Vince Welnick (The Grateful Dead)

Vince Welnick, the current keyboard player with the Grateful Dead was born 21 February 1951. The Grateful Dead were fomed in 1965 in the San Francisco Bay Area and were known for their unique and eclectic style, which fused elements of rock, folk, bluegrass, blues, reggae, country, improvisational jazz, psychedelia, and space rock. These various influences made the Grateful Dead “the pioneering Godfathers of the jam band world.” They were ranked 57th rolling Stone’s Greatest Artists of all Time poll and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and their Barton Hall Concert at Cornell University was added to the Library of Congress’s National Recording Registry.The founding members of the Grateful Dead were Jerry Garcia (guitar, vocals), Bob Weir (guitar, vocals), Ron “Pigpen” McKernan (keyboards, harmonica, vocals), Phil Lesh (bass, vocals), and Bill Kreutzmann (drums). Lesh was the last member to join the Warlocks before they became the Grateful Dead; he replaced Dana Morgan Jr., who had played bass for a few gigs. With the exception of McKernan, who died in 1973, the core of the band stayed together for its entire 30-year history.

The Grateful Dead began their career as the Warlocks, in early 1965 from the remnants of a jug band called Mother McCree’s Uptown Jug Champions, although The band later changed their name to The Grateful Dead, I.e “the soul of a dead person, or his angel, showing gratitude to someone who, arranged their burial.”One of the group’s earliest major performances in 1967 was at the Avalon Ballroom by the San Francisco Hare Krishna temple, where The Grateful Dead performed alongside the Hare Krishna founder Bhaktivedanta Swami, poet Allen Ginsberg, bands Moby Grape and Big Brother and the Holding Company with Janis Joplin, donating proceeds to the Krishna temple.The band’s first LP, The Grateful Dead, was released in 1967. 1970 included tour dates in New Orleans, Louisiana, where the band performed at The Warehouse for two nights. Mickey Hart quit the Grateful Dead in February 1971, leaving Kreutzmann once again as the sole percussionist. However Hart rejoined the Grateful Dead in October 1974. Tom “TC” Constanten was added as a second keyboardist from 1968 to 1970, while Pigpen also played various percussion instruments and sang. Following the Grateful Dead’s “Europe ’72″ tour, Pigpen’s health seriously deteriorated and he could no longer tour with the band. His final concert appearance was June 17, 1972 at the Hollywood Bowl, in Los Angeles and died in March, 1973 of complications from alcohol abuse.

The Grateful Dead formed their own record group, Grateful Dead Records & released the album, the jazz influenced Wake of the Flood in 1973 and in 1974 they released the classic album, Grateful Dead from the Mars Hotel. Then the Grateful Dead decided to take a break from live touring, however This hiatus was short lived, and they resumed touring in 1976, and released the album Terrapin Station in 1977.

During the 1980s the bands sound transformed. Sadly though Garcia’s health began to decline. His drug habits caused him to lose his liveliness on stage. After kicking his drug habit in 1985, he slipped into a diabetic coma for several days in July 1986. After he recovered, the band released In the Dark in 1987, which resulted as their best selling studio album release, and also produced their only top-10 chart single, Touch of Grey. Inspired by Garcia’s improved health and a successful album, the band’s energy and chemistry peaked in the late 1980s and 1990 and they enjoyed a resurgence in their popularity. Sadly The band’s “high time” came to a sudden halt when Mydland died in 1990. So Vince Welnick, joined on keyboards and vocals and Bruce Hornsby joined the band on Piano and vocals on September 15, 1990.The fans of the Grateful Dead, some of whom followed the band from concert to concert for years, are known as “Deadheads” and are known for their dedication to the band’s music. From 2003 to 2009 former members of the Grateful Dead, along with other musicians, toured as The Dead and The Other Ones. There are many contemporary incarnations of the Dead, with the most prominent touring acts being Furthur and Phil Lesh & Friends and although both Jerry Garcia and Brent Mydland have passed away, they remain popular.

