Superheated-New Order feat. Brandon Flowers

This is the song of my summer…. so far.

It’s thanks to my husband and his musical influences, his big brothers.

I’m deliberately not writing much right now.

I’ll be writing again soon. 🙂

Until then, I’ll just keep sharing the songs. They’re too precious not to.

Happy Summer!

~Erin

 

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“Move Me” by Sara Watkins

I love it when I find a gem that hasn’t been released yet, like this one.

I’m so feeling this whole song right now, from the sweet and raspy vocals to the tired and honest message in the lyrics. I also really love the guitars and the beat and the major verse to the minors in the chorus… It’s exactly describing my feelings about life these days.

Someone randomly said to me today, “Sometimes, you have to be the one to make the first move.”

Maybe to be moved, you have to first move yourself.

I encounter this conundrum with creativity all the time. In every area.

The first step to freedom is always movement: saying what you want out loud.

Move the lips.

“I want a better schedule.”

“I want to sing  songs.”

“I want to go on a trip.”

Spoken aloud, it exists. It has a chance to survive and become something real.

OR, you hear how ridiculous it sounds, and you can put it away for good.

Either way. Honesty is the best policy. (HA! Didn’t we learn that in…. school? See the first lyrics…)

 

 

Every step’s been shown to you

Like all those years you were in school

What they said is what you say

What they saw is what you see

You like a clear drawn line

Partitioned and defined

So you can rest in knowing everything’s as it should be

But I want you to move me….

Oh, we’ve got our back and forth

And always stay the course

Talking quickly doesn’t leave much time for questioning

So much is repetition

We mimic all decisions

And walk the same line just because we know we’re in the lead

But I want you to move me…

I always give you all I’ve got

But I fear you’ll disapprove

Underlined and opened eyes

The heart will follow through

Take you up and bring you back

But you will not be moved

I want you to move me…

Eva Cassidy’s “Songbird” by Anchor + Bell and Erin Marie

I woke up my sweet Johnny boy from his afternoon nap yesterday, and I knew something was wrong the second I picked him up. His sweet little head, usually perfumed with the fresh scent of youth that only a baby’s head can be, reeked of rancid, stinky spit up. Sure enough, it was all over his head, matted into his hair and all over his cribsheet. My heart sank. How long had he been asleep like that?

Needless to say, we spent the next hour in the tub waiting out the dance of  ‘rinse and regurgitate’, until he seemed to be done. He never complained. He was happy to splash around and play with his toys, pausing every 10 minutes or so to let the stomach bug do its thing and let his mama wash it away before continuing to splash and play again.

Certainly I am not the first mother in the history of the world to wish she could take the bug instead. Certainly mothers for thousands of years have thrown the same prayer out there in the sadness that ensues when watching your sweet child battle any sort of sickness. And certainly there are worse fates than a stomach bug.

Still, I find in the uncertainty and drama of these episodes in life, where we are temporarily derailed by sickness or sadness and whatnot in our pursuit of happiness, that it is helpful to keep in mind that this is all part of that happiness we’re after. I am reminded this weekend over and over again: the pain proves the JOY. The sadness reveals the happiness. Even this morning, reading my online magazine Brainpickings: “Frustration is essential to satisfaction in love.”

And right after that in the new John Eldredge: “…the menace is essential to the exhilaration of achievement.”

In fact, I wrote about this a week ago, and here we are circling back around the same message (which maybe means I’m still learning this… I probably will be for a long time…)

The message is this:

There is purpose to the pain as long as you’re open to its lessons.

I think Jon Foreman, lead singer of Switchfoot, sings it best: “The shadow proves the sunshine.”

We slowed way down. We snuggled on the couch. I became his Momchair, and he let his little body rest. I sang him all the songs that comfort him, and he slept a long time.

JohnnyAndMomchair

“To you, I would give the world.” ~Eva Cassidy

Songbird is a song that I used to dream I would sing to my children one day. I recorded it a few years ago, and guess what? Anchor + Bell did, too. What are the odds?

 

 

“Tryin’ Hard to Love You” by Freddy & Francine

This one is so exclusive, there’s no YouTube video yet.

