Every Fighter Is A Song

Howdy!

My sincere apologies for the delay, but you know how it is… work work work. All’s I can say – it beats the alternative…

Well, in the last couple of days I was toying with an idea about tying two things I love together into one post. Music and MMA. Now, we know that fighters have their walk-in music. Some choose a song based on their current mood, or if they want to make a specific statement. Others have a song they always use. That’s all nice and dandy.

But what I was thinking about was – what song IS that fighter? Which song could represent a fighter? So with that in mind…

Here are ten fighters and their songs:

Conor McGregorThe real slim shady / Eminem

There’s no one quite like Conor, some folks try to be like Conor but they’re not the real Conor now are they? A spark of craziness and a similar spark of genius. Will the real Conor McGregor please stand up?

Jon JonesBohemian rhapsody / Queen

Just like this Queen masterpiece, Jones starts out quiet, develops quickly with some unexpected turns and explodes into a crescendo. To date, though, that peak was followed by a whisper… Let’s hope that – like what usually happens with this song – we will just hit “repeat” and listen again and again as this young lad makes his comeback. Also considered one of the best of all times.

Demetrious JohnsonPlug in baby / Muse

The song is quite short, is mostly burst after burst of energy, and one of the best of its generation. Hold on, did I just describe a song by Muse? or the flyweight champion?

Daniel CormierSweet Home Alabama / Lynyrd Skynyrd

DC may be from Louisiana, but still, we’re talking about some southern gold which some people may have sneezed at, at first. Until they realized it’s just that damn good.

Frankie EdgarWorking on a dream / Bruce Springsteen

Frankie, like the Boss is a Jersey boy who’s busy with the dream. Like the subjects of Springsteen’s song (pretty much – us), Frankie might hit a wall every so often. But he keeps the hope alive, that one day, with the right attitude and hard work – he will realize his dream. Will it happen? I don’t know. The song is a song of hope, and like Frankie, we won’t give up on that.

Nate Diaz (Nick Diaz)Smoke two joints / sublime

Not a man of many words, but says it as it is. For him. Represent yo.

Ronda Rousey – I, Me, Mine / The Beatles

All through the day, I, me, mine, I, me, mine, I, me, mine. Even those tears, I, me, mine etc. It seems like it was always about Ronda doesn’t it? She’s here, She’s there, she’s everywhere (no, that song doesn’t fit). It wasn’t about the sport, not even about the promotion. It was about Ronda. Well, for better or for worse, only time will tell. We’re waiting for the new chapter in this story.

Robbie LawlerBad company / Five Finger Death Punch cover

This song, like the fighter, is a very nice mix of Aggression and heart felt look at one’s career. A warrior like Robbie who’s done this and that, was scorned by so many of us, yet realized his true identity and… well, you know the rest. I can’t deny, till the day I die.

Michael BispingManchester England England / Hair Cast

What can I say? He believes that god believes in “Claude”. That’s him. Hair also attracts polarizing views. Some people love it, while others can’t stand it. I like it.

Fabricio WerdumPais tropical / Sergio Mendes

For I do not owe anything to anyone. For I am happy, very happy with myself. I saw werdum trying to show a “tough” front in promo work. At best it was a not smiling Fabricio. This guy seems to truly be having fun every minute of his career. What wasn’t said of him in the past? he was all but written off until storming all the way to the top of the heavyweight division.

Well, hope you enjoyed. Will be happy to hear opinions, other ideas. What song is you?

Until next time (very soon – UFC197 Predictions…),

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Here Come The Drones!

Hi All and welcome back after a short and unplanned hiatus. Some of you noticed the domain name glitch, and while that was going on, I was sick, then healed up in time to fill in for my wife – let me tell you, I got a reminder of how hard it is to be a woman – and now… now I’m back. The blog is back and Muse are freaking back!

When we grew up and went to school, there were certain teachers who… would leave the science lab unattended and allow us to sneak in for a couple of hours to watch a movie. And not just any movie. To this day, I think of it as a kind of miracle that this video cassette (Pink Floyd’s The Wall) lasted for as long as it did.

We’d lock ourselves in, turn the lights off and watch it over and over, marveling at how many new nuances we could catch every time we did. The Wall isn’t my favorite Pink Floyd album, though it’s way up there, but it is so far the best concept album that was ever produced.

That is until 6/9/2015.

There were quite a few songs, albums, musical acts that were (and some still are) really tied in with my personal life, beliefs, state of mind. Some of them represented things I wanted to say, some resounded in my own thinking, some seemed to be written about me. Such is Muse’s new album – Drones.

What separates a really good concept album from the rest of the noise?

Well, first is the obvious… it actually has a concept. Yeah, the sexy lead singer can say there is, but unless it’s reflected in the actual work – a concept album it does not make. Like in literature, the album must stay the course. Stay true to what was promised. You might remember a post I wrote about this magnificent band earlier – Muse – As Advertised. Drones remains on point from the first note of “Dead Inside” through to the last echoes of “Drones“.

Another distinguishing question is whether the songs hold their own musically as well as being part of a coherent concept. The answer here is again, a resounding Yes. Each of the first 7 songs (I’m excluding the “Drill Sergeant” and “JFK” tracks which are more binders) are not only really good songs, but can definitely hold their own as singles. The last 3 are more thematic, but I see nothing wrong with them either. A matter of taste. And while they can all be listened to regardless of context within the album, they fit right in as major pieces in this artistic puzzle. Bellamy has sharpened his ax, so did Chris on the Bass and Dom’s machine gun drums are locked and loaded and the band delivers a consistent artistic piece from start to end.

And last but not least is that X factor. The one that should make us care (or not) about the concept album. Perhaps a better name is a thematic album. Because without having anything to correspond with in our own life, a concept album is merely a gimmick. Drones is definitely not a gimmick. Mathew Bellamy has a few things to say, and he says them very clearly throughout this album.

Like the best literature available, Muse drew a nice main plot that can take the listener through the story of mankind. But the magic starts when you dig deeper. Understanding that “Drone” may or may not be just what you thought. Understanding the metaphors and double (and some time triple) meaning of some of the lines you thought you fully understood so far. The musical choices for style, as well as instruments picked per song also play very well in setting the mood for each chapter of this story, and what we get is satisfying. Very much so.

I’ve read some really misguided attempts at critiquing this album. With respect – Ignore them all.

Yes ladies and Gentlemen. Muse’s “Drones” is the real deal. It is at the very least on the level of Pink Floyd’s masterpiece and I for one, would expect to see more developments with regards to this album.

I think you can safely say that I wholeheartedly recommend this album to anyone.

Until next time, let me know what you think. Did you already get the album? What are you waiting for?

Comment, likes and shares are awesome.

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You sold out!

Hello ladies and gents, welcome back.

In recent weeks I’ve done a bit of reblogging. I shared some nice posts (see references below) I found on WordPress while busying myself with some important everyday life tasks, on top of plotting my next book.

Since my attention span is often likened to – hey here’s a butterfly – what was I saying? I wasn’t able to really concentrate on anything much other than the aforementioned occupations. But, while humming in the shower today, I remembered an idea that keeps popping into my head every now and then and I thought it’d justify dedicating a post to it.

You guys know I fell in love with a band called Muse, remember? Well, seems like the “hard-core fan base” is worried. Why? Because of recent albums that were perceived by certain individuals as “not the real Muse”.

Well, you know the drill.

It normally follows these next 3 phases:

Phase 1 – Anonymity

Why is no one listening to this band? These guys are geniuses! Why is the mainstream media ignoring them? Why don’t they get played on the radio? Why is MTV so full of shit and not one clip from this band? What a world we live in where a band that good can’t break into mainstream media!

Phase 2 – Selling out

Holy shit, ever since that album, this band is played on every radio station, gets a special on MTV, every Tom, Dick and Harry owns their latest CD. YOU SOLD OUT! Why can’t they go back to their roots???

Phase 3 – Recycled shit

O. M. G. did you hear that piece of crap album this band just released? Excuse me but I have to puke. That’s so 2007. These guys just recycle riffs. What a bunch of losers!

Often, as is the case of Muse, there’s an additional phase I like to call Phase 2b – The experimental phase. Where the band dares stray an inch from their marque chord progression, which in turn sends a legion of teenage girls into a frenzy. That normally leads to the inevitable phase 3 described above.

That cycle applies to pretty much every band that grew from the garage and up. Honorable mentions to Metallica, Green Day, Red hot chili peppers, Foo Fighters and the list goes on and on.

Excuse me but never has a nickname been so misplaced as “hard-core fans”. To me, that sounds more like whiny spoiled brats.

In the case of Muse, it’s even  more irritating, since the Albums that are considered “Selling out” and “Experimental” are likely the bands most important pieces of recordings. “The Resistance” and “Drones” (Which wasn’t even released yet! Yes, it’s that pathetic).

Two concept albums that actually SAY something about life. and that, ladies and gentlemen constitutes “Selling out“. What’s the world coming to?

Here end rant.

