Monday, November 27, 2017

Playlist for Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017: One More Once!

This coming Sunday, I have to be in a parade. A DJ, I'm kidding. No, for this "parade" I wear a different hat. I am a Lawn Chair Lady, part of a phalanx of ladies of a certain age, who cavort down the street with boas and bling and "dance" their way into your heart! And Sunday is a (no doubt) chilly winter event that we will participate in. Hence my absence from Jazz 90.1, and hence a recorded show.

This one's from September 24th (2017) with a couple of tweaks, but know that I'll be back live on December 10th, with "bells on"! Vive la Broadway!

Deep Beneath The City (Company, In Transit)
Nobody (Corey Cott, Laura Osnes, Company, Bandstand)
I Know A Guy (Corey Cott, Bandstand)
A Band In New York City (Corey Cott, Laura Osnes, Brandon J. Ellis,
      Alex Bender, Ensemble, Bandstand)
Back On Top (Patti Lupone, War Paint)
Dinosaurs (John Dossett, Douglas Sills, War Paint)
Beauty In The World (Patti Lupone, Christine Ebersole, War Paint)
Bidin' My Time (Mary Martin, Girl Crazy)
My Ship (Maria Friedman, Lady In The Dark)
This is All Very New To Me (Barbara Cook, Plain And Fancy)
Civilization (Danny Kaye, The Andrew Sisters, Angel In The Wings)
Nothing (Priscilla Lopez, A Chorus Line)
Something (Douglas Bernstein, Upstairs At O'Neals)
What'd I Miss? (Daveed Diggs, Ensemble, Hamilton)
What Did You Miss? (Nicholas Edwards, Chris Anthony Giles, Spamilton)
Not For The Life Of Me/NYC/Astonishing (Sutton Foster, Live At The
      Cafe Carlyle)
Air Conditioner (Sutton Foster, Live At The Cafe Carlyle)
My Heart Was Set On You (Sutton Foster, Live At The Cafe Carlyle)
Finishing The Hat (Mandy Patinkin, Sunday In The Park With George)
Poems (Sab Shimono, Isao Sato, Pacific Overtures)
Ladies In Their Sensitivities (Edmund Lyndeck, Jake Eric Williams,
      Victor Garber, Sarah Rice, Sweeney Todd)
Have You Ever Been On Stage (Evalyn Baron, Hermoine, Scrambled Feet)
Funny/The Duck Joke (Andrea Martin, Lannyl Stephens, My Favorite Year)
Saturday Night Obsession (Erin Mackey, In Transit)
But, Ya Know (James Snyder, Margo Seibert, In Transit)
A Little Friendly Advice (Moya Angela, Company, In Transit)

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Broadway side dishes!

 Our More or Less corner,
above with Rae Allen and ShoeLESS Joe From Hannibal Mo.
Damn Yankees hit Broadway in 1955,
and along with its star, Gwen Verdon,
featured, from left, Russ Brown, Rae, Ray Walston,
and Steven Douglass (the shoeLESS one).

 The many faces of Jackie Hoffman,
Broadway's present-day answer to Carol Burnett,
who started off as a member of the Second City comedy troupe.
We'll hear her as Prudy Pendleton
(she also played the Gym Teacher and The Matron)
 in Hairspray.
"The Legend Of Miss BaltiMORE Crabs"

 Tony Roberts and Robert Morse
in Sugar!
PenniLESS Bums
(penniMORE in this shot, I guess!,
with the music of Jule Styne and Bob Merrill.
 And then we'll celebrate Arthur Schwartz's birthday!
Couldn't resist this pic of two Broadway darlings,
Ethel and Mary...
and Mary below with Jack De Lon,
at the recording session of Jennie,
an Arthur Schwartz/Howard Dietz creation.
 Arthur's birthday is Nov. 25th (1900).

The "plot" of Jennie:
 Married acting couple tours the states, with
many costume changes, and unlinked musical numbers.
There. Done. And so was the show.

