Monday, April 20, 2015

Sound & Groove, Episode 56: "Marriage in Music"

Sparks, a quirky duo supplemented by other musicians over the years, is actually brothers Ron and Russel Mael. Their on-stage look and presence couldn't have been more different especially after Ron had his long locks shorn and began dressing like a pastiche of conservative stuffy killjoys while sporting a pencil mustache. Russell meanwhile dressed like a flamboyant rock pin-up idol with a nerdy touch, sort of like if Mick Jagger had gone to study chemistry instead of economics in his educational pursuits. Though American, Sparks have proven most popular in more glam-friendly UK. Coming off like the more bizarre bastard twin of Queen, they employed an operatic rock sound then gradually shifted to more dance-oriented electronica which has been their main calling card ever since. Once in that style they finally broke through to some success in their native USA in the 80s. But Europe has always dug Sparks more for their daring odes to opera, classical and techno. One of their typically campy classics is featured in this 56th all-time episode of Sound & Groove.

There are always those traditional songs played at a wedding, ie "Here Comes the Bride" or "Ave Maria" or "Air on a String in G" but what about the contemporary lexicon? Here on the S&G Podcast we thought why not put them out there and highlight the artists who did the work. Running the gamut from tunes about marriage to those about weddings and those about the ups and downs of it all, this episode provides an array of styles to hopefully perk up your ears and send you out into the world looking to discover more. Repeated listening always helps. Enjoy while thinking of your significant other!

Sit back and soak in another  musical journey through yet another themed podcast for your listening enjoyment. And if you're new to this podcast: Every month there will be a theme that the selection of music is centered around. It will be jam packed with my analysis, synopses, breakdowns, anecdotes and other witticisms you might enjoy while I play edited versions of each tune (to make room for talk and for a good 8-9 songs per 45 minute episode). And not to worry, each month will contain a different theme than the last. All killer, no filler... other than when I talk and introduce the tunes and recap the ones before it. But aside from that? 100% juicy meat! 100% juicy tofu if you happen to be a vegetarian.

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Track Listing:
1. The Wedding List- Kate Bush (1980)
2. Wedding Bell Blues- Laura Nyro (1966)
3. When Will We Be Married?- The Waterboys (1988)
4. Will I Be Married?- The Jayhawks (1989)
5. Marry Me- Sparks (1974)
6. It Should Have Been Me- Gladys Knight & the Pips (1968)
7. My Wife- The Who (1971)
8. Let's Get Married- Al Green (1973)
9. All My Ex's Live in Texas- George Strait (1987) 

Info of note:
Intro- "Hejira" by Joni Mitchell (1976)
Outro- "Refuge of the Roads" by Joni Mitchell (1976)
All comments, questions and feedback are greatly welcomed and appreciated! I encourage participation. Even though I drain an hour off your life by listening to the podcast then checking through the links, at least you don't have to fork over your money to me... though if you feel like, you know... But in all seriousness, let me now what you'd like to hear or see and I'll consider it. Popular approval doesn't always sway me but having fans or listeners get their input would be just grand!

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