pardon the disappearance


Sorry folks, had a traveling week at work. Late nights and busy days make for bad blogging conditions. Anyway, last week is so last week. The real story here is the weekend. A weekend where I, your average American everydad, was left in charge of the baby all by myself. Yeah, that’s right. What’s more, I’m happy to report that, although it is Sunday, the third day of my four-day single-parent trails, Keaton’s managed to retain all her appendages, her original hair color, and her well-fed, robusto plumpness. In fact, I’ve really been enjoying my daddy-daughter time. I like feeling more solely responsible, it’s kind of empowering. Who knew I could nurture? Maybe I shouldn’t get ahead of myself, I suppose she could still end up down a well or something tomorrow. I better stay on my game.

Anyway, let’s get to this thing. It’s mostly about music today (well, the baby, too), and I’ll likely close out this week the same way, as I’m just about done with my “best albums” list for 2007 and should be ready to post it by Friday.

Today, while Keaton slept, the Sufjan’s song, “Casimir Pulaski Day” shuffled up on the iPod. I’ve long been in love with the song, and it effected me no less today than it ever does. Sure, I couldn’t listen to it with “my boys” in the car on the way to the bar after paintball or anything, but I still love it to death. Such an un-formulaic “sad song, the narrator laying out his heartbreaking case for being angry with God. Sufjan seems to alternate between extreme economy and verbosity with the words he uses to tell his stories, and this is one of the more straight-forward cases (hit up “Flint (For the Unemployed and Underpaid)” as an example of the former). Anyway, I don’t want to ruin it, but I do want you to listen to it. OK? Can you do that for me? Click here and tell me if it makes you want to cry (manly) tears the way it does me.

Way back in the day, before Keaton was born, I wrote an entry dedicated to what I had chosen to be her “first song.” Those who know me know that I tend to mark events, milestones, and the passage of time with musical memories (here are one, two, three, and four examples – and that was only from memory). From the minute I chose it, I knew her “first song” was the right one. The Beatles’ track (which is really more of a McCartney track) “I Will” is a simple, heartfelt, and soothing song. True to my idea, it was the first thing she heard on the way home from the hospital, I think we go through it twice in those few short minutes.

Now, every time I put her down, be it for a nap or at bedtime, I sing it to her as a lullaby. The brevity of it works well for this, as I can usually get through the pre-bedtime diaper change in right about the same time it takes to sing the thing through. The lyrics go like this:

Who knows how long I’ve loved you
You know I love you still
Will I wait a lonely lifetime
If you want me to, I will.

For if I ever saw you
I didn’t catch your name
But it never really mattered
I will always feel the same.

Love you forever and forever
Love you with all my heart
Love you whenever we’re together
Love you when we’re apart.

And when at last I find you
Your song will fill the air
Sing it loud so I can hear you
Make it easy to be near you
For the things you do endear you me to
Ah you know I will
I will.

On that very last “I will” at the end there, Paul jumps up an entire octave and hits a high note to close out the song. Being a Beatles purist, I do my best imitation of this high-note as I finish off Keaton’s lullaby each night, my voice often breaking around the strain. Keaton has oviously learned to recognize this point in the song, because, at the past two night-night concertos, she’s squeaked out the high note right along with me at the end. At first I thought it might be a fluke, but now there’s no denying she knows the song enough to realize when that finale is coming, and hearing her little voice try to match my wavering attempt at alto completely melts my heart. Not only because we can share that “moment,” but also because… she knows the Beatles! Hehe.

Oh man, I have to tell you guys about this Led Zeppelin bootleg downloading spree I’ve been on. I don’t know why, but I just went nuts and started downloading all sorts of live ‘Zep recently. I actually think it started when all the hooplah about their recenr reunion show was boiling over on the internet. Anyway, I ended up finding a couple of simply amazing sounding “soundboard” shows. For those not acquainted with the terminology used to rate the sound quality of live music, soundboard means the show was recorded direct from the mixing board where the band’s engineer monitors all the audio sources and makes them sound good for the audience – it’s the best quality you can hope for in a live bootleg. Anyway, one of the shows is from Dallas in 1975 and one from Paris in 1969. Oh man, you gotta hear these shows… online bootlegging is the way of the future.

Oh, and, on the down-low, ‘Zep’s reunion show from last week has totally already leaked online… you should check it out tout-de-suite (look for the “slowburn” version until something better comes along).

Sorry it was all music. Goodnight.


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