Northern Lights

When you mix the sound of New Order, The Cure, The Smiths, Alphaville, and Joy Division, the result is pure magic.  This is the case with “Northern Lights” by Death Cab For Cutie.  On their new album, “Thank You For Today”, the band reinvigorated themselves and they sound incredible!

“Northern Lights” will most likely be my song of the year.  It captures everything I loved about the other bands and shows how adaptable Death Cab is to bring that sound into the 21st Century.  Heck, at this point, it could wind up being my song of the decade.  When I replay it about 50 times in a row and don’t get sick of it, I know it’s a keeper!

This blog has been on the heavy side and going on all cylinders lately so I thought it would be good to get something a little uplifting out there, even if it is just a song!

1986

I was 15 when it began.  A year that changed so much.  A time when I began to find out who I was and broke out of the mold I set for myself.

A time for BHTL…

A time for friends…

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A time to be happy…

A time to win…

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A time to be young…

A time to pretend…

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A time to panic…

A time to appreciate…

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A time to look away…

A time for heroes…

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A time to pray…

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A time for dreams…

A time for love…

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A time to look to the future…

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A time to run…

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It was 1986.  I was a high school sophomore and junior during this year.  We lost a teacher before she ever entered space.  We joined Hands Across America.  The Police got back together for the Amnesty International concert.  The beginnings of Glasnost led to the end of the Cold War as fallout fell around Chernobyl.  Ferris took a Day Off while Molly got Pretty In Pink.  We wasted our time watching Geraldo find a bottle of moonshine but we were obsessed with Max Headroom.  Bill Buckner let a ball slide between his legs while we watched a Refrigerator do a Shuffle.  For myself, it was a reawakening that changed my life forever, where the bizarre met the future.  Howard and Phil told us No One Is To Blame.  I was a short-lived Drammie.  A lady rose in stature once more.  The term “going postal” was born in Oklahoma but we lost a couple good ones at my school.  Lindsay Lohan entered the world while there was some affair going on between Iran and Contra.  I worked at a comic store and helped out with a magazine about comic books as well as the local pharmacy.  I spent a lot of time that summer in Ridgefield where I left my heart for a while.  I played football in Vermont one weekend and was an Antassawomack Beach Bum another.

To truly get this article, you had to be alive at the time, and probably into some of the same stuff I was at the time.  Alternative music, comics, Yankees, and movies!  The Cold War was still going on but we could see the beginnings of a warm-up.  I walked out of my own shadow and became… something!  It was a chrysalis but I didn’t find out what came out of the cocoon until many years later.  It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.  It was 1986…

 

 

 

Vote For The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Nominees!

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees for 2016 were announced last week, and one of my all-time favorite bands was nominated.  29 years ago, I was first introduced to The Smiths.  While the band only lasted for about four years, The Smiths made a huge impact on music.  So The Smiths certainly get my vote.  There are some other great bands in here, but I won’t plug any other ones, like I have for The Smiths.  Just vote (for The Smiths) and know that nothing I say can have any (The Smiths) influence over you.  This is not some Cheap Trick I’m trying to pull on you, or some Roundabout.  So go on, Take The Money And RunThe Cars will be full in the parking lot at the Grammys, but I’m not sure if it is in Chicago this year.

Big Mouth Strikes Again: What Did Earl Jaques Say This Time To Diss Parents?

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Delaware State Rep. Earl Jaques can’t let it go.  He hates parents opting their kids out of the Smarter Balanced Assessment.  Last night, at the SBOE SBAC Pizza Party, Jaques said “Parents make bad decisions for their kids.”  This was in reference to a question posed to participants about why 3rd graders may have done better on the Smarter Balanced Assessment compared to 8th graders.  While he didn’t come out and speak about opt-out, he briefly glanced over at me while he was saying this.  I was at this meeting for a very short time, but fate must have dictated I be there to hear Jaques’ latest rant against Delaware parents who must not know how to raise their children and must bow down before the all-knowing Earl Jaques, his buddies at the DOE and Governor Markell.  Jaques knows my position on opt-out as well and knows I am one of the most fervent supporters for it in the state.

As the House Education Committee Chair, Jaques vehemently opposed State Rep. John Kowalko and Senator Dave Lawson’s bi-partisan parent opt-out legislation earlier in the year.  House Bill 50 passed with a majority of votes in the Delaware House and Senate after months of arguments and amendments to the bill.  While Governor Markell vetoed the bill in July, many Delawareans are hopeful the legislators in the 148th General Assembly will override Markell’s veto when they return in January.  I expect more “Jaqueisms” at that time.  Last March, Jaques publicly stated students who opt out don’t measure up and slammed parents for opting their kids out.  This forever cemented Jaques place in the Exceptional Delaware Wall of Shame and earned him the ire of parents of special needs children.  He has been quiet on the issue up until last night.  Big mouth strikes again…

Apparently, Jaques really hates it if you spell his last name Jacques…