When I started blogging about my featured images (Astronomy), I was culminating a series of other steps that I had taken to even getting to this point. Since then, I have added other images (headers and websites, governance, writing, and anything goal-related). What remains to be covered are miscellaneous items (quotes, humour, etc.) and reviews.
I have a category called “family” and for a long time, I’ve used a simple symbol of a house. It’s a cute clipart image, kind of almost gingerbread-ish in its feel. But it doesn’t really say family to me. I have another one, a logo of two pandas together that my wife and I used for our wedding theme which I quite like. But it’s only two pandas — no image for our son. We called our son cub for quite some time, but a few years ago, he decided he’s a penguin. » Read the rest
This was outing #6 of the year (following 1 OLT, 2 NAC, 1 hockey game, and 1 Gladstone) to see the NAC Pops show called “80s Mix Tape” with conductor Stuart Chafetz and singers Julie Reiber and Bryce Ryness. The show was a collection of 21 songs from the 1980s performed by the NAC orchestra, with 8 instrumental versions and 13 with lyrics. The full playlist (with two extra songs) is at the bottom.
The show kicked off with the instrumental version of The Final Countdown (Europe), and it was good, but not amazing. A nice light opening. They then went directly into a song with the female singer, Call Me (Blondie). I felt like she was doing a pop lite version of the song, no real grit, and the version I’m used to from Blondie has more deeper tones behind it. Or so I thought. However, you’ll see in the playlist version below, my memory might be off because it isn’t much darker/deeper in tone than the version I heard last night. » Read the rest
My wife and I enjoy the NAC Orchestra shows, particularly the Pops, and if it wasn’t for simple cost and logistics, we’d sign up for them every year. Instead, we pick and choose the shows we want along with some others. With 17 shows across multiple venues, this was outing #2 this year. The theme for the night? The music of John Williams, namely from all his soundtracks of the greatest hits of films.
Up first was the Main Title from Star Wars (1977), and it’s a great blockbuster opening. From there, they slid into Superman March from Superman (1978). Just those two alone would be worth the price of admission for some people, including me.
After that, they went through The Flight to Neverland from Hook (1991), excerpts from Artificial Intelligence (2001), The Cowboys Overture from The Cowboys (1972), and Theme from Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977). They’re all good, and the Cowboys Overture has that big epic Western feel to it. » Read the rest
Before you go searching for an app, there isn’t one. This is just a DIY trivia game that requires nothing more than a streaming service, a streaming device (like your phone) and preferably a second person to make it fun. My wife and I invented the game by accident, but now we’re playing in the car all the time to pass the commute or part of long trips.
We have Apple Music, although any streaming service will do. All of them have genre playlists or radio stations, and with Apple Music, we go for the radio station option for the variety. We click on RADIO STATION / GENRES / YEARS and then we often choose 1980s POP (one of the few years where we both have a good chance). We press PLAY, and then turn the phone away.
As the song starts, we play NAME THAT TUNE and try for the title and artist. » Read the rest
My wife and I had tickets for the latest NAC Pops show this week, and unlike the odd one last time (NAC Pops – Holiday Swing), this was a bit more their style when it comes to non-orchestral “modern music”. They’ll do Broadway or rock or a host of other “pop” sources for music, stick the orchestra in the back playing the music, and throw some good singers up front. I confess, at times, they bury the orchestra. But it’s still fun.
This one was along that line, with eighteen fantastic songs made popular by female artists. To handle vocals, the program had three female ex-Broadway-calibre performers — Katrina Rose Dideriksen (Hairspray, Rent, Grease, Legally Blonde, etc.), Cassidy Catanzaro (American Songbook, backups for big rock stars, songwriter), and Shayna Steele (Rent, Hairspray, Jesus Christ Superstar, huge backup opportunities with larger stars, etc.). Katrina is the young relative newbie, Cassidy is a bit older and richer voice, and Shayna is a bit older still with more experience and a more vibrant voice. » Read the rest