Monday, June 04, 2007

Life in a Song 4:

I love music.

Sometimes it’s the songs that get me… and sometimes it’s the artist.

Anita Baker is one of my favorite artists and not without reason:

Her voice is so smooth and sexy

and warm… so warm I wish I could curl up in it.

Ms. Baker just brings a sensual, stirring quality to every note she sings…

I’m the sort of person who falls in love with an album and listens to it on instant replay for weeks and even months on end…

I’ve come to know every instrumental and ad-lib on her ‘Rapture’ and ‘Best of Anita Baker’ albums…


A few of my favorite songs on those albums:

· You bring me joy: Her voice starts on this track like a warm spring breeze… you know the kind when you’re in a sundress and some cute sandals without a care in the world… the kind when you just met somebody nice and there are vibes and you see it actually going somewhere. “When I loose my way, your love comes smiling on me” Times when you remember someone and just smile… when you find pleasure in the mundane just because that person is there to share it with you. “I love you…cos you’re the finest thing I’ve seen in all my life”… Times when you see beauty in someone even when they don’t see it in themselves…

· You’re my Everything: “Got the sun in the morning I got the moon at night… I got your arms around me everythings all right…I just want to say that you’re my everything.” There’s so much story and joy and character in her voice… it’s the voice of a woman who has seen… a woman who has loved and lost… who knows exactly what it feels like. I couldn’t care less if she writes her songs or not… but I can just picture her making adjustments to the song as she records it… adding those little ‘scatty’ things she does… more ad-libs… taking it higher. I first heard this song in Nigeria. It brings back good memories… of my step sister who never got the lyrics of any song right and butchered this song till it was almost unrecognizable… very good memories.

· Giving you the best that I got: I love this song because she doesn’t say that she’s giving him the best that there is… just the best that she’s got. I read somewhere that love isn’t about loving a perfect person… but loving an imperfect person perfectly. I agree cos sometimes we get so caught up in the trivialities that we forget the essence of love… sometimes it’s about being able to love another ‘in spite of’

· Sweet Love: “With all my heart I love you baby, stay with me and you will see, my arms will hold you baby never leave cos I believe I’m in love… sweet love… hear me calling out your name, I feel no shame… don’t you ever go away, it’ll always be this way”

‘I’m in love… I feel no shame… I’m in love’ My favorite line of the entire song… I think that’s how it’s supposed to be… really. There should be no shame…

-

· No one in the world: ‘I look back on all those good times that we once shared… ‘

This one’s reminiscent… remembering someone you loved or genuinely cared about…and the good times. Ms. Baker’s begging for it quite literally: ‘Please take me back… baby I can’t go on without you… I’ll do whatever it takes to get you back with me again… I realize I need you here in my life’ The song is about mistakes and second chances, lost love and all it entails. No one in the world is so beautiful I can’t even explain. Her voice starts out really calm and sweet and mellow, but as the intensity of her emotions grows… so does her voice… it’s almost an ‘and I’m telling you I’m not going’ moment. If I was the guy she’s wants this much… if she could sing me this song just once a week… I’d take her back and adore her for the rest of my life… yeah, that’s the power of this woman’s voice.

· I love you just because: Not because he’s tall or handsome or rich or smart or generous… she loves him ‘just because’. Her voice on this track is so full…

“You’re a diamond in my mind… a precious gem to me, you’re so nice to have around… it’s amazing loving you, I’m doing things I never thought I’d do” This woman sings of ‘old love’… you know that love our grandparents and great grandparents used to have… the love that came before prenuptial agreements and separate bedrooms (although I’m aware valid arguments can be made for both

· Rapture: “I’m caught up in the rapture of love… nothing else can compare while I feel the magic of you…” When Anita Baker sings it, I feel like I can still let go… even after everything… to be ‘caught up in the rapture of love’. This is probably the song that everybody knows… there are elements of whimsy in this song… her voice is just so… ahhhh.

· Body and Soul: This song makes me wish I was a ballerina… the delicacy and intricacy of the dance almost captures the beauty of this song… almost.

