THE TRUTH ABOUT TRUTH:

All truth passes through three stages.
First, it is ridiculed.
Second, it is violently opposed.
Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.



Tuesday, February 25, 2014

‘OUT OF THE CLOSET’ (Or, ‘I AM GAY, WILL YOU LIKE ME ANYWAY?’)

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"A dry martini you always 
shake to Waltz time."
~ Nick Charles

It’s confession time...

In my 54th year of life on this planet, I am finally ready to confess that I am... [*gulp!*] ...“gay”. Is that OK? Will you still like me anyway? ... “Not that there's anything wrong with that”(?)

I’m sure this will come as a shock to most of you. Sorry about that.

In truth, it comes as a shock to me, too!

Over the last couple of months, I have fallen in love with a man. Prior to that, I had no idea that I was really “gay”.

The man I am in love with is named NICK CHARLES, and it was actually my Ma who introduced me to him back when I was about 17 years old.

Knowing I loved movies and that I wanted to become a professional actor, my Ma suggested I watch one or two of the ‘THIN MAN’ movies with her. ‘The Thin Man’ was a series of 6 movies starring William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles. (Nick was a detective until he met, fell in love with, and married Nora, who had inherited a lot of money. After the marriage, Nick gave up the detective business – or tried to, anyway – to concentrate on his drinking. Unfortunately for Nick, life and his wife had a way of dragging him back into the detective business.)

I remember watching one or two movies from ‘The Thin Man’ series when I was about 17, kind of shrugging my shoulders and thinking: “I dunno. I don’t get it. What’s the big deal?”

Of course I was young and stupid then and I thought every movie ought to be like ‘The Deer Hunter’ and ‘Ordinary People’. I really wasn’t intellectually capable at 17 of following a story (and grasping the humor) of a movie like ‘The Thin Man’, and the 5 subsequent installments in the series.

Where I work, they have a book and DVD library, and seeing some of ‘The Thin Man’ installments there, and remembering how much my Ma had loved them, I took a DVD home with me one night.

And that’s how I fell in love with Nick Charles (William Powell) and got on this TOTAL ‘Thin Man’ series kick! (I guess I’m old enough, mature enough, mentally sharp enough to “get it” now, as opposed to when I was 17 and “knew everything” but knew nuttin’ at the same time.)
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‘The Thin Man’ series, a total of 6 movies, revolves around Nick and Nora Charles, their dog Asta, and the murder mysteries they always seem to get drawn into.

“Asta! You’re not a terrier, you’re a ‘police dog’!”
~ Nick Charles

Nick just wants to retire from detective work and spend his time drinking and socializing at fancy, uptown joints and dinner parties, but somehow murder always finds him - and when it doesn’t, his wife Nora pushes him into the next adventure. She’s madly in love with Nick and just wants to watch the way his mind – and fists – work. Nick looks like a second-rate used car salesman with that soft body and cheesy moustache, but you’d better not let his looks fool you: Nick is always at least 4 mental steps ahead of everyone else, and he can knock a man down like he can knock a drink down!

Nick Charles and W.C. Fields – probably the only two men in history who could have drunk ‘The League Of Soul Crusaders’ under the table!
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"A  DRY  MARTINI  YOU  ALWAYS  SHAKE  TO  'WALTZ'  TIME."
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“Shaken, not stirred” – what a weak line. Only a sub-intelligent society could embrace a quote like that when Nick Charles had a Martini line so much better!

And that leads me to something ELSE...

Brother Nappy and I watched the first ‘Thin Man’ movie tonight (yeah, we’ve been going out of order, due to availability), and at one point I said to Nappy that most Americonned People couldn’t even keep up with a movie like ‘The Thin Man’ today. We have been so dumbed-down as a society that what was common entertainment back in 1934 is sometimes way, Way, WAY too complex for modern American movie audiences.

Below are the movies in the series listed by title and year...

