Texas Liberal

All People Matter

You Don’t Love God If You Don’t Love Your Neighbor

A great song is a gospel bluegrass song called “You Don’t Love God If You Don’t Love Your Neighbor.”

This song is performed by a woman named Rhonda Vincent.

Here is Ms. Vincent’s website.

I don’t know anything about bluegrass music, but I do enjoy this song. I think it should be sung at church.

Here are some of the lyrics—

There are many people
who will say they’re Christians
and they live like Christians on the Sabbath day

But come Monday morning, til the coming Sunday

They will fight their neighbor all along the way

Oh you don’t love God, if you don’t love your neighbor

if you gossip about him, if you never have mercy
if he gets into trouble, and you don’t try to help him
then you don’t love your neighbor, and you don’t love God

That’s right!

Here is a link to a video of Ms. Vincent singing this song.

I’m not at a fan of Bluegrass music. I have nothing against it—I’ve  just never paid attention.

Here is a history of Bluegrass music.

The International Bluegrass Music Museum is in Owensboro, Kentucky.

It is good to learn about something new, and it is good when some aspect of life you had not much considered before offers something rewarding.

(Below—Bluegrass Country in Fayette County, Kentucky. Photo taken by Conspiracy of Happiness.  Here are some facts about bluegrass. The actual grass. Not the music.)

July 9, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Dick Clark Was Upfront And Admirable—Johnny Lydon And Public Image Limited On American Bandstand

Television star and businessman Dick Clark died earlier this month.

Here is Mr. Clark’s obituary from the New York Times.

Here are the parts of Mr. Clark’s obit that I liked the most—

“I never took any money to play records,” Mr. Clark said in his 1999 Archive of American Television interview. “I made money other ways. Horizontally, vertically, every which way you can think of, I made money from that show.” Over half a century, Mr. Clark made millions as a producer or executive producer, shepherding projects onto the airwaves that even he acknowledged were more diverting than ennobling: awards shows like the Golden Globes, the Academy of Country Music Awards and the American Music Awards; omnibus shows like “TV’s Bloopers & Practical Jokes,” featuring collections of clips; and television-movie biographies and dramas that targeted devotees of camp, kitsch or B-list celebrities…..Mr. Clark wasn’t high-minded about his work. “I’ve always dealt with light, frivolous things that didn’t really count; I’m not ashamed of that,” he said during a 1999 interview for the Archive of American Television. “There’s no redeeming cultural value whatsoever to ‘Bloopers,’ but it’s been on for 20 years.” He added: “It’s a piece of fluff. I’ve been a fluffmeister for a long time.” 

There is a lot to be said for a performer who can remain on the public stage for a long time.

There is a lot to be said for a showperson who just wants to make a buck and who has the talent to do so without hurting anybody.

Don’t trust anybody who is not a huckster to some degree.

Above is a video of an appearance of Johnny Lydon and Public Image Limited on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand in 1980.

P.I.L. “plays” 2 songs from the album Second Edition in this clip. It is some fine television.

Second Edition is a great recording.  I’ve been listening to it for 30 years now.

Johnny Lydon’s speaking to me is one of the my greatest punk rock moments.

April 26, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

El Vez Is The Mexican Elvis—Retaining The Past And Moving Forward

Above is a picture from 1995 of El Vez.

El Vez bills himself as the Mexican Elvis.

This picture you see above was taken in Cincinnati at a bar called Sudsy Malone’s. This is establishment was a bar and laundromat. You could get a beer and have a shot of  whiskey. Bands played there on many nights of the week.

I saw this show. I can recall it 17 years after the fact. El Vez put on quite a concert. I am glad to see on his website that he is still touring.

This picture was taken by my longtime friend George DuChaine of Cincinnati, Ohio. George can take your wedding photos and often takes pictures of people on motorcycles.

George and I have been friends for at maybe 25 years. We keep in touch to this day.

I enjoyed my life when I often went to bars to see bands. I enjoy my life today when  I am more likely to stay home on a Saturday night.

I never imagined when I was seeing El Vez in 1995 that I would be writing about him on a blog in 2012.

Life is great for the friends and memories we keep, and it is great for the ways we move ahead.

February 6, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

B-52′s Are Cheery, Energetic & Professional—That’ll Get The Job Done

I saw the B 52′s last week here in Houston.

The band was cheery, professional, creative and energetic. They struck the right line between being friendly, and yet a bit removed from the audience.

They appreciate that you bought a ticket and that you would like to see them play, but they are not going to invite you up on stage or out for a drink after the show.

That is just how it should be.

I try to avoid knowing much about the baseball players I follow or about people in bands I like.

I just imagine them all as nice enough people—or least not bad people—and let it go at that.

The video with this post is Song for a Future Generation.

It is a happy song.

Here is the B-52′s website.

Here is an introductory history of music with links to additional information if you are so inclined.

(Below–The B-52′s in Houston last week.)

November 12, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

Simple Gifts Performed At Arizona Shooting Memorial Service

(Blogger’s Note 1/13/11—Simple Gifts was sung at the end of the memorial to the Tuscon, Arizona shooting victims. This is a meaningful song with lyrics all should hear. I’m reposting my entry about Simple Gifts that I first posted in 2009.)

Above is a video of me speaking the words of the Shaker hymn Simple Gifts while standing on the eastern end of Galveston Island.

The video runs just over 90 seconds.

Behind me as I speak is a ship in Galveston Bay that is sailing out towards the Gulf of Mexico.

Simple Gifts is one of my favorite songs in the world.

If you click this link, you’ll see the lyrics and the song will play.

The song was written by Joseph Brackett. Here are some very basic facts about Joseph Brackett.

Here is some information about Shaker music.

Here is some history of the Shakers.

From that history—

“One of the numerous religious sects who emigrated to American shores in search of religious freedom, the Shakers followed Mother Ann Lee to the United States in 1774. Here they established several colonies– the first in 1776 at Nikayuna near Albany, NY–whose governing principles included celibacy and agrarian communal living.”

Here are some things you could see if you visited Galveston, Texas.

Here are some facts about Galveston Bay.

Here is the link to the Galveston Bay Foundation.

Here is a link where you can track the location of ships around the world.

Here is some history of ships and boats.

The part of Simple Gifts I like best is where it says that to bow and to bend we should not be ashamed. I would like to live my life by that principle, but so far I have lacked the discipline to do so.

January 13, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Copland’s Fanfare For The Common Man A Strong Choice To Begin Arizona Memorial Service

The Tuscon memorial service for the Arizona shootings began with a rendition of Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man.

(Above–Mr. Copland.)

This dignified tribute of the day-to-day work of democracy, is a strong way to note the work of politics and freedom. This was the work taking place at the constituent meeting Congresswoman Giffords was holding at the time of the shooting.

We are all equal citizens.

Here is a brief history of this work from National Public Radio. You can also hear Fanfare at this site.

This work was commissioned for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in 1942.

Here are facts about the great American composer Aaron Copland. Mr. Copland lived 1900-1990.

Mr. Copland is also well-known for his famous work Appalachian Spring.

Dignity is found in the creative and hard-working response to the challenges and opportunities of daily life.

The playing of Fanfare for the Common Man to begin the memorial service was appropriate and hopeful.

Without  for a moment forgetting the part that circumstance and dumb luck plays in life, we all have the ability to make the best of who we are in this existence. We all have the ability to make each day a day of great value.

January 13, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Get It Through Your Head—You Don’t Love God If You Don’t Love Your Neighbor

I got a haircut not so long ago.

My barber often plays DVD’s of Bluegrass Gospel singers while I am getting my haircut.

A song he played a few months ago that stuck with me was called ” You Don’t Love God If You Don’t Love Your Neighbor.” This song is performed by a woman named Rhonda Vincent.

Here is Ms. Vincent’s website.

