However you may have arrived here, this is the old Not Not Silly Newsroom.

It's a long story -- hardly worth going into here -- but after this place was declared a Brownfield Site, we abandoned it for the NEW! IMPROVED!! Not Now Silly Newsroom.

Feel free to stay and read what you came here to read, but when it's time to leave go to the new place by clicking HERE.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

A Tribute To Alan Turing ► The Man Who Saved The World

Dateline June 23, 1912 - Alan Turing was born on this day. Who dat? Oh, just the man who saved millions of lives and maybe the world during World War Two by cracking the Nazi U Boat codes and building the Enigma machine. Doesn't ring a bell yet? Surely you know him. He's the guy who, in 1936, built the Universal Turing Machine, which used stored programs, making it a direct descendant of whatever device you are reading this on at this exact moment; essentially a modern computer. 

Yet, why have so few people heard about Alan Turing? He died young to start with, at 42, by his own hand after (rumor has it) he ate a poisoned apple in 1954.* But here's the real reason we don't know his name: In 1952 Turing was prosecuted as a homosexual, which was a crime at the time. In order to avoid a prison term he agreed to be chemically castrated. However, his security clearances were revoked and he could no longer carry on his work for the government. He committed suicide on my birthday, June 7, 1954. * In 2009 British Prime Minister Gordon Brown apologized for Turing's treatment at the hand of the government, which he called "appalling."
Thousands of people have come together to demand justice for Alan Turing and recognition of the appalling way he was treated. While Turing was dealt with under the law of the time and we can't put the clock back, his treatment was of course utterly unfair and I am pleased to have the chance to say how deeply sorry I and we all are for what happened to him ... So on behalf of the British government, and all those who live freely thanks to Alan's work I am very proud to say: we're sorry, you deserved so much better.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Day In History ► Day In Music ► June 21st

Dr. Goldmark examining creation of a 33 1/3 record.
Pic used by Fair Use, even tho' Corbus thinks it owns it.
Dateline June 21, 1948 - Dr. Peter Goldmark, of CBS, demonstrated the first 12 inch LP, "Long Playing" record, that spun at 33 1/3 revolutions per minute, as opposed to the 10 inch 78 RPM record. You could only shove about three and a half minutes of music on one side of a 78. A symphony or opera issued on 78, would come in an album with any number of platters to spin out the entire length of the piece. In contrast the LP would hold about 28 minutes of music a side. With this the format wars wars ON! RCA refused to pay CBS for the license to press LPs, so it came out with its own format, the 45 RPM disc, 7" wide with a bigger hole in the middle. The 45 could hold more music than a 78, but not nearly as much as a LP. No one really won this format war. These two systems remained viable formats side-by-side until the digital compact disc, CD, almost put vinyl out of business.

Dateline June 21, 1969: The worst song ever released!!! On this day One Hit Wonders Zager & Evans release the biggest piece of crap in all of recorded music, and that includes "An Evening With Wild Man Fisher." Ladies and gentlemen, I give you "In the Year 2525." REMEMBER: I tried to warn you.

What's your least favourite song?

How Jamaica Conquered The World ► An Update

Back on April 20 I wrote about my small part in "How Jamaica Conquered the World." Every once in a while producer Roifield Brown sends out an email, telling me about the latest progress for this amazing FREE documentary. I've combined a few of them to bring you the latest in "How Jamaica Conquered the World" News:
It never rains good news but it pours good news. As of next week, How Jamaica will be promoted by iTunes as its podcast of the week in the UK.
Earlier Roifield sent along more iTunes progress:
Hello, just thought I should send you an email to keep you updated with the progress of the project "How Jamaica Conquered the World." I've been working on the project for some 8 months now and in the last week we seem to have made some real and significant progress with getting the message of Jamaica's influence throughout the world out there.

The series is now on iTunes and we are experiencing hundreds of downloads each day and we have been promoted by iTunes on the "new and noteworthy" section which is absolutely brilliant. What is important is that we get as many reviews on iTunes as possible, so at the end of this email are itunes links to HJCW so that you can subscribe, tell your friends and hopefully write review. On iTunes the shows are released weekly, with the new episode going up every Sunday evening. Currently there are 5 published.

As well as our success on iTunes where I'm now featured mix on www.mixcloud.com. As well as increasing downloads we had taken on board a PR company which will be getting us press and media exposure for the whole project.

This week was rounded off by a fruitful telephone conference with SABC, South African broadcasting Corporation who are interested in the rights to the project, so the film could well be starting in production in the next two months.

However, the email that excited me the most said:
Hello all, working on this podcast has made me realise that I have way too much material and a lot of good content is being left on the cutting room floor as I try to condense every topic into a 10 minute show. So to remedy this I will be creating a new podcast entitled the Reggae Monologues or the Dublogues. These will feature your interview in full with myself edited out but with a dub soundtrack. I feel that this will be great extra content for people that want to know more about your feelings and insight into the given topics being discussed.

It will be a few weeks before I put up the first episode on iTunes but I will alert you when your show is live.
The thought that I might become a part of a Dub soundtrack is one of the thrills of my life. Thank you, Roifield.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Happy Birthday, Brian Wilson: Genius ► A Musical Appreciation

There's no point in writing a Brian Wilson biography; every one knows the high points of his life. What started as a love of the four-part harmonies of The Four Freshmen consumed a lad in Hawthorne, California, who went on to write music that defined several generations. As the leader of The Beach Boys and beyond Brian Wilson has created true art in the form of music. For me it's sufficient that Brian Wilson's music is the background to so many of my memories. His music will stand the test of time, but it's an absolute bonus that he's come back around to playing music again, both without and with The Beach Boys. Celebrating their 50th Anniversary The Beach Boys are touring again, with Bruce Johnston and David Marks. Too bad Glen Campbell couldn't join them. They have also released a new album, "That's Why God Made the Radio," which will be a fitting capstone to their career, if they decide to wrap it up.

Brian Wilson still has the ability to write an instant classic:

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Happy Birthday, Moe Howard ► Nostalgia Ain't What It Used To Be

Dateline June 19, 1897 - Moe Howard, future leader of The Three Stooges, was born Moses Harry Horwitz on this date. He would be joined later in life with older brother Samuel (Shemp) and younger brother Jerome (Curly) at different times in one of the longest-running comedy teams in show bidnezz.

Moe Howard began in vaudeville with "Ted Healy and his Stooges," along with brother Shemp. Soon Healy hired violinist Larry Fine and the Three Stooges were born, more or less, even tho' they weren't called that yet. Shemp made one 'Stooge' movie with Healy and quit the Stooges to start a solo career. Moe suggested younger brother Jerome/Curly and, after they managed to get rid of Healy, this was the trio that starting making all those Columbia shorts over the years, starting in 1934, and eventually running to 190 with a few cast changes.

Another Magical Tee Vee Moment ► I've Got A Secret

Dateline June 19, 1952 - I've Got A Secret begins a 15 year run on tee vee. 

If it's not obvious already, the pressure to post almost every day has me looking at the calendar for inspiration. There are many times I am surprised, like now when I realize I am just as old as I've Got A Secret. Certainly, I would have guessed before today, it is ancient. No, it's just me that's ancient because I remember watching this show for years and years. Nostalgia ain't what it used to be.

Here are some magic moments from I've Got A Secret, some new to me, some not:

First and foremost:
We owe it all to this man, without whom none of this would have been possible:

An amazing eyewitness to history:

Groucho Marx takes over the show:

Harpo Marx with Johnny Carson on the panel

Soupy Sales, before he was well known. He had just
taken his local Detroit show to a national network.

The unluckiest drummer in the world:

There really was a Col Sanders and here he was before he was world famous:

Here's a very young Johnny Carson, with his own secret [begins at 3:09 and follows with Part Two:

This is a special find:
I have always loved the comedian George Kirby.

Another comedian I always loved. Jack E. Leonard was,
in my mind, a much funnier insult comic than Don Rickles.

Many magical tee vee moments were brought to us on I've Got A Secret.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Musical Appreciation ► Paul McCartney

There is no denying that Paul McCartney has written a wealth of music that will stand the test of time. As we listen to Beethoven and Bach long after their lifetimes, we will be listening to the music of Paul McCartney.

Here's a small Paul McCartney Jukebox:

As always: CRANK IT UP!!!

Uncle Russ Gibb
And, just because it pisses Mark Koldys-Johnny Dollar off, I am going to link to other versions of this story again.

Uncle Russ Gibb
Here's what I find funny: I have made no claims, yet Johnny Dollar has gone out of his way to refute them.

J$ asked one person one question (or had a confederate ask one question) and then spun out an entire new conspiracy theory. While, that's hardly journalism, it's par for the course for Markie K and the Sycophant Five.

I only ever told this to ONE journalist. The resultant article that came out was so garbled, I never told it again "on the record." Therefore, every other version I have read is second hand, or a re-writing of the original post. Each has managed to garble the story further. However, and I stress, only one person ever bothered to ask me any questions and I answered them all honestly.

However, I am most grateful that Markie K and the Sycophant Five, along with their patron Mark Koldys-Johnny Dollar are such loyal followers of my Aunty Em Ericann Blog.

What's left of The Grande Ballroom; Picture by author 2010
The Grande Ballroom on opening night of a whole new era.

Unpacking The Aunty Em Ericann Blog

Help keep Aunty Em in nail polish. Click on an advert.
One of the cool things that Blogger gives a blogger like me is a bunch of stats. There's not a lot of ways to view the information, but within the statistics can be found some real information. F'rinstance, since starting this blog, here are the Top 10 countries where my visitors live:

United States [9,601 visitors]
Italy [1,420]
Canada [320]
United Kingdom [284]
Ireland [177]
Russia [168]
Germany [119]
France [67]
Australia [46]
Netherlands [32]

    This is information I find totally useless. It would make more sense to know who they are than what country they come from so I can ask them personally if they enjoyed their stay here and how much they think it was worth.

    However, this is info I found more useful:

    Pageviews by Browsers
    1. Firefox 9,336 (64%)
    2. Internet Explorer 3,472 (24%)
    3. Chrome 619 (4%)
    4. Safari 343 (2%)
    5. Mobile 296 (2%)
    6. Mobile Safari 214 (1%)
    7. Opera 71 (<1%)
    8. Instapaper 21 (<1%)
    9. BingPreview 4 (<1%)
    10. Maxthon 3 (<1%)
    It allowed me to see what the Aunty Em Ericann Blog looked like on other platforms.

    But wait! That's not all!!!

    Pageviews by Operating Systems
    1. Windows 8,782 (61%)
    2. Macintosh 4,731 (32%)
    3. iPhone 320 (2%)
    4. Android 217 (1%)
    5. Linux 144 (1%)
    6. iPad 115 (<1%)
    7. BlackBerry 41 (<1%)
    8. Other Unix 12 (<1%)
    9. Windows NT 6.1 8 (<1%)
    10. SymbianOS/9.3 2 (<1%)
    HA! There are operating systems on that list I have never heard of.

    As of this moment [1:29 PM DST; June 18, 2012] here are the Top Ten All Time Posts on my Aunty Em Ericann Blog:

    The Top Ten All Time Posts on the Aunty Em Ericann Blog

    257 Pageviews

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    Musical Interlude ► A Detroit Jukebox

    I always have music on in the background when I'm writing. When I'm writing about Detroit, I listen to music from Detroit and Detroit Music is more than just Motown. Here's a Detroit Jukebox for your listening pleasure:

    As always, CRANK IT UP!!!