It’s been a cold and contentious week in New Orleans. We continue to debate the merits of holding Carnival amidst the Omicron wave. My position is clear but, Mayor Teedy seems dug in and she has the hammer. I have a nerf mallet at best. Do they make those? Beats the hell outta me.
The featured image is an uncharacteristically subdued painting by Salvador Dali. I picked it because of the “rose in a fisted glove” image used by Stephen Stills in Love The One You’re With.
This week’s theme song was written by Stephen Stills in 1970 for his eponymous debut album as a solo artist. I have mixed feelings about Love The One You’re With. It has a swell melody and a great groove but some of the lyrics are hippie dippy tripe. In the end, the groove triumphs over the lyrics.
We have four versions of Love The One You’re With for your listening pleasure: the Stills original followed by terrific covers by Luther Vandross. the Isley Brothers and my 13th Ward homies, the Neville Brothers.
I love how Luther takes the tune to church, which reminds me of this Lyle Lovett song:
Now that we’ve had some greens and good cornbread, let’s jump to the break.
I’m still a bit peckish after contemplating cornbread. This song by my old friend David is quite filling:
We begin our second act in earnest with some thoughts about JD Vance: Peter Thiel’s candidate for the senate in Ohio.
Hillbilly Elegist Or Trumpist Stooge? There’s a fan-fucking-tastic profile of JD Vance by Simon van Zylen-Wood in the WaPo Magazine. He takes a deep dive into Vance’s public persona and tries to explain his shift from anti-Trumper to slavish acolyte of the Donald. I think it’s opportunism, but van Zylen-Wood thinks there’s more to it than that. You be the judge or is that jury?
Simon van Zylen-Wood sat for an interview with Slate’s Mary Harris in which he expresses his opinions more forcefully than in the Vance profile. It’s an excellent read with a swell title: JD Vance Has Turned A 30 Rock Joke Into A Viable Political Strategy.
Our next segment is about political extremism, denial, and a woman’s obsession with revealing the truth about Nazi filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl.
Burying Leni Riefenstahl: In the years after World War II, Leni Riefenstahl ran an elaborate con game. She claimed to have been merely a hired hand who made movies for Hitler and Goebbels. It was a BIG LIE from a leading Nazi propagandist. Riefenstahl was a charming and attractive woman, so she was able to fool some people. But not Nina Gladitz.
Gladitz embarked on a lifelong quest to expose Riefenstahl as a lying Nazi. It was not an easy task. She was a difficult woman who alienated many former allies including writer Kate Connolly who has written a great piece in the Guardian. Nina Gladitz was difficult, but she was also right.
The last word of our second act goes to Sheryl Crow:
We begin our third act with a new feature. Consider it borrowed not stolen. I’m giving the stolen one, Separated At Birth, time off for bad behavior.
Born On This Day: It’s Martin Luther King Jr’s actual birthday, so we’ll celebrate that on Monday, The three-day weekend thing is some powerful shit, y’all.
I used Brittanica.com for my source material for this feature. January 15th was a busy birthing day in history. I’m going to list a top five and be done with it.
We have a weird group: Saints QB Drew Brees, The father of the H-Bomb, Edward Teller, firebrand 19th Century abolitionist and feminist Abby Foster, swing era drummer Gene Krupa, and Dadaist blues singer Don Van Vliet DBA Captain Beefheart.
Drew is the only one who’s still alive. HBD, DB the QB.
The last word of the segment goes to Captain Beefheart with a Dadaist blues song:
My Top Ten Favorite Sidney Poitier Movies
- Edge Of The City
- In The Heat Of The Night
- Paris Blues
- Buck and the Preacher
- The Defiant Ones
- To Sir, With Love
- No Way Out
- Separate But Equal
- Lilies Of The Field
I try not to be obvious but sometimes the obvious choice is the best choice. Lulu gets the last word of the segment:
Saturday GIF Horse: Paris Blues is perhaps Poitier’s most underrated movie, In it, he and Paul Newman played jazz musicians living in the City of Lights. These GIFS are in the nature of a call and response. The first GIF features Louis Armstrong followed by Newman’s reply.
TCM Clips Of The Week: Noted film director and bullshit artist Peter Bogdanovich died at the age of 82 on Twelfth Night. Here’s TCM’s concise tribute to the man and his movies.
Here’s Bogdanovich sitting for an interview with TCM host Ben Mankiewicz:
Tweet Of The Week: Malaka Of The Week, Christopher Key was in New Orleans yesterday for an anti-mandate protest.
That’s not just any speaker, y’all. It’s the “drink your own urine” guy Christopher Key.
— Hell Or Bywater (@HellOrBywater) January 14, 2022
It’s unknown if anyone went out for drinks with the Alabama Piss Drinker. I’d demand he gargle with Listerine before I got within 6 feet of him. Social distancing is always advisable with this creep. The malakatude not only burns, it stinks.
Let’s close down this virtual honky tonk with some more music.
Saturday Classic: Jack Bruce is best known as Cream’s singer/bassist. He also made some fine solo albums. My favorite is 1969’s Song For A Tailor. I love the title of the opening track on the album: Never Tell Your Mother She’s Out of Tune. Wise choice, Jack.
That’s it for this week. The last word goes to Sidney Poitier and Barack Obama.