Tag Archives: Jeff Buckley

August Newsletter: A Review of the Month’s Culture, Arts + Trends

27 Aug

AUGUST’S SORROW

1.Aretha.aug2018.1

Aretha Franklin
(March 25, 1942-August 16, 2018)

WITH RESPECT

The marquee on the Fox Theater shows the word "Respect' in memory of singer Aretha Franklin in downtown Detroit

It started out as a soul song and ended up a national anthem of empowerment. Aretha Franklin turned Otis Redding’s soulful Respect into a statement, a mountain of meaning, a powerful mandate for all of humanity. Some say that it is the best cover of any song of all time. It was Aretha’s first No. 1 hit. The time was 1967. In that song, she was singing about the civil rights movement, women’s liberation, and any and every abuse put upon the downtrodden. She brought dignity into the equation. Otis Redding’s song, from the man’s point of view, was about domestic discord. Aretha made it a hymn of sexual liberation and political engagement. She made it a powerful enduring statement for freedom and equality, a statement that underscored the need for respect and dignity for all.

 

TAKE A SEAT

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Eating pizza on the patio? What could be nicer? You know those little plastic pizza tables that keep your fresh steaming hot pie from sticking to the lid of the delivery box? It does look like a patio table, doesn’t it? So a Canadian pizza company, Boston Pizza, and their ad agency, John St., made tiny patio seats to go with them as a funny summertime surprise! And a very cool marketing campaign was born.

 

A POTENT PARTNERSHIP

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Dave Lory is a good friend and colleague, an artist manager, and all-around music industry maven. His book, Jeff Buckley: From Hallelujah to the Last Goodbye, is about Dave, Jeff, the music business, and life. It belongs right alongside the other essential music books on your shelf. Told in first person, we learn about the “day-to-day reality of managing a genius.” Here’s all you need to know, starting with the Introduction … Dave’s own introduction to this new artist (it is 1993) was getting off to a bad start. It was a Sunday, Jeff was late, and the lawyer acting as his manager wasn’t exactly obliging. This first meeting was going south until Dave speaks directly to Jeff: “I have a pet peeve.” Jeff says, “Oh yeah?” Dave’s answer, “Lateness.” Then he adds, “If you want to work with me, I’ll put together a plan for you … and then we’ll follow that plan together. Piss-poor planning equals piss-poor results … Anyway, I’ve got somewhere else I’d rather be right now. The football ain’t gonna watch itself.” Dave starts to walk out when Jeff catches up with him, “You’re the first person that hasn’t kissed my ass.” … Dave Lory was Buckley’s manager from the beginning of his career until his tragic death in 1996. Dave’s no-nonsense management approach serves him well in his writing. You’ll be hooked. I sure was. Get it on Amazon.

 

OOEY GOOEY PERFECTION

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What is most everybody’s favorite summertime campfire treat? Did you just say, S’Mores? Of course! Who could resist that mound of warm gooey deliciousness? … The oldest ingredient is the marshmallow, from the plant marsh mallow, used for thousands of years to cure sore throats and also a treat. Today’s marshmallows contain no marsh mallow sap at all. The Industrial Revolution made possible the production of chocolate less costly, making it available to the masses. And graham crackers were invented by a Presbyterian minister, Sylvester Graham, who felt that a vegetarian diet would curb carnal desires and was a healthier diet … S’Mores may have started as a homemade version of Mallomars or moon pies, two snacks introduced in the 1910s. Some more S’Mores, anyone?

The first documented S’Mores Recipe is from the 1927 publication, Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts. “Toast two marshmallows over the coals to a crisp gooey state and then put them inside a graham cracker and chocolate bar sandwich. The heat of the marshmallow between the halves of chocolate bar will melt the chocolate a bit.” So get yourself 1 graham cracker broken in half, 3 rectangles of milk chocolate, and 2 large marshmallows. You know what to do. And since practice makes perfect, you may need to try and try again!

