Rest in Peace, John Hurt

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We’ve lost another great actor. John Hurt, who was nominated for an Oscar for his role as the “Elephant Man” in the movie of the same name in 1980, passed away yesterday at the age of 77.  His career spanned about 60 years.  He played many popular roles in his lifetime, most recently “War Doctor” in the “Doctor Who” series.  He also played “Mr. Ollivander” in “Harry Potter” movies.

Though his exact cause of death has not been released, it is known that Hurt suffered from pancreatic cancer.  Our condolences to his family. May his memory be eternal. – BMT

NEVER FORGET – 9/11/01

“Today. . .our very freedom came under attack. None of us will ever forget this day.” – President George W. Bush. In loving memory of Joe Hunter and all of the lives that were lost, I offer up prayers for them and the survivors they left behind, for the armed forces – who willingly risk their lives every day to protect and defend freedom all over the world, for our civil service professionals who also risk their lives to protect, serve, and fight terrorism on the home front. As we all know, freedom is not free. We must honor this day and we MUST NEVER FORGET! GOD bless America! – BMT
september 11 photo

Rest in Peace Gene Wilder

Together again, in Heaven.  Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner.

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Gene Wilder and Gilda Radner in 1986 – photo from Wikipedia.org

Gene Wilder. Born Jerome Silberman on June 11, 1933 died today – August 29, 2016 from complications due to Alzheimer’s Disease. He was 83 years old.

I probably realized it when I watched the film a few years ago, but it was interesting for me to read today at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_Wilder that his first movie role was in 1967, as a hostage in “Bonnie and Clyde.” There are so many awesome roles he played but one of my favorites was “Stir Crazy” with Richard Pryor and of course, “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory.”  May he rest in peace. – BMT

What’s your favorite Gene Wilder movie? Please comment below.

Rest in Peace Garry Marshall

Somehow this sad news fell under my radar. Writer, producer, actor, Garry Marshall passed away on July 19, 2016.  He was 81 years old. As I feel it is always better late than never, I want to send my thoughts and prayers to Penny Marshall and the entire Marshall family. Garry Marshall was so incredibly talented, it would be terrible not to pay tribute to him. If you aren’t familiar with Garry’s career, just think back to your favorite TV show or movie since the 1960s and he probably had something to do with it. You name it, he’s likely written, produced, directed, and/or acted in it! Just to briefly list his accomplishments in television, he wrote for the Tonight Show Starring Jack Paar; The Danny Thomas Show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Lucy Show, Gomer Pyle, and The Odd Couple, just to name a few.  More notably he was the creator and executive producer of classic hits such as Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley (starring his sister, Penny), Mork & Mindy, Angie, Joanie Loves Chachi, and he was the executive consultant for the current version of The Odd Couple, with executive producer, Matthew Perry.  Over the years, Garry starred in several TV shows and movies, including Goldfinger, A League of Their Own, Murphy Brown, The Simpsons, The Majestic, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Louie, Two and a Half Men, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Hot in Cleveland, and The Odd Couple.  

Garry was born, Garry Kent Masciarelli on November 13, 1934 in the Bronx, New York. His father, Anthony Masciarelli, an industrial filmaker, changed the family name to Marshall in 1934. Though I am not certain why, I do know that back in those days, due to discrimination, many Italian-Americans changed their names to something they believed to be less “ethnic.” Being a New Yorker of Italian descent, I have a special place in my heart for stars like Garry. I always enjoyed listening to him give interviews. His voice, that New York accent, always took me back home. I couldn’t post about Garry without a video clip, so here’s an interview Garry did on “CBS This Morning” in 2012 to promote his book, “My Happy Days in Hollywood.”  Such a humble and down-to earth man; they just don’t make them like that anymore.

(Video obtained from YouTube)

Movies Directed by Garry Marshall:

1982 Young Doctors in Love
1984 The Flamingo Kid
1986 Nothing In Common
1987 Overboard
1988 Beaches
1990 Pretty Woman
1991 Frankie and Johnny
1994 Exit to Eden
1996 Dear God
1999 The Other Sister
1999 Runaway Bride
2001 The Princess Diaries

2004 Raising Helen
2004 The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
2007 Georgia Rule
2010 Valentine’s Day
2011 New Year’s Eve
2016 Mother’s Day

If you are like me, you may be reading this list, thinking, “I didn’t know he did that!”  As you can see, not all of his work was comedy, but all of his work was brilliant!

