Wednesday, March 19, 2014

St. Joseph's Day 2014


  March 19 is St. Joseph Feast Day and traditionally falls during the Lenten season and is a day of abstinence, which is why St. Joseph tables and alters are meatless.

  If the feast falls on a Sunday other than Palm Sunday. it is observed on the next available day, usually Monday, March 20, unless it is another saints feast day. Since 2008, if St. Joseph's Day falls during Holy Week, it is moved to the closest date possible before March 19, usually the Saturday before Holy Week. This change was announced by  the Congregation for Divine Worship in March-April 2006.

  St. Joseph is the patron saint of the Catholic Church, carpenters, workers, unborn children, realtors, against doubt and hesitation, and a happy death. Personally, I think he should also be the patron saint of step-parents, foster parents and adoptive parents, for he was one and took in another's Child to raise as his own.

  St. Joseph is also the patron saint of many countries, such as: Croatia, Vietnam, Malta, Philippines, United States, Spain, and Italy are just some.

  On the Italian island of Sicily, where St. Joseph is regarded as the island's patron saint, and in many Italian-American communities, thanks are given to St. Joseph for helping to prevent a famine on the island during the Middle Ages. The drought was so severe in Sicily that the inhabitants prayed to their patron saint for rain and if St. Joseph answered their prayers the would prepare a large feast in his honor. As it is said, the rains came and the Sicilians prepared a large banquet for St. Joseph. The fava bean is the crop that saved the people of Sicily from starvation and is a traditional part of St. Joseph's Day altars. Giving food to the poor is a traditional part of St. Joseph's Day. In some communities. on St. Joseph's Day, it also traditional to wear red and eat the Neapolitan pastry, Zeppole.

 On a typical St. Joseph altar people place, wine, limes, fava beans, candles, flowers, specially prepared cakes, breads and cookies (as well as other meatless dishes and zeppole. Foods are traditionally served containing bread crumbs for bread crumbs are the representation of sawdust since St. Joseph was a carpenter. Because the feast occurs during Lent there is no meat served on the celebration table. The altar has traditionally three tiers that represent the Trinity.

  In Italy St. Joseph's Day is also Father's Day. Good day to have I think.

 In the U.s. In Louisiana, especially New Orleans, which was a major port of entry for Sicilian immigrants in the late 19th century, St. Joseph's Day is a city-wide event and not just for those of Sicilian background. There are both public and private St. Joseph altars. For those that wish to pay homage the altars are usually open to visitors. After the altar is taken down the food is usually given to local charities.

  There are also parades held to honor St. Joseph and the Sicilian population in New Orleans, which is akin to those of St. Patrick's Day and Mardi Gras. On this day, some Mardi Gras Indians stage their last procession of the season on the Sunday nearest to St. Joseph's Day. This is known as "Super Sunday" and afterwards their costumes are dismantled.

New Orleans St. Joseph's Day 2014 courtesy of The Times-Picayune


Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Reissuing of Led Zeppelin's First 3 Allbums

  Mark June 6,2014 on your calendar for that is when the release of the first three Led Zeppelin albums will be reissued as remastered versions of Led Zeppelin I, Led Zeppelin II and Led Zeppelin III that will also contain previously unreleased bonus material. This will include:

October 1969 concert in Paris on their debut album.

 Led Zeppelin II will have alternate mixes or backing tracks for most of the album's songs plus an unreleased song 'La La'.

 Led Zeppelin III will have outtakes of seven of the songs on the album, as well as 'Jennings Farm Blues', 'Bathroom Sound' (an early version of 'Out on the Tiles') and a medley of blues classics 'Key to the Highway' and 'Trouble in Mind'. Unfortunately, 'Hey, Hey, What Can I Do?' the B-Side to 'The Immigrant Song' is not included in Led Zeppelin III bonus tracks.

 There will be several options for us, the buyers, to choose. For the minimalists there will be the normal single -CD reissues in cardboard sleeves and single-LP vinyl reissues with original covers replicated. 

  Now the deluxe editions will be either two CDs or two LPs and come with extras. Extras will also be available for those that want to download. And then there will be the ultimate super deluxe boxed set, that will include both the CD and vinyl versions, a download code for HD digital audio, a hard-bound photo book, high quality reproductions of the original album covers (first 30,000 will be numbered) and a replica of Led Zeppelin's first Atlantic Record press kit.

  I know what I am going to be saving my money for and may I please be forgiven for wanting to make what may be seen as a foolish purchase, but they don't understand.

  Information is courtesy of the New York Times. Click the darkened link to read the full article.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Over the Hills and Far Away - Led Zeppelin

    The third single from the Led Zeppelin's Houses of the Holy album, 'Over the Hills and Far Away' is one of my favorites by them, but then there are not many of their songs that are not my favorite. The song just really gets to me in a way in which I may be too polite to try and articulate. Of course I may not be the only one that 'Over the Hills and Far Away' gets to in that way. Damn Page and Plant. ♥

 Anyway, originally called 'Many, Many Times", 'Over the Hills and Far away' was the first US single from "Houses of the Holy" album. Reaching #51 on Billboard Hot 100 chart, it became a staple on classic rock radio stations.

  'Over the Hills and Far Away' was originally constructed in 1970 by Jimmy Page and Robert Plant at the small Welsh cottage, Brom-Yr-Aur, where they stayed after a particularly punishing American tour.A six-string acoustic guitar introduction is played by Page with a melody recollected of Jimmy Page's guitar instrumental 'White Summer'. Page repeats the theme with a 12-string acoustic guitar at the same time.

  On the next repetition Robert Plant's vocals appear, where he tenderly offers himself to a "lady" whose "got the love I need". The acoustic guitars build in crescendo toward the abrupt infusion of Page's electric guitars along with John Paul Jones' and John Bonham's rhythm accompaniment.

  'Over the Hills and far Away' stands out as an example the tight interplay between Bonham and Jones and is shown through the preverse intervals and instrumental bridge. Following the final verse, the rhythm section fades out, gradually being replaced by the echos of Page's electric guitar and a few chords from Jones' harpsichord. Page executes a linearly descending/ascending sequence and ends with the authentic V-I cadence on syth imitating a pedal steel guitar.


  Because 'Over the Hill and Far Away' was introduced on stage well ahead of it's studio release it was part of Led Zeppelin's concert set list. In his spoken introduction before the song on June 27,1972 in Long Beach, California, Robert Plant said that Led Zeppelin had performed 'Over the Hills and far Away the night before the Forum. The band continued to play it for the rest of their 1972 concert tour of  North America. Keeping it consistently through 1979, before they omitted it from their final tour of Europe in 1980.


Hey lady, you got the love I need
Maybe more than enough
Oh darling, darling, darling walk a while with me
Oh you've got so much, so much,  so much.

Many times I've loved, many times been bitten
Many times I've gazed along the open road.

Many times I've lied, many times I've listened
Many times I've wondered how much there is to know.

Many dreams come true and some have silver linings
I live for my dream and pocketful of gold.

Mellow is the man, who knows what he's been missing
Many, many men can't see the open road.

Many is the word that only leaves you guessing
Guessing 'bout a thing you really ought to know
Really ought to know, I really ought to know.

You know I should, you know I should 
You know I should, you know I should.