Playlist of the moment.

My playlist is always changing…and I thought I’d start keeping track of it for my own sake. It’s interesting to look back even a few weeks later and see what I was hooked on, what I’ve grown out of, etc.

I’m in a major pop/dance phase right now. I tend to weave from pop to rock to oldies to world to jazz to you-name-what-else, but I’ve been stuck on the pop/dance thing for a while. I think it’s because I need that burst of energy to keep me happy and motivated this summer. It just so happens that a lot of my favorite boy banders have some great solo pop/dance stuff out right now, so that has something to do with it too. ūüôā

(In no particular order), these are some of the songs I’m hooked on this week:

Howie D ~¬†“100”

This song isn’t mind-blowing by any means, but it’s¬†catchy and¬†dancey. And it’s Howie D. I mean, fuck. This is THE¬†Backstreet Boy¬†I used to¬†kiss a picture of every night, and pray that I’d one day marry. (No joke. We’re talking the love of my teenage life here.) And admittedly, when the video gets about to 1:48+ and he starts making all those damn cute faces, I kinda¬†remember why I wanted to have his babies…

 

A.J. McLean ~¬†“Teenage Wildlife”

Okay, confession time – the only reason¬†I openly¬†idolized Howie D¬†is because I had¬†a deep, dark secret.¬†If my father had known¬†of my obsessive love¬†for Alexander James McLean, he would have personally carved a cross and crucified me to it. But it was true. From day one, I wanted the bad boy…and I still do. Endless tattoos, piercings, drug problems, and that damn guyliner…even I say what the fuck? But I can’t change it. This guy somehow is still one of the sexiest people I’ve ever laid eyes on. *sigh* And this song is completely badass. Also, still¬†unavailable in the U.S., even more than a year after its release¬† Of course. (FML!)

 

Joey McIntyre ~ “Here We Go Again”

I don’t know where to begin with this one. How does the baby-faced kid of New Kids On The Block end up releasing such a badass solo single at age 38? Hot damn. I mean, he was cute and I liked his solo work back in the day, but now he’s better than ever. (Aren’t they all?)

 

David Guetta feat. Taio Cruz & Ludacris ~ “Little Bad Girl”

Mmkay, a few things here:

1) I love David Guetta.¬†If I were a billionaire, he would DJ every one of my parties. I’d have him on speed dial.

2) I love Taio Cruz. He’s British, he’s sexy, he wears shades even in a dark club, and he says absurd things in songs like “over thurrr”. What’s not to love?

3) I love Ludacris. He’s a badass rapper to¬†begin with, but¬†absolutely KILLS IT in this song.

4) I did not know these 3 recorded a track together until a few days ago. I nearly screamed when I found it. It¬†is (of course) amazing, and is now my theme song of the moment. ‚̧

 

Pitbull feat. Marc Anthony ~ “Rain Over Me”

The first time I listened to this song, I was like, “Oh it sucks. Boring after the first listen.” Then I kept going back for more. WTF?!

Okay, fine. I’ll admit it. It gets better with each listen. Pitbull’s growl with Marc Anthony’s gorgeous wail? Shiiiiiiiiit! ‚̧ I’m hooked. Whatever.

 

Selena Gomez ~ “Love You Like A Love Song”

This song blows. It’s sooooo bad. And sooooooooo good. Even I’m ashamed to love it as much as I do – and I’m the queen of cheesy pop! Damn you, Selena. And you have to be so fucking cute to boot. (I love her videos. It’s like watching a little girl have a blast playing dress-up. I’m totally jealous!)

 

Nick Carter ~ “I’m Taking Off”

I’m sad there’s no music video for this (yet) because it could be insane! I don’t know what I was expecting from this album – I loved Nick’s first¬†solo¬†album “Now Or Never”, but that was (oh now I feel old) back in 2002. The sheer time between his albums, and the fact that “I’m Taking Off” has a dull, gray-tone, unmemorable cover, apparently lowered my expectations. But the title track alone is worth it. (The rest of the album’s great too!) This song is brill – the lyrics, the music, the premise. C’mon, any song that mentions Captain Kirk is bound to be the shit. Looooove it.

 

Colbie Caillat ~ “I Do”

This doesn’t fit the dance/pop mold I’m in, but I adore Colbie and her music is exactly how I envisioned my own would be¬†if I recorded an album.¬†Sunny, bright,¬†endlessly creative…I love her work so much. There are several of her songs I’m¬†hooked on at the moment, but this is just one of my faves. Besides, I can’t say no to a song that has either banjo or ukelele in it. Period.

