Friday, October 21, 2016

Wicked Cool Minute - I Love My American Woman

Go America!
For decades I have thought the song "American Woman," by The Guess Who, was an America-inspired protest song. Of course, I derived that information from what I thought were well-informed disc jockeys and music rags.
So the story I always heard was that the Canadian band wrote this song to protest America: "I don't need your war machines; I don't need your ghetto scenes."
The ongoing 2016 circus (presidential) election drove me to investigate the significance of the song and the history of the lyrics.
I reached out to Neil Ratner Rock Doc (find him on Facebook) who was a musician and close friend of many musicians in the late 60's and 70's.

The Rock Doc told me that "American Woman" is "a very misunderstood song and not patriotic at all." The song was co-written by Burton Cummings who says, "What was on my mind was that girls in the States seemed to get older quicker than our girls and that made them, well, dangerous. When I said 'American woman, stay away from me,' I really meant 'Canadian woman, I prefer you.'"

So there you have it...the Canadian boys preferred the Canadian girls. Naturally there are two sides to every story and perhaps there is one here, but the song now sounds differently to me.

Check out the version by The Guess Who:

And for extra credit points, check out the cover by Lenny Kravitz:

Thanks for reading my Wicked Cool Minute (which took longer if you watched the videos). Please share the blogs with your friends to add a little cool to their day :)

Don't forget to use Recipe Records Cookbooks for recipe ideas for your holiday gatherings!

Peace & Love,

Lanea Stagg
twitter:  @reciperecords
facebook: send friend request to RecipeRecords Cookbook

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Main Event

Yep.....I said FREE CONCERT on Evansville's Downtown Main Street!

Hot 96 FM and Outside the Gift Box are sponsoring "The Main Street Event," a free concert at 327 Main Street; in front of Outside the Gift Box (across from Innovation Pointe, Heavenly Ham and The Arts Council.)
Main Street will be closed between 3rd and 4th Streets for the event.

The concert begins at 4:30 p.m. with Factor Primo taking the stage.
Will Champlin, L.A. recording artist and "The Voice" finalist, will begin at 6:00 p.m.

HOT96 FM will be on site as well as food vendors for your convenience!

Will Champlin on "The Voice"
I had the pleasure of speaking with Will Champlin on the phone yesterday and I asked him about his career, what influenced him, and what it was like to be on Adam Levine's team, among other things. The talent who graced the stage of NBC's "The Voice," is using his gifts to generate popular music that is entertaining millions.
Champlin told me that the crowd can expect to hear original music from his latest album "Borrowing Trouble," along with his crowd-pleasing covers, which have included "Demons" by Imagine Dragons (my personal fave.)
It was an interesting surprise to learn that Champlin's father, Bill, was a member of the highly respected band Chicago, and it was not too shocking to hear that Chicago was a huge influence, along with other bands such as Steely Dan and Fleetwood Mac. He appreciates all current popular music and listens to a lot of cutting edge, obscure music from Ireland and England. 

When I asked the highly recognized musician about his experience on "The Voice," he shared that the experience went fast and furious and "it changes everything." When asked about Adam Levine, the accomplished musician who is the lead for band Maroon 5 and a coach on the NBC reality talent show, he told me that Levine is "a great guy. He's a great guitar player, too, not just solo lead vocalist. A lot of people don't realize what an outstanding guitarist he is."

Graduating from Berklee College of Music in Boston, residing and performing in Nashville, competing on "The Voice," and recording his own music is rewarding, but it's been a lot of work. "Musicians and creators tend to forget to enjoy it. Musical nutrients are needed to nurture your creative side." 

Champlin told me in all sincerity he is "looking forward to coming to Indiana and performing for Evansville." I assured him that Evansville will love him and treat him with the utmost hospitality. 

Will Champlin - "At Last" performance from "The Voice"
Will Champlin

Will Champlin - Retrograde-James Blake (looping cover by Will Champlin)

Champlin assured me that plenty of his merchandise will be available (and I'm pretty sure you'll get autographs, too).

