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Morning Song – Lord, Send Out Your Spirit

It’s hard to think of anyone who’s done more than Rawn Harbor to integrate the Hebrew Psalms with the African-American gospel music tradition.

With much of the Christian world celebrating Pentecost today, here’s Harbor’s version Psalm 104, “Lord, Send Out Your Spirit”, aka, “the Pentecost psalm”.


Morning Song – Teddy The Toad

There’s a great story behind “Teddy The Toad”.

I don’t know what it is, but just listen to the Count Basie Orchestra swing it, and 1) you’ll get a smile on your face, 2) you’ll find yourself creating your own version of the story.



Beauty All Around Me – Red Maple Leaves On A Spring-Blue Sky


Morning Song – Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Remind me again—what was going on in 1988 that an obscure jazz vocalist like Bobby McFerrin could take an Indian guru’s catchphrase and a faux-Jamaican accent, and put them together to produce the first (and so far, only) #1 a capella single in US history?


Noted Without Comment – You Can’t Have It All Edition


Morning Song – Gettin’ Bi

The obsessive geeks over in the Music Department here at MassCommons World Headquarters love Adam Schlesinger’s* “Gettin’ Bi” for its clever wordplay (“I don’t care if you wear high heels or a tie, You just might catch my eye…”), its Huey Lewis & The News homage/ripoff sound, and its success at addressing weighty social issues within the conventions of pop music. (It’s no “Living For The City”, but the mere fact they’re even in the same conversation is an accomplishment.)

But our lovable geeks are clueless about broader cultural matters, so we’re outsourcing to Vox’s estimable and talented Caroline Framke for commentary on how “Gettin’ Bi” fits into an encouraging trend of increased (and improved) bisexual representation on television:

“But for the most part, bisexual men are still rarely depicted on TV as anything more than insatiable cheats — that is, if they’re depicted at all….

That’s why someone like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s Darryl is such a surprising breath of fresh air. When Darryl’s realization that he had feelings for a man after being married to a woman for decades didn’t result in him realizing he was gay, it was startling; when Darryl decided to announce his bisexuality with a literal song and dance, it was breathtaking.

Not only does ‘Getting Bi’ let Darryl celebrate his attraction to multiple genders, but it pointedly combats all the negative stereotypes around bisexuality that make coming out so hard.”

*Better known as the bassist for Fountains of Wayne, and co-author of the band’s biggest hit, “Stacy’s Mom” (itself an homage to another ’80s band, The Cars).


Beauty All Around Me – A Profusion Of Pink Azaleas