Saturday, March 31, 2012

M.D.N.A. Track Reviews: "I Don't Give A ..."

There's only one queen, and that's Madonna! Biiitch!

Next up on M.D.N.A. is "I Don't Give A...", a fast and frenzied funky track featuring Nicki Minaj. I'm really liking this one a lot. The lyrics are an angry rant at the ex, and the vocals are spoken at a quick pace, only this time Madge's rapping works well. The music track is equally fast paced and thumping and I just love the dramatic chants that come towards the end after Minaj's rap. I'm not sure if this one will ever make it as a single, but who knows, it just might work!




MDNA (Deluxe Version) - Madonna



Check out the reviews of the first seven tracks on "M.D.N.A.":

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Gang Bang

I'm Addicted

Turn Up the Radio

Some Girls

Superstar

Stay tuned for the rest...


A letter from P!nk...


Ah yes, spring is here and one of my absolute faves, Ms. P!nk herself, is back! Yesterday subscribers to her website P!nk'sPage received a letter from the singer, and it was sweet and exciting:

A Letter to My Fans

People of The World!!!

How the hell are you? I trust you are all well.....
I AM CRANKING ALONG!!!!

Things are going swimmingly, in the studio, as a mommy. My goodness gracious, how life has changed!!!!!!

Studio sessions used to go well into the night... I can vaguely remember having keys confiscated, passing out on Butch Walker's couch a couple of times using a packing blanket as a cover...... These days "bottle service" is more like "bottle warmer"..... but where I used to excel in my drinking capabilities, this time I'm excelling in productivity and vocals... and boobs. boobs boobs everywhere. That little girl can eat. TMI

I am soo soo soo excited for all of you to hear what we've been working on...
I think it's good. I really do- but who cares what I think, right? What matters most is how you feel about it.....

I'm putting my heart and soul into every song and there's a lot of that these days. This little girl has expanded me and what I am capable of feeling as a human. Let's hope it shows:)

Really looking forward to seeing all of you again, dusting off the old dancing shoes and learning some new tricks :)

Thanks again for all the "I Miss You's" and all the constant love. My heart is full. Thank you.

And I love that fan dork dance video. I'm gonna have to seriously step up my geek game- or put Willow to work....

all my lovin' xxx

P!nk


How cool is that? Check out "F**kin Perfect"



F**kin' Perfect - F**kin' Perfect (Perfect) - Single




Image Source: P!nk's Page


March 31st, 2012: Aunt Barbara; Toots; Meatloaf and ESL

Hey all and happy Saturday! It’s been a really long, busy week here and I’m taking a little break from everything by just hanging around the house on a rainy day. There’s been lots to catch up on, but I haven’t had too much time to be writing, so now that I’ve got the chance…



Aunt Barbara

On Wednesday, my pal Dita and I attended an Aunt Barbara Tupperware party at Trio Restaurant to benefit the Long Island gay Men’s Chorus. I’ve been a fan of Auntie for some time now and I was excited for Dit to see for himself what she was all about, and Auntie B didn’t disappoint. For almost a full hour, we were kept in stitches by her unique brand of humor, sprinkled with 70’s pop culture references and hysterically funny product demonstrations. If you’ve never been to an Aunt Barbara event, you need to! I just published a review of the event here and you can see what a little of what she’s all about here:



Toots

Thursday night I had a reunion with one of my oldest friends. I’ve spoken of Marcia here before, most recently a few weeks back when her husband Brad had passed away. Well, “Toots” had a family wedding this weekend here on Long Island and so she came up with her daughter Layne and her family. Since she didn’t have much time, nor a car to get around in, I drove into Nassau County to have dinner with the bunch of them and it was like 20 years ago all over again!

Marcia and I go way back…all the way to 1984 or so, and we’ve been through a lot together. I know just about everything about her and she likewise. Her sister Susan came out from Queens to make that circle of my life almost fully complete (sans one person!). The whole night was like a fun family reunion…an evening full of reliving old memories and making new ones. Though she’ll be here in NY until Monday, wedding stuff will prevent me from seeing her again, which is too bad.

Of course, my buddy has got this understandably sad aura about her and I’m glad I was able to give her some joy out of life even if for a little while. I think this might be the year I return to Florida. It’s been a long time!


Really, the iPhone takes crappy pictures!

Meatloaf and ESL – An American Classic!

For the past several weeks, I’ve been teaching a food unit to my beginner ESL class. I’ve got four students who know very little English and part of teaching them at this stage of the game is giving them lots and lots of vocabulary. We started off with basic food items like fruits and vegetables, meat and poultry and the like, and then moved on to food packaging and words relating to the supermarket. I wanted to culminate the unit with cooking an entire meal, American-style of course, and planning it from beginning to end. I decided upon that classic American standard, meatloaf, which only one of the four had ever tried.

We started by taking a look at recipes and learning words relating to measurements, followed by words for kitchen utensils and kitchen verbs (mix, chop, stir, boil, etc.). We took a mini-field trip to the supermarket and made a list of what we’d need, prices and all. Our activity culminated on Wednesday morning with a trip to the Home Skills classroom, where we’d prepare our meal. The experience was a wonderful one, as the kids really got down to business and prepared an entire meal of meatloaf, mac n cheese, broccoli and a salad, which all of my other students got to enjoy. As always, I’m proud of them and the job that they did, and I know they learned a lot.

Well, that’s some of what’s happened in my busy week. We’ve got four days left until spring break and I am definitely looking forward to that! As always, thanks for reading and enjoy the weekend!










Image Sources:

NY Mag

My iPhone

Me




Love and Pride

Song of the Day - Paparazzi - Lady Gaga



Here's a belated birthday tribute to Lady Gaga, who turned 26 this week:



Paparazzi - The Fame




Image Source: Blingee


Friday, March 30, 2012

Madonna returns to Twitter on April 4th



To celebrate MDNA's global first week success, Madonna will return to Twitter April 4 at 10pm ET via @MadonnaMDNAday to thank her fans.

- Madonna.com

Yup, it seems that Madonna enjoyed her live chat last Monday with her fans on Twitter, so much so that she's doing it again this coming Wednesday. Though it's a bit early to start asking her questions, here's the link and info to do so:

Use #askmadonna in your tweet. Watch www.madonna.com/askmadonna

Image Source: ThePlanetD




www.zirh.com

M.D.N.A. Track Reviews: "Superstar"



Ooh la la you're my superstar!

The next track off "M.D.N.A." is a catchy mid-tempo tune that I'm liking more and more with each listen. Some of the lyrics are a little on the corny side ("You're a hot track, you're my suppa duppa star"), a la the title cut and others from Mo's "American Life" album, but the "ooh la la's" are just irresistibly good and the whole song is pretty memorable! Take a listen:



MDNA (Deluxe Version) - Madonna



Check out the reviews of the first six tracks on "M.D.N.A.":

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Gang Bang

I'm Addicted

Turn Up the Radio

Some Girls

Stay tuned for more...

Superstar

Ooh Ooh
Ooh la la
Ooh Ooh
Ooh la la

You're like Brando on the silver screen
You're my hero in a mythical dream
You are perfect just the way that you are
You're Mike Jordan, you're my superstar

Oooh la la, you're my superstar
Oooh la la, love the way that you are
Oooh la la, you're my superstar
Oooh la la, that's what you are

I'm your biggest fan, it's true
Hopelessly attracted to you
You can have the keys to my car
I'll play you a song on my guitar

Oooh la la, you're my superstar
Oooh la la, love the way that you are
Oooh la la, you're my superstar
Oooh la la, that's what you are

Ooh Ooh
Ooh ooh la la
Ooh Ooh
Ooh ooh la la

You’re my gangster
You’re like Al Capone
You’re like Ceasar
Stepping onto the throne
You’re Abe Lincoln
Cuz you fight for what’s right
You’re my angel
Bringing peace to my life

Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, love the way that you are
Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, that’s what you are

I’m your biggest fan, it’s true
Hopelessly attracted to you
You can have the password to my phone
I’ll give you a massage when you get home

Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, love the way that you are
Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, that’s what you are

You're Bruce Lee with the way that you move
You're Travolta getting into your groove
You're James Dean driving in your fast car
You're a hot track, you're my suppa duppa star

You're my superstar
You're my superstar (ooh la la, ooh la la)
You're my superstar (ooh la la, ooh ooh ooh ooh la la)

I’m your biggest fan, it’s true
Hopelessly attracted to you
You can have the keys to my car
I'll play you a song on my guitar

Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, love the way that you are
Ooh la la, you’re my superstar
Ooh la la, that’s what you are

Ooh la la, ooh la la, ooh la la, you're my superstar
Ooh la la, ooh la la, ooh la la, you're my supersuperstar


Lyrics courtesy of AZ Lyrics

Image Source: MusicBoxMix


Song of the Day - Point of No Return - Exposé



One of our local radio stations on Long Island, "Party 105," runs (or used to run?) something called "Freestyle Fridays," a weekly hour-long flashback to the great freestyle music of the 80's. Since I am a big fan of that style of music, I thought I'd bring a lil' bit of that here to John's World.

"Point of No Return" was one of the first big hits by freestyle girl group Expose' and it has an easily recognizable synthesizer run. Typical of the freestyle music of the time, it's fast moving, catchy and oh so danceable! Just click play and enjoy!

Happy Freestyle Friday!



Point of No Return - Exposure




Image Source: RobsRecordsCDsDVDs


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Shallow thoughts for today



This is from an email I got from my pal Rich...I thought it was too funny not to share. Enjoy!


Shallow thoughts for today


*Nothing ticks you off more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.

*I totally take back all those times I didn't want to nap when I was younger.

*There is a great need for a sarcasm font.

*I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in. (So true!)

*I think part of a best friend's job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die. (Hehe)

*I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

*How many times is it appropriate to say "What?" before you just nod and smile because you still didn't hear what they said? (I'm notorious for this!)

*I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers!

*Map Quest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

*Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died. (Totally!)

*I can't remember the last time I wasn't at least kind of tired.

*Bad decisions make good stories. (Always...that's why I write, hehe)

*You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you've made up your mind that you just aren't doing anything productive for the rest of the day. (Can I get an amen! Lol)

*Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after DVDs? I don't want to have to restart my collection. (Really!)

*There's no worse feeling than that millisecond you're sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

*I'm always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my thirty page insurance policy that I swear I did not make any changes to.

*While watching the Olympics, I find myself cheering equally for China and USA . No, I am not of Chinese descent, but I am fairly certain that when Chinese athletes don't win, they are executed.

*I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Darn it!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voicemail. What'd you do after I didn't answer? Drop the phone and run away? (Hmmmm????)

*I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

*Sometimes I'll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.

*I keep some people's phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call. (Good advice!)

*Even if I knew your social security number, I wouldn't know what do to with it.

*I wonder if cops ever get ticked off at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit.

*I think the freezer deserves a light as well.

*I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with liquor than with "Kay".

Image Source: Another email from my pal Dita!


Banner


Song of the Day - Ain't No Other Man - Christina Aguilera



With the announcement that Christina's soon coming back with a new record, I wanted to celebrate one of her best... Happy Thursday!



Ain't No Other Man - Ain't No Other Man - Single




Image Source: Ethno the Beat


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

M.D.N.A. Track Reviews: "Some Girls"

The sixth track on "M.D.N.A." is definitely not one of my favorites. Another one made specifically for dance floors, "Some Girls" doesn't have quite nearly the same appeal as some of the other dance tracks on the album. It's very electronic/techno and in some parts reminds me of Lady Gaga's "I Like It Rough," only with a quicker tempo. Though it does grow on you somewhat after a few listens, I find myself skipping it every so often.




MDNA (Deluxe Version) - Madonna



Check out the reviews of the first five tracks on "M.D.N.A.":

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Gang Bang

I'm Addicted

Turn Up the Radio

Stay tuned for the rest...


The Wanted to appear on American Idol



Oh, boy band mania is definitely back! During a week in which they share the Billboard cover with rival boy band One Direction, Brit boys The Wanted continue to steamroll their way into the minds and iPods of Americans. The band announced via Twitter that they will be appearing on the April 5th results show of American Idol, one of the biggest stages here in the States.

With a whole host of appearances on television and in concert halls across the land, the boys have been very busy keeping up with the chart-topping One Direction, and their AI performance just might be the one that lets them topple their fellow boy band for bragging rights here in America. The group has recently announced that they'll be releasing an eponymous EP here in the US on April 25th and "Chasing the Sun' will be their next single.



Sources:

Idolator

Popcrush

Image Sources:

Idolator

Sharetv






Unlimited Music, Everywhere. Try Rdio for Free.

March 28, 2012 - Writing Wednesday

Every time I turn around it seems we're back to Wednesday again! I wish it would be like that for Fridays, but oh well! Today is Hump Day, Writing Wednesday, and a beautiful one at that! The sun is shining, the birds are singing, and the brief cold spell we've had over the past 48 hours or so has seemingly passed. Oh, I love spring!



Madonna Mania

For any of you who read me regularly already know that Madonna has been coming up a lot in my pieces lately, and for good reason. We've all got our favorite musical acts and for me, Madonna is my all time favorite. I've been listening to her since I was about 18 years old and the story of my whole life since is told with a Madonna soundtrack playing in the background.

"M.D.N.A." was finally released this week and there's been plenty to talk about, so if you're a fan like me, then read on:

A new approach to promo for Ms. M

One of the most commonly held beliefs about Madge is that she's been able to stay on top of her game because she pays attention and knows how to change with the times. In the months leading up to "M.D.N.A.," I think Madonna learned something new about the music business in the year 2012 and she adapted to it. Here are some examples:

Madonna at the Top of Her Game in Promo Appearances for 'M.D.N.A.'

M.D.N.A. Mania begins with live Facebook chat with Madonna

Madge counting down to "M.D.N.A." with Facebook chat, live appearance in Miami

First Facebook, Now Twitter: Madonna takes to the Internet to promote M.D.N.A.

Madonna on Twitter

M.D.N.A. Track Reviews

After my first couple of listens, I decided to do something new. Instead of writing a track by track review piece for Yahoo or Gather, I decided to take a view of each track on "M.D.N.A.," one at a time here on John's World. So far I've covered the first five tracks:

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Gang Bang

I'm Addicted

Turn Up the Radio

Stay tuned for the rest...

Music News

Here are some music headlines from the week from the musical acts I watch:

"The Wanted's" new EP track listing

"Girl Gone Wild" too racy for YouTube viewers

Christina Aguilera assures new album "is coming"

M.D.N.A. #1 with a Bullet!



Commentaries and Rants: Credit card Companies and Banks

A couple of weeks ago I had an upsetting experience with Citibank, one of my credit card holders. While looking over my credit card statements, I found that I was literally being robbed blind by a bank I've been dealing with for almost 25 years and through no fault of my own.

I took the opportunity to share the my expertise in the banking world to and what happened to show just how unfair things are these days for the average person. The whole story validates what the protesters in the Occupy Wall Street Movement have been talking about and I published both pieces in the hope that people become more aware of such issues and not be quiet about what's happening to us, the 99%.