 

DOG NEWS

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E.B. White wrote many of the books and poems we have enjoyed reading as children and as adults, including Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little. But did you know he loved, really, really, really loved, dogs? He’s written about them and he also wrote about his black Scottie dog, Daisy. On December 22, 1931, she was hit by a New York City taxi while smelling the flowers at the florist shop on University Place. E.B. White wrote Daisy’s obituary that was published in The New Yorker (March 12, 1932). He described her life, from her birth to her untimely death at 3 years old: “Her life was full of incident but not of accomplishment … Once she slipped her leash and chased a horse for three blocks through heavy traffic, in the carking belief that she was an effective agent against horses … She died sniffing life, and enjoying it.” The entire obituary is in the book, E.B. White On Dogs … In the pic above, that is E.B. White with Susy, a West Highland White Terrier, in his study in North Brooklin, Maine. Yes! Oh yes! He had a Westie!

 

ENDNOTE: ARETHA FRANKLIN

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In 1973, The New York Times wrote, “she knows more than we do about so many, many sectors of human experience.”

“Being the Queen is not all about singing, and being a diva is not all about singing. It has much to do with your service to people, and your social contributions to your community and your civic contributions as well.” (Aretha Franklin)

 

WE CAN HELP

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The Queen of Soul supported the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, which specializes in diabetes research. She lived with diabetes throughout her life and wanted to make sure other people would have the health care access that they needed. The Center provides care to children and adults with Type 1 diabetes and teaches patients how to prevent or delay complications. The Center is part of the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Aurora, CO. Donations can be made to the Children’s Diabetes Foundation in memory of Aretha Franklin by filling out the form or by calling 303.863.1200.

 

Soundtrack to this Issue

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Aretha’s A Song for You

Hearing of Aretha’s passing, this is the song that came immediately to mind, my favorite Aretha song. I have always loved it. I have listened to Leon Russell’s deeply heartfelt rendition so, so, so many times. Those words and the way the music informs those feelings. And then along comes Aretha who makes it her own, without diminishing or taking away from the writer’s own intent. What she does with it is tell us who she is, her story, and what’s in her heart. Herself a songwriter, she bestows appreciation, honor, and respect on every one of her covers.

C’mon, sing along, you know the words:

I’ve been so many places in my life and time
I’ve sung a lot of songs
I’ve made some bad rhymes
I’ve acted out my life in stages

With ten thousand people watching
But we’re alone now
And I’m singing this song to you 

I know your image of me is what I hoped to be
I treated you unkindly
But darling can’t you see
There’s no one more important to me
Baby can’t you see through me?
‘Cause we’re alone now and I’m singing this song to you 

… And if my words don’t come together
Listen to the melody
‘Cause my love is in there hiding 

I love you in a place
Where there’s no space or time
I love you for my life
You’re a friend of mine
And when my life is over
Remember when we were together
We were alone
And I was singing this song to you

Who rescued whom?11.KEEP-YP+BarkleySo grateful for Barkley coming into my life.
Thanks to Westie Rescue of New England.

Buddha, stay. Good dog. z”l12.KEEP-Buddha“…live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
(Buddha)

 

Sources:
Respect pic: Pic of the marquee on the Fox Theater in Detroit, Aretha’s hometown
Pizza pic: John St.
Jeff Buckley: From Hallelujah to the Last Goodbye quotes: Post Hill Press (May 29, 2018)
E.B. White and Westie pic: photo by Jill Krementz, from New York Social Diary (February 9, 2009), Jill Krementz Photo Journal-Top Dogs (more awesome photos of writers with their dogs!)
We Can Help pic of Aretha: International Women’s Day March 18, 2018/One Drop.Today highlighting Women With Diabetes
Soundtrack A Song for You lyrics: Leon Russell ©Universal Music Publishing Group

August 27, 2018
All Rights Reserved

 

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