EL DOCTOR’S CLASSIC ALBUM #1

suzanne ciani seven waves cover

ARTIST: Suzanne Ciani

TITLE: “SEVEN WAVES”

LABEL HISTORY: Finnidar/Atlantic, Private Music, Seventh Wave

WHAT SO INTERESTING ABOUT THIS RELEASE: Suzanne Ciani has been an electronic artist since the ’70s.  She had been one of the sound designers for the original “Star Wars”, and yes, you heard her music all over the place e.g. The Columbia Pictures “Starburst” logo, the Atari commercials, “Intel Inside”, you get the picture.  In 1982, Ciani released “Seven Waves”, one of very few new age/meditative albums that still stands the test of time because the instruments used to make the music are no longer made.

The concept about this album is, basically, melodies surrounded by ocean waves.  This classic would have been lost if she didn’t license it unlike her Private Music releases.  Hopefully, she can do what her then-Private labelmate Patrick O’Hearn did and stream all of his releases from his website.

NOTICEABLE CHARACTERISTICS: The Sea/Water Theme would go on to influence songs on future releases.

A SURPRISE FOR APPLE USERS: Her MOTU (Mark Of The Unicorn) Software is available for the Apple Platform.

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ART OF THE DESIGN: LOOKING WAY TOO MUCH INTO THIS

poppycock

 

Last week, I met a Sac State student at Naked Coffee along Light Rail.  He was working on photos he took and was trying to enhance using Lightroom.  I has told him that I had been working in post-editing and title design.  I pointed him to my YouTube channel and had shown him my retreads (my version of old soap credits) and my original stuff (“Between Worlds”) and he was in awe of the work.  He showed me a logo he had designed and wondered if he would get problems because he altered the lettering he used.  I had told him there might not be a problem but be prepared if one comes up.
Which brings me to this subject: when you look way too much into a logo or trademark.
Years ago, Procter & Gamble caught hell from conservative Christians because their logo – the one with the crescent moon and seven stars – was derided to be satanic.  You bought their products, you are worshipping Satan which was the consensus.  They thought they made P&G cave in by removing the “offensive” symbol, so they just went by the company’s initials.  Years later, the crescent came back but the shape of it on a sphere.  It went on to their Proctor & Gamble Productions logo.

About that same time, they were screaming the Led Zepplin Swan Song logo was Satanic, when in fact, it was their take on the painting “Fall of Day” or “Evening”, an 1869 painting by William Rimmer updated by a British design firm Hipgnosis.
Then just two years ago, Starbucks unveiled a Christmas holiday cup with just their green logo on a red background.  And the same crowd said that they were “attacking Christmas”.  Over a simple red cup.  Unlike P&G, Starbucks didn’t cave in.
Now a new attack is happening over the logo for Monster Energy Drinks.
Their logo, a ‘M’ made with a claw, is simply that: it represents a monster tried to get into the can.
But to some, it is the number 6 in the Hebrew alphabet, thus leading many to say that Monster drinks worship Satan because the logo spells out the number “666″.
As I have said about those who screamed that Starbucks was killing Christmas -they really do need to get lives because they are looking way to much into this on many fronts.
The first is the alphabet system-you can look at our alphabet system and find that it is primitive.  Our uppercase ‘I’, lowercase ‘L’ written plain and not cursive could pass as a ‘6′.  In relation, ‘alif’ (the first letter in the Arabic alphabet) is a single stroke and it is stand-alone.  And many other languages that do not use the Latin alphabet as their own have singular strokes.
The second are font designers-those people who design different fonts for use in designs in print, web, and film/video.  If you wrote ‘Ill’ (as in Illinois) or the Roman numeral III using any sans-serif font i.e. Arial,  Franklin Gothic, it looks like you wrote ‘666′.
This goes further when the designers veer into creative mode.  Like Motown’s iconic “M” logo is Futura Black (a stencilized version of Futura), or the iconic Warner “W” designed by Saul Bass.  Whomever designed the New album cover by Paul McCartney.  All of those are single-stroked designs but none are satantic.  Fonts like Museo either have ‘I’ and lowercase ‘L’ or both that could pass for a 6.
Finally, artists themselves.  Comic artist Ernie Bushmiller, famous Nancy always signed his name where the “m” in his last name was always three vertical strokes.  I tried that myself for “Kumar” and found that it says time, but I went back to the regular way I do it. Other artists might pick this up and run with it.
By equating vertical single-stroke letters to the number 6 in Hebrew, they are trying to dumb down people when it comes to this logo.  Like when some of them use the Greek letter Delta and call it Alpha-same trangular shape, but one is an actual “A”.
You can’t instill fear because of something is different between cultures and you don’t understand it. And euqating with a “Johnny-Come-Lately” excuse is pathetic.

