Friday, October 14, 2005

Wildlife: That hungry Kestral pearches near our feeders and scares all the other birds away.

Visit: Michael's Montana Web Archive
Theater, Art, Flash Gordon, Funky Music and MORE!

Web Site News: New comments from James Donlon. Thanks for the corrections!

Weather: Mild Autumn days -- those gorgeous leaves are steadily sluffing off.

Charity Alert: The Hunger Site Six charities -- clicking is easy as easy can be.

Media Watch: One Nation Under A Groove was best when it covered the earliest days of George's barbershop, Doo-Wop, and Soul-to-Psychedelia. To tell you the truth, George's tales of his barbershop are the funniest ones I've heard, in my opinion. Hearing the Original P -- Calvin, Grady, Fuzzy, and Ray sing around a barber chair was worth tuning in all by itself! It's too bad that Ray Davis left us all earlier this year -- he was a fine bass singer, who even gigged with the Temptations for awhile. 1973's Shakey Ground was the nearest moment we have to mixing Parliament/Funkadelic with Motown. I can't cover everything I saw and heard in one blogging session, but I wish they hadn't relied on that BBC film from a decade ago -- it ended with a snippet of a live version of We Want The Funk, only the vocals were labored and out-of-tune. Guess what? These guys made the same funkin' mistake -- that's EXACTLY the wrong snippet to play under the closing credits.
The P-Funk Mob are the ones who suffer when people hear bad music on their TVs. They almost always sing well in concert -- if they have a bad night, it's an exception. When they did a less-than-great show in Los Angeles earlier this year the after-effects included most of their fall tour being cancelled, possibly because all the national promoters and press were at that single L.A. gig. The next night in San Francisco was spectacular, but the power-brokers weren't there to see it, or spread the good word.

George Clinton and Robert (P-Nut) Johnson up front in concert
"Giving up THE FUNK" while Lige Curry grooves on the bass in back

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Wildlife: Jasmine, my beautiful Calico Cat, is terrified of big birds since she was chased by a flock of wild Turkeys eight years ago. Merry Gold, our fourteen-pound Tiny Tiger-Cat, somehow decided to stalk the Pheasant family -- he didn't learn THAT behavior from Jasmine. They just moseyed out of his range and kept grazing.

Visit: Michael's Montana Web Archive
Theater, Art, Flash Gordon, Funky Music and MORE!

Web Site News: I ordered Ida Rubinstein's two biographies via Interlibrary Loan today. I looked at their prices, and they cost about a hundred bucks each if you buy them. I also found a website with great Leon Baxt (Baskt) artwork:
The Russian Avant Garde
(I speculate that he might have been in love with Ida -- but the whole city of Paris was in love with her too. Still, something amazing happens above and beyond the artist and model when they share aesthetics.)

Weather: A mild Autumn day -- those gorgeous leaves have about a week left.

Charity Alert: The Hunger Site Six charities -- click away.

Media Watch: I'm recording One Nation Under A Groove at school tonight. The satellite TV is still disassembled at home.
Hundreds of people are involved with the story of Parliament/Funkadelic. I wonder how many names are going to drop in this film?

Monday, October 10, 2005

Wildlife: Those two Raccoons were on the deck again last night, helping themselves to spilled bird food. I scared them back from the door with my flashlight beam, but they just sauntered underneath to lick some more leavings.

Visit: Michael's Montana Web Archive
Theater, Art, Flash Gordon, Funky Music and MORE!

Weather: It got almost warm today. I shouldn't have left my car outside last night -- scraped a millimeter or more of frost off of every dam' window this morning.

Charity Alert: The Hunger Site Six charities can be helped with clicks.

Media Watch: I've been ripping up wall-to-wall carpeting so that we can lay down a wooden floor. Everything's disconnected, so we've been re-watching Bollywood movies on the VCR while we work. It was fun watching Suniel Shetty (Bad Guy) and Sanjay Doot (Good Guy) beating up each other again in Rudrakesh. They are a couple of big guys as far as Indian movie actors go.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Wildlife: We have had a couple of visits from a Kestral in our back yard -- she was chewing on a slow-flying Finch the first time.

Visit: Michael's Montana Web Archive
Theater, Art, Flash Gordon, Funky Music and MORE!

Web Page News: New corrections from Cedric Curtis, long-time lead guitarist of Friends Roadshow -- great memory for names!
I'm looking at getting a proper domain for my pages too. There's too much in the archives to fit within Cyberport's personal webspace allocations.
I've also started a new project -- a 'modest' website devoted to Ida Rubinstein, an energetic young Jewish lady from St. Petersburg who joined Ballet Russes and became a sensation during Paris' Belle Epoque preceding WWI. She remained a force in Parisian Theatre for three more decades.
Read the Wikipeadia about her: Ida Rubinstein
About twelve years ago, I found an old yellowed newspaper page on the fringes of an otherwise undistinguished garage sale in Spokane, Washington -- it was from the American Examiner, and was copyright 1913 (Great Britain Rights Reserved). It had two large pictures of this elaborately costumed person from the Paris theatrical scene, a couple of spot illustrations of her, and a very strange story/interview by someone named Alan Dale, who seemed to have anything but an open mind about his subject. (Her name was given as Ida RUBENSTEIN, too.)
I am able to contribute those photos, illos, and the oddball article to Rubinstein's scholarship on the web. Luckily, there's at least two biographies about her in print now, where there was only a few scattershot blurbs a decade ago, so I can summarize the outlines of her whole career. I'm not really concerned about her private life, although it has some real significance in her case. She loved other women, and her social circle included some very famous women who lived their lives on their own terms, a fact which has inspired a number of web writers. My choice is to concentrate on her artistic achievements though -- and she had many.

Weather: Fairly nice days, fairly chilly nights, with just a trace of ice on the birdbath in the mornings.

Charity Alert: The Hunger Site Six charities can use your clicks.

Garage Sale Booty: Voices of the Loon, an old LP of wonderful bird calls that we didn't hear on our lake this year.

Media Watch: NFL Football -- Donovan McNabb's injury has got to be affecting the Philadelphis Eagles' game. They can't keep trying to play "catch-up" from multi-touchdown deficits. Dallas was ready to pounce on their weaknesses, and sure beat 'em bad! I don't know how they are set up at backup quarterback, but McNabb needs an operation.
PBS' Independent Lens is showing One Nation Under A Groove starting on Tuesday: