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Archive for the ‘Sexy Song Saturday’ Category

Thanks to everyone who left a comment. Loved hearing from all of you, and now I have some more songs for future installments of Sexy Song Saturday! The winners of the books are: Marlena Fein and RaonaidLuckwell. I’ll contact you both to get you your prizes! Also, please head over to R@R to see if you’re a winner there!

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The Hot Holiday Hop starts today in honor of J. Kenner’s Release Me and Random House is giving away some great prizes! Julie’s book is Picture (Device Independent Bitmap) 1getting some really super reviews which I am very psyched about (18+ only, if you’re considering it!).

But before we get to that, I also must mention that it is Sexy Song Saturday (“SSS”)! I started my SSS feature earlier this year, and this is only its third installment (you can read the first and second ones, if you’re interested). Because it’s the holiday season, I’m going to deconstruct a holiday song—the famous Santa Baby.

Have a listen (sung by the inestimable Eartha Kitt), and check out the lyrics:

Santa Baby
Written by J. Javits and P. Springer

Santa Baby, slip a sable under the tree, For me.
been an awful good girl, Santa baby,
so hurry down the chimney tonight.

Santa baby, a 54 convertible too,
Light blue.
I’ll wait up for you dear,
Santa baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight.

Think of all the fun I’ve missed,
Think of all the fellas that I haven’t kissed,
Next year I could be just as good,
If you’ll check off my Christmas list,

Santa baby, I wanna yacht,
And really that’s not a lot,
Been an angel all year,
Santa baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight.

Santa honey, there’s one thing I really do need,
The deed
To a platinum mine,
Santa honey, so hurry down the chimney tonight.

Santa cutie, and fill my stocking with a duplex,
And checks.
Sign your ‘X’ on the line,
Santa cutie, and hurry down the chimney tonight.

Come and trim my Christmas tree,
With some decorations bought at Tiffany’s,
I really do believe in you,
Let’s see if you believe in me,

Santa baby, forgot to mention one little thing,
A ring.
I don’t mean on the phone,
Santa baby, so hurry down the chimney tonight,
Hurry down the chimney tonight,
Hurry, tonight.

The song was written in 1953, is noteable for being one of the few hit Christmas songs written by someone with two x-chromosomes (go, Joan Javits!), and has been described as a tongue-in-cheek look at the Christmas list of a woman who wants extravagant gifts.

On first blush, and without hearing the song, you could certainly read it that way, but when you listen to the song, with all its “boo doo be doos,” in the background and its pregnant pauses between lines, a different picture emerges.

First of all, the song is written as if she’s talking to Santa…but is she really? I’m not so sure. Now, this might be sacrilegious, but what if Santa = sugar daddy? Sure, it can be in a holiday style, but I’m envisioning a man dressed up as Santa Claus (like in the old movies) sneaking around the house trying not to get caught by the kids. Santa’s a “baby,” a “honey,” and a “cutie,” and there are all those “other fellas that [she hasn’t] kissed,” which leads me to think that Santa really isn’t Santa. This is especially true because of the lyrics of last two stanzas in general, and these two lines in particular:

Come and trim my Christmas tree,
With some decorations bought at Tiffany’s

and

Santa baby, forgot to mention one little thing,
A ring.
I don’t mean on the phone

I won’t get into the obvious double entendre of trimming one’s tree (especially with the pause between that and the next line, leaving just enough space for the listener to wonder), but I will certainly discuss the “ring.” I’m interpreting this as an engagement ring. It’s the good-girl (but not really) as gold-digger ploy, I think. Plus, the breathless, “hurry, tonight,” really nails it home.

So part of my reading of this song is Eartha Kitt’s sex-kitten voice and part of it is that I’m convinced these are seriously suggestive lyrics. What do you think? Have I just completely spoiled an innocent holiday classic, or am I right on the money?

And now, what you’ve all been waiting for: the prizes! The Hot Holiday Hop runs from 12/1-12/10, and Random House is generously giving away:

  • Grand Prize $25 Gift Certificate to a retailer of your choice!
  • 10 print copy winners of RELEASE ME, must be 18 or older!
  • 15 Net Galley Preview copies of RELEASE ME, must be 18 or older!

The Rafflecopter link to enter is here.

And hop on over to these other sites for more chances to win!

1. Books Books and More Books 2. Ruthie Knox
3. SOS Aloha 4. Bea’s Book Nook
5. Elisabeth Barrett 6. Review From Here
7. Forget About TV Grab a Book 8. Author Julieanne Reeves
9. Tempting Reads 10. Cocktails and books
11. Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews 12. Read Your Writes Book Reviews
13. Romantic Reading Escapes 14. Mimmi’s Musings
15. Paranormal & Urban Fantasy Review 16. In Love with Romance
17. Treasuring Theresa 18. Ex Libris
19. BookHounds 20. Read-A-holicZ
21. Fic Fare 22. From the TBR Pile
23. The Romanceaholic 24. Talk Supe
25. Books R Us 26. Manic Readers Guest Author blog
27. Book Lovin’ Mamas 28. Blogging by Liza
29. Saucy & Sinful Reviews Blog 30. Tome Tender
31. Bookshelf Confessions 32. Delighted Reader
33. RomCon – Romance Readers Convention 34. Sascha’s Secrets
35. The Book Reading Gals 36. Readaholics Anonymous
37. herding cats & burning soup 38. Tyhada’s Bookshelf
39. Reading Reality 40. The Itzel Library
41. The Book Tart 42. Yvonne @ Socrates’ Book Review Blog
43. Book Monster Reviews 44. Book Obsessed Chicks Blogspot
45. Book Lovers Inc. 46. Boekie’s Book Reviews
47. Autumn After Dark 48. J. Kenner Hot Holiday Hop Featuring Release Me!
49. Sinful Reads Blog 50. Novels On The Run
51. Sharon the Librarian 52. Book Lovers Inc.
53. Seduced By A Book

I’ve been on a giveaway spree myself, so while the giving’s hot (put intended), I’m going to give away an autographed copy each of Deep Autumn Heat and Blaze of Winter. All you have to do is to leave a comment either (a) letting me know whether you agree/disagree with my reading of Santa Baby; or (b) giving me a song suggestion for another Sexy Song Saturday. U.S. only, please, and the contest ends at 9pm PDT on 12/10.

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Hello, and welcome to another installment of Sexy Song Saturday, my effort to combine two things I love—music and writing. In my first SSS, I tackled Bruce Springsteen’s I’m on Fire. Today, I’m going to do a less well known song, but one that I really, really love.

There are some songs that from the very first note or beat or word you’re hooked. Well, the song I’m going to be discussing today is one of those: You Look Like Rain from an indie band called Morphine. They describe their music as “low rock,” but I’d describe it as jazz rock. Regardless, their work is pretty amazing, and I’d encourage you to give at least this song a listen.

You Look Like Rain opens up with the smokiest baritone sax you’ve ever heard calling out a siren’s song. It’s smooth, it’s hot, and then a couple of measures later, the drumbeat and Mark Sandman’s* poured-whisky-over-ice voice comes in and you’re like, “Are you trying to seduce me, Mister Sandman?”

Yes, yes he is.

This is what I’d describe as a thinking man’s seduction, carefully designed to appeal to a specific kind of person. It’s seduction by gray matter, and it is extremely sexy. Let’s take a look at the lyrics:

You Look Like Rain
Lyrics: Morphine
Music: Morphine
Performed by Morphine

Your mind and your experience call to me
You have lived and your intelligence is sexy
I want to know what you got to say
I want to know what you got to say
I want to know what you got to say

I can tell you taste like the sky
‘Cause you look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain

You think like a whip on a horse’s back
Stretched out to the limit you make it crack
Send that horse ’round and ’round the track
I want to know what you got to say
I want to know what you got to say
I want to know what you got to say

I can tell you taste like the sky
‘Cause you look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain
You look like rain

Short and simple, but there’s so much more here. I won’t overanalyze the lyrics…it’s evident what he means. This guy is pretty much saying, you’re smart, and that’s the hottest thing about you. I will touch on the line I can tell you taste like the sky ‘cause you look like rain. My take? That the listener/person to whom the song is directed is cleansing. Fresh. Clear. I like the clarity interpretation, especially because of the whip on the horse’s back line. Sharp and lucid.

And the music, God, it’s awesome, especially the understated drums and the baritone sax riff in between the two verses? Like wood smoke curling around you, creeping into your pores. You can’t help but fall under its spell. But you’re fully aware that you’re doing it, which makes it even sexier.

So there you have it! My second installment of Sexy Song Saturday. See you next time, and as always, I’d love to hear what you think are the sexiest songs.

* Tragically, Mark Sandman died in 1999 of a heart attack. You can read more about him here.

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I was driving earlier in the week (as I do), when Bruce Springsteen’s I’m on Fire came on. No doubt about it, it is a damned sexy song. Or at least I think so. The pull of his voice, the longing, the utter desire in the lyrics and the background hum and the beat of the drums. And for just a moment, I didn’t feel like a trilifan, mom-mobile driver, with my three car seats in the back and my Starbucks iced tea in the cup holder in the front and Pete Seeger’s American Folk Songs For Children on permanent repeat.

Then I got to thinking how even though I know an awful lot about music (theory, composition, etc.), and am kind of obsessed with particular kinds (for those of you who follow my Twitter account, you’d know that I actually considered naming one of my kids Thelonious), it’s really difficult to incorporate that knowledge into novel writing because not everyone might have heard the song I reference, and even if they have, it might not resonate with them the same way it has with me because music is so subjective and extremely personal.

Then I thought: Hey, I should do a feature on my blog about sexy songs! And I can give a link so that people can actually hear the music! Yes!

So click on the song title below (for discussion purposes, I’m going to ignore the visual of the music video), have a listen, and then allow me to present the first ever installment of Sexy Song Saturday, featuring the song that launched it all:

I’m on Fire
Lyrics: Springsteen
Music: Springsteen
Performed by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band

Hey little girl, is your daddy home
Did he go away and leave you all alone
I got a bad desire
I’m on fire

Tell me now baby is he good to you
Can he do to you the things that I do
I can take you higher
I’m on fire

Sometimes it’s like someone took a knife, baby, edgy and dull
And cut a six inch valley through the middle of my soul
At night I wake up with my sheets soaking wet
And a freight train running through the middle of my head 
Only you can cool my desire
I’m on fire

Okay, so if you look at the lyrics alone, it’s pretty straight up – guy wants girl, guy can’t have girl because girl is with someone else. But if you look deeper (and if you listen to the way he’s singing it), it’s insidiously dark.

And, like most great songs, this one isn’t just about the lyrics. It’s the music, too, and the way the words fit with the notes. The song begins with the melody from a synthesizer playing legato in the background, and over it, the pizzicato sound of the guitar, which I think evokes the engine of a train, moving over the tracks. This theme is echoed throughout the piece, and repeats at the end. The drums are a steady tick-a-tick in the background (train, again, I think). With this in mind, let’s examine the lyrics.

This guy – I’ll refer to him as He – is talking at her, but not to her. Maybe in a daydream? And from the first few lines, he kind of sets it up – Hey, little girl is your daddy home, did he go and leave you all alone?

He’d never leave her all alone. Not like that. Because he can do things to her that the man she’s with now can’t. He can take her higher (I think we can guess what this means!). And he’s inflamed just thinking about it. This is sexy. Especially because his voice is all rough and hoarse and just aching with need. He’s bad, the desire is bad – and he knows it. Also sexy.

Then, the next two stanzas bring home the fact that he’s obsessing about being with her and how much it’s killing him that he can’t. At first he uses a simile – It’s like someone took a knife… to describe the way he’s feeling. He’s hurting, emotionally. But it’s not just the emotional; no, he’s in real, physical pain, as we see from the next phrase, At night I wake up with my sheets soaking wet / And a freight train running through the middle of my head. That “freight train” is a great metaphor because it echoes the thrum of the rhythm of the song, and the way he sings the words. In fact, from the line Someone took a knife, baby… to running through the middle of my head, the lyrics come fast and furious. Like he’s just trying to spit them out, except it’s Springsteen singing, so he’s very smooth about it.

Then he gets to this line: Only you can cool my desire. And there’s this really poignant pause between Only you and can cool my desire. And the words slow down as he says [Oh] I’m on fire, and then repeats it again. This I’m on fire line is a doozy. It’s not like he’s on fire. He is on fire. He needs her to slake his love – physical and/or emotional – and that’s the crux of it. He’s going to die if he doesn’t have her. He’s going to go up in flames. And his voice sounds broken here, like he’s trying very hard to keep a check on his emotions. I can’t underscore how sexy this is.

Another thing that’s interesting is that he kind of barrels through most of the lyrics in this song, making only a few pauses – like in the line Only you can cool my desire. His passion is full-steam ahead, even if he can’t have what he wants. The last few lines of the song aren’t lyrics at all. Just him going “whoo hoo” – kind of like the long sound of a train whistle in the still of the night. Or a lone wolf in a canyon, howling at the moon.

And there you have it. My first ever Sexy Song Saturday with Springsteen’s I’m on Fire – a very sexy song. We’ll see how this feature evolves, but in the meantime, feel free to let me know your favorite sexy song in the comments. It might just be featured in my next installment.

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