Appreciating all that makes America special

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Just think of all the music that’s distinctly American. Jazz. Rock and roll. Motown. The blues. Zydeco. (And if we didn’t invent it here, we found a way to make it better.) We tap our toes, we dance, we thrill to the music of America.

Hoagy Carmichael, Songwriter

Posted by on Mar 13, 2012 in Featured, Music | Comments Off on Hoagy Carmichael, Songwriter

Yes, I do have a soft spot for songwriters. They’re the heart of American popular music, but the least appreciated (and compensated)....

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“I Fall to Pieces” by Patsy Cline

Posted by on Feb 29, 2012 in Featured, Songs | Comments Off on “I Fall to Pieces” by Patsy Cline

It was the Billboard Hot Country chart’s number one song for the year 1961. Sometimes those songs become classics, sometimes they...

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Dick Dale, Surf Music Pioneer

Posted by on Feb 23, 2012 in Featured, Music | Comments Off on Dick Dale, Surf Music Pioneer

You may remember Dick Dale from the soundtrack of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction. That rapid staccato guitar playing...

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“My Girl,” The Temptations

Posted by on Feb 16, 2012 in Featured, Songs | 1 comment

I’d like to know how many times I danced to this song during my teenage years. Seems every band, regardless of the type of music they...

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Rosemary Clooney

Posted by on Feb 6, 2012 in Featured, Singer | Comments Off on Rosemary Clooney

Yes, she’s the aunt of George Clooney. But Rosemary Clooney was a huge success in her own right, as both an actress and a singer....

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“Stand By Me,” Song

Posted by on Jan 31, 2012 in Featured, Songs | Comments Off on “Stand By Me,” Song

When Mike Stoller came up with the bass line that begins “Stand By Me,” he had one of his greatest moments as a composer. Then...

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Neil Diamond

Posted by on Jan 24, 2012 in Featured, Singer | 2 comments

Earlier today, I went to check something on my post about Neil Diamond – and found I hadn’t written one. While everyone will...

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“Graceland,” Paul Simon

Posted by on Jan 16, 2012 in Featured, Music | Comments Off on “Graceland,” Paul Simon

From the title track on, “Graceland” showcased Paul Simon’s willingness to experiment. Much of it was recorded in South...

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“Enter Sandman”

Posted by on Dec 29, 2011 in Featured, Songs | 1 comment

The best introduction to a song. Ever. The first 1:10 instrumental of “Enter Sandman” is an adrenaline rush that is unmatched...

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Smokey Robinson

Posted by on Dec 1, 2011 in Featured, Music, Singer | 1 comment

  Smokey Robinson and Berry Gordy, Jr. have each had a tremendous impact on the other’s career. Gordy liked Smokey’s group...

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