Monday, March 29, 2010

DVD Review: The T.A.M.I. Show

More than 40 years after its release, the concert film The T.A.M.I. Show is finally available on DVD! Filmed over two days in October 1964 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium and featuring some of the biggest acts of the era (dig the lineup on the movie poster above!), The T.A.M.I. Show is a must-have for anyone who's a fan of rock 'n' roll and soul music from the period.

Fittingly, rock pioneer Chuck Berry opens the show with "Johnny B. Goode"Johnny B. GoodJohnny B. Goode. He then does the opening verse of "Maybellene" as he turns it over to UK beat group Gerry & the Pacemakers as they do their take on the song. The two acts then continue to take turns going through some of their big hits. Although I like Gerry & the Pacemakers, I would have preferred for the director to keep their set separate from Chuck's. Still, it's better to have a little of Chuck Berry's "rock and roll music" than none at all.

To those who aren't students of mid-sixties pop music, the prominence in The T.A.M.I. Show of the aforementioned Gerry & the Pacemakers and another UK group (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas) may have them scratching their heads. Although the two groups are a bit obscure today, in 1964 they were among the most popular acts around. The squeals and screams in the audience during their sets is a a testament to their appeal at the time this was filmed.

For me, the highlight of The T.A.M.I. Show is watching James Brown & the Famous Flames as they proceed to torch the stage with their 4-song set. After witnessing it, one will be hard pressed to argue with Rick Rubin's claim that this was "the single greatest rock and roll performance ever captured on film". Hitting every note as he displayed a dazzling series of spins, slides, and splits, James had kids who probably hadn't heard of him before in the palm of his hand (check out the audience shots during the "call and response" part of "Night Train"). There is also an audience shot of a fur coat-wearing mystery woman who is standing mesmerized during Brown's set. I wonder what (if anything) she was wearing underneath that coat.

Watching James Brown's sweat soaked performance and knowing that The Rolling Stones had to follow him, you almost feel sorry for the lads from London. Simply put, there was no way they were going to top James. Still, Mick and the boys put on an excellent show as the concert's closing act. Even though they were several months away from becoming superstars with the release of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction", The Rolling Stones' set brims with confidence that is impressive.

A big part of what makes The T.A.M.I. Show work is the presence of the backup dancers. Their shimmying, shaking, and gyrating really adds to the energy of the show. Also, it's fun to see one of the dancers early in her career... a 17-year old Teri Garr! Plus, I wouldn't be me if I didn't mention one of the dancers in a two-piece bikini... damn!! Mr. Russ Meyer, she is ready for her close-up! James Brown noticed her too because during the finale when all the acts and dancers are onstage together, he zeroed right in on her.

Along with Teri Garr, watching The T.A.M.I. Show gives viewers the chance to see performers such as Diana Ross, Mick Jagger, Marvin Gaye, and Brian Wilson before they become icons. Speaking of Brian Wilson, within a couple of months of his performance with the rest of The Beach Boys on The T.A.M.I. Show, he would quit touring with the band for several years to concentrate on songwriting and producing.

Some of the other highlights:

* The Barbarians' highly-energized performance of "Hey Little Bird". If this garage-rock quartet from Cape Cod is remembered at all, it's probably because of their minor 1965 hit "Are You A Boy or Are You A Girl?" or the fact that their drummer (Victor "Moulty" Moulton) had a hook in place of his left hand. Though their presence in The T.A.M.I. Show may have some asking "who are they and why are they in the movie?", The Barbarians make the most of their brief time onstage. Special mention goes to drummer "Moulty", who is a maniac on the skins!

* The Miracles' electrifying performance of "Mickey's Monkey".

* The commentary by director Steve Binder and music historian Don Waller. The two of them do a good job of providing background info about the acts featured in The T.A.M.I. Show and Binder's memory is uncanny when it comes to recalling particular camera shots during the show. He also justifies the decision to have the Rolling Stones close the show instead of James Brown.

* The DVD trailer with optional commentary by John Landis. The future director of such films as National Lampoon's Animal House and The Blues Brothers was among the teenagers in attendance at The T.A.M.I. Show. In addition to his funny remarks about preferring James Brown to The Rolling Stones, Landis recalls that one of his schoolmates (a future teen idol of the 1970s) was also at The T.A.M.I. Show.

The T.A.M.I. Show is an exhilarating document of one of the last moments of rock and roll's era of youthful innocence and exuberance, before things got serious and the genre transformed into "rock".

My grade of The T.A.M.I. Show: A-

Below is the trailer for the DVD of The T.A.M.I. Show:

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Final Results of the Recent Movie Remake Poll

With almost half the vote, the new version of Clash of the Titans is the remake that most of you feel is least likely to suck. The "clash" was supposed to begin on 3/26, but the movie's premiere has been pushed back to 4/2 so we'll have to wait a little to see whether or not the 2010 version of Clash of the Titans will be a Maltese Falcon (1941) or another (fill in the name of your choice for the worst movie remake).

Here are the final results:

Clash of the Titans- 47%
Nightmare On Elm Street- 22%
The Karate Kid- 18%
Red Dawn- 11%

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Retro Mix Playlist For 3/26/10

7 pm hour

The Thrill Is Gone- B.B. King
The Impression That I Get- The Mighty Mighty Bosstones
Come On Eileen- Dexy's Midnight Runners
Misled- Kool & the Gang
Divine Hammer- The Breeders
Don't Dream It's Over- Crowded House
Three Little Birds- Bob Marley
Brother Louie- Stories
Three Dog Night- Liar
The Breaks- Kurtis Blow
Gypsy Woman (She's Homeless)- Crystal Waters
Knock On Wood- Amii Stewart
Safety Dance- Men Without Hats
Saved By Zero- The Fixx
Wonderous Stories- Yes

8 pm hour

Free Your Mind- En Vogue
Fake- Alexander O'Neal
Maniac- Michael Sembello
Born To Wander- Rare Earth
Sweet Thing- Rufus
Funky Cold Medina- Tone Lōc
Informer- Snow
The Difference- The Wallflowers
Me and Bobby McGee- Janis Joplin
The Gigolo- O'Bryan
You Make My Dreams- Hall & Oates
Take Me, I'm Yours- Squeeze
Black Betty- Ram Jam

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Don't Dream It's Over by Crowded House

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Album Review: Volume Two By She & Him

My introduction to the indie duo She & Him came through Red, one of the contributors to the pop culture blog Ginger Is the Watchword. Last year she put together an awesome CD mix for me which included the She & Him track "Sweet Darlin'". I was immediately taken by the song's driving beat and throwback sound. When I found out a few months ago that She & Him's next album was due in the spring, I couldn't wait. After listening to Volume Two, I am happy to say that it was worth the wait.

If you are into pop music with a retro feel, this is the album for you! With a combination of playful lead vocals, sweeping harmonies, and sharp musicianship, lead singer/musician Zooey Deschanel and vocalist/musician/producer M. Ward have assembled a collection of gems bound to put or keep you in an “endless summer” mood. I can imagine Barry (Jack Black’s character in “High Fidelity”) including many of these tracks on his “Monday Morning Mix CD” as an antidote to Dick's "sad bastard" music. Hopefully, Barry has upgraded from cassette by now.

Many of the songs on Volume Two have a breezy groove that is hard to resist. Their remake of the NRBQ song “Ridin’In My Car” (which features Deschanel and Ward sharing lead vocals), “I’m Gonna Make It Better”, and “Don’t Look Back” are just a few of the sunshine-filled tunes perfect for cruising with the convertible top or windows down.

With Volume Two, Zooey Deschanel is primed to emerge as one of the top female voices in pop music. Although she may be best known for her roles in films such as Almost Famous, Elf, and Yes Man, Zooey’s work with She & Him doesn’t come off as a vanity project designed to cash in on her Hollywood fame. In addition to providing lead vocals and playing piano, Zooey also wrote 11 of the 13 tracks on Volume Two. The two exceptions are the previously mentioned “Ridin’In My Car” and a tune originally done by Teresa Brewer, “Gonna Get Along Without You Now”.

The album closes with “If You Can’t Sleep”, a song which I can see entering the repertoire of many adults as they try inducing young ones into a golden slumber.

On Volume Two, She & Him have created a blissful world that may not exist, but it doesn't matter to me. To quote Liz Lemon of 30 Rock, “I want to go to there!”

My grade for Volume Two: A

Side note: While looking up Zooey Deschanel's Wikipedia entry, I realized she was the actress who played Jennifer Aniston's cynical co-worker in The Good Girl. The "Fuck you very much" girl has come a long way.

Below is the video to "In the Sun", the first single from Volume Two:

Monday, March 22, 2010

Album Review: Plastic Beach by Gorillaz

Since I've been getting back into the contemporary music scene, I thought it would be a good idea to share with you the albums/artists that I'm digging at any given moment. My first review is of Plastic Beach, the latest release by the English "virtual band" Gorillaz.

Although I didn’t know much about Gorillaz outside of their performance with Madonna during the 2006 Grammys, I was intrigued to hear Plastic Beach. From the opening track (“Orchestral Intro”), I was sucked in by the album’s musical palette of sounds that are space-age, soothing, and exotic.

What struck me first about Plastic Beach is that although the album is eclectic, it flows. Even when there are stylistic changes within a song, it works. A prime example is “White Flag”, which opens with an Arabian flavor that will have the ladies belly dancing (resistance is futile). About a minute into it, guest rappers Bashy and Kano enter the mix and trade off rhymes that'll make you wanna put on a baseball cap, turn it to the back and bob your head to the beat. It then returns to the Arabian feel that allows the ladies to go back into Shakira mode. “White Flag” concludes with a string section that has a Bondian feel which fits perfectly. No, not that Bondthis Bond.

Plastic Beach also impressed me with the musical diversity of its guest roster. In addition to the aforementioned Bashy and Kano, the album also features Snoop Dogg (“Welcome to the World of the Plastic Beach”), soul poet Bobby Womack (“Stylo” and “Cloud of Unknowing”), protopunk pioneer Lou Reed (“Some Kind of Nature”), and Swedish electronic band Little Dragon (“Empire Ants” and “To Binge”) among others. Not to be outdone, Gorillaz co-creator/lead vocalist Damon Albarn makes his presence felt on songs such as “Rhinestone Eyes”, “Broken”, and the title track.

The best part about Plastic Beach is that it can be listened to from beginning to end. It plays like a soundtrack to a Ralph Bakshi film that hasn’t been made. Another added bonus… Plastic Beach sounds awesome in my car’s CD player!

My grade for Plastic Beach: A

Below is a mix of some tracks from Plastic Beach:

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Retro Mix Playlist For 3/19/10

7 pm hour

Every Little Step- Bobby Brown
Screen Door- Uncle Tupelo
The Old Man Down the Road- John Fogerty
Sail On- The Commodores
No More Words- Berlin
Change- Tears for Fears
What About Your Friends- TLC

Tribute to Alex Chilton (who died on 3/17 at age 59)
The Letter- The Box Tops
Free Again- Alex Chilton
Thirteen- Big Star
Way Out West- Big Star
You Keep Tightening Up On Me- The Box Tops

Warm It Up- Kriss Kross
The Men All Pause- Klymaxx
Your Saving Grace- Steve Miller Band

8 pm hour

You Give Love A Bad Name- Bon Jovi
Keep Pushin'- REO Speedwagon
Body Heat- James Brown
I Love the Nightlife (Disco 'Round)- Alicia Bridges
Beautiful Girl- INXS
Avalon- Roxy Music
Good Times- Chic

Now & Then segment's featured artist: Snoop Dogg
Welcome to the World of the Plastic Beach- Gorillaz feat. Snoop Dogg (from the Gorillaz' 2010 CD Plastic Beach)
What's My Name- Snoop Dogg

Driver's Seat- Sniff & the Tears
Just A Girl- No Doubt
Private Idaho- The B 52s
Better Be Good To Me- Tina Turner
Foolin'- Def Leppard

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: The Men All Pause by Klymaxx

Top Five On Friday: Power Pop!

Top 5 power pop songs:

1. My Sharona by The Knack

2. Cruel To Be Kind by Nick Lowe

3. Go All the Way by The Raspberries

4. Dream Police by Cheap Trick

5. Daisy Glaze by Big Star (Alex Chilton, R.I.P.)

Because narrowing down the list to just 5 tunes was hard, here is a bonus for all you proponents of power pop:

What songs would make your Power Pop Top Five?

Please Take A Moment To Vote In the Current 80s Movie Remake Poll... Thank You.

Because it would be too easy to say, "these remakes will all suck", I decided to put a positive spin on this poll. Although some remakes can be pointless, retelling a story isn't a bad idea in and of itself. Admittedly, the quartet of remakes featured in this poll aren't likely to make fans forget the 80s originals. On the other hand, there is the possibility that one or more of these remakes surpasses the original. After all, the 1941 version of The Maltese Falcon (the 3rd time the story was brought to the big screen) is by far the best.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Alex Chilton, 1950-2010

Singer-musician Alex Chilton, who experienced mainstream success in the 1960s with The Box Tops and later achieved cult hero status as one of the founders of Big Star, died Wednesday of an apparent heart attack at the age of 59.

As the teen-aged lead singer of The Box Tops, Chilton belted out such pop/soul nuggets as The Letter, Cry Like A Baby, and Soul Deep. It's hard to believe the gruff voice that fronted The Box Tops' records came from a kid not even old enough to get into bars legally. Allegedly, the soulful voice he used as The Box Tops lead vocalist was due to lack of sleep. The Box Tops are also responsible for perhaps the first Billboard Top 40 hit to address the subject of prostitution (1968's Sweet Cream Ladies, Forward March).

Below is a clip of their 1969 appearance on the program Upbeat in which they lip-synched their 1967 debut The Letter (which spent 4 weeks at #1 two years earlier):

After The Box Tops broke up in 1970, Chilton launched his solo career. However, his early solo output didn't see the light of day until years later when various labels released such compilations as Alex Chilton's Lost Decade and 1970. The latter, includes my favorite Chilton solo tune, Free Again:

Although they didn't come close to obtaining commercial success during their original incarnation in the 1970s, in many circles Big Star is how Chilton is best known today. Despite this mainstream oversight, Big Star was highly influential on many of the alternative bands of the 80s and 90s such as R.E.M., Teenage Fanclub, and The Replacements. The latter even wrote and recorded the tribute song Alex Chilton (from their 1987 album Pleased To Meet Me).

The track below (Thirteen) is one of the prettiest ballads ever written and was originally featured on Big Star's 1972 debut titled #1 Record. Because Chilton's vocals on Big Star's recordings are in his natural voice (which has a sweeter, higher pitch) , some people don't make the Box Tops connection.

After several years spent cutting solo records or out of the music business entirely (he was a tree trimmer and dishwasher for a brief time), Chilton relaunched Big Star in 1993 with fellow original member Jody Stephens and two members of The Posies. That same year the band released the live album Columbia: Live at Missouri University 4/25/93. To promote the release, Big Star appeared on The Tonight Show and performed one of their most enduring songs In the Street (which was later used as the theme to That 70s Show).

During the last few years, Chilton continued to record and tour, as a soloist and as a member of The Box Tops and Big Star. He is survived by his wife and son.

If you have any favorite songs from Alex Chilton's eclectic career, please discuss them in the comments section.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Peter Graves, 1926-2010: Oveur and Out

On Sunday afternoon, actor Peter Graves died of an apparent heart attack at the age of 83.

Because of he had a long and varied career in the biz, one's age probably dictates what role you associate with Peter. To some, he is Jim Phelps, the 2nd leader of the IMF on the original version of Mission: Impossible (a role he played from 1967-1973).

Peter also assumed the role of Phelps for 1988-1990 revival.

To others he is Capt. Clarence Oveur, the pilot who had a tendency to ask a little boy named Joey some rather odd questions in the 1980 spoof Airplane.

Below is a montage of Peter's scenes from the movie Airplane:

If you're a bit younger and were an A&E junkie, you probably associate Peter with his 12-year stint of hosting the documentary series Biography. Whatever you remember Peter for, his solid presence will be missed.

Side note: To the news outlets that gave away too much about a movie that Peter co-starred in early in his career (the 1953 POW comedy-drama Stalag 17), I have two words for you: spoiler alert! Oh, here are two more words: you suck! Even if news reports ruined the movie for you, I highly recommend that you still give it a look.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Retro Mix Playlist For 3/12/10

7 pm hour

One Way or Another- Blondie
They Want Money- Kool Moe Dee
Just A Friend- Biz Markie
Soaking In It- Sons of Elvis
Baby What A Big Surprise- Chicago
Newborn Friend- Seal
The Look- Roxette

The Greatest Miss of the Week:
Is This Really the First Time- JoBoxers (did not chart in the U.S.)

Abracadabra- Steve Miller Band
Hong Kong Garden- Siouxsie and the Banshees
Harvest for the World- The Isley Brothers
Put A Lid On It- Squirrel Nut Zippers
Stray Cat Strut- The Stray Cats
Crazy Little Thing Called Love- Queen
Do Something- Macy Gray

8 pm hour

I Want You To Want Me- Cheap Trick
Rockestra Theme- Wings
Easy Lover- Philip Bailey w/ Phil Collins
Found A Cure- Ashford & Simpson
Ironic- Alanis Morissette
Let the Day Begin- The Call
Love Rollercoaster- The Ohio Players

On the Flip Side segment:
Right- David Bowie (the B-side to Fame)

These Are the Days- 10,000 Maniacs
The Wizard- Uriah Heep
If You Leave- OMD
So Fine- Howard Johnson
Lies- The Thompson Twins
Mississippi Queen- Mountain

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Easy Lover by Philip Bailey w/ Phil Collins

Phil Collins & Philip Bailey - Easy Lover
Uploaded by MALIK69T. - Watch more music videos, in HD!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

CTFD: Lindsay Lohan vs. E-Trade

Don't mess with "The Lohan" unless you want to run the risk of getting slapped with a frivolous lawsuit. Multiple award-winning* actress Lindsay Lohan has filed a $100 million lawsuit claiming a TV ad for the Wall Street firm E-Trade is modeled after her and improperly invoked her “likeness, name, characterization, and personality” without permission, violating her right to privacy. In the commercial, talking babies have a conversation that refers to "milkaholic Lindsay." As everyone knows, Lohan has had her issues with alcohol.

Although Lohan's name was never mentioned, her lawyer argues that "Lindsay" is an equally recognizable moniker for her client — like that of Oprah or Madonna. In addition to the ca$hola, Lohan's legal team is also seeking an injunction to stop future airings.

For one thing, when I hear the name "Lindsay", I don't automatically think of Ms. Lohan ...

Sometimes Olympic Gold Medal skier Lindsey Vonn comes to mind.

At other times, I'm reminded of former "Bionic Woman" Lindsay Wagner.

Hell, sometimes I go into Mayberry mode and think of George "Goober" Lindsey.

Also, the claim that the ad improperly invoked Lohan's “likeness, name, characterization, and personality” is a joke. If the director of the commercial slapped a long, red wig on the infant actress, placed her face down on the floor, and scattered empty baby bottles all around her, Lohan might have a case. As it stands, all this lawsuit is doing is costing Lindsay legal fees and providing material for smart asses like me.

Unless her handlers are "fully loaded", they'd sit Ms. Lohan down, tell her to continue working on getting her shit together, and convince her to drop this silly lawsuit.

* Hey Razzies and Teen Choice Awards count!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Final Results of the Recent Sexiest Song Poll

In the recent poll asking you to select the sexiest song, Marvin Gaye's 1973 ode to making the beast with 2 backs won easily with over 50% of the vote. Something that many people were in agreement on was that Physical by Olivia Newton-John did not belong on the list of sexiest songs of all time (I don't think it does either). On paper, I get the song's sexy vibe. Here are the opening lyrics to Physical:

I'm saying all the things that I know you'll like
Making good conversation
I gotta handle you just right
You know what I mean
I took you to an intimate restaurant
Then to a suggestive movie
There's nothing left to talk about
Unless it's horizontally

Ultimately, Olivia's version is too bouncy and lastly, I just can't think of Physical without getting visions of leotards and sweatbands dancing in my head. That's the power of music video.

Here are the final results:

"Let's Get It On" by Marvin Gaye- 54%
"I'll Make Love To You' by Boyz II Men- 13%
"Tonight's the Night" by Rod Stewart- 11%
"Physical" by Olivia Newton-John and "Other"- 9% each (you can click here to read the alternate songs chosen by readers)
"Too Close" by Next- 1%

Thanks to all of you who participated in this poll and to Denise H. for suggesting it.

Below is "The Master" Marvin Gaye performing a live version of Let's Get It On:

Sunday, March 7, 2010

My Predictions for the 2010 Academy Awards

I was going to call Miss Cleo to get her thoughts on this year's nominees. However, since I have a low tolerance for fake Jamaican accents, I decided I was going to fly solo. Below are my Oscar predictions (highlighted in bold) for 7 of the major categories.

Best actor in a leading role:
* Jeff Bridges in “Crazy Heart”
* George Clooney in “Up in the Air”
* Colin Firth in “A Single Man”
* Morgan Freeman in “Invictus”
* Jeremy Renner in “The Hurt Locker”

Why: This will be a way for the Academy to honor Jeff''s body of work. With a career that includes strong performances in such films as The Last Picture Show, Fat City, and Arlington Road, I'm OK with that. Plus, from what I hear, Jeff gave an amazing performance.

Best actor in a supporting role:
* Matt Damon in “Invictus”
* Woody Harrelson in “The Messenger”
* Christopher Plummer in “The Last Station”
* Stanley Tucci in “The Lovely Bones”
* Christoph Waltz in “Inglourious Basterds”

Why: Christoph has won practically every honor for this performance (I think he even won a Soul Train Music Award), so this is a safe bet.

Best actress in a leading role:
* Sandra Bullock in “The Blind Side”
* Helen Mirren in “The Last Station”
* Carey Mulligan in “An Education”
* Gabourey Sidibe in “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”
* Meryl Streep in “Julie & Julia”

Why: I call this the "Julia Roberts/Erin Brockovich rule": An actress with box-office appeal gives a critically acclaimed performance by portraying a contemporary, real-life person. Plus, the Academy may feel that Sandra isn't likely to get nominated again so this is their chance to show their appreciation.

Best actress in a supporting role:
* Penélope Cruz in “Nine”
* Vera Farmiga in “Up in the Air”
* Maggie Gyllenhaal in “Crazy Heart”
* Anna Kendrick in “Up in the Air”
* Mo’Nique in “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”

Why: She has dominated the awards season with her portrayal of the title character's abusive mother. The only Best Supporting Actress award for which Mo’Nique's been nominated that she didn't win was the Toronto Film Critic's Association's (Anna Kendrick took home the prize for “Up in the Air"). I don't see Anna upsetting Mo’Nique a 2nd time.

Best animated feature film:

*“Fantastic Mr. Fox”
*“The Princess and the Frog”
*“The Secret of Kells”

Why: I have a hunch that the stop motion/computer animated trio of Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Up, may cancel each other out. This leaves the hand-drawn duo of The Princess and the Frog and The Secret of Kells. The Academy may want to honor the dying art of hand-drawn motion picture animation and will therefore give the nod to the better known The Princess and the Frog.

Best Director:
*James Cameron, “Avatar”
*Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”
*Quentin Tarantino, “Inglourious Basterds”
*Lee Daniels, “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”
*Jason Reitman, “Up in the Air”

Why: I think the stars are all lined up for history to be made by awarding the Best Director Oscar to a woman for the first time. Plus, the Academy may feel that with the top 2 highest grossing films in box-office history (before adjustments for inflation) and a Best Director Oscar already on his mantel, James Cameron has enough.

Best motion picture:
*“The Blind Side”
*“District 9″
*“An Education”
*“The Hurt Locker”
*“Inglourious Basterds”
*“Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”
*“A Serious Man”
*“Up in the Air”

Why: Although the pool of nominees has increased to 10, I think this is a two-horse race between "The Two Billion Dollar Film" and "The Little War Movie That Could". The Nicolas Chartier controversy may cause The Hurt Locker to lose some votes, but I'm still going with it because of the "James Cameron has enough" factor.

What are your Oscar predictions this year?

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Retro Mix Playlist For 3/5/10

7 pm hour

The Boys Are Back In Town- Thin Lizzy
Fake- Alexander O'Neal
The Glamorous Life- Sheila E.
Starrider- Foreigner
One Week- Barenaked Ladies
Dead Man's Party- Oingo Boingo
Got To Give It Up- Marvin Gaye

Double Retro segment:
Bette Davis Eyes- Kim Carnes (remake recorded in 1981)
Bette Davis Eyes- Jackie DeShannon (the original 1975 version)

Jackson Cannery- Ben Folds Five
It Must Be Love- Madness
Groove Me- King Floyd
Ffun- Con Funk Shun
Electronic Behavior Control System- EBN

8 pm hour

Shadows of the Night- Pat Benatar
Don't Cry- Asia
Pony- Ginuwine
It's Ecstasy (When You Lay Down Next To Me)- Barry White
I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love- The Emotions
Love Will Keep Us Together- Neil Sedaka
Woo-hah! Got You All In Check- Busta Rhymes
Seal My Fate- Belly
Shattered Dreams- Johnny Hates Jazz
I Shoulda Loved You- Narada Michael Walden
Boys Do Fall In Love- Robin Gibb
Love Plus One- Haircut One Hundred
Ain't We Funkin' Now- The Brothers Johnson
Hurts So Good- John Cougar

The Retro Mix Song of the Week: Bette Davis Eyes by Jackie DeShannon. Although there isn't any performance footage with this video clip, I thought it would be fun for people to compare Jackie's original version with Kim's well-known remake.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Terror In the Skies on TCM Friday Night!

Fasten your seatbelts and turn off all electronic devices because Turner Classic Movies is taking to the skies for a airplane disaster flick triple feature! First up is the 1960 film The Crowded Sky starring Dana Andrews, Rhonda Fleming, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., and Anne Francis. Although I don't know much about The Crowded Sky, the following quote has me looking forward to it:

I should be in the American flag business. Cigarettes turn me blue, whiskey turns me red, and women turn me white.

The 2nd film is the movie that set the standard for modern movie spoofs... the 1980 classic Airplane! In addition to featuring hilarious "out of left field" cameos by such people as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Leave It To Beaver mom Barbara Billingsley, and Ethel Merman, Airplane! is also responsible for the career 180 of Leslie Nielsen, who previously was best known for his dramatic roles in movies and countless TV guest shots. Now it's hard for some to think of Leslie doing anything else but comedy.

Wrapping up the triple feature is the movie that inspired Airplane!, the 1957 drama Zero Hour!, starring Dana Andrews, Linda Darnell, and Sterling Hayden. A few years ago, I learned that Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker (the makers of Airplane!) purchased the rights to this movie and used the script almost as is to create Airplane! I say "almost" because ZAZ are the twisted minds behind such silly/iconic lines as "I am serious. And don't call me Shirley." and "Joey, have you ever been in a... in a Turkish prison?"

Here are the start times (all EST) for the movies in the terror in the skies triple feature:

The Crowded Sky (8 pm)
Airplane! (10 pm)
Zero Hour! (11:45 pm)

Below is a montage of scenes from Zero Hour! and Airplane! that allows you to compare them and see how similar they are. Props to Flip Flomas for putting this together!

Please Take A Moment To Vote In the Sexiest Song of All Time Poll... Thank You

Recently, Billboard magazine compiled a list of The 50 Sexiest Songs of All Time. Below are the top 5 songs on the list, which are included in the current poll. Although you are likely familiar with this quintet of aural sex, you can click on each title if you'd like to hear them with a fresh set of ears before voting in the poll.

1. Physical by Olivia Newton-John
2. Tonight's the Night by Rod Stewart
3. I'll Make Love To You by Boyz II Men
4. Too Close by Next
5. Let's Get It On by Marvin Gaye

Since you may not think that the sexiest song of all time is in Billboard's top 5 or made the list period, you can select "other" in the poll. If you vote "other", don't be shy... let us know the title/artist of the song that gets your motor running... and not in the Steppenwolf way.

Note: Thanks to Denise H. for honoring my request by coming up with this poll suggestion.
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