This Is Me--2019 A to Z Theme

The Challenge of 2019 was the 10th! Since this was kind of a milestone year for A to Z my theme was a retrospective of sorts, looking at my 10 years as a blogger as well as ruminations about my life as it is and as I hope it yet can be. I've got places to be and people to see along the way. Hope you'll join me for this part of my journey...

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog.

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Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Please Come to Boston ( #BOTB ) ( #IWSG )


In recent weeks I've been hearing a shrill shrieking noise emanating from somewhere in the vicinity of the neighborhood where I live.  I hear it periodically throughout the day and the night.  Sometimes I am awakened to hear this undefinable noise. My wife says she hears it too so I know it's not something in my head.  It's puzzling to me.  But so much has become puzzling in recent months.  I mean more puzzling than anything ever before in my life...



The Insecure Writer's Support Group


Join us on the first Wednesday of each month in Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Support Group--a forum of writers who gather to talk about writing and the writer's life. For a complete list of participants visit Alex's Blog




The co-hosts for the July 1 posting of the IWSG are Jenni Enzor, Beth Camp, Liesbet, Tyrean Martinson, and Sandra Cox!



July 1 question - There have been many industry changes in the last decade, so what are some changes you would like to see happen in the next decade?


      The changes that I'd like to see are changes within me.  Everything in the industry has changed in ways that certainly make getting my work published to be a more attainable goal, but to be actually read by any appreciable audience remains a mystery in so many ways.  And if I don't write then it won't matter what else I do anyway.

       My interest in fiction writing has gone by the wayside while my inclination towards writing non-fiction--primarily memoir--is more steadfast though with not enough actual writing.  You might think the restrictive nature of current life circumstances might lead me to write more.  No, not quite--I'm not even reading more.

       Good news is that I'm writing more songs these days.  Almost every day I start a new song and even almost finish some.  My mind has been filled with music--and other writing I suppose.  I'm writing a lot in my head.

       So here's a change I'd like to see--or maybe it's more of an invention.  How about a device that I can hook into my brain that will transmit my writing thoughts into digital storage that can be printed out or sent where I want to send it.  Just the ticket for lazy me!

        If I had one of those I'd be really prolific.  Wouldn't we all...

     

Battle of the Bands


        Battle of the Bands is the blogging event started by Far Away Series and now hosted by StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands.   This event happens each month on the 15th and on some there is also a Battle on the 1st of the month.  My blog is one of those with a second Battle excepting over these summer months.   The premise is simple:  Listen to the songs presented below and then in the comments vote for your favorite and tell us why you liked it.  Then visit the links listed near the bottom of this post for more Battle action.


Please Come to Boston

        After my last BOTB post, my youngest sister Joni sent me a request to feature a favorite song of hers--"Please Come to Boston" which was originally done by Dave Loggins. Now, like I told Joni, I have so many song Battles lined up in my "someday queue" that I wasn't sure when I'd get around to doing this one, but considering it's my sister and she recently celebrated a birthday with her twin brother Jay (I won't say how old they turned, but they are getting older like I am) I figured I'd indulge her request and move her song to the top of my list.

       When "Please Come to Boston" came out in 1974 it got a lot of airplay on the radio stations in Knoxville TN near where I was living at the time.  I think the reference to Tennessee particularly caught the attention of Knoxville music fans.  My good friend Vernon had mentioned at the time how much he liked the song. I liked it too, though maybe not as much he did.

        It's a sweet song that has since those days taken on greater meaning for me seeing as how I've roamed far and wide away from East Tennessee throughout the years that followed the song's release.  These days as I seem more trapped in Los Angeles by the circumstances of life and the choices that I've made, the song hits home like never before.  It would be nice to go back to at least visit Tennessee, but I doubt that I'll ever live there again.  If visiting there or anywhere is in my future, it's not on my agenda for this year.  Don't think I'll be going anywhere this year unless the situation in this country changes drastically for the better.

        Realistically speaking, I don't think this is a very good year for traveling anywhere.  But I can dream and reminisce...
     




Confederate Railroad  "Please Come to Boston" (2007)

       When I was looking for cover versions of "Please Come to Boston" this group's name stood out considering all that's been going on of late.  Looking at the Wikipedia entry for the group I read where upcoming concerts for the band have been cancelled because of the problem with their name.  Looks like another band is going to have to change their name due to the current scourge of political correctness.  But that's a topic for another day and for now let's listen to their version of the Dave Loggins hit...







Reba McEntire  "Please Come to Boston"  (1995)

       For the female take on "Please Come to Boston" I decided to stay with the country genre.  Surely everyone is familiar with Reba since she's not only been a long time country star, but has appeared in movies and television, including her own sitcom.  See what you think of Reba's version...







Time to Vote!

