Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Netflix Most Rented of 2009

Today Netflix released its list of the most rented movies of 2009.

1- Curious Case of Benjamin Button
2- Seven Pounds
3- Slumdog Millionaire
4- Gran Torino
5- Changeling
6- Twilight
7- Doubt
8- Body of Lies
9- Valkyrie
10- Burn After Reading

Thursday, December 24, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

This week we turn the clock waaay back to this week in 1958 and the #1 song "The Chipmunk Song" by The Chipmunks and David Seville.
The fastest selling song of 1958 with 2.5 million copies sold in the first 3 weeks of release. Ross Bagdasarian a.k.a David Seville was the creator of the Chipmunks and at the first annual Grammy Awards took home 3 awards: Best Recording for Children, Best Comedy Performance and Best Engineered Recording.

R.I.P George Michael

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcwashington.com/video.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Decade in Horse Racing

Good article from the New York Times covering this decade of racing.


FYI,
due to numbness in a couple of my fingers on my right hand and trouble with my left hand going numb at times, I may not be posting much in the next few days. I am scheduled to see the doctor on Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

This weeks chart topper is from July 11th 1970. Sorry I am cold and needed a summer hit to make it seem warm outside.
"Mama Told Me (Not To Come) by Three Dog Night
hit the top in July 1970 where it spent 2 weeks. It knocked off "The Love You Save" by The Jackson Five.
This was the only song written by Randy Newman to hit the top, although his "Short People" made it to #2 in early 1978. This was the first #1 for the singles machine of Three Dog Night who had 21 Top 40 hits between 1969 and 1975, with 11 hitting the top 10 and 3 of those going to the top spot (Joy to the World 1971, Black and White 1972 were the others).
This was also the first #1 song on the first show of "American Top 40" hosted by Kasey Kasem.

Here are Danny Hutton, Cory Wells and Chuck Negron, Three Dog Night

Friday, December 11, 2009

Best of the 2000s: The Decade In Charts and More | Billboard.com

Best of the 2000s: The Decade In Charts and More Billboard.com

the bestselling album of the decade went to a group that isnt even around anymore, N'Sync.
top single of the decade was "We Belong Together" by Mariah Carey.

In my opinion as a grumpy old man, most of these stink. view at your own risk.

Bigfoot in the northwoods?

Bigfoot in the northwoods? Camera picks up strange image near Remer - TwinCities.com
Here is another subject I am absolutely fascinated with, Bigfoot and any other paranormal phenomenon.
One of my very favorite books I read back in high school was called "Earth Secret Inhabitants". The book is a now hard to find paperback but was a great read about winged creatures, mysterious lions and leopards being seen in Indiana, Illinois and Ohio. It had a theory that there was a door between dimensions that was over those states and the creatures passed through all the time.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Tadeus Wladyslaw Konopka

You may not recognize the name but you know him and love him and today would have been the 86th birthday of the great Ted Knight.
Here in this video his friends pay tribute to his years as Ted Baxter.

One Hit Wonder

Today on Yahoo! Music they announced Billboard Magazine's One Hit Wonders of the Decade. Actually they used the years 2000-2007.
Strangely the #1 song on the list is the only one of the Top Ten that I recognized.

Here is the article from Yahoo!
and
Here is the Billboard list

Saturday, December 5, 2009

A true troubled hero

Yesterday my friend Doug emailed me about an article in the USAToday on the journey of the death mask of Ira Hayes.
Who is Ira Hayes you might ask, well he was one of only 27 survivors of the battle for Iwo Jima and is in the legendary picture of the flag raising on Mt Suribachi. He is on the far left of the group in the picture.


He is one of America's great soldiers who was a hero but after his service was never the same and didnt want the celebrity that was thrust upon him.

God Bless all our men and women in uniform past and present.

Aaron Schroeder dies at 83; prolific songwriter for Elvis Presley and others -- latimes.com

Aaron Schroeder dies at 83; prolific songwriter for Elvis Presley and others -- latimes.com
As you read this obituary you will see in later years Mr. Schroeder provided songs and singers for "Scooby Doo Where Are You?" and "The Banana Splits". Quite a varied career in music.
I found this very interesting because you dont hear about the writers of all the great Elvis songs, just him singing these songs and making them famous.
Elvis also helped the career of a young songwriter named Scotty "Mac" Davis by putting "In The Ghetto" on his Memphis Sessions album that also included "Suspicious Minds", "Kentucky Rain" and "Don't Cry Daddy".

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Friday, December 4, 2009

Your Video of the Day

My daughters and I have been going around doing this routine for the last 2 weeks.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Top of the Pops!

This week we celebrate the 75th Birthday of soul legend Billy Paul and his biggest chart hit.
We go to December 16th 1972 for our Top 5.

#5 - It Never Rains in Southern California - Albert Hammond
Peaking this week at #5 with his biggest hit


#4 - You Ought to be With Me - Al Green
This would peak a week later at #3 and had been on top of the RB singles chart this week.


#3 - If You Don't Know Me By Now - Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes
This was the first song in the Top 5 by the songwriting team of Gamble & Huff and the first hit for the Teddy Pendergrass led Bluenotes.


