Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Retro Mix Playlist For 10/30/09

7 pm hour

Believe- Cher
Chase Me- Con Funk Shun
Hot Number- Foxy
She Blinded Me with Science- Thomas Dolby
I'll Be That Girl- Barenaked Ladies
Buffalo Stance- Neneh Cherry
You Win Again- The Bee Gees

Double Retro segment's feat. artist: The Beach Boys
Do It Again (1968)
Getcha Back (1985)

Beach Baby- First Class
A Love Bizarre- Sheila E.
Escape (I Need A Break)- Whodini
Hearts- Marty Balin

8 pm hour

One Thing Leads to Another- The Fixx
Stir It Up- Patti Labelle
Self Esteem- The Offspring
Next to You- The Police
Everybody Plays the Fool- The Main Ingredient
Sex O Matic Venus Freak- Macy Gray
Squeeze Box- The Who
Find Your Way Back- Jefferson Starship

The Guilty Pleasure of the Week:
You're the Inspiration by Chicago

Daddy Could Swear, I Declare- Gladys Knight & the Pips
Thriller- Michael Jackson
Church of the Poison Mind- Culture Club
In the Garage- Weezer
Stutter- Elastica
In My Dreams- Dokken

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Stutter by Elastica

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Moolah For Hulu?

It's been reported that Hulu, the awesome (and FREE) online streaming service, may start charging a subscription fee for video content sometime in 2010. Since it's introduction in 2007, Hulu has been a haven for millions of viewers interested in checking out the old (Dragnet, The Big Valley, Doogie Howswer, M.D., etc.), the new (Family Guy, Glee, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, etc.) and much, much more at no cost. What I love about Hulu is that I have the chance to watch old faves that are rarely rerun anymore and catch up on episodes of new series I may have missed. Oh yeah, I also love the fact that it's FREE!

The plan to charge a subscription fee doesn't sound like a good idea to me. Especially when there are other online video services that are free of charge. You know what they say... if it ain't broke, don't fix it pull the rug out from under your customers by sticking them with a fee.

Would you pay for Hulu? If so, how much?

For more on the story, please visit the link below:

Hulu To Charge Subscription Fee

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Mount Rushmore: TV Cars

For this installment of my periodic series in which I select who/what I think are the 4 ultimate in a given category, I'm focusing on automobiles of the small screen.

1. The Batmobile (Batman, 1966-1968)

2. The General Lee (The Dukes of Hazzard, 1979-1985)- Although I'm not crazy about the Confederate flag on the roof, there's no denying that this is an iconic car.

3. The Ford Gran Torino (Starsky & Hutch, 1975-1979)

4. K.I.T.T. (Knight Rider, 1982-1986)

Which TV cars would make your Mount Rushmore?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Final Results of the Twitter Poll

If we are to believe the results of the recent poll, it appears that most who haven't joined the Twitter revolution have zero interest in getting an account. Although I have a Twitter account, I basically use it to pimp my blog posts. You can get the picture of me in a floor-length fur coat, wide brim hat, and Plexiglass platform shoes (with fish swimming in the heels) out of your head! Others commented that their use of Twitter is mainly to promote their blog posts as well.

Based on various surveys, Twitter's retention rate (those who come back the following month) is below 50%. My guess is that Twitter is going to have to add some Facebook-like features (FarmVille anyone?) in order to hold people's interest and to get others to join.

Here are the final poll results:

Poll question: Are you on Twitter?

No- 52%
Yes, but rarely- 16%
Yes and I'm addicted- 13%
Yes, but only sometimes- 13%
No, but I'm thinking about joining- 3%

Thanks to all who participated!

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Retro Mix Playlist For 10/23/09

7 pm hour

Nothing from Nothing- Billy Preston
61 Seconds- The Outfield
It's Still Rock & Roll To Me- Billy Joel
Apollo 69- My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult
If You Don't Know Me By Now- Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes
Weakness- Stevie Wonder & Dionne Warwick
What's My Name?- Snoop Doggy Dogg

Now & Then segment's feat. artist: Delbert McClinton
When She Cries At Night (from his 2009 CD Acquired Taste)
Giving It Up For Your Love (released in 1980)

That Ain't Love- REO Speedwagon
The Politics of Dancing- Re-Flex
Taffy- Lisa Loeb & Nine Stories
Here Comes Your Man- The Pixies
Funky Worm- The Ohio Players
Jungle Love- The Time

