JUST BECAUSE

Four days after RIDE THE WIND DAY comes JUST BECAUSE DAY. Because Aug. 27 is JUST BECAUSE DAY — and because some solid* would-be-gone-with-the wind songs didn’t make my RIDE THE WIND DAY post — today conveniently provides an excuse to rewind and take up where I left off. As it happens, I have just the appropriate song:

Of all the wind songs I failed to include in my last post, perhaps I blew it the most with….

If you’re feeling a bit low from on high,
don’t end up on the downside like this guy….

Be like Ella. Tell a fella….

*Swing era slang for great, wonderful, sensational, far-out

 

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THINK NOTHING OF IT

Seeing as how July 26 is ALL OR NOTHING DAY, I realized ALL OR NOTHING is as good a subject as any to post about today. A good thing too, as the only thing that had come to mind was nothing, otherwise this post might be about something, which at this point is something I want nothing to do with, as a post about something would be worth nothing unless nothing is the something I want to post something about nothing about.

Speaking of ALL OR NOTHING AT ALL, I subsequently came upon a dissertation by one Farouk Radwan, MSc, about all-or-nothing thinking, which may explain one way why The King of Self-Trumpeting Liars, Donald Trump, is the way he is. Unless you’re a glutton for punishment, this may be more than you want to know (and certainly more than Trump knows, or would admit if he DID know), but I can stand it if you can:

“Narcissism is one of the causes of the all or nothing way of thinking. Being a narcissist either devalues people and considers them worthless, or thinks highly of them” [like how The Donald devalues Robert Mueller but thinks highly of his no-bargain Attorney General, William Barr?].

Anyway — after much ado about nothing — I close with the Trump badministration’s theme song*:

*composed in the year 1934 B.T. (Before Trump) by Cole Porter, including these oh-so-apt-today lyrics:

The world has gone mad today
And good’s bad today
And black’s white today
And day’s night today

So ANYTHING GOES, but TRUMP STAYS? That can’t be good, or my name is Cole Porter.

 

 

A com-POSE-r BY ANY OTHER NAME (Part 2 of 2)

I am pleased to announce (as is often said when making an announcement) the proper pairings of birth names with noms de plume listed in Part 1:

a. 2
b. 3
c. 4
d. 5
e. 6
f. 1
g. 10
h. 9
i. 8
j. 7

Next (as is often said when making another announcement), I am pleased to announce that I have selected the following song from the requests made by readers of Part 1 to be played in Part 2, which I am pleased to announce totaled one request, which was a considerable help in deciding the final choice. So, after much soul searching — not to mention weeping and gnashing of my remaining teeth — here is the request winner:

But wait — there’s more! I have my own favorite song from the list. Composed by Eubie Blake with lyrics by Andy Razaf, here is MEMORIES OF YOU, with vocal refrain:

I close with the 1930 instrumental version played by Eubie Blake & His Orchestra:

 

JAZZ FOR LAUGHS (PART 01)

This post is JAZZ FOR LAUGHS — or, more to the part, the first in a series of JAZZ FOR LAUGHS posts. Just for laughs is my musical theme — when it comes to funny, I’ll stop at nothing. So, when you hear Nothing, it means something. Or Nothing At All.

So, what’s so funny about that song, you ask. Nothing. Nothing at all. But I needed a lead-in, and that’s the best I could do. Seriously. Speaking of seriously….

Well, that clip started out well, but I must admit it Peter-ed out after a while. (Did you get it — Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky “Peter-ed” out….hahahahaha.) So enough of the serious stuff. Let’s see what else drives Spike to drink….

As the horse said to the horse traitor who led him to firewater, “I’ll drunk to that” (with apologies to Dorothy Parker, who once said, “You can lead a whore to culture, but you can’t make her think.” Horticulture has had a soiled reputation ever since.).

IT’S T TIME

It’s T time — time once again to take to the links and “T” off. Our first link, as I post this in the wee small hours of the morning, is a tune that goes through a roll call of maids-in-waiting. As you will hear, Frank’LL TAKE TALLULAH. (It dawns on me that come the Don, Frankel take her too, or I miss my bet*):

*referring to our friend Don Frankel, fellow unofficial member of the Frank Sinatra fan club

Four years after the above 1944 recording, another T came into Sinatra’s life:

As you may know, Tina is the name of Sinatra’s ‘other’ daughter (Nancy being the older and more celebrated of the two). So how did Tina really feel about her famous father?

We started with a WW II era song from a movie, and we’ll close with another: Johnny Mercer’s TANGERINE, from THE FLEET’S IN (1942). The orchestra this time is Jimmy Dorsey’s (brother of Tommy, who took Tallulah aboard Ship Ahoy in the first clip):

If the last clip, in particular, shows its age and looks/sounds quaint to us today, remember this is what your parents or grandparents listened and danced to in their day ….and you would have done the same in their place. Truth be told, aren’t most of us captives of the culture we’re in? I may be spitting into the wind, but it strikes me that we’re stuck in shallow water if we think there is only ‘now.’ Why so many have so little interest in where we came from is beyond me. It might tell us how we got here. It might even help tell us where to go (not that I would ever do such a thing).

 

THIS IS THE S’s (PART II)

Believe it or not, I have standards — which I have made the standard for S (Part II). One of the all-time great standards of America’s Golden Age of popular music is STELLA BY STARLIGHT, composed by Victor Young for the 1944 film THE UNINVITED.  I invite you to be my guest for this good-as-it-gets rendition by the man known as “Mr. B”….

By most standards, the obscure tune which follows isn’t considered a standard….but when it’s by Cole Porter, almost any song (in my considered opinion) qualifies:

Our next S song has had more lives than a cat named Susie. It was first recorded by Eddie Cantor on 4/6/1925 and became a bestseller. It was subsequently sung by an actor who played Cantor in THE GREAT ZIEGFELD (1936), by two guys named Gene & Frank in ANCHORS AWEIGH (1945), and again by Cantor in the films IF YOU KNEW SUSIE (1948) and THE EDDIE CANTOR STORY (1953)….not to mention other vintage recordings and performances. The clip below is from (guess which) one of the above:

We close with a song which may be too highbrow for some of you, but a little taste of class is surely worth the risk of a black eye to your reputation (such as it is — ha ha):

 

THE N DAME

In doing research for the posts of this fem song series, I occasionally come across an old tune which not only is unfamiliar to me, but has a ‘trivia’ connection that catches my attention as much as the song itself. Such is the case with my first N song — NINA, recorded in 1931 by Wooding’s Grand Central Red Caps:

Orchestras of that era often adopted the names of venues where they played extended gigs, such as Richard Himber and His Ritz-Carlton Orchestra / Billy Wynne and His Greenwich Village Inn Orchestra. These venues lent a certain prestige to the orchestra and, one assumes, vice versa — though it’s hard to see how Grand Central Station could gain prestige from being coupled with a relatively obscure band like Wooding’s. But beyond that, it seems unlikely that any orchestra would be the ‘house band’ at a train terminal ….even one so grand as Grand Central — unless a night club was ‘on board’ there (which I can find no record of). If anyone can throw some light on the latter, please comment.

Moving on, we have a gal named NELLIE who is also waiting for some light:

The end dame of our N game is NANCY….you know — the one with the laughing face.