“Holly Jolly Christmas” (Burl Ives Cover)

Originally posted 2008-12-15 23:54:12. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

Good evening, one and all.  This is my first solo Christmas song of the season, and I’m happy to contribute to the holiday spirit we’ve been building not only at the Laptop Sessions but also at the Fusco-Moore Experience.

(For those unaquainted with it, the “Experience” is what the condo has been dubbed.  Why it has, I’m not exactly sure, but if you’d like to find out then give us a call…)

Seriously, this song is a classic number originally performed by the one and only Burl Ives.  I still picture him as a talking snowman/host of children’s Christmas specials.  But, alas, I didn’t have my snowman costume with me tonight, so I just wore my festive green shirt.  I think it sufficed for the video.  :-)

The song itself has undergone the Chris Moore treatment, a combination of steady strumming and lower vocals.  The harmonica solo is just about as “me” as they get.  And this was actually a two-take song for me — a truly rare and pleasant surprise for me!  I actually recorded a second song tonight; it’s not a Christmas tune, so I may record a different one if I get a chance, but it’s always good to have at least one music video in reserve.  I wish I had recorded a surplus a year ago when I got sick mid-winter.  Being our first-ever (and ONLY, I’m sure!) “Session-a-Day” project, I hadn’t anticipated having to record songs with no voice.

As you may recall, I turned to Bob Dylan’s recent catalog for those times that my voice was gruff or worse…

I don’t think you can underestimate how much music plays a part in our lives here at the Laptop Sessions.  Take me, for example.  Just this morning, I kept hitting the snooze on my iPhone alarm just in time to hear only part of the chorus to Warren Zevon’s “Lawyers, Guns, and Money.”  Being cut off where it was each time, it sounded like, “I was gambling in a van” (instead of “Havana”).  I don’t know why that struck me as being so funny — it’s a lot less funny now that I’m fully awake and thinking about it — but I ended up staying in bed longer than initially planned just so I could keep trying to hit the snooze at the right time.

I don’t know what that says about me.  Probably just that I didn’t want to get out of bed and would do anything to justify staying in it!

I hope you enjoy my rendition of this Christmas classic and take it for what it is — my sincere wish that you all have a “holly jolly Christmas.”  It’s just over a week around the corner; can you believe it?  I know I can’t.  For once, I’m actually ahead on shopping!

Now, if I could only be ahead on wrapping…

This is why I would be a terrible Santa.  I would be trying to wrap the presents in the sleigh, between houses.  The wind would be kicking up and blowing the paper around, blowing presents out of the vehicle.  It would be bad.

Okay, that’s it for me tonight.  Don’t miss another great Jeff Copperthite session tomorrow — it’s gonna be “so amazing that you wouldn’t even mind if he changes the name of the day from ‘tremendous Tuesday’ to ‘tubular Tuesday'” good!!

See you next session!

“Wishful Thinking” (Wilco Cover)

Originally posted 2009-01-20 00:35:53. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For Wilco chords, CLICK HERE!

By Chris Moore:

Welcome back for another installment of “Chris Moore Monday” here at the Laptop Sessions.  I’m excited to bring you another installment in my little Wilco project.  I decided a couple months ago that I would like to record one song from each of their albums — since there are six, I figured that would be a reasonable goal.

I’ve already recorded from their first album (“Box of Letters” from A.M.), third album (“How to Fight Loneliness” from Summerteeth), fourth album (“I Am Trying To Break Your Heart” from Yankee Hotel Foxtrot), and now I’m happy to present “Wishful Thinking,” a track from their fifth album, A Ghost is Born.

