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Patriots’ Day In Patriots’ Land

It is always nice to enjoy a long holiday weekend. In Boston, Massachusetts, Patriots day is is especially enjoyable. Schools, businesses and state offices are closed on this holiday which officially commemorates the battles of Lexington and Concord, which ignited the Revolutionary War in 1775. Patriots’ Day is also a legal holiday in Maine, which was actually a part of Massachusetts until 1820.

Patriots Day is particularly enjoyable in the city of Boston for reasons related to sports. First of all, the Boston Red Sox always play at venerable Fenway Park on the holiday, but there is a twist. The baseball game is played at 11:00 AM so as not to conflict with the hundreds of thousands of fans who come to Boston on this day not to watch baseball, but to view the running of the Boston Marathon. Strangely enough, Patriots Day has nothing to do with our NFL franchise, the New England (formerly Boston) Patriots.

Patriots’ Day 2012 is shaping up to be rather unique in and of itself. This year marks the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park, the oldest park in Major League Baseball. The Red Sox themselves are even older than the park, having been founded in 1901. This morning the Sox will host the Tampa Bay Rays in exceptionally warm and sunny Spring weather.

It is the weather however, which is posing some trouble for the athletes in the 115th Boston Marathon. The average temperature in Boston in April is the low 50s. Runners like it to be cool but temperatures are expected to approach 90 degrees in Boston today. Such temperatures may pose a health risk to runners. Consequently, the race organizers have taken the drastic step of allowing any runner who has qualified for the race to defer their participation one year until the 2013 race. Also, the finish line will remain open for an additional two hours to accommodate runners who may be slowed down by the oppressive weather. It is interesting to note however, that today’s marathon will not be the hottest in history. In 1905 the temperature actually reached 100 degrees!

The Boston sports mania continues this evening when our National Hockey League franchise the Boston Bruins take on the Washington Capitals in Game 3 of their best of seven playoff series. The series is presently tied at one game apiece. The first two games were not decided until sudden death overtime.

If you are a sports fan from Boston, Patriots’ Day is a very special occasion.

Bruins Win Stanley Cup Making Boston The New Titletown!!!

The Boston Bruins beat the odds tonight by Winning Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals. They whipped the Vancouver Canucks by a score of 4 to 0 on Vancouver’s home ice. It is the 6th time that the Bruins have won the Cup, but the first time since 1972. In the process of winning this year’s Cup the Bruins became the first NHL team to ever win 3 seven game series. They also played more playoff games this season than any other team in history.

Even more impressive however, is that the City of Boston is now the first city to win a championship in each of the 4 major sports this millennium. Since the year 2000, Boston has won 3 Super Bowls, 2 World Series, 1 NBA championship and now the Stanley Cup! Woooo!!!

Bruins Crush Canucks Again!!! Bring On Game 7!!!

Luongo lets in another floater!

The Boston Bruins Crush The Vancouver Canucks In Boston!!!

Forget about Vancouver coming to the Cradle of Liberty and making a point. After taking a 2 games to 0 lead lead in Vancouver, the Canucks came to Boston and were crushed two games in a row.

After playing as dirty as a team could play in Game 3, the Canucks were demolished 8 to 1.  They followed that up with a demoralizing 4 to 0 loss in Game 4. The series now heads to Vancouver (the city of wussies) for game 5.

Here we go, Bruins, here we go!

Revenge Of The Bruins!!!

The Canuckleheads heard more than their share of this tonight. Their dirty and unsportsmanlike play has woken the sleeping bear. The Bruins crush the Canucks in Boston by the score of 8 to 1. Game 4 in Boston on Wednesday night. Bruins trail the series two games to one but they now have a temper. WOOOOO!!!!!

Palin’s Magical History Tour Continues…

Last call for the Palin Magical History Tour, All Aboard!

This is it folks. It appears that Sarah Palin’s family vacation/campaign tour/publicity stunt is coming to an end. The next to last stop took place yesterday in the cradle of our nation, Boston , Massachusetts. The former ex-quitting half-term governor of Alaska toured the Freedom Trail of historic sites and made stops at the Bunker Hill Monument (site of the Battle of Bunker Hill) and the Old North Church (place from which Paul Revere started his famous ride). The alleged “hockey mom” however, failed to make any mention of the city’s beloved Boston Bruins, who are presently competing in the Stanley Cup Finals. That is quite an oversight when one considers that most every historic statue (or as Palin would say, “statute”) in the city is presently adorned with a black and gold Bruins sweater.

Paul Revere statue

George Washington statue

and even the "Make Way For Ducklings" statues

While in Beantown, Palin could not however avoid celebrity impersonator (and Lynnrockets’ pal) Cecilia Thompson. The two came face to face in Boston’s historic North End neighborhood where they briefly hugged before Palin gave marching orders to her clone. She said, “Now you go to all these reporters and you speak for me”.

(Pat Greenhouse/Boston Globe Staff Photo)

Palin was also able to do what she does best while in Massachusetts. She ignited a war of words with former Massachusetts governor and current 2012 Republican presidential candidate, Mitt Romney. Although Palin lacks the courage to say whether she will run for the presidency, she is not shy about picking a fight with one of her potential (and dare we say, far better qualified) opponents. Not surprisingly, she criticized the health care reform law which Romney signed into law in Massachusetts and which served as the blueprint for our new national health reform law. The Boston Globe reports that while on Romney’s home turf, Palin told reporters “In my opinion, any mandate coming from government is not a good thing.” She went on to say that the law will be one of the reasons that it “will be a big challenge” for Romney to appeal to Tea Party supporters. “It’s tough for a lot of us independent Americans to accept [the mandate] because we have great faith in the private sector and our own families and our own business men and women making decisions for ourselves, not any level of government telling us what to do.’’

It was no coincidence that Sarah Palin planned her stop in Mitt Romney’s home state on the very day that Romney was in New Hampshire announcing his campaign for the presidency. It is also no coincidence that Palin’s final stop on her bus tour is in the very same New Hampshire which holds the nation’s first primary election. Would it not be swell if Palin and Romney cross paths in the Granite State? It would be interesting to hear what Romney might say about Palin’s “Bridge to Nowhere” or her “death panels” or her decision to quit her job as governor of Alaska after only two years. Oh, to be a fly on the wall.

In honor of the troops, please click on the song link below to familiarize yourselves with the tune and to have more fun singing along with the song parody.

Magic Bus song link:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl9bvuAV-Ao

TRAGIC BUS

 (sung to The Who song “Magic Bus”)

Everyday she plays the big fool (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She gets on the bus and begins to drool (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She’s so nervous she just sits and smiles (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Sarah Palin is racking-up those miles (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She is Alaska’s “Mama Bear” (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Sarah Palin spreads hate and fear (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Piper’s there to whine and fuss (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She’s not in school, she’s on the bus (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Whoa!

It’s Gettysburg on Tuesday (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She’s eating pizza with “The Donald” Wednesday (Too much, the Tragic Bus)

*[She wants it, She wants it, She wants it,
She wants it, She wants it, She wants it]

And she’ll have it!

*[She wants it, She wants it, She wants it]

She’s talking nonsense everyday
She don’t drive cuz she’s lazy
No interviews, she’s too afraid
She’s drinking lots of Tea Party Kool-Aid

Tragic Bus, Tragic Bus, Tragic Bus, Tragic Bus, Tragic Bus…
She wants the Tragic Bus, She wants the Tragic Bus, She wants the Tragic Bus…

I say soon she’ll be reduced to dust (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Her history tour will be a bust (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She drives us crazy everyday (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
Won’t Palin please just go away? (Too much, the Tragic Bus)

*[She wants it, She wants it, She wants it]

Soon she’ll be reduced to dust (Too much, the Tragic Bus)
She’s a crazy lady in her Tragic Bus (Too much, the Tragic Bus)

Bruins Win!!! Bruins Win!!! Bruins Win!!!

Congratulations to the Boston Bruins for their nail-biting win in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Bruins defeated the lightning by a score of 3 to 1 and now lead the best of seven series by 3 games to 2. The highlight of the game was the save of the year by Bruins goalie Tim Thomas who was the first star of the game.

Sunday Morning Coffee (or Tea) – 77

Just a few newsworthy items (and comments thereon) that have been making their way through the political universe this past week but may have escaped your attention. Please ponder and maybe chuckle a bit before enjoying a wonderful day! We also hope you enjoy this new “look” for this ever-evolving blog.

BREAKING NEWS:  At a New Hampshire Republican forum sponsored by the Koch brothers this week, failed 2008 GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney defended the Massachusetts universal health care plan which he signed into law. This is a sure sign that summer is approaching because the Mitt(wit) has pulled his flip-flops out of storage yet again.

THIS JUST IN:  In another sign of democracy at work, a Michigan elections panel has voted to approve the language of a recall petition against Republican Governor Rick Snyder. Snyder is being targeted for promoting a series of initiatives that, in the language of the petition, “take authority and funds from local government and school districts,” gives emergency financial managers “the power to invalidate legal and binding contracts,” and “sought tax increases upon retirees and lower income families (and) large new tax cuts for corporations and businesses.” The recall petition follows on the heels of the numerous recall petions in Wisconsin filed against newly elected Republicans.

BREAKING NEWS:  Speaking of the new perils of anti-union Republicans, Florida Governor Rick Scott‘s bill to ban public employee unions from using automatic payroll deduction to collect dues is expected to die in the state senate because of a lack of support from GOP senators. It would appear that fear of the dreaded recall petition has crept south.

THIS JUST IN:  This week’s episode of “Everybody Loves A Racist” features Donald Trump. When asked during a radio interview about whether he is supported by African-Americans, the bankrupt billionaire boasted, “I have a great relationship with the blacks. I’ve always had a great relationship with the blacks.”  Also, John R. O’Donnell, the former president of Trump Plaza Hotel & Casino claims that Trump once said, in reference to a black accountant at Trump Plaza, “laziness is a trait in blacks.” O”Donnell also says that Trump once proclaimed, “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.” There is a lot more of this stuff but we will save it for a full post and song parody.

BREAKING NEWS:  Remember back in 2010 prior to the passage of our new health care reform law when Republicans peppered the air-waves with film of town hall meetings in which Tea Baggers, in a fugue of confusion, taunted Democratic members of Congress for daring to take away their Medicare? Well, the shoe is now on the other foot. As the result of the new Republican budget plan to completely privatize Medicare, those town hall meetings this year have taken a decidedly anti-GOP slant.  Rep. Daniel Webster‘s (R FL) town hall meeting last week featured a room full of irate constituents calling for the GOP to leave their Medicare alone. The tide is turning.

THIS JUST IN:  Republican Rep. Allen West of Florida is also facing the heat from constituents that are outraged at the GOP ban to dissolve Medicare. He has countered with a somewhat more brown-shirted tactic than most other Republican members of congress however. West simply has the police remove any citizen from a town hall meeting if they dare to vocally question him about Medicare. How is that for serving your constituency?

BREAKING NEWS:  A funny thing happened on the streets of Rhode Island last week. RawStory.com reports, Robert Watson, a high-ranking Republican state legislator in Rhode Island, is in hot water after being charged with driving under the influence of marijuana and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Drug charges alone would be bad enough for a public official, but Watson, Rhode Island’s House minority leader, is still remembered for his controversial anti-drug, anti-gay and anti-immigrant remarks. In February, Watson said the Rhode Island legislature had their priorities right “if you are a Guatemalan gay man who likes to gamble and smokes marijuana.” Hypocrisy remains a badge of honor for members of the GOP.

THIS JUST IN:  This week’s episode of “Strike Two – One To Go” features Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and her racist and discriminatory immigration law. The 9th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals has now affirmed the Federal District Court ruling which bans enforcement of the law which would force all darker complected citizens to carry their papers at all times to avoid detention for suspicion of being an illegal alien. The court held that the Arizona law countered federal law and may be unconstitutional.

BREAKING NEWS:  This week’s episode of “Sometimes Even The Insane Have a Moment of Clarity” features the very same Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer. Last week, while being interviewed on CNN, Brewer said that she believes President Obama was born in Hawaii and that the birther issue is leading the nation “down a path of destruction.”

THIS JUST IN: The jab of the night at the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Dinner was delivered by President Obama. First, he singled out an unsmiling Donald Trump and credited him with making hard decisions — such as firing Gary Busey over Meatloaf on an episode of “The Celebrity Apprentice”. He then followed with, “Now, he can focus on more important matters like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?”

MINOR SIDE-NOTE: President Barack Obama did what George W. Bush never could. He killed Osama bin Laden.

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE BOSTON BRUINS FOR THEIR VICTORY OVER THE PHILADELPHIA FLYERS IN GAME 1 OF THE EASTERN CONFERENCE SEMI FINALS!

HERE WE GO BRUINS, HERE WE GO!

Today’s song parody takes a rapid-fire look at Republicans past, present and future. Please remember to click on the song link below to familiarize yourselves with the tune and to have more fun singing along with the parody.