         Are you feeling the country?    Which song version do you prefer?   Hopefully you have an opinion of some kind.  You don't have to know about music to have an opinion since it all comes down to your own personal taste.

        Please vote on your favorite by letting us know your choice in the comment section and tell us why you prefer the version you chose. Then after you've finished here, please visit the other blogs listed below who may or may not be participating this time around. And if you've put up your own BOTB contest let us know that as well so we can vote on yours.



Here are some other places where you might find BOTB posts:

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

 ‘Storms and Stardust’ 

  'MIKE'S RAMBLINGS'

'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

The Doglady's Den 

Angel's Bark  

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 


Cherdo on the Flipside 

A I Love Music


Winner of this Battle Announced Wednesday July 8th

         Stay happy if you can and if you're doing like I've been doing you'll be mostly staying at home.  That's fine with me.  I'm happy at home.  Please vote today and come back later to see if your favorite was the winner.


         Have you been hearing any strange sounds lately?   Do you have any vacation plans this summer that involve travel?   During the pandemic lock down have you experienced greater productivity or have you been distracted by other things?





     



54 comments:

  1. I vote for Confederate Railroad. It seems to be a better version of what the song probably should be (like when the Hooters did an excellent version of Boys of Summer).

    I think they mentioned back when that simple mindedness brouhaha was going on, there was no way they were going to change their name just to satisfy some simple minded politicians. Oh and they scored some other gigs that canceled the cancellation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GB, I'm sure if CR retains their name there will continue to be controversy. Everybody needs to calm down for a while I think, but I don't see that happening any time soon either.

      A vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  2. I vote for Confederate Railroad why? well Lee that year I DID go to Boston and heard it whilst there.
    It brought back memories.
    Keep well and safe also your family.
    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yvonne, I'm sure whenever I was in Boston that song probably crossed my mind a time or two. It is a song that can evoke memories in an exceptional way.

      A vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  3. Downloading it out of my brain would be great.
    Sorry, just can't do the country songs. Would vote for Reba solely based on her appearance in the movie Tremors.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha ha ha ha ha...made my day. We love Tremors.

      Delete
    2. Alex, you should work on expanding your musical horizons! Country ain't all bad. But I did like Tremors for sure and enjoyed Reba in that film.

      A wormy vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  4. "changes within me" has to be the best best answer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chrys, to accept external changes one needs to be ready to change attitudes. I tend to resist a lot of changes.

      Lee

      Delete
  5. From Facebook, a vote from my sister Joni for...

    Confederate Railroad.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  6. Again from Facebook from my friend Lonnie, a vote for...

    Reba McIntire.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  7. I enjoyed both versions, but Confederate Railroad spoke to me just a little bit more. It felt more emotional.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carrie-Anne, I get what you're saying.

      A vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  8. First, both of these were better than the original. That was an EBS Special for me.

    Confederate Railroad did a magnificent job with this, but when Reba started, it tugged at my heart. Somehow the song works better from the perspective of the person who's being asked to relocate. And, my God, Reba's voice is amazing. I'll cast my ballot for her.

    Maybe I should solicit votes via Facebook, too...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John H, "EBS Special"--too funny, but I can relate.

      Reba does sing well and she's a great artist.

      I get a few votes from Facebook, but usually not more than 3 or so. It's worth a shot I think.

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  9. The depth of the vocals on Confederate Railroad were better, I thought...Reba, no offense.

    Can I say Confederate Railroad or do I have to say __________ Railroad? :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cherdo, Reba strikes me as someone who is not easily offended so I'll say she's fine with your vote. The group may have to undergo a name change in the future, but for today it's...

      Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  10. Replies
    1. L.Diane, I totally agree. Essentially same as poetry and often in my songs I tell a story.

      Lee

      Delete
  11. Hi, Lee!
    This song grew roots in my heart, years ago. Reba does a splendid rendition, but Confederate Railroad sounds closer to the original version I fell in love with. I’m voting for the boys on this one because even if they cave to a name change, the song remains the same.

    Good to hear you’re still writing songs! Music moves and soothes me. Though lately, it’s been drowning out the sounds of helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft dumping water and fire-retardant, in effort to control the devastating Bighorn Fire. I’ve gazed fondly at this mountain range my entire life and can only hope the words of Stevie Nicks are true: “The feeling remains even after the glitter fades.”

    Keep writing those songs, Lee. I still hope you’ll share with us one day ;-) I’ll be back for the tally!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diedre, hope you stay safe from those fires. In my neighborhood lately there are more sounds of loud vehicles and fireworks (I hope they are fireworks!).

      I'm hoping I can find a way to record some of these songs and maybe work with a collaborator. These days I don't much feel like going anywhere or associating with anyone.