 

Jordan Knight ~ “Let’s Go Higher”

This kind of reminds me of the Howie D song in regards to¬†quality: it’s not earth-shattering, but it’s catchy, and the fact that it’s my “favorite” member of a group makes it a must. I loved Jordan. I still do. He’s gorgeous, but more importantly, he has one of the most beautiful voices I’ve ever heard.¬†It’s like silk, and when¬†he hits those high falsetto notes in NKOTB songs, my knees get weak. I had always thought for sure those notes were auto-tuned in the studio, but this 41-year-old sexpot nearly blew the ceiling off with them at the NKOTBSB concert. I had to hold myself up for a moment. Good damn thing his brother’s the gay one, because that means my Jordan fantasies are still possible…well, you know, ignoring the fact that we both have spouses and multiple children. (Kimberly Knight has a¬†ring to it, that’s all I’m sayin’.)¬†Anyway…

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Holding back the flood.

I initially watched this video months ago when it first premiered; I remember lying in bed and viewing it on my iPod. Just moments into the video, and well after the end of it, I was in tears.

Now, I’m not a baby by any means, and I don’t tend to cry a lot over my own emotions. But other peoples’ emotions? Instantly. I cry at movies, books, commercials, (and apparently YouTube videos) at the drop of a hat. So, no, the emotions don’t have to happen to a real person – even a fictional character will have me sobbing.

And I guess that’s a good thing? At least, I consider it to be. Each time it happens, it proves that my capacity to feel amazing, earth-shattering emotions is still going strong. It’s part of the way I run – I “idle high” at all times. (More¬†thoughts on that at a later date.)

After all of my Take That obsession lately (okay, it’s been going on for a while now, but I only decided to let it out in blogs recently), I realized that I’ve¬†failed to share¬†what I consider the single best moment in TT history, and just a beautiful moment in humankind to boot.¬†Yep, this video.

Here’s why it’s so great: rewind over 15 years ago, to when Robbie Williams abruptly departed Take That and the band fell apart. There was bad blood between the boys (especially Robbie and Gaz). People thought that was the end. And, for a while, it was.

Then fast forward to 2005, when Gary, Howard, Jason, and Mark reformed without Robbie. Fans were thrilled. ‚̧¬†Give it another¬†few years and we finally come to 2010, when, much to the surprise of – let’s face it – pretty much everyone, it was announced that Robbie Williams was returning to the Take That fold. Holy doughnuts, Batman! This was huge news. Considering the popularity and commercial success of TT, and of Robbie Williams on his own,¬†it could arguably be compared (on a slightly¬†lesser scale, of course) to the returning of a missing Beatle.

What many wondered is Рdid Robbie come back because he wanted to be a part of TT again? Or did Robbie return simply because his own career was floundering and his former bandmates were experiencing success?

I think this video answers it all.

The song is¬†“The Flood”. This video, from an episode of The¬†X-Factor in 2010,¬†marks their first official performance as a 5-piece in over 15 years.¬†It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that¬†“holding back the flood” is more than just some song lyrics here. Robbie is beside himself with emotion from the first note (all of which he hits beautifully, by the way!). And the other guys? Beaming. ‚̧¬†Despite Gary’s mic being too low¬†(grrr! Fire the sound techs!), I’ve never seen¬†Mr. Barlow¬†so happy on stage, ever. He’s trying to maintain that stoic Gary Barlow stage face, and hot damn, does he ever fail at it this time around!

Best moments:

0:40-0:45¬†~ Robbie visibly choked with emotion as he sings “then we forgave them”. Forgiveness strike a particularly poignant chord with this group, perhaps? ūüėČ

1:07-1:24 ~ Gary trying to keep a straight face. Sorry, Mr. Serious, you failed! ūüėÄ ‚̧

3:32-3:38 ~ Mark and Robbie, need I say more? Watching them perform together is¬†always sooooo cute. ‚̧

3:56-3:58 ~ Gary’s little jig. What the fuck was that?! I love men who can dance, but sometimes men who can’t dance are even better! LOL

And, obviously, group hug at the end. ‚̧ ‚̧ ‚̧ Emotional for anyone who understands just how ugly the backstory with this group is!

It’s a lovely moment in time, all things considered. They knew there were naysayers out there, so they had to come out and prove they were ready to be a cohesive group for the first time in over a decade. And they nailed it.

(Edit: Apparently you’ll have to click to allow a YouTube pop-up in order to watch the video. Dumb!)

Douche or Delight ~ Vol. 7

Douche or Delight?

 

Delight!

Rain

Some people may consider this selection a douche, but I really, really, really love rain! What’s not to love?¬†It smells amazing, it washes allergens away, and it keeps everything green (which happens to be my favorite color). It’s also soothing, and¬†most of the cranky people stay inside on rainy days¬†– which may be my favorite bonus of all!