 Shirley Booth and Ronnie Jensen
in By The Beautiful Sea,
a Schwartz/Dorothy Fields collaboration.
"Lottie Gibson Specialty"

So here's the big story about the song "I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plan": Arthur got a job as a summer camp counselor 
(Brandt Lake Camp for Boys in the Adirondacks),
knowing that Lorenz Hart 
who, in his 20s, already had a lyric-writing rep, worked there.
Anyway, the two got together, writing shows for the campers,
and overwork is probably the best excuse for the Hart lyric,
"I Love To Lie Awake In Bed",
and basically never get up! 
Arthur wrote the melody, which turned out 
WORTH IT 10 years later, 
when it was  reincarnated with a Howard Dietz lyric.
The story of the song continues, with Clifton Webb,
star of The Little Show (1929)
asking (last minute, of course) for another number
that he could perform in a suit, 
and debonairly frustrate-over his lost romance with.
Voila..."I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plan" 
was ferreted from Schwartz's trunk of tunes, 
with Howard providing the needed lyric make-over. 
 Of course in the Hollywood tradition,
where MORE is MORE,
it was resuscitated for use in The Band Wagon (above)
for debonair Jack Buchanan and Fred Astaire.

Arthur would go on to do 11 musicals with Howard.
He also wrote with lyricists Leo Robin, Frank Loesser,
Ira Gershwin, Yip Harburg, Johnny Mercer and Oscar Hammerstein.
He was inducted into the Song Writers Hall of Fame in 1981,
and passed away in the fall of 1984.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Vintage Thanksgiving Parade Pics

 Macy's began their Thanksgiving Day Parade
back in 1924, 
to celebrate their New York store's expansion
(one entire city block).
Although it was held on Thanksgiving morning,
it was called The Christmas Parade,
in hopes that it would bring throngs of parade goers
to shop the next day. 
Enjoy the pics of a long ago, less crowded paraded route,
and some weird balloons!

 The very first Santa float
from that first parade in 1924.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Playlist For Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017: More or less, that IS the question!

So it's that time of year again. From now until Jan 2nd, it is a roasted/creamy/sugar-laden/pate-encrouted holiday slog...and fat suits (which I have a "Brand New One" of) are available (for free!) (or BOGO!) in Aisle 2! That's what it feels like. If you're not planning a dinner, burning a pie, or re-newing your first-name-only friendship with the local liquor store owner, you're not really celebrating! Unless it's Ugly Sweater Day, and then you're just boppin' around, sporting your poly-knit-lit-up-Rudolph, saying "Mine's uglier than your's".

Ahhhh, the holidays. But we ain't going there yet. We're just groaning over the groaning board, with MORE, not LESS. Oliver is here asking for 2nds, Luisa wants MUCH MORE, and Miss BaltiMORE Crabs remembers when she HAD MORE. LESS comes into play as well, tho there are LESS songs with LESS than MORE. Hmmmm...we will be forced to play Piano LESSons, and go ShoeLESS in Missouri, and PenniLESS in Chi-town.

We'll also toast Arthur, as in the Schwartz variety, because it is his natal day on November 25, born 117 years ago, composer of classics like "You And The Night And The Music", all that wonderful Band Wagon stuff, "Alone Together"...I could go on and on, and may, come Sunday. He is also the father of Jonathan Schwartz, NYC radio personality and expert on all things cabaret and Broadway and American song-booky. He tells the story of one of the first versions of "I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plan", with a young, not-yet-Papa Schwartz and Lorenz Hart cooking it up with lyrics that had to do with camping. More on that tale later in the blog, but so glad Howard D. showed up in the "Nick" of time to excise the tents!

Til Sunday then...I'm on bread and water. For the next 2 hours anyway. :) 

Food, Glorious Food (Ensemble, Oliver!)
Oliver! (Willoughby Goddard, Bruce Prochnik, Oliver!)
Who Will Buy? (Bruce Prochnik, Ensemble, Oliver!)
It's A Fine Life (Georgia Brown, Oliver!)
It Couldn't Please Me More (The Pineapple Song)(Lotte Lenya, Jack Gilford,
I'm Glad I'm Not Young Anymore (Alfred Drake, Gigi)
The More We Dance (John Lithgow, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels)
Much More (Rita Gardner, The Fantasticks)
The More You Ruv Someone (Ann Harada, Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Avenue Q)
Baltimore (Audra McDonald, Go Back Home)
The Legend Of Miss Baltimore Crabs (Jackie Hoffman, Hairspray)
Alone Together (Judy Garland, Judy Garland At Carnegie Hall)
No One Is Alone (Ann Hampton Callaway, Blues In The Night)
Shoeless Joe From Hannibal, Mo (Rae Allen, Ensemble, Damn Yankees)
Don't Be Anything Less Than Everything You Can Be (David Garrison,
      Terry Kerwin, Vicki Lewis, Snoopy)
Piano Lessons (Barbara Cook, Pert Kelton, The Music Man)
Penniless Bums (Robert Morse, Tony Roberts, Sugar)
Slappin' The Cakes On Me (Dave Frishberg, At The Algonquin)
The Cake I Had (Mary Louise Wilson, Christine Ebersole, Grey Gardens)
Some Girls Can Bake A Pie (Larry Kert, Paige O'Hara, Of Thee I Sing)
Waitin' For The Evening Train (Mary Martin, Jennie)
When You're Far Away From New York Town (Jack De Lon, Jennie)
Lottie Gibson Specialty (Shirley Booth, By The Beautiful Sea)
Hang Up (Mae Barnes, By The Beautiful Sea)
You And The Night And The Music (Enric Madriguera and His Orchestra,
      with Tony Sacco on Vocals)
Make The Man Love Me (Barbara Cook, A Tree Grows In Brooklyn)
Gotta Brand New Suit (Nanette Fabray, Fred Astaire, The Band Wagon
Rainy Night In Rio (The Andrews Sisters)
Triplets (Fred Astaire, Nanette Fabray, Jack Buchanan, The Bandwagon)
I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans (Fred Astaire, Jack Buchanan,
      The Bandwagon)
That's Entertainment (Fred Astaire, Jack Buchanan, Nanette Fabray,
      Oscar Levant, The Bandwagon)

Friday, November 17, 2017

Sweet, Lonely, Caroline.

 Caroline, Or Change
opened on Broadway in 2004,
having been work-shopped at the Public Theatre for several years. 
Music was by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Thoroughly Modern Millie),
a book and lyrics by Tony Kushner (Angels In America).
Although its run lasted only 4 months,
it was highly praised and received 6 Tony nominations.

 It starred Tonya Pinkins as Caroline (on the right)
and Chandra Wilson (left) as Dotty.

 Caroline is a maid in a Jewish household in 
New Orleans, circa the early 1960s.
The appliances (the washer, dryer, radio), 
the bus and the moon 
are all played by actors who comment and/or torment
from the side.

 Caroline's star, the wonderful Tonya Pinkins,
a Tony award winner for "Jelly's Last Jam",
has done television (soap operas got her a start!),
film and a helluva lot of stage work.

 A good find:
Blossom Dearie and Howard Keel
singing obsure Oscar Hammerstein...
"Lonely Feet",
originally from a show called Three Sisters,
and also used in the film, Sweet Adeline, 1934.
Above, Blossom; below, Howard...
both looking studious in matching glasses. 

 Mr. Astaire in The Bandwagon,
contemplating life "By Myself".
Nice matching luggage tho, Fred.

 From our "Sweet" corner,
"When Veruca Says" from Charlie And The Chocolate Factory.
Above Emma Pfaelle, as the current Broadway Veruca,
and below, Ben Crawford who plays her dad, Mr. Salt.

 Spoiler alert:
Veruca gets it, in the end.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Ore Briny Foam, We Sail (And Pilfer)!

 Who knew pirates could sing,
and often dance?
Above, Tim Curry in
Muppets Treasure Island played 
"A Professional Pirate", Long John Silver,
chuckling no doubt as Kermit walks the plank. 

 A pirate theme must include
Cyril Ritchard (loving that beauty mark!),
as the original Captain Hook in Peter Pan. 
"Captain Hook's Waltz"

 Gene Kelly and Judy Garland in
The Pirate, 1948.
The song "Mack The Black"
replaced "Voodoo"
which was deemed WAAAY too sexy for movie audiences
(so much so that Louis B. Mayer had the negatives burned).
 Swimming from pirates to the briny deep,
Samuel E. Wright sang the part of Sebastian The Crab
in The Little Mermaid...
"Under The Sea,"
a song by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman.

