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]
"I ought to warn you, if you haven't read any of my stories, that you may be a little disturbed by some of the things that happen."
Though Roald Dahl is better known in this day as the author of stories for children, he had a parallel career as the author of short stories with more adult, macabre sensibilities. Some of those stories became part of a short-run series to fill the slot of to not one but two ill-fated Jackie Gleason shows. But instead of another game show or talk show, CBS wanted something to pair with the Twilight Zone. That show was Way Out, though it didn't rate well and only ran for 14 episodes (and 5 episodes are on Archive.org). 18 years later, Dahl returned to TV with his sinister stories, but this time it was in the UK, where Tales of the Unexpected lasted 9 seasons, 112 episodes in total. You can view 23 or so episodes online, split into parts (YT Playlist). [more inside]
Not Only... But Also, the 1960s Peter Cook and Dudley Moore sketch show, was one of the many programmes where many of the episodes were lost due to the BBC's strangely appalling archival policies. Last month, however, audio recordings of 11 of the lost episodes were found at the home of NOBA fan Graham Webb, who had recorded them off the TV at the time of transmission, using a reel-to-reel tape recorder. [more inside]
Why Bother? was a Talkback production for BBC Radio 3, consisting of five radio interviews between Chris Morris and Peter Cook's character Sir Arthur Streeb-Greebling, recorded in late 1993 and originally broadcast in 1994. The majority of the dialogue was ad libbed between the pair, which Morris then edited. Eels, Love & Guns | Bears | Christ | Prisoner Of War | Drugs etc 1 | Drugs etc 2
Bob Claster was a DJ on KCRW in Los Angeles. In the 80's he had a comedy show called Funny Stuff and he would interview comedians. He has many of these interviews online as mp3s. He interviewed Tom Lehrer, Douglas Adams, Danny Arnold (a.k.a. Barney Miller), Peter Cook, Terry Jones, two interviews with John Cleese, one solo and another with Michael Palin, Emo Philips, Billy Connolly, Mort Sahl, Quentin Crisp, "Brother Theodore" Gottlieb, June Foray and Bill Scott (a.k.a. Rocky and Bullwinkle and an epic five-part interview with Stan Freberg, the subject of my last post.
199 Peter Cook videos (in case you don't know who Peter Cook is, he's often considered the funniest English comedian of the 20th Century, this myspace page has a concise biography).
For the duration of three profanity-laden LPs in the 1970s, Peter Cook and Dudley Moore were two disgusting foul mouthed oafs named Derek And Clive. Listen to them here (real); here be transcripts.
The Rutles: All You Need Is Cash may be the most elaborate parody of the Beatles ever constructed, including satirical tributes to the appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show, Yellow Submarine, and the rooftop concert at Apple Records. Check out some other fine parodies who picked up where the Rutles left off: The Mosquitoes on Gilligan's Island, Chris and the Alphabeats on Sesame Street, Letter B and Hey Food by the Beetles, the Be Sharps on the Simpsons, A Hard Day's Night of the Living Dead by the Zombeatles, Peter Cook & Dudley Moore's L.S. Bumble Bee, the Powerpuff Girls Meet the Beat Alls (parts 1 and 2 with commentary by Mojo Jojo), Beatles spoofs in a Polish sitcom and a Bollywood musical, Beatallica sings A Garage Dayz Nite, the Chasers' I Am Thesaurus, and the Beatles go bar mitzvah.