The Classic/Retro Pop Culture Thread

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by The Old Mixer, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    This is why we fought for independence, because young punks wouldn't leave us alone on trains and airplanes.
     
  2. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Mih ssim, mih ssim, nam, daed si Xim. Moderator

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    50th Anniversary Album Spotlight

    Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
    Neil Young w/ Crazy Horse
    Released May 14, 1969
    Chart debut: June 21, 1969
    Chart peak: #34, August 29, 1970
    #208 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time

    The album opens powerfully with the hard, fuzzy rockin' "Cinnamon Girl" (charts June 20, 1970; #55 US), a song that I already had in my collection before buying the album:

    Young reportedly wrote this song, "Down by the River," and "Cowgirl in the Sand" while suffering from a high flu fever.

    Next up is the album's title track, the more laid-back "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere," a good country rocker:


    This is followed by the strikingly gentle, mesmerizing waltz "Round & Round (It Won't Be Long)":


    Side one closes with "Down by the River," another one that I had in my collection, probably because it has a spot on The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs That Shaped Rock and Roll. At 9:13, it's only the second-longest song on the album. I can't say I'm crazy about there being so many rock/pop songs of the era about guys shooting their girlfriends, but musically this one makes for a good, deep, meaty listen that you can get lost in.


    The second side commences with "The Losing End (When You're On)," another country rocker. I like this style of country rock better than what The Flying Burrito Brothers were doing, which was a little too on-the-nose country to my ear.

    Side two's middle track is "Running Dry (Requiem for the Rockets)," which seems to refer to a previous incarnation of the band Crazy Horse, The Rockets, which Wiki describes as "a psychedelic pop/folk rock ensemble". I wonder if this one was based on an existing melody from a work in the public domain...it seems vaguely familiar. Sorta "Greensleeves"-ish.

    The remainder of the album is filled by "Cowgirl in the Sand," a 10:06 acid rock mini-epic:


    Overall, this album makes for a pretty good listen, and I can definitely see why something like this rates a spot on the list. It grows on me with each play.


    Next up: Crosby, Stills & Nash

    _______

    This brings to mind a quote from the film that I didn't use, referring to the mixer...
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  3. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Completely understandable.It's not my number 1, but definitely in my all time top 10.

    Went with my brother and sister and one of her girlfriends the first time I saw the movie. We sat through 3 double feature showings. I got sick after the first two showings and threw up in the theater. But I loved it.
    Didn't know that.
    And if memory serves, Patty was the young lady who stuck her hand through the fencing in the baggage car attempting to touch Ringo's hair during I Should Have Known Better.
    My sister loved this part since Ringo was her bias.
    So George and Ringo could dance, but John and Paul could not, apparently.
    Surprised me since I thought they weren't even plugged in for the performance scenes, as the songs were later dubbed in.
    Too bad, I was looking forward to seeing it.
    My absolute favorite sequence in the movie. George just low key kills these scenes. Plus the sequence was so well written. Hard to believe the actor who played the TV show producer wasn't credited. He was great.
    Spinelli was perfect as the put upon erstwhile auteur "forced" to shepard this "circus" onto national TV on time and without a hitch. The Beatles nearly killed him.
    It certainly was a great scene. Beautifully lit and photographed. George played a classical accoustic I'd never seen before.
    Phil Collins's idol worship apparently continued into adulthood. I heard a story about Phil standing in a line waiting to get an autograph from Paul during Paul's solo career and after Phil had achieved fame in his own right. Supposedly, Paul gave Phil a hard time for doing this.

    I imagine Paul might have been embarrassed by this or maybe was embarrassed for Phil, kinda like "shouldn't you and I, of all people, be beyond this sort of thing?" Don't know how much truth there is to this.
    I'd like to see this. Can't Do That is one my favorite of the early songs.
    The strength of the movie was not only Richard Lester's complete understanding of Beatlemania but also his understanding of the images of the individual Beatles. Lester was able to capture the craziness of Beatlemania and the Beatles's personalities (as we knew them), and weave them into a realistic story while also keeping it funny and full of great musical performances. They also surrounded the Beatles with some great character actors who really carried the story.

