Posts Tagged ‘Lydia’

As I have mentioned, the Daughter is really into the music of Weird Al Yankovic. She asks me questions about who did the originals of his parody songs. I’m pretty good with the pop/rock stuff, not so hot with the rap sourced items.

One exception is Amish Paradise, one of our favorite Weird Al songs, which I know came from the Coolio song Gangsta’s Paradise, featuring singer L.V. But truth is that I am only aware of that because it’s a reworking of Pastime Paradise, a song on the first side of the epic, Grammy-winning 1976 LP Songs in the Key of Life by Stevie Wonder.

A couple days later, the Daughter asked if Al gets permission to use other people’s songs, and I said that he did. But by this point, she knew of the Coolio/Weird Al feud. “Coolio claimed that he did not give permission for the parody… Yankovic claimed that he had been told Coolio had given the go-ahead through his record label and apologized.” Coolio too has since apologized for allowing his ego to get in the way.

For a while, the Daughter would play the three songs back-to-back. But eventually, she really glommed to the Stevie original, playing it a few times every day. I think it is the rhyme:

Dissipation
Race relations
Consolation
Segregation
Dispensation
Isolation
Exploitation
Mutilation
Mutations
Miscreation
Confirmation, to the evils of the world

Proclamation
Of race relations
Consolation
Integration
Verification
Of revelations
Acclamation
World salvation
Vibrations
Stimulation
Confirmation, to the peace of the world

I always liked it, but her affection for the song has enhanced my enjoyment of it.

Listen to:

Pastime Paradise – Stevie Wonder (1976) here or here
Pastime Paradise – Ray Barretto (1981) here or here
Gangsta’s Paradise – Coolio, featuring L.V., #1 for three weeks on the Billboard pop charts (1995) here or here
Amish Paradise -Weird Al Yankovic, #53 (1996) here or here
Pastime Paradise – Patti Smith (2007) here or here

Chuck, Heather, Fran, this blogger. (c)2017 Chuck Miller

Early in October, my wife slipped on some stairs, getting a nasty bruise on her hip . It turns out there was moss growing on the top step. We would have probably sued the property owners, except they were us.

Yeah, we replaced our front steps when we redid that porch. But the back steps are in dire need of repair, something that might have made this year’s list of things to do until the boiler conked out.

The Daughter missed three days of school in September, until we found medicine that could help her with what ailed her. When she got ill the week of Columbus Day, I was home with her and called her primary physician’s office.

The person, not the doctor, who treated her last time said I COULD bring her in again. But her lungs were clear last time, so she wasn’t sure what they could do for her. She expressed ta theory she was stressed about homework; well, she wasn’t before she got sick again, though she sure is now.

More than being irritated, I’m frustrated that I don’t know what to do for my child. My wife took her to the allergist the next day, who tested at 25 – 25 what, I don’t know, but it was extremely low. The allergist gave her a combination of meds the primary’s office told her not to take together. A week later, her breathing score was 100, which is good.

I’m just tired. Stayed up talking to an old friend until after midnight one day, and the next met with some Times Union current and former bloggers, then worked on the Albany Public Library Foundation’s gala for some hours, planning Black History Month at church, extra choir rehearsals for our Randall Thompson performance, et cetera, et cetera,, et cetera.

I have probably more topics I want to write about but don’t have the time than any point in this blogging. Writing relaxes. Not writing gets my subconscious mind working in overdrive.

I WILL have days off on Election Day and the day before Veterans Day. Any port in the storm.

As a followup to a question I answered in this blog months ago, someone, probably Chris, asked: Is there anything you don’t want her to learn from you? – the “her”, of course, being the Daughter.

I sent myself an email to remind me to write about it, but it got buried in other messages. As for the answer:

I don’t want her to find her sad place, or at least not to stay there for too long. I don’t want her to let the bastards keep her down.

I don’t want her to use food as a drug.

I don’t want her to be too proud or stubborn to ask for help.

I want her to be more tidy, not because it matters so much to me, but because it’ll matter to people she’ll encounter – roommates, friends and romantic entanglements.

I want her to drive a car with confidence and competence.

I want her to try to avoid senioritis, which I surely had in both high school and college.

I think I want her to find out what she wants to do in life sooner, but I’m not sure. The journey can have value in and of itself. AND work in the 21st century continues to be so different, she’ll probably have several jobs anyway.

I want her to travel much more than I have.

