Rashida Jones channels TLC, SWV, and MJB to take us all back to the 90s Because it's Friday and I want us to have nice things too.
The Highwayman (1987-88) was a 60-minute sci-fi/action tv series from Glen A. Larson starring Sam J. Jones (1980's Flash Gordon). Jones played a federal marshall with a high-tech 18-wheeler "supertruck" that had advanced weaponry, the ability to turn invisible and a cab that turned into a helicopter. He patrolled America's highways and fought crime in the futuristic world of... 1992. A pilot movie, Terror on the Blacktop (starring Claudia Christian, G. Gordon Liddy, Jimmy Smits and Rowdy Roddy Piper) kicked off the series, which lasted nine episodes before driving off into the cancellation sunset. [more inside]
808 State is an English electronic group that formed in 1987, and take their name from the Roland TR-808 drum machine and their shared state of mind. As a trio, they produced their iconic track, Pacific, which fused influences of house music, jazz fusion and exotica. The group changed membership a bit over the years, but one way or another 808 State have released six albums* to date, and a number of singles, EPs, and promotional discs. 808state.com has a ton of information, including an extensive visual discography, a list of other productions and remixes, and over a gig of demos, live tracks, and other non-album audio to download. Given the group's 27 year-long history, there's a lot more to see and hear. [more inside]
During the late 1970's and 1980's, Glen A. Larson's lighthearted television dramas were incredibly popular: Knight Rider. B.J. and the Bear. The original Battlestar Galactica. Quincy M.E. The Fall Guy. Magnum, P.I. Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Larson had hit after hit and it seemed he could do no wrong. But he did produce three flops in the 80's, (and another in the 90's that managed to last two seasons): Automan, The Highwayman, Manimal and Night Man. [more inside]
In 1981, the South Bank Show followed Elvis Costello to Nashville for the making of his latest album. The result: "The Making Of Almost Blue" [more inside]
Later this year will mark the 45th anniversary of Bill Cosby's first self-titled sitcom, The Bill Cosby Show. Ten years ago, the original jam sessions were released, which are notable for the "various collection of notables who steal the show with contributions at various points." Pianist Les McCann, sax man Ernie Watts, and guitarist Arthur Adams get things going on "Groovy Gravy," Tom Scott shows some legit chops on "Toe Jam," while Jimmy Smith offers sampling of his Hammond B3 on the interlude "Jimmy Cookin' On Top." If seeing Quincy Jones and Bill Cosby get top billing confused you, the album credits reference their roles, which are not front-and-center, except for some vocal improv by Cosby on "Hikky-Burr." You can hear more tracks on Grooveshark, and if you're into more of that modern dance remixery, you might (also) enjoy The New Mixes, Vol. 1, which can also be sampled on Grooveshark.
The Music Scene is a television series aired by ABC as part of its Fall 1969 lineup. The show featured performances from the top musicians of the week as compiled by “Billboard Magazine” and had a number of hosts, including David Steinberg and Lily Tomlin. Many huge names of the era, including The Beatles, James Brown, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Three Dog Night, Tom Jones on the initial program and Janis Joplin, Bobby Sherman, The Miracles, Sly & the Family Stone, Isaac Hayes, Stevie Wonder, Bo Diddley and Mama Cass Elliot, (who co-hosted as well as performed) among many others, appearing on subsequent shows. [more inside]
Cub Scout Pack 442 of Cloverly, Maryland, has been forced by the BSA National Capital Area Council to remove a non-discrimination statement from its website that included sexual orientation. [more inside]
Working up material for the project, Cleese and Chapman took another pass at the car-salesman idea. It had possibilities, Cleese felt, that they had failed to exploit. What if they shifted the action to a pet shop? What if the malfunctioning car became a dead animal? A dog, say. Or a parrot.