#2 - I Am Woman - Helen Reddy
This first of 3 #1 singles for Helen Reddy, this song spent the previous week at the top spot and helped Helen Reddy win a Grammy for Best Female Performance in 1972.


#1 - Me and Mrs. Jones - Billy Paul
The other song by Gamble & Huff in this weeks Top 5 and their first #1 song, this spent the last 3 weeks of 1972 on top and made Billy Paul a household name.

Monday, November 30, 2009

What do they have in common?










This very very odd grouping of people all share today November 30th as the date of their birth.
So can you name them all?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Grammy Awards

Today in 1959 the 2nd Annual Grammy Awards were aired on NBC television as part of the anthology series Sunday Showcase.
The big winner that night was Duke Ellington with 3 awards, and all 3 were for his soundtrack of the motion picture "Anatomy of a Murder".
The Grammys would not air live on TV until 1971 when ABC bought the rights to air the awards and were broadcast from Los Angeles. In 1973 CBS bought the rights after they were moved to Nashville, TN thus paving the way for ABC and Dick Clark to start the American Music Awards to air from Los Angeles and compete against the Grammy telecast.

The 1959 winner for Record of the Year (awarded to the artist) and Best New Artist of the Year went to Bobby Darin for his smash hit "Mack The Knife".



The winner of the Song of the year (for the writer) went to "The Battle of New Orleans" written by Jimmy Driftwood and sung by Johnny Horton. This also got Johnny Horton the Grammy for Best Country & Western Performance.



The Grammy for Album of the Year went to Frank Sinatra's "Come Dance with Me".


Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Blind Side


Went with my lovely wife last night to see the movie "The Blind Side". A story of now Baltimore Ravens tackle Michael Oehr and his remarkable life and path from homeless teen to All American at Ole Miss to first round NFL draft pick.

I cannot recommend this movie enough. Not a tearjerker because you know the outcome but still you get drawn into the story and it just makes you feel good.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

Today's #1 song is from this week in 1974, Billy Swan and his only #1 hit "I Can Help".
It spent 2 weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100.
This is his only top 40 hit but it was the first of several country chart hits for Billy Swan.
"I Can Help" topped the US and Canadian Country Charts as well as the Austrailian Top 40.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Top of the Pops!

This week we step way back to November 28 1964.
America was in the grip of Beatlemania but the girls groups were still hanging strong and Bonanza was on top of the TV ratings as shown by this weeks Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart Top 5.

#5) Ringo - Lorne Greene
Riding the wave of western tv shows and especially the huge success of Bonanza,which was the top rated tv show for 3 straight seasons starting in 1964,Lorne Greene's only hit record jumped into the top 5 on its way to #1.


#4) She's Not There - The Zombies
Starting a 6 week run in the top 5 on the way to #2.


#3) Come a Little Closer - Jay & The Americans
Peaking at #3 this week and the biggest hit for Jay & The Americans


#2) Baby Love - The Supremes
After 4 weeks in the top spot with their second #1 song, Diana and the girls drop a notch.


#1) Leader of the Pack - The Shangri-Las
The 4 girl group from New York hit the top spot for only 1 week. This clip is from the gameshow "I've Got A Secret" and you can see how nervous the girls were but they managed to get through it.
Here they are only a trio as the sister of lead singer Mary Weiss had left the group shortly after recording the single.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Obit page always yields something interesting #3

Today's NY Times obituary page had the notice for the passing of Colonel Lewis Millett who died last Saturday at the age of 88. Col. Millett was Medal of Honor winner from the Korean War. He was given the medal for leading a bayonet charge up Hill 180 near Osan, South Korea. It was the called the most complete bayonet charge by American troops since Cold Harbor, a bloody 1864 Civil war battle in Virginia.
His story is fascinating and show he is truly an American hero.

His NYTimes Obituary
Another great article on Col Millett and a recent photo.

To me its sad that so many of our great veterans and Medal of Honor winners pass without the general public having no knowledge of them.

Allan Sherman

Today November 20th in 1973 Allan Sherman died of emphysema at the Motion Picture home in Calabasas California, just 10 days short of his 50th birthday.
By all accounts he was not a happy man nor was he well liked among tv people he worked with, although his talent was obvious.
He will live forever in his song "Hello Muddah Hello Fadduh" which reached #1 on the Cashbox Hot 100 and spent 3 weeks at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in 1963.
In 1952 his idea for a game show became "I've Got A Secret" ,which he was named prodcuer of instead of getting paid for his idea by Mark Goodson-Bill Toddman Productions. He lasted until 1958 as producer before being asked to leave after one too many of his stunts endly badly.
I could not find any clips of him singing his classic hit but here is an old commercial for a board game based on the song with Allan Sherman.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Number 1 Album Spotlight

In November and December of 1985 the soundtrack for the tv show "Miami Vice" sat at #1 on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart.
It included hits from Phil Collins "In The Air Tonight", Tina Turner "Better Be Good To Me", Glenn Frey "Smuggler's Blues" and "You Belong to the City".
The album went quadruple platinum (over 4 million copies) and produced one #1 single, "Miami Vice Theme" by Jan Hammer.
Miami Vice became the first tv show to produce both a #1 album and #1 song.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Dana White: Brock Lesnar May Never Fight Again

This is a really weird story and until we get the full story and details from Brock himself all this speculation will continue. He pulled something similar with the WWE and played sick to get a better deal. I dont think the UFC works that way, but you never know.

Dana White: Brock Lesnar May Never Fight Again

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Trailer Park

Today's edition of the Trailer Park celebrates this day in 1956, the premiere in theaters of "Love Me Tender".
This was the first, and probably the best, of all the Elvis movies.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Top of the Pops!

In honor of my youngest, Jessie Marie, turning 13 today we are going to look at the Top 5 of Billboard's Hot 100 for the Week ending November 13/14 1971.

5- I Found Someone of My Own - Free Movement
A true One Hit Wonder. This song peaked at #5 this week up from #8 and was the only top 40 hit for the group from Los Angeles.


4- Maggie May - Rod Stewart
The smash #1 hit for the big sensation of 1971. This song spent 5 weeks at the top before being moved out 2 weeks ago.


3-Imagine - John Lennon
The former Beatle is at #3 for the second week in a row.


2- Theme From "Shaft" - Isaac Hayes
On his way up to the top spot,"The Black Moses" pauses briefly at #2.


1- Gypsys, Tramps and Thieves - Cher
Riding the success of "The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour" Cher sits at #1 for a 2nd consecutive week with her first #1 solo single.

Completed! until the next Academy Awards

I finally got the one movie I didnt have for my Best Picture Oscar DVD collection. Today I taped "The Last Emperor" from TCM. You know I am cheap and most of my movies were taped from TCM or bought at deep discount, but I finally completed this project. Well its complete until the 2010 Academy Awards are announced.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Billboard Top 200 Album Chart

Billboard magazine makes huge change to its rules for the Top 200 Album chart.

Read it here.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Former wrestler's home to go up for auction

Former wrestler's home to go up for auction - WTHR |

From WTHR.com, the home of Indiana legend Dick "The Bruiser" Afflis is on the market.

In Case You Missed It

Cal running back Jahvid Best scored a great looking touchdown this last saturday but he paid the price by being knocked out and getting a concussion.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Top of the Pops

This week for Top of the Pops lets go to November 13th 1982.

5 - "Heartlight" - Neil Diamond
Neil Diamond's 36th Top 40 hit, from the soundtrack of the mega blockbuster movie "E.T."


4 - "Gloria" - Laura Branigan
Going from #9 to #4 is the first top 40 appearance by Laura Branigan. She would take this number to #2 for 3 weeks.


3- "Heart Attack" - Olivia Newton-John


2- "Truly" - Lionel Richie
On his way to the top spot with his debut solo single, he would stay on top for 2 consecutive weeks.


1- "Up Where We Belong" Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes
In the second of 2 weeks at #1 this was from the soundtrack of "An Officer and A Gentleman".

Friday, November 6, 2009

In Case You Missed It

Well this would akin to Steve Perry leaving Journey several years ago. They will not be Aerosmith if Steven Tyler leaves.

Check out the story from the Las Vegas Sun.

1978 Yankee World Series Parade/Riot

I am not a fan of the Yankess today but in 1978 when I was 11 years old they were all I wanted to be. With my man "Mr. October" Reggie Jackson,Thurman Munson,Bucky Dent and Sweet Lou Pinellas, this was the greatest team ever in my mind.

Now the fans in NYC during the 1978 World Series Champions parade got a little out of hand

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcnewyork.com/video.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Front Page of the Day (possibly the year)


From the front page of today's New York Post. This is reference to a comment a couple of years ago where Pedro Martinez said "the yankees are my daddy". Since he seemed to get hammered when he pitched against the Yankees.

With tonight being game 6 of the 2009 World Series and Pedro being the Phillies starting pitcher, it just may be the front page of the day and probably the year.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pumpkin House

I saw this on the daily "Ripley's Believe it Not" cartoon today.
Its called the Pumpkin House and its in Kenova, West Virginia.
The owner Ric Griffith, his family and hundreds of volunteers spends months every year carving pumpkins for this gigantic display.

Check out these photos: Pumpkin House

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Top of the Pops!

Lets have some fun. Here are the Top 5 songs on Billboard's Hot 100 for the week ending November 1st 1969.
It was a 5 that included Motown, rock, bubblegum, pop and the last top spot appearance for the King.

Number 5 - Baby It's You - Smith.


Number 4- I Can't Get Next To You - Temptations
You can notice that legendary singer Eddie Kendricks (far right) was way out of it for this number. He was in the middle of one of his famous "high times" and probably was just singing and dancing on instinct.


3- Sugar Sugar - The Archies
Just 2 weeks removed from the spending 4 weeks on top this bubblegum classic was all over the airways in the summer and fall of 1969. I picked the video of the acutal singer of the song Ron Dante because the cartoon version just isnt that good.


2- Wedding Bell Blues - The Fifth Dimension
On its way to the top spot


1- Suspicious Minds - Elvis Presley
This would be the 17th and last #1 song for the King of Rock N Roll. It would stay just one week a the top. In this video the King does some of his famous ad libs in the song just to crack himself and the band up.

Weird but Fascinating!


Once again I have stumbled on something that completely fascinates me and always has, serial killers!

