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Monthly Archives: December 2002
Tuesday, December 31, 2002
Mister D: Now some of you Westerners get out there and go see Ms. Lewis…should be a dynamite show…
Jennifer Lewis has sung with Bette Midler, done Broadway’s Dreamgirls and Ain’t Misbehavin’ and currently has a TV gig on Lifetime’s “Strong Medicine.” So, Now What?? Jennifer Lewis has sung with Bette Midler, done Broadway’s Dreamgirls and Ain’t Misbehavin’ and currently has a TV gig on Lifetime’s “Strong Medicine.” So, Now What??
Another royal Bette can stand:-)
2002 Tony Award winner Alan Bates was chosen for this year’s British honor of knighthood along with film director Ridley Scott.
Congratulations to Master Bates!!!!:-)
Love, Mister D….tee hee
Monday, December 30, 2002
I’d like to take a bit of your time and say thank you, thank you, thank you, for making this site rock in such a short amount of time. I never thought anyone would have that much interest in what I dredge up except for me:-) So this has been a great way to end the year and begin a new one…
I’m getting kind of schizoid on where to take this site, so please bear with me or give me feedback and I’ll try to accomodate your wishes…I have areas I really want to work on…print stuff, the Harlettes, and a tribute to Mr. Vilanch. But I have to say this techie stuff is getting to be a little much for this blonde boy (and I use “boy” very loosely):-) My favorite thing is finding news…so if worse comes to worse…that’s what I’m sticking with. And, of course, the music!!!
Mister D: Even though it’s only one sentence, I at least found one renowned (notorious) critic, Rex Reed, of the New York Observer who actually commented on her performance:
The best thing I saw last week had nothing to do with movies. It was Short Talks on the Universe, a Broadway benefit for Friends in Deed and the Bay Street Theatre, produced by Mike Nichols. When he asked some of the best writers in New York to write an evening of plays lasting no more than 12 minutes each, hundreds of folks packed the Eugene O’Neill two nights in a row at up to $1,000 a clip. They got their money’s worth. Two generations bonded when Angela Lansbury, a symphony in beige cashmere, and Chris O’Donnell played a once-great star and a young stagehand who meet on the empty stage of a deserted theater marked for demolition in Terrence McNally’s Ghost Light. Bette Midler brought down the house reading a comic essay by Nora Ephron on why she hates her purse.In Elaine May’s Extra, curvy movie star Ellen Barkin and scrappy Alec Baldwin were a couple of elegant strangers at a party who hated each other on sight, insulted each other all the way through cocktails, then forgot and forgave on the dance floor the minute the band launched into a Cole Porter tune. Kevin Kline and Christine Baranski literally stole the show in Steve Martin’s hip, name-dropping skit about a tired married couple in bed who torture each other with lies about their extramarital sex lives to keep each other awake all night. The weakest play was a bit that went nowhere by Jon Robin Baitz, with Matthew Broderick as a tail-swishing Devil who arrived from Hell in a puff of smoke to claim the soul of a bad producer (Tony Roberts) in the men’s room at Sardi’s. After the actors took their bows, Mr. Nichols made his curtain speech, and Candice Bergen, Richard Avedon, Diane Sawyer and others too fabled to mention led a standing ovation you could hear a block away. The miscalculated addition of three long, irrelevant Stephen Sondheim songs was generally regarded as weirdly anticlimactic. Still, it was the kind of swanky event that only happens here. With pals like these, you almost wish Mike Nichols would stop directing and just throw parties.
Dave: How did you start writing the “Real Life Top 10” columns for Salon.com? Are those a major focus for you or something to keep you busy between larger projects?
Marcus: I started a column in New West magazine in 1978 called “Real Life Rock.” At the end of each essay, I’d include a little list called “Real Life Top 10.” The point was not to just be a list of records, but anything that remotely had to do with music, a dress Bette Midler wore at an awards show or a great guitar solo in the middle of a song that otherwise wasn’t very interesting. At some point, Doug Simmons, the music editor at The Village Voice, said, “What if you made that into a real column, annotated each item?” I’d never thought of that. So I made it a monthly column for The Village Voice in around ’86.
