My IdeaLife: Music

My Kingdom for a Kiss Upon Her Shoulder

It's been 18 years since his blood warmed our hearts and his, but his voice remains and still inspires...Read more...

The love of your life

Is it a man, is it a career, no it's superbaby!...Read more...

A lifetime of beauty in a song

Middle East (the band not the place) have somehow condensed the human experience into this soulful song: Blood...Read more...

Superwomen have it all by NOT doing it all

Superwoman really don't exist, it's more like Insanitywoman, so stop pretending and start outsourcing...Read more...

Showing posts with label Music. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Music. Show all posts

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Lover you should have come over - dedicated to Jeff Buckley

18 years ago today I woke to find the only musician that still adorned my walls had died. Music transcends time and it seems like yesterday his flowing, blood-driven voice wrapped itself around my open heart.


I was a backpacker just settled into my first share house in London, my room not much larger than a walk-in robe, lit up with his beauty. At work that day I mourned in isolation, as the middle-class English girls had no clue who I was talking about. Luckily the music journos of the day did and every major newspaper in London had full page spreads set aside telling of the untimely loss of Jeff Buckley. 

Like so many that felt as though he had let them inside his soul, we cried at what we would no longer feel. Without him serenading us, understanding the depths of our heart, it would ache restlessly. We cried because we felt his pain, we knew he'd been abandoned by his father, Tim Buckley, who's own death at 28 meant they never knew each other and met only once for fifteen minutes. We knew his depth threatened to engulf him and fame overwhelm, but we never imagined that he would drown, we all thought he would float and keep singing. 
He will always be my dream brother, and the lines in my head will remain for him, from him.
"So I'll wait for you and I'll burn
Will I ever see your sweet return
Oh, will I ever learn?
Oh, lover, you should have come over
'Cause it's not too late"

Jeff Buckley
November 17, 1966 - May 29, 1997

 

Listen to him here pdora.co/JeffBuckley or to the live interview and performance below

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

A lifetime of beauty in a song


I can't say that this song is going to make your day because it makes me sad yet it inspires me at the same time. But It somehow captures a lifetime in minutes and I am at the same time grieving the end as much as celebrating the wonder of what is now and possible. 

Because life in all it's forms always contains at least elements of beauty. The unique outlook each individual has, what they see is what no one else ever will. We are all watching our own movie and whatever scene you are up to, one thing is for sure it is yours and yours alone, to cherish and keep, locked in your beautiful mind. 


Townsville has obviously been harbouring some deep, mesmerising souls in 'Middle East' 

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Wrong...in all the right ways

I know I am late to this party but by accident (1 minute in a car park before work) I actually listened to the words of Pink's song "Raise your glass" and I fell in love with it and her. 

And then for some unknown reason a colleague at work sent me to this blog post about embracing your weird self (I think I might be weirder than I first thought). Then that classic scene in The Family Stone popped into my head, you know the one where Meredith (Sarah Jessica-Parker) is told by, if-only-this-guy-existed-in-real-life, Ben (Luke Wilson) that she has a freak flag that she just doesn't fly. And I realised there is something quite beautiful (in the loosest sense of the word) about being your real imperfect, nitty gritty, human self. 

We seemingly are all trying to be something that we think is the cool, "right" thing to be, appearing all detached "man", "holler". Well sod that - I get my knickers in a twist all the time and it's because I do care and I do want things to be different and I'm not going to just hang back to appear cooler than I am.


So newsflash - I have a geeky freak flag too (Wow at last Sarah Jessica Parker and I have something in common). Socially I think that over-sharing is hilarious and that political incorrectness is fun. I hate cyclists and often think they ride like they actually want to be run over by a car (I used to ride and I was respectful that cars can take off faster than bikes from a set of lights...helloooo!) I sometimes use the word 'spaz', mostly to describe myself but I know this offends some people seemingly my hubby the most (he's such a spaz!) 

I also forget to ask everyone who's asked me how their weekend was because quite frankly I can't remember my own let alone have the brain power to absorb what happened to some one else. I'm not intentionally or selfishly not interested, it's just my diskspace is full, sorry! I have an obsession with perfect typography, copywriting and layout that drives my team and our agencies crazy. I have an unsettling memory for the perfect word order of a conversation and don't accept answers that contradict the "vibe" of a situation. I like excel and picmonkey in equal measure. 

