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 --

The shaky legacy of Don Knotts --

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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.