· I apologize: This is probably my favorite Anita Baker song… my shoulders automatically shrug in pleasure everytime I hear it. Her voice, the lyrics, the background… it’s almost too much. It’s one of those songs I can picture being played in a Starbucks somewhere in Nova Scotia… a song that’ll make you want to order one more cappuccino… a song that you’d not mind staying a few minutes later even though your lunch break is over and your manager is an ***, you can’t leave just yet cos you have to listen till it’s completely over. If I was a singer… I’d sing this song. If I was an actor… I’d act this song. If I was a couturier… I’d make this song. If I was a painter… I’d paint this song. I read somewhere that “I love you” and “I’m sorry” are the most powerful phrases in the English language. I agree… and from the way she sings it… I think Anita Baker does as well. “When the road gets rough you say things you should not say… I never meant to treat my baby that way”. A couple of my friends think I have the ‘gift of gab’ and can talk myself out of most things… but this is probably one of the few instances where I’d let a song speak for me… I would play this song if I hurt someone I really cared about… cos it sings better than anything I could say. I’d die a happy woman if I could hear Anita Baker sing this song just once in my lifetime.

I would do an Uzo on this and tell you to send me your email addresses if you want these songs… but it might be easier for you to youtube them. However, if you’re gonna get fired at work for doing that… then I’ll send it to you( the only compromise is that I’ll expect a little ‘grease’/ ‘oil’/ ‘pepper’/ ‘lettuce’… all man needs to survive… lol)

33 comments:

36 INCHES OF BROWN LEGS said...

Anita baker rocks!!!! long legged sister mi, abeg send me the songs nnkwanu (did i just murder ur language or what) lol!!

missbrowlegs@yahoo.com

Nyemoni said...

It appears you're getting your old groove back!!!! Nice to have you back with life in a song!!

Anita Baker truly has wondeful songs... the one I liked the most while growing up was Giving you the best!
The lyrics mesmerize me till now..and the part I like the most goes....
"We love so strong and so unselfishly.......
And I made a vow so I tell you now
I'm giving you the best that I got, baby..........
I bet everything on my wedding ring
I'm giving you the best that I got, givin' it to you baby...."

Soul said...

yes oo..
my aburo is getting all soully..
my sista.. I love body and soul with a passion.

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@36 inches: hey sis… wassup? E don tey small… shey o wa pa(lol… I’m also butchering your language)… I go send am no problems… I love that your email name sha… hehe… working the legs for all they’re worth aren’t ya… I no blame you jare… it’s not easy!

@nyemoni: lol… yeah … I am getting my groove back(at least the portion of it that I feel free to…) yeah I’ll be doing more of these and mummy Sundays… cos I’m back in that frame of mind. I absolutely love the song giving you the best that I got… this woman can sing and the lyrics in her songs can make a believer out of anyone… definitely one of my favourite artists…

@Soul: lol… it doesn’t happen often… me getting ‘soully’… so make we cherish am cos the next life in a song might be mystikals ‘shake that ass’… lmao. I love body and soul as well… it might be my third favourite song of hers… but nothing absolutely nothing comes before ‘I apologize’…

TaureanMinx said...

Body and Soul, def a winner for me. I also adore Sweet Love.

Uzo said...

Yayyyyyy! Excellent choice of artist for a music post. I especially love Serious off her new cd. Anita is a classic. She even inspired a haircut way back in the day....Loving this Overwhelmed

SET said...

Anita is one of the best effortlessly sensual voice ever. You must have a lot of memories with this album? hmmmm. 'body and soul', 'rapture' and 'I apologise' just touches my heart every time I hear them. Three months ago I pick up bro-in-law's ipod and the the album was on there i only listened t snippets and was like wow. even my bro loves anita,

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Body and Soul: yeah those two are probably some of her most popular songs… I actually can’t believe I haven’t yet listened to the new album she released two or 3 years ago… abi was it last year self… this reintentive memory when I no come get again(lol… I just remembered the prayers we used to say in Nigeria before we went in for an exam “Oh lord give me reintentive memory so I can remember everything I read last night… lol” those were the days…

@Uzo: I still haven’t listened to her new cd(to my shame) I guess I’m still busy listening to the old one… but if you get sha song… sha send it to me (abeg)… I’ll come on your blog and leave this request… lol I remember the anita baker haircut… I actually was going to write about that as part of this post… as in you know you’re sick with it when someone can go and request an ‘Anita Baker’ and the stylist knows exactly what they’re talking about. I don’t know if you watch Regis and Kelly( I don’t… but I happened to catch an episode last week for the first time in years… and howie mendell was the guest host… saying something about having a ‘howie mendell bikini wax special’ somewhere in California or something… I’m guessing that one doesn’t quite have the same effect… lol.