    No wonder HDN is still considered to be a classic, standing head and shoulders above rock movies that came before and the ones it inspired after.
     
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  4. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    I've always thought of A Hard Day's Night as a comedy first and a rock-'n'-roll movie second. The so-called "jukebox musicals" of the 1950s and early '60s were mostly bargain-basement affairs featuring a string of music acts connected by a thin plot. A Hard Day's Night completely broke out of that mold. It's a breezy, cheeky, anarchic comedy that never fails to charm and amuse even 55 years later. Some contemporary critics compared it favorably with the best of the Marx Brothers, which is no small compliment.
     
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  5. Spot261

    Spot261 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There are so many generalisations and misrepresentations in this quote I have no idea where to start.
     
  6. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    I absolutely love this song.

    I didn't even know that was trending.

    Sex obsession will save us all.
     
  7. Spot261

    Spot261 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I have the unfortunate privilege of having met Paul under less than ideal circumstances when I, ahem, ran him over backstage.

    In fairness it was a very slow impact and he took a backward step in front of my van but I have to say the guy was incredibly forgiving about the whole thing, more concerned about my feelings than the (thankfully very minor) injuries involved.

    It probably helped that I'd spent the prior week being the on site medic for his band and crew and he even joked about it onstage and pointed me out in the wings (no pun intended) to the audience. Taking a bow seemed the only appropriate thing to do at the time....
     
  8. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    You almost killed Paul McCartney? Bollocks. Everyone knows he's been dead since 1966! :lol:
     
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  9. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    That's about the time I first encountered the movie, too. So I sometimes feel like the Beatles' shadow leaves a lot of great '60s stuff under-appreciated, but wow. Not only are they writing some of the greatest songs and making the greatest albums of all time, but when they decide to make a movie, it's also an unqualified classic? "On a roll" doesn't cover it.

    Neil Young closed out three consecutive decades with almost universally acknowledged classic albums; this is the first. It really sets the pattern for his '70s output, and even beyond: overdriven rockers, sweet duets, long jams anchored by Young's idiosyncratic lead guitar. All that's missing is a pure acoustic number, I guess.

    A timeless track; puts "Mr. Soul" in better perspective. The drop-D tuning gives a propulsive edge similar to what Keith Richards was getting into. I have seen Neil Young many times but once saw Los Lobos jam on "Cinnamon Girl" for what seemed like 20 minutes, it was euphoric.

    The country-rock tunes are interesting because they are unmistakably so, yet he didn't put pedal steel or fiddle on them, Sweetheart of the Rodeo notwithstanding. It's as if Neil Young was going to combine country and rock, he was going to put his own brand on it.

    Yeah but it was just a case of "everything old is new again" updatings of traditional English and American songs, which could be quite morbid. Specifically in "Down in the Willow Garden" aka "Rose Connolly", which seems to have emerged in the late 1800s, the murder is also committed down by a river. It was covered on a '58 album by the Everly Brothers, whom Young looked up to a lot when he was starting out.

    I don't know if it's an existing melody but I think it's a Dorian scale which is very English folk, as is the time signature, so he probably had that goal in mind.
     
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  10. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^
    [​IMG]
    :D ;)
     
  11. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Mih ssim, mih ssim, nam, daed si Xim. Moderator

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    55 Years Ago This Week


    Selections from Billboard's Hot 100 for the week:

    Leaving the chart:
    • "Can't You See That She's Mine," The Dave Clark Five (10 weeks)
    • "Farmer John," The Premiers (9 weeks)
    • "I Should Have Known Better," The Beatles (4 weeks)
    • "Memphis," Johnny Rivers (12 weeks)
    • "Try It Baby," Marvin Gaye (11 weeks)
    • "You're My World," Cilla Black (7 weeks)

    Recent and new on the chart:

    "Selfish One," Jackie Ross

    (Aug. 1; #11 US; #4 R&B)

    "Haunted House," Jumpin' Gene Simmons

    (Aug. 8; #11 US)

    "Maybelline," Johnny Rivers

    (Aug. 15; #12 US; writer Chuck Berry's 1955 original reached #5 US, #1 R&B, and is #18 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time)

    "Remember (Walkin' in the Sand)," The Shangri-Las

    (#5 US; #9 R&B; #14 UK; #395 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time)

    "Dancing in the Street," Martha & The Vandellas

    (#2 US; #8 R&B; #28 UK; #40 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time)

    Total Beatles songs on the chart: 5

    _______

    I take it this was original run? How much screaming in your theater?

    Here he is as Colonel Smithers...ostensibly working for the Bank of England, but evidently moonlighting in M.I.6's Exposition Branch.

    Yep.

    That reminds me of something I meant to squeeze into the review. Years after I'd first watched the film, after seeing Paul in other "acting" roles like Give My Regards to Broad Street, SNL skits, and whatnot, I realized that Lester probably realized that Paul was the weakest actor in the bunch. Note how he's the only one that doesn't have a substantial "solo" scene. John's was very brief, but he also got all the best one-liners, which was playing to his strength. Paul was likely given the grandfather angle to elevate his presence in the film via association with such a prominent part of the story and the highest-billed professional actor in the cast.

    They might've added the flourish in post as well, but that reminds me of how for Broad Street, Paul made sure there were strings on all the guitars and people were playing instruments authentically, as faking these things in musicals was something that he'd always noticed and been bothered by.

    I thought there was one available from which the audio had been removed, but I couldn't even find that.

    That segment could have worked very well as a standalone short.

    Spinetti's increased role in Help! is one of the few things I like better about that film...they gave him a lot more to do as the mad scientist who was out to...Dare I say it?...rule the world! Provided he could get a government grant. (And yeah, Roy Kinnear did a great job as his sidekick as well.)

    George was definitely expanding his musical horizons at this point, what with AHDN being the album on which he started playing 12-string guitar...a move that proved very influential to other artists. And it was while filming Help! the following year that he became interested in the sitar.

    It's at the end of the Phil Collins-hosted "making of" documentary that I linked to in the review post.

    Alun Owen deserves his share of the credit for this, as he was from Liverpool and spent time with the Beatles to learn their voices and mannerisms, giving authenticity to their scripted personas.

    As for Lester, I've historically pointed to AHDN when people in these parts would be quick to label him a "hack" for his involvement in the Superman films. The man practically invented the music video!

    It definitely works as a comedy film in its own right, but let's not kid ourselves about what the film's real draw was. From what I've read (and heard anecdotally, IIRC) about screaming in theaters during the original run, I imagine that the jokes were lost on a lot of the target audience at the time.

    Well, there's "Hey Joe," recorded by many artists but most noteworthy for Jimi's rendition. And the expressed desire to shoot a girlfriend in "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town". I'm sure that if one scrounged around, they could find another example or two. See also J.T.B.'s mention of earlier precedents that I didn't know about.

    Well that beats having shaken his hand all hollow...! :o

    Mih ssim, mih ssim, cidem yzarc a yb nwod nur saw Luap.

    There's a Los Lobos-related factoid on the song's Wiki page...

    Sorry, hadn't meant to drive you to madness! :p And you know that The Monkees owe their existence to AHDN, right?
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
  12. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    :rommie:

    Not so memorable.

    This is cute.

    Good cover, classic song.

    Beautiful.

    Classic! I just have to keep the Jagger-Bowie video out of my head....

    Interesting. It's not something that ever occurred to me as a sub-genre. I'm almost afraid to see if there's a Wiki page. :rommie:

    :rommie:
     
  13. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    You know there is:
    Murder ballad.
     
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  14. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Mih ssim, mih ssim, nam, daed si Xim. Moderator

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    50 Years Ago This Week



    And The Old Mixer is the size of a butternut squash.
    Squash-cellent...!...?


    Selections from Billboard's Hot 100 for the week:

    Leaving the chart:
    • "Color Him Father," The Winstons (13 weeks)
    • "Good Morning Starshine," Oliver (13 weeks)
    • "Good Old Rock 'n Roll," Cat Mother & The All Night News Boys (8 weeks)
    • "One," Three Dog Night (16 weeks)
    • "Reconsider Me," Johnny Adams (8 weeks)
    • "Yesterday, When I Was Young," Roy Clark (10 weeks)

    New on the chart:

    "Walk On By," Isaac Hayes

    (#30 US; #13 R&B)

    "You, I," The Rugbys
    (#24 US)

    "I'm Gonna Make You Mine," Lou Christie

    (#10 US; #2 UK)

    "This Girl Is a Woman Now," Gary Puckett & The Union Gap

    (#9 US; #2 AC)

    "That's the Way Love Is," Marvin Gaye

    (#7 US; #2 R&B)

    "Little Woman," Bobby Sherman

    (#3 US)


    And new on the boob tube:
    • The Ed Sullivan Show, Season 21, episode 38, featuring Steppenwolf, Eric Brenn, and Sergio Franchi

    (Don't they know they're on against Woodstock?)

    _______

    It's alright, but yeah.

    No "sounds like the '50s" comment for this one? Because to my ear, this one sounds like it would be right at home between 1956's "The Flying Saucer" and 1958's "Purple People Eater".

    Classic song, absolutely. Bleh, whitebread cover.

    A welcome debut...they definitely bring something to the table.

    Quite understandable.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2019
  15. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    That figures. :rommie: Now I have to read it....

    [​IMG]

    Okay, that was weird.

    Not bad.

    Catchy.

    Great song.

    Classic Marvin. :mallory:

    Catchy.

    They'll find out. :rommie:

    True, it does have that 50s vibe.
     
  16. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Mih ssim, mih ssim, nam, daed si Xim. Moderator

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    WOODSTOCK
    Day 1?


    Well, I guess that if I really wanted to do an immersive, real-time Woodstock thing, I'd need something that's the equivalent of the Apollo 11 real-time site. When I got into the performance segments of the film, I quickly found that it was taking hefty chronological liberties, mixing and matching performances from different days. The film itself ought to be next year's 50th anniversary business, but it is the classic way of vicariously experiencing the generation-defining event, and as my intent was to watch it in its entirety in segments, I'll just have to follow along with its reworked narrative.

    The early scenes of the festival being set up and the traffic jams make use of some good contemporaneous studio music from a couple of the acts that were at the festival, including "Long Time Gone" and "Wooden Ships" from the then-fresh Crosby Stills & Nash album and "Going Up the Country" by Canned Heat (which has a live intro, but sounds like it segues into the studio version). These scenes include the famous "brown acid" announcement and establish the film's use of split-screen to effectively squeeze more footage into the movie's length. Jerry Garcia gets a good amount of camera time in the non-performance segments, though the Grateful Dead's performance segments weren't used in the film. IIRC, that was their own choice.

    The film establishes that it wants to get the bookend performances right, at least, starting with the opening act on Friday, Aug. 15, Richie Havens. His ten-song set ran 5:07pm – 6:00pm. The first performance shown is his eighth in the set, the antiwar song "Handsome Johnny," which is followed in the film by the tenth, “Freedom (Motherless Child)”:

    Note how sweat-soaked his robe is by that point. (Can anyone tell me what that garment is actually called? I did try Googling it.) In the first number, we saw that he's also got the less fashionable socks & sandals thing going on.

    The film then skips the invocation by Swami Satchidananda, Sweetwater, Bert Sommer, Tim Hardin, (note that Sommer and Hardin get a mention during one of the inter-performance segments) Ravi Shankar, Melanie Safka, and Arlo Guthrie to give us Canned Heat from the next evening, Saturday, Aug. 16. "A Change Is Gonna Come / Leaving This Town," a hard, electric blues number, was the third in a six-song 7:30pm – 8:30pm set:


    The film then returns us to the first night with Joan Baez. Her 12:55am – 2:00am set, consisting of thirteen songs, was actually the last of that night. The film picks up on Baez mentioning her pregnancy and her then-husband, David Harris, who was in prison for draft resistance, as an intro to her fifth number, "Joe Hill":

    The film follows up with her twelfth song, "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot," which serves as a good showcase for the set of pipes she had going on.

    The film's narrative then gives us one more wee-hours performance, perpetrating the illusion that the Who's set occurred on the same night. It was actually the penultimate set from the next night, running 5:00am – 6:05am on Sunday, Aug. 17. The film dramatically cuts to them performing the "See Me, Feel Me" / "Listening to You" segment of "We're Not Gonna Take It," the eighteenth number in a twenty-two-song set that included most of Tommy:

    The way they play it out longer than in the album version just underscores my earlier point that it really would have worked better as a separate closing track. The film continues into the actual next song of the set, "Summertime Blues" (which they really rock up), but segues from that to their finale (which Wiki tells me was part of an instrumental number called "Naked Eye"), so that we can see Pete smashing his guitar and tossing it out into the audience.

    Alas, the film doesn't show us the Abbie Hoffman incident, which followed "Pinball Wizard".

    More to come in whatever order Michael Wadleigh saw fit. :p

    _______

    That was the sound of '70s soul coming in.

    Yeah, nice little obscure psych rock number.

    Sounds like the early '60s to me, which would be the '50s to you, right? :p

    Not quite up to par with their previous hits to my ear, but it will be their last. Puckett's petering-out phase will include three more charting singles in 1970-71, one with the Union Gap and two solo, none of which crack into the Top 40.

    Yep.

    Bubblegumish, but I got it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2019
  17. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Its a good example of why managers/agents trying to jump on the bandwagon of sticking British Invasion acts in films was largely a bust. In endless period interviews where the press was trying to get any reaction out of band members, you can see the cringe worthy attempts to be clever / cute, when the bands were just not those kind of guys. The members of Herman's Hermits were probably an easier fit with filmed media, as seen in the film When the Boys Meet the Girls (MGM, 1965), but even they were stretching things with the "cheeky English lads" routine.


    I'm not the guy in that pic, pal! :D

    Funny thing is, that Rafelson and Schneider claim they had the idea of a quartet of folk musicians living on their own and getting into trouble before the release of AHDN, but saw another way of presenting that after seeing the movie.
     
  18. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This was something I meant to mention in my post but forgot. How likely was it that what would turn out to be the most important act of the rock era would also have the most important rock movie of the era -- in their first movie?
    Yes, it was the original run. I honestly don't remember hearing any screaming.
    I'v always felt Paul was the weakest actor of the four. He seems to have this uptight self consciousness that keeps him from ever appearing to be relaxed. George and Ringo were naturals.
    Yeah, George had always played one of those big Gretch guitars so seeing him with the very thin bodied 12 string Rickenbacker was a surprise. It sounded great, all jangly and crisp. Youtube has some videos that tell a story about just about all of George and John's guitars, including the classical accoustic, and the 12 string Rick, George plays.
    I didn't want to say it for fear of triggering. :lol:
     
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  19. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't think anyone could take a pop song and turn it into a soul dripping ballad the way Isaac Hayes (and Al Green) could. I'de love to know what Burt Bacharach thought of this rendition of his classic.
    Along with the lead singer on the Bread and Butter song, this is another one of those odd sounding falsettos that popped up back in the day.

    He doesn't sound as nasally here, plus I think it's a better song:

    Over the years these guys have been chided for singing songs that had kind of a creepy pedo vibe to them. If this song slightly fits that description, "Young Girl" might be grounds for arrest. :lol:
    This song's arrangement has it sounding a lot like Marvin's version of I Heard It Through the Grapevine. Not a good thing, to my ears.
     
  20. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    What we really need is Woodstock: The Series, with all the performances in full and in chronological order.

    Extensive research indicates "orange robe."

    That's really squeezing them in there. Although time may have been seriously altered at that point.

    Perhaps it was not consistent with the Peace & Love theme. Whack! Thud. :rommie:

    It doesn't sound like the 50s to me. It didn't strike me as evoking any particular time as I listened to it, but when I think about it now it sounds a little bit like early 70s to me.