      Another vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  12. I think it's great that you're writing a lot of songs right now. I've also been focusing on shorter things, like short stories. Our minds need variety, and it's probably best not to fight it too much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jenni, short things are good for my attention span. And I'm always up for variety.

      Lee

      Delete
  13. Howdy, LEE ~

    No offense meant toward anyone but... this song has just never done anything for me. I don't dislike it. It's always just kind of been "there", and has never spoken to me in any way, even though I have been to Boston a couple of times. (I didn't feel any different afterwards. )

    In this Battle, my vote goes to CONFEDERATE (yes, I said "CONFEDERATE"!!!) RAILROAD. And although it's still not a song I'd necessarily need to hear again, I actually prefer the Confederate Railroad cover to the Dave Loggins original.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    STMcC Presents BATTLE OF THE BANDS

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. STMcC, I'm inclined to agree with you about the song. I used to think it was a bit sappy. I still do in a way though as I've grown older sappiness kind of suits me well at times. But could I really ignore my sister's request to use it in a Battle? She's the only one of my sibs who ever votes on my Battles so I can give her one Battle I think. And she was one of the first to vote on it!

      A vote for (gasp!) Confederate Railroad (how dare we use that term!).

      Delete
  14. I vote for Reba because it sounded a bit less country and I felt she put heart into it. I never ever liked the Confederate flag because it still denotes your country as separate. The South can't seem to be good losers plus it brings many bad, very bad issues the South stood for. You lost, suck it up but, that being said, I don't believe in censorship. If the band wants to change their name because they realize what Confederate stands for, ok..sure but I feel bad for them if..and only if, they were just thinking of the proud South and not the ugliness behind d it. Hey, Quebec was Ted to cede from the rest of Canada. When you go to Quebec, there is a big change, in language and culture but they are Canadians and should never cede. Now, they never were in outright war with the rest nor did they feel slavery was ok at one time but they should be part of Canada and they are. They have the Canada flag and the Provincial but they don't have another flag proudly saying g screw you to the rest of the country. Ok..so there is my non opinionated self...haaaaa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Birgit, I've never owned a Rebel flag or been a big fan, but I do think it took on a different meaning for Southern Rock groups back in the seventies and it really didn't have to do with the values of the Confederacy or anything promoting slavery. But this could turn into a long treatise so I'll just leave it with that.

      Interesting that you would say that Reba's version sounded less country because the country twang of her vocal stands out to me. But they're both country for sure.

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  15. Definitely the Confederate Railroad.

    You know, Lee, when I was about 45 someone asked what I'd like to become. I always answered that I'd like to be a successfully published author. That was when I wrote fiction. Somewhere in my mid 50s, I discovered that storytelling is what I enjoy writing. Since then, my fingers are typing all the time.

    You are a storyteller. That is where and what you should write: stories about your life and experiences. Start with your strongest memories from boyhood and bring them to life.

    that will get your own fingers going strong.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Susan, when I do write it is those snippets of my life, but I do need to do it more. For now I write a lot of my life in songs.

      Lee

      Delete
  16. I was hoping to hear an original take on the song, not just singers trying to emulate the original. My vote goes to Dave Loggins

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. PJ, it's probably a difficult song to convey without the original style. When I try to imagine it in my head it all sounds smaltzy, but maybe an interesting experiment for some accomplished musician with a will.

      A non-counting vote for Dave Loggins.

      Lee

      Delete
  17. I prefer REBA's cover. I do love Confederate Railroad (just not their name - I try not to be overly politically correct, but yep...going with politically correct on this one.), but like Reba's version of this song a bit more.

    Kim

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kim, I rather not overthink things but people have sometimes said that I was oblivious. Oh well (shrugging shoulders).

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  18. From my Cousin Tom on Facebook a vote for...

    Reba.

    Lee

    ReplyDelete
  19. Apparently some Americans are hell bent on destroying American history in the same way Europe did. We need to learn from our past mistakes, not tear them down and rewrite history.

    I like the group Confederate Railroad. Too bad about their name. A whole lot of things associated with the South will be changing - not for the better though.

    I do love Reba! I like how she put her own style on the song.

    This is a tough voting choice. Both versions are awesome. I want to be a rebel and vote for the Confederates, but ya know - REBA.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dolorah, it's sad and frustrating to watch what's going on in this country, but I don't know what I can do. But I've also got the reality that I'm getting older and of another era. I don't think upcoming generations have the same interest and respect in the past and their elders like I did when I was younger. I'm getting tired.

      There might be a tongue-twister somewhere in that vote of yours...

      It's Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  20. Reba for me. I kind of agree with Confederate Railroad about the name change thing. David Lee Roth going to "El Roth" is a bit ridiculous IMO. History is history. Learn it and move on.

    Janet’s Smiles

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Janet, I hadn't heard the David Lee Roth nonsense, but I'm not a fan so I don't care what he does as long as he doesn't get in my way of living.

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  21. As a Reba fan - converted by my wife a few years back - she gets my vote. Plus, I prefer her version.

    As for your writing device, it's called VR Viredrake and I've just patented it; it's a lucid dreaming app. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Roland, sounds like the invention I'm looking for.

      Another vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  22. Lee, at the rate it is going, YOU are going to have to change your name. After all, Robert E. Lee was a Confederate, and, ehem... your name? I suggest Andrew. No, wait… that won’t work. How about Nathan Bedford? Well, maybe that won't work either. I'll give it more thought.

    If these idiots actually were burning and destroying monuments for their stated reasons, they would care about facts. Like the fact that General Lee, one of the finest generals in world history, was not in favor of slavery. In a letter he penned to his wife in 1856, he described slavery as “a moral and political evil” and anticipated “its eventual abolition." He believed in states rights and felt he should fight for his home state of Virginia (the once-great state now led by Gov. "Black Face" Northam.)

    But these slobbering moronic goons would just as soon tear down a Lincoln statue as Lee's. Hell, any statue, because they don't really care about black lives, or slavery, or any of the other things they use as talking points. They care about Marxism and the demise of the free world. China is killing and torturing Uyghurs faster than you can crank out sausages, while simultaneously breaking the Hong Kong agreement and imprisoning ACTUAL aggrieved protestors who are merely trying to hang on to freedom. Meanwhile we deal in childish nonsense. We allow room-temperature-IQ slobbering, tattooed, unemployed thugs to decapitate statues of abolitionists and throw them in the lake. We banish the term "master bedroom" because some narcissistic pussies whine that the term MASTER made them recall that - 155 years ago - the term master sometimes referred to an owner of a slave in this country.

    It is all over.

    Everybody HAS to push back because if you don't, the Jacobins will come for you next. If one can't see that, then you are just as stupid as the uneducated Taliban brown shirts to whom you're giving your support.

    I listened to both song versions and liked them both. However, because push back HAS to happen every chance we get, I’d have voted the same way whichever version I preferred.

    VOTE: CONFEDERATE RAILROAD.

    Unless they relent and change their name, then I withdraw my support (as I have done with the shoe-shining asshat running Chick-fil-a.) If they do change the name, I suggest “The Dixie Chicks” instead. I hear the name is available.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 6-Gun, I figured Arlee Bird was a safe change but then there's Robert Byrd the Klan senator. Guess I might try Mr. A to Z, but I'm sure there must be a racist side to the alphabet. Actually I was never all too pleased with the name "Robert Lee" but now I'll proudly wear that moniker.

      We are living in crazy times. Maybe this is the best time to be locked down. Oh well, I'm getting old so it doesn't matter that much to me personally, but I'm sad for my kids and grandkids.

      A vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  23. Reba McEntire gets my vote. Just better music.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Honestly, this one's a poser. I'd like to just come out and vote CR just to tweak the SJWs out there. But after an annoying start (to me), Reba's version had the only thing I thought CR lacked- some of the original emotion. In the end, it should be about the music, and while freedom of expression is important, I'm not sure a failed Rebel experiment is a hill I care to die on. So, Reba.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. CW, a lot of folks died on that hill and I'm not even sure that many of them were all that vested in the cause of slavery.

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  25. Both are really good. Going with Reba though.
    Glad you're writing music.
    I think a lot of us are in a creative funk right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sandra, not as much to do outside of our homes and so much to distract us while we are in confinement. Funky times for sure.

      A vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  26. Hey Arlee, how are you? My vote goes for Confederate Railroad. I like Reba but I like Confederate Railroad better. I hope you had a great 4th. I am taking July off as I need a BotB break. I will be back in August! Enjoy summer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ami, I'm doing fine under the circumstances. My life and attitudes about it are changing every day. Probably not for the better, but I'm here.

      You enjoy your month off!

      A vote for Confederate Railroad.

      Lee

      Delete
  27. Lee,

    In 1974, I was 13. I'm not sure I remember the song when it released but by the time I hit 15 I heard the hit many times. It wasn't until 1979 that the song took on new meaning for me as that's the year DH & moved to Knoxville shortly after our wedding. Confederate Railroad did a nice job but because the original recording artist is male then I couldn't shake the connection and found that I preferred Reba in this showdown. Nice battle! Stay safe and be well, dear friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cathy, I think the song resonates with a lot of people who have left hometowns or have a loved one who has. And then there's the Tennessee connection.

      Another vote for Reba.

      Lee

      Delete
  28. Sorry I'm just now getting around to replying to comments for IWSG. I love the fact that you've been writing songs! That's awesome. If there's one thing that's helped me get through some of the harder times, it's music. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Loni, music has often helped me through tough times and writing a song can put a lot of my angst into words.

      Lee

      Delete

Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee