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Saturday, May 30, 2015

Songs That Inspire Me

I love music. I love almost every genre of music and will spends hours listening to it - on walks, when I'm going places, etc. A few weeks ago Rolling Stone had an article where artists (Marilyn Manson was one!) wrote about 5-10 songs that inspired them. It was interesting to read the lists. I'd like to share with you 12 songs that inspire me, along with a story to go along with why they inspire me.

1. Acrassicauda - Garden of Stones

This was the first song that I listened to by Acrassicauda after buying their book, Heavy Metal in Baghdad (transcripts from the documentary movie). I love the energy to it and it inspires me to pick up a guitar and write songs, or at least poetry.

As you all know, I am working on a book that I hope to be done next month at some point. Ironically, Lyn sent me a prompt yesterday for's blog and I never got around to writing it. This list is going to make me write it here:

What do you think is necessary to turn your blog into a published book? Do you need to base your blog on one topic or theme? Or have random entries like we do with here in the group? Do you think we will see blogs published as books in the future?
I usually wouldn't publish my blog from because most of what I write on is for prompts and it's personal. However, I would publish what I have posted on Blogger and I have. However, for the book I am publishing, I am making one exception from I'll be including some of the stories and poems I wrote for Soundtrackers along with the NaPoWriMo prompts and general poetry. I'm editing them now. For instance, I edited the entry for Acrassicauda's Garden of Stones for my book. Here is a blurb:

We drove over the Blue Ridge Mountains. I looked down upon my blue silk head scarf. Although I was finished afternoon prayer, I wanted to put the blue silk around my brown hair to protect my head from the sun once we get out of the car. The day before I was badly burned as we floated along the Shenandoah. I had a shirt over me, like always, to protect myself from the sun. However, I didn't think of putting sun screen on my scalp and legs, I was badly burned, and was now in pain. 

I had my earbuds on—Garden of Stones blasting into my ear drums. Acrassicauda. A heavy metal band from Baghdad. I liked their style; a blend of Pantera, Metallica, and all of my metal favorites. I had discovered the band three months prior—April 2010—when I searched for “Heavy Metal and Islam.” I have heard of Christian Metal and wanted to see if Islam had an equivalent. I found their book, Heavy Metal in Baghdad (also a documentary), ordered it and was captivated with their story. 

The Virginia trip was fun, especially standing on the rocks that peered out onto the Shenandoah Valley. Standing on the rocks atop the Blue Ridge Mountains was terrifying (I am terrified of heights), but once I had my bearings, I calmed down seeing God’s beautiful grace down below me. The winds hit my face and relieved the burns from yesterday. “God is good,” I thought to myself as I closed my eyes.

Buy the book to read the rest. :D

2. Acrassicauda- Unity

I just love the Arabic in this song. Like Garden of Stones, this song inspires me to keep writing and keep writing in Arabic. It's fun. :)

3. Talal Maddah- Time of Silence

I really like his مرحباً song that Moe sent me last month. That song always puts a smile on my face because the beat is so cheery. I listen to that song every morning and it always puts me in a good mood. Time of Silence is a second favorite and it's another song that puts me in a good mood. Maddah's music also reminds me of Moe and I like Maddah's voice.

4. Smashing Pumpkins - Today

As Marilyn Manson wrote in Rolling Stone, "most people think this song is a happy song about the best day of his life. It really isn't and it's so dark." I have always admired Billy Corgin's writing style and I love how he can put irony into something that is so upbeat. The song is about suicide, but most wouldn't pick up on it because the meaning is hidden deep within the lyrics. I like that about writing and I do that with my writing at times as well. Also, Today was the first song I learned on the guitar. I would play the song for hours in the hot summer heat. When I first started playing my acoustic guitar, I would sit on Nan's couch and strum to it. Then my ex gave me an electric guitar and I bought an amp. It sounded so much better on electric. When I bought the electric Fender, I would plug the guitar into my amp and play Today, Come As You Are, Cowboys From Hell, and Iron Man for hours.


