Tag Archives: songs

Thursday Morning Melody: Always

180447_1631122743643_2327969_nThere’s a tattoo on my left ankle that says “It was always you falling for me.” When people ask me what it means I sort of brush it off with “They’re my favorite lyrics by my favorite band, Panic! at the Disco.” At that point they either give me a puzzled look because they have no idea who I am talking about or laugh because the few that have probably stopped taking them seriously in 2008.

So I don’t explain that I started listening to them in 2005, the fall of my junior year of high school when I coincidentally moved out of my house for a two year intensive math and science boarding school. Seeing as how I’m editor of a wellness blog and an aspiring screenwriter I think you can guess how well the whole “Science & Math” thing worked out for me. Those were the toughest two years of my life. I lost my identity as the smartest girl in my class. I had a lot of family issues. I lost all the friends I had to leave behind at home and making new ones didn’t come easily to me. I was in a really dark place. Given the epidemic of teen suicides in this country over the past few years I don’t like to be as dramatic to say I was suicidal; but I also like to say that if it hadn’t been for Panic!’s debut album that I had on constant repeat I would have probably taken my wondering what it would be like to not have to exist anymore a bit more seriously. I could write 5,000 words on why that album meant so much to me but the moral of the story is that it gave me something to hold on to. It was the only thing that made me feel like a human in those two years. Those songs helped me survive and I’m a stronger, better person for it, because of this band.

People stopped taking them seriously in 2008 because that’s when their second album came out, after they had basically transformed into a Beatles tribute band. It’s not their most heralded album, but there’s a song called “Northern Downpour” on it that they wrote for their fans. That was originally going to be the tattoo. The second verse starts “And then she said she can’t believe/Genius only comes along/In storms of fabled foreign tongues,” that broke my heart. There’s a history there because they had to scrap the original sessions for the second album and briefly thought of disbanding under the pressure of trying to create a follow up to their debut “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out” – which sold 1.9 million copies worldwide. The first proposed second album was supposed to be a rock-opera of sorts, and their first album was composed of songs based off lyricist Ryan Ross’s short stories and favorite books (fabled – because the stories were made up – foreign – because some of them weren’t his – tongues, get it?) His at-the-time girlfriend told him not to give up, that he had genius of his own from his own experiences and so the band forged on to write “Pretty. Odd.” The first time I met the band I handed Ryan a letter thanking him for not giving up and quoted those lyrics. To this day I kick myself for not including my email address because I like to think he would have written back.

Of course, my idol worship was to be short lived. Apparently taking on the Beatles persona gave Ryan a case of John Lennon disease and he let his new girlfriend Yoko Ono the band. That’s rumored of course. The public story is that they had creative differences, but Ryan and bassist Jon Walker left all the same. This time it seemed Panic! was done for real. I mean, how do you write a third album when your main songwriter bails? You thank the heavens for a lead singer who knows how to step up. Brendon Urie and drummer Spencer Smith forged ahead. Brendon got out a notebook and started writing – and two years later “Vices & Virtues” was released, proving he was more than a powerhouse vocalist but a wordsmith to be reckoned with. “Always” is on that album and it’s the only ballad. Actually, it’s just an acoustic guitar and Brendon – vulnerable and austere as he sings out “It was always you falling for me/Now there’s always time calling for me/I’m the light at the end of the road/Blink back to let me know“. In interviews after the album he said the only reason the album exists is because his mentor/”Pretty. Odd.” producer Rob Mathis told him to “just show up.”

