LA Confidential

I have recently watched the exciting crime noir film LA. Confidential. It is loosely based on James Ellroy’s 1990 novel of the same name, which is the third book in his L.A. Quartet series. It tells the story of a group of LAPD officers in 1953, involved in police corruption and Hollywood celebrities. It takes place in Los Angeles and features Sergeant Edmund “Ed” Exley, son of the legendary LAPD detective Preston Exley, Who is determined to live up to his father’s reputation. His intelligence, insistence on following regulations, and cold demeanor isolates him from other officers. He exacerbates this resentment by volunteering to testify in the Bloody Christmas case against his fellow officers in exchange for a promotion to Detective Lieutenant. This goes against the advice of Captain Dudley Smith, who states that a detective should be willing to shoot a guilty man in the back for the greater good. Exley’s ambition is fueled by the murder of his father, killed by an unknown assailant, whom Exley nicknames “Rollo Tomasi”.

Officer Wendell “Bud” White, whom Exley considers a “mindless thug”, is a plainclothes officer obsessed with violently punishing woman-beaters. One such incident leads him to confront a former cop named Leland “Buzz” Meeks, a driver for Pierce Patchett. White comes to dislike Exley after White’s partner, Dick Stensland, is fired due to Exley’s testimony in the Bloody Christmas scandal. Smith wants White to torture the out-of-town criminal element that attempt a foothold in Los Angeles when gangster Mickey Cohen is imprisoned for tax evasion. Then The Nite Owl case, a multiple homicide at a coffee shop, becomes personal after Stensland is found to be one of the victims.

Sergeant Jack Vincennes is a narcotics detective who moonlights as a technical advisor on Badge of Honor, a popular TV police drama series. He is also providing Sid Hudgens, publisher of the Hush-Hush tabloid magazine, with tips about celebrity arrests that will attract more readers to Hudgens’ magazine. When he becomes involved in Hudgens’ scheme to set up actor Matt Reynolds in a homosexual tryst with L.A. district attorney Ellis Loew, and Reynolds is killed as a result, Vincennes becomes determined to find the killer.

Murders then take place at the Nite Owl and Three African Americans are initially charged with the Nite Owl murders, and are later killed in a shootout. Although the Nite Owl crime initially looks like a botched robbery, Exley and White investigate and discover indications of corruption all around them. White recognizes Nite Owl victim Susan Lefferts as one of Meeks’ escorts which leads him back to Pierce Patchett, operator of Fleur-de-Lis, a call girl service that runs prostitutes altered by plastic surgery to resemble film stars. He begins a relationship with Lynn Bracken, a Veronica Lake look-alike prostitute.

White finds more bodies when he searches a storage room under Lefferts’ mother’s house, including the decomposed corpse of Meeks. When Vincennes approaches Smith with the evidence he has found with Exley, Smith realizes his scheme to take over Mickey Cohen’s heroin empire is threatened so Smith shoots Vincennes. Exley’s suspicions are aroused when Smith asks him who Rollo Tomasi is. During an interrogation of Hudgens. White is angered by photos of Bracken sleeping with Exley, Smith kills Hudgens. Exley investigates and discovers Meeks and Stensland used to work closely with Smith. Exley convinces White that Smith is corrupt and later find Patchett murdered. Exley and White realize What Smith is up to And pursue him and his hitmen in an exciting final shootout

World Post Day

World Post day takes place annually on October 9. This date was first declared World Post Day at the 1969 UPU Congress in Tokyo, Japan. The proposal was submitted by Shri Anand Mohan Narula, a member of the Indian delegation. Since then, World Post Day has been celebrated all over the world to highlight the importance of the postal services and to raise awareness of the Post’s vital role in the everyday lives of people and businesses, as well as its contribution to global social and economic development.

The mail or post is a system for physically transporting documents and other small packages; or, the postcards, letters, and parcels themselves. A postal service can be private or public, though many governments place restrictions on private systems. Since the mid-19th century national postal systems have generally been established as government monopolies with a fee on the article prepaid. Proof of payment is often in the form of adhesive postage stamps, but postage meters are also used for bulk mailing. Modern private postal systems are typically distinguished from national postal agencies by the names “courier” or “delivery service”. Postal authorities often have functions other than transporting letters. In some countries, a postal, telegraph and telephone (PTT) service oversees the postal system, in addition to telephone and telegraph systems. Some countries’ postal systems allow for savings accounts and handle applications for passports. The Universal Postal Union was established in 1874, includes 192 member countries and sets the rules for international mail exchanges. The practice of communication by written documents carried by an intermediary from one person or place to another almost certainly dates back nearly to the invention of writing. However, development of formal postal systems occurred much later. The first documented use of an organized courier service for the diffusion of written documents is in Egypt, where Pharaohs used couriers for the diffusion of their decrees in the territory of the State (2400 BC). The earliest surviving piece of mail is also Egyptian, dating to 255 BC.