@Set: yeah Anita rocks… I think anybody who knows good music… knows this… glad you like her too…

Naija Vixen said...

LOl...she is a great musician and she did inspire a great haircut too!!

Anonymous said...

Nubius Naija

honestly reading this was crazy
for what its worth
I gotta say "No one in the world"
is like my favorite
I actually recently uploaded it on my MP3
in short so much memories
this post is by far my favorite
I got my reasons

temmy tayo said...

Body and soul, I apologize, makes me go weak in the knees anytime.

Simply Gorgeous said...

I love Anita Baker and Toni Braxton. Their voices are very similar and very sultry.

"aint there something I can give u, in exchange for everything you gave me.....(I am singing)....


Great post...

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Naija Vixen: so you were loving that haircut too huh…

@Anonymous: Glad you liked it… I absolutely love this woman…no one in the world is a beautiful song…

@Temmytayo: Me too mami… me too

@Simply Gorgeous: oh my gosh… another Toni Braxton fan like myself… if I had a brother… I’d make him marry you or something so we could sit at home and listen to Anita and Toni all day long… but since I don’t have a brother… um… you’ll just have to continue being my blog friend… and we’ll do it that way… lol… Good things happen to those who appreciate good music…

nosa101 said...

Hola!Como estas? I'm trying to force back into blogging...hey, I'm making an effort.

BTW, Anita Baker was pretty darn hot...before she got all old.

36 INCHES OF BROWN LEGS said...

oh My God i was first!!!!!!!!!1 yay!!!!!!!

bibi said...

wassup..ownb..long time..lol hope ure doing aiight...anita baker has lovely songs and i love her hair..lol..wish i could do that style..wahhh..

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is wierd! Just yesterdy i was thinking about who my all time fave artist is ms Baker's name came unbidden to my consciousness (havent listend to her in ages so dat must say somthng!) Soulful, sultry, sexy... all my favorite "S" words and then some.

But u forgot

"i wont be neglected, i wont be denied, the pleasure of ur kisses, the pleasure of ur smile, i think u take for granted, i'll always be here, just becos i love u, it dont mean i wont disappear, been so long... (take it away overwhelmed)!

And am real glad u dint throw away the beautiful thing that ur blog is on some "poor" guy who wouldnt know a good thing if it got under his skin!!

U write beautiful and i dont know u but i love u anyway!

Tayo said...

Hmmm, this is an excellent review. I've never really listened to Anita Baker but you've made me want to get her songs. Oya, finish what you started o, send me the songs.

adumaadan - Blacktinkerbell said...

Great post. I've always admired Ms Baker but you make me want to listen to her right now.

Pink-satin said...

hey girl,tanx 4 stopping by my page...u can get the voice thingy @ www.snapvine.com,make sure you choose the voice player meant for blogs( as in the longer ones ,not the wide ones)..and yes we are thiking that if many pple sign up for it we could have a blogville idol contest...as in those that want to contest would sing in their player and bloggers can choose who they want and put the name in whoever is managing the contest's blog ..and each week pple sing till u get a winner..wat do u think?if u do get the voice comment thing holler at me...God bless

chidi said...

i used to like Anita Bakers songs too. those were the days!

LurLar said...

Anita baker na my lifetime favorite. Infact i think there was a hairstyle named after her.

nameless.poetical. said...

the more posts of urs i read, the more i get an insight into you...
i read your blog and walked into my kitchen thinkin ur heading along the "next oprah" path...cos i can imagine people downloading anita baker after reading this..
ok, so maybe i AM doing that..
sue me
e dey happn

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@nosa101: hey gorgeous… welcome back… so now I get to hear all the gist you have been withholding from your big sis for so long.. oya spill… the good the bad and the wowo! Lol… before she got all old ke? The woman is still hot as hell jare… who’s hotter? Ciara?

