Saturday, July 13, 2013

Dolly, Faut y croire. Happy Bastille Day!

Dolly was one of France's most popular rock bands from the early 1990s until 2005, when their bassist, Mickaël "Micka" Chamberlin, died in a car crash. After that, the group stopped recording and touring, but later, the surviving three members--Emmanuelle "Manu" Monet, the charismatic lead vocalist and guitarist; drummer Thierry Lacroix; and guitarist Nicolas "Nico" Bonnière--added a new bassist and began performing as "Manu."

I once suggested, not entirely in jest, that the Mets ditch the inane "Meet the Mets" as their fight song, and replace it with Faut y croire, which roughly translates as "Ya gotta believe!"

Addendum: A friend asks this question on Facebook: "Why does it sound like they're saying 'delenda est' after the title lyric?" My reply: "Maybe they are."

I forgot to mention that there are Bastille Day festivities right here in my neck of the woods.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Michael Simmons, "As I Walk by the Moon"

My erstwhile Lion's Head drinking companion Michael Simmons, now living in L.A., has been a steady source of mostly music related material for this blog, including a clip of the song "Instant Forget" by his band Slewfoot that was very popular according to the stats I get from Google. Now I have a clip, thanks to Kassamiia (aka Tiina Bockrath), of a very young Michael's solo performance, accompanying himself on acoustic guitar, of a lovely song titled "As I Walk by the Moon," which he wrote with Barry Parker. The audio is accompanied by a still photo of Michael by John Duke Kisch.

Monday, July 08, 2013

British Pathé Newsreel: S.S. United States wins the Blue Riband on her maiden voyage.

The Blue Riband? It's an award that is not likely ever to be given again. It was for the passenger ship that made the fastest crossings, both eastward and westward, of the Atlantic, measured between the Ambrose Lightship off New York harbor and Bishop's Rock off Cornwall, England. S.S. United States won it on her maiden voyage in 1952, and retired with the title as transatlantic jet service supplanted ships. Queen Mary 2 annually makes one or two  transatlantic voyages between  my beloved Brooklyn and Southampton, England, traditional home port for Cunard liner services. Designed for cruising, Queen Mary 2 is unlikely to challenge any speed records.

Unfortunately, the United States is now in danger of going for scrap. The S.S. United States Conservancy, headed by Susan Gibbs, granddaughter of William Francis Gibbs, the marine architect and engineer who designed the great ship, is trying to raise funds to save her.  I'm hoping she may be preserved as a floating museum and perhaps hotel at a pier along what used to be "ocean liner row" on the west side of Manhattan, where she used to dock.

Update: The Conservancy has a Facebook page. Please consider giving them a "like."