Footy Finals Song # 1: South Adelaide

August 23, 2018 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, LIFE, Modern Music |

OK, P is grumpy that the Glenelg Tigers miss out on the finals (again). And the final five is now settled: (1) Norwood (2) Sturt (3) Eagles (4) South Adelaide and (5) North Adelaide. The order may vary slightly after the last minor round, but not in a meaningful way: Sturt and Eagles might change places but they will still square-off in the Qualifying Final; South and North might swap 4th and 5th places, depending on results, but they will still contest the Elimination Final. So we have 5 finalists and 4 Club Songs (Norwood and Sturt share one, mutatis mutandis).  The Varnished…

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18 AUGUST – COLLECTIVE BIRTHDAY CAKE

August 19, 2018 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classic Film, Classical Music, FILM, MUSIC |

18 August 1750 – Antonio Salieri His work has faded, leaving behind a (probably unfair) reputation of the poisoner of Mozart… 18 August 1920 – Shirley Schrift (Shelley Winters) The needy, blowsy slattern with a heart of gold and born to lose – Shelley’s specialty. Her great film moments: The Great Gatsby (1949), A Place in the Sun (1951), The Night of the Hunter (1955), The Diary of Anne Frank (1959), and especially Lolita (1962). 18 August 1933 – Roman Polanski His reputation has taken a battering of late, but he gets a plea in mitigation for films such as…

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Listening to Buck Owens

August 12, 2018 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Modern Music, MUSIC |

Buck (born 12 August 1929, in Sherman, Texas) was Big in America.  But he was big everywhere.  Why else would the Beatles cover one of his songs?  Why else would Creedence Clearwater Revival sing about listening to Buck while lookin’ out their back door?

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Act III From “Meistersinger” – Mastered!

Come blow your horn

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Act III, Adelaide, 4 August 2018. The ASO and State Opera triumph again!  Our slate is free of crosses!  A dramatic version of Act III of Wagner’s magisterial comedy was beautifully presented on Saturday night, with Nicholas Braithwaite and the ASO, having had about 5 minute’s practice, fully on top of Wagner’s complex, rich sonorities, polyphonic master-touches, and yes, humour, and humanity.  Whilst The Varnished Culture overheard one dowager claiming afterwards that Hitler used to turn up for Act III alone (to absorb the finale’s Message about the retention of Pure Germanic Art), we have always considered…

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“Give us a Boating Tune, Fred!”

July 17, 2018 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | Classical Music, HISTORY, MUSIC |

17 July, 1717: Handel’s “Water Music” is played on the Thames for King George I.  He went for Baroque on the river. As Michael Steen* points out, the story that Handel “tried to regain the King’s favour by serenading him, uninvited, is untrue: the music was written later.”  Handel had to work at self-selling of course, who does not? But his success was surely due to his prolific output of dramatic effects and ingenious musical structures. For a man born (23 February 1685) in Halle, Handel became the quintessential composer for the English.  His Zadok the Priest became the coronation…

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