Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Tomtastic holiday mix...2009

My Holiday mix...with tracks picked by me... with some help by Mel. Ashley provided the artwork for the cover and The Melanie drew a custom drawing on everyones cd.
Most,if not all, the songs I discovered(or rediscovered) this year. Also, you will notice, for being a holiday mix,there is no christmas case you didn't know a song...or would like to make your is the tracklist :

1. The Theme Song to "The Golden Girls" - Just hearing this song reminds me of spending the night at my Mamo & Papo's (grandparents) and watching this show. And I'm not going to lie, I watch it now if its on...and it's ALWAYS on. Plus, its a damn catchy tune.

2. 100 Yard Dash- Rapahel Saadiq - I only went to one concert this year, to see this guy, a birthday gift from my Melly (who, sadly, got a 100 degree fever and coudln't go. I missed her and only went on her insistance). This was the song he opened his set with that night. A good show and a great song.

3. Stubborn Kinda Fellow - Mel put this song on the mix she made me for my birthday. She said the title reminded her of me (haha?) and, more than that, she thought I would like it. She was right.

4. How Do I Let A Good Man Down?- Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - The first of two songs by this group on my mix. Though they have been around for awhile I just discovered the Dap Kings this year. A great throwback to that Motown/ soul sound which I love so much.

5. Got To Be There - Michael Jackson - I had to put at least one MJ song on this mix. And this one, I have to admit, I had never heard until this year. Much like most people my age, one of my first musical memories is of hearing Michael Jackson. And, okay, trying to dance like him to. I never did learn to moonwalk but I always enjoyed his music. Even when it wasnt cool. This song is starting to become one of my favorite songs by the king of pop.

6. How Long Do I Have To Wait For You- Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - This was the first song I heard by this band....while in a bar, Spoontonic, drinking with Mel, Zac and Shirley. The DJ put it on and, like most times I hear something great I said, What the hell is this ?? I went up to the dj and asked. The next day, I bought the cd.

7. Ballad Of A Thin Man - Stephen Malkmus & The Million Dollar Bashers - from the soundtrack to the Bob Dylan film, I'm not there...this had a killer intro which caught my ear.

8. Flightless Bird / American Mouth- Iron & Wine - This song was on the Twilight soundtrack. Okay, that's outta the way. Dont hold it against it. Its still one of the prettiest songs I've heard all year. Mel played it for me on one of her mixes and its been stuck in my head ever since...

9. Angel Baby - Rosie & The Originals - Sometimes, you gotta go old school. And hearing this song always makes me think of her.

10. Pilgrims Progress - Kris Kristopherson - Rolling Stone magazine has gone downhill. From Obama being on the cover every other month ( one month, fine, 5 times in a thanks. The mag istill about music, right?) to a pointless sports section (didnt know I subscribe to SI) to the way they structure the countdown issues ( best songs of the decade...well, if you START with number one, why should I read on...start with number 100...jeez). But, as much as I bitch about the mag, once in awhile they get it right. One issue this year (Obama on the cover) they had a huge story on actor/poet/singer-songwriter/all around cool motherfucker Kris Kristopherson. The article, written by Ethan Hawke (yes, the dude from Training Day...Before Sunset...Reality Bites), was very well written and made me interested in checking out some of his tunes. This song, off his most recent (fantastic, start to finish !! ) album was, for me, the best one. I played it six times in a row and...almost as soon as a I got home...started throwing it on mix tapes.

11. Sea Of Love - Tom Waits - Remember what I said about Kris, esp., all around cool motherfucker....ditto, Tom Waits. If I were to get one of my stories published, I would want Waits to read the audio version. I liked the Cat Power version of this song but...Waits is waits. And he's awesome. Course, his voice (a mix of years of, I'd imagine, smoking unfiltered smokes followed by a shot of jack for breakfast) isnt for everyone. Listen with an open mind.

12. October Weather- Whiskey Slew - I first met Justin Dnofrio, the main component of Whiskey Slew, when we were both baristas in Starbucks (during my first go around with the bux). He would play his guitar in between breaks and before/after work. Not to long ago, I went to his first show. And everytime I see the guy, he's growing as a preformer. He recorded a few songs, burned them onto a cd and handed them out to a few people. I was lucky enough to be one those people. This song was my fav out of the ones I've heard.