Follow Will Champlin here:

Evansville based band Factor Primo performs urban music which is a blend of funk, contemporary R&B, jazz and soul music. The band's diverse influences are evident in the dynamic music they create and the artists they cover. The core members of the group are Chasen Little on drums and percussion, Edward Sein on lead and rhythm guitar, and Patrick Preston performs on keyboards, organ, synths and is the Musical Director.
Evansville's Factor Primo
Factor Primo's first full-length release, Sonic Wallpaper Vol. I, is available on iTunes and other digital music platforms. While all members perform on vocals, their first release featured a number of performers from Evansville and beyond to collaborate with them in the studio. They will be playing selections from this first effort at this Friday's MAIN Street Event as well as material from other artists they respect and admire.

The co-sponsor of the event, Outside the Gift Box, is a locally owned gift shop that caters to your cool side. Unique and very reasonably priced gifts are a specialty at the shoppe. 
Led Zeppelin cut out album
Owners, Tracy and Joe Klemczewski, have done a marvelous job of bringing this hip store to downtown Evansville and I hope you will check it out soon. I love their pure aspirations to help downtown Evansville grow and thrive along with catering to customers. Their spirit of contribution is notable, as a portion of all sales benefit parallel local charities through their "Imagine Project." The benefactors include Soldier Dogs for Independence, Aurora, The Arc, Peace Zone, and LaCola Village.

"Pup Stop" in front of Outside the Gift Box
A respite for downtown pups!
Convenience • Trendy, fun novelties and an extensive inventory on Main Street and online! • Themed gifts and packages ready to go! Customization • Gift & Go Station for an impeccable final touch! • Happiness consultants standing by to help you unleash smiles! Community • Customized/branded products for your business or organization! • The Imagine Project extends your giving to those who need it most!



Evansville Local Authors
Indie Book Fair - United Way Giveback Event
Saturday, November 19 -- 10:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
St. Paul's United Christian Church - Gymnasium
2227 W. Michigan St., Evansville, IN 47712


Peace & Love,

Lanea Stagg
Facebook: RecipeRecords Cookbook (send friend request)
Twitter: @RecipeRecords and @LaneaStagg

Sunday, October 9, 2016

You're My Favorite One

Sitting in a room full of challenges, the first words I heard when Terese Grotius McKannan entered the room were: "You're my favorite one."
This darling pianist/vocalist, entertains at local nursing homes and retirement centers, and is quite a celebrity. McKannan is responsible for many smiles that are prompted by her confident ivories and crooning that assures them "life is gonna be so sweet ... on the sunny side of the street...." Residents who are hanging by a moment, allow the unflappable tunes to lure them back to another day. McKannan smiles, waves and belts "Zippity Doo Dah," while a darling lady rocks her baby doll in the wheelchair next to me, and perks up when Dianne Berry joins McKannan, belting out Barbra Streisand's "Second Hand Rose." Enjoying the show (and reactions), I clapped along with McKannan's rendition of "Daydream Believer" and more.
It's been two and a half years since my mom was admitted to a nursing home. The home is a seven mile drive for me, but some days it feels like a 700 mile drive. It takes all of my energy to just go. I am continuously in awe of the angels that I happen upon at the nursing home. The couple from a local church who take communion to my mother, the gifts she receives from school children, the beautiful vocalists that sometimes are heard throughout the hallways. Every little bit of goodness that goes into the walls of that nursing home does not go unnoticed. 
It was a great honor to enjoy Terese's performance yesterday and I wanted to share a blog previously written by M. Dianne Berry (see below). I hope you are able to see her show, too!
Terese Grotius McKannan
This life is full of marathons. We are running to school, work, exercise, shop, crafts and numerous activities. I hope our society is planning for the days ahead of us. Planning how we are going to give back to a generation who is assigned to live final days (months, years) where we will need a loving hand to make us feel alive again.
I recently heard from Angie McCartney (Paul's stepmum and also the entrepreneur responsible for Mrs. McCartneys Teas and Wine):

Angie told me this:
"We attended a great event last Saturday called Music Mends Minds. It is a charity aimed for people suffering from Parkinsons, Alzheimers, and other neurological related diseases. The band of pro musicians who play at these events call themselves The Fifth Dementia. They are all solo musicians, studio musicians, composers, etc. Our friend and client, Steve Tyrell, sang a few jazz standards; the audience was made up of a cross-section of people, many sufferers and their caregivers, and many, like ourselves who just wanted to be supportive. There was a fabulous selection of music and stories, and everyone sang along. I was so moved by it all, and seeing the power of music in real time brought tears to my eyes. It was at The Brentwood Presbyterian Church, where they hold regular gatherings. It seems that in so many cases, although people are losing their cognitive skills, music brings them right back into focus and they can remember all the words of the songs. Amazing, isn’t it? Evidently music is the first thing to become active, and the last thing to go. Thank God for music."

Terese Grotius McKannan
Printed from the blog of M. Dianne Berry:

Terese Grotius McKannan, long-time veteran musician and singer has it better than some these days when it comes to landing music jobs. At a time when there is so much hype on competition, television contests, getting a record deal, or even regularly working in one's hometown, she is in high demand within the senior communities.
As a teenager who grew up in the 60's, she was highly influenced by her mother, Najla Macksoud Grotius, who was a singer and pianist for one of USO's first '40's entertaining groups during WW2 while professor-father and drama director Robert Grotius encouraged them to put a little theatre into the act. Terese and the other five Grotius siblings rehearsed with their mother's instrumental backup, tight harmonies, and snappy delivery which also launched their professional music careers.
Terese began her own career in high school and gradually expanded her repertoire till she was booked in popular piano bars. With her lively presentation and remarkable ability to engage audiences with familiar TV show themes and commercials, she kept the night clubbers awake as they asked for more. Before long, she was working the plush hotels, piano bars, clubs, and restaurants, both locally and across the states while moonlighting. Though between the traveling gigs she took a few brief jobs in the mainstream work force, she always came back to playing music.
Now getting older has its perks as there will always be the elders whose needs include more than good health care. They need to be entertained, wooed by the sounds of their time, emotionally taking them away from the mundane and melancholy. Terese decided to give back to our parents' generation by dedicating a 45 minute program to a few nursing facilities. They loved her! With her letters of introduction to many more senior venues, some photographs and some resume of her musical career, calls began to roll in. It wasn't long before she nearly had more than she could handle. But she was happy. Happy because she was doing something she always knew and loved and could do it full time while care-giving her own mother.
She delivers a punchy medley of national and state anthems. Among them are:
"God Bless America," "Back Home Again In Indiana," "California Here I Come," "Georgia," and many others. She also performs show tunes like "Cabaret," "Hello Dolly," and "Moulin Rouge." The best of the Beatles also roused the memories of those who raised their own children of the 60's making it easy to smile, cry, and sing along. The icing on the cake is the love and endearment she has with the residents who attend her programs.
"I become very close to many of these wonderful people, Terese reports . "I've spoken with some notables as well. Like Bettie Engelbrecht, whose dance team performed with Debbie Reynolds in the movie, "Singing In The Rain." Marilyn Durham, and author of "The Man Who Loved Cat Dancing."
Terese was honored. She tears up when telling about her chat with holocaust survivor Veronika Federowska Samila who jumped off a train while in transit toward Auschwitz to escape her eventual brief encampment. (Compassionate as well, Terese makes a point to see their extended families whenever a resident passes away.)
She lives in Evansville and and serves nearly all local facilities, and more frequently at Newburgh Healthcare, The Heritage, The Protestant Home, and others.
If you want to hear a few sound clips, I'm afraid she's old fashioned, doesn't mess with the computer and needs me to speak on her behalf since she's my sister! Terese would like to invite anyone to come to one of her events. To request a list of upcoming gigs, you can email me directly: Subject: (RantingsFromRiverBayBlog)


Friday, October 21  -   Evansville's Downtown Main Street (between 3rd & 4th Streets) will be closed for a celebration!

Outside the Gift Box owners, Joe and Tracy  Klemczewski along with HOT96 FM radio, are hosting "The Main (Street) Event" with musician Will Champlin, a star from the NBC tv series "The Voice," along with Factor Primo.

4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. FREE to the public - please spread the word (more info about the event will be on my next blog)

Peace & Love,

Lanea Stagg
Facebook: RecipeRecords Cookbook (send friend request)
Twitter: @RecipeRecords and @LaneaStagg