Category: music

Testing your Xmas carol I.Q.

Given the words of stanzas usually not sung, can you identify the following traditional Christmas favorites?  [This quiz is indebted to  ChicagoNow blogger Margaret Serious’s post “Christmas carols with words worth defending”] 1. Then let us all with one accord// Sing praises to our heavenly Lord. 2. O morning stars, together// Proclaim the holy birth//... Read more »

Broadway melodies can give the brain a tune-up

  Note: Recent research seems to indicate that singing show tunes like “The Sound of Music” improves cognitive function in the elderly.   You do not  have to be a great singer To be pleasing to Fate’s Moving Finger. Studies show  if you croon Lustily a  show tune Your joie de vivre  will longer linger.... Read more »

Herr Mozart's Hair: A triolet

  The hair of Amadeus Wolfgang Mozart is up for auction Thursday with an estimated price of 10,000 pounds to 12,000 pounds ($15,400 to $18,450).  [Associated Press]   Mozart’s hair is up for sale. You can have it at a price. Was it from a plump pigtail? Mozart’s hair is up for sale. To  opera... Read more »

Chew your obsession away

  “Can’t get that song out of your head? Chewing gum could turn off annoying ‘earworms’ according to new research from the University of Reading.” []   Are motifs and melodies in your head, chum? Obsessive tunes you continually hum? There is an RX To get rid of this hex. You can silence the songs... Read more »

An evening with Max Raabe and his Palast Orchester

We stood on the platform of the train station. The four of us, waiting for the Metra train to take us Downtown. The station doors were locked. So we huddled outside in the chill under its roof.  We had just come from the Bohemian restaurant on Burlington Road in Riverside.  Express trains whizzed by while... Read more »

An Enchanted Evening Happened 66 years ago today. Coincidentally speaking.

  I played pinochle earlier today. Wound up winning  $8. In one of the games I caught all the kings. All 8 of ’em! That gave me 80 points toward the 100 needed to win a game. Which I did the very next hand. Now that’s a lot of luck with a little skill mixed... Read more »

Greeting Spring with a chorus of crocuses

  Author’s note: This morning in my garden I came upon a bunch of crocuses (pictured above). Their beauty took me by surprise.  Breathtaking. Angelic. They seemed to be breaking out in song. And I thought about a boy choir from London that I had seen on Channel 11, Libera.  The 32 boys in the... Read more »

Czar Nicholas II Rap

  Last night I went to bed about 10 p.m.   A hour and a half later I got up with an upset stomach.  Took something for it and turned on the TV.  On CBS a commercial had just ended and the announcer for Letterman returned with the following:  “He was highfalutin. A friend of Rasputin.... Read more »

Where Are the Songs of Yesteryear?

Where are the songs of yesteryear? The tunes that you could hum. Now they have words you cannot hear And what they say is dumb. Where are the songs of yesteryear? Whose strains were so romantic. Now at a volume too much for the ear They  leave you  all frazzled and frantic. Where are the... Read more »

What Song Punctuated Your Romance?

  “If music be the food of love, play on,”  wrote Shakespeare in “Twelfth Night”.     The  Bard probably knew from experience how passion is nourished by sweet sounds. Most lovers have a signature song that whenever it’s  heard later in life will rekindle memories of the beginnings of their romance. Our song is “Misty”.  The... Read more »