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Dear Music Lovers:

If you are like me, you have playlists for various occasions. In my case, these playlists correspond to very specific occasions. Here are some examples:

1. Playlist that keeps me from murdering my attitudinal oldest son and burying his body in the shrubs outside our door:

Notes: It’s hard to be mad at your 13 year old when 13-year-old Taylor Hanson is scatting. No, I’m not ashamed to have One Direction on a playlist. Yes, “1985” resonates (I too never got a hand on a member of Duran Duran. Yet.).

2. Playlist that helps me get ready for work when I spent too much time the night before bingeing “Santa Clarita Diet” and drinking wine.

Notes: I dare you to stand still when you hear any of these songs. “Thrift Shop” is one of my youngest son’s favorite songs.

3. Playlist that allows me to let my redneck freak flag fly (and those moments I can ignore over-the-top objectification of women):

Notes: This may surprise you, but my first date with Eddie was a Tim McGraw/Sawyer Brown concert. I was a DJ for a country music radio station at the time. As I also worked as a TV news reporter, I couldn’t use my real name on air at the radio station. I wanted to call myself Moonpie Jones, but my boss wouldn’t let me.

4. Playlist to offer when someone asks you your favorite song from the ’80s.

Notes: How could I choose? So many great songs for so many good reasons. It’s shocking how Bow Wow Wow is undervalued and underplayed.

5. Playlist for when the kids are not in the car:

 

Notes: All great. All NSFW and NSFC. It’s surprising there’s no “E” next to “Crazy Bitch.” It’s definitely “E.” (Sarah K., don’t say a word to me about Buckcherry.)

6. Playlist for stress cleaning your habitat because your house in your old city STILL hasn’t sold.

Notes: It’s been a year. This is better than drinking.

7. Playlist for cooking complicated dishes like Mexican tamales, Puerto Rican pasteles and Japanese gyoza while wishing regular life could be as easy as following a recipe.

Notes: If I’m going to cook, I’m going to COOK (i.e., go all out). All-day cooking makes me feel very counterculture — counter to my usual routine — hence this throwback playlist.

I’m open to new bands. I promise! (I’m just too lazy to go searching.) Send me your top playlist and its best occasion!

Thanks for the recs,
Beth

 

From Instagram. Change 2000s to 1980s.

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When last we saw Beth and Eddie, Eddie had asked for permission from the president of the college to date Beth. Beth had said she would go out with him if he got permission. He did, and she didn’t.

SHE SAID

Yes, it was stupid. I know. I could have saved myself plenty of angst. The relationship with the reporter continued its death spiral until April 1994. He had moved out of town by this point and I was thinking of joining him. I even found a job. At the very last moment possible, the small voice of reason inside finally broke free (think Jojo’s “yop” from “Horton Hears a Who”). I backed out of the job, and the “relationship,” such as it was, dissolved.

This is where Beth gets her groove back, thanks to Eddie.

I switched from PR at SCAD to reporting at a local television station. Like a true multitasker, I also started doing weather on Sundays, and serving as a DJ for the country station connected to the TV station. Free concert tickets — woohoo! I hadn’t previously been a country music fan, but that all changed during my tenure as K.C. Quinn. (I couldn’t use my real name, of course, because I was a reporter and that would be weird. I wanted to be called Moonpie Jones, but they wouldn’t let me.)

After the breakup, I quickly took up with another reporter in town, but was considering other options.

HE SAID

I am not sure, but I think she is talking here about the man with the concaved chest I referred to as “Stick Figure.”

SHE SAID

I had a chance to go to the Sawyer Brown/Tim McGraw/Diamond Rio concert, and I decided to take Eddie. We had begun chatting quite regularly at this point, but it was all strictly platonic.

HE SAID

I couldn’t believe she finally called me to ask for a date. “A country concert? I’m sure I’ll find lots of lively Puerto Ricans there,” I thought. But undeterred, I saw my chance and took it. I’d never been to a country concert. Sawyer who? Wasn’t he in a book? But it was Beth, so I went. I like all kinds of music, and I did have a good time.

SHE SAID

It was this night that Eddie informed me that I should lay off the dudes for six months, just date casually, and figure out what I really wanted. Bold, no?

HE SAID

It was all part of my master plan. The friend in me wanted her to stop trying to date people seriously for a while. The guy in me wanted her to continue her behavior and date me next. But she was never going to be happy until she figured out what she really wanted. And I was hoping it was me. You know, that whole “letting the bird go” thing.

SHE SAID

After the concert, I drove him home. If you are wondering why he never drove, it is because he had a craptastic Civic that barely fit one person, and it was always broken down. Sexy.

HE SAID

That’s why I walked a lot.

SHE SAID

In the parking lot of his apartment, we had our first kiss.

HE SAID

The kiss was very nice.

SHE SAID

But it was very short and sweet. He broke it off, and I said, “That’s it? I waited years for that?”

He said, “You played hard to get, and now it is my turn.”

I was hooked.

But I did what he said. For once.

Up next: The jig is up

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