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The Asteroids Galaxy Tour Drinks Heineken

30 Aug

If you’ve watched T.V. lately, you’ve had to have seen the latest Heineken commercial. While I’m not a beer drinker,–I’ll take a Stolli salad any day—I do admit they have the best commercials. Don’t believe me? Watch the Super Bowl. Doritos is really the only competition. This new Heineken commercial puts them all to shame though. For me, the star of the commercial isn’t the sexy man making the grand entrance, it’s that song. The Golden Age by The Asteroids Galaxy Tour is infectious. It’s light, fun, clinky vibe just puts a smile on your face. Color me addicted!

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Down N’ Up

15 Aug

This past Tuesday, Virginia and I headed up to Hartford’s XL Center (formerly, and according to the city’s signs still, the Civic Center) for Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale Tour featuring Nicki Minaj and Jersey Shore’s Pauly D. Minus Pauly D–I’m still not sure why he was there–it was an awesome show! Britney and Nicki are both such performers that it was an entertaining stage show as well as a concert.

I wasn’t a huge fan of Nicki Minaj before the concert. In all honesty I only liked her most recent song Super Bass and her contribution to Lil Wayne’s Knock Out. However, after seeing the many faces of Nicki and hearing some of her stuff, I’d have to say it is quite good if you like crossover genre stuff because she is everything from pop to hip hop to R&B to techno. I think what I was most astonished by was that she was a very talented singer in addition to a rapper. Just by hearing stuff on the radio I assumed she had other women singing the choruses like most rappers.

This was my third time seeing Britney. I saw her in 2000 for the Oops… I Did it Again tour in Syracuse and 2009’s Circus at Mohegan Sun. This was by far the best show she has put on. Britney seemed to be really enjoying herself, unlike Circus where it looked like she was drugged up. Not to mention she did not lip sync this time which made me, a super Britney fan, really happy. She just seemed happy and healthy and having a great time on stage like the Britney I remembered from 11 years ago. Plus she had more songs to play with now than she did on the Oops tour. I loved how she remixed mega hits like Baby One More Time and Toxic so they sounded like new songs.

Britney opened the show with a song that was only on the deluxe editions of Femme Fatale, Down N’ Up. It is such a pump up song, and totally infectious. Before Tuesday, Virginia had never heard it, but I think it’s safe to say afterwards she loved it. How safe is that to say? Virginia and I were singing it two nights later as we were walking into the Rascal Flatts show. Not only were we at the wrong concert, we were in the totally wrong genre as we sang a techno-y pop song by the ultimate pop tart wearing cowboy hats and boots. Still don’t believe me? Take a listen. I promise you’ll be singing “down n’ up and down n’ up and down n’ up and down” all day tomorrow.

Auto-tuning

15 Jul

Back in the day, which was a Wednesday (hehe. Last Dane Cook joke I swear), there was no such thing as auto-tune. Bands actually consisted of people playing music and the lead singer sang with their own voice. I know, crazy idea. However, today it seems all you hear on the radio is auto-tuning. Even singers who once never thought of it are allowing producers to change their voice.

Clearly I am totally against auto-tuning. It is what makes me thing Lady Gaga is nothing more than an overly-elaborate gimmick (yes, I know she has a music degree from NYU. Why doesn’t someone tell her to use it and make real music?) and what has made me start listening to 99.1 WPLR more than KC101, my favorite station since I knew how to work a radio.

Today I was perusing PerezHilton.com (don’t judge me) and he posted what Britney Spears’ Hold It Against Me without auto-tune. I don’t hide the fact that she is one of my favorite celebrities and I will continue to buy her music as long as she makes it, so I understand if you think I’m biased, but I don’t think she sounds that terrible. Trust me, she hits her rough spots. I almost wish the producer just had her go back and redo them until they sounded good though because the song as a whole is not too bad. When I first clicked on the link, I was terrified to what it was going to sound like. Did her multi-year smoking stint affect her voice? Had she just lost it? I am happy to report that I was plesantly suprised.

Click here to check it out

Music for the Ride Home

5 Jul

There is something relaxing about the ride home after a long summer day at the beach, or if you’re like me and Virginia the other day baking in the sun at a ballpark followed by a pack train ride.

As I was on my way home from the train station, I had on 99.1 WPLR (a classic rock station in Connecticut that I highly recommend) and Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb came on the radio. At that moment I was so tired and so just ready to collapse, and the song was so relaxing, and the sky was at that point where all the pink of the sunset had just turned into a deep blue. It was a perfect combination. Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven came on next. More perfection.

I’ve always found that the sun takes a lot out of me, even when I’m not really doing anything exhausting. So on my way home I want something relaxing. Since the other night, I’ve made a Led Zeppelin station on Pandora Radio and it is the perfect mix for a summer night ride. Mixing Led Zeppelin with “similar artists” like The Doors and The Who it can work for the ride to the beach as well as home.

Are Fireworks Meaningless Without Music?

4 Jul

 

 

In the town I grew up in, going to the fireworks on the green was like the social event of the year. Everyone in town was there. The parents and neighbors went a little earlier with their coolers. The little kids all had those buzzy light up things swirling around, while all the big kids walked around just “hanging out” before sitting with their family in time for the big show. There was a band playing background music in the gazebo up until the lights went out and the fireworks were about to start. As soon as the first bang lit up the sky, songs like God Bless the U.S.A.  and Born in the U.S.A. started pumping out of the speakers.

Since I moved to East Haven fireworks just haven’t been the same. I traded the bustle and charm of the Hamden fireworks to stand by the beach and watch multiple towns’ firework shows along the coastline. While I get to see more fireworks, I have found they lost part of their meaning. I always thought that it was the whole experience that made fireworks so important to the Fourth of July. The beauty of the fireworks paired up with the dramatic music filled with pride of our country and the sacrifices made to maintain our way of life were what the Fourth of July are all about, but without that music fireworks are just… well… pretty.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy looking at fireworks as much as the next person, but they just do not hold meaning on their own. I think that is why I enjoy the Disney firework shows so much. The music and story around them is captivating. And that is how I remember Fourth of July fireworks being, so every year seems to be a disappointment when that magic does not come through.

So for those of you watching fireworks from a distance and cannot hear the music, here are some of my favorite Fourth of July jams.




“I Know My Calculus”

4 May

I’m sitting in the Mac labs with my friends pulling that one last late night homework session and to keep motivation up and sleepiness away, goofy songs are necessary. So, for all you twenty-somethings that might remember the MTV show 2Gether, here’s something to lighten your finals week.

Graduation in 15 Days?? What?

30 Apr

When did this happen?

With Salve graduation only days away, I think it is safe to say I am not the only one freaking out. With most of our futures up in the air–I really dislike those of you who already have jobs–what should be a happy rejoicing time is now becoming filled with panic attacks.

Last night at my workstudy job, my friend and I spent our night writing cover letters and sending out resumes. My friend and I both had panic attacks and were on the verge of tears within the first hour and a half of our shift, but not because of the pressure of picking the best way to word our should-barely-be-considered-work job at the computer labs to make it sound super important. It was because we spoke to our parents. While our phone calls we completely opposite, the outcome was the same. My friend’s father was pushing her and pushing her to contact this woman about a teaching job (she has already been in contact with the woman for a month, but of course that didn’t get through her father’s head), while my mom seemed like she couldn’t care less. All I got was “Stop worrying. Everything will work out.” MESSAGE TO ALL PARENTS: This line is never comforting.

After taking a good 20 minutes to recollect ourselves, it was time for some music. My friend and I are infamous for playing fun songs loudly and dancing around the office on Thursday nights–if you’ve walked through the library basement on a Thursday between 6-9 I’m sure you have noticed–so this whole murky ora that had settled was not acceptable. I opened up iTunes and as soon as I hit play all the worry was lifted out of the room.

Lesson of the night: Don’t waste time freaking out. Just turn on some good, bouncy, fun music instead.

Here are the first 2 songs that kicked off a 2 hour dance party in the UCL.

A Favorite Song

24 Apr

With over 8,000 songs on my iPod, it is hard to pick just one favorite song, but there comes a point when I catch myself liking a song no matter who is singing it that I know it is the one. This song is Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”

Whether in the deep voice of Leonard Cohen, the raspy voice of Jon Bon Jovi, or the soft voice of Kate Voegele as soon as I hear that first line “I’ve heard there was a sacred chord” come on it is like my mind is just at ease because the song is just so relaxing. However, it is almost ironic that I find it relaxing because the song is filled with so much emotion no matter who is singing it. Cohen just wrote so much emotion into the words it is hard no to empathize pain of heartbreak when listening to it.

I invite you to listen to a few different versions below to get a better grip on what I mean.

Centerfield

26 Feb

To go along with the baseball theme today, I offer you a song that is probably ringing true in hearts of a lot of the young players taking the field today down in Florida and Arizona. “Put me in Coach; I’m ready to play today; Look at me; I can be Centerfield.” John Fogerty may have release “Centerfield” back in 1985, but those words are still on the minds of many young players whether they be major leaguers, minor leaguers, or little leaguers everybody wants a chance to go show Coach what they can do. Today is Day 1 of many of their chances.

“Livin’ on a Prayer”

21 Feb

Everyone knows the words. It’s impossible not to sing along to Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer” when it comes on the radio, and next to Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’,” it is probably the No. 1 song sang at kareoke bars around the world.

Over the last year, I have become a huge Bon Jovi fan thanks to my mom suddenly falling in love with them. (Yes, she has been listening to the singles on the radio since they came out in the 80’s, but it wasn’t until last March at a concert at Mohegan Sun that she realized they were all by Bon Jovi. Since then we have seen them play their home in Jersey at Giant Stadium and have tickets to the MSG show in a couple weeks). You could say it has become an obsession in my house, but when one band’s music can bridge generation gaps and please everyone on a road trip, that is success.

“When the song is bigger than the trend, that is when it keeps going, but when the trend is bigger than the song, those are the guys that go down the tubes,” Kid Rock said about “Livin’ on a Prayer” in the Bon Jovi documentary When We Were Beautiful.

So, in case you couldn’t figure it out, today’s song of the day is Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer,” but I offer the entire Slippery When Wet album to you too.