Friday, November 30, 2018
Song:Beggar In The Morning
Album:The Barr Brothers
The folk music duo The Barr Brothers used to be in a band. But they are having some success on their own. Andrew and Brad Barr are from Providence, RI but they now live in Montreal. While attending Berklee in Boston, they joined The Slip. That band made their recording debut in 1996 and they went in hiatus in 2007. The Slip continued though they aren't active right now. But The Barr Brothers moved to Montreal. In his new apartment, Brad Barr heard a harp through his bedroom wall. He went next door to introduce himself to classically trained harpist Sarah Page. The three began performing as The Barr Brothers. They signed with Montreal based indie label Secret City Records and released the 2011 album The Barr Brothers. Beggar In The Morning was the first single. The album was critically acclaimed and they went on tour. They appeared on the Montreal Jazz Festival and they appeared on Late Night with David Letterman. And they were nominated for a Juno. Since then they have released two albums and an EP. Their latest album Queens of the Breakers was released in 2017. Sarah Page has left the group. The Barr Brothers usually hire musicians for touring though it appears that keyboard player Andres Vial is now a regular member. They recently won a Felix award for concert of the year in Quebec. They are currently touring eastern Canada and the northeast US. Here's the video for Beggar In The Morning by The Barr Brothers.
Thursday, November 29, 2018
Song:The Jesus Song
Album:You're All I Want For Christmas
If you're looking for a Christmas album that you can listen to all year long, you might want to check out this 1997 album by the legendary a capella group The Persuasions. I have been a fan since the 60s. Their mottos are "You can do anything with a capella" and "We still ain't got no band". Like most doo wop groups, The Persuasions started out singing on New York street corners. Frank Zappa was the first to record them. Zappa was a big doo wop fan. In the 70s they recorded for Capitol, A&M, Elektra and MCA. None of those labels could figure out how to sell them. In the late 70s they moved to roots music label Rounder Records and that was a better fit. In the 90s The Persuasions moved to Bullseye Blues. By this time Jerry Lawson was still lead singer along with Jayotis Washington, Joe Russell and Jimmy Hayes. Hubert "Toubo" Rhoad died in 1988. Though Lawson wrote The Jesus Song, the other songs on this album are all Christmas standards. Soon after this album, The Persuasions recorded a series of tribute albums to Zappa, The Grateful Dead, The Beatles and U2. Jerry Lawson left The Persuasions in 2007 to form Talk Of The Town. They were featured on the NBC series The Sing Off. Lawson released his first solo album in 2015. Joe Russell died in 2012 and Jimmy Hayes died in 2017. But they continue with lead singer Dave Revels. In 2017 they recorded an album with Barenaked Ladies. Here's a video for The Jesus Song by The Persuasions.
Wednesday, November 28, 2018
|Mara Borella, Taila Santos|
Here's the match video of the women's battle royal from last night's episode of Smackdown. Smackdown Women's Champion Becky Lynch returned to Smackdown last night after recovering from a concussion. The plan was for her to defend against Charlotte Flair on TLC Dec. 16. Of course the storyline is that Charlotte has been handed opportunities mostly because she is Ric Flair's daughter. The Smackdown wonen's locker room led by Mandy Rose comes out to complain about this. Smackdown GM Paige books a battle royal. The winner is added to the TLC title match. Though WWE battle royals tend to be blah like the one on Evolution, I thought this would be a good opportunity to get Asuka back into the title picture. And her match layout will be better than what we would normally see. The first half of the match was by the numbers and boring. But it got more interesting when it got down to Asuka, Naomi, Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. I can only assume that Asuka wanted to show that battle royals can be done differently than how the WWE usually does them. And that included a Shining Wizard on the ring apron. It was executed exactly as planned and Asuka won the battle royal and gets the title shot. There was no margin for error. One mistake and Asuka hits the floor. Will Asuka win the title? I dunno. But it didn't take much to get her back into the title picture. Enjoy the video!
Song:The Closer You Are
Album:Especially For You
The doo wop group The Channels are well remembered in New York City and the Tri-State area. But they never had a national hit. The 1956 single The Closer You Are is probably their best known song. The Channels were formed in 1955 by Larry Hampden, Billy Morris and Edward Doulphin. Then they brought in Earl Lewis and Clifton Wright of The Lotharios. Lewis became lead singer and songwriter. And he still leads The Channels today. The Closer You Are was their second single in 1956. Lewis was 15 years old when he sang and wrote the song. They recorded for Bobby Robinson's Whirling Disc label and later they recorded for his Fury label. Robinson owned a record store and he would release records and attempt to sell them to a larger label for national distribution. He was successful doing that so I can only assume that The Channels never had a hit that was big enough to attract a major label. After four singles for Whirling Disc, The Channels recorded a couple of singles for George Goldner's Gone label. Most of the group jumped ship but Lewis and Wright brought in other guys and continued to record for Robinson's Fury label. After that they split up but Hampden reformed them when Jubilee Records reissued some of their singles in the early 60s. That soon ended until Lewis revived The Channels in the late 60s. He started his own record company in the 70s and The Channels have toured the oldies circuit ever since. It looks like they are still active. You can get all the 50s recordings on this Collectables comp. Here's Earl Lewis and the Channels performing The Closer You Are on WNET in New York 2000. The host that you see briefly at the end is legendary DJ Cousin Brucie Morrow. Thanks to The Entertainers We Love for the info about The Channels.
