Twisted MixTape 33 – This One is Epic!

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I’ve been waiting for this theme for months! This week is “Epics” song’s that tell a story. Not songs that share an emotion, not your simple verse chorus verse bridge verse chorus reprise. Give me a storyline people, what happened? How did it start where did it go?

I’ll be honest, the reason I’ve been rubbing my little hands together waiting for this day is this song, I’ve got nothing to say, except I loved this movie, Cult Classics always hold a special place in my heart.

Flash Gordon by Queen


I think it’s fitting to follow one Science Fiction song with another. Billy Joel has described this as a “science fiction song” about an apocalypse occurring in New York as a result of discussions that the city was failing in the 1970s. New York was bordering on bankruptcy, and after asking the Federal Government for help, they were denied assistance. This resulted in the famous headline on the New York Daily News, stating “Ford to City: Drop Dead.” He said the song is titled “Miami 2017” because many New Yorker’s retire to Miami and the narrator is telling his grandchildren in the year 2017 about what he saw in the destruction of New York.

This is my second favorite Billy Joel song of all time. I wrote on Raised on the Radio about my favorite Billy Joel album, Turnstiles, in the post How I Thought Billy Joel and Billy Crystal Were the Same Person. It was one of the first albums I sat and listened to, over and over. This song was imprinted on my brain. Maybe it was even the genesis of my love of Science Fiction?

Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)


Another piece of my past was Harry Chapin. I often speak of how my father influenced my love of music, but someone else I haven’t mentioned was my sister Helene. In the 70’s and 80’s my sister played guitar and had a beautiful voice. She made a cassette tape for my father when she was a Freshman in college at SUNY Geneseo called Songs For Daddy, and sent it to my father. Since my father worked from home, and was an audiophile (it’s genetic), he has an elaborate stereo system in his office. Many a day I would lay on the floor in my father’s office as he worked and listen to the cassette my sister had made so lovingly for my father. One of the songs on that tape was Cat’s Cradle. As a family we were all huge Harry Chapin fans. Although my sister and my father beat us all.

On May 16, 1981 my sister graduated from SUNY Geneseo, Harry Chapin gave the commencement speech. It was one of the most amazing experiences both my sister and my father had. Exactly two months later he died in a car crash on the Long Island Expressway. My sister was devastated, my father was devastated. I think that was why Harry Chapin was so imprinted on my brain, I was 11-years-old, it was hard to understand the heartbreak that my sister was feeling, but I certainly felt for her. Now so many years later I can’t hear a Harry Chapin song without thinking of her 1395 miles away from me.

Taxi by Harry Chapin (Incidentally my husband won a Karaoke contest singing this on our Wedding Cruise – he was clearly meant to be part of our crazy family)


Some of you may know that my son is a huge Gordon Lightfoot fan. It’s funny because his love is what inspired me to take a closer look at Gordon and eventually write So Much More Than Sundown for Raised on the Radio, I also included a video of him singing The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald in this post. Right now he is working on this song, it is an amazing Epic tale of the Railroad coming to Canada, so beautifully haunting at times, exhilarating at others. Gordon Lightfoot is so inspiring to me because he wrote about something not just anything. I think he’s a great role-model for my son and I will continue to encourage his love of learning these long Epic songs.

Canadian Railroad Trilogy by Gordon Lightfoot


Number 5 was the hardest to choose. My son has also re-introduced me to a whole new world, some songs I listened to and others passed in one ear… He loves the old Country Western songs, trucker songs, songs that tell a tale. I wanted to choose songs like Ringo or Big John, but as much as I know every single lyric thanks to my son’s need to listen to songs over and over, that wasn’t it. There could have been A Boy Named Sue or Cocaine Blues by Johnny Cash. But in the end this song is the family favorite, because it’s about a car, more specifically a Lincoln, which my son plans to buy one day if he can stop spending his money on Hot Wheels and GI Joe.

Hot Rod Lincoln – Commander Cody

Thank you for listening, now share your MixTape with all of us. The best part of this party is we get to hear so much music that may be new, may be forgotten or may be just what you wanted to hear right now.

These are the rules. Five songs (do your best to stick to it, I listen to every mix). Stick to the theme (as best you can). Check out the other players (everyone wants to share their tunes with you). Create a mix, not a “hey look at all the cool songs I know” we’re not snobs, if you were our best bud and you were gonna make us a tape, what would it be? And share this party so more people will play next week!

Do me a favor, if you’re a veteran, try and visit at least one person you’ve never visited before.


And now, The List of all Lists

November 19 – Cheating Songs
November 26 – I know it’s gonna be hard, with Thanksgiving and all, but this is a really fun topic suggested by my favorite mixer-uper, literally, she’s always mixing up the topic. Kerri from Undiagnosed but Okay. She said,  how about a “this song could’ve sent me to jail?” I was intrigued, but needed more. Hmmm let’s see the Doors come on baby get higher 🙂 Or Carrie Underwood doing a little grand larceny beating up her boyfriends truck? Blondie gets arrested after seeing Aliens in Rapture Or even to be funnier: Joe Cocker you can leave your hat on, so if I left just my hat on I would be arrested for indecent exposure. Trust me it wouldn’t be pretty! – Now I get it!
December 3 – It is officially OK to be listening to Christmas Music now! Bring it on! Maybe we’ll find some new favorite Christmas tunes for our holiday playlists!
December 10 –  I don’t just love you, I’m addicted to you!
December 17 –  It’s dealer’s choice again! Already? Yup already!
December 24 – Unfortunately this MixTape occurs on Christmas Eve, so Merry Christmas Everyone! We’ll be taking this week off.
December 31 – I hate to say goodbye to another mixtape. So in honor of looking back on the past year, repost your favorite mixtape! (remember we go live on Monday, so you can post on the 30th if you like)
January 7 – As everyone is looking forward to a New Year and talking about resolutions, this week’s them will be Past Mistakes (not necessarily love related 😉 )

Once it is officially Tuesday, Wrong Song Lyrics goes live over at Raised on the Radio. If you haven’t visited my sister site that is a collaboration with Linda Roy and Lance Burson, what are you waiting for? Also! If you haven’t contributed your Wrong Song Lyrics what are you waiting for? Click here, it’ll take 3 minutes top! And your blog will get a shout out too!

  • Loved your choices this week Jen and yes truly all epic songs, especially Billy Joel. Seriously cannot go wrong with Billy Joel ever!!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Thanks Janine! One of these days I’m gonna get you to play!ReplyCancel

  • This is interesting. Two of the songs you have on your list have a direct relation to the story I first started writing for ROTR. The one I mentioned that I started but needed to get a better feel for. So, you’ll just have to wait until I finish that.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Can’t wait Kath! Now I NEED to know! I’m gonna start guessing….ReplyCancel

  • There you go Jen. Ask and you shall receive. Your website has been invaded by the evil genius. I have to give you props on Gordon Ligthfoot and Billy Joel. Glad I didn’t put Billy on mine.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      YES!!! Finally, been waiting a long time for your Evil Genius to join us!ReplyCancel

  • evilgenius75

    There you go Jen. Ask and you shall receive. Your website has been invaded by the evil genius. I have to give you props on Gordon Ligthfoot and Billy Joel. Glad I didn’t put Billy on mine. And I was first to link! I want my trophy!ReplyCancel

  • Jean

    A no nap day and my daughter is sleeping in my arm right now or I would have jumped in. I love story songs!!!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Now worries Jean, listen to Canadian Railroad Trilogy it’ll keep you nice and relaxed 🙂ReplyCancel

