When you live abroad sometimes it is difficult to express the fact that you are, at heart, a patriot. Indeed, I think that patriotism now that we are moving into the post-states (for all intents and purposes) world has somehow turned into a dirty word. I’m not sure how that happened. Certainly, for us Americans, being the big, dumb, blumbering dude in a room filled with slicker, sleeker, shinier countries hasn’t helped our cause any.

But, see, here’s the thing. We Americans ARE awesome. I mean I wouldn’t go so far as to say that we’re the most awesome (see, e.g. our deeply teetering economy, our inability to solve any of the major global problems that the rest of the world is desperately looking for some leadership from us, and oh yeah Big Macs).  But we shouldn’t be afraid to say that even given all that, we’re still pretty awesome.

And this is where the Norah Jones comes into the equation.  I don’t know if it isn’t cool that I like her music.  *Yeah, all right you think, Come Away With Me as an alright song.  but she’s a bit too “pop-py” for my tastes *(and you would likely draw out the “oooooo” in that word).  But she has really incredible range.  She had great songs from a huge variety of genres.  And even when you try to take away the lens that your inner hipster hatred for the “pop” makes you don and you try to listen to each of her different songs as if they were from an artist who you normally associated with that genre.  In other words when she sings a country song, it is a really good song even if I thought of her whole persona as a country singer.  She’s digging up old slave / civil rights songs.  She’s licking on classic bluegrass and still classic but a bit more mainstream country and jazz songs.  And they all sound really good.  She’s working with tons of different types of people, likely trying finding some of the greatest musicians rolling around New York City right now to dig up exciting new combinations that really work.  And there, in that city, she has elite artists of possibly every single major and most minor musical cultures in the entire world.  It is cliche, but true, only in America.  Nobody else’s got that.

I mean, sure, we got our panties in a wad over a freaking mosque being placed two blocks from ground zero, when daily I can’t walk two blocks without hitting at least three mosques wherever I go.  So we got that stuff, but we got cool stuff too.

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