Lanny's Blog

Music Video of the Week- Silverstein

I will admit and I’m not ashamed that I still listen to bands that were popular in the 2000s. If a song has good lyrics, real instruments and a great music video, then I’m always on board. One of my favorite bands from the 2000s was a group called Silverstein. A few months ago, I started listening to their music again and I was pleasantly surprised that they are still releasing new records.

In fact, this year, they will be releasing a new record called, “I Am Alive in Everything I Touch.” And I’m very excited about it. These guys have consistently made good albums without ever changing their style of music. Most bands these days decide to switch styles in order to sell more records but it usually just comes off looking desperate. Check out the new Nickelback video if you need an example of how sad it can be.

But yes, Silverstein has stuck to their guns and continue to make great rock music. That’s why this week’s video is from their new album and it’s called, “A Midwestern State of Emergency.” Enjoy!

Frank: The Strangest Movie I’ve Ever Seen

Recently, I’ve been watching a lot of odd movies. The type of films where you scratch your head and at the end, you wonder what you just watched. The last three weird movies that I have seen are The Babadook, Tusk and one of my new favorite movies, Frank.

This is Frank.

This is Frank.

Frank is a peculiar tale about a young man who joins a band with a very strange lead singer played by Michael Fassbender. (Even though you don’t see his face until the end.) Fassbender’s character wears a giant head throughout the entire film. All the time. Even in the shower. He never reveals his face. He is also a musical genius.

Here’s one of their songs. It almost sounds like a mixture of Radiohead and Jim Morrison.

The whole movie is about a band struggling to record an album while they also deal with new fame and a lead singer who is mentally ill. Each member fights to remain true to themselves while their lives and music evolves.

Would I recommend this movie? Sure, but it’s definitely not for everyone. I enjoyed the quirkiness and the dry humor. I also thought it had some really meaningful metaphors in it about the music business and people dealing with a mental illness.

Frank is on Netflix and it’s also out on DVD and Blu-Ray. If you’ve seen the movie, tell me what you think about it in the comments section!

Music Video of the Week- The Wonder Years

Life is full of highs and low. Valleys and mountains. Sometimes we’re on top of the world and sometimes we are in the deepest gutter. For the times where I feel like I’m stuck in a hole, I usually listen to this song by The Wonder Years called, “Passing Through a Screen Door.”

The song is about a guy who doesn’t seem to have his life together. One point in the bridge he talks about being 26 and not measuring up to his peers. The lives of others seem to be in order and seem to be productive. That’s something I can relate to on a very deep level.

You start to look around and ask yourself if you messed up somewhere along the way. Maybe you look back and see choices you’ve made and wonder where you would be if you choose differently. Maybe you’d have a wife, a family, a better job, a better place to live or just a better life in general. Maybe you’d be a better person.

The thing I love most about The Wonder Years is that their lyrics are so relatable. You can feel the real emotion coming through. The lead singer asks questions of himself and examines how he could have been a better person.

On the other hand, maybe we’ve made the right choices. Maybe we are exactly where we are suppose to be. Maybe our choices are leading us to something greater than we ever could have imagined. Maybe the other choices just weren’t for us. At least, that’s what I’m hoping…

So here is this week’s music video. Enjoy.

Back In Action

This blog feels like such a distant memory to me now. But I’m not here to get sentimental with you. I’m here to say, that I’m back and will be updating the blog.

Lately, I’ve been trying to figure out what I want to do with my life. And honestly, I still have no clue. I have ideas of what I would like to do, but nothing has grabbed me. Nothing has been worthy of pursuing. Except writing. Writing is the one passion that I would gladly do without getting paid. That and making music. I do them both and don’t get paid and I’m okay with that.

So, here we go. In this blog, I will be writing about music, music videos, news stories that interest me and random topics that I want to explore. Will anyone read this blog? Probably not. But I’m okay with that too.

So to start things off, here’s a music video from a band I’ve been listening to a lot lately. They are called The Sidekicks and the song is titled, “Everything in Twos.” Enjoy. And I hope you’ll be back.

The Oldest Man in the World

All good things must come to an end, right? Well for Jiroemon Kimura, the oldest man in the world from Japan, he lived more days than most of us can ever hope.

Not only was Kimura the oldest man alive according to the Guinness Book of World Records, but he was also the oldest person to have ever lived! That’s a pretty amazing feat when you think about it. And what’s even more amazing is the fact that he died of natural causes at the ripe age of 116. And by ripe, I mean pretty old.

Jiroemon Kimura

I hope I’m this happy when I’m 116.

Kimura was born on April 19, 1897. Just think of all the amazing things and events this man was alive for. Both world wars, dinosaurs, and most of the stories from the Old Testament.

I think the thing I learned from this story is that even if you live to be 116, life is still short. Do the things you love and go out with a big smile on your face.

To read more about this story, check out the link.

Music Video of the Week- Be Your Own Pet

It’s been a while since I’ve graced this blog with my presence. It’s been a busy two months, and unfortunately this blog was put on the back burner. However, the posts shall continue whether you like it or not.

Be Your Own Pet

Be Your Own Pet

This week’s music video comes from a band that I recently discovered even though they broke up a few years ago. Once again, I’m late to the party. It’s like high school all over again. Just kidding, I was never invited to parties in high school…

That’s neither here nor there. This week’s I have chosen the band, Be Your Own Pet. This punk/garage band came to us from the sweet dwellings of Nashville, Tennessee. Which is weird, because the lead singer is the only Ten I See. In other words, she’s attractive.

Anyways, here is there video for the song, Adventure. Enjoy yourselves.

Music Video of the Week- Taking Back Sunday

Taking Back Sunday is one of my favorite rock bands. Yeah, I know some people describe them as “emo,” but I do have a problem with that term. Technically all music is “emo” since all goods songs convey some sort of emotion. But that is neither here nor there.

Taking Back Sunday

Taking Back Sunday

Personally, I think Taking Back Sunday were in their prime when the album, Where You Want To Be came out. Yes, Tell All Your Friends was a great record, but for some reason I could relate and enjoyed WYWTB even more.

This week, I have chosen a live music video from these guys. The song is called One-Eighty By Summer and it just happens to be my favorite track from WYWTB, even though I thoroughly enjoyed every song from the record.

So sit back, and enjoy an amazing performance by one of my favorite bands.

What’s your favorite Taking Back Sunday song? Tell me about it in the comments.


Barney and Friends…and Murder

When you think of Barney, the popular purple dinosaur, what words come to mind? Children? Education? Learning? Murder?

Now I know what you’re thinking. How could a fictional character that is both loving and caring be tangled up with murder? Well he’s not. But the son of the show’s creator is.


Barney’s response after he was asked if he had ever murdered someone.

Sheryl Leach, the creator of the show Barney, has a son named Patrick that is being accused of attempted murder. He was also charged with one count of assault with a semi-automatic weapon. Someone obviously missed the episode about forgiveness.

Patrick apparently got into an argument with his neighbor over a trespassing issue and shot him. The neighbor called the police after he was shot. Patrick was later arrested and is now scheduled to appear in court next month.

This story just makes me sad. What’s next? Is the daughter of the director of Wishbone going to rob a liquor store or hold up a bank? What’s this world coming to? And what really makes me sick is how this story will reflect on poor Barney. I wonder if he will do an episode about gun control? Or an episode about how to survive in prison? Either way, I would watch those episodes.

If you would like more information on this story, you can check it out here.

Also, if you know of any other amusing news stories, feel free to send me a link and let me know about them.

Music Video of the Week- Bright Eyes

When an artist is compared to the likes of Bob Dylan, they must be doing something right. That’s what first drew me to the band, Bright Eyes.

Bright Eyes

Bright Eyes

After listening to multiple songs over and over, I really began to respect and admire this band. At the helm, is Conor Oberst, who plays guitar and handles lead vocals. His shaky, folk style and heartfelt lyrics are really quite a combination.

The songs that drew me to this band the most were Lua, At The Bottom of Everything and Landlocked Blues. If you haven’t heard these tunes, then I highly recommend you check them out after you check out this week’s video.

The video I chose to share is from their record, Casadega, and the song is called Four Winds.

I love this video because it shows the band slowly getting booed of stage while still delivering an amazing performance. I thought it was pretty comical.

So here’s the video, Four Winds, by Bright Eyes.

If you know any other bands similar to Bright Eyes, please let me know about them in the comments section.

3 Things I Learned From Sports

I haven’t played a team sport in a few years. However, I can still remember the “good ole days” playing basketball and tennis in high school. Looking back on those experiences, I’ve discovered that there are 3 things that sports taught me.

3. If you play a sport that doesn’t matter, you don’t matter- I think some people deny that student athletes get special treatment, but it does happen. If you’re not getting special treatment, then you’re playing the wrong sport.

When I was a sophomore in high school, I switched schools and the only sport I played was tennis. Needless to say, no one cares about tennis.

Basically, unless you played basketball or football, you were still considered a nobody in the eyes of your peers. For instance, every time we had a pep rally, the only two sports that were celebrated were basketball and football. However, one time, the tennis team was recognized because we had made it into a big tournament. We were welcomed with little to no applause and you could subtlety hear the question, “We have a tennis team?” being mumbled.

confused student

Tennis…is that like water polo or something?

So basically, here is my advice. If you’re looking to be popular, have tons of friends and have the admiration of your peers and teachers, I recommend you play a well-loved sport and get really good at it. And no, golf doesn’t count.

2. It’s not about winning, it’s about having fun- This is the biggest lie that I have ever heard. For years, I heard this over and over and over. But yet for some reason, I never really believed any coach that said this.

When I played basketball in middle and high school, I had numerous coaches tell me this before a game. But guess what? Once half time came around and we were down by 20 points, the coach was yelling and telling us how if we didn’t win, we were going to be running our asses off at the next practice.

But what if we were having fun playing the game? Sure, we were losing, but what if we were okay with that because we just loved the game? All of sudden that “having fun” part went out the window.

“It’s not about winning, it’s about having fun. But winning is the only way to have fun! So get out there and win!” I feel that’s the better expression.

angry coach

“Now you get out there and start having fun!” Yelled no coach ever.

So the next time you’re playing a sport and having a good time with some friends, look up at the scoreboard. If you’re down by a few points, it’s time to step up and start having more fun. And if you’re a coach, then you scream and yell at those little punks until they start crying tears of fun! Because that’s what all the great coaches do, right?

1. It’s okay to cheat to get to the top, just don’t get caught- This wasn’t a lesson I really learned by playing sports. This was a lesson I learned by watching sports. In the world we live, sports are so important that people are willing to lie, cheat, steal, murder and take all kinds of drugs to reach their full potential and get on top.

These same athletes are considered role models and tell our kids that if you work hard, say your prayers and eat your vegetables, you can be successful too.

One scandal we can look at in recent news is Lance Armstrong. This is a story of a man willing to do anything to be number one and reach the top. So was he sorry that he cheated, or was he sorry that he got caught cheating?

It’s baffling to me that some athletes are willing to cheat to obtain their goals and be number one. But what happens when all of your hard work adds up to nothing because you cheated and cut corners to get there?

And if a majority of pro athletes are taking performance enhancing drugs to get there, what kind of message is that sending to the youth? It’s telling them that it’s okay to cheat, just don’t get caught.

But I also think sports drive people to cheat. Think about it. Let’s say you really loved football and you were a pretty good player. You did well in high school and even had a few colleges look at you. Then, all of a sudden, some coaches tell you that you need to work on building mass and strength. Sure you could hit the gym and work hard, but when every pro athlete and their mother is taking steroids, perhaps it would be tempting and easier to give yourself a little boost.

And if everyone else is doing it, it must be okay right? And let’s say you don’t have enough time to get bigger. Are you willing to kiss those scholarships goodbye? Man, life has some tough decisions.

But that’s what sports are there for right? To separate the strong from the weak. If you can’t get bigger, maybe little Timmy down the street can.

kid flexing

Good Lord, Timmy got swole!

Hell, even Buggs Bunny and the rest of the gang took performance enhancing drugs in Space Jam!

Makes me sick!

Don’t get me wrong though, I really enjoyed playing sports. Why? Because I had fun. I was just there to hang out with friends and have a good time. And I think we’ve lost sight of that. Sports are suppose to be fun. So ignore all the people who take it too seriously and let your coaches get upset if they want. Just don’t take anything they say personally and remember that it’s a game and games are suppose to be fun! So get out there and enjoy yourself! Unless it’s dodgeball. That’s war, not a game.

Space Jam

And yes, Space Jam is the greatest sports movie of all time.

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