Category Archives: music

Time To Cry Tuesday – Graduation (the final one)

danny-grad
A graduation post? Again? Didn’t I just do one of these? I suppose three years could be considered ‘just’ in some circles.

Each time my kids donned a cap and gown, I came here to share the overwhelming emotions attached to watching one’s child ‘grow up’.

There was Jana’s HS graduation; my first experience of letting go. I reread it today and it seemed like both yesterday and 100 years ago. (yes, I cried)

Danny’s HS graduation post brought back the memory of the pending empty nest (which by they way empties and fills again a few times before it is truly vacant). For some reason that was the first of two posts where I had an overwhelming emotional experience in a Starbucks. What the hell is that all about? (Yes, I cried again)

Then there was Jana’s college graduation. I marveled at the woman we had grown as I continue to do every day (yeh, more tears).

So many milestones, so many emotions.

But this time we finally got it right. Instead of all that overwhelming emotion, our graduation trip was a true celebration. We simply had fun! And although I felt very sentimental about leaving Madison after 7 years, I was more excited about my second child starting his life. Danny, in his matter-of-fact, self-assured manner, set the tone. He cut us the slack to be proud but kept the reigns tight on not making it all too big. We have simply had way too much big this past year, and he knew that. With humility and confidence he taught us how to do what he does best… be here now, go with the flow and most of all – enjoy life. (with shades on, of course).

Sure there were mixed emotions, how could one not miss a town with this view that had flyers for a band named Diarrhea Planet and reverse evolution graffiti on the sidewalk. This place is awesome. And my kids are more awesome for having lived there. But all things change. And change is good.

Here is my net of it all:

When your kids first leave for college it feels like an amputation. You think you are losing something you can never get back. You worry about your life changing drastically. Your heart aches as your head is telling you to knock it off and lose the drama. You dread your parental obsolescence.

Here – on the other side – you realize that your kids are not part off you, they enhance you. And you them. You never lose them, for no matter where they live they share their lives with you. Your life will change drastically, and that is a good thing… if you kept going at that custodial parenting pace much longer you would explode. And being someone again, instead of someone’s parent is the natural progression. Let’s face it, you have stuff to do!

Sure your heart will ache from time to time as you watch them struggle and grow, but it is a good ache. It is the physical manifestation of how much you love them. Just like when they were little, they will most certainly fall. The hard part is not trying to fix it for them when they do.

But most of all, parental obsolescence is simply a contradiction in terms. They will always need you, just differently. It’s all good.

Congrats Danny boy, thanks for the best weekend ever. You make us so very proud.

Every.

Single.

Day.

Now go out and be all you can be (and be careful).

 

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Filed under advice to my son, college, danny, education, family, graffiti, moms, music, relationships, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Baby DJ School

photo

Oh those Brooklyn hipsters, they make us yuppies of way back when seem like we did not indulge our children. I am usually saddened by the race to adultify babies. Having been through the whole raising of the kids thing, I want to stop these parents and tell them there is plenty of time for them to become little hipsters and ‘mix music that is super dope’, just not while they are still drooling on the soundboard. But then I fear I am becoming that woman who stopped me on the street over 20 years ago while both my kids were screaming and told me I would miss these days. (that day, I have never missed, btw)

We saw this flyer while walking down Bedford Street and I had to take a picture. A little further investigation, and I found this HuffPo piece on the place. The woman who started it is definitely a genius. I am all for someone being entrepreneurial and preying on the insecurities of the tragically hip. And she has great cred. DJ and composer Natalie Elizabeth Weiss  has shared the stage with LCD Soundsystem and Dirty Projectors. She could, however, use a little graphic help. Just saying. (cute kid, though)

But this mom?  I sort of wanted to punch this mom in the face:

Samantha Al-Fayez, the mother of one of Weiss’ new students, told the Wall Street Journal that her 1-year-old Julien “loves gangsta rap.”

Seriously, Samantha?! Why is your 1-year-old listening to gangsta rap? I shudder to hear his first words! When he calls you mutha, don’t come crying to us when he figures out the second half of that word.

I am happy to report that Weiss does not play any music with profanities for the kids.

Hipster wholesome!

I did so want to make fun of this whole thing but honestly, for the older kids this is quite fabulous. Check out this 4-year-old. I love him. And his dad is a riot. The kid totally gets it, no?

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Filed under absurdities, childhood, music, New York City, parenting

Cash Only

There is nothing I love more than a visual pun. Unless, of course, you add some music in. Then I am just entertained beyond belief.

This sign wins for my favorite of the year. It was on the door of a lovely little coffee shop in Tarrytown, right next to the Tarrytown Music Hall.

As if this were not the double delight of music and graphics for me, it went right over the top with its name… Coffee Labs Roasters. Check out their logo.

That’s right, THAT kind of Lab. The whole place has a Lab theme. Check out the toilet paper holder.

Of course they support sustainability, are Rainforest Alliance Certified and Bird Friendly (I know, bird friendly Labs sound like a bit of a stretch).

