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Balearic Breakfast | Episode 165 | Not just a Woman to me...

Updated: Mar 23

Colleen 'Cosmo' Murphy broadcast the 165th episode of Balearic Breakfast on her Mixcloud and Twitch TV socials on March 5th 2024.

 

About this show. – On March 2nd, Colleen posted the request line on her socials with an astounding picture, crafted as always by our dear Lee, asking us for some musical suggestions regarding the celebration of International Women’s Day: "The Balearic Breakfast Request Line is back! This coming Tuesday on the 5th March is our annual International Women’s Day celebration so please suggest songs by women artists/musicians. This show is always so inspiring and I look forward to discovering some new music as well as unearthing past treasures and celebrating women’s creativity. Now it’s over to you…"

The show in itself was a Beautiful 3hour and a half musical promenade, allowing us all to discover tunes from Female artists that inspired generations, and that will, without a shadow of a doubt, inspire the generations to come... The Balearic Breakfast Family truly outdid itself on that one, allowing our Captain to draw a seamless female musical path... As Colleen stated, "This is an annual tradition and is always one of my favourite shows as it spotlights women’s creativity and musicianship. Your requests were incredible and spanned the musical spectrum and thank you. A lot of ground is covered - folk, jazz, soul, house, electronic, experimental and a canto pop record I discovered when I was in Hong Kong last month."


Listen back to the 165th episode of Balearic Breakfast:

 

PLAYLIST


(2007) Aretha Franklin Tree of Life

(2020) Roseanne Reid Couldn’t Wish More for You

(2024) Caoilfhionn Rose Fall Into Place

(1969) Laura Nyro Captain for Dark Mornings

(1968) Bobbie Gentry Jessye’ Lisabeth

(1976) Joni Mitchell Amelia

(1995) Tracy Chapman New Beginning

(1986) Suzanne Vega Neighborhood Girls

(1976) Joan Armatrading Love and Affection

(1996) Neneh Cherry Woman

(1970) Dorothy Ashby Heaven and Hell

(2024) Kinga Glyk Opinions

(2021) Cleo Sol Promises

(2004) Jill Scott Golden

(2015) Lindsey Webster Fool Me Once

(2020) System Olympia 6am Romance

(1985) ‘Til Tuesday Voices Carry

(1984) Laurie Anderson Sharkey’s Day

(2000) Sade By Your Side (Cottonbelly Remix)

(1980) Sally Oldfield Blue Water

(1979) Elkie Brooks Rising Cost of Love

(1977) Marlena Shaw Sweet Beginnings

(1982) 夏妙然 (Serina Ha)  看看你’ (Look at You)

(1984) Sheila E The Belle of St. Mark

(2024) Ada Morghe We Are One (Cosmodelica Remix)

(2023) Spirit of Sundaze Ensemble & Cherise Earth is the Place

(2023) Tigerbalm & Farafi Nina (Elado Remix)

(2011) Ladytron Destroy Everything You Touch (Sasha Involv2er Remix)

(1990) Lisa Stansfield This is the Right Time (Yvonne Turner Remix)

(2007) Masters at Work ft. India Love & Happiness

(2000) Ultra Naté Desire (Kerri Chandler's Brazilian Mix)

(1997) Sounds of Blackness The Pressure (Jazz n Groove Remix)

(1993) Daphne When You Love Someone

(1980) Ann Margret Everybody Needs Somebody Sometimes

(1992) Moodswings ft Chrissie Hynde State of Independence

 

THE LISTENING EXPERIENCE

This 165th episode really felt like a long walk into a forest, discovering music from artists we all deeply love and respect. A lot of the songs featured here were never played before during Balearic Breakfast, and even Colleen's flow felt somewhat different today; maybe it's me being oh-so subjective again, laughs! Anyway, I felt a beautiful musical equilibrium in this episode, and I was able to divide it into three parts, each one of them showcasing why a Woman will always be so much more than what we think... Let's dive in, then...

 

THE EMOTION...


