Category Archives: music maven

1-1-11….Renewal Time

So, it’s finally a new year and I have resolved to start blogging again.

I could go into why I took a sabbatical, but wouldn’t want to bore folks with my trials and tribulations.  Suffice it to say that 2010 had its ups & downs for me, just like everyone else.  I did experience some major life changes in that I changed jobs (again) and we went through Dave’s Senior year of high school and his subsequent leaving for college.  In between all of that, we have been trying to sell our house so that we can build our dream house “on the river”, but the economy and the Gulf Oil Spill created a frozen market with not a one offer in a year. 

We’re hoping that the Spring of 2011 will bring a motivated buyer so that we can get on with our lives.  Which brings me back to this blog.  While I’ve decided to keep the name, the format will change somewhat.  I’ll still delve into Music, but plan to include some other “features” that may or may not revolve around photography, sports, politics, home building, decorating, fishing, wine, and anything else that I have a burning desire to share here.

I hope that you will come by, read, and comment and I hope that 2011 brings the best on all fronts for everyone.

New Year, Death Cab for Cutie


Music Maven’s Grammy Rundown


Admittedly, The Grammys do not thrill me.  Unfortunately, moguls like Clive Davis’ seeming influence into the awards over the last few years leaves me very skeptical as to the nominations and the winners.

I mean, WHERE is Amos Lee?  Ray LaMontagne? 

However, in the spirit of Music comraderie, I made my own Grammy picks.  Personally, I think that they could cut out 2/3 of the categories and cut this puppy down to a half-hour show….but, whatever.  Here are the 2009 Music Maven Grammy picks.

Record of the year

  Please Read the Letter, Alison Krauss & Robert Plant

Mainly because Coldplay’s Viva La Vida is so over-played.

Album of the Year

Because of their revolutionary, “name your price” sales strategy….

  In Rainbows, Radiohead — Videotape track

Song of the Year

Only one choice for me…loved her from the start.  Remember, she debuted her 12-song DC (rather than CD) for $6.99 on iTunes.

  Love Song, Sara Bareilles

Best New Artist

For her ’60s vibe….

  Mercy, Duffy

If Katy Perry’s I Kissed a Girl wins anythings, I will never turn on a radio again.

In the Best Male Pop Vocal Performance category, I’m seriously torn between James Taylor’s Witchita Lineman and John Mayer’s thoroughly emotional Say, from The Bucket List.   However, I’m going to have to go with Sweet Baby James on this one.  The Glen Campbell kun-NECK-shun is just too strong.  The best song lyric of all time:

…and I want you more than need you, and I want you for all time.

‘Nuff said.

  Witchita Lineman, James Taylor

(Besides, Say wins a MM Grammy in another category — see below.)

Which, given the choices, leads me to Best Pop Album — JT’s Covers.  I was convinced by Seminole Wind and Not Fade Away.

I was intrigued by the nominations within the Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance (who comes up with these categories?) pitting Sir Paul McCartney’s Amoeba Record performance I Saw Her Standing There against John Mayer’s Gravity performance from Where the Light Is.  While I have great affinity for McCartney, the Where the Light Is video is superb and Gravity is one of my all-time favorite songs.  Therefore, the award goes to….

  Gravity, John Mayer

The only performance in the R&B categories that I feel is worry of any award is Wayne Brady’s Change is Gonna Come.  Yes, Wayne Brady of Who’s Line is it, Anyway? fame.

  A Change Gonna Come, Wayne Brady

However, I’d like to see Jennifer Hudson win a Grammy, just because she is that good and she deserves it.  Note:  she is the only American Idol alum nominated this year.

In the Country categories, only two nominations piqued my interest.  Brad Paisley’s nomination for Letter to Me in the Best Country Song category and The Del McCoury Band’s nomination for Best Bluegrass AlbumLive at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.  Love me some Del…

  Nashville Cats, Del McCoury Band

John Mayer’s Say is a lock for the Best Song Written for a Motion Picture.  I love this song, music & lyrics.