I follow a duo on Facebook by the name of Anchor and Bell ,who I will feature here later on…

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Emily Herndon and Noah Needleman of Anchor and Bell

 

Speaking of which, who wouldn’t follow a group called Anchor and Bell? Could there be a prettier name for a band?

Anyway, they posted this song on their page yesterday with the tag, “Thank the good Lord there’s new music out there.”   They were talking about Freddy & Francine, an Americana duo with what I’d say is a rather refreshing sound.

Amen, Anchor and Bell! Amen.

You’ll have to click the link and listen to the Soundcloud, but you’ll be glad you did.

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Freddy & Francine

Hear Freddy & Francine’s Romantic Duet “Tryin’ Hard To Love You”

Here’s another one by Freddy & Francine.

Stay tuned for some Anchor and Bell. 🙂

“Michigan” by the Accidentals

Pretty.

That’s really the only adjective I have to describe this sweet little surprise of a song.

It’s all strings and steady heartbeat rhythms, and it makes me wanna twirl around in a field of wildflowers. Like a little girl.

It also makes me happy I moved here almost 5 years ago 😉

It’s all fresh air and weather and just enough slowing down and just enough scrapes to get into.  I love you, Michigan!

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Bostwick Lake

 

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On the other side of Bostick Lake with family and friends and refreshments

 

“Luck” by American Authors

It seems in the last few weeks, I’ve been bombarded by the songs of artists I have never heard of before (I don’t listen to the radio, mmmkay?), and I think this is just fantastic! I love it when songs come out of nowhere and smack me right in the hearnuts.

This one came to me at the gym, of all places. This lyric in particular convinced me to put down the weights a second and Shazam the song on my phone: “Some birds aren’t meant to be caged.” I was very pleased to find that the song is a perfect example of an artist effectively pouring sadness out into a song that sounds like HOPE. It happens when the artist is sincere and honest. I love that, and I love everything about this song.

Have you heard of these guys? Could they have a cooler band name? Should I be listening to the radio? (NO to that last one; I don’t miss it.)

**Update: Ummm…. These guys sing “Best Day of My Life.” Which everyone hears all the time every place they go. I bet you all knew that, too, right? #headslap  K, bye!

Share your own unheard of songs or artists with me!

 

How can we make amends when we said all we said?
I call and you don’t pick up
How can I say instead that I hope it’s for the best?
I won’t, and I won’t give upI’m sorry, Mother
I know I let you down
I’m sorry for how I up and left this townHow can we push aside all the bad and make it right
Now you got me all choked up
I’m sorry, brother
I know I let you down
I’m sorry for how I up and left this town
Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
I am my own man
I make my own luckHow can we both pick sides when we know nothing’s right?
Open up the door that’s shut
How can I have my pride and drink away my soul tonight?
Sorrow’s filling up my cup

I’m sorry, Father
I know I let you down
I’m sorry for how I up and left this town
Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
I am my own man
I make my own luck

Well some birds aren’t meant to be caged
And I just can’t see the light of day

Please forgive me
I can’t remember
Please forgive me
No one is calling
Please forgive me
I can’t believe it
No…

Gonna pick myself up, so I don’t let this ever grow
Even if I mess up, I won’t let this ever go
It’s hard to stay
It’s hard to stay
Cause some birds aren’t meant to be caged

How can I set us free?
I’m what you taught me to be
Shouldn’t that be enough?
It’s time that we make amends
Let’s forget the things we said
You know we were all just stuck

I’m sorry, Mother
I know I let you down
I’m sorry, Father
I didn’t stick around
Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
I am my own man
I make my own luck
Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
Just like my old man, I make my own luck

And some birds are meant to be caged
And some just won’t see the light of day

Please forgive me
I can’t remember
Please forgive me
No one is calling
Please forgive me
I can’t believe it
No…

Gonna pick myself up, so I don’t let this ever grow
Even if I mess up, I won’t let this ever go
It’s hard to stay
It’s hard to stay
Cause some birds aren’t meant to be caged

Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
I am my own man
I make my own luck
Please just listen cause I don’t ask for much
I am my own man
I make my own luck

 

“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” by Greg Laswell (yup)

This one’s for you, Melissa!

