J.J.Cale

zap_jjcale2American singer-songwriter and musicianJohn Weldon Cale(JJCale)  was born December 5, 1938.  in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. He was raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and graduated from Tulsa Central High School in 1956 and moved to Los Angeles in the early 1960s, where he first worked as a studio engineer Finding little success as a recording artist, he later returned to Tulsa and was considering giving up the music business until Eric Clapton recorded Cale’s “After Midnight” in 1970. Cale was one of the originators of the Tulsa Sound, drawing on blues, rockabilly,country, and jazz influences. Cale’s personal style has often been described as “laid back”.Songs written by Cale that have been covered by other musicians include “After Midnight” by Eric Clapton, Phish and Jerry Garcia, “Cocaine” by Eric Clapton, “Clyde” by Waylon Jennings and Dr. Hook, and “Call Me the Breeze” by Lynyrd Skynyrd, John Mayer and Bobby Bare.

His first album, Naturally, established his style, described by Los Angeles Times writer Richard Cromelin as a “unique hybrid of blues, folk and jazz, marked by relaxed grooves and Cale’s fluid guitar and laconic vocals. His early use of drum machines and his unconventional mixes lend a distinctive and timeless quality to his work and set him apart from the pack of Americana roots musicpurists. In 2013 Neil Young remarked that of all the musicians he had ever heard, J.J. Cale and Jimi Hendrix were the two best electric guitar players. Some sources incorrectly give his real name as “Jean-Jacques Cale”. In the 2005 documentary, To Tulsa and Back: On Tour with J.J. Cale, Cale talks about Elmer Valentine, co-owner of the Sunset Strip nightclub Whisky a Go Go, who employed him in the mid-1960s, being the one that came up with the “JJ” moniker to avoid confusion with the Velvet Underground’s John Cale. Rocky Friscotells the same version of the story mentioning the other John Cale but without further detail ]In this 2005 documentary J.J. Cale’s style is also characterized by Eric Clapton as “…really, really minimal…” and he states precisely: “…it’s all about finesse”.

His biggest U.S. hit single, “Crazy Mama”, peaked at #22 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1972. In 2008 he was a Grammy Award winner, jointly with Clapton. In the 2005 documentary filmTo Tulsa and Back Cale recounts the story of being offered the opportunity to appear on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand to promote the song, which would have moved it higher on the charts. Cale declined when told he could not bring his band to the taping and would be required to lip-sync the words. Cale often acted as his own producer, engineer and session player. His vocals, sometimes whispery, would be buried in the mix. He attributed his unique sound to being a recording mixer and engineer, saying; “Because of all the technology now you can make music yourself and a lot of people are doing that now. I started out doing that a long time ago and I found when I did that I came up with a unique sound.”Cale died of heart failure On July 26, 2013 at the age of 74, in La Jolla, California.

Little Richard

rrcLittleRichard1Often cited as “the architect of rock and roll”, American singer, songwriter, musician, recording artist, and actor Little Richard (Richard Wayne Penniman) was born on this day December 5 in 1932′ Little Richard began performing on stage and on the road in 1945, when he was in his early teens, and began his recording career on October 16, 1951 by imitating the gospel- influenced style of late-1940s jump blues artist Billy Wright, who was a friend who gave him the opportunity to record his first song.However His early fifties recordings, did not achieve remarkable commercial success, and it was not until 1955, under the guidance of Robert “Bumps” Blackwell, that he began recording in a style he had been performing onstage for years, which featured a varied rhythm (derived from everything from drum beats he would hear in his voice to the sounds of trains he would hear thundering by him as a child), a heavy backbeat, funky saxophone grooves, over-the-top gospel-style singing, moans, screams, and other emotive inflections, accompanied by a combination of boogie-woogie and rhythm and blues music.This new music, which also included an original injection of funk into the rock and roll beat, also inspired many of the greatest recording artists of the twentieth century, including James Brown, Elvis Presley, Otis Redding, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Michael Jackson, and many other rhythm & blues, rock, and soul music artists. . He is considered key in music’s transition from rhythm and blues to rock and roll in the 1950s, and was also the first artist to put the funk in the rock and roll beat which contributed significantly to the development of soul music.Like the late great Elvis Presley, Little Richard blew the lid off Fifties music, laying the foundation for rock and roll with his explosive music and charismatic persona. On record, he made spine-tingling rock and roll. His frantically charged piano playing and raspy, shouted vocals on such classics as “Tutti Frutti“, “Long Tall Sally” and “Good Golly, Miss Molly” defined the dynamic sound of rock and roll. During the height of his stardom He charted seventeen original hits in less than three years

