I didn’t start out to make June Yes-Paul Klee month. It just happened that way. They do have something in common: Klee was Swiss and the Going For The One album was recorded in Montreux, Switzerland.
This week’s theme song was written by Jon Anderson several years before it saw the light of day in 1977 as the opening track on the album of that name. One of my exes referred to GFTO as the butt album. You can see why below.
Going For The One marked Rick Wakeman’s first of many returns to the band and Steve Howe’s first use of steel guitar as his sole instrument on a song.
We have two versions of Going For The One for your listening pleasure: the studio original and a 21st Century live version.
It’s unclear if one is actually the loneliest number. Let’s consult with Aimee Mann:
We begin our third act with a brilliant and frightening piece from the Atlantic.
American Rasputin: Jennifer Senior spent more time with Steve Bannon than any sane person should. She found him alternately infuriating and charming. Above all, he’s a dangerous dude. Go to the Atlantic for the gory details.
John Entwistle didn’t write this song about Bannon but the title fits, so why the hell not use it?
Woodstein Returns: We’re steaming toward the 50th anniversary of the Watergate break-in. That was enough to bring Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein back together. The title says it all: Woodward and Bernstein Thought Nixon Defined Corruption. Then Came Trump.
If that doesn’t send shivers down your spine, I don’t know what will.
Here’s something for the Woodward haters out there. It comes from the NYT’s obit for the forgotten Watergate editor, Barry Sussman:
“Mr. Sussman had hoped to be the third author of “All the President’s Men,” but to his chagrin, Mr. Woodward and Mr. Bernstein felt that they did not need a Post editor for the book project. Mr. Sussman decided to write “The Great Coverup: Nixon and the Scandal of Watergate” (1974), which was published a few months later, though not to the fanfare that “All the President’s Men,” a best seller, received.
When the author Alicia C. Shepard contacted Mr. Sussman for her book “Woodward and Bernstein: Life in the Shadow of Watergate” (2007), the old wound of being excluded from the book seemed to have lingered. He told her that he had not read “All the President’s Men,” adding, “I don’t have anything good to say about either one of them.”
Ouch. I seem to recall that Nora Ephron felt much the same way.
Let’s move on to a more pleasant subject than Woodstein.
Documentary Of The Week: Some know him as Marty Funkhouser on Curb Your Enthusiasm; others as Albert Brooks’ older brother; still others as Officer Judy on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. To me, Bob Einstein will always be Super Dave Osborne the inept and irascible daredevil. Super Dave was a parody of Evel Knievel who was a sensation back in the day. Evel was unintentionally funny; Super Dave was the real deal.
The Super Bob Einstein Movie tells Bob Einstein’s story and tells it well.
The talking heads include Bob’s old friends Rob Reiner, Steve Martin, and his kid brother as well as Super Dave super fan Jimmy Kimmell. It’s a warm and fuzzy but still funny tribute to Einstein who died in 2019.
Here’s the trailer:
I loved The Super Bob Einstein Movie. It literally made me laugh and cry, often at the same time.
Grading Time: I give The Super Bob Einstein Movie 3 1/2 stars and an Adrastos grade of B+. It’s streaming on HBO Max.
The last word of our second act goes to James Brown:
Dig that crazy animation. Good gawd, y’all.
We begin our third act with our favorite stolen feature.
Separated At Birth Casting Edition: If you felt like invading a country, Napoleon Bonaparte was your man.
The best movie of the group is The Emperor’s New Clothes. It’s about Napoleon in exile on St. Helena and his plan to escape and cause more chaos in Europe.
Movie List: James Wong Howe was one of the greatest cinematographers of Hollywood’s Golden Age as well as one of the few prominent Asians in the business. This is his list. There’s only one film in color: Picnic which features a bravura performance by William Holden.
My Top Ten Favorite James Wong Howe Movies
- Sweet Smell Of Success
- Body and Soul
- City For Conquest
- Objective Burma
- The Rose Tattoo
- Out Of The Fog
- Laugh Clown Laugh
Laugh Clown Laugh is the only silent movie on the list, but it reflects James Wong Howe’s long career in which he worked with everyone from Lon Chaney to Barbra Streisand.
As far as I know, James Wong Howe is no relation to Yessman Steve Howe, but I might as well post a lesser known Yessong while I’m at it:
Best Of Johnny: It’s time for more Bob Einstein as Super Dave pays Johnny Carson a visit.
Saturday GIF Horse: Here are two GIFs from the #1 film on the James Wong Howe list.
It’s hard to be Sidney Falco. It was, however, the best role Bernie Schwartz DBA Tony Curtis ever had.
Next up, a last minute addition.
Tweet Of The Week: It comes from regular First Draft reader Al Dunn in response to my 1/6 committee post:
Dipshit, dipshit insurrection
You’re a soldier wanna be
Dipshit, dipshit realization
There’s no easy way to Nazi
No easy way to Nazi
-Shecky Townshend https://t.co/A8xmYnA8Ua
— Al Dunn (@AlDunn45) June 10, 2022
New lyrics for Slip Kid by The Who? Well done, sir.
I used some Slip Kid lyrics as a post title recently: No Easy Way To Be Free.
Here’s the song itself. Al’s new lyrics are for the chorus:
Let’s close down this virtual honky tonk with some more music.
Weekly Vintage Video: Are you ready for greens and some good cornbread? Let’s go to Church with Lyle Lovett.
That’s all for this week. The last word goes to Tennessee Williams, James Wong Howe, and Burt Lancaster on the set of The Rose Tattoo.