  Say, from The Bucket List, John Mayer

Miscellaneous Other favorites:

Best Traditional Gospel Album, Down in New Orleans, The Blind Boys of Alabama

Best Traditional Blues Album, Pinetop Perkins & Friends, 95 year old Pinetop Perkins, with a line-up of Blues royalty.

Best Contemporary Blues Album — THREE New Orleans acts; Dr. John, Irma Thomas and Marcia Ball.  Can they simply split a Grammy?

And, finally the BIG category….Best Zydeco or Cajun Album….drum roll please……

Music Maven picks……

  Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys





The Day the Music Died: Part 1 – American Pie


….A long, long time ago….

Singer/song-writer, Don McLean penned one of the most recognizable songs ever recorded.  American Pie is part of our musical and American lexicon.  Not only does the song lament the change in music with the passing of Buddy Holly, but it catalogues the changes and additional “deaths” of music through the decade of the ’60s.  There is a real dichotomy in this era.  The mutation of music in the 1960s provided revolutionary new sounds, electric music and much different attitudes.  While many would look at this as positive progression, many also mourned the loss of the music of the past, as well as the innonence of the time.

  American Pie, Don McLean

McLean has never commented extensively on the meaning of the song, preferring to let the aire of mystique remain.  When asked what the song means, he generally gives the elusive answer of “It means I’ll never have to work again” or “It’s the story of America”.

For my personal experience, I spent many a high school night memorizing every word of every verse, rewinding my cassette recorder over and over again to get every word.  On the way home after a night out, my friends and I would pop the tape into the car cassette player and passionately belt out the lyrics.  I imagine that American Pie has been a staple on playlists across America for the last 35 years.

Perhaps the most eloquent explanation of American Pie is the original Rolling Stone review from ’72 by Lester Bangs:

Don McLean’s “American Pie” has ripped out of nowhere and taken the country by storm both in its album and truncated single versions. It took exactly two weeks to shoot to the top of the charts, everybody I know has been talking excitedly about it since first hearing, and, even more surprisingly, it has united listeners of musical persuasions as diverse as Black Sabbath and Phil Ochs in unbridled enthusiasm for both its message and it musical qualities.

All of which is not so surprising once you’ve heard it, because it is a brilliant song, a metaphor for the death and rebirth of rock that’s at once complex and immediately accessible. For the last couple of years critics and audience alike have been talking about the Death of Rock, or at least the fragmentation of all our 1967 dreams of anthemic unity. And, inevitably, somebody has written a song about it. About Dylan, Buddy Holly, the Beatles, Stones, Byrds, Janis and others. About where we’ve been, the rush of exhilaration we felt at the pinnacle, and the present sense of despair. Don McLean has taken all this and set it down in language that has unmistakable impact the first time you hear it, and leaves you rubbing your chin–”Just what did that line mean?”–with further listenings because you know it’s all about something you’ve felt and lived through. A very 1967ish song, in fact, in the way it makes you dig for deeper meaning, but not the least bit mawkish.

It opens with a slow, mournful sequence about reading the headlines about the deaths of Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper while delivering papers as a child, then into the chorus: “Bye bye, Miss American Pie/Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry/Them good ole boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye/And sayin’ this’ll be the day that I die.” Then all at once it rears up and charges through the years in a giddy rush: “I was a lonely teenage bronckin’ buck/With a pink carnation and a pickup truck,” the “Book of Love,” sock hops in the gym and puppy jealousy, and then into the heart of the myth, where Dylan is a Jester “in a coat he borrowed from James Dean,” laughing at the king “in a voice that came from you and me.”