@36 inches: lol… excitement… my best friend rejected my fantastic cake because she doesn’t trust my cooking but because I ate it twice and I’m still alive… I’ll give you a piece… lol… sha don’t blame me for any side-effects… heher

@bibi: hey bibi… how now? E truly don tey sha.. my dear I’m ok oh… I have a few things to accomplish in the next couple of days sha… getting my belly piercing checked and/or redone, getting my hair and nails done… travelling really far to get this dress that I really love(cos they don’t have it near me anymore and I’m planning to rock it somewhere soon… I’ll tell u details when I actually get it… ) anita baker is hot hot hot… man I would look horrible with that hairstyle(with my big head… lol)

@Anonymous: I LIKE YOU!!! You know good music 4real… been so long... of missing you baby…been so long... of missing you baby. Thoughts and mellow memories of once upon a time slowly creeping on me n they linger on my mind’ (I realized I left this out and ‘lead me into love’… but it’s all good… matter of fact for reminding me this one…I have a special prize for you. I will serenade you every day of this week with some fantastic melodies… just name it… lol..i’m generous abi?) love you back anon

@Tayo: Thanks gorgeous… I will send em tomorrow.. to you and 36 inches cos I don’t have them on the computer I’m on.. but it’s a done deal… just remember you have to grease my palms for this service(nb: I only accept 100 dollar bills and 500 naira notes(abi is there a bigger denomination now… dang I can just remember when I left naija that it was such a big deal to posses 200 naira notes self…)

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@adumaadan: thanks darling… you should… she’s beautiful

@pink-satin: lol… I’ll let you know what happens either way… blogsville idol… I cant participate.. don’t want your computer screen to shatter… lol

@chidi: used to ke? Please re-like them oh

@Lurlar: yay!!!!!!!!!!!!! You see one of the reasons I like you now… you’re too current… lol

@nameless poetical: I can’t wait to hear u singing anita in that your frog singing soprano voice(lol hip hop fire.. please don’t deal with me for saying this about your romeo).. are you coming to this special Friday ‘prayer meeting’ that I’m hearing about?

Tayo said...

Send them quick o! First send the songs, then send me your bill after I receive them. I'll then send you a cheque for the payment. Cashable only in Naija!

Mad Soul said...

just passing thru... and no, i didnt read it lol
but gr8 post tho

Anonymous said...

I sense A hint in this recent post
I just hope Am wrong

Waffarian said...

My big memory of Anita Baker: I was 14, our neighbour had just come home with a new funky haircut, I wanted the same, the name of the haircut was "anita baker". Went to nearest saloon, told them I wanted anita baker, they "butchered" my hair. Ran home crying, neighbour took me to her saloon where "Andrew the barber" saved the day and also fell in love with me, till today, my brother goes around telling people that the only toasters I ever had were "barbers and mechanics".

Overwhelmed Naija Babe said...

@Uncle T: I no get your email address oh… send am here… or I’ll come by your blog quicktimes and get it… I like the sound of your currency… you see why I always call you a happening guy…

@Mad Soul: you’re a nincompoop!!!

@Anonymous: Hint? Of what? It’s a post about Anita Baker… the beauty of her and her music… hint of what?

@Waffarian: lol you always have the funniest stories… barbers and mechanics… not bad oh… at least you didn’t have aba spare parts dealers and ‘o da esi guys’(I forget their cult name… you know the ones the supposedly don’t bleed if you cut em…because they have been cooked in some traditional formulars.. lol) after you before you even grew breasts(yes oh yours truly has some stories to tell) but you self… so you started this your trendy behaviour from childhood ehn…

nameless.poetical. said...

frog voice ke? if i feed you undercooked pancake batter ehn? in fact..il let hip hop fire ur nyash!!! my voice is a tenor frog voice, not soprano frog voice
nonsense
lol

Pink-satin said...

hey girl pls check out my page or miss okpeke's page on the upcoming blogville idol contest...Will u be interested?pls say yes!we just trying to spice up stuff on blogville....

Sweet Sag said...

you just took me back to my childhood. my mother used to listen to anita baker (on vinyl) while she was getting ready for work in the mornings. and she sang. i now sing those songs of course, and they are just as poignant as your words explain.