On 9 October Universal Postal Union member countries are encouraged to organize their own national activities to celebrate the event, including everything from the introduction or promotion of new postal products and services, to the organization of open days at post offices, mail centres and postal museums. Countries also participate in the UPU International Letter-Writing Competition and the winners are often honoured on 9 October.

It also commemorates the date of birth of Arun Kumar CA (Pacha Kuthira) in 1990 in Kumarakon. He used to give post to so many renowned people like Vineeth KB(Nano), Junaidh PP(aana vayaran) and Arun Dev S(Vijay aka Annan). He is said to have special abilities like reaching kottayam from Ernakulam in less than 15 mins. who later on settled down in Saudi Arabia. Presently he is working in Bangalore as POST MASTER GENERAL.

John Enwistle (The Who)

The Late great English singer-songwriter, musician, producer and bass Player John Entwistle was born on 9th October 1944 in Chiswick, London. He began piano lessons aged 7, and after joining Acton County Grammar School aged 11, switched to the trumpet,moving to French horn when he joined the Middlesex School’s Symphony Orchestra. He met Pete Townshend in the second year of school, and the two formed a trad jazz band, The Confederates. The group only played one gig together, before they decided that rock ‘n’ roll was a more attractive prospect. Entwistle, in particular, was having difficulty hearing his trumpet with bands, and decided to switch to playing guitar. However, due to his large fingers, and also his fondness for the low guitar tones of Duane Eddy, he decided to take up the bass. He made his own instrument at home, and soon attracted the attention of Roger Daltrey, who had been the year above Entwistle at Acton County, but had since left to work in sheet metal.

Daltrey was aware of Entwistle’s reputation and asked him to join as bassist for his band, The Detours. After joining the Detours, Entwistle played a major role in encouraging Pete Townshend’s budding talent on the guitar, and insisting that Townshend be admitted into the band as well. Eventually, Roger Daltrey fired all the members of his band with the exception of Entwistle, Townshend and the drummer, Doug Sandom, although in Sandom’s case it was only because he had not yet found a drummer with sufficient talent to replace him. Upon the entry of Keith Moon to the band, Roger Daltrey relinquished the role of guitarist to Pete Townshend, instead becoming frontman and lead singer. The band considered several changes of name, temporarily performing as the High Numbers, and finally settling on the name The Who, with Roger Daltrey (lead vocals, harmonica and guitar), Pete Townshend, John Entwistle (bass guitar, brass and vocals) and Keith Moon (drums and percussion). Entwistle was the only member of the band to have had formal musical training. In addition to bass guitar, he contributed backing vocals and performed on the French horn (heard on “Pictures of Lily”), trumpet, bugle, and jaw harp, and on some occasions lead vocalist on his compositions. He layered several horns to create the brass section as heard on songs such as “5:15”, among others, while recording the Who’s studio albums, and for concerts, arranged a horn section to perform with the band. In1967, Entwistle married his childhood sweetheart Alison Wise and bought a large semi-detached home in Acton, filling it with all sorts of extraordinary artefacts, ranging from suits of armour to a tarantula spider. His eccentricity and taste for the bizarre was to remain with him throughout his life, and when he finally moved out of the city in 1978, to Stow-on-the-Wold in Gloucestershire, his 17-bedroom mansion, Quarwood, resembled a museum. It also housed one of the largest guitar collections belonging to any rock musician.

He joined the rock band the Who in 1964 alongside Roger Daltrey (lead vocals, harmonica and guitar), Pete Townshend and Keith Moon (drums and percussion). The Who became known for energetic live performances which often included instrument destruction. So far The Who have sold about 100 million records, and have charted 27 top forty singles in the United Kingdom and United States, as well as 17 top ten albums, with 18 Gold, 12 Platinum and 5 Multi-Platinum album awards in the United States alone. The Who rose to fame in the UK with a series of top ten hit singles, boosted in part by pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline, beginning in January 1965 with“I Can’t Explain”. The albums My Generation, A Quick One and The Who Sell Out followed, with the first two reaching the UK top five.

