Monday, January 18, 2016

Show #142 November 21, 2015

Rosemary light up the world!

Rosemary- The Smirks Rosemary 7"
Turn on The Light- Bram Tchaikovsky Strange Man/Changed Man 
All The Lights Are Alive- Tommy Keene Laugh In The Dark 
Light Love- Free Energy Stuck On Nothing 
All In Light- The Bye Bye Blackbirds We Need The Rain 
See A Little Light- Bob Mould See A Little Light 
Blinded By The Light- This Perfect Day Don't Smile 
I Do Love The Light- Tommy Hoehn Losing You to Sleep 
^I Saw The Light- Todd Rundgren I Saw The Light 
I Saw The Light- Dash Rip Rock Dash Rip Rock 
I Saw The Light- Raspberries Raspberries 
I Saw The Light- Spoon Transference 
Every Light On- Nick Piunti 13 In My Head 
There Is A Light That Never Goes Out- The Smiths The Sound Of The Smiths 
Lady (Put The Light On Me)- Dead End Kids Breakout 
Into The Light- Soul Asylum Delayed Reaction 
Light Of Love- T-Rex The Very Best Of T-Rex 
Day In The Lights- Speedometors Day In The Lights 
Bright Lights- The Outlets Outlets 7" 
Morning Light- Ida Maria Fortress Round My Heart 
Under the Light of the Moon- The Merrymakers Bubblegun 
The Light- Bracket Hold Your Applause 
All For The Love Of City Lights- Dog Rose Glitterbest 
Perfect Light- Arrogance Mondo Montage 
>You Are The Light- The Easybeats It's 2 Easy 
Out Into The Light- Turning Curious Teen Line no. 3 
The Light Pours Out Of Me- Magazine Real Life 
See The Light- Green Day 21st Century Breakdown 
Bring In The Morning Light- Motors
Guiding Light- Television Marquee Moon

^Power Pop Peak:  #16 Billboard Hot 100 6/10/72

>Power Pop Prototype:  1966

I was afraid of the dark until I was about 10 years old.  The bane of my young existence was the lack of a light switch at the bottom of the stairs going up to my bedroom at our house on 30 Gordon St. in Brockton, Mass.  In the early '70's my parents had major reconstruction done on our house, adding a dormer to the second floor making two bedrooms into four and adding a much needed upstairs bathroom.  When they first started building I thought it was cool to bed down in sleeping bags in the living room but this lost its charm after the second week or so.  

30 Gordon Street, with upstairs dormer

Somehow during construction they forgot to put an overhead light on the upstairs landing so at night from the bottom of the stairs you'd stare up into inky blackness- I mean anything could've been up there!  At first, I'd turn on the upstairs bathroom light while it was still light out but my mom would invariably turn it off.  (She is a notorious electricity saver- as I am myself, though judging from my kids, this trait has skipped a generation.)  In any case, I had to climb the stairs and cross the landing to turn on the light in my room in PITCH BLACK!  After the first few ascents in a blind panic, I developed a complex and no doubt insane looking eyes-closed crab sprint up the stairs on all fours finished off with a mad lunge across the landing to slam on my bedroom light.  

While my active imagination has served me well in later life, it sometimes made my childhood years difficult.  My fear of the dark was innate, yet was no doubt helped along by things I saw on television, one of which I still remember today.  It is the opening of an episode of the British TV show The Avengers called "The Living Dead" that 40+ years later I finally managed to track down.

Patrick Macnee as John Steed
Originally airing February 25, 1967, I'm guessing I saw the episode in re-runs sometime in 1972 when I was seven or eight.  I was a big fan of The Avengers. John Steed was super cool- no matter how tense things got he always kept his sense of humor and never once spilled his Champagne.  Dude was unflappable!  This was a quality I would later recognize in James Bond and was disappointed to find that not all Brits possess.  As for Emma
Diana Rigg as Emma Peel
Peel, well she blew my young mind.  At the time I had no idea what "sexy" was, I just knew I couldn't take my eyes off her.  To this day, I think of Emma Peel every time I see a woman in a leather bodysuit- and that's a lot in these superhero saturated times we live in.  Seriously,  from Julie Newmar's Catwoman on the 60's Batman TV show to Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow- they all owe a debt to Diana Rigg's Emma Peel.  

Now back to "The Living Dead," the Avengers episode that scared the crap out of me.  It starts with this drunk in a pub called The Duke of Benedict.  He stumbles out with a bottle and starts walking through a graveyard:
tripping in front of a grave, the top of which starts moving and this happens:
This guy dressed all in white rises out of the grave!  Then the guy goes into the church and starts ringing the bell!

I realize this doesn't seem that scary and I had watched my share of Creature Double Features but for whatever reason it scared the bejesus out of me.  Looking at it now on Hulu, the whole graveyard is clearly a set on a soundstage outfitted with cheap stuff that wouldn't make the cut at a second rate Halloween store.  The ghost of the Duke isn't even that threatening looking.  Yet, I didn't even finish the episode, I ran out of the living room and hid in my bedroom.  I had nightmares for two weeks!  

Of course if I had stuck with the show I would've seen Steed and Emma find a cool underground city, like the one under the crater in the Bond film You Only Live Twice.  She gets kidnapped, he tries to rescue her, he gets caught, she rescues him.  If I'd just stuck with the episode, "The Living Dead" wouldn't have been nearly as traumatizing.  I think this is why I forced my kids to watch all of Edward Scissorhands that fateful night when they were little.  Of course, that didn't work out too well either, though I don't remember Jack or Nica having nightmares so maybe I was right after all.  (My wife Jaime wholeheartedly disagrees.)

A few years after The Avengers incident I remember thinking "will I ever NOT be afraid of the dark?!?"  I don't remember when I got over this fear, perhaps it was so gradual I didn't even notice.  Even so, not being afraid of the dark didn't stop me from almost killing my friend Paul's grandmother.  I was sleeping over at his house after he, our friend Mo and I went to see Friday The 13th at the Hanover Mall. That movie freaked me out!  We'd seen Halloween but were in no way prepared for the non-stop onslaught of Friday The 13th.  Tweaked and exhausted after- wards,  we were jumping at shadows the whole ride home.  Later in Paul's downstairs rec room we'd just about settled down when someone started opening the outside door. He grabbed a baseball bat, I picked up a golf club and we yanked the door open on his startled grandmother who was coming back from, I kid you not, Bingo at the Catholic church.  Even now, young Jason coming out of the water at the end of Friday The 13th ranks up there with my all-time movie scares.
But what about the boy?

I still like a good scare at the movies, but these days I go for subtler fare.  I've never seen the Saw or Hostel films, but I'll still gladly shell out my hard-earned for The Babadook or It Follows or Goodnight Mommy.  In fact I think a strong litmus test of a person's imagination can be found in their reaction to horror movie The Blair Witch Project.  There isn't one drop of blood spilled in the film, nor does the titular witch ever appear.  Blair Witch filmmakers Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez were asking us as audience members to meet them halfway-
they supplied the story and the dread while we filled in the "gaps" with our imagination.  The movie freaked me out- when the lights came up I was hugging my knees in my seat.  Two rows in front of me though a young guy turned to his girlfriend and said "that SUCKED!"  As I self-consciously lowered my feet to the floor I realized this guy might not have enough imagination to appreciate the film- he was only able to react to what was on the screen.  I feel bad for this guy, because to him the image below is just a dude in a basement but to me it is something that will haunt me the rest of my life.
I re-create this scene EVERY time I am in a windowless stone room, so far my sister is the only person who has ever laughed
And just to see if I know how to do it, here's the clip from The Avengers episode "The Living Dead" that I pulled off Hulu

Links for this show are below, click to stream or to download, right click and "Save Link As"
Hour 1
Hour 2

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