I’ve always loved music. I spent hours as a kid playing records and dancing around the living room. I still remember the old, woody smell of the jackets as I pulled them from their tightly wedged compartment in the dining room buffet table. It was like picking up a favorite library book and running your nose over the fragrant pages before doing so with your eyes.
Soon after, I discovered radio. I recall finding out the hard way that turning off the radio to save a favorite tune for later only led to head-scratching disappointment.
I began carrying around a radio so I wouldn’t miss any of my favorites. It was the 70’s precursor to the boombox* of the 80’s. Though less sexy, the radio had its merits. It was roughly the size of a lunchbox and was bound in honey leather with a handle. Perfect for getting funky on the go. The dial was always tuned to WKBW in Buffalo, because they were all about the hits.
From Top 40 I moved on to classic rock, where I was introduced to Rush, Queen, Bowie, and my beloved Genesis. Cut to high school, when I began digging into new wave radio (another Buffalo station, which has come full circle and is alternative again!) and discovered so many great artists: The Fixx, Kate Bush, Abc, Adam Ant, and the wildly talented Adrian Belew.
Then there was Prince.
He played on hit and soul stations alike, and I can still hear the intro a local DJ gave over the opening bars of “Mountains” (video in right column–look who’s in it!) I recorded straight off the radio on that magical boombox: “His royal badness… The Kid… PRINCE!” So many names (and one un-name) over the years, but ever-evolving and gifted to the core. He paved the road for musicians to own their work. He delighted in showcasing up-and-coming artists in his songs and shows.
We danced to him every weekend in college at the local watering hole. He and his band adorned my dorm walls–even my blinds. I sliced up a poster so one side of the blinds revealed this:
Every TV show and corner of the Interwebs is now sharing all there is to know about him, right down to his affinity for Dunkaroos with a side of Yak’s milk. Fans thirsted to know more about the mysterious purple one. One thing is for certain: There’s no shortage of love and respect for him.
I was one of many moved by his music–milestones and moments forever tied to his songs. Regardless of whether he pleased your musical palate, the fact remained he was an absolute musical genious who lived to entertain.
Probably he’s wearing a doe-eyed smirk somewhere right now, anticipating our reaction to the music sealed in his vault. A party in a box? We’ll have to see.
Before his passing, it was virtually impossible to find any of his music on YouTube. As fast as it went up, it was removed. I don’t know how long it will be available, so enjoy this playful Unplugged session while you can:
He lived up to his song title, “Life of the Party.” Fitting that the last event he held was a dance party at Paisley Park.
His departure from this world seemed to echo his exits from the stage. Go out with a bang and leave them wanting more.
Which we do.
I’ll just keep spinning my favorites as always. Purple dance party for one!
We’ve been having some fun face swapping at the Wombat homestead. While it’s true that some things are probably better left unseen, I’m sharing this one with you anyway, cuz I love ya. Mwah.
(video may be choppy the first run through, but watch again once it’s loaded. Worth it for The Girly’s laugh alone)
Seems like every third ad on TV these days is for some kind of medication. All kinds–some for depression starring wind-up toy people, and others featuring a couple holding hands in his & her outdoor clawfoot tubs overlooking pristine mountain views promising to put an end to erectile disfunction (thanks, Hulu, for playing those during episodes of the family-friendly show, The Middle). Still others offer hope for those who suffer from psoriasis outbreaks or toenail fungus.
Funny thing is, a lot of the airtime for these drugs is used up by the lengthy list of warnings about possible side effects. It’s like the blurb you hear on the radio that sounds like it was recorded at hyper speed at the end of auto dealer ads that lay out the fineprint for listeners.
The fine print on the medications are not only lengthy, but they can also make you second guess “calling your doctor to see if it’s right for you.”
Wouldn’t it be nice if there were positive side effects of a medication? Following are a handful I wouldn’t mind seeing on a product insert or following a TV ad featuring a fake doctor and patient chatting at his desk:
[SIDEBAR: Does anyone ever chat with a doctor at his desk? Aren’t we all sitting in a chilly exam room awkwardly draped in gappy paper garments while our teeth chatter and our toes turn blue?]
WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS:
- This medication may reverse gravitational pull on breasts, causing them to regain their upright and perky state.
- Lengthy bouts of unbridled happiness and incandescent joy have been reported. These may become permanent with long-term use.
- Could cause abdominal muscle toning. Six packs have been reported.
- Regular use of this medication may produce buns of steel. Patients have reported ability to crack walnuts without the aid of a cracking device.
- Funky fresh dance moves have been reported while on this medication.
- This medication has been known to increase ability to be witty and wise.
What good side effects would you wish for?
One day after yet another mangled package arrived via UPS, I wondered how many packages in total I’ve received that had taken a beating en route or had boot print postage cancellation marks on them. It got me to thinking there should be more truth in advertising, so I put together a couple new slogans:
Their slogan: “What can Brown do for you”
I’ll tell you what you can do. Stop reenacting the Broadway show “STOMP!” on the contents of your truck, m’kay?
My slogan: UPS: Kicking the crap out of packages since 1907
Their song: “Stanley Steemer Gets Carpet Cleaner!”
When my house is your first call of the day, there’s no reason you should ask to use my restroom. Zero reasons. None. Actually, regardless of the time, you should not ask to use my restroom when you’re here for a 30-60 minute job.
I also think there’s an unspoken rule somewhere about giving the terlit a workout while employed at someone’s house. It’s just not done in polite society. It’s that simple, Mr. Steemer. And, no, showing me pics of your dog on your phone does not distract me from the fact that there is presently an angry green cloud eminating from the powder room commiting felony assault on my olfactory nerve.
Say nothing of what I witnessed upon inspection of said bathroom after you’d left.
This jingle begs for a rewrite after that experience.*
My song: “Call 1-800-Steemer… Stanley’s cleaners leave bathroom steamers!”
What slogans would you change?
*My friend hired the same carpet cleaning company and the dude asked to use her bathroom as well. I’m convinced he’s a serial bathroom user.
To bust up the dust in this joint, I’m going to share a video from earlier on in Steve Harvey’s TV career (he had hair!). I heard Mase’s “Bad Boys” version of this song today (The original is Kool & The Gang’s “Hollywood Swinging”), and it reminded me of one of my favorite funny videos. Here it is for your viewing pleasure.
This kid = awesome: