Music Throwback Saturday: Banana Boat

Harry Belafonte will be turning 90 on March 1, 2017

tarriersI knew the song Banana Boat (Day-O) by Harry Belafonte. Everybody knows that song, even fans in Japan, who would sing it TO Harry.

But looking on the charts for February 16, 1957, I found TWO songs with similar titles, the Belafonte Song at #5 and The Banana Boat Song by a group called The Tarriers at #7, a recording that, to my knowledge, I had never heard.

The Tarriers was a folk trio of Eric Darling (d. 2008), Bob Casey and the future movie actor Continue reading “Music Throwback Saturday: Banana Boat”

November Rambling: Eddie, the Renaissance Geek, turns 50; Jaquandor’s book now available for purchase

The official video for Cuts Like a Winter by Rebecca Jade and the Cold Fact

christmas savings

John Oliver’s Complicated Fun Connects for HBO. Perhaps John Oliver Is Outdoing The Daily Show and Colbert. In any case, Yet Another Study Shows US Satire Programs Do A Better Job Informing Viewers Than Actual News Outlets.

The Motion Picture Academy chose to bestow a special award to Harry Belafonte, the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. “Belafonte’s remarks offer both a pointed and powerful rebuke of Hollywood’s past and a stirring inducement to continue the industry’s more recent progress on human rights issues.”

Re the Ferguson protests, which I saw described as “mind bogglingly incomprehensible”: It’s Incredibly Rare For A Grand Jury To Do What Ferguson’s Just Did, as even Antonin Scalia could tell you. So Mark Evanier’s thoughts largely echo mine. Related: video showing the moments leading up to the fatal shooting by police of a 22-year-old Saratoga Springs, Utah man, Darrien Hunt.

6 Things You Might Not Think Are Harassment But Definitely Are Continue reading “November Rambling: Eddie, the Renaissance Geek, turns 50; Jaquandor’s book now available for purchase”

That Big Box of Vinyl

Tosy and Cosh is a blogger that I used to enjoy reading, before he went on sabbatical back in 2009. I just discovered that he is back writing. Somehow, though, I missed his brief return from March to May 2011, during which time he did this piece That Big Box of Vinyl. It was really depressing, because it was subtitled “music you remember your parents listening to.” It included songs such as Colour My World by Chicago, which was his mother and father’s wedding song; it was also the song of my high school prom. Talk about feeling old.

I’ve previously shared some of the singles in my father’s collection. So here are some albums.

Harry Belafonte, as noted, was a huge influence on my father’s time as a singer of folk songs. From this Belafonte discography, I discovered the albums Dad owned. The album links have 30-second clips of each song.

The most important album for him had to have been My Lord What A Morning, from 1960. He performed most of the songs, especially Buked And Scorned. In fact, it was SO important that, just this year, I bought copies of it for the older of my sisters and for me. From Streets I Have Walked (1963), he got the arrangement of This Wicked Race. Dad also owned An Evening With Belafonte/Makeba (1965) and In My Quiet Room (1966).

I noted, a long while back, the importance of Pete Seeger’s “We Shall Overcome” album “recorded live at his historic Carnegie Hall Concert, June 8, 1963″. I found a four-song EP, featuring If You Miss Me at the Back of the Bus; Little Boxes; I Ain’t Scared of Your Jail; and We Shall Overcome. I also discovered a too-trimmed version of Tshotsholosa (Road Song). I own a version by Ladysmith Black Mambazo, and just this summer, I heard a performance by Peace Train, a South African pair of women, one white, one black, singing this tune.

Finally, Joan Baez, and specifically, the oddly-named Best of Joan Baez, from the early 1960s, was huge. Here’s So Soon in the Morning, with Bill Wood, which my father, sister and I used to perform together.

May Rambling: Stolen Scream and lots of music

THE QUID IS A COOL ROCK BAND that gained some success during the Garage Band era in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

The Stolen Scream (via Steve Bissette’s Facebook page). Creative theft is a global phenomenon. “The Stolen Scream” is a snapshot of just one such phenomenal, almost spontaneous international appropriation of an artist’s (in this case, a photographer’s) work.

A death that was also a birth. “As a midwife, I’ve spent the last 30 years taking care of women in pregnancy. But nothing prepared me for this.”

It’s a horrible cycle I’m quite familiar with and occasionally adore. After all, anxiety is king, and I am its lowly peasant. Going into public, whether a store, the movies, a restaurant, or a family function, is exhausting. Continue reading “May Rambling: Stolen Scream and lots of music”

Paul Simon’s Graceland, plus 25

When the Graceland album comes out in the fall of 1986, there are a lot of positive reviews, though there is some discussion of cultural imperialism, talk Simon occasionally faced directly,

On June 5, the 25th anniversary edition of the landmark Paul Simon album Graceland will be released. It has a few demo or alternate tracks, plus something described as “The Story of ‘Graceland’ as told by Paul Simon,” which could be interesting. But what is really intriguing is the DVD that comes with it, Under African Skies, directed by Joe Berlinger, which I saw on A&E a few days ago. It not only discusses the making of the album, and shows the reunion of many of the artists; it also addresses the huge controversy over the album and the subsequent tour.

There was a United Nations cultural (and other) boycott of South Africa at the time Continue reading “Paul Simon’s Graceland, plus 25”