Video of the Week: Livin’ On a Prayer Park Singalong

On Music…

Video of the Week: Arpeggios at the speed of light – Amazing guitar performance in Buenos Aires streets

“On Eagle’s Wings”: The simple origin of the song that makes the world cry

Via (America: The Jesuit Review) by Colleen Dulle

While Catholics can argue ceaselessly over a number of issues, we hold a few unshakable truths in common: Jesus is present in the Eucharist, Mary was conceived without sin and, when “On Eagle’s Wings” plays, we cry.

In the 38 years since its publication, “On Eagle’s Wings” has achieved global popularity, been translated into a variety of languages and become a Christian funeral classic (if not a staple).

But the song’s true staying power is rooted in our shared but individual experience of hearing it in moments of grief…

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Video of the Week: British Guitarist Analyses Heart live in 1977

Songs You May Have Missed #721

Tenpole Tudor: “Swords of a Thousand Men” (1981)

“Messy and infectious” is how Allmusic describes the drunken singalong clatter of British punk band Tenpole Tudor, the less angry and much more fun contemporaries of the Sex Pistols.

Maybe they couldn’t sing. They certainly couldn’t fight with swords.

But they did create a raucous good time. Hoorah, hoorah, hooray yeah!

Deep in the castle and back from the wars
Back with my baby and the fire burned tall
“Hoorah”, went the men down below
All outside was the rain and snow

Hear their shouts, hear their roar
They’ve probably all had a barrel or much, much more
Hoorah, hoorah, hoorah, yeah
Over the hill with the swords of a thousand men

We had to meet the enemy a mile away
Thunder in the air and the skies turned gray
Assemblin’ the knights and their swords were sharp
There was hope in our English hearts

Hear our roar, hear our sound
We’re gonna fight until we have won this town
Hoorah, hoorah, hoorah, yeah
Over the hill with the swords of a thousand men

The knights come along at the end of the day
Some were half-alive and some had run away

Hear our triumph, in our roar
We’re gonna drink a barrel or much, much more
Hoorah, hoorah, hoorah, yeah
Over the hill with the swords of a thousand men

Hoorah, hoorah, hoorah, yeah
Hoorah, hoorah, hoorah, yeah, yeah…

That Time Bob Saget Burst onto the Stage at a Guster Show in Boston

Guster photo via Getty/Joey Foley/Contributor | Bob Saget photo via Getty/Amy Sussman/Stringer

(via Boston Magazine) by Spencer Buell

Fellow comedians, actors, and fans have been sharing kind words for Bob Saget by the dozen today after the beloved comic and TV dad’s abrupt death over the weekend, and for good reason. Saget had quite the reputation as a talented (and often dirty) stand-up, a guy willing to laugh at himself and lean into the nostalgic excitement his presence always elicited, and as an overall pretty decent dude. This was a man who loved to make people laugh, and hardly ever turned down an opportunity to do so.

Just ask Guster, the legendary Boston rock band who, according to drummer Brian Rosenworcel, had a strange and hilarious run-in with the American icon at a show in Boston one night 15 years ago, a retelling of which is being shared far and wide today…

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Video of the Week: Conspiracy Central Tackle the Paul is Dead Hoax

20 Awesome Albums That Critics Initially Hated

(via Yardbarker) By Matt Sulem

Jan. 12 marks the anniversary of the historic release of Led Zeppelin’s self-titled debut album, also known as “Led Zeppelin I.” Now ranked among the greatest rock records ever made, “Led Zeppelin” actually wasn’t initially received well by critics. However, as you’ll soon see, many now-iconic records also didn’t get the warm welcome you might have expected from critics. And back before anyone with an internet connection could be a published music writer, major publications held a lot of power, and a couple of bad reviews could really damage a band or artist (one reason why the list tends to skew older). With that, here are 20 awesome albums that critics initially hated…

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As much as I might agree that critics were about as off the mark as could be on albums like Abbey Road and Blood on the Tracks, I have a few further thoughts on the topic.

While you may (with sight not afforded the critic appraising new music) recognize AC/DC as a great “classic rock” band, actually it’s hard to argue with Billy Altman’s description of them as  “two guitars, bass and drums all goose-stepping together in mindless three-chord formations”.

I mean, that’s the point of AC/DC, right?

And while McCartney’s Ram sounds in retrospect like a classic and a predecessor to indie pop, perhaps we needed indie pop to come along to form that consensus.

But fresh on the heels of the full band polish and meticulous George Martin production of late-period Beatles’ releases, how could it not sound spare and undeveloped?

The bottom line is that the appreciation of music (or lack thereof) is subjective and never takes place in a vacuum. It’s all about context.

If you as a listener hadn’t (presumably) grown up in a world that generally reveres “classic” rock–and rightly so in most cases–you could likely be convinced AC/DC is annoying if your ears prefer the relative subtlety and sheen of Fleetwood Mac.

Just as you could be persuaded that Fleetwood Mac have no balls because they lack the testosterized swagger of AC/DC.

The critic has to walk out on the limb, so to speak. Has to make his judgment without benefit of hindsight, with the past as his only context. It’s an impossible job, really.

I think Blood on the Tracks would have become near and dear to me regardless of anyone else’ opinion of it. But then again, if I hadn’t come across the album at a time when I was experiencing the same kind of pain Dylan was writing about–who knows? Maybe he would have sounded annoying.

I just think it’s possible to both see how obviously these critics missed the mark (and later recanted/reappraised) and see some truth in their original words. To some degree, both things can be true at once.

On a Lighter Note…

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