Late T.V. Host Inspired By 'Some Nights' Up Late

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Journalist T.J. Holmes became a household name during his years on CNN. Now he's the host of the new BET late-night show Don't Sleep. Holmes shares the music that keeps him going for the occasional feature, In Your Ear.


And now it's time for the occasional feature we call In Your Ear. That's where we hear from some of the guests on the program to find out what songs they've been listening to. Today we talk with a man who might be keeping you up late at night. T.J. Holmes spent more than a decade in the media, including five years as an anchor and correspondent for CNN. He recently sat down to talk with us about the debut of his new late-night talk show "Don't Sleep." It premiered earlier this month on BET. In between tapings for the program he took time to share some of the songs that help him burn the midnight oil.


FUN: (Singing) Some nights, I stay up cashing in my bad luck; some nights, I call it a draw.

T.J. HOLMES: This is T.J. Holmes and this is what's playing in my ear. Up first, "Some Nights" by the band Fun.


FUN: (Singing) But I still wake up, I still see your ghost. Oh Lord, I'm still not sure what I stand for. Oh...

HOLMES: This is a really upbeat song. It makes you feel good, has a bit of a choir feel to it. You can't help but feel good when you hear this one.


FUN: (Singing) Any more. Oh, ooh, oh, oh. Oh, ooh, oh, oh. Oh, oh. Oh, oh, oh, oh. Oh, ooh, oh, oh. Oh, ooh, oh, oh. Oh, oh. Oh, oh, oh, oh. This is it, boys, this is war - what are we waiting for? Why don't we break the rules already? I was never one to believe the hype - save that for the black and white. I try twice as hard and I'm half as liked, but here they come again to jack my style. That's all right, that's all right.


HOLMES: Also in my ear, Esperanza Spalding, "I Know You Know."


ESPERANZA SPALDING: (Singing) The way you look at me when you think I'm not looking, tells me. Your heart's a sleeping giant worn out by someone you loved before me. I see you're scared unconvinced by what I've tried to say; that I am yours and that nothing will take me away. You already know but I'll sing it again; I love you babe and nothing will take me away. I know that you know but I'll sing it again; I love you babe and nothing will take me away.

HOLMES: Well, if you don't know this young lady, I recommend it to anybody. She is just an amazing talent, who has won a Grammy, of course, for Best New Artist. But "I Know You Know" is the song off one of her albums, but it's just one of those songs you just put on and let it ride.


SPALDING: (Singing) You already know. I know you know and I know it's yours that I know you know. I know you love me baby. I can see you love me, I know. I already know, boy. Sing it again. Sing it again. I, I, I la, la, la, la, la. I , I, I, da, da, da, da, de. Mmm.


MELANIE FIONA: (Singing) How about my first next to your last, boy, I couldn't have done no better. I could dance with you forever and ever.

HOLMES: And another, I've been on a reggae kick lately, so "Like I Love You" from someone I know, Melanie Fiona, who I've got a chance to hang out with and spend some time with.


FIONA: (Singing) Not ever. I've waited forever for you to love me like I love you. Now that we're together, oh, all I want is for you to love me, love me like you know I love you. Want me, want me. Like you know I want you. Love me, love me. Love me like I love you. Love me like I love you. Love me, love me...

HOLMES: This is kind of has a slower traditional reggae groove to it. But it's - if you like any reggae, you will love this song by Ms. Melanie Fiona, "Like I Love You."


FIONA: (Singing) Love me like I love you.

MARTIN: That was journalist T.J. Holmes telling us what's playing in his ear. To listen to our previous conversation with him, just go to our website,, click on the Programs tab and look for TELL ME MORE.


FIONA: (Singing) I held my breath till I turned blue waiting on you. Had my friends, even my family call me a fool.

MARTIN: And that's our program for today.

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