He has been an influential figure in popular music and culture for over six decades. Penniman’s most celebrated work dates from the mid 1950s where his dynamic music and charismatic showmanship laid the foundation for rock and roll. His music also had a pivotal impact on the formation of other popular music genres, including soul and funk. Penniman influenced numerous singers and musicians across musical genres from rock to rap.Penniman has been honored by many institutions, including inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He is the recipient of Lifetime Achievement Awards from The Recording Academy and the Rhythm and Blues Foundation. Penniman’s “Tutti Frutti” (1955) was included in the Library of Congress’National Recording Registry in 2010, claiming the “unique vocalizing over the irresistible beat announced a new era in music.”

In 1986 He became one of the first group of inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and one of only four (along with Ray Charles, James Brown, and Fats Domino) to also receive the Rhythm and Blues Foundation’s Pioneer Lifetime Achievement Award. He was also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame In 2007, and in 2010 The United States of America’s Library of Congress National Recording Registry added the groundbreaking recording of his original 1955 hit “Tutti Frutti”to its registry, claiming that the hit, with its original “A-wop-bop-a-loo-bop-a-lop-bam-boom!” a cappella introduction, heralded a new era in music. It has also been voted Number 1 by an eclectic panel of renowned recording artists on Mojo’s The Top 100 Records That Changed The World, hailing the recording as “the sound of the birth of rock and roll.”

Alexandre Dumas

-Count-Monte-CristoBest known for his historical novels of high adventure The French Author Alexandre Dumas sadly passed away on 5 December 1870. Born 24 July 1802 and raised in poverty, Dumas father tragically died when he was four, and he faced discrimination because of his ethnic African ancestry, although he was more than three-quarters French. Through his father, who was born in Saint-Domingue, he was also the grandson of a French nobleman and a mixed-race slave. His mother was French.As a young man, Dumas’ aristocratic rank helped him acquire work with Louis-Philippe, Duke of Orléans. He began his career by writing plays, he also wrote numerous magazine articles and travel books; his published works totaled 100,000 pages.In the 1840s, Dumas founded the Théâtre Historique in Paris.

In 1851, Dumas left France for Belgium. After several years, he moved on to Russia for a few years, before going to Italy. In 1861 he founded and published the newspaper, L’ Indipendente, which supported the Italian unification effort. In 1864 he returned to Paris. Married, Dumas also had numerous affairs. He was known to have at least four illegitimate children, including a boy named Alexandre Dumas who also became a successful novelist and playwright, and was known as Alexandre Dumas, fils (son), while the elder Dumas became known as Alexandre Dumas, père (father).Prolific in several genres, His novels have been Translated into nearly 100 languages, these have made him one of the most widely read French authors in the world. Many of his novels, including The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers, Man in the Iron Mask, Twenty Years After and The Vicomte de Bragelonne were originally published as serials. His novels have been adapted since the early twentieth century for nearly 200 films. Dumas’ last novel, The Knight of Sainte-Hermine, unfinished at his death, was completed by a scholar and published in 2005, becoming a bestseller. It was published in English in 2008 as The Last Cavalier. Many of Dumas’ novels have been adapted for screen and television numerous times, including The Man in the Iron Mask, the Count of Monte Christo and the Three Musketeers.