James Dean Bradfield

James Dean Bradfield, the lead singer with The Manic Street Preachers was born 21 February 1969. The Manic Street Preachers were formed in 1986 at Oakdale Comprehensive School, in Blackwood, Caerphilly and consisting of cousins James Dean Bradfield (lead vocals, lead guitar), and Sean Moore (drums, percussion, soundscapes), plus Nicky Wire (bass guitar, lyrics). They are often colloquially known as The Manics. Bradfield and the slightly older Moore are cousins, and shared bunkbeds in the Bradfield family home after Moore’s parents divorced.

During the bands early years, Bradfield, alongside the classically trained Moore, primarily wrote the music while Wire focused on the lyrics. The origin of the band’s name remains unclear, but the most often-told story relates that Bradfield, while busking one day in Cardiff, got into an altercation with someone (sometimes said to be a homeless man) who asked him “What are you, boyo, some kind of manic street preacher? Original bassist Flicker (Miles Woodward) left the band in early 1988. The band continued as a three-piece, with Wire switching from guitar to bass, and in 1988 they released their first single, “Suicide Alley”. Despite its recording quality, this punk ode to youthful escape provides an early insight into both Bradfield’s guitar work and Moore’s live drumming, the latter of which would be absent from the band’s first LP.[10] The Manics intended to restore revolution to rock and roll at a time when Britain was dominated by shoegaze and acid house. The NME gave “Suicide Alley” an enthusiastic review, citing a press release by Richey Edwards: “We are as far away from anything in the ’80s as possible.”After the release of “Suicide Alley,” Edwards joined the band on rhythm guitar and contributed to lyrics alongside Wire. Edwards also designed record sleeves and artwork, and drove the band to and from gigs.

In 1990 the Manic Street Preachers signed a deal with label Damaged Goods Records for one EP. The four-track New Art Riot E.P. attracted as much media interest for its attacks on fellow musicians as for the actual music. With the help of Hall or Nothing management, the Manics signed to indie label Heavenly Records. The band recorded their first single for the label, entitled “Motown Junk”.Their next single, “You Love Us”, sampled Krzysztof Penderecki’s “Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima” as well as Iggy Pop. The video featured Nicky Wire in drag as Marilyn Monroe and contained visual references to the film Betty Blue and to Aleister Crowley. In an interview with then-NME journalist Steve Lamacq, Edwards carved the phrase “4REAL” into his arm with a razor blade to prove their sincerity. He was taken to hospital and received seventeen stitches.

As a result of their controversial behaviour, the Manics quickly became favourites of the British music press, which helped them build a rabidly dedicated following. They signed toColumbia Records of Sony Music UK and began work on their debut album.Following the release of their first single, “Suicide Alley”, the band was joined by Richey Edwards as co-lyricist and rhythm guitarist. The band’s early albums were in a punk vein, eventually broadening to a greater alternative rock sound, whilst retaining a leftist politicisation. Their early combination of androgynous glam imagery and lyrics about “culture, alienation, boredom and despair” has gained them a loyal following and cult status.

With their debut album, Generation Terrorists, the Manic Street Preachers proclaimed it would be the “greatest rock album ever”, it contains the songs; “Nat West-Barclays-Midlands-Lloyds”, “Motorcycle Emptiness”,”Little Baby Nothing” a duet between Traci Lords and Bradfield, And Everything Must Go. The band also made a cover version of the song ′′Suicide is Painless′′. However the album’s failed to meet this level of success, then Richey Edwards disappeared in February 1995 and Edwards was legally “presumed dead” in 2008

The Manic Street Preachers next album Gold Against the Soul, displayed a more commercial, grungy sound which alienated some fans. The group’s third album, The Holy Bible features an alternative rock sound and incorporates various elements from other musical genres, such as hard rock, British punk, post-punk, new wave, industrial, art rock and gothic rock. Lyrically the album deals with subjects including prostitution, American consumerism, British imperialism, freedom of speech, the Holocaust, self-starvation, serial killers, the death penalty, political revolution, childhood, fascism and suicide. There was also an element of autobiographic subjects, like in the song “4st 7lb” where the lyrics clearly tackle Richey’s own experience and life. In 1996 the Manic Street Preachers released their next album “Everything must go” without Richey, featuring the songs Everything must go, Swimming Horses, Design for Life, Australia”, “Everything Must Go” and “Kevin Carter”. The album was shortlisted for the 1996 Mercury Prize award for best album, and won the band two BRIT Awards for Best British Band and Best British Album. In 1997 the band performed a special gig at the Manchester Arena for more than 20,000 people.

In 1997 the Manic Street Preachers released thier fifth album This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours featuring the songs “You Stole the Sun from My Heart”, “Tsunami” ,”The Everlasting” and “If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next”.This song’s theme is taken from the Spanish Civil War, and the idealism of Welsh volunteers who joined the left-wing International Brigades fighting for the Spanish Republic against Francisco Franco’s military rebels. The song takes its name from a Republican poster of the time, displaying a photograph of a young child killed by the Nationalists under a sky of bombers with the stark warning “If you tolerate this, your children will be next” written at the bottom. The song is in the Guinness World Records as the number one single with the longest title without brackets.

In1999The Manics won Best British Band and Album awards at the BRIT Awards, This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours was also shortlisted for the 1999 Mercury Prize and the band received a further nomination in the category of Best UK & Ireland Act in the 1999 MTV Europe Music Awards, where the band performed live the single If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next. In the NME Awards in 1999, the band won every single big prize, Best Band, Best Album, Best Live Act, Best Single and Best Video, nailing also the prize for Best Band In The World Today in the Q Awards 1998. The album went to number 1 of the band in the UK, remaining at the top of the albums chart for 3 weeks, selling 136,000 copies in the first week and spending a total of 74 weeks in the Album Chart. The title is a quotation taken from a speech given by Aneurin Bevan, a Labour Party politician from Wales.

After headlining Glastonbury Festival, T In the Park and V Festival, the band played the Leaving the 20th Century concert at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff on 31 December 1999, the first concert to be held there, with 57,000 people attending and the final song being broadcast around the world by satellite as part of 2000 Today.

In 2000, they released the limited edition single “The Masses Against the Classes”. And In 2001, they became the first popular Western rock band to play in Cuba (at the Karl Marx Theater), and met with president Fidel Castro. Their concert and trip to Cuba was documented and then released as a DVD entitled Louder Than War. At this concert they revealed many tracks from their upcoming sixth album, Know Your Enemy, which was released on 19 March. The left-wing political convictions of the Manic Street Preachers are apparent in many of the album’s songs, such as “Baby Elián” as they comment on the strained relations between the United States and Cuba as seen in the Elián González affair, The album also Features tribute to singer and civil rights activist Paul Robeson in the song “Let Robeson Sing”, James Dean Bradfield wrote the song “Ocean Spray” about his mother’s battle with cancer. Other songs include So Why So Sad” and “Found That Soul”. The Manics also headlined Reading and Leeds Festival.A greatest hits (plus remixes) album Forever Delayed was released in 2002, containing two new songs, “Door to the River” and the single “There by the Grace of God”. Several songs were edited for length (“Motorcycle Emptiness,” “You Love Us”, “Australia,” “Everything Must Go,” “Little Baby Nothing,” and “The Everlasting”)

Despite enduring many tragedies The band went on to gain critical and commercial success And Throughout their career, the Manics have headlined several festivals including Glastonbury, T in the Park, V Festival and Reading, won eleven NME Awards, eight Q Awards and four BRIT Awards. They have been nominated for the Mercury Prize in 1996 and 1999, and have had one nomination for the MTV Europe Music Awards. The group has reached number 1 in the UK charts three times: in 1998, with the album This Is My Truth Tell Me Yours and the single “If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next”, and again in 2000 with the single “The Masses Against the Classes”. They have sold more than ten million albums worldwide.