In short I am like this swearing, curiosity junkie who won't stop until I know the "real" story and have created the "scientifically" perfect layout (I would have said article but that would be insulting given the shoddy word selection of this here post that you are struggling to follow). 

It is weird, annoying and quite tiring. Mainly because I have been left of centre and "wrong" for as long as I can remember and there is no better time to say "you know what - that's what makes me me". And this freak is starting to fly her obtuse flag - look out "perfect" people you're about to cringe!

As Pink so articulately puts it "Raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways..."

Cheers to what makes you perfectly imperfect! 


Monday, 8 April 2013

20 songs to make you smile

If you have read a lot of this blog you will know that I blog about the music I love, and more and more so as I come out of the baby haze. It is also timely that The Voice started again in Australia last night and the song selections were pretty amazing, including one of my big faves Blackbird.

With relatives like this you can see why I love music! The Saitta boys (Dad's on the left)
So for #hAppyril it seems only fitting to compile a list of songs that move me to a better place. Sometimes its tears at the beauty of a song, or the memories a song can conjure, whatever it is these songs feel like they are the soundtrack to my life. 


What songs move you?


p.s. If the songs won't play here check out my Spotify playlist instead or if you're a tenacious type go to your browser plugins and check whether your Quicktime plugin is working (I had to disable it, restart Chrome and then re-enable it). 

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Small Bump, Huge tears: the agony of miscarriage

I am sharing this song because although it is likely to do to you what it did to me, namely make you spontaneously burst into tears, which arguably isn't that pleasant, it is too beautiful not to. 

The scans of my unmade plans


What an unbelievably rare talent, Ed Sheeran is that he can capture so perfectly the hope and love that happens even before you meet a baby. It defies all logic but nonetheless the love is palpable and I would know as I only got to meet two of my four. 

I know I am one of the lucky ones but even so I still remember the shocking emotional agony of my miscarriages. There are people all around the world trying to define at what point divided cells become life - for me it is that first magical moment of connection. Eight weeks later when a once beating heart was no longer, there was no comfort in knowing how early or how developed or not, because a new life had died before it had lived, and all the hopes and dreams I had attached to this very small person died suddenly with it. 

My comfort came in the form of another two babies and although I knew they were different and unique lives, they were still new and perfect with wonderous eyes and gorgeous potential. But this song reminds me of the cruelty of miscarriage and the absurdity of losing the love of your life and all of those precious unmade plans...

"Hold on tight, it'll be alright" xxx

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Turning Tables: discovering first loves again

When I was 16 I wouldn't have believed you if you told me that I wouldn't actively listen to music for about three years in a row. In fact at 30 I still wouldn't have believed you. Music was integral to my existence, my soul and my body, which was more often than not, moving to it. 


Pass-times can be one of those sneaking casualties of becoming a parent, especially if you end up going back to work, like me. The only music that made it past the turning point of birth were my wedding compilation albums, the occasional superb song like Foster the People's Pumped up kicks and the three songs I sing to the boys at bedtime; Close to you, Evergreen and Someone to watch over me. 

Well am happy to report a cool phase has begun with my babies now big enough for me to start remembering loves, pre- the biggest love of my life. One of them has been my hubby, but that's another less G-rated blog post and as you've probably guessed, the other is listening, playing, dancing and singing. 

Triple J has some really annoying DJs, but when they are not talking they are still educating Australia on the latest and best music ever made. And if classics are not your strong point then I can't recommend the first five series of Glee highly enough, with soundtracks of whole generations captured in a new and creative way. 

Anyway it wouldn't be a useful post if I didn't share a favourite that hopefully becomes a part of the soundtrack for your life too. And if it is anything like mine, the tables have turned again.


  What have you rediscovered that the baby years briefly took away?


