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Ethel Merman’s Scorched Earth Cover of “Tomorrow” from <I>Annie</I>

Ethel Merman’s Scorched Earth Cover of “Tomorrow” from Annie

Music, Television

In 1978, Ethel’s voice was still as efficient a killing machine as it was in the 1930s. Taking aim on the lovely set decorated for Christmas, Merm launches into the Strouse/Charnin standard with the intensity of a category five hurricane and proceeds to do to Sesame Street in 1978 what Godzilla did to Tokyo in 1956.

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Faith Newman on Teddy Pendergrass and her Philly Soul Roots

Faith Newman on Teddy Pendergrass and her Philly Soul Roots

Music

In 1981, at fifteen, I got my first job at a Philly record store called “The Listening Booth.” I flirted with the kinda slimy guy with the coke pinky who worked in the stereo department so he would play the in-store music that I liked. Of course that included Teddy and Rick and Marvin and Prince and my all time heroine, Teena Marie, the one person who made me feel that it was okay to be who I was and respect what I loved. I was asked to leave after I asked stereo guy to play Vaughn Mason’s Jammin’ My Big Guitar in the store. It was Christmas season and it didn’t go over too well with management.

The <i>Stargayzing</i> Collection of Things I Collect

The Stargayzing Collection of Things I Collect

Munk's Junk (Everything Else)

One of my oldest collections began before I was ten years old, when I bought my first two Pyramid books about film—about Bette Davis and Humphrey Bogart.  Published in the 1970s, the layout these books was perfect for a kid, as they simply presented a survey of the actor’s film work chronologically eschewing almost everything personal.  Some of them were written by future film experts like Leonard Maltin. They are a great example of a collection that has little monetary value but means the world to me, as it represents the seeds of passion for my future film studies.

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