TROUBLE IN PARADISE

daniel-dae-kim-grace-park-hawaii-five-0

Hawaii Five-0 is renewed for an eighth season but it does so without Chin Ho and Kono.

I have been a viewer of the rebooted Hawaii Five-0 ever since it returned to the airwaves/  I love the way it mixes some of the culture with drama and some humor.  The bromance of McGarrett and Dano, the shots of Waikiki Beach with plenty of locals and tourists alike, the cast that we were introduced to and were able to flesh out their characters (still remember Kono clocking a surfer that made her nearly fall off her board).  And every time they show the skyline, I would spot the former Maile Sky Court.

Now, as it enters its’ eighth season, Daniel Dae Kim Chin Ho) and Grace Park (Kono) have parted ways with the series over a contract dispute.  Kim and Park wanted a 15% increase to match Alex O’Laughlin and Scott Caan’s contracts.  CBS Productions said no, so they walked.  I don’t think it is fair that Kim and Grace had to walk.

Over the past seven seasons, their stories were more of a driving force behind the series. From Chin Ho being accused of being on the take to Kono falling in love and marrying an ex-Yakuza. From Chin-Ho getting rid of a bad guy and adopting his daughter to Kono becoming a role model for Grace/  Through it all, their stories have been the strongest.

But now that they are exiting, maybe CBS is trying to make that magic happen like NBC’s Law and Order: Special Victims Unit.  There Christopher Meloni left as Elliot so, in real life, he can pursue other interests.  So, two new characters were introduced to One Police Plaza, but four had left, yet the nucleus of the cast still remains.  But the changes are buoyed with better writing and good performances when everyone thought the show couldn’t survive without Elliot.  And it’s been thriving.

But in this case it’s not the same. Like Elliot, Chin Ho and Kono were introduced and we’ve grown to love them.  Unlkie Elliot’s departure, it could spell the end of the series. Ratings have been slipping and it is going to take more than McGarrett and Dano to keep it alive.

NO MORE F*CKS LEFT TO GIVE

Too late for buyer’s remorse.  You voted for him?  Own it!

It’s amazing how some people never seem to do research.  

In the last election cycle, we were saturated with how the Democrats were in favor of terrorism against Muslims not looking out for each other that those election ads never mentioned white terrorists.  And then people went and voted for Drumpf saying that he would protect us, that he would “make America great again”.  And in a ridiculous show of how dumbed down this country had really become, THIS COUNTRY NOMINATED HIM ANYWAY.

And he targeted the Affordable Care Act…which those who thought he was killing Obamacare.  Not so, since Republicans never once called it by the Affordable Care Act.

Until he got in.

He decided he wanted to build a wall on the border with Mexico and have Mexico pay for it.  Turns out we, the taxpayers, are going to pay for it.  He handpicked imbiciles and dolts to head government agencies.  He cut out or scaled down budgets to agencies that are there to keep things in check.  

And now, we are flooded with stories from people who supported Drumpf that believed what he was going to do to “the illegal immigrant”.   The brown people, the Muslims, the LGBTQ community.  What he was going to do to them won’t affect me, you thought.  How wrong you were.

He started after those who were undocumented that had built up the communities where they lived and took them away.  And never mind if you were born here.  He crows like a rooster when a Muslim exremist attacks European targets, but is very silent when mosques and gurdwara (Sikh temples) are shot up, because the Sikhs look like Muslims.

And now he went after the programs some of you Drumpf supporters use that the government pays for.  He cut out a lot of programs designed to help everyone to pay for that wall.  And he scaled back internet privacy and put women’s rights to where if they’re submissive, barefoot and pregnant, that is acceptable.

