A music video birthday blog.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Dolly Parton

Happy birthday to Dolly Parton, born this day in 1946! Here she is singing a subdued but absolutely lovely version of her song "I Will Always Love You" on Hee Haw in 1974.

Robert Palmer

Happy birthday to the late Robert Palmer, born this day in 1949! Here he is with his pre-solo-career band Vinegar Joe in 1973 or so--the other singer is Elkie Brooks--doing a song called "Proud To Be a Honky Woman." Ah, the well-meaning but wince-worthy racial politics of the '70s. Sigh.

Charles Amirkhanian

Happy birthday to Charles Amirkhanian, born this day in 1945! Here's a 1972 sound-poetry recording by him called "Radii."

Caron Wheeler

Happy birthday to Caron Wheeler, born this day in 1963! Here's the video for her first American hit with Soul II Soul, "Keep On Movin'." That 1989 production--beautiful.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Joanna Newsom

Happy birthday, Joanna Newsom, born this day in 1982! Here's a new, as-yet-untitled song, performed live last November. (The sharper-eyed among you may have noticed that the title of this blog is lifted from another one of her songs.)

R. Stevie Moore

Happy birthday to R. Stevie Moore, born this day in 1952! He has approximately nine zillion self-made videos, but I've always been fond of this song: "Part of the Problem," recorded in 1980.

David Ruffin

Happy birthday to the late David Ruffin, born this day in 1941. Here's a lip-synched performance of "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" with the Temptations in 1966--check out that choreography!

Danny Kaye

Happy birthday, Danny Kaye, born this day in 1913! This is one of those inimitable videos of somebody just playing a record--in this case, a 1941 recording of "Tschaikowsky (and Other Russians)," his showstopping number from Lady in the Dark (the really good part is the last 45 seconds).

Jim O'Rourke

Happy birthday, Jim O'Rourke, born this day in 1969! Here's a clip of Kahimi Karie singing a song he co-wrote with her, "Night Train," last year, with an ensemble including O'Rourke himself, Otomo Yoshihide playing guitar, and Sachiko M playing electronics!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

all the boys and girls

Happy birthday to Fran├žoise Hardy, born this day in 1944! Here's the original Scopitone video for her first hit, "Tous Les Gar├žons Et Les Filles," from 1962. Beautiful song.

every day I'll pass and say

Happy birthday to Susanna Hoffs, born this day in 1959! Here she is with the Bangles circa late 1982, in their early garage-rock mode, doing three songs: their own "Tell Me" (lead vocals by Susanna), the La De Da's' "How Is The Air Up There?" (lead vocals by Vicki Peterson), and the Seeds' "Pushin' Too Hard" (with Debbi Peterson doing "her Sky Saxon imitation"). Not the best video quality, but awesome performances.

scholarly room

Happy birthday to Andy Rourke of the Smiths, born this day in 1964. Here they are doing "Handsome Devil" live at the Hacienda in 1983.


Happy birthday to Eartha Kitt, born this day in 1927! This live-on-TV performance of "I Want To Be Evil" from '62 is one of the greatest achievements of humankind.

give the world a touch

Happy birthday to Shabba Ranks, born this day in 1966! Here's the video for his circa-1990 collaboration with Scritti Politti on a cover of the Beatles' "She's a Woman," which is one of those things that shouldn't work but does.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Happy birthday to Damo Suzuki, born today in 1950. Here he is with Can in 1970, playing a live-on-TV version of "Mother Sky":

I love how the band are way, way more into it than the audience.

the Coliseum, the Louvre Museum

Happy 100th birthday, Ethel Merman! Here she is with Bing Crosby in 1936, performing Cole Porter's "You're the Top":

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

sure 'nuff 'n' yes I do

Happy birthday and hope you're doing well, Captain Beefheart, born this day in 1941. Here's a ripping 1980 TV performance of "Ashtray Heart":

this is MY wall

Happy birthday and rest in peace (and quiet), Ivor Cutler, born this day in 1923. Here's a fan-made video for the immortal "Get Away from the Wall."