Monday, 1 October 2012

A Beautiful Beginnings End: RIP Jill Meagher

Street Art Tribute in Hosier Lane, Melbourne, Source: HeraldSun

Her dreams were those of any beautiful young girl, her vibrancy and light existence marred only by a shimmer of doubt that flashed through her mind when a stranger began talking to her on the way home early last Saturday morning. That doubt grew into unthinkable horror when Jill Meagher's circumstances conspired against her and a predator, a man so lost and damaged, thought nothing of ending her near perfect life. A life with a long future of love and adventure and moments. A lifetime of moments he felt were less worthy, than a vulgar, disturbed one made up of power and violence. 

Source: The Vine Live
I don't understand this man, not even close. What megalomania takes hold to not understand another human's huge and majestic existence? How could he not see her, and how she extended into the past, the future and into all those that know and love her in the present? Was it the brilliance of her that made him hate her enough to end her beautiful life? I don't know and like the thousands that walked down Sydney Road as a tribute to this senseless loss, I will probably never know what possessed the man that did this to Jill. 

Tribute March for Jill Meagher, Brunswick, Source: HeraldSun
All we are left with are questions unanswered, shock and grief. And a desperate scrambling to pull together, to reassure each other that humanity is not lost. That there are more of us who feel each other, empathise with and respect each other, than those that do not. I want to hope, I want to send thoughts of strength and love to Tom Meagher and the McKeon Family, but I am collapsed in grief at the absurdity of this life. That this can happen, and does happen more often than we know, breaks my heart. 

Tears replace the space where hope lived, so for now I cry with you in your great loss. And hope that maybe one day the lyrics of this song will make sense of the senselessness of Jill's end. 


"Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end"

Monday, 26 March 2012

"Sometimes we wish for far away" man I love Powderfinger

This song was one of those songs I waited for when I listened to Powderfinger's album Odyssey Number Five, which I happened to listen to a lot in 2000 and 2001. I had just ended a 2 year de-facto relationship at 30 and my life was at a turning point. The understated agony in their music resonated with my own confused heart. 

I was reminded of my buried obsession one night driving home when someone with obviously impeccable music taste, I think on Triple M, played 'DEF', my second favourite song of theirs. And then by my mate Purple_Cath who was sharing her love of Powderfinger yesterday on Twitter. We lamented together their decision to disband.

Powderfinger farewelling the crowd at one of their final concerts... :(

So what better way to reignite my passion for men, such as these, that just reach in to my chest and grab my heart but than writing about it here. Enjoy, and I hope it brings back memories of late nights, dancing in muddy fields and stolen kisses. 

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

The Problem with Mortality: Jim Stynes gone at 45

On the day of Jim Stynes state funeral an edited version of this post was published in the Tele

"All those moments lost in time...like tears in rain...time to die"
BladeRunner 1982


I’m not in to watching sport, in fact when my husband turns it on, daily that is, I go kind of mental and loudly threaten a 24 hour Jane Austen marathon until he changes the channel. But tonight the not so random Fox Sports channel specifically selected to watch a dedication to AFL legend Jim Stynes sent me a different kind of crazy. Tears streamed down my cheeks as I took in the loss of an obviously great man with a rare mix of humility, drive and amazing character. My heart broke as I imagined his wife and children facing a future without what was obviously the backbone of their reality gone. And as I saw the helplessness we all share when the enemy of our time rears it’s ugly head, to cut short another young life at only 45, it was almost too much.

Last year Sarah Watt died of Cancer, a month before her, Steve Jobs, weeks before that Gavin Larkin, a few months before that my cousin, and the list goes on like a morbid game of Chinese Whispers that leaves only grief and sadness in its wake.

We are surrounded by death, a day does not go by in which we are not confronted by mortality. Whether it be a car accident, a suicide bomb or an illness, the TV beams it to us daily. Not surprising really, given over 150,000 people die each day. What is surprising though is how we manage to ignore it, mainly because it is not our own and for years and hopefully whole life times we carve a path through life without looking death squarely in the eye. We live as if immortal.

Even when my Mother was diagnosed with Breast Cancer I managed to shelve the situation in the “she’ll be right” category of my brain and luckily she was. Today though my delusion is showing cracks and I don’t know whether it is maturity or just that the people threatened and dying now are peers, but my "eternal" existence is being challenged.