The halcyon days of Sgt. Pepper are brilliantly caught: “The half-time air was sweet perfume/As the Sergeants played a marching tune,” but suddenly the Jester is on the sidelines in a cast, the stage is taken by Jack Flash (“Fire is the devil’s only friend”), and Altamont, the Angels and the despairing resentment the Stones left many fans with pass in a dark panorama. Finally coming down to the levee again, where the good old boys are draining the bottles and talking as if it’s all over, as they did when the plane bearing “The Father, Son and the Holy Ghost” fell and as they will again and again through the years. It’s just the old Calvinist sense of impending apocalypse and perdition, but they’re good old boys anyway and we can’t resent them because we too “believe in rock ‘n’ roll/And [that] music can save your moral soul.” Because they’re us.

“American Pie” is a song of the year, and its music is just as strong as those lyrics, propelled with special resonance by the piano of Paul Griffin, who played with the Jester when his myth was at pinnacle. The single version is considerably shorter than that on the album, and I only wish that I could recommend the latter unhesitatingly. Unfortunately, the eight-minute hit is the only tune of real substance and vitality on it; the rest is given over to a series of moody, rather bland songs stereo-typically deriving from the Sixties folk tradition and the current proliferation of songwriters specializing in introspective, watery poeticizings. Shucks, I almost wonder from struggling to keep my attention on them whether “American Pie” won’t be the only important song Don McLean will ever write. But maybe that’s being premature and petty; because he did write it, and we needed it, did we ever. If you’ve ever cried because of a rock & roll band or album, or lain awake nights wondering or sat up talking through the dawn about Our Music and what it all means and where it’s all going and why, if you’ve ever kicked off your shoes to dance or wished you had the chance, if you ever believed in Rock & Roll, you’ve got to have this album. (RS 100)


I have to disagree with Lester on the rest of McLean’s American Pie album.  There are several great tracks on this album, with Vincent (Starry, Starry Night) as a particularly compelling song about artist Vincent Van Gogh.

  Vincent (Starry, Starry Night), Don McLean

Don McLean was friends with folk legends The Weavers, as well as Pete Seeger and briefly attended Villanova with Jim Croce.  McLean’s style is very much in the vein of old-time singer/songwriters with tunes that are easy on the ear and hard on the mind.  His songs MEAN something.  They’re not catchy and snazzy, they are deep.

A young girl named Lori Lieberman attended one of Don McLean’s performances and was so touched by it that she wrote a poem, entitled Killing Me Softly with His Blues.  Composers Charles Fox and Norman Gimbel later turned that poem into a song immortalized by Roberta Flack as Killing Me Softly. 

   Killing Me Softly, Roberta Flack

It was later re-mixed and covered by The Fugees.

MUSIC MAVEN Trivia:  Lori Lieberman went on to provide music for the critically acclaimed Schoolhouse Rock…”I’m just a bill, only a bill…”

NOTE:  I refuse to post  covers of American Pie, as among those that attempted it, the Madonna and The Brady Bunch (a kid you not) versions are hideous.  Garth Brooks does a minimally decent rendition but it doesn’t come close to Don McLean. 

Don McLean immortalized the great Buddy Holly, paying apt homage to the legend’s musical importance and ensuring  Holly is known to new generations.  American Pie is proof that songs with meaning, songs than resonate with listeners, are recognized, treasured and endure forever.

Tune in tomorrow for the next installment in The Day the Music Died series.  Until then, if you’re so inclined, take a look at Music Maven’s take on American Pie‘s lyrics, verse by verse.

  Click here for Music Maven’s Lyric Interpretation of American Pie


Tags: , ,

It’s Coming….

I’m working on a big project for Music Maven.  Be sure to check back this weekend…

Here’s a hint:

  Killing Me Softly, The Fugees

1 Comment

Posted by on January 31, 2009 in music maven


Tags: , ,

Crisis of Inspiration


Dry as a bone.  Uninspired.  Writer’s block.

When I started this blog, thoughts were flooding through my brain and screaming to escape into some kind of creative expression.  I had lists and lists of musical ideas and exploration that I felt compelled to share.  I posted nearly every day with an excitement and desire that was exhilerating.  To add to the thrill, my confidence soared when it seemed that people were genuinely interested in what I had to say.  I marveled each day at the dialogue generated from the comments and checked email with heightened anticipation to see what new commenter had found my little piece of reflections on life and music.  I reveled in the comments of “regulars” and the camraderie of community and acceptance.

Over the past two years, I’ve watched this blog change and evolve.  While music is still a burning passion for me, there are other topics that I find more compelling at this point of my life.  Perhaps it’s the added pressures of proving myself at work so that I don’t lose my job to this horrendous economy, along with the consternation over finding the right college for my teenage son, and finding and buying the perfect “spot” on the water to build our dream home, and trying to keep up with the day to day responsibilities of that little thing called life, that has caused my mind to lack the focus to come up with new and exciting ideas to post about.  I don’t know.

Maybe it’s because I feel that this blog should somehow be tied to music and right now, there’s nothing new on the music front that’s inspiring me to rise above the day to day and produce interesting reading.  I honestly don’t know. 

I also don’t know, at this point, that even if I work through this apparent “blogger’s block” and find new and compelling topics to write about, if people are even interested.  I get alot of hits to various posts, with most coming from Google images, where I find many of the pictures I use, so people come, but do they even read?

For example, the top post with the most hits ever on this blog is Abba vs. Journey.  Nearly 12,000 hits on this post since it was written (over 100 each day, still), yet only 25 comments.  Do that many people actually CARE about Abba?  And, if so, are they not actually reading the post?

But I digress…

I guess what I’m saying is that things change.  Some blogs thrive and some limp along, while others die a slow death.  I’m simply not sure what category Music Maven falls into right now and if I have the time and energy to continue.

The only song that I can muster up that captures some of what I’m feeling….

  Landslide, Stevie Nicks & Lindsay Buckingham


Posted by on January 11, 2009 in inspiration, music maven, navel gazing


Tags: , ,

2008 Music Maven Christmas Playlist


Hope you all have a very safe and Merry Christmas and a most blessed New Year.  To assist in your merriment, here’s my annual Christmas playlist…a little old school.

Grown Up Christmas List —  Michael Buble’

Let it Snow — John Legend

Away in a Manger  —  Ella Fitzgerald

Santa Clause is Coming to Town — Bing Crosby

Christmas Waltz — Frank Sinatra

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Me — Stevie Wonder

Go Tell it on the Mountain — Mahalia Jackson

We Three Kings — George Strait

The Christmas Blues — Dean Martin

Winter Wonderland — Tony Bennett

Do You Hear What I Hear?  — Perry Como

Celebrate Me Home — Kenny Loggins

Silent Night — Elvis Presley

Run, Run Rudolph — Keith Richards

Christmas Auld Lang Syne — Bobby Darin

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen — Barenaked Ladies & Sarah McLachlen

Little Drummer Boy — Bob Seger

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas — Judy Garland

Jingle Bells — Sinatra & Crosby

O Come, O Come Emmanuel — Enya


Posted by on December 24, 2008 in christmas, holidays, music maven


Tags: , ,

Wonderful Wedding Weekend

Made it back in one piece from our New Orleans excursion for the family wedding. What a weekend!

On Friday, we made the two-hour trip to The Big Easy and arrived just in time for the first of the wedding festivities — the Rehearsal Dinner at Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse. We had a great meal with great fellowship between the two families forging this new covenant.

Paul is a graduate of Notre Dame (but in Law School at LSU) and his mentor, Fr. Tim Sculley made the trip from South Bend via The White House earlier in the day to preside over the weekend festivities. He was very gracious and a whole lot of fun. He gave Mini-DD his card and told him to give him a ring when he’s ready to enroll in college….We’ll see.

After our wonderful dinner, we all retired to The Carousel Lounge at The Monteleone, the famous French Quarter Hotel affectionately dubbed “de Clouet Central” for the weekend. Here’s a party pic of the groom (center) with his Uncle Mark and his brother, John’s, wife Jeanne.

