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Entries in concerts (25)

Wednesday
Dec 28 2016

Judy by the Numbers: Sunday Night at the Palladium

Anne Marie has spent each Wednesday morning this year,investigating Judy Garland's career through musical numbers.And now,the finale...

Somehow,we've reached the end ofthis series,this year,and the life and career of this incredible performer.Though Judy never starred in another television show or movie after 1964,she stayed busy with tours and TV guest star gigs,including a recurring spot as Johnny Carson's guest onThe Tonight Show.Her touring schedule brought her frequently to England,where she was taped one last time in front of an audience in a sold-out January performance at the London Palladium.

The Show: "Sunday Night at the Palladium"
The Songwriters:Various
The Cast:Judy Garland

The Story: It was a bittersweet discovery to find that the full kinescope of Judy Garland's last television performance,Sunday Night at the Palladium,has been almost totally lost to time.Though sound recordings of the special exist,the only actual image currently available is sixteen silent seconds of Garland taking her final bows.It's an oddly perfect way to end the series,though...

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Tuesday
Dec 27 2016

Doc Corner: George Michael on Show in 'Foreign Skies'

Nathaniel already looked at hisfavourite George Michael songsin tribute to the man's passing at age 53,and today a 1985tour documentary featuring the finest male vocalist of his generation.

Three decades ago when China figuratively opened their doors to western culture,the first to arrive were… Big Bird and Wham!Two fey,energetic,hyper-coloured performers who sought a mutual exchange through music and film.The yellowSesame Streetcharacter hadBig Bird in China,while George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley gotWham!In China: Foreign Skies.

It's a peculiar film,and not an especially good one.Half Chinese travelogue for the western audiences fascinated by the newly open China with their bustling food markets,seas of grey fashion,and their Great Wall;half concert film focusing,rightly,on the energetic and handsome George Michael sashaying around on stage like nobody had ever seen before.

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Wednesday
Aug 17 2016

Judy by the Numbers: "When You're Smiling"

I know,I know.I'm cheating again.Last week I presented youa picture with no singing,and this time I present you singing with no picture!However,the difficulty of a short series devoted entirely to musical numbers from TV & film is that it ignores the vast breadth of a performer's capability.Last week was devoted to Judy Garland's acting ability,a talent overshadowed by her incredible musical gift.This week is about Judy Garland the performer,an entertainer who captivated audiences live and via vinyl.This week,I have just one question:

When is the first time you heardJudy At Carnegie Hall?

The Album:Judy at Carnegie Hall(Capitol Records,1961)
The Songwriters:Larry Shay,Mark Fisher and Joe Goodwin
The Cast:Judy Garland,Mort Lindsay and the orchestra

The Story:When it was released in November 1961,Judy At Carnegie Hallwent gold.Not only was it Judy's highest-selling record,it also won her 4 Grammy awards the next year,including Best Concert Album.In the ensuing decades,it would inspire copycats,homages,and new generations of fans.

If you have an opportunity today,I encourage you to listen to the full album.It's a mix of new songs and classics.For Judy fans,it definitely lives up to the hype of "the greatest night in showbiz history."On a stage stripped bare of sets or ornate costumes,Judy sang a full set of two dozen songs in peak form.But it's more than form or technique or Judy's sparkling voice.It's the emotional power of her performance.Judy doesn't speak a lot between numbers - though the anecdotes she does share are amazing - but she communicates her gratefulness,sadness and joy through each song.An album with such emotional range is a good companion no matter what your mood.

Tuesday
May 10 2016

Podcast Special: 25th Anniversary of Madonna's "Truth or Dare"

Nathaniel,Nick,andJoerevisit the seminal rock documentary by Alek KeshishianMadonna: Truth or Dare(1991).The film was a blast in 1991,became one of the biggest documentary hits of all time,and proved prophetic thereafter for celebrity culture and reality TV narcissism which hadn't been invented yet.Well,reality TV hadn't;Narcissism precedes Madonna.

Topics include but are not limited to: Our first viewings,Warren Beatty's terror at the project,the Antonio Banderas fixation,celebrity cameos,and Madonna's relationship to both the camera and LGBT culture.

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post ordownload from iTunes.Continue the convo in the comments...

  • What's the story ofyourfirst viewing?
  • Have you watched it recently (Hint: it's streaming on Netflix!)?
  • Do you think Blonde Ambition is Madonna's best era?

Truth or Podcast

Friday
Feb 19 2016

Interview: David Lang on "Simple Song No.3"and Storytelling through Music

Lady Gaga may have understandably hogged the media's coverage of this year'sBest Original Song categorybut she's not the only Grammy winning composer in the mix.Diane Warren (the main writer of "Til It Happens to You") and The Weeknd "Earned It"are also Grammy winners.So isDavid Lang,an eclectic composer best known for his classical work.He's nominated for "Simple Song No.3"fromYouth,the lynchpin song of the whole movie.Like Jane Fonda's movie star in the same film,his song is hyped consistently by the story and characters before we fatefully cross paths with it.

Lang hasn't worked in movies too often,though he did contribute to the incredibly memorable music inRequiem for a Dream(2000).After his elevating and Oscar nominated work onYouth,we're hoping he spends more time composing for our screens.

When David Lang sat down to talk to The Film Experience I warned him that I know next to nothing about music.亚博主页The good humored composer joked,absurdly,that he barely knows anything either.Lang is one of very few Oscar nominees in the Academy's history to have won a Pulitzer Prize before their Oscar honors.(Here's our talk edited slightly for length and clarity.)

NATHANIEL:  Famously you wrote "Simple Song No.3"before Sorrentino's screenplay was complete.How quickly did you write it?Did Sorrentino ask for several iterations?

DAVID LANG: I work pretty fast.The way this worked was I made a version of the song and I would get a singer to sing it and send the demo to Paolo.I basically sent him three versions of the song.I probably spent much more time having these philosophical conversations with him and reading the script and having dark neurotic nightmares about it than actually doing the work!

more...

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