Category Archives: Music

Happy Birthday, Johnny Cash

Here he is on Tex Ritter’s Ranch Party, 1956 or so. Great guitar solo, too. Tennessee Ernie Ford and Johnny Cash together. “Sing it pretty, Ern.” This particular kind of ease and grace and humor no longer exists (at least … Continue reading

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Sheer Liquid Joy: The Honeycombs

1. The dame on the drums. 2. The clapping! 3. The “grrrrr” in the lead singer’s voice on occasion. It gives the pop song a sense of sexual urgency, but always joyful. It makes you think, “Hell, yeah, I’ll come … Continue reading

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You Don’t Own Me: R.I.P. Lesley Gore

The great Lesley Gore passed away last week at the age of 68. I wrote this piece a while back. Lesley Gore, performing “You Don’t Own Me”, on the 1964 T.A.M.I. Show, directed by Steve Binder (who also would end … Continue reading

Posted in Music, RIP | 43 Comments

On This Day: February 3, 1959

When I was 5 years old, I was in kindergarten and we had our first Show ‘n’ Tell Day. Other kids brought in their Barbies, or their pet hamsters, or their G.I. Joes. I stood up in front of the … Continue reading

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Elvis Presley: Powerful Claws Threaten Us

Elvis Presley was born on this day in 1935. Here is one of my favorite performances of his. It’s one for the ages. Elvis Presley performing “Trying To Get To You” during the informal sit-down session section of his 1968 … Continue reading

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“Animals Don’t Hate, and We’re Supposed To Be Better Than Them.” – Elvis Presley, the Twin Who Lived

Elvis was born on this day in 1935, Tupelo, Mississippi From Elvis and Gladys by Elaine Dundy On the chill afternoon of Tuesday, January 8, 1935, Catherine Hall was walking briskly home. At the end of Lake Street she slowed … Continue reading

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The Morrison Hotel Gallery: Icons on the Wall

After Inherent Vice, we headed south a couple of blocks to go check out The Morrison Hotel Gallery. I had never been. He knew where it was from memory (it had been years since he visited), only now it’s no … Continue reading

Posted in Art/Photography, Music | 2 Comments

Year in Review

I may write some magnum opus in the next two days, you never know, but here are links to some of the things I’ve written in 2014, here and elsewhere. I have worked hard to keep my site an eclectic … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Movies, Music, Personal | 14 Comments

A Maestro on the Fender Stratocaster

We went to see Billy Hector play last night, a New Jersey blues guitar legend. His guitar-playing is out of this world, and his guitar was vintage, battered, well-used, gorgeous. His playing ranges from dreamy, his fingers sliding up and … Continue reading

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R.I.P. Millie Kirkham

Millie Kirkham had an unearthly high soprano voice, and recorded with some of the biggest stars of her era (and other eras and ours). Perhaps most famously, she provided the swoopy woozy soprano part on Elvis’ original recording of “Blue … Continue reading

Posted in Music, RIP | Tagged | 7 Comments