You have to love the tagline: Grown Globally. Roasted Locally. I want to marry this coffee place. Or at least sleep with it!

If you are ever in Tarrytown, check them out. Oh, and their coffee is good too.

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Filed under carry a camera, music, restaurants

Jon Cleary, Dr. John AND a rainbow

Such a night…

Sometimes you have the good fortune of seeing a legend one more time. At 72 Dr. John still rocked the house with his own special brand of New Orleans magic.

We raised our kids on songs like this and to add to the magic we them both with us. And we had dear friends came too.

AND there was a rainbow on the way there.

Can’t ask for much more than that on a Thursday night.

Ok, maybe he could have played a little Iko Iko. Here’s an amazing all-star version. (and the headdress is to die for!)

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Remembering Levon

Yesterday, April 19, 2012, the music world lost a legend, Levon Helm. This loss was a personal one in our home. Not only do my husband and I have a strong bond to the music of The Band, but our children both share that love. Part of the soundtrack of our lives, Levon and The Band will forever make us feel the love. That down home sound crawled its way into our home in a big way.

A few memories to honor the man who helped shape the sound we loved:

1. The first album I ever owned was The Band, Music from Big Pink. My older brother, who was a strong influence on my formative musical tastes, bought this for me as a birthday gift when I was still in elementary school. While the other kids were listening to The Archies and The 1910 Fruitgum Company, my bro made sure I was a cool little kid.

2. My first concert was Bob Dylan and The Band, 1974 at the Nassau Coliseum. I went with my girls and our parents had to drop us off because we were too young to drive.

3. A few summers ago I was fortunate enough to stumble into the end of a counselor’s day off from the camp my kids attend. My son and his friends rolled into the restaurant we were in and as luck would have it there was a band playing. Out of nowhere all the boys broke into a rendition of The Weight that will forever remained burned in my memory.

4. But the highlight memory of Levon Helm for me will remain attending The Ramble last December 3rd. It was one of those special nights where the music wrapped itself around everyone in that barn and held us in its embrace all night long. For those who are not familiar with the Midnight Ramble, it is a concert series in a barn/studio that is part of Levon’s home. There are scheduled guests, but this particular night had a host of drop bys that blew us away. Spanning the years of my adolescence to one of my favorite new bands of today, we were treated to Jimmy Vivino, Garth Hudson, Donald Fagan, Jackson Browne and Dawes.

Thank you Levon, for a great run. For the passion. For the joy in your face when you banged those drums even after the cruelty of fate robbed you of your singing voice.

And most of all, for the music.

Photo: This image is from the downstairs bathroom at the Midnight Ramble. I hope the Helm family will forgive me the ‘no pictures’ rule for this one, I simply could not resist.

 

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Time to Cry Tuesday – The Blue Note

Note: This never made it up on Tuesday, so forgive me if you cry on Friday instead. As a consolation I permit you to start drinking early.

Monday night we had the privilege to celebrate Dr. Jimmy’s birthday at The Blue Note to see Monty Alexander (highly recommended). For those who are not familiar, this is the historic jazz club in the Village in NYC. Seeing a show there is a comfort;  the place has hardly changed and every time you walk through those doors you get the feeling that you are part of the real New York.

I arrived a little late and when I got there our table of 11 was mostly full. There were a couple of open seats at the end and a table next to us with a reserved sign on it. “Look at whose names are on that sign”, said Dr. Jimmy.

And there they were. As if every day I get to sit RIGHT NEXT TO one of my favorite recording artists and his wildly talented wife. Yes, my friends. Krall and Costello meant Diana Krall and Elvis Costello. AT THE NEXT TABLE. And if you have ever been to the Bluenote you would know how these tables are right on top of one another.

So, a little while later, in walked Elvis and Diana and sat RIGHT NEXT TO ME. Being the very cool and respectful NYers that we are we refrained from bothering them. Which by omission made us so not cool because we were deliberately ignoring them. I can’t tell if they were relieved or thought us rude and stuck up.

I posted this sign on Facebook and impressed all my friends. I am still wondering if Elvis did the same.

Since I am still uncomfortable with having not having acknowledged them at all, I would like to say here that sitting next to Elvis Costello goes up there with one of my greatest thrills. My first concert with Gary was Elvis Costello at the Eastman Theatre in Rochester when I was a freshman in college. It was raw and exciting and the beginning of what would become the sound I grew to love.

So, Elvis, if your social media monitoring picks this up I would like to say the next time we sit next to each other at a show it would be my honor to buy you and Diana a drink.

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Filed under dr. jimmy, music, New York City, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Kickstart the Squeeze

This awesome site is a place you can fund and follow creative projects. To keep this short, a project is posted with a funding goal. People make pledges and they are only charged if the funding goal is met. It is an awesome concept.

Even more awesome is the fact you can help fund a new album! The Main Squeeze, a band who has two members from our camp family, is raising money to fund this project. You can give any amount over $1.

Please watch the video and I dare you not to fall in love.

Good luck to The Main Squeeze, we know you will make this happen!

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