To me, the first nine songs really depict how powerful and important a woman's emotions are in our Masculine World. We're drawn into today's trip by the opening track, Tree of Life, by the Unique Aretha Franklin. With its large and somewhat open soundstage (somewhat because you can feel that the instruments on each side of the left and right channel are somehow framing the soundstage while not closing it totally) and its realistic sound, Aretha's voice simply shines while she sings a leftover song from her 1973 studio album Hey Now Hey (The Other Side of the Sky, later published on "Rare and Unreleased Recordings from the Golden Age of the Queen of Soul" in 2007 on Rhino records. She is there, with us, as her imploring, yet combative, voice sings what I feel is a redemption song. From the second song on, Colleen chose to let the music speak, taking us through an emotional walk. And this is exactly what you feel while listening to Couldn’t Wish More for You by Roseanne Reid, someone wishing you well on your journey, Emotions. Colleen's timing here is perfect, the music flows, and really, everything falls into place. On her Facebook, Caoifflan shared, "I wrote ‘Fall Into Place’ to a person close to me, to remind them that there’s always hope and I’m willing them on every day. This song features many of my good friends and amazing musicians Janileigh Cohen and Chloe Foy on backing vocals, Jordan Smart on saxophone, John Ellis on piano, Alan Taylor on drums Rich Williams on guitar and production and Gavin Barras on double bass."

With her voice being very similar to Kate Bush's, Laura Nyro almost fooled me. Her song, Captain for Dark Morning (first released on her 1969 New York Tendaberry studio album), is so close to Kate's universe to me! In an interview, the self-taught-pianist and composer shared: "My jazz background put certain inflexions into my songwriting and singing. Throw in all the poetry I'd read since I was a kid and just being a woman, and that's what made my songs complex and emotionally rich". I love these kinds of songs—they are very dynamic, with beautiful outbursts and high-pitched notes effortlessly reached in a smile! Emotions equal Women, and Bobbie Gentry's 1968 song Jessye’ Lisabeth proves it perfectly, too. There is that something in this first part of the show, a calm, reassuring but driving force; of course, you can feel Colleen's work here perfectly. These songs are all about hopes, the future, and friendly support. They deal with our journeys, just as Joni Mitchell's Amelia does! For those of you who did not know, Amelia Earhart was a pioneering aviator who, in 1932, became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, and Joni's song deals with what it takes to go on a journey when life gets tough... "Basically, the false alarm was the end of a relationship. Two Scorpios couldn't let each other go. It was done, but we couldn't let go; we belonged to each other. It was winding down and I am driving solo without a driver's license across the country. I think of Amelia I think solo flight. I can't remember how many hotel rooms later it was complete" I love it when songs are so close intellectually to one another! It's just beautiful, and this is why I could listen to Colleen without end...


Emotion... I must say I had teary eyes while listening to that edition of Balearic Breakfast; I think a tear rolled down my face while hearing that Colleen chose Tracy's Chapman "New Beginning" as, for several months now, I have been thinking silently about what it takes to be Balearic and one of the elements I figured out was that maybe changing the way we talk to one another would help improve our relations. When that happened to me, I swear, I didn't know Chapman's song... In fact, I discovered it while making the requests on Colleen's Facebook, finding that "Give Me One Reason" was nice but too bluesy for the show, I stumbled across that song... and it Clicked instantly... true story! To me, this is the most Balearic song we ever played on the show. It's all in there; now, all we have to do is apply Tracy's lyrics... Emotions? My goodness gracious, for sure! With Suzan Vega's "Neighborhood Girls" solid structure following Tracy's relaxed delivery, we here have the dynamics I was talking about in the interview I gave to Douglas Noble about the creation of this very blog. Colleen's musicality shines here. The first part of this 165 edition of Balearic Breakfast ends with the beautiful "Love and Affection" by Joan Armatrading, her voice making me think about FitzRoy's one!


 

THE ADVENTUROUS AFFIRMATION...


These eleven songs take us through another phase of this episode, showcasing, on many levels, how much women know to take the con in life and how, musically, they are an undoubtful driving force.

