September 19, 2009

"If I Didn't Care"

Information from Wikipedia:

"If I Didn't Care" is a song written by Jack Lawrence that was originally sung and recorded by The Ink Spots in 1939. According to Lawrence he mailed the song before showing it to some of his friends. His friends' reaction to the song was almost universally negative, but he remained positive on it and later it became one of his biggest successes. The song in its original form sold over 19 million copies on the Decca record label, becoming one of the biggest-selling singles of all time.

In the 1950s both The Hilltoppers and Connie Francis charted with the song and in 1974 a version was recorded by David Cassidy. Another notable cover came from The Platters. The song was also covered by Madness for their 1999 album Wonderful.

The song appeared in the film Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, sung by the actors Amy Adams and Lee Pace. The Ink Spots' recording was used on the soundtracks of the films Radio Days, The Shawshank Redemption and the television series The Wonder Years. It has also appeared in the video game Bioshock, and the teaser trailer for The Strangers.

It was named to the Grammy Hall of Fame and was number 271 on the Songs of the Century list.

The song is often sung by Fred G. Sanford (go to 7:45) (Redd Foxx) on the 1970s television series Sanford and Son and was his character's favorite song.

From an early '50s "soundie":

September 18, 2009

I should have known better

So, I finally got The Beatles Rock Band. Having never played one of these Rock Band/Guitar Hero games before, I see that what I've heard about actual musicians having a hard time with them is true. So far, I'm either really bored or completely overwhelmed by it, depending on the difficulty level. It's a very weird experience to play songs I've played on actual guitars for twenty-something years on that sucker you see pictured above. With the little I've played of it, I currently am feeling like Randy Marsh. I hope it's getting better (it can't get no worse). I guess if I'd never actually played music in the real world, I might like games like this more. And I'm still hopeful I'll end up liking it, but as far as playing video games is concerned, I'd rather be shooting things and blowing stuff up.

September 16, 2009


At least Obibama Kenobi isn't wielding a red one....
Gawker via Buzzfeed

"We'll Meet Again"

In honor of 92-year-old Dame Vera Lynn getting back to the top of the British charts, I repost the follwing. According to the linked article in the previous sentence, she has even beaten out Britain's own Beatles for the top spot. Coincidentally, "We'll Meet Again" is used very effectively and poignantly near the beginning of episode one of The Beatles Anthology (04:04).

Wikipedia entry:

"We'll Meet Again" is a 1939 song made famous by British singer Vera Lynn with music written by Ross Parker and words by Hughie Charles.

The song is one of the most famous songs of the Second World War era, and resonated with soldiers going off to fight and their families and sweethearts. The assertion that "we'll meet again" is optimistic, as many soldiers did not survive to see their loved ones again. Indeed, the meeting place at some unspecified time in the future would have been seen by many who lost loved ones to be heaven.

Vera Lynn performance from 1942

The song gave its name to the 1943 musical film We'll Meet Again in which Vera Lynn played the lead role. Lynn's recording is featured in Stanley Kubrick's 1964 movie Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.

Pink Floyd makes reference to this song and the performer in "Vera," a song from the Pink Floyd album The Wall: "Does anybody here remember Vera Lynn?/Remember how she said that we would meet again some sunny day?". A short clip of "We'll Meet Again" can be heard at the beginning of the first track on the Pink Floyd album Is There Anybody Out There? The Wall Live 1980-81.

September 15, 2009


From the Wikipedia entry:

"Peach" is a song by Prince from his 1993 compilations, The Hits 2 and The Hits/The B-Sides.

The B-side was the live version of "Nothing Compares 2 U" in the U.S., while the UK backed the song with an edit of "My Name Is Prince." In addition, the UK issued two CD singles for "Peach", each backed by hits not on the collection. The first disc contained "Peach," "Mountains*," "Partyman," and "Money Don't Matter 2 Night." The second disc contained "Peach", along with "I Wish U Heaven," "Girls & Boys," and "My Name Is Prince". The first disc was sold in a special fold-out collector's case with a place holder for the second disc, which was sold separately.

"Peach" was a failure stateside. It peaked at #7 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, which roughly equals #107, however, it did peak at #14 in the UK, its b-side "Nothing Compares 2 U" charted at #62 on the U.S. R&B/Hip-Hop chart.

My generation's Hendrix:

His name is Prince, and he is funky.

*favorite Prince song

September 10, 2009

Open letter to Harmonix

Dear Harmonix:

Well, well, well, the vaunted, Lennon-friendly 9/9/09 has come and passed. Despite being a Beatles fanatic since 1981 (learning to play the guitar at 14 in order to "be" a Beatle, buying all the albums and then later the CDs), I don't believe I'll be purchasing the remastered box sets just so I can hear "crisper cymbals" and "warmer bass lines." I guess I'm just not that much of an audiophile. And what's this I hear about no "I've got blisters on my fingers!!" on the mono version of The Beatles?? Sacrilege, I say. A pox on your house, whoever made that decision. May you rot in Hell, sir or madam. The thought of a generation of kids not experiencing "the White Album" for the first time without that on it? For shame....FOR SHAME!!!! Don't get me started on how the pitch is shifted up intentionally on the mono mix of "She's Leaving Home."

But I digress, Harmonix. As one who loves The Beatles and videogames, I've been anticipating for months your "Beatles Rock Band," which you released yesterday. Having never purchased any of your previous "Rock Band" games, I have no controller/guitar with which to play the game. SO, despite the tepid reviews, I spent about an hour yesterday in Naconowhere searching, earnestly, for one. And by "one," I mean one of these, damnit:

Now, maybe I'm just being picky, but the stores (Hastings and GameStop) which had them at all (our "super" Wal-Mart had not a one of, offered only this "model":

Understand, I love George Harrison and I admire Chet Atkins and all, but the guitar I dreamed about as a kid and drew during math classes, over and over and over again, was this one:

This one:

This one:

This one:

This one:

Yes, this one:

So, Harmonix, until I can walk into a store, locally, and purchase one of those, I'm not buying or playing your freaking game!

Sincerely yours,

Exquisitely Bored in Nacogdoches

P.S. I love you.

September 8, 2009

Zion Hill First Baptist Church

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After building a number of residences in Nacogdoches in the Prairie or Bungalow style (showing the influence of Frank Lloyd Wright), Diedrich Rulfs returned to his Gothic and Victorian roots on what must be of one of the finest churches built at that time in Texas for a black congregation. The Zion Hill congregation dates back to 1879. In 1914, the congregation moved to the Lanana Street building designed by Rulfs. According to information included in the National Register listing's narrative for the Judge Stephen Blount House, the church's Gothic Revival tower closely resembles the tower of the church where Rulfs was married at Atenserfeld, Germany:

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The view from Oak Grove Cemetery, where Rulfs and a few family members are buried.

September 7, 2009

Nimoy lets Spock go

William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy appeared together this past weekend at Dragon*Con, and Nimoy let it be known he was done playing Spock. Other than that, it's sort of neat to see the two men together again. In this clip, Shatner discusses how he has yet to see the new film, despite it apparently being shown on the flight he took to get to Dracon*Con:

September 2, 2009

"Tidal Wave"

Some dude named Lane Steinberg took a fairly obscure Beach Boys instrumental track recorded around the time of Pet Sounds and added a pretty cool vocal part. He sounds uncannily like Brian and/or Carl at times. I first heard the original track, called "Trombone Dixie" (which I love), on the original CD release of Pet Sounds back in 1990, but it has also appeared on at least the huge, multi-disk set Pet Sounds Sessions in 1997. Here it is, in it's beautiful, Wall of Sound-inspired brilliance:

And here is Mr. Steinberg's awesome collaboration/tribute, which I like more each time I listen to it:

The video seems stranger and stranger each time though...