We Didn’t Start The Fire song link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFTLKWw542g&ob=av3em

WE DIDN’T START THE LYING

(sung to the Billy Joel song “We Didn’t Start The Fire”)

Ronald Reagan, Larry Craig, Mark Sanford, Tom Delay
Michelle Malkin, Michele Bachmann, “Goin’ with the flow”

Joe McCarthy, Richard Nixon, Howard Baker, lack of vision
Spreading Fear, Acting queer, and ole Sixpack Joe

No icebergs, H-Bomb, “Pay for play”, “Hockey Mom”
Landrieu, Hamid Karzai, and that Michael Savage guy

Ivy tower, Van Flein, Tea-bagger party scene
Party of “No”, Tim Pawlenty, Let’s watch Glenn Beck cry

These are G.O.P. liars
Shy away from learning
Keep our stomachs turning
Burning their cross of fire
We watched them light it
And they can’t deny it

Vitter’s fallin’, Ginny Foxx, Boehner and Inhofe
Mitch McConnell, small umbrella, Talking the talk

Spin Zone, Rent to own, Straight martini, Bank loan
Russian view and Pastor Haggard’s flock

Sex crimes, Grassley, John McCain is “Mavericky”
Lining pockets, health care plan, Giuliani, Limbaugh Land

Barrasso, Fake protest, Tom “The Hammer”, Chambliss
Senate race, Lack of grace, and Melvin Martinez

These are G.O.P. liars
Shy away from learning
Keep our stomachs turning
Burning their cross of fire
We watched them light it
And they can’t deny it

Loaded Glock, SarahPAC, Sam Alito, Johnny Mack
Jindal, Right to die, Tripp’s father is Levi

Pentagon, Border wall, We must deport them all
Bed-wetters, genocide, No assisted suicide

Bush’s folly, Torture, Dick Cheney, Blackwater
Hate groups, Castro, John Ensign and his ‘ho

First Dude, Hannity, Mann Coulter and O’Reilly
Scooter Libby, Karl Rove, Sarah Palin’s “Sixpack Joes”

These are G.O.P. liars
Shy away from learning
Keep our stomachs turning
Burning their cross of fire
We watched them light it
And they can’t deny it

Kay Bailey, Muslims, K Street is full of bums
Villains, Pearlman, Iraqi Invasion

Health reform hysteria, Sarah Palin mania
Shameless G-Men, War in Afghanistan

Ron Paul, Airport sex, They don’t want no litmus test
Kneel and pray, Always “nay”, Can’t get married if you’re gay

These are G.O.P. liars
Shy away from learning
Keep our stomachs turning
Burning their cross of fire
We watched them light it
And they can’t deny it

Birth control, Lives of sin, They like folks that have white skin
Buckshot, Dow stock, Loud mouthed chicken-hawks
Takin’ Bacon, Palestine, Palin is no friend of mine
Now they have nukes in Iran, Couldn’t stop the Taliban

Makin’ fortunes, Soldiers die, Did we mention Glenn Beck cried?
Foreign debts, Homeless vets, Exposed by three jets
We voted them out the door, Now they’re just a mouse that roars
Spider holes and unjust wars, I can’t take them anymore.

These are G.O.P. liars
Shy away from learning
Keep our stomachs turning
Burning their cross of fire
We watched them light it
And they can’t deny it
(repeat chorus to fade)

Lynnrockets’ Presidents’ Day Perceptions

Boston Winter Twilight

Aside from the noteworthy Wisconsin labor protests, the GOP’s threat to shut down the government and the numerous worldwide uprisings, things have been pretty quiet in the political world of late. By that, we mean that there have not been any new salacious stories of Republican misconduct along the lines of John Boehner’s alleged affair with a lobbyist, Todd “First Dude” Palin’s alleged affair with a prostitute, Scott “Centerfold” Brown’s sex abuse or Christopher Lee’s topless Craigslist solicitations for the last few days. Things may heat-up soon however, as Congress takes its week long Presidents’ Day recess. After all, nothing prompts a “family values” conservative politician to participate in scandalous behavior moreso than time-off from work. By the way, why is it that Congress gets a week off for Presidents’ “DAY” while the rest of us are lucky to get the day off?

All that being said, Lynnrockets would like to take this slow news-day opportunity to bring you Rocketeers up to speed on what has been happening up here in Rocketland of late. If you are not out buying a new car, please pour your favorite warm beverage, kick your feet up and linger here a little while.

