The Making of a Superband – Tinley Park : Central Middle School Band

2014 ISU Invitational: The students decided they would each have a chance to touch the trophy and have his or her picture taken by it.

2014 ISU Invitational: The students decided they would each have a chance to touch the trophy and have his or her picture taken by it.

Do you remember what you did in your spare time when you were in seventh and eighth grade? I remember babysitting, playing baseball in the street with my friends, swimming in my backyard pool, and wasting an inordinate amount of time trying to beat The Legend of Zelda. I was also in the school band which met once or twice a week, and I took lessons for which I was rarely prepared. Our band concerts were twice a year, and I am pretty certain our audience consisted of mainly our parents because, quite frankly, they were the only ones brave enough to subject themselves to the torturous cacophony of a junior high band concert. This experience starkly contrasts with the experience the students have in Central Middle School’s Symphonic Band.

Endless Loop: A Day in the Life

beatlesHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“A Day in the Life” by The Beatles

I’m going to do my very best not to come off deliberately and irritatingly contrarian here. It’s probably going to take some effort, but here we go. The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is an overrated album. There. I said it. Now let’s let that sink in for just a second or two. Okay. Have you recovered? Please allow me to explain.

Endless Loop: My Autumn’s Done Come

leehazlewoodHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“My Autumn’s Done Come” by Lee Hazlewood

Someday I’ll finally be too tired to go out. I’ll be too tired to meet with friends or talk with strangers. I’ll be too tired to run, or dance, or explore. Instead, I’ll sit back in a comfy chair as my joints crack, resting my weary body, probably enjoying a cocktail, watching the leaves turn brown and fall from the trees, as my own hair gets whiter and sparser on the top of my head. For a little while, I’ll be content. And then I’ll eventually close my eyes. And go to sleep.

Endless Loop: Snakedriver

jmcsdHave you ever had one of those songs that get stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Snakedriver” by The Jesus and Mary Chain

The Joup Friday Album: Syd Barrett – The Madcap Laughs

Sydbarrett-madcaplaughsHey kids, did you know that if you start playing ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ after the MGM lion growls at some off-screen heel that probably just flicked a filterless cigarette in his mane to make him react at the beginning of The Wizard of Oz, and smoke some pot, that it’s a moderately diverting expenditure of 43 minutes and 17 seconds? It’s awesome because the most ill-fitting song on the album, ‘Money’, kind of almost exactly starts within the five second period of time in which Dorothy opens the door on the Technicolor Munchkin village, not only that, the album climaxes with the showstopping Omega of ‘Eclipse’ while the Tin Man is getting his long overdue oiling – before the Cowardly Lion has even been introduced, let alone the narcotic associations of the narcoleptic poppy field or the psychedelics of the Emerald City itself.

Endless Loop: Fade Into You

mazzystarHave you ever had one of those songs that gets stuck in your head for days…weeks…years? Sure you have. These are the songs that always make the cut. The songs on repeat. We all have them. I have a ton. Welcome back to Endless Loop.

“Fade Into You” by Mazzy Star

I am a shy teenager caught in an eternal slow dance in a school’s gymnasium, hushed, embarrassed, and awkward, my arms forever enfolding my unrequited love. I am an admirer pining away from a distance, but never standing to meet, gazing and longing forever. I am the loving and lonely soul who gives away my whole heart only to have it given back to me. I love what can never love me back.

The Joup Friday Album: The Phantom of the Paradise OST

phantomofparadiseTwo years before he tackled Carrie in 1976 to open himself up to a much wider audience, Brian De Palma made the absolutely bonkers musical/rock opera/horror schlock film The Phantom of the Paradise. The movie is a take on The Phantom of the Opera and Faust, but taking place within the music industry. William Finley plays the wide-eyed Winslow Leach, an aspiring music composer and singer whose songs catch the eyes and ears of satanic record producer and club promoter Swan, played wonderfully and devilishly (pun absolutely intended) by Paul Williams. From there, we have love, betrayal, murder, mutilation, a deal with the devil, and a string of grand, rock and roll music numbers.

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