Monday, November 8, 2010

'Mack the Knife' - The Original

Bertolt Brecht - 'It is easier to rob by setting up a bank than by holding up a bank clerk'

Guess we all probably know 'Mack the Knife' from Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald or Frank Sinatra.

Or from Lotte Lenya if we're a bit aware of the leftist anti-fascist theatre of Bretolt Brecht and Kurt Weill.

Well, in my peripatetic travels about cyberspace today, I came across the original - in the sense that Bertolt Brecht is singing ...

He gives it that hard edge the meaning of the song dictates - partly it's all those harshly flapped [r]s!

I've thrown in Lotte Lenya Singing 'Seeräuber Jenny' ('Pirate Jenny') also from 'The Three-Penny Opera' ...

... for those whose tastes run this way.

A Serious Exercise in Nostalgia -
Bette in Full Flight @ The Continental Baths (1971)

This is going to be a serious exercise in nostalgia - Bette Midler in full flight at the Continental Baths in 1971 singing 'I Shall Be Released'. Barry Manilow is on piano and Joey Mitchell on drums.

Hope you can be patient with the quality of Jimmy Vito's amateur footage - the frames jump around a bit at the beginning but the issue is straightened out by about half way through.

Cos if you can accept the technical inadequacies the performance it's the kind of classic high-voltage compelling performance you'd expect from The Divine Miss M at that period.

Finding Desktop Background Images

'Wuthering Heights' (1992)

I don't know about you guys but I tend to change my desktop background image every few days. Otherwise I just stop 'seeing' them.

And I'm often scratching my head about where to find new kinds of images, having run the gamut of works of art, travel snaps, old family photographs - the usual stuff.

I used to use porn images but occasional unexpected visits associated with urgent needs to check email lead to some decent surprises for all concerned.

Now the point of this post is that I've just found a whole new venue for harvesting images - snags of films I'm watching on my puter. And I'm stunned how often I reach for the icon of my SnagIt software to capture yet another indispensable image.

Today's collection came from the 1992 'Wuthering Heights' (above), 'The City of Your Final Destination' (2009) ...

'The City of Your Final Destination' (2009)

... and 'Assault Girls' ...

'Assault Girls'

... and 'True Blood' - for something completely different ...

One of Lafayette's V-Visions from 'True Blood'
(Season 3, Episode 10)

Which as much as anything says something about what movies I watch ... and how many a day!

Any confessions on your part here?
Strange How Things Travel About

I was thinking this morning how strange it is the way things unexpectedly move about the globe.

A few years back, we were rough travelling through the rice terraces of Northern Luzon.

It's an area so rugged it was quite isolated during the Spanish occupation and only visited by non-Filipinos in the 1950s - by American missionaries.

We'd hiked into Sagada, one of the larger towns of the region, and were walking down the main street when we wandered into a shop ...

... and happened to notice a highly patinated old hat worked from very finely woven reeds and topped by a carved wooden anito or animist figure.

I'm not sure what the shop-keepers imagined we might buy as we wandered around but they were highly amused when we said were interested in the hat - it was the everyday head gear of the owner's grandfather.

We struck a deal to everyone's satisfaction ... and this beautiful hand-crafted object duly took its place in our ever-expanding collection of travel bring-backs.

Strange how things move about the globe.

So are you guys rabid collectors and hoarders like us?