Consumers Should Scrutinize Credit Card Statements to Protect Themselves

Banks and Credit Cards: A Case Study in Supporting Occupy Wall Street



Roller Coasters

Spring is upon us and soon amusement parks will be opening their gates for the 2012 season. Over in England and down in Tennessee, two parks have already opened and unveiled their newest and baddest coasters from this year's crop. Take a look at Dollywood's "Wild Eagle" and Thorpe Park's "Swarm":

Dollywood's new Wild Eagle Coaster - Take a front seat ride!

All New Pics and a POV Ride on the New "Swarm" Roller Coaster at Thorpe Park

GLAAD Media Awards

GLAAD is an organization that promotes the positive ways GLBT people are portrayed in the media and last Saturday they held their annual awards ceremony in New York City.

Image Sources:

Madonna Scrapbook

My Bank Tracker

CNBC




Love and Pride

M.D.N.A. Track Reviews: "Turn Up the Radio"

Next up on "M.D.N.A." is, to me, the potential smash of the whole album! "Turn Up the Radio" is a bona fide pop/dance anthem, with a catchy chorus that sticks in your head long after a listen, though Ms. M's vocals here are a little Minnie Mouse-ish. And the music is equally anthemic. This one will do great both on radios and on dance floors...trust me on this one!



MDNA (Deluxe Version) - Madonna



Check out the reviews of the first four tracks on "M.D.N.A.":

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Gang Bang

I'm Addicted

Stay tuned for the rest...

]

Song of the Day - Boyfriend - Justin Bieber



If you'd have told me a month ago that I'd have Justin Bieber on my blog not once, but twice in one month, I'd have thought you were crazy. I mean, yeah he's cutesy and talented, but the whole teeny bopper thing just kinda turns me off. (Bad memories of a Debbie Gibson concert at Jones Beach with about 15,000 teenage girls in 1988 might just have something to do with it.)

I gotta say, though, every once in awhile the bubble gum pop just gets to me, and that's just what happened when I posted Carly Rae Jepson's "Call Me Maybe" video a few weeks ago, which features Justin. Since putting that one up, I've actually downloaded it to iTunes and have caught myself listening to several times since then.

Anyway, back to this one. Of course, coverage was all over the place when this was released on Monday and I gave it a quick listen just to see what it was about, and you know what? I kind of liked it! It's definitely a maturer sound than the things I've heard from the kid, and it's pretty good at that.

"Boyfriend" has a nice, snappy track and Justin's vocals are a little R&B in the verses and downright poppy-catchy in the chorus. It's an interesting song that's now got me eager to see what Mr. Bieber's gonna come out with next.



Boyfriend - Single - Justin Bieber

Image Source: Cambio


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Christina Aguilera assures new album "is coming"



Digital Spy reported earlier today that "The Voice" coach/pop diva Christina Aguilera finally spoke of her upcoming 7th studio album, the follow-up to her good, but overlooked and short-lived 2010 effort, "Bionic."

"It's coming, it's coming, it's coming. I'm very, very excited...It's quality not quantity," the singer said backstage at The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

The singer first announced in June of last year that she'd finally be getting back into the studio in what at first seemed like a really short span between projects for her (It had been four years in between her last three studio albums "Stripped" (2002), "Back to Basics" (2006) and "Bionic" (2010)), but in the interim now it seems as if Ms. Aguilera is taking the time to do it right, hopefully.

Christina's been mostly mum about the project ever since, but I'm glad to hear that it is indeed in the works. She's characterized the new work as "fun, introspective, honest and raw," so I'm excited to see what she'll come out with. Stay tuned as details become available. In the meantime, here's a fun one from "Bionic," featuring Nicki Minaj...

Woo Hoo



Woohoo (feat. Nicki Minaj) - Bionic




Image Source: p2pbg


M.D.N.A. Track Reviews: "Gang Bang"



Like a bitch out of order
Like a bat out of hell
Like a fish out of water
I'm scared, can't you tell

Bang Bang
Bang Bang


In the third in a series of track by track reviews of Madonna's "M.D.N.A.," we take a look at the singer's own favorite song off the record. "Gang, Bang" is a thumping dance floor track with aggressive undertones as our heroine shares her desire for revenge against an ex who ended up with all her "jack."

