Welcome to my newest music series, Quick Hits! I once again return to my trusty ol’ iPod (that’s still alive and kicking…for now) for a monthly peek into my musical past. Each new post will cover five shuffled songs. My musings per song may be voluminous or sparse, depending on what memories they spark. So, let’s not waste any more time and get on with the music!
“Bubblegoose” – Wyclef Jean feat. “Stan,” “Kyle,” “Cartman,” and “Kenny”
Member South Park? I member. Mostly, that is. I was at peak fandom with the series when I picked up this ridiculous and still hideously fun compilation. Oh, it’s got a few duds (that were always duds), but most of the songs stand the test of time, like Wyclef Jean’s (member him?) “Bubblegoose,” a song about comeuppance that’s only slightly wrecked/enhanced by the South Park kids. Must admit that Cartmen’s “Mack 10” insistence still makes me chuckle. Eh, what can I say? Sometimes I’m easily amused.
“Hole Hearted” – Extreme
Have I said before that the band, Extreme, ruled a good third of my personal musical life in high school? Right from the opening lines of its massive radio hit that put the band on the map, “More Than Words,” I hole-heartedly (haha) fell hard for the dulcet tones of Gary Cherone and Nuno Bettencourt. I pretty much kept my tape of band’s 1990 album Extreme II: Pornograffitti on constant repeat in my walkman or bedroom stereo. I can still recite most of the album’s lyrics, and “Hole Hearted” is no exception. As much as I like the band’s semi-rock sounds, its poppy tunes like this one resonate always resonated more strongly.
“The Crucifixion” – from Jesus Christ Superstar (The New Stage Production Soundtrack)
Why I do I not have the soundtrack from the excellent 1973 film rendition of Jesus Christ Superstar remains one of my greatest personal mysteries. The version I have of a recording done in 2001 is fine, but it’s nowhere near as impactful. Anyhoo, the disconcerting, syncopated tones that play during the crucifixion scene are unlike anything else that’s in the soundtrack, but the music captures well the extreme sentiment of the scene. From Mary Magdalene’s breakdown to the laughing soldiers to the pensive and/or aghast onlookers, emotion abounds as strange rhythms play almost unwelcome in the background.
“And the Glory of the Lord” – from Handel’s The Messiah
As I have been mostly onto Christmas music on my iPod, I wondered if it might shuffle onto something seasonal, and it did. Well, if you consider Handel’s The Messiah “of the Christmas season,” that is. Maybe there’s a church or something near you that invites folks to a Messiah sing-a-long, where the only tune that really gets any mileage is it’s famous “Hallelujah” chorus. In my own choral “career,” I’ve sang various pieces and parts from this work but never this particular song. It’s a lovely listen.
“Theme of Samus Aran – Galactic Warrior” – Kenji Yamamoto, Super Metroid soundtrack
Funny story. Due to some long past electronic glitch, I only have about 18-20 second of this famous theme on my iPod. Yep, it’ll just play for these short seconds and then skip into the next song without warning. It’s hilarious. [sigh] At the time I ripped the Super Metroid soundtrack from the Internet, I was not nearly as savvy, and it doesn’t really matter now, as I can listen to dozens upon dozens of versions of Samus Aran’s theme on various outlets any time I want. Plenty of excellent video game characters have their own excellent video game themes, but Mr. Yamamoto created nothing less than something brilliant for the inter-galactic bounty hunter we all know and love, Samus Aran. I love that it has the bones of a classic march and is full of punchy energy.