Ave Atque Vale, Culture, Entertainment, Music

Loretta Lynn, R.I.P.

Loretta Lynn has died at the age of 90. Some who know me might find my love of American country music a bit odd.  Mr. Right never did.  He understood that it hearkened back to centuries ago, to the traditions of English, Scottish, Welsh, and Irish ballads, and to the stories those songs told, stories… Continue reading Loretta Lynn, R.I.P.

Entertainment, Movies and TV, Music

Happy Birthday, Englebert Humperdinck!

https://youtu.be/kOcW9gZv68A Oh.  Wait.  Sorry.  Wrong Englebert Humperdinck. “Wut!”  I hear you exclaim in disbelief.  There’s more than one Englebert Humperdinck? Well, no….. The “real” Englebert Humperdinck, born September 1, 1854 was a German composer best known for his opera Hänsel und Gretel, based on the Brothers Grimm fairy-tale of the same name.  Like many of his… Continue reading Happy Birthday, Englebert Humperdinck!

Ave Atque Vale, Entertainment, Music

The Carnival is Over: Judith Durham, R.I.P.

The year is 1964.  The pop revolution is underway, and groups like The Beatles and The Rolling Stones own the British charts and are besieged by thousands of screaming girls throwing flowers (and much else) at them wherever they go. Out of nowhere, that May, a quartet of young Australians who'd worked their passage from… Continue reading The Carnival is Over: Judith Durham, R.I.P.

Culture, Entertainment, Music

Maria Szymanowksa: Composer, Pianist, Trailblazer

Today is the one-hundred-ninety-first anniversary of the death of Maria Szymanowska, nineteenth-century Polish composer and professional pianist who achieved the height of her fame at the court of Russian Empress Alexandra Feodorovna. Before settling in St. Petersburg, Szymanowska had toured most of Western Europe, and her performances, as well as her compositions had been respectfully… Continue reading Maria Szymanowksa: Composer, Pianist, Trailblazer

Culture, Entertainment, Music

Tuneful Tuesdays–The Bakersfield Sound

So, there I was, a couple of weeks ago, exchanging emails with a new friend who lives in California, and who's spent quite a bit of time in Bakersfield.  (Note to self: Food. Sounds Awesome!) I think he assumed that--Brit that I am--I'd be unfamiliar with the city. But.  No. He misunderestimated me.  Hugely. TBC,… Continue reading Tuneful Tuesdays–The Bakersfield Sound

Loss, Love, Music

Happy Birthday, Pierino Ronald Como!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffZI9ETWMmo He was born 110 years ago, on May 18, 1912, just a small piece down the road from me, in Canonsburg PA, home of (among other things) Sarris Candies and All-Clad cookware.  Not to mention also Bobby Vinton, Marty Schottenheimer (giving the lie to the idea that the only good things, NFL-wise, to come… Continue reading Happy Birthday, Pierino Ronald Como!

Music, Plain Speaking

Musical Mondays: Someone Waits for Me, on Serenade Radio

I've often mentioned my fondness for Mark Steyn on this site.  It's one which dates back many years, long before he referenced Dad's Telegraph obituary in his National Review column.  I think it even dates to before my discovery that he spent many of his formative years in Birmingham in the UK, my family stomping… Continue reading Musical Mondays: Someone Waits for Me, on Serenade Radio

Culture, Music, Plain Speaking

Triangulations (Apologies to Sir Cliff Richard)

Lord.  I remember, as a child and adolescent, Cliff Richard being the quintessentially British pop star.  Better (and bigger) than the Beatles. He never really made it in the States, where his closest brush with fame came in the mid-1970s with something called "Devil Woman." Not really one of my faves, as I wasn't sure… Continue reading Triangulations (Apologies to Sir Cliff Richard)

Music, Quote of the Day, Religion

“We are an Easter People, and Alleluia is our song!”

It’s true that I haven’t been able to find a single source pointing me to the place where the putative author of today’s quote said exactly these words, even in translation (perhaps someone could help me out). But they are widely attributed to St. Augustine, and certainly embody the spirit of his Easter Reflections, an… Continue reading “We are an Easter People, and Alleluia is our song!”