That’s what my tattoo is a reminder of – to show up for my life. And I’m glad I waited for the third album, that I picked this song over “Northern Downpour.” This is a song about finding strength, on an album that was born out of the ashes of struggle and ego. This song, these words, are the rainbow on the other side of the storm for me. Listening to “A Fever” 8 years ago pushed me to show up every day at that school no matter how hard it was. No matter how angry I was at my parents, or how hopeless my future felt. Fun fact, despite falling to a C average, my entrance essays (about the importance of participating in your life!) got me into NYU, BU, Tufts, UNC Chapel Hill and Northeastern University. The latter gave me a full-tuition scholarship, so that’s where I went and majored in Music Industry. By my senior year I was a paid freelance writer for Billboard and interviewed Panic! at the Disco, in person, in a quiet corner of the Atlantic Records office. I don’t say any of that to be arrogant or to brag. I’m saying I got there by doing what their music inspired me to do, what Brendon had to do – by showing up, and those 28 minutes and 43 seconds were absolutely worth the two years of desperation I had to survive beforehand.

Thus I couldn’t think of a better choice than “Always” for this week’s Thursday Morning Melody. Enjoy!

For those that have made it through all this intense obsessive history and still find yourselves interested – Panic! at the Disco released their fourth album “Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die” on Oct. 8. Shortly before the release, Spencer confessed he’d been battling a prescription drug addiction for the past couple of years and had been absent for most of the recording process. Since he is in the beginning stages of his recovery he also sat out their nationwide arena tour with label-mates Fall Out Boy. This means that Brendon has largely been carrying the creative load for Panic! squarely on his own shoulders. Their new single “This Is Gospel” is a song he wrote about the frustration, anger and fear of losing his best friend to addiction. “If you love me let me go/These words are knives and often leave scars/(This is the fear of falling apart)/The truth is I never was yours/(The fear, the fear of falling apart)/This is the beat of my heart,” rings out the chorus – proving definitively that genius doesn’t only come in storms of fabled foreign tongues, but in honesty, creativity, and having the guts to show up. It also reminds me my right ankle is pretty bare…You can check out “This Is Gospel” below as well.

Are there songs or works of art that inspire you to show up? Tell us in the comments below. If you have a song that inspires or moves you submit it to our Thursday Morning Melody column by emailing editor@intent.com!

Thursday Morning Melody: Do I Wanna Know?

Screen shot 2013-09-26 at 1.56.16 AMIt’s late. You’ve had a little bit to drink. Your fingers are itching to call the one person who’s been running through your mind on repeat for God knows how long. It’s probably a bad idea – no, it’s definitely a bad idea – but you can’t help wondering if they feel the same way that you do. Is it safer to just wonder or do you go for it?

Maybe you should just put on the latest from Sheffield (England) natives The Arctic Monkeys. Frontman and lyricist Alex Turner captures the moment perfectly in “Do I Wanna Know?,” the second single from the band’s fifth full-length effort, AM. 

The Arctic Monkeys have been around since 2006, but this album is getting rave critical reviews from US press. It’s a combination of loose rock ‘n’ roll and early Dr. Dre influenced beats paired with clever songwriting.

“Do I Wanna Know?” hits the spot for two reasons – first the seductive guitar riff that gives the ballad a late 70s vintage rock feel. The second is Turner’s earnest crooning, “Ever thought of calling when you’ve had a few?/’Cause I always do/Maybe I’m too busy being yours to fall for somebody new/Now I’ve thought it through.” There’s a reason he was voted one of NME Magazine’s Greatest Lyricists of All Time. Turner has a way of turning universal every day experiences into poetry and emoting those occurrences with his northern accent in a way that makes you swoon. AM is the fifth consecutive album from the Monkeys to debut in the UK at number 1, making them the first indie act to ever do so. Our friends across the ocean have figured out what the US seems slow to pick up on – this band is something special, so stop missing out!

Check out the song and the official video below:

AM was released September 9, 2013 and available wherever records are sold.


This post is part of  our Thursday Morning Melody series. Every Thursday we feature the music video and lyrics to a song that touches us deeply. If there’s a melody you wish to share with the Intent community, please share it with us in the comments below! Click here to listen to past Thursday Morning Melodies.

