Category: Music

RIP: Joan Weldon

Joan Weldon’s family announced yesterday that the singer and actress, died on February 11, 2021, at the age of 90.  No cause of death was given.

Weldon was best known for her co-starring role in the sci-fi, horror classic Them!  Weldon’s career began her singing in the San Francisco Grand Opera Company. She later sang in the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera and on Broadway,  Weldon’s acting career began in 1953.  She appeared in eleven films and made eleven guest appearances on television shows including roles on Cheyenne, Perry Mason, Have Gun Will Travel and Maverick.

After her acting career, Weldon returned to her first love, singing. She appeared in many road show productions including The Music Man and Oklahoma.  Joan Weldon retired in 1980.

I had no idea that Joan Weldon was a singer.  I knew her best from her role in Them!  I thought she was excellent.  I appreciate that she came off as smart (if not smarter) than the men in the movie and she wasn’t there to be saved.  Weldon’s career in movies and television was relatively short, but what an impact she made.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family, friends and fans.

The Top 10 All-Time Most Memorable Movie Songs (and One That Should Have Made the List)!

Jonathan Blaauw at Listverse recently posted his choices for the Top 10 Memorable Movie Songs.  His list is a good one.  I was happy to see that Eye of the Tiger by Survivor for Rocky III came in at the number one spot.  Stayin’ Alive by the Bee Gees for Saturday Night Fever came in at #9.  I would have put Stayin’ Alive in the top spot, but who am I to quibble.  The songs in Blaauw’s Top Ten were all excellent choices.

If I was making the list however, I would have found a place for Queen’s Who Wants to Live Forever from the movie  Highlander.  I think that Who Wants to Live Forever is not only a cool song, but perfectly fit the film.  There are many other songs that I also might have picked for my top ten but watch the video below and tell me if you don’t agree, Who Wants to Live Forever is one of the great movie songs of all time.

The Bee Gees’ Record-Breaking Trivia!

Me-TV posted There’s no jive talkin’ in these 12 fascinating facts about the Bee Gees. As an unabashed Bee Gees fan, I’m happy to see it.

Unfortunately I don’t think enough people give the Bee Gees enough credit for their impact on music and culture.  Although they were making and releasing great music in the 60s, they peaked in the 70s and then continued to write and produce hits well after.  I was (and am) a Bee Gees fan.  I still love their music — it brings back great memories and makes me smile.  Before you click over, here are my three favorite facts from the Me-TV post…

  • They released eight songs in 1978 that reached number one.  (Their #1 hits were “How Deep Is Your Love,” “Stayin’ Alive,” “Night Fever” and “Too Much Heaven.” They wrote and produced the hits “(Love Is) Thicker Than Water” and “Shadow Dancing,” for their little brother, Andy Gibb.  That year they also are credited for Frankie Valli’s “Grease” and Yvonne Elliman’s “If I Can’t Have You.” – Craig)
  • In 1978, they accounted for 2% of the entire record industry.  (Please see above! If the Bee Gees had done nothing else before or after 1978, their success in that one year would have put them in the record books.- Craig)
  • After the public lost interest in the Bee Gees, the Gibbs quietly wrote and produced massive hits for other artists.  (Hits that they wrote for other artists include: Barbara Streisand’s “Woman in Love“, “Islands in the Stream” for Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers, “Emotion” for Samantha Sang, “Chain Reaction” for Diana Ross, ‘If I Can’t Have You‘ for Yvonne Elliman and many more. – Craig)

“The Beatles: Get Back” Sneak Peak from Peter Jackson!

Beatles fans will love this sneak peak…

PETER JACKSON REVEALS SNEAK PEEK OF HIS UPCOMING MUSIC DOCUMENTARY
“THE BEATLES: GET BACK” ONLINE AND STREAMING ON DISNEY+

Feature-Length Film Opens in Theatres August 27, 2021

Acclaimed filmmaker Peter Jackson has released an exclusive sneak peek of his upcoming documentary “The Beatles: Get Back” for fans everywhere to enjoy. The 5-minute special look is available to fans worldwide on TheBeatles.com and streaming on Disney+.

Jackson said, “We wanted to give the fans of The Beatles all over the world a holiday treat, so we put together this five-minute sneak peek at our upcoming theatrical film ‘The Beatles: Get Back.’ We hope it will bring a smile to everyone’s faces and some much-needed joy at this difficult time.”

Acclaimed filmmaker Peter Jackson’s “The Beatles: Get Back” is a unique cinematic experience that takes audiences back in time to The Beatles’ intimate recording sessions during a pivotal moment in music history…

“Zappa” – The Poster and Trailer are Here!

Here we have the poster and trailer for Zappa.  I don’t really care for the poster, but the trailer has me interested in seeing the movie.  I was never a big fan of Frank Zappa’s music, but then again, I never was exposed to much of it.  I am interested in learning more, so this is one I’ll want to watch.

With unfettered access to the Zappa family trust and all archival footage, ZAPPA explores the private life behind the mammoth musical career that never shied away from the political turbulence of its time. Alex Winter’s assembly features appearances by Frank’s widow Gail Zappa and several of Frank’s musical collaborators including Mike Keneally, Ian Underwood, Steve Vai, Pamela Des Barres, Bunk Gardner, David Harrington, Scott Thunes, Ruth Underwood, Ray White and others.

Available everywhere Thanksgiving Week
Directed by Alex Winter
http://www.thezappamovie.com/

“Billie” – The Trailer is Here!

I want to see the documentary, Billie!

Billie Holiday had one of the greatest voices of all time and changed the face of American music. She was a woman of breath-taking talent and global popularity while also stirring controversy. She started a notable rebellion singing “Strange Fruit” which exposed the realities of Black life in America and earned her powerful enemies. Raw, emotional and brutally honest, Billie is filled with never-before-heard interviews from musical greats like Charles Mingus, Tony Bennett, Sylvia Syms and Count Basie.
Director: James Erskine

“Harry Chapin: When in Doubt, Do Something” – The Poster and Trailer!

And now the poster and trailer to Harry Chapin: When in Doubt, Do Something.

HARRY CHAPIN: WHEN IN DOUBT, DO SOMETHING is the inspiring story of Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter/activist Harry Chapin (“Cat’s in the Cradle”). Chapin sold over 16 million albums and was one of his generation’s most beloved artist-activists who spent his fame and fortune trying to end world hunger before his tragic passing.

The film features Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Peter Seeger, Sir Bob Geldof, Kenny Rogers, Graham Nash, Pat Benatar, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Robert Lamm, Richie Havens, and Harry Belafonte intimately reflecting on Chapin’s larger-than-life impact on music and the world including his founding, along with Bill Ayres, of WhyHunger – the nonprofit organization leading the movement to end hunger and advance the human right to nutritious food in the U.S. and around the world.

——
Director: Rick Korn
Cast: Harry Chapin, Harry Belafonte, Pat Benatar, Sir Bob Geldof, Billy Joel, Robert Lamm, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Kenny Rogers, Pete Seeger, Bruce Springsteen

RIP: Helen Reddy

Helen Reddy, the multi-talented singer and actress died yesterday at age 78.  Reddy became widely known on the music scene in 1971 when she recorded, I Believe in Music by Mac Davis and I Don’t Know How to Love Him from Jesus Christ Superstar.  The A-side wasn’t showing much impact but when some DJs started playing the B-side (I Don’t Know How to Love Him) people took notice.

Reddy followed up with the song she co-wrote and is most known for, I am Woman.  The song went to number one and earned Reddy a Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.  Reddy went on to record hits such as Delta Dawn, Leave Me Alone (Ruby Red Dress), You and Me Against the World and Angie Baby.