Rain inspires me. I get the most ideas for stories, song lyrics, and poems when it’s pouring outside. I also feel most at peace with the world during a rainstorm. It’s like God’s (or, if you prefer, Nature’s)¬†subtle way of reminding us that we’re not as significant as we think we are. There are many things in this world bigger than us, more powerful than us, more magnificent than us. And I kind of like feeling small and insignificant. Well, you know. Sometimes.

What will pop up on my list next time?

Nobody knows…

Douche or Delight ~ Vol. 6

Douche or Delight?

 

Delight!

 

Music

This is far too broad of a category for a D-or-D post, but I had to put the obvious out there: I love music. I live for music. I can’t go two steps out the door without my iPod before I start to have a panic attack. When I’m mad, I listen to music. When I’m sad, I listen to music. When I’m happy….you get the picture. I think that discovering new music (whether it’s actually new, or decades old) is one of the single most amazing experiences in the world. I tend to get panicked that one day I’ll run out of new music to fall in love with. Then I find a new-to-me artist or song that throws my world into a¬†spin and I feel giddy all over again. If my house were on fire and I¬†only had time to¬†save one thing, I’d dive straight for the iPod. Okay, slight exaggeration. But nobody knows me better than my iPod (except maybe Amazon – damn you and your spot-on recommendations, Amazon!), and sometimes, when it plays a particularly mind-blowing sequence of songs,¬†I think I’d marry it. ¬†

I’ll take music in any form – cassette, CD, vinyl, digital, live, whatever¬†– and any genre. I can always find something I like. It’s not really a hobby or an obsession, it’s more important than that.

It’s fuel.

What will pop up on my list next time?

Nobody knows…

That’s my girl.

From the moment I first laid eyes on her years ago (ironically, sitting unnoticed alongside her already-famous BFF, Selena Gomez, while Selena signed autographs), I adored this girl. Then I heard her singing voice and fell into total obsession. 

Demi Lovato always has been (and likely always will be) one of my favorite “Disney kids”. She may have even tied Hilary Duff on my favorites list by now. I just LOVE her.

And after rehab at 18 (ouch), she has come back stronger than ever. This song takes everything people say about Disney kids (they can’t sing, they’re robots, they have no brain cells) and shatters it. Hot damn, Demi. Way to go. That’s my girl. ‚̧

Douche or Delight ~ Vol. 5

Douche or Delight?

 

Douche.

 

Cigarette Butts

I consider myself a fairly tolerant person when it comes to others’ personal and lifestyle choices. If it’s not affecting anyone else, who cares? But smoking is one lifestyle decision¬†that strikes a constant nerve with me. Let it be known – I am a smoker. I don’t smoke every day, but I’m a casual cigarette-with-a-drink and/or social smoker. This may seem like a hypocritical choice for douche or delight, but I beg you to read on. See, when I smoke, I am vividly conscious of how it’s affecting others. If there are non-smokers present, I do my best to smoke away from them and downwind.¬†Many¬†full-time smokers are not so considerate.

What’s¬†quickly becoming one of my biggest pet peeves, however,¬†is cigarette butts. I want to know who decided that leaving the butt of a cigarette on the ground is acceptable etiquette? If we really allow this to happen on a regular basis, that mentality would indicate I can just leave a Diet Coke can on the ground when I’m done with it, right?

It makes no sense.

I understand the cigarette has to be put out somehow, and the natural choice is asphalt or¬†a similar¬†surface that won’t catch fire. But are we really so lazy that we can’t clasp the cigarette between our fingers long enough to stand back up, then walk it¬†to an ashtray or trash can?

I’d like to make a suggestion. If you’re a smoker who normally leaves butts strewn on the ground, try carrying an empty Altoids¬†tin with you. (They now make “Altoids Smalls” and the tin is about half the size of the normal one.) When you put out a cigarette, toss it in the tin, and the next time you see a trash can, empty the tin. It’s like a tiny ashtray on the go. There’s really no acceptable reason for a cigarette butt¬†to be left on the ground, ever. ¬†

What our society has done is make cigarette¬†butts a socially acceptable form of¬†litter. But, let’s face it:¬†any kind of litter is always¬†a douche.¬†

What will pop up on my list next time?

Nobody knows…

When we were young.

Not a blog. Just an excuse to post the latest Take That music video – which they actually made available in the U.S. right off the bat! :-O Thank heaven for small miracles.

It’s¬†the final single off of the Progress/Progressed album, and my personal favorite track on Progressed. Simply lovely.

There will be random things like this popping up on my blog from time to time, because they make me incredibly happy, but most of my “friends” on Facebook couldn’t give a rat’s ass what makes anyone else happy. Too bad for them, because they miss out on my random nuggets of joy.

When We Were Young – Take That

(Lead vocals: Robbie Williams on verses, Gary Barlow on chorus.)