April 28, 1965 – Millions of American television viewers tuned in to a primetime hour of 22-year-old Barbra Streisand in her first-ever TV special, the triumphant My Name Is Barbra. It won two Emmys and a Peabody Award and helped make Streisand a household name.
This song about old age and loneliness, written about an old couple, is a theme relatively unexplored by songwriters. What’s amazing is how it rings so true despite being written by a 25-year old young man. John Prine cuts to the soul of humanity like no other.
Music has always been a matter of Energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel. I have always needed Fuel. I am a serious consumer. On some nights I still believe that a car with the gas needle on empty can run about fifty more miles if you have the right music very loud on the radio.
― Hunter S. Thompson
April 23, 1961 – Never did Judy Garland so unify a collection of strangers than on this day in 1961 during the famous Carnegie Hall performance often called “the greatest night in showbiz history.” Her performance on this night was captured on a live recording that would go on to spend 95 weeks on the U.S. album charts (including 13 weeks at #1) and sweep the 1962 Grammys.
For your Sunday Morning listening pleasure…Stereophonics perform an acoustic version of their hit song “Maybe Tomorrow” on RTL2.
I look around at a beautiful life
Been the upper side of down
Been the inside of out
But we breathe
I wanna breeze and an open mind
I wanna swim in the ocean
Wanna take my time for me
This is truly a taste of Something Fine from Richard Thompson. “Wall of Death” can be found on the album Shoot Out The Lights which was released in 1982.
Recorded by Richard and his wife, Linda Thompson, “Wall of Death” was by far my favorite song on the album and had special meaning to me. As a young army lieutenant serving in the 82d Airborne Division from 1983 -1985, this was my favorite tune to listen to prior to a parachute jump. It fully captured the excitement and thrill that can only be found in taking a little risk.
Let me ride on the Wall Of Death one more time
Let me ride on the Wall Of Death one more time
You can waste your time on the other rides
This is the nearest to being alive
Oh let me take my chances on the Wall Of Death
Brooks Maguire is a singer/song writer who is blessed to live in one of my very favorite locations on this earth – Maui. I had the fortune of meeting him in the mid 1990’s when a friend of mine suggested we ask him to perform at a beach-side party we were hosting on the North Shore of Oahu. I took that recommendation, and that was the first of many times I got to hear him play. His soulful, tenor voice is one of the best I have ever heard, and his friendship is even finer.
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
There are only a handful of people in my life that that seem to embody Emerson’s quote. And Brooks is one of those. He is truly happy and has a zest for life, his family and friends, and his music. We are all a product of our experiences and our values, and perhaps his zest stems from a life changing event on Feb 17, 1984.
This event was chronicled by People magazine in 1996 in the article, “In The Company of Angels.” Here is his story from the article:
A MUSICIAN IS HEALED BY A STRANGER’S PRAYERS
For weeks, Marilyn Pallas, 49, a Houston homemaker, had visions of a blond man in need of help. On Feb. 17, 1984, she found him. Heading home from a prayer meeting, she and her friend Bonnie Keith came upon an accident on a Houston freeway. “It felt like my car went into slow motion,” recalls Keith, now a nondenominational Christian minister. “We had to stop.”
At the scene they found guitarist Brooks Maguire hemorrhaging, his legs nearly severed above the knees. Moments earlier, he had been struck by a car after stopping to help a woman change a flat tire. Pallas knelt beside him, held his hands and began to pray. “The moment we touched his legs,” says Keith, “the bleeding stopped. There is no question in my mind it was divine intervention.”
At the hospital, Maguire underwent 12 hours of surgery to repair his crushed arteries. But infections set in and doctors asked permission to amputate both legs. As Maguire agonized over the decision, Pallas arrived to pray with him. “Don’t listen to the doctors,” she said, then told him of a vision she had had of him walking on his own. Hours later, when doctors checked Maguire’s wounds, the infection had begun to heal. “The doctor said, ‘You may be making a liar out of all of us,’ ” says Brooks, 41. “I said, ‘It’s not me. It’s God.’ ”
Released in hip-high casts four months later, Maguire was running 8-minute miles within two years. “None of this would have been possible without Marilyn’s relationship with God,” says Maguire. “Yet she never took credit for it.”
Maguire never saw Pallas again after he moved in 1987 to Maui, where he eventually married Kelly, 26, a veterinary technician. Last summer, Pallas died of colon cancer. Beth Stephenson, 41, one of her four children, says her mother was just too busy to keep in touch with everyone she helped. “God used her all the time to pray for people,” says Stephenson. Her example still inspires Maguire. “We humans put God in a box,” he says. “But my experience blew out every boundary of what God could do or was willing to do—especially for someone like me.”
Brooks has just released his third CD, “The Road I Never Chose”, and the very first listen absolutely wowed me. Sure it’s his great voice and songwriting. And it’s absolutely the outstanding cast of musicians who accompanied him on this recording produced in Nashville. But more importantly, his passion for life and his loved ones emerges as the central theme of the tracks on this amazing recording.
Brooks Maguire’s website is here. You can listen to clips from his CD and order your own copy directly from the site.
See the video tribute to our men and women serving in the US Military and hear Brooks’ title song.