My brain hurts.
I've spent the majority of this work reading, researching and preparing an assignment for the university course I'm doing. And whilst the subject matter has been extremely interesting, putting together a narrated online lecture has been tedious. I know I can teach. I would've been so much happier to knock out a few thousand words. But, it seems that this is the brave new world of online post-graduate study. I'm glad this is my last unit – the whole experience hasn't been all that satisfactory.
And I know I'm getting to be a bit of a broken record on the subject, but if you're thinking of coming along to one of our Midnight Oil shows (18 and 25 May) then get your skates on and buy a ticket. You can get details and see the shameless self-promotion photo here. If you don't understand why the t-shirts say what they do then click here.
There were a couple of big events in our house this week. First up was Angus' birthday. He's 15. He's made the most of his pay increment at work by being there pretty much all week! Of course ANZAC Day was on Thursday. Zoë went to the Dawn Service and took ages in the shower afterwards thawing out as it was –2 degrees here in Canberra! ANZAC Day is something I've written about before. It's also doubly important to me as it is the anniversary of the death of one of my Grandfathers. My favourite thing this ANZAC Day was the photos of my good friends Laff and LIz taking their newborn daughter to her first ANZAC Day service. He's a returned serviceman so he and his wife deserve our thanks.
During the week I discovered a website called "MyJam". Essentially it's a music streaming site. But unlike something like Spotify, it's free. You sign up, select your fave song of the moment and MyJam then shares that song with anyone interested because the either follow you or a tune they like is related somehow. It's pretty cool and I've been turned on to some very cool tracks as a result.
First up is this one by Chris Bathgate. Wikipedia reveals that he is from Michigan and is an "indie-folks singer-songwriter". I like the fact that he started out in Heavy Metal bands before returning to folk music. I can relate.
Chris Bathgate – Yes I'm Cold - http://youtu.be/eDTFa8JPH1Y
This next one is an absolute killer. From Hank Williams. But listen carefully to the tune in the verse. Can anyone say. "Bill Haley and the Comets"? This was 8 years before Rock Around The Clock.
Hank Williams – Move It On Over - http://youtu.be/QFDsx1LV3TE
Neko Case is a Canadian singer who you may have heard singing in the band "The New Pornographers". This track was written by John Mellencamp and is slated to appear in a new Stephen King film called "Ghost Brothers of Darkland County". Hopefully the film will be better than another that had an awesome soundtrack – AC/DC's "Who Made Who" was made for the film "Maximum Overdrive".
Neko Case – That's Who I Am - http://youtu.be/_n7O_9AA47I
Punk rock is mainly the realm of white boys and girls. There are a few notable exceptions like Bad Brains and of course the Ska influence is a veritable melting pot. The next band were out of Detroit in the 70's. This song was one that came around on MyJam and that made my ears prick up. I kinda like the fact that Death were an R&B band who changed styles after seeing Alice Cooper play.
Death – Views / Can You Give Me A Thrill - http://youtu.be/YLUMovIOby0
Alice Cooper – Under My Wheels - http://youtu.be/HQwJaAhtCi8
You may wonder what song I put up to get these recommendations. Well, it was Johnny Cash's version of "I Won't Back Down". It pretty much all flowed from there through Paul Simon, Tom Waits, Ron Sexsmith and Tom Petty. But there were some fairly left field recommendations and that's what I really like.
Here's a new(ish) one from Ron Sexsmith – he's very quickly becoming of one my favourite singers. His songs are melancholy but as he says in an interview in March's "Uncut" magazine, "there is comfort in a sad song". See what you think...
Ron Sexsmith – Love Shines - http://youtu.be/_X2LJ-BEBhY
But to finish, the opening theme to my uni presentation. I hope it gets me top marks!
The Rolling Stones – Emotional Rescue - http://youtu.be/Q0tQPodGgeM
See you all next time on the Muppet Show.