I don’t know anything about bluegrass music, but I do enjoy this song. I think it should be sung at church.

Here are some of the lyrics—

There are many people
who will say they’re Christians
and they live like Christians on the Sabbath day

But come Monday morning, til the coming Sunday
They will fight their neighbor all along the wayOh you don’t love God, if you don’t love your neighbor

if you gossip about him, if you never have mercy
if he gets into trouble, and you don’t try to help him
then you don’t love your neighbor, and you don’t love God

That’s right!

Here is a link to a video of Ms. Vincent singing this song.

I’m not at a fan of Bluegrass music. I have nothing against it—I’ve  just never paid attention.

Here is a history of Bluegrass music.

The International Bluegrass Music Museum is in Owensboro, Kentucky.

It is good to learn about something new, and it is good when some aspect of life you had not much considered before offers something rewarding.

(Below—Bluegrass Country in Fayette County, Kentucky. Photo taken by Conspiracy of Happiness.  Here are some facts about bluegrass. The actual grass. Not the music.)

October 8, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

She Left Me For Jesus

Here you see the picture of the satellite radio display on the rental car I’m driving this week in Cincinnati. This picture was taken when I picked up the car a few days ago.

The song on the display is “She Left Me For Jesus.” This song is performed by Hayes Carll.

I’ve investigated this song. Here ate some of the lyrics—

She left me for Jesus and that just ain’t fair.

She days that he’s perfect, how could I compare.

She says I should find him and I’ll know peace at last.

If I ever find Jesus I’m kicking his ass.

This is a fine song. I’m glad I’ve discovered this song.

June 30, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Disco Inferno!—Learn The Interesting History Of Disco Music

I enjoy disco music. As I write this post, I’m listening to the disco channel on Pandora radio. I find the music good-natured. Enough of life is angry. I’m often angry. I want something good-natured and disco music fits the bill.

I think if we all played disco music in our cars during our commutes to work that people would be nicer to each other on the road.

At this very moment the song Disco Inferno by The Trammps is playing on Pandora. This is indeed entertainment.

Here are some of the lyrics to Disco Inferno—

To mass fires, yes! One hundred stories high

People gettin’ loose – all gettin’ down on the roof – Do you hear?

(the folks are flaming) Folks were screamin’ – out of control
It was so entertainin’ – when the boogie started to explode
I heard somebody say

Burn baby burn! – Disco inferno!

Burn baby burn! – Burn that mother down
Burn baby burn! – Disco inferno!
Burn baby burn! – Burn that mother down
Burnin’!

These words seem like you are being urged to burn something down. But it is quite the opposite. The singer clearly says in the song that your soul is on fire and you are happy. This song is channeling your negative energy away from destructive acts!

A new book reviewed in the New York Times recently tells some of the history and the social meaning of disco. The book is called Disco and the Remaking of American Culture and was written by Alice Echols.

From the review-

“But for the thrill-seekers, especially gay ones, who packed the trendier nightspots, disco was the sound of hard-earned freedom. It meant dancing your heart out until dawn, often aided by drugs, in clubs where anybody could pair with anybody. Disco’s beat took over your body and pounded away your inhibitions. At its headiest, the experience was a close simulation of sex, or a direct lead-in to it. Women were the main voices of lust. In “I Feel Love,” Donna Summer’s techno-backed moaning — “Oooooh, it’s so good, it’s so good, it’s so good” — seemed like a six-minute glide on the runway to orgasm….Alice Echols, a professor of American studies and history at Rutgers University and a former disco D.J., knows that most of the music she spun is considered “mindless, repetitive, formulaic and banal.” But in her engrossing new book, “Hot Stuff: Disco and the Remaking of American Culture,” she portrays that scene as a hotbed of social change — for gays, for women and their sexual rights, for blacks in the record industry. Other writers have done more to evoke the era’s sleazy glamour and animal excitement. But Echols…has few peers among music sociologists. Scholarly but fun, “Hot Stuff” is not just about disco; it re-examines the ’70s as a decade of revolution.”

(Below—A classic.)

Here is an article on the history of disco from American Heritage magazine. It is a good article that traces the evolution of disco to Paris during WW II.

Now playing on Pandora is Upside Down by Diana Ross.

Here is a history of disco from Soul-Patrol.com.

Listen to some disco and let some happiness into your life. Learn about the history of disco and see why it was music that made a difference in people’s lives and in our society.

(Below–Why must this gentleman be a hater? Photo taken by Rich.lionheart.)

April 9, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Good Natured Picture Of Band Playing Block Party—Cincinnati’s Fairmount Girls

Above is a picture of the Cincinnati band called the Fairmount Girls playing a block party.

It is a happy and good-natured picture.

Don’t you wish that life was more happy and good-natured?

A lot of people appear to be quite angry. 

The Fairmount Girls have been around for at least 15 years. I think. Maybe longer. Maybe not as long. I guess I’m not fully certain.

Here is how the Fairmount Girls describe themselves on Facebook—”Fairmount Girls are a 5 piece independent rock band .we’ve had several different incarnations due to peoples lives and who can blame anyone for wanting to move out of Cincinnati or get away from us . we’ve always had at least one if not several boys in the band and at least 2 girls if not three or four . we have 3 full length albums……11 minutes to anywhere , tender trap , forever and are pleased to announce we’ve started a fourth . This will be our first vinyl release !!! we remain humble and true to our DIY beginner punk roots, even though we think we write pretty catchy songs and are pretty fucking fabulous . cheers to all things Fairmount . if you are reading this chances are that we LOVE you ! “

Look them up on Facebook. It seems clear they would be happy to hear from you.

The red haired girl in the blue shirt is a good friend of mine. She and I had a cup of coffee together a few weeks ago in Cincinnati. 

Here are the Fairmount Girls on You Tube.

Below is a poster for a show this band played at the Inner Peace Center in Cincinnati.

I wish there was an Inner Peace Center I could visit. It would be nice to have a greater measure of inner peace.

October 3, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

You Are Able To Discuss Any Topic—Not Just Dumb Stuff

Yesterday I went to the dry cleaner. I’ve been going to the same dry cleaner for the 11 years I’ve lived in Houston.

During my visit yesterday, the dry cleaner lady made a comment to me about the new music director of the New York Philharmonic. The dry cleaner lady is the only employee at this shop. She and I get along well.

( Above–Ureli  Corelli Hill. Mr. Hill was the founder of the New York Philharmonic.)

I’m no expert on the New York Philharmonic, but I had heard a report about this gentleman, Alan Gilbert, on NPR. This being the case, I was able to conduct a conversation on the topic with the dry cleaner lady.

It is good that two people could have spontaneous discussion on this matter. Often all people talk about is dumb stuff.

Let us all please have more conversations about things other than pop culture and half-informed opinions about sports. People are capable of more than they realize. Soon enough you will be nearing the grave and you may realize that you missed out on a lot of things in life.

Here is information about Alan Gilbert.

September 21, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Speaking The Words To Simple Gifts As Ship Passes Behind Me

Above is a video of me speaking the words of the Shaker hymn Simple Gifts while standing on the eastern end of Galveston Island.

The video runs just over 90 seconds.

Behind me as I speak is a ship in Galveston Bay that is sailing out towards the Gulf of Mexico.

Simple Gifts is one of my favorite songs in the world.

If you click this link, you’ll see the lyrics and the song will play.

The song was written by Joseph Brackett. Here are some very basic facts about Joseph Brackett.

Here is some information about Shaker music.

Here is some history of the Shakers.

From that history—

One of the numerous religious sects who emigrated to American shores in search of religious freedom, the Shakers followed Mother Ann Lee to the United States in 1774. Here they established several colonies– the first in 1776 at Nikayuna near Albany, NY–whose governing principles included celibacy and agrarian communal living.

Here are some things you could see if you visited Galveston, Texas.

Here are some facts about Galveston Bay.

Here is the link to the Galveston Bay Foundation.

Here is a link where you can track the location of ships around the world.

Here is some history of ships and boats.

The part of Simple Gifts I like best is where it says that to bow and to bend we should not be ashamed. I would like to live my life by that principle, but so far I have lacked the discipline to do so.

July 15, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Top Texas Political Blogger Sings The Damned At Houston Ship Channel—Let Go As Life Is Brief And Brutal

Above is a video of me singing The Damned’s Wait For The Blackout at the Houston Ship Channel.

Life is short and you’d might as well just let go.

One way to let go is to tell the people you care about how much you care about them.

Life is brief and often brutal.

At the end of the song it says–”There is no vision here.”

Quoting the Bible, Franklin Roosevelt said in his 1933 inaugural address that “Without vision the people perish.”

I stand by both the song and by President Roosevelt’s speech.

Please don’t forget—I’ll be hosting the biggest punk rock event in the nation this August 15 in Newport, Kentucky. Newport is just across the Ohio River from Cincinnati.

June 19, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Doing The Hustle And Doing It Right

Above is a video on how to do The Hustle.

What I enjoy about his video is that the man doing the talking is intelligent and crisp without being condescending, while the woman is with the program and in control of her movements even though the man has the lead.

Don’t you wish that people were this smart and with the program all the time? It’s just so useful and almost cathartic to see something done right. The people in this video took the time to get it right.

The video is from the Starlight Dance Studio in San Diego. The man in the video is Michael Kiehm and the woman is Janelle Walton. Mr. Kiehm owns the dance studio.

I don’t want to learn how to dance. But if I did want to learn how to dance and I lived in San Diego, I would call Mr. Kiehm. 

Here is the link to the International Dance Hustle Association

Here is the mission statement of this group—

The International Hustle Dance Association (IHDA) is hereby established to support the Hustle partner dance and accepts the following as its charter:  

  a)   To help promote, protect and nurture the Hustle as a social, competitive, and artistic dance form. 

b)  To develop uniform contest rules and divisions to be utilized at IHDA sanctioned events. 

 c)  To encourage communication among all hustle dance enthusiasts and professionals, thereby creating a forum for hustle dances worldwide.

d)  To develop a widely respected and standardized format for competition judges accommodating competitive hustle dancing.

e)  To establish an event calendar of recommended Hustle dance events, clubs, activities and dances.

 f)   To develop event sanctioning minimums and guidelines

Who knew such a group existed?

Here is some basic information on the Hustle Dance.

The famous song called The Hustle was performed by Van McCoy. Regretfully, Mr. McCoy lived only from 1940 until 1979. The Hustle was released in 1975.  Here is Mr. McCoy’s web home. 

(Below— Van McCoy)

June 10, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I’m Willing To Sail With A Ship Of Fools

Above is the video for the song “Ship of Fools” by World Party. The song is from 1987.

If you’re old enough, you likely recall the song and the video.

The lyrics say–” I don’t want to sail with this ship of fools.”

The song is about economic and environmental exploitation.   

The lyrics also say–”You’re gonna pay tomorrow.”

Here are the full lyrics.

I understand not wanting to set sail with a ship of fools. It is often hard to understand why the world is as it is.

And we may well pay tomorrow. Our current recession seems to be a form of payment for overconsumption.

Though it is really the very poor that pay in ways we never see or give much thought about.    

That said, I’m willing to to share the ride with a ship of fools. You’re born, you do your best, and you take your chances.

We’re all connected to each other and I accept that fact. 

I’m not resigned or fatalistic. I feel I try in life.

If I do my best but go down with the ship—I have at least done my best.  I’d rather sail with a ship of fools than sail alone.

Anyway—What if I’m the fool and the rest of you are doing me a favor by letting me stay on the ship? 

Please click here to read about World Party’s Karl Wallinger.

May 31, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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