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witoy SOUNDTRACK: JUANES-Tiny Desk Concert #172 (November 3, 2011).

Juanes is a Colombian superstar (he’s really juanesquite hunky).  This performance consists of Juanes singing and playing electric guitar (mostly solos) and his accompanist playing acoustic guitar.

The blurb says that he usually plays arenas and large venues, so it’s a treat to see him up close like this.  He was in town to receive an award from the Hispanic Heritage Foundation.

His voice is great and powerful and while he is singing in Spanish, his phrasings don’t sound Spanish at all.  Perhaps its the blend of Colombian roots-folk and rock ‘n’ roll.

“Hoy Me Voy” begins with some acoustic guitar playing and Juanes singing.  It’s a bouncy and upbeat folk song.  And while I don’t understand the words, I feel like I can make sense of the song.

For “Yerbatero” he opens the song with a guitar riff while the other guy plays percussive chords.  The “yeaaaaaaaaaaaah” section is catchy in any language.  And the solo he plays is pretty fun.  There’s also a fairly wild guitar solo near the end of the song.

“La Camisa Negra” was requested by someone in the audience–it was one of his bigger hits.  Juanes plays a cool intro riff (and some complex chords) before launching into the song proper.  I love the middle section with the warm guitars and catchy vocals that counter the staccato verses.

[READ: September 24, 2015] Wars in Toyland

There have been many books about toys coming to life, but I don’t think I’ve read anything quite like this before.

And the artwork is so good that it made the whole story even more compelling.

This book is geared towards YA readers and I can see why… although there’s no bad words (one “bastard”), the subject is very dark.  As it opens we see that young Matthew’s brother Adam is missing.  There’s even Missing posters on the fridge (it’s pretty dark).  Matthew and Adam used to play war with their toys all the time (I love the way the toy soldiers are drawn).

But now that Adam is missing Matthew doesn’t feel like playing war anymore.  And that’s when the toys drag Adam into the toy box and into Toyland, where things are very bad indeed. (more…)

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