Thursday, June 29, 2006
The 60's Batman show still packs some pow.
Here's an audio wallop: Batman stars, themes and tribute songs. Since books have actually been written about the show, there's no need to further explain things here, and since folks just want to download, I'll spare you my anecdotes about various cast members I knew and know.
"THE RIDDLER" by Frank Gorshin. He was the most manic and memorable of all villains. As an impressionist, he shared a classic "Ed Sullivan Show" with the Beatles. Without his personality the gags here would make anyone gag.
ILL FOLKS BAT-MEDLEY.Bearing in mind that a novelty tune can lose it's novelty even halfway through, here's an Ill folks montage that gives you a smooth sampling of: Adam West's overly bouncy "Miranda," a bit of Burgess "The Penguin" Meredith in a musical narration about his nemesis, and then Jan and Dean who washed up onto shore for "The Joker is Wild." It segues into the real Joker in a bit of dialogue from the show.
This bops and echoes into Cesar Romero seriously giving a "Thought for Today."
Holy Attention Deficit Disorder! See if you can last the six minutes! Not "seven minutes." You know what Irving Wallace figured was a much better way of spending seven minutes.
"JULIE NEWMAR" a tribute song! The purrfect alloy of beauty and brains, and the erotic and the comic, Julie is one of the most unique women on this or any other planet. She deserves a bit better than this effort from the dim 40 Watt band, but Walter Egan set the bar very high years ago with his humorous fanboy worship tune "Tuesday Weld."
Batty Ill folks! Instant download or listen on line. Bat-fan montage!
Julie Newmar tribute song Instant download or listen on line.
Frank Gorshin Offers bad jokes as The Riddler!
Posted by Ill Folks at 7:00 AM
Here's Khan Jeh-Stet, miming his request for two Alan Parsons Project songs: "Eye in the Sky" and "You're Gonna Get Your Fingers Burned." What a master of hand-eye-nose coordination.
Two songs in one download for you! Is this the missing link between music and mucous? Some say it is, some say it's snot.
These quick links don't last long so get this nine-minute epic instantly:
Posted by Ill Folks at 6:54 AM
Monday, June 19, 2006
TEEN TRAUMA AND DRAMA
(Yes, the photo enlarges if you click on it. But do you want that?)
Death was an obsession with teens of the late 50's and early 60's. Morbid music and monster movies became a fad. While there have always been grim pop songs from "Gloomy Sunday" to "D.O.A." somehow, dying was just so much more entertaining, during this era!
The day the music died...was every day on the radio back then.
Bobby Darin snapped his fingers and sang of bodies oozing life. Heck, "The Cheers" recorded a motorcycle wreck song. How cheerful! The answer song to all these deathly singles, "Let's Think About Living," paled next to the morbid numbers that we all found as endearing as fresh flowers on a well-kept grave.
You get the usual motorcycle wrecks and grim songs of dead people ("Tragedy" by The Excellents, "Dead!" by Carolyn Sullivan) and even a few morbid and weird C&W ditties.
Here's Lloyd Price, Mark Dinning, The Shangri-Las, Twinkle, Jody Reynolds, Dickey Lee, Ray Peterson, The Cheers and more...
Use the comments feature to ruminate on faves I've left out (like "Laurie/Strange Things Happen" or "Ode To Billie Joe") or just download these downers and rest in peace:
1. Teen Angel
2. Tell Laura I Love Her
3. Endless Sleep
5. Last Kiss
6. Leader of the Pack
7. Dead Man's Curve
8. Black Denim Trousers
10. I Can Never Go Home Anymore
11. Stagger Lee
14. Me and Little Andy
15. El Paso
Downloading this? "Look out, Look out, Look out!"
Friday, June 09, 2006
Those eyes, those lips...that voice?
We wish our screen goddesses could do it all. With us! If you're looking for perfection, stick it in your ear. See if the voices measure up to the bodies and faces. These women are fairly obscure ill folks as far as the music world is concerned.
Here's Tina Louise doing "I'm in the Mood for Love," Marilyn Monroe (arguably the prototype for Tina's "Gilligan's Island" movie star doing "I Wanna Be Loved By You," and Brigitte Bardot joined by Serge Gainsbourg on the "J'Taime" demo (later re-done with Jane Birken, perhaps more prone to surprised gasps and groans than BB).
Mamie van Doren duets with June Wilkinson, Jayne Mansfield does a "Big Bopper" answer song, and you also get Raquel Welch's attempt at singing.
Oh...and "Am I beautiful/am I usable" is copped from AFI's Davey Havok and the song "The Killing Lights."
That former Phil Ochs rival BOB DYLAN has a fondness for Ill Folks...obscure, unfamiliar singers on the other side of fame. On his new radio series, at least half the numbers are intended to shine a light on these great talents. His baseball show includes people you probably never heard of: Buddy Johnson ("Did You See Jackie Robinson Hit That Ball"), Winona Carr ("Life is a Ball Game") and Johnny Darling ("Baseball Baby"). There are some famous folks, too, like The Treniers, Chance Halladay and the Teddy Brannon Orchestra.
In case you missed it, here's Bob narrating a neat collection of songs about the National Pastime. Too bad he missed a few like:
You Anaheim Angel You, Lay Lady Lay Down a Bunt, One Too Many Innings, As I Struck Out One Morning, Blind Umpire McTell and Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window And Get My Ball For Me?
Take Me Out to The.... BOB-O'-LINK
Posted by Ill Folks at 7:05 AM
Sometimes an obscure person becomes famous by getting executed. The four cases presented here led to songs that have immortalized the mere mortal.
What's your view on the death penalty?
Should it never be used? Is it better or crueler to let someone rot in a tiny cell? Perhaps the death penalty should be reserved only for cases of premeditated murder or mass murder, such as Lennon's killer or The Son of Sam (both residing rather comfortably in New York State).
The four cases here involve an alleged rapist who never killed anyone, a druggie who went nuts with a murderous boyfriend, a guy whose partner killed a cop, and a somewhat slow man who was innocent and framed by the real killer.
CARYL CHESSMAN (top left) was a career criminal, but his rap sheet had nothing on it similar to the masked "Red Light Bandit," who robbed motorists and sexually assaulted female passengers. Caught in a car with a red light (simulating a police car's light) and unwilling to say who was using the car besides himself, Chessman was convicted of multiple felonies including kidnapping (for dragging a woman out of a car against her will). In California, kidnapping could be punished by death. And it was. Chessman fought an amazing battle to stay alive and wrote a best-selling autobiography while on death row. After many years, he finally died because a secretary mis-dialed the warden's office and the latest stay of execution was received too late. Some say a rapist deserves death, and a career criminal is no loss. Two country songs challenged the death penalty in the Chessman case (as did celebrities around the world). Should Chessman have died?
KARLA FAYE TUCKER was white trash in Texas, a teen groupie with the Allman Brothers Band, later a heroin addict and prostitute. She lived in a slum where everyone did drugs, and a Harley dripping oil and stinking of fumes was safer in the house than outside. Karla hated the guy who owned the Harley, especially since he routinely beat his wife (a friend of Karla's). Karla and her latest boyfriend planned on wrecking the guy's bike, but after a binge of drugs, they beat the guy to a pulp, along with his latest girlfriend, who had been hiding in the darkness. In prison, Tucker was apparently "born again," and many insisted her early environment had much to do with her crime. If various bloody female followers of Manson could escape the death penalty, how about a reprieve for Karla? After 15 years on death row could anyone say she was the same person she once was? Her pleas for mercy were ignored by Gov. George W. Bush who declared: "Karla Faye Tucker has acknowledged she is guilty of a horrible crime. She was convicted and sentenced by a jury of her peers. The role of the state is to enforce our laws...May God bless Karla Faye Tucker and may God bless her victims and their families." The two songs here trace her pathetic life leading up to the crime. Should a messed up woman's one night of brutality mean execution?
In Great Britain, Tim Evans died in 1950 and Derek Bentley in 1953. Ewan MacColl wrote protest songs after the executions, focusing on the glaring injustices in both high-profile cases.
TIM EVANS (lower left), his wife and child, lived uncomfortably in a poor walk-up apartment. Their arguments were heard by a neighbor, Dr. Christie. When the police found the body of Mrs. Evans, and the child, Tim was long gone, on the advice of the good doctor. Frightened during interogation, and not having much to live for, he confessed. Then he recanted. Ewan Maccoll's brilliant song (alternately called "Go Down Ye Murderer") seems to follow, with justifiable vengeance, the execution of a murderer. Should Evans, with a previous clean record and protests of innocence, have gotten the death penalty?
Teens DEREK BENTLEY and Chris Craig were just a pair of Croydon punks. During a warehouse burglary gone wrong, they were stopped by a policeman. Craig waved his gun. Bentley shouted, "Let him have it, Chris." Meaning, hand over the gun? Craig chose the slang meaning, and shot the cop dead. He was a bit under the legal age for a hanging, but not Bentley. Though he had not fired the gun, Derek was deemed just as guilty as Craig. MacColl's song seethes over the boy's death while the chorus grimaces at the comic books and violent films that "educated" the young criminals. Elvis Costello re-visited the case and wrote his own version decades later. Should Bentley, or anyone, get the death penalty when they haven't actually killed anyone? Chris Craig served ten years in jail and has not been in trouble with the law since.
CARYL CHESSMAN - Ronnie Hawkins
CARYL CHESSMAN - Country Johnny Mathis
KARLA FAYE - Mark Knopfler
KARLA FAYE - Mary Gauthier
BALLAD OF TIM EVANS - Karan Casey
BALLAD OF TIM EVANS - Ivy League Trio
GO DOWN YE MURDERER - PADDY REILLY
BENTLEY AND CRAIG - Ewan MacColl
LET HIM DANGLE - Elvis Costello