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Saturday, October 10, 2015

True Grits with a little Meat and Metal on the side!

Good Saturday morning Family, Friends, Foes and Followers!

Been thinking a lot, working a lot, sleeping a little and working out when I can,

But I am listening to Music ALL THE TIME!

And, despite the dismay of my family and society in general, my penchant and preference has been for the hard-driving, sometimes dark, always introspective, virtuosity inspired, physically demanding music, that can best be genre-identified as....

Heavy Metal.

It has for the last 6 years, been what I listen to the most, and what I will listen to for the foreseeable future.

And my vehicle of choice for this musical journey has, for the last few years, been iHeart radio, where I simply name a song or an artist and it plays all music related to that selection.

I listen to all kinds of music - Happy Music (that's for you BJ), Pop, Alternative, Hip Hop, Rap, Jazz..... you name it.

But here's my take on Rock Music vs the rest of the music world in a list:
  • When you look and listen to bands like Metallica, Avenged Sevenfold, Pantera, Iron Maiden and the actual music being played and by that I mean the notes, the scales, the riffs.... whatever you want to call it, the musicianship for any instrument in the band - drums, bass, lead guitar, rhythm guitar, keyboards, washboard..... and you compare that to any other genre of music.... well, there's no comparison.  Heavy Metal is the Classical Music of today.  It kinda reminds me of that scene in the movie "Amadeus" where Mozart has just finished playing a new composition for the German emperor and his rival, Court Composer Salieri, and the following conversation takes place.....

EMPEROR: Well, Herr Mozart! A good effort. Decidedly that. An excellent effort! You've shown us something quite new today. 

[Mozart bows frantically: he is over-excited.] 

MOZART: It is new, it is, isn't it, Sire? 

EMPEROR: Yes, indeed. 

MOZART: So then you like it? You really like it, Your Majesty? 

EMPEROR: Of course I do. It's very good. Of course now and then - just now and then - it gets a touch elaborate. 

MOZART: What do you mean, Sire? 

EMPEROR: Well, I mean occasionally it seems to have, how shall one say? [he stops in difficulty; turning to Orsini-Rosenberg] How shall one say, Director? 

ORSINI-ROSENBERG: Too many notes, Your Majesty? 

EMPEROR: Exactly. Very well put. Too many notes. 

MOZART: I don't understand. There are just as many notes, Majesty, as are required. Neither more nor less. 

EMPEROR: My dear fellow, there are in fact only so many notes the ear can hear in the course of an evening. I think I'm right in saying that, aren't I, Court Composer? 

SALIERI: Yes! yes! er, on the whole, yes, Majesty. 

MOZART: But this is absurd! 

EMPEROR: My dear, young man, don't take it too hard. Your work is ingenious. It's quality work. And there are simply too many notes, that's all. Cut a few and it will be perfect. 

MOZART: Which few did you have in mind, Majesty? 

EMPEROR: Well. There it is. 

So what's my point?

If all the great composers of history were alive today, they would be in a Heavy Metal Band!
  • When you listen to the vocalists of Heavy Metal Bands, in almost all cases, these are the guys and gals with the most incredible, wide ranging operatic voices.  Holy shit, did you just say operatic as in opera?  Yes, the no holds barred, sweep your senses from their basis, boggle your mind nature of Heavy Metal music requires their vocalists to be the Virtuoso's of Voice to keep up with the challenges of the Music behind the Voice.  Don't believe me or don't get it? Fine... Have one of your country stars like Brad Paisley or Keith Chesnutt or whoever's in the Country Top 20 try to sing "Holy Diver" or any other song in the Heavy Metal Top 20.  They'd blow their voice up in about 2 songs.  On the other hand, take any Heavy Metal Vocalist like Iron Maiden's lead Bruce Dickinson and plop him down on a country set and he'd knock it out without even breathing hard.  I think I've made my point.
  • Finally..... the lyrics.... and this is where it requires a little more navigation through the different Metal genres....

First, I'll tell you, no matter what kind of music I'm listening to, if I can't hear and understand at least some of the lyrics, then I tend to not listen to that music.  So, I'm not a big fan of the type of Heavy Metal music where the vocalist is basically screaming with the music drowning out his voice and I don't go for the violence and Satan lyrics and all that shit.

Second, for the most part, excluding the above types, I have found that most Heavy Metal music has the most meaningful, life questioning and challenging, inspirational and thought provoking lyrics of all genres of music.