 Shirley Booth and Wilbur Evans had a tunnel of love
boat ride in By The Beautiful Sea,
with music by Arthur Schwartz and Dorothy Fields.

 And then a first: Kirk Douglas sings!
"Whale Of A Tale" from 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, 1954.
Stripes shirts were popular with musical comedy pirates
(and Parisian artists, I guess).
Below, the rest of the "chorus":
James Mason, Peter Lorre, and Paul Lukas
Absent: The Giant Squid. (Perhaps a Squidward ancestor!)

 We'll hear 4 "takes" of "In The Same Boat"
from Kander and Ebb's Curtains
(well, they were trying to get it right!).
Above, Jill Paice, Karen Ziemba and Megan Sikora
with boat oars. :)

 "There's A Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon For New York"
from Gershwin's Porgy and Bess,
and originally sung by John Bubbles (above)
as Sportin' Life.
Below, the team of Buck and Bubbles,
the vaudeville act that started them off.

 The Apple Tree from 1966
was a Jerry Bock/Sheldon Harnick creation;
three separate plots...
Mark Twain's The Diary of Adam and Eve,
Frank R. Stockton's The Lady Or The Tiger,
and Jules Feiffer's Passionella.
 All three starred Barbara Harris, Alan Alda and Larry Blyden.
We'll hear "It's A Fish" from Act 1.
(A revival was attempted back in 2006 
with Kristin Chenowith, Bryan D'Arcy James and Marc Kudisch.
Kristen was praised, but the show proved 
"creaky" and closed after 3 months.) 

 Okay, so this is SpongeBob,
in previews on Broadway presently, 
and scheduled to open in early December.
We'll hear the 2 songs I can tolerate...
"Poor Pirate" and "I'm Not Loser"
which is seen below, with Gavin Lee as Squidward.
Note extra "legs". Nuff said.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Playlist For Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017: ARRRRR!

It's Poe weather...hard by the dank tarns, withering, crisped, and sere. That sort of thing. Ulalumes skulking about, looking Weir-y. It all makes me shudder and reach for something restorative (interpret this however you may).

But maybe that's why I was weak, when Jazz 90.1's music director, Derrick Lucas, shoved a brand new Broadway CD in my face...SpongeBob whatis Pants? Surely you jest, DL? On MY show? But in my palsied state, I listened. I listened again. And nothing. I felt nothing. But for two measly songs, the rest were immemorial. But again, my twisted, Auber-full brain ignited to a concept, an idea, nay...a theme! A theme so large, so all-encompassing as to have within its range, sub-themes. And so was borne another 2 On The Aisle.

Pirates! The foam! The roiling waves! The tiny boats who dare sail them...that's what we'll attack this Sunday, to tempt us out of the gloom (haunted woodland)... with the brave inclusion of 2 Spongey songs that are deamed worthy. Plus depressing, yet fitting, right? Plus Candy. Cuz, that helps. Yup, I've turned into a Theme Nut. There must be a medication for this sort of obsession, but talk to me later about that, after I finish my 17th cup of Joe.

So enjoy the variety (ride the waves!) and the juxtapositions (Blossom Dearie, Tim Curry, drive-in movies, Sugar Babies, and Kirk Douglas)(???) that a show like this foists on you. Only here on 2 On The Aisle, with an over-caffeinated host and too much music for her own good. :)

