Friday, 28 January 2011

THE BEST ROMANTIC SONGS - both obvious and alternative

It will soon be Valentines Day, a day to celebrate new or long-lasting relationships. With this occasion in mind, I have been thinking about romantic music; music that I like and don't like.

I have never purchased a CD of romantic songs, because they may contain songs that I don't like, songs to skip through because you think they are a cliché. This is where i-tunes has come into its own for me. A chance to create my own double CD, every song my taste. Some songs are either on CDs that I already had, others I had downloaded in the past. Nonetheless it has been a chance to improve my music knowledge and download a few new songs. Also I have done what I always said I wouldn't: buy something twice! There are a few that I have on cassette tape, that I liked so much, they deserved a download.

Having given listened to many songs and given this the time it deserved; I decided that there are more romantic songs that are to my taste than I initially thought. Time and time again, the same songs appear on people's lists. Granted I am listing many of those, but hopefully I am including some others that may not initially spring to mind.

This isn't in order of favourites because I couldn't even begin to rank or rebuke these singers. Nonetheless I have a varied music taste, some are from the past and some are more recent.

Here is my comprehensive list of the best romantic songs.

1.   L.O.V.E. - Nat King Cole
2.  L.O.V.E.  - Joss Stone
3.  Come away with me - Norah Jones
4.  When I close my eyes - Shanice
5.  I love your smile - Shanice
6.  Sign your name - Terence Trent D'Arby
7.  Be without you - Mary J Blige
8.  As (ft Mary J Blige) - George Michael
9.  You are the sunshine of my life - Stevie Wonder
10. I just called to say I love you - Stevie Wonder
11. All I want is you - Miguel & J. Cole
12. Marry you - Bruno Mars
13. Just the way you are - Bruno Mars
14. Grenade - Bruno Mars
15. I want you - Cee Lo Green
16. It's OK - Cee Lo Green
17. Fool for you - Cee Lo Green Ft Philip Bailey
18. Old Fashioned - Cee Lo Green
19. Without you - Mariah Carey
20. I got you babe - Sonny and Cher
21. Circle of life - Elton John
22. Truly madly deeply - Savage Garden
23. The way you make me feel - Ronan Keeting
24. Love letters - Ketty Lester
25. Love will keep us together - Neil Sedaka
26. My heart - Lizz Wright
27. The One I love - R.E.M
28. You're still the one - Shania Twain
29. I won't leave you lonely - Shania Twain
30. Let my love walk in Wanda Jackson
31. Big bad handsome man - Imelda May
32. Love Tatto - Imelda May
33. Johnny got a boom boom - Imelda May
34. Stupid Cupid - Connie Francis
35. Don't let me be misunderstoon - Nina Simone
36. I put a spell on you - Nina Simone
37. Now or never - Wiley and Jodie Connor
38. Kickstarts - Example

Understanding that my husband and I don't always share the same taste in music. We often banter about that, me saying that he has a narrow taste in music, and him wondering what on earth I'm listening to!

As a gift for Valentines day, I created a playlist, of songs that I hope he'll like.

I think you have to put more effort in finding indie/alternative type love songs. I found that a lot are anti-love or to do with break-ups. I know that can be said for any music genre, but it seemed even more so, when trying to make an alternative love songs playlist.

I hope I have selected well and that anybody who doesn't like my immediate choice above, will like this selection:

Alternative Love Songs

1.  Toothpaste Kisses - The Maccabees
2.  Echo - Incubus
3.  Love should - Moby
4.  She's so lovely - Scouting for girls
5.  Love you but your'e green - Babyshambles
6.  Baby I'm yours - Arctic Monkeys and the Newell Octet
7.  505 - Arctic Monkeys
8.  Somebody told me - The Killers
9.  Auf Achse - Franz Ferdinand
10. Love's not a competition (But I'm winning) - Kaiser Chiefs
11. As the cold rain falls - Tiger Army
12. Are you gonna be my girl - Jet
13. Baby, I love you - Ramones
14. Hand in glove - The Smiths.

15. Inevitable by Anberlin
With thanks to: because this is my favourite from this blogger's list.

I am interested to know what you think of either, or both of the above lists. Which songs do you like? Which would you add? Which romantic songs are your favourites?

Thank-you to:

Sunday, 16 January 2011

To blog or not to blog.

There seems to be an infinite number of blogs out there; people blogging for a variety of reasons, topics and issues. Some people are viewed as brave, when they blog their journey through serious illness, or when they lost a child. Others share their excitement on the run up to getting married, or when travelling the world. Some people seem to blog about everyday family life, share photos and explain their tastes in things. It seems that there are as many motivating factors as there are blogs.

It is a shame, when some time later, you want to look at a blog and it’s no longer there. Perhaps the author got into hot water and somebody took exception to the content, and they had to take it down. Other people loose heart, or circumstances change and they stop blogging, but the blog is still there. I prefer the latter option, because generally there is a newer blog that they use instead, or have transferred to a proper website.
I often notice people apologizing for not blogging for a while. They feel guilty about being busy in work, or being ill. Perhaps others simply didn’t think they had anything to say, but to admit that, they think it would make them sound boring.

