Saturday, March 28, 2015

March (and some more) Underappreciated Music: the links

The (finally returned) monthly assembly of undervalued and often nearly "lost" music, or simply music the blogger in question wants to remind you reader/listeners of....

Patti Abbott: One-Hit Wonders

Brian Arnold: Chris Hillman and Gram Parsons: "Wheels";  Halloween Songs

Jayme Lynn Blaschke: Friday Night Videos

Jim C: The Odean Pope Saxophone Choir: Locked and Loaded

Sean Coleman: Joni Mitchell: The Hissing of Summer Lawns

Bill Crider: Forgotten Music; Song of the Day 

Iba Dawson: What Happened, Miss Simone?

The Staple Singers: "Sit Down, Servant"


Jeff Gemmill: Rumer, and Natalie Duncan

Jerry House: Johnny Rivers; Four Bitchin' Babes and more; Hymn Time

Randy Johnson: (Music) Because I Like It...

George Kelley: The Hollies: 50 at Fifty; Amanda Marshall: Everybody's Got a Story

Kate Laity: Alan Savage, Lys Guillorn, Downtown Boys; Gladys Bentley's Quartette; Scottish Night at Albany Symphony; Vic Godard and Subway Sect: 1979Now!; The Possibilities Are Endless (soundtrack); Julie Beman: Movie; The Autumn Stones; Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings

Evan Lewis: Kip Anderson and Nappy Brown: "Drinkin' Wine Spo-Dee-O-Dee"

Miriam Makeba: "Ye tintu tiz alegn" (aka/sic "Yetentu Tizaleny")


Todd Mason: Saturday Music Club: Late Shift (jazz overnight); Better 1? Better 2?; Some Bands with Singers, Some Singers with Bands; SMC Returns, Still Tardy; Further Afield; Some Rather Funny Songs; Some Folk Rock and Antecedents 

Lawrence Person: Shoegazer Sunday

Charlie Ricci: The Monkees: "Goin' Down"; Crosby, Stills & Nash: CSN; John Gorka; Annie Haslam: Annie Haslam

Richard Robinson: Wayne Shorter

Ron Scheer: Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser;  Oscar Peterson Quartet featuring Joe Pass: Tokyo 1987

Teo Macero Band: "T.C.'s Groove"


The Staple Singers: "I'm Coming Home"

Friday, March 27, 2015

Friday's "Forgotten" Books: MONAD Number Two, March 1992, edited by Damon Knight (Pulphouse Publishing)

Paperback edition above, hc below.

As noted here previously,  Damon Knight's Monad, as a periodical book (subscriptions available) was sadly short-lived, producing only three issues/volumes before the overextended publisher gave up the ghost (unlike Algis Budrys, who bought his magazine Tomorrow Speculative Fiction and published it himself after the first and only Pulphouse issue, Knight perhaps decided he didn't need to gamble his own cash). Knight's editorial here notes that the first two issues break nearly every rule he set out for himself in the first editorial, and indeed the subtitle is no more true for this issue than for the previous, as the essays collected here are nearly as much about fantasy fiction and literary criticism as about sf per se

The quality of the essays is about as good as in the first issue, as well, with William Wu's account of being perceived as not writing Sufficiently Orientally about East Asian and particularly East Asian-American matters a wry tale, Wu trying his damnedest to be both fair and kind but his head clearly still shaking No as he types, with utmost justification.

Contents, courtesy ISFDb:

Brian Aldiss, in a piece first delivered at an IAFA convention, makes some interesting observations about how home-bound, and comfortable in being so, the majority of British fantasy before the latter 1970s had been (British characters even often living rather cheerfully with their household haunts), vs. the quest tendency prevalent in US fantasy...even Arthur eventually settled, though Aldiss takes more interest in another poem usually attributed to the anonymous composer of "Sir Gawain and the Green Knight."

Gary Westfahl's first essay is the weakest in the volume, making valid points about various sorts of and reasons for sequelization, but tying that to a rather tiresomely distended running joke of creating or repurposing terms for these various methods and devices; the butterfly is definitely broken by time the wheel stops turning.

John Barnes replies to Bruce Sterling's essay in the first volume, taking Sterling to task for his rather facile dismissal of modern critical theory, without ignoring the flaws and limits of the array of critical approaches he cites.

