Monthly Archives: August 2012
Tuesday Weld (born Susan Ker Weld, August 27, 1943). The name’s probably familiar, but where have you seen the beautiful Tuesday Weld? Well, she made a big splash in early 50’s TV with The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, and the 1956 film Return to Peyton Place. You may remember her from her Academy Award nominted performance in 1977’s Looking for Mr. Goodbar, opposite Diane Keaton. Or Sergio Leone’s One Upon A Time in America with Robert De Niro and James Woods, or perhaps The Cincinnati Kid w/ Steve McQueen, Wild in the Country w/ Elvis Presley or the 1966 cult favorite Lord Love a Duck. In the 60’s she famously passed on a few films that went on to to be blockbusters, notably, Bonnie & Clyde, Rosemarry’s Baby, True Grit & Bob and Carol, Ted and Alice. Ask your dad, he knows exactly who Tuesday Weld is! Tuesday pretty much quit acting in the 1990’s and her last performance was in 2001. Hopefully she’s somewhere nice celebrating her 69th birthday.
These are a series of posters collected over a 6 year time span to try and make the citizens of Tokyo more aware of Subway etiquette. It would seem like leaving your umbrella and smoking on the platforms at undesignated times were the biggest problems, but there were other concerns, like gum and public drunkeness. The use of manga and cartoon characters is expected but the use of, say, Jesus and the Last Supper as a reminder to take your umbrella is just plain odd, hilarious but odd.
The Undertones grew up in, arguably, one of the most dangerous places in Britain at the time – Derry, Northern Ireland. Starting their career in 1975 as a cover band they were miles away from what was going on in London at the time – as seen by their keen fashion sense. When the Sex Pistols hit big in 1976 not even Northern Ireland was exempt from Punk. The boys quickly changed their name from The Hot Rods to The Undertones and set their course. Unable to get a contract, they sent their tape to England’s most influential DJ – John Peel, who financed their first recording, a 4-song EP call “Teenage Kicks”. The title song would become John Peel’s “all-time favorite song” – an opinion he held to his death in 2004. High praise indeed. All 3-chord power pop, The Undertones didn’t sing about the troubles of Northern Ireland, they sang about teenage angst, girls, cars and candy bars. They would stay together until 1983, when lead singer Feargal Sharkey went solo, citing musical differences. They have reformed, without Feargal, he becoming CEO of a British pressure group involved with rights for musicans. The others would briefly form a band called “That Petrol Emotion” with US singer Steve Mack. Where to start with The Undertones? The first LP is their absolute best – their 2nd and 3rd are pretty great too. There are about 5 greatest hits LPs out there, for some reason, though “Anthology” is the best.
Most of the actual art for the pulp fiction paperbacks of the 50’s and 60’s were beautifully designed and executed paintings by exceptionally talented artists. They weren’t paid much at the time and their work was considered simple advertising ilustration. Infact in the late 50’s one of the publishing companies had so many laying around that they were offerd for sale – 10 for $1.00. Those that didn’t sell were destroyed. Most were designed for the titles and type to be added later and were often used for multiple book covers. These are all over the place, some early 50’s, some late to mid-60’s. The only theme here is women – some in trouble (a common theme), some taking charge, all beautiful.
Sgt. Pepperis probably one of the most recognizable album covers ever. On the Beatles 8th LP they decided to go all out and not only create ground-breaking music but to make the packaging and promotion just as unique. This was an era where an album cover was usually a shot of the band with some interesting type and not much more. They chose to hire ‘pop’ artist Peter Blake along with Art Director Robt. Fraser to design and conceive the packaging of their newest work. According to artist Peter Blake “In my mind I was making a piece of art rather than an album cover. It was almost a piece of theater design. I offered the idea that if they had just played a concert in the park, the cover would be a photograph of them with the group who had watched the concert. If we did this by using cardboard cutouts, it could be whomever they wanted.”It was left to the Beatles to decide who that audience would be. Each of the four Beatles was told to compile a list of people they admired, and their choices would all be featured on the album’s cover. Ringo, always the least pretentious of the four, declined right off the bat. Whoever the others wanted was okay with Ringo. John Lennon’s – being John (and a bit of a dick) came up with, among others, Adolf Hitler and Mohandas Gandhi. Hitler was immediately nixed for obvious reasons. Incredibly, a paper cutout of Adolf Hitler was actually made and appears in some outtakes of the shoot. Gandhi got the axe by EMI executives, believing it would hurt album sales in the region. George, of course, chose four Indian gurus. Bob Dylan was a clear choice by all the Beatles. Fred Astaire was a Paul choice. The legendary dancer was an easy sell and was reportedly delighted to be featured. However, several of the chosen figures gave EMI some trouble. Shirley Temple asked to hear the finished product produced before giving her consent (she’s on the cover but obscured). The Beatles all wanted Mae West to be on the cover, but she was apprehensive. “What would I be doing in a lonely heart’s club band?”. To placate the legendary sex symbol, all four Beatles wrote and signed a letter to Mae, and she finally agreed. Leo Gorcey of The Bowery Boys was chosen along with his comic side-kick Huntz Hall. Gorcey demanded the sum of $400.00 to appear and was denied. It is still easy to see where Gorcey was airbrushed out on the final cover. Huntz, proved more cooperative, and can be found hovering in the top row.
The oddest choice? probably Sonny Liston, the boxer who was twice defeated by Muhammad Ali. Liston had attended a Beatles concert that same year (1964), hated the boys, and was quoted as saying, “My dog drums better than that guy”. Most curious omission? Definitely Elvis Presley. Where’s the King? Elvis was one of all four Beatles’ supreme hero, especially in their early, formative years and no one really knows why he was forgotten.
Both the music and the artwork have weatherd nicely (though “When I’m 64” is even more sugary then it was 43 years ago).
I’ve posted a number of vintage Burlesque promo shots before and I always get great reactions. Some from fans and a couple from the actual dancers themselves, which is astounding. Besides the sexy cheesecake aspect of these, I love the stage names, the costumes, and for the most part it looks as if they’re having the time of their lives. They actually look happy. They also look like real women and not the plastic-ey, sullen, angry looking dancers of today. Come on, man, who wouldn’t go to a strip club featuring names like Bubbles Darlene, Precious Diamond, The Eyefull Tower Girl, Irma The Body or Sally The Shape?