Tuesday Tunes — Hamilton: The Musical

Hi and Happy Tuesday.  I cannot believe it has been a week since I wrote last time.  I have been so busy.  I did, however, want to write today about my favorite recent musical — Hamilton.

I have the CD of the original cast recording and love to listen to it.  My son and I have been singing along with our favorites and having a great time.  The writing is amazing, the music is great, and it is all so easy to sing along with.

There are so many varieties of amazing music — rap, hip-hop, rhythm and blues, jazz, and more.  Clearly not for everyone, but we love it.  The cast was and still is super talented and brings amazing life into each nuance of the characters and the songs.  And better still, it is all based on our nation’s history.

As a writer, I have been so impressed with the lyrics written by Lin-Manuel Miranda.  He is amazingly talented and crams so much into each verse or line of a song.  So much content and a great history lesson.

My sister and her family got to see the original cast production on Broadway.  They bought tickets before they became too expensive and are so glad they did.  All of them loved the show and were so happy to be there.  I so wish I could have gone with them.

Several of my sister’s friends have also seen the show as have mine.  Each of them have said the show is amazing, or phenomenal, or well worth the hype.  I think this musical is most deserving of the multiple Tony Awards, the Pulitzer Prize, and much more accolades the show and cast have received.

For my birthday, I received the original cast album (two CDs of 23 songs each), and a book about the making of the show, the writing of the show, and the people who were both on stage and backstage.  Not having seen the show, this was a great way to enjoy the entire experience.  I do still want to see the musical and hope that I can one day.

For now, I love singing with Ian on our favorite songs — My Shot, Alexander Hamilton, Yorktown, You’ll Be Back, What’d I Miss, One Last Time, The Room Where It Happens, Satisfied, and Who Lives Who Dies Who Tells Your Story.

Actually, we like every single song for different reasons.  Each stirs up happiness or sadness, a look into flawed people who fought for freedom, the importance of each life and contributions, the impact we make on others, and so much more.

The original Hamilton had quite a life.  This musical gave a voice to all that he did for our country.  I am so glad that Lin-Manual Miranda read that book on vacation.  Imagine if he hadn’t.  What would we have missed?

I am also glad to have been introduced to and/or seen more of the amazing talented original cast — Lin-Manuel Miranda, Renee Elise Goldsberry, Leslie Odom Jr., Christopher Jackson, Daveed Diggs, Jonathan Groff,  Anthony Ramos, Phillipa Soo, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Okieriete Onoadowan, the ensemble, and the understudies.

I give it two thumbs up!  Great show and great fun.  Have you seen the musical?  Have you listened to the music?  If so, I hope you have enjoyed it as much as I have.  (The images are from Power Point clip art.)

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Tuesday Tunes — The Bee Gees

Hi and Happy Tuesday. I wanted to write something for Tuesday Tunes, which I haven’t done in quite a while.  This one is on the Bee Gees, one of my all-time favorite groups.

This image is from Power Point clip art and is how I remember these three men. I am pleased to have their greatest hits album that I like to sing and dance to.

On Sunday night, we watched a great Grammy special in their honor on CBS.  Many artists performed and discussed the impact of the Brothers Gibb.  At the end, the remaining member of the group Barry Gibb performed with his band and with the other artists.  It was great and brought back so many wonderful memories.

I had forgotten how much amazing music they wrote and performed.  I liked every single song that was performed and there were a lot of them.  So many great old photos of Barry, Maurice, and Robin, as well as Andy.  The three Gibb brothers who have died were gone too soon.  Lovely tributes were made for them.  Also, John Travolta was there with Barry Gibb and his family.

The performers were: Katherine McPhee, Celine Dion, Panic at the Disco, Ed Sheeran, Keith Urban, Andra Day, DNCE, Stevie Wonder and John Legend, Little Big Town, Joe Jonas, Pentatonix, Tori Kelly, Kelsea Ballerini and Thomas Rhett, Demi Lovato, Jason Derulo and Tavares, and finally Barry Gibb.  These are not in order of performance.

Here are a just a few of the songs that I love by the Bee Gees. These were all performed during the special.  There were only two that I was not familiar with — Massachusetts and Love So Right.

  • Stayin Alive
  • You Should Be Dancing
  • Jive Talkin
  • Night Fever
  • Immortality
  • Tragedy
  • To Love Somebody
  • If I Can’t Have You
  • Too Much Heaven
  • I Just Want To Be Your Everything
  • How Can You Mend A Broken Heart
  • How Deep Is Your Love
  • Emotion
  • More Than A Woman
  • Islands In The Stream
  • Lonely Days

Amazingly, these are just some of their hits.  Hope you were able to watch these performances and tribute to this terrific band.  I for one enjoyed it very much!  Since I should be dancing, I better get to it!  Cheers!!

“You’ve Got To Be Taught” – Tuesday Tunes

musicHi and Happy Tuesday!  Hope you have had a great weekend.  Mine was nice but I didn’t feel good so it could have been a lot better.  I went to the doctor yesterday afternoon and found out I have a sinus infection.  Needless to say, a lot of rest was on the agenda for me over the weekend.  I read, watched some shows and movies, and had a nap or two.

One movie that I watched part of was South Pacific, released in 1958.  The movie starred Mitzi Gaynor as Nurse Nellie, Rossano Brazzi as Emile DeBecque, John Kerr as Lt. Joseph Cable, Ray Walston as Luther Billis, Juanita Hall as Bloody Mary, and France Nuyen as Liat.

The movie Web site IMDB states this about it, “On a South Pacific island during World War II, love blooms between a young nurse (Nellie) and a secretive Frenchman (Emile) who’s being courted for a dangerous military mission.”  There is another storyline regarding young and lovely Liat, the daughter of Bloody Mary, and the very handsome Lt. Cable.

I had the pleasure of playing Liat while in college.  I learned to do the hula for this part and had a  great experience and such fun.  Lt. Cable sings “Younger Than Springtime” to Liat during the show and they start falling in love.  This was fun to play and I can still remember the words to that song.

I love the songs in this movie in addition to that one: “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair,” “Some Enchanted Evening,” “Happy Talk,” “Bali Hai,” and “Bloody Mary.” I imagine that I have left out a few.  I know the words to each and every one and sang along with them while watching the movie.

My mother starred in a production in our home town more than 20 years ago as Bloody Mary.  She did a beautiful rendition of Bali Hai that my grandparents loved hearing her sing.  I like her version better than the one in the movie.  I guess I partial to my mom’s singing.

I think that the most profound song in the show is called, “You’ve Got To Be Taught.”  Lt. Cable sings it after not being sure about Liat since she is different.  He has major doubts about loving her.  The words are:

You’ve got to be taught
To hate and fear,
You’ve got to be taught
From year to year,
It’s got to be drummed
In your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade,
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late,
Before you are six or seven or eight,
To hate all the people your relatives hate,
You’ve got to be carefully taught!”

He sings about the fact that we are often taught to not like people who are different from us.  By the time he finishes the song, he realizes how that he does love this young woman and that he should follow his heart.   These words really spoke me to over the weekend.  They reminded me again of how important it is what we teach our children — both through words and how we treat others.

Have you seen young children of different races play together nicely?  I have.  They don’t know that it’s not okay to do this — until someone tells them it’s not.  My son has friends of all kinds — including different races and religions, and many other differences as well as some of the same — a nice variety. I love that he knows that just because someone is different, that he can still be friends with this girl or boy.  I too have a variety of friends and family and feel blessed that all of them are in our life.

My husband and I are teaching him that all people have value and all are loved by God.  We are teaching him also to be kind to all people and love others.  May we remember to treat others with respect, kindness, and love.  After all, we truly have more similarities than differences.

I wonder if I can truly remember to love others and treat them with respect and kindness.  I do my best each day to do just that.

Tuesday Tunes: The Sing Off and Christmas Music

singingHi and Happy Tuesday.

Did you happen to watch The Sing-Off last night on NBC? I did and was so glad that I did.  It was a fun two hours with some very talented people and some kind judges who know how to give constructive criticism without being mean.

It is a show with all of the groups singing A Capella music.  The groups are very talented.  It is amazing what they can do with just their voices! There are 10 groups who are in the competition this season: acoUstiKats, Calle Sol, Element, The Filharmonic, Home Free, The Princeton Footnotes, Street Corner Renaissance, Ten, Vocal Rush, and VoicePlay.

Each of these groups brings something unique to the competition and has their own sound.  My favorites last night were Street Corner Renaissance, acoUstiKats, and The Filharmonic.  I missed a few of the performances and overall was pleased with everyone.  For Ten, last night was the first time they have ever performed together.  As Jewel said, I too was surprised by that fact.  Imagine once they start regularly practicing.

It will be interesting to see and hear what they do next.  I am looking forward to it.  Please share your thoughts on the competition and if you’ll be watching it.

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cropped-sany0111.jpgThis is also the time of year for wonderful Christmas music.  The radio station that I regularly listen too is interspersing Christmas songs with their usual lineup.  And, on the weekends, it’s all Christmas music.

A few of my favorites are:

  • “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” by Band-Aid
  • “It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” by Andy Williams
  • “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” by the Eurythmics
  • “Believe” by Josh Groban
  • “Celebrate Me Home” by Kenny Loggins
  • “My Grown-Up Christmas List” by Amy Grant
  • “Breath of Heaven (Mary’s Song)” by Amy Grant
  • “Last Christmas” by George Michael
  • “Santa Clause is Coming To Town” by Bruce Springsteen
  • “Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney

These are all I can think of now, but there will be more as I hear them again.

Hope you have a day full of music — no matter what kind you like the best!  Happy Tuesday Tunes!

Tuesday Tunes – “What Do You Got?”

musicHi and Happy Tuesday.  How do you like that title?

It’s not my favorite but it is the name of a Bon Jovi song that I wanted to write about. So despite a few grammatical issues with the song, I do really like it and overlook it since it moves me.

We listened to it on the Bon Jovi Greatest Hits CD while returning from a trip on Saturday afternoon.  Ian loves this CD and loves to sing along with the songs.  I have to say that they are his favorite band so far and I do love that!

His favorite song on the CD is “Who Says You Can’t Go Home” with Jennifer Nettles of Sugarland.  He also likes “Wanted: Dead or Alive.”  It is such fun to hear his voice singing along with these songs that I have loved for a long time. Here is Ian playing a friend’s guitar a few years ago.  It is bigger than he is.

Ian.guitarIn 1988, a friend of mine and I went to see this great band in concert.  They were as good then as now.  It was a blast.  On Saturday, Ian told me he wanted to see them in concert.  Wouldn’t that be fun?!

The lyrics of “What Do You Got?” are very powerful and all about the importance of love. With my anniversary this week, it truly moved me when I heard it most recently.

I like that the band sings that despite all the success you could possibly imagine having, it doesn’t matter much without love. In fact one line of the song is, “If you ain’t got love, it’s all about keeping score.”

Isn’t that  true? In our quest to improve and get ahead, we can keep score and make that the important thing in our life.  When clearly, it isn’t.

I think that short of the line, “who do you hold in the dark of night,” love could be anyone special in your life.  Then again, you can cuddle with your child or another family member, and I sometimes do just that.

The love of a mate is amazing, as is the love of your child, your parents, siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles, in-laws, grandparents, and friends.

Here are the lyrics:
“Everybody wants something, just a little more
We’re making a living and what we’re livin for
A rich man or a poor man, a pawn or king
You can live on the street, you can rule the rule
But you don’t mean one damn thing

(chorus)
What do you got, if you ain’t got love
Whatever you got, it just ain’t enough
You’re walking the road, but you’re goin nowhere
You’re tryin to find your way home, but there’s no one there
Who do you hold, in the dark of night
You wannt get up, but it’s worth the fight
You have the things, that you’ve been dreamin of

If you ain’t got someone, you’re afraid to lose
Everybody needs just one, someone to tell them the truth
Maybe I’m a dreamer, but I still believe
I believe in hope, I believe the change can get us off our knees

(repeat chorus)

If you ain’t got love, it’s all just keeping score
If you ain’t got love, what the hell we doing it for

And it continues with another few lines and chorus.  I like these lyrics in that they talk about the fact that love is important.