Thomas Perry looks closely at Robert Heinlein's first published sf story, "Lifeline," and among other things cites Alexei Panshin for his misconstruction of the story in the latter's critical writing on Heinlein (Perry is too kind, however, to Cory and Alexei Panshin's The World Beyond the Hill, their attempt at a critical history of sf that won an extremely undeserved Hugo not long before this issue was published). Perry's joke about the death of a journalist character in the story is particularly fine. (Perry apparently didn't know, or perhaps didn't remember, that the Thrilling Wonder Stories story contest Heinlein didn't choose to send his story to was subsequently won by first sf-story author Alfred Bester.)

John Sladek briefly and wittily (of course) limns some of the inspiration for and subtext of his novels Roderick and Tik-Tok, and robot narratives generally.  BBC Radio 4 and possibly NPR and Pacifica Radio listeners' loss is our gain here.

Westfahl is in much better form with his second essay, which is a good brief survey, by an academic critic of sf, of how and why much of the academic criticism of sf goes awry, or misses its own point (sometimes by intent and out of practical necessity), and how some for which this is true is still better work than The World Beyond the Hill, which he deftly outlines as pitiful with plenty of supporting evidence, despite, as he notes, having within it at least an interesting and useful consideration of the influence and underappreciated qualities of A. E. van Vogt's early sf...and this in a critical magazine edited by Knight, who first gained widespread attention in the speculative-fiction community, in the late 1940s, for his critiques of van Vogt's widely-hailed early work not long after the latter was first published. Westfahl is also judicious about the strengths and weaknesses of critical works of peers ranging from Darko Suvin through Paul A. Carter (one of the first I read, when his The Creation of Tomorrow, and I, were new) to Norman Spinrad (whose critical work in the last decade or so has been underappreciated and usually rather better than his more recent, and sparse, fiction).

J.R. Dunn's letter rather forcefully, if at excessive length, takes issue with an assertion of Ursula K. Le Guin's in her essay in the first issue, and there's some justice and some useful reference in the churn of his argument.

One could wish for more Knight in this issue beyond the editorial, but one could certainly wish the magabook had had a longer run.  I still need to pick up the third and final issue.

For more of today's books, please see Evan Lewis's blog (and his Hammett-tribute story in the current Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine), as he fills in for Patti Abbott (with her own new story in the new magazine Betty Fedora) this week.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tuesday's Overlooked Films and/or Other A/V: the links

The IPCRESS File
Back again, for a second week running (!), and featuring at least two Ida Lupino films among other items of at least some interest, and usually some very great interest indeed, at least from one angle or another...thanks to all contributors and all you readers...

Anne Billson: The Beginner's Guide to Giallo

Bill Crider: Blind Date [trailer]

Brian Arnold: VHS Treasures; CBS Saturday Morning TV Commercials, 1985

BV Lawson: Media Murder

Comedy Film Nerds: Helen Hong

Dan Stumpf: The Key Man; The Villain Still Pursued Her

Darlene Vendegna: TableTop: "Cards Against Humanity"

Ed Lynskey: The Bigamist

Elizabeth Foxwell: Crossroads; Odd Man Out

Evan Lewis: Richard Diamond, Private Detective: "Custody"

Frank Babics: The 4400: "According to Collier"

George Kelley: Some Came Running

How Did This Get Made?: Deep Blue Sea

3 Coeurs
Iba Dawson: 3 Coeurs

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.: In the Land of the Head Hunters; The Doris Day Show: "Doris the Model"

J. Kingston Pierce: Bullet Points

Jack Seabrook: Alfred Hitchcock Presents: "Dip in the Pool" (by Roald Dahl)

Jackie Kashian: LeAnn Olsen and musical theater

Jacqueline T. Lynch: Deep in My Heart

Jake Hinkson: Albert Maysles

James Reasoner: Three O'Clock High

Jeff Flugel: Ride Lonesome

Jeff Gemmill: Veronica Mars
The Late Edwina Black

Jerry House: The Hitch-Hiker

John Grant: The Late Edwina Black Keiju; The College Girl Murders (aka...)

