Archive for Paul Simon

“Cinderella” Dies at 81

Posted in Cinema & Filmmaking, Fame & Celebrity, Movies & Movie Stars, Mythos, Romance, Style & Fashion, Technicolor Pop, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 7, 2010 by alphabetfiend

OK, don’t freak out — Cinderella didn’t die because Cinderella shall live forever in Technicolor.

Ilene Woods died at 81. Ilene Woods was the voice — speaking & singing — of Cinderella in the Disney classic.

Woods was just 18 when Walt cast her as Cinderella, beating out 400 hopefuls for the coveted part. The fellas who wrote the lyrics for the feature film were friends of Ilene Woods — songwriters Mack David and Jerry Livingston — and so Woods sang in the demos that were submitted to Disney. Walt liked what he heard and gave Woods the part. How exciting that must’ve been!

I wanna be a cartoon!

I wanna end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.

When I got my boobs & hips overnight, taking on a pronounced hour-glass shape of near fetishistic proportions, I was immediately hailed as “Betty Boop” by all the boys (much to my dad’s dismay.) The Boop thing continues to this day but before that, I was called “Cinderelli” by my father. If I felt the least bit put upon or taken for granted (as the oldest of six, I often had cause to feel grumbly) Dad would mercilessly tease me in sing-song, “Wash the dishes, Cinderelli! Fold the linens, Cinderelli! Sweep the hearth, Cinderelli! Serve us stew, Cinderelli!”

Only I had no mice or birds to make me gowns of cast away gewgaws. O woe! I want mice and birds! I want a perfectly drawn up-do. I want a pumpkin carriage.

I want GLASS SLIPPERS, the most dreamy and absurd accessory of all. As silly as the diamond-soled shoes that Paul Simon sang of, “People say she’s crazy, she got diamonds on the soles of her shoes, well that’s one way to lose these walking blues. Diamonds on the soles of her shoes!”

Yes, I wanna be the itty-bitty specimen of footly perfection that slips, effortlessly, into that magical high-heel.

It looks like Woods had a real-life pair of glass slippers! (She’s posing with the heels in the above photo.) Lucky lucky cartoon lady.

Ilene Woods said that the best part about playing Cinderella in the timeless classic was that her children (and her children’s children and so on) would be able to connect with her long after she parted.

I wonder if they’ve watched the film since her death on July 1st.

Maybe their hearts are still too raw for that.

Like Janet Jackson was, after Michael Jackson died, when the film “This Is It” was in theatres. Janet refused to see the film, citing her grief and a lack of readyness. Someday, she said, Not yet. Not now.

After my Dad died we continued to pay his cell bill, for months, because we couldn’t give up the comfort of that phone number. We’d call the number just to hear his voice on the message. It was kind of like pushing a big purple bruise, flinching, ouch, and then you push it again. When I finally decided to disconnect the phone, I checked his voicemail one last time and was astounded to find that calls had been pouring in, at all hours of the day and night, from family, friends, kids, cousins, nephews, even his dry-cleaner/tailor who had once turned the flag my dad stole from the post-office into a subversively patriotic shirt. It took me forever to listen to all the messages, as people spoke to him with desperate yearning.

How could you do this to me, Paul? asked one friend, You sonofabitch asshole cocksucker. Why’d you leave me here alone?

Losing a loved one is never easy. I can only imagine how hard it would be if your mother was CINDERELLA. Maybe it is too soon for Ilene’s family to cuddle on the couch and watch as Cinderella enchants Prince Charming. But someday they will and Woods is right, that film will be a gift that keeps on giving.

Bon Voyage, Cinder-Ilene! I hope you are traveling by coach. I hope the journey is magical and Technicolor and glorious. I hope you are wearing your glass slippers.

 

**For more info, see Animation Magazine.  **“I wanna end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard”  is from “You Can Call me Al,” yet another song by Paul Simon.

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Two Gracelands — Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel

Posted in Lipstick Shamaness, Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 14, 2008 by alphabetfiend

“And my traveling companions are ghosts and empty sockets, I’m looking at ghosts and empties but Ive reason to believe that we all will be received in graceland.” — Paul Simon

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Every time I’ve ever driven through Memphis I’ve made sure to have this song Q’d up and ready to go. Then I push repeat like 10 times at least. It’s just so great. It’s about a city, it’s about Elvis, it’s about God, it’s about heavan. It’s about the way those things blur for some of us… rock & roll redemption. It’s about a state of grace. It’s about suffering and yielding to life. It’s about love & losing love. It’s grief and it’s healing. As if all that weren’t enough it’s also a really great travel song and goof knows I love one of those.  

The first time I ever heard Willie Nelson’s version — “There is a girl in Austin Texas who calls herself the human trampoline” — I was in a Tennessee truck stop en route to Texas. I was moving to Austin actually so I was en route to becoming “the girl in Austin Texas”.  It was one of those magical moments where you feel saint-touched… a nod from the gods… ancestors saying yea, keep goin’, you’re on the right road to the right place.

Graceland

The mississippi delta was shining
Like a national guitar
I am following the river
Down the highway
Through the cradle of the civil war
Im going to graceland
Graceland
In memphis tennessee
Im going to graceland
Poorboys and pilgrims with families
And we are going to graceland
My traveling companion is nine years old
He is the child of my first marriage
But Ive reason to believe
We both will be received
In graceland

She comes back to tell me shes gone
As if I didnt know that
As if I didnt know my own bed
As if Id never noticed
The way she brushed her hair from her forehead
And she said losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees youre blown apart
Everybody sees the wind blow

Im going to graceland
Memphis tennessee
Im going to graceland
Poorboys and pilgrims with families
And we are going to graceland

And my traveling companions
Are ghosts and empty sockets
Im looking at ghosts and empties
But Ive reason to believe
We all will be received
In graceland

There is a girl in new york city
Who calls herself the human trampoline
And sometimes when Im falling, flying
Or tumbling in turmoil I say
Oh, so this is what she means
She means were bouncing into graceland
And I see losing love
Is like a window in your heart
Everybody sees youre blown apart
Everybody sees the wind blow

In graceland, in graceland
Im going to graceland
For reasons I cannot explain
Theres some part of me wants to see
Graceland
And I may be obliged to defend
Every love, every ending
Or maybe theres no obligations now
Maybe Ive a reason to believe
We all will be received
In graceland

*************************************************************************

“LOOK OUT FOR THOSE NODS FROM THE GODS, Y’ALL,” sez the girl in Austin Texas. “Cause I’ve reason to believe that we all will be received.”

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There is a girl in Austin Texas who calls herself the human trampoline and sometimes when Im falling, flying or tumbling in turmoil I say Oh, so this is what she means. She means were bouncing into graceland. — as sung by Willie Nelson

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