Titles:

1: The Thin Man (1934)
2: After The Thin Man (1936)
3: Another Thin Man (1939)
4: Shadow Of The Thin Man (1941)
5: The Thin Man Goes Home (1945)
6: Song Of The Thin Man (1947)

So far, Brother Nappy and I have seen numbers 1, 2, 3, and 5. Numbers 4 and 6 are currently at the very top of my NetFlix queue.

According to the consensus, #1 was the best and #5 was the worst. But, so far, Nappy and I agree that #2 is the best we’ve seen, and if #5 (when Nick Charles goes “on the wagon” because he’s visiting his Pa, who doesn’t approve of “drinking the juice”) is the worst, well... it was still pretty damned entertaining! It includes a scene where a bunch of ex-cons go running out of a house, each one cradling an infant in his arms! (That’s another running gag in the series: Nick Charles is such a likeable detective that all the criminals he “sends up the river” or “to The Rock” eventually find him again, after parole, to shake his hand and share a drink with him. Some classic sh!t here, Peoples!)

Below is a collection of ‘Thin Man’ movie trailers I found at YouTube. These trailers, while amusing, don’t even begin to hint at the wonderfulness of the ‘Thin Man’ movies.

The Thin Man series - Trailer Compilation



Nick Charles... I love you, man!
“Not that there's anything wrong with that.”

~ Stephen T. McCarthy

YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.
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Monday, February 24, 2014

‘WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO CHRIS J. FRIES?’ (Or, ‘STRATPLAYER, WHERE ARE YOU?’)

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Is there anybody out there who can tell me what happened to Chris J. Fries, also known as the blogger responsible for the blog ‘The Creative Outlet Of StratPlayer’?
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Chris seems to have disappeared entirely without a trace and I KNOW this can’t be good.

The last we heard from our fellow ‘BOTB-er’ (‘Battle Of The Bands’ participant) he had posted his February 1, 2014, ‘Battle Of The Bands’ blog bit BOTB 2/1/14: "All Along the Watchtower".

Right after that, Chris Fries seemed to disappear; he never responded to any comments left on his post, he never voted on anyone else’s ‘BOTB’ posts, and he didn’t emerge again for the February 15TH ‘Battle Of The Bands #14’ edition.

I have already prayed for Chris because something is really very wrong here. Chris, being a musician and new to the BOTB-fest was really enthusiastic about it (unlike some of us older-timers who maybe don’t get quite so excited about it anymore, and mostly just bicker amongst ourselves and criticize other BOTB-ers’ song selections).

When Chris never responded to comments left on his ‘All Along The Watchtower’ contest, I knew it was a bad omen. But when he never posted a new ‘BOTB’ installment two weeks later, I knew it was worse than a bad omen: it was a bad reality!

I have searched through his blog looking for some kind of ‘contact information’ like an Email address or name of a relative, or anything like that, but I have come up empty.

Is there ANYBODY out there – family members, good friends of Chris Fries, or maybe just some love-struck females – who can tell me what has happened to the man? Damn, I need an answer to this question! Does ANYONE have an “A” for my “Q”? If so, speak up now, please!

~ Stephen T. McCarthy
Also Known As:
D-FensDogg of the ‘Loyal American Underground’
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YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement. 
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

‘THE BEST MOVIE TRAILER EVER?’ (Or, “UNTIL NOW, YOU’VE NEVER REALLY SEEN THE WORLD YOU LIVE IN”)


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I’ll be dogged if I can figure it out but... what is it about Betty’s comments that inspire me to compose and post new blog bits?

[“Betty” is actually a (real) man, and the nickname is an inside joke between us. To quote Ol’ Waylon: I don’t explain if you don’t understand.]

In the Comment Section of my last blog bit, I wrote the following:

But when it comes to movies we [my Brother Nappy and I] are about 99.90% simpatico. I can think of only one movie Nappy ever recommended to me that I did not much care for. And although my all-time favorite movie, 'KOYAANISQATSI', is one Nappy wouldn't even put on his '10,000 Favorite Movies' list (it's way too artsy and abstract for him), it is a very rare occurrence when our opinions about a movie don't match up to within a + or - in the grading (e.g., B+ versus B-). That's about as far apart as we ever are when it comes to our movie likes and dislikes.