We all gave him a hard time regarding that sear-sucker suit, but hey, it worked. And, I actually made it through the “revolving” experience with no injuries.

The next morning brought some extreme humidity, but we weren’t deterred from enjoying the day. We headed out to The French Market to acquire a little jewelry, some sunglasses and wonderful homemade candles.

Now the French Market used to be commonly known as Dryades Market and my husband’s family actually owned the spot about 200 years ago. It’s a very diverse and active place that offers all kinds of possibilities. There is traditional New Orleans fare, like Mardi Gras masks….

…as well as various and a sundry articles for purchase. Mini-DD got some sunglasses and a trade bead bracelet and I secured some decorative flip-flops along with some nice silver jewelry to wear with my new dress for the wedding. All Mr. D wanted to do was get through the market to the Gazebo. Once there, we sat an enjoyed the open air lounge and restaurant by listening to some locals do some a variety of NOLA inspired tunes.

One favorite that was covered —

Don’t You Just Know It, Huey Smith and The Clowns

You might remember some of Huey’s better known hits.

Rockin’ Pnuemonia & The Boogie Woogie Flu

Sea of Love (written by Huey Smith)

After a Banana Daiquiri and a Shrimp Po-Boy lunch, we began our trek down back to the hotel with a couple of stops along the way. Here’s a picture of Mini-DD in front of St. Louis Cathedral where his great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather married 247 years ago on May 11th.

Part of the loveliness of New Orleans is it’s history, particularly for those of us with historical Louisiana backgrounds. History is readily apparent in the wonderful architecture that is The French Quarter and the European influences are very self-evident.

The wonderful residents of the area preserve and protect the architecture and make the environs so inviting, but I have rarely ever seen residents actually sitting on the balconies, except for Mardi Gras.

The beautiful courtyards are interwoven with commerce and tourism, inviting walkers to partake of their tranquility.

Of course, New Orleans is never short on dichotomies. An example of just how diverse Nahlin’s can get is this “robot” found just a few hundred feet from the previous picture.

It never ceases to amaze me how creatively some people can make a living.

After a short walk back to our hotel and an afternoon nap to prepare for the nighttime festivities, we gathered with our family at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church, where Fr. Sculley presided over a very happy ceremony. Each wedding has it’s own personality and while some are touching and others poignant, this one was joyous. Everyone was smiling from start to finish, just happy to be there and be a part of the joining of two fun-loving, happy people.

It was back to the hotel for the reception, where Paul’s groom’s cake greeted us.

Some of the LSU fans there were foiled in their plan to sabotage the cake, but otherwise it was generally well-received.

The reception was full of visiting, laughter and enjoyment. I was particularly elated to see my God-child, Dana and her boyfriend, Dave, there.

They happen to be good friends of the bride and groom. Dana is a wonderful young woman studying to be a Cardiologist. I am so very proud of her and the wonderfully independent woman she has become.

Also among the crowd were a few Music Maven patrons:

Parents-to-be, Amy and Michael Paul (Mr. D’s nephew and the groom’s brother) a/k/a Neil Diamond connoisseur. If you haven’t already done so, check out Amy’s blog. She has a great wedding re-cap.

Another family blogmeister was also in attendance. Mr. D’s other nephew, Mark, and his wife of one year, Karen, always bring some life to the party.

Mark is a very witty writer and also has a nice wedding overview. There’s even a bonus pick of Michael Paul in “Sweet Caroline” mode.

Part of the reason that I started this blog was to expose readers to music that they may not have known about or explored very deeply. I will continue to talk about artists like Paul Pena, to ensure that others are least exposed to great music that might not otherwise be known. Mark shared with me that my recent Randy Newman post of Louisiana 1927 has now made him an ardent fan of Randy Newman. I have to say that this has given me great satisfaction. If that wasn’t enough, Mark’s brother, Matt shared with me that he and his girlfriend, Paige, read and love the blog.

