Weird Universe


The Escorts


Full story here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue Nov 24, 2015 | Comments (2)
Category: Crime, Music, 1970's

The Varitone Sax

A more-or-less failed and forgotten 1960s experiment in electrifying the saxophone.

Two good articles here and here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Fri Nov 13, 2015 | Comments (4)
Category: Music, Technology, 1960's

Shadows of Paragon:  Silentium

It's been way too long since we examined any Death Metal here. Or maybe, after you hear this, you'll say, "It's been just long enough, if not too soon!"

Turn your sound almost off first. Seriously. Don't be fooled by the melodic opener.

Why would anyone listen to this stuff voluntarily? Could your life really be so horrible that this music was uplifting?

Info on band.

SURFER BOY by the Supremes

The Supremes as the Beach Boys? To me, that's far enough off their baseline to be weird!
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sat Oct 10, 2015 | Comments (3)
Category: Music, Oceans and Maritime Pursuits, 1960's

“The Chicken Song”

Posted By: Paul | Date: Thu Oct 01, 2015 | Comments (6)
Category: Animals, Eccentrics, Food, Music

The Violaeol


Original article here.

In 1935, one Alfred Grosjean (as named in a separate TIME magazine article) invented the "violaeol."

Some years later, luthier Josh Rieck recreated one for his own use.

Posted By: Paul | Date: Sat Sep 26, 2015 | Comments (2)
Category: Inventions, Music, 1930's

Bat Sounds?

Several sources claim that in 1999 one of the top-selling CDs in Europe was titled "Bats." It consisted entirely of the sound of bats flying around.

However, one of those sources is the Weekly World News (May 4, 1999). So not very reliable. And since I can't find any trace of this CDs existence elsewhere (I thought a copy would likely have surfaced on eBay -- but no; or on YouTube -- no again), I'm wondering if the CD was real, or one of WWN's jokes.

The other source that mentioned the CD was the Glasgow Sunday Mail, May 2, 1999. But maybe they got their info from the WWN?

Do any WUvians have the answer to this bat mystery? Was Bats really a European top-seller?

Weekly World News - May 4, 1999

Posted By: Alex | Date: Fri Sep 18, 2015 | Comments (7)
Category: Animals, Music, 1990's

When the Circus Comes to Town

I have no idea of the provenance of this half-hour compilation. Shown at cinemas before the main feature? Whatever the case, it has everything. Cornball music, girly cheesecake, animated cartoon, stop-motion cartoon, narration by a chimp. Also, the highly disturbing image reproduced below. Somehow I feel it relates to the "horse fondling" theme of yesterday.

Posted By: Paul | Date: Wed Sep 16, 2015 | Comments (6)
Category: Animals, Clowns, Dreams and Nightmares, Music, Sex Symbols, Cartoons, Stop-motion Animation, 1940's

RIP Will Atkinson, the Walmart Elvis

Will Atkinson died recently of pancreatitis, at the age of 51. He had gained fame in Oxford, Mississippi as an Elvis impersonator, and was known there as "Elvis," or the "Big E." And also as the "Walmart Elvis" because he worked at Walmart and would sing in the aisles as he worked. From the Clarion-Ledger:

By day, he worked at the local Walmart, where he would sing gospel and Elvis classics throughout the store so well that many mistook his voice for the sound system, said Walmart sales associate Suzette Boone...

Atkinson obsessed over getting every Elvis detail correct. He dyed his hair, had four Elvis jumpsuits, and fashioned his voice to sound just like the real thing...

At the local Walmart, employees broke corporate protocol and set up a memorial wreath at the entrance, and had pictures displayed on a table inside, along with a condolence book, which many customers have stopped to sign. The store even played some of Atkinson’s recordings on the sound system. "The aisles are going to be quiet now," said Walmart assistant manager Lavina Woodfin, "No more song."

There are more tributes to him here and here.
Posted By: Alex | Date: Tue Sep 08, 2015 | Comments (5)
Category: Music, Obituaries

Mystery Illustration 9


What pop song of the 1950s was this tableau intended to represent?

Answer after the jump. More >>
Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue Sep 08, 2015 | Comments (7)
Category: Fashion, Music, 1950's
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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2008 by the author of the post, either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.