Friday, February 22, 2019

Music Friday: Noncommittal Boyfriend Loses the Prettiest Jewel in Roxette's 'Happy Together'

Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you awesome songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the lyrics or title. In 1999's "Happy Together," Marie Fredriksson and Per Gessle of the Swedish pop band Roxette tell the story of a young man whose fear of commitment derails his chance for a lifetime of happiness with the love of his life, the "prettiest jewel."

They sing, "She carried his ring / Since she left school / He knew she was precious / The prettiest jewel / She wanted a baby / But he wasn't sure / He couldn't make up his mind anymore."

In the song, we learn that the couple has been together since high school and she's looking to tie the knot. Although he loves her, the young man is frozen in fear. His noncommittal attitude leads her to break off the relationship and move on with her life, while he's left to wonder what could have been.

Deep inside, he knows they would have been so happy together. They could have run the earth, the stars, the sun.

Penned by Gessle, "Happy Together" was released as the "B" side to "Wish I Could Fly," a song that charted in 23 countries.

According to Roxette's official website, Fredriksson and Gessle, both 60, came out of Halmstad, Sweden, in the late 1980s with the dream of conquering the pop-music world. With 33 chart-busting singles and total record sales exceeding 75 million, they were well on their way to accomplishing their mission.

In 2002, Roxette was forced to go on a long hiatus while Fredriksson recovered from a life-threatening brain tumor operation. The band staged a successful comeback in 2009 and celebrated three decades on the airwaves with a world tour in 2016.

The 30th Anniversary Tour was cut short, however, when the rigors of being on the road became too demanding for Fredriksson. Band members took their final bow after their 557th live performance.

Please check out the audio track of Roxette performing "Happy Together." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"Happy Together"
Written by Per Hakan Gessle. Performed by Roxette.

When she walked up
He walked down
Just like the seasons went round and round
She was in love
He wasn't sure
She wrote some letters he tried to ignore
They could have been
so happy together
They could have been
so lucky in love
Sing la dee da
So happy together
They could have run the earth, the sky, the sun

She carried his ring
Since she left school
He knew she was precious
The prettiest jewel
She wanted a baby
But he wasn't sure
He couldn't make up his mind anymore

They could have been
So happy together
They could have been
So lucky in love
Sing la dee da
So happy together
They could have run the earth, the stars, the sun

I couldn't ever hurt no one
If you feel shattered
I'm sorry for what I've done
We could have been
so happy together
We could have been
so lucky in love
sing la dee da
so happy together
We could have run the earth, the sky, the sun

yeah we could have been
so happy together
we could have been
so lucky in love
so happy together
we could have run the universe
could have run the universe
could have run the universe
for fun

so happy together
so happy together
so happy together

Credit: Image by Lala Lugo [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

As Alrosa Focuses More on Color, Miner Unveils Largest Pink Diamond in Its History

Already the world's biggest diamond producer in terms of sheer output, Russian mining company Alrosa is looking to become a major player in a segment of the industry now dominated by Rio Tinto and Anglo American's De Beers — gem-quality colored diamonds.

Alrosa recently conducted a media preview in Moscow to showcase a portfolio of its most dazzling finds, in hues ranging from lush pink to bright yellow. The star of the show was a 14.83-carat pink oval diamond sourced at the Ebelyakh deposit in Yakutia, Russia, in 2017.

At the time of its discovery, the pink diamond was billed as the largest pink diamond ever mined in Russia. The smooth-surfaced alluvial diamond measured 22.47 mm x 15.69 mm x 10.9 mm and weighed 27.85 carats. The previous record holder was much smaller at 3.86 carats.

Alrosa Deputy CEO Yury Okoyemov said that due to its size and clarity, the rough gem was “one of the best to be discovered anywhere in the world in recent years.”

The largest stone in the exhibition was a deep yellow Asscher-cut diamond, weighing 20.69 carats. It was cut from a raw crystal with a rare honey hue, which weighed 34.17 carats and had the distinction of being the largest yellow diamond mined in Russia in 2017.

A third standout in the collection was a pink-purple cushion-shaped diamond weighing 11.06 carats. Alrosa noted in a press release that the Gemological Institute of America has recognized the gem to be the largest of its color in the world.

Describing the rarity of gem-quality colored diamonds, Okoyemov offered this telling statistic: "Out of every 10,000 natural jewelry-class diamonds mined, only one will be colored. And large colored diamonds are even rarer."

One of the reasons Alrosa is making such a big play in the colored diamond market is the strength of this niche sector. Okoyemov cited market analysts, who reported that the average price for colored diamonds has risen consistently by 12% a year during the last few decades.

“The diamonds we are now exhibiting are completely unique, and each of them perfectly embodies the Russian art of gem cutting," Okoyemov added. "We calculate that the huge potential of [our colored diamonds] will soon enable Alrosa to become the leader in the international market.”

Credits: Images courtesy of Alrosa.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Katy Perry's New 'Full Bloom' Engagement Ring Complements Her Colorful Style

Pop star Katy Perry announced her Valentine's Day engagement to Lord of the Rings alum Orlando Bloom with an Instagram selfie showing off a ring with a deep pink center stone in a flower-shaped diamond cluster setting.

Both Perry, 34, and Bloom, 44, featured the photo on their Instagram pages. Perry's was cleverly captioned "full bloom" and Bloom's was titled "Lifetimes."

Bloom picked an unusual, fanciful, Edwardian-inspired ring for Perry, who is famous for her colorful style and sometimes-outrageous fashion choices.

Perry and Bloom have yet to confirm the identity of the oval-shaped center stone. Some pundits believe it's a ruby, while others are calling it a pink sapphire, or a pink diamond.

That's why the same experts have offered a wide range of retail values — from $25,000 to $5 million.

The oval gemstone is estimated to weigh 2 carats, while the eight complementary diamond "petals" are estimated to weigh a total of 2.5 carats.

Antique jewelry expert Stephen Feuerman told that Perry's new engagement ring reflects a cluster style that first became popular at the turn of the last century. Since then, the style has been revived in a number of famous engagement rings, including the blue sapphire and diamond ring that Prince Charles presented to Princess Diana. More recently, Princess Eugenie's engagement ring featured a cluster setting with a padparadscha sapphire at its center.

This will be the second marriage for both Perry and Bloom. The pop star tied the knot with actor Russell Brand in 2010, the same year Bloom married supermodel Miranda Kerr. pointed out that Bloom seems to have a fondness for cluster-style engagement rings. The ring he gave to Kerr was similar to Perry's, except that Kerr's had a diamond center stone and was set in white metal. Perry's has a colorful center stone and is set in yellow gold.

Perry and Bloom began dating in 2016, but broke up briefly in March of 2017. The romance was rekindled in 2018.

Credit: Photo via