Tuesday, August 30, 2022

FIND YOUR BUCKET LIST MY FELLOW WEARY VAGABOND

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.” - Christopher McCandless

That statement defines the beauty of travel. The things we have discovered lost on a winding road or riding on a train or walking an unknown trail still hold strong in our heads and hearts.

Here we are two days from Labor Day 2022. I must apologize for being such a slacker. But, as they say, stuff does, indeed happen. My last post was on December 25, 2021, celebrating the second most important day of Christendom. Most people consider it the most important because you reconnect with family, friends, and people you may not have seen in a long time. Throw in the insanity of COVID and it makes it even more meaningful for travelers and those that just stay home So, as we are finally coming out from the COVID stoppage of living our lives, it is time to look to the future. 

Do you have your Bucket List? Do you even know where it is? Do you still remember all those things that you told yourself you were going to do before you die? Find it, clean it off and update it. Now Bucket Lists tend to be extraordinarily private. You may have things on yours that you really don't want anyone else to see. Additionally, most people that have Bucket Lists have many Travel desires listed. 

There are places you want to see. There are always things you want to enjoy with the ones you love. One of the most amazing trips we have ever had was a week in Barcelona with my son, his wife, and my daughter. Sagrada Familia, Dali's home, the amazing architecture, ancient and modern, the art of Picasso, the father of Cubism, and some of the most amazing food on the planet. And all of this was enjoyed with those people that mean the most in my life. There are places you have always wanted to visit, experience, sleep and eat in. Your "Updated" Bucket List should embody the desires of your life for yourself and the people you love. So - ATTENTION! - write, reserve, and go. 

For the next few posts, I am going to write about various travel experiences including Spain, Italy, and maybe even a little Daytona Beach. The posts will cover the places, the hotels, the AIRBNBs,, the food, and the joys of travel with the people I love. Here is an oh-so-profound quote from one of America's greatest writers

“I have found out there ain't no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.”

I have traveled a lot over the years with my one and only best friend, lover of life, beautiful vagabond, and lover of all things romantic - my wife. There is nowhere she will not go. There is nothing she will not try and she learns things that go deep into her life view when she experiences the cultures of people that are different from hers. I have also traveled far and wide with my kids. It is my firm belief that travel has enhanced their lives immensely. Travel can change you in more ways than you could ever imagine.

And, BTW - Summer is ending. That means that you can travel in September and October to many places, particularly in Europe, that will be less crowded and much less expensive. So, start ticking off that lifetime list of things you have always wanted you and yours to enjoy. Of course, you can search this blog for many recommendations on places to stay, eat and visit.

If you have never been to Europe, then, the first place to visit must be Italy. The land, the architecture, the food, and the people. The culture of this small but amazing country can be life-changing. When you see the buildings and experience the culture of the cradle of Western Civilization, you will be amazed and mesmerized at the same time. Our memories of visiting Italy have never left us. We are currently planning a trip for 2023. 

So, get off that couch, take that relaxing 9-hour flight - LOL!! and see places that will enlighten your mind, heart, and soul.

Next up - My meanderings about Spain and maybe some Daytona Beach.

And just to show I'm still on the move, check out a very cool tune by the great Lyle Lovett entitled PANTS IS OVER RATED from his new album 12th of June.


When in doubt - Just Go!

Thanks

DL Stafford
thenomadarchitect















Saturday, December 25, 2021

MERRY MERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS - DECEMBER 25 - THE DAY WE CELEBRATE THE JOYS OF LIFE AND THE BIRTH OF JESUS CHRIST!

Merry Christmas
- To coordinate our families' times for Christmas, we celebrated and opened gifts yesterday. Watching my four and half year old grandson relish every second of opening everybody's gifts and enjoying his gifts brought smiles, laughter and love. I hope, whether yesterday, today or tomorrow that you enjoy the feelings this grandest day of celebration brings. Every time I hear the story of the birth of Jesus, I am reminded that it truly is The Reason for The Season.

On this special day please enjoy NO. 1 on THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN as multi-Grammy winning artist Faith Hill delivers a powerful song celebrating the birth of Christ - A BABY CHANGES EVERYTHING.


Also, today enjoy a completely new arrangement of a very old Christmas Classic - for KING & COUNTRY performs  OH COME OH COME EMMANUEL.

 

And no listing of Christmas songs would be complete without this - The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sings the greatest hymn in the history of religious music with over 2,000 people from around the world - THE HALLELUJAH CHORUS!


And - When today ends, and the kids are finally tired, let this nice little tune by the greatest rock/pop group in history with Ringo Starr send you off with dreams of Christmas.


I hope you enjoyed the tunes brought to you for the ninth year of THE CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

D.L.Stafford


Friday, December 24, 2021

IT'S CHRISTMAS EVE! THE PRESENTS ARE WRAPPED AND UNDER THE TREE RIGHT!! NO. 2 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

CHRISTMAS EVE! All wrapping done - check! All presents under the tree - check! All cookies, brownies, cakes, pies, etc. cooked - check! Prime Rib, Ham, Turkey in the oven - check! Everything is slowly being put in place for little kids to walk on the ceiling! To celebrate the night before the big day, it is my fervent hope that you and yours are enjoying the grandest of all seasons as we prepare for the joy of family together and being with people that you may not have seen in a long time. And, that we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, the savior of the world. 

Today seems a perfect time to hear a cavalcade of British royalty and thespian talent presenting a unique reading of THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS - NO. 2 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN.


Next - A great pop tune celebrating Christmas Eve by Ryan Stevenson as he and his crew celebrate Christmas Eve with a great tune - THIS CHRISTMAS EVE.


And to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ is a powerful song written by Chris Tomlin and sung by Lauren Daigle - NOEL!


Have a good one!

D.L.Stafford

Thursday, December 23, 2021

IT'S RANDOM THURSDAY FOR SOME NEW TUNES FOR NO. 3 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

Today is for those of you hunting for some new music to listen to for Christmas. I have searched high and low to find tunes that are pretty much brand new this season. Three very different artists to help you celebrate Christmas..

First today - ALABAMA doing an acapella number entitled CHRISTMAS IN DIXIE - NO. 3 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN. Wow, this is some fine singing.


Second - One of the best guitarist and singers performing today in Country Music - KEITH URBAN performs a smooth arrangement with a very cool video - I'LL BE YOUR SANTA TONIGHT.


Then, enjoy a great jazz/pop artist who happens to be the daughter of Ravi Shankar, a master of the sitar, who collaborated with the likes of George Harrison, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones - NORAH JONES delivers a completely unique tune and video entitled CHRISTMAS CALLING (JOLLY JONES).

 

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. I can't wait. Merry Christmas!

D.L.Stafford

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

IT'S HUMP DAY - LET'S LISTEN TO SOME GREAT JAZZ PRESENTED BY SOME AMAZING ARTISTS TODAY - NO. 4 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

I've always been a jazz fan - big band, small combo, quartet, great singer and, of course, piano. Jazz has a broad array of different styles and rhythms to see and hear. Today, I'm bringing you some new and some tried and true from the jazz world writing, playing and singing about Christmas. 

First up on Jazz Wednesday, take a listen and enjoy one of the masters of jazz piano - No. 4 on The 2021 Christmas Countdown - Dave Brubeck and his sons performing A Special Christmas Song in 1996. We had the pleasure of seeing Dave Brubeck twice. First time was July 4th Weekend 1969 at the first Atlanta International Pop Festival. For some reason, Brubeck was the only jazz artist featured in three days of pure rock and roll. What an amazing weekend of music hearing Brubeck along with the likes of Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin and Canned Heat. I was mesmerized watching and listening to this amazing artist. Then, we saw him again in 2006 at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, Florida at the age of 86. Again - mesmerized.


The second piece today is performed by a very good friend who just happens to be an amazing pianist and musical artist. Please enjoy this version of The Christmas Song with a very polished group of players from my good friend Regi Stone.


And from a group of very innovative musicians - THE PIANO GUYS bring you - ANGELS WE HAVE HEARD ON HIGH (Christmas with 32 fingers and 8 thumbs).


Only four days! I gotta get some things wrapped. And don't you just love AMAZON!!!

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

MERCY ME ON TUESDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS - THESE BOYS CAN PLAY AND SING LIKE CRAZY - NO. 5 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN


Since 1994, MERCY ME, an innovative Contemporary Christian Band, has brought a whole new sound to gospel music. Bart Millard, the lead singer, has a voice that just grabs you with every phrase. And the band is always blistering or subtle as each tune demands. They always deliver great musicianship on every tune. These guys are not your typical contemporary Christian group. They are constantly looking for new musical innovations to present the Gospel.

Enjoy a very cool rock/pop number by MERCYME - NO. 5 on THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN - CHRISTMAS TIME AGAIN.


Today's bonus track, not a Christmas song, features MERCYME doing a very funky song about change and living the good life. The video is outstanding with the band and an ensemble of dancers to get the message across.


Ir's Tuesday - so get up and sing and dance. Christmas is only five days away.

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford

Monday, December 20, 2021

HOW ABOUT A LITTLE R&B THE MONDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS FROM KEB MO' AND FREINDS - NO. 6 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

The first time I heard KEB MO', I was hooked. His lyrics, his voice and his jamming on the guitar deliver some of the best R&B you will ever hear. I saw this winner of five Grammys live right here in my hometown at the thirty-five-year-old venue - THE MOON. Keb Mo brings poetry to life with the blues. Some blues players can't seem to find anything new to sing or play. But Keb Mo' is always developing something innovative with a new way to hear the blues.

First up today - KEB performs a great innovative Christmas tune written by Koko Taylor around 2009. The video shows KEB playing this tune to get the party going - NO. 6 on the 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWNMERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS,  


And, in today's Bonus Track, KEB mixes it up with the Tony Award winning singer/actress Kristin Chenoweth on another great Christmas tune. A nice blues arrangement of MERRY CHRISTMAS BABY.


It's Monday and we're headed to the big day.

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford