JBJ is always there

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You say you’ve cried a thousand riversJBJ2008
And now you’re swimming for the shore

I was thinking about this video on the way to work this morning as I sang along to I’ll Be There For You. I taped it from MTV and watched it over and over and over … when it comes to Bon Jovi videos, this one is tops for me. Probably because Jon looks so fine in the brown leather pants, the shirt unbuttoned to his navel, and that hair, oh, that glorious hair, and because I wanted someone to feel that way about me:

I’ll be the water when you get thirsty, baby
When you get drunk I’ll be the wine

Those are some of my favorite song lyrics. Even as a teetotaling 17-year-old, I loved the imagery. Someone loving you so much that he gets a high just from being with you? Back then I understood “getting drunk” as acting silly, giddy, and having fun while nursing a wine cooler. (As an adult, I’d learn more than I’d ever want to know about what it really meant. I’ll expand on that in a later post.) “Getting drunk” was something college kids and grown-ups did, not something high school me did. I just loved the metaphor. And still do.

Twenty-four years later, I could still watch the video on repeat, only now I can see Jon and his leather pants in high-def on my 42-inch flat screen. YouTube through a Blu-Ray player is an awesome invention. <clicks play>

Beer and ball

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For me, music and sports go together like milk and fresh-from-the-oven brownies. Whether it’s hearing Alabama’s Rammer Jammer cheer or “Crazy Train” when Atlanta’s Chipper Jones steps up to the plate or “I’m Bad” while working out, music gets me fired up.

So as the Boys of Summer get ready to make a run for October and the Boys of Fall kick off their season, I’ve got singer/musician Chris Blake here to talk about how music makes the sports we love even better.

Chris, whose latest EP Girl is just out, explains why sports and music are so intertwined. “Music does so much to bring the game to a new level–particularly baseball,” he says. “Music accompanies celebration, loss, traditions like the 7th-inning stretch. It adds to the tension, like when the organist plays Charge! during a two-out, bases-loaded situation.

“Music also keeps us entertained in a big way during the breaks between innings–like when the little kid starts playing air guitar to Don’t Stop Believin’ at Dodger Stadium!”

While Chris enjoys a few college football match-ups each year, baseball is his real love. The Southern Cal Trojan says, “The only reason I ever really watched football games back in college was to drink beer.”

However, he figured out that baseball was much more conducive to beer-drinking. “You could lose an entire inning waiting in line for a Coors Light and still come back to your seat and not have missed anything.”

A Chicago White Sox fan, 2005 was a big year for Chris and his family as the team won the World Series. “Along the way (catcher) A.J. Pierzynski brought (Journey’s) Steve Perry along for the ride, and now, even though I had such strong childhood memories attached to ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ ’, all I can think of when I hear it now is how amazing it was at that moment when the Sox somehow managed to go all the way.

Want to know more about the 7th sexiest man on Twitter? RSVP for The Music Mamas Twitter Party happening Friday night from 8-9:30 Central, and join us for a chat with Chris and a chance to win an iPod touch and his CD Girl.

Below is a playlist of Chris’ favorite get-pumped songs. What tunes do you crank up when you want to get your adrenaline pumping?

Summer Breeze

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Summertime and the living is easy … mostly. Riley’s at day camp every day while Ryan and I work (this week she’s in Town Creek with my parents), we’ve been spending lost of time with friends, and we’ve spend lots of time at the softball field since she made all-stars. (We played two tournaments and didn’t do so hot, but the experience was so good for Riley’s confidence and her desire to win. But that’s another post.)

Anyway, these are the songs we’ve been listening to this summer–some old, some new. Riley enjoys most of them, but don’t worry, I keep the dirty words to myself. And I’m not including her HSM songs, because, really, when they’re playing year-round they don’t make the Summer Playlist.

Pardon Me–Jonathan Tyler & The Northern Lights

Baby, Baby–Justin Bieber

All I Do Is Win–DJ Khaled, et al

Baby Jane–Rod Stewart

Keep It Loose, Keep It Tight–Amos Lee

Not Afraid–Eminem

She’s a Bad Mama Jama–Carl Carlton

I Want A Love I Can See–The Temptations

Carryout–Timbaland, Justin Timberlake

The Ballad of Jayne–L.A. Guns

Your Love is My Drug–Ke$ha

Love Uncompromised–Jason Castro

Dance the night away

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Riley’s dance recital was two nights last week. Her first night was ballet; the second night was acrobatics and jazz. She did wonderfully–she knew where everyone was supposed to be, and she helped get them there. She loves dancing and it shows! We are so proud of her and everything she has accomplished in her two years on stage.

Getting ready backstage before One Dance

Riley waves to her adoring public after the first-night finale

Waiting her turn for her one-handed cartwheel during Cotton-Eyed Joe

Backstage getting ready for Jailhouse Rock

Proud parents with our dancer girl

Long lost Harry Connick Jr. review

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Harry Connick Jr.

Ryan and I went to see Harry Connick Jr. back in February and I’m just now getting around to posting my “review.” Fun! Great! Bummer!

The VBC usher was on me tight that night. Everyone else around me was snapping photos of Harry as he sang, told jokes and danced. But as soon as I pointed my camera at him, the lady usher came barreling at me and made me put it down. Ugh! So that’s not my picture. I got it from Flickr’s Creative Commons stash.

Sorry, Harry, it’s such a dumb rule to allow no cameras. Ninety-nine percent of people just want to have photos for their own personal collections. Surely the 1% who use the photos for profit don’t put even a tiny dent in artists’ bank accounts. Meanwhile, the real fans are left with a sour taste and none of their own photographic evidence of having been at the show.

Ah, but sometimes I’m a rulebreaker. And although you can’t see Harry, you can hear him here. I put my iPhone on video and just let it sit on my lap. 🙂 I’m not profiting. I’m just spreading my love for a great singer, entertainer and actor. Love ya, Harry!
The show was terrific. Aside from being a wonderful singer and pianist, Harry is a funny man. He’s a crack-up. He had the audience laughing and dancing and clapping. He sang some of Ryan and my favorites like “Come By Me,” and “We Are in Love” along with some old classics that we ended up really enjoying like “You Are My Sunshine.”

Harry would be a cool person to hang out and have a beer with, trading stories about kids and music and adventures. And maybe catch a Saints game. Right?

Look! It’s snowing!

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The precipitation keeps changing from snow to sleet to rain. School was dismissed at 11 a.m., and Riley just got home. Looks like I’ll be working from home tonight, my next-to-last night with the newspaper. I sure don’t want to take the chance of getting stuck there.

I took this video from the back door this morning.

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