My Birthday, Your (Musical) Present

Happy birthday to me!

Today is my birthday, and last night I saw Augustana at the Summit Music Hall in Denver. 

I like to say Augustana is my favorite band that no one has ever heard of.

They have opened for Counting Crows and the Goo Goo Dolls and I think those are pretty good comparisons:  smart, poetic, talented bands that straddle the pop-rock border. 

Their most famous song is “Boston.”  It’s been used on several TV shows, including a recent mention on “The Big Bang Theory” where they described it as a perfect song to include on a mixed tape to accompany a suicide.  😦  Love that show, love Chuck Lorre, but really?  Really?  “Think I’ll go to Boston/Think I’ll start a new life…”  Not a soundtrack for suicide, guys.  Just an easy punchline.

Check ’em out:

That was six years ago and they just released their third album, the self-titled (or eponymous*, if you will) Augustana.  And in honor of my birthday, and my birthday concert last night, I am giving away a copy of their CD!

The current single from the CD is called “Steal Your Heart” which has a distinctly Tom Petty vibe.  It’s the song they’ve played on the late night shows such as Letterman and Jimmy Kimmel.  It’s not, however, my favorite song on the CD.  Here’s what I imagine will be the second single from the CD, “Shot In The Dark,” performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live:

So what if those clips up there were the first you’ve ever heard them?  I promise you they’re great!  And it’s free!  It’s a prize!  C’mon, it’s fun!

All you have to do is leave a comment below between now (June 8th) and 11:59 p.m. (Rocky Mountain time) on Sunday, June 12th and I will randomly select one winner from all the commenters.  Here’s some ways you can increase your chances of winning:

1: one extra entry if you tweet the contest (please tell me in your comment)

2: one extra entry if you start following my blog (please tell me – I’m still new to all this)

3: one extra entry if you add me to your own blog roll (it counts if I’m already there – just tell me)

4: if you don’t already follow me on Twitter, one extra entry if you start following me on Twitter

U.S. residents only, please.  Much as I love international friends, I don’t love dealing with international postal customs and costs.

This is my very first blog contest so please bear with me. 🙂

I leave you with this:  “Sweet and Low” from Augustana’s second album, Can’t Love, Can’t Hurt.


*Raise your hand if you didn’t know what “eponymous” meant until R.E.M. released their album by that name in 1988 and you looked it up.  Yep.  Anyone else? 

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18 Responses to My Birthday, Your (Musical) Present

  1. First to enter? 😉

    I first heard “Boston” on Pandora, which I listen to while cooking. I remember stopping to listen to the words and then all of a sudden one of my characters was bawling on my shoulder. Character then confessed to a traumatic event that the song reminded him of… turned into a nice, dramatic chunk of flashback.

    Bought the one track, but I would love to have the whole album! 🙂

    I already have you in my blogroll and I just started following you on Twitter.

    • How wonderful that Augustana inspired you… er, your character… They are just like that, passionate, deep, moving; but they can rock the house too! Good luck and thanks for being here!

  2. Nancy Sima says:

    Happy Birthday!!!! I hope your night out was GRAND! Thanks for putting this band on my radar 🙂

    • They were great in concert! I bought V.I.P. tickets and we were the first ones inside the theater so we got our pick of spots (there are no seats in the theatre) – front and center of the balcony, the equivalent of tenth row or so in the average venue. Sad to say, at my age, I was not going to fight it out with the college kids on the floor standing and pushing for four hours. How old am I? Old enough to want a bar stool, thanks.

  3. Mabel says:

    Happy birthday, Maryanne! Thank you for sharing Augustana with me today. About the points… I get one official point for following your blog, and here are some suggestions for ‘extra credit’. 😎
    – 1 point for owning a grand piano that is not on the sand nor near a beach, but appropriately placed next to an “inside” wall
    – 1 point for each kid that is here at home (while I try to work!) with me this summer. Total: 3
    – 1/2 point for taking up on on your previous blog “challenge”… I’m finished with Jane and nearly through Cathy.

    • OK, people, I CANNOT change the rules mid-stream, but I do appreciate how clever you all are. I would love to give you points for the grand piano, and I know how hard you’re working on Jane and Cathy! Thanks, and good luck!

  4. Jack says:

    Happy 29th M! You are a curious case – like Benjamin Button 🙂
    Sign me up for a chance to win!

  5. Jenn says:

    Happy birthday! And what a nice and fun thing to do–giving away a CD of one of your favorites! I love Augustana’s song “Boston” but haven’t looked into the rest of their music. I will correct this after listening to those clips you shared! Oh, I also retweeted your tweet about this, if that counts. 🙂

  6. Nisha says:

    Happy Belated Birthday and best wishes!
    As a South African I have never heard of Augustana, but if they opened for Goo goo Dolls(one of my favs) they must be good…

  7. Melissa Mullin says:

    Please add me to your contest. You wouldn’t even have to mail the CD if I win, just walk it 2 doors down. I also follow your blog roll, so 2 entries total.

  8. By purely random drawing performed by pulling little slips of paper out of a pretty gift bag this morning, the winner of the Augustana CD is…


    Congratulations Jenn, and I hope you will enjoy Augustana’s music as much as I do. I’ll shoot you an email to find out the best way to get it to you.
    I wish I had enough CDs to give one to each of you who entered. Thanks for joining me here and I hope you’ll visit again soon.

  9. Jenn, me Jenn? How cool! Yay! I’m so excited–thanks for doing this giveaway, Maryanne!

  10. Guess what I’m listening to right now?!? Thank you so much for giving away this CD. I am LOVING it. I don’t think there’s a song I don’t like on it.

  11. Chrissy Prisco says:

    I love Augustana; I’m insanely jealous! Boston is the first song I ever taught myself how to play on the piano! I so didn’t expect to see them mentioned in your blog and I’m so pleasantly shocked 🙂

  12. Chrissy Prisco says:

    yayy!!! 🙂

  13. Pingback: Augustana in Denver | A Writer's Notepad

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