Friday, November 30, 2001

No, It's Win2K

I have restored at least some functionality to this computer. The problem was with a busted installation of Windows 2000. I deleted the folder that the temp installation was in and everything is fine now. It may be a few days before we're back to full-on Normal.

Wednesday, November 28, 2001

It's The Captain And Tennille! BIG JOKE! Ha ha!

And another annoying trend in commercials: soft AC music as comic relief.

I am sure that people are out there who don't appreciate songs like "Do That To Me One More Time" by the Captain and Tennille (with their participation yet!) or the late Minnie Riperton's "Loving You" as a punchline to a spot. The latter especially rankles because Riperton's been dead for quite some time now, and Riperton's daughter, "Saturday Night Live" actress Maya Rudolph, played the song in tribute to Mom on this past year's Mother's Day special.

I won't even mention the advertisers. Believe me, they don't need the publicity from this misguided attempt at humor.

Badtrans Is To Blame

Those of you who have been sending me the Badtrans virus will be receiving very nasty notes. I believe that this virus has caused the operational problems with my computer.

Sunday, November 25, 2001

Ouch! Dave's Having Problems

I am currently having operational problems with my primary computer, the one on which are stored all my websites and databases. This temporarily means the suspension of updates to my websites. Once the problems are rectified, we will be resuming regular operations.

Friday, November 16, 2001

Obit: Albert Hague

Even a Grinch needed friends, and he lost one of his best ones last night. Composer Albert Hague has died at the age of 81. Born in Germany and fleeing the Nazis in his teens, Hague collaborated with Dr. Seuss on the songs for "How The Grinch Stole Christmas", the original Chuck Jones cartoon from 1965. A Tony winner in 1959 for his score for "Red Head", many also know him from his diversion into acting, playing the music teacher Shorofsky in the movie and TV series "Fame" from 1980-1987.

Saturday, November 10, 2001

Trash The Signs Now!

I drove by a local gas station today and noticed several dozen political candidate signs still up. Ironically, these signs were for losing candidates.

I think a good idea would be to go to your local Waste Management depot, ask to borrow a loader for a few hours, then drive around town with some friends and take every political sign you can find down.

Oh, happy birthday Dad, and Billy. (See below)

Thursday, November 08, 2001

Happy Birthday Billy May

This Saturday, on what would have been my own father's 80th birthday, the man I regard as one of my musical fathers will celebrate his 85th. Billy May, composer, conductor, arranger, trumpeter, and above all else, overgrown frat boy.

He made his name in the Glenn Miller Orchestra as trumpeter and arranger. By the time he struck out on his own, the Big Band era was largely over, but May was able to diversify in several ways. May became a fixture at Capitol Records as its staff genius, not only producing and arranging fine big band recordings such as the 10 inch LP you see pictured above, but also a slew of children's records featuring Bozo the Clown and the Warner Bros. animation characters (working with that studio's three primary writers, Tedd Pierce, Warren Foster and Michael Maltese, as well as voice genius Mel Blanc). He later hooked up with Sinatra and was responsible for the "Come Fly With Me" album. Later he worked with Bobby Darin at Capitol, including the "Two Of A Kind" album featuring the songs of Johnny Mercer. And Dan Ingram, the radio disc jockey, appropriated the last minute or so of the May recording "Tri Fi Drums" as his closing theme and still uses it today.

He also worked in radio and television, acting as musical director on Stan Freberg's radio show and scoring most of the episodes of Jack Webb's "Emergency!" (though he did not write the theme - that chore went to Nelson Riddle). By this time his reputation as a fun loving prankster and a hard drinker was known throughout the industry. In his book "Sinatra: The Song Is You", Will Friedwald recounted an anecdote by the late Daws Butler (one of Freberg's stock company when he wasn't voicing Yogi Bear and others), who stated that Billy May was the only man alive who was capable of conducting a full orchestra and chorus while "stone drunk". But the music never suffered from Billy May's antics.

The fine web site of Gary Wachtel, (a repository of big band MIDI's based on arrangements from the likes of Dave Wolpe, Jerry Nowak, Roger Holmes, and Sammy Nestico), has a chart by Sammy Nestico called "Billy May For President" which erroneously notes that Billy May is deceased. Although he's relatively retired today, I'd gladly write Billy May, still among the living, on the ballot for 2004. So here's to you, Billy May... happy birthday!

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

Politics As Usual

Hi everyone. It's politics as usual. NJ has returned most, if not all, of the State Senate and Assembly to their prior seats and has selected Jim McGreevey as our new Governor. Michael Bloomberg is the new NYC mayor. And barring recounts and absentees, it looks like Jim Whelan will be returning as mayor of Atlantic City.

What sucked big time about this campaign - and what generally turns me off to the election process in general - is the increasingly negative tone of all of the television and radio campaigns of various candidates. Bloomberg's opponent, Mark Green, made a desparate last ditch attempt to shame Bloomberg on some matter that was settled half a decade ago, and I am pleased that that strategy has blown up in his face. We now even get attack ads on billboards and even on banner ads on the Internet. To borrow an oft-repeated tagline from these type commercials: "Its WRONG for politics!"