately in love. The music was stunning, her voice was stunning and I was captivated. Who is she, I thought to myself (I had no idea that Sarah McLachlan had two previous albums). I found the Fumbling Towards Ecstasy CD as fast as I could. It is a fantastic album. There is not a bad song on it.
When Surfacing came out in July 1997, I snatched it, too. It was released to coincide with the Lilith Fair. Though Fumbling Towards Ecstasy remains my favorite of her albums, Witness is my favorite single. The sixth track, it was never released as a single, has no chart information what-so-ever and it remains in the shadow of Building A Mystery, Sweet Surrender, Adia and, in particular, Angel. The album is one of two that reached #2 on the Billboard 200. It was the #1 album on Billboard’s Canadian Albums chart on August 2, 1997 and on Canada’s RPM Top Albums/CDs chart on July 28, 1997.
As an odd bit of trivia, this album is mentioned in the Starr Report, Ken Starr‘s investigation of the Monica Lewinsky Scandal, as was Altoid Mints, the movie Titanic, Billie Holliday, Elvis, Spinach Dip, Starbucks and Leaves of Grass. Monica apparently liked track #5.
This song speaks to me on so many levels. It’s a beautiful piece with beautiful lyrics… ~Vic
Make me a witness
Take me out
Out of darkness
Out of doubt
I won’t weigh you down
With good intention
Won’t make fire out of clay
Or other inventions
Will we burn in heaven
Like we do down here
Will the change come
While we’re waiting
Everyone is waiting
And, when we’re done
As we carried the weight
And died for the cause
Is misery made beautiful
Right before our eyes
Will mercy be revealed
Or blind us where we stand
Lilith Fair @ 20 (Billboard Article/Gil Kaufman/07-05-2017)
Sarah McLachlan Named In Starr Report (MTV News/09-16-1998)
Starr Report Unearths New Bedfellows (The Hartford Courant/Rock Critic Roger Catlin/09-17-1998)
The Pop Life: Musical Damage In Starr Report (The New York Times/Neil Strauss/09-24-1998/Web Archive)
No Official Video
Live From Mirrorball
Sarah Discussing The Surfacing CD
Hey, hey, hey…PAR-TAY! I love a jukebox and I had no idea there was a national celebration day. ~Vic
From National Day Calendar:
On the day before gathering around the turkey, gather around the nearest jukebox to celebrate National Jukebox Day! As Americans flock to their hometowns for Thanksgiving, many will head out to neighborhood bars and restaurants. They’ll catch up with friends and family and, celebrate by playing great songs on their local jukebox.
The name jukebox is thought to originate from places called juke houses or jook joints. In the early 1900s, people congregated in these establishments to drink and listen to music. Throughout history, the jukebox continued to evolve with the times. While the Blue Grass Boys played to sold-out audiences in the Grand Ole Opry, guys and gals danced the night away by playing their song over and over, again, on the jukebox at a local pub. With the advancement of technology, today’s jukebox is more versatile than ever before. Throughout each era, from big band, jazz, country and blues, to rock & roll, acoustic, and electric, and everything in between, the jukebox has played it all.
In 1889, Louis Glass and his partner William S. Arnold invented the first coin-operated player in San Francisco. They were both managers of the Pacific Phonograph Co. Formally known as the nickel-in-the-slot machine, the player included a coin operation feature on an Edison phonograph. However, it played a limited selection of songs without any amplification.
When recording artists first crooned into microphones and cut records into vinyl, an aspiring inventor in a Chicago music store worked nights to build a box that would play both sides of the record. The Automatic Entertainer was introduced by John Gabel and included 24 song selections.
The 1930s were considered the start of “The Golden Era” for jukeboxes as manufacturers including Rudolph Wurlitzer Co., The J. P. Seeburg Corp., The Rock-Ola Manufacturing Corp. and Automatic Musical Instrument Co., competed to produce them for diners, saloons and other entertainment locations.
1946 ushered in “The Silver Age” for jukeboxes as market demand for the newest and greatest technology soared. Fashionable and sleek, jukeboxes weren’t just music players, they were centerpieces often flamboyant with color and chrome. Neon and sci-fi became a tremendous influence on style as well.
The 1960s was the start of a new modern age for jukeboxes. Designs of coin-operated models went through radical changes, not only because of the availability of new materials, such as plastic but also because of the need to accommodate customer demand for more song selection.
In 1989, compact-disc mechanisms replaced the older record style players as newer technology became affordable and rapidly implemented among the general population. Jukeboxes started to become more of a novelty than a necessity.
TouchTunes founded National Jukebox Day to celebrate the iconic jukebox and the powerful memories it evokes in people.
Terry Stafford (Elvis sound-alike)
Fifty years ago, today, the #1 song on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart was You Gave Me A Mountain by Frankie Laine. Written by singer-songwriter and NASCAR driver Marty Robbins, Laine’s version charted the highest of any performer, including Robbins.
The lyrics to the song detail a series of challenges that the singer has endured in his life, including the death of his mother while giving birth to him, [being] deprived of the love of his father [described as] like time spent in prison “for something that I never done” and, the singer’s wife taking their child and leaving. He describes these setbacks as hills that he has scaled in the past but, then states that “this time, Lord, you gave me a mountain” […]
The original third line of Robbins’ song mentioned that he was “despised and disliked from my father” but, Laine requested that this line be changed to “deprived of the love of my father” when he recorded his version, since Laine’s father had died shortly before the recording took place.
Many other artists recorded the song including Johnny Bush, Don McLean, Eddy Arnold, Ray Price, Jim Nabors and Dean Martin. Elvis Presley included this song in the set for his Aloha From Hawaii concert in 1973.
This was the final Top 40 hit of Laine’s career.
Born in the heat of the desert
My mother died givin’ me life
Deprived of the love of a father
Blamed for the loss of his wife
You know, Lord, I’ve been in a prison
For something that I’ve never done
It’s been one hill after another
But I’ve climbed them all, one by one
But this time, Lord, you gave me a mountain
A mountain I may never climb
And is isn’t a hill any longer
You gave me a mountain this time
My woman tired of the hardships
Tired of the grief and the strife
So tired of workin’ for nothin’
Tired of bein’ my wife
She took my one ray of sunshine
She took my pride and my joy
She took my reason for livin’
She took my small baby boy
So this time, Lord, you gave me a mountain
A mountain I may never climb
And is isn’t a hill any longer
You gave me a mountain this time
A song you like by an artist no longer living…
I’ve already posted some Prince videos and I will have to work hard to keep this post trimmed down.
Can’t do a post like this without The King of Rock and Roll…Elvis. I grew up with this music.
Next up, The Queen of Disco…Donna. Her music covered my life from 10 years old to 18.
The Beatles were never played in my house. Their music was just not part of my childhood. I discovered who they were after they split up and I liked a lot of solo stuff that came out. My favorite was George. I liked his scratchy, squeaky voice. Paul came in second.
This one covers two that have left us…Freddie and Bowie. This song spoke to me at 15 and still does to this day (and I was extraordinarily annoyed when Vanilla Ice ripped it off).
This came out after I started college. Teena was the Ivory Queen of Soul.
Ok. I’m stopping at seven (I could be here all night). I grew up with this music, as well and still remember all the words. I previously posted my favorite of his songs related to the Gold Rush of 1896. So, I will post my second favorite. I give you Johnny Horton.
It’s Tune Tuesday! Twenty-five years ago, today, the number one song was I Can’t Help Falling In Love, a Reggae version of Elvis’ hit from the 1961 soundtrack and movie of the same name, Blue Hawaii. Both of these versions topped the U.S. & U.K. charts.
I am also posting the clip from the movie. Elvis’ original didn’t make it to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 (which is usually where I get my number one songs from) in the U.S., getting stuck at number two behind Peppermint Twist but, it did make it to number one in the U.K. & Australia in early 1962. It was a number one hit on the Billboard Adult Contemporary Chart in January 1962:
Plus, I have to confess that, while I like Reggae, I am an Elvis fan and I prefer the original (no offense, guys!).
Gone on the same day, 41 years apart. I was two weeks shy of my 11th birthday when Elvis died. I am two weeks shy of my 52 birthday. Two incredibly beautiful, powerful voices and souls are gone.
May they rock heaven. ~Vic