Claude Monet

imageFrench impressionist painter Claude Monet sadly passed away on 5 December 1926 at the age of 86 and is buried in the Giverny church cemetery. His home, garden and waterlily pond were bequeathed by his son Michel, & then to the French Academy of Fine Arts in 1966, his house and gardens at Giverny are also open to the public. Born November 14th 1840. He was a founder of French impressionist painting. The term Impressionism is derived from the title of his painting Impression, Sunrise (Impression, soleil levant). In 1851, Monet entered Le Havre secondary school of the arts. Locals knew him well for his charcoal caricatures, which he would sell for ten to twenty francs. Monet also undertook his first drawing lessons from Jacques- François Ochard, a former student of Jacques-Louis David. On the beaches of Normandy in about 1856/1857, he met fellow artist Eugène Boudin, who became his mentor and taught him to use oil paints. Boudin taught Monet “en plein air” (outdoor) techniques for painting.When Monet traveled to Paris to visit the Louvre, he saw painters copying from the old masters. Having brought his paints and other tools with him, he would go and sit by a window and paint what he saw. He also met other young painters who would become friends and fellow impressionists; among them was Édouard Manet.

imageDisillusioned with the traditional art taught at art schools, in 1862 Monet became a student of Charles Gleyre in Paris, where he met Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Frédéric Bazille and Alfred Sisley. Together they shared new approaches to art, painting the effects of light en plein air with broken color and rapid brushstrokes, in what later came to be known as Impressionism. Monet’s Camille or The Woman in the Green Dress (La femme à la robe verte), painted in 1866, brought him recognition and was one of many works featuring his future wife, Camille Doncieux; she was the model for the figures in Women in the Garden of the following year, as well as for On the Bank of the Seine, After the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War , Monet took refuge in England in September 1870, where he studied the works of John Constable and Joseph Mallord William Turner, both of whose landscapes would serve to inspire Monet’s innovations in the study of color. In May 1871, he left London to live in Zaandam, in the Netherlands. He also paid a first visit to nearby Amsterdam. In 1871, Monet moved to Argenteuil, on the bank of the Seine near Paris, and this was where he painted some of his best known works. Including “Boulevard des Capucines” and ”Impression, Sunrise” (Impression, soleil levant) which is on display in the Musée Marmottan Monet in Paris.

Monet married Camille Doncieux and, after visiting London and Zaandam, they moved to Argenteuil. It was during this time that Monet painted various works of modern life. In 1878 Monet moved to the village of Vétheuil. in March 1878 Camille gave birth to her second child Michel Monet, Sadly though On 5 September 1879, she of died tuberculosis. Monet painted her on her death bed & After several difficult months following the death of Camille a grief-stricken Monet began to create some of his best paintings. In April 1883, whilst looking out the window of the little train between Vernon and Gasny, he discovered Giverny, and in 1883, he moved to Vernon, then to a house in Giverny in Normandy, where he lived the rest of his life, the barn doubled as a painting studio, and it was here that he painted several groups of landscapes and seascapes in what he considered to be campaigns to document the French countryside. His extensive campaigns evolved into his series’ paintings. with the surrounding landscape offering many suitable motifs for Monet’s work and Monet’s fortunes began to change for the better and Monet became prosperous enough to buy the house, the surrounding buildings and the land for his gardens.

During the 1890s, Monet built a greenhouse and a second studio & from the 1880s through the end of his life in 1926, Monet worked on “series” paintings, in which a subject was depicted in varying light and weather conditions. His first series exhibited as such was of Haystacks, painted from different points of view and at different times of the day. He later produced several series of paintings including: Rouen Cathedral, Poplars, the Parliament, Mornings on the Seine, and the Water Lilies that were painted on his property at Giverny, with its water lilies, pond, and bridge. He also painted up and down the banks of the Seine, producing paintings such as Break-up of the ice on the Seine. Between 1883 and 1908, Monet traveled to the Mediterranean, where he painted landmarks, landscapes, and seascapes, such as Bordighera. He painted some paintings in Venice, Italy, and in London he painted two important series—views of Parliament and views of Charing Cross Bridge . His second wife, Alice, died in 1911 & It was during this time that Monet began to develop the first signs of cataracts. During World War I, Monet painted a series of weeping willow trees as homage to the French fallen soldiers. Sadly Monet died of lung cancer on 5 December 1926 at the age of 86 and is buried in the Giverny church cemetery. His home, garden and waterlily pond were bequeathed by his son Michel, & then to the French Academy of Fine Arts (part of the Institut de France) in 1966. Through the Fondation Claude Monet, his house and gardens were opened for visits in 1980.

Walt Disney

Walt-Disney-Screencaps-The-Walt-Disney-Castle-walt-disney-characters-32053265-2560-1440American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur and entertainer  ”Walt” Disney was born December 5th, 1901. In 1906, when Walt was four, He moved to a farm in Marceline, Missouri. Here, Disney developed his love for drawing . The Disney family moved to Kansas City in 1911 where Walt and his younger sister Ruth attended the Benton Grammar School. At school he met Walter Pfeiffer who introduced Walt to the world of vaudeville and motion pictures. Before long Walt was spending more time at the Pfeiffers’ than at home. Walt also attended Saturday courses at the Kansas City Art Institute. In 1917, The Disney family moved to Chicago. Walt went to McKinley High School and took night courses at the Chicago Art Institute. He became the cartoonist for the school newspaper, drawing patriotic topics and focusing on World War I. in 1919 Walt moved back to Kansas City to begin his artistic career. He decided on a career as a newspaper artist, drawing political caricatures or comic strips. Walt also worked briefly at the Pesmen-Rubin Art Studio where he met cartoonist Ubbe Iwerks and they decided to start their own company together called, “Iwerks-Disney Commercial Artists”. However Disney & lwerks both Joined Kansas City Film Ad Company. where they made commercials based on cutout animations, Disney then became interested in animation, and decided to become an animator.

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Cinderella http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=MVG8F9ULW6w

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After reading the Edwin G. Lutz book Animated Cartoons: How They Are Made, Their Origin and Development, Disney considered cel animation instead of cutout animation & opened his own animation business, recruiting fellow co-worker Fred Harman, as his first employee. Walt and Harman then secured a deal with local theater owner Frank L. Newman, to screen their cartoons at his local theater, which they titled Laugh-O-Grams, these soon became popular and he Soon acquired his own studio. Disney and his brother Roy set up a cartoon studio in Hollywood. Disney’s New York distributor, wanted more live-action/animated shorts based upon Alice’s Wonderland, which began focusing more on the animated characters rather than Alice

In 1927 Disney created a new animated series, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, which became a popular figure and also develeloped a mouse character based on a mouse he had adopted as a pet while working in his Laugh-O-Gram studio . Ub Iwerks reworked the sketches made by Disney to make the character easier to animate although The voice and personality were provided by Disney himself until 1947. Originally named “Mortimer”, the mouse was later re-christened “Mickey”. Mortimer later became the name of Mickey’s rival for Minnie – taller than Mickey and speaking with a Brooklyn accent. The first animated shorts to feature Mickey were Plane Crazy and The Gallopin’ Gaucho. Disney added sound for the next cartoon Steamboat Willie, which became an instant success. Thanks to Plane Crazy, The Galloping Gaucho, Steamboat Willie Mickey’s popularity skyrocketed during the early 1930s. Next a series of musical shorts titled, Silly Symphonies were released in 1929. The first, The Skeleton Dance was entirely drawn and animated by Iwerks.