5 Ways Your Smartphone Can Improve Your Mood

You pick up a cell phone several times a day, but can you imagine a cell phone picking you up? Well, they do it all the time. We all know your cell phone makes your life easier. You can order pizza, get directions, chat with friends and even send photos when you feel like doing so, but this little device can also make you feel better when you feel blue. There’s truly no limit to what technology can do these days. Next time you feel down, pick up your cell phone. It will return the favor.

Hunt for Feel Good Music

Music - an art for itself - Headphones and music notes / musical notation system

If you are feeling low, the easiest way to pick yourself up is to play a song. With Music Hunt, an app for smartphones, you can find the right song to pick you up. Search for an old favorite, such as a hit from the 80s, or surf through a variety of recent hip-hop hits. Satisfy your craving for some feel good rock ‘n roll, sure to blow your blues away in a heartbeat.

This app is perfect for rainy day blues. Add this to all of your work phones and give your crew something to smile about on those long flights. You can do this in a few clicks (or taps) with using just your tablet or smartphone.

Stream a Video, Enjoy a River of Laughter

Streaming videos on your phone is a great way to improve your mood. With today’s phones, you have hundreds of video apps to choose from. Open the YouTube app and search for funny, short videos for a quick laugh to lighten your mood. It’s also free, which will make you smile.

Hulu Plus is also available on select smartphones. You can immediately brighten your mood by watching your favorite sitcom on your phone. You can also download and watch comedies on your phone for a minimal price of around $7.99.

Crack a Joke a Day


Many apps feature jokes to force you to look at life from a different perspective. Try YoMama Jokes or go for quantity with the app 5000 Jokes, or Best Bar Jokes. All of these apps will make your mood improve immediately.

Chat With a Friend

Another mood-booster is to have a chat with a friend. Open up your favorite messaging app and send a quick note to a friend, or repair a damaged relationship with a nice text. It’s a little easier to start a conversation using texts.

Relive Feel Good Moments

Grand Cayman Vacation

Load your phone with your favorite pictures of friends, family, and great moments. Put them in a folder called “fun photos” or something similar and browse photos when a blue mood strikes. You’ll start thinking about all the fun times in your life.

You always have your phone with you. When you feel blue, use these suggestions and add a little creativity to turn your smartphone into your personal mood-booster.


Image Via Flickr by photosteve101

Image Via Flickr by gagilas

Image Via Flickr by c&rdunn

Top 10 Workout Tunes for March

Keep some spring in your step as we move away from those cold, winter months. These jams are sure to save your workout on a tired morning, or push you to sprint when you didn’t think you had it in you. That’s why once again I’ve gotten together with some of my hottest, Hollywood exercise friends Keith Irace SoCal group Exercise Manager and Liz Marmesh, Top Personal Trainer in Century City, CA at www.EquinoxFitness.com to create the perfect Top 10 Hottest Workout iTunes Playlist for you.

 We’re also giving you a couple old skool tunes with songs by R.E.M., The B-52’s, and Lynyrd Skynyrd as a tribute to my Southern Skool roots then, ending with Jai Ho from my favorite movie this year, Slumdog Millionaire. Use all 10 songs in this order to get you through a 35-minute uphill walk, interval workout on the elliptical, or a circuit training session. Get out there and move!

  1. Shiny Happy People by R.E.M.  time: 3:46
  2. Bottle Pop (feat. Snoop Dogg) by Pussycat Dolls  time: 3:30
  3. Untouched by The Veronicas  time: 4:14
  4. Change (feat. Wale) by Daniel Merriweather  time: 3:20
  5. Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd  time: 4:45
  6. Love to Love You Baby by Tom Novy and The Tom Toms  time:?4:00
  7. My Life Would Suck Without You by Kelly Clarkson  time: 3:31
  8. Love Shack by B-52’s  time: 5:21
  9. American Boy (feat. Kanye West) by Estelle  time: 4:44
  10. Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack by AR Rahman  time: 5:19

 A great workout tune tempo should be between 120 and 140 bpm, which roughly corresponds to the average person’s heart rate during a workout routine.  A beginning walker’s bpm should be between 110 to 114 bpm, intermediate below 120, and advanced walker/jogger up to 150 bpm.