You must listen to this show like you would to an album. Not being able to participate in the chat gave me the opportunity to do that on this 165th edition of Balearic Breakfast, thus paying attention to Colleen's "breaks" (finding the hidden structure of the show 😉). The second part starting with Neneh Cherry's song "Woman" is a Hint, Indeed, as this torch song was a take on James Brown's 1966 hit "It's A Man's Man's Man's World.", making Neneh Cherry a positive role model for women! I want to share with you this analysis of the song I found on the net, it's very inspiring indeed! "It sounds as a pamphletary one about the woman's condition in this world. I mean Neneh is talking to every women who have been forced to live under man's oppression without finding a space for expressing their infinity love. More specifically, she's talking about an African woman who has been chased by men who have taken everything from her except for her inner strenght. And she has been chased just because she owns some kind of mystical power ("And for my healing wits / I've been called a witch") which lets her heal people and it seems to me the men from her 'tribe' fear the popularity that she has got with this, since they would never admit to share their power with a woman 'witch'. It's a kind of jealous feeling, I think. So she's condemned to death on fire and every good things she has made must be forgotten by everyone for not making her a martyr."I've died so many times I'm only just coming to life." I assume she's talking she is like Phoenix bird, not meaning she will be born again in flesh&blood, but meaning it'll always exist another women like her who will be prepaired to try to spread love around this godless land..."

This part of the show really showcases Women's musicianship and is a beautiful affirmation of their soul. Here, you can hear songs about Women stating who they really are; here, you can hear songs demonstrating their sensitivity and their musical empowerment, Dorothy's "Heaven and Hell" being a perfect example of that: a sad song, adapted from Khayyam’s poetry, acknowledging that no matter your spiritual path, death is at least some sort of end. As this blog article states, "not only could Dorothy Ashby play the harp, but also the piano and the Japanese koto, a stringed instrument plucked or strummed while sitting or kneeling. And she sang. You can hear her soul, her classical training, and her love of the stage in her playing, which could quickly veer from hushed to dramatic." This track makes me think of another great French musician, the singer, composer and violin player Catherine Lara, who, at the end of the 70s and in the following decades, played the violin on her studio albums and on stage, being the first one to use this instrument as a solo and resolutely rock instrument! Talking about violins, we're not very far away from bass; I absolutely love how Kinga Glyk's "Opinions" track blends a relaxed feeling with a very solid sentiment, enhanced by the slapping instrument! The Polish bassist shared her thoughts in a recent interview, saying "My musical heroes are not only bass players - I’m inspired by many, many other artists. Listening to different kinds of music and many musicians gives me freedom and does not close my mind to a single way of thinking. Always be yourself. Never try to be someone else. If you play, play as well as you can, but you don’t have to prove to anyone that you can do more than you can."

But this part of the show, showcasing Woman taking the con, is also a rhythmical journey, and the empowerment can be absolutely felt both in Cleo Sol's "Promises" rhythm and Lyrics! It's Solid; it's driven, even if the lyrics are somewhat sad you can feel this Woman is not ready to stop her journey because of what happened... Keeping the rhythm steady and the feeling absolutely vibrant, Colleen then plays Jill Scott's "Golden". Speaking about the song, singer-songwriter Sug Daniels explained: “When I listen to ‘Golden,’ as an adult, it’s just a good song, it feels good in your body, it’s like you’ve got the top down, the sun is out. But she’s really prophesying, she’s really claiming her happiness, she’s saying ‘this belongs to me.’ I feel like as Black women, sometimes we don’t think about happiness, we think about survival. So to hear a Black woman being like ‘I’m taking my freedom.’ it really hit me, it really touches me.” Now, you understand the title of the second part of this show, don't you?! 😊


Even if "Fool Me Once" by Lindsey Webster has a slower tempo, it so beautifully showcases a Woman's soul and Behaviour when she knows something is not right! Listen closely to the next three tracks; you'll find a musical approach you never heard till that point of the show: "6am Romance" by System Olympia is a very modern, resonant-sounding piece of music; you can almost picture the soundwaves in your head, and this effect is very well enhanced by the following song, "Voices Carry", also a very vibrant sonic trip (the song is about an abusive relationship...), this being enhanced by the rhythm of the song (Colleen's selections and the order of the tracks are indeed perfect here, aren't they?)! Our Musical Audacity trip is reaching an end as Sharkey's Day enters our brains (take the time to watch Colleen's interview right here). The last two songs (Sade's "By Your Side (Cottonbelly Remix)" the original version showcasing a beautiful sonic evolution of Sade's sonics & Sally Oldfield's "Blue Water"), which to me belong here, also demonstrate perfectly Women's adventurous affirmation, almost acting as a bond to the last part of the show (listen to what happens @1h42min and you'll understand)...