By 1932,the popularity of Silly Symphonies was decreasing. and Max Fleischer’s flapper cartoon character, Betty Boop, was gaining popularity among theater audiences. So Flowers and Trees was reshot in three-strip Technicolor, and it won the first Academy Award for Best Short Subject: Cartoons in 1932. Through Silly Symphonies, Disney also created his most successful cartoon short of all time, The Three Little Pigs, which featured the song “Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf”.In 1932, Disney received a special Academy Award for the creation of “Mickey Mouse”, who was soon joined by characters likeDonald Duck, Goofy, and Pluto. Pluto and Donald became standalone cartoons in 1937, with Goofy following in 1939. Donald Duck, also teamed up with Mickey in the 1934 cartoon, Orphan’s Benefit, and became Disney’s second most popular character

snowwhited1504_468x621n 1934 Disney began planning a full-length animated feature-length version of Snow White, This premiered on December 21, 1937 and went on to become the most successful motion picture of 1938. Following the success of Snow White, Disney received one full-size, and seven miniature Oscar statuettes and this ushered in a period known as the Golden Age of Animation during which Pinocchio Bambi, Fantasia, the Three Caballeros, and Dumbo were also made. In 1945. Disney was asked to make an educational film about the Amazon Basin, called The Amazon Awakens and also started making full-length dramatic films that mixed live action and animated scenes, including Song of the South and So Dear to My Heart. In the late 1940s, work began on Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella and Peter Pan. In 1948 the studio also made a series of live-action nature films, titled True-Life Adventures.

During the 1940s, Disney Visited Children’s Fairyland in Oakland, California and had the idea for an amusement park .This was originally intended to be built on a plot located across the street to the south of the studio. These original ideas developed into a concept for a larger enterprise that would become Disneyland, which was officially opened to the public in 1955. Walt Disney Productions also began expanding its other entertainment operations. In 1950, Treasure Island became the studio’s first all-live-action feature, soon followed by 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Old Yeller, The Shaggy Dog, Pollyanna, Swiss Family Robinson, The Absent-Minded Professor, and The Parent Trap. The studio also produced its first TV special, One Hour in Wonderland. During the 1960′s Disney made Lady and the Tramp, Sleeping Beauty, One Hundred and One Dalmatians and The Sword in the Stone. In early 1964, Disney announced plans to build Disney World a few miles southwest of Orlando, Florida. This was to include “the Magic Kingdom”, a larger, more elaborate version of Disneyland and would also feature a number of golf courses and resort hotels. The heart of Disney World, however, was to be the Experimental Prototype City (or Community) of Tomorrow,( EPCOT).

Sadly Walt Disney was a chain smoker his entire adult life, And a tumor was discovered in his left lung which was malignant and had spread throughout the entire left lung. Having removed the lung, doctors informed Disney that his life expectancy was six months to two years. After several chemotherapy sessions, Disney and his wife spent a short amount of time in Palm Springs, California. On November 30, Disney collapsed at his home and rushed to St. Joseph’s where on December 15, 1966, at 9:30 am, ten days after his 65th birthday, Disney died of acute circulatory collapse, caused by lung cancer in Burbank, California. Disney’s final production was The Jungle Book and the animated short Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day, as well as the live-action musical feature The Happiest Millionaire, all released in 1967.

During his lifetime he received four honorary Academy Awards and won 22 Academy Awards from a total of 59 nominations, including a record four in one year, giving him more awards and nominations than any other individual in history. Disney also won seven Emmy Awards. In 1967 construction began on Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. His brother Roy Disney inaugurated the Magic Kingdom on October 1, 1971. and he also gave his name to the Disneyland in the U.S., as well as the international resorts Tokyo Disney Resort, Disneyland Paris, and Hong Kong Disneyland.

Christina Georgina Rossetti

English poet Christina Georgina Rossetti Was born 5 December 1830. She wrote a variety of romantic, devotional, and children’s poems, including Goblin Market, Remember, and the words of the Christmas carol “In the Bleak Midwinter”. Rossetti was educated at home by her mother, who had her study religious works, classics, fairy tales and novels. Rossetti enjoyed the works of Keats, Scott, Ann Radcliffe and Matthew Lewis. The influence of the work of Dante Alighieri, Petrarch and other Italian writers had a deep impact on Rossetti’s later writing. The family homes in Bloomsbury at 38 and later 50 Charlotte Street were within easy reach of Madam Tussauds, London Zoo and the newly opened Regent’s Park, which she visited regularly, Rossetti was very much a London child, and, it seems, a happy one.

