Archive for October, 2015

My 20 Favorite Janet Jackson Songs

Janet Jackson’s first headlining concert tour was 1990’s “Rhythm Nation World Tour”.  Since then, she’s embarked on six more world tours.

JanetJackson

The North American first leg of her latest, the “Unbreakable World Tour”, is down to eight shows following some recent postponed shows to rest her vocal cords.

Lucky for me, her first show back is tonight in Omaha, Nebraska, and I’ll experience my first Janet Jackson show.  So, to entertain myself (and hopefully, you), I’m sharing my 20 favorite Janet hits from all of her Billboard Hot 100, R&B, or Dance Club Song chart entries.

“I hope you enjoy this as much as I do/Are we ready?/I am ’cause it`s all about control/And I’ve got lots of it”.

Okay, those are lyrics from Janet’s 1987 Top 5 Hot 100 hit “Control, which also topped Billboard’s R&B/Hip Hop and the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart.  While a fantastic song, it didn’t crack my Top 20!

Let the countdown begin.

20

“AGAIN” (1993)

19

“RUNAWAY” (1995)

#18

“JUST A LITTLE WHILE” (2004)

#17

“I GET SO LONELY” (1998) 

16

“BECAUSE OF LOVE” (1994)

15

“GO DEEP” (1998)

#14 Movie

“THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE” (1987)

13

“LET’S WAIT AWHILE” (1987)

12

“ALL FOR YOU” (2001)

11

“BURNITUP!” (2015)

10

“THAT’S THE WAY LOVE GOES” (1993)

9 CD

“THROB” (1994)

8

“TOGETHER AGAIN” (1997)

7

“IF” (1993)

6'eren_RGB_FINAL

“MISS YOU MUCH” (1989)

#5 MOVIE

“NASTY” (1986)

#4 CD

“ESCAPADE” (1990)

green 3

“LOVE WILL NEVER DO (WITHOUT YOU) (1990)

2

“WHEN I THINK OF YOU” (1986)

#1 MOVIE

“WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR ME LATELY”

MY LOVE FOR “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE FOR ME LATELY”

That song was so popular back in 1986 when I started going out to the clubs in Kentucky and we’d be jamming to it as we got ready to go out on the town.  It’s still my favorite Janet Jackson song.

This past summer when Janet announced the “Unbreakable World Tour”, it was featured in our entertainment report on “Local 4 News This Morning” in the Quad Cities of Iowa and Illinois.  (By the way, Janet is coming here to Moline in June 2016!)

So, spontaneously, I started doing the Janet and Paula Abdul video introduction to “What Have You Done For Me Lately” from the diner.

You’ll have to forgive me because we were running out of time and I hadn’t seen the video introduction in decades, so I left out one line and changed a word.

But, it showed my love for Miss Jackson and it’s the thought that counts. 🙂

So, what are your favorite Janet songs?  Let me know.

Anthony

Adele Will Save Christmas & The Music Industry

UPDATED POST:  Monday, November 2, 2015

It was a week ago today that I posted this blog on how Adele will make Christmas brighter for the music industry.  You can read that below.

The first week numbers are out and it validates my theory!

“Hello”, the first release from “25”, debuts at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.  It becomes only the 24th song in music history to top the chart in its first week.  The last song to accomplish that was Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” on September 6, 2014.

“Hello” becomes Adele’s fourth Hot 100 number one songs.  (More on that below).

It’s a record-setting week for Adele.

In just the first week, “Hello” was downloaded a record 1,112,000 times!  It becomes the first song ever to be downloaded over a million times in a week.

The previous leader was “Right Round” by Flo Rida with Ke$ha.  That song, in February 2009, was downloaded 636,000 times.

The list of accomplishments will continue to grow throughout November with more radio airplay, video views, and the release of “25”.

And, to think, Adele told syndicated morning radio host Elvis Duran on October 23rd just hours after “Hello” was released, “I was so frightened that no one cared.”

As if!

Anthony

ORIGINAL POST:  Monday, October 26, 2015

We’re heading into the holiday shopping season and are you ready for the biggest album release since last October’s “1989” by Taylor Swift, which has sold more than 8 million copies worldwide?