And I'm not saying there's not a lot of other types of  music out there that doesn't have some heart stringing, emotion twisting and mind melding tendencies..... I just think that Heavy Metal music consistently puts together the melody, music and lyrics that mean something.
  • Next, the shear physical aspects of Heavy Metal music in live performances are way above and beyond any other genre of music.  I watch the performances of Alternative, Indie, Country, Americana.... you name it..... other artists on stage and I feel like ordering a Grande Cafe Americano with an extra shot just to wake me up.  You wanna know why all these Rock Stars are so skinny?  It's not the Coke or any other drugs...... it's cause they're burning about 3000 calories in their workout concert performances.
  • Finally, despite conflicting data on the matter, I can tell you for me personally, the combination of the construction of the music and how it is played and presented, provides an uplifting, motivating and driving input to my daily activities - whether it's knocking out a challenging work assignment or climbing to a high ridge in the Sangre de Cristos or climbing the mountain of a CrossFit style workout. This music motivates me to think about my day, my life, my challenges, my pain, my deficiencies and my vision for tomorrow.... and then do something about it.  It gets me up, keeps me up and focuses me on being more than what I am today and more than what I am capable of.
Now with that little dissertation out of the way.....

Let's listen to some Heavy Metal music.

Don't normally have Waffles with my breakfast but if I did, I would sprinkle a little Sevendust and syrup on them and consume with a purpose.....

A Universe to fill
Can't scratch the surface
Now a slow pay
Still why everyone watching
It's like I'm real tired of the clones
I'm real tired of the clones

Whatever you say
Whatever you say
Whatever you say

Bring me a light
Make my life worth something more
Show me a light
Bring a light

See what I mean about the lyrics?

And absolutely love the smooth and mellow sound of Lajon Witherspoon's voice....

So what's better than Metal Music?

Southern Grits! Creamy and Delicious under Eggs over easy with some diced tomatoes and a side of 96% lean ground beef.

That'll make you wanna Jump Up and Shout.....

Bring Me to Life.... Make my Life worth something More!

Praxis - - the brainchild of BJ Monger - is starting a Healthy Eating Challenge

Despite the 10/8 deadline, I bet if you called Praxis now, you could probably still get in.

Me?  Hell I'm always in the Healthy eating challenge!

You awake yet?

No?  Well listen to this....

I like the whole theme of waking up in a prison cell.  Despite the fact that people try to put a happy face on their life, there's a lot of people out there including yours truly that have to break out of the daily prison of life's challenges and make something of each and every day!

Nonpoint?  This one's a little darker and more random....

There's a lot that say that darker lyrics of pain and anguish drive the youth of the day to those same dark thoughts and worse....

I guess that could be true, but the other school of thought is that listening to lyrics that describe their own experiences and thoughts provides some sort of release and therapy.

Me? I just like the song!

This is a 5 minute meal of lean ground beef mix and sauted already baked sweet potato.

A little blurry....  kinda like this song too.

I think I was on a South Texas Deathride for about 53 years!

I think denying yourself the opportunity to try and do new things is one of the greatest mistakes of all.

I see people everyday allowing themselves, choosing to succumb to limits imposed on them by their past and the physical, mental and emotional pain that it has burdened them with.

That is done.  It's in the past.  

Move on.

Just the speed and intensity of this song will either make you change the station or walk faster.

Either way.... it evoked a response.

Another song with some thought provoking lyrics related to trying to make it in a society that seems to make it harder and harder everyday.

See everybody watching and passing judgment
on every little move and decision I make.
How can I be an individual with the weight of the world
with 8 other planets to take?
and with everything happening
gunshots clapping and people all
running in every direction
with their hands up praying for the drama to end,
I got my hand out looking for some money to spend.

Is that negative..... or just realistic?

So the other day, I found myself Right Here, at Primos Tobacco shop, and had a yen for some fresh tobacco.... and yes, I do smoke a little tobacco now and then.

I don't want my lungs getting too clean in this 7200' elevation air.

The Black Cherry infused Rio Rojo from Primos hit the spot!

Speaking of Bodies....

One, nothing wrong with me
Two, nothing wrong with me
Three, nothing wrong with me
Four, nothing wrong with me
One, something's got to give
Two, something's got to give
Three, something's got to give
Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor

2-1/2 months ago, Dr Woods cut that 2-1/2" incision on the inside of my left knee and reached in with a chisel and knocked a 1-3/4" long bone spur off the back inside of my knee.

It's been a long and painful road back to where I am now, but I'll be damned if I'm gonna pull in the handicapped spot.

I will continue to push that knee and my body to do more and get better.

One.... Nothing Wrong with Me.
Two....Nothing Wrong with Me........

It's all about a mind set to move forward and not fall back.

Today is another opportunity to be better.

I think that's about it for this Saturday morning.

Gotta go get ready for the 10:00 am Praxis workout.

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