In the late 1980s it felt as if the world was sorting itself out. The Berlin wall came down in 1989, and Nelson Mandela was released after 21 years in 1990. Mandela turned 90 this past week, so here is Stevie Wonder’s pretty gospel song “Free” of 1987 in a video that seems to be dedicated to Mandela. But who are all those other people?
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Michelle Obama is very good at the difficult political wife routine – she sounds about as grounded and real as you can sound if you have to be everything to everybody. She manages to voice her admiration for Hillary Clinton very diplomatically on The View, a women’s talk show, while reminding everyone of the racism that Obama’s candidacy is facing. Continue reading Michelle, ma belle
“The blues is the healer”, sang John Lee Hooker. Well, jazz witch Cassandra Wilson casts a healing spell in “Death Letter” – a powerful womanly take on Son House‘s raw blues classic. It’s about hearing that the man/woman you love is dead and being faced with the dead body and the funeral. Listen to that guitar growl at the beginning.
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Aimee Mann delivers deadpan songs with intelligent irony on “@#%&! Smilers”. She takes a dim view of our materialistic world: “You got a lot of money, but you can’t afford the freeway.” Bouncy, in a downbeat sort of way. Listen:
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Another one bites the dust. Comedian George Carlin (May 12, 1937- June 22, 2008) was a very funny guy who hated bigotry. The first host of Saturday Night Live, he said, “I think it is the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately.” Noone understood better that you need to use dirty words if you want to remain pure at heart. Continue reading RIP George Carlin
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You women out there, do you ever wonder why you play second fiddle to the men at work? Maybe, like me, you tend to break one of the unwritten codes of male business behavior, namely “Never make excuses for failure”. Excuses are self-sabotage in the male dominated business world, and they will get you nowhere, says Canadian Chris Flett, the “reformed alpha business male” writer of “What Men don’t Tell Women about Business” Continue reading A is for Alpha
Oh, for a Friday night out listening to the blues sung with real class! Catherine Russell grew up in New York in a musical family (her father collaborated with Louis Armstrong, her mother is a singer, too) and has been a backup vocalist for big pop and jazz acts for years. But she’s got her second solo album out and it’s called “A Sentimental Streak”.
Continue reading Catherine Russell sings the blues