Brother Beer Boy Betty wrote this:

KOYAANISQATSI

What? Did you just drop a game of Scrabble? Had a stroke mid sentence? I'm not sure I caught that... ;)

For anyone who might be interested, below is the movie trailer, embedded on my blog. But rather than watching it here, I recommend that you click the URL link below the video instead and see it in the larger-screen presentation at YouTube. (You can always come back here later and tell me how intrigued you are.)

Koyaanisqatsi (trailer)


URL link:

Anyone who might be interested in gaining a greater understanding of my appreciation for this movie can click the link below, which will take them to one of my posts from Arlee Bird’s very first ‘A TO Z’ Blogfest. (I wasn’t able to complete the Blogfest but, thankfully, I did at least manage to get up to the letter ‘K’, which allowed me to yak about my all-time favorite movie, ‘KOYAANISQATSI’.)
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~ Stephen T. McCarthy

YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.
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Monday, February 17, 2014

A LOST "CLASSIC" AND A "FINE MEMORY"


[From the STMcC Archive: February 5, 2006]
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Late last November, my Bro and I drove down to Tombstone ("The Town Too Tough To Die") to get out of Phoenix for the weekend. Bro doesn't have a CD or tape player in his car, and since Airheadzona is too uncultured to have a real Jazz radio station, we had to settle for "Classic" Rock. (There's nothing like seeing the rebellious Rock of a man's youth labeled "CLASSIC" and played in grocery stores to make him feel geriatric!)

Driving out of the uncultured metropolis and into the unyielding desert wasteland, our talk turned to tunes of our ancient personal history.  While Bob Seger's 'Turn The Page' played (thanks to "The Real Deal, Rockin' Steele" at KDOG), Bro mentioned how much he used to like Seger, a rocker I had turned him onto back in '75. Before we even reached Tombstone's Boot Hill (final resting place of Billy Clanton and the McLaury Bros. after that nasty little bit of business near the OK Corral), I had decided that I was gonna get Bro a copy of Seger's 1975, ‘BEAUTIFUL LOSER’ for Christmas - you know, exhume that body from the graveyard of his buried past for him.

So, on Christmas morning, while y'all were in slippers and knotting those new ties around the collars of your pajama tops, Bro and I - two Beautiful Losers - were re-experiencing our Black Nights, discussing Momma, and sharing a Fine Memory or two. It was astounding to me - a Rock 'N' Roll deserter who took up arms for the Jazz camp about 20 years ago - to find just how good this album sounds today.  ‘BEAUTIFUL LOSER’ was released at the time Bob Seger was just starting to get national recognition. Some might call this a minor breakout album, but I'd call it the "Lost Classic Rock" recording.  My Bro also got Mr. Seger's 'Greatest Hits' from me last Christmas, but ‘BEAUTIFUL LOSER’ was the winner.

Bob sings like a REAL man (a rare occurrence in those androgynous days and an even greater rarity in this era of wimpy, pseudo-tough poseurs trying to convince every hormone-overdosed, pimply suburbanite that they've seen bad times). Seger strikes an ideal balance between catchy hard rockers and sensitive (but most certainly not saccharine) ballads, perfectly expressed through that Jim Beam and barbed wire-raked voice of his. The man sure knew how to write an intelligent Rock song. (Yeah, I know that's nearly an oxymoron. And was this really the same guy who 5 years LATER would pen the sophomoric and regrettable 'Horizontal Bop'?)

The song BEAUTIFUL LOSER always did (and still does) remind me of a beautiful friend who one night decided to voluntarily find out what's on "the other side." KATMANDU is driven by Bob's Motor City mania. JODY GIRL is not just one of the most tender ballads ever written, it's one of the saddest - damn near activates my tear ducts! MOMMA brings to my mind that tortured and misunderstood, yet loving relationship between my Ma and my Bro back in those days contemporaneous to this album. The biggest surprise was NUTBUSH CITY LIMITS, which I never much cared for back "in the day." Don't know what I was thinkin' - this bad boy REALLY ROCKS; it nearly blows the grey hair right off of my head! And this collection closes with a beautiful and introspective ballad about a FINE MEMORY, which the entire album is for me.

~ Stephen T. McCarthy
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Nov 28, 2007
ANTI-MICROCHIP says:
Nicely done!!! Now I know why the gentleman who commented on "The Unseen Hand" got sucked into your reviews for, wasn't it four hours, he said? Though I don't feel this is your best review, it definitely has the McCarthy flare and sense of real life impact I've grown to love. Well done, sir, well done.
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Nov 22, 2011
TULIPS says:
“Great review.... you sound like one of those 'ol western flicks narrated by Sam Elliott!” 

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YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.
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Saturday, February 15, 2014

‘BATTLE OF THE BANDS #14 – POST-SUPER BOWL BLOWOUT EDITION’ (Or, ‘BOB SEGER AND THE SILVER BULLET BAND VS. EDDIE AND THE HOT RODS’)


Republican Vs. Democrat, Male Vs. Female, War Vs. Peace, Light Vs. Dark, Good Vs. Evil, Man Vs. Machine, Love Vs. Hate, Dog Vs. Cat, Sun Vs. Moon, Brain Vs. Brawn, Oscar Vs. Grammy, Angel Vs. Demon, Laurel Vs. Hardy, Beer Vs. Wine, TV Vs. Radio, Pitcher Vs. Batter, Paper Vs. Plastic, Reality Vs. Fantasy, Yeshua Vs. Beelzebub, Conservative Vs. Liberal, You Vs. Me, House Vs. Senate, Offense Vs. Defense, Kramer Vs. Kramer, Spy Vs. Spy, Fischer Vs. Spassky, W.C. Fields Vs. Sobriety, Harold Gimpy, Jr. Vs. Sheldon J. Pismire, Rock Vs. Paper Vs. Scissors, Islam Vs. Everything, Singer Vs. Singer, Band Vs. Band...

THE  BATTLE  OF  THE  BANDS! (‘BOTB’)


Shoop-Shooby –
Shooby-duh-Dooby-Doop-Dooby-Dooby-Doo-Wah –
Buh-Doo-Wah!
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EUGENE  MARTONE  VS.  JACK  BUTLER
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So... didja watch Super Bowl XLVIII? I did. That is, I did through the first play of the second half when the Seattle Seahawks ran the kick-off back for a touchdown. At that point (to use an expression from The Holy Bible), “the handwriting was on the wall”, and I found more exciting things to do, like... go to the grocery store, peel my toenails and clip potatoes.

Beforehand, the Denver Broncos were favored to win the game by 3 points. The Seattle Seahawks won the game by a score of 43 to 8. Ooh! How did anyone survive such suspense?

I’ll bet the embarrassment of such a lopsided loss to an underdog team caused many Broncos fans to wish they could... “get out of Denver”.
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GODZILLA  VS.  KING  KONG
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Well, this post-Super Bowl Blowout ‘Battle Of The Bands’ (‘BOTB’) installment is in honor of those poor souls in Denver, Colorado, who were forced to endure such a humiliating defeat in “The Biggest Game On Planet Earth”. My heart (and my ‘BOTB’ post) goes out to them!
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In 1974, Bob Seger and his Silver Bullet Band released the album ‘Seven’ which included the high-velocity song ‘GET OUT OF DENVER’. Although it was never a Billboard Top 40 hit, it did receive quite a bit of airplay on FM radio stations over the years. I always dug that song big time.

Here’s the Bob Seger original, getting out of Denver at "120" miles per hour:

Bob Seger – ‘Get Out Of Denver


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In 1976, a British Pub and prototype Punk band called Eddie And The Hot Rods released an album called ‘Teenage Depression’. I can no longer recall how I first heard about it, but I purchased a copy of it probably a year later in ’77. Being a depressed teenager at the time, I played it a lot.

