Bennett? I think I broke it!
Sorry, punchline to an old joke, couldn't help myself. Anyway, Tony Bennett, whose albums have made the charts in every decade since the 1950s, will sing a series of duets this evening with the likes of Barbara Streisand, Elton John, Christina Aguilera, John Legend, Diana Krall, k.d. lang and Michael Buble. Tony Bennett: An American Classic, which celebrates Bennett's 80th birthday, airs tonight at 8:00 on NBC and is directed by Rob Marshall, who also directed Chicago and Memoirs of Geisha. The tribute will include big production numbers and stories about Bennett from folks such as Billy Crystal and John Travolta.
Call me old fashioned, but I'd rather just see Tony on stage by himself singing his hits and a few standards without all the extravagance and folderol, but what the heck, it's good to acknowledge that he's still influencing artists from different generations.
If you're looking forward to the Strangers with Candy movie as much as I am, you should check out these three songs from the movie, currently available for your listening pleasure over on CBS' Late Show site. The songs were written by Paul Dinello and Late Show bandleader Paul Shaffer. The first song, "Betrayal," sounds like a slightly modified version of the main theme of the TV series. I also dig the disco-y funk of "She's A Fig Neutron" which nicely describes Jerri's ample frame and her penchant for both the men and the ladies. Of course, "Schizophrenalize" isn't without its charm, either. All in all, the songs are pretty funny, though I wouldn't mind rocking out to a little Buddha Stalin, too. I guess we'll have to wait and see if he shows up in the movie. Not many people can sing the phrase "diarrhea milkshake" with such passion.
[via Best Week Ever]
I know a lot of people praise YouTube, but it's well-deserved praise. The site has become a depository for just about any old clip from any show, commercial, or video you can think of. In fact, there's a huge amount of Sesame Street clips on there, and one person has taken it upon themselves to provide links to almost one hundred classic and not-so-classic clips from the show. I'd like to say I was the one with that kind of time on my hands, but I wasn't. I mean, I have that much time on my hands, I'm just too lazy to actually compile all those videos. The clips include some favorites of mine, such as the Alligator King, Ladybug Picnic, Mahna Mahna, and Kermit's "News Flash" segments, which I always thought were some of the funniest segments on Sesame Street. No Muppet plays the straight man better than Kermit. Well, maybe Bert. Anyway, enjoy them all.
The Simpsons receives plenty of well-deserved praise, but I think people take for granted the great music in the series, all composed by the great Alf Clausen. Clausen worked on several other TV series as well, including, funny enough, ALF. His contribution adds a great dimension to the show, so I thought it would be cool to use this episode of The Five to talk about our favorite musical moments from The Simpsons. Here's a few I like:
Jasper sings the theme from A Summer Place: This is possibly my favorite Simpsons moment of all time, or a least in my top five. During the episode when Homer is telling his family how he was once in a popular barber shop quartet, there's a scene where they're auditioning new singers. Jasper chooses to sing the theme from A Summer Place, which doesn't actually have words, so he just keeps singing the words, "theeeeeme, from a suuummer plaaaaaace...." It cracks me up every time, but unfortunately I think that segment is cut out when the episode airs in syndication.
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