Poor Pirates (Jason Michael Snow, Pirates, SpongeBob SquarePants)
Pirate Song (Lost Boys, Pirates, Peter Pan)
Captain Hook's Waltz (Cyril Ritchard, Joe E. Marks, More Pirates, Peter Pan)
A Professional Pirate (Tim Curry, Ensemble, Muppet Treasure Island)
Mack The Black (Judy Garland, The Pirate)
The Advantages Of Floating In The Middle Of The Sea (Mako, Company,
      Pacific Overtures)
By The Sea (Angela Lansbury, Len Cariou, Sweeney Todd)
Under The Sea (Samuel E. Wright, The Little Mermaid)
Call Of The Sea (Bobby Van, Ensemble, No, No, Nanette)
The Sea Song (Shirley Booth, By The Beautiful Sea)
16 Feet Beneath The Sea/The Radio/Laundry Quintet (Tonya Pinkins,  
      Carpathia Jenkins, Tracy Nicole Chapman, Chuck Cooper, Caroline,
      Or Change)
Dotty And Caroline (Tonya Pinkins, Chandra Wilson, Caroline, Or Change)
I Got Four Kids (Tonya Pinkins, Chuck Cooper, Caroline, Or Change)
Whale Of A Tale (Kirk Douglas, 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea)
Catfish (John Foley, Mark Hardwick, John Schimmel, Pump Boys And Dinettes)
It's A Fish (Alan Alda, The Apple Tree)
For Every Fish (Josephine Premice, Jamaica)
Saturday Night Fish Fry (Jerry Dixon, Doug Eskew, Milton Craig Nealey, 
      Kevin Ramsey, Jeffrey D. Sams, Five Guys Named Moe)
In The Same Boat (David Hyde Pierce, Karen Ziemba, Jill Paice,
      Edward Hibbert, Curtains)
Sit Down, You're Rocking The Boat (Stubby Kaye, Guys And Dolls)
There's A Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon For New York (John W. Bubbles, Porgy
      And Bess)
No More Candy (Laura Benanti, She Loves Me)
Let Me Be Your Sugar Baby (Ensemble, Sugar Babies)
When Veruca Says (Ben Crawford, Emma Pfaeffle, Charlie And The
      Chocolate Factory)
Sugar (Robert Morse, Tony Roberts, Sugar)
Hard Candy Christmas (Donna King, Lisa Brown, The Girls At Miss Mona's,
      The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas)
I Can't Do It Alone (Catherine Zeta Jones, Chicago)
Alone At A Drive-In Movie (Barry Bostwick, Grease)
Lonely Feet (Blossom Dearie, Alfred Drake, Oscar Hammerstein Revisited)
By Myself (Fred Astaire, The Bandwagon)
All Alone (Tim Curry, Michael McGrath, Spamalot)
I'm Not A Loser (Gavin Lee, Anemone Chorus, SpongeBob SquarePants)

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Sunday Warblebirds!

 One of our Sunday ballads this week:
Leslie Uggams
and "My Own Morning",
written by Jule Styne, Betty Comden, and Adolph Green
for Hallelujah, Baby!
It was Leslie's Broadway debut, at the age of 24,
and she scooped a Best Actress in a Musical Tony award for it.

Leslie's presently 74 and still working:
 She starred in Empire (2015) and Deadpool (2016), 
above as "Blind Al".
Over 6 decades in the "business"...
and it all started in a little film called
in which Leslie played Ethel Water's niece, 
at 8 years of age. 

 Gotta have some Nathan Lane,
above with Bebe Neuwirth in
The Addams Family,
and below in the film version
(Addams Family Values, done in 1993)
in which Nathan played a police desk sergeant.
"Cook 'em, Hook 'em, and Book 'em!"

 And below, of course,
a star turn in The Producers,
Best Musical Tony winner of 2001,
with Cady Huffman
and Mathew Broderick.

 Bryce Pinkham and Jane Carr:
"You're A D'Ysquith!"
in A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.
Bryce sounds British to the core,
but he was born and raised in California,
and has trod the Broadway boards in
Ghost, Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, The Heidi Chronicles, 
and more (of course!).
Jane, on the other hand, is straight from Essex,
and has done film, stage, Brit television, and voice overs a 'plenty.

 Bryce with Jefferson Mays,
who played the entire D'Ysquith family in the show.
Back in 2004, Jefferson garnered
for his performance in 
I Am My Own Wife.
So no stranger to success, he!

 The Callaway Gals!
We'll hear a mash up of 
"The Sweetest Sounds" from No Strings
(a Richard Rodgers' musical from 1962)
and "I Can See It"
(from The Fantasticks, 1960...til forever!).