Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Manhattan babies don't sleep tight until the dawn

Finally. My life has a soundtrack. Having been the last creature on earth to fall into the MP3 pit, I am now the owner of a slim, spiffy hot pink iPod, thanks to Daughter and Son-in-Law. It took a couple of weeks to figure out the whole iTunes thing and how to move my music from CD to the darn thing, but I think I've got the hang of it now.

This tiny little thing holds lots of song favorites, a couple of audiobooks, and several podcasts, allowing me to shut out everyone else's iPod noise on the subway. Fine with me. But over the past few days, one playlist has risen above the others to get me to and from work - New York songs.

Any idea how many songs there are about New York City? A ba-zillion. Far and away more songs have been written about NYC than any other city on earth - nothing comes close. I'm sure I'll be downloading to the playlist from now till doomsday, but here's what I have so far:

New York State of Mind - Billy Joel (Don't care if it's Chinatown, or 'round Riverside . . . )

Rhapsody in Blue - original George Gershwin recording with Paul Whiteman Orchestra (#1 New York song of the ages. Perfectly captures the city's rhythms.)

Theme from "New York, New York" - Frank Sinatra (Start spreadin' the news. I'll probably add in Liza's version as well, since it was her song in the first place.)

Lullaby of Broadway - Jerry Orbach and cast of "42nd Street" (Allentown? The hip-hooray and ballyhoo.)

Arthur's Theme - Christopher Cross (When you get caught between the moon and, well, you-know-where.)

Take the A Train - Duke Ellington (Too cool for its own good.)

On Broadway - George Benson (. . . and one thin dime won't even shine your shoes.)

Boy from New York City - Manhattan Transfer (Oooooh, weeee. You ought to come and see.)

Manhattan - Ella Fitzgerald (But I'll only take Manhattan, not the Bronx and Staten Island, too.)

NYC - from "Annie" (Too hot. Too cold. Too late, I'm sold.)

The 59th Street Bridge Song - Simon and Garfunkel (Lookin' for fun and feelin' groovy.)

New York, New York - (from "On the Town") Mel Torme (A helluva town.)

And I've just scratched the surface. Lots of my New York favorites aren't here yet. But let me tell ya', folks, nothing perks up the walking pace like "On Broadway" or "Rhapsody in Blue." And as yellow taxis whiz by and the top of the Chrysler Building comes into view, I feel like I'm in the middle of my own private 1930's movie.

I own this town, baby! Me and George, Ella, Frank, and Jerry. The Bronx is up and the Battery's down.


Anonymous said...

While not a "New York song" (far from it actually) but noting the date of this latest post, I hope you have included "Ode to Billie Joe" on your play list. "It was the third of June another sleepy dusty Delta day...."

Also, you must read the latest Ferrol Sams book "Down Town." All his books are laugh-out-loud funny.

Love, Cuz

Anonymous said...

I have found my ipod playlist on a lot of commercials on T.V. I was watching CSI NY one night and counted six songs that were on my playlist. I don't know if I have good taste or they are just running out of ideas. If it wasn't for my ipod I would have gone nuts last summer. I have my boys to thank for keeping my sanity, and keeping a song in my heart.

Joy Des Jardins said...

You are a girl after my own heart....I love every song you have picked so far. GREAT choices!!! Keep going girl. I don't have an ipod, but what a great gift. Have a wonderful weekend sweetie.... ~Joy xo

Liz said...

Nope, I don't have one yet. I have this phobia about someone creeping up behind me while I'm tuned in and turned off, and STABBING me!

And I don't even watch horror movies.

Great songs though.