SONG OF THE DAY – “ALL ABOUT YOU” by Birdy

June 17, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

I love the young English singer-songwriter, Birdy. I have been following her for several years now and just find her to be an incredible, young (only 18 years old!), unique talent.

Birdy’s real name is Jasmine van den Bogaerde, but she uses the nickname Birdy that was given to her by her parents when she was just a baby. They began calling her Birdy because she used to open her mouth like a baby bird when she was being fed, and the nickname just stuck. Birdy began playing the piano at age 5 and writing her own music at age 7. Her mother is a concert pianist and music just seemed to come naturally.

Birdy was only 15 years old when she released her self-titled, debut album, Birdy, in 2011. The album was mostly covers, but it did include one original song. The album received rave reviews and went to the top of the charts in many countries. Her first single was a cover of Bon Iver‘s “Skinny Love” which was a remarkable interpretation of the song and became an instant hit. I actually find Birdy’s version much more captivating than the original.

Eighteen months later, at the age of 17, Birdy released a new album, Fire Within, with some amazing original songs. The album was just released in North America a few weeks ago on June 3, but was released in the UK in September of 2013. I bought the song on my UK iTunes account back in September and shared this song as my daughter’s Song of the Day back on September 30, 2013. Because the album is brand new, I wanted to share the song with you on this page today because I think it is an incredible song. I absolutely LOVE the lyrics to this song, and the music is mesmerizing. I also have to say that the live rendition on the YouTube video below is fabulous and you shouldn’t miss it!

Birdy has had a pretty amazing year. She received a nomination for British Female Solo Artist at the 2014 Brit Awards, and she just finished touring in the US as the opener for Christina Perri. I was not able to get to one of the shows this time around, but I am hoping to catch her when she returns … and I am certain that she will return! I think there is much more to come from the talented young artist and I look forward to hearing more new music from her. Speaking of new music … she is featured in three songs on the new The Fault in Our Stars soundtrack. And speaking of music … that is one amazing soundtrack!

Advertisements

SONG OF THE DAY – “SONG FOR MY FATHER” by Sarah McLachlan

June 15, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all the dads out there!

I feel so blessed today as we celebrate Father’s Day. I have the most incredible father, and I have an amazing husband who is a wonderful father to our children. As far as Father’s Day goes … I have a lot to celebrate.

My dad has always been my biggest fan. He always believed that I could be anything I wanted to become and he has supported me in all my crazy endeavors. I have so many memories of my dad that make me smile. Probably one of the most touching memories was on my wedding day. I remember being at the altar and glancing over at my dad (who by the way was sick as a dog!) and seeing him look at me with tears rolling down his face. It was at that moment that I realized how difficult it is to be a father and realize you are letting go of your little girl.

My dad was the father of four girls and we all thought he could do anything. He lived on a pedestal so high that it must have been overwhelming sometimes. Another favorite memory is when we had a puppy die and my sister said, “Don’t worry … dad will fix it when he gets home.” We honestly believed my dad could fix anything and make it all better. My dad can fix just about anything – maybe not a dead dog – but just about everything else. He can build, repair, and create anything.

When I was in charge of house decorations for my sorority during Greek Week one year in college, I told him that what I really wanted to create were two 30-foot wine glasses that could move and clink each other. I just remember my dad looking at me and saying, “30 feet?! Do you know how tall 30 feet is?” Obviously I didn’t, but my dad figured out a way to make two 15-foot wine glasses from wood. I don’t even know how he did it, but he did – and they even moved back and forth to clink! Needless to say, we won the award for best House Decorations that year thanks to my dad. He has always been able to do things like that. Even today, if any of us need something fixed, created or figured out, my dad is the man to call.

My dad turns 80 years old this summer! He still is as sharp as a tack and moves like a man half his age. I admire him so much! My dad taught me about hard work, integrity, and commitment to family. His family means everything to him and has always come first. He is opinionated, smart, funny, sarcastic, genuine, and selfless. He has been such an incredible example to me and I love him more than I could ever express.

