Sunday, March 29, 2009

Lick a Lolly

This song makes me very happy. The Electric Company was sort of like grad school for Sesame Street watchers. I was a really early reader, by the third grade I was reading at an 8th grade level and probably this show was one of the reasons.

When I first watched this number I thought it was cute and a little naughty, but after the 2nd time I marveled at the wonder of the songwriter Joe Raposo. He wrote a number of songs for Sesame Street and The Electric Company. Probably his best known song is "Sing" (Sing a Song). Raposo knew how to make ear bugs, songs that were just stuck in your head, that tickled that part of your brain that makes you happy. This song is drowning all other thoughts out of my mind.  La, la, la, la, la, la, la, la, la! 

Friday, March 27, 2009

LUKA - 1993
Hair Have You Gone

Sorry for the lack of posts, but I'm working on some other projects this month. Mainly transferring some old videos and family photos. Among these were some old performance videos of mine that I thought I'd share.

This is from 1993. It was for a benefit called Operation Pride and was held at the Improv Comedy club. The benefit was for a local theater company and to support the cause to give gays the right to serve in the military. (From the time I was four I was terrified of being drafted, so it's a right I have reservations about. Did no one remember the Vietnam War?)

The show featured all gay performers. The host the late Ted Bales really liked me and had me do four pieces in the show. My lounge meets performance art style at the time really didn't fit in with the drag acts, monologists and comedy troop.  Except for this song all the other pieces I did completely flopped.  Probably rightly so, looking at the tape now I was pretty awful and unsure of myself. I can't even bare to look them today.

However, I have always liked this performance. At the time I was working with Peter and Paul Allen, they were my neighbors and good friends. Peter was a great rock guitarist and he would come up with these very simple arrangements of popular songs that I would sing. This performance is pretty typical of my style at the time. Over the top Patti LaPone dramatics meets Andy Williams lounge. My perm and ability to show some chest really dates this clip.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Summer Beach in Wisconsin

The morning after the Polka dance party my family hit the beach. This clip is a little fuzzy, but it's great if only for the Greco-Roman wrestling of my uncles, complete with a cigarette hanging out of my Uncle Bruno's mouth.   

Music: Ferrante & Teicher from the album Pianos in Paradise, African Echoes. 

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Once in Love With Amy

Joe.My.God recently linked to another post about the 100 things everyone should see on the Internet. This video was one of them. Anyone whose been to a wedding or had to get up and speak knows the horror of having to go from your regular life to being Milton Berle, but with more pathos. I've only had to do it once, and luckily I got to sing a song.

This video is amazing just for the guests ability to pull it all together. It's sweet and touching. I love the look on the bride's face. And girls, this is why you got to get some gays in your life. They'll make your wedding video a youtube hit.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

The Kindness of Strangers
We Are Loving Those Crazy Ads...

The great thing about doing this blog for almost three years is that I've met so many fun cyber friends. It's been a great place to chat with like minded people who I can help such as a guy in South American whose for last father's day was looking for Ruth Welcome zither albums and I was able to send him my whole collection. His father's collection was stolen or was somehow destroyed.

Or the ever kind Vassilis who sends me beautiful music from the other side of the world. Last month Jana at AnyPlaceFarm wrote me and said that she had some magazines that she was trying to sell on ebay and that they didn't sell and did I want them. The next thing I knew a big package with some classic women's magazines showed up in my mailbox... My favorite is Modern Screen that is so chocked full of fantastic articles; I don't know what one to post first... Troy Donahue's haunted house or Tab Hunter's fate worse than death; or the intimate details of Debbie Reynolds Honeymoon!

Of course, the first thing I go to in those old magazines are the ads. These did not disappoint.

Women's Personal Health issues. "It's What Women Want to Know" are always good fodder for lots of laughs... especially when you can incorporate the word "Gay" in big type in the ad. I swear I've seen so many variations of this ad with Sally being gay, Jane being gay... I wonder if the ad man who worked this ad up ever had a sinking feeling during the Gay Rights Marches of the 60's. "Damn... that word had to catch on... didn't it..." I reminds me of that All in the Family where Archie complains that the queers took away a perfectly good word away from us...

I'm also surprised that I've never seen this ad printed on the front and back of tee-shirts for sale at any gay pride parade... perhaps I've just seen how I can get that down payment on that new home...

Torture becomes this woman in a horrifying ad that really brings home the fact that she has a really, really bad sore throat. Not that I'm a doctor but if she came into my office I would either diagnosis this as strep and no amount of Neo-Aqua-Drin is going to help it. This woman needs some antibiotics and a wire cutter!

And lord... this ad for Solarcaine!!! Remember that product, I thought it was for mild sunburns, not for 2nd degree burns. These ads shouldn't be in women's magazines but in an Italian Gallo movie.
If those two ads haven't scared and depressed you enough. How about suicidal mice who eat themselves to death? I'm assuming a pamphlet comes with this where you have to yell at the mice and tell them that no one will ever love them. Ingmar Bergman films not included.

But ladies don't you fall into that eating yourself to death trap... try Diet Delight. With the wonderful new plan that tells you how many carbs and calories are in each can of corn... and no sugar! I just love this illustration!
My mother was an expert ironer. I swear I've taken my shirts to the best of dry cleaners and they can't touch mother Pearl's perfect creases. It was an art I guess passed down for generations. I don't remember her putting starch in a pot; the canned versions were popular already.

I think in the church of ironing this must be one of there stain glass windows. And Lo the winged iron came down and dispelled Iron Drag, Stick and Scorch and there was much rejoicing.
I think that this final panel is just as frightening as the burning woman or the barb-wired torture. Her the winner of the title of Speed Ironer is given the award of "Speed-Ironing" for Life! Perhaps she'll get free of her fate if she eats herself to death with the mice.

And this next ad, doesn't have anything to do with the themes of the other ads... but I put it in just for the sake of it... $5.95 for a glamour wig. I think I'd get at least three... Ice Blue for shopping days, Grey Streak for bridge Wednesdays. And Pink for those special nights with the husband.
Now I have to finish another box of this D-Con; I swear you can't stop eating it once you start. Yum...