8 pm hour

Peter Gunn- The Art of Noise
Tonight- Kool & the Gang
Hat 2 Da Back- TLC
Turn To Stone- Electric Light Orchestra
Oh Very Young- Cat Stevens
Some Things Are Better Left Unsaid- Hall & Oates
U Can't Touch This- M.C. Hammer

With or Without You segment's feat. artist: Stevie Nicks
Seven Wonders (w/ Fleetwood Mac)
Rooms On Fire (solo)

Thank You Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin- Sly & the Family Stone
Sugar Free Jazz- Soul Coughing
Back To Life- Soul II Soul
AEIOU, Sometimes Y- Ebn- Ozn
No Sleep till Brooklyn- The Beastie Boys

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Jungle Love by The Time

Soupy Sales Dead At 83

The Grim Reaper takes yet another pop culture icon. Comedian and children's TV pioneer Soupy Sales died Thursday at the age of 83. Sales, who had been in declining health for several years, passed away at the hospice in the Bronx that he entered last week

Best known for his children's TV programs (which originally aired on WXYZ in Detroit and later moved on to other markets), Soupy helped raise the "pie in the face" gag to an art form. His shows were a rarity in that they appealed to both kids and adults, similar to Pee Wee's Playhouse some 25 years later. Something I learned this morning is The Soupy Sales Show became such a phenomenon that several big names made cameo appearances on the program. Frank Sinatra, Tony Curtis, Sammy Davis Jr., and Mickey Rooney are some of the celebs who appeared just for the chance to have their mug smeared with custard.

Even after his self-titled show ended, Soupy remained a TV fixture. For many who grew up during the 70s and beyond, you probably remember Soupy from the numerous appearances he made on game shows such as To Tell the Truth, Body Language, and various incarnations of The Pyramid.

For more on the death of Soupy Sales, please check out the story below:

Comedian Soupy Sales Dead At 83

Below is a clip from The Soupy Sales Show featuring Frank, Sammy, and Trini Lopez:

Please Take A Moment To Vote In the Current Twitter Poll... Thank You

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thursday Thirteen #76: Favorite Baseball Movies

Since we are in the midst of the MLB playoffs, I decided to list (in alphabetical order) 13 of my favorite films about America's pastime. Even though the Detroit Tigers choked away their chance at the playoffs (how the hell can you blow a 3-game lead with only 4 left to play?!), I haven't let that disappointment ruin my enjoyment of the baseball postseason.

What are some of your favorite baseball movies?

1. 61* (2001) - A made-for-cable film (directed by Billy Crystal) about the quest during the 1961 season of Yankee sluggers Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris to break Babe Ruth's single season home run record set in 1927.

2. The Bad News Bears (1976) - Walter Matthau as a boozing pool cleaner who's put in charge of managing a foul mouthed Little League team. Along with the profanity-laced wisecracks is some serious stuff about how adults sometimes place winning above everything else.

3. The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings (1976) - Berry Gordy produced this film about barnstorming ballplayers during the Negro League era. "Kick that mule!"

4. Bull Durham (1988)- A veteran catcher (Kevin Costner) and a baseball groupie (Susan Sarandon) both work in their own way to groom a hotshot rookie pitcher (Tim Robbins) for "The Show".

5. Eight Men Out (1989) - John Sayles directed this drama about the 1919 "Black Sox Scandal" in which eight Chicago White Sox players conspired with gamblers to throw The World Series. Sayles also co-stars as sports columnist Ring Lardner.

6. Hardball (2001) - Keanu Reeves stars as deep in debt gambler who agrees to coach an inner city Little League team as a condition of getting a loan from a friend. This movie was better than I expected.

7. It Happens Every Spring (1949)- A college professor (Ray Milland) becomes an overnight major league pitching sensation after he invents a fluid that's a wood repellent.

8. The Kid from Left Field (1979) - A boy (Gary Coleman) drags the San Diego Padres out of the cellar when he takes over managerial duties for the team. This was the first of 3 TV-movies that paired Coleman with Robert Guillaume (who portrays his ex-ballplayer father).

9.A League of Their Own (1992)- A fictionalized story about the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League (AAGPBL) starring Geena Davis, Tom Hanks, Lori Petty, and Madonna.

10. The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg (1998) - An insightful documentary about the legendary Detroit Tigers first baseman. Greenberg was the first Jewish superstar of American pro sports and the film details the anti-Semitism he faced throughout his Hall of Fame career.

11. The Pride of the Yankees (1942)- Gary Cooper received an Best Actor Oscar nomination for his portrayal of "Iron Man" Lou Gehrig, "The luckiest man on the face of the earth".

12. Soul of the Game (1996) - HBO biography about Negro League players Satchel Paige (Delroy Lindo), Josh Gibson (Mykelti Williamson) and Jackie Robinson (Blair Underwood) and each man's attempts to become the first black player to sign with a Major League baseball team.

13. Take Me Out to the Ballgame (1949) - Musical comedy set in 1908 about two ballplayers (Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra) who are also part-time vaudevillians.

Participate In the Thursday 13 Here

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

TV Theme Songwriter Vic Mizzy Dies At 93

Mizzy (above center) with Green Acres stars Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor

Vic Mizzy, the songwriter who earned a spot in the Pop Culture Hall of Fame by penning two of the more memorable theme songs in TV history (The Addams Family and Green Acres), died Monday at the age of 93. In addition to those tunes, Mizzy also composed the themes to such lesser known TV series as The Double Life of Henry Phyfe and The Temperature's Rising as well as music for several Don Knotts films (including The Ghost & Mr. Chicken, The Reluctant Astronaut, and The Shakiest Gun in the West). In honor of Mizzy's work, he gets...

Two chest beats

and some finger snaps too!

Below are the opening themes to Green Acres and The Addams Family:

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Retro Mix Playlist For 10/16/09

7 pm hour

Roll With It- Steve Winwood
I Don't Blame You At All- Smokey Robinson & the Miracles
Could It Be I'm Falling In Love- The Spinners
Was It Worth It?- Pet Shop Boys
Suicidal Dream- Silverchair
Veronica- Elvis Costello
Don't Pull Your Love- Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds

Double Retro segment's feat. song: Hard To Handle
The Black Crowes (1990)
Otis Redding (1968)

Tired of Being Alone- Al Green
No Parking On the Dance Floor- Midnight Star
I Wish I Had A Girl- Henry Lee Summer
Round and Round- Ratt
Stranger Than Fiction- Bad Religion
Holding On (When Love Is Gone)- L.T.D.

8 pm hour

Love Plus One- Haircut 100
The Goonies 'R' Good Enough- Cyndi Lauper
Getto Jam- Domino
Endicott- Kid Creole & the Coconuts
Saturday Night- The Bay City Rollers
Gone Movin' On- The Raiders
Bills, Bills, Bills- Destiny's Child
Me Myself and I- De La Soul

The Greatest Miss of the Week:
China- The Red Rockers (peaked at #53 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1983)

You're the One That I Want- John Travolta & Olivia Newton-John
Cars- Gary Numan
Nasty Girl- Vanity 6
We Close Our Eyes- Go West
Girls Girls Girls- Motley Crüe

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Endicott by Kid Creole & the Coconuts

Tracy Morgan Delivers A Verbal Smackdown To Two Former SNL Colleagues

In his upcoming autobiography "I Am the New Black", 30 Rock star gets candid about his time on SNL. Apparently, all was not well at Studio 8H between Tracy and fellow cast members Chris Kattan and Cheri Oteri. Tracy's days on the sketch comedy series weren't all bad because he did have good things to say about some of his other co-workers.

In the clip below from the talk show "The Young Turks", hosts Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian play an excerpt from the audio version of "I Am the New Black" where Tracy talks about his SNL co-workers. Cenk and Ana later discuss the excerpt with "The Young Turks" producer Jayar Jackson.

I found Tracy's comments about Kattan and Oteri refreshing and hilarious! Too often, celebs give marshmallow answers (which are probably lies) when asked about their experiences working with other stars. The release date for "I'm the New Black" is Tuesday, October 20th.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Facebook Lesson #13: A "Poke" Could Send You To the Pokey

I've given up saying, "Now I've seen it all" because of stories like this one. Last month, Shannon D. Jackson of Hendersonville, TN was arrested for "poking" an acquaintance on Facebook. Although "poking" sounds like something Larry Dallas might do, it's normally harmless. It's basically the online equivalent of saying "what's up?!"

I said "normally harmless" because if a person slaps you with a restraining order, "poking" them could get you fitted with a bright orange jumpsuit. According to police, Jackson is accused of using the "poke" option on Facebook to contact Dana Hannah (also of Hendersonville), thus violating the terms of the order of protection, which stipulates "no telephoning, contacting or otherwise communicating with the petitioner."

Violating an order of protection qualifies as a misdemeanor, and can carry a sentence of up to one year in jail, as well as a maximum fine of $2,500.

ABC News video:

Woman arrested for Facebook Poke

Although Ms. Jackson's situation looks bleak at the moment, she could easily turn things around:

Write a best-selling memoir

Make a tearful appearance on Oprah

Have her memoir adapted into a Lifetime movie of the week starring Heather Locklear

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Final Results of the Recent RRHOF Poll, Plus My Thoughts On Who Should/Will Get In

Narrowly edging out 2nd place, Genesis received the most votes in the poll in which I asked which of the 12 nominees for the 2010 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame should be inducted.

Here are the final results of the poll:

Genesis- 41%
ABBA- 37%
The Hollies and Donna Summer- 24% each
KISS- 22%
The Stooges- 18%
LL Cool J and Red Hot Chili Peppers- 15% each
Jimmy Cliff and Darlene Love- 13% each
The Chantels and Laura Nyro- 5% each

Only 5 of the 12 nominees will be inducted. Below are my thoughts on the nominees for the 2010 class. I selected the 5 I think should get in and the 5 I think will. Please note that for some of the ones I said shouldn't get in, I'm not saying they should never be inducted. It's just that I don't think they should get in next year.

I was too lazy busy to provide any analysis as to why I feel the way I do. However, if you are curious as to why I made my choices, feel free to ask me in the comments section.

ABBA- Shouldn't and won't get inducted
The Chantels- Shouldn't and won't get inducted
Jimmy Cliff- Shouldn't and won't get inducted
Genesis- Should and will get inducted
The Hollies- Shouldn't and won't get inducted
KISS- Should, but won't get inducted
LL Cool J- Shouldn't and won't get inducted
Darlene Love- Should and will get inducted
Laura Nyro- Shouldn't, but will get inducted
Red Hot Chili Peppers- Shouldn't, but will get inducted
The Stooges- Should and will get inducted
Donna Summer- Should, but won't get inducted

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Retro Mix Playlist For 10/9/09

Note: The Retro Mix may be moving to a different time slot.  Stay tuned for more details...

7 pm hour

Don't Stop- Fleetwood Mac
Tramp- Salt & Pepa
My Prerogative- Bobby Brown
Your Mirror- Simply Red

Dreams- The Cranberries
Together In Electric Dreams- Human League
Detroit Rock City- Kiss

With or Without You segment's feat. artist: Michael Nesmith
What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round- The Monkees
Silver Moon- Michael Nesmith

Blood Sugar Sex Magik- Red Hot Chili Peppers
Let's Groove- Earth, Wind and Fire
Cruel To Be Kind- Spacehog
My Kinda Lover- Billy Squier
Yes I Am- The Emotions

8 pm hour

I Ran- A Flock of Seagulls
Underground- Men At Work
Regulate- Warren G & Nate Dogg
You Can't Change That- Raydio

I'll Be There- The Jackson Five
Driving- Everything But the Girl
Dyslexic Heart- Paul Westerberg

The Guilty Pleasure of the Week:
I Saw Him Standing There- Tiffany

More Than A Woman- Tavares
Get On the Good Foot- James Brown
People Are People- Depeche Mode
Slow Dog- Belly
Peace of Mind- Boston

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: You Can't Change That by Raydio

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Happy 60th Birthday Sigourney Weaver

Yes, believe it or not, Ellen Ripley has reached the 6-0 milestone.  That rare mix of talent, smarts, sex appeal and badassosity*, it's those qualities that are why Sigourney has been able to stay in demand during her 30-plus year acting career. Last year, Sigourney mentioned that she may be starring in an Alien spinoff film that would focus on Ellen Ripley instead of the Aliens.  Don't laugh.  If a nearly 70 yr old Harrison Ford can dust off his fedora and break out his whip (get your mind out of the gutter please), I don't see a problem with Sigourney springing back into action as Ripley.

