Posts Tagged ‘music

26
Jun
09

In Passing… Michael Jackson (1958-2009)

michael_jackson

 

 

Singer, songwriter, and entertainer Michael Jackson passed away yesterday, June 25, 2009. Born Michael Joseph Jackson in Gary, Indiana he was the seventh in line with brothers Rebbie, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Randy and sisters La Toya and Janet. The Jackson siblings got into music and at the age of 5, Michael began showing his talent. He joined the band his brothers started and the group became known as the Jackson 5. In 1966 they won a local talent show with young Michael leading a cover of James Brown’s “I Feel Good,” and from there they toured the MidWest in a string of black clubs and venues, often opening for stripteases and other adult acts. The Jackson 5 signed with Motown Records in 1968 and their first four hits (two of which were “ABC” and “I’ll Be There’) went straight to number one. In 1978 Michael starred as Scarecrow in “The Wiz” where he met and teamed-up with Quincy Jones who agreed to produce his album, “Off the Wall.” The album was released in 1979 and gave Jackson his first two solo hits: ‘Rock with You,” and “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.” 1982 brought the release of “Thriller,” which is in the top five best-selling albums of all time. “Thriller” contained the hits “Billie Jean,” “Beat It,” and the title track “Thriller” (which included the voice of Vincent Price). A video for “Thriller” was made by director John Landis who would go on to direct other Jackson videos. Jackson then became friends with Paul McCartney, singing duet on “Say, Say, Say” and “The Girl is Mine,” but the friendship dissolved once Jackson bought half of the Beatles catalog in an auction. In 1987 “Bad” was released, giving the singles “Bad,” “Man in the Mirror,” and “Dirty Diana.” He went to the White House, obtained several awards, and was proclaimed “The Artist of the Decade.”

Sadly while the 1980’s crowned him “The King of Pop,” his kingdom began slowly slipping away; his celebrity status quickly overshadowed his career in music. Charges of child abuse and molestation began plaguing him. His skin seemed to become whiter each year. He married Lisa Marie Presley and divorced her in less than two years. Following that he married his dermatologist’s nurse Deborah Rowe with whom he had a son and daughter. They married and divorced in 1999. Afterward there was the debacle with his label, child abuse charges, losing the Neverland ranch and leaving the United States. Jackson was poised for a comeback beginning in the UK this summer. He was 50 years of age at the time of death.

Thoughts and prayers for his family and friends.

For more information check out his IMDB page at:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001391/

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08
Jan
09

Name that Movie Trailer Tune

Every now and then you’re watching a trailer and a piece of music comes from beneath the natural sounds of the movie and you (and sometimes I) wonder, “What song is that? Who does that?” Here are some of the ones I’ve ran across:

“Every Day Should be a Holiday” – The Dandy Warhols

This was one of the two songs used for the “Sideways” trailers. This song also happens to be part of the soundtrack for “There’s Something About Mary.”

“No Rain” – Blind Melon

This was the other song used in the trailers for “Sideways.”

“No One Knows” – Queens of the Stone Age

Located on the trailer for “Confidence.”

“Dragula” – Rob Zombie

Located on the trailer for “Highlander: Endgame.”

“Get Connected” – Stereo MC’s

This one has been used in a few movies and TV shows, as well as a razor commercial.

“Battle Without Honor or Humanity” – Hotei Tomayasu

The infamous theme to “Kill Bill” was from a 2000 movie called, “Shin jingi naki tatakai/ Battle Without Honor,” which was a remake of a ‘70s movie.

“Vampire Hunters” – Wojciech Kilar

From, by, and of the movie “Bram Stoker’s Dracula.” Also used in numerous other trailers.

“O Fortuna” – Carl Orff

Okay, who HASN’T heard this one? Created for the play “Carmina Burana.” I heard it in the “Doors” movie.

“Grounds for Divorce” – Elbow

I’ve been looking for this one ever since I saw the trailer for “Burn After Reading.” Check it out!

If you’ve heard a piece of music in a trailer and want to know where it’s from, add a comment or send me an e-mail.

02
Sep
08

In Passing… Jerry Reed (1937-2008)

Singer, actor, and songwriter Jerry Reed passed away yesterday from complications with emphysema. He was 71 years of age. Reed was known for such hits as “When You’re Hot, You’re Hot,” and “Eastbound and Down,” the theme to “Smokey and the Bandit” in which Reed played sidekick to Burt Reynolds. He spent time acting on TV shows and other movies, and even directed a film called, “What Comes Around.” He will be missed.

 

For more information, check out the following link:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0715274/

 

Thoughts and prayers go to his family and friends.

 

10
Jun
08

Queen at the Movies (a Top 5 list)

The British rock band Queen, lead by late singer Freddie Mercury, contributed some of the most popular and memorable music to the world from the 1970’s to the 1990’s. Whether you were at a sports game and heard “We Will Rock You,” or “Another One Bites the Dust,” or sat through “Highlander” (which they soundtracked), Queen’s presence in pop culture has been widely acknowledged. Today, I list the Top Five Uses of Queen Music in the Movies:

 

“Blades of Glory” (2007) – Will Ferrell and Jon Heder are ice skaters who hatch a plan to resurrect their careers by joining up for a “couples” ice skating event. While you know this is a Will Ferrell movie (and that he’s gonna find a way to win) the actual surprise (or maybe not) was their choice for the music to skate to: Queen’s “Flash” theme (for the movie “Flash Gordon”). The bass drum and piano chord opening made the entire scene worth it.

 

“Shaun of the Dead” (2004) – When Shaun (Simon Pegg) and his friends are holed-up in the Winchester Bar, Shaun finds that not only does he have to fight off the undead outside, but the bar’s owners are undead and they’re inside. The jukebox kicks on and begins playing Queen’s, “Don’t Stop Me Now,” and Shaun and friends are beating the male owner of the Winchester on the head with sticks and shovels, while his girlfriend and mom sit on the side bopping along to the music. “Kill the Queen!” “What?!?” “The jukebox!” Good double-entendre there.

 

“Grosse Pointe Blank” (1997) – Martin Blank (John Cusack) returns to his hometown from a 10-year sojourn and is sent to kill the father of his love interest (Minnie Driver), as well as watching out for a hitman sent to kill him, Federal Agents, and rival hitman Dan Akyroyd. In one scene he attends his 10-year high school reunion and is talking with a former classmate who introduces him to her kid. Martin stares at the kid, possibly pondering the miracle of life. Enter Queen’s “Under Pressure.”

 

“Iron Eagle” (1986) – When Col. Ted Masters (Tim Thomerson) is caught and taken hostage in the Middle East, it’s up to his son Doug (Jason Gedrick) and friend Chappy Sinclair (Louis Gossett, Jr.) to hack into computers, scramble some jets, and complete a covert rescue mission. And when you’re blowing up bad guys and their equipment, you may find yourself kicking-on your cassette player and dispensing justice via Queen’s “One Vision.” Just maybe.

 

“Wayne’s World” (1992) – It’s just another day in the life of Wayne Campbell (Mike Myers) and pal Garth Algar (Dana Carvey). When they go to pick some friends of their up, what music is better to blast in the Mirthmobile than Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody?” A huge song in the UK upon its original release, the song did moderately okay in the United States. With its use in “Wayne’s World,” the song’s re-release shot it to #1 on the Billboard Charts. “Magnifi-co-oh-oh-oh…”