Tuesday, November 27, 2018
Album:Chamber Music Society
Bassist Esperanza Spalding is currently the most popular jazz musician to the point where she has crossed over to mainstream. She started out as a child violin prodigy. She was born Oct. 18, 1984 in Portland, OR. raised by her mom. After watching cellist Yo-Yo Ma perform on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, Esperanza taught herself to play violin. At age five, she played with the Chamber Music Society of Oregon. By the time she left that group at age 15, Esperanza was concertmaster. She learned to play bass in high school and started playing Portland clubs. She also started singing and writing for the group Noise for Pretend. She earned a scholarship to Portland State and this led to Berklee. Then she released the album Junjo in 2006. Esperanza toured with Patti Austin and an Ella Fitzgerald tribute tour. She also studied with sax player Joe Lovano and they have frequently toured together. She signed with Heads up International and the 2008 CD Esperanza was released. Heads Up was a division of the jazz label Telarc. Both companies were swallowed by Concord. Little Fly is from the 2010 album Chamber Music Society. It is a William Blake poem set to music accompanied by Esperanza's bass and strings arranged by Gil Goldstein. The other musicians were her band at the time Leo Genovese on piano and Terri Lyne Carrington on drums. Milton Nascimento and Gretchen Parlato make guest appearances. A 2010 appearance on the PBS series Austin City Limits made Esperanza the second most searched name on Google. Then she won the 2011 Best New Artist Grammy. her 2012 album Radio Music Society was an even bigger hit as it reached the top ten of the Billboard Hot 200. So now she is the best selling jazz artist in the world. Esperanza has also appeared on albums by Janelle Monae and Bruno Mars. Last month she released a new CD 12 Little Spells and she is touring to support the album. I have already seen her twice but I'll go see her again if she comes to Toronto. Go see her if she's coming your way. Here's the video for Little Fly by Esperanza Spalding.
Monday, November 26, 2018
The Smashing Pumpkins Are one of the more durable bands to come out of the 90s alternative rock boom. They are mainly an album and touring band. 1979 was their biggest hit single probably because MTV played the video to death. Smashing Pumpkins leader Billy Corgan is from Chicago. His father played guitar. After graduating high school, Corgan moved to Florida to form The Marked. After they split up in 1988, he moved back to Chicago to work in a record store and form a new band. He met James Iha and they started writing songs. They performed as a duo with a drum machine. Corgan met bassist D'Arcy Wretzky at a concert and then hired drummer Jimmy Chamberlain. They signed with Virgin Records who released the 1991 album Gish on Caroline to give them indy credibility. Though The Smashing Pumpkins were a band live, Corgan was a control freak in the studio and he frequently played all the instruments which would drive the others nuts. Touring helped as they were compared favorably to Nirvana and other bands. And they had a song in the hit film Singles. The 1993 album Siamese Dream was certified 4XPlatinum despite the band discord over Corgan's behavior and Chamberlain's drug addiction. The Smashing Pumpkins had their greatest success with the 1995 2CD set Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. The album was certified Diamond meaning 10M copies sold. And the single 1979 reached #12 on the Billboard Hot 100. They got seven Grammy nominations and one win. It all came crashing down when on July 11, 1996 when Chamberlain and touring keyboardist Jonathan Melvoin overdosed on heroin in a New York City hotel room. Melvoin died and Chamberlain was arrested and fired. The band's decline continued until Corgan disbanded them in 2000. That's when this comp CD was released. Corgan's mother died and he got divorced. He was always a dour guy and he got more depressed. After Corgan released a 2005 solo album, The Smashing Pumpkins reformed and they are still around today with three original members. They just released a new album and they are touring to support it. A lifelong pro wrestling fan, Corgan is currently trying to revive the National Wrestling Alliance. It's too soon to know how that will turn out. His first two attempts at pro wrestling ownership didn't end well. Maybe the third time is the charm. Here's the video of 1979 by The Smashing Pumpkins.
Sunday, November 25, 2018
Singer Jhelisa Anderson had modest success on the London club scene with the 1994 single Friendly Pressure. Those who are fans of Acid Jazz or neo soul should check her out. Jhelisa is from Jackson, MS from a musical family. Her father plays piano and he is a gospel DJ. Her aunt is Vicki Anderson who is married to James Brown's right hand man Bobby Byrd. Her sister is Pamela "P.Y." Anderson and her cousin is Carleen Anderson. They both moved to England to sing with the popular group Incognito. So it's not surprising that after recording albums with the groups Pal and Soul Family Sensation, Jhelisa moved to England in 1991. She joined The Shamen and appeared on their 1993 album Boss Drum and the hit singles Phorever People and L.S.I. (Love Sex Intelligence). Jhelisa went solo and released the 1994 album Galactica Rush on Dorado Records. The single Friendly Pressure was popular in London clubs. Jhelisa wrote and produced the album with Lee Hamblin who had previously produced Womack & Womack and Chante Moore. The guitar solo is by session musician Phil Hudson. Since then Jhelisa has released a couple of albums. But for the most part she is a backup singer who has recorded and toured with Bryan Ferry and Courtney Pine among others. I think she still tours with Ferry. Here's the video for Friendly Pressure by Jhelisa.
Saturday, November 24, 2018
Here's the match video of Xiaonan Yan cs Syuri Kondo from this morning's UFC show in China. This match went as expected. Both fighters are strikers with no power. The big difference was that Yan threw combinations and Syuri threw one punch at a time. Syuri's corner tried to get her to do more but she just didn't. I scored the fight 30-27 for Yan and so did the judges. But it didn't make me think she could beat anyone. And if Syuri can't be anything more than a one dimensional kickboxer, maybe she should return to pro wrestling. She won't last in the UFC with this fighting style. Enjoy the video!
Here's the match video of Zhang Weili vs Jessica Aguilar from this morning's UFC show in China. Weili won her UFC debut. I thought she looked pretty good. I thought Jessica would be a good test for her. Jessica is 36 years old and injuries have slowed her down. I expected Weili to win. But I don't think anyone expected such dominance. First Weili busted Jessica open with an elbow. Then she took her down and continued to pound her. After a triangle choke didn't work out, Weili adjusted her position and Jessica tapped out to an armbar. It was good to see a dominant performance after most of the Strawweights seem to like to play patty cake. Move her up the card. As for Jessica, maybe it's time to retire. Enjoy the video!
Here's the match video of Yanan Wu vs Lauren Mueller from this morning's UFC show in China. This one was a bit of an upset. But I guess it goes to show that mistakes can be very costly. Lauren looked very good in her last fight. And I'm not convinced that Wu is a UFC caliber fighter. There was nothing much to the fight until Lauren knocked Wu down and she followed her to the ground. Lauren just got careless. Wu grabbed her arm and that was it. It was over. Lauren messed up and it cost her the fight. Wu deserves credit for taking advantage of that mistake. I wonder if she could do that in her next fight. Maybe Lauren took her lightly. Sometimes fighters learn from losses like that. Enjoy the video!
Album:Roy Clark & Joe Pass Play Hank Williams
When guitarist Roy Clark died recently, he was remembered mostly for his many years on Hee Haw. But he started out as a Wanda Jackson's ace guitarist. So he built his reputation with his guitar. And when given the opportunity, Clark was very versatile. He could play any kind of music with anyone. That's why he liked to play concerts with symphony orchestras. One of my favorites is the 1979 album Makin' Music by Roy Clark and blues legend Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown. Sadly these opportunities didn't come around very often because even music business veterans had preconceptions about Clark because of Hee Haw. So when LaserLight Digital producer Ralph Jungheim approached Clark about recording with jazz guitar legend Joe Pass, Clark was delighted. He was a big Joe Pass fan. Jungheim had recently produced a Joe Pass Christmas album Six String Santa. And he also produced Ruth Brown, Etta James, Boots Randolph and even Jack Lemmon. They decided to record an album of Hank Williams classics with Pass' usual band of John Pisano on rhythm guitar, Jim Hughart on bass and Colin Bailey on drums. The album was released on Ranwood Records owned by former Dot Records head Randy Wood and it's available as a digital download. Sadly this was Pass' final recording as he died of liver cancer on May 23, 1994 at age 65. But this seemingly unlikely pairing turned out very well. Here's Roy Clark & Joe Pass performing Jambalaya Jan. 1994.
Friday, November 23, 2018
Song:When The Sun Goes Down
Album:Greatest Hits II
Kenny Chesney scored one of his biggest hits with When The Sun Goes Down in 2004. The album and tour were a tribute to one of Chesney's heroes Jimmy Buffett. Uncle Kracker was also popular at the time. He scored a top ten hit with his 2003 cover of the Dobie Gray classic Drift Away. The two became friends after recording When The Sun Goes Down and Kracker joined Chesney's tour. When The Sun Goes Down was written by Brett James. He recorded an unsuccessful album in 1995. He has written plenty of songs for others. The steel drum solo is by veteran session musician Tom Roady. He is a member of the Brentwood Jazz Orchestra. Chesney has recorded some other duets but this one was his biggest hit duet. And it got Uncle Kracker an in to the country market. This record topped the country charts so it's his biggest hit. You can get When The Sun Goes Down on this budget comp. Here's the video for When The Sun Goes Down by Kenny Chesney featuring Uncle Kracker. This video is not on Youtube.
Thursday, November 22, 2018
Song:My Shining Hour
Trombonist Marshall Gilkes seems to specialize in big bands. He has recorded with Maria Schneider and his recent albums have been with the WDR Big Band in Germany. He was born Sept. 30, 1978 in Camp Springs, MD. His mother was a classical singer and pianist. His father conducted the Air Force Academy band. Of course being in the military his family moved around a lot. Gilkes has a Bachelor in Music from Juilliard. Conrad Herwig and Wycliffe Gordon were his instructors. He has recorded with Maria Schneider Big Band, John Fedchock New York Big Band, David Berger's Sultans of Swing, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra and the Big 3 Palladium Orchestra. He also plays with harpist Edmar Castaneda. Since 2004 he has recorded as a leader for his own Alternate Sides label. My Shining Hour is from the 2015 album Koln recorded with the WDR Big Band in Germany. Except for that song, Gilkes wrote all the album songs. My Shining Hour was written by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer for the 1943 film The Sky's The Limit. The song was popularized by Glen Gray and is now considered a jazz standard. This concert aired on German TV. Gilkes returned to Germany to record a second album with this band called Always Forward. Gilkes does a lot of touring as a guest soloist in big bands. He occasionally appears in smaller groups and even has his own trio. But big bands seems to be his specialty. Here's Marshall Gilkes and WDR Big Band performing My Shining Hour on German TV 2014.
Wednesday, November 21, 2018
Here's the match video of Asuka and Naomi vs Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville from last night's episode of Smackdown. They are teasing Mandy and Sonya splitting up. This started when Sonya was named to the Smackdown Survivor Series team and Mandy wasn't. Mandy was on the team because of the Becky Lynch injury. The WWE likes to stretch these things out. The other notable characteristic of this match is the awful commentary featuring Corey Graves' ridiculous fawning over Mandy. He does the same thing for Alexa Bliss on RAW. Call the damn match and stop bickering. I know Vince McMahon tells Graves to say this junk. But I wonder if Graves knows how stupid he sounds. And I know he's not really stupid. Asuka tags in and takes charge of the match. To quote the legendary Ed Whelan, a "malfunction at the junction" lands Sonya in the Asuka Lock and the match is over. I expect this split angle to go on a little longer. They might not even break them up. Obviously the WWE thinks Mandy has star potential. She's an OK wrestler but we know why they like her. Enjoy the video!
Song:Get Out and Stay Out
Album:9 To 5 The Musical: Original Broadway Cast Recording
Stephanie J. Block is a Broadway performer. She has been in several successful shows including this 2009 musical adaptation of the 1980 Dolly Parton film 9 To 5. Get Out and Stay Out is Stephanie's big number at the end of the show. She was born Sept. 19, 1972 in Brea, CA. After graduating from Orange County High School of the Arts, she started out in regional theater. She played Belle in the Disneyland production of Beauty and the Beast. She was also the voice of Barbie in commercials. In 2000 she read for Elphaba in the musical Wicked. But Idina Menzel got the role. Stephanie was set to be her understudy. But she played Liza Minnelli in the Broadway production of The Boy From Oz starring Hugh Jackman as Liza's songwriter husband Peter Allen. Then she played Elphaba in Wicked in the 2005 touring production. She starred in the 2007 show The Pirate Queen. But that show only ran for two months. So she went back on the road in Wicked. Then she was cast in 9 To 5 based on the 1980 film starring Dolly Parton, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin. Dolly wrote the songs for the musical version. Stephanie plays the character played by Jane Fonda in the film. The other two roles were played by Megan Hilty and Alison Janney. Get Out and Stay Out is this empowerment song that Stephanie performs at the end of the show. 9 To 5 was nominated for four Tony Awards. The original cast album was released on Dolly Parton's label and it's available as a digital download. Stephanie released the album This Place I Know in 2009. It is her only album to date. Her next big show was The Mystery of Edwin Drood in 2012 followed by the 2016 show Falsettos. Stephanie got Tony nominations for both shows. Most recently she had a recurring role in the now cancelled NBC series Rise. She is currently playing the title role in the jukebox musical The Cher Show. It played Chicago in the summer and will open on Broadway on Dec. 3. Three actresses are playing Cher at different stages of her life. Stephanie is playing the oldest version of Cher. Here's Stephanie J. Block performing Get Out and Stay Out on the 2009 Tony Awards Nomination show May 18, 2009.
Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Album:Kansas City 1953-1962 Sides
I'm sure you have heard this classic oldie which topped the charts in 1959. It was the only big hit for Wilbert Harrison. He was born Jan. 5, 1929 in Charlotte, NC. He grew up singing in church. He moved to Miami after being discharged from the US Navy in 1950. Harrison performed a calypso style in clubs. Henry Stone signed him to his Rockin' label in 1953. The single This Woman Of Mine was Kansas City with new lyrics written by Stone. Harrison moved to New Jersey and signed with Savoy Records. He recorded several unsuccessful singles for Savoy. Then in 1959 Harrison met legendary New York record store owner Bobby Robinson and he released Kansas City on his Fury label. Kansas City topped the charts. The record featured a great guitar solo by Wild Jimmy Spruill. Kansas City was written by legendary songwriters Jerry Lieber and Mike Stoller for Little Willie Littlefield in 1952. It was released by Federal Records as KC Loving but it was not a hit. Of course Harrison recorded it as This Woman Of Mine. Little Richard recorded Kansas City in 1955 and then he recorded it in 1956 as Hey-Hey-Hey-Hey. Several artists recorded it in 1959. But Harrison's recording was the big hit. The problem was Harrison was still under contract to Savoy. They sued Robinson and by the time that got sorted out Harrison had cooled off. He recorded for several labels in the 60s. Harrison scored a top 40 hit in 1969 with Let's Work Together. Canned Heat had a bigger hit with that song. You can get all of Harrison's 50s recordings on this budget comp. Harrison continued to tour until he died on Oct. 26, 1994 at age 65. His recording of Kansas City was given a Grammy Hall of Fame Award in 2001. Here's Wilbert Harrison performing Kansas City on the Dick Clark Beech Nut Show May 2, 1959.
Monday, November 19, 2018
Here's the 2018 Women's Survivor Series match. All these matches are RAW vs Smackdown. I'm not going to go into detail. The match was OK but nothing special. The crowd was dead except to cheer Asuka and boo Nia Jax. Nia winning was predictable like the Evolution battle royal. She has a title match coming up next month so she had to win. I'm going to get into Nia Jax a bit more on my podcast. And I am also going to talk about Ronda Rousey vs Charlotte Flair on my podcast. The turning point of the match was when Bayley and Sonia Deville were counted out of the ring. That was lame. That left Nia and Sasha Banks vs Asuka. While Nia hid on the floor, Asuka and Sasha were going pretty good. Then Nia sabotaged Sasha and Asuka beat her with the Asuka Lock. Nia picked up the scraps and won. The thing you may not know is that Vince McMahon wanted a RAW sweep because Stephanie McMahon promised Baron Corbin that a sweep would get the interim taken off his general manager title. And Shane McMahon promised changes on Smackdown. We'll see what that is. So check out the match for yourself and check out my podcast for more that I am not covering here.
Album:The Prewar Vocal Jazz Story
Herb Jeffries was a jazz singer best known for singing Flamingo when he was in Duke Ellington's band in the early 40s. He also acted in cowboy movies and was known as The Bronze Buckaroo. He was born Umberto Alexander Valentino Sept. 24, 1913 in Detroit. There has been controversy about Jeffries' race because neither of his parents were black. He claimed that his great grandmother was Ethiopian. But his stepfather Howard Jeffrey was black so Jeffries took his name. This followed him for his entire career. But his skin was dark enough so he could pass as black. Jeffries sang in Detroit ballrooms as a teen. And Louis Armstrong spotted him and recommended him to Erskine Tate at the Savoy Ballroom in Chicago. Knowing that this was a black band, Jeffries told Tate he was Creole. Armstrong may have told him to say that. Jeffries joined Earl Hines' band in 1934 and that was when he first recorded. While touring the south with Hines, Jeffries got the idea of doing a black cowboy movie. He was a big Tom Mix fan but Jeffries thought black audiences should have their own singing cowboy. He approached producer Jed Buell who agreed to do it. Jeffries starred, wrote the songs and could ride a horse. His co-star was Amos 'N' Andy's Spencer Williams. Harlem on the Prairie was the first of several films. Jeffries became The Bronze Buckaroo. He sang and did his own stunts. Then he returned to music and Duke Ellington in 1940. Flamingo was his biggest hit. It's now considered a jazz standard. The story goes that the songwriter Ted Grouya gave the song to Jeffries and asked him to show it to Ellington. Billy Strayhorn saw it on the dressing room table and started playing it on the piano. Ellington heard that and had his pal Edmund Anderson write lyrics for the song. Jeffries sang it and the rest is history. After leaving Ellington's band in 1944, Jeffries recorded solo with modest success. He moved to Europe in the late 40s and returned to the US in the late 50s. He recorded occasionally until he died on May 25, 2014 at age 100. Unfortunately there is no Herb Jeffries comp CD but you can get Flamingo on this 2CD various artists comp. Here's Herb Jeffries with Duke Ellington and his Orchestra performing Flamingo in a 1941 Soundie.
Sunday, November 18, 2018
Here's the match video of Cynthia Calvillo vs Poliana Botelho from last night's UFC show in Argentina. Cynthia is returning from a drug suspension. She tested positive for weed. In 2018 no one should be suspended for testing positive for weed. Hell, it's now legal here in Canada. No, I don't smoke that stuff or anything else. Then she missed weight. Cynthia explained that she was having her period and the weight just wouldn't come off. And the last time we saw her, Cynthia looked awful losing to Carla Esparza, a fighter she should have beaten. So it's not surprising that Poliana was favored as she has looked good in the UFC. Poliana is a striker so Cynthia needed to take her down to beat her. And that's what she did. She won with a first round rear naked choke. I don't know what was wrong with Cynthia when she lost to Carla. But this was the Cynthia we saw before that. And that's what I needed to see from her. Hopefully she's back on track and heading to an eventual Strawweight title shot. Enjoy the video!