Malcolm X

On February 21, 1965, Human Rights Activist Malcolm X was tragically assassinated, as he prepared to address the Organization of Afro-American Unity in Manhattan’s Audubon Ballroom, after a disturbance broke out in the 400-person audience. As Malcolm X and his bodyguards moved to quiet the disturbance, a man seated in the front row rushed forward and shot him once in the chest with a double-barreled sawn-off shotgun. Two other men charged the stage and fired semi-automatic handguns, hitting Malcolm X several times.

Malcolm X was Born 19th May in 1925. To his admirers, he was a courageous advocate for the rights of African Americans, a man who indicted white America in the harshest terms for its crimes against black Americans. Detractors accused him of preaching racism, black supremacy, antisemitism, and violence. Malcolm X’s father died—killed by white supremacists, it was rumored—when he was young, and at least one of his uncles was also lynched.

When he was thirteen, his mother was placed in a mental hospital, and he was placed in a series of foster homes. In 1946, at age 20, he went to prison for breaking and entering. In prison, Malcolm X became a member of the Nation of Islam and after his parole in 1952 he quickly rose to become one of its leaders. For a dozen years Malcolm X was the public face of the controversial group, however disillusionment with Nation of Islam head Elijah Muhammad led him to leave the Nation in March 1964. After a period of travel in Africa and the Middle East, he returned to the United States, where he founded Muslim Mosque, Inc. and the Organization of Afro-American Unity.

Malcolm X’s beliefs changed substantially over time. As a spokesman for the Nation of Islam he taught black supremacy and advocated separation of black and white Americans—in contrast to the civil rights movement’s emphasis on integration. After breaking with the Nation of Islam in 1964—saying of his association with it, “I was a zombie then … pointed in a certain direction and told to march”—and becoming a Sunni Muslim, he disavowed racism and expressed willingness to work with civil rights leaders, though still emphasizing black self-determination and self defense.

Sadly On 21 February 1965, less than a year after leaving the Nation of Islam, he was assassinated by three members of the group. The funeral was held on February 27 at the Faith Temple Church of God in Christ in Harlem and Malcolm X was buried at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York. Malcolm X has been described as one of the greatest and most influential African Americans in history and is credited with raising the self-esteem of black Americans and reconnecting them with their African heritage. He is largely responsible for the spread of Islam in the black community in the United States. Many African Americans, especially those who lived in cities in the Northern and Western United States, felt that Malcolm X articulated their complaints concerning inequality better than the mainstream civil rights movement did.

International Mother Language Day

International Mother Language Day (IMLD) (Bengali: আন্তর্জাতিক মাতৃভাষা দিবস Antôrjatik Matribhasha Dibôs) is a worldwide annual observance held on 21 February to promote awareness of linguistic and cultural diversity and multilingualism. First announced by UNESCO on 17 November 1999, it was formally recognized by the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution establishing 2008 as the International Year of Languages. International Mother Language Day has been being observed since 2000 to promote peace and multilingualism. The date corresponds to the day in 1952 when students from the University of Dhaka, Jagannath University and Dhaka Medical College, demonstrating for the recognition of Bengali as one of the two national languages of East Pakistan, were shot dead by police near the Dhaka High Court in the capital of present-day Bangladesh.

“Mother language” is the calque of a term used in several Romance languages: lengua materna (Spanish), lingua madre (Italian) and langue maternelle (French). A more literal English translation would be “mother tongue”, although “native language” is the most comprehensible term in English. In linguistics, “mother language” refers to an ancestral (or proto-language) of a language family. The 2015 Mother Tongue Day in Islamabad, saw demonstrators demanding that Punjabi (the mother tongue of a plurality of Pakistanis) be made an official language of Pakistan

International Mother Language Day was proclaimed by the General Conference of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in November 1999 On 16 May 2009 the United Nations General Assembly, called on its member states “to promote the preservation and protection of all languages used by people of the world”.In the resolution, the General Assembly proclaimed 2008 as the International Year of Languages to promote unity in diversity and international understanding through multilingualism and multiculturalism. The resolution was suggested by Rafiqul Islam,a Bengali living in Vancouver, Canada. He wrote a letter to Mr. Kofi Anan on 9 January 1998 asking him to take a step for saving all the languages of the world from the possibility of extinction and to declare an International Mother Language Day. Rafiq proposed the date as 21 February on the pretext of 1952 killing in Dhaka on the occasion of Language Movement. Languages are the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing our tangible and intangible heritage. All moves to promote the dissemination of mother tongues will serve not only to encourage linguistic diversity and multilingual education but also to develop fuller awareness of linguistic and cultural traditions throughout the world and to inspire solidarity based on understanding, tolerance and dialogue.