Exposing these young people to music that they haven’t really been “into” before but like once they give it a chance is very rewarding and I’m so happy that they come by and read my ramblings about music.

So, the wedding was tremendous fun that culminated in a midnight “second line” with the newlyweds happily heading up the train.

If you’re not familiar with the “second line” concept, here you go….

So, the happy couple is off to NYC for their honeymoon and we’re all back to our normal lives, with another great memory and with inspiration from various sources. Hope it’s a great week….for everyone.


The Life of a Music Maven…Real March Madness


So, lately my posts haven’t been very robust. I know you guys must be terribly disappointed…heh.

But, hey, I’ve been busy. In January, I went back into the real rat race of marketing consulting and for financial services, no less. It certainly is interesting times and I’ve been working some really long hours to get back into the swing of things, but I have to say that I’m totally stoked. Not as stoked as I’d be if I could write a blog for a living, but pretty stoked.

We study consumer behavior, execute marketing strategies and then track them to prove we’re right. Man, I really love to be right. Who knew?

I thought I’d give you all a little flavor of my own March Madness, with some tunes thrown in, for sure. (And, all photos were taken by lil’ ole me.)

March came in like lamb, with my Mother-in-Law’s 82nd birthday on March 3rd, but quickly picked up pace. Now, my MIL is a piece of work — and I do mean that in a good way. She had 7 kids in 10 years (5 of those are boys) and she was married for 61 years to a great guy who could be very difficult to live with. She’s smart, she’s active and she’s loving. I have long forgiven her for her “yankee-ness” and have the highest respect for her and her ability to adapt to the backwater of South Louisiana. Hail, Queen of Casseroles!!

Here is a picture I took of her on Good Friday with one of her 18 great-grandchildren…BTW, there are FIVE more on the way.


Somebody’s Hero, Jamie O’Neal

One blistering week later, her baby boy turned 60. That baby happens to be my baby.


On Saturday, March 8th, we had a 60th birthday bash, complete with family, friends, and CRAWFISH!!


It was great fun and we got to visit with all of our boys, including the grand-munchkin.



Thankfully, Munchkin’s Mom came along to provide some estrogen….lots of it, since she’s expecting another munchkin in the fall.


Birthday, The Beatles

A few days later, Mini DD went off on his own to Washington, DC to the National Youth Leadership Congress, to which he was nominated by his high school. Yes, Mom is proud.


Growing Up, Bruce Springsteen

After dropping da boy at the airport, Mr. D. and I took off for a few days of fun and business in Memphis.


Having lived there for six years before moving to Mobile, it was fun to re-trace some of our old steps. We are particularly partial to Downtown Memphis and The Peabody Hotel.



And, of course when in Memphis you must do as the Memphibians do….and that means Rendezvous ribs. Now, I’m partial to Corky’s “wet” ribs, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.


Walkin’ in Memphis, Marc Cohn

Of course, in the middle of all of the travels and travails, there were soccer games to attend. Mini DD’s team captured their big tournament with an exciting last second score.


We Are the Champions, Queen

Then, there was our Easter weekend in God’s Country, a/k/a Acadiana.

Allons a Lafayette, Wayne Toups

We started with our “Resurrection” Golf Tournament on Good Friday. Here’s a picture of our nephew Mark, of “The Life of Mark” blog fame.


Fortunately, Mark is a better blogger than golfer. However, he had one of the loveliest weddings EVAH!

One of the nice things about golf in South Louisiana is the scenery. In particular, there’s plenty of wildlife to enjoy out on the links.



After golf, the family gathered for a wonderful lenten repast of…. you guessed it, boiled crawfish.


Lovely Day, Bill Withers

On Saturday, we visited with my family, including the infamous Uncle Harris — who never changes.