Here's the match video of Shayna Baszler defending her NXT Women's Championship against Kairi Sane from last night's Takeover show. This is a very good but flawed match. Shayna and especially Kairi performed great. The flaws are lamebrained booking decisions. I don't know why this was made two out of three falls. That kind of match was common decades ago. Because they are infrequently done today, modern bookers aren't familiar enough with that kind of match to do it properly. I thought Shayna and Kairi worked around the limitations well. The other thing is again the match was too short. It's like WWE management doesn't want them to steal the show because given twenty minutes, that's what they would do. And the War Games match that ended this show was way too long. So Kairi came out on fire until Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke came out and interfered. I told you on Friday to expect shenanigans. The interference led to Shayna winning the first fall with a choke. Shayna continued to dominate until Kairi countered an attempted suplex on the apron into a DDT. That should have been a count out to tie up the match. Instead they had Kairi bring Shayna back into the ring and tie it with her Insane Elbow finisher. Then they had Mauro Ranallo give a lame explanation for Kairi's actions. Phooey! Kairi is dominating the third fall when Marina and Jessamyn interfere again. Dakota Kai comes out to help Kairi followed by Io Shirai hitting a moonsault from the top rope to the floor. Kairi hits her elbow finisher which Shayna rolled into a pin for the win. That was a callback to Brooklyn when Kairi won with a flash pin. But it didn't look good and Kairi got her shoulder up anyway. That means this feud will continue but it has now been expanded. And that's what HHH said in his post show press conference. The only problem is it backs up the NXT women's division where Bianca Belair among others are ready for a push. Maybe they will do their next match in a steel cage. I can already envision Kairi doing her elbow from the top of the cage. Enjoy the video!
Song:Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
Album:Broadway: The Great Original Cast Recordings
Vivienne Segal was a popular Broadway musical performer in the first half of the 1900s. She is probably best known for introducing Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered in the 1940 production of the Rodgers and Hart musical Pal Joey. She was born Apr. 19, 1897 in Philadelphia. Her father was a physician and he financed Vivienne's stage debut at the Philadelphia Operatic Society at age 15. He also financed her Broadway debut in the 1915 Sigmund Romberg musical The Blue Paradise. This led to roles in the 1918 Jerome Kern musical Oh, Lady! Lady!! and the 1919 musical The Little Whopper. Vivienne also appeared in the 1924 and 1925 editions of The Ziegfield Follies. She also went to Hollywood and appeared in some early film musicals like the 1930 film Viennese Nights. That's where she met Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart. Vivienne appeared in the 1938 Rodgers and Hart musical I Married An Angel. She then played Vera Simpson in the 1940 show Pal Joey. And of course she sang Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered which is now a standard. There was no cast recording for that. So when record companies started making albums in the late 40s, Columbia asked Rodgers and Hart to assemble the Pal Joey cast for a studio recording. Vivienne appeared in that and she also returned to Broadway in the 1952 revival of Pal Joey. The studio cast is available on CD but it's too expensive. The 1952 cast is available on a poor quality European version that I can't recommend. Sony thought Vivienne's recording of Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered was significant enough to include it on their massive 100 Years of Sony Music box set. They split that into 2CD sets like this Broadway one. It has plenty of great performances. The 1952 Pal Joey was Vivienne's final Broadway appearance. After some TV appearances, she retired in 1966 and died on Dec. 29, 1992 at age 95. Here's a video of Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered by Vivienne Segal from the 1950 studio cast of Pal Joey.
Saturday, November 17, 2018
Song:Smells Like Teen Spirit
The one thing Nirvana did while they were around was popularize alternative rock because Smells Like Teen Spirit was a top ten pop hit in 1991. Nirvana didn't capitalize on that because of Kurt Cobain's suicide. But it's unlikely that bands like Soundgarden would have been successful without Nirvana's success. Nirvana were from Aberdeen, WA. Lead singer and guitarist Kurt Cobain and bassist Krist Novoselic went to the same high school. But they became friends while practicing with veteran punk rockers The Melvins. Cobain wanted to form a band and he gave a demo to Novoselic. After three years he finally listened to it and agreed to form a band. They had difficulty finding a drummer. Cobain called the group Nirvana because he wanted a nice name. They moved to Tacoma and recorded demos with Dale Crover of The Melvins on drums. He moved to San Francisco and they settled on drummer Chad Channing. They signed with Sub Pop Records and released their 1989 debut album Bleach. They toured to support it. They went to Wisconsin to record their next album with Butch Vig of Garbage producing. Channing was unhappy because he wasn't involved in the songwriting. Cobain and Novoselic were unhappy with his drumming so he left. Meanwhile Nirvana's demos were attracting record companies. Crover did a tour with them but he wasn't staying. Buzz Osborne of The Melvins introduced them to Dave Grohl of the Washington, DC based group Scream. They had just split up. He auditioned and they knew he was the right guy. Nirvana then signed with DGC/Geffen and released the 1991 album Nevermind. DGC was hoping for sales similar to Sonic Youth's Goo of 250,000. But then the video for Smells Like Teen Spirit went into regular rotation on MTV. And that led to radio airplay and #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. Nevermind sold seven million copies in the US and 30 million worldwide. It knocked Michael Jackson's Dangerous off the top of the Billboard Hot 200. So now Nirvana are big stars. The first thing Cobain does is reorganize the songwriting royalties so he gets a majority of the money. This almost caused Nirvana to split up and ill feelings lingered. While waiting for Nirvana's next album, DGC released the album of early recordings Insecticide. They recorded In Utero with producer Steve Albini. The album sold over three million copies. They toured and while on tour, Cobain's wife Courtney Love found him unconscious in his Rome hotel room. It was a drug overdose. The tour was cancelled and Cobain agreed to go to rehab for his heroin addiction. After a week, Cobain left and returned to Seattle and shot himself on Apr. 8, 1994. As usually happens when a popular musician dies prematurely, there was a big spike in album sales. Cobain's death became part of their legacy. Of course Grohl has had great success with his band Foo Fighters. Novoselic's current band is Giants in the Trees. DGC has released several Nirvana box sets. This comp is the only single CD comp currently available. Nirvana was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame in 2014. Here's the video for Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana.
Friday, November 16, 2018
Song:I Miss Me
TV talent contests can be a double edged sword. It's supposed to launch the winner to stardom. But sometimes it doesn't. And that's what happened to Brad Cotter. He won the 2004 season of the USA Network show Nashville Star. But then his career went nowhere. He was born Sept. 29, 1970 in Opelika, AL which is a suburb of Auburn. His father was a preacher. Cotter not only sang in the church choir but Jerry Redd of The Stamps Quartet got him a record deal and he released five gospel albums as a teen. His most successful album was the 1986 album On The Edge produced by Eddie Crook of Regency Records. It got some Christian radio play and Cotter toured the southeast. But he quit singing for a few years. He returned in the early 90s with the country group Silverado. They never recorded but Cotter signed a solo deal with RCA's BNA label. An album was recorded but never released. The same thing happened when Cotter signed with Mercury in 1996. An album was recorded but never released. Then he had success as a songwriter. His song She Said Yes topped the country charts for Chad Brock in 1997. Cotter signs a publishing deal. Maybe he should have stuck to songwriting. In 2001 he signs with MCA but he never recorded due to label management changes. His Nashville Star win got him a deal with Epic. The album Patient Man was produced by Steve Bogard and Rick Giles who had success producing Michelle Wright. The three wrote most of the album songs. Three singles were released including I Miss Me which Cotter sang on the Nashville Star finale. All three singles charted but not high enough for Epic to keep Cotter around. Sony closed Epic's Nashville office. Cotter released an EP in 2007. He released the 2009 album Right On Time on OMG Records. It doesn't look like they were in business very long. Cotter also wrote the book Nashville Scarred. There's a page for it on his website but I don't know if it was ever published. His website has been inactive since 2009. He's on Twitter and Facebook but he's not very active. So I don't know if Brad Cotter is still in music. Nothing seemed to work out for him. Here's Brad Cotter performing I Miss Me on the 2004 Nashville Star finale.
Thursday, November 15, 2018
Album:Super Hits Of The '70s: Have A Nice Day Vol. 21
Jay Ferguson scored a top ten hit in 1977 with Thunder Island. Though he is perceived as a one hit wonder one of his other songs charted. He was also lead singer of Spirit and Jo Jo Gunne. He has composed music for films and TV since the 80s. He was born May 10, 1947 in Burbank, CA. Ferguson took piano lessons as a child. As a teen, he played banjo with his fiddle playing brother Tom in the bluegrass band The Oat Hill Stump Straddlers. And he played in a few garage bands. This led to Spirit. Ferguson was lead singer and he wrote most of the songs with Randy California. Band infighting led to Ferguson and Mark Andes leaving Spirit in 1971 to form Jo Jo Gunne. They scored a big hit with Run Run Run. Andes then left to form Firefall. Jo Jo Gunne split up in 1975 after recording four albums. Eagles producer Bill Szymczyk asked Ferguson to come to his studio in Miami to play on Joe Walsh's 1975 album You Can't Argue With A Sick Mind. This was just before Walsh joined Eagles. I suppose Szymczyk could have had Ferguson join Eagles too. But instead he produced Ferguson's three albums on Asylum Records. Thunder Island was from the second album. it reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100. Walsh plays slide guitar on the record. Ferguson's other chart single was Shakedown Island in 1979. You can get Thunder Island on this Rhino various artists comp. After three albums for Asylum, Ferguson recorded two albums for Capitol. Since the 80s, Ferguson has composed music for film and TV. He has worked a lot for TV and he is currently the composer for the series NCIS: Los Angeles. Here's Jay Ferguson performing Thunder Island on Don Kirshner's Rock Concert 1979.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Here's the match video of Charlotte Flair and Jeff Hardy vs Asuka and The Miz from last night's Mixed Match Challenge (MMC). This airs on Facebook Watch which is not available in many regions including Canada where I am. Most of the MMC matches have been awful. There's been way too much comedy for me. And turning it into a round robin tournament was done because the final will be in December so they had more time to kill. There was no logical reason to do that. This match is at least watchable because there is no comedy. Jeff Hardy filled in for AJ Styles after Styles lost to Daniel Bryan on the Smackdown main event. The only problem with this match is there is no heat because three of the four wrestlers are babyfaces. Asuka took the loss to Charlotte's figure eight leglock which I have never liked as a finisher. Look, they couldn't have Charlotte lose just before she faces Ronda Rousey at Survivor Series. And it doesn't matter anyway because the tournament is round robin. I told you when this started that Asuka and The Miz wouldn't win. And he berated her in a post match interview. Unless she's turning heel, he shouldn't make her mad. They announced the other day that the winners of this tournament will get the number 30 slot in the Royal Rumble and a free trip anywhere in the world. That Royal Rumble slot could be motivation for Asuka and The Miz to go full blown heel. But I don't know if the WWE has the guts to do that. Enjoy the video!
Song:The Crying Game
Album:Best of 60s British Beat
You probably heard this record in Neil Jordan's 1992 film The Crying Game. But you probably know nothing about it. It was a top five hit in England for Dave Berry in 1964. He got left behind when The British Invasion came to the US. He was born David Holgate Grundy Feb. 6, 1941 in Woodhouse, Sheffield, Yorkshire, England. He started singing in local groups in 1960. His stage name was a tribute to Chuck Berry. Berry was spotted by producer Mickie Most and that got him a record deal with Decca. His first single was a 1963 cover of Chuck Berry's Memphis. It reached #19 on the British singles chart. The Crying Game was his fourth single. It reached #5 on the British singles chart. Berry was conflicted. He wanted to be a rock singer but he had his greatest success with weepy ballads like The Crying Game. The song was written by Geoff Stephens of The New Vaudeville Band. Remember Winchester Cathedral? He was mostly a producer and songwriter. The guitar solo is by Big Jim Sullivan. As I said, Berry's recording was used in the 1992 film The Crying Game. Boy George's cover was also in the film and it was a top twenty hit in the US. Berry's other hits in England were Little Things in 1965 and Mama in 1966. He never charted in the US. You can get The Crying Game on this various artists budget comp. Berry still tours the nostalgia circuit in England. Here's Dave Berry performing The Crying Game in 1964. If you're wondering why he seems to be hiding, apparently that was his performance gimmick.
Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Song:Don't Let Me Down
The Chainsmokers are an Electronic Dance Music (EDM) duo who have crossed over to pop in a big way with hits like Don't Let Me Down. That market can be very fickle so they are releasing a lot of music. The Chainsmokers were formed in 2012 by DJs Alex Pall and Rhett Bixler. Pall's manager introduced him to Andrew Taggart and when Bixler left Pall and Taggart teamed up. Pall says the Chainsmokers name is because he smoked a lot of weed in college. They started out doing remixes and a couple of singles with Indian actress Priyanka Chopra. They started performing in New York clubs until they released the single #Selfie on Steve Aoki's Dim Sum label. The song was supposed to be a gag but it caught on and topped the dance charts and reached #16 on the Billboard Hot 100. That led to their own Disruptor label with Columbia distribution. The 2015 EP Bouquet featured their first top ten pop hit Roses. This was followed by the 2016 EP Collage. Don't Let Me Down was the first single. It reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100. The singer is Grace "Daya" Tandon who scored a top thirty hit in 2015 with Hide Away. They originally wanted Rhianna but her people said no. Taggart wrote the song with frequent collaborators Emily Warren and Scott Harris. Warren is best known for her work with Dr. Luke. Harris has worked with Shawn Mendes. He also worked with Warren on her album. The single Closer featuring Halsey was an even bigger hit. It is The Chainsmokers only #1 hit to date. Both songs are on Collage. They finally released an album Memories...Do Not Open in 2017. Paris and Something Just Like This were top ten hits. The album was certified Platinum. They should have a new album out in 2019. A couple of singles have been released. The Chainsmokers are doing well for a couple of DJs. Here's the video for Don't Let Me Down by The Chainsmokers featuring Daya.
Monday, November 12, 2018
Here's the match video of Ashley Yoder vs Amanda Cooper from Saturday's UFC show in Denver. This fight was about as awful as I expected. Neither of them should be in the UFC. It's Monday and I don't remember the fight. I'm probably trying to forget it. What I do remember is that I scored the fight 30-27 for Amanda and the judges gave it to Ashley by split decision. It was a close fight. Neither of them did much of anything. So a win is marginal. I don't expect either fighter to contend for the Strawweight belt so I didn't care who won. Check out the fight for yourself.
Here's the match video of Maycee Barber vs Hannah Cifers from Saturday's UFC show in Denver. Maycee is the 20 year old fighter who appeared on Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series. She's from the Denver area. Hannah was brought in as a late replacement. I watched a couple of her fights. She is a striker. But she had nothing for Maycee who dominated round one and then finished early in round two. Her main weapon was elbows. But Maycee was much bigger and quicker. Hannah was a bloody mess by the time the fight was stopped. Afterwards Maycee called out Mackenzie Dern. She wanted to fight her when both were in the LFA. I would not do that fight yet. For one thing, we don't know of the UFC will force Mackenzie to fight at Flyweight. But even if they allow her to fight at Strawweight, that's a potential money fight that can wait for at least a year depending on how things go for these two fighters. They have plenty of time. Enjoy the video!
Here's the match video of Germaine De Randamie vs Raquel Pennington from Saturday's UFC show in Denver. I thought Raquel's best chance to win this fight was to take Germaine down. Unfortunately she wasn't able to do that and Germaine won easily. Raquel didn't look right anyway. She missed weight and she looked out of shape. My guess is she was hurt and fought anyway because she's from Colorado Springs. Not surprisingly the fight was blah because Germaine used her takedown defense to win the fight in the clinch. She never tried to finish the fight. she was satisfied with a decision win. It doesn't make me think she can beat anyone good. I guess a win is a win. Check out the video for yourself.
Album:20th Century Masters: The Christmas Collection: The Best Of Bing Crosby
This time of year I am always asked about Christmas music. So I will feature Christmas CDs depending on what AccuRadio plays at random. Bing Crosby's White Christmas is the granddaddy of all Christmas songs. And it's the best selling record in Crosby's long career. Not to mention the 1954 film White Christmas is an annual TV staple. Of course White Christmas was written by legendary songwriter Irving Berlin. Crosby first performed it on his NBC radio show The Kraft Music Hall Christmas Day 1941. Then it appeared in the 1942 film Holiday Inn starring Crosby with Fred Astaire and Marjorie Reynolds and directed by Mark Sandrich. And then Crosby recorded White Christmas and Decca released it in 1942 as part of the Holiday Inn soundtrack. At first the song was not a hit because the film was not successful. White Christmas became a hit when Crosby performed it on his radio show Christmas Day 1942. I guess it resonated with folks as it was right after the Pearl Harbor attacks. It topped the charts for eleven weeks. The whole thing was a fluke because in Holiday Inn, the original plan was for Reynolds (dubbed by Martha Mears) to sing White Christmas. But they had her do it with Crosby instead. The song won an Oscar and White Christmas was the first Christmas perennial that topped the charts every year. Crosby recorded White Christmas again in 1947 because the original master was worn out. And then of course he sang it in the 1954 film White Christmas. That film is played every year because it's in color. It is not a remake of Holiday Inn. Actually I prefer Holiday Inn and it can be streamed on Amazon Prime but it does air on Turner Classic Movies. There are soundtrack CDs for Holiday Inn and White Christmas. But both are short. So I recommend this Crosby Christmas music budget comp first released in 1999 and then reissued under the 20th Century Masters banner in 2003. Here's Bing Crosby with Marjorie Reynolds (dubbed by Martha Mears) performing White Christmas in the 1942 film Holiday Inn.
Sunday, November 11, 2018
Song:In My Life/A Heart Full Of Love
Album:Les Miserables: Highlights From The Motion Picture Soundtrack
Of course we all read Victor Hugo's novel Les Miserables in school. In 1980 it was turned into a musical with music by Claude-Michel Schonberg. And in 2012 it was turned into a film directed by Tom Hooper and starring Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean. This song is part of a romantic subplot featuring Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried and Samantha Barks. Redmayne was born Jan. 6, 1982 in London. He started out as a model and then a stage actor. His first big film was the 2006 film The Good Shepherd directed by Robert DeNiro. Les Miserables is considered to be his breakthrough performance. He has since been nominated for two Oscars. Les Miserables is his only musical to date. Amanda was born Dec. 3, 1985 in Allentown, PA. She started out in daytime soaps and then the HBO series Big Love. She was also in the film musical Mamma Mia!. She was also in the sequel. Samantha was born Oct. 2, 1990 on Laxey, Isle Of Man. She became famous in England appearing on the 2008 BBC talent show I'd Do Anything. She appeared in the 2010 London stage production of Les Miserables and then she made her film debut in the 2012 film version. Before Samantha was hired, the rumor was that Taylor Swift was going to play Eponine. Samantha continues to perform in stage musicals and she released her debut album in 2016. Because Les Miserables is almost three hours long, Universal released a highlights CD and later a 2CD Deluxe Edition which has everything in the film and some bonus tracks. Here's Eddie Redmayne, Amanda Seyfried and Samantha Barks performing In My Life/A Heart Full Of Love in the 2012 film Les Miserables.