Included on that release was a cover version of Seger’s ‘GET OUT OF DENVER’, although Eddie and his Hot Rods were getting out of Denver a bit faster, like, at about 170 miles per hour. Here’s their cover version, recorded live somewhere:

Eddie & The Hot Rods – 'Get Out Of Denver'


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RIDDLER  VS.  BATMAN
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Alright now, “you know the gig”... I welcome EVERYONE to vote for their favorite of these songs in the comment section below. And feel free to tell us WHY you chose one song over the other. (NOTE: Comment Moderation is activated. All submitted comments that do not transgress "Ye Olde Comment Policy" will be posted as soon as possible. Thanks for taking the time to comment.)

After voting here, I suggest - actually I insist - you pop over to FAE’s ‘Far Away Series’, Arlee Bird’s ‘Tossing It Out’, Robin’s ‘Your Daily Dose’, LC’s ‘DiscConnected’, and Chris' 'The Creative Outlet Of StratPlayer' blogs to see which songs they have chosen and vote there also. (If their ‘BOTB’ blog bits aren’t posted yet, pour yourself two shots of ‘Grand Marnier’ over ice – do it twice – and then return to their blogs to vice your voice ...vote your vice ...voice your vote.)

Voice Your Vote @ ‘FAR AWAY SERIES’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘TOSSING IT OUT’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘DISCCONNECTED’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘CREATIVE OUTLET OF STRATPLAYER’ by clicking HERE.

As I've done in the past, I will continue to return to my 'BOTB' blog bits on the 7th and 21st of each month to post my own votes and announce the winners in the comment sections.

Links To Previous 'BOTB' Installments:

~ Stephen T. McCarthy

YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.

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Monday, February 3, 2014

‘YAKETY SAX, DON’T RUN BACK!’ (Or, ‘AL B. SCUTTLEBRAYND’)


Dogs chasing cats, cats chasing rats, rolling pin-wielding harridans chasing old husbands, young men chasing skirts, and EVERYONE chasing Benny Hill.

In the comment section of my last post, ‘BATTLE OF THE BANDS #13’ (Or, ‘ELLINGTON VS. VISCOUNTS VS. GATTON’), my buddy Bryan of the blog A Beer For The Shower posted the following on February 3, 2014 at 9:01 AM:

Also, if you want music to strip to, I recommend Yakety Sax. Now THAT'S a horn piece that really gets the blood flowing.

My immediate thought was: 'YAKETY SAX' is not music to strip to! It’s music to slap little, old, bald men on the head to, and music to chase people in circles to!

I don’t know (yet) if Brother Beer Boy Bryan – a young man of 30 – is aware of the history of ‘Yakety Sax’ and its connection to the comedian Benny Hill, but...

I actually knew the tune ‘Yakety Sax’ by Boots Randolph years BEFORE I knew who Benny Hill was, because my Pa was a Boots Randolph fan and had a couple of his LPs when I was a tot.

Years later – late 1970s or very, very early 1980s – my entire family regularly watched the Benny Hill Show.

On Monday, September 20, 2010, I participated in the ‘List Your 10 Favorite TV Shows’ Blogfest sponsored by Alex Cavanaugh. My blog bit was titled ‘WE INTERRUPT THIS REGULARLY SCHEDULED BLOG TO BRING YOU THIS IMPORTANT TELEVISION PROGRAM’.
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Here’s an excerpt from my entry:

People always think I’m joshing when I say this, but Benny Hill was a genius. He was a genuine comedic genius. How he was able to come up with so many exceedingly clever situations and gags on such a demanding time schedule is beyond me. As geniuses go, I’d rank him just below Twain and just above Einstein.
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I remember one sketch in which Benny was playing the Queen of England (as if that’s not funny enough!) who was being interviewed remotely, but there was a delay or lag in the transmission signal. As a result, the Queen unknowingly fell one answer behind and so her every response was in fact an answer to the previous question. As bad luck (and great writing) would have it, everything the Queen said seemed like a sexual reference. So there’s the Queen of England saying something dirty and then smiling big for the camera. Too funny! Only a genius of comedy could have conceived of that scenario. Benny Hill: genius.
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And let’s be honest, this world would be a little less entertaining had there never been a Fred Scuttle:
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Now, who can tell me the name of the song that brought The Benny Hill Show to a close while everyone chased everyone else around in fast-motion?

