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Posts Tagged ‘JD McPherson’



Practice giving things away, not just things you don’t care about, but things you do like. Remember, it is not the size of a gift, it is its quality and the amount of mental attachment you overcome that count. So don’t bankrupt yourself on a momentary positive impulse, only to regret it later. Give thought to giving. Give small things, carefully, and observe the mental processes going along with the act of releasing the little thing you liked.

–Robert A.F. Thurman, American Buddhist author/professor



I like this bit of advice.

Give away things that mean something to yourself, something to which, as Thurman points out, you have a mental attachment that must be overcome. That’s always been the yardstick I use when giving away work at my talks or simply as a gift. It has to be something that hurts a bit to give away, something that you just want to hold onto a bit longer. 

But giving away the valued things of self brings on a feeling of magnanimity in myself, a feeling that seems so much larger and grander than that which usually comes along with clinging onto something. The feeling of generosity is warm and encompassing, like a field of fully opened sunflowers reaching toward the sun. On the other hand, miserly stinginess feels cold and all balled up, like a raisin sitting on a frigid garage floor.

And you most likely will find that the more that you give away, your desire to cling on to these things will fade away.

Let me clarify: I am not saying that you should give away all you have. Again, as Thurman also points out, don’t bankrupt yourself on a momentary positive impulse. First of all, a large or expensive gift doesn’t necessarily have any emotional attachment. Sometimes a small but thoughtful thing, even something that might appear trivial to someone from the outside, holds the most lasting meaning.

So, don’t equate price with meaning. But give when you can or when it it is needed and don’t be afraid to give of yourself, even if it’s only a few sincere words on a piece of paper. Those always ends up being the gifts that hold the most meaning for both the giver and the receiver.

But you probably knew this, right? So let’s listen to a song with a similar message from JD McPherson and his fun holiday album, Socks, from a few years ago. This is All the Gifts I Need.

Have a great day.



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Socks

This time of year it seems like so many radio stations play nothing but Christmas music. It’s a constant rotation of the same old holiday standards, often remade by singers from every genre. Flipping the channels around I seem to bounce from one version of  Santa, Baby  or Jingle Bell Rock to another. And mixed in are some new holiday songs that are usually saccharine sentiments set to some pretty blah music.

It’s hard to get too excited about a month of this stuff.

But I saw there was an album of new holiday songs from retro rock and roller JD McPherson called Socks. The title intrigued me. I definitely had childhood memories of opening Christmas presents that revealed brand new pairs of pale yellow or blue socks from my grandmother or an aunt. It was hard as a selfish little kid to paste on a grateful smile.

So I listened to the song. Then the next. And the next, and on and on. What a great fun album! They were all very catchy, easily accessible tunes with sharp, humorous lyrics, well produced with not a trace of sappiness. Found myself singing along by the end of most of them thanks to their videos that run the lyrics.

Here are three from the JD McPherson album that jumped out at me. There are several others that are as much good fun that aren’t here, most notably Claus vs Claus and Hey Skinny Santa  with its R&B Big Band sound. If you feel like some holiday music that doesn’t necessarily feel like holiday music, give a listen. Hey, any fun we can wring out of these days is a good thing.

Have a great day.



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