The Bag Snagger is a new tool for arborists and citizen tree pruners designed to remove plastic bags and other debris from trees.
Able to reach heights of more than 40 feet, the Bag Snagger can get rid of virtually all unsightly bags which have lodged in trees in parks, along city streets, or anywhere trees may be threatened.
Bag Snaggers are now being used by a number of organizations in New York City including the Central Park Conservancy and the New York Restoration Project founded by Bette Midler. Click below to see photos of Ms. Midler and members of her group removing bags from trees.
Sunday, December 29, 2002
Mister D: This is from an interview with Francis Thumm in Interview Magazine, 1989
FT: Bette Midler attended some of your earliest New York concerts(7). What was that like?
TW: Well, she came in with all the feathers and ermine and red hair on fire, trailing ten or twelve people behind her. She was moving turbulence. She was in the audience, and I think we became friends right away.
FT: What did she say about your performance?
TW: She said. “You need some feathers, girls, hula skirls, and beaded curtains, and then you might have something.” I wrote some songs for her. like “I Never Talk to Strangers” and “Rainbow Sleeves.”(8) As soon as I met her, I felt like I had already known her she can do an hour on your hair. We can talk about anything. I love her musical impulses; she has a great sense of history in terms of her involvement in show business. She wanted to open a lounge act together, featuring us as Edie and Edie Wednesday. We’ve been friends for a long time, you know, since ’74.
Mister D: Such strange casting and subject…why I can’t even imagine it:-) But you never know with Hollyweird…
Nick Paton Walsh
Sunday July 14, 2002
It will take him six months, 2m strokes and 4m calories, according to scientists. And at the end, he’ll swim up the Hudson River to pose beneath the Statue of Liberty.
Per Larsson, 36, the Swedish endurance champion, yesterday began his marathon non-stop swim across the Atlantic Ocean, from Dakar to New York. Larsson will be accompanied two-thirds of the way by a ship paid for by sponsors Ready Brekky cereals. He has yet to find a sponsor for the latter third of the trip, although sources say a major network is close to stepping in, and signing him up for a documentary of his swim, to be narrated by athlete Ben Johnson. And, if he completes the swim, oil giant Cheney Rumsfeld has promised to give $4bn to charity.
Mister D: Robert Risko is a great caricaturist. I love his response to the interviewers description of Bette’s face. He has a book out, The Risko Book (The Monacelli Press) …” a lavish, nonstop whirl through popular culture, a bright and brilliant illuminated manuscript representing the flash of our age.”
A new book celebrates American fame and the artist who has drawn everybody…
Whom have you drawn the most?Bette Midler. I met her once very quickly at a party that a friend of mine, Brett Benedict, threw many years ago for a book he did called Fame. Bette wrote the foreword and we all went to a restaurant in Little Italy. We were introduced and I said, ‘Oh, I have a great drawing of you.’ And she said, ‘Oh, I don’t want to see it, I don’t want to see it.’ She’s hysterical. I love her. Since then I have drawn her several times for The New Yorker. I just did her for Entertainment Weekly for her television show, and I did her for an HBO videocassette package. She is a very pleasant caricature.
Friday, December 27, 2002
You have said that Some People’s Lives is the best song you’ve ever been involved with.
It’s a faultless song. It is now hopefully on its way to becoming somewhat of a standard. We wrote it in ’86 and pitched it to everyone in the music biz and nobody would touch it. We had some really nice reactions and as a songwriter it’s so rare that you get reactions like that. I remember Anita Baker actually called MCA to thank us and to say that it was one of the best songs she’d ever heard but it didn’t work for her album. And I thought “what a class act.” People never do that. Nobody cut it until Michael Johnson in 1988. I did an NAS show in L.A. and Bette Midler was there. I found out later that she requested a video of it, and learned it, and we didn’t find out she was intending to cut it until the middle of 90. So it was over four years until Bette cut it.