Jules’s Jukebox: Remembering Lennon

Today marks the 36th anniversary of John Lennon’s assassination by Mark David Chapman. Thankfully, Chapman was denied parole for the ninth time in August for the rock legend’s murder. He will come up for parole again in two years. So for two more years we can forget him and remember the man he took from us despite him.

The story of how Lennon died is so chilling, but today I remember not how John Lennon died. I choose to remember how he lived–as an activist  who topped J. Edgar Hoover’s secret FBI “enemies” list (his dossier was over 300 pages), who had to fight deportation from the U.S. for participating in anti- Vietnam War efforts, and who had to battle even harder to secure his green card to live in the U.S.

Lennon’s example of standing up against injustice is not lost on me. I’ve long believed being a BMW (a bitcher, moaner, & whiner) solves no one’s problems. Getting involved, being an activist, learning as much as possible about my issues, educating others, mobilizing and organizing on my issues…those are things that can promote progress.  Lennon proved himself a leader of people–one who would stand up at the front of the crowd and show them how to work for social justice even at the risk of being labeled “subversive” by the U.S. government. One doesn’t have to agree with Lennon’s left-wing politics to recognize and honor his dedication and investment in progressing his beliefs for peace and justice.

Photographer Allan Tannenbaum took the last photo shoot of Lennon for promotion of what would be his last album, Double Fantasy, ten days before his death. Tannenbaum said,  “He loved to push ­boundaries like that,” referring to Lennon and his wife, Yoko Ono, posing nude. The photographer related that “nudity was just another form of expression for them.” The image most easily found online from this photo shoot shows such happiness and ease from the couple.

john-lennon-last-photo-shoot

One of Allan Tannenbaum’s photos from John Lennon’s last photo shoot.

To honor his activism and his life on this day, I stand with his widow, Yoko Ono, in pleading for common sense gun laws in America. On her Facebook page, Ono eloquently wrote:

Dear Friends,
Every day, 91 Americans are killed with guns.
We are turning this beautiful country into a War Zone.
Together, let’s bring back America, the green land of Peace.
The death of a loved one is a hollowing experience.
After 36 years, our son Sean and I still miss him.
Yoko Ono Lennon
8 December 2016

 

She also shared this heartbreaking and shocking image/meme:

lennon-gun-control

So today’s jukebox duo of songs are to celebrate the activist, the leader, the man–John Lennon.

“Remember” by John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band

“Power to the People” by John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band

Sheryl Sandberg Says Fake News on Facebook Didn’t Sway the Election — Fortune

Did the fake news that spreads like wildfire online help Donald Trump win the presidential election? Facebook still doesn’t think so. Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of the massive social media platform, said in an interview on NBC’s Today show on Thursday morning that fake news and hoaxes did not affect the outcome of November’s general…

via Sheryl Sandberg Says Fake News on Facebook Didn’t Sway the Election — Fortune

*Jules’s Note: Tell that to Edgar Welch who stormed Comet Ping Pong Pizza to save kids from a fake Clinton/Podesta child sex ring…fake news does sway way too many people because of the cognitive certainty/dissonance running rampant in American culture. Emotions are trumping (pun intended) logic in a society that has chosen entertainment over substance.

Jules’s Jukebox: Clannad

I hung out with the girls last night, and up popped a song by Clannad. I hadn’t heard a Clannad song other than the two on my current playlist in eons–much less in rotation on someone else’s playlist. Nothing like some Celtic folk/new age tunes to start off our evening. Ok, nothing like Celtic music and whiskey to start off our evening…before walking the beach at dusk and binge watching Vikings

So along with my Irish boyfriend Jameson, I give you a Clannad twofer:

“Love and Affection” by Clannad is probably my favorite song of theirs. Love, love, love this song.

“…Sweet justice hard to find
Say the same with deceit…”

Clannad became known for being Enya’s first band and for having songs used in movies, even though the songs may or may not have been written for the films. “Theme from Harry’s Game” was used in 1992’s Patriot Games starring Harrison Ford and Sean Bean, but the song appeared years earlier on their album Magical Ring in 1982. Their songs have also appeared in movie’s like Mel Gibson’s Braveheart and Blake Edwards’s Switch. But one song that was written expressly for a film is my second choice tonight:

“I Will Find You” by Clannad appeared on the group’s 1993 album Banba, but was written for the film The Last of the Mohicans starring Daniel Day Lewis. Parts of the song are sung in Mohican and Cherokee.

Bonus song:

“Brave Enough” by Clannad is from the band’s most recently released album Nádúr, which they released in 2013.

Jules’s Jukebox: Rock Remixes

Recipe for success= take a great rock song, then remix it with driving dance grooves. So for today’s jukebox tunes, we will sample a few of the delicious concoctions cooked up by DJs.

“Falling Down” by Oasis, remixed by the Chemical Brothers who give it their industrial treatment. This is one of my all time fave Oasis tunes, so hearing the Chemical Brothers take on the Brothers Gallagher is a treat.

