Roger Waters rehearses for his upcoming "Us & Them" tour. Photo courtesy of his Facebook page.

Enjoying Pink Floyd (and Roger Waters) with my 50 favorites

Hello (hello, hello … is there anybody out there?).

Please forgive the juxtaposition of two songs from “The Wall,” but I couldn’t resist.

I have today off from work, and I’m spending it relaxing. For me, that’ll mean a fair share of music.

I’ve been on a big Pink Floyd kick of late. I wake up with the group’s songs going through my head. I drive to work humming some of them. I’ll find myself pondering the instrumental and lyrical depth of some of their great works while doing my job.

Why now? I don’t know. Perhaps the better question is: Why not now?

It’s been 50 years since Pink Floyd’s first album was released. And in a matter of weeks, we’ll have a new studio album from Roger Waters (his first full studio rock effort since 1992’s great “Amused to Death”). And he’ll be touring again, too!

I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am for the new Waters album. I’m eager to hear what he has to say, and to immerse myself in the atmospheres of mood and music he weaves to help enforce his point.

A cropped photo of the upcoming Roger Waters solo album “Is This the Life We Really Want?”

In spirit of my day off, and of enjoying Pink Floyd’s music (and the music of its individual members), I feel like writing about some of my favorites. You in? Let’s get this going.

Continue reading “Enjoying Pink Floyd (and Roger Waters) with my 50 favorites”

I show off some of my "Pet Sounds" swag after seeing Brian Wilson perform the classic album on Oct. 2, 2016, in Minneapolis.

Remembering to be thankful: Holidays and counting our blessings

I don’t know how it’s been for the rest of you, but 2016 has been one of the most challenging and nerve-wracking years of my life.

And here we are, it’s late in December, the year is almost over. Why wait until New Year’s Eve to look back? I’m going to use that day to look forward.

So, for this entry, I want to look back at the year and count the blessings. To talk about being unemployed or to talk about the major music deaths won’t accomplish anything.

Sometimes it’s understandable to dwell on the things mounting against you. Politics, health, loss, bills, etc. Life’s pressures can build up and become too much at times. I certainly understand and appreciate that. I’ve been there (many times), even recently.

I don’t want to sound like one of those folks who always tells you what’s best for you, but I’ll say this: I’ve learned that dwelling in the darkness does you no good. Sometimes counting your blessings helps turn things around, at least mentally.

Continue reading “Remembering to be thankful: Holidays and counting our blessings”

Pink Floyd's "Have a Cigar" was released as a single in some markets in 1975.

Great car songs: Pink Floyd’s “Have a Cigar”

Ever get a song going through your head, and get swept up by it? You get so caught up with it that you have to track it down and listen to it a few times just to find some peace?

This morning, I woke up with the intro of Pink Floyd’s “Have a Cigar” running through my head. What a groove, it’s almost funky. All props to “Money” from the classic album “The Dark Side of the Moon,” but I’ll take this highlight from the “Wish You Were Here” album any day. It is a great, great song for playing loudly while you’re driving solo.

Listen to the guitar. Isn’t that bass fantastic? What about the synthesizer’s textures? It sounds so alienating and cold, but still beguiling. And considering the lyrical content, that’s about the most perfect instrumental vibe for which you could hope.

Continue reading “Great car songs: Pink Floyd’s “Have a Cigar””