Burning with optimism’s flame: A New Year’s Eve mixtape
By Dennis Hartley
Charles Pierce wrote a great Esquire piece today about the difficulty of holding on to optimism as we head into a new year during trying times. He says: "Optimism is not exactly something that’s just lying around on the floor, waiting to be picked up. It’s something we have to work for again. It’s a heavy lift, but a necessary one. All we have as we enter 2020 is, well, us." He's right...it's up to us to keep the fire burning. Chin-chin.
Tired of Guy Lombardo? Here are 10 more alternate tunes to ring in the new year...
"Time" - David Bowie - A song as timeless as Bowie himself. “Time, he's waiting in the wings/He speaks of senseless things.”
"1999" - Prince - Sadly, it's a perennial question: "Mommy...why does everybody have a bomb?"
"1921" - The Who - I always listen to this first thing when I wake up New Year's Day. “Somehow when you smile I can brave bad weather.”
"New Year's Day" - U2 - I know... "Great pick, Captain Obvious!" Fabulous live version, with The Edge pulling double duty on keys.
"Celtic New Year" - Van Morrison - Speaking of Ireland: Van the Man! “If I don't see you through the week, see you through the window.”
"Year of the Cat" - Al Stewart - Great Old Grey Whistle Test TV clip. “Strolling through the crowd like Peter Lorre, contemplating a crime.”
"Reeling in the Years" - Steely Dan - A pop-rock classic with a killer guitar solo by Elliot Randall.
"New Year's Resolution" - Otis Redding & Carla Thomas - Great Stax B-side from 1968, with that unmistakable "Memphis sound".
"Same Old Lang Syne" - Dan Fogelberg - OK, a nod to those who insist on waxing sentimental. A beautiful tune from the late singer-songwriter.
We are still running the Happy Hollandaise end-of-year fundraiser. If you would like to support this kind of independent media as we cover what is going to one doozy of a political year, you can do so below. And thank you so much for reading and supporting my work all these years. I am truly grateful. --- d