Category Archives: Music

Another Side to Eric Fleischmann: Soy! Live!

My friend Eric Fleischmann has published widely at the site of Center for a Stateless Society, including, recently, some very fine, original essays on the thought of individualist anarchist Laurence Labadie. I have previously written about his work on Notablog, here and here (where he critiqued my monograph, “Ayn Rand, Homosexuality, and Human Liberation“). In addition to his developing scholarship, he’s a regular rabble-rousing activist anywhere he goes!

Not many people know of yet another side to Eric. His “secret” was safe with me—until now. Check him out tonight with the band Soy, which will run a live show, taped on January 2, 2022. He is a roaring lion on stage! It’s at 7 pm (ET) tonight! Don’t miss it!

Song of the Day #1902

Song of the Day: Paradise by the Dashboard Light, words and music by Jim Steinman, is a piece of musical theater that became a staple of classic rock radio when it was released in 1978 as the third single off the album, “Bat Out of Hell“, the 1977 debut album of singer and actor, Meat Loaf (Marvin Lee Aday). The Platinum 8+ minute track, featuring both Meat Loaf and Ellen Foley on vocals, was produced by Todd Rundgren, who plays guitar on the track. When the song came out—even as it was played endlessly in its full album glory—I had a certain sentimentality for it. Any song that features the rather ‘suggestive’ play-by-play of Hall of Fame Yankees shortstop and hilarious sports announcer, Phil Rizzuto, gets Major League Points in my book. Yesterday, Meat Loaf passed away at the age of 74. Check out one of his biggest hits [YouTube link].

Song of the Day #1901

Song of the Day: Light Switch, words and music by JKash, Jake Torrey, and Charlie Puth, is the lead single from Puth’s forthcoming album, “Charlie“. This one has been in the making on TikTok for months on end. The video is an uptempo “exercise” in fun. “You turn me on like a light switch,” Charlie sings. This Puth fan is looking forward to the new album. Check out Charlie working on the song and the new video, which made its debut today [YouTube links].

Song of the Day #1900

Song of the Day: One at a Time features the music of Michel Legrand and the lyrics of Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman. The theme here is from the 1969 film, “La Piscine,” which Legrand scored with his typical lush, jazzy flair. The soundtrack theme had no lyrics, though it features vocalizing by Michel Legrand and his sister, French soprano, Christiane Legrand of the original Swingle Singers, and a scintillating jazz violin solo by the great Stephane Grappelli. Check out the original soundtrack recording [YouTube link]. In 1971, the Bergmans added wonderful lyrics to the music, and it was Jack Jones who first recorded it [YouTube link], with Legrand’s orchestrations and arrangements. Yesterday, three-time Oscar winner Marilyn Bergman died at the age of 93. She and her husband combined to provide so many wonderful lyrics to some of the greatest songs of the twentieth century, many of them composed by Legrand. My very first “Favorite Song” in this ongoing series, which premiered on September 1, 2004, featured lyrics by the Bergmans set to Legrand’s music: “What are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?” [YouTube link]. My life has been enriched immeasurably by the romance Marilyn brought to the music. RIP, lovely songwriter.

Song of the Day #1899

Song of the Day: New Year’s Day, words and lyrics by Scott Hoying, Mitch Grassi, Kevin Olusola, Martin Johnson, and Sam Hollander, is performed by Pentatonix. As the lyrics declare, when the Apple Falls in Time, we embrace the moments to come, our friends forever by our side … it’s time to celebrate like it’s New Year’s Day. Check out the studio version and a live performance [YouTube links]. A Very Happy and Healthy New Year to All!

Oh c’mon, that pic is so scary, it’s funny! 🙂

Song of the Day #1898

Song of the Day: Ben-Hur / King of Kings (“A Christmas Sequence”) [YouTube link], composed by Miklos Rozsa, arranged by Christopher Palmer, is a lovely ‘mash-up’ of the music from two of Rozsa’s film score masterpieces: “Ben-Hur” (1959) and “King of Kings” (1961). It takes the cues related to the birth of Christ from both films and presents us with an inspirational thematic celebration of peace on earth, goodwill to all. The sequence is conducted by George Fenton, and performed by the BBC Concert Orchestra and the London Choral Society. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night! (And it’s my Greek Name Day too! Yay!)

Song of the Day #1897

Song of the Day: You’re All I Want for Christmas, words and music by Glen Moore and Seger Ellis, has been recorded by many artists through the years, including Bing Crosby (with the Andrews Sisters), Al Martino, and in a lush instrumental by Jackie Gleason [YouTube links] (with Pee Wee Erwin on trumpet). It’s Christmas Eve, and you can be sure I’ll put up another musical selection when Christmas arrives! Till then … don’t forget to Track Santa on NORAD!

Song of the Day #1896

Song of the Day: Christmas Every Day, words and lyrics by Dave Barnes, Cason Cooley, and David Archuleta, who sings this song from his 2018 album, “Winter in the Air.” Archuleta was a very young runner-up in Season 7 of “American Idol” (2008). This song has a finger-snappin’ sweetness. Check it out on YouTube. Two more musical selections to go till Santa touches down!

Empire Christmas

This is not a “Song of the Day,” because it was the featured song on December 29, 2008. But this wonderful light show atop the Empire State Building—my all-time favorite NYC skyscraper—took place on December 19, 2019, when Mariah Carey‘s 1994 holiday tune, “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” finally hit #1 atop the Billboard Hot 100—the first time any Christmas song hit the apex of that chart in 61 years (following “The Chipmunk Song” by David Seville). I know, I know, you’ve heard this song a million times… but you’ll likely never see it presented like this again.

Song of the Day #1894

Song of the Day: Bobby DJ’s Disconet Christmas Medley [YouTube link], mixed by the late Bobby “DJ” Guttadaro, was released in December 1978 by the Disconet Subscription Service. This past summer, I featured a tribute to the many wonderful dance medleys produced by the fine DJs at Disconet—and Bobby was one of the original team of remixers for the service. For a man who started out as a professional pharmacist, he would go on to become one of the great pioneers in beatmixing and disco remixing. Born in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, Bobby was the first DJ to be presented with a Gold Disc and was a Billboard National DJ of the Year Award recipient. This fun, if eclectic, Disconet medley has a certain poignancy. Bobby loved Christmas. He died the day after Christmas in 1989, due to complications from HIV/AIDS. But his spirit lives on in the music he left behind. His sense of humor blesses this medley, which concludes with The Singing Dogs barking out “Jingle Bells“. I’ll be posting three additional Christmas holiday music selections until Santa touches down on Christmas Day! Stay tuned!