Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Kiss The Day Goodbye

Marvin was almost a great song writer.

And while I've got my giant Broadway Queen hat on that's never fit quite right, A Chorus Line is one of our stupidest musicals in the library, though not nearly as offensively terrible and banal as Rent, by the end of which I was actually pulling for the AIDS virus.

And because like most people at the age of 11 or so I was going through my "Ragtime phase", I never understood how he could've accepted an Academy Award for music he didn't even write. It's akin to some Celine Dion hot mess of a song at the end of yet another animated comic disaster beating out something like "Kiss At The End Of The Rainbow", which is actually in the movie at a point when you don't know whether to laugh or cry.

I think "I Need This Job" is a perfect song, and not just because he lifts its main theme from Elgar's "Nimrod". That's fine; we all steal. I've lost count of the number of times I've heard guys on tv name their biceps. Only on Modern Family is it still funny after 10 years. (England Dan and John Ford Coley.)

But like most of his work, you kind of have to dig "I Need This Job" out of the bargain bin at the TJ Maxx to appreciate it and differentiate it from all the mismatched scarves and satin belts. (Queen hat still on, I guess.)

The thing about Marvin is that he couldn't keep up with the music he heard in his head. He was enormously gifted, to be sure, but most of the time he was just holding onto his own coattails for dear life while scribbling away furiously on blank music paper only to hear from a distance tune after tune appear to outrun him in the subway car ahead. (Sondheim was always one step ahead of his own mind because he always took a cab.)

And then there's "Through The Eyes Of Love".

But even the worst musical snob when he hears the last refrain of "I Need This Job" can hear himself say upon being quite moved: Please don't let this feeling end.

6 comments:

Michael said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael said...

God I love A Mighty Wind.

Jim's grandmother just referred to him as "Moonpie" (on Big Bang Theory) which reminded me...How's the roommate's foot?

switters said...

Hey Michael. Most if not all of "Red, White and Blaine" is based musically not so loosely on "Chorus Line", most notably "Stool Boom". I'm pretty sure it's not accidental.

Some advice: Don't watch "Iron Lady" followed by the series finale of Season 2 of "Breaking Bad". Without getting all weepy (which I am, for reasons I'd rather not go into tonight for fear of making a fool of myself, again), "Iron Lady" is pretty good, but it's more about saying goodbye than anything, I guess. Like the counselors said, I have to mourn both of them all over again as part of recovery. Good times!

But let me say this very carefully, very sincerely, very earnestly: I suspect your dad and my dad were somewhat alike.

Go LoLo, lost sister of Rashida, though I'm sure I've already missed it.

P.S. My mom would've called it, obviously, "Iron Maiden".

Winter cabin room's coming along; joists tomorrow. Happy, slightly limping dog is just fine. With the cooler evenings, she's taken to curling up in her bed at night instead of keeping watch outside.

Michael said...

Good. Glad to hear the paw is being rested for when it's really needed.

Bryan Cranston. Forget it. Dude's got serious chops. If they ever run the Tom Hanks thing "From the Earth to The Moon" again, check out Cranston as Buzz Aldrin. Fuckin' amazing. And then he's Tim Whatley on Seinfeld. Breaking Bad will live on and on and on in reruns.

Lolo- 4th.

Iron Lady- I sold my autographed copy of Downing Street Years to a guy in New Jersey in January. $175. I paid $30 back the mid-90s, gave it to mom, because she was this huge Reagan/Thatcher fan. She was deeply touched Swit. And then, 10 years later, she told she wanted me to have it after she's gone, and why wait for that, so she gave it back to me. Since I'm not a huge Thatcher fan,...yeah, sure I feel terribly guilty. I'm over it.

Scare up some pics of your progress please.

And finally if your dad was somewhat like my dad, then your dad was a hell of a guy and I'll leave it at that.

rundeep said...

"Misty watered colored memories"
"it may not come again, and I want to remember it"
Makes me feel sad for the rest, nobody does it, half as good as you, baby you're the best."

Back when I pretended to be, atlernatively, Barbra Streisand or Linda Rondstadt, these are the phrases I crooned into my curling iron.

switters said...

Doubt. Doubt, I guess is what it is.

Probably time to reflect upon Michael Scott's Ten Rules Of Business:
Rule Number One: You have to play to win. But, you have to win... to play.

I'm stupid. I never thought much of Charlie Rose, until I started, well, watching his show. My PBS affiliate reruns several mornings a week his show at 6 in the morning. Apparently there's a new movie with Tommy Lee, Michael Scott, and Miranda Priestly, in that order. It's a great interview if you come across it. Great way to wake up and drink coffee and start the day.