Still the Same, Bob Seger

Finally, Easter Sunday and the annual family pacque’ (pronounced pah-KAY) tourney. The 80 or so people who gather at Mr. D’s all participate — providing they are family, i.e., born or married into…

This is serious business. There is a bracket…


….and it is highly competitive with lots of trash talk. Many use their eggs to do the talkin’. Like my BIL, Big Mark, who utilizes the ole JMJ (Jesus, Mary, Joseph) as a psych out.


His new son-in-law Michael, displays his egg as “Pity Pacque” Champ from 2007. That contest is reserved for those who aren’t “official” family yet. This was his first “official” participation — demolished in Round 1.


Perhaps the most intimidating egg belongs to my BIL, Michael. Each year, he comes to fight with his egg adorned with the following scripture:

“Is not my word like a fire?” says the Lord; “and like a hammer that breaks the rock into pieces. “

Jeremiah 23:29


Pretty difficult to stand there and fight God. But somehow, we manage.

The premise is to knock eggs trying to crack the opponents egg by tapping ends. While it sounds civilized, I can assure you it is not. It’s ruthless and cut-throat, pitting brother against brother….


and even the sweet little grandmother shows no mercy…


But, at the end of it all, we happily crown the champion and award the plaque. Oh yes, there is a plaque. This year’s winner is the one and only Michael and the holy egg. Here he’s awarded the plaque by last year’s winner, Grandma. Don’t let the smile fool you, folks. She is FIERCE.


AllStar, Smashmouth

Amid all of this activity, IT’S SPRING!

Here in the South, foliage is popping everywhere.


Walking on Sunshine, Katrina & The Waves





Of course, my “madness” would not be complete without mentioning that I had a business trip, or two in there somewhere. Here’s a sunrise in Charlotte….


I’ve Been Everywhere, Johnny Cash

My travels come with ALOT of airline travel and in those travels I generally always run in to somebody I know or somebody famous. However, I was ill-prepared for what I saw a few nights ago as I was hurrying to make my connection so I didn’t miss the last flight home. As I passed the Birmingham gate, I saw this…


Wherever I Lay My Hat, Taylor Hicks

You just never know what you’ll find in the airport, but I’ll save THAT for another post.


Posted by on April 1, 2008 in music maven, that's life


A Trip Around the Sun

Hard to believe it but it’s been a year since I took the fateful leap into bloggerland.

With this historic post, my life took a decided turn for the better.  I’ve found a great creative outlet that allows me to enjoy the thoughts of others while vomiting out my own.  My life has been enriched by your support to pursue the things that I really enjoy and to explore more music.

Thanks to all of you who read and comment and to those who just read.  While I invite you to comment, I understand if you don’t.  To those of you who have been here since the beginning (and you know who you are), I want to particularly thank you for your loyalty and friendship.  Of course, I’d like to thank that somebody who showed us how it’s done.  For without that brave soul, hundreds of tiny, unnoticed blogs would not have proliferated; freeing the captives.  (I keed.  I keed.)

Hopefully, I’ll have some more time soon to get into some discussions I’ve been noodling on in my big ole head.  Funny thing about finding a job that you really like…you end up spending a lot of time doing it.  However, I’m trying to carve out my moments of blog time and ideas but it’s like my swearing to get organized.  Mr. D. says that I just need to break down and admit that it’s just not going to happen.  This is how he sees me in terms of my projects and work, etc.


I’ve gotten better and this blog, in particular, keeps me somewhat focused.  Just don’t throw any shiny objects in front of me and I’m pretty much o.k.

I think that music is God’s way of providing a Rosetta Stone for folks to feel common emotions and to kun-NECK, you know, soothe the savage beast.  For the life of me, I am flabbergasted when someone tells me that they don’t really listen to music or they don’t know a watershed tune like We Can Work it Out or Hallejuah.  That’s why I feel that Music Maven’s purpose is to educate, discuss and advance music and artists of interest.  Bridge generations, genders, race and creed via the love of music.

