Quick Hits: April 23

  • On this day in 2001, Fatboy Slim released his single “Weapon of Choice”, which features Bootsy Collins on vocals. The video for “Weapon of Choice” was directed by Oscar winner Spike Jonze and stars the delightful Christopher Walken. Fatboy Slim earned six trophies at the MTV Video Music Awards that year and took home the 2002 Grammy Award for Best Music Video.
  • Shirley Temple was born on this day in 1928. Temple became an overnight sensation at the age of six when she starred in 1934’s Bright Eyes, which features the song most closely associated with her: “On the Good Ship Lollipop”. The United States was at the height of the Great Depression, and Temple provided a respite from the anguish of unemployment, homelessness, and hunger. Temple was the #1 box office draw from 1935 to 1938 and won an honorary Oscar in 1935. In her adulthood, Temple was a diplomat, serving as a United Nations delegate and US Ambassador to Ghana and Czechoslovakia.
Bill “Bojangles” Robinson was Temple’s favorite dance partner (“It was kind of a magic between us”). They were the first interracial couple to dance together onscreen (in 1935’s The Little Colonel). Here’s a scene from one of their later collaborations, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.
  • John Cena, Kal Penn and John Oliver are all celebrating their 45th birthdays today.
  • “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)” by The Four Tops was released on this day in 1965. The single spent nine weeks atop the Billboard R&B chart and two non-consecutive weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 (it was toppled by The Byrds’ “Mr. Tambourine Man” and The Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”, respectively). It was the second-best-selling single of 1965, after (and I am not making this up) “Wooly Bully” by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs.
  • Because I needed another time-wasting activity, I just discovered this YouTube channel that discusses a film or television series based on real events and how closely it adheres to the historical record. Amadeus is a movie I’ve seen only once (when it was in theaters), but after watching this video I’ve decided it’s time for a re-watch. Some of the other clips by History Buffs cover everything from Gladiator to Braveheart to Saving Private Ryan to Bohemian Rhapsody. And down the rabbit hole, I go…
Yes, that’s Jeffrey Jones as Emperor Joseph II
  • Singer Michael Feinstein, a friend of Liza Minnelli’s, appeared on SiriusFM’s The Jess Cagle Show this week with an interesting addition to that heartwarming Lady Gaga/Minnelli moment at the Oscars.
  • And finally, Robert Morse has died at the age of ninety. Morse is best known for his portrayal of J. Pierrepont Finch in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, which earned Morse his first Tony; he reprised the role for the 1967 film adaptation. I appeared in my high school’s production of How to Succeed… so it holds a special place in my heart. Morse won his second Tony for playing Truman Capote in Tru (and an Emmy for the airing of the one-man play on PBS’s American Playhouse). Morse may be familiar to TV audiences for his role as Bert Cooper on Mad Men.
I love this so much!

3 thoughts on “Quick Hits: April 23

  1. I’m so going down that History Buff rabbit hole with you-I can’t believe you didn’t tell me about it!

    And I am NOT making this up, Wooly Bully and Sugar Pie Honey Bunch are two of my favorite songs. There’s just something about that era/these songs that makes me want to dance!

    Liked by 1 person

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