Fuck You: A Magazine of the Arts was a literary magazine founded in 1962 by Ed Sanders, a poet later co-founded The Fugs. Its credo was "I'll print anything", and Sanders produced thirteen issues on a mimeograph machine from 1962 to 1965. Issues included works by Tuli Kupferberg, Charles Olson, Peter Orlovsky, Philip Whalen, Allen Ginsberg, Frank O'Hara, Julian Beck, Herbert Huncke, Norman Mailer, Gary Snyder, Diane DiPrima, William S. Burroughs, Leroi Jones, Gregory Corso, Robert Creeley, Michael McClure, Ted Berrigan, Joe Brainard, and Andy Warhol. - wikipedia. With a helpful index. [more inside]
"...for the next tour, I’ll either be calm and collected or nervous with a dangerously out-of-control boner."
O'Brien is tryin' to learn to talk Hawai'ian / To his Honolulu Lou / He's sighin' and cryin' / And all the time he's tryin' / Just to say "I love you true" / He's sighin' and lyin' in Irish and Hawai'ian / To his wife and Lulu, too . . Meanwhile, another gent from the Emerald Isle was indulging in blissful fantasy: Sure the shamrocks were growing on Broadway / Every girl was an Irish colleen / And the town of New York was the county of Cork / All the buildings were painted green / 'twas only an Irishman's dream. Happy St. Patrick's Day! [more inside]
"She sounded like Saturday night on a Sunday morning. Patsy on Jesus. Elvis without the pelvis." is how the liner notes for The Glory Road, the Numero Group's 2005 reissue of Fern Jones' classic album Singing a Happy Song start. When her album was recorded, the session musicians had just played Elvis's 1958 sessions. Later, Jimmie Davis and Johnny Cash both covered one of Fern's songs (I Was There When It Happened(YT)). Much of the information on the web, including this brief piece from The Oxford American about Fern, these images from her revival days, and other history comes from the website maintained by her daughter. Fern's daughter is interviewed about her mother here (mp3), with musical clips included. NPR reviewed the reissue in 2005 when it came out. [more inside]
Welsh pop idol and blue-eyed soulman Tom Jones as lead vocalist for 60s hippie icons Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young? Seems spectacularly unlikely at first glance, but...it happened. [more inside]
I always loved the Quincy Jones-composed theme song to 70s sitcom Sanford and Son, but up until a few minutes ago I'd never heard the entire piece: three minutes and six seconds of delightfully infectious, playfully bright instrumental pop-funk. It's called The Streetbeater, and its creative and ever-changing arrangement includes snippets of the rarely heard bass harmonica. The piece is just a hella lotta fun. [more inside]
Talk Radio's Alex Jones, the Most Paranoid Man in America. Charlie Sheen's interviewer opens up.
Snow is a short film directed by Geoffrey Jones (1931-2005) and shot by Wolfgang Suschitzky [imdb], simultaneously spectacle and social-commentary it can be viewed online (YouTube). Snow was made under the aegis of British Transport Films (wiki) and nominated for an Oscar in 1965; unable to afford to licence his choice of soundtrack—“Teen Beat” by Sandy Nelson—Jones enlisted Johnny Hawksworth to rerecord “Teen Beat” with an altered tempo and effects by Daphne Oram [wiki, BBC]. The result is a masterpiece of sound and image.
A DNA test has proven that a man was executed for murder by the State of Texas on the basis of false forensic evidence. [more inside]
If you were to ask me "What is the most artistic drum solo you've ever heard?", I'd say "You mean the one with the most exquisite sense of dynamics? One that doesn't bludgeon you over the head, but instead pulls you in with its subtlety and restraint? Where masterful technique is purely at the service of musicality? That best conveys a musical vision and a deep understanding of the interrelationships of percussive timbre and tone that make up that remarkable instrument we call the drum set?" You'd say "Yeah." I'd say this. [more inside]
Composer Bob Jones shows a Harmonic Visualization of his latest piece, “Well Jessica, It’s Just as Well."
Harmonic Visualization Bob Jones is finally making more musics. Here are some of his latest work. Make sure to look at the Harmonic Visualization before (and durning) listening to the piece. It really allows for a richer experience.
