Soundtracks

All posts in the Soundtracks category

Music to Make Horror Movies By: Hattie McDaniel

Published November 25, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

 

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After Hattie McDaniel won her Oscar in 1940, it was 24 years before another black performer received the statuette. While criticized for taking on stereotypical roles in her lifetime, McDaniel is now often praised for being a pioneer in the entertainment industry and for her commanding performances under frequently humbling circumstances. Nicely, the fun revue Thank Your Lucky Stars allowed her majestic personality to fill the frame as something other than a domestic and she appears to truly be enjoying herself as the neighborhood gossip in the number below, Ice Cold Katie.

Granted, McDaniel’s connections to the horror genre were small as she was mainly cast in comedies. But she did appear alongside terror icon Bela Lugosi in 1935’s Murder By Television. As the cook Isabella, she provided the studio mandated, over exaggerated comic relief, but she is eventually given a couple of more level headed moments. In one more progressive segment, she even interrupts a murder scene intruder and helps throw him out, proof positive of her power and strength as a performer.

Hattie Murder shots

Until then next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Bruce Davison

Published October 21, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

 

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Beloved by the queer community for his Oscar nominated work in Longtime Companion, an acclaimed look at the effects of the AIDS crisis, the eclectic Bruce Davison has also worked with a number of classic film’s acclaimed divas.

Bruce-Davison-Mame-1974In the skittering horror of Willard, Davison shared significant screen time with Elsa Lanchester, the Frankenstein Monster’s favored bride. A few years later, he played the nephew of comedic genius Lucille Ball in the celluloid version of the musical Mame. In that project, he added the role of vocalist to the many notches on his creative belt.

Nicely, Davison is still providing layered and passionate support to many of gothic filmdom’s talented divas. His recent work opposite Lin Shaye in Insidious: The Last Key provided both performers with the chance to connect with subtle yet deep emotion. He also provided a glow of kind energy against the more nefarious outpourings of such genre pros as Meg Foster and Dee Wallace in Rob Zombie’s very personal Lords of Salem.

Bruce and me

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Man Meat

Published August 12, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

 

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The one thing that has always struck me as both unique and heartbreaking about the theatrical performance is its impermanence. Once it is done, it’s done and if you weren’t there, it isn’t even a vaporous speck in your consciousness. Of course occasionally, whether in rehearsal or secretively done during a performance, footage can be recorded for posterity.

Such is the case with Zombie Bathhouse: A Rock Musical. I wrote the book for this show that premiered during the Halloween season in Chicago last fall. Along with the ghastly limb chewing action and romance – (Yes, romance. This was a musical, after all.) – that occurred onstage; some ghostly presence got some recorded evidence of the show. Now we have a super cool music video of one of composer-lyricist Scott Free’s most aggressive numbers, Man Meat.

Nicely, this leaves an imprint for both the work of director Dan Foss and one of the show’s inspirations, Joey Kissling. Foss, who was suffering from kidney and heart disease, died nine days after the close of the show. His imaginativeness helped flesh out the show’s structure and his love for the cast allowed everyone to overcome the emotional hurdles involved with mounting a larger production with ease.  Kissling, meanwhile, provided the spiritual outline for Michael, the show’s conflicted and defiant lead. Kissling succumbed to an aggressive form of cancer in the spring of 2016 and Michael was created in his honor. Now, thanks to the existence of this video, they both have a more permanent and much deserved legacy.

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Dan Foss directing the ZB cast.

For those interested in the production itself, please feel free to visit www.zombiebathhouse.net/.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Elaine Paige

Published July 22, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

 

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Some people may appreciate 1978’s The Boys from Brazil for its mad scientist Frankenstein-ian themes. Those who feel revulsion for the Three Men and a Baby films may enjoy this dark conspiratorial yarn for its swift deposal of Steve Guttenberg’s nosy do-gooder in the opening sequence. Musical theater buffs meanwhile might dive into this horror hybrid because one of its main themes, We’re Home Again, was sung by Elaine Paige, one of the multi-talented, undisputed queens of the ever glittering boards.

Paige has won countless awards for her work on shows like Evita, Cats and Anything Goes. Along with Barbara Dickson, she also introduced the pop world to I Know Him So Well, a powerhouse duet from Chess, co-written by Tim Rice and Abba’s Benny Andersson & Bjorn Ulvaeus.

Paige, who recently celebrated her 50th anniversary in show business, is forever bringing good protein to the entertainment smorgasbord at www.elainepaige.com and https://www.facebook.com/elainepaigeofficial/. 

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Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Vito Price

Published July 1, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

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Recorded by both Anita O’Day and Bing Crosby, the song Beautiful Love played in the background of the ball scene in Universal’s classic The Mummy. Serving as atmosphere there, jazz saxophonist Vito Price put the tune itself to the fore on this joyous take for his well regarded LP Swingin’ in the Loop.

It’s a recording that definitely makes you feel like you’re the participant in a sophisticated virtual reality experiment – you experience the neon joy of an old school Chicago music club like The Green Mill in every bouncing note that bursts from Price’s ebullient horn.

Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Bette Davis

Published April 22, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

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After her role in Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, Bette Davis became the goddess of the Grand Guignol horror film. Her presence electrified such projects as Dead Ringer, The Nanny, Burnt Offerings and The Secret of Harvest Home.

While not as celebrated  as Baby Jane, Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte was another solid offering in the scare sweepstakes. Nominated for numerous Academy Awards (including one for supporting actress Agnes Moorhead), this production was, originally, supposed to reunite Davis with Jane co-star Joan Crawford. Crawford took ill, though, and was replaced by Olivia De Havilland, who gives a ghoulishly intense performance as Bette’s determined rival.

Here, Davis, the master of the television interview, sings Charlotte’s theme song on one such appearance.

Meanwhile, discounting Jane’s maniacally funny I’m Writing a Letter to Daddy, Davis’ best known singing performance has to be the clever They’re Either Too Young or Too Old from the star studded Thank Your Lucky Stars.

Sonically satiated, we leave you with one of Bette from her first breath of spring….

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…and until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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Music to Make Horror Movies By: Portia Nelson

Published April 8, 2018 by biggayhorrorfan

portiaFor generations of children the scariest thing about the distinguished Portia Nelson was probably the fact that her decisive Sister Berthe didn’t like Julie Andrews’ lovable Maria in the 1965 film version of The Sound of Music. But Nelson’s friendship with author Tom Tryon actually resulted in a role with even more haunting consequences. Cast as Mrs. Rowe in the atmospheric film version of Tryon’s The Other, this eclectic artist found herself as a part of the cinematic universe of one of the most popular horror novels of the early ‘70s.

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But Nelson, who was also an influential author and songwriter, was perhaps best known for her work in the cabaret. Her beautiful soprano voice, which deepened adroitly with age, was nimble enough to find subtle meanings in the songs she sang, allowing listeners to, as her most popular lyrical composition attested, “make a rainbow” in their minds.

Nelson, whose poem Autobiography in Five Chapters is a notable tool for those in recovery, also battled cancer for many years. Ever the warrior, she, ultimately, lost her life to the disease, at the age of 80, in 2001.

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Until the next time, SWEET love and pink GRUE, Big Gay Horror Fan!

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