On January 10th of this year we lost one of the most the most innovative musical performers of the late 1960’s on: David Bowie. David Bowie managed to re-invent his stage persona and musical style to fit the times and keep himself relevant. Bowie was not just a talented musician and singer. He was also a talented actor and he starred in a number memorable and now classic films. In his first major role his acting ability and unique looks brought the alien character of Thomas Jerome Newton to a life in The Man Who Fell to Earth. And few who have seen the film Labyrinth can forget him as the King of the Goblins in his M.C. Escher inspired castle.
Below I have provided a link which will bring up a list of Monroe County Public library’s holdings wish feature the music, writing or acting talent of David Bowie. Mr. Bowie, you will be missed.
The sound of a projector is heard as an old 8mm home movie is projected on to a screen. They show a young father playing with his children, making faces at the camera, laughing and enjoying his life. The camera pulls back behind an older couple watching the film from their couch. Then a close up. The older man is biting his upper lip then asks, “Who is that?” “That’s you honey” comes the reply. A pause then, “Oh, there I am.” And he laughs. Another pause, “Who’s that with me?” “That’s your daughter. Your first daughter Debbie.” And so begins this 2014 documentary on the life of Glen Campbell, now in his 70’s, struggling with Alzheimer’s and preparing to go on one last farewell tour. Read more about Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me.
The Monkees were one of the most controversial bands of the 1960’s. They were controversial because many people could not decide if they were really a band or not. Conceived first as a television series the group was made of up two established musicians Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork, an English Broadway performer, Davy Jones and a former child star, Micky Dolenz who was also toured with his sister as part of a folk singing duo. Read more about The Monkees – Head
In 1964 the United States developed a love affair with four young men from Liverpool, England known as The Beatles. I’m sure you’ve heard of them. By the time they reached the United States they had already been popular in England for two years and had been contracted to film their first movie A Hard Day’s Night. That was soon followed by their second Film Help! Then came two semi psychedelic films Yellow Submarine and Magical Mystery Tour. If you haven’t seen them they are worth a look, if only for the history of both the music and the band. Read more about The Fab Four Films
Eddie and the Cruisers is the story of a fictional band from the early ‘60s, their rise to fame and the death of their leader and chief wordsmith, Eddie Wilson. The story itself seems to be inspired by two real life events; the death of Doors lead singer Jim Morrison and the sudden decision by Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys to shelve the band’s album Smile. Like singer Jim Morrison, Eddie Wilson is a master in putting words and music together in ways that convey feeling while still containing the drive and energy to make a great song. Like Brian Wilson, Eddie is forward thinking in his writing style and wants to produce a piece that is not simply rock and roll, but something that will be remembered for all time even if it is vastly different than anything he has done before. Read more about Eddie and the Cruisers
I’m not much of a purist about most things but Beatles’ songs are an exception. The idea of a movie that used the songs of The Beatles to tell a story did not really appeal to me. That the songs were not the original recordings made the idea seem even worse. However after re-reading Roger Ebert’s review of the movie “Across the Universe” I felt I had to at least give the film a shot. Jude (Jim Sturgess) has come to the United States to find his father and make his way as an artist. While here he meets Max Carrigon and his sister Lucy. From here the film follows Jude and Lucy through the turbulent sixties while capturing their up and down relationship. This happens to the beat of the accompanying background of Beatles tunes. Read more about Across the Universe