Twisted MixTape 27

mixtape jenkehl

Howdie all! This is your good friend and friendly music director Jen Kehl. Bringing you this weeks fabulous series; music that moves. Yes you heard it. This week our favorite listener calling from over there at As Long As I’m Singing has a special request. Troy has asked to hear the 5 seminal songs who made you the person you are today. The shutter-openers, the wakers, the “I can see clearly now the rain is goners.” The tunes that forced you to look in the mirror and say, “Hey good-looking, you seem familiar, yet new.”

OK Troy, we’ll put that out there and see what our great listeners and mix-makers have to say about that. Folks come on and join on in. The fun has just begun. And although I thought this one would be tough, it turned out that when I got started it wasn’t as hard as I expected. I mean the fact is, that if you love music, you are going to have those songs. Those songs that scream this is me, this is that moment, this is what I need right now.


The Window 1974-present


Rikki Don’t Lose That Number by Steely Dan – If you read my blog often then I’m going to sound like a broken record. But this was my FIRST favorite song. For some reason this song spoke to my soul when I was only 4 years old. The same story it told in my head then, still plays today. I wrote a whole novel post about it, you can read it here. Put your headphones on for this one.


Baker Street – This is another song I remember as a kid. I was 7 when this song came out. I remember that bridge with that mournful saxophone. I use to still sing along with every note of that solo. I remember laying in the back seat of the car, staring at the trees speeding buy over my head and singing:
And when you wake up it’s a new morning
The sun is shining, it’s a new morning
And you’re going, you’re going home


Teach Your Children by Crosby Stills Nash and Young – I always loved this song, but in 1988 my father died. My father was the primary parent in our family, he was the one I went to with everything, he was the rock. So as you can imagine, losing him at 18 left me more than a little lost.  This song took on completely new meaning to me then. I thought this song is what my father would tell me if he were here. I still can’t sing that song without getting teary.


Scarlet Begonias by The Grateful Dead – In 1990 I needed a break from life. I was still very much reeling by my father’s death and had not dealt with it one iota. My mom shut down after my dad died, I left for college and was pretty much on my own. So in 1990 I dropped it all, packed up my car and headed to California. I had followed the dead summers and local shows for about 3 years up to this point. But man, by 1990 I had had enough, and I jumped in with both feet. The next 12 months were one show after another. It was the complete separation from reality I needed. I wish I could say it fixed things. That would be a lie. But I can tell you it was one of the best times of my life. I will forever be sad that I won’t be able to share this with the boy.
So the thing is, when you are seeing 3-12 concerts a week (which were never the same mind you) you got to learn every note of every song. If you listen very closely to this version, you will realize that just a teaser of a “let’s make sure we’re all in the same key” and the cheering gets louder. It’s almost like a game. Not only do you know the song in one note, but can you tell by how they’re playing it if they are going to play Scarlet Begonias or Scarlet/Fire (that was short for Scarlet Begonias that went into Fire on the Mountain) All I know, is when I heard that first note of Scarlet Begonias, that was it, I was right where I belonged:

There ain’t nothing wrong with the way she moves, scarlet begonias are a touch of the blues.
I was a touch of the blues. And now I had a new family, no cares, never wondered how I would get food, where I would sleep. It really was just like all of the stories you have heard. We were one big family and we took care of each other. Strangers stoppin strangers just to shake their hand

Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right.

I wanted to pick a show I was actually at, but I can admit that Jerry just wasn’t sounding his best then. (not that we cared) And yes, there were always balloons being tossed about.



Little Wing by Jimi Hendrix – This is it. This is the song. From the first time I ever heard this song I believed this song was about me.
All she ever think’s about, riding with the wind.
It’s All right she say’s, it’s alright, take anything you want from me

I wish I could actually explain to you what this song is to me. I know this sounds ridiculous, and if you have done me the honor of reading this far I will give you a glimpse into my soul.  It’s one thing to be young and live in a world of imagination, but it’s another thing to have a completely unexplained connection to a piece of the world. When I heard the words, All she ever thinks about, riding with the wind. It spoke to me, Jimi spoke to me. Probably the strangest habit I have is standing outside in the wind. I can’t control the urge to do it, thankfully with dogs now, I have a convenient excuse – go walk the dogs.

Jimi Hendrix died 4 months after I was born. But I can’t help feeling so strongly connected to him. Whatever song I hear, my brain just says yes. My brain says yes, and you are unmatchable, unattainable, unquestionably born to play music. There was nothing else he could have been, no other way his life could have went. Look at his face when he is playing, that’s how I feel.


This is it my friends. 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 just may be just what you wanted to hear right now.

These are the rules. Five songs (give or take). 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!

My good friend Kristi from Finding Ninee is my fabulous co-hort. She was my first blogging friend ever and gave me the courage to make this thing happened, so there should be a song in there for her too. But I don’t know a Billy Idol or Metallica song that fits, so she’ll just have to except my undying admiration and your visits.


If you feel the need to own these songs, don’t let me stop you. Click on the links below to go straight to iTunes:

Rikki Don’t Lose That Number – Pretzel Logic (Reissue)
Baker Street – City to City
Teach Your Children – Deja Vu
Scarlet Begonias (Live in Springfield, MA) – Dick’s Picks Vol. 25: 5/10/78 (Veterans Memorial Coliseum, New Haven, CT) & 5/11/78 (Springfield Civic Center, Springfield, MA)
Little Wing – Axis: Bold As Love


And now, The List of all Lists

October 8 – I wouldn’t love these songs so much if they weren’t part of a Soundtrack. Your favorite songs from soundtracks, could be anywhere from pop music you love to original scores, you decide. Try and use the point of view that it was the Soundtrack that made you love the song.
October 15 – Make a mix of songs that are totally from a genre or style of music that you don’t usually listen to. You know… 5 songs that you love anyway… kinda like Clark pulling the Classical Music card for Best of
October 22 – Songs that are spiritual. In anyway. To you, about something spiritual, you decide.
October 29 – Songs that are scary. FOR ANY REASON. Halloween is a few days away. Are they scary because of the words, what the band looks like, because it’s just so darn bad??
November 5- Free for all!
November 12 – Song’s that tell a story. These can be epics or not. Just a story. You know, just not la la la I love you or I hate you or whatever…..

25 thoughts on “Twisted MixTape 27

  1. Great list… great to learn so much about you too!

    im totally stumped about what songs made me who i am. there are songs that speak to me like nothing else, or really exemplify where I was at a time in my life. But that doesnt seem to be the same thing as “made me who I am”. Going to have to read and listen for a few days to see what inspires me.

  2. I truly loved learning even more about you here tonight and I can totally see why these songs do have such a place in your heart. Thanks for sharing and just happy to get to know you that much better here tonight!

  3. I think it’s posts like this that I aspire to be able to do as a blogger. I haven’t hit this comfort zone yet – but so enjoyed being able to read about your journey. The idea of checking out and following the Grateful Dead around for a while sounds wonderful. What an experience it must have been! I have to admit that most of your picks pre-date when I started noticing music, but I love the Crosby Stills Nash and Young song – beautiful on it’s own – and certainly more so for you.

    • Thanks Louise! That’s such an amazing compliment. There does come a time when you realize you have nothing to lose, I suppose I’m there.

  4. Wow this list sure brought back some memories! Baker Street, Teach the Children… oh yeaahhhhh…

    As you (Jen) know already, I’m still on vacay, so as much as I wanted to do this week’s Mixtape I don’t think I’m going to get it done since I’m going back to work in the morning AND my house is a complete and utter disaster! I don’t want anyone to think my non participation in the hop this week has anything to do with the subject!

  5. Jen, I love how intensely personal all these songs are, and thank you for sharing the beautiful melodies of some of the highs and lows of your life. So sorry to hear that your Dad passed away when you were so young. The song you remember him by is stunningly gorgeous.


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  8. Pingback: Seminally yours… | as long as i'm singing

  9. I adore the fact that I get to know you better each week. I wish I would have known you back when you were going to all those Dead shows. We’d have had some fun tossing balloons around. Great great list, you.
    And thanks for the lovely sweet comment at the end. I got a little choked up. The undying admiration part? Mutual. Totally. TTTx10 and MWAH!!!

  10. Your enthusiasm for music is contagious, Jen. Thank you for sharing a bit of yourself with us every week. Even when I don’t post, I love reading yours!

  11. I was born three months before the Beatles officially broke up, and both Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix passed away later that year. (I was born in January). I get what you’re saying about having a connection because I love all three artists.

  12. this Post is a model for me, not necessarily reproduced, but an example of what I would like at some point in my efforts to achieve, i.e. simply and direct story telling, enhanced by music.

  13. Unfortunately some songs make us who we are because of sadness rather than joy. But at least the sorrow left us with beautiful music. Love this list. I have a DeadHead friend, ha, you’ve probably met, so I get that thing too. Nice getting to know you.

  14. Jen – What Little Wing has always meant to me was that to every man there is that one special woman that change bring daylight to the darkest night. Whenever she’s close by, life changes for the best. She may not always be there, but when she is fun and excitement become your companion as you enter into her world and leave yours. Or, so much for my humble opinion. lol I knew you’d followed the Dead, but I didn’t know you were a true “Dead Head.” I admire your guts and willingness to do what others only dreamed of doing. Great post and great music!


  16. Thanks for suggesting to listen to Steely Dan’s “Rikki Don’t Lose That Number” with a headphone… love the intro! Jimi Hendrix and his guitar really had beautiful voices.

  17. I had no idea that you had lost your father so early in life. And to be the solid foundation on which you stood. My heart…I know that you’re keeping him tightly with you not only by the song, but through your stories. I am so proud of you for knowing what you needed and running towards it.
    I love how personal all of these selections are. Thank you for sharing a piece of your soul with me. Beautiful. That’s you.

  18. I love everything on this list. Hadn’t heard the Grateful Dead tune believe it or not, but I dug it. Of course I knew Rikki would top the list – such a great story. I have fond memories of the Rafferty song and Jimi – CSNY – stellar choices. You’ve been musically shaped well, my friend.

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