The singer Meat Loaf has passed away at age 74. While most sites are going with the expected musical salutes, Balladeer’s Blog is instead selecting the rock star’s iconic moment as “Eddie” in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. It’s Hot Patootie, Bless My Soul.
Yes, it’s the song from that notoriously bad movie Santa Claus Conquers The Martians. Long years ago The Christmas Martian supplanted this flick in my Bad Movie Lover heart but Hooray For Santa Claus is still a butt-kicking song.
Starting us off is the movie version of the song by the poor man’s Skitch Henderson – Milton De Lugg – and The Little Eskimos.
And here’s the version by Al “Green Hornet Theme” Hirt: Continue reading
MUSICAL MUTINY (1970) – Halloween Month continues here at Balladeer’s Blog with a Barry Mahon movie that’s more frighteningly bad than it is frightening. I’ve recently become obsessed with this made in Florida wonder that features the ghost of a long-dead pirate, the deskbound narrator from Blood Freak and a mad scientist intent on taking over the world with his new beverage which gets drinkers higher than marijuana. There are also three on-stage performances by Iron Butterfly (yes, really), including the full-length version of In A Gadda Da Vida.
Perhaps most importantly for me and my fellow Bad Movie geeks, this is the earliest movie release done as a promotional piece for Pirate’s World, the long-defunct Florida amusement park featured in notorious Grade Z films like Jack and the Beanstalk, Thumbelina plus Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny (reviewed in 2010 here at Balladeer’s Blog). In fact, Musical Mutiny is so obscure that as of this writing there are only five user reviews at IMDb. Continue reading
If I ever formed a rock band of my own I would, needless to say, base the name on something from Bad Movie Lore. Something like Renegade Belgian Cardinals – based on a line of dialogue from the Serial-Killer Priest flick The Confessional.
Putting that aside here’s a quick Balladeer’s Blog list of Oddly-Named Bands of the Past. It’s strictly for people who sometimes wake up at 3am and wonder if Gene was only pretending to love Jezebel.
THE TRASH CAN SINATRAS
When you hear the name Sinatra you immediately think of … Scotland? Well, no you don’t, but that’s where this band hailed from.
Used in a Sentence: “The Trash Can Sinatras is a hell of a mean-spirited way of referring to Nancy and Tina!”
For decades this band was known as THE influence in Belgian Industrial Rock, complete with all the massive cultural firepower that implies. (Oh, sure, Balladeer, pick on the Belgians!) Continue reading
Balladeer’s Blog’s fans know that I don’t consider myself a music expert. I may enjoy anything from operas and symphonies to all categories of pop and rock, etc but I never claim that my tastes are governed by some overriding musical aesthetic. I just know what I like and what I don’t like.
And that brings us to Mark Gormley. At first this guy’s work struck me as music’s answer to oddball filmmaker Neil Breen and I assumed that his cult following loved Gormley in an ironic way. The more I look into it, though, there are many people who seem to be providing actual, profound justifications for considering the man genuinely talented. Those same people even praise his “Power Stance,” which I have always found incredibly silly.
Below is one of Mark’s music videos preceded by a brief introduction from the Uncharted Zone‘s hosts. Let me know if you think I’m a musical Philistine for laughing at the Gormster or if you think those who hail him as a genius are just keeping the straightest faces this side of Leslie Nielsen. I’m open to being set straight if I’m missing something about this guy but he strikes me as a hybrid of Ned Flanders, Floyd R Turbo and Tiny Tim. Here he is with his song Little Wings:
HARRIET, THE WOMAN CALLED MOSES – This opera, with music and libretto by Scottish composer Thea Musgrave, was first performed March 1st, 1985 at the Virginia Opera in Norfolk, VA. The conductor was Musgrave’s husband Peter Mark.
Regular readers of Balladeer’s Blog will remember my articles about Thea Musgrave’s 1979 opera version of A Christmas Carol. I consider Musgrave one of the few genuine giants of opera from the late 20th Century. (Yes, I’m so boring I’m even into opera.)
Of Republican Harriet Tubman, the famed former slave who worked with the Underground Railroad to lead other slaves to freedom, Musgrave said “Harriet is every woman who dared to defy injustice and tyranny. She is Joan of Arc, she is Susan B Anthony, she is Anne Frank, she is Mother Teresa.”
Harriet, The Woman Called Moses is a two-act opera which uses a non-linear narrative structure, jumping back and forth in time while highlighting powerful episodes in Tubman’s life. A chorus representing slaves remains on stage for the entire performance. Continue reading
“Please, sir, may I have some more?”
It’s that time of year again! Just a note in the spirit of the holiday season to mention my favorite Thanksgiving Eve movie.
Every Wednesday before Thanksgiving I make a point out of watching the musical Oliver!
I know the musical sentimentalizes several characters that Dickens portrayed in a sinister way in the book (especially Fagan and The Artful Dodger) but the finished product has always seemed very holidayish to me. Continue reading
Halloween Month continues here at Balladeer’s Blog. Today I decided to take time out from my magnum opus titled Was Paul McCartney Really John Lennon? to send a musical shoutout to Motorhead’s Ace of Spades.
This is my favorite song about a gravedigger. Not even those songs in Repo! The Genetic Opera come close. But let’s face it, I think we’d all LOVE to hear Paul Sorvino and Paris Hilton performing a duet of Ace of Spades for Lemmy’s birthday.
With a loved one in the hospital it’s been a subdued Frontierado here today. Still, wherever you are and whatever your Frontierado Saga, I hope you and yours are having a terrific time! In the past Bon Jovi has given us holiday songs like Wanted: Dead or Alive, Blaze of Glory and Billy Get Your Guns. This time it’s Santa Fe or as some call it Judgment Day in Santa Fe.
Just a few more days until the Frontierado Holiday this Friday, August 2nd.
GET MEAN (1975)- One of the weirdest Spaghetti Westerns ever made and that’s saying something! Get Mean stars Tony Anthony and was also released under the title The Stranger Gets Mean, making it the final movie in Anthony’s series of Italo-Westerns as the enigmatic gunslinger known only as the Stranger.
Another alternate title the movie was released under was Beat A Dead Horse, reflecting the view of Anthony and his production company that Spaghetti Westerns really were beating that dead horse of a subgenre for everything they could squeeze out of it by this point. Emphasizing that point was the way Get Mean features its heroic gunfighter clashing with anachronistic Vikings, Moors and an evil hunchback who loves quoting Shakespeare (for obvious reasons).
The film starts out with Tony Anthony’s character being dragged into a ghost town in a box canyon by a horse he’s been tied to. We glimpse Tony through a small orb like the kind used by Gypsy fortune-tellers. Many viewers use that orb to support their argument that Anthony’s gunslinger will be magically traveling through time and that THAT’S why he battles out of date Vikings and Moors.
It still wouldn’t explain why they speak Spanish and/or English or any of the dozens of OTHER problems that would result from a time-travel explanation. My view is to just enjoy it as weirdness for weirdness’ sake. Think of it like Six-String Samurai but without the actual meaning behind that film’s metaphors. Continue reading