Alan Rickman

English actor and Director Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman was Born 21 February 1946 in Acton, London. Rickman attended Derwentwater Primary School, in Acton, a school that followed the Montessori method of education. He excelled at calligraphy and watercolour painting. From Derwentwater Junior School he won a scholarship to Latymer Upper School in London, where he became involved in drama. After leaving Latymer, he attended Chelsea College of Art and Design and then the Royal College of Art. This education allowed him to work as a graphic designer for the radical newspaper the Notting Hill Herald.

After graduation, Rickman and several friends opened a graphic design studio called Graphiti, but after three years of successful business, he decided that if he was going to pursue acting professionally, it was now or never. He wrote to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) requesting an audition and was awarded a place at RADA, which he attended from 1972-74. While there, he studied Shakespeare and supported himself by working as a dresser for Nigel Hawthorne and Sir Ralph Richardson. He left after winning several prizes, including the Emile Littler Prize, the Forbes Robertson Prize and the Bancroft Gold Medal.

After graduating from RADA, Rickman worked extensively with British repertory and experimental theatre groups in productions including Chekhov’s The Seagull and Snoo Wilson’s The Grass Widow at the Royal Court Theatre, and appeared three times at the Edinburgh International Festival. In 1978, he performed with the Court Drama Group, gaining parts in Romeo and Juliet and A View from the Bridge, among other plays. While working with the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) he was cast in As You Like It. He appeared in the BBC’s adaptation of Trollope’s first two Barchester novels known as The Barchester Chronicles (1982), as the Reverend Obadiah Slope. He portrayed the Vicomte de Valmont, in the 1985 Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Christopher Hampton’s adaptation of Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and received both a Tony Award nomination and a Drama Desk Award nomination for his performance.

He also played romantic leads like Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility (1995), and Jamie in Truly, Madly, Deeply (1991); numerous villains in Hollywood big budget films, like German terrorist Hans Gruber in Die Hard (1988) and the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991); the very occasional television role such as the “mad monk” Rasputin in an HBO biopic Rasputin: Dark Servant of Destiny (1996), for which he won a Golden Globe and an Emmy.[16] He was the “master of ceremonies” on Mike Oldfield’s album Tubular Bells II, released in 1992, on which he read off a list of instruments on the album. His role in Die Hard earned him a spot on the AFI’s 100 Years…100 Heroes & Villains as the 46th best villain in film history, His performance as the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves also garnered praise. He also portrayed Severus Snape, the potions master in the Harry Potter series (2001–11).

MarvinParanoidAndroid-rich_7652During his career Rickman has also played comedic roles, sending up classically trained British actors who take on “lesser roles” as the character Sir Alexander Dane/Dr. Lazarus in the science fiction parody Galaxy Quest (1999), portraying the angel Metatron, the voice of God, in Dogma (also 1999), appearing as Emma Thompson’s foolish husband Harry in Love Actually (2003), providing the voice of Marvin the Paranoid Android in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005), and the egotistical, Nobel Prize-winning father in Nobel Son (2007). He was nominated for an Emmy for his work as Dr. Alfred Blalock in HBO’s Something the Lord Made (2004) and also starred in the films Snow Cake (2006), with Sigourney Weaver and Carrie-Anne Moss, and Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. He also appeared as the evil Judge Turpin in the critically acclaimed Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) directed by Tim Burton, alongside Harry Potter co-stars Helena Bonham Carter and Timothy Spall. Rickman also appeared as Absolem the Caterpillar in Burton’s film Alice in Wonderland (2010).

