Archive for April, 2010

This is an MGM cartoon from 1938 and is the final Bosko cartoon. It;s amazing how much Bosko changed from a decade earlier when he and his creators Rudy Ising and Hugh Harmon were at Warner Bros. and he launched the Looney Tunes. Bosko has become so obscure now that it is relatively unknown that he actually launched two cartoon studios, Warner Bros. and MGM and without Bosko there would have been no Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Daffy Duck, Tom & Jerry or Droopy. Bosko started as the Talk Ink Kid and was not really an African-American stereotype but a creation of Rudy Ising.

It was not until he came to MGM that he was more identifiable as a black kid.

I really like the Harmon & Ising cartoons of this period and think that the animation is almost on a par with the stuff that Disney was producing at the time. In today’s society the black stereotype is quite unsavory but we must remember that this is a product of its time. I’d love for Warners (who own the MGM cartoons) to release some of the Happy Harmonies onto DVD but I know that this won’t happen as they do not value the MGM cartoons as much as the Looney Tunes that they own. (Sad but true!)

Here is one of George Pal’s fantastic Puppetoons from the late 1940s. I have never seen this one before but that is unsurprising since the rights owner Arnold Lebovitz has released so few of these cartoons onto DVD but is very diligent in getting these taken off Youtube within days of them being uploaded. (So I guess that this will be gone before the end of next week!)

Pal is really the father of stop motion animation and even though Willis O’Brien had been animating for almost two decades before Pal left Europe, he is more remembered only for King Kong and little else. Both O’Brien and Ray Harryhausen worked as animators on Pal’s cartoons throughout the 1940s.

George Pal is perhaps remembered mostly for the live action sci-fi films that he produced in the 1950s and 60s, including War Of The Worlds and The Time Machine.

I like A Date With Duke a lot, especially the great music from Duke Ellington.

On Friday the new Rolling Stones song Plundered My Soul became available for download. The song will officially be released on Monday but as I have already downloaded the song from Sony Music, and listened to it, I thought that I would share my thoughts.

Plundered My Soul is one of the left overs from the 1972 Exile On Mainstreet sessions. For the digitally remastered version of Exile Mick Jagger was asked to delve deep into the archives to find some songs that could be used as a bonus track. Plundered My Soul was one the tracks that he discovered. Mick initially believed that there was nothing left unreleased from these sessions and said he was surprised when he found Plundered My Soul. He and Keith have since given the song a good spit and polish, digitally remastered it and added some new percussion to it.

Upon listening to Plundered My Soul I wonder whether it is really from the Exile sessions and is not from a bit later on. I don’t really want to question the great Mick Jagger but the drum beat sounds a little like it is from the Some Girls/Emotional Rescue/Tattoo You period and it is well known that there are a lot of songs from this period that are still undiscovered. (Thanks to the Jagger/Richards rift that was happening at the time!) Perhaps the problem is with Jagger and Richards’ tinkering with the song as it doesn’t sound like it is from the drug and booze hazed Exile On Mainstreet period, as it sounds a little too crisp and polished. It sounds a bit more like a hybrid of the the Stone’s from the 1990s/2000s, mixed with the early 80s drum beats and 1970s countrified soul, if that makes any sense at all. Still I do think that the song is very catchy and better than most stuff that you hear on the radio at the moment. (And there are some very horrible songs on the radio at the moment. Don’t believe me… turn on Nova or FOX right now and see what I mean.)

As for the remastered version of Exile On Mainstreet, I am not so sure whether I will purchase it when it is reissued into records shops next month. (I won’t download it, that’s for sure!) I already own Exile on CD and have for about 18 years, and am not sure whether the addition of new undiscovered songs will justify my purchasing it again. The new version does come with some sort of gimmick packaging, but it won’t be like the zipper fly version of Sticky Fingers (yes I do own the zipper fly CD version of Stick Fingers!!!).

For those who want to hear the new song it has been uploaded to Youtube.

I don’t know if I should be happy with this or not, but after perusing through the Youtube comments I see that there are some people who agree with my assessment that the song sounds like a hybrid of modern Stones (ala Don’t Stop, Keys To Your Love) and late 70s/early 80s Stones (Beast Of Burden/Emotional Rescue).

The credits for the song are…
Mick Jagger: Vocals, Guitar & Percussion
Keith Richards: Guitar
Charlie Watts: Drums
Bill Wyman: Bass
Nicky Hopkins: Piano
Mick Taylor: Guitar
Bobby Keys: Sax
Lisa Fisher: Background Vocals
Cindy Mizelle: Background Vocals…

I also have a feeling that it is Woody on lead guitar and not Mick Taylor but who really knows. (This is also being debated on Youtube!)