As I sit here early this morning watching a soft snow fall over the Boston skyline, I am reminded of the winters of my childhood. As I look back to my days as a young boy, I have a vision of winter as being a never-ending snow-filled holiday. My fond, but nostalgia-shaded memories of those late 1960′s/early 1970′s winters are of seasons of daily light snowfall which kept the street-lining snowbanks and drifts a marshmallow-like powdery white and not the black and soot covered glaciers of my adult years. Luckily, this winter season in Boston has reflected those halcyon days. We are on pace to have one of our snowiest seasons on record (global climate change at work?). Consequently, the glistening whiteness has been restored quite regularly. There have been many snow days and this generation of young children has restored my faith a bit as they have somehow torn themselves away from video-games to enjoy sledding and tubing like so many of those before them. Even my canine pal Marley (Weimaraner) seems to relish the endless opportunities to run along the snow-covered beach and bury her snout in her backyard drifts. As I glance out the window of my study this morning and see those slow-falling dime-sized flakes, I try to take a mental snap-shot of the type of New England winter that sometimes only lives in story-books and memories. Who knows how long it will be before we Bostonians are blessed with another season like this? In the meantime, this warm, nostalgic feeling is comforting.

Those of you that may have read this blog for sometime know that I am an avid sports fan. My favorite sport is hockey (that is ice hockey to you Southerners) yet my favorite sports franchise is football’s Green Bay Packers. I am thrilled that they have just won their 13th NFL championship, the most of any franchise. They are the Montreal Canadiens, New York Yankees (boy, I hate to mention them) and Boston Celtics of pro-sports. More impressive than their championships however, is the fact that they hail from the smallest city (pop. 102,313) of any pro-franchise in any sport and they are publicly owned by a group of regular working-class stiffs. There is no billionaire owner (ala Jerry Jones) simply using his vast wealth to buy championships for his team which he treats like a shiny toy. No, the Packers truly are the team of the people. They are the only authentic “America’s Team”. I am even more proud of the players and the franchise after they publicly sided with the rank and file union workers of Wisconsin last week. In a letter directed to union-busting Teapublican Governor, Scott Walker  they wrote,

We know that it is teamwork on and off the field that makes the Packers and Wisconsin great. As a publicly owned team we wouldn’t have been able to win the Super Bowl without the support of our fans.

It is the same dedication of our public workers every day that makes Wisconsin run. They are the teachers, nurses and child care workers who take care of us and our families. But now in an unprecedented political attack Governor Walker is trying to take away their right to have a voice and bargain at work.

The right to negotiate wages and benefits is a fundamental underpinning of our middle class. When workers join together it serves as a check on corporate power and helps ALL workers by raising community standards. Wisconsin’s long-standing tradition of allowing public sector workers to have a voice on the job has worked for the state since the 1930s. It has created greater consistency in the relationship between labor and management and a shared approach to public work.

These public workers are Wisconsin’s champions every single day, and we urge the governor and the State Legislature to not take away their rights.

Let’s hear it for the champions of both the playing-field and the working-class.

As for my favorite sport, it is this late winter period when things pick-up. Presently, my Boston Bruins are in first place in the Northeast Division of the NHL which secures them a third place seed in the Eastern Conference for the time being. This week they acquired highly skilled defenceman Tomas Kaberle from the Toronto Maple Leafs (aka “Make Believes”) in an attempt to gear-up for the playoffs. I can only hope that this move helps them avoid another devastating playoff loss this season. I still have a bad taste in my mouth from last year’s playoff loss to the hated Philadelphia Flyers after having had a 3-0 game advantage and a 3-0 lead in the seventh and deciding game. Yukk!

My former college team, the Bowdoin College Polar Bears have captured the fifth seed in the NESCAC (New England Small College Athletic Conference) playoffs with a 15-7-1 record. They are presently ranked 12th in the Division II/III national rankings. GO U BEARS! By the way, they are called the Polar Bears not because the school is way up north in Maine, but because the men that first traveled to the North Pole, Robert E. Peary (class of 1877) and Robert S. MacMillan (class of 1898) were Bowdoin graduates. It is also interesting to note that the college’s Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum is the only museum in the United States dedicated completely to Arctic Studies.

My old high-school hockey teams are thriving also. The St. Mary’s (Lynn, MA) Spartans boys hockey team captured the Division I Catholic Central League title with a record of 12-5-3. They are awaiting their seeding for the Division I state tournament which will be announced next Saturday. More impressive than that however is the girls team. The Lady Spartans finished the regular season in first place with a 17-0-3 record and the number one seed in the state tournament. Over the last number of seasons the team has compiled an undefeated streak of 96 games and counting. They have won four Division I state championships since 2005 including the last three in a row and are well on their way to another. Standout goaltender Sarah Foss was featured in Sports illustrated‘s “Faces In The Crowd” last week.

Now, back to Lynnrockets news. Some of you may remember that Lynnrockets won the contest to be the liberal blogger for Boston’s largest talk radio station, WRKO. Indeed, you Rocketeers were instrumental in securing the win by means of your Palinesque stuffing of the ballot box. Well, after a number of meetings with the station brass concerning employment and contract issues, I am pleased to announce that I will be appearing on the station’s website (WRKO.com) beginning on or around March 1, 2011. Please stop by on occasion to say hello. Do not worry, Blast-Off is not going anywhere. This blog will remain my blogging priority.

Lynnrockets wishes all of you a healthy Presidents’ Day! See you tonight or tomorrow with some political commentary as soon as something noteworthy happens.

Please remember to click on the song link below to familiarize yourselves with the tune and to have more fun singing along with today’s rather personal song parody.

I Write The Songs song link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-fev20voMc

I WRITE THE SONGS

(sung to the Barry Manilow song “I Write The Songs”)

I sling the jive whenever,
I sit down and scribble a song
I put the words and Republicans together
I love music,
And I love these songs

I write the songs that I hope you folks sing
I write the songs to dethrone G.O.P. kings
I write the songs that expose all their lies
I write the songs, I write the songs

I’m from a state that’s deep blue,
And we make a damned good lobster roll
No, there aren’t many right wing guys
There’s some but then, all of them are very old

I write the songs that attack the right wing
I write the songs that I hope linger and sting
I write the songs that prompt Glenn Beck to cry
I write the songs, I write the songs

Oh, I’ll take a hostile stance
When Limbaugh begins to rave and rant
And I’ll lead you to a poll, he can’t disprove
Palin has no heart,
So, I will tear her life apart
Hannity, Coulter too,
Also, too, O’Reilly
None of them can hide from me !!!

I write the songs about Mark Sanford’s flings
I write the songs about Larry Craig’s stings
I write the songs about Mark Foley’s guys
I write the songs, I write the songs

I write the songs about Joe Wilson’s slings
I write the songs of Vitter’s diapery things
I write the songs about all of those guys
I write the songs, I write the songs

I love music, so I write these songs

Monday Night Music Byte

Lynnrockets’ Blast-Off is trying out a new look to the blog tonight. We have received some complaints that it was difficult to locate the “Comment” link on the blog. This new theme makes it stand out a bit more at the bottom of each post in blue lettering. Consequently, there are no more excuses for failing to leave a comment. Ladies and gentlemen, start commenting!!!

Oh, and lest we forget, congratulations to the Boston Bruins and their game 3 victory over the Buffalo Sabres this evening. The Bruins now have a 2 games to 1 advantage with the next game at the Garden.

Men at Work are an Australian rock band which achieved international success in the 1980s. They are the only Australian artists to have a #1 album and single simultaneously in the United States (with Business as Usual and “Down Under” respectively). At the same time, they also had a simultaneous #1 single and album in the United Kingdom. The group won the 1983 Grammy Award for Best New Artist and sold over 30 million albums worldwide. The band’s sound is distinguished by its use of woodwind and brass instruments.

Colin Hay emigrated to Australia in 1967 from Scotland with his family. In 1978, he formed a duo with Ron Strykert, which expanded with the addition of drummer Jerry Speiser and Australian progressive rock keyboard player Greg Sneddon. They formed an unnamed four-piece group that would later morph into Men at Work. The band’s first experience in the recording studio was recording the music to Riff Raff, a low-budget stage musical Sneddon had worked on. Sneddon soon left, to be replaced in late 1979 by saxophonist/flautist/keyboardist Greg Ham.

By late 1979, the group took up residence at the Cricketer’s Arms pub. Desperate for a name, they took the “Men at Work” moniker from a street sign denoting construction. Shortly thereafter, the band, who had been performing with Strykert on bass guitar, recruited bassist John Rees and the group was complete.

Please enjoy this video clip of Men At Work performing their hit single “Down Under” in 1983.


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