You were warned about what would happen if he got in.  You cheered when people at his rallies attacked protesters and he cheered them on.  You said Hillary was untrustworthy because she was in the pocket of Big Banks.  You cheered when WikiLeaks went after her emails, but turn a blind eye and deaf ear when it came to his failed business ventures which taxpayers still have to pay for.  And some of you dismissed him talking about grabbing women by their genetalia as “locker room talk.”  

But you bought it all.

I’m a very compassionate person.  I am caring enough to try to help my fellow human being when I can. 

But you squandered whatever compassion I had towards you.  You voted on racism, sexism and xenophobia without once using your head about the consequences that will happen if you don’t think.

Therefore, I hate to say this, but I have no f*cks to give you.

ART OF THE DESIGN: B&B’S TBT

B&B title card 30

Viewers and fans of “The Bold and the Beautiful” got an unusual treat last week as the show celebrated its’ 30th Anniversary.

The show paid tribute to the title design from when it began.

B&B’s original main title was designed by Wayne Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald’s run in daytime title designs began with “One Life To Live” three years prior. What happened in the original one was you would see a camera with the unseen photographer taking pictures of models amid quick cuts of palm trees, clothing material and cast members with the title appearing three different times before going to the beauty shot when the title separates itself as a roll of clothing material rolls and stops on the screen. It slowly became the running joke among B&B fans for the fact that the Forrester clan’s pictures (Ronn Moss, ex-Ridge; John McCook, Eric; Susan Flannery ex-Stephanie) were bookended and not updated when these characters changed their looks over the years.

This time around, B&B revisited this opening with the current cast members and they threw in a shot of the original Sally Spectra (the late Darlene Conley) in. When the title spread apart like in the original, the number 30 flashed in utilizing the word “Bold”. It was a great nod to the series.

SIDEBAR: B&B FUN FACTS:

  • When B&B debuted, it had replaced “Capitol”, a political-themed soap, which replaced “Search for Tomorrow”.
  • It became the only American soap to do SAP for the Spanish-speaking audience, calling it “Belleza Y Poder”. Eventually, the actors and actresses speaking the Spanish would be credited.
  • All over the world, it is shown as is with language translations in various countries it airs. However, in the Canadian province of Quèbec, it is dubbed in French and called “Top Modeles” and in Germany it’s called “Reich & Schön”, even had matching title designs like the American version. The German version ended in December. All across Europe, the show was renamed “Caroline” (after the character that was portrayed by Joanna Johnson); when Caroline was killed off, the show was renamed “Beautiful”.
  • It was the second soap to add closed-captioning for the deaf and hard-of- hearing, but first to do it on a regular basis. “Search for Tomorrow” did it before.
  • Its show creator, the late William J. Bell wrote for it and “The Young and the Restless” (the other soap he created).
  • Dionne Warwick appeared on the show singing “High Upon This Love” which incorporated the B&B theme composed by Jack Allocco and David Kurtz. It was used as an end theme for a brief time in 1998.

ART OF THE DESIGN: THE Y&R LOGO

YoungandtheRestless1984

When “The Young and the Restless” made its’ debut on CBS back in 1973, the title design was something that had not been done on daytime before. Using the song “Cotton’s Dream” from the movie “Bless The Beasts and the Children”, the title designer Sandy Dvore gave Y&R its’ signature look of drawings of cast members of the show.

But in 1984, the title designer made the iconic painted Y&R logo. And it has not changed at all to something different.

When it debuted, the logo painted itself on-screen. To accomplish this, the logo had to be set apart in four different parts as using a switcher, each part painted on then faded to red with the title of the show over it. The drawings at the end over closing credits gave way to this logo (the only exception was during the era when Susan Banks and Harry Hall made the cast as paintings that came to life-however the logo was everywhere else).

The logo itself was presented in different ways. In 1999, the cast was shown against a red velvet background, the logo was clear acrylic over the background with a jazzy version of the theme and cast names were added when CBS and other countries did away with the show’s closing credits; in 2004, the show went back to the 1998 theme and the logo double-painted itself in an extreme close-up focusing on the right side of the logo.

In 2017, the logo and title flash. on the screen when paint strokes are ethereal with the cast in the painting. And the lady that walked towards you in the black lingerie from the previous opening is barely there disappearing in a segue of flashes before the logo is revealed towards the end.

When “The Young and the Restless” made its’ debut on CBS back in 1973, the title design was something that had not been done on daytime before. Using the song “Cotton’s Dream” from the movie “Bless The Beasts and the Children”, the title designer Sandy Dvore gave Y&R its’ signature look of drawings of cast members of the show.

But in 1984, the title designer made the iconic painted Y&R logo. And it has not changed at all to something different.

When it debuted, the logo painted itself on-screen. To accomplish this, the logo had to be set apart in four different parts as using a switcher, each part painted on then faded to red with the title of the show over it. The drawings at the end over closing credits gave way to this logo (the only exception was during the era when Susan Banks and Harry Hall made the cast as paintings that came to life-however the logo was everywhere else).

The logo itself was presented in different ways. In 1999, the cast was shown against a red velvet background, the logo was clear acrylic over the background with a jazzy version of the theme and cast names were added when CBS and other countries did away with the show’s closing credits; in 2004, the show went back to the 1998 theme and the logo double-painted itself in an extreme close-up focusing on the right side of the logo.

In 2017, the logo and title flashes on the screen when paint strokes are ethereal with the cast in the painting. And the lady that walked towards you in the black lingerie from the previous opening is barely there disappearing in a segue of flashes before the logo is revealed towards the end.

This logo may have been presented in different ways but the concept remains the same. And after 33 years of it, it has held up well. It has proven to be very versatile everytime with each title design change.

This logo may have been presented in different ways but the concept remains the same. And after 33 years of it, it has held up well. It has proven to be very versatile everytime with each title design change.  And a hats off to Sandy Dvore, who created this logo.

MOST INTERSTING MUSIC SLOGANS

mighty-three

“Just off the coast of PolyGram” – Island: shortly before Polygram became Universal, Island managed to get this on a few releases.  It indicated that it was part of the mainland (PolyGram).

“Blue Note hits a new note” – Blue Note: when Liberty (yeah, it existed) merged United Artists with Blue Note in the early 70s, it had expanded on more contemporary and fusion jazz and they changed the logo from the more familiar eighth-note logo to a small eighth note encased in a thick lower case ‘b’-which pissed off label co-founder Albert Lion to no end.  After EMI bought out United Artists Group, the label was shuttered until 1985 when Bruce Lundvall revived the label and brought back the note.

Trifecta – Motown: When Motown has separate labels, the three main ones had individual slogans with logos to match.  Motown’s overall slogan “The Sound of Young America” encompassed everything coming from Motown; however, Tamla’s slogan was “The Music Heard Around The World” and Gordy’s was “It’s What’s in the Grooves That Count”.

“Individuals for and by individuals” – CBS Records: jazz was a big thing in the 70s and most labels tried their best.to make various versions of jazz were represented.  CBS did an insert in 1979 that was called “Individuals For And By Individuals”.  The insert was included in many jazz releases by various jazz artists like Wilbert Longmire, Lips, Stanley Clarke, George Duke, The Heath Bros., et al.

“There’s a message in the music” – Philadelphia International: During its’ heyday in the70s, Philadelphia International co-founder Kenneth Gamble did something no other label had done: put little essays on their covers on their albums with subjects that were dealing with social injustice, inequality and life in general; each one ended with the tagline “There’s a message in the Music.” Also on the 45 labels included the phrase  “The Sound of Philadelphia” and “You’ll Never Forget Our Tunes” for their publishing company.

“The earth has music for those who listen” – Tabu: Founder Clarence Avant adopted this saying by philosopher George Santayana.

“The most beautiful sound next to silence” – ECM: Granted the label, founded by Manfred Eicher, in 1969 is a well-known jazz label, their artists refuse to be held down by boundaries in their music.

“A Company Run in the Spirit of The Three Stooges” – Hollywood:  When the label was originally founded by Disney and distributed by Elektra, these guys sent a press release and  it contained this line trying to compete with Giant (which was kicking butt at the time).  Eventually, it was scrapped.