Tuesday, February 16, 2010


The rules: list 50 records you can listen to start to finish and why. They don't have to be your favorite or in any particular order.

1. Cake - Fashion Nugget the why is easy--i f-ing love cake.  it was hard to pick just one album to include.
2. Adele - 19  one word:  brilliant.
3. Alanis Morissette - Jagged Little Pill  reminds me of middle school--i still know every word.
4. Ali Farka Toure - In the Heart of the Moon  absolutely beautiful music.  i grade to it all the time.
5. Amos Lee - Amos Lee  see "why" for number 1.
6. Anna Nalick - Wreck of the Day  brilliant songwriter.
7. Asa - Asa  political music at its best.
8. Barenaked Ladies - Stunt  reminds me of the fun times i had in high school theatre.
9. Ben Folds - Way to Normal  hands down one of the best artists ever--and a really great concert to go to!
10. Better than Ezra - Greatest Hits  they make me happy.  enough said.
11. Brad Paisley - 5th Gear 
see "why" for number 1.
12. Camille - Le Fil  she's the french bjork--the music is interesting and fun.
13. Ceu - Ceu  because i wish i spoke portuguese fluently.
14. Chico Science and Nação Zumbi - De Lama Ao Caos  i was exposed to this group my first semester of college.  it was new and fascinating.  i still love it.
15. Damien Rice - O  wow.  just wow.
16. Eli Young Band - Level  i'm totally this band's groupie.
see "why" for number 1.
17. Flobots - Fight With Tools  this album got me through a tumultuous first semester of teaching.  it contains hope.
18. The Fratellis - Costello Music  british punk.  need i say more?
19. Goldfinger - Stomping Ground  more than any of the other artists/songs that remind me of him, this album defines my relationship with my best bud.
20. Green Day - Warning  five words:  i wanna be the minority.
21. Hank Williams - The Complete Hank Williams  this is where i come from.  what i grew up listening to.
22.  Jack Johnson - Brushfire Fairytales  absolutely fabulous songwriter. see "why" for number 1.
23.  Jason Mraz - Mr. A-Z  it's fun.  he's great. 
24. Jimi Hendrix - Blues  because there are few things better than hendrix's "red house".
25. Joss Stone - The Soul Sessions  this album reminds me of sitting for hours on end in the eesat building on campus reading and studying.
26. Kate Nash - Made of Bricks  a delightful brit with a potty mouth. 
27. The Kinks - Village Green Preservation Society  i love it.  isn't that enough?
28. Live - Throwing Copper  reminds me of my sister.
29. Macaco - Ingravito  i long to be spicy and latin.
30. Maroon 5 - Songs About Jane  makes me remember the good times my best bud and i had while living together.
31. Massive Attack - Mezzanine  makes me focus--another grading fave.
32. MC Solaar - Chaptire 7  french rap.  what more is there to say?
33. Melody Gardot - Worrisome Heart  the best contemporary jazz i've heard in a while.
34. Muddy Waters - The Best of Muddy Waters  there is no blues without muddy waters.
35. Muse - Black Holes and Revelations  a new favorite.  it just rocks.
36. Nikka Costa - Can'tneverdidnothing  fun.
37. Orishas - El Kilo  cute latin boys rapping.
38. Otis Redding - The Very Best of Otis Redding  i don't know what i would do without otis.
39. Panjabi MC - Beware  panjabi rap.  AWESOME!
40. Patsy Cline - The Patsy Cline Collection  reminds me of being a little kid and cleaning the house with mom on saturday mornings.
41. Poe - Haunted  cool artist.  cool album.
42. Queen - The A-Z of Queen  because its freddy mercury and no one could rock an argyle bodysuit quite like him.
43. Red Hot Chili Peppers - Blood Sugar Sex Magic  reminds me of my sister.
44. Red Violin Soundtrack  great music from a great film.
45. Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack  because it's great.
46. Sam Cooke - Portrait of a Legend  what album list would be complete without sam cooke?
47. Stevie Wonder - Number 1s  see "why" for number 1.
48. Train - Save Me, San Francisco  see "why" for number 1.
49. Willie Nelson - Texas in My Soul  because there are few things on earth as good as willie nelson singing blue eyes crying in the rain.
50. Ximena Sarinana - Mediocre  she's awesome.

Honorable mentions:
Taxi Amarillo - Taxi Amarillo 
Zap Mama - A Ma Zone
Zac Brown Band - The Foundation
The Wombats - A Guide to Love, Loss, and Desperation
Ella Fitzgerald - The Complete Ella Fitzgerald Songbook

Thursday, February 11, 2010

snow and inspiration.

it's snowing.  

i love snow.  it reminds me of so many good things.  there's something transcendent about it.  ethereal.  

snow is quiet and calm, floating to the ground softly where it changes the look of the earth.

it reminds me of home.  of being in the presence of those who love me.  of comfort.  of warmth.  of being loved.

so even though it's snowing and lovely outside, i'm uninspired.  i can't seem to make myself write.   nothing is riding on my ability to pen my thoughts, but i want to put my thoughts down.  

i hope that when i go home today to sit quietly by the fire and watch the snow inspiration will strike.  i hope.  snow, please don't fail me.

one of my favorite songs expresses my feelings about snow better than i ever could--not the lyrics, but the music.  it, in a few short minutes, demonstrates everything that snow is: quiet, soft, calm, peaceful, joyful.

give it a listen.

remember--it's not the lyrics.  it's the music.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

nods and noms.

2010 oscar nominations came out today.  overall, they are as expected.  here's the list, including who i would love to see win (in green) and who i predict will win (in blue):

best picture:

hurt locker
inglourious basterds
up in the sir
blind side
district 9
an education
a serious man

best director
james cameron - avatar
kathryn bigelow - the hurt locker
quentin tarantino - inglourious basterds
lee daniels - precious
jason reitman - up in the air

best actor in a leading role:
jeff bridges in crazy heart (win)
george clooney in up in the air
colin firth in a single man
morgan freeman in invictus
jeremy renner in the hurt locker

best actor in a supporting role:
matt damon in invictus
woody harrelson in the messenger
christopher plummer in the last station
stanley tucci in the lovely bones
christoph waltz in inglourious basterds (win)

best actress in a leading role:
sandra bullock in the blind side
helen mirren in the last station
carey mulligan in an education
gabourey sidibe in precious
meryl streep in julie & julia

best actress in a supporting role:
penelope cruz in nine
vera farmiga in up in the air
maggie gyllenhaal in crazy heart
anna kendrick in up in the air
monique in precious

best animated feature film of the year:
fantastic mr. fox
the princess and the frog
the secret of kells

achievement in art direction:
avatar (win)
the imaginarium of doctor parnassus
sherlock holmes
the young victoria

achievement in cinematography:
harry potter and the half-blood prince
the hurt locker
inglourious basterds
the white ribbon

achievement in visual effects:
district 9
star trek

best original screenplay:
the hurt locker
inglourious basterds (win)
the messenger
a serious man

best original score:
fantastic mr. fox
the hurt locker
sherlock holmes

i guess i'll just have to keep my fingers crossed until 3/7!