The Friday Five: December 16, 2011

On the sixth day of every week, Michael Parr shuffles through his library to bring you five random tracks.

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

I’ll Be Home for Christmas (If Only in My Dreams)” by Frank Sinatra (from Christmas With the Rat Pack, 2002)

This is a perennial favorite. The (somewhat) ironic thing is: this was not part of the music that I grew up with. Sinatra was, in the words of my parents, “old people music.”

Winter Wonderland” by The Andrews Sisters (from The Time-Life Treasury of Christmas, Volume 2, 1987)

Without Bing, I don’t know that I care much for The Andrews Sisters.

Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” by Michael Bublé (from Christmas, 2011)

Damn you, Michael Bublé. Damn you straight to hell.

“Baby, It’s Cold Outside” by Leon Redbone & Zooey Deschanel (from Elf, 2003)

Wait up, Bublé; make room for Ms. Deschanel. Okay, to be fair, I love this version. Despite a deep, burning—not unlike the time Dave Lifton’s mom gave me the clap—dislike for Will Farrell, I love the film it comes from. For more unbridled scorn of Zooey head over to Popdose for today’s installment of Jeff Giles’ & Jason Hare’s Mellowmas.

The Little Drummer Boy” by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band (from A Very Special Christmas, 1990)

I take no issue with Bob Seger’s overwrought, overproduced version of the holiday classic. Listen to those swelling synth pads and gospel choir vocals! This is what Christmas is about, y’all.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: September 2, 2011

On the sixth day of every week, Michael Parr shuffles through his library to bring you five random tracks.

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“AC/DC Bag” by Phish (from 2004-06-18: KeySpan Park, Brooklyn, NY, USA, 2004)

Nothing like easing back into the Friday Five with a jammy bit o’ goodness from Vermont’s finest. After six days without power, I probably resemble a touring phan more than I’d care to admit.

“Crank Me Up” by BulletBoys (from BulletBoys, 1988)

Well it isn’t “Smooth Up in Ya,” or “For the Love of Money,” so … next!

“Now” by Prince (from The Gold Experience, 1995)

“Don’t worry about my name, it’s 2 long 2 remember. I could tell U now, but we’d be here ’till next September” For as clunky, and dated, as some of the material on The Gold Experience is, it still kicks a good bit of ass.

“Beck’s Bolero” by The Jeff Beck Group (from The Rolling Stone Collection: 1967-1969, 1993)

Duh-da-da-da-duh-da-da-da-duh-da-da-da-duh-duh-duh

“Snakes in Schubas” by Jason Mraz (from Selections for Friends, 2007)

So before I close this out, I want to thank Jeff Giles for picking up my slack last week. I also want to give a plug, and plea, for everyone to check out After the Flood: A Compilation to Benefit Upstate New York Victims of Hurricane Irene. It’s a few bucks for a good cause, and in return you’ll get a great collection of tunes from some of New York’s finest singer/songwriters.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: May 20, 2011

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Touch of Madness” by Night Ranger (from Midnight Madness, 1987)

Discussion around the Popdose water cooler has been buzzing about Night Ranger’s upcoming release, Somewhere in California, touting the return of “classic Night Ranger.” Perhaps predictably, Matt Wardlaw and Dave Steed are in a tizzy and Jeff Giles (Y’all) has to replace his monitor.

Oh, and will you look at that; Matt even wrote about it!

“Dance the Night Away” by Van Halen (from Best Of, Volume 1, 1996)

Since we’re all doomed in the next 48 hours, I might as well go ahead and let you all know that this is, hands down, without a doubt or question, my favorite Van Halen song. It’s the perfect example of the band’s ability to balance pop perfection and hard rock hooks.

“Can’t Buy Me Love” by The Beatles (from A Hard Day’s Night, 1964)

I’m debating listening to Abbey Road, Let it Be and Purple Rain all day Saturday. I’m not buying into this rapture bullshit, but if something is going down, I might as well go ahead and listen to my favorite records, right?

“Porch” by Pearl Jam (from Ten, 1991)

“What the fuck is this world running to?” Okay, enough of this end of the world crap.

“The Best of My Love” by The Eagles (from The Very Best of The Eagles, 2003)

When I heard the first strum, I was reminded of a story I read once. You should go and read it, but make sure you come back and leave your five!

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 11, 2011

On the sixth day of every week, Michael Parr shuffles through his library to bring you five random tracks.

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Wings and Feathers” by The Guggenheim Grotto (from The Universe Is Laughing, 2010)

A bit ironic that this week’s Friday Five would begin with my favorite Irish singer/songwriter duo, as I’m headed to NYC to see them later this evening. While not my favorite track from their most recent release, it’s one I could see coming to love, in the live setting.

“Hot for Teacher” by Van Halen (from The Best of Both Worlds, 2004)

As Jeff Giles’ (y’all) has pointed out, there simply is no better Friday record than Van Halen’s seminal, 1984. For me, “Hot for Teacher” was every bit the hit single as “Jump” or “Panama.” I mean, come on … that intro? I remember spending hours upon hours trying—in vain—to master the two-hand tapped figure.

“Babylon” by David Gray (from Draw the Line, 2009)

This is a live version of Gray’s big hit single. It’s a xerox performance, save for the crowd’s insistence to sing the tune themselves. As much as I love the original, I can’t sit through 6 and a half minutes of it.

“The Way Young Lovers Do” by Van Morrison (from Astral Weeks, 1968)

Sorry Mr. Gray … I’d much rather listen to the real deal.

“Airplanes, Part 2 (feat. Hayley Williams & Eminem)” by B.o.B. (from B.o.B Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray, 2010)

I can honestly say that I haven’t cared for much of Eminem’s output of the last few years, save for a verse here and there. His appearance on “Airplanes” is one of those exceptions.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: March 4, 2011

On the sixth day of every week, Michael Parr shuffles through his library to bring you five random tracks.

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“New York State of Mind” by Billy Joel (from Turnstiles, 1976)

I was going to wax poetic about Billy, but I just read this brilliant review of his upcoming Last Play at Shea and would rather you take the moment to go read Jeff Giles’ thoughts. It’s okay, I’ll wait.

Okay, you’re back? On with the five!

“Push” by Matchbox Twenty (from Yourself or Someone Like You, 1996)

You know what? I still kind of like this tune.

“Real Vacation” by Caleb Hawley (from Steps, 2009)

No truer words have been spoken.

So, for those of you that partake in the American Idol, you might recognize the name Caleb Hawley. He managed to make it all the way to the Las Vegas stage, before being given his walking papers. It’s a damn shame, really. Rather than wallow, get over to iTunes or Amazon and pick up Steps, and his latest We’ve All Got Problems, and celebrate a great singer/songwriter.

“Cold Truth” by  The Guggenheim Grotto (from …Waltzing Alone, 2006)

“Hey Maria, I’ve been thinking, been thinking bout moving … far away, cross the sea, maybe, somewhere cold and magnificent.” From Caleb to the duo that introduced me to him! Over the course of the last year I’ve had the pleasure of seeing The Guggenheim Grotto perform five or six times, and this song specifically at least three or four times. Like most tunes by the duo, it is beautifully simple, with soaring vocal harmonies.

“Down By the Water” by The Decemberists (from The King Is Dead, 2011)

Until hearing The Damnwells’ No One Listens to the Band Anymore I was pretty certain that I was going to crown The King Is Dead my favorite record of the first quarter of 2011. The funny thing is, I wouldn’t categorize myself as a fan of the band. I listened to Hazards of Love a few times, and while I liked what I heard, nothing stuck. Flash forward to the band’s latest, which managed to grab me by the ears with its none too subtle nod to a certain little band from Athens, GA. If you haven’t given this a listen for fear of shanty songs and prog-rock leanings, fear not! This is one of the best records of 2011.

What’s on your shuffle today?