He performed onstage in Noël Coward’s romantic comedy Private Lives, and In 1998 He appeared in Antony and Cleopatra as Mark Antony with Dame Helen Mirren as Cleopatra, in the Royal National Theatre’s production at the Olivier Theatre in London. Rickman also appeared in Victoria Wood with All The Trimmings (2000), a Christmas special with Victoria Wood, playing an aged colonel in the battle of Waterloo who is forced to break off his engagement to Honeysuckle Weeks’ character. Alongside Harry Potter co-star Imelda Staunton.

Rickman also directed The Winter Guest at London’s Almeida Theatre in 1995 and the film version of the same play, released in 1997, starring Emma Thompson and Phyllida Law. He compiled the play My Name Is Rachel Corrie, and directed the premiere at the Royal Court Theatre, London in 2005 for which he won the Theatre Goers’ Choice Awards for Best Director. In 2009, Rickman was awarded the James Joyce Award by University College Dublin’s Literary and Historical Society. In October and November 2010, Rickman starred in the eponymous role in Henrik Ibsen’s John Gabriel Borkman at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin alongside Lindsay Duncan and Fiona Shaw.

In 2011, Rickman again appeared as Severus Snape in the final installment in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 and earned his first award nominations for his role as Snape at the 2011 Alliance of Women Film Journalists Awards, 2011 Saturn Awards, 2011 Scream Awards and 2011 St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association Awards in the Best Supporting Actor category. On 21 November 2011, Rickman opened in Seminar, by Theresa Rebeck, at the John Golden Theatre on Broadway. Rickman, won the Broadway.com Audience Choice Award for Favorite Actor in a Play and was nominated for a Drama League Award.Rickman starred with Colin Firth and Cameron Diaz in a remake of 1966’s Gambit by Michael Hoffman. In 2013, he played Hilly Kristal, the founder of the famous East Village punk-rock club CBGB, in the CBGB film with Rupert Grint. Alan Rickman sadly died of cancer on 14 January 2016 at the age of 69 He leaves behind a large number of great films and will be sadly missed.

Sam Peckinpah

American film director and screenwriter David Samuel Peckinpah was born February 21, 1925 in Fresno, California, where he attended both grammar school and high school. He spent much time skipping classes with his brother to engage in cowboy activities on their grandfather Denver Church’s ranch, including trapping, branding, and shooting. During the 1930s and 1940s, Coarsegold and Bass Lake were still populated with descendants of the miners and ranchers of the 19th century. Many of these descendants worked on Church’s ranch. At that time, it was a rural area undergoing extreme change, and this exposure is believed to have affected Peckinpah’s Western films later in life.

He played on the junior varsity football team while at Fresno High School, but frequent fighting and discipline problems caused his parents to enroll him in the San Rafael Military Academy for his senior year. In 1943, he joined the United States Marine Corps and was sent to China with the task of disarming Japanese soldiers and repatriating them following World War II. Although He did not see combat, he witnessed acts of war between Chinese and Japanese soldiers including acts of torture and the murder of a laborer by sniper fire. The American Marines were not permitted to intervene. Peckinpah also claimed he was shot during an attack by Communist forces. He also applied for discharge in Peking, so he could marry a local woman, but was refused. His experiences in China reportedly deeply affected him.

After being discharged in Los Angeles, he attended California State University, Fresno, where he studied history. While a student, he met and married his first wife, Marie Selland, in 1947. A drama major, Selland introduced Peckinpah to the theater department and he became interested in directing for the first time. During his senior year, he adapted and directed a one-hour version of Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie. After graduation in 1948, Peckinpah enrolled in graduate studies in drama at University of Southern California. He spent two seasons as the director in residence at Huntington Park Civic Theatre near Los Angeles before obtaining his master’s degree. Peckinpah then began working as a stagehand at KLAC-TV in the belief that television experience would eventually lead to work in films.

