Track of the Week: “When Your Mind’s Made Up”

Track of the WeekIf you’re a musician and haven’t seen Once, shame on you. It is movie — a musical really, but more on that later — about a busker who is trying to rebuild his life after a breakup. By chance, he meets a woman who shares his passion and talent for music. Their relationship helps him recover from his heartache and set his plans for musical success back in motion. It’s a lovely movie — ahem, musical, ahem — that features some great music. Here’s my favorite song from the soundtrack. Interestingly, it’s in 5/4 time.

The movie stars Ireland’s famous folk-guitar hero Glen Hansard as the busker, simply named “guy” and Markéta Irglová as the “girl.” (We never learn the characters’ names in the movie.) The music is performed by the actors, which is why an Irish rock star like Hansard was cast.

The movie’s story unfolds as both a traditional drama and as a musical. There are about a dozen captivating musical performances in the movie, all of which are available for purchase. In this sense, the movie plays out as a musical. Where it departs from the traditional musical format is that music happens naturally, befitting the scene, and there is no impromptu dancing.  You can imagine the musical scenes in Once actually taking place in real life, whereas scenes from Chicago or Grease are entertaining, yes, but totally unrealistic.

Anyway, check it out. You’ll really enjoy it.

For more information about me and the guitar lessons that I give in and around Baltimore, visit

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