John F. Norris: The Two Faces of January

Jonathan Lewis: White Zombie; The Deadly Trackers

Juri Nummelin: Él 

Kate Laity: The IPCRESS File

Kliph Nesteroff: Dick Gautier

Laura: The Big Broadcast

Lev Levinson: The Women

Lucy Brown: Father of the Bride (1950 film)

Martin Edwards: Deception

Marty McKee: Terror Among Us

Mystery Dave: A Million Ways to Die in the West

Patti Abbott: The Egg and I

Paul Gallagher: Warhol

Peter Rozovsky: Talaash

Prashant Trikannad: Are You Turned Off by TV Drama?

Thelonious Monk
Randy Johnson: Have a Good Funeral, My Friend...Sartana Will Pay (aka...)

Richard Wheeler: Casablanca

Rick: This is Cinerama!

Rod Lott: WolfCop

Ron Scheer: Thelonious Monk: Straight, No Chaser

Sergio Angelini: Cash on Demand

Stacia Jones: Without a Clue

Stephen Bowie: The Chrysler Theater: "Barbed Wire"

Stephen Gallagher: Chimera

Steve Lewis: Law and Order LA: "Hollywood"; Profiler: Pilot; Why Didn't They Ask Evans?

Todd Mason: The Subject is Jazz: "The Future of Jazz"

Yvette Banek: The Grand Illusion

Monday, March 23, 2015

Saturday Music Club on Monday: some rather funny songs

Maggie and Terre Roche (featuring the Oak Ridge Boys): "If You Emptied Out All Your Pockets You Could Not Make the Change"


Karen Kilgariff: "Couldn't Love You More"


Tom Smothers: "Mediocre Fred"


Fairport Convention: "Million Dollar Bash"


The Kinks: "Wicked Annabella"


Utopia: "Everybody Else is Wrong"


The Damned: "Grimly Fiendish"


Trusty: "Goodbye, Dr. Fate"


The Virgin-Whore Complex: "The Coldest Night of the Year"


Annie Ross: "Twisted"; Lambert, Hendricks & Ross with Williams: "Every Day I Have the Blues"


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tuesday's Overlooked Films and/or Other A/V: the links

Mozart in the Jungle
Anne Billson: The 10 Most Undervalued Crime Movies of the 1990s

Bill Crider: Wag the Dog; John Wick [trailer]

Brian Arnold: Scrooge (1935 film)

Brian Busby: Earthbound

BV Lawson: Media Murder

Comedy Film Nerds: Still Alice

David Vineyard: Father Brown (2013-date TV)

Ed Gorman: Dirty Harry

Ed Lynskey: The Great St. Louis Bank Robbery

Elizabeth Foxwell: Routine Job

Evan Lewis: Left Coast Crime 2015

George Kelley: Dig

Halli Casser-Jayne: James Grady and Dennis Lehane

How Did This Get Made?: Zardoz and the sequel episode

Iba Dawson: Girlhood

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.: The Connection

Jack Seabrook: Alfred Hitchcock Presents: "Lamb to the Slaughter" (by Roald Dahl)

Jackie Kashian: superhero movies, and enough

Jaqueline T. Lynch: Paddy O'Day

James Reasoner: All About Steve

Jerry House: Rio Rattler

Jonathan Lewis: The Jayhawkers

Kate Laity: SpeakeasyRadio

Kliph Nesteroff: Art Metrano

Laura: The Milky Way

Lucy Brown: Pride and Prejudice (1940 film)

Martin Edwards: Marathon Man

Marty McKee: The Octagon

Michael Shonk and Randy Cox: The Future of TV Watching

Mystery Dave: Frank

Patti Abbott: Buffalo Bill

Peter Rosovsky: Street of No Return: The David Goodis Pilgrimage 2015

Prashant Trikkanad: LA Confidential

Randy Johnson: Light the Fuse...Sartana is Coming

Sergio Angelini: Fedora

Stacia Jones: Panic Button

Stephen Bowie: Then Came Bronson

Stephen Gallagher: The Prisoner reboot

Todd Mason: Mozart in the Jungle, Nightmare in Chicago, Man in a Suitcase, Schitt's Creek

Yvette Banek: 10 Romantic Films for Snowstorm Cuddling