This Is Me--2019 A to Z Theme

My A to Z Theme for 2022 was My Vinyl Record Collection. For the 2023 Challenge I'll be doing something similar with my home book collection. Lots of book stuff from A to Z

Sunday, October 22, 2023

Autumn Waft ( #BOTB Results )

       Not much of a breeze on this fall evening.  Just cool autumn air wafting through the windows.  But even when summer is gone, we can still sing summer songs...


Battle of the Bands Results



Summer Showdown

       The most recent Battle found two contrasting renditions of the Seals and Crofts classic hit "Summer Breeze" which all voters seemed to agree on it being a fine summer song.  

        The somewhat ominous sound of Dark Side of Light I did enjoy quite a bit.  I even liked the weird electronic sounds and such.  But it was the mellow delivery of the duo that won me over.  Guess it just fit my mood better.  I gave my vote to The Running Mates.


Final Vote Tally

The Running Mates        5 votes

Dark Side of Light           6 votes

An unpleasant sounding write-in      1 vote


Next Battle on Wednesday November 1

       Did I really say that?  Time to think about Christmas.  Happy Halloween!



Sunday, October 15, 2023

Summer Breeze ( #BOTB )

      It's the middle of the month when I guess I am among the few with a Battle of the Bands post.  Be sure to check the other BOTB participant sites listed below in case there are others. Lots going on as I watch another summer disappear in the rearview mirror.  Still I've been getting some of those October reminders of the summer breeze.  Can you feel it?

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.


The Ultimate Summer Song?

      There might be a bit of a debate as to the most iconic of all summer songs, but I think many of us will agree that Seals & Crofts' "Summer Breeze" is one of the best of the best.  The Seals & Crofts duo is not something we'd listen to in my basement back in the seventies, but still their music was frequently heard on our car stereos or wherever our 8-track players were.  In the basement I only had a turntable and I didn't have any Seals & Crofts on vinyl.  

      The other day I was looking for a different Seals & Crofts song on YouTube and the following choices appeared.  As I listened to the singer of the Running Mates I could clearly understand the lyrics that for the most part I had never actually listened to before.  Then, the DSOL video had the lyrics for me to read which further clarified what the song was saying.  It really is a wonderful summer song!  Such visual images portrayed.  Is this among your favorite summer songs?

       How about these two versions that inspired me to do this match today?  Which do you prefer?...


The Running Mates   "Summer Breeze"  (2022)

 




Dark Side of Light  "Summer Breeze"   (2020)

 




Time to Vote!

           Hang on to summer for a bit longer as you enjoy these two song versions.  Which do you like best?.  Just listen and have fun.
  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. I don't know if anyone else will be doing a Battle this time around, but you can still check out these sites.


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

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 






Results coming on Monday October 23
     
           Sure, I'll post the results.  I think I can fit that into my schedule.





Sunday, October 8, 2023

Who Was on Top & Who Got Just a Little Amount of Votes? ( #BOTB Results )

       The title of this blog post gives the answer to the question asked albeit in a somewhat cryptic fashion.  If you are interested in knowing which artist won my previous Battle then read on.  If you're not interested in knowing then go ahead and read on anyway...


Battle of the Bands Results



Soul of the Soundtrack of My Life

      During my high school and college years I spent many hours in the retreat of the basement of my family's house.  There was a stereo record player there that was usually playing when I was down in that favorite room.  The musical styles were widely varied so one might hear just about anything playing while I was in my lair.  During the late 60's I'd mostly play rock and pop with a heavy emphasis on The Beatles, but I had some excellent Soul and R & B records as well that spent a fair amount of time spinning on the turntable.

       My most recent Battle featured popular songs from two popular groups of the era--The Four Tops and Little Anthony & the Imperials.  In those days my preference would have been with The Four Tops while Little Anthony was more to my sister's liking, though I also enjoyed their music.  Now in my mellowing older age of my life have my tastes changed that much.  In regard to these two songs I would have to say no.  Between Little Anthony's "Hurt So Bad" and The Tops "Reach Out", I still prefer the latter so The Four Tops captured my vote in this contest.  And in the final tally, The Four Tops turned out to be the predominate favorite, though most voters also approved of Little Anthony's hit. 

      


Final Vote Tally

Little Anthony & the Imperials        5 votes

The Four Tops                               11 votes


Next Battle on Sunday October 15th

     At least that's my plan for now.  If I decide not to do this then that will become my plan.  Come back and see what happens.

   








Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Superficial Intelligence ( #IWSG )

 

     If computers ever take over the realms of creativity then hopefully they will provide programs that will just inject info into our brains so that we don't have to actually read what the machines write--the machines will just tell us what we would have read if we had actually read it.  Why bother to think if someone or something else can think for us?  I don't think I like where this could go...


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 October 4 posting of the IWSG are Natalie Aguirre, Kim Lajevardi, Debs Carey, Gwen Gardner, Patricia Josephine, and Rebecca Douglass!






October 4 question: The topic of AI writing has been heavily debated across the world. According to various sources, generative AI will assist writers, not replace them. What are your thoughts?


          I don't know much about this topic of AI and considering my computer limitations of this past year I'm not sure I care too much.  There are advantages to AI as far creativity I would say, but once the human component of creativity has been replaced by AI would the various arts using it tend to become stale and highly formulaic?  Then again, maybe that has happened to a great extent with human writers.  A great many of the books, films, or other media that become a series have to rely on formula and sameness because that's probably what the audience wants.
 
         But who am I to say since I don't have enough experience with anything in regard to AI?  If the future means reading a lot of stories, seeing a lot of films, or hearing a lot of music that basically sound like something else we've already experienced repeatedly then is that really a good thing?  Or has this happened already?

          I'll admit that I'm pretty much in the dark about AI, but maybe we all are.  Maybe only AI knows for sure...


         If you haven't done so already, I hope you'll stop by to vote on my current Battle of the Bands.  This one has songs that you probably know and like.  And I don't think they were composed using AI, but I couldn't confirm that.











Sunday, October 1, 2023

Soul of Lee's Basement ( #BOTB )

     When my family first went to Maryville Tennessee I figured it was more like a vacation except that my father had to go to work every day.  It was a vacation for the rest of us though.  My parents and four siblings were staying in our travel trailer parked at a mobile home park.  Each day after my father went to work, my mother took the rest of us to some nearby tourist attraction--and there were many!  We all fell in love with the area.  By  mid-August it was decided that we would move here.  My parents put our Indiana house up for sale and by September we were settled in our new home in East Tennessee.

     The house we decided on was a nice sized recently built brick house on a very large lot. Of particular appeal to all of us was the large finished half basement that had a large open area with a fireplace, a sort of alcove with small closet, and a laundry room with a bathroom.  My father saw a good space for practicing our juggling act.  I envisioned a retreat where I could listen to music.  There was something for everyone, but I felt like it was mostly my domain.  Eventually those in my circle of friends would call it Lee's Basement.

       When our family made the move to Maryville, my record collection was likely not much more than 20 records if that many.  I treasured each and every one of them and played them often.  My sister also had her records, but she didn't take collecting as serious as I did.  My records were usually in better shape than hers and always inside their proper dustcovers. I occasionally listened to her records and enjoyed them, but we had distinct inclinations to like different types of music.

        Each Christmas my mother would take an album wish list from each of us and that would be another 20 or so albums in the house.  There would be my Kinks album versus her Bobby Vinton or my Beach Boys against her Diane Renay (anyone remember her?  "Navy Blue"?).  When she got over Beatlemania and stopped being interested in Beatles records is when they caught my attention an I started listening.

        My sister had her music and I had mine even though I really did like a lot of what she was listening to.  I like music and that's why I do this thing...

       


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.


A Little Bit of Soul

       Both my sister and I leaned heavily in the direction of the rock or pop genres, but some of the R & B groups caught our attention.  We both started listening to the Motown artists, but Joy had already been a fan of the NYC group Little Anthony and the Imperials for a couple years.  I also liked their hits that were often played on the Chicago station we listened to when we were still in Northern Indiana.  Joy probably liked having their songs as a background to young teenage angst.  I just liked their sound, but I could understand how some of their songs could set a mood for reflection or whatever.

      The Four Tops had released several hits before they really registered with me, but soon they caught my attention with their edgier sound.  They seemed more like a group for action rather than reflection and being moody.  Of course Joy liked those Four Tops songs, but I'm pretty sure she would have rather listened to Little Anthony if the choice were hers for music to set her mood and I think that would be the case even now. 

        Has my musical tasted changed over the years as I've become older and more reflective?  Back in the late sixties in my basement, my go to music would have been Four Tops over Little Anthony.  Where am I now?  That's not only for you to find out when I post my results for this Battle, but also for you to decide which you prefer.  Listen and remember.  And then, please vote...

       

Little Anthony & the Imperials   "Hurt So Bad"  (1964)






Four Tops   "Reach Out I'll Be There"  (1966)










Time to Vote!

           Do these songs bring back memories for you?  Which do you like best?.  Just listen and have fun.
  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. I don't know if anyone else will be doing a Battle this time around, but you can still check out these sites.



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

 StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands

'Curious as a Cathy'

Sound of One Hand Typing

Jingle, Jangle, Jungle 






Results coming on Monday October 9th