I made Taylor Swift cry.

In a good way, and in a dream. I’ll explain.

Last night I dreamed she read one of my books (Heartborn), posted a video of herself crying about how it made her feel, and several things happened:

The book became a sensation.

It was made into a show on the CW, and everyone in the show was beautiful (with great hair).

I got invited onto the Tonight Show for banter with Jimmy Fallon. I told him I liked him, and thought he was even better looking in person. We laughed and fistbumped, then he asked me who my favorite band was.

I said, “The Cult” without hesitation, to which the curtain drew back and there they were, ready to rock. Ian Astbury invited me up and I got to sing Love Removal Machine and OH MY GAWD it was amazing even though I can’t sing and I’m fairly certain that even in the dream world, my mic was turned off.

It’s going to be really tough to top this dream.

2015: The Bestest Song of the Year

2015 saw the usual array of music.

Cool new bands. Good stuff from established acts. The glut of overproduced crap that LA churns out.

However: As a man who came of age in the 80s, there was a hands-down-no-hold-barred-Chess-King-parachute-pants-wearing-winner for my favorite song of the year.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Walk the Moon: Shut Up and Dance.

For an 80s guy like me, this song has it all. This video has it all– the female star (Lauren Taft) is a perfect homage to the “it girl” of my generation ( the beat up sneaks? yep. perfect.)

The hook is so good, it almost made me dance without stretching for ten minutes in order to prevent injury.

What’s your fave song or album this year? Whatcha got?


My Top Ten: Country Songs By Women

Nothing too fancy, I happened to hear my favorite country song by a female artist today, and thought about a list 
Here’s the good thing about lists: people will invariably disagree and tell me about other excellent music I’ve not heard before. I consider that a win/win.

So, without further ado:

1. Hands down, my favorite: Seven Year Ache by Rosanne Cash. It’s early-80s-electric piano at the top of the mountain. I love this song.

2. The Queen of Country, Loretta Lynn. This song is so amazingly redneck I can’t fathom anyone else singing these words. (Okay, maybe Dolly).

3. For sheer purity, there is nothing like the voice of Suzy Bogguss. It’s like bells in the wind, and this song about a rodeo and love and America ought to make you cry.

4. From the department of female empowerment ( take note, posers), an actual song about, you know, being an adult. Mary Chapin Carpenter is just so damned good, and she has the finest backup act in the history of the planet on “He Thinks He’ll Keep Her”.

5. Martina McBride has the kind of voice that puts an air raid siren to shame, but with a pitch and clarity that blow my mind. “Independence Day” makes me want to invade Europe, it’s that uplifting.

6.  Jo Dee Messina. Her first album is loaded with slick pop country, but this is the song that established her as worth listening to. 

7. Trisha Yearwood has a dozen songs that will never leave my memory. This one is her first, and in my mind, the best:

8. The early 80s were a time of muddled charts and excellent music. This is my favorite from that era. Juice Newton and “Angel of the Morning”. 

9. In the same vein, Charlie Dore was a late 70s artist who crossed genres without really trying. Pilot of the Airwaves captures a time when Disc Jockeys were giants, country had a twang, and there was a western US flair to a lot of hits. 

10. Last but not least, is “She Can’t Save Him” by Canadian artist Lisa Brokop. This song could actually be number one for me if the subject matter was more upbeat. Her voice is rich, full, and so riven with emotion you have to ask exactly what the hell American music executives are looking for in a singer

I await your additions.