Category Archives: Music

“Weird Al” Yankovic Concert

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“Weird Al” Yankovic Concert

Hello!! This past Wednesday, my dad, brother, Johnny, and I went to see “Weird Al” Yankovic in concert at the Goodyear Theater in Akron. My brother and I haven’t seen “Weird Al” since 2012 during his Mandatory Fun tour and we had an absolute blast! Although we all stayed up way too late on a school night, we would do it again in a heartbeat for two and a half hours of nonstop laughs. Let’s get to it:

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As you can see by the pictures, we didn’t have the best seats for The Unfortunate Return Of The Ridiculously Self-Indulgent Ill-Advised Vanity Tour. We were in the very last row of the balcony! However, this was actually fine by us because it was like having our own little private section and no one was breathing all over us lol. Despite the crappy pictures, we could still see everything perfectly… Except for when the stage lights were blinding us!

The show began with a set by comedian, Emo Phillips, and it was a riot. Him and “Weird Al” have been touring together for years now and he is also one of Johnny’s favorites so it was cool to see him live. He was SO damn funny and one of his jokes was one of the best parts of the night. Emo mentioned there were probably some liberals here and people cheered. Then, he said there were probably some conservatives here and some guy yelled “YEAH”. To which Emo replied with “Oh, okay. Don’t worry – I won’t talk about politics, religion, or science”. I think this guy was looking for some type of confirmation but he got completely MERKED and that’s always nice to see! 😀

After a rousing set by Emo, it was time for Yankovic to take the stage. The very long name of his tour meant that he was going to be performing some of his lesser known hits, which were primarily non-parody songs. He also told us stories about how each song came to be before playing them so it was neat to hear him just talking to us.

The opening number of the set was “CNR” and songs like “Lame Claim To Fame”, “Close But No Cigar”, “I’ll Sue Ya”, “Dog Eat Dog”, “First World Problems”, and “Skipper Dan” were all included. A moving coffee shop rendition of “Dare To Be Stupid” was also performed. We saw him play that during the Mandatory Fun tour and it was even funnier the second time around. That was definitely one of our favorite songs of the show!

To wrap things up before a lengthy encore, “Weird Al” told us about how his biopic “Weird: The Al Yankovic Story” will be released in November. He said he didn’t know how to feel about it, though, because there’s already a song that tells his life story… ALBUQUERQUE!!!!! So, obviously, everyone lost their shit and he added all kinds of silly bits to it that included starting the song over from the beginning. It was the absolute best.

An amazing time was had by all at the concert and we must do our due diligence to protect “Weird Al” Yankovic at all costs. The man is a national treasure!! ❤

What is your favorite “Weird Al” song? Who else is excited for his biopic? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Musical Instruments You Can Learn As An Adult Beginner

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Musical Instruments You Can Learn As An Adult Beginner

Many adults have wanted to be famous musicians at some point in their childhood, fantasizing about selling out concert halls and filling stadiums worldwide. However, not everyone was privileged enough to take music lessons as a child, and many may not be practicing anymore. According to Statista data, just 10.10% of Americans aged 18 to 29 revealed that they had played musical instruments in the last twelve months as of 2018. You can revive your passion for music by learning to play an instrument. Here are the best and easiest instruments to learn as a mature beginner:

Harmonica:

The harmonica is an instrument that many people rarely think about. However, it may surprise you to learn that it is the best selling musical instrument globally. This instrument is quite portable, affordable, and easy to learn, making it excellent for beginners. There is no way to sound bad when playing the harmonica since all the notes you play will be in key. It is never too late to learn how to play the harmonica since you can absorb its core concepts in just a few hours. Anyone can play the harmonica, but you will particularly enjoy learning it if you are a fan of folk, blues, and country music.

Piano:

It is estimated that 21 million Americans play the piano, making it one of the most popular musical instruments. The piano is quite versatile, allowing you to play songs in various styles. This classic instrument will boost your coordination since it forces you to play different melodies with both hands. Although this sounds difficult, many experts say that you shouldn’t have much of a problem mastering it if you can type on a computer keyboard.

You will likely find a few piano teachers in your area, given its widespread popularity. However, the internet is an excellent repository of tutorials and video lessons that you can rely on to practice your piano skills if you lack the budget or time for in person lessons, so keep this in mind. You can download music notes here to start practicing and follow in the footsteps of all time greats like David Bowie, Thelonious Monk, and Prince, who were self taught.

