Monday, February 01, 2010

Why hello there!

I promise to blog about our new news (what? Pregnant? Wasn't even trying? Well no, not THAT month, anyway) on my other blog, Bastante Bien, hopefully in the next day or two. It's been a bit crazy since November when we confirmed that Geoffrey and I are indeed, "in a family way," and with two classes and teaching one seminar, well, my procrastination talent kicks into high gear.

That's not entirely true, of course. Geoffrey's been amazing, sorting through all of our books and toys to essentially DE-feather our nest before our little one arrives. And over the weekend, while we were sorting through cookbooks (so many cookbooks!) I heard the new BNL single, "You Run Away." I didn't even think about it until the DJ announced it was a new BNL song (I was listening to 96.7 btw - I love me some crazy Canadian programming). Hunh. I was a bit underwhelmed, but with BNL, I find that I have to be beat over the head with it a few times and then I'm sold.

So here's the official release via YouTube:

I know that many of the comments on this song (there are already a few on the video) will include a lament about Steven Page leaving the band last year. For me, it does seem as though this song is missing an element of dense harmonization I had come to expect and love from BNL. But on this song, I think it's on purpose. A sort of acknowledgement of loss, of change, of moving on. I'm not sure who is singing which part, but it mostly sounds like Ed is harmonizing with himself.

That's not to say that all future songs will sound like this. This brilliant acoustic version of "For You" with Ed and Kevin shows that they'll be just fine. Things change.

There will be a lot of changes coming over the next few months. I hope to be better about sharing them with you here and in my other blog. See you soon!


Saturday, August 08, 2009

Sometimes you just gotta take a break...

Tip to toe, originally uploaded by Kodamakitty.

I'm finishing up a week off from work and then the rest of August will be spent trying to get back on a schedule. Hopefully that will include more regular blogging too.

Classes begin in three weeks, yikes!


Sunday, June 21, 2009

CHESS in Concert live at Albert Hall

Initial verdict: for completists and fans of Idina Menzel, Adam Pascal or Josh Groban only.

I loooooove this musical. I don't necessarily love every recording of it. And there are quite a few recordings of it at this point. Still, I was thrilled as punch to see this disc (and the "Highlights from" single disc) at Target. Target! CHESS! Wow!

But, I am sad to say, this version of the musical does not thrill me. Josh Groban is great, Adam Pascal is great. But Idina seems to be channelling either Maureen from RENT (she played Mimi in the Original Broadway Cast) or Ani di Franco, who tends to use her nasal delivery as a tongue-in-cheek affect. Menzel's Florence is brash and brassy and not in a good way.

Also glaring to me are the lyrics, written by the brilliant Tim Rice, which seem to be diluted and diminished with each successive recording. Brilliant turns of phrase have been changed to be more obvious and incidental music and dialogue added to, well, I'm really not sure for what purpose other than to appeal to the some sort of musical adoring crowd who can't infer what's going on.

A few year's back the Actor's Fund of America staged a similar production with Groban and Pascal but with Julia Murney as Florence and Sutton Foster (seen more recently as Coco in Season 1 of Flight of the Conchords) as Svetlana. Maybe now that the book rights seem to have been straightened out, that version can be released. You can see footage of that production on YouTube - unfortunately, it's a fairly motley collection of rehearsal and concert footage:

As a completist (more or less), I am glad to have the 2008 version in my library (I still need the flawed and doomed Broadway version) and I will most likely seek out the DVD or at least try to record the concert on PBS.

Ultimately, the original concert album, followed by the amazing Danish version (sung in English) are my top picks for anyone who wants to really hear why so many people are oddly obsessed with this musical. I am sure there will be passionate debates about who is the best Florence or Anatoly or what the ultimate recording is/was/would be - but at least this means that CHESS has not faded into obscurity and will hopefully continue for many years ahead.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

A very belated thank you!

DSCF1228, originally uploaded by Kodamakitty.

Geoffrey had these gorgeous flowers sent to my office as an end-of-the semester surprise. The note says, "I just wanted to give you something to look at other than a student or a computer screen. Love, Geoffrey."

*sigh* I love that man.

That evening, Geoffrey also gave me MONO:

These plush microbes are so cute, you almost forget how icky they can be in real life!

Thank you, sweetie. I'm a very lucky girl!


Thursday, April 02, 2009


I was catching up on my Google Reader and there was a picture of a billboard for something called Gama-Go. I clicked on it and found a bunch of super cute, limited edition stuff, including this bag. The design is called "Ninja Kitty." Hopefully they don't sell out anytime soon - this might be my birthday splurge!


Thursday, March 26, 2009

New Blog - "Bastante Bien"

daffodils banner 2.jpg
Originally uploaded by Kodamakitty.

"I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun more.
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive.
I wish you enough pain so that the smallest joys in life appear much
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish enough "Hello's" to get you through the final "Goodbye."

- Bob Perks

This was the thought behind titling my new blog, "Bastante Bien." I still want to keep this blog for the fun and funny things that interest me (and I hope interest you, too), but the new blog will be to track my progress in changing my eating habits and trying to start a family.

Just as a warning, this new blog will be a bit on the girly side, in terms of talking about my potential diagnosis with PCOS - Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome. I hope to write in a way that will be interesting to anyone who stumbles across it, but it will also be a way for me to journal the side effects (good and bad!) of beginning treatment.

See you either here or there!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Oh yeah, summer is on the way

And with it - amazing songs on the radio like this:
"Lucky" Official Video With Colbie Caillat

I know, this album isn't new - it came out nearly a year ago, but I was listening to the radio (96.7, oh how I love those crazy Canadians) and heard this and had to track it down. I'll bet every wedding from here to September will be playing this at least once. And deservedly so.