“I Don’t Want To Live Like This, But…”

Monday morning, Josh and Carson get locked out of their apartments.

In this cover of Vampire Weekend’s “Harmony Hall,” Josh figured that virtuoso singing and guitar-playing was too easy, so let’s throw in taking off and putting on the guitar capo a few times without losing a beat.

More at Josh Turner Guitar

“Who Wants Their Mind Changed?”: Roy Zimmerman, Part Two

And here’s Part Two of our interview with singer/songwriter Roy Zimmerman. Last week in Part One we talked with Roy primarily about his more comical satirical songs. This week, in the final part, the conversation takes a turn as Roy talks about how he writes a song with heavier political content–maybe songs that can change some minds.

Click on the triangle or mp3 link above to hear Part Two of my interview with Roy as broadcast today on the Arts Express radio program on WBAI FM NYC and Pacifica affiliates across the nation.

Part One can be found here: https://jackshalom.net/2021/02/16/yer-a-socialist-satirist-roy-zimmerman/

More Roy at Roy Zimmerman

The Great Bombo Dump

Here in NYC we were blessed in the 1960s with at least three incredibly talented daytime television hosts. They masqueraded as children’s program hosts, but they produced thousands of hours of hilarious comedy with no budget to speak of, and whose studio audience was usually only an appreciative camera crew. There was Soupy Sales, Sandy Becker, and perhaps the most talented of them, Chuck McCann. Here’s Chuck as the failed escape artist, The Great Bombo. I believe his sidekick here, Sid Slick, is played by Jim MacGeorge.

Thanks to YouTuber sandysoup

“Yer A Socialist”: Satirist Roy Zimmerman

Roy Zimmerman has been described as “Lenny Bruce meets Stephen Sondheim meets Phil Ochs in Brian Wilson’s living room.” He’s a master of satirical political songwriting, the lyrical heir to Tom Lehrer, as well as a damned fine musician. I’ve been listening and laughing at his sharp wit for years, and I was very happy to do an extended interview with him.

Click on the triangle or mp3 link above to hear Part One of my interview with Roy as broadcast today on the Arts Express radio program on WBAI FM NYC and Pacifica affiliates across the nation.

Part Two is here: https://jackshalom.net/2021/02/23/who-wants-their-mind-changed-roy-zimmerman-part-two/

More Roy at Roy Zimmerman

“Dear Number 1036924053887”

In which your friendly neighborhood healthcare insurance company sends a letter of mild request to Roy Zimmerman…

One more example of Roy’s great witty songs.

More at Roy Zimmerman

Denial

(“Enjoy Denial” by Tim Fenn is licensed under CC BY 2.0)

Here’s a re-working of an essay that I originally printed on this blog some time ago, and revised for radio broadcast.

Well everyone’s all aflutter these days with our newly elected overlords, and far be it from me to burst anyone’s bubble.  I mean, what fun is it in having enemies if you can’t beat up on them and blame them for all the country’s ills? Of course our unelected overlords still continue apace, but today I want to talk about a different level of reality that remains largely unspoken...the one incontrovertible fact about life in these United States regardless of who is ruling is the following…”

Click on the triangle or link above to hear it as broadcast today on the Arts Express radio program on WBAI FM NYC and Pacifica affiliates across the nation.

Does Everything Have To Be Funny?

In which Nellie McKay answers that burning title question–and sings a version of “Moon River” to boot.

(The expert panel of the Language Acquisition and Identification Department of Shalblog® Industries is identifying the language in the song, within a 2-3% margin of error, as being Portuguese.)

Thanks to YouTuber Caffe Lena

Small Day Tomorrow: Janis Siegel

Janis Siegel’s name is new to me, but after hearing her sing this Fran Landesman/Bob Dorough song, I am definitely a fan.

Sometimes I hear a strong lyric and I smile, because I can imagine the songwriter knowing she has hit gold with a great idea. Bob Dorough, the composer of this song, told in an interview how his writing partner, Fran Landesman, came upon the lyric. One night Fran and her husband were out drinking with some wealthy business people, and one of the puffed-up men suddenly downed his drink and peremptorily said, “Folks, I have to get going, I have a big day tomorrow” And Fran’s husband drawled, “Well, I think I’ll stay. I have a small day tomorrow.” And of course, as soon as they got home, Fran knew that was the hook of a great song, wrote down the line and finished writing the lyrics. Bob Dorough says as soon as he got the lyrics from Fran, the melody practically wrote itself.

More at Janis Siegel – Topic

Rehearsing the Bridge

Monday morning, peeking through the bedroom blinds. Art Garfunkel and pianist Larry Knectal did 72 takes for the studio version of Paul Simon’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” the last of which eventually landed on the best-selling album. Above is an early version which has some different lyrics from the final version, and a lot less orchestral backing. While the lyrics in this version are a bit more filled with college-level angst, especially the cheesy “bedroom blinds” line, I like the simpler music arrangement a whole lot more, with less bombast than the released album version.

Thanks to YouTuber Simon and Garfunkel News