Ukulele:

You will undoubtedly see the ukulele in any list of the easiest musical instruments for beginners to learn. It has gained popularity in recent times because it is more straightforward to learn than the guitar. The ukulele has only four strings compared to the guitar’s six, so chords are easier to memorize. It is also smaller than a guitar with a thinner neck, so it is ideal if you have tiny hands. This instrument has a distinct, cheerful sound that can make any song sound fantastic, and many people grasp the basic chords in a few weeks. Also, it is more affordable than a guitar and mastering it puts you in a perfect position to play more difficult songs and even advance to complex string instruments like the violin.

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^^^ Pixabay Image

If you are looking for a new and rewarding hobby, then learning how to play an instrument is the way to go. Remember, all of the greats started out as beginners too!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

Boyz In The Band

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Boyz In The Band

Hi! This past weekend, my darling husband’s band, The Outside Voices, had their final hurrah performance at Musica in Akron. It was a bittersweet showing for everyone involved but it was so nice to be surrounded by such great friends and family the entire night. In fact, tons of Johnny’s family who I haven’t met yet made the trip to see the show and that was awesome to finally be able to meet them! We also had several of our dear friends from Marietta come to the concert, which was also amazing. ❤

All of the guys in The Outside Voices performed so well and that is all that I wanted for them during their last show. But, bigger and better things are calling and Johnny already has lots of musical plans up his sleeve to tend to and that is really exciting! I can’t wait to see what he does next!

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^^^ Interested in hearing Johnny play? He is lead guitar!!

^^^ Kevin’s other band, The Buffalo Ryders, are one of my faves!!

Kevin (bass), Sam (drums), Jimmy (guitar), and Johnny are my sweetest boys and it has been an absolute pleasure to see them perform time and time again. When Johnny and I first started dating almost three years ago, we were with the band boyz constantly and they all feel like older brothers/besties to me now and that is so special to me. I am so proud of everything that they have accomplished together and can’t wait to hear all of their new projects on the horizon!

Who is your favorite local band? Can you play any instruments? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

How To Support Musical Children

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How To Support Musical Children

Music can be beneficial to children in many different ways. Playing or listening to music can be an enjoyable thing to do together, a way for children to learn new skills, develop their creativity, and explore their emotions. If your child has shown an interest in becoming a musician, how can you best support them?

Encourage Listening Skills:

Getting children to begin to enjoy exploring music can be a fun thing for the two of you to do together. As you listen to music, ask your child to describe to you what they can hear so they can start to work on their listening skills. Choose a piece of music you think they will like and ask them questions as you listen. Ask them questions like:

  • What sounds can you hear?
  • How would you describe this piece of music?
  • How does this piece of music make you feel?

Having these conversations can also help your child to begin to build their communication skills as they find the right words to describe things to you.

Play Along To Music:

Children love making noise, and a musical instrument along with something like Moon River sheet music can be a good way to channel that interest in noise into something more creative. Encourage them to play along with a song they enjoy so they can think about the different parts of the music. Suggest they try to play as loudly and then as quietly as they can with different ways of making sound such as clapping or tapping a pan with a spoon.

Another fun game to help them to build an understanding of beat and volume is to ‘wake’ a sleeping toy. Using one of their stuffed animals, ask the child to wake it up by playing loudly and make the toy go to sleep by playing softly. You could also move the toy around in time with the beat.

Move To Music:

Children often really love to dance, and you can support this with an enjoyment of music. Tempo is the speed in music, and children can get a good grasp of what this means by exploring it with their movements. Put on music and encourage your child to move as they listen. Watch to see what they do, then join in with them by copying their ideas. By mimicking their ideas, they will see that you value and are interested in what they think.

For some children, physically responding to the music might feel more natural than playing instruments or talking about music. Offer them lots of different genres of music to listen to and see how they respond and move to different kinds of music. You might be surprised by what they actually enjoy the most. Music that has a range of tempos in it can be great fun.

Try listening to music from around the world too, from a range of cultures. This is a good way to explore music and encourage them to have a conversation with you about different cultures too.

Whether your child wants to be a rock star, a dancer, or just loves to listen to music, supporting this will be amazing fun for the both of you!

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Weekend Road Trip

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Weekend Road Trip

Hello! Given the pandemic, if you would have told me half a year ago that this past weekend Johnny and I would finally get to see some live music, I would have said “no way”. But, thanks to being fully vaccinated, we had that opportunity and took a road trip to Marietta to see our friends in Jake Dunn & The Blackbirds perform. This was our first big outing since we were in Marietta for Valentine’s Day a month prior to the pandemic striking in 2020 and it couldn’t have been better.

When Johnny asked if we could make this weekend road trip happen, I jumped on the opportunity. We had such an awesome time in Marietta for Valentine’s Day and I was eager to go back – hell, go anywhere with my husband. After fueling up with Taco Bell and candy, we hit the road and arrived just in time on Saturday for Jake Dunn & The Blackbirds to perform in an outdoor show. As per ushe, they were fabulous and we actually saw them play the last time we were in the area. Not to mention how fun it was to all hang out again!

Once their show was over, we headed to the Adelphia which is a hotel and music venue to see a honky tonk band play. It was an absolute blast and it felt just like when Johnny and I first started dating and were at different shows almost every weekend. Reuniting with old friends and meeting new ones all to the tune of live music made for a perfect day and I can’t wait for a whole lot more of that in the future. ❤

Have you been on a road trip recently? Where did you go? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Loud & Clear!

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Loud & Clear!

Hello all!! A few days ago, I posted about how the radio in my car has not been working for the past several months. I drive a lot for work, so it has been a huge drag not being able to have my singalongs when I hit the road. Before, my radio would always turn back on after a day or two of not working but after months had gone by, I had all but given up hope of hearing anything in my car until I got it fixed. So, you could imagine my surprise when the radio began playing music out of nowhere!

I was about to leave work for the day, turned my car on, and was immediately greeted by The University of Akron’s radio station blasting. Needless to say, it completely shocked me and I dropped my iPod as I was selecting music to play at full volume for the ride home! It’s a little thing, but listening to the radio while I drive makes my work day better and, despite being stuck in rush hour traffic, it was the best drive I have had in months.

I wouldn’t say that I had a bad day at work that day, but I definitely have felt like I could use a pick me up and my radio working was just the surprise I needed. I was eager to hear what the hits have been after two months of radio silence and I walked into my apartment with an ear to ear grin because the last song I heard was one of my jams by Machine Gun Kelly. Small thing. World of difference.

While I love my job so much, we all have those days where we just don’t feel like going to work. However, as I write this, I am itching to get in my car and start my day so I can listen to the radio and enjoy the eighty degree weather in Ohio with my windows down. Let’s have a great day today!

What is your favorite radio station? Who is your favorite Top 40 artist? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Christmas Present Pride

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Christmas Present Pride

Hello!!! This year sucked and I really wanted to spoil my Christmas giftees rotten because we have all diligently worked through these hardships together and I feel it was much deserved. I have so much fun picking out the perfect presents for the people on my list and was eager to get my Christmas shopping started all the way back in August! I love all of the gifts that I selected for everyone under the tree but I am particularly fond of a piece of decor I got for Johnny. I better be, because he hung it up as soon as he took it out of the box! Lol, check it out:

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My Johnny loves the Rolling Stones so much and we were actually going to see them this past June in Cleveland but the concert got cancelled due to COVID. I certainly hope that we can see the Rolling Stones in concert eventually, more for him than for me but it sure would be fun! For Christmas, I got Johnny a few shirts from his favorite online retailer, PHIX. But, when I saw this homemade neon sign on Amazon worthy of being in the coolest bar ever, I just couldn’t say no because I knew he would freaking love it.

I have been looking forward to giving Johnny his Christmas gifts since I purchased them and after we were done with our gift exchange, he could finally see why. I was so tickled that he wanted to find the perfect spot for his new decor immediately. We settled for in our living room but I can’t wait to get a bigger place soon so we can hang it up in a game room.

Hearing Johnny say how much he loved his gifts was a present in itself for me and I can’t look at the neon sign without smiling. The creator of the sign has a ton of really neat designs and I might just have to pick out a girly one for me too! 🙂

Do you have a favorite gift that you gave this year? Where do you find the most unique home decor? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

At Home Concerts Pt. 2

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At Home Concerts Pt. 2

Hello! For those of you who don’t know, my “big girl” job is as an independent provider for adults with special needs. Pre-COVID, community integration was my specialty and I was always finding exciting activities and events for my clients to participate in that they might not have had access to before.

One of my favorite haunts “back in the day” with a client who is a music lover was a vinyl record club at the library where a group of our now good friends would sit around, eat pizza, listen to music, and talk about anything and everything. It was such fun and we both miss it a lot so, naturally, at home concerts had to happen when record club was no longer an option.

