Thursday, June 23, 2005

Hey, so I still complete a thought once in a while, to the best of my ability: Recent cover albums. (NB: Couldn't include Cobra Verde's new Copycat Killers b/c it's co-released by Scat; and I got wind of Paul Anka's new Rock Swings, on which more later, here or somewhere else, after this piece was waiting to be posted -- no time to do more than add a link.)

Also worth a click, if you're at Slate: This infamous-in-some-circles clip of Uri Geller squirming on the Tonight Show, after Carson and The Amazing Randi conspired to replace his props w/ ungaffed ones. (Part of a piece on Randi and the skeptic's movement; ah, the Martin Gardner columns of my youth.)


Odd: Had been practically strafed w/ weekly emails about Oxford Collapse's L.A. shows from their publicist. Last night, they were supposed to be at Silverlake Lounge, but the listing had disappeared from The Fold's website. Went by around 10:00 last night, no sign of a show, bartender knew nothing about it. (They were at The Smell the previous night -- or were they? -- but I was at the Berdoo Black Angus with the family. Grandma rec'd Casanova in Bolzano, large print, by the way -- possibly a little more high-toned than her usual (and copious) novel-reading, but it seemed like the best possibility Vroman's had to offer.)

[Preparing to wrap presents Tue. afternoon, couldn't find a pair of scissors anywhere in the apt.; after dropping Bree off in the eve. -- took an extra 1/2 hr. to get home b/c of various freeway closures -- stopped by a 24 hr. Rite-Aid to buy a pair. Got home, happened to open a kitchen drawer for something else entirely, instantly saw scissors.]


Sorrentino's Little Casino -- more noxious, less cohesive than Lunar Follies, yet it's the one that got shortlisted for a Pen/Faulkner after relative "years of neglect," to use a phrase regarding which GS would be typically corrosive.


Go-Betweens last Sat. @ Troubadour. Crowd not as uniformly old-like-me as I might have predicted, certainly not as homogenous as, mmm, a Soft Boys show. Heartened that they've managed to get over here w/ a rhythm section for the first time since, what, '90?, and Adele Pickvance seems to be having as much or more fun as the principals) but, to be honest, it didn't allow as much space for their performing personalities (esp. Robert's) as the acoustic set-up -- big exception being "Draining The Pool For You" (such, such a great song, dedicated tonight, as Rael noted while I was distracted by something, to Billy Wilder) with the "I've been hired, I've been fired" fade extended to incantatory length. Some of the "let's play the new ones" imperative in effect -- one could sense a "we don't know this one" vibe from a chunk of the crowd -- though "Make Her Day" and "Boundary Rider," most notably, improved on the recorded versions. Good show, but not the central event of my entire month the way it might have been -- no, was, at the Roxy and the long-vanished Texas Records after Tallulah -- once.


I doubt you have the time to waste, but if you happen to be an invalid, or so overwhelmed by the thought of moving halfway across the country in a couple months, during half of which time you'll be on another continent, there's a new freeware widget called Archive (you'd think I'd like that, right?) which will play a number of public-domain full-length movies in a (tiny) quicktime viewer. Resupplied w/ 7 or so movies every Monday. Last week's included a film based on the OTR comedy Lum & Abner, one of Oscar Michaux's continuity-challenged all-black movies, and Inner Sanctum (no relation to the Rod Serling show) a pretty sharp Detour-ish noir from '48 w/ Fritz Leiber Sr. -- he keeps popping up -- and Mary Beth Hughes.* Those are gone, but this week you can watch Dishonored Lady, a '47 Hedy Lamarr vehicle -- she's your typical post-war career-girl/nymphomaniac. (The word "excitement" is the flick's key euphemism.) Why are the "neurotic" women (mainly in "not being able to decide on a man") in these movies so often in fashion/fashion-magazine-art-direction? Cf. Ginger Rogers in Lady In The Dark (which this film most resembles), Lauren Bacall in Minnelli's Designing Woman, and, to a degree, the great Kay Thompson in Donen's odious Funny Face (her character based closely on Diana Vreeland).

*Who, decades later, apparently played the mother in an item called Tanya, a.k.a. Sex Queen of the SLA, a 1976 softcore quickie "based" on the Hearst kidnapping. I doubt I'll ever see this, but David Trinidad ought to, don't you think? (Well, he probably has, come to think of it.)



Trygve Simon Givens, 6/10/05, 8 lbs., 5.5 oz.
Bunker Guy Rohrbaugh, 6/15/05, 7 lbs., 1 oz.
Henry ("Hank") David Guffey Callaci, 6/20/05, 10 lbs., 9. oz.

All fortunate to be born to parents who won't raise fools or creeps.

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