Muse’s “Drones” hit stores on June 9th, 2015 and you better get on the bandwagon now. Just cause I’m nice, let me save you the google-ing. Here are the first three singles released from what promises to be a kick ass, no holds barred album:

And as promised, links to these nice posts I reblogged recently, in case you missed them. They’re really good:

As usual, feel free to leave a comment, like and/or share this post with the rest of the blogosphere. Who knows? Maybe one day my blog will be popular enough to be accused of “Selling out!“.

2014 – revisited

Merry Christmas and a Happy new year everyone! Hope you ring in the year on a positive note. Just do me a favor and be safe!

I wanted to take this opportunity and look at what we talked about here in 2014. But unlike the standard-issue photo collage that Facebook randomly generates, I wanted it to be more reflective. More meaningful. So… for that purpose, I picked a post from each month, and put it here for you (There are more, don’t believe me? look for yourself!). I hope you enjoyed reading almost as much as I did writing it 🙂 So with no further delay, here we go: (Each photo is a link to a post)

January:

I started this year with a few words about my second Novel. Words that would echo in one of the final posts of this current year (last one in this post). Talking about the Novel I wanted to write and the one I needed to write.

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February:

In February, among other posts, I made a short comparison between “Dexter” and “Breaking bad“. Fun and games folks, not to be taken too seriously.

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March:

In this post I talked about what bores me and what will always pique my interest, regardless of the media. Be it Facebook, face to face conversation or a work of literature.

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April:

April marked the induction of Nirvana into the Rock n Roll hall of fame, and being a huge fan of Nirvana I took a break to pay honors to this awesome band.

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May:

Here I listed 15 reasons NOT to write. Are they enough to stop you from writing? You be the judge.

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June:

I shared a nice Q&A I had with an Iranian friend I made over the interweb. Peace!

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July:

Sometimes you stumble on greatness. This is what happened to me with the band Muse. And some of their materials I found, are very important, beyond the music.

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August:

Having finished watching “The Wire” I found a few parallels with another great series…

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September:

A post about the woes of a writer whose English is a second language.

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October:

Oh the things we can eat, Oh the things we can do, your mother will not mind at all if you do! 🙂

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November:

In November, as public service (You’re welcome), I finally defined “Love” for you. Don’t mention it.

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December:

In December, 2014 came full circle and I went back to discussing my second Novel, its completed first draft and the advantages of writing a novel before writing a novel…

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T-t-that’s all folks! Come back next year for more, and in the meanwhile, let me know what you think right here below.

MUSE – As Advertised

Welcome good men and women.

Today, I thought I’d share some of my appreciation for a band I learned to love and respect.

I won’t try to convince you that their music is awesome (it is), or that their concerts are great (they are). I’m not really going to talk about their music at all.

I just happen to find their name choice very appropriate.

I want to show what I mean, through two of their biggest hits (and the fact that they are hits is important).

Resistance:

If we live a life in fear
I’ll wait a thousand years
Just to see you smile again

Kill your prayers for love and peace
You’ll wake the thought police
We can’t hide the truth inside

If you’ve heard these lyrics and didn’t immediately think about George Orwell’s 1984, I believe there are two options. You either didn’t read the book, or you weren’t listening very well. Not just the specific term “Thought police”, but the whole piece. To me personally it screams Winston Smith and Julia. Their secret struggle and yearning to experience life to its fullest, the hopelessness of their predicament.

Here’s where a listener can listen to one song and be inspired to read a powerful and thought provoking book. Muse.

But it’s not only inspiring in a direct link to the book.

Love is our resistance
They’ll keep us apart and they won’t stop breaking us down
Hold me
Our lips must always be sealed

At times, this world seem to be weighing down on everyone. External forces of every kind try to “put us in our place”, to keep us “in line”. We’re limited by laws and rules, by norms and expectations. “They” can try to keep us apart and break us down, but they can’t control our hearts. Love is our resistance.

Uprising:

From the opening lines, it’s clear that these guys aren’t settling for the “official version”.

Paranoia is in bloom,
The PR, transmissions will resume
They’ll try to, push drugs that keep us all dumbed down
And hope that, we will never see the truth around

In a world as cynical as it’s ever been, I personally feel good when I see  that there are others who can see past the spiel the media is feeding us. I only hope that many would listen, really listen to this song and at the very least acknowledge that things aren’t what they seem, and that just by being aware, we can start to take the power back.

Rise up and take the power back
It’s time the, fat cats had a heart attack
You know that, their time’s coming to an end
We have to, unify and watch our flag ascend 

I love music for many reasons. But every now and then, there are musicians who inspire. I hope this made sense to you as much as it did for me.

  • What do you think?
  • Who else inspire you through music?

Until next time,

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