At home concerts are one of my favorite activities to do with clients now because it’s fun, safe, and I love singing and dancing with my pals! If you remember my original At Home Concerts post, you will know I taught one of my friends how to use YouTube and we are still going strong on watching his favorite golden oldies artists perform.

My other client has a much different taste in music, though. He loves rap! And so do I so at home concerts with him are an absolute trip. In fact, he was the one who introduced me to Cardi B and she’s one of my faves now! Every week we alternate who is going to pick the album and we spend the entire time dancing on opposite ends of the room, laughing, and talking about everything from the important to the downright silly.

Pre-COVID, at home concerts were the last thing on my mind when I could take my clients to all kinds of wonderful events where live music was played. Post-COVID, I find at home concerts to be an inspired idea and it has become my new favorite part about my job.

Exploring different genres of music, hearing songs I’ve never listened to before, and seeing my clients have fun is a high point of my day when we feel like listening to some tunes. We all consider our at home concerts to be an exciting event and it could be for you and your friends/family too!

Dress as your favorite artists, celebrate a different theme or genre, or even learn the different dances of the times so you can better groove to the music. An at home concert can turn a blah day into something really awesome – all it takes is a little creativity. 🙂

What are some of your favorite at home activities? Do you have any suggestions for what my clients and I should listen to next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

October 2020 Funky Time Jams

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October 2020 Funky Time Jams

Hi! One of the big things that my clients and I do together now that we don’t really go anywhere is listen to music. I swear, we are constantly having concerts starring each other and honestly can make an afternoon of it. Sometimes I’m dancing the YMCA and other times I’m spitting bars to Cardi B! Lol, my job is never boring and it’s impossible to hear the following songs without thinking of the people I work with:

^^^ As always, I have no rights to these songs or videos!

This is such a random compilation of songs but each set of three are usually the first songs that come to mind when I think of a specific client. I really get a tour of different styles of music each week, going from girl power anthems to golden oldies all the way to rap and, yes, Marilyn Manson. (I got one of my guys hooked on him!)

Impromptu dance parties, sing alongs, and at home concerts have become primary sources of entertainment when I’m at work and my clients have a blast every time. In some way shape or form, I’m pretty sure we’ve developed some kind of hand movement routine or different melodies to all of my client’s top picks. We even make music videos of us singing our favorite songs together!

Coming up with enticing activities to do at home is the name of my work game now. Whether that be dancing the Hokey Pokey or the Electric Slide in someone’s kitchen to going for a drive with the windows down and music blasting, my brain is always working overtime to help my clients stay safe while still enjoying themselves. I love having “our songs” with each person I work with and nothing warms my heart more than when one of them hears a tune and says “this is our jam”. ❤

Is there a song that reminds you of someone whenever you hear it? What is your favorite song to dance to? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

August 2020 Funky Time Jams

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August 2020 Funky Time Jams

Hi! We are breezing right along through August and spooky season will be upon us before we know it – hurray! I, for one, am so over the hot ass weather and am looking forward to curling up comfortably at home with a soft blanket without sweating my nads off. *Sigh* Wishful thinking. This summer has honestly been a bit of a bust so I say let’s keep moving forward into cooler, Halloween themed times to the tune of these songs:

^^^ And, as always, I have no rights to these songs or videos!

Now, you might be wondering why I only chose three songs for the August 2020 Funky Time Jams and it’s a bit of a funny story… My car radio died. That’s it, lol. My car radio died and I have yet to get it fixed so I currently have not been listening to anything in my car except for my iPod turned up really loudly. It basically sucks and I will most definitely get it fixed EVENTUALLY!

In the meantime, I am more focused on being hyped about new music from a few of my favorite artists like Marilyn Manson and Glass Animals. Mr. Manson will be releasing a new album next month and Glass Animals just dropped their newest, Dreamland, a week or so ago. I have been privileged enough to see both of these bands in concert and I still think back fondly to those shows to this day.

Every event that Johnny and I were going to go to this summer got cancelled (For good reason!) and it is nice to have something musical to enjoy. This especially rings true since we were supposed to see My Chemical Romance’s reunion at Riot Fest come September. Whomp whomp. I am eagerly anticipating Marilyn Manson’s new album next month and, until then, you can find me blasting Dreamland by Glass Animals which is out now!

Are any of your favorite artists releasing new music? Did coronavirus cancel any of your events? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah