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Showing posts from June, 2008

Happy Sunday & The Most Important American Movie of 2008

Hey All, today was a wonderful (although very warm) day. Our charity variety show at the Noho First United Methodist Church was a grand success. Literally. We raised our goal in donations for the Red Bird Mission in Kentucky. The program itself was a success and showcased all kinds of talent. I personally, performed I'm In The Mood For Love . It was the first time I'd played a song by myself on piano for an audience since a 4 th grade talent show at Berwick El. in Columbus, OH. It went over well; everyone who remembered the song as a contemporary hit made sure to tell me so. Ain't they sweet? Playing the song was a lot of fun. There are plenty of standards from that era that I'm going to learn. Nothing like having a new party piece. I also did a bit with the MC Hart Bakely (played by comic/writer Phil Mottaz ). I certainly enjoyed the entire fake radio show. Thanks to everybody who attended and donated. After all the Sunday activities at church, several of us went t

Church Charity Event This Weekend

Hey All, long time since I blogged. Been learning new job parts at the Studio and it's been a hot week. Apologies for not checking in. Here's the latest. This Sunday I am performing in a charity event at North Hollywood First United Methodist Church, 4832 Tujunga Ave. The show will be at Noon, June 29 in the social hall. It will be a mock 1940's radio show (not to be confused with the "1940's Radio Hour" that my Dad performed in in Atlanta) with skits and musical acts. I will be doing one number and one of the skits. It's a free show, although this is a fund-raiser for the Red Bird Mission, so free-will donations are welcome. Free food will also be served. So bring your yearning for yesteryear and join me on Sunday. Also, my performance for Defy Music Group's premiere party is now scheduled to take place at the Avalon on Vine St. in Hollywood on Weds. July 30. Time to beat the heat and turn up the A/C. It's sweltering here in L.A. Peace

Some Girls Are 30 Years Old

File under Music Appreciation. An underrated (although big selling) masterpiece celebrates its 30 Birthday today. I'm talking about the Rolling Stones' Some Girls . One of the most exciting records put on wax. I vaguely knew who the Stones were as a tot, but really couldn't tell you about their music. They weren't popular with my generation. Until Miss You . Oh, that groove, that falsetto, that sweet harmonica and a saxophone solo. Whoo! And disco!? I didn't know better. It surely represents a lot of what I'm after musically now. I was a Saturday Afternoon roller skating fool at United Skates of America when I first really discovered the Stones. That was the Summer of '78. My favorites to skate to included Chic, Heatwave and the Stones! I also remember muggy nights in Michigan rolling in my Dad's big old car and Miss You (or something from Steely Dan's Aja ) would pop on and I'd be in music nirvana. And I certainly didn't know what they were

Prince and the Big 5-0

Happy Birthday to Prince Rogers Nelson who turns 50 today! (And Happy Birthday to the twins: Peter and Juliana. I love you, much) Can it be? How did Prince go from the 18 year old prodigy in a trench-coat and speedos to a Rock And Roll Hall of Famer (with 25 years of recording experience required) in a blink of an eye!? I've spent many blogs rhapsodizing about the Artist formerly known as the Artist formerly known as Prince, so I'll keep this one brief. I can still remember the first time I heard When Doves Cry . It was music from another world and the first Prince single I purchased at Coconuts on the Arlington Expressway. And the flip side? 17 Days had a similar effect on my brain and music appreciation skills. Then came Purple Rain , the movie and LP. A paradigm shift with repercussions I couldn't escape if I wanted to. As I get older, there are songs of Prince's that make less sense to me, but they are still slamming recordings. Of course, my guiltiest pleasure

Remembering D-Day

After visiting the coast of Normandy and touring the beaches last month, I have a renewed appreciation for the undertaking of June 6, 1944. There was lots to learn about Operation Overlord while we were there. And I feel I only scratched the surface. Many monuments along the road from WWI & WWII. It was very moving to see the last of the Mulberry Harbor. And incredibly heavy visiting the American Cemetery in low clouds and rain. God bless the men who sacrificed themselves for the victory in second World War. Here are a few snaps from our drive around Omaha and Gold beaches. I will post details tonight. Peace Mulberry Harbor, Gold Beach. British landing site. Brainchild of Winston Churchill. Road signs along the Normandy Coast. Omaha Beach from the American Cemetery. The ceiling of the chapel at the American Cemetery. A sculpted table-top displaying Operation Overlord's landing sites. Me at Omaha Beach. Patty and the statue for the American Spirit. Long view of the cemetery .

Goodbye, Mr. Kong

Sad day at work yesterday. I wasn't there, but I sure watched the news. One of my favorite pastimes at the studio was to walk around the New York Street sets and Courthouse Square. Especially on Saturdays. Like strolling through a Twilight Zone- esque deserted town. Solitude, mysteriously empty buildings and singing birds. Walking up New England St.; Georgetown St. and arriving at Courthouse Square. Always being careful to dodge any production that might be filming. There was one wedge of Brownstones that I particularly enjoyed. Alas, most of it is gone now. But I'm happy to report that the courthouse (made famous in "To Kill A Mockingbird" & "Back To The Future") still stands. Bravo and 3 cheers for the fire fighters and Sheriff's deputies who responded to the blaze on the backlot . Just last Thursday I was tramming on the backlot and got to spend some quality time with King Kong. It's a shame that future generations will not see his likes ag