Top Hat, White Tie and Tails – Anne’s Earworms Episode 1

I found out about this musical soundtrack from William Zinsser’s book Easy to Remember: The Great American Songwriters and Their Songs (I’m only partway through this book, but it’s great so far). Zinsser wrote this about Fred Astaire:
“But it was Astaire the singer, not Astaire the dancer, that the songwriters wanted to write for. They knew that whatever they wrote, he would sing it perfectly, every note true, every syllable clear, every nuance of emotion and humor caught with natural elegance and timing and taste.”
I was a fan before I even heard Astaire.
My favorite song from this album is “I’m Building Up to An Awful Letdown.” I love this song because of it’s clever lyrics. It uses analogies that are catchy, but unexpected:
I’m like Humpty Dumpty,
Up on the garden wall.
I’m riding high
And who can deny
That whatever goes up must fall?
Poor old Humpty Dumpty,
He got the toughest break,
And yet his fall
Was nothing at all
Like the one I’m going to take.

I’m building up to an awful letdown
By playing around with you.
You’re breaking down my terrific buildup
By treating me as you do.
I also love how the melody matches the words. When he sings: “I’m building up to an awful letdown,” the melody goes up, but drops suddenly at the syllable “down.” It adds to the songs clever feeling. I went around singing this song for weeks (which was especially funny during a Jenga tournament).
This is a great album for the morning, because it’s peppy and interesting.  Each song can stand alone, or you can listen to the whole album straight through (like I am while writing this blog post). The styles of the songs are close enough to not jolt you around, but the moods are different enough to keep you engaged.
If you want to hear the album on Amazon, listen here.

2017: Goals and Blog Changes

Since 2017 is upon us, I decided to try something new. I love challenges, but I’ve never completed a yearlong challenge before (I’ve only tried one, and I failed.) So here are five challenges I’m trying in 2017:

    1. A reading challenge. When I saw the 2016 Popsugar Reading Challenge at the library, I thought it was a great idea for finding new books and authors. Popsugar has a list of 40 book criteria (e.g., a book recommended by a librarian, or a book written by someone with a disability). Here’s the 2017 version that I’m doing: My parents and my sister Sarah are also doing this one, and Christina is doing her own reading challenge. 
    2. Writing every day. This is largely to help me be more consistent with my blogging and journaling. I was originally going to write 100 words every day, but my mom recommended writing a paragraph instead of shooting for a word count because I wouldn’t be tempted to use filler words.
    3. Anne’s Earworms. My sister Sarah invented this brilliant title. I love music, and I’m trying to find new music to enjoy, so I decided to write about the music that I find and enjoy, because other people might be interested in it. I’m going to continue my normal posts on Saturdays and post the Earworms on Wednesdays. This is the challenge that I’m most nervous about, because I’ve never written about my musical tastes, and I’m insecure about the fact that I don’t know tons of music. But I think it will be awesome to talk to my blog buddies about the music I love.
    4. The Bible in a Year. I’m following one of the methods Don Whitney recommends in his book, Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life (Great book, if you’re interested). I’m starting in three different places in the Bible (Genesis, Job and Matthew) and reading three chapters every day, and five on Sundays. I tried to do this once before and failed, but I’m hoping that I can stay dedicated to it better this time with more accountability.
    5. Audible. I’ve never been a huge audiobooks fan, but I think they could be a cool tool for me, especially now that I’m in college. Our family has an Audible subscription, so I’m going to try it for a year. This probably won’t be as hard as some of the other challenges, but I thought it would be helpful for my future reading life (especially since I’m learning to drive, and I can’t read while driving). I’m especially excited about this one since I started listening to podcasts and enjoying them.

Because I want to keep you up to date, I will write about how my challenges are going on the last Saturday of each month. I’m pumped to try new things in 2017, and I’m especially excited about blogging. How are you going to challenge yourself in 2017? Let me know in the comments.
If you want to see my mom’s reading challenge, go here


One Fine Day (A Bette Midler Cover)

I have been obsessively listening to Bette Midler’s One Fine Day for the past month. Since I enjoy the song so much, I decided to do a cover of it (surprise!). When I was listening to my recording, however, I noticed a weird metallic sound in my vocals. I’m not sure why it’s making this sound, so I haven’t fixed it yet. I hope you enjoy this recording despite its sound issues.

Recording buddies, do you have any ideas for fixing the weird vocal sound? Let me know in the comments if you have any suggestions.

You and I/Story of My Life- My Cover of a Cover

This mashup was originally performed by the group Anthem Lights (one of my favorite bands). This song is really special to me because it reminds me of one of my best friends. We’re completely opposite in many ways, and this song reminds me of the effort it takes to have a solid friendship, and of its benefits. I hope you enjoy it!




Also, here’s the Anthem Lights original mashup:

Turning Tables- An Adele Cover (ft. Adam Cecil)

Adam and I did this cover as part of our band’s first concert on Friday. I had a great time making it with him and I hope you enjoy it!

For those of you who are wondering, here is the logic behind our lyric changes in the bridge. In the original song, the lyrics are as follows:

Next time I’ll be brave;
I’ll be my own Savior,
When the thunder calls for me.

Next time I’ll be braver;
I’ll be my own Savior,
Standing on my own two feet.

Since Adam and I don’t believe that a person can be their own Savior, we decided to change them to

Next time I’ll be braver,
I can’t be your Savior,
Don’t you try to call for me.

Next time I’ll be braver,
I won’t be your Savior,
Try standing on your own two feet.

Also, here is our practice video if you’re interested: