Tag Archives: abba

Larry Loved: Stereogum’s ‘The Number Ones’ article series

Don’t hold me to this, but I think I want to capture some of those things that Larry loved and write about them on my site.   Something that immediately came to mind was the article series on the Stereogum website:


The author, Tom Breihan, has written about every single #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100 charts since it’s inception in 1958.   As of today, he’s currently up to January 1979, where we are still apparently in the clutch of disco (nothing wrong with that).   Larry loved to always talk about what song was #1 during someone’s birthday – on his birthday, it was Earth, Wind & Fire’s “Shining Star”, which really is a fantastic song.

For my birthday, it was one of Larry’s favorite bands:  Chicago’s “If You Leave Me Now”.   I narrowly avoided it being Rick Dees’ “Disco Duck”, so thank god for small miracles.

This past year, Larry thoughtfully sent along the article for when it was ABBA’s “Dancing Queen”.   The write-up is beautiful, frankly, so read it, and the song does mean a lot to me.   It was the last song we danced to at our wedding reception, and just for that alone it will be forever special.  Plus, it’s just pure ABBA perfection.

Larry just loved lists like these – he was so happy to get the comprehensive book containing the listing of every Television show up through like early 2000s.   It was something I loved so dearly about him, as he was just so into stuff and I couldn’t help but be into it too.

ABBA, Perfect Day, Dirty Computer and More

Before we head out to see Avengers: Infinity War and return 4 hours later or however long the movie is, I thought I’d post about some random things because why not.

I am liking my slight redesign and tweaking of the website.  I crafted that new header and a new favicon and found a plugin or two to help me modify my site to a way that is more me – so that includes more red all around.

If you didn’t take note, this past week contained the Perfect Date…per Miss Rhode Island from Miss Congeniality.  Honestly, I have to agree with her as in Los Angeles this week, the weather was gorgeous.  Sunny, windy, a nice warmth during the day but not too hot, while just enough of a chill at night.  Perfect!

I fucking love that movie.  It still trips me out that the first movie was set in San Antonio and released while I too lived in San Antonio.   Then the sequel was set in Las Vegas and released while I too lived in Las Vegas!  Stop stalking me, Sandra Bullock!  🙂

In other crazy-ass news, ABBA tells us yesterday that they’re “reuniting” and going to perform together for a television special in December and TWO NEW SONGS will be released and I can just fall over in joy now.

ABBA Is Officially Reuniting—And Recording New Music!

They’re not exactly going to be touring together though, as while I think they were able to deal with each other and get along well enough to make some new music, that goodwill isn’t enough to deal with each other all the time.  Some Digital Avatar experience will be happening and just tell me how much money is necessary as that is just fine with me.

Janelle Monáe’s new album, Dirty Computer, came out yesterday as well, so apparently music bliss was on the menu.  I’ve had it on repeat throughout the day yesterday and gotta say…I fucking love it.  From the opening track, “Dirty Computer”, which has a Brian Wilson harmony on it, to the already released singles which I love, to the new track “Screwed” which is hilarious and inspiring…the entire album is just a feeling and vibe that makes me happy.  I liked a review I read that indicated this album may be the first time we see the real Janelle Monáe as she doesn’t have the Cindi Mayweather character in this like she did in her two previous (awesome) albums.

In addition to loving the album, I was able to get tickets to see her at the Greek Theater in June.  SO EXCITED.   Nicki and Rekha will be joining in on the fun too.   Took a bit of finagling random codes and such on the ticketmaster site as it’s still in “presale” mode.   My Citi Cardmember presale didn’t really help at all this time like it did with Madonna tickets, as there was nothing available, but the Artist Presale definitely did!   Finally was able to get front of  Section C tickets – we’re going to be in the back section, but the price was right ($60/each), and the Greek isn’t that big of a venue, so all seats will be good!

Okay, probably need to wrap this up for now.   Larry and I are celebrating our second anniversary tonight at a French restaurant I found online in West LA, so hoping it is as good as expected (reviews certainly indicate it will be) and a nice night is had by all.  I’ll check back in with thoughts on the movie (and other movies we’ve seen in the meantime since A Quiet Place) and also keep retrofitting my site’s existing content as the migration wiped out a lot of my recent galleries.  As I find them, I fix them, and I’m back to late 2016 in terms of fixing things.  It’s funny as I do that and see posts I’d long forgotten about.   I love that I have this record.

Getting Hitched: Getting Hitched!

There’s happily a whole YouTube recording of the ceremony because we wanted our friends and family who couldn’t make it, yet still wanted to see it, to have that ability.  Marie, our wedding coordinator, suggested this as an option and it worked pretty great.  It streamed live while it was happening while also recording it – which is how I can embed it here in this post.  Note, you can watch it here by just clicking the Play button, but it won’t let you watch it in full-screen unless you click on the YouTube icon on the bottom right to open up the video in a new tab.

