When I went to bed last night the mist was so thick that I really thought there must have been a landing. In response, we kept it alien and watched Earth vs. the Flying Saucers from 1956 as recommended by Ste Stallianitiou on yesterday’s blog response. It starred Hugh Marlowe (1911-1982) who as it happens was also in All About Eve (1950) as well as The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) which also like the former inspired a band name from the character Klaatu, played by Michael Rennie (1909-1971). Their inspired classic track, Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft (1976), bizarrely covered by The Carpenters in 1977, started with a love for aliens. I never saw the remake of The Day The Earth Stood Still (2008) with Keanu Reeves who is still alive and apparently the nicest guy in showbiz. How was Earth vs. the Flying Saucers? Well, fifties sci-fi follows a pattern of appealing, laughable absurdity, and then there are the special effects.
The film had special effects by Ray Harryhausen who you will remember from the unforgettable scene in Jason and the Argonauts (1963) where the skeleton warriors rise up from the ground. Jason has music by Bernard Hermann, Harryhausen originally had teamed up with Hermann for the soundtrack of The 7th Voyage of Sinbad (1963). Hermann had of course worked extensively with Alfred Hitchcock and wrote the music for North by Northwest which we watched yesterday.
Everything is connected somewhere, the Eiffel Tower and Portugal, the Amazon and Dierdre at number 23, there’s a thread between everything which is why when the aliens come, the humans all find themselves on the same side, a common enemy but because fighting the aliens as a common cause means we have something in common this makes us relate to each other which turns us into friends so really fundamentally as humans we should all be friends, haha, nice theory.
I filed away Olivia’s records into the shelf today and in there were some albums from her parents, so there were a few records there that the archive didn’t have, for example Beardfish (Olivia), Adolphson & Falk (Mamma), James Ingram (Pappa). These are the kind of records that I probably wouldn’t buy but deserve to be in an archive that is set up to preserve music in general. So who is going to bring in the hip hop because it won’t be me. We need Genre Department Heads. How do I get a tycoon (haha, even the word is silly) interested in the preservation? The answer is when it becomes an investment that gives a healthy return. Philanthropists (who seem to be tycoons with souls) want to preserve art legacies but I don’t think they’ve come around to records yet. If you consider the R ‘n’ R era began in the early fifties leading to an interest by young people in electronic music and any modern contemporary music or commercial or underground rock, pop or metal and anything experimental then that began seventy years ago, surely it’s time to think about saving it. Andy Warhol’s paintings weren’t always worth millions, imagine the value of a giant record collection in 50 more years? I need long-term vision from investors who look beyond their own deaths! Haha, I guess that’s too much to ask, I’m not sure tycoons think like that and philanthropists release funds for good causes on their death beds even if their families don’t want wise old art lovers giving their inheritance away to damned museums. I must say though lots of people have contributed to the cause of the archive in different ways, with smaller and large donations, records, magazines and books, concert tickets and musical instruments. I keep dreaming about it happening and trying to add to it all the time. Thanks, past music lovers and reformed tycoons, haha.
Music today has been Aztec Camera’s classic debut album High Land, Hard Rain (1983) for responder Shivaun O’Neill. Singer-songwriter Roddy Frame got a lot of press and acclaim for this album when it came out. Frame is another one of those mysterious singer-songwriters who hasn’t made a record for years. After six albums with Aztec Camera between 1983 and 1995, he made four solo albums between 1998 and 2014 but hasn’t released anything for eight years. I bought the early singles (in picture sleeves) and still have them in the archive, Mattress Of Wire, Oblivious, Pillar To Post, Walk Out To Winter, All I Need Is Everything. I don’t have the very first one, released on Postcard Records, Just Like Gold (1981) but I do have Mattress Of Wire (1981) on Postcard and the Rough Trade singles Pillar To Post (1982), Walk Out To Winter (1983) and Oblivious (1983) and All I Need Is Everything (1984) on WEA.