Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2nd Anniversary • Smoke Free

Angus & Julia Stone Patti Smith
kd lang Declan Bennett
Clockwise: Angus & Julia Stone; Patti Smith; Declan Bennett; and k.d. lang.

Well, it has been just over two years since I had my last cigarette. Sometimes, it is incredible for me to think I actually made it that long. I mean, I have to be honest, I had smoked for more than 30 years, and had thought I would have little shot of giving it up at this point. But through a strange series of events, I got sick, and had bad congestion, and couldn't smoke for a few days. I quickly decided to see how far I could ride it out. At that point, I was paying over $50 a week for cigarettes, and decided since I wanted to purchase an iPad, if I managed to not smoke for 10 weeks, I would have paid for the iPad. So I had a goal, which I found to be an important part of those early days. To date, I have saved over $6,000, and have clearly paid for my iPad. I thought this was cause for celebration, and so let us begin. The first song I would like to offer up is the fantastic brother/sister duo from Australia, Angus and Julia Stone, as they sing "Chocolates and Cigarettes".



Next up, we have a song written by American composer Willard Robison, and sung by some very exceptional jazz singers. That list has included Nina Simone, Peggy Lee, Julie London, and so many others. But this time, give a listen to the brilliant Patti Smith as she sings "Don't Smoke In Bed".



Next up, there is another brilliant vocalist that has long been on my playlists. Very early on in her recording career, k.d. lang was making her own very special flavor of Country music. Here is "Three Cigarettes In An Ashtray", off the 1987 release 'Angel With A Lariat'.



And finally, I offer you the always addictive Declan Bennett with a song off his 2004 album, 'The Painter's Ball'.  Actually, he released that under the name "sumladfromcov", and it was the first album I found of his, and instantly fell in love. On it, he sings "Smoke".



So, it there anything you'd like to give up?

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