Showing posts from 2022

One from the Heart (Zoetrope, 1982) Is a Better Movie Than You Think; A Stellar Soundtrack Composed By Tom Waits and Sung By Waits and Crystal Gayle Is a Big Reason Why

  Images courtesy of Zoetrope Studio Gem from the Record Room and from the Movie Shelf:  Francis Ford Coppola wanted  One from the Heart to be a simple romantic comedy, ostensibly the antidote for his then latest film Apocalypse Now; a ntidote in the sense  that it was intended to be everything that  Apocalypse Now was not. No one would ever accuse Coppola of not thinking big, so perhaps it was impossible for him to make a small picture. For starters, he tried to make  One from the Heart at the same time he transformed the then vacant  Hollywood General Studios, that he had just bought, into the Hollywood home of Zoetrope. Even though the story of  One from the Heart  all takes place in one night in Las Vegas, every scene required the construction of a set there on the lot. As if that weren't enough, Coppola conceived a new kind of electronic filmmaking in which storyboards for each scene were recorded on videotape. The video could be reviewed and revised in real time. These dream

Richard Harris - MacArthur Park (1968); Irish Actor Harris Takes the Song You Loved To Hate To # 2, Inspiring Tons of Cover Versions Including One By Will Lee Who Crushes It Live On Letterman

Photo: Tourism Media. MacArthur Park, L.A., California Gems From the Singles Box "MacArthur Park" by Richard Harris  reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in June of 1968. Harris has been know to say that although he was not a singer, he approached the song as an actor and he gave it his all. The songwriter Jimmy Webb, who also played harpsichord on the Harris track, had a long and successful career penning hits for the likes of The 5th Dimension ("Up, Up and Away"), The Brooklyn Bridge ("Worst That Could Happen"), and many hits for Glen Campbell (including "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", "Wichita Lineman", and "Galveston"), just to name a few. But Webb really outdid himself when he wrote "MacArthur Park".              Photo:  Larry Ellis/Daily Express When "MacArthur Park" was released as a single, it was one of the longest songs ever to reach the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart. For comparison, "

ChimyTina - Constellations: Martina DaSilva and Dan “Chimy” Chmielinski Have Released a Superb Second Album Featuring Guest Stars Galore

  Photos courtesy of the artists Having gotten their start in 2014 posting DIY videos that went viral due to their artistic excellence,  Martina DaSilva and Dan “Chimy” Chmielinski performing as ChimyTina, released their debut full length album in 2019. The album, which featured their take on a number of Christmas classics, knocked me out with its groundbreaking arrangements and the sound of their performance, especially the voice of Martina DaSilva. I enjoyed it so much in fact, I sought out DaSilva's earlier work with The Ladybugs. The jazz repertoire of Christmas music has been done so many times in so many ways that to break through you really need to do something different and do it quite well. That they did. For their second album  Constellations,   ChimyTina applies their innovative arrangements to some jazz standards, as well as a pair of new originals penned by DaSilva. The originals are "Twin Flame" (watch the video, below) and "My Universe".  The basi

Joel Whitburn, RIP; We Say Goodbye to Joel Whitburn, The Father of Music Chart Analysis

Photo: Tom Lynn, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel In February 1964, when The Beatles played on Ed Sullivan, my world changed forever. Even though I was only ten at the time and my mom bought Meet The Beatles for me, somehow it took until 1965 for me to discover record stores and then it was all over ( I've written about these events previously in this blog ). Record stores, for me, started with Gimbels' record department. In those days, most department stores had a record department. Some were even good; I'm thinking not only of Gimbels, but EJ Korvettes and Sears, which had record departments that could compete with record stores. In the 60s, whatever the record store, they all had survey sheets from the local Top 40 stations. In Philadelphia, we had WIBG (990am) with a weekly survey of the Top 99 records of the week. Later, WFIL (560am) joined the fray with their Famous 56 survey. Both of the surveys reflected sales and airplay. Ultimately, data such as this contributed to the

Bonnie Raitt, Lucinda Williams, Mann Music Center, Philadelphia, PA, 6/15/2022; Let's Give 'Em Something to Celebrate

  Photo Courtesy of the Artist Bonnie Raitt played  The Mann Center for the Performing Arts  on Wednesday night, June 15th armed with her 18th album, Just Like That , her slide guitar, and her crackerjack touring band. One of Raitt's strengths, in addition to her music, is the way that she speaks to the audience. Opening the show, she said that she was very glad to be back on the road following a two year Covid layoff. Raitt thanked the crowd for coming to the show and the thunderous applause that she got throughout sounded more like a sold out large arena or stadium (if you closed your eyes) rather than The Mann, which wasn't quite full.  I was glad too, being that this was my first time back seeing live music since December 2019. Despite several excellent live streams, there is nothing like seeing a live show in the flesh. During the song "Something to Talk About," I kept thinking that this was something to celebrate.  The sound at The Mann that night was outstandin