Archive for the ‘music’ Category


I wrote this one around 2002 or so.

When I was a child
I thought I could dream
when I was a child
things were what they seemed
when I was a child
I thought that I could be
anything in the world
that I wanted to be
And lies….
And lies…
holding … holding me… on the ground

when I was a child
I thought life was fair
when I was a child
God was every where
when I was a child
the american dream
was something to hope
for tomorrow to bring
And lies… And lies… holding … holding me … on the ground

lie to myself
lie to each other
lie to someone
who deserves truth
but who wants the truth
when it hurts so much
better to lie
and pretend all is well
lies… And lies… holding … holding me … on the ground

when I was grown up
and thought I could fly
I jumped from the roof
and oh how I tried
but of course you can’t fly
if you have had your wings
clipped early on
by lies posing as dreams
And lies… And lies… holding … holding me … on the ground

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Wrote this song around 2008 or so, based on an idea I had in 2004. Still relevant today.

Tell me who to hate today
tell me what to feel
tell me who’s the enemy
tell me who to kill
tell me what is right and true
tell me what is really real
tell me what I should believe
tell me who’s the enemy

Welcome to the United States of Delusion
Where every day’s an illusion
bathe me in your cool blue glow
tell me what to think and feel
Welcome to the United States of Delusion

Images on a glowing screen
teach me what is really real
I sit in my reclining chair
as they tell me who to blame today
for my dreary life of pain
and emptiness of dreams long died
Handsome men in expensive suits
fill me with their simple lies
simple lies to fill the holes
of a life empty of hope


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RIP John Prine

Dead of COVID-19 at age 73.

His first self-titled album would be a “best of” compilation for any other artist. Get it if you can. Many of his other albums had some good songs on them, but this is the classic one.

He considered himself halfway between Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash. Not a bad place to be.

— Badtux the Music Penguin

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David Roback 1958-2020

David Roback was the music side of Mazzy Star, making beautiful music to go with Hope Sandoval’s words. Eventually Hope’s quirks got on his last nerve and Mazzy Star broke up, after which he produced other people’s music. He was only 61, way too young, but his influence in the music world was bigger than his reputation outside of it. RIP, David.

– Badtux the Music Penguin

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Dick Dale, May 4, 1937 – March 16, 2019. He was 81 years old, and still had concerts scheduled for the remainder of this year in order to pay his medical bills.

Goodbye, Dick. You were a warrior. And, alas, a perfect example of the problems of our healthcare system here in America.

– Badtux the Obituaries Penguin

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First, a song…. Regina Spektor, “Ballad of a Politician” off her brilliant 2012 album What we Saw from the Cheap Seats.

Okay, so you’re back. Did you listen to the song? If you didn’t listen to the song, go listen to it. Really. It is completely and totally relevant to the point of this post.

So: Did you get the point of the song? Did you, really? If you didn’t, you won’t understand why Kavanaugh will be confirmed despite the fact that he sexually assaulted at least three women, was a drunk and a cad towards many other people, and lacks the fundamental respect for rule of law that we expect for our sitting judges.

And that point was: Basically: If you are a politician today, you are a prostitute.

This is especially true of Senators, who are required to raise millions of dollars from their johns in order to become and remain Senators. If they don’t obey their johns, their johns will find another prostitute willing to pleasure them in the way they demand. And these johns want Kavanaugh, because Kavanaugh has promised to overturn multiple Supreme Court rulings that they find distasteful because they give the little people more rights than the johns want the little people to have.

And that’s that. Now, granted, Nothing is ever 100% guaranteed. Perhaps some of those prostitutes will decide that they’re tired of prostitution, and vote against their johns’ demands. But still, I say there’s a 90% chance that Kavanaugh will be confirmed within the next five weeks…

– Badtux the Prostitution Penguin

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So one of my office-mates was new to the United States from China back in the 1990’s. He didn’t know Aretha Franklin from Benjamin Franklin, and there was a trade show in New Orleans and the person he was with says, “Oh, Aretha Franklin is in town at the House of Blues! Let’s go!” And he says “Who?”

It was a night he still remembers, all these years later. “She had such a BIG voice!” he exclaims, hands sweeping wide. “I didn’t know someone could sing so BIG!”

That she did. That she did. Even at the age of 73, in the video above.

Aretha Franklin, R.I.P.

– Badtux the Music Penguin

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Garbage. From 2005’s Bleed Like Me.

This was Shirley Manson’s ruminations on the Afghanistan and Iraq wars…

– Badtux the Music Penguin

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I keep listening to this maybe-album over and over again.

This is Tess Parks and Anton Newcombe. Tess has the laconic delivery of Hope Sandoval down pat, though she’s a little raspier. And Anton Newcombe is, of course, basically Brian Jonestown Massacre nowadays.

Shall I call it Mazzy Jonestown Massacre? Brian Jonestown Star? This penguin has no idea other than that he likes it!

– Badtux the Music Penguin

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She is brilliant

Regina Spektor, “Grand Hotel”, off her brilliant 2016 album Remember Us To Life.

Check out the whole session, including the bit at the end where she talks about life after she arrived in America as a child, and how the whole neighborhood in the Bronx rallied around the family to feed her musical ambitions including taking up a collection to buy a piano for her family and a brilliant classical piano teacher and performer who lived in the neighborhood giving her free lessons because they were so poor they couldn’t afford any, and how lucky she feels to have experienced this in her life when there is so much negativity around. She knows just how lucky she is, unlike the people who were born on 3rd base and thought they hit a triple, like Dim Shrub Son and Dimmer Orange Son.

— Badtux the Music Penguin

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