Asra Q. Nomani writes in The Wall Street Journal on Sherry Jones's new historical novel, "The Jewel of Medina" about Aisha, the young wife of the prophet Muhammad. Random House has pulled the book for fears of a political and extremist nature. In a statement, Random House said: "We stand firmly by our responsibility to support our authors and the free discussion of ideas, even those that may be construed as offensive by some. However, a publisher must weigh that responsibility against others that it also bears, and in this instance we decided, after much deliberation, to postpone publication for the safety of the author, employees of Random House Inc, booksellers and anyone else who would be involved in distribution and sale of the book." Over at the Guardian, you can read more about the controversy.
Grace Jones is coming to get you. [SLYT] From Jones' new album Hurricane, due this October. Sweet dreams, MeFites!
One fine old day in old LA, in the year of nineteen and sixty, one Frederick Usher met Eddie "One String" Jones, heard him lay down some deep blues on his diddley bow, and was so taken with Jones' monochord masterpieces that he ran home, grabbed his tape recorder and recorded Jones in the alley. One other recording session ensued soon thereafter, which was released as an LP in 1964. By that time, however, the mysterious Eddie Jones (if that was even his real name) was long gone, and was never heard from again. [NOTE: see hoverovers for link descriptions] [more inside]
Here's a wonderful, brief clip of the great tenor saxophonist Ben Webster (wiki) and the great drummer Papa Jo Jones (wiki). Both men were marvels: here's a little illustration from 1957 of what made Jones so great, and here's Ben (accompanied by pianist Teddy Wilson[wiki]) late in life, milking the ballad "Old Folks" for so much feeling that one literally sees tears running down his face. [more inside]
40's-50's-Fun-Filter: glglglgl-prt-HIC! What soothing melodies do I hear? honk!honk!honk! Is it geese mating? Ibidi? Ibiduh. Ibidih? eauugh! No, it's Spike Jones and his City Slickers! [more inside]
If you've seen clips of Bo Diddley performances from the early 60s, you'll surely have noticed the presence of one or more female guitarists on stage, churning out that chunky six-string rhythm alongside the esteemed Mr. Diddley. Might've been Lady Bo that you've seen or heard, or it might've been The Duchess. Either way, hats off to some fine guitarists: women who filled a job category generally reserved (especially at that time) for the menfolk. [more inside]
Sex and the College Girl, by Norah Johnson A view from an educated woman in the 1950s: "Two criticisms rise above the rest: people in college are promiscuous, for one thing, and, for another, they are getting married and having children too early. These are interesting observations because they contradict each other."
'Because something is happening here - But you don't know what it is - Do you, Mister Jones?' '...He's dead, Jim'
You walk into the roomJeffrey Owen Jones, a film professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology and, inadvertently, the featured metaphor in Bob Dylan's Ballad of a Thin Man, has died.
With your pencil in your hand
You see somebody naked
And you say, "Who is that man?"
You try so hard
But you don't understand...
Beatrice Coron is a paper cutting artist, who has a wonderful collection of paper cutting links, including images of her own work, the extraordinary cut paper art of Hina Aoyama, Kako Ueda, Masaaki Tatsumi, Virginia Rose Kane, Drew King, Rick Jones, Andrea Dezsö, Bette Burgoyne, Justine Smith and papercutting art from around the world. [more inside]
Ted Haggard returns --with a cash for heaven offer to support him while he helps "broken people". Unfortunately, the procedure outlined is illegal, and the charity (Families With a Mission) is unregistered and run by a convicted sex offender. Meanwhile, Mike Jones, Haggard's favorite whore, pops up at a dirty bar trivia night (questions about Haggard and him, maybe nsfw, textwise)
It's Irrational Consumerism day at last, so fold a rose, bake some tasty desserts, dress your self or your SO in something flimsy (previous two links may be NSFW), buy some love potion (via), and throw on some tasty mashup (via).