  • evilgenius75

    Damn rookies! Double posting like they’re important!ReplyCancel

  • Would you believe I almost entered Harry’s “Sequel” in my blog, figuring that someone would choose “Taxi”? I’ll admit, you did catch me off guard with the Billy Joel tune. Didn’t expect that out of you. Good choice! And thank God I didn’t do “Hot Rod Lincoln”!!! I decided to go with “One Piece At A Time” instead, knowing our discussion a couple of weeks ago. lol But … where’s the Dead’s “Truckin’?” 🙂ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      LOL Rich! So glad you’re going to do One Piece at a Time! LOVE THAT SONG! As you know. Also there was too many Dead songs to choose from so I had to give up. Jack Straw, 100 thousand tons of steel, Friend of the Devil… just too many to chooseReplyCancel

  • Hot Rod Lincoln!! damn perfect!

    gotta go and try to put something together and maybe link up tonight!ReplyCancel

  • woah! Does Lance know you have a sister named Helene?! That’s wild! Anyway – love that we both chose Taxi. Harry’s got so many good story songs. I just love him. I still cry whenever I hear “All My Life’s a Circle”…but I can’t tell you why…aghh…what a great song. Flash Gordon! I had a roommate once who was so into Flash Gordon and we heard that song a lot. FLASH! Aaahhh! 🙂 Billy, Gordon and Commander Cody! Great stuff!!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Thanks Linda! And no, I never told Lance. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • I’m back! I’m back!
    Woah this is hard!

    The first one that comes to mind is “Don’t Take the Girl” by Tim McGraw. Man what a sad one!
    I think many country songs would fit into this one…ReplyCancel

  • I think this is the week where your list aligns most closely with music I know and enjoy. Almost wish you’d posted Boy Named Sue – love that one. And I almost posted Gordon Lightfoot this week. I hadn’t heard the Queen or Billy Joel picks – but love both of them 🙂ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Thanks Louise! It almost all went country western, but I had to jump that ship!ReplyCancel

  • I’m back!!!! Finally! LOL

    Love your mix this week and I had a good time with it…hope you like it! <3ReplyCancel

  • ACH Billy Joel!!! Is there any better love? My dad influenced my music choices this week, too. In fact, I’d forgotten how much I loved 1979 until I downloaded…ReplyCancel

  • Did you and my husband secretly collaborate on the Gordon Lightfoot stuff? HA HA! I almost added a Queen song, but my facts were wrong about the one I had so I just didn’t. Not my most epic TMT, but yours is! 😀ReplyCancel

  • […] You can hear more songs that tell stories at Twisted Mixtape. […]ReplyCancel

  • OMG, seriously??? Flash??? How much do I love that song? It instantly takes me back to my childhood. Thank you for that memory!!!ReplyCancel

  • […] middle and end to the tale. It’s no surprise, then, that the Billy Joel song is first up on today’s Twisted MixTape. Here are a few of my other favorite songs that fit this week’s theme: songs that tell a […]ReplyCancel

  • Ok, I didn’t post but here is my mix tape: The Gambler, Billy, Don’t Be a Hero, Copacabana, Scenes from an Italian Restaurant,and Leader of the Pack. How’s that?ReplyCancel

  • […] soon as i read about a weekly virtual mix tape on my skewed view, i knew i had to participate.  i have always been a prodigious maker of mix tapes, and in fact, it […]ReplyCancel

  • […] yours — or learn about more epic songs — at Twisted Mixtape […]ReplyCancel

  • I don’t know most of these songs so it was nice introduction. Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Absolutely SAM that’s what we’re here for!ReplyCancel

  • Great list! I’m familiar with all of the artists but some of the songs are new to me. Love the personal Harry story. Very cool.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Yea! Melissa and I are finally on the same page!ReplyCancel

  • […] Challenge hosted by:  Jen Kuehl of My Skewed View […]ReplyCancel

  • […] you remember “mix tapes” from the 80′s & 90′s? What if you had to create one with a theme that someone else has chosen for […]ReplyCancel

