Give Me Five...Featuring Nina Simone

Give Me Five…Featuring Nina Simone

Another new month. Another month of still being pandemic-bound, though things are starting to open up. I’m grateful to have been vaccinated, grateful that it gifted me the chance to have lunch with a dear friend, go to bookstores and lunch with my boyfriend, and maybe even see a concert someday soon.

I miss live music more than I have words to say.

I sit here in the early morning almost sunrise, coffee in hand, and fantasize about what band or artist will be the first I see live. My daydream wish list is getting pretty big.

Happy Saturday! Happy May! Let’s get the music started before I lose myself completely in dream venues and live songs to sing-a-long to.

Give Me Five – May 2021

You can listen and follow along with May’s Give Me Five at Spotify and YouTube

Song 1: “O-o-h Child” by Nina Simone

Nina Simone "O-o-h Child" Give Me Five
“O-o-h Child” by Nina Simone – from the album, Here Comes The Sun (1970)

“Some day, yeah,
we’ll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun.
Some day,
when the world is much brighter.”

Starting May with a cover song from one of my favorites, Nina Simone. The lyrics fit perfectly for that daydreaming of a time when we can see live music, hug and hold our friends close, share meals and conversations and walks in the sun and life with each other again. I’m counting the days.

I’ve been in such a Nina mood lately. I may need to put a favorites playlist together, or maybe a Top Ten.

What are some of your favorite Nina Simone songs? What songs that she’s covered do you like best?

Nina Simone "O-o-h Child" Give Me Five - Song 1

Song 2: “Residue” by Tayla Parx

Tayla Parx "Residue" Give Me Five
“Residue” by Tayla Parx – from the album, Coping Mechanisms (2020)

“You, yeah, you’re a knot,
yeah, you’re a knot I can’t undo
Yeah, you’re a spill,
yeah, you’re a spill I can’t remove.
Baby, you’re a thought.
A thought that’s stuck to me like glue.
No matter what I do,
you leave your residue.”

Another song and artist that my daughter introduced to me. I love the dance-pop-sugary-summertime feel this song has. It’s one of those tunes that gets completely stuck in your head – and leaves a “Residue” (see what I did there? Yes, I’m groaning, too).

From the first listen the song stuck in my head, and I’ve woken up many mornings lately with the chorus singing in my head. I end up spinning around the kitchen to this song, making coffee while I “do-do-do-do-do.”

Do you want to hear more of Tayla Parx? Maybe help support her music, too? If so, do-do-do-do-do right over here.

Tayla Parx "Residue" Give Me Five - Song 2

Song 3: “Strangers” by Black Pumas and Lucius

Black Pumas and Lucius "Strangers" Give Me Five
“Strangers” by Black Pumas and Lucius – from the album, Black Pumas – Expanded Deluxe Edition (2021)

“Strangers on this road we are on.
We are not two,
we are one.”

Another cover for the first of May. Why not. Covers are some of my most favorite things, and this is a delicious new discovery. I’m digging this take on The Kinks song this morning, its fitting in perfectly with my daydreamy, getting caffeinated mood.

I love when artists I love come together and make music.

You should check out more of Black Pumas, and help support their music if you can – here.

Lucius, too – here.

Black Pumas and Lucius "Strangers" Give Me Five - Song 3

Song 4: “Clementine” by The Decemberists

The Decemberists "Clementine" Give Me Five
“Clementine” by The Decemberists – from the album, Castaways and Cutouts (2002)

“You slept in your overalls,
after the wrecking ball,
bereft you of house and home,
and left you with sweet fuck all.

So, we got in your car,
with our kickabout hearts,
and we hollered out –
“Sweet Clementine””

One of my favorite Decemberists songs from one of my favorite albums of theirs. The lyrics, I can see the story they tell. It reminds me some of my best friend and I, how we survived so many things in our young lives, our childhoods, our families. How we would get in my car and just drive. Turn the music up, head to the ocean, and sing-a-long.

I love the line “with our kickabout hearts.”

I think we definitely had kickabout hearts back then.

This song also reminds me one of my all-time favorite fictional characters – Clementine from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

To hear more of The Decemberists story told songs, and to help support their music, take your own kickabout heart here.

Song 5: “Revolutionary Love” by Ani DiFranco

Ani DiFranco "Revolutionary Love" Give Me Five
“Revolutionary Love” by Ani DiFranco – from the album, Revolutionary Love (2021)

“I will tend my anger.
I will tend my grief.
I will achieve safety.
I will find relief.
I’ll show myself mercy.
I’ll show my self-respect.
I’ll decide when i’m ready.
To forgive but not forget.
I will ask you questions.
I will try to understand.
And if you give me your story.
I will hold it in my hands.”

New Ani DiFranco makes me very happy. I’m so in love with this song right now. I love the seventies vibe it has, the soul, and the lyrics just slay me.

I especially love the line “And if you give me your story, I will hold it in my hands.”

That is love and connection and all things wonderful – being listened to, being heard, and having your stories (and yourself) held close.

To hear more of Ani DiFranco, and to help support her music, reach on over here.

Ani DiFranco "Revolutionary Love" Give Me Five - Song 5

What songs are you playing and singing-a-long to on this first day of May?

Creekside by Kelly Vivanco May Give Me Five Cover Art
May Give Me Five cover art – “Creekside” by Kelly Vivanco

For May’s Give Me Five I’m featuring Kelly Vivanco’s piece “Creekside” as the Cover Art.

Go now go and check out here art – I think you’ll love it as much as I do.


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