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“Yeah, I know I ain’t nobody’s bargain — But, hell, a little touch-up and a little paint” — Bruce Springsteen

Podcast

A podcast that posits “Wind of Change” was written by the CIA. For real.

Wind of Change (photo subject to copyright)

Writer Patrick Radden Keefe digs deep and examines the conspiracy that the Central Intelligence Agency is actually the creative force behind the Scorpions 1991’s power-ballad “Wind of Change.” A song that is largely associated with the collapse of communism.

“Wind of Change” is sometimes even considered to be the reason communism fell.

Let that marinate.

It may be hard to imagine that the CIA could be the Lennon/McCartney of metal power-ballads, but maybe? Truth is often stranger than fiction.

American covert activity abroad, typically led by the CIA, had one mission during the Cold War with the Russians — to…


Music

John Cougar Mellencamp — Uh-huh (1983)

Photo by Mick De Paola on Unsplash

John Mellencamp’s commercial peak coincided with the two terms of the Ronald Reagan administration. With 1983’s Uh-huh, Mellencamp began to explore more socially conscious songs. He produced four albums using his songs as a clarion call to the fallacy of “Reaganomics” and its impact.

The relationship between music and social consciousness has a long history. In western culture, socially conscious music is traced back to “The Cutty Wren,” a coded anthem against feudal oppression dating back to the English peasants’ revolt of 1381.

Not surprisingly, America’s first musical social commentary songs have their beginnings with slavery. Songs like “Go Down…


Podcast

The podcast of record for music nerds …and the people who love them.

May be subject to copyright.

If you’re a big ol’ music nerd, of which I gleefully admit I am, a song isn’t just a song; it’s your sustenance. You want, nay, need, to know everything about the song or the band.

Before he was a headphone entrepreneur and billionaire, Jimmy Iovine was a music engineer and producer. I was so much a fan of the way he produced and the sounds he got from the artists he worked with that I would purchase albums solely because he produced them — I knew I would more than likely dig the band. …


Photo of a brilliantly made Cheesecake

A Story in 100 Words.


Dating

Episode 4: Molly

Photo by yns plt on Unsplash

Molly

According to the dating app, Molly and I matched on 96% of the questions that we both answered. I guess that means, according to the app’s algorithm, we would get along …96% of the time.

By now, I knew the dance of communicating on apps. You start on the app, and if that goes well, one of you suggests taking the conversation off the app and swapping phone numbers. If that continues to go well, you set up a coffee/lunch/drink or something like that.

And that’s how it went with Molly and me.

A native of the west coast, I…


Photo by pawel szvmanski on Unsplash

A morning reflection in 100 words.


Music

Cover songs that may, in fact, be better than the original.

My cat, Lulu, she has nothing to do with cover songs but behold her beauty.

Not that anyone asked for it, I felt it was time for another one of my wildly subjective Mix-Tape Playlists!

Keeping the general rules of the mix-tape, according to Rob Gordon: “You gotta start with a killer and then take it up a notch” — two sides @ +/- 45 minutes each side.

As a general rule, I don’t much like cover songs. Even at their best, I’m pretty ambivalent about them. While I appreciate the talent and artistry of a different interpretation, I often feel the original is better.

But not always.

Van Halen covered “You Really Got Me”…


Sex

Believe me, no one is more shocked about what’s below than I am.

Photo by Dainis Graveris on Unsplash

If you know me, you know that I’m pretty private, and I’m very private about my personal life. But if you’ve ever seen the cartoon Popeye, then you know the point where he reaches his wit’s end and says:

“I’ve had all I can take. I can’t takes no more!”

That’s where I’m at with reading articles about sex here on the Medium. I’ve read so many now that my feed is beginning to look like Penthouse Forum.

A lot of the writing is fantastic, and I can neither confirm nor deny that I have tried a thing or two…


Music

EP of the Day — 31 May 2021

Counting Crows (Butter Miracle Suite One, UMG)

Simon Ramsay reviewed Counting Crows Butter Miracle Suite One in Stereoboard on Friday 28 May and summed up the experience of being a fan:

“Being a Counting Crows fan requires the kind of patience usually possessed by a Jedi Master.”

Now I know there is some kind of Star Wars joke/metaphor with “Jedi Master” here, I could come up with to counter it if I knew more about Star Wars.

But I don’t.
So I won’t try.

Adam Duritz has always been one of the best songwriters of Generation X.

I never cared much for “Mr. Jones” off of their…


Music

Rock and rolls thundering troubadour.

Photo by Glenn van de Wiel on Unsplash

So the joke goes:

Q: What do you call someone who hangs out with musicians?
A: The drummer.

Drummers, for reasons that still confound me, never seem to get the respect they deserve. Among other drummers, yes. At live shows (remember those) during the drum solo, they get paid fealty by the fans. But I think if we’re all being honest, getting a bunch of chemically altered rock fans to first pump and air drum to your work is flattering, just maybe not so challenging.

More honesty, it seems the rhythm section in rock bands seldom gets its propers. Arguably, drummers have it marginally…

Keith R. Higgons

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