Taylor_Swift_-_1989

Adele rocked the music industry last week and made fans and retailers very happy when she announced that her third album “25” would come out November 20th.

adele

Since Friday’s commercial radio release of “Hello”, it’s been played more than 2,000 times at Top 40 radio stations and the video has been viewed more than 70 million times!

We last heard Adele when she reached the Top Ten with the Academy Awards, Golden Globes, and Grammy-winning theme song to the James Bond film, “Skyfall” in early 2013.

Adele-21

Adele’s last album, “21”, which was released in early 2011 has already sold more than 30 million albums worldwide and spent 24 weeks at #1 on the Billboard album charts.

It also produced three #1 singles on the Billboard Hot 100, “Rolling in the Deep”, “Someone Like You”, and “Set Fire to the Rain”.

That album also sparked interest in her 2008 debut, “19”, which has now sold seven million copies around the world.

Christmas 2014

Not only will “25” be the biggest selling album of the Christmas season, it’s also spiking sales of her first two albums.

This morning on amazon.com’s list of Best Selling albums, “25” is at #1, “21” has jumped to #5, the vinyl copy of “25” is #9, and “19” is back up to #22.

christmascocktails

Christmas cheers to Adele for saving the music industry.  Taylor Swift shouldn’t have to do all the work.

Anthony

Random Friday Thoughts — October 23, 2015

Happy Friday!  It’s been a month since I posted some “Random Friday Thoughts”, so here are a few.

It’s time to put the final touches on your Halloween costumes and stock up on candy that you buy for yourself and the candy you hand out to trick-or-treaters.

Gretel Halloween

Yes, that’s Gretel from a few years ago!  Visions of “The Walking Dead” are dancing through my head.

“HALLOWEEN” IS STILL MY FAVORITE

John Carpenter’s “Halloween” is still my all-time favorite horror movie and Michael Myers still rules 37 years later (and he hasn’t aged one bit!).

Michael

I’ve always wanted to be in a “Halloween” sequel and a new one is coming to theaters next year — without me!  It’s being shot this fall.

CHECK OUT THIS HALLOWEEN MOVIE

While we all have our favorite scary movies (if you like them), the little seen “Hellbent” from 2005 is one that I make sure that I watch ever fall.

Hellbent1

While it didn’t become a blockbuster, it has some great pedigree.  It’s from the co-creator of “Halloween” and the executive producer of “A Nightmare on Elm Street”.

SOMETHING SCARIER THAN HALLOWEEN…

… Presidential politics!

DT Masks

A new Quinnipiac poll yesterday shows that Donald Trump no longer leads in the Iowa Republican Presidential Caucus.

An even scarier candidate, Dr. Ben Carson has jumped to 28 points with Trump at 20 and Marco Rubio in third with 13.

MarcoRubio1

Up until now, I thought that Jeb Bush would be the Republican nominee, but now I think it’ll be Rubio!

By the way, if a Rubio is going to be in the White House, I vote for Paulina Rubio (even though she wasn’t born in the United States)!

PaulinaRubio

BIGGEST THREAT TO POLITICIANS — INTERNS?

After the poll came out showing Trump had fallen behind Carson in Iowa, this tweet came across Trump’s Twitter feed.

Trump

Trump now claims it was an “intern” that posted it.

Maybe people should manage their own social media — it’s always the “intern”!

Again, another case of the lack of responsibility!  And, there are hearings today about Benghazi?

Oh, about that…

LAST POLITICAL COMMENT TODAY

Like the email server controversy, I’m ready for the Republican House-led Benghazi hearings with Hillary Clinton to be over and for people to get the answers they need.

president-hillary

Many think (not just me and not just Democrats) that these hearings are being held now to sidetrack Hillary’s bid to be president.

Look at this graph of attacks on U.S. diplomats.  More have happened under which side’s control of the country?

Attacks

Are you not convinced?  In January, just two weeks ahead of the Iowa Caucus, director Michael Bay (the “Transformers” series) will be releasing a Benghazi movie!

Coincidence in timing?  I think not!

FALL TELEVISION — HITS AND MISSES

How are your television favorites this season and what new shows are you watching?