 

THE RISING & THE SHINING...


Of course, Balearic Breakfast has its own Soul, and the last part of the show is the one that will bring you dancing on your feet (the two first parts of this episode clock at 1hour47min., and this gives us 1hour42min. to dance, did I talk about Female perfection already?)! Still, this part is musically very interesting as it really Shines, allowing you to see a beautiful Female Disco Ball hanging somewhere over you. Here, I will only share a few facts about some of the songs that I feel really resonate with that image. Let's go then!

An upbeat funky track taken from Elkie Brook's 1979 album "Live and Learn", "Rising Cost of Love" has been recorded in a more downbeat tempo in 1979 by Darrow Fletcher. I discovered Elkie thanks to her "Pearls II" vinyl compilation containing the astounding song "Will You Write Me a song", a must listen to! Colleen then takes us to Marlena Shaw's "Sweet Beginning's", co-written by Leon Ware and John Bettis, a song that marked another change in style, funk with disco within the 1977 album of the same name that blended as various styles as Funk, soul and also R&B! The Beautiful Japanese song "Look at you" made me think of these "Waltz pop songs" I like so much, one of them being "Where boys are" by Mariya Takeuchi or the astoundingly and heart-wrenchingly beautiful "Moje jedyne Marzenie" (My Only Dream) by the great and very missed Polish Singer, Anna Jantar...

Colleen's mixing is just perfect here as "The Belle of St. Mark" hits our dancefloor, simple yet very effective! What a track, to me the Wow effect of that show! Our dear Captain always keeps her pulse on the music, and remixing Ada Morghe's "We Are One" is such a great move! I hope this one will be included in the next Balearic Breakfast compilation! This show is a never-ending sea of Musical goodness, and "Earth is the Place" is another example of that: "The Nathan Haines/Phil Asher-produced ‘Earth Is The Place’ is a Secretsundaze classic if ever there was one, a constant feature in my sets and at the party since its release in 2001. The vocals around female empowerment have become iconic in my book, penned by Phil himself. In terms of our approach to it, the main desire was just to bring it up to date really, to bring it back into the current musical landscape and to take the opportunity to shed more light on a piece of music that is very dear to me.”


There is always that moment in Balearic Breakfast where we reach true depths; here we do so thanks to Tigerbalm nicely followed by a trippy remix of "Destroy Everything You Touch" by Sasha Involv2er! Fun fact, LadyTron band's name is a reference to Roxy Music's 1972 studio album! Brian Eno was a big fan of the quartet: "Ladytron are, for me, the best of English pop music". With a darker theme, the song deals with human relations: "My take is that the person is afraid of getting hurt, so he sabotages relationships as soon as he senses he's getting too close to someone. "Anything that may desert you / So it cannot hurt you". He closes himself off from the other person and his own feelings, and he doesn't realize how much his actions affect the person he's rejecting. He ends up devastating the people who care about him. It seems like the singer might be in love with this person and wants to pursue the relationship despite knowing how he reacts to intimacy, maybe even thinking that there's a chance she could be the one to save him from himself."


With One hour left to go, Colleen wisely chose tracks taking us back to her "Club 89" shows. As she states on her Website, "It’s always been about discovery and turning people on – the wheel never stops turning. Club 89 was one of the few weekly house shows in New York City,” she says. “I had Lil Louis, Romanthony, Danny Krivit, David, François, Joe Claussell, Louie Vega and others up as special guests. I always tried to make it bigger than myself. It was about community.” This part of the show really got us Hooked; I mean, hearing Yvonne's take on Lisa Stanfield, Masters at Work, Kerri's take on Ultra Naté, and Jazz n Groove's take on Sounds of Blackness in one single mix just made us lose our heads!!!

After slightly easing down the tempo with "When You Love Someone" and "Everybody Needs Somebody Sometimes", Colleen reaches out to Eternity by waving us goodbye on "State of Independence"...


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