In 1954, Peckinpah was hired as a dialogue coach for the film Riot in Cell Block 11. His job entailed acting as an assistant for the movie’s director, Don Siegel. The film was shot on location at Folsom Prison. Reportedly, the warden was reluctant to allow the filmmakers to work at the prison until he was introduced to Peckinpah. The warden knew his family from Fresno and was immediately cooperative. Siegel’s location work and his use of actual prisoners as extras in the film made a lasting impression on Peckinpah. He worked as a dialogue coach on four additional Siegel films: Private Hell 36, An Annapolis Story, Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Crime in the Streets. Invasion of the Body Snatchers, starred Kevin McCarthy and Dana Wynton and became one of the most critically praised science fiction films of the 1950s and features a cameo by Peckinpah as Charlie the meter reader.

On the recommendation of Don Siegel, Peckinpah established himself during the late 1950s as a scriptwriter of western series of the era, selling scripts to Gunsmoke, Have Gun – Will Travel, The Rifleman, Broken Arrow, Klondike, and Dick Powell’s Zane Grey Theatre. He wrote one episode “The Town” (December 13, 1957) for the CBS series, Trackdown, starring Robert Culp as the Texas Ranger Hoby Gilman, this concerns a cowardly town afraid to resist the clutches of an outlaw gang. Peckinpah wrote a screenplay from the novel The Authentic Death of Hendry Jones, which became the 1961 Marlon Brando film One-Eyed Jack. His writing led to directing, and he directed a 1958 episode of Broken Arrow and several 1960 episodes of Klondike, (co-starring James Coburn, L. Q. Jones, Ralph Taeger, Joi Lansing, and Mari Blanchard). He also directed the CBS sitcom Mr. Adams and Eve, starring Howard Duff and Ida Lupino.

In 1958, Peckinpah wrote a script for Gunsmoke that was rejected due to content. He reworked the screenplay, titled The Sharpshooter, and sold it to Zane Grey Theater. The episode received popular response and became the television series The Rifleman, starring Chuck Connors. Peckinpah directed four episodes of the series (with guest stars R. G. Armstrong and Warren Oates), but left after the first year. The Rifleman ran for five seasons and has since achieved enduring popularity. In 1962, Peckinpah directed two hour-long episodes for The Dick Powell Theater. In the second of these, The Losers, an updated remake of The Westerner set in the present day with Lee Marvin as Dave Blassingame and Keenan Wynn as Dehner’s character Bergundy Smith, he mixed slow motion, fast motion and stills together to capture violence, a technique famously put to more sophisticated use in 1969s The Wild Bunch.

He also created the television series The Westerner, starring Brian Keith and in three episodes also featuring John Dehner. Peckinpah wrote and directed a pilot called Trouble at Tres Cruzes Which ran for only 13 episodes before cancellation mainly due to its gritty content detailing the drifting, laconic cowboy Dave Blassingame (Brian Keith). However despite its short run The Westerner and Peckinpah were nominated by the Producers Guild of America for Best Filmed Series. An episode of the series eventually served as the basis for Tom Gries’ 1968 film Will Penny starring Charlton Heston and The Westerner has since achieved cult status,

Throughout much of his adult life, Peckinpah was affected by alcoholism, and, later, other forms of drug addiction. He may have had a mental issue, possibly manic depression or paranoia.It is believed his drinking problems began during his service in the military while stationed in China, when he frequented the saloons of Tianjin and Beijing.Peckinpah divorced Selland, the mother of his first four children, and in 1960, hemarried the Mexican actress Begoña Palacios in 1965. A stormy relationship developed, and over the years they married on three separate occasions. They had one daughter together. His personality swung between a sweet, softly-spoken, artistic disposition, and bouts of rage and violence As An experienced hunter, Peckinpah was fascinated with firearms and was known to shoot the mirrors in his house while drunk. Peckinpah’s reputation as a hard-living brute with a taste for violence, inspired the content in his most popular films and affected his artistic legacy. Peckinpah seems to have inspired extraordinary loyalty in certain friends and employees. He used the same actors (Warren Oates, L. Q. Jones, R. G. Armstrong, James Coburn, Ben Johnson, and Kris Kristofferson), and collaborators (Jerry Fielding, Lucien Ballard, Gordon Dawson, and Martin Baum).