Jim, Steve and Sarah had children, so have I, they were happy, so am I, they were in their 40s, so am I, they were needed, so am I. There it is, the unfamiliar face of death taking someone my age, at my stage of life. It is despicable, wrong and absurd. But most of all it is insanely confronting.

It is an understatement to say I am not happy about this happening. The injustice of it is driving me quietly mad. I am sad and angry and desperate at this interruption to such brilliant existences. “It is NOT fair! this is not how it is meant to be” I scream as I try to return death back to its abstract box, miles away from me. But as I spin hopelessly in my new world without infinity, I realise I need a new way to look at this or I would be of no use to anybody.

Then I remembered what I had heard last year. When it became apparent that Steve Jobs was gravely ill, I watched his speech to Stanford graduates. It left me a blubbering mess then and compelled me to write about his life, but his words were like oxygen for those grieving his loss after he died and I so I share them again as we grieve again today for Jim Stynes:

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart…”
Steve Jobs, 2005

And when Jim Stynes was asked whether he thought what was happening to him was incredibly unjust he responded: 

“Life throws up challenges, life is unfair.
When you understand that, you can get on with your life”. 
Jim Stynes, 2010



He also admitted to being too busy to get a sizable lump on his back checked despite his wife urging him to go to the Doctor. Sound familiar? “Living” does gets in the way of life and if on the day we die we want to look back without regret, listening to those that have at last faced their own mortality is key. 

So maybe instead of seeing a seething monster when death reminds us it exists, we need to see a motivator with a light shining through our material and superficial trappings to our soul and heart. A filter that tears away the unimportant and uncovers what it is we want from our very finite life. 

Unfortunately these inspirational and wise words can’t reduce the intense pain of losing someone we love or the thought of our own self ceasing. But maybe if we accepted that one day our spirit will end with one final synapse firing in our brain. Maybe then and only then would we truly learn how to live, grateful for the things that matter, and looking for ways to find inner happiness and share it with those we love.

When life gets in the way and I forget what really matters I am going to stop and remember the great ones that don’t have the chances I have, to cherish their gorgeous family and friends and to stop sometimes and just be.

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam Jim Stynes

Friday, 4 November 2011

MUMMY'S FUNKY FRIDAY : Pumped Up Kicks


My recent Friday Night Lights stories got me thinking about how life as a parent can be so boring that a loud street party you're not at and a bit of car bashing being done by a drunken lout to your own car is about as exciting as it gets. TRAGIC! And then this song came on the radio (I haven't yet given in to the grown up impulse to switch to talkback radio) and I found myself dancing hands in the hair, dance party style in the front seat of our car (don't worry I wasn't driving, god help us if I were).


Source: Fosterthepeople.com
This reminded me that I used to be an obsessed music chick that danced whenever she got the chance but especially in front of Chris Cornell in Rotterdam, ColdPlay in a muddy field in Byron Bay and Foo Fighters at Big Day Out to name a few. Although my true claim to fame was when a girlfriend and I cleared the dance floor in Nottingham when Run D.M.C's 'It's like that' came on. Today you are more likely to find me rocking out to Toot Toot Chugga Chugga Big Red Car (one day I might show you the video, 'lovingly' recorded by my hubby) and although I love The Wiggles for the smiles they bring to my children's faces, they have nothing on the strong guitar riffs and unshaven growls of the likes of Dave Grohl, which I had forgotten...until now.

So I bring you (and me) the first instalment of MUMMY'S FUNKY FRIDAY, your way out of being a boring parent who's only view to the outside world is somewhere between Larry & Kylie on The Morning Show and Tony or Alan Jones, depending on your political sway. And although all of these people make an amazing contribution to society in their own way, you don't want to find yourself quoting them during the rare times you get out of the house and talk to people taller than 4ft. Instead you can now say "Have you heard of that band 'Foster the people'?" and there you have it - instant COOL.


Pumped Up Kicks is their first single and it has made them a global hit. If you can ignore that the lyrics are about a dysfunctional youth with an absent father who's recently got his hand on a gun then this is the perfect Summer anthem. Jill Menze of Billboard describes why saying "[it] boasts a laid-back, lo-fi '60s vibe, a slick bassline and an undeniably catchy chorus" all which make it impossible not to at least tap your foot to, even with a toddler on board. In fact I challenge you not to start bopping up and down in a daggy Mum kinda way!

And so you can appear amazingly informed Foster the people was formed out of LA and was originally named Foster & the people after frontman Mark Foster, but this was continually misheard and the band gave up trying to correct it and changed the name. They played at Splendour in the Grass (that field I was talking about above if you didn't already know), in July, which I didn't attend because I was up at the same time rocking in a not-so-fun-way with my then baby. But now that I'm cool again maybe I can get to their rumoured appearance at Big Day Out 2012 (Stop laughing!)

Luckily the video above is just snippets from this young band's tour footage rather than teenagers outrunning gunmen, and although I've never been a rock star, well not in real life anyway, I have been that girl in the front row, wearing not very much and dancing like my life depended on it, all the while making eyes at the lead singer. This song is all types of nostalgic and this Mum is completely dreamy about it, I hope it has the same affect on you. 

HOW COOL ARE YOU NOW? (or how behind am I?)


©MyIdeaLife, 2011, All rights reserved

Thursday, 17 March 2011

What's with the Landslide of tears?

So watching Glee the other night and trying to chill out after the 5-7pm dinner, bath and bedtime double shift. Thinking 'this is a good episode' no Michael Jackson or Olivia Newton-John songs, so that was making me happy. And Gwyneth Paltrow’s character, Holly-sex is like hugging, only wetter-Holliday was cracking me up, so all was good.

Then suddenly out of the blue I am crying. My poor husband sitting next to me looking not that surprised exclaimed ‘what’s wrong?’ I couldn’t answer of course as was singing along word for word with Stevie Nicks’ song Landslide while tears streamed down my cheeks.

‘What is it about that song?’ my husband wanted to know, when it was over. 'I honestly don't know' I gurgled, 'the same thing happened when you played it while I was giving birth to Max, remember?'. Of course he didn't but one minute I was peacefully enjoying my epidural-nullified contractions and the next I was blubbering uncontrollably and yelling ‘turn it off, turn it off’.

So not the birth of said firstborn and don't think it was playing during any angst-ridden teenage breakups. It didn't feature at our wedding, 'so what is it' I puzzled.

Well without darting off and educating myself on the affect of certain rhythms or guitar riffs on human emotion I concluded it must be down to the lyrics. As research I thought I’d play it again the next day. So braved it on my way to pick up my son from day care. I sang along as usual and was doing ok even until the lines:

Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?


Then the chorus started:

Well, I've been afraid of changing
'Cause I've built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Even children get older and I'm getting older too


And that was it – in the middle of a reverse park I screwed up my face in that ugly involuntary way you have to, to try and stop hysterical crying coming on. I shook my head vigorously and quickly turned off the ignition managing to hold it together and not hit another parent's car. (Anyone watching would have thought I had some sort of tourettes type episode.)

Stevie Nicks wrote Landslide at a turning point in her life when she was living in Aspen. Her father had just offered to pay for her to go back to university, of which she had previously dropped out to pursue her musical career. Polydor Records had just dropped her and Lindsay Buckingham and she hadn’t yet been asked to join Fleetwood Mac, which would of course change everything.

The reflection and sentimentality of the song are understandable then also the eerie ability to make you step back and look at your life with a long view. But the child bit is what gets to me, maybe because at 40 I still feel like a wide-eyed 19 year old most of the time. Stevie Nicks was 25 when she was torn between her Father's rescue plan and her dream of being a musician. She ultimately backed herself and the rest is musical history.  

I think my tears are from the disappointment I feel at not having fully backed myself in my 20s, plus the inevitable sadness that time keeps moving on not waiting for me to grow up...mmmmnnn...Or maybe I've just underestimated the power of pregnancy and breastfeeding hormones*? Whatever the reasons - what an amazing song.

 
Have a listen - does it reduce you to a watery mess?

*The three instances of tears occurred either while pregnant or breastfeeding - will test theory when hormone levels back to normal