Saturday, November 10, 2018
Song:Yes I'm Ready
Album:Ladies of the 80's Vol. 2
This cover of the Barbara Mason classic Yes I'm Ready was a top five hit for Teri DeSario in 1979. Though she is perceived as a one hit wonder, she scored a couple of other chart hits before quickly fading. She was born Nov. 27, 1951 in Miami. Teri started out as a folk singer and then got into jazz after marrying trumpeter Bill Purse and they started the group Abacus. One night they are playing in a club a guy comes up and claims to produce the Bee Gees. He asked for a demo. That was producer Albhy Galuten. Barry Gibb liked Teri so much he got her a record deal with Casablanca and wrote and produced Ain't Nothing Gonna Keep Me From You with Galuten and Karl Richardson. It reached #52 on the Billboard Hot 100. Her 1978 album Pleasure Train did OK but Teri wasn't happy with it. She bumped into an old high school friend Harry Casey, leader of KC & The Sunshine Band. He asked Casablanca Records owner Neil Bogart if he could produce Teri's next album. Bogart suggested covering Yes I'm Ready as a duet. It reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. They also recorded a cover of Dancing In The Streets which charted. Teri recorded two more albums for Casablanca but the second one was shelved and she was released. You can get Yes I'm Ready on this various artists budget comp. After that Teri got into Christian music and she released a couple of albums on Word's Dayspring label. She was nominated for a Grammy in 1986. She left Word and sang with Carman and she toured and recorded with The Maranatha! Singers. She became popular in The Philippines and she still performs there. She also appeared on the 1996 album Truth and Light: Music From The X-Files. It looks like Teri has done OK for someone who is perceived as a one hit wonder. Here's Teri DeSario featuring KC performing Yes I'm Ready on American Bandstand 1979.
Friday, November 09, 2018
Song:Body and Soul
Album:Who Is William Onyeabor?
So I'm going to answer the question asked by this CD. Who is William Onyeabor? Afrobeat fans may already know about him but even at home in Nigeria he is an enigma partially because he quit the music business in the 80s. He was born Mar. 26, 1946 in Enugu, Nigeria. He studied piano as a child. Onyeabor moved to Europe and studied cinematography in Russia. He came home to Nigeria to start his own company Wilfilms. This was at a time when guys like Fela Kuti became really popular. Instead of making films, he decided to record music in his home studio. Onyeabor released seven albums from 1977-85 on his own label. Body and Soul is from the 1980 album Body and Soul. Then in 1985 he became a born again Christian and denounced his music. He wouldn't even do interviews anymore. Onyeabor owned a flour mill and was made High Chief of Enugu. Years later David Byrne was looking for music to release on his Luaka Bop label. A couple of Onyeabor tracks appeared on various artists CDs. There was enough interest to release the CD Who Is William Onyeabor? in 2013. Luaka Bop also released a box set and all the original albums gave been released on vinyl for DJs. They also released some remixes. And the William Onyeabor tribute band Atomic Bomb! Band led by Ahmed Gallab toured and recorded an album on Luaka Bop. Special guests on some of the tour dates included David Byrne, Damon Albarn of Blur, Amadou and Mariam and jazz musicians Pharoah Sanders, Joshua Redman, Charles Lloyd and David Murray. In a 2014 BBC Radio interview, Onyeabor announced plans to record new music. Sadly he never got to do that as he died on Jan. 16, 2017 at age 70. Here's the video of Body and Soul by William Onyeabor.
Thursday, November 08, 2018
Today I have a couple of changes due to injury. Former KSW Flyweight champ Ariane Lipski was supposed to make her UFC debut against Maryna Moroz on UFC Fight Night 140 Nov. 17 in Argentina. Last week Maryna posted a picture of herself on Instagram with her foot in a cast. The UFC decided to cancel that fight and reports out of Poland have Ariane's debut rescheduled for UFC 233 Jan. 26 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA. As you can see in the above tweet, Ariane has signed a fight agreement. The reported opponent is Joanne Calderwood. Ariane is 24 years old from Curitiba, Brazil. Her record is 11-3 and I think her UFC debut is eagerly anticipated. Joanne is 32 years old from Glasgow, Scotland. She trains at Tristar in Montreal. Her record is 12-3 and she won her last fight over Kalindra Faria by submission for the very first time. Joanne is mainly a striker. Kalindra is awful. Ariane is a much tougher opponent. I was disappointed when Ariane's fight was cancelled. I am very interested in this fight. The other change is also in Flyweight. Antonina Shevchenko was supposed to face Ashlee Evans-Smith on The Ultimate Fighter 28 Finale Nov. 30 at The Pearl at the Palms in Las Vegas. Ashley is injured and she has been replaced by Ji Yeon Kim. Of course Antonina is the older sister of Valentina Shevchenko. She is also a kickboxer. Her record is 6-0. Antonina won a UFC contract on Dana White Tuesday Night Contender Series. Kim is 29 years old from Korea. Her record is 8-1-2. After she lost her UFC debut, she dropped from Bantamweight to Flyweight and Kim won her last two fights by split decision. I don't think either fighter can finish. I would expect Antonina to win if this is a kickboxing match.
My next fight coming soon ... let’s go ☝🏽👊🏼👑 @rasthaioficial 🏆#ufc #ufcfighter #theviolencequeen #Rasthai #ArianeLipski #thanksGod🙏🏽 #socialqueencom - Published with https://t.co/iErsXxXGmC™ pic.twitter.com/HB84jTnTyt— Arianelipski (@Ariane_lipski) November 8, 2018