13. Billie Jean - Chris Cornell - One of, for real, the best covers I've ever heard. He takes Michael Jacksons classic and strips it down. One dude and a guitar. Honestly, the song, lyrics, are much better then I ever gave them credit for. And Cornell, arguably one of the best voices of the last 20 years, sings the hell out of it.

14. After Hours - We Are Scientists- I have to admit, I discovered this song last year. It was in the movie "Nick & Norahs Infinite Playlist"...dont hold that against it. This is a great song to play when you first get in the car, heading out to start your night.

15. Revolve - Scarlett Johanson & Pete Yorn - I know who sings it. But, damn it, it's just catchy.

16. Halfway Home - TV On The Radio - I'd read about this band in all the magazines. They were the band everyone was talking about (in between hype for Wilco and, now, Kings of Leon). And this song kicks ass.

17. Lets Spend The Night Together- David Bowie- remember what I said about Tom Waits ? Ditto, Bowie. Double Ditto. Every mix worth its salt needs some Waits and it needs some Bowie. This is off Aladin Sane. And is a Rolling Stones cover. Listen to it.

18. Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want- She & Him -From the soundtrack to "500 Days of Summer"(good movie). This is a Smiths cover from a band that has been nothing but enjoyable in everything I've heard from them.

19. The Book Of Love - Peter Gabriel - I heard this one on the last episode of "Scrubs"( the series ended for me when most of the main characters left it). And for the next few weeks I obsessed about it. I finally managed to track down this version and put in on a mix for Mel. Hearing it makes me smile.

20. Wild Is The Wind - Nina Simone - Melanie found me this song after (typical Tom) I said, "what the hell is that ?" while watching a commercial one day. The song was in the trailer for the movie "Revolutionary Road". The song was better than the movie(which wasnt bad, just not great). This song is best heard while driving in the least, thats when I thought it sounded best. Love this song.

21. Unreachable- John Frusciante- John is a musical genius. And because of this, some of his stuff is...a little weird. Not so much with this song though. A great song that I've used as the last track to a few mixes this year. Of all the songs on his latest cd (The Empyrean) this was the one that stood out first for me.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Tom's Top 5 Awesome Things This Week...12-21-09

( For The Week Of 12-21-09 )

5. The tasty shrimp, abalone and calamari cocktail that I had on Sunday - add some lemon juice and chips...not to mention having good company, My Mom and Mel,and it was a good lunch !!

4. Getting two bowls of the tasty food Mels papa made on christmas day -Also great : The cookies, lumpia and all the other food that was served.

3. Having some late night pasta and watching / quoting "Nacho Libre" with Melanie and Ashley = a great end to a fun christmas eve.

2. Spending Christmas day with Melanies family

1. Spending Christmas eve with My Family.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tom's Top 5 Awesome Things This Week...12-14-09

For those new to the Top 5 :

Back in 2006...A combination of boredom and watching "High Fidelity" the day before led me to write my own Top 5 list about my week. I had so much fun doing it that I wrote another the next week. And I havent missed a week since.

Some weeks are harder to find 5 good, let alone awesome things in my week. But, after some thought, I always find them.

Anycrap, here is the Top 5 for this week....

(For The Week of 12-14-09)

5. After a long day or two at work...getting to come home to christmas movies and good stuff to read.

4. "The Princess & The Frog" - When I first saw this trailer I thought it looked fun. Being a fan of all things Disney, I knew Mel and Ashley and I would be seeing it. What I didn't expect was how much I'd enjoy this movie. A fun, FUNNY story with great music. You, the unknown reader, might think I'm lame but give this movie a chance...I think you'll enjoy it.

3. Getting to spend some time with Ashley on her birthday.

2. Helping myself to two bowls of Potatoes & Beef curry that Mel's Dad made !!

1. Aftera long day or two at work...simply getting to come home and spend time with her.

So...that's it.

What's been cool about your week?

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Debut...(No, that title sounds lame).


I've finally done it. After months, no, years of talking about it. I finally have my own blog.

I feel so 1996 right now !!

This blog with feature "Tom's Top 5 Awesome Things This Week", a weekly "column" I've been writing on Myspace for sometime now. Some of you may have read it...if so I thank you. And feel free to read it here. Each week. Also, I plan to post...well...whatever I feel like.

Alright, I shall write's go with tomorrow.