They first hit the US Top 40 in 1967 with “Happy Jack” and hit the top ten later that year with “I Can See for Miles”. Their fame grew with memorable performances at the Monterey Pop, Woodstock and Isle of Wight music festivals. The 1969 release of Tommy was the first in a series of top ten albums in the US, followed by Live at Leeds, Who’s Next, Quadrophenia, The Who by Numbers, Who Are You, and The Kids Are Alright. Moon died at the age of 32 in 1978. Following this tragedy’ the Who released two further studio albums, the UK and US top five Face Dances and the US top ten It’s Hard, with drummer Kenney Jones, before disbanding in 1983. However They re-formed at events such as Live Aid and for reunion tours such as their 25th anniversary tour and the Quadrophenia tours of 1996 and 1997. In 2000, the three surviving original members discussed recording an album of new material, but their plans temporarily stalled upon Entwistle’s death at the age of 57 on 27 June 2002.

Townshend and Daltrey continue to perform as The Who, and in 2006 they released the studio album Endless Wire, which reached the top ten in the UK and US. They have also played Barnstorming sets at Glastonbury. The Who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990, their first year of eligibility; the display describes them as “Prime contenders, in the minds of many, for the title of World’s Greatest Rock Band.” Time magazine wrote in 1979 that “No other group has ever pushed rock so far, or asked so much from it.” Rolling Stone magazine wrote: “Along with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, The Who complete the holy trinity of British rock.” They received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1988, and from the Grammy Foundation in 2001, for creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording. In 2008 surviving members Townshend and Daltrey were honoured at the 31st Annual Kennedy Center Honours. That same year VH1 Rock Honours paid tribute to The Who and Jack Black of Tenacious D called them “the greatest band of all time.  In April 2017 The Who took to the stage at London’s Royal Albert Hall to perform their rock opera “Tommy” live in its entirety for the first time in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust. Tommy concerns a “deaf, dumb and blind kid who sure played a mean pinball” and the concert is being released on DVD and Blu Ray in October 2017.

 

 

 

 

John Lennon

English musician, singer and songwriter John Ono Lennon, MBE, was born 9 October 1940 and raised in Liverpool. As a teenager, Lennon became involved in the skiffle craze; his first band, the Quarrymen, evolved into the Beatles in 1960 and went on to become the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed act in the history of popular music and have had more number-one albums on the British charts and sold more singles in the UK than any other act. The band’s best-known lineup consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr. Rooted in skiffle and 1950s rock and roll, the group later utilised several genres, ranging from pop ballads to psychedelic rock, often incorporating classical and other elements in innovative ways. In the early 1960s, their enormous popularity first emerged as “Beatlemania”, but as their songwriting grew in sophistication, they came to be perceived by many fans and cultural observers as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the era’s socio-cultural revolutions.

They built their reputation playing clubs in Liverpool and Hamburg over a three-year period from 1960. Manager Brian Epstein moulded them into a professional act and producer George Martin enhanced their musical potential. They gained popularity in the United Kingdom after their first single, “Love Me Do”, became a modest hit in late 1962. They acquired the nickname the “Fab Four” as Beatlemania grew in Britain over the following year, and by early 1964 they had become international stars, leading the “British Invasion” of the United States pop market. From 1965 on, they produced what many critics consider their finest material, including the innovative and widely influential albums Rubber Soul (1965), Revolver (1966), Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967), The Beatles (1968), and Abbey Road (1969).

After their break-up of the Beatles in 1970, Lennon embarked on a solo career that produced the critically acclaimed albums John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band and Imagine, and iconic songs such as “Give Peace a Chance” and “Imagine”. Lennon revealed a rebellious nature and acerbic wit in his music, writing, drawings, on film and in interviews. He was also Controversial through his political and peace activism, he moved to New York City in 1971, where his criticism of the Vietnam War resulted in a lengthy attempt by Richard Nixon’s administration to deport him, while some of his songs were adopted as anthems by the anti-war movement.After his marriage to Yoko Ono in 1969, he changed his name to John Ono Lennon. Lennon disengaged himself from the music business in 1975 to devote time to raising his infant son Sean, (Who was born October 9th thirty five years later in 1975, but re-emerged with Ono in 1980 with the new album Double Fantasy. Sadly though Lennon was tragically murdered by Mark Chapman in New York on 9 December 1980, three weeks after the release of Double Fantasy.

As of 2012 Lennon’s solo album sales in the United States exceed 14 million units, and as writer, co-writer or performer, he is responsible for 25 number-one singles on the US Hot 100 chart. In 2002 a BBC poll on the 100 Greatest Britons voted him eighth, and in 2008, Rolling Stone ranked him the fifth-greatest singer of all-time. He was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1987 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. The Beatles topped Billboard magazine’s list of the all-time most successful Hot 100 artists In 2008, The Beatles also hold the record for most number-one hits on the Hot 100 chart with 20. They have received 7 Grammy Awards from the American National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, an Academy Award for Best Original Song Score and 15 Ivor Novello Awards from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors. They were collectively included in Time magazine’s compilation of the 20th century’s 100 most influential people.