I just love this song. This song really helped me through a dark time in my life. LDLHA-IBCSYWA was the last song Twiztid played on tour; my first Twiztid concert. Good memories.

Another excerpt from my book:

They ended with "LDLHA-IBCSYWA," which is my absolute favorite song by them. This song is on Abominationz and it's always something I listen to. If I ever play the piano again, I'd play this. I sang along with it and you can definitely hear it in the video. When the song ended, the lights dimmed and we all screamed, "FAMILY! FAMILY! FAMILY!" Madrox and Monoxide came back out and did a mini comedy routine. Madrox started saying, "Monoxide, I want to give you a big hug" and Monoxide started running from him - it was a game of cat and mouse on stage. Monoxide gave a big smile, but sadly that picture didn't come out.. however, I did capture another Monoxide smile moment (I love his smile! His smile makes my heart melt). Then they thanked everyone who performed. Jamie said, "after me let's give everyone a "whoop motherfuckin' whoop whoop!" We had to do it a few times, I gave a really loud "whoop motherfuckin' whoop whoop" to Monoxide. Monoxide just said, "I'm not as creative as Jamie, so let's all give Jamie a simple "whoop whoop."

6. Rammstein- Engel

Another song that uses irony. Rammstein is the German equivalent of Acrassicauda in the way that Rammstein inspires me to write poems and stories in German (I know German as well). I've always admired Rammstein and it brings back good memories of spending time with Anna. Anna is the one who really got me into Rammstein.

7. Willie Nelson- On The Road Again

I love Willie Nelson - he's an awesome country musician! I love his attitude and I don't care style. He's a total rebel and bad ass. When I traveled to Wisconsin in 2012, I made a mix for my travels. This song was on the compilation. As I was riding on Greyhound to Green Bay from Milwaukee, this song played as we strolled along country sides and through cities. Wisconsin truly is a neat state to travel through and Willie Nelson's On The Road Again really set that mood.

8. Nirvana- All Apologies

This is my favorite Nirvana song. I love Kurt Cobain's writing style and I love the emotion in it. I think the MTV Unplugged version is the best because in his cracking voice, you can really hear what was going on inside him, especially since it was six months before he committed suicide. There was always something really powerful about that song.

9. Johnny Cash- Folsom Prison Blues

Johnny Cash is another one of my favorites. I like his style, especially his writing style. I believe Folsom Prison Blues is a very powerful song and I love the story line.

10. Pantera- I'll Cast a Shadow

This is my favorite Pantera song. I think it's a very powerful song and I love listening to it when I work out. It just makes me feel energized to conquer anything - I'll even play it when I'm writing. I did write a story based on this song five years ago - maybe I'll share it at some point after it's edited. :)

11. Christina Aguilera- Beautiful

This song is beautiful and was the anthem of my middle school years. To me, this song makes me feel that although I'm a bit different, I belong in my uniqueness. We're all unique and all have wants and dreams. It's a powerful message and really great song writing. I also like the piano composition.

12. Eminem- The Real Slim Shady

Yeah, this was the first song that got me into Eminem. I played this song 24/7 as an 11 year old back in 2000. I love The Marshall Mathers LP. This song makes me laugh, which Eminem is good at.

Extra song: System of a Down- Chop Suey!

I fell in love with this song as a 12 year old, back in 2001. I would listen to it for hours, especially after Anna burnt it onto a CD for me. I like their style, especially the writing style. It's philosophical and deep. The message is profound and can really make you think. I like that in music. And yes, even back then, as a young teenager I listened to almost everything.

In this time period I started really getting into some rap, some nu-metal (combination hip-hop/metal), but more so grunge and metal. As you can see from the list, I like a lot of different genres. I hope you did enjoy this list.


  1. Johnny Cash was my favorite on your list.

    1. I have a special place in my heart for Johnny Cash. <3

  2. I love "Beautiful" of Aguilera's. I also love "Fighter" of hers, which is from the same album.

    I think I've heard of Pantera from somewhere else; I'll look it up and follow this up. :)