“Blue Suede Shoes” by Elvis Presley, Viva Elvis Remix may be fun, but DJs have been taking on Elvis tunes throughout the years. Think Ocean’s 11 soundtrack–Junkie XL’s remix of “A Little Less Conversation”. I also have a great Paul Oakenfold version of “Rubberneckin'”

Eric Prydz took on Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall, pt. 2” by remixing it and calling it “Proper Education.” Prydz’s version is a great work out track too. It has a driving, pulsing, thumping beat that sets pace.

Yummy Holiday Food: Brie Bites aka Ambrosia

I have tried variations of this recipe from People.com, and yes, it is easy and tasty.

Baked Brie Bites can be as simple or as complex as you are willing to make them. The recipe provide by People Magazine uses candied pecans and apricot preserves. I’ve used a variety of jellies and cheeses in the past, such as orange cranberry sauce, mint jelly, jalapeño jelly, or orange marmalade coupled with brie, Gruyere, Parmesan, or pepper jack cheeses.

 

This image uses cranberry sauce and brie cheese. I made these last year and relished them as breakfast bites for a few days.

cranberry-and-brie-bites-square2

If you prefer savory to sweet, modify the recipe to include a small nugget of meat with the cheese. Ham is a popular option, but I’m a bacon girl myself.

“Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste good.” Vincent Vega. Pulp Fiction.

bacon

Either way, puff pastry with just about any topping is ambrosia.

 

Jules’s Jukebox: December

Yes, December is already upon us. And no, this is not a post about holiday music. Songs about December exist despite the holidays. As we enter the month of “best of the year” lists, I thought I’d pay homage to the month itself as it appears in song.

Today’s jukebox selections (we get a triple play today):

“December” by Collective Soul

This is one of my favorite songs from Collective Soul. The bitter tone is reflected in the treachery, vanity, and doubt in a relationship that has moved into its winter season, its December.

“…December promise you gave unto me
December whispers of treachery
December clouds are now covering me
December songs no longer I sing…”

“My December” by Linkin Park

Yet another song using the season/month as a symbol of the coldness of a barren winter of a dying/dead relationship. Where Collective Soul’s song was great mainstream pop/rock radio fodder in the 90s, this song is a ballad with sadness and regret hanging in its air.

“…This is my December
This is me alone
And I
Just wish that
I didn’t feel
Like there was
Something I missed
And I
Take back all
The things I said
To make you
Feel like that…”

Bonus Song:

“Lego House” by Ed Sheeran

No, December isn’t in the title, but it is in the song. And this song is the opposite of the other songs in that the speaker in the song is protecting his love from the storms of December. And yes, that’s Rupert Grint (more famously known as Ronald Weasley in the Harry Potter movies) in the video.

“…And it’s dark in a cold December, but I’ve got ya to keep me warm
And if you’re broken I’ll mend ya
And keep you sheltered from the storm that’s raging on now…”

Cognitive closure and US politics — Later On

That’s from a very interesting Open Culture post by Dan Colman, which begins: There’s a political disconnect in the United States. We have two political parties, each now living in its own reality and working with its own set of facts. The common ground between them? Next to none. How to explain this disconnect? Maybe the answer […]

via Cognitive closure and US politics — Later On

*Jules’s Note: My colleagues and I have long talked of Leon Festinger’s theory of “cognitive dissonance,” the discomfort  an individual experiences when holding two or more contradictory beliefs or values at the same time. The individual may also perform an action that is contradictory to those beliefs or values, but these actions often occur when the individual is confronted by new information that conflicts with existing beliefs, ideas or values.  The individual tends to choose the beliefs or values over what the new information show to be erroneous in those held beliefs or values. “Cognitive closure” gives some clarity to how “cognitive dissonance” can exist. This video is enlightening. Take a few minutes and watch.

North Carolina man reels in massive 112-pound catfish — KFOR.com

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. — A North Carolina man hooked a hulking 112-pound catfish, just 5 pounds shy of breaking a state record, according to WWAY. Riahn Brewington said he caught the huge fish the day before Thanksgiving at his favorite spot along the northeast section of the Cape Fear River. Brewington said he released the catfish after the catch.…

via North Carolina man reels in massive 112-pound catfish — KFOR.com

*Jules’s Note: I’m glad he pulled a “catch and release.” But man, I’d be afraid of losing my arm if I was noodling and caught that thing. I’m surprised the guys line didn’t break either.

Dystopia — Discover

At Tabula Candida, a site of satirical stick-figure comics, history teacher Erik Jensen comments on contemporary news and media.

via Dystopia — Discover

*Jules’s Note–Yes, life currently feels like a mix of 1984, Brave New World, Fahrenheit 451, and Hunger Games. We have yet to find our Mockingjay, but may the odds be ever in our favor as we batten down the hatches during the coming millionaire/billionaire corruption storm of our government.