21 May 2012
There were tons of yard sales on Saturday morning, but I was only able to hit a fraction of them. I bought some Dr. Who DVDs: the Five Doctors special and the two 1965 and 1966 Daleks movies starring Peter Cushing as the Doctor, something of a rarity. I have now seen ALL of the Doctor Who episodes in syndication (up to the end of the first Matt Smith season, when I gave up on the franchise) plus the two off-shoot movies. Nerd bragging rights.
We (me, Chris, Don) did the Spotsylvania Civil War battle for only one day - it wasn't big enough to spend an entire weekend at. Photos here. Afterwards we stopped at Carl's in Fredericksburg to get some frozen custard from their 60+ year old machines (as seen in the Rick Sebak ice cream documentary) and hung out for a time at a nearby parking lot classic car show, where we met Elvis. Video here. Nice little "scene" they got going there... not as big or as interesting as the Friday night car show at Bob's in Burbank, but fun.
I'm not thrilled with the way the camcorder overexposed the video images... something went wrong. I'll have to figure that out. And the device is so small it's a bit difficult for me to use with one hand - the controls are not entirely "handy" for my big mitt. I'll have to deal with that as well.
I really must train myself to keep my mouth shut while filming... I'm never pleased with the idiotic things I say behind the camera. Let the images speak for themselves - or provide titles and captions... I've done a LOT more more video content this year (my youtube channel here) than in past years; you'd think I'd get better at it.
Oh... last week I mentioned that Justin and Jenny, two talented young church friends of ours, did a little concert in our home. I got some video. Here it is. They also performed on Sunday, during church. It was very nice. Professional string tone.
I found a one buck CD of the recent Broadway revival of West Side Story, my all-time favorite musical, at a library sale Friday. I bought the movie soundtrack in 1972, later on the original Broadway cast, and so I know every note. This one's not bad - but it isn't especially good, either. It's bilingual, that is, the songs "I Feel Pretty" and "A Boy Like That" are sung in Spanish, which makes a certain amount of sense, given that the Sharks are winning the American linguistic rumble. But it seems gimmicky. I prefer English.
The modern digital recording is a real plus; the orchestrations sound great. You can feel some bass. The problem, however, is that the singers appear to be singing in a flat, generic American dialect. The 1961 soundtrack features singers using more of a Manhattan lilt (if that's the word for what people generally consider to be an unmusical dialect). Also, there's an insistent snap and energy to the patter and singing in the soundtrack that is entirely missing from this production. I miss the jazzy early Sixties syncopation: "With a CLICK/With a SHOCK/Phone'll jinggggle/Door'll KNOCK/Open the latccch..." Staccato, staccato, legato, staccato, legato. Brilliant.
Also, looking at some of the photos, it seems to be in contemporary times, if the costuming is any indication. Again, that makes sense, but... West Side Story with cell phones - without the daddy-o, just doesn't seem right. It was a nice effort and I give the producers credit, but I'm glad we have the originals.
By the way, Tony's song "Something's Coming" was significant for me, when I first listened to it as a sixteen year-old. It captures the hyped up expectancy of a teenager. I knew something was coming for me, too, but I didn't know what. As it turned out, it was the remainder of my high school and teenage years, which were fun and confusing at the same time. And, given that I was a eighteen year-old Marine, that was a part of it as well.
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