Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Xmas (1950)

This Christmas, sit down with your egg nog by the fire, and dig into the amazingly true story of the legendary Korla Pandit. "People talk about adversity..."

Monday, December 14, 2009

Slam Stewart Trio (1947)

I had to re-post this here. The quality is very good (is YouTube FINALLY becoming a watchable medium?) and I have never seen it before. It gives a rare glimpse of Slam Stewart's late-40s trio that featured Beryl Booker on piano and vocals and John Collins on guitar. Stewart had previously been a member of the Art Tatum Trio with Tiny Grimes, which, like this combo, showed the undeniable influence of The King Cole Trio. In fact, it's hard to really grasp how influential The King Cole Trio were at their time. This clip was taken from the 1947 film, "Boy! What a Girl" that also featured musicians such as Big Sid Catlett. If you are interested in the trio check out this site.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

San Francisco Municipal Railway 26 Valencia Line (1892-2009)

Due to budget cuts, MUNI has discontinued the line, which had run in one way or another since 1892. Now I will 'fess up...I RARELY use the line, although I live just a block off of Valencia but I don't like seeing public services cut anymore than the next frustrated-socialist, 20-year Frisco resident (and, yes, I did just call it Frisco). The Citywide reactions have been interesting. For example, this is the first eulogy for a MUNI line I have read. Surprisingly optimistic, it does put forward a great idea of restoring the Valencia Street corridor to a light rail line (that would also allow cyclists). I actually like this idea. Extend those historic streetcars through the Mission. I don't know how traffic would be controlled and there are a lot of Valencia Street businesses and residents that might have other ideas. Perhaps it would even have a positive effect on the crime in my neighborhood. Who knows? Certainly food for thought. Thanks to Spots Unknown from whom I pilfered the above photo from 1943. Rest in Peace.