After all, don’t we all get busy, caught up in everyday life? You think everyday routines don’t necessarily warrant a blog post and think that people wouldn’t be interested in what you have to say.

I will stay away from controversial issues, and refrain from describing scandal in my own life. My blogging issues will be personal, but on a general level that I hope you will relate to. Having said that, I am sure everybody only writes about things they want others to know. Even celebrities, who write an autobiography, must hold something back; keep certain memories to themselves, for privacy.

Last time I blogged after sitting in a café, waiting for my car to be fixed. Next to somebody travelling the world, that is a dull everyday task, but I found inspiration that day and a reason to blog about how observant you are.

I find one thing can lead to another: an idea to read another book, all because it was mentioned in your current book. Certainly the more music you listen to, the more you want to listen to. There are always authors who have written other books, actors who have stared in other movies.

I see such issues important to self development, in terms of actually getting around to reading new books, or hearing new music. This means actually taking the time to fully appreciate somebody’s work and not just reading one book of theirs. Perhaps this is when you see the influence or inspiration they have for you.

Indeed learning more about where I live, looking at everyday landmarks in a different way is something I want to do. I know certain places nearby have been immortalised in art or film. I think these aspects are worthy of a blog post and more importantly getting around to investigating. Perhaps some interesting observations can be made in the middle of town, places you pass every day; the everyday things that can also inspire you at a time when you don’t know what to blog about. I am sure this is when true creativity and ideas occur, when somebody takes a step back from their everyday task and looks at their surroundings in a different way.

Taking all this into account, there must always be something to blog about then!

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Ever wondered how observant you are?

In the toilets of a café, a few things caught my eye: Firstly there was no mirror. Clearly it is easy to be observant and notice the things that are lacking.  I found it hard to imagine, why after all this time, they hadn't put a mirror up.

Plus they had displayed an array of laminated notices; some were typed, others handwritten. Nonetheless, somebody else has clearly felt the satisfaction of repeatedly laminating things.

"Please put paper towels in the bin" said one handwritten laminated notice. "Please turn off the taps when you have finished" ordered the other. As I was drying my hands, I pondered the relevance of such notices. You would have thought it is common sense, not to litter the place, after all a bin is visible. Plus the taps were easy taps, not the sort that you have seen left running because you cannot turn them off.

I was trying to imagine a situation where somebody thought it was a good idea to put their used paper towels in the sink and leave the taps running, to flood the place. Had that ever happened? Was there a bad experience along these lines, not long after opening, where water was dripping through the ceiling, onto customers? Clearly I didn't ask, in case they thought I was the sort of person to do these things.

The other laminated notice said "Please inform a member of staff if the toilets require attention." I figured as there was space in the bin for my towels, as the taps still worked and as nobody flooded the place through ignoring all signs. There was no need to mention anything and I was clearly somebody observant enough to follow their instructions.

There was a retired man, who approached my table and asked if he could help himself to some sugar. Such an inconsequential interaction: a quick greeting and leaving with two sachets of white sugar. But the thing that surprised me was that he then walked out of the door. I think the lady behind the counter wondered why I looked at her. Was he a white sugar thief? Was the sugar for his supply at home because he ran out? Clearly I wasn't observant enough to remember if he was the same man who sat outside at one of the tables. After all in January, I didn't expect the outside tables to be popular.

It just goes to show, that when faced with a man walking out of the shop with 2 white sugar sachets and another member of the public, walking past the door at the same time: It's easy to be unsure of the intentions of either person, and it goes to show how easily your mind goes blank and you are unsure which person you had just spoken to. It makes me wonder that if it's hard to remember such minutiae and remember people's characteristics, what on earth we would be like if there was a crime. If indeed, I was too engrossed in my book, to be a witness for the great white sugar thief.

Clearly he wasn't a white sugar thief and he had his drink brought outside to him. It does make you think: that we are all caught up in our everyday activities, talking to who you are with, reading your book or a paper. Would you really notice something bad happening, would you really remember what somebody looked like a moment later if you had to? Clearly my mind was more occupied with the notices in the bathroom and the book I was reading, than what this man was doing. So it was a good job he only wanted sugar for a drink he paid for, to drink outside. It was a good job that any peril was only imagined on my part, as I was very relaxed in my own world, reading my book. A good entertaining book it was, and I read a quarter of the book sat in the café.

I do find it interesting how your mind can either be put at ease, or wander, as soon as a stranger says something. People on a nearby table "What time is it?" "It's twenty-to" came the reply. Clearly my mind focusses on such chat and my curiosity of the time of day, is fulfilled, even though I wasn't wondering what time it was, just before I heard the time being mentioned.

Plus I was surprised when a customer wanted roast turkey sandwich and they didn't have that filling. I wondered who on earth lacks turkey over Christmas, that they feel the need to order a turkey sandwich the first week of Januray. Perhaps they hadn't eaten a turkey sandwitch, or perhaps they loved turkey so much, they had to eat more, once their own turkey was used up.