I hope that you have love in your life and someone who you can share your dreams and hopes and sad things with and someone who will be honest with you.  As I mentioned, this person can be any number of people in your life.  May you have love and be loved.

I wonder if we can truly appreciate the love we have in our life.  And, wonder if we can share it with others?  I certainly hope so.

Tuesday Tunes – The Symphony

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Tuesday!

On Sunday, we went to the local symphony orchestra’s concert for children.  This is the second year that we have attended this great concert and had a lot of fun.

The theme was Thomas the Train and all things train-related.  Even the songs were about trains. Among them were The Chattanooga Choo-Choo, the theme from Thomas the Train, and a song from the Polar Express movie.

Ian was in his element since he has liked trains for a while now.

The conductor had the kids in the audience blow their train whistles at certain parts of the show.  And, the kids paraded across the stage during one song.  GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA

Prior to the concert, students could make crafts and watch trains go around on a track.  They also made instruments.

In addition, there was a petting zoo where students could hold the instruments and play them.  Ian had fun trying out two violins and a cello.  You can see the fun he was having.

It was a great way to introduce young people to classical music.  I applaud the conductor and his musicians for doing this.  Bravo!!

The program said that an adult can get a half-price ticket if you take a child under 18 to a concert.  Isn’t that cool? They are doing a holiday concert and we’ll plan to go to that as well.

The other cool thing for the day was the location of the concert.  It was where I used to perform in high school chorus and drama club, and helped with lighting for the city ballet.  It brought back many memories for me.  They have renovated the auditorium so the sound has improved.

Not only was it a trip down memory lane but a fun new time with my family, including my parents who came with us.

Happy Tuesday!

September 10 – Sweet / Tuesday Tunes

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Tuesday.

Today’s photo challenge is Sweet, which also works well with the song I picked for Tuesday Tunes.

The photo is of Ian from Easter.  He had fun during the Easter Egg Hunt at church.  He got a lot of sweets and was very happy.

For Today’s Tunes, I decided to write about the song “Candy Girl” by the Jackson 5.

Ian has heard this on the radio and likes to sing the chorus.

Candy girl
You are my world
Look so sweet
You’re a special treat

Candy girl
All I want to say
When you’re with me
You brighten up my day”

I enjoyed listing to a very young Michael Jackson sing the words with his brother.  They recorded some great music.

It’s really fun to hear Ian sing this song too, whether to the radio or by himself.  He is good with remembering the words and the melody.

Hope you have a day full of sweets!  Any songs remind you of sweet or sweets?

I wonder what other sweet things will be a part of my day?  It should be fun to find out.

July 23 – I Drew This!

POD_July.23__I.Drew.ThisToday I have Tuesday Tunes and another photo for the July Photo-A-Day Challenge.  For July 23, the challenge is I Drew This!

As my regular readers know, the phrase “I Still Wonder Where Rainbows Come From” inspired the name of my blog and my writings.

My grandfather was a storyteller.  The quote is something often said by one of grandpa’s characters.  This character was always looking for where rainbows come from.  He  would regularly get into trouble during his quest and then need his friends to help bail him out.

Hearing my grandpa weave his tales was fun and an amazing gift.  I thought everyone knew about this layered character.  Later in my life, I found out these were special for my family and our friends.

At the end of each story, this character would scratch his head and say, “I still wonder where rainbows come from.”   This drawing celebrates that.

I have closed quite a few of my blogs with “I still wonder.”   I mention that about the topic I am writing on.  I want to keep this mindset of wondering and learning in my life and my son’s life as well.

I have always liked these stories and wondering about many, many things.  I also know and love that friends and family will help me through the tough times.  This was a great message that my grandpa illustrated in vivid and active stories.

And, I have always loved rainbows!  I remember learning the colors in school – ROYGBIV — Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet.  These are all here — although the orange is tough to see.

I wonder what new item will inspire me next.  I so look forward to finding out!  May you find and enjoy your quest!

To read more about the phrase, please see https://patticates247.wordpress.com/welcome-to-my-blog/.

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For Tuesday’s Tunes, I wanted to mention the latest in music that Ian has been singing.

This morning he said, “I love Bon Jovi.”  And, he has been singing a few of the songs!

We have a greatest hits CD which includes the great song, It’s My Life.  It includes several parts where Richie uses a special microphone to make modulated sounds.

Ian likes the wah-wahs that he does.  And, he loves to sing the words as well. I love it since they have been one of my favorite bands for years.  I saw them in concert in 1988 and would love to again.

Yesterday, he pretended two of his Hot Wheels firetrucks were members of the band.  One was Jon Bon Jovi and the other was Richie Sambora.  And, his other cars said they enjoyed the concert.

Our family has a new generation which loves this group!  Isn’t that great?

Hope you have a wonderful Tuesday!

Tuesday Tunes — My Favorite Dance Music

dance danceHi and happy Tuesday!  Hope you had a great weekend and Monday!

I have decided to change Thursday Tunes to Tuesday Tunes.  Then on Thursday, I will be adding Thursday Throwbacks.

Thursday Throwbacks will include old pictures, old quotes, and I may even revisit an old blog or two.  This way I have a few more days of items to write about!

Today’s Tuesday’s Tunes is about My Favorite Dance Music.

As I mentioned in Friday’s blog, there are a few songs that I cannot just listen to, but have to get up and dance.  Over the weekend, I thought of a few more and decided to include them in my blog.

You will notice that a lot of them are from the 1980s and 1990s, with a few from the 1970s.  This is the time that I went out dancing a lot and many of these are the songs that I loved then and still do today.

During my senior year of college, my friend Dawn and I went out almost every weekend to a neighboring city to dance.  We went to a great place where we had a lot of friends.  Both of us were mainly about the dancing and it was so much fun!

Not all of these were played at this club, but I liked to dance to them on the radio or other places.  In more recent years, I have enjoying dancing with my neighbors at the beach!  That is fun too.

These bring back such great memories for me!  I looked up a few lists online to find these treasures!

What are some of your favorite dance songs?  Please share them.

Here is my list of 36 great dance songs:

  • “The Electric Slide”
  • “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees
  • “Very Superstitious” by Stevie Wonder
  • “Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch
  • “Rhythm Nation” by Janet Jackson
  • “Rock this Town” by the Stray Cats
  • “Let’s Groove” by Earth, Wind, and Fire
  • “”Livin’ the Vida Loca” by Ricky Martin
  • “The Way You Make Me Feel” by Michael Jackson
  • “PYT (Pretty Young Thing)” by Michael Jackson
  • “Celebration” by Kool and The Gang
  • “Push It” by Salt -n- Pepa
  • “Super Freak” by Rick James
  • “Vogue” by Madonna
  • “Pump up the Jam” by Technotronic
  • “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin'” by Michael Jackson
  • “I Can’t Wait” by Nu Shooz
  • “In My House” Mary Jane Girls
  • “You Spin Me Round” by Dead or Alive
  • “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins
  • “Highway to the Danger Zone (from Top Gun)” by Kenny Loggins
  • “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” by Wham
  • “Nasty” by Janet Jackson
  • “Come Go With Me” by Expose
  • “The Glamorous Life” by Sheila E
  • “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)” by C&C Music Factory
  • “The Power” by Snap!
  • “Finally” by Cece Peniston
  • “Gettin’ Jiggy With It” by Will Smith
  • “Everybody, Everybody” with Black Box Feat
  • “What is Love?” by Haddaway
  • “All That She Wants” by Ace of Base
  • “Too Shy” by Kajagoogoo
  • “Two of Hearts” by Stacy Q
  • “Express Yourself” by Madonna
  • “Back to Life” by Soul II Soul

I know there are others that I have also liked over the years, but this is my list for today.  I would love to listen to each and every one of these songs again!

I will have to work on a more current list of 2000s songs for my next blog.  There are a lot of great songs now and in the past 20 years.

I wonder what song I will hear first today that I can dance to.  I look forward to finding out.