Symphony No. 9, II. Largo

I’ve always thought when listening to the 9th Symphony by Czech composer Antonin Dvořák (1841-1904), that the second movement, the largo, is so understated and unique that it almost doesn’t belong with the rest of the work.  The movement starts so simply, peacefully, and as one online reviewer comments, it says so much with soContinue reading “Symphony No. 9, II. Largo”

In a Manner of Speaking

Sweety and I have a friend we met through another, longtime friend, but have only seen a handful of times over the years. We have connected on social media and come to know her better in the past year or so, much of this through the pandemic where online conversation was one of the fewContinue reading “In a Manner of Speaking”

Everybody Wants to Rule the World

Okay, so we’re stuck in the 80s for another day… call it a distraction from the challenge I’ve told you about, with me not wanting to let go of summer. It’s real, folks, I tell ya… Anyway, today’s selection reminds me of summer. The most powerful memory I have of hearing Tears for Fears wasContinue reading “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”

I Melt with You

Do you ever notice how, when you start your day off with an upbeat song, it has an influence on your mood for the rest of the day?  I think music can have that power, though I wouldn’t claim it will cure all ills. But I believe it does make a difference. Maybe that’s whyContinue reading “I Melt with You”

Taking Tiger Mountain

Today I was thinking of posting an ambient piece — something to chill out on. You see, last night, I was not feeling tired at all, and so I stayed up to watch two episodes of a new series I found on Netflix, Away, about a NASA mission to Mars. I enjoy a quality scienceContinue reading “Taking Tiger Mountain”

Nobody Knows

Today, I’m sharing an exhilarating piece I heard for the first time this morning. As followers of this blog know, I gain a lot of my new-to-me music through Guy Garvey’s Finest Hour on BBC 6 Music, where the host and lead singer of the British band Elbow shares his musical taste, history bits byContinue reading “Nobody Knows”

Violin Concerto No. 2, “Summer”

Antonio Vivaldi composed his best-known works, four violin concerti that form The Four Seasons, around 1716 or 1717. They were the first four concerti of 12 in his Opus number 8, Cimento dell’ Armonia e dell’ Inventione (The Contest Between Harmony and Invention).  Each concerto of the four is written in three movements, and the soundsContinue reading “Violin Concerto No. 2, “Summer””

Listening Wind

Today I was thinking of the 1980 album by Talking Heads, Remain in Light. In my opinion, it’s their best and most inspired work. A visit to the vinyl collection in the basement and a look at the album and liner notes reminded me that Brian Eno, David Byrne and Talking Heads co-wrote the album’sContinue reading “Listening Wind”

On the Sea

It’s Friday, September 11, the last day of what’s been for many a challenging first week back in school in Canada. It’s also a day when the world remembers the deaths and other losses suffered in terrorist attacks on the United States 19 years ago. The commonality is life and death, the sometimes thin veilContinue reading “On the Sea”

The Yellow Lights of Moray

It has been a while since I have highlighted a local musician. Today, a song by Winnipeg, Canada’s Scott Nolan. Nolan is a talented individual with a good heart, who supports the local music scene and musicians, and has exposed Winnipeg to talent from other places. A great example of this was the playbill heContinue reading “The Yellow Lights of Moray”

Pour le Piano, Movement No. 2: Sarabande

A few weeks ago, when I was looking for a particular classical piece, I stumbled upon this piano piece by Claude Debussy (1862-1918), and it’s remained with me since. The YouTube notes for the music say, “Watch Rafał Blechacz play Debussy’s “Sarabande” from his new DG recording featuring piano works by (Karol) Szymanowski and Debussy.Continue reading “Pour le Piano, Movement No. 2: Sarabande”

Two Cold Nights in Buffalo

This morning was a little warmer than yesterday, so I set out with fewer layers hoping I’d be warm enough on the bike. Soon the knee-warmers came off and were stuffed in my jersey pocket. Then just south of Saint-Adolphe, Manitoba, where I turned around after riding 40 kilometres (25 miles) against a mild headwind,Continue reading “Two Cold Nights in Buffalo”

Round and Round

Happy Friday! It feels like the weather has suddenly changed. When I set off on my bike this morning, it was just 7°C (44°F). It stayed on the cold side through the ride, so I was wearing some extra clothing to keep warm. It felt good to be moving after a few days off theContinue reading “Round and Round”

You’re All I’ve Got Tonight

Back on March 26, just days into the lockdown, Sweety and I were already scheming with neighbour-friends on how to get together, and I posted about a gathering we had at the time. Later, I wondered if it was really such a good idea after all. Since then, public health recommendations have loosened, though they’veContinue reading “You’re All I’ve Got Tonight”

Lonely People

The day before yesterday, in the car just getting on the road, I flipped on the Sirius XM soft-rock radio channel, The Bridge, as I wasn’t yet sure what playlist of my music I wanted to hear. (We still have Sirius as, whenever I call to cancel, they offer me a ridiculously cheap, six-month extensionContinue reading “Lonely People”

Eleanor Rigby

Today, when searching a few other songs, I came across The Beatles’ song “Eleanor Rigby.” I distinctly remember it from my childhood as the first song where I learned words for feelings of loneliness and other darker emotions. That was back in 1966 which, from a health perspective, was a pretty terrible year for me.Continue reading “Eleanor Rigby”

Deep Blue

The most powerful films I’ve seen leave me rapt in attention to the music at the ending credits… often wishing the film just wouldn’t end. In my imagination, I’ve pretended that some of my most favourite songs were the ending themes to movies. I mentioned in my post on Dire Straits’ song “Sultans of Swing”Continue reading “Deep Blue”