An Ode to New Yoga Pants

Tonight, it’s all about the difference between wanting what you have and having what you want. Why are those even two different things? Of course I should want these old ratty yoga pants! They’re mine! They’re comfortable! And before the crisp black color went stale in the millionth wash cycle, I wanted them very much. But things change, I guess, and we start to want new pants. We start to feel stuck in the pants we used to love. (Ummm… not literally. My pants still fit, folks. MMMkay?)

I know. This is how you learn patience. And endurance. And gratitude. All crucial things to practice. We have to BE them.

But at some point, in the middle of yet another heartbreak, another day that grinds you to specks, another week without that shiny new pair of pants, don’t you just want to throw your hands up and say “enough already?”  Why is wanting what you want such a burden sometimes? What’s so wrong with being happy all the dang time?

I’m reminded of the last movie I saw before my sweet boy was born, Inside Out. One of my favorite things about this particular movie is that the character Sadness, who for most of the film acts as an extremely annoying burden to those around her, actually ends up being the one who leads her human back to Joy. Isn’t that how it works? Joy and Pain: two sides of the same coin. We never truly reach one without the other.

Okay. Yoga pants are a poor example. But there seems to always be something, someone, some circumstance we want that is just beyond our reach or just outside our idea of the perfect time (which, let’s be honest, is usually NOW). I’m learning it’s more important to ask the sadness or the pain of this unfulfilled desire, “What are you here to teach me?” I think I learned that from Oprah…

I had been pondering all of these things when I ran into a friend in transit at school. I don’t remember why, but I said to her jokingly, “Why can’t we just be happy and have what we want all the time? What’s so wrong with that?” She laughed and said she had just been discussing that very thing with someone else. She said maybe I should blog about it. I said I’d have to think of a song first (because… that’s the whole point of this anyway.)

This song was her suggestion. I just found a different version for her. We all want the magical thing dancing around in our brains, the new, the exciting. We get tired and uninspired in the same old places and in the same old pants. But we also find comfort and warmth where the sun has already been shining, so that when it gets dark again, we know how to be okay in that place. We remember to be patient.We remember why we loved these pants in the first place.

So, as with a pair of yoga pants, may she (and we all) find Joy through the Pain in the change from old to new.

 

 

“Everybody Else” by Carbon Tigers

I’ve been sorting through my “old me” stuff…

Old song lyrics and melodies, old journals, old dreams…

I’m finding that in sorting through and visiting with this “old me” stuff again, everything is like new. There’s a memory, certainly, and I’ve changed in so many ways, but still…

These are still MY lyrics. These are still MY melodies, MY journals, MY dreams.

And the woman I am today is not so different from the woman I was before. She’s in here still and is all wrapped up in these layers that have grown since. It’s all beautiful and blooming and … here.

It’s no coincidence that my ma just told me today she found an old box full of pictures I took and stories I wrote as a girl and do I still want these?

YES. Yes I do.

I stumbled across this gem of a song on my old SoundCloud, which I visited yesterday for the first time in over a year. I love how these guys melodically play around the root note, just above it, just below it, tickling it almost. By playing every note around it, they bring your attention to it, the root. And this is perfectly matched in its lyrics: they leave the root or the truth or the message, if you will, for the very last thing they sing: “I am just like everybody else.” These writers do a fantastic job of simply pointing out the humanity in each of us. I love all of it. I even love how in the opening, it sounds like a wind is bringing about this life they are singing about, and it fades in and out. I hope you and all of your old you’s enjoy it as much as we do. 😉

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On the first day
All of this got started
Got the last name
Of my father’s father

This riddle gets too hard to solve so I
leave it on the shelf
But I am just like everybody else

Pen to paper
This wish of mine
Filled an ocean
And I dive inside
Then the waves get darker
And they take me on a ride
But I’d be floating on my back
If I could only find the tide

When this riddle gets too hard to
solve I leave it on the shelf
I am just like everybody else