Peckinpah spent a great deal of his life in Mexico after his marriage to Palacios, eventually buying property in the country. He was reportedly fascinated by the Mexican lifestyle and culture, and he often portrayed it with an unusual sentimentality and romanticism in his films. His best known films include The Wild Bunch, Major Dundee, Straw Dogs, The Getaway, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia, Cross of Iron, The Deadly Companions, Ride the High Country, The Cincinnati Kid, Noon Wine, The Ballad of Cable Hogue, Junior Bonner, The Killer Elite, Cross of Iron, Convoy and The Osterman Weekend. Four of these films, Major Dundee (1965), The Wild Bunch (1969), Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973) and Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974), were filmed entirely on location within Mexico, while The Getaway (1972) concludes with a couple escaping to freedom there.

During his final years Peckinpah’s lifetime of hard living caught up with him and he was seriously ill. Regardless, he continued to work until his last months. He died of heart failure on December 28, 1984. At the time, he was working on the script for On the Rocks, which was due to be filmed in San Francisco. Peckinpah lived at the Murray Hotel in Livingston, Montana, from 1979 until his death in 1984.

W. H. Auden

English-American poet. Wystan Hugh Auden was born 21 February 1907 in York. He, grew up in and near Birmingham in a professional middle-class family. He attended English independent (or public) schools and studied English at Christ Church, Oxford. After a few months in Berlin in 1928–29, he spent five years (1930–35) teaching in British public schools. He travelled to Iceland and China in order to write ibooks about his journeys.

He came to wide public attention when he published his first book Poems in 1930 at the age of twenty-three. This was followed in 1932 by The Orators. Three plays written in collaboration with Christopher Isherwood between 1935 and 1938 and aAuden and Isherwood maintained a lasting but intermittent sexual friendship from around 1927 to 1939, while both had briefer but more intense relations with other men. In 1939, Auden fell in love with Chester Kallman and regarded their relationship as a marriage, but this ended in 1941 when Kallman refused to accept the faithful relations that Auden demanded. However, the two maintained their friendship, and from 1947 until Auden’s death they lived in the same house or apartment in a non-sexual relationship, often collaborating on opera libretti such as that of The Rake’s Progress, to music by Igor Stravinsky.

In the early 1940’s. Auden moved to the United States and became an American citizen in 1946. Between 1941 to 1945 He taught in American universities, followed by occasional visiting professorships in the 1950s.His work in the 1940s, including the long poems “For the Time Being” and “The Sea and the Mirror”, focused on religious themes. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for his 1947 long poem The Age of Anxiety, the title of which became a popular phrase describing the modern era.From 1947 to 1957 he wintered in New York and summered in Ischia and from 1958 until the end of his life he wintered in New York (in Oxford in 1972–73) and summered in Kirchstetten, Lower Austria. Between 1956 and 1961 he was Professor of Poetry at Oxford; his lectures were popular with students and faculty, and served as the basis for his 1962 prose collection The Dyer’s Hand.

Auden was a prolific writer of prose essays and reviews on literary, political, psychological and religious subjects, and he worked at various times on documentary films, poetic plays, and other forms of performance. Auden’s poetry was noted for its stylistic and technical achievement, its engagement with politics, morals, love, and religion, and its variety in tone, form and content. He is best known for love poems such as “Funeral Blues”, poems on political and social themes such as “September 1, 1939” and “The Shield of Achilles”, poems on cultural and psychological themes such as The Age of Anxiety, and poems on religious themes such as “For the Time Being” and “Horae Canonicae”.

Throughout his career he was both controversial and influential, and critical views on his work ranged from sharply dismissive, treating him as a lesser follower of W. B. Yeats and T. S. Eliot, to strongly affirmative, as in Joseph Brodsky’s claim that he had “the greatest mind of the twentieth century”. After his death, his poems became known to a much wider public than during his lifetime through films, broadcasts and popular media. Auden sadly died 29 September 1973.