Tag Archive | holidays

#MusicMonday – Nancy LaMott – All Those #Christmas Cliches

Nancy LaMott was a cabaret singer who broke out into radio and the national and international scene in the 1990s. Plagued by serious illnesses for much of her life, she died from uterine cancer on December 30, 1995, only 17 days before her 44th birthday. Her priest blessed her union with Peter Zapp, a little more than an hour before she died.

According to her father, she sang along with Barbra Streisand records when she was a girl. It shows. Sometimes my husband and I confuse Nancy LaMott for Barbra Streisand when we hear her recordings on WPFW 89.3 FM’s Sunday afternoon program The American Songbook.

It was through The American Songbook that I discovered All Those Christmas Cliches. It’s wistful and takes me back to childhood. Even today Christmas lights fill me with happiness and wonderment.

From four years ago:

My husband and I came back from India last Sunday.  It was not a happy occasion.  My mother-in-law passed away late last month, and we went back to perform rites.  Her passing hit me hard: she was the last of our parents to go.

To change the subject, as we were returning to the U.S., I realized that I missed much of the Christmas season! At the Dubai airport (our layover), there were Christmas trees (or should I say “holiday trees”?) and Christmas songs, but any reference or allusion to Christ was suppressed.  When we arrived home on Sunday, December 15, I realized that there were only 10 calendar days to Christmas.

We arrived in the morning.  By the afternoon, I was ready to nap.  I turned on WPFW 89.3 FM to listen to The Great American Songbook …

That’s what I long for: All Those Christmas Cliches.


#MusicMonday Happy 4th of July!  Lady Gaga at Super Bowl 50

To mark the Fourth of July and #MusicMonday, I’m reaching back into recent history: namely, Lady Gaga’s rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner at Super Bowl 50:

She starts out softly, but once she surmounts “and the rocket’s red glare,” you know that she’s killed it.

Reblogged on WordPress.com

Source: Happy 4th of July! | The Style Page

#Canada Day again

I’m taking a different tack on Canada Day this year. On Facebook, I attributed the massacre at the Pulse night club to the killer’s professions of Islamic ideology. A prominent Canadian beauty blogger subsequently ripped into me:

It’s time to examine why your country [emphasis mine] gives guns to people who are mentally unstable. Especially when the FBI knew about them, and had been following them. Who cares about whether or not it was an American who decided to use ISIS to focus his hatred? Your gov’t knew all about him, yet he could still get guns. Stop talking about Islamic hatred and start talking about why your country discriminates against the gay community, which gives people like this shooter a reason for his own hate. IT DOESN”T MATTER that he was with ISIS. The US has had 7 mass shootings this week. Get your head out of the sand.

or did she really mean to say, get my head out of my ass? 😀

It’s time to examine the ideology of your country [emphasis mine] that went to war in Muslim countries, destroyed entire countries, armed rebels and basically created ISIS. Jesus. Read a book.

I felt that her references to your country reeked of contempt for the good old United States and that she regarded me as yet another contemptible  illiterate American ignoramus.

Jesus. Read a book.

I don’t know if she had any particular books in mind, but here are some books that I’ve read:

  • The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood (in fact, I’ve seen Margaret Atwood read from her works in person)
  • Beautiful Losers by Leonard Cohen
  • Roughing it in the Bush by Susanna Moodie
  • The Deptford Trilogy by Robertson Davies
  • The Tin Flute by Gabrielle Roy
  • The whole series of Anne of Green Gables books (six books) by Lucy Maud Montgomery. I can tell you why Anne of Windy Poplars and Anne of Ingleside are the worst books of the series. I’ve also read Rainbow Valley and Rilla of Ingleside, but these are not considered as part of the Anne canon, as they deal with Anne’s children.
  • The three books of L.M. Montgomery’s Emily series

Notice a pattern here?

Happy Canada Day.

It’s Canada Day again, and time to revisit this article Canada Day.  Happy 148th Canada!

Source: #Canada Day | The Style Page | The Style Page

How climate change triggered the Ten Plagues

Passover begins tomorrow evening, Friday, April 22, 2016. Here is an intriguing article on how climate change might have triggered the chain of events known as the Ten Plagues:

The Biblical plagues that devastated Ancient Egypt in the Old Testament were the result of global warming and a volcanic eruption, scientists have claimed.

Source: Biblical plagues really happened say scientists – Telegraph


Frogs were the second of the 10 Plagues

How fitting that Earth Day and Passover coincide this year.

Canada Day

Flag of Canada

Flag of Canada

Today is Canada Day. Warm wishes to all our Canadian readers (our second largest readership)!

Canada Day marks the joining of the British North American colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Province of Canada into a federation of four provinces (the Province of Canada was divided into Ontario and Quebec) on July 1, 1867. Happy 146th birthday, Canada!

Want to mark Canada Day with music? Here are The Style Page’s picks:

Classic Canadian Songs from Smithsonian Folkways

Classic Canadian Songs from Smithsonian Folkways

Smithsonian Folkways describes Classic Canadian Songs in this way:

Canadian identity was once truly a mosaic—of disparate regions and small communities widely dispersed over a vast and inhospitable landscape. Classic Canadian Songs from Smithsonian Folkways showcases the rich musical traditions from generations of European settlers and contrasts with that of Aboriginal peoples fiercely determined to preserve their ways of life in the wake of colonialism and its injustices.

Hymns of the 49th Parallel – k.d. lang covers songs by fellow Canadians Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Leonard Cohen,  Bruce Cockburn, and others

Famous Blue Raincoat – Jennifer Warnes is best known for her overwrought duets with Bill Medley (Dirty Dancing) and Joe Cocker (Top Gun), but this is her heartfelt tribute to the songs of Leonard Cohen (again!). Leonard Cohen himself appears as the voice of Fire that consumes Joan of Arc. Moody and melancholy, one friend said that this album was music to slit your wrists by.

Northern Songs: Canada’s Best and Brightest – this Starbucks Hear Music CD features signature songs Constant Craving by k.d. lang, Angel by Sarah McLachlan, the Cowboy Junkies’s cover of Lou Reed’s Sweet Jane, and more.