This album took me a little time to get into, but once I did, I really grew to love the songs.  There aren’t really any songs on the album that stand out as single-worthy; in fact, I don’t believe they even released a single.  But, as you become more and more familiar with the songs, you begin to pick up on the subtle nuances in both the instrumentation and the vocals.  Considering the album’s twelve tracks, I thought this one would work best as a solo acoustic number.  In addition, I think the vocals are a particularly good match for my range and style, so I’m always excited when that happens…

Although I chose this song, my instant favorite track on the album was “Company In My Back.”  I didn’t even know what that meant at first, but I loved the song, so I had to do some research so I could fully understand what I was singing along to!  I may yet record that track (coincidentally the song that follows “Wishful Thinking”) for a future “Members Only” video or a surprise non-Monday video.  After all, with so many great bands and songs that we haven’t covered, I don’t feel like I can spend too much time on any one artist, even if they’re one of my favorites…

So, I’ll hold myself back from recording my final two Wilco songs of this little “project” at least for a while.  I did finally buy the second Wilco studio album today with a Best Buy gift card from Christmas.  That was exciting, if a bit sad, since that’s the final gap in my Wilco collection.  But, it’s a double album, so it’s a sizeable gap and I’m sure I’ll enjoy it.  I’ve only had time to listen to the first disc, and I was distracted for part of it, so I think I’ll put it on as I get ready for bed.

I should share that the second CD I bought with the gift card today is Warren Zevon’s 1991 album Mr. Bad Example.  Apparently, this is the “Encore: Back in Print Imprint” version.  If I recall properly, this album was such a flop when it came out that it went out of print until recently.  I couldn’t be more excited, as my second favorite Zevon album of all time is The Envoy, his eighties album that was so poorly received that his record label dropped him.  And I love that one!  What a shame.

On a personal note, outside of my DVD player temporarily going haywire last night, I had a really relaxing weekend.  For those of you who don’t teach and/or have work that you bring home, that’s also code for “I didn’t really get much work done.”  Oh, well.  The week will begin soon enough, and as good ole T.S. Eliot wrote, “There will be time.  There will be time.”  I hope so, because I’m going into midterms with a slightly larger pile of work than I hoped for and my BEST portfolio on the horizon…

Oh, and I almost forgot.  If you haven’t already, you should check out my review of Meade Skelton’s new single “My Loudoun County Home,” which I posted yesterday.  Jim and I are quite excited to have our music reviews section expanding, so go ahead and read them all!  Or, if you don’t have time for that, then just get yourself back here tomorrow night for another awesome “Jim Fusco Tuesday.”

See you next session!

WCJM Free Internet Radio Station: “The Best Original Christmas Song” – 2003

Originally posted 2008-08-03 03:19:08. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By WCJM Free Internet Radio:

It wouldn’t be WCJM free Internet radio without a Christmas show. The first show with Alberto Distefano was a Christmas show, and since then, the growing cast had done two other Christmas Morning Shows until the “Best Original Christmas Song” Show in late 2003.

The cast of Chris, Jim, Mike, Alberto, Matt, Jeff, and Becky (the same cast from the Complaining Show) came together on December 23, 2003 to do an exciting Christmas show. Dave couldn’t be at the show- he was spending Christmas in Florida! However, he did have input towards the show and approved of the content after he came back.

Jim wanted to do a show that was different from all the other Christmas shows. After all, pretty much every decent Christmas song ever made was played on the previous three shows! So, there needed to be a theme that would still keep the show interesting. So, Jim decided to make a contest. What is the best original Christmas song ever written and recorded? Why did he specify original? Well, taking classics like “White Christmas” and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” are in another class by themselves, so to even the playing field, the list was narrowed down to just “rock’n’roll” Christmas songs.

Twenty songs were chosen out of a possible hundred or so, making the final candidates list. Just like the Song for the New Millennium voting, each cast member (plus Stuffy) ranked each song from 1-20. The averages were then taken for each song’s ranking and the songs were placed in order- the lowest (closest to #1) average would become the Best Original Christmas Song!

The show also finally gave Matt and Jeff a chance to vote on the songs, as they were left out of the voting for the Song for the New Millennium Show. Scheduling conflicts almost prevented this show from happening. Each member of the WCJM cast began going his own way, so finding a time everyone could meet for over two hours in a row would be a difficult task. But, Jim was persistent and with the help of the rest of the cast, everyone made it. However, Alberto had to work and didn’t arrive until halfway through the show- hey, at least he got to hear which song won!

The show also featured every cast member in their elements. Alberto and John Daley worked out a segment before the show, making it seem that Alberto was actually there for the time he missed! Also, since Dave’s voted were calculated into the voting, his valuable input made his presence felt. Chris was a superb host for this show- on top of the schedule at every turn. Jim came up with his best comedy segments to date, and Matt and Jeff lived up to their high standards of comedy, as well. Stuffy D. Bear was back with even more to say on this show, completing a well-rounded comedy lineup.

