Johnny Ace was this R&B singer back in the day who blew his head off on Christmas Eve playing Russian Roulette backstage at his own concert. All of his music happened to sound a whole lot like funeral music, too. Heavy on the slow piano. When we get into the impending start of a year, where the Egg Nog is souring in the fridge and everyone is bushed from the Holiday rush, when the feeling isn't so much post coital as post traumatic, I think of poor old Johnny Ace, with a chip on his shoulder and too much to prove. By default, "Pledging My Love" is a good sad Christmas song, even though there's no Christmas in it.
Imagine young Johnny Ace with his ego swelling, his records hitting the charts, buying a new suit, fitted and everything. His family and friends proud and jealous, his voice on the radio, the world opening it's arms and legs for him. Then you imagine that revolver stuffed down the back of his well pressed sharkskin pants daring him to take fate on one more thrillride. Did Johnny Ace figure that he was fated to be Johnny Ace and thus was fated to never die? To be Johnny Ace forever? Was Johnny Ace immortal?
Well, we're still talking about Johnny Ace about 50 years later. So yeah. Maybe he was.
The sad, stupid bastard.
Posted by Rocko Jerome at 12/19/2011
Bobby Darin recorded an album called The 25th Day Of December. It is a heartfelt and powerful piece of work, devoid of anything corny or insipid as you so often find in Christmas albums. It is absolutely brilliant and showcases a singer in his prime.
You can physically buy it here for just a few bucks and you should.
You can hear a bit of it and buy the MP3s here.
Posted by Rocko Jerome at 12/17/2011
Chances are, you know all about Captain America. You might even know about the brilliance of Jack Kirby. Might not know Joe Simon, though.
Joe was Jack's partner, the writer and the artist. Joe's on the right. They were a team for close to a decade, in which time they made some of the most exciting comics imaginable. Their work was head and shoulders above most of what was out at the time.
Joe died today, at 98. A rich, full life, that happened to be long enough to see his creation come to vivid life. Here's to you, Joe.
Posted by Rocko Jerome at 12/15/2011
One question I had for Jim Steranko was this:
"What's on Nick Fury's hi-fi while he's making out with The Contessa?"
Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis.
Posted by Rocko Jerome at 12/11/2011