  • I need to know what you sang at karaoke on your wedding cruise. Like – stat. =)ReplyCancel

  • This was a GREAT choice of theme. Of course now that I finished mine with 5-songs as per the “rules” I have a dozen more clamoring around my brain. It is going to be an earworm day Jen! Can’t wait for next weeks! Speaking of which, once you have the calendar laid out in your posts, do you ever change your mind for a scheduled prompt? I ask because with NaBloPoMo I am trying to “schedule” posts in advance on days when my regular work/writing load is heavy. Have I mentioned I love your blog (both of them btw). I have been all over them both all morning. Also, I am being an over-achiever this morning and have already made it a point to visit every single blog on this BlogHop today and have commented and followed a few. Why didn’t I know about this tuff before? Sheesh, kinda silly considering I teach blogging boot camps!!!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      So glad to have you Cheri! And I love the idea of having you over at Raised on the Radio!ReplyCancel

  • I love this bloghop! What a great week to find you-all and join in.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      So happy you found us Nikki!ReplyCancel

  • Fun list! I knew all of them this time except for the Gordon Lightfoot one, but even though I had heard that Billy Joel one many times, I didn’t know the story behind it and guess I had never listened too closely to the words either.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Hey Marcy – If it weren’t for my boy I wouldn’t know that Gordon Lightfoot either, crazy huh?ReplyCancel

  • The Harry story was awesome. Music – and those who create it – find their way into our hearts, and when they’re gone, the hurt is so real. Love that you shared this.

    Can’t go wrong with “Devil Went Down to Georgia” (not the wussy version) and “Piano Man” for this category, either.

    I’m getting back in this game for the Christmas edition … see you then!ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Thanks for stopping by Eli! Yeah, both of your choices are classics and perfect!ReplyCancel

  • Hot Rod Lincoln is an awesome song! I’ve never heard it before, but I get why it is your family favorite. I would like a son more like yours. Mine are always trying to listen to the Top 20 crap.
    You almost lost me with the Flash Gordon, but brought me back with Billy and Harry. Your sister is the sweetest, making a tape for your dad. (I was so close to putting Cat’s in the Cradle in my mix today!) Chapin died when I was only 9, so I didn’t even know who he was or that he had died. It’s only as an adult that I can appreciate (and love)his music.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      Christine you kill me! I won’t let my son listen to the new stuff. We don’t do radio so I completely control the input so far. We’ll see what happens when he realized there is a world outside of smallville!ReplyCancel

  • Great choice of mix tape, though I had a hard time getting it down to 5. I could have done 5 for each of the performers I chose. I love your Harry Chapin story. A friend of mine saw him in concert when she was in college during one of his World Hunger Year tours, and got his autograph and a kiss. She never allowed me to forget this.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      LOL Meg. It was hard, but I finally realized whatever songs don’t make it on this list I write down to use on another one. There will always be more mixtapes!ReplyCancel

  • First, I’m diggng the font for the comments.
    Next, love this list idea! I think I have some epic songs to add.ReplyCancel

    • Jennifer Kehl

      You are always welcome here Rachee! And thank you! I am a font junkie.ReplyCancel

  • I loved all of these, but I especially loved reading about your family’s connection to Harry Chapin. How tragic was his death, but how wonderful it is that you all have such wonderful memories involving his music. Great list!ReplyCancel

  • […] just discovered an awesome blog hop over at My Skewed View. It’s called “Mixed Tape Tuesdays” and, as the title implies, takes place on […]ReplyCancel

  • I’m so glad I found you and this blog hop! I love it.

    Your selections this week were great — I would have used Miami 2017 if you hadn’t, LOL!

    I can’t wait to participate in the next few! (I’ve got to put my thinking cap on for it, but I think I’ll figure them out!) 🙂ReplyCancel

  • […] This week’s topic is called “This One Is Epic.”  Songs that tell a story.  Check out other people’s selections over at My Skewed View. […]ReplyCancel

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