I must have got that from my father who came home one day with a great book called "Bloodletters and Badmen Vol 1" and we of course argued over who got to read it first. I was down with hip surgery so I read it while he was at work and he read at night, so it all worked out and my fascination has never ceased.

So I was looking at a radio station website that plays "AT 40 The 70s" and they had a link to "A Gallery of the World's Most Famous Serial Killers".
I guess that is their contribution to Halloween this year.

Check it out here at WORC-FM

Friday, October 30, 2009

Hogan interviewed on Larry King Live

Hogan is always a good interview because you never know what version of wrestling history he is going to tell. This is enjoyable by Larry King's complete ignorance of most facts, saying Laila Ali was Muhammed Ali's wife?!
Fascinating interview nonetheless. Oh and he brought his lawyer. I have posted the first 2 parts, if you want to see the rest you can check it out on YouTube.



Wednesday, October 28, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

Let's go to October 1965 and the song that held the top spot on Billboard's Hot 100 for the entire month, "Yesterday" by the Beatles.
It was not released as a single in the UK because it was part of the "Help!" soundtrack, it was finally released in 1976 and peaked at #8.
In the US it was released as a single with the B side being Ringo Starr's version of the Buck Owen's "Act Naturally".

"Yesterday" holds the Guinness Book of World Record as the most covered song in history with over 2,500 different versions.



Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Ever So Humble

With the release of the new memoir by Hulk Hogan, Amazon has it set up you can read the first few pages online. In the first paragraph he gives us this statement " I hate confrontation. I've always hated confrontation. The thought of a truly violent confrontation scares me more than just about anything else in life. I know that sounds strange coming from the most famous professional wrestler who ever lived-but its the truth"

REALLY? the most famous who ever lived??? ok he might have a legit claim to that but to call yourself that in the first paragraph of your memoir? The man's ego has an ego and they are both the size of Madison Square Garden. I guess maybe he has to have that to survive in the world of pro wrestling. It just boggles my mind.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Something New

Ok I want to post this here and if I get a favorable response I will make it a regular post if possible. I might just start a new blog just for my music love but I want to start here. I have posted about my love of music and the American Top 40 countdown of years gone by and my post of the Number 1 song of the week is fun, so I would like to post here the Top 5 songs of the week from this week in top 40 history.
So lets start with the week ending Oct 30th 1976.

Number 5, A former number one hit.


Number 4 and heading for a peak of #2


Number 3 and still moving up


Number 2, number 1 just 2 weeks ago


Number 1 for a second consecutive week

Friday, October 23, 2009

Obit page always yields something interesting (again)

While scanning the NYTimes Obit page yesterday I saw this obituary for Howard Unruh. It was the lead obit this Tuesday October 20th and the headline caught my eye "Killed 13 of his neighbors in Camden in 1949".
I had never heard of this man or his crime and I am usually up to date on mass murders and serial killers.
I found only a brief mention of him in the Encyclopedia of Killers book I have and its in the spree killing section.
His obituary covers all of the details and after a Google search I found this amature documentary on Youtube. If you can handle the monotone and rapid narration it is an interesting 10 min film.
This was made in 2007 so it does mention Howard Unruh as being alive.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Trailer Park - Halloween Edition

Here is the trailer for one of my very favorite movies ever! Young Frankenstein.
I could watch this all the time and it never gets old. Gene Wilder leads a great cast in some of the funniest stuff ever on film.
it has become a Halloween tradition to watch this and maybe get my girls to watch too. I may have to show them the original "Frankenstein" so they get the jokes.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Great hockey shot

I have a blog for hockey post but this is too cool not to share and its probably all over the web by now but I saw it yesterday for the first time. This is some kid.

Nascar Hall of Fame Inaugural Class

I cannot argue with this list of inductees for the first class for the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

I will post more about this when I get the time.

#

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

NFL already "Flexing" its muscle

Courtesy for Profootballtalk.com and NBC:
Vikings-Packers moves to 4:15 p.m. on November 1
Posted by Mike Florio on October 13, 2009 11:23 AM ET
The annual NFL flex schedule, with games potentially moving from Sunday afternoon to Sunday night on NBC (and vice-versa) and from early afternoon to late afternoon (and vice-versa) doesn't begin until November 22.But the NFL has pulled an early flip-flop of Sunday games, due ostensibly to the possibility of a World Series game being played in Philadelphia on November 1.So the Giants-Eagles game slides from 4:15 p.m. ET to 1:00 p.m. ET. In its place lands the Return of the Favre -- Vikings-Packers at Lambeau Field.Though Giants-Eagles is still a great game, it's not as if Eli Manning has talked about retiring for five years, retired, unretired, was spurned in his attempt to return to the Giants, was traded to a team out of the conference, played a year, retired again, was released by the team in the other conference, hinted at unretiring again to play for the Eagles, told the Eagles no after weeks of anticipation, changed his mind again after training camp closed, and then helped lead the Eagles to a 5-0 record.So i's a significant move for FOX, since it pulls the latter portion of the football game into prime time, giving FOX a great ratings boost for its evening lineup, which presumably includes the World Series. Since there will be no Sunday night game that week, and given that The Cleveland Show and Family Guy will be preempted by the World Series, I figure I'll just watch the damn baseball game. Until Mad Men starts.

