Melancholy Monday: Good times and good friends

The Damn Yankees rang in the decade that defined my youth (Photo: courtesy of metrotimes.com)

The Damn Yankees rang in the decade that defined my youth (Photo: courtesy of metrotimes.com)

I hope you all had a great time this Independence Day! I know I did. Maybe a bit too good, actually. I paid for all the food I ate and, uh… beverages I drank the next morning. Not feeling so great, I decided to stay home Saturday and just rest. Sitting in my favorite chair and thinking about the previous night’s festivities, I couldn’t help but feel a little melancholy about other good times I’d had and the music which defined them.

For example, back in the early ’80s I remember tagging along with my older cousin, her boyfriend, and their friends. We’d go to the arcade (those long forgotten places where kids used to go to play video games before there was such a thing as Xbox), the water park, or the movies, and no matter where we went the entire trip there would be filled with music from her favorite band, The Police.

When I got a little older and was able to talk my parents into letting me hangout with friends without my cousin around, I remember that no matter where we were, be it the mall, the arcade, or at a friend’s house watching MTV (believe it or not, they actually used to play music on that channel), you couldn’t seem to go more than an hour without hearing either something from Madonna, Duran Duran, or this classic from a-ha with the most impossible high-note of the decade…

Then, only a few years later, came a song that, for me, defined a decade; my decade. Puberty, girls, parties, and high school; the 90’s had arrived! In the late 80s, hair bands such as Poison, Motley Crue, and Def Leppard dominated the music scene, and though it wouldn’t be long before a couple Seattle-based bands would take music in a completely different (and awesome!) direction, 1990 produced one more iconic power ballad. A song that also just happened to be playing in the background at a party during my first, um… meaningful “romantic encounter.” Thank you, Damn Yankees!

Though the rest of my teenage years would still be full of good times and great friends, there was also angst, confusion, and even anger. Nothing new, of course, but it was new to me and the 90s gave my generation the perfect opportunity to express those feelings of disenfranchisement through music… and combat boots. Enter, “grunge,” and one of my favorite bands of all time, Nirvana! High school dances became flannel-clad moshpits and we never had a better time being pissed off.

So what songs and music genres define your younger days? Which artists and tunes bring back memories of old friends and good times? Let us know in the comments. Also, be sure to like us on Facebook and download the free Sing-N-Share app for your smartphone or tablet if you haven’t already! It’s a free, easy way to relive those music-filled good old days.

Nirvana Reunite with Show-stopping Collaborations

Nirvana, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,  Joan Jett, Krist Novoselic

Photo courtesy of http://www.rollingstone.com

It was truly a night to be remembered. The 29th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony honored Hall and Oates, Cat Stevens (Yusuf Islam), Peter Gabriel, Linda Ronstadt, KISS, and Nirvana at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The night was full of nostalgia and recognition of the newly inducted artists, but it was clear that Nirvana stole the show. It was the reunion everyone had been anticipating. We had only seen it once when the grunge band teamed up with Paul McCartney in 2012 during a benefit for the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Last night, Nirvana reunited on stage for the second time since the suicide of frontman Kurt Cobain. Yes, it was a big deal.

Kim Gordon, Nirvana, Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Photo courtesy of http://www.rollingstone.com

The performance of the night featured surviving members Krist Novoselic on bass and Dave Grohl on drums, along with guitarist Pat Smear. Who would fill Kurt Cobain’s shoes? Rumors swarmed after a picture of Novoselic’s bass, Grohl’s drumkit, Smear’s guitar, and Joan Jett’s stickered Melody Maker was shared on the Foo Fighters’ Instagram page. (Clever hint from Dave Grohl’s band.) But I don’t think anyone expected an array of women to front the band. Joan Jett, Kim Gordon, St. Vincent, and Lorde stepped up to perform classic Nirvana songs!

Joan Jett kicked it off with “Smells Like Teen Spirit” which instantly ignited the crowd. Sonic Youth’s Kim Gordon was up next. She gave an energetic performance of “Aneurysm.” St. Vincent, who performed a cover of “Lithium” at Chicago’s Riviera last Saturday, took on the song once more. Finally, Lorde led “All Apologies” with the support of the other artists. Nirvana is being praised for their choice of powerful and fitting singers. Job well done, ladies.

It was the perfect tribute to Nirvana’s history and influence while honoring the legacy of Kurt Cobain. April 5, 2014, marked the 20th anniversary of his tragic death. This monumental performance and well-deserved induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame seemed to have come at the right time. Now who’s ready for the Kurt Cobain musical, biopic, and documentary? We know we are!