* Badassosity is a word.  Although it's not in Merriam-Webster, it can be found in the Urban Dictionary.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Please Take A Moment To Vote In the Current RRHOF Poll... Thank Your

If and when time permits, I will give my thoughts on who should/who will be inducted into the RRHOF in 2010.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Mount Rushmore: Songs of the 1980s

For installment #5 of my periodic series in which I select who/what I think are the 4 ultimate in a given category, I'm focusing on songs from the 1980s. I had to make some hard choices (my apologies to Def Leppard and The Police just to name two), but for me, the following quartet best typify the decade of Jem, Jordache jeans, and the Jheri curl.

1. Billie Jean by Michael Jackson

2. When Doves Cry by Prince

3. Blister In the Sun by The Violent Femmes

4. The Message by Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five

What four songs from the 1980s would make your Mount Rushmore?

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Retro Mix Playlist For 10/2/09

7 pm hour

Like A Virgin- Madonna
Bootzilla- Bootsy's Rubberband
Fire- The Ohio Players
Come Back and Stay- Paul Young
Daughter- Pearl Jam
Dance Naked- John Mellencamp
Nutbush City Limits- Ike & Tina Turner

Double Retro segment's feat. song: Our Lips Are Sealed
The Go-Gos (released in 1981)
Fun Boy Three (released in 1982)

Where Do You Go- No Mercy
TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia)- MFSB
Laughing Out Loud- The Wallflowers
Second Chance- Thirty Eight Special
Good Vibrations- Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch w/ Loleatta Holloway
Bring the Boys Home- Freda Payne

8 pm hour

Shock the Monkey- Peter Gabriel
New Song- Howard Jones
Real Love- Mary J. Blige
High School Dance- The Sylvers
Billy Don't Be A Hero- Bo Donaldson & the Heywoods
Pipes of Peace- Paul McCartney
Tubthumping- Chumbawumba

On the Flip Side segment:
Horny Toad (B-side to Delirious)- Prince

Mary Goes 'Round- Ready For the World
Miss You- The Rolling Stones
Want Ads- The Honey Cone
Warm It Up- Kriss Kross
Boom There She Was- Scritti Politti
Back In the Saddle- Aerosmith

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: New Song by Howard Jones

The Twilight Zone Turns 50

On this date back in 1959, Rod Serling's classic anthology series The Twilight Zone (which featured "before they were famous" appearances by such performers as Robert Redford, Elizabeth Montgomery, Burt Reynolds, Carol Burnett, and Ron Howard) made its debut on CBS.

The Twilight Zone is a rarity in that's it's one of the few dramas from TV's early days that has been rerun on a regular basis after its cancellation. I first entered "The Zone" as a kid via reruns on WXON-Channel 20 out of Allen Park, MI back in the 1980s. I got one of my nieces (who's now 22) watching it back when most kids her age were fixated on a certain purple dinosaur and his friends. While at a party about a month ago, I had an awesome conversation with a 22 yr old who told me that his favorite show was The Twilight Zone (he even owns all the episodes of the original series on DVD).

Even though there were other quality dramatic series from that era, The Twilight Zone has that certain something which separates it from the rest. I won't get off into theorizing why The Twilight Zone has been a rerun mainstay, I'm just glad that it is so people born long after it was made can continue discovering it.

Note: Syfy (formerly known as The Sci-Fi Channel) is airing a marathon of episodes until 3:30 PM today EST.

Here are five of my favorite Twilight Zone episodes. If you're as big a fan as I am, you can understand how difficult it is to narrow down the list to just a quintet.

1. Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up- On the night of a UFO sighting, seven people at a diner claim to be Earthlings, though one of them is not.

2. Five Characters In Search of An Exit- Five people (a ballet dancer, a major, a clown, a tramp and a bagpipe player) are trapped in a featureless enclosure. With no idea how they got there, they attempt to escape.

3. It's A Good Life- Six-year-old Anthony Fremont holds a town in terror with his powers to change or destroy anyone or anything at will.

4. The Monsters Are Due On Maple Street- A mysterious power failure causes paranoid suburbanites to suspect one another of being disguised creatures from outer space.

5. A World of His Own- A playwright describes characters into his tape recorder and they materialize before his eyes. This episode (the final one of the first season) marks the first time in the series that Rod Serling appears onscreen.

If you are a fan of The Twilight Zone, please submit your favorite episodes to the comments section of this post for approval.
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