Tag Archives: Johnny Cash

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

28 Mar

MIGHTY MARCH

A new album by Johnny Cash is worth celebrating. Out Among The Stars (Columbia/Legacy) was supposed to come out in theJohnnyCash.March2014 mid-1980s but was shelved … Make your way down to the Motown: The Truth Is a Hit exhibit at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Tracing the history of black music with the story of Motown Records, we learn how Motown became the powerhouse of the music we love. There through July 26 … Also at the Schomburg is the 21st Century Women’s Jazz Festival overseen by Toshi Reagon and featuring Meshell Ndegeocello … Surprised and sad to learn that the San Diego Opera, the 10th largest opera company in the US, plans to close. Citing a tough fundraising environment and weak ticket sales, yet another reminder of the challenge to fund arts programs … Only ten Stradivari violas exist and one is heading to auction for $45 million, making it the most expensive instrument in the world. A Sotheby’s VP explains, “Musical instruments and string instruments are quite different from selling other things, because they need to be played.” Hear, hear … Another sale to note are the 270 acoustic vintage guitars, some from the early 1900s, at Guernsey’s on April 2 anitique guitarand 3 … The incomparable voice of k.d. lang on Broadway in After Midnight … The Allman Brothers annual Beacon concerts got off to a rousing and sentimental start owing to the announcement that two beloved members would be leaving and that the band would stop its regular touring after this year. After Gregg Allman came down with bronchitis, the band postponed their last four dates. Sometimes I feel, Like I’ve been tied, To the whipping post … To celebrate Spinal Tap’s 30th anniversary, AMC is streaming a special version of the film for free viewing through April 11. Don’t forget to crank it up to 11 … 92Y Soul Jazz Festival featured Esperanza Spalding … The NY Philharmonic reprised Sweeney Todd in concert. This time director Lonny Price had Bryn Terfel and Emma Thompson in the ghoulishly delicious main roles … Also at the NY Phil, the Orchestra played back-up for Mary Chapin Carpenter, who brought along Shawn Colvin and Joan Baez … Paul Simon and Sting together on tour, made a stop at Madison Square Garden, where Sting, before he sang Simon’s America, said of Simon, “If you wanted to become a literate and literary songwriter, there is the template.” … The ever evolving, ever dynamite Nona Hendryx at Joe’s Pub … And the Oscar for Best Documentary film went to 20 Feet From Stardom, where one of its stars, Darlene Love (love her!) delivered the best thank you speech ever – in song with gratitude and grace.

GIMME A KISS

I wanna rock ‘n’ roll all night. And party every day … Call it the KISS trifecta … They will be inducted into the Rock ’n’ Roll Hall KISS.RollingStoneCover.March2014of Fame in April … They are the face of John Varvatos’ spring ad campaign, which was inspired by their album, Dressed to Kill. Wearing Varvatos suits and their famous faces, natch … Oh and by the way, did you know that the John Varvatos Bowery Store was originally the home of CBGB’s? …

And KISS is finally on the cover of Rolling Stone … Can it get any better for these guys who’ve just been at it forever and deserve it all? Mentsches they are … As Paul Stanley says, “…I’m dead serious. With all guns loaded. And a six-string guitar that can kill.”

SOME LEARNIN’

Interested in journalism and how we get our news? Check out the NYU Center for Global Daily_News.March2014.redAffairs’ new lecture series, Newsmakers: Perspectives in Global Media. The creator and host is Alexis Gelber, a longtime top editor and director of special projects at Newsweek. Alexis talks to international journalists about their use of new social media and non-traditional media to source, cover, and spread their stories. What has changed? And do these changes affect the outcome and our perspective? Alexis gets to the heart of it and breaks it down for us. Check it out.

WE CAN HELP

WQXR.March2014We know that music changes lives, saves lives. How great it is to help students by giving them instruments. Between now and April 7, donate your gently used musical instrument to the WQXR Musical Instrument Drive. Working with Sam Ash Music Stores and the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, WQXR will repair the instruments and distribute them to music programs in NYC Public Schools. Drop off points are in NYC, NJ, Westchester and Long Island. A NYC Public School student myself, I know firsthand what it means to be handed an instrument that can change a life, can save a life. It did mine.