I’m really enjoying the new hits, “Quantico” (ABC) and “Limitless” (CBS).

I love the quirkiness of “Limitless” and the character, Brian Finch.  If that wasn’t enough, actor Jake McDorman is so sexy!

I plan on getting around to checking out the new season of “Fargo” and the series, “Wicked City” and “The Man in the High Castle”.

“Scream Queens” is entertaining if you love camp — deliciously bad!

As for my returning favorites, I think “How To Get Away With Murder” is even better this season than it was in the over-the-top incredible first season.

How the heck are we going to get to this teased ahead shocker???? I can’t wait to find out!

annalise

I’m still loving “Madam Secretary” and the sixth season of “The Walking Dead” is off to a refreshing (and violent) start.

The Walking Dead

I’m reserving my judgement on the Lady Gaga-led “American Horror Story: Hotel” and after three episodes, I’m on the fence about liking the return of “Empire”.

Empire

The first season was fresh and exciting.  This season just seems tired even with the amazing Taraji P. Henson and Jussie Smollett.  I even loved the music of the first season more than the new music this season.

Let’s hope it changes before I abandon the show.

READY FOR MOVIE POPCORN!

We’re approaching the end of October and I still haven’t been to the movie theater this year!  I’m missing my movie popcorn and free refill.

There are two movies I want to see out now and I think I may see one of them this weekend.

I want to see “The Martian” with Matt Damon, but I’m putting my money on “Sicario” with an Oscar-buzzed performance by Emily Blunt.

ROBIN WILLIAMS’ LAST ON-SCREEN MOVIE

We watched “Boulevard”, the late actor’s last on-screen movie role, just out on DVD, and it’s very touching.

It features heartbreaking performances from both Williams and Kathy Baker (“Picket Fences”).  Also, relative newcomer Roberto Aguire stands out as Leo, the man that helps Williams’ Nolan Mack to re-evaluate his life at 60.

A must see!

GRADE:  A-

CHRISTMAS IS COMING

While you may be thinking of the candy rush of Halloween, I’m already salivating over turkey and cheesecake for Thanksgiving.

Our Turkey 2012

But, Christmas is also right around the corner.

I just bought LeAnn Rimes’ “Today is Christmas” album, but the one that I’m really excited for and counting down to (November 13th) is “Kylie Christmas” by Kylie Minogue.

Kylie Christmas

The deluxe edition not only comes with extra songs, but a DVD, too!

CHRISTMAS WOULDN’T BE CHRISTMAS

There are three albums that instantly come to mind when I think of Christmas and two of those artists are featured in this one video!

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without these staples:  “Christmas” by Michael Buble, “Merry Christmas” from Mariah Carey featuring the incredible “All I Want For Christmas Is You” and “Christmas Portrait” by the Carpenters!

‘Tis the season early!

PICK HIT

24-year-old Alvaro Soler of Barcelona, Spain, is ready to move beyond Europe and take the United States and the world by storm.

Alvaro Soler

His debut album, “Eterno Agosto” came out this past summer to moderate success in Italy and Switzerland.

The first single, “El Mismo Sol” topped the charts in Italy and Poland and the song hit the Top Ten in Austria, Belgium, Finland, and Spain.

The song now has a bilingual version subtitled, “Under The Same Sun” featuring Jennifer Lopez and is currently at #22 on the Billboard Latin Airplay chart here in the U.S.

I’m still waiting for the full version, but here’s the amazing teaser.

The song is so uplifting (both versions) and to feature these two beautiful people makes it even better.

Here’s the original version.

I hope that Alvaro becomes a huge star in America.  There’s enough love for him and Enrique Iglesias!

FINAL THOUGHTS

As always, I appreciate you checking out my random thoughts.  If you agree with me on something, let me know.  If you don’t, tell me, too.  We can disagree — diplomatically.

And, since I mentioned Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas today, this sums it up.

MyFavoriteDecoratingCartoon

Have a great weekend.

Anthony

Favorite Birthday Memories Over 50 Years!

As I turn 51 today, I’m just happy to be alive, healthy, and happy.  Age is just a number — after all, Giorgio Moroder states that “74 is the New 24”!

