Thursday, October 05, 2006

Any more tags and I'm going to have to get a bigger ear . . .

Ziggi put me on the musical spot, so here's 10 songs - not necessarily favorites and with the thankful omission of "Having My Baby" - that have some meaning in my cold, gray, insignificant life:

"The Third Man" theme - Anton Karas
I first saw the movie on PBS in high school, and I just got caught up in how the music mixed with the images of a post Hapsburg Vienna and the hunt for Harry Lime.

"The Girl I left Behind"
As I got immersed in getting my history degree, "Breaker Morant" was among the film list for my British imperialism course. This late 19th/early 20th century tune - the equivalent of modern-day pop as were so many other pieces in the movie - made me realize that really not all that much has changed in popular music. And it's still a catchy little song a hundred years later.

"The Fez" - Steely Dan
Listening to this as a 14-year old, one wondered with not a little salaciousness just what it was that Donald Fagen wasn't going to do without the fez on, no no.

"On Broadway"
Even though I was 6, I still remember the television commercial for - was it Radio Free Europe or Voice of America? - with the eastern European expatriate walking the streets of New York and coming into work to read the news to secret listeners behind the Iron Curtain. George Benson really screwed that song up when he remade it.

"Tradition" - from 'Fiddler on the Roof'
I'm not much on show tunes, but I've always liked this one. Hearing Topol sing it again at Wolf Trap in 1989 just made it better.

"I'd Be Surprisingly Good for You" - Patti LuPone, from "Evita"
I never liked the movie version of Evita - it was too wrapped up in its stars and not in the creepy, Gothic mystique of Eva Peron, but the original stage version and soundtrack were like a Faulkner story or something out of Tennessee Williams. Again, I'm not a big show tune fan per se, but how could one not be enthralled by this combination of the erotic and Machiavellian cynicism? It certainly crystallized my view of much of what I see.

"Aja" - Steely Dan
My first serious girlfriend kept my copy of the album - we played the title track a lot when we were alone.

"Onward Christian Soldiers"
I spent second grade in a Christian school in Florida, and we sang this every morning after reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. I remember it was hard to sing then, and 39 years later I still wonder just how the title reconciles with what Christianity is supposed to be. One's sense of irony needs a workout whether young or old, I suppose. the song gave me no comfort then and it gives even less comfort now.

"All Day and All of the Night" - The Kinks
This is what I think of when I think 'rock and roll' Less than three minutes long but with more energy and everything that scares one's parents than any album length drum and guitar solo. Every time I hear it I still feel the same as if I was a teenager again.

"In the Hall of the Mountain King" - from "M"
In the movie "M," Peter Lorre plays an overcoat-and-fedora clad child molester/killer who whistles this piece as he searches for his victims. The whistling builds as he gets closer to his prey. To this day, I think of this piece when I see or hear news of a missing, molested or dead child.

That was a cool breeze from hell . . .


Blogger ziggi said...

I so nearly put the Kinks, but You Really Got me Going! And then I read Joyce's and she had Whoa Black Betty - and that brought to mind a whole set of memories I'd forgotten . . . and then you frightened me with M brrrr

12:40 PM  
Blogger Carmenzta said...

AJA!!!!! YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1:41 PM  
Blogger The Michael said...

I don't know how to respond to this, since in comparison my tastes and influences seem so much more pedestrian. So read these and weep..........

"On the Turning Away" Pink Floyd
"All the Young Dudes" Mott the Hoople (whatever the hell a "Hoople" was....)
"We've all come to say goodbye/better off dead" Paul Williams - Phantom of the Paradise
"It's all been done" Bare Naked Ladies
"The Last Resort" The Eagles
"Have Mercy on the Criminal" Elton John

No wonder I'm so screwed up.........

2:07 PM  
Blogger Frontier Editor said...

Naw, I'm the screwed up one, still thinking about a 1931 Peter Lorre movie

2:09 PM  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

I love that we have some music in common - The Kinks, Ram Jam are both in mine but hidden as secondary choices.

I nearly had Beethoven's Ode To Joy 'cos we had to play it in Orchestra nearly every school assembly

4:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A wonderful and eclectic selection FE. So much more class than previous participants that I have seen.
Don't like the music much, though.

4:51 PM  
Blogger Frontier Editor said...

well, Grieg IS a moody old f*** but you go with what you know >B^D>

4:56 PM  
Blogger Within Without said...

I had to re-read selection No. 2 to determine it was not Girl With a One Track Mind.

I recognized Steely Dan and the Kinks, anyhoo...but am wondering why you wouldn't have listed the YouTube entry from your previous "after the last three days" post.

10:28 PM  
Blogger Homo Escapeons said... what an eclectic little list you have amassed here.
I played Mendel the Rabbi's son in Fiddler so I sang those songs for five months....sort of took the L'chaim out of my sails..although Sinrise Sunset is still a beautiful tune..
it was more fun to do Officer Krupke when we did West Side Story.
Steely Dan were certainly in a class by themselves and my favorite Kinks album is Schoolboys in Disgrace.
Benson's broadway was jazzy enough to break through the clutter and he had a very fancy schmancy moustache..
Breaker Morant is one of my favorite movies of all time...
very interesting liner notes from the frontier editor..well done.

11:01 PM  
Blogger Frontier Editor said...

WW: Cos "Hell" is just a good drinkin-beer-and steamin'-crabs party song >B^D>

Ziggi: I wavered on "All Day . ." and "You Really Got Me." Better to have a hard choice between those two.

Carmenzta: At the risk of sounding like a real pig, "Aja" is one of the great date albums of all time.

The Mike: Yours ain't pedestrian. Mine's just weird.

Vicus: "M" was the subject of a really great, esoteric Halloween costume back in college. All I had to do was shave, put dark circles under my eyes, get an overcoat and hat, chalk M on one shoulder and whistle all night. I was the envy of the film lit students >B^D>

Cherry: We're gonna have to compare cd collection notes.


Tradition, tradition . . .

Without our traditions, our lives woulld be as shaky as, as . . . a fiddler . . . on the roof!

To all: I suppose if I came to the party we all wish we could have, I wouldn't be tossed out immediately based on my CD collection? Or should I just pipe down?

11:29 PM  
Blogger awaiting said...

OK, OK, you convinced me to do this. But it will have to wait until the morn. I am bored to the point of sleepiness. :)

12:23 AM  
Blogger ziggi said...

I hear in the news to day that you folk 'over there' are short of pumpkins - well! What will you do? This is a real disaster, so it is reported, and has pushed the US political agenda off the front page.

11:28 AM  
Blogger Frontier Editor said...

I see it as a blessing in disguise - no kids will be throwing them in our yard, and there'll be a corresponding shortage of pumpkin pies this year. Squash and allspice as dessert? What in the wide world of sports was someone thinking!

There won't be a shortage of jack'o lanterns though - just keep watching our political news >B^D>

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Laura Elizabeth said...


I thought my sister was the only one crazy enough to make pumpkin pie from scratch.

Musical list? Bruce Springsteen.

3:25 PM  

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