Saturday, February 19, 2011

This Blog's Sidebar

It's been some time since I've updated the Blogs for Faithful Churchmen blog roll on the right column here, so I thought I'd draw attention to my addition of one blog and my deletion of two others.

New is For All the Saints, though perhaps it would better be described as a "renewal" or even "resurrection," albeit in a slightly different guise. This For All the Saints blog (not to be confused with the Lutheran breviary [daily prayer books] For All the Saints) -- subtitled "encouraged by their examples, aided by their prayers, strengthened by their fellowship" -- is a new effort by an old blogosphere "friend," Todd Granger. In starting it last November 28, he wrote:
One of the features of my near-defunct weblog, The Confessing Reader, was the posting of the commemorations of the saints in the sanctoral (saints’ days) calendars of the Churches of the Anglican Communion, along with some commemorations from the Lutheran Book of Worship.

This weblog will continue that function of The Confessing Reader. For each commemoration, or “lesser feast” as The Episcopal Church’s sanctoral supplement to the Book of Common Prayer described them, I will post a brief biographical sketch, the collect for the commemoration, and the propers for the day (or a link to the Lectionary Page’s propers for the day). For most of the posts, there will also be an icon, or an iconographic depiction, of the saint whom we are commemorating and for whom we are giving thanks that day.
Read more of his (re-) introduction here.

The Confessing Reader itself has been on my blog roll for as long as I've had one, but (as Todd notes) it is nearly defunct. In its heyday it not only featured the calendar of saints, but regular theological reflection on current matters (including the controversies within the Episcopal Church, most of which were quickly immersing the ELCA) and news from the Nordic (Lutheran) churches -- something notoriously difficult to find in English. Now, there's still plenty of good things in The Confessing Reader's Word Press archives (though much more got lost in the fall of CANNet), but apart from occasional posts of the calendar of the saints, which is now on Todd's newer blog, it's been pretty quiet the last couple of years.

Pontifications has also been on my blog roll forever, another must-read CANNet-hosted blog written by Fr. Alvin Kimel, started when he was a reasserter Episcopal priest. What one finds on the current Word Press iteration is but a shadow of the wonderful reflections and discussions that were lost (at least to the blogosphere) in CANNet's fall. Fr. Kimel's blog quieted down when he gave up the struggles of being faithful in the Episcopal Church and was received into the Roman Catholic Church and ordained a priest under the Pastoral Provision. He is, I suspect, much more content -- at least that's what I read between the lines of a blog whose last post was a year-and-a-half ago.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Fifteen Isn't Enough

And so I got tagged by a Facebook friend (who happens to be an actual friend that only just came on to Facebook:
15 Favorite Vocalists

The rules: Don't take too long to think about it. Fifteen vocalists that will always stick with you. List the first fifteen you can recall in no more than fifteen minutes. And in no particular order. Tag fifteen friends, and me, because I'm interested in seeing what singers my friends choose.
So, after looking at Elisabeth's list, I took about 10 minutes and posted:
  1. Nat "King" Cole
  2. Bing Crosby
  3. Peggy Lee
  4. Ella Fitzgerald
  5. Bobby Darin
  6. Glen Campbell
  7. Dean Martin
  8. Michael Jackson
  9. Vikki Carr
10. Frank Sinatra
11. Johnny Rivers
12. Tom Jones
13. Brooke Benton
14. Jimmie Rodgers (as in "Honeycomb")
15. Chris Isaak
But now I must confess, these weren't the first 15. 4 or 5 other names had come to mind over about 10 minutes, but I discarded them from these 15 because the ones here had been really important at some point of my life. Then, after posting the above list I looked at other friends' lists and the comments their friends added. Wow, there were some really top-notch vocalists there, some of whom I should have included on any "favorites" list, some of whom I recognize as good but who don't do a whole lot for me.

And then there is in my car a list of "important vocalists" that I have been keeping track of as I listen to the radio (particularly XM Radio's SIRIUSLY Sinatra channel. And when I looked at it, sure enough were 3 more names on that list:
* Billy Eckstein
* Perry Como
* Barbra Streisand.
And I knew that I needed to make a more complete list of my favorite vocalists. So, looking through my list of records and CDs that I have or want, I add these vocalists, again in no particular order:
* Johnny Mathis
* David Clayton Thomas (Blood, Sweat and Tears)
* Jim Morrison
* Roland Gift (Fine Young Cannibals)
* Lou Rawls
* Tony Bennett
* Andy Williams
* Matt Monro
* Jimmie Sommerville (Bronski Beat)
* Bryan Ferry
* Pat Boone
* David Bowie
* Neil Diamond
* Greg Lake
* Mika
* Freddie Mercury (Queen)
* Neil Tennant (Pet Shop Boys)
* Louis Armstrong
* Sammy Davis, Jr.
* Rod Allen (The Fortunes)

* Linda Ronstadt
* Karen Carpenter
* Martha Davis (The Motels)
* Phoebe Snow
* Norah Jones
* Carly Simon
* Shakira
* Diana Ross
* Madonna
* Judy Garland
* Petula Clark
* Patricia Kaas
* Mama Cass Elliott
* Marilyn McCoo (The 5th Dimension)
That's 52 Favorite Vocalists. And I know I'm missing somebody!

Monday, February 07, 2011

The Blizzard of 2011

As beautiful as it is, the best thing one can say is:

Pitchers and catchers report next Sunday!