Saturday Odds & Sods: Handle With Care

Saturday Morning by Edward Hopper.

It’s been a busy week. so I’ll keep this introduction brief. And I mean it this time.

This week’s theme song was originally supposed to be a George Harrison single, but it turned up on the Traveling Wilburys first album in 1988. The song is credited to the band, but the primary writer was George. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

We have four versions of Handle With Care for your listening pleasure: the Wilburys original, Jeff Lynne’s ELO, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and Stephen Stills & Judy Collins.

If you can handle it, let’s jump to the break but with care. Always with care.

Since I played a track from the Stephen Stills & Judy Collins album, here’s the brilliant song that he wrote about her some fifty years ago,

We begin our second act with a piece about legendary cartoonist Jules Feiffer.

Toon Talk With Tisserand: Jules Feiffer is 91 years old. He’s been skewering politicians for most of his life and he’s still at it. Richard Nixon was one of his favorite targets. What’s not to love about that?

Herriman biographer and parade route book signer, Michael Tisserand, has a marvelous piece  at The Daily Beast about the man who should be called the Pied Feiffer.

The last word of the segment goes to Frank Zappa & The Mothers wherein FZ quotes Tricky Dick, “I am not a crook.”

Fremont & Free Soil in Fifty-Six: That’s 1856 and I’m talking about the first Republican nominee for president, not the Bay Area burg named for him. I’ll let the NYT image doohickey serve as a secondary segment header; thereby making this a bona fide doubleheader.

Steve Inskeep is the author of a recent book about John C. Fremont. He was a colorful and interesting figure who disappeared into undeserved obscurity. I hope this piece and Inskeep’s book will help revive his reputation.

It’s also a reminder of an era when the Republican party was to the left of the Democrats. It’s a shame that Fremont lost to James Buchanan one of the worst presidents in American history.

Campaign songs used to be a big deal. Here’s one from the Fremont campaign:

That was rousing. How about one more hurrah heavy song? As if you have any choice:

We begin our third act with our favorite stolen feature.

Separated At Birth- Casting Edition: Speaking of revived reputations, Harry Truman left the White House as one of the most unpopular presidents in American history.

Watergate changed that. Truman’s plain speaking approach was in stark contrast to Tricky’s parade of lies. That’s when he started turning up in movies.

There was also a character based on Truman in Gore Vidal’s play/movie The Best Man. Lee Tracy played former president Art Hockstader on Broadway and in the 1964 film adaptation.

The Truman revival included this song by Chicago:

The Movie List: I recently realized that my love of classic films made this a Movie List Too White except for Spike Lee. It’s time to remedy that this week.

My Top Ten Favorite Denzel Washington Movies:

  1.  Malcolm X
  2.  Devil In A Blue Dress
  3.  Glory
  4.  Mississippi Masala
  5.  American Gangster
  6.  The Mighty Quinn
  7.  Out Of Time
  8.  Fences
  9.  Courage Under Fire
  10.  Crimson Tide

The last word of the segment goes to Manfred Mann with a Bob Dylan song:

Our next segment could be called Toon Time Without Tisserand.

Saturday GIF Horse: Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck are two of my comedic heroes. Say no more.

Let’s move forward in time to 1983.

Weekly Vintage Video: Joan Armatrading is not an artist I’ve kept up with over the years, but I love, love, love this song.

And now for something completely different.

Saturday Classic: Monty Python member, film director, and  writer Terry Jones died recently at age 77. In addition to his life as a humorist, Jones produced a series of historical documentaries for the BBC from 2002 to 2006. This is the first one:

That’s it for this week. The last word goes to Nancy Smash and the House removal trial managers: Hakim Jeffries. Sylvia Garcia, Jerry Nadler, Adam Schiff, Val Demings, Zoe Lofgren, and Jason Crow.

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