I thought you were good
But you painted me bad
Compared to the others
You're the best thing I had

Bang Bang, shot you dead
Bang Bang, shot you dead

I thought it was you
And I loved you the most
But I was just keeping
My enemies close

I made a decision,
I would never look back
So how did you end up
With all my jack?

Bang Bang, shot you dead
Bang Bang, shot you dead in the head


Both the bass and the singer's voice build up stronger and stronger as the song progresses, ending with a climactic and inevitably controversial "shot you dead" ending. This one has radio potential, though it's much more tailor made for the dance floor (Looking forward to the remixes of this one!). I would imagine from the singer's references to a "violence" themed show that this is one song off "M.D.N.A." she'll be taking on the road.



MDNA (Deluxe Version) - Madonna



Check out the reviews of the first two tracks on "M.D.N.A.":

Gimme All Your Luvin

Girl Gone Wild

Stay tuned for the rest...

Lyrics courtesy of AZLyrics

Image Source: YouTube


Madonna on Twitter



Last night, Madonna took to Twitter to chat live with her fans. I happened to be on Facebook when the notice came on my wall that the chat had just begun. I quickly logged in and watched as the tweet questions came in by the hundreds. People asked all sorts of questions, as you can imagine, and the singer answered with honesty and of course her sarcastic, yet funny sense of humor.

What is your favorite type of flowers?

hydrangeas, silly!


would you ever go vegan ?

no, I love I need I want animal protein.

If you could control time with one feature, would you choose to pause or rewind?

pause to take a couple breaths, then go forward. never go back.


Is your love a revolver?

my sex is a killer.

How do you feel about bullying and what do you think about Gaga's work with the Born This Way Foundation?

I applaud @ladygaga support of the gay community and her commitment to stop bullying.


"Everybody" turns 30 this year. Any chance of hearing it on the next tour?

Not telling

What’s your favorite Britney Spears song?

baby one more time

I asked three questions, but none of them were answered...ah, well, I couldn't think of a really good one anyway, but I figured I'd give it a try. One of my Twitter friends, Robert V., who runs a blog called Ultimate Madonna, did get a response from the singer when he tweeter her an RSS feed of his posts. She thanked him for his support. How cool is that?

Check out the feed of Madge's Q&A from last night's Twitter chat right here.

More on last night's chat from Madonnarama.

Image Source: Twitter






Love and Pride

Song of the Day - My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It) - En Vogue



I just read yesterday that En Vogue's breakout album "Funky Divas" just had its 20th Anniversary on Saturday and I just had to pay tribute. En Vogue was a foursome of funky divas with powerful voices, plenty of style, and who always conducted themselves with class.

"Funky Divas" was the girls' sophomore set released in March of 1992 and it sent them into the stratosphere, albeit for a short time, with chart-busting, fast n funky songs like this one and "Free Your Mind," and soulful ballads like the smooth "Giving Him Something He Can Feel." It's really too bad that the girls, Dawn Robinson, Maxine Jones, Terry Ellis and Cindy Herron broke up much sooner than any of us would have liked. Who knows, maybe one day...



Funky Divas - En Vogue




Image Source, and for more on "Funky Divas" 20th Anniversary, check out Idolator.


Monday, March 26, 2012

All New Pics and a POV Ride on the New "Swarm" Roller Coaster at Thorpe Park

One of my go-to coaster sites, Coaster Grotto, has just published pictures of the newest roller coaster at Thorpe Park in England. Swarm is the frenzied winged coaster where crash test dummies lost their limbs on test runs before the ride opened on March 15th. So far there have been no reported loss of limbs from riders..






To read more on "Swarm," click here.
.
For more images, check out Coaster Grotto here

And check out a front seat ride right here:



YIKES!






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