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Morning Song – Great Balls Of Fire

No wonder the moral and cultural arbiters of 1958 were scandalized by—and terrified of—Jerry Lee Lewis and his fellow rock ‘n’ rollers.

What looks like a week’s worth of Brylcreem couldn’t contain “The Killer’s” golden mane for two minutes. He’s shirtless under that leopard-print-trimmed jacket. And he’s clearly singing about fornication and all sorts of unmentionable activities.

But most of all, look at the reactions of all those nice, clean-cut, all-American young women who’ve come to watch him perform “Great Balls Of Fire” live on American Bandstand. Just imagine what will happen to them if they keep listening to such devilish music.

And that’s before he married his 13 year-old cousin.

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Morning Song – I’ve Got Love On My Mind

Slow, and sultry, and sweet, Natalie Cole’s “I’ve Got Love On My Mind” is a beautiful marriage of lyrics, music, vocals and orchestration¬†plus it’s got that moment (at 3:08) when the drummer’s rimshot cuts the crescendo and leads into an unexpected call-and-response vamp that takes the song to a whole new level of intimacy, joy and pleasure. (No wonder it spent five weeks at the top of Billboard’s R&B chart.)

Morning Song – Love On Top

It’s Queen Bey’s world. We’re all just lucky enough to live in it.

I can see the stars all the way from here;
Can’t you see the glow on the window pane?

Morning Song – Straight From The Can

Try the Mar-Keys’ “Straight From The Can”. It goes down a lot smoother than spinach.

Morning Song – If It Had Not Been For The Lord On My Side

In a bygone era, Catholic nuns used to supervise high school dances by admonishing their charges to “leave room for the Holy Spirit”.

In an entirely different way, that’s what Jennifer Holliday does with Dr. Margaret Douroux’s gospel classic, “If It Had Not Been For The Lord On My Side”. Based on Psalm 124, the song’s power lies in its spaces, those brief moments of silence between the beats and the syllables that allow the audience/congregation to make the song their own, recalling their own moments of crisis and change when, by the grace of God, they made it through the storm.

Morning Song – Who, Me?

Yes, you.

Because just 5 short minutes of the Count Basie Orchestra at the peak of its considerable powers swinging behind Snooky Young’s trumpet work on one of Frank Foster’s completely in-the-pocket grooves will brighten your day.

Enjoy.

Morning Song – Take Your Time (Do It Right)

“Take Your Time (Do It Right)”—with its funky bass line, insistent drumbeat, skittery rhythm guitar, and tight horn section—was a huge hit for The S.O.S. Band back in 1980. But if all you do is listen to the music, you’re missing the most important part.

The words are the most important part of this song.

You know you ought to slow down;
You been working too hard and that’s a fact;
Sit back and relax a while;
Take some time to laugh and smile.

Lay your heavy load down,
So we can stop and kick back;
It seems we never take the time to do,
All the things we want to.

Baby, we can do it, take the time, do it right;
We can do it, baby, do it tonight.