Today feels heavy and red flag danger full. The floor is covering atom bombs and geysers ready to blow. Dynamite or lava, or maybe just bubbles that smell like cotton candy, but taste just the dish soap my grandmother bought at Zody’s on Valley Blvd. If I say all the bad words I know will I get the “wash your mouth out” soap taste instead of shrapnel and third degree burns?

The girl with red-green eyes at the dispensary asks “do you need a bag?” It takes a minute for the question to grab my short-attention. I answer, “paper, please.” If only they sold dopamine. If only I liked what they sell, at all. Not for me, I think when she says “enjoy”, but out loud I say “thanks.”

For now, music will have to be my medicine. So it is. So will it always be.

GIVE ME FIVE…JULY 26, 2022

Available to listen on Spotify and YouTube

SONG 1: “SHOOK” BY TKAY MAIDZA

Tkay Maidza
“Shook” by Tkay Maidza – from the album, Last Year Was Weird, Vol. 2 (2020)

“These mans,
yeah I got ’em all shook.
Earthquake,
yeah I got ’em all shook.
I came,
I don’t play by the book.
Yeah I make the bands,
yeah I got ’em all shook.”

Tkay’s music is one of my favorites this summer. “Shook” is a go-to feel good rush of dance and yes and remember who you are and “I just want them to know they didn’t break me” vibe. Catchy, and yeah, another track to dance to. All her songs are 100% go press play now.

Tkay is from Australia, but way of Zimbabwe. Singer-songwriter, hip-hop artist, with 3 volumes of “Last Year Was Weird”, because they just haven’t stopped being weird, have they?

If you want to press play on more Tkay, go HERE

Tkay Maidza

SONG 2: “BUILDING STEAM WITH A GRAIN OF SALT” BY DJ SHADOW

DJ Shadow
“Building Steam With a Grain of Salt” by DJ Shadow – from the album, Endtroducing… (1996)

“From listening to records,
I just knew what to do.”

To me, that lyric is the cure, the music medicine, to help me know just what to do. I know it isn’t the instructive directive meaning in this song (I’m assuming it refers to his music creating), but for me, today, that’s the message I’m receiving. The message I’m needing.

To hear more DJ Shadow, interpret for yourself HERE.

DJ Shadow

SONG 3: “BUMMER DAYS” BY LIZA ANNE

Liza Annephoto by Brett Warren
“Bummer Days” by Liza Anne – from the album, Bad Vacation (2020)

“I don’t know what I want,
but I know that I feel bad.
And then when I feel good,
I think I make myself sad.
I wanna feel like I can get out of my own way.”

Pandemic created, the album Bad Vacation by Liza Anne is full of indie-pop sad girlish songs that give me lots of “I get it” feelings. 2020 was definitely a “bad vacation” year. I’m not sure it’s improved that much. But, then again, I’m having a bad bummer summer currently, so yeah, I’d like to get out of my own way and feel better.

Liza is from Georgia, and her 2020 pandemic album release touches on mental illness and depression. The album has songs about depression (see above), anxiety, panic attacks. Liza has stated she wants fans to embrace the dark that they may also identify with. She said this to billboard.com, in 2020:

“[It’s] is really all I could hope for a piece of art I was a part of — just to give people more of an understanding of themselves.” 

To hear more from Liza Anne, come and join me HERE.

Liza Anne

SONG 4: “DRINK BEFORE THE WAR” BY SINEAD O’CONNOR

Sinéad O’Connor/Shuhada Sadaqat


“Drink Before the War” by Sinéad O’Connor/Shuhada Sadaqat – from the album, The Lion and the Cobra (1987)

“‘Cause you know we’ve heard it all before.
Why don’t you go out there and do something useful?”

Yesterday, I was in the car with one of my daughters and her best friend who is visiting us from Colorado. Said visiting best friend had a playlist she’d made on and this song started up. I asked her, “is this Sinéad O’Connor?” and she said yes, and told me that she’d heard this song on an episode of Euphoria. I forgot how much I love this song, a deeper cut off of The Lion and the Cobra album that was released the year I graduated high school. This song, and Sinéad’s voice in it, so raw and vulnerable and powerful and gorgeous all at once, just slays me.

I’m so glad that music is so available to listen to, even if I have my own critical feelings about artists not getting what they should from streaming sites. I’m also grateful for shows and films and series using music from all over the place, and all over time. That songs like this one can be discovered years and years later. A deep cut. Not even a hit, or a single. Mostly, I just love discovering, and seeing other people discover, music.

If you’d like to hear more of Sinéad O’Connor, known now as Shuhada Sadaqat, go HERE.

Sinéad O’Connor/Shuhada Sadaqat

SONG 5: “I WANT YOU TO LOVE ME” BY FIONA APPLE

Fiona Apple
“I Want You To Love Me” by Fiona Apple – from the album, Fetch the Bolt Cutters (2020)

“I move with the trees.
In the breeze.
I know that time is elastic.”

Oh Fiona, I can’t imagine not having your music as part of my life soundtrack. This song is everything today.

For more Fiona, run, don’t walk, HERE.

Fiona Apple

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