Some timecode notes:

  • The first 22:30 minutes are of people arriving and sitting down, so while that actually is kind of cool to see, at least to me, you can drag the slider over and past that point and start to see when everyone is mostly sat down and Cantor Kerith comes out.
  • The entrance’s music is a little hard to hear as it comes in and out…not sure why, especially when the cantor’s words come out pretty clearly.
  • At 38:15 is when both Larry & I realize that the wedding rings are safely back in the “getting ready” room, followed shortly after by Kerith smoothly handling it and reassuring us it wasn’t a big deal.  Erin then offers to go get the rings and finds them like a champ!
  • 47:20 is when the MVP Nicki single-handedly catches the chuppah from collapsing in on itself due to increasing winds!  Still can’t believe her reflexes there, and she suitably impresses Kerith, who deftly includes some praise for good, quick friends!

We loved the ceremony and were so happy it went as well as it did!  I am so happy that Larry ended up finding the music we used to have as entrance music:  The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra’s medley of “Waterloo”, “Fernando,” and “Dancing Queen.”   There were a couple of possibilities we bandied about leading up to this decision, but once Larry found this I think we were both immediately sold.  And the exit music of “I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do” was almost a no-brainer.

Here are some pictures from others during the ceremony!

I think there’s one more post ahead to post stuff related to the reception, and then after that will likely be a giant post, or set of posts?, to show the actual professional pics.  Still haven’t looked at them yet.  🙂

Wedding Links:

Monday Musings on a Hot October

A miscellaneous look at the things that I’m thinking about:

This video is everything to me today.  The latest Entertainment Weekly had a reunion issue with the cast of Felicity, Misery, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and lastly, Muriel’s Wedding.  It’s hard to believe this movie is 21 years old.  Anyway, this scene in the movie is the exact moment when I unabashedly started my love affair with ABBA.  The moment when they hit the chorus for the second time?  BLISS.  I’m honestly thinking Larry & I could reenact this dance at our wedding.

Wedding Talk!  Ha, well, the events of last month definitely knocked planning for the wedding out of the priority queue.  But we’re finally getting in gear again and hoping that maybe a date and/or location will be decided soon.  Wouldn’t that be nice?  Or we’ll just go to Vegas and call it a day.  Who knows?

And then this videogame, Transformers Devastation, shows up and gets decent reviews and I’m suddenly transported back to watching the Transformers as a child of the 80’s and I’m thinking, “I MUST have this videogame – it’s literally the style of the cartoon but you’re playing a game.”  Why don’t I have this yet???  Old-school Megatron and Starscream?  Shockwave?  Devastator???  Bumblebee and Optimus Prime??? I’m dying.  Dying!

Larry Update:  I won’t go into toooo many details here since if Larry wanted to publicize shit, he’d publicize it.  But basically, the amount of recovery he’s done since getting pancreatitis back in mid-September is amazing.  He’s on a no-drinking program right now and for the next few months (hopefully that will be lightened up at that point); I’m basically following his lead on that too, as I’d rather not drink if it’s by myself, both not to make him feel bad as well as it’s no fun drinking alone.  But I’m not 100% on that, but I have been able to make a bottle of wine last nearly a week by just drinking one glass at dinner.  Impressive, eh?  I figure with this mindset, I’ll probably lose weight.   Go figure.

Exercise:  I went running for the first time in a while.  Plus, it was this morning before work.  With the way work looks to be going for me, longer days are likely and motivation to work afterwards will be NIL.  I’m glad to get back on the treadmill but it was exhausting.  But here I am sorta self-satisfied at being done for the day!  Here comes my beachbody!  😉

Pillows:  I had a ROUGH night of sleeping one night last week.  I think I was feeling meh anyway, but I think that I ended up getting both of the crappy pillows after the housekeeper had remade the bed.  I slept for shit and knew that the crappy pillows were a heavy factor in that.  Off I went to Macy’s and they were having a sale on getting the 2nd pillow for $1.  I got some fantastic Serta pillows and man, my sleeping has been fantastic. Fantastic!  I forgot how important it is to have a good pillow.

prisonarchitectI had bought Prison Architect off Steam when it was still Early Access as it had an interesting premise and was like a Tycoon game for Prison.  Fun!  But after playing the one “tutorial” level and then just handed off to the Sandbox mode, I was lost.  It was compelling to play, but I constantly just kept getting it wrong.  So I went off to play some Assassin’s Creed or something.  But the “final” version of the game was released last week and it included a new Campaign mode.  This is the mode I was looking for.  You’re given guidance as to what all the features do and put in situations that actually test you to use them.  Now I’m hooked.  It’s so compelling, although like the review above mentions, you kind of lose track of the fact that your little beings here are representing incarcerated prisoners.  You just want to win!! Win win win!