I must say, however, that the best explanation of music that truly resonated with me came from some guy that happened to capture my attention a few years ago:

It’s music, man.  If music’s in your heart, you feel it, you play it, you sing it, you perform it, you bust your buns doin’ it.  And, that’s what it’s all about….



2007: Music Maven in Review

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…..the year of 2007.

I’m sure in the years to come, I’ll look at 2007 as a year of decision and change.

After a year or so of blogging on other folks’ blogs, I decided to write my own. While it’s not Pioneer Woman, it’s been such a wonderful creative outlet for me. And, then there’s the regulars like Shrew, Jenfera, brc, huckleberry friend, little deb, dingeaux, morewines and the wonderfully talented Colette. Thank you all for continuing to come by and comment and basically indulge my musings.

Even though “Year in Review” stuff is one of my pet peeves, I thought I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least recap Music Maven’s first year.

March 22ndA Star is Born – The start of Music Maven, chosen for a hopeful prediction.

March 31stA Whiter Shade of Gray – The final curtain of, the Taylor Hicks fansite that started my online blogging experience and was the inspiration for Music Maven. Gray Charles set the standard that I aspire this blog to be. His blog was one of the best times and encouraged me to write more, put myself out there and have more confidence. For that, I am eternally grateful.

April 19thFeist-y – The introduction of Feist…before the iTunes commercial.

April 29thHey Jude – One of the most visited posts at Music Maven, still. Possibly the greatest Rock song ever.

May 30thCome into my Web – An analysis of music promotion and marketing via the internet, this post also continues to see significant traffic.

June 14thThe Legendary B.B. King – Review from the front row.

June 22ndThe Flexing of Muscle Shoals – Reviewed our trip to FAME studios and the life altering breaking of my leg.

July 24thTaylor Does Marksville – Summertime trip to see Taylor Hicks at Paragon Casino in Marksville, LA.

August 16thMy Favorite Elvis – 30 years gone.

August 29thDA-DA-DAAAA-DA – College football and the LSU TIGERS!!!

September 4thMusic + Passion = Paul Pena – A dossier on Paul Pena.

October 9thThe Zydecajun: Wayne Toups – A little cajun flare for a hugely talented, albeit somewhat troubled, musician.

November 1stLSU Football: The Jilted Lover – The woeful tale of LSU fans, Nick Saban and As the World Turns.

December 13thIke Turner 1931-2007 – 76-year-old Ike Turner joins the Night Shift.

As for me, personally, alot has gone down this past year. Mini DD has only two years of high school left, and has a new driver’s license. Broke the leg and have had a major change in what I can and can’t do. For an ex-athlete, it has truly been an adjustment. I quit my responsible job to do what I really want to do. Scary, yet exhilarating.

I look toward 2008 with much enthusiasm and anticipation that it’s going to truly be a great year. I hope that all of the things that you dream for you and yours comes true in the next year and that you continue to come by. If you already comment, thanks…keep it coming. If you haven’t commented, I invite you to do so and join the party.

So, we ring out 2007 with My Wish by Rascall Flatts. Good tune and good lyrics.

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow,
And each road leads you where you want to go,
And if you’re faced with a choice, and you have to choose,
I hope you choose the one that means the most to you.
And if one door opens to another door closed,
I hope you keep on walkin’ till you find the window,
If it’s cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile,

But more than anything, more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,
Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you’re out there getting where you’re getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.

I hope you never look back, but ya never forget,
All the ones who love you, in the place you left,
I hope you always forgive, and you never regret,
And you help somebody every chance you get,
Oh, you find God’s grace, in every mistake,
And you always give more than you take.

But more than anything, yeah, and more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,
Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small, You
never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you’re out there getting where you’re getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,

This is my wish
i hope you know somebody who loves you
may all you dreams stay big

Bon Annee’, Mon Amis.


Posted by on December 31, 2007 in music maven