One person came up with the correct answer:

Sheboyganboy #VI said...
GREAT LIST!

I am not sure how to spell it, but the Benny Hill song was "Yakkety Sax".

Benny Hill? Pure genius... ranking just ahead of Einstein and Twain, and just behind O. Henry.

Here’s what Wikipedia says about it:

Alfred Hawthorne Hill changed his first name to 'Benny', in homage to his favorite comedian, Jack Benny. ...

The most common running gag in Benny Hill's shows was the closing sequence, The "run-off", which was literally a running gag in that it featured various members of the cast chasing Hill as part of the chase, along with other stock comedy characters, such as policemen, vicars, old ladies, and so on. This was commonly filmed using 'under-cranking' camera techniques, and included other comic devices such as characters running off one side of the screen and reappearing running on from the other. The tune used in all the chases, Boots Randolph's "Yakety Sax", is so strongly associated to the show that it is commonly referred to as "The Benny Hill Theme". It has been used as a form of parody in many ways by television shows and a small number of films. The Wachowskis used the same style (and musical theme) in a scene in the film ‘V for Vendetta’ (2006). It also appears in the cult film ‘The Gods Must Be Crazy’.

Years ago, a good friend gave me the 3-DVD boxed set ‘The Hill’s Angels Years: BENNY HILL – Complete And Unadulterated – Set 4, 1978-1981’ and it includes some classic episodes! Someday I really need to collect all the other sets in the series.
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And now for your viewing pleasure, here are some short videos featuring Benny and Boots’ toots:

BENNY HILL CHASE SCENES...







In searching YouTube for videos like those, I accidentally stumbled upon the following video, and this thing had me laughing louder and longer than ANYTHING else has in at least 12 years. What... a... CLASSIC... parody... of outrageous comedy!
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Orange County Police Car Chase - Benny Hill Themed
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I STILL LOVES ME SOME BENNY HILL!

~ Stephen T. McCarthy

YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.

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Saturday, February 1, 2014

‘BATTLE OF THE BANDS #13’ (Or, ‘ELLINGTON VS. VISCOUNTS VS. GATTON’)

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Republican Vs. Democrat, Male Vs. Female, War Vs. Peace, Light Vs. Dark, Good Vs. Evil, Man Vs. Machine, Love Vs. Hate, Dog Vs. Cat, Sun Vs. Moon, Brain Vs. Brawn, Oscar Vs. Grammy, Angel Vs. Demon, Laurel Vs. Hardy, Beer Vs. Wine, TV Vs. Radio, Pitcher Vs. Batter, Paper Vs. Plastic, Reality Vs. Fantasy, Yeshua Vs. Beelzebub, Conservative Vs. Liberal, You Vs. Me, House Vs. Senate, Offense Vs. Defense, Kramer Vs. Kramer, Spy Vs. Spy, Fischer Vs. Spassky, W.C. Fields Vs. Sobriety, Harold Gimpy, Jr. Vs. Sheldon J. Pismire, Rock Vs. Paper Vs. Scissors, Islam Vs. Everything, Singer Vs. Singer, Band Vs. Band...

THE  BATTLE  OF  THE  BANDS! (‘BOTB’)


Shoop-Shooby –
Shooby-duh-Dooby-Doop-Dooby-Dooby-Doo-Wah –
Buh-Doo-Wah!
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EUGENE  MARTONE  VS.  JACK  BUTLER
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Wikipedia sez:

"Harlem Nocturne" is a jazz standard written by Earle Hagen and Dick Rogers in 1939. The song was adopted by bandleader Randy Brooks the next year as his theme song.

