Monthly Archives: September 2015

Fly Us to the Moon (Again)

(U Discover Music)

(U Discover Music)

As everyone knows by now, Frank Sinatra would have celebrated his 100th birthday Dec. 12. On Tuesday, a new addition was announced to the many celebratory projects planned.

The four-CD box set Frank Sinatra: A Voice on Air (1935-1955), due Nov. 20, will trace the singer’s evolution during that period with more than 100 tracks, including 91 previously unreleased performances.
Elysa Gardner (USA Today)

Will the world ever see another Frank Sinatra?

Well, Michael Bublé is certainly trying.

And that’s a good thing, just like there needs to be rockers and rollers and big bands and pianos. Even outside of music, there is a firm belief that past greatness (movies, television shows, clothing, restaurants/dishes, technology or lack there of, etc.) should be replicated in the present. There is the notion that these movies or shows (as two examples) are bold indicators of the future. In some cases, this is true.

In other cases, not so much.

Hence the excitement for 20-year anniversary’s of movies (Jurassic Park) and television shows. Random reunions, official and unofficial (That ’70s Show, Friends, Frasier), remakes or series extensions (Girl Meets World, Fuller House) rejuvenate the hearts and minds of dedicated fan bases.

The fact that history repeats itself can be a beautiful thing. Regarding Sinatra, the new recordings arriving in November will again remind us of the talent and unique character of Ol’ Blue Eyes. His music and persona is iconic.

It will be fun to watch for that youngster who discovers Sinatra for the first time in a couple months and how that inspires a return in the future to the era of the impeccably dressed, cool gentleman with a style and voice that defines a generation.

And music will welcome a familiar, yet new way to entertain us for another 100 years.   

How I Met My XLE

Today was defined by a classic milestone:

The second car.

The fully-equipped 2004 Solara in a bold, beautiful red body was a looker. No doubt about that. I was the recipient of this sporty gem just in time for those years in college when one needs to get away from campus sans the bus and its predetermined schedule. Maya (the Solara) served me well for nearly 10 years and more than 128,000 miles.

There were good memories and those moments I wish didn’t happen. These are the accidents when the car behind me was speeding and then rams into the back of the car, severely damaging the bumper. However, that Toyota-made bumper protected me, so point to Toyota.

Anyways, the day arrived when I needed some new wheels. The great steering, stylish finish, powerful engine, dependability, affordability and incredible safety record led me, after an exhaustive search of countless car models, to return to the land of the Camry.

A 2016 Toyota Camry XLE, to be precise.

After a successful and comfortable ride home from the dealership late tonight in the rain (good sign), one thing came to mind. Enduring the joys and periodic pitfalls of driving a car for such a long time results in unforgettable milestones (100,000 mile mark!) and nostalgic reminiscing.

I’m gonna be showing you something we can all relate to.

And yes, I played and sang along to “500 Miles” by The Proclaimers on many, many occasions.

Maya had great acoustics.

Happy Monday!

“…end extreme poverty by 2030”
–Andrea Beasley, MSNBC

Four years in and the Global Citizen Festival, held in New York City’s Central Park, directs attention to initiatives that support equality and combating extreme poverty by working with organizations, celebrities and world leaders (Malala Yousafzai, Bill and Melinda Gates, Leonardo DiCaprio, to name a few).

While still early in its process, the publicity aimed at this annual musical gathering, with policy speakers and videos scheduled throughout the day, continues to draw some of the biggest bands and performers from around the globe. When I attended the first festival with a friend of mine, K’naan, the Black Keys, a special performance by John Legend, Band of Horses, Neil Young and the Foo Fighters (such an amazing weekend) entertained the crowd of 60,000-plus. It was a perfect day and night in NYC. This year, festival-goers enjoyed Beyoncé, Eddie Vedder and Ed Sheeran.

And this small indie group from across the pond that came equipped with a brand new song…

Have an Inspired Week!

Insanity’s Checkered Life

There are a billion reasons to love and hate chess.

Pawn Sacrifice seeks to highlight justifications for both ends of that spectrum.

Tobey Maguire (Bobby Fischer) escaped into the legendary chess player for a movie he said was 10-years in the making. For most people (including myself), Bobby Fischer is the one name we know in the chess universe. Most notably, this stems from a film in which a 7-year old boy from a middle-class family in New York City found himself inadvertently “searching” to channel Fischer’s world-renowned skill in the 1993 classic, Searching for Bobby Fischer.

In a recent interview, Tobey Maguire revealed just how difficult chess is to play, let alone succeed against the best. The mental toll, if pushed to the highest levels, is enough to drive any sane person mad. This is one of the driving forces in Pawn Sacrifice, which is based on a true story. However, the psychological illness caused by the strenuous nature of chess didn’t stop Maguire from relishing in the blind luck mastery of today’s chess champion.

That’s insane.

Whether you have to drive diagonally across town, north and then west or straight up the road, seeing Pawn Sacrifice this weekend seems like a worthwhile move.