Monday, October 18, 2010

Mavis Staples "You Are Not Alone"

I got to indulge myself a bit, during my vacation a few weeks back.

One of the biggest adjustments in my shift from long-time single guy, to father (of two) and husband (of one), has been the recalibration of my entertainment options.

When you blast the stereo at home these days, it really needs to be a consensus artist.

And, between the 4 of us, there are many. We all enjoy listening to The Beatles and the Glee Soundtracks and Michael Franti and Dan Zanes and many others.

Unfortunately, there are many, many artists and albums that I like that aren’t consensus. So many of my punk rock albums and hip hop records and LOUD ROCKING discs don’t get much play on the home stereo.

But for the first few days of vacation, I didn’t have to worry too much about consensus.

My wife had left for Chicago, for the wedding of a friend. And we sent my 3 year old daughter to Gramma’s house, for a few days in that wonderland.

That left me home alone with the boy. And let’s face it, at 6 months old, he wasn’t really going to argue with any of my entertainment choices.

Sunday morning, I put him in his Elmo car---a roll-y walker vehicle---and as I cleaned up the house a bit, I put on “The Last Waltz” DVD and cranked up the sound.

I was in and out of the room, singing along throughout, but when it came to the scene with The Staples Singers, I just stopped, unable to tear myself away.

How many times have I heard “The Weight” in my lifetime? Hundreds?

How surprised was I, to find myself getting goosebumps, as soon as Mavis Staples started her verse?

After all these years, she still has amazing powers.

Vacation week turned out to be a mini-Mavis fest.

Because I didn’t have to get up early, I was able to stay up and watch the late night talk shows. So I caught Mavis and Jeff Tweedy doing “Wrote A Song For Everyone” on David Letterman. And the very next night she was on The Colbert Report, once again moving me, this time with a Tweedy-penned track called “You Are Not Alone."

Good things come in 3s. And it was enough critical mass to make me run to the stacks when I got back to work, and make sure I had a copy of Mavis’ new record, also called “You Are Not Alone.”

Today on mvyradio, we’re giving away copies of her disc, as The Monday Free CD. Tune in to win.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Mavis Staples & Jeff Tweedy - You Are Not Alone

Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionMarch to Keep Fear Alive

Check out the interview with Colbert that preceded the performance. I love her answer to Colbert's question, "Do you sing The Devil's Music?"

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Mavis Staples & Jeff Tweedy
Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionMarch to Keep Fear Alive

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