Reddy made many appearances on variety shows in the 1070s and even hosted her own.  Reddy also acted in movie and tv roles and probably best know for her roles in Pete’s Dragon and Airport 1975.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Helen Reddy’s family, friends and fans.

RIP: Mac Davis

Mac Davis, the multi-talented singer-songwriter and actor died yesterday at age 78 from complications of a recent heart surgery.

Davis was an award-winning song writer who first came to notice for writing the popular Elvis Presley songs, In the Ghetto, Don’t Cry Daddy and A Little Less Conversation.  Other singers such as Kenny Rogers, B.J. Thomas, Perry Como, and Helen Reddy (to name just a few) were happy to cover Mac Davis songs.

Davis wrote hits for himself such as Baby Don’t Get Hooked on Me, Stop and Smell the Roses and One Hell of a Woman.  In 1974, Davis was named the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year.  This success led to The Mac Davis Show which ran from 1974-1976.  Davis caught the acting bug and began his career in North Dallas Forty.  Davis would spend the rest of his life singing and acting alternating between movies and television and live concerts.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Mac Davis’ family, friends and fans.

RIP: Ronald “Khalis” Bell (Kool & the Gang Co-Founder)

Ronald “Khalis” Bell, co-founder of Kool & the Gang, died yesterday of an undisclosed cause at the age of 68.  Bell was a singer, songwriter, producer and saxophonist.  Just a few of the songs Bell composed, produced and performed include Celebration, Get Down On It, Jungle Boogie, Cherish, Hollywood Swinging and Summer Madness.  Celebration is in the Grammy Song Hall of Fame and Bell is in the Songwriters Hall of Fame.

Kool & the Gang, which Bell co-founded with his brother, Robert in 1969 released their first album in 1970. Khalis and his brother remained in the band which underwent many group member changes over the years but still continued to produce music their fans loved.

Ronald “Khalis” Bell, along with Kool & the Gang, created music that brings back great memories.  I was in Junior High when Jungle Boogie and Hollywood Swinging broke big.  Both songs still bring a smile to my face.  When I was in high school and college they continued to be a part of fun times with songs like Ladies Night, Celebration and more.  Bell’s song Summer Madness was even featured in Rocky.   Their hits continued in the 80s with songs like Too Hot, Joanna, Cherish (a great love song), and Fresh.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ronald “Khalis” Bell’s family, friends and fans.

Andy Griffith Trivia!

When I think of Andy Griffith, I think of his classic The Andy Griffith Show.  Mr. Griffith played Andy Taylor, the Sheriff of Mayberry, a small town in the south.  Griffith was joined by a perfect cast in a top-rated show that spawned two spin-off series (Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. and Mayberry, R.F.D.) and ran for eight years (finishing at #1 in it’s last season).

But Andy Griffith was much more than Andy Taylor.  Andy Griffith made comedy records, sang and played on county and gospel albums, appeared on Broadway, starred in feature films, television movies as well as other tv series.

MeTV has 12 surprising things we learned about Andy Griffith.  A lot of these facts were new to me.  Here are my thoughts on three of them…

His favorite snack was peanut butter and mayonnaise on crackers.
(I grew up eating peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches.  Not many folks I know have ever tried one and the thought usually grosses them out.  I’ll bet Andy would have given a peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwich a go.  I’d also wager that the crackers he ate were Ritz and after taking a bite he’d say, “Goooood cracker.  Good cracker.”  Most of you probably aren’t old enough to remember his commercials for Ritz crackers where he’d say that after taking a bite of one. – Craig)

He regretted ending The Andy Griffith Show after eight seasons.
(I’ll bet he did.  The Andy Griffith Show was always in the top ten for each season it was on.  It was also one of only three tv series to quit while in the number one spot.  – Craig)

He made $25,000 a week in clubs while The Andy Griffith Show was on break.
(That translates to about $185,000 a week in 2020.  Wow.  Andy was making bank! – Craig)

Click over and check out 12 surprising things we learned about Andy Griffith.