However, the biggest surprise on the show was the long (watch it!) segment with Dr. K. His segment on this show completely overshadows (Another one! Giddy up Keckster!) his appearance on the Complaining Show and makes this show a true Moore Hits in the Morning Classic. The excitement throughout the show makes you always wanting more, whether it’s comedy you love, which song will be #1, or both! I guess this show accomplished what it set out to do: to have another WCJM Christmas get-together and to have a great, exciting WCJM Morning Show!

So sit back, relax, and get in the Christmas spirit with this comedy radio show. See if you can guess which song is Number 1!

“The Sound of Settling” (Death Cab for Cutie Cover)

Originally posted 2009-08-11 13:20:37. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For Death Cab for Cutie chords & lyrics, CLICK HERE!

By Chris Moore:

This one gave me blisters on me fingers and numbness in me thumb (thanks to all the sliding up and down the guitar neck, the barre chords in the progression, and the fact that I didn’t really know the lyrics to the verses before playing it tonight), but it was all worth it, for all two minutes of it.

And, quite a number of takes of this simple little song later, I know the lyrics by heart!

“The Sound of Settling” is the second single from Death Cab for Cutie’s fourth album, Transatlanticism.  This is the album that my sister, Jaime, strongly recommended I hear if I hear nothing else from the band.  Seeing as how this is one of those “I’ve heard of them, but I haven’t heard any of their songs” bands for me, I picked it up on sale and enjoyed it.  Apparently, it was the first album that frontman Ben Gibbard felt was a truly serious, well put together record.

While I like several of the songs on this album very much, I haven’t found myself very interested in picking up their other material, as they seem to have a penchant for EPs and other non-album releases.  Those sorts of releases seem nice if you’re a fan and have new material to look forward to, but they’re really quite expensive over the long run.  Consider Ben Folds’ EPs  Speed Graphic, Sunny 16, and Super D; those added up to a combined total of about $24.00 for 15 songs, about 7 or maybe 8 of which were any good.  This is not a slight to the good songs on these EPs; some were tremendous and among his best ever released.

Then there were the covers and outtakes from previous albums that he re-recorded.  And, as any music fan knows, some songs were never meant to see official release outside of designated bonus track status on another album or collection.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this cover song music video, as it is the first Death Cab for Cutie song to be debuted at the Laptop Sessions blog.  There was so little new music of interest this week as well as last week that even I don’t feel a need to visit Newbury Comics today.  And THAT’S saying something!  So, instead, I went back to my iPod to find a band that we had missed along the way.  There are still a lot of bands that have gone uncovered, as well as classic and/or great songs from artists that we have, so don’t even think about taking us out of your “Favorites” menu.

Instead, be sure to stop by later tonight when our founder makes his triumphant return to the second day of the week as it should be:  Jim Fusco Tuesday!

See you next session!

(The text of my original Monday night post follows below the video…)

Originally titled and posted as:

The Laptop Sessions: “_ _ _   _ _ _ _ _   _ _   _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _” (???? Acoustic Rock Cover Song)

By Chris Moore:

Well, my cover song music video for tonight is recorded, rendered, and ready to go…

…and if I actually had Internet (thanks for nothing, Cox!) or even a wireless signal from an unsuspecting, password-phobic neighbor, you’d be reading my post and watching my video. Instead, I’ll be posting both my session and the accompanying chords tomorrow after I get a visit from the cable guy (lower case for any of you Jim Carrey fans thinking the worst!) some time between 10:30 and 12:30.

Until then, I’ll leave you with the following clues about the song I’m playing:

1) The song is from one of my favorite albums to listen to at night in a dark room, sometimes to fall asleep to.

2) The aforementioned album is NOT “Pet Sounds.”

3) My sister recommended this band and album.

4) The band is named for the song performed by the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band in the 1967 Beatles movie, “Magical Mystery Tour.”

5) The band’s name is comprised of four words – an adjective, a noun, a preposition, and an object of the prep. -in that order.

Okay, that’s all I’ll give you. Check back Tuesday afternoon for the startling conclusion to this post!