First up to the plate is Duke Ellington, who surely needs no introduction. I will say, however, that if you and your “Significant Other” have never made love while hearing the album ‘Ellington Indigos’ you have missed out on something special.
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[There seems to be some discrepancy at YouTube whether this is Duke Ellington or Ted Heath. However, one commenter says that his great-grandfather was hired by Ellington to play the tenor sax on this version, and I did find another different version by Ted Heath. So I’m calling it: Duke Ellington. Plus, it sounds like an Ellington arrangement to my ears.]

Duke Ellington - ‘Harlem Nocturne’


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GODZILLA  VS.  KING  KONG
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My original plan was to put Duke Ellington up against Danny Gatton. But then I read the following at Wikipedia:

The haunting version by The Viscounts has the distinction of being a tune released twice by the same band and rising high on the Billboard charts each time: first in 1959, when it peaked at #53, and again in 1966, peaking at #39 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

I wasn’t familiar with The Viscounts' version, so I checked it out, and I thought it was so darned good that I simply HAD to include it also in this ‘BOTB’ blog bit, making this a 3-way Battle. But take heart, because the first two renditions are LESS THAN 3 minutes long, this won’t be a massive investment of your time.

The Viscounts – ‘Harlem Nocturne’


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RIDDLER  VS.  BATMAN
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And lastly, Danny Gatton. Who was Danny Gatton?

My friend, big Larry Rosen (aka “Fu#kin’ Lelly”), is a Blues guitarist whom you can see in action on stage wearing his classic black Western “smile-pocket” shirt (and eyeglasses) by clicking HERE.
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Circa 1993, Lelly gave me a cassette mix tape he’d put together for me. It was titled ‘Little Guitar Ditties: Lelly’s Favorites’. There were tracks by Stevie Ray Vaughn, Jeff Beck, Chet Atkins and Mark Knopfler, and Danny Gatton. I’d never heard of Gatton before, but what I heard on that tape blew my mind!

I have since become very familiar with Gatton’s music. ‘Guitar Player’ magazine once featured Gatton on its cover with the title “The World’s Greatest Unknown Guitarist”. It is my opinion that guitar playing does not (and probably cannot) get better than Danny Gatton; he’s the virtuoso amongst virtuosos.

On October 4, 1994, Gatton committed suicide. But the year before, he (re-)recorded ‘Harlem Nocturne’ for his ‘Cruisin’ Deuces’ album. Let’s hear what Gatton does with this melody... 
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Danny Gatton – ‘Harlem Nocturne’ 
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 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U01s2Rvvl4w 
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Alright now, “you know the gig”... I welcome EVERYONE to vote for their favorite of these songs in the comment section below. And feel free to tell us WHY you chose one song over the other. (NOTE: Comment Moderation is activated. All submitted comments that do not transgress "Ye Olde Comment Policy" will be posted as soon as possible. Thanks for taking the time to comment.)


After voting here, I suggest - actually I insist - you pop over to FAE’s ‘Far Away Series’, Arlee Bird’s ‘Tossing It Out’, Robin’s ‘Your Daily Dose’, LC’s ‘DiscConnected’, and Chris' 'The Creative Outlet Of StratPlayer' blogs to see which songs they have chosen and vote there also. (If their ‘BOTB’ blog bits aren’t posted yet, pour yourself two shots of ‘Grand Marnier’ over ice – do it twice – and then return to their blogs to vice your voice ...vote your vice ...voice your vote.)

Voice Your Vote @ ‘FAR AWAY SERIES’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘TOSSING IT OUT’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘YOUR DAILY DOSE’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘DISCCONNECTED’ by clicking HERE.
Voice Your Vote @ ‘CREATIVE OUTLET OF STRATPLAYER’ by clicking HERE.

As I've done in the past, I will continue to return to my 'BOTB' blog bits on the 7th and 21st of each month to post my own votes and announce the winners in the comment sections.

Links To Previous 'BOTB' Installments:

~ Stephen T. McCarthy

YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.

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