Today, I want to share a few pictures of my favorite birthdays.

My favorite:  2011, the last with my best friend and buddy, Miss ABBA.

October 2011

October 2011

Last year, I hit the “big 5-0” in Paris, France before we jetted off to Tel Aviv, Israel and my favorite meal ever on the Mediterranean!!!!

Benny The Fisherman

In Paris, Ray treated me to a dinner cruise on the Seine River, a trip to the top of the Eiffel Tower, and then champagne and a fantastic show at the Moulin Rouge!

AP R MoulinParis Birthday

In 2012, I saw Madonna on my birthday in Las Vegas!

Madonna Anthony

And, in 2009, my first birthday with my lovely family, Ray and Gretel!

2009 Gifts

GretelMB

And, since I’m reflecting, here’s where I was 50 years ago today — enjoying my first birthday cake!

AP 1st Birthday

Thank you for all the birthday wishes and for checking out this walk down memory lane!

Anthony

My Favorite “Iconic” Madonna Hits

Some say that the “third time is a charm”.  For me, every time I see Madonna in concert, it’s a charm.

RHT M

Tonight’s “Rebel Heart Tour” show in Saint Paul, Minnesota, is my fourth Madonna concert following the October 2012 show on my birthday in Las Vegas for “The MDNA Tour”, October 2008 in Chicago for the “Sticky & Sweet Tour”, and the “Confessions Tour” in Chicago in June 2006.

In anticipation of the show, I thought back over Madonna’s 33-year career and all of her accomplishments and hits.

Madonna-MTV-VMA-Like-a-Virgin

She’s the only active artist to chart continuously since 1982, spanning four decades.  Madonna has more Top Ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100 (38), which is more than the Beatles, and she’s topped the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart 45 incredible times, with 21 consecutive number one hits on that chart from 1996-2008!

Madonna is the best-selling female recording artist of all-time and the Top Touring female artist of all-time, with box office receipts surpassing one billion dollars!

madonna

And, even though the accomplishments go on and on, Madonna is the most successful solo artist in the history of the American singles charts.

So, I thought back to her first chart entry on the Billboard charts in 1982, “Everybody”, and decided to rank my 33 favorite Madonna hits (Hot 100 and Hot Dance Club Play) out of the 73.  It wasn’t easy to do, but here goes.  By the way, I chose Top 33 for the 33 years of hits.

After you check it out, let me know which of your favorites didn’t make my Top 33 list and which ones I included surprised you.

#33  “YOU’LL SEE” (1995)

#32  “SORRY” (2006)

#31  “DEEPER AND DEEPER” (1992)

#30  “DON’T CRY FOR THE ARGENTINA” (1996)

#29  “HUNG UP” (2005)

#28  “TAKE A BOW” (1994)

#27  “GIVE IT TO ME” (2008)

#26  “EROTICA” (1992)

#25  “4 MINUTES” (2008)

#24  “MATERIAL GIRL” (1985)

#23  “LUCKY STAR” (1984)

#22  “WHO’S THAT GIRL” (1987)

#21  “TRUE BLUE” (1986)

#20  “YOU MUST LOVE ME” (1996)

#19  “DRESS YOU UP” (1985)

#18  “GIRL GONE WILD” (2012)

#17  “LIVE TO TELL” (1986)

#16  “EVERYBODY” (1982)

#15  “GHOSTTOWN”  (2015)

#14  “CAUSING A COMMOTION” (1987)

#13  “MUSIC” (2000)

#12  “DON’T TELL ME” (2000)

#11  “RAY OF LIGHT” (1998)

#10  “LIKE A VIRGIN” (1984)

#9  “CRAZY FOR YOU” (1985)

#8  “PAPA DON’T PREACH” (1986)

#7  “INTO THE GROOVE” (1985)

#6  “BURNING UP” (1983)

#5  “RAIN” (1993)

#4  “EXPRESS YOURSELF” (1989)

#3  “OPEN YOUR HEART” (1986)

#2  “LIKE A PRAYER” (1989)

#1  “BORDERLINE” (1984)

Let me know your favorites.

Anthony