In my research, I came across some of his quotes, “It’s always helpful to learn from your mistakes because then your mistakes seem worthwhile.” He also said, “Learn to work with people you wouldn’t go to lunch with.” Wise words to live by, don’t you think? The world has lost another great artistic legend. Rest in peace Garry. Eternal be his memory.

What’s your favorite Garry Marshall accomplishment? I’d love to hear about it.- BMT

Rest in Peace Glenn Frey

“There’s . . .Heartache Tonight, I know.”

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What a terrible way to start the year for music fans. I was about to turn off my computer, when I came across this shocking post on the Eagles Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/EaglesBand/posts/1200240780005485

“There’s a Hole in the World”

https://youtu.be/WD3cnivUVXc

How I wish the news came from “Lyin’ Eyes.” Unfortunately, it is true, yet another musical legend has left us.  The Eagles founding member, guitarist, songwriter, and singer, Glenn Frey, passed away today. He was 67 years old. The post from the Eagles page said that Frey died from “complications from Rheumatoid Arthritis, Acute Ulcerative Colitis and Pneumonia.” I am saddened by this news. The Eagles are one of my favorite bands. In fact, I never met anyone that said they didn’t like them! I grew up in the 70s and 80s listening to their music and loved it all. I think it is safe to say that everyone has a favorite Eagles song.  Who hasn’t been to an event where the crowd was singing along to “Hotel California,” “Desperado,” “Take it Easy” or any number of Eagles classics?  Don Henley and Glenn Frey’s song lyrics are poetic genius; true works of art.

I got to cross something off my “bucket list”

Since they disbanded in the 80s, I never thought I’d get to see the Eagles perform live in my lifetime, but on September 8, 2008, my dream came true.  I was blessed to get tickets from one of my bosses to see them at the AT&T Center here in San Antonio. I took my,then 9 year-old, daughter with me.  There was not one song that we didn’t sing along to. We were up on our feet the entire time. (This was back when I could stand more than 10 minutes!) It was a surreal experience to be able to enjoy music from my childhood icons with my daughter. It is still one of the best concert memories we share. In fact, just last week, when we picked-up our tickets to the upcoming Pat Benatar rodeo concert (my Christmas present) we talked about how fantastic that show was. Music has always been a big part of our routine.  I’ve taken her to many concerts, but this one made a huge impression on her back then because they have so many hits, that the concert, as I recall, was over two hours long!  Also, on our way to the concert, she said she didn’t know who the Eagles were, but she recognized almost all of the songs in the set list. Each song sounded almost identical to the versions recorded some 20-30 years earlier; their voices were just as crisp. To me, it is the epitome of musical talent when artists sound just as good or even better, live in-concert, as they do on their studio recordings.

“Part of Me, Part of You”

This post seems to be more about the Eagles, than Glenn Frey, but let’s face it, as a co-founder, one of the lead singers and songwriters, Glenn Frey is a huge part of the Eagles and the Eagles are a huge part of Glenn Frey.  I imagine the band will continue to tour without him, since they were in the middle of their “History of the Eagles” tour when they took a break because of Glenn’s illness.  I think it would be an awesome tribute to him to continue, but they can never replace Glenn Frey.

Soundtrack to Our Lives

During Glenn’s solo career in the 80s, “The Heat Is On” was one of his biggest hits.  It is one of the songs on the soundtrack of “Beverly Hills Cop,” the story of a Detroit Cop (Eddie Murphy) that winds up in Beverly Hills. Coincidentally, Glenn Frey was born in Detroit on November 6, 1948. His song, “Part of Me, Part of You,” is also on the soundtrack for the movie, “Thelma & Louise.” His voice was soft yet powerful, with just the right amount of “rasp,” making his songs perfect to use in movies and really, perfect music for life’s many occasions.  Since reading the news of his passing, I’ve seen so many Twitter posts by celebrities, one that stands out, and I think most would agree with, was from Melissa Gilbert, she wrote, “Rest well Glenn Frey. So grateful for the soundtrack you gave my life. . .” I couldn’t put it better, he did give our lives a soundtrack!

David Bowie, There’s “A New Kid in Town”

Glenn joins so many great artists in Heaven tonight.  Rest in Peace Glenn, your music will live on forever.  You have the best of our love. – BMT