My dad with “his Girls” on his 70th Birthday!

Then I have my husband. He is such an amazing father to our two kids. He, like my dad, considers his little family the most important thing in his life and he would do anything for his children. He just beams with pride about both of his kids. He loves to spend time with them and is their biggest fan. I know how lucky my two children are to have him as their father and I feel very lucky to have him be my partner in parenthood. I love him and the great example of love, strength, and support he is for my kids.

My husband as father with his two little children.
My husband as father with his two little children.

This song today is from Sarah McLachlan’s new album, Shine On and is a tribute to her father. The album, which is her seventh full length album, was released just last month in May 2014. Sarah McLachlan is from Canada and made her debut in 1988. She is an incredibly talented artist with a beautifully unique voice and incredible staying power. I love this song and the emotion that is expressed when she sings it.

SONG OF THE DAY – “MASTER PRETENDER” by First Aid Kit

June 14, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

Just a quick note on this lovely Saturday afternoon.

I am posting a song today from two sisters who form the talented Swedish-duo, First Aid Kit. I love finding bands that so many other musicians are talking about. This group is one of those bands. First Aid Kit is made up of sisters, Johanna and Klara Soderberg, from a suburb outside of Stockholm, Sweden. They have great vocals and create amazing harmonies.

The song is from their third album, and the first one from a major label (Columbia). The album was released in the US just a few days ago – June 10, 2014. They are performing at Bonaroo this weekend and are very popular festival performers. They are young and love to tour; currently on tour, they would be a great live show.

SONG OF THE DAY – “IT’S TOO LATE” by Carole King

June 12, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

It’s Throwback Thursday! Today we are going way back to 1971 for the #tbt song. 

Today I got to spend the day with a dear friend of mine who I don’t get to see nearly often enough. It was such a sweet day and I loved the time together. We spent the morning walking the entirety of Central Park, talking and catching up on life the entire time. During the conversation we both mentioned that the one show we were dying to see on Broadway is “Beautiful – The Carole King Musical.” If you are not familiar with the show,” it is the story of Carole King’s life and it is currently one of the most popular shows on Broadway, with tickets that are nearly impossible to obtain. It just seemed to make it a fitting day to use one of her song’s as my TBT song.

Carole King is one of my all time favorite artists. She is literally one of the most talented songwriters and singers of this generation, and just an all-around classy lady. Plus, what about that piano! I would have to credit my parents with introducing me to Carole King back in my growing up days. We used to listen to her music around the house all the time.

One of my very favorite albums of all time is Tapestry. Today’s song is from that album, which was released in 1971. It was difficult for me to pick just one song! Once I got started playing the album, I kept saying “Oh, this is the one. No, I am going to do this one. Wait … maybe this one.” This went on for a solid hour as I just sat and enjoyed listening to this amazing album. I finally decided on this song because it was one of her biggest hits as a singer and it is a great example of what she is so well known for … honest, powerful, emotional music that just really connected with the listeners. It is still as powerful today as it was when it was released so many years ago.

Carole King started as a songwriter, penning songs for other artists. It was thanks to encouragement from her friend, James Taylor, that she began singing her own songs. What an incredible decision that was, as she has since become one of the most prolific singer-songwriters of all time. The album, Tapestry, has been listed by Rolling Stone Magazine as #36 in the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.  This is really no surprise … is there anyone out there who can’t sing along with at least one of the songs on this album? My son was amazed that I could sing every single word to this album while we were listening to it tonight. It is a Masterpiece!

Enjoy this throwback today! I hope it inspires you to go back and listen to the entire Tapestry album.

SONG OF THE DAY – “HOLDING ONTO HEAVEN” by Foxes

May 20, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

Just a quick note today. I picked up my girl from college this morning. She finished her sophomore year. Crazy! Where does the time go? I get to have her home for a few days before she takes off for an internship for the rest of the summer. They grow up and time gets so short and precious … I feel like I am holding on to every minute. Holding onto heaven while she is here.

I really like this song today by rising artist, Foxes. Foxes is the stage name of British singer-songwriter, Louisa Rose Allen from Southampton (now based in London). Foxes has been the featured artist on many albums with other artists, most notably “Clarity” by Zedd which won a 2014 Grammy Award for “Best Dance Recording” (also Rudimental and Fall Out Boy). She has since devoted her time to her solo career and songwriting, releasing her debut album, Glorious, earlier this month (not yet released in the US). She has an amazing voice and I find this song incredibly addictive. It will be interesting to see where she goes from here.

SONG OF THE DAY – “FEELS LIKE COMING HOME” by Jetta

May 19, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

I just returned from a very quick trip “home.” Home to the place where I spent the first 24 years of my life and where both my family and my husband’s family still live. We have not been home for a visit in almost two years and it just felt incredibly nice to be there. The thing that I loved the most about being there was the time I was able to spend reconnecting with family.

There is so much that I love about being “home” and yet, at the same time, so much about it that feels foreign and disconnected from me. Having grown up there, I notice many things that never change, but at the same time, I realize that so much has changed … that I have changed.

While I was there I kept thinking about this song. Obviously it talks about home and so that seems like a natural reason for the selection, but that is not what drew me to this song. There is just something about the feeling and tone of this song that speaks to me. The song gives a sense of peace about coming home and that feeling of “it feels like I’ve come home,” but there is also something about the song that feels melancholy. To me, that is what it feels like to “come home.”

This is an amazingly beautiful song by Jetta, a young UK singer-songwriter who was born in Liverpool and is currently based in London. She grew up with two musical parents and has been involved with music most of her life. While only a teenager, Jetta spent two years as a backup vocalist for Paloma Faith and, after that, she went on to sing backup for CeeLo Green before breaking out on her own. During all that time, she was busily writing her own music and in 2012 Jetta released an amazing independent video of her song, “Start a Riot” which led her to a record deal. In March of this year, she was listed as one of the “10 New Artists You Need to Know” by Rolling Stone magazine. Even if you don’t think you know her as an artist, you probably have heard this song before as it was the featured song for Google Zeitgist’s “Here’s to 2013 ad campaign (a must watch video, with over 30 million views). Her debut album is expected out this year – keep your eye out for it.

SONG OF THE DAY – “THE BEST DAY” by Taylor Swift

May 11, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

To all the mothers out there, I wish you an incredibly Happy Mother’s Day!

I love that I have the opportunity today to make certain that I tell my mom how much I love her and how important she is to me, but I hope that she knows it every single day. I have an incredible mom. I think she is the most amazing woman and my life has been so blessed to have her as my mom.

I think my mom is so cool. She has always been such a “goer” and “doer” and really instilled that sense of being active and adventurous in me. She has so many amazing talents and always made our home such a wonderful place to be. Even today, I love going home to my parents house. I love the smell, I love the warmth, I just love being there. In fact, even though I am grown up and a mother myself, my mom is the only person I want when I am sick. She has always been the one person who makes me feel better. My mom is the most giving and generous person, and has always been my #1 fan and supporter (along with my dad, of course). In addition to all of these wonderful things, she is also just a great friend – she is supportive, kind, and just an awful lot of fun to be around.

My mom set the bar very high. I know that I am the type of mom that I am because of what I learned from her and because I strive to be like her. I am posting this song today, because it says just about everything I want to say to my mom. The perfect Mother’s Day song! I don’t think I have ever been able to get through this song without tearing up. I love you mom! Thank you for your unconditional love and support, and for not only being my biggest fan, but my biggest inspiration as well.

SONG OF THE DAY – “PLEASE DON’T SAY YOU LOVE ME” by Gabrielle Aplin

May 7, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

The last few days I have been able to get outside for a run in close to 60 degree weather. What a joy! I love the sunshine, being in my running shorts, and having to stop halfway thru the run to remove my long sleeve top and tie it around my waist. That is just pure pleasure. 🙂

Another pleasure is listening to today’s artist. I am posting a song by a young artist (21 years old!) from the UK that I have been a fan of for several years. I have followed Gabrielle Aplin‘s music since 2011 and have often had to purchase it from the UK iTunes site since the songs were not available here in the US. I am, therefore, very excited to announce that her album, English Rain, (which was released in the UK this month last year) was finally released here in the US yesterday (May 6, 2014). In addition to the album release yesterday, she also performed live in concert in NYC last night. I am excited to see her extend her reach into the States and I thought it was a perfect day to post another song by her. I posted my favorite song by her – “Home” – on this page back in December.

I find Gabrielle Aplin‘s music just very honest and easy to listen to. I really like this song and I love the video I have attached where you can watch her perform in her element, standing by herself playing the guitar (or the piano) and singing. She received her first guitar from her parents at age 11 and says that she was influenced musically by listening to her parents’ Joni Mitchell and Bruce Springsteen albums. She is an incredibly talented young lady! Her full EP is definitely worth checking out and I am certain we will hear more from this rising young star.

As you know, another favorite musical group of mine from that side of the pond (Ireland) is Hudson Taylor. The brothers, Alfie and Harry, and Gabrielle are great mates who have known each other for over four years when they all moved to London. In fact, I have discovered that Alfie and Gabrielle are dating… so cute! It is fun to watch these young artists develop friendships with each other and support each other in their respective journeys. Let me know what you think about today’s song – I would love to hear from you.

SONG OF THE DAY – “NIGHT LIKE THIS” by LP

May 4, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

 

Today I am posting a song by an artist that I just find fascinating – LP.

I really love LP’s totally unique sound. This song is from her new album, Forever For Now, scheduled for release on June 3. I am excited to listen to the album in its entirety because I understand there are a lot of new sounds for her and a real focus on her very unique voice.

I was first exposed to LP with her song, “Into the Wild,” which I absolutely adore. Many of you may have heard the song as it was later played on a CitiBank commercial). I also watched one of her live concert performances online and was really taken by her entire performance – her interaction with the audience, her look, her infamous ukulele (an instrument she taught herself to play), her whistle, and that incredibly unique voice. One of my favorite live performances is of Beyonce’s song, “Halo” – watch it here. I am hoping to get a chance to see her perform in person soon; I have heard the performances are electrifying.

LP is a native New Yorker who moved to Los Angeles many years ago in her pursuit of music. She has been on the music scene for many years and, in fact, once had a bidding war to sign her to a recording contract after her performance at SXSW in 2006. Along with being an amazing performer, she is also an incredible songwriter and has written songs for many artists, including Rihanna (“Cheers (Drink to That)“) and many others. Along the way, LP has amassed a loyal fan base and many admirers, including being named as Artist of the Week by Vogue Magazine in 2012, and receiving praise from the likes of CNN, Rolling Stone, and Esquire (see her bio).

Enjoy this new song and keep your eye out for her new album.

SONG OF THE DAY – “WHO SAYS” by Selena Gomez & The Scene

April 24, 2014

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004

It’s Throwback Thursday! Today’s #tbt song was originally posted as my daughter’s Song of the Day on May 8, 2012.

I know that this song choice seems off beat for me, but I have to tell you that I just love this song. I find it totally empowering! It just makes me feel good.
.
I find this to be a great running and workout song, or just a great song when I want to dance around the house and tell off the world. haha! Also a good song as a reminder for my daughter and other young girls who are finding their way. So, it is an old song by a teen pop star – not my typical song choice – but it is a great song and I think you will like it.  I can’t say that I follow Selena Gomez, but I can say that I sure like the girl in this video and hope that she is still that girl.
.