Sunday, July 22, 2012

In Loving Memory... For you, Dennis

It's been three years, on January 20th to be exact, that a dear friend of mine died in Afghanistan. I spoke about him a bit in my previous 4th of July post. Not a day goes by that we don't miss him.... 

All the years we spent together, there was always music involved - talking about it, listening to it, sharing random musical fun facts, debating on who was the best band of all time.... VH1 Classic was the channel always playing on the tv at our friend's house, many times the songs playing on Metal Mania and Headbanger's Ball sparking some of these debates. So strange to think back now to those times knowing he is no longer with us...

My best friend, Melissa and I wanted to honor our friend in the best way we knew how. Dennis was a huge Iron Maiden fan, all the way to the end. Melissa and I had talked about getting tattoos to honor and remember him. After much debate, deciding what to get done and finding the right time to do it, our wish finally came true two days ago on the anniversary of his passing. Everything seemed to finally come together, and the timing of his anniversary seemed most fitting to the occasion. 

So on we went to meet with our tattoo artist Rod Whitesinger at Disciple Tattoo in Chandler, AZ to get inked with the lyrics from Hallowed Be Thy Name.... "Catch my soul, it's willing to fly away, Mark my words, believe my soul lives on, Don't worry now that I have gone, I've gone beyond to seek the truth....". Melissa and I played a bit with the verse order, but here are the final results.

Back of my left shoulder:

Left side of Melissa's stomach:

I know Dennis can't come back to us, but at least now he will truly always be a part of us... Always to love, never to be forgotten. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Music Never Stopped.....

Every now and then, a movie comes along that you just have to see..... not often are there movies about music. I read about this movie on a Facebook ad; The Music Never Stopped caught my eye, and I had to see what it was all about. The more I read about the movie, the more I knew I just HAD to see it. The movie originally premiered at the Sundance Film Festival to rave reviews. And it certainly didn't hurt that it stars one of my favorite actors, J.K. Simmons as the father.

I didn't know at the time this was a song title from the Grateful Dead. I was never a huge fan of the band, but neither was the father in the movie. The movie is based on a case study by Dr Oliver Sacks called "The Last Hippie". The story shows the relationship between a father and his long lost son recently reconnected through the son's cerebral trauma. The Music Never Stopped is truly the most heartwarming, oft gut-wrenching story of father and son struggling to bond only through the music that ironically tore them apart two decades earlier. 

This story shows that love and devotion prevails if you open your heart and learn to accept others for who they are. 



TheMusicNeverStopped - DVD on Amazon

TheMusicNeverStopped - Redbox

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Mood Music.....

Ahhh, a nice rainy day here in Phoenix, Arizona.... We don't get many of them, but when we do,we revel in it. So many things I love about the rain - waking up to it on a day off from work, opening the curtains to watch it come down; so very relaxing. My definite favorite part of a rainy day is the feeling it gives you and the mood it puts you in. For me, I celebrate with rainy day music and a movie.

Straight up music? Evanescence's album Fallen. I can listen to it top to bottom on any rainy day. Probably the most "rain" type song would be Going Under:

Looking at the rainy day movie, I pick the original, the best.... The Crow starring Brandon Lee every time. Not only did Brandon Lee give the performance of his life, literally, for this movie, but the soundtrack for the film is easily my favorite movie soundtrack over any other. Stone Temple Pilots, Nine Inch Nails, Rage Against The Machine, The Cure, Violent Femmes, Pantera, just to name a few. How could you not love a soundtrack with so many music legends??? My favorite widely known track is definitely Big Empty by Stone Temple Pilots:

Even the lesser known bands on the soundtrack are just so fitting for the movie and amazing...  My favorite lesser known song is Golgotha Tenement Blues by Machines of Loving Grace:

What's your favorite rainy day soundtrack?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Catch My Soul, It's Willing To Fly Away.....

On this 4th of July, I've been thinking of a very dear friend, Dennis, that we lost three years ago to the war in Afghanistan. Before he moved and joined the army, we hung out all the time with two other friends of ours. The four of us were very close and have so many memories together. My favorite was one particular 4th of July....

Dennis and I were at our friends' house barbecuing in the afternoon. Later that night, I remember sitting on the roof of our friends' house watching fireworks in the distance - we must have seen 6 or 7 different set of fireworks going on that night all over the Phoenix metro area. I sat on the lower part of their roof that was level and felt safe, but Dennis jogged up to the top of the steep, angled roof with his young daughter in his arms without hesitation or fear. 

Tonight I sat on that same roof and looked back to the spot I last saw Dennis standing.... Still so strange that he is gone from our lives. I miss him so much. As if that weren't enough to think of him, driving home I heard an Iron Maiden song, Hallowed Be Thy Name, on the radio. 

"..... Catch my soul, it's willing to fly away, mark my words, believe my soul lives on, don't worry now that I have gone, I've gone beyond to seek the truth.... ". The very words my best friend and I are going to have tattooed later this month on the 3rd anniversary of Dennis' passing. Dennis was the biggest Iron Maiden fan. I can't think of a better way to honor him and never forget how much he meant to us.... to me.

I dedicate this post to Dennis ~~ May he forever live on in our memories and our hearts ~~

Monday, June 25, 2012

Song Challenge Day 30 - Your Favorite Song This Time Last Year

And the song challenge comes to an end.... Due to my delay in timing, this technically is for my favorite song two years ago. 

The Good Life by Three Days Grace!! "All I want is a little of the good life..." 

I'm going to make this one a double-shot seeing as I fell in love with Three Days Grace last year....  And now I give you the visually stunning video for the song: 

BREAK!!!! Three Days Grace, I ♥ you!

Song Challenge Day 29 - A Song From Your Childhood

I'm going waaaay old school with this one. My mom used to own a store (( Maynard, MA residents, remember Blue Horizons/Stacey's Treat Boutique???)) Well, this song reminds me of her store. As I stated in my very first blog post, my mom was a very big influence on me musically growing up. I think it's something so magical that a song can bring back an exact memory and bring you back to a moment from your past. Pretty special, huh? 

Huey Lewis & The News - I Want A New Drug

Song Challenges Days 27 & 28...... Stumped!

Ok, sadly I am stumped with the following two challenges... Now I understand why these are challenges!

A Song That You Wish You Could Play - I have never played an instrument aside from the recorder in grade school (I only ever mastered Mary Had a Little Lamb)... Really this should also specify what instrument you wish you could play! I guess if I HAD to choose, I was slightly interested in playing the violin since I loved the sound of it but never pursued it. I'm good at listening to music, not playing it!

So, here is my choice for this one - the epic Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin. Ambitious, I know!

A Song That Makes You Feel Guilty -  Well frankly, I honestly can not think of anything that falls under this category. Officially stumped on this one!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Song Challenge Day 26 - A Song That Reminds You Of A Movie

One of the best and the original "teacher working at an inner city school" movie *Dangerous Minds*..... 

How 'bout some Coolio in da house???? Gangsta's Paradise b**ches!!!

Song Challenge Day 25 - A Song That Makes You Laugh

Electric Avenue by Eddy Grant.... Don't know why, but it just does! Silly song I remember from growing up in the 80's. I challenge any of you to listen to this and not laugh! And you know all of you at one time checked to see if Electric Avenue is a real street!

Song Challenge Day 24 - A Song You Want Played At Your Funeral

Wow, little depressing to research this one... But I feel it's fitting to choose a song by my all-time favorite band.. a lesser known song but by all means beautiful and meaningful to the topic.... No One But You by Queen: