Category Archives: music

Jesus ‘n’ Mo, Calvin ‘n’ Hobbes, and Bonnie ‘n’ Clyde

This morning we have a fortuitous conjunction of three pairs of individuals—fortuitous because Albatross 2.0 will be done today and I will have little time to post here. Do not expect Deep Thoughts (which, according to philosophers and theologians, I don’t have anyway). First the latest Jesus and Mo, relevant to our discussion of theology […]

Laura Nyro (reimagined)

If you listened to National Public Radio (NPR) this morning, you heard a piece on Laura Nyro, who happens to be one of my favorite popular singers of all time, and someone who, I imagine, is almost completely unknown to anyone born after 1970.  She died young: at 49, and from ovarian cancer, the same […]

Good morning!

This is the best morning music ever.  I am not a diehard or knowledgeable fan of classical music, which, given the circles I run in, sometimes makes me feel left behind, but there is much of the music I love, and one of them is Ravel’s Daphnis and Chloé (1912), a beautiful ballet. In fact, I like […]

Old Blue Eyes on religion: “When lip service to some mysterious deity permits bestiality on Wednesday and absolution on Sunday — cash me out”

If you think of Frank Sinatra as a dumb kid from Hoboken, New Jersey, who made it big from his voice alone, you’ll be surprised by this interview he gave to Playboy magazine in 1963. He’s thoughtful, articulate, and—surprise!—godless. The Playboy interviews were famous, one of the best things about the magazine. I used to […]

Work to do

I’m working like gangbusters on the Albatross, which is coming along nicely but slowly. However, due to the existence of a real job, things on this website are either going to be either slow, video- and persiflage-oriented, or thin until this bird is off my neck.  The appropriate song was recorded in 1972 by the Isley […]

Friday music: Salut Salon

It’s gonna be a long day. Besides working on The Albatross, I had to dress up, which I hate, to get photographed for the dust jacket of The Albatross.  So let’s begin the day with some nice, upbeat music, played in a, well, acrobatic way. It’s Vivaldi, but you’ll recognize other songs as well. The YouTube notes […]

Steve Pinker on the evolutionary significance of music

Eloquent as usual, and speaking in perfect, publishable paragraphs, here’s The Pinkah on The Really Big Questions podcast, discussing the evolutionary significance of music. (The bit is about 9 minutes long.) Pinker argues that in fact that music is not an evolutionary adaptation, but a spandrel: a pleasurable byproduct of some other adaptation. What’s the “enabling” adaptation? In […]

Tony Bennett

It’s the evening, I’m done with work, and nobody’s around to read this, so I’ll just post what I want. What I want tonight is to hear two of Tony Bennett’s best songs. I heard his stuff repeatedly as a kid, as my parents had several of his albums: “Love Look Away,” my favorite of all […]


I missed Canada Day on Tuesday (it’s July 1)! But I believe I did post a Canadian singer then: the incomparable Sarah McLachlan. Apologies to my friends up north, even if they do install the toilet paper backwards. To make reparations, I’m posting another great song by McLachlan: the famous “Angel,” recorded in 1997 and performed […]

I Will Remember You

Whatever happened to Sarah McLachlan? I suppose she’s out there still singing like an angel, but I don’t hear much of or from her. Of course, I barely listen to the radio any more.  But I did hear this song, which reminded me of an old friend, and so wanted to share her live performance (she’s […]


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