ln the 1840s, her family faced severe financial difficulties due to the deterioration of her father’s physical and mental health. He had Bronchitis, possibly tuberculosis, and faced losing his sight. He gave up his teaching post at King’s College and though he lived another 11 years, he suffered from depression and was never physically well again. So Rossetti’s mother began teaching and Maria became a live-in governess. At this time her brother William was working for the Excise Office and Gabriel was at art school, leading Christina’s life at home to become one of increasing isolation. When she was 14, Rossetti suffered a nervous breakdown and left school. Bouts of depression and related illness followed.  She, became deeply interested in theAnglo-Catholic movement that developed in the Church of England. Religious devotion came to play a major role in Rossetti’s life

In her late teens, Rossetti became engaged to the painter James Collinson. like her brothers Dante and William, he was one of the founding members of the avant-garde artistic group, the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. The engagement was broken in 1850 when he reverted to Catholicism. Later she became involved with the linguist Charles Cayley, but declined to marry him, also for religious reasons. The third offer came from the painter John Brett, whom she also refused.Rossetti sat for several of Dante Rossetti’s most famous paintings. In 1848, she was the model for the Virgin Mary in his first completed oil painting, The Girlhood of Mary Virgin, which was the first work to be inscribed with the initials ‘PRB’, ( Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood).The following year she modelled again for his depiction of the Annunciation, Ecce Ancilla Domini. A line from her poem “Who shall deliver me?” inspired the famous painting by Fernand Khnopff called “I lock my door upon myself”. In 1849 she became seriously ill again, suffering from depression and also had a major religious crisis.

Rossetti began writing down and dating her poems from 1842, and From 1847 she began experimenting with verse forms such as sonnets, hymns and ballads; drawing narratives from the Bible, folk tales and the lives of the saints. Her early pieces often feature meditations on death and loss. She published her first two poems (“Death’s Chill Between” and “Heart’s Chill Between”), which appeared in the Athenaeum, in 1848 when she was 18. Under the pen-name “Ellen Alleyne”, she contributed to the literary magazine, The Germ, published by the Pre-Raphaelites from January – April 1850 and edited by her brother William. Her most famous collection, Goblin Market and Other Poems, appeared in 1862, when she was 31. It received widespread praise, establishing her as the main female poet of the time. Hopkins, Swinburne and Tennyson lauded her work.Rossetti was hailed as a successor to Elizabeth Barrett Browning. one of Rossetti’s best known works Goblin Market Is about the misadventures of two sisters’ when they encounter goblins.

Rossetti was a volunteer worker from 1859 to 1870 at the St. Mary Magdalene “house of charity” in Highgate, a refuge for former prostitutes and it is suggested Goblin Market may have been inspired by the “fallen women” she came to know.There are parallels with Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner given both poems’ religious themes of temptation, sin and redemption by vicarious suffering. Swinburne in 1883 dedicated his collection A Century of Roundels to Rossetti as she had adopted his roundelform in a number of poems, as exampled by her Wife to Husband She was ambivalent about women’s suffrage, but many scholars have identified feminist themes in her poetry. She was opposed to slavery (in the American South), cruelty to animals (in the prevalent practice of animal experimentation), and the exploitation of girls in under-age prostitution.

Rossetti maintained a very large circle of friends and correspondents and continued to write and publish for the rest of her life, primarily focusing on devotional writing and children’s poetry. In 1892, Rossetti wrote The Face of the Deep, a book of devotional prose, and oversaw the production of a new and enlarged edition ofSing-Song, published in 1893.ln the later decades of her life, Rossetti suffered from Graves Disease, diagnosed in 1872 suffering a nearly fatal attack in the early 1870s. ln 1893, she developed breast cancer and though the tumour was removed, she suffered a recurrence in September 1894. She died in Bloomsbury on 29 December 1894 and was buried inHighgate Cemetery. The place where she died, in Torrington Square, is marked with a stone table