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I Dreamed I Was in Rock and Roll Heaven


CaveGirl
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The showing of the two Frank Tashlin movies last nite on TCM, showcased so many iconic rockers from the past and in beautiful living color, that anyone who missed seeing them really should be devastated.

 

That is of course unless you have both "The Girl Can't Help It" and "Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter" on dvd, which makes up for missing out.

 

Tashlin's understanding of Madison Avenue and its gambits, makes one wonder why the show "Mad Men" did not create a character like him on the show. His ability to insert hidden sexual content was beyond compare and he did not put the usual non-rock and roll performers in the film, but used mostly the real deal with people like Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran, Fats Domino and the likes of Little Richard.

 

When I once met Richard, he said that a lot of times rock performers then were treated like dirt, but that this movie was a happy experience for him. If he wasn't the forerunner of so many others, I don't know who is since even the Beatles credit him with that "whooo" sound they used in "She Loves You" and loved touring with him. The further remarks from Mankiewicz concerning the Beatles adoration of these musical giants was instructive.

 

The name Rita Marlowe, of course brings to mind a combination of movie goddesses like Hayworth and Marilyn, and Loverdoll's real moniker combines Rock Hudson with Tab Hunter and such names were the brainchild of agent Henry Willson, who had that stable of nubile young males in his corral.
 

Mickey Hargitay looked resplendent in basically nothing but a loincloth and Jayne teaching Tony Randall to walk in his shoes with lifts was a scream. While watching both films I kept thinking that Edmond O'Brien was reminding me of Donald Trump and somewhat resembled him. Not sure if that is a compliment or dig to either one.

Best of all was the arrival at the end of WSSRH of Groucho as Georgie Schmidlapp [sp?] and one can totally understand any woman falling for him, including Stay-Put's most kissable starlet.

 

All in all, two great films which are a testament to the fun Fifties, and a document of some of the rock and roll originators in all their regalia. Thanks, TCM for Jayne Mansfield nite!

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The showing of the two Frank Tashlin movies last nite on TCM, showcased so many iconic rockers from the past and in beautiful living color, that anyone who missed seeing them really should be devastated.

 

That is of course unless you have both "The Girl Can't Help It" and "Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter" on dvd, which makes up for missing out.

 

Tashlin's understanding of Madison Avenue and its gambits, makes one wonder why the show "Mad Men" did not create a character like him on the show. His ability to insert hidden sexual content was beyond compare and he did not put the usual non-rock and roll performers in the film, but used mostly the real deal with people like Gene Vincent, Eddie Cochran, Fats Domino and the likes of Little Richard.

 

When I once met Richard, he said that a lot of times rock performers then were treated like dirt, but that this movie was a happy experience for him. If he wasn't the forerunner of so many others, I don't know who is since even the Beatles credit him with that "whooo" sound they used in "She Loves You" and loved touring with him. The further remarks from Mankiewicz concerning the Beatles adoration of these musical giants was instructive.

 

The name Rita Marlowe, of course brings to mind a combination of movie goddesses like Hayworth and Marilyn, and Loverdoll's real moniker combines Rock Hudson with Tab Hunter and such names were the brainchild of agent Henry Willson, who had that stable of nubile young males in his corral.

 

Mickey Hargitay looked resplendent in basically nothing but a loincloth and Jayne teaching Tony Randall to walk in his shoes with lifts was a scream. While watching both films I kept thinking that Edmond O'Brien was reminding me of Donald Trump and somewhat resembled him. Not sure if that is a compliment or dig to either one.

 

Best of all was the arrival at the end of WSSRH of Groucho as Georgie Schmidlapp [sp?] and one can totally understand any woman falling for him, including Stay-Put's most kissable starlet.

 

All in all, two great films which are a testament to the fun Fifties, and a document of some of the rock and roll originators in all their regalia. Thanks, TCM for Jayne Mansfield nite!

As said before, the rock and roll, si, the film, no.

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As said before, the rock and roll, si, the film, no.

Thanks, Down! I'm glad we agree that the rock and roll was magnificent [except maybe for stuff like the Three Chuckles].

 

That type of film always had to insert a few non-rockers to appease the public who were scared of the wild antics of people like Little Richard. Putting in young guys in a tux to pretend to sing a rock and roll song was the panacea for such fears.

 

The Three Chuckles were more like a group that would have fit right in on "Your Hit Parade" or "The Lawrence Welk Show" and later I think had typical mainstream vocalist Teddy Randazzo as their lead.

 

We can agree to disagree about the quality of the movie in general, because as you know I am much shallower than you could ever hope to be and I was enjoying all Jayne's, Frederick's of Hollywood type couture and watching the poodle's hair bow change color to match, scene to scene. To me, these things are so important to a film.

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Thanks, Down! I'm glad we agree that the rock and roll was magnificent [except maybe for stuff like the Three Chuckles].

 

That type of film always had to insert a few non-rockers to appease the public who were scared of the wild antics of people like Little Richard. Putting in young guys in a tux to pretend to sing a rock and roll song was the panacea for such fears.

 

The Three Chuckles were more like a group that would have fit right in on "Your Hit Parade" or "The Lawrence Welk Show" and later I think had typical mainstream vocalist Teddy Randazzo as their lead.

 

We can agree to disagree about the quality of the movie in general, because as you know I am much shallower than you could ever hope to be and I was enjoying all Jayne's, Frederick's of Hollywood type couture and watching the poodle's hair bow change color to match, scene to scene. To me, these things are so important to a film.

For me, it's basically Ingmar Bergman or nothing.

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Although I can't think of their titles, there have been other films similar to THE GIRL AN'T HELP IT in which the "dissing" of rock'n'roll as a valid musical genre was blended into the story.

 

That a busty woman emitting a high pitched squeal can become a rock'n'roll "sensation" , or that O'Brien's character with his banal "Rockpile Rock" tune can be a "smash" goes to the core of Hollywood's appealing to the "anti rock'n'roll" sentiment still encompassing the nation at that time, and any opportunity to make the music look simple minded was seized upon.   But their inclusion of the genre's "giants" at that point in time is the movie's saving grace.

 

Hard to admit, but those cheaply budgeted ALAN FREED rock'n'roll flicks, in which the music finds a hard row to hoe but in the end triumphs were short on story, but long on presentation of how GOOD the genre was and is.  And did it more favors than TGCHI.

 

But retrospectively, I think the films show that although Mansfield was by no means that period's Meryl Streep, she WAS more than just her bustline.  AND incredibly gorgeous to boot!

 

But I always liked the movie despite all that other crap.  Both the rock acts AND Ewell have a lot to do with that.

 

 

Sepiatone

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Although I can't think of their titles, there have been other films similar to THE GIRL AN'T HELP IT in which the "dissing" of rock'n'roll as a valid musical genre was blended into the story.

 

That a busty woman emitting a high pitched squeal can become a rock'n'roll "sensation" , or that O'Brien's character with his banal "Rockpile Rock" tune can be a "smash" goes to the core of Hollywood's appealing to the "anti rock'n'roll" sentiment still encompassing the nation at that time, and any opportunity to make the music look simple minded was seized upon.   But their inclusion of the genre's "giants" at that point in time is the movie's saving grace.

 

Hard to admit, but those cheaply budgeted ALAN FREED rock'n'roll flicks, in which the music finds a hard row to hoe but in the end triumphs were short on story, but long on presentation of how GOOD the genre was and is.  And did it more favors than TGCHI.

 

But retrospectively, I think the films show that although Mansfield was by no means that period's Meryl Streep, she WAS more than just her bustline.  AND incredibly gorgeous to boot!

 

 

Sepiatone

More than her bustline? She was billed as having an IQ of, like, 170, which is more than 4x her bustline.

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Although I can't think of their titles, there have been other films similar to THE GIRL AN'T HELP IT in which the "dissing" of rock'n'roll as a valid musical genre was blended into the story.

 

That a busty woman emitting a high pitched squeal can become a rock'n'roll "sensation" , or that O'Brien's character with his banal "Rockpile Rock" tune can be a "smash" goes to the core of Hollywood's appealing to the "anti rock'n'roll" sentiment still encompassing the nation at that time, and any opportunity to make the music look simple minded was seized upon.   But their inclusion of the genre's "giants" at that point in time is the movie's saving grace.

 

Hard to admit, but those cheaply budgeted ALAN FREED rock'n'roll flicks, in which the music finds a hard row to hoe but in the end triumphs were short on story, but long on presentation of how GOOD the genre was and is.  And did it more favors than TGCHI.

 

But retrospectively, I think the films show that although Mansfield was by no means that period's Meryl Streep, she WAS more than just her bustline.  AND incredibly gorgeous to boot!

 

But I always liked the movie despite all that other crap.  Both the rock acts AND Ewell have a lot to do with that.

 

 

Sepiatone

Sepia, I watched the other Mansfield flicks shown that night and in the earlier ones it was so much more obvious that Jayne had a very normal voice and was just putting on an act with her Rita Marlowe characterization. But most people think of her only in that way.

 

I did mean to check to find out if Jayne was actually singing at the end on stage.

 

I do think Jayne was quite intelligent, gorgeous and a nice person from all I've ever read. Anyone who has watched her appearance on "This is Your Life" would be able to see the real person. This is why I have always been much more a fan of Jayne than Marilyn Monroe. I just find Jayne to be a lot more fun and interesting.

 

I think it is sad that she was not able to go on to more things with her talent. It's too bad she was killed at such an early age though I am having trouble envisioning a Jayne Mansfield at 80. I wonder if Sophia Loren would still be checking out her cleavage at award dinners?

 

P.S. You are so right about most tv shows like Steve Allen's and others, who would have on a current rock star like Elvis, but then basically make fun of them. Like making poor Presley have to sing to a hound dog! I would have rather seen Steve have to sing "Hound Dog" to his silly wife, Jayne!

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CG, Allen really had nothing against the genre as a musical form,  but what I always liked about Steve's comedy was his believing there are no "sacred cows".  So him putting Elvis through singing "Hound Dog" to an actual hound dog was simply part of his off-beat comedic style.

 

Sepiatone

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CG, Allen really had nothing against the genre as a musical form,  but what I always liked about Steve's comedy was his believing there are no "sacred cows".  So him putting Elvis through singing "Hound Dog" to an actual hound dog was simply part of his off-beat comedic style.

 

Sepiatone

Yeah, yeah, yeah, Sepia!

 

C'mon, you know that Allen was always putting down these poor rock stars by reading their lyrics on his show, as if they were poetry. Just because many of them did not use proper English and had bad tense form was no reason to mock them.

 

Okay, maybe Stevie did make fun of everyone a bit, I'll give you that. But I bet if Bing Crosby was on the show, Steve would not have made him sing "Mississippi Mud" in front of, well, the people in the tune that if I say the word here I will get banned.

 

I'm really not angry though, since any exposure on big time tv was good for most of the rock and rollers of that time!

 

Can you tell I'm more a fan of Ernie Kovacs than Steverino?

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Jayne Mansfield's "stardom" is such a sad story.

 

The 20th Century Fox "Jayne Mansfield" was "an act".

 

Her studio didn't take her seriously, but Jayne Mansfield took her "act" seriously.

 

20th Century Fox put a quick end to the "fabrication".

 

But Miss Mansfield never let go of it.

 

As, on her own, she descended into cheaper and cheaper movies, she held onto her "Jayne Mansfield" with such tenacity.

 

Many times, she looks bloated and just plain "bad".

 

She did have a lot of children and did not really take care of herself.

 

If you see her in "Promises, Promises", in which she exposes - fully - her fabulous breasts to the leering camera, you can only feel genuinely sorry for her.

 

She could not have stooped any lower.

 

The irony here is that she could be an effective actress - she and Dan Daley were memorable together in "The Wayward Bus".

 

But her too-famous bod always got in the way.

 

The Jayne Mansfield Story is really a tragedy.

 

Today, she is more famous for her body - than any of her accomplishments on the screen.  

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Jayne Mansfield's "stardom" is such a sad story.

 

The 20th Century Fox "Jayne Mansfield" was "an act".

 

Her studio didn't take her seriously, but Jayne Mansfield took her "act" seriously.

 

20th Century Fox put a quick end to the "fabrication".

 

But Miss Mansfield never let go of it.

 

As, on her own, she descended into cheaper and cheaper movies, she held onto her "Jayne Mansfield" with such tenacity.

 

Many times, she looks bloated and just plain "bad".

 

She did have a lot of children and did not really take care of herself.

 

If you see her in "Promises, Promises", in which she exposes - fully - her fabulous breasts to the leering camera, you can only feel genuinely sorry for her.

 

She could not have stooped any lower.

 

The irony here is that she could be an effective actress - she and Dan Daley were memorable together in "The Wayward Bus".

 

But her too-famous bod always got in the way.

 

The Jayne Mansfield Story is really a tragedy.

 

Today, she is more famous for her body - than any of her accomplishments on the screen.  

You are so absolutely right, Rayban. I own that mondo documentary with Jayne, called "The Wild Wild World of Jayne Mansfield" and it is upsetting to see what she was reduced to at that time.

 

I try to forget her latter career and just focus on earlier times but those career downturns probably affected her most adversely ending in her demise. Sad but true.

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You are so absolutely right, Rayban. I own that mondo documentary with Jayne, called "The Wild Wild World of Jayne Mansfield" and it is upsetting to see what she was reduced to at that time.

 

I try to forget her latter career and just focus on earlier times but those career downturns probably affected her most adversely ending in her demise. Sad but true.

She was the victim of a tragic accident. What connection did that have to her career downturn?

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She was the victim of a tragic accident. What connection did that have to her career downturn?

Well, when people don't keep putting you in the movies and you have to go by car to personal appearances, then it becomes a very possible scenario that you could be in an auto accident.

 

Just teasing you, Down.

 

Who knows, I could be banned for that, but I'm telling you now that the day that happens is the day I will never grace this joint again with my presence. If I'm not appreciated here then as they say, do not cast pearls before swine or their press agents.

 

You'll miss me when I'm gone.

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Maybe ol' Steverino was jealous of some of the early rock and

rollers. His ratio of recognizable songs to songs written is

pretty low as far as I know.

Uh, he wrote "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" right, for Big Tiny Little wasn't it?

 

Lawrence Welk would be proud.

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I thought that "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" was written for a woman about to get a breast implant.

Oh gosh, I shoulda known what I was starting here.

 

Uh, Down, just wondering what are you doing on Mammarial Day this year?

 

Oops, I mean Memorial Day.

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Uh, he wrote "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" right, for Big Tiny Little wasn't it?

 

Lawrence Welk would be proud.

And I thought he wrote it about his honeymoon night with

Jayne Meadows. I suppose it lends itself to different inter-

pretations. I read somewhere Steve had written hundreds

of songs, but how many have become standards? Not too

many that I know of.

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And I thought he wrote it about his honeymoon night with

Jayne Meadows. I suppose it lends itself to different inter-

pretations. I read somewhere Steve had written hundreds

of songs, but how many have become standards? Not too

many that I know of.

Steverino did write a vast amount of songs.

 

Now being that quantity does not necessarily equate with quality, we can stop there I guess, Vautrin.

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Maybe ol' Steverino was jealous of some of the early rock and

rollers. His ratio of recognizable songs to songs written is

pretty low as far as I know.

 

 

I have a recording of Steve & Eydie doing This Could Be The Start of Something Big.

 

Andy Williams had a Cadence recording of the Songs of Steve Allen--you might check that out. The most famous one was the theme to the movie Picnic--

I also had Steve Allen's Picnic on Andy Williams's Millions Sellers album - - so it must have sold a million copies.

 

Steve Allen wrote Picnic with Charles Duning.

 

Andy and Steve & Eydie were Steve Allen's singing Protegés on the first Tonight Show. So subsequently they all recorded his music.

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Thanks, Down! I'm glad we agree that the rock and roll was magnificent [except maybe for stuff like the Three Chuckles].

 

That type of film always had to insert a few non-rockers to appease the public who were scared of the wild antics of people like Little Richard. Putting in young guys in a tux to pretend to sing a rock and roll song was the panacea for such fears.

 

The Three Chuckles were more like a group that would have fit right in on "Your Hit Parade" or "The Lawrence Welk Show" and later I think had typical mainstream vocalist Teddy Randazzo as their lead.

 

We can agree to disagree about the quality of the movie in general, because as you know I am much shallower than you could ever hope to be and I was enjoying all Jayne's, Frederick's of Hollywood type couture and watching the poodle's hair bow change color to match, scene to scene. To me, these things are so important to a film.

It doesn't get any better for me in classic rock than Little Richard singing The Girl Can't Help It - - Richard Penniman always wrote his own numbers. After all, who could write for him, or like him? Little Richard was The original Rock and roller who wrote Tutti Frutti, Long Talll Sally and Good Golly Miss Molly.

 

Well the answer is, much to my surprise, professional jazz musician/ composer Bobby Troup. Troup was famous for writing Get Your Kicks on Route 66.

Troup wrote The Girl Can't Help It for the movie; it's become one of Little Richard's legendary numbers.

 

Troup was the husband of singer, Julie London who appears in The Girl Can't Help It, as Tom Ewells' sad memory, singing her famous rendition of Cry Me a River.

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Steverino did write a vast amount of songs.

 

Now being that quantity does not necessarily equate with quality, we can stop there I guess, Vautrin.

Maybe it was more of a hobby. He just liked

to write songs, whether memorable or not.

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