 If you want to be guaranteed a consistent beat, I love downloading pre-mixed Digital Fitness Music album compiled by the fitness pros at Dynamix http://www.Dynamix.com or iSweat http://www.iSweat Music.com.  Both offer hundreds of Digital Fitness Music Albums available in 30, 45 or 60 minute workouts. 

Each Dynamix music album offers a variety of music styles including dance, disco, country, rock, with well-known popular songs, in various speeds for different fitness levels.  The music plays non-stop on your iPod or MP3.  Each album is pre-programmed to keep you on pace to achieve your cardio or strength workout goals. (Yes, this means no cheating since the music speed keeps you going!)

For more training tips by Linda, click here. 

Jingle Bells Pahrumpum

I have a confession to make.  Please don’t judge me by this.  I am not a Scrooge – I have just as much holiday spirit as the next person.  But… I really don’t like hearing Christmas music in the grocery store.  Or the shopping mall.  Or the gas station.  I don’t know what it is about this ambient fa-la-la, it just isn’t natural.  I know that the music is meant to be perky and upbeat and get us all in a festive, shopping mood.  But for some reason it has the opposite effect on me.  It bugs me!  It that weird?

It’s not the songs themselves that are a problem.  Although most of these places play the same dozen or so Christmas songs in an endless loop.  There is a place for tradition, and ritual.  There is a time and place for this music – and I think it’s in a place where you actually go to hear music, and maybe a week or so before the actual holiday.  When I hear those piped-in tunes it’s like some kind of a reminder that there’s more to do, more to get ready for, and that this is the “hap-happiest time of the year” so we’d better darn well get with the program.  But maybe it’s just me.

On the bright side – I love that there are some new holiday albums out this year that really look promising – and hopefully some of these songs will get into the piped-in rotation soon.  Elliot Yamin, of American Idol runner-up fame, recorded a song called “Let’s Be Naughty, and Save Santa the Trip.”  And Harry Connick. Jr. has a whole album out that gives a nice jazzy feel to holiday standards.  Almost every year I get the Cost Plus World Market compilation CD that has Christmas songs played by world music artists, it’s very international and sophisticated – and yes, fun!

“patterned clouds” lyrics

 "patterned clouds"

by jen pumo and graham pearce

 Ab   Db

    calm the spirit wrapped around me


    while the air is oh so clear

                                Ab                          Db 

    you would think i could stand still here 


    while the world is full of fear

Fm  Ab  Db

          whispers flicker in the leaves


          fallen from the patterned clouds

Fm  Ab  Db                 

          ageless is this melody

                 C   Db      C   Fm 

  i’m here, i’m home

Ab    Db

      thought i would’ve known better



  i trusted my own hand

                            Ab                   Db

  but i got caught up in this madness


  in the childish game of man

Fm   Ab   Db

          whispers flicker in the leaves


          fallen from the patterned clouds

Fm   Ab   Db

          ageless is this melody

                   C   Db      C    Fm

          i’m here, i’m home

Db        Eb       Db      Eb       Dd        Eb         Ab       Db      Fm

 la da da . . .

Ab   Db 

    though i’m searching through the ages 


          for a love that fills my hands

                            Ab                Db      

    there’s comfort in the center


    and here alone i stand

Fm  Ab  Db

          whispers flicker in the leaves


          fallen from the patterned clouds

Fm  Ab  Db                  

          ageless is this melody

                  C Db        C Fm   

          i’m here, i’m home

                  C Db        C Fm   

          i’m here, i’m whole

          C Db        C Fm           Db    Ab   Fm   Db    Fm

                  i’m here, i’m home

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