Saturday, December 29, 2012

They say you would not hurt a fly

I made this dinosaur for a new baby friend of mine. (I haven't met him yet but will very soon). 016_edit
The pattern is Rebecca Danger's Basil the Boogie Woogie Brontosaurus. It is well written, and no more fiddly than it needs to be.
I don't think it matters if you think of him as a 'brontosaurus' or apatosaurus  or some other unspecified kind of dinosaur. K pointed out that his tail should stretch out behind him, and looking at the pictures, I suppose his neck and head should be more forward too.... but he wouldn't be as cute that way. Perhaps his upright posture is what makes him a boogie woogie dinosaur?
I used 5 ply wool and he came out quite big (didn't measure and he has flown away now, but the body might have been 20cm long?). In 8 ply he would be impressive.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Where everyone would love to drown

Last Saturday night, while drinking beer and eating Turkish food with good friends, the question was asked, what would you play if you were guest programmer on (long-running wee-hours-of-the-weekend music video show) Rage?

After a slow start, I hit on one of my favourite themes -- songs featuring male and female vocals together. I can't tell you why but it's always been something that really draws me to a song or a group.

A few ground rules: it doesn't have to be a duet with equivalent parts, but both voices need to have have a bit more than just a standard backing singer part. Also, they can be in a band together, it doesn't have to be a special one-off team-up. (But those are cool.)

We all tossed around ideas and came up with heaps, I only wish I had been writing them down at the time. Although if I had them all this post would be way too long, so here are a few of my favourites. If you like this kind of thing too, I'd love to hear your suggestions.

Johnny and June. Aw.

Continuing in the country vein, Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton.

Something from Jack White's album with Loretta Lynn, Van Lear Rose, Portland, Oregon. Don't you love her dress, in that context? 

(Unfortunately I wasn't able to embed all of the videos.)

Something from the beautiful album Raising Sand by Alison Krauss and Robert Plant has to be in here - try Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On).

Brad Paisley's incredibly depressing Whiskey Lullaby, featuring Alison Krauss, also deserves a mention. However, the official video, which I had never seen until researching this post, kind of  spoils the mood. If I ever made a music video I'd try to steer clear of such a literal interpretation.

From his bluegrass album, Paul Kelly and the Stormwater Boys, a song featuring Kasey Chambers. I like Kasey's voice much better in duet than solo. More recently, she and her husband Shane Nicholson have made two albums together that I really like.

Or maybe you prefer the Emmylou Harris version of the same song, with Ricky Skaggs? She toured recently, including a show in Canberra, and I really wish I had gone to see her!

Isobel Campbell and Mark Lanegan - you could pick almost anything from their three albums together - this is Come on over, turn me on.

Ok, is that enough country/blues/bluegrass? Let's turn to British band The Beautiful South. So many of their songs feature Paul Heaton and/or Dave Hemingway duetting with the female vocalist in the band at the time (over several years, Briana Corrigan, Jacqui Abbott and then Alison Wheeler). Good as gold (stupid as mud) or Perfect 10 or Prettiest Eyes or many others...

Ooh, how about the Pet Shop Boys featuring Dusty Springfield - What have I done to deserve this?

Although songs from musicals are less likely to fly on Rage, this is my blog and I'd like to throw in A Model of Decorum and Tranquility, a duet that turns into a trio, from my favourite musical, Chess.

Siblings often sound good together (think of the Bee Gees). Michael and Janet have the dancing gene as well.

Nick Cave has done some great duets - here he is with PJ Harvey.

Mustn't forget Fleetwood Mac.

And a final mention for Eurythmics' We too are one, though Dave Stewart's singing part is not huge, I just wanted them in this list anyway.