I want her to start saving for retirement earlier than I did.

I hope she can find a faith community that she is comfortable with in her twenties.

i’m sure there’s more, but that’s enough. That question is tough because, ultimately, it’s a dissection of myself as much as anything, and it’s a bit brutalizing, to tell the truth.

But as I’ve noted before, she does already have, for good or ill, a lot of my sensibilities. This parenting thing is every bit as difficult as I thought it’d be.

There was a Washington Post article in April 2017, The simple idea to make kids more empathetic? Get them reading the news. It’s about a specific program sythesizing the news.

One of the things I tried to protect the Daughter from was the news. I thought I was watching it when she was busy doing other things. But at some point, when she was eight or nine, I noticed she was picking up on stories. Moreover, she was aware of them at a level that I knew that her classmates were not. And that is still true.

I must admit this is a curse she has inherited from from her father, who was reading op/ed columns in the local paper at 9 or 10. William F. Buckley and Jack Anderson and the like was on my reading diet.

Following the news, she became more aware of the candidates for President – she hated Chris Christie, loved Bernie Sanders – and more of them than 90% of American adults.

I tried very hard not to inculcate her with my pain about race in America. Yet the evidence in the news, with only some minor clarification from me, really informed her, such as when she saw unarmed black men getting shot. I really didn’t want her to have to know about this, but it’s out there.

She has participated in walks to fight hunger. She has contributed money to help shelter animals. She really does have a good heart, which would probably embarrass her, but so be it.

I think that she will be a good citizen. She’ll follow the issues and she’ll always vote. At this point, I can’t see her ever running for office – at some level, she is very shy – but i can imagine her working behind the scenes for a candidate she supports. And perhaps she’ll surprise me.

Rebecca Jade, Sheila E., Lynn Mabry

When we heard that the #1 niece, Rebecca Jade, was going to be a backup singer for Sheila E., the percussionist a protege of the late artist known as Prince, we were pretty excited. But when we found they were going to be performing in New York City, well, that became a priority.

First, get tickets online at the BB King Blues Club. Next, find a place to stay downtown that cost only an arm and half a leg; the Distrikt fit the bill. I took the bus down early for a work meeting, and the wife and daughter followed about three hours later.

We met at the hotel at 4 pm. I actually took a nap, largely because of some tooth pain (another story). We get to the club less than two blocks away, and found ourselves in line. It’s a dinner theater, as it were, and since I bought only the “cheap seats,” ($49.50 each, plus handling), by the time we got in, there was but one table left that was close by, stage left, already with a single patron.

We had a $10 minimum to eat/drink; easy enough. The Daughter had a cheeseburger and fries that was only $13. I had mac and cheese for $20, with a slab of salmon for an additional $7; not bad, especially the latter. The wife’s meal of shrimp and grits was not only overpriced at $36, but skimpy. I gave her a chunk of both the mac/cheese and fish, and the Daughter was generous with her fries. Her Mississippi mud cake ($12) was like it came from a box of frozen dessert.

Then the show begins, sort of, with two Sheila E. videos. Watch America and Funky National Anthem: Message 2 America, the latter of which shows the Niece at 0:58 and beyond.

The band comes out:
Lynn Mabry – vocals
Rebecca Jade – vocals
Eddie M. – saxophone
Mychael Gabriel – guitar
John Wesley McVicker – drums
Raymond McKinley – bass
Bertron Curtis – keyboards

Ooo, the singers are on stage left, which was close to us. We were watching Sheila, of course, but also my first sister’s only child.

Watch:

Love Bizarre (with a Prince/P-Funk/Sly Stone medley). The niece is in the striped skirt.

Purple Rain. A guy in a blue T-shirt was way too loud nearby with his running commentary.

17 Days/Alphabet St./Raspberry Beret, the latter with an RJ solo!

Girl Meets Boy. Sheila E. slows it way down to sing a song she co-wrote after Prince’s death. She says it’s available for free on SheilaE.com. She urged everyone to find a stranger and tell him or her that you love them. The Wife and I took that opportunity to catch RJ’s eye.

America/Baby I’m A Star/Glamorous Life.

A nice show. We see the niece after the show far too briefly, then went back to the hotel and were asleep before Snoop Dogg started his 11:30 show at that venue.

BTW, there were a LOT of people recording her, and she didn’t seem to care. The videos above were taken very near where we were sitting, on our side of the stage.

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