It’s been a long, busy week, and I’m still grappling with reacclimating from our trip. I had a couple of things in the works –- notably a tribute to a neighborhood fixture who passed away suddenly in July, as well as a closer examination of the second-tier cast members of Susan Seidelman’s “Desperately Seeking Susan,” prompting by a viewing of same on Madonna’s 60th birthday. Beyond the more obvious cameos by folks like Richard Hell, Rockets Redglare, Anne Magnuson and DNA’s Arto Lindsay, this recent viewing revealed quick appearances by John Lurie of the Lounge Lizards, Stephan Ielpi from False Prophets and -– is that Vinnie Stigma from Agnostic Front? Jury’s still out on that one, but if I manage to get the right screengrab, perhaps I’ll bring that post to fruition. I was gearing up for that, but then Madonna –- dressed like a Tusken Raider -- gave that heroically ill-considered eulogy to Aretha Franklin at the VMA's, this week, and the moment kinda passed.
But, not wanting to send you all off into the weekend without something to chew on, here are three videos I’ve encountered in the past few days that warrant sharing.
First up, I’m sure you’re all as sick as I am of this bullshit about Toto’s “Africa” being recast as some sort of monumental musical achievement, prompting Weezer to record a cover it, which -- in turn -- prompted Toto to cover Weezer’s “Hashpipe” in a veritable circle jerk of low standards. The whole episode was a rapturous championing of mediocrity.
But even mediocrity would be a high bar for the video below. See how long you can suffer through this live rendition from 2015 by original Toto vocalist Bobby Kimball. Kimball was responsible for the high-piped chorus of the original, as well as his more notable contributions to the Toto oeuvre in the form of the hoary lead vocals of “Hold the Line.” Here he is on a festival stage in Japan, I believer, making tragic corned-beef hash of the whole endeavor. See if you can make it to the impromptu bass solo at the end. Cheers to my comrade Ned Ragget for this. You won’t thank me, but…
Next up, here’s amazing comic Dana Goudl portraying Maurice Evan’s storied portrayal of Dr. Zaius doing a recitation of Hal Holbrook’s portrayal of Mark Twain. This you WILL thank me for.
Lastly, my friend Rich posted this song on Facebook yesterday. Obviously, it’s a damn timely title (although the band in question is not the pseudonym adopted by Robert Plant and Jimmy Page in 1984). Plant’s venture was the Honeydrippers. This, meanwhile is the Honey Drippers from 1972, and apart from the intended political nyuck-nyucks, it’s actually a damn funky track. Crank it.