Larry and I went back to the TCL Chinese Theater this past weekend to catch The Walk while it was still in IMAX 3D. What an experience.  If you don’t watch the video above or haven’t heard of what it’s about, it tells the fucking insane true story of a French high wire artist who managed to pull off the feat of stringing a wire between the two towers of the World Trade Center and walk back and forth across it.  It involved quite a bit of determination and guile and the first 2/3ds of the film are about the work getting to that point. If you’ve seen Man on Wire, the actual documentary of the event, this is kind of familiar territory.  Man, even that documentary was thrilling, honestly.  But the real draw of The Walk is all about being up top of the Towers.  I am no fan of heights – especially when still connected to the ground and the thought of falling from that height is present – and even though my mind knew this was a movie, the way that the director, Robert Zemeckis, constructed the shots of being up on top of the Twin Towers was both exhilarating and nauseating.  Joseph Gordon-Levitt is awesome as Phillipe, and the special effects are absolutely spectacular.  The ending of the movie is very moving too, as it just silently looks at the wonder of the Twin Towers from the Statue of Liberty, then fades to black.  I highly recommend it – what a great season for movies this is turning out to be so far!?  First The Martian and now The Walk!

Work?  Work is good.  I’m having to do a bit of hustle to make sure I keep up.   I’m not entirely sure I have an accurate assessment of how I feel about work at this point, but I am not willing to say one way or the other just yet until at least a year has passed. Then maybe we’ll talk.

I’m kind of interested in the Chevy Volt.  I know, I know, I just got my damn beautiful red Mazda 3….but still.  Probably just need to let that go for a little.  No need to change at this point.

Oh yeah, I got the new Rock Band 4 – still just as fun as it was when it was Rock Band 3.  But now I can play it on the PS4.  I guess it helps I really just like these games!

ABBA The Concert at the Hollywood Bowl

Last Night at the Bowl – September 19, 2015

Our last concert of the Hollywood Bowl season!!!  So sad an occurrence, but it was a fantastic way to end it.  Anyone with a pulse knows ABBA is awesome, and as we discovered in 2013, this tribute band puts on an insanely amazing show.  They really are ABBA, at least as close as you can be when recreating ABBA at the height of their songwriting and performing powers.

Since I was in my lazy blogging state in 2013, it seems I never posted about the awesome ABBAFest concert we saw at the Hollywood Bowl back in 2013.  Basically, this group from Sweden looks and sounds pretty much exactly like all four members of ABBA and they tour the world putting on ABBA concerts.  They really go for it too, having the hair, accents, and costumes down perfectly.  They’ve also got charming concert banter and basically you’re just dancing during the entire concert with a great big smile on your face.  Unless you hate ABBA, and why would you?

Mom joined us for this concert as I knew back in 2013 that she’d love this show. The group skipped the Hollywood Bowl in 2014 so it was a happy day to see they were back this year – and it seemed they were taking the slot that normally The Sound of Music Sing-a-long occupies.

In 2013, the opening act was 3 different acapella groups from LA universities and hosted by the woman who was a brief internet sensation when she sang “For Good” with Kristin Chenoweth at her HB appearance and even nailed the harmonies.  So that was a cool experience.  In this year’s opening, we got the gay men’s chorus called Menalive, and they freakin’ nailed a great set of Elton John songs that had the crowd very entertained.

Getting to the Bowl


This was a fun group to have warm up for the ABBA show, and they sang the upbeat Elton John songs like “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting”, “I’m Still Standing”, and “The Bitch Is Back.”  They did a performance of “Candle in the Wind” that included a Marilyn Monroe lookalike dancing around with them.  There were a few cute guys performing their hearts out as you’ll see in the pics here.

ABBA: The Concert!

The setlist for this night was just slightly different than it was in 2013, with a few songs shuffled around and some replaced for others.  My heart still was hoping to see them perform “Super Trouper” this year, but alas, they didn’t.  They didn’t in 2013 either.  The other awesome ABBA songs were though, as you can see:

  • Summer Night City
  • Knowing Me, Knowing You
  • Money, Money, Money
  • Chiquitita
  • Take a Chance On Me
  • One Man, One Woman
  • Slipping Through My Fingers
  • Waterloo (Swedish to English)
  • Mamma Mia!
  • Santa Rosa
  • Voulez Vous
  • Fernando
  • Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!
  • The Winner Takes It All
  • If It Wasn’t For the Night
  • The Visitors
  • Lay All Your Love On Me
  • When All Is Said and Done
  • Hole In Your Soul
  • Does Your Mother Know?
  • Dancing Queen
  • Thank You For the Music