Motown.TheFourTops.March2014Soundtrack to this Issue is
The Four Tops’ I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch)

C’mon, sing along with Levi and the guys:
Sugar pie, honey bunch
You know that I love you
I can’t help myself
I love you and nobody else

 

 Buddha, stay. Good dog. z”l

IMGP2541.cr.newsltr

“…live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
(Buddha)

 

Sources:
Strad quote: NY Times, March 26, 2014
Whipping Post lyrics: Unichappell Music Inc.
Paul Stanley quote: Official John Varvatos Spring/Summer 2014 campaign video
The Four Tops lyrics: Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., EMI Music Publishing

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

27 Feb

FAB FEBRUARY

Downton Abbey’s Season 4 was surely enlightening, thrilling, and quite satisfying. Now we wait a year to learn who DowntonAbbey.2.27.14Lady Mary chooses and how Carson and Mrs. Hughes liked the water … Johnny’s daughter, Roseanne Cash, released The River & the Thread, a meditation on folk and country by way of a southern state of mind. And she performed her dad’s songs on his signature Martin guitars at the Metropolitan Museum, tied in with the exhibit on Martin’s early guitars … Carnegie Hall presented the first Isaac Stern Memorial Concert with Yo-Yo Ma and Emanuel Ax playing Brahms … Hope you got to hear Dianne Reeves at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Her voice, her poise – she is one in a million. On Beautiful Life, she sings Fleetwood Mac and Marvin Gaye … The NY Philharmonic celebrated the Chinese New Year with Tan Dun’s The Triple Resurrection: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Hero; and The BanquetThe Apollo turned 80 and celebrated with Doug E. Fresh hosting their famous Amateur NightLadysmith Black Mambazo, you know, from Paul Simon’s Graceland, well, they brought their magnificent a cappella chorus to BB King Blues Club. Their album, Live: Singing for Peace Around the World, just won a Grammy. Spreading the good word in harmony, that’s what they do … And farewell for real to City Opera with a grand concert that celebrated 70 Years of the People’s Opera. Placido Domingo showed up, too, after all it’s where he made his NYC debut. Put on by the musicians and choristers, they ensured that proceeds benefited the NYC Musicians’ Emergency Relief Fund (Local 802). A classy way to go out. Bravo.

BEATLEMANIA

It was 50 years ago todayThe Beatles performed on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964 and the anniversary of theirBeatles.Love.vbb55 arrival in the US was not forgotten … The Grammys offered a tribute concert featuring Stevie Wonder, John Mayer, Joe Walsh and Jeff Lynne, Maroon 5, Katy Perry, Eurythmics, and oh yeah, Paul and Ringo … Donovan and Peter Asher talked about Beatlemania at the 92Y … The Library for the Performing Arts’s exhibit, Ladies and Gentlemen, the Beatles!, features tour memorabilia, historic film clips and video interviews. The Library held a debate, Beatles vs. Rolling Stones. Mike Myers stood up for the Beatles and NPR’s Ophira Eisenberg with Bill Janovitz, musician and author of a Stones book, spoke for well, y’know. Assembled by the Grammy Museum, catch it before it goes May 10 … Like their melodies, lyrics, and harmonies, the Fab Four’s cultural and musical legacy lives on and on and on and on, across the universe.

DOG MANIA

Every February welcomes the hounds. The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show celebrates our companions, our champions. It’s our chance to see the wondrous magnificent variety of the dog world, where we are guided by the knowledgeable and passionate David Frei, who celebrated 25 years as our host. Three new breeds were introduced: WestminsterDog.2.27.14.bChinook, Rat Terrier, and Portuguese Podengo Pequeno – loved him! This year offered something extra. The Agility Championship, where the dogs go through steeple-chase maneuvers, included for the first time mixed-breeds. Congrats to our new champ, Sky, the magnificent Wire Fox Terrier – the breed’s 14th Best in Show win, more than any other breed. Terriers rule –with 46 wins, the most of any group. Asked why Terriers win so much, David said, “Terriers were bred to look for trouble…gives them an edge to their performance in the ring…It’s their world and we’re just living in it.” Tell me about it.

REMEMBERING PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN

I will always remember this great actor’s roles in three music-related movies. In A Late Quartet, he played the secondphilip-seymour-hoffman.2.27.14.br violinist in a string quartet famous for playing Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 14, opus 131. In Almost Famous, he was the renowned rock critic, Lester Bangs. And in Pirate Radio, he made us believe that he could save the world with rock ‘n roll radio. In each of these roles, he showed us his character’s pain, his truth, his humanity. Baring his own at the same time.

WE CAN HELP

Angel-on-a-Leash.9.30.13.crWe know how much dogs can help to alleviate stress and suffering that patients and their families experience when dealing with illness. Angel On A Leash was founded by the host of the Westminster Dog Show, David Frei, to provide the best therapy dog programs in health care facilities, schools, rehabilitation, and hospice. Learn how you can help or donate.

 Hey-Jude-45.2.27.14

Soundtrack to this Issue is
The Beatles’s Hey Jude
C’mon, sing along:
Hey, Jude, don’t make it bad
Take a sad song and make it better
Remember to let her into your heart
Then you can start to make it better

Buddha, stay. Good dog. z”l IMGP2541.cr.newsltr“…live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.”
(Buddha)

 Sources:
Downton Abbey pic: DowntonAbbeyOnline
Beatles pic: vbb55
Best in Show pic: Ben Hider/USA Network/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty images
David Frei quote:
ESPN interview
Philip Seymour Hoffman pic: The Well-Tempered Ear

Hey Jude lyrics: Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Johnny Cash Explains the Hurt

27 Nov

Do you watch Person of Interest? A television show I recently got into. Interesting concept, heroic characters, fast-paced plots. From Bad Robot, JJ Abrams (Star Trek, Fringe). And there’s a dog. What’s not to love?

Question: Can a piece of music elevate and even elucidate an episode of a television show? Did you watch last nite’s episode? If you did, you know the answer is yes, it can. Because it did.

JohnnyCash.11.27.13.hurt.crThe opening four minutes was accompanied solely by Johnny Cash’s version of Hurt. It set the tone and it stated the thesis for what followed.

Revenge, eye for an eye, retaliation, settling the score. The characters suffered a mighty loss in last week’s episode. This week was all about their response.

Healing, light at the end of the tunnel, there’ll be better days…

Sure, there’ll be time for all that.

For now, Johnny Cash is tellin’ you, it’s just about the hurtin’.

Hurt

I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that’s real
The needle tears a hole
The old familiar sting
Try to kill it all away
But I remember everything

What have I become?
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end
You could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt
I wear my crown of thorns*
On my liar’s chair

Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
Beneath the stain of time
The feeling disappears
You are someone else
I am still right here

What have I become?
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end

You could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt
If I could start again

A million miles away
I would keep myself
I would find a way

Sources:
Hurt: Music and lyrics by Trent Reznor (*changed to crown of “thorns” in Cash’s version)
Johnny Cash’s Hurt: From the album, Johnny Cash – American IV: The Man Comes Around (2002), produced by Rick Rubin
Johnny Cash Pic: from Hurt shoot

July Newsletter: A Review of the Month’s Culture, Arts & Trends

31 Jul

JULY IS HOT HOT HOT

That Tree.markhirsch.7.29.13.bTemperatures in the 90’s and 100’s all over the country. An unbearably hot summer. And one that we may have to get used to because, hey, this could be the new norm…JK Rowling wrote a detective story, The Cuckoo’s Calling, under a pseudonym. And it got good reviews! Whew…My fave author, Daniel Silva, published the next account of his superspy Gabriel Allon’s exploits, The English Girl. When we left Gabriel, he and his Mossad team were solving a murder in the Vatican at the Pope’s request. Oy!…On his Facebook Page called That Tree, photographer Mark Hirsch posts an iPhone photo a day chronicling a year in the life of an oak. Peaceful and majestic doesn’t come close to describing his pics. A tree of life indeed…Showtime is on a roll. Rock ‘n’ roll. Another great doc, Beware of Mr. Baker, displays Ginger Baker’s drum chops as well as his idiosyncrasies…Cyndi Lauper performed her She’s So Unusual album in its entirety in honor of its 30th anniversary. Boy is she on a roll. And having fun…Mick Jagger turned 70. What? Yep. And he still moves like Jagger…And dogs and cats were up for adoption at the 15th annual Broadway Barks benefiting NYC animal shelters and rescue organizations. Thank you big time to Mary Tyler Moore and Bernadette Peters and the Broadway community for caring! Buy a Broadway Barks 2014 Calendar to support the cause.

 ARTS NEWS

JohnnyCashStamp.7.29.30July in New York means the NY Phil in Central Park. Fireworks ensue…George Lucas, Tony Kushner, Renee Fleming, Herb Alpert, and others were awarded the NEA’s National Medal of Arts. President Obama said, “they create a new space and that becomes a lasting contribution to American life.” An apt description of the arts, Mr. President…Carnegie Hall’s new National Youth Orchestra is now touring the world with Joshua Bell…In Beatles news, Let It Be, the latest Broadway musical of Beatles songs opened… Alvin Ailey made a welcome return to Lincoln Center after an absence there of over ten years…More welcome news from The Met Museum of Art, now open on Mondays! That makes it 7 days of no excuses to miss anything anymore. I will be heading to the Roof Garden. Those splatters of red paint are artist Imran Qureshi’s renderings of shrubbery, angel wings, and birds. Persian ornamental motifs that he describes as “a dialogue with life, with new beginnings and fresh hope starts.”…Back to the NY Phil. Although Maestro Gilbert wore a baseball jersey for the Major League Baseball All-Star charity concert, he was upstaged by Mariah Carey who, well, didn’t. Fur and feather more her thing…Noting his influence from rock and folk to blues and gospel, the US Postal Service honored Johnny Cash with a stamp…When asked by his producer Rick Rubin what he was working on, an ailing Johnny Cash replied, “I’ve been working on using I and me less. Remember? You gave me that comment on the song?” But he wasn’t talking about a song. He was talking about life. A lesson we can all take to heart.

 TECH NEWS

There are people who really rely on Twitter for their news. Y’know what Ezra Klein has to say about that? “I find it a place you go to find, I guess, your barbecued potato chips. A lot of stuff that is kind of interesting, mostly not that good.”…NYC has finally gotten approval for its own domain name: .nyc. You can get it if your primary business residence is in NYC. Watch out Silicon Valley. NYC is on its way to becoming the world’s tech capital…My NY Phil boss, Barbara Haws, is on a mission to fight the Keystone XL pipeline. And in what can only be called the opposite of tech, she carries a sign on her subway trip to and from work every day. Not only effective, she’s inspiring. 

BUSY BLOGGIN’ 

MMM.HumpDay.7.15.13.camel“Uh-oh. Guess what day it is? Guess what day it is.” Who doesn’t love a talking camel? I’ve written lots of posts on Yvette Perry’s Blog. About trends, social media marketing, the latest in music and the performing arts, writing, and more. But no post has been viewed more than this one of Geico’s Happy Camel. I wrote about him because he makes me stop to watch him every time it comes on. And I’m not alone. A memorable ad that makes people smile. Good job…And the Rolling Stone cover of the Boston bomber made lots of headlines. With rock star hair and a guarded direct gaze, it seemed like Rolling Stone was making him into a celebrity. By giving up a coveted piece of rock ‘n’ roll real estate, my question is: Is it still cool to be on the cover of the Rolling Stone?

SlyTheFamilyStone.7.29.13
Soundtrack to this Issue is Hot Fun in the Summertime
from Sly & the Family Stone.

 Buddha, stay. Good dog.
IMGP2541.cr.newsltr
 “…live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” (Buddha)

 

Sources:
Tree pic: Mark Hirsch, FacebookPage/ThatTree
President Obama NEA quote: The White House
Imran Qureshi quote: Metropolitan Museum
Barbara Haws: Moyers & Company
Johnny Cash quote: Rick Rubin Interview/The Daily Beast
Ezra Klein’s Twitter quote: The Atlantic
NYC domain: Betabeat
Camel pic: FacebookPage/Geico
Johnny Cash stamp: Frank Bez/USPS
Sly & The Family Stone pic: last.fm

Monday Marketing Mojo: Dig This!

1 Jul

Start the week off with these thoughts to get your mojo juices flowing.

Why is Y sometimes a vowel?
OK, so with a name like Yvette you got me. I had to know. In school we learned “A, E, I, O, U, and sometimes Y.” In yes, Y is a consonant and in gym, it’s a vowel. Y, I mean why, is that? Because writing and speech are different – the concepts of vowel and consonant properly belong to the domain of speech.

Sony-walkman.7.1.1334 years ago the first Sony Walkman walked the Earth
Sony’s chairman wanted a small device to listen to his music while travelling. And so on July 1, 1979, the Sony Walkman was introduced. The world’s first portable cassette player changed how we listen to music. It cost $200 and weighed 14 ounces (today’s iPod weighs 4 ounces). Sony promoted its portability and hi-tech qualities, touting it as the thing you wanted, that you needed, that you had to have!

Johnny Depp on Music
“Music is my life … It’s my natural habitat, to have a guitar strapped to me.” CBS This Morning’s Charlie Rose asked Johnny Depp, “When you play, you didn’t want to be the vocalist, you wanted to be in the shadows?” Johnny’s reply, “… the idea of being the lead singer, of being the front man … I’d rather be Keith than Mick, no disrespect.”

Go to Twitter for Your News?
Here’s what Washington Post blogger Ezra Klein feels about getting your news from Twitter: “I really try not to get my news from Twitter, which has a reputation as a place where people go and find lots of great news. I find it a place you go to find, I guess, your barbecued potato chips … A lot of stuff that is kind of interesting, mostly not that good.”

Record Producer Rick Rubin Is Ruling the Charts
Asked about his working with Johnny Cash, Rick Rubin had this to say: “… there was a song he wrote, I can’t remember which one it was, but I listened to it and said, ‘Do you think you could take some of the I’s and me’s out of it?’ And he thought about it and he was like, “Yeah, I think I can do that.” And he did. So 10 years later, I’m visiting him in Nashville … I said, ‘What have you been working on lately?’ And he said, ‘I’ve been working on using I and me less.’ And I said, ‘Really?’ And he said, ‘Yeah. Remember? You gave me that comment on the song? That’s what I’ve been working on.’ Incredible. He didn’t mean it in the context of songs. He meant it in the context of life.” 

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