Monday, October 12, 2009

SNF

Watching NBC's Sunday Night Football is an evening well spent. I love the highlights with Patrick/Olbermann and Tony Dungy's commentary. I think Costas is just a great host and of course Collinsworth and Al Michaels really work well together. This season has provided some good games already this season but.....
my favorite part this year is the opening theme with Faith Hill and that tremendous black dress/shirt and those thigh high boots!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Christopher Cross w/Michael McDonald

Here is great clip from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Its Christopher Cross singing his hit "Ride Like the Wind" with special guest Michael Mcdonald. I really like these two and they sound great together. I hope a new generation of fans start enjoying this because Michael McDonald is a legend and Christopher Cross isnt so bad himself. I have never heard Christopher play guitar before like he did on this show and it sounds great.
Enjoy this number, click here.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Billboard #1 Song of the Week


This week our #1 song is "Total Eclipse of the Heart" by Bonnie Tyler. This went to #1 October 1st 1983 and stayed there for 4 consecutive weeks.
This was a song written by super producer/writer Jim Steinman. He had the idea for this song as part of a theme for a musical he was writing called Small Circle of Friends but it never got off the drawing board. He wrote "Eclipse" and the song "Faster Than the Speed of Night" out of the remains of that musical.
Steinman put together an all star band for the recording of "Eclipse" that included Max Weinberg of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band and legendary Edgar Winter guitarist and vocalist Rick Derringer. He added Rory Dodd as the backing vocalist for "turn around....", Rory had sang backup on Meat Loaf's "Bat Out of Hell" album so he was a favorite of Steinman.
"Total Eclipse of the Heart" also went #1 in the U.K. and Bonnie Tyler was the first female to have an album , Faster Than the Speed of Night, debut at the top of the U.K. album charts.
After recording "Eclipse" and before Columbia records decided to release the song, Bonnie was asked to record "Holding Out For A Hero" for the soundtrack to Footloose. "Hero" was another Jim Steinman song it would crack the top 40 in 1985.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

In Case You Missed It

I havent had much to blog about in recent days. Don't know if I was bored or just tired but tonight I was able to find something interesting to post:

'Cops' TV Crew Injured In Police Car Crash

Friday, September 25, 2009

29 Years Ago Today

It was Sept 25th 1980 and John Bonham was on top of the hard rock world as the drumming icon of the legendary Led Zeppelin, he spent the day and night doing what he loved to do, play drums and drink. After rehersal with Led Zeppelin, preparing for their next world tour, the band went to Jimmy Page's house to finish drinking. After several hours of more drinking John passed out and was put to bed, the next morning on Sept 26th he was found dead still in bed by bandmate John Paul Jones.
An autopsy determined he had died from pulmonary edema, or waterlogging of the lungs by inhalation of vomit, he basically choked on his own vomit. He left a group without its backbone and they disbanded too distraught to continue without him. John is buried at St. Michael's Churchyard in Rushock Worcestershire, England.
His legend has grown over the years and only twice has Led Zepplin offically reformed, 1988 for Atlantic Record's 40th Anniversary and a 2007 one off reunion show with John's son Jason at the drums.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Just My Opinion

Well I havent posted in a few days but here is a thought I had this last Sunday night while watching the Emmy Awards and Sunday Night Football, I really don't like "30 Rock" and I really really don't like Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys. First let me talk about the so called best comedy on tv (according to the Emmy voters) "30 Rock". I have never liked this show and I have never found it remotely funny, I like Tina Fey but she does nothing for me on this show. Now I did read from one critic that it wins every year because its about TV and the writers of a comedy show. Now tv folks love the inside jokes and stories and they want it to win, but I think the rest of America (the flyover part) disagrees. I have watched and given it a chance and I tried again over the summer with repeats, but I just barely chuckle a couple of times. Maybe its Tracy Morgan who I never found funny on SNL, but I can't stand Alec Baldwin PERIOD! So enjoy Emmy voters because I think the best comedy on tv is "The Big Bang Theory".

Now on to the Cowboys. I have hated the cowboys for years and years going back to my young days. They beat the Broncos in the only SuperBowl where I rooted for the lowly Broncos. I just dont plain like them and they have been too successful and need to have these down years to make up for it.
Jerry Jones may be extrememly wealthy and can buy what he wants but it does my heart good to know he can't buy a team to win in the playoffs let alone get to the SuperBowl. Watching him pick his nose live on national tv was just great but I am sure he pulled out a 100 dollar bill to wipe his finger on when he was done.
Ok enough of me rambling. Thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Mary Travers - R.I.P. (#1 Song of the Week)

Today we say goodbye to a very distinct voice in Folk/rock music. Mary Travers, the Mary, in Peter,Paul and Mary died late last night of lukemia, she was 72.
Lets pay tribute with the last single released by Peter, Paul and Mary,"Leaving on a Jet Plane". This was also their only #1 hit single and it was written by the then fairly unknown John Denver.
The trio had been close to the top spot twice before with songs hitting #2 in 1963, "Puff the Magic Dragon" and "Blowin' in the Wind" but didnt hit the top until December 20th 1969. The group broke up in 1971 and each member recorded solo albums with varying amounts of success but nothing like they had in the 60s. They got back together in 1978 for a benefit concert and stayed together and recorded albums and toured the world every few years until Mary's illness prevented her from going.

Friday, September 11, 2009

The shaky legacy of Don Knotts -- latimes.com

The shaky legacy of Don Knotts -- latimes.com

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Larry Gelbart- R.I.P.

Thanks to Booksteve and his great blog I just saw that Larry Gelbart just passed away. A sad loss after a long struggle with cancer. He wrote one of my all time favorite show "M*A*S*H". His legacy is secure in the annals of TV history just for that.
Here is the latest.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Welcome to the Trailer Park


Today we kick it old school in the trailer park with one of my favorite movies ever, "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" with Don Knotts and a cast of very familiar faces. Back in the late 80s when the channel American Movie Classics was still that ,and commerical free , they played this and "Young Frankenstein" on Halloween. What a blast that was to watch. Now this is one of my favorites.

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Rest of The Story



Today would have been the 91st birthday of radio legend Paul Harvey. Sadly he passed from this world on Feb 28th of 2009, leaving a void on the radio for millions of listeners who tuned in at lunch time everyday to hear his news and views. I know I did and had been since I was about 10 when my dad introduced me to "The Rest of The Story". I didnt hear it on the radio first, but he found a "Paul Harvey's Rest of The Story" book at our library and we both read it cover to cover. I can remember going to my Uncle's house on a saturday morning with my nose buried in that first collection of "Stories". I couldn't wait to get to the other volumes and still to this day enjoy them.
I started even had my daughters listening to Paul Harvey in the afternoon's until WIBC moved to FM, no longer wanted the older skewing audience that Paul Harvey attracted.
To remedy that I found the tv version of "The Rest of the Story" on YouTube. Still entertaining and what a pleasure to hear that voice.

What's My Line? Day

Well I totally spaced that yesterday September 3rd was "What's My Line?" Day. It was on that day in 1967 that CBS had its last airing of the sunday night staple hosted by the classy John Daly.
It ran a total of 17 years and made Bennett Cerf, Arlene Francis, Dorothy Kilgallen household names and brought Fred Allen back into our homes on a weekly basis. Steve Allen moved from the panel, where he popularized "is it bigger than a bread box", to late night legend. All of it was moderated by the classy, cool and strict John Daly. Mr. Daly ran a tight ship and made sure it stayed a bastion of high class viewing.
I am still in the process of putting all the episodes I have on my dvr onto dvd, but I do have this one on dvd. Its from the final airing, and the mystery guest was none other than John Daly himself.


It still amazes me that the original "What's My Line?" has been off the air for 42 years and is still more entertaining than most of what passes for tv today.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Collyer Brothers


I saw today that E.L. Doctrow has a new book out called "Homer and Langley" and its reviewed here by the NY Times.

I wasnt sure what it was about until I started reading the review and I saw its about the 2 infamous packrat brothers from New York City. I first found out about them while randomly picking out a year in wikipedia and checking out all the articles for that particular year. In this case I was looking at 1947 and saw a story about the Collyer Brothers. Having no idea who they were I of course had to read it and see what was so important about them in 1947. Seems as though they had both died in 1947 and their once posh NY brownstone house was basically a death trap and filled from top to bottom with everything imaginable. The brothers had developed a type of OCD that became compulsive hoarding disease and was named after them and led to their deaths. Both brothers were found dead in the home after police and fire departments raided the house.

Another good article on the brothers I found here.

The book by E.L. Doctrow is a mix of fact and fiction in the way he did previous books like the bestseller Ragtime, World's Fair and Billy Bathgate.

Its a strange, tragic story but very fascinating.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Edward Kennedy 1932-2009

Not a fan of Sen. Kennedy's politics or the man himself but I always watch funerals of high profile individuals with great interest . I have taped the funerals of Presidents Reagan and Ford and Sen. Kennedy's was even more fascinating for the Catholic Mass that is rarely seen on television. The networks seemed to give us plenty of closeups of the family including the last surviving sibling Jean, and closeups of President Obama, Carter and Clinton.
As always I found the work of the Honor Guard, carrying the casket to the hearse, fascinating. The precision and look is incredible and I know from past funerals that to be a member of the guard for a funeral like this is a very high honor and they practice hours everyday for the job.
Later today will be the funeral procession through Washington DC then onto Arlington National Cemetery for the burial. It will be emotional to see the last of the fabled Kennedy men laid to rest next to his brothers, President John Kennedy and Sen. Robert Kennedy.
The New York Times obituary for Senator Kennedy.
More on the Kennedy funeral.

Here is a tremendous article on the history of State Funerals in the United States.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tarzan Day


Happy Tarzan Day!!
On this day in 1912 Edgar Rice Burroughs published "Tarzan of the Apes".
He gave the world one of its most enduring icons of literature, movies and television.
I own all of the books in paperbacks and I discovered them around the same time I saw my first Tarzan movie on Ch 4 out of Indianapolis about 1974. It starred Johnny Weismuller and I became instantly hooked and couldnt wait for the next movie to show up on tv. My dad gave the background on Johnny and his incredible Olympic career before he went to the movies and he remains my favorite of all the Tarzans.
My dad was a fan of Ron Ely who played Tarzan on TV in 1966.

Here is a "condensed classic" showing all the movie Tarzans from the beginning with Elmo Lincoln all the way to Casper Van Dien from the 1998 "Tarzan and the Lost City".



My favorite little tidbit about all the different movie Tarzan's regards former NFL player Mike Henry who played the title role in 3 movies from 1966 to 1968. He went on to play Major Penobscot, "Hot Lips" Houlihan's husband, in the "Olympics" episode where the MASHers held their own Olympics competition to go along with the 1952 Helsinki Olympics.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Welcome to the Machine - Joe Posnanski - SI.com

I am not a big fan of the Cincinnati Reds but this will be a welcome addition to the library next month.

Welcome to the Machine - Joe Posnanski - SI.com

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Netflix

Here is a movie I am getting from Netflix this week, Sunshine Cleaning.
It has great buzz on the net and it does looks funny and just enough emotion for my wife to watch too. Of course it doesnt hurt to have the great comedic actor Alan Arkin as the dad.

What just happened here?

I wish I spoke japanese to have some idea of what this was all about. It doesnt take a translator to tell he was OUT!

Monday, August 24, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

Today we are hearing and looking at the first number one single for Huey Lewis and The News, "The Power of Love". It hit the top on this day in 1985 and was from the soundtrack for Back To the Future.
"Power of Love" pushed Tears for Fears second #1 hit "Shout" down to #2 after 3 weeks at the top.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Today in Sports History

Hello sports fans, how about we take a trip back 20 years ago and watch the The Ryan Express, Nolan Ryan get his 5000th strikeout. Of course it was against my Oakland A's and fellow Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson was the 5000th victim.
From August 22nd 1989


a sidenote: arent the skin tight uniforms from the 70s,80s and early 90s just lovely compared to today?

District 9

I took my lovely daughter Mikayla to see "District 9" last night. It was a decent movie but not GREAT. I would say the acting was good and the effects were very good and the story itself was Oscar caliber but it was just lacking something that said "This is a GREAT MOVIE". I wish I could tell you what it was but I would say its a not a waste of time.
I enjoyed it and it had a couple of laughs and to my surprise, plenty of bodies exploding. Also, if you have a problem with the "F-Bomb" DO NOT go see this. The writers found this a fun word to use and in this instance I can say it wasnt out of place. I knew from what I read before going that this would be an allegory for apartheid and the treatment of non whites in South Africa for over 100 years. I don't know how people will pick up on that but if they do it will make the movie even more disturbing.
I also found the lead character, Wikus van der Merwe, someone who turned very likable after starting out as milktoast. He was played by somewhat unknown in the USA, Sharlto Copley, who may not get an Oscar but was very very good in this role.

*SPOILER ALERT*

The ending leaves it WIDE open for sequel(s), espescially in 3 years.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Something Something Something Darkside

Thanks to that great site TVonDVD.com we get a sneak preview of the cover of the dvd for the Family Guy parody of "The Empire Strikes Back".
Take a look here.

Freak of Nature

If you havent heard or seen yet, Usain Bolt smashed his own world record today in the 200 meters at the Track and Field World Championships in Berlin.
Watch this superhuman effort here.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Elvis

I am a huge Elvis fan and today is a sad day. On this day in 1977 Elvis passed away at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis TN. I was 10 years old and I was on vacation in Kentucky with my folks visting my great grandmother and all my dad's family. I remember my dad telling me about it while we were out with my great uncle on his tractor checking his tobacco fields. They had just heard it on the radio and with no 24 cable news coverage it wasnt all over the tv like Michael Jackson. I wasnt too upset at the time because I wasnt really old enough to understand what Elvis meant to the music world and to people everywhere. My joy of Elvis really took hold as a teenager when I discovered the album "Elvis- The Top Ten Hits". I wore that cassette tape out and I still have it but they are all on my Ipod now.
here is my favorite Elvis song.

Beef & Boards Theater

I took my wife, the lovely Michelle, and my daughters Jessie and Mikayla to see "The Sanders Family Christmas" lastnight at Beef & Boards Theater in Indianapolis. I know its August but they already have shows scheduled for December and some cast members already have commitments for the holidays.
Anyway, it was a great show and is part of a trilogy of "Sanders Family" musicals. There is "Smoke on the Mountain", "Smoke on the Mountain:Homecoming" and "Sanders Family Christmas" . We have seen the last 2 at B&B and with the same cast and they are tremendous. The lead of the "Rev. Mervin Oglethorpe" played by John Vessels was and is the highlight of the play. He will make you laugh and then make you say AMEN! in the next breath. What a delight he is to watch, one of the funniest on stage I have ever seen and can adlib with the best of them.
I can't recommend this musical enough.
Here is a brief clip of one number from the show done July 2009.

Pro wrestler Kurt Angle charged with HGH possession - More Sports - SI.com

Well this wont be good for Kurt Angle or TNA wrestling or the sport in general because this is the last thing they needed was confirmation of wrestlers using illegal substances.

Pro wrestler Kurt Angle charged with HGH possession - More Sports - SI.com

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

This week in 1968 was the first week at #1 for the group formerly known as the Young Rascals and their third #1 song "People Got To Be Free".
They had persuaded their record label to let them drop the "Young" and just be "The Rascals" for the new album and single so they wouldnt sound like a group of little kids on the playground.
Previously hitting #1 with "Good Lovin" 1966 and "Groovin" 1967, this would be the last time the Rascals would top the Billboard Hot 100 and it was the most emotional song lead singer Felix Cavaliere had written. He was deeply affected, as was much of America, by the assasinations of Dr. King and Bobby Kennedy just 6 weeks earlier. "People Got To Be Free" entered the charts July 20th and 4 months later sat alone at the top for 4 weeks.

R.I.P Les Paul

The passing of Les Paul should have been met with tributes from every musican, studio producer, mixer, sound man and guitar player. Les Paul was THE innovator and inventor that gave the music world the multitrack recording system. This would allow anyone to record vocals and instruments at different times and put them together and dub them in as many times as you would want for harmony and a big full sound. Les Paul gave us the the foundation for the wall of sound of the 60s. He was known also for mentoring and molding a young Steve Miller into the guitar hero he became in the 1970s. Sadly there will be no Michael Jacksonesque tributes or day after day of Larry King interviewing anyone who was vague associated with him. Just the fans and muscians all over the world honoring him wherever they can find an outlet.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

25 Things We Miss in Baseball

For the baseball fan to remember what we miss about baseball.
I agree with all of these (see link below) and day games is one I truly miss. Some of my best childhood memories are coming home and getting the last couple of innings of a playoff game and my mom filling me in because she had the tv on in the background while fixing supper. The famous one game playoff between the Yankees and Red Sox (when Bucky Dent hit THE home run) I saw that at my grandparents house because we went there after my dad picked me up from football practice. I can vividly remember walking in and just catching sight of Bucky hitting the ball and just jumping up and cheering.
The NBC Saturday Game of the Week is also something I truly miss. Today, seeing every game is great but the days of waiting for Saturday to maybe see my Oakland A's or Willie Stargell or the first chance to see Nolan Ryan pitch, were the best. Oh to see the Ryan Express! One saturday I was so excited because the scheduled game of the week was the California Angels visiting the Baltimore Orioles and Nolan Ryan was scheduled to start for the Angels.
I had read about him in the paper and watched highlights on THIS WEEK IN BASEBALL (with Mel Allen) but I had never seen him pitch live on tv. Well my dad and I were at Dale's barbershop in Kirklin for haircuts and the game came on, but to my stunned disbelief there was Joe Garigiola standing in a empty stadium. Rain coming down, and he was telling me that the scheduled Orioles vs Angels game was postponed and the game of the week was Cincinnati vs I dont even remember because I was so bummed out. Here was my chance to see the 100mph fastball of Nolan Ryan and then the rug was pulled out!
Now we have day baseball on Saturday but it starts a 4 in the afternoon, whoopee. The last time I can remember excitement over a day game on Saturday was in 1998. The Fox Saturday Game of the Week was always St Louis vs whoever with Mark McGwire Roger Maris and 61 homeruns.

Nestle - Remember When

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Sunday, August 9, 2009

WML? Baseball Hall of Fame Edition

On this day in 1971 Leroy "Satchel" Paige was inducted in the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. Here is his appearence on "What's My Line?" shortly after his induction.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The 9 Greatest Supreme Court Justices


Well since they have confirmed a new justice for the US Supreme Court, lets read this article I found in my latest issue of American History.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

My New Gadget


I found this turntable at Costco and now I can transfer all my old 45s and albums to my Itunes and then onto my Ipod or cd. The software alone used to be a couple hundred dollars or more but this included everything for 99.00. I could not pass it up with all the albums I have and its takes about 5 minutes to hook up, install the software and start recording.
Its made by Ion and here is their website.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Happy Archie Bunker Day

Today is the anniversary of the birth of Carroll O'Connor. It was 85 years ago today that he was born in the Bronx New York.
Lets celebrate by watching part of the funniest episode of "All in the Family", Sammy's Visit.


and here is a clip from "Mike's Friend".

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ninja Warrior

I found this show on the G4 network last summer when they ran a marathon of episodes, its called Ninja Warrior. People come from all walks of life to try and conquer the course. Very few make it past stage 1 and fewer past stage 2 and only 3 won gotten past all 3 stages to win. Its like a serious version of Wipeout (another great show). Here are so great wipeouts from Ninja Warrior.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

This week lets listen to the King of RockNRoll, Elvis Presley from 1958 and his 10th #1 single "Hard Headed Woman". This was from the soundtrack to his movie "King Creole" All of the songs for the soundtrack were recorded in January of that year and when this one hit number one the week of July 21st, Elvis was in Ft Hood, Texas for Army basic training. "Hard Headed Woman" spent 2 weeks at #1. This would be the last we would see Elvis at the top for a year when a song he recorded while on furlough,"Big Hunk O'Love", would top the charts.
I couldnt find a performance of this song but here is montage of photos with the song


and here is the trailer for "King Creole" probably one his best movies and Elvis' favorite of all his films.