Saturday, May 08, 2021

Happy Mother's Day Weekend 2021 from Way Too Damn Lazy To Write A Blog

On Mother's Day, the gang here will be driving over hill and dale (but not, fortunately, on any dusty trails) and shall miss Sunday's Amazing Tales online presentation by the San Francisco Silent Film Festival (it's at noon PST/ 3:00 p.m. EST - register here).

After catching up on Giants-Padres game highlights, we'll watch apropo Mother's Day entertainment, starting (of course) with a cartoon. Never mind that bit at 5:37 with the chick frying an egg - it's a quail egg, folks! This is what happens when the same ex-Fleischer animators responsible for the anarchic "Scrappy" cartoons try their hands at "Disney cute."

Have a hunch that George Stevens’ 1948 film I Remember Mama will be on the Turner Classic Movies schedule. It’s an enjoyable film, loaded with fine performances by the great Irene Dunne and the cast of excellent character actors, and would look spectacular in 35mm on the big screen. As one gets older and family members have passed, the sentimental period piece movies about eras far in the rear view mirror increasingly pack an emotional wallop.

One of the key characters in I Remember Mama is named Dagmar - and now all this correspondent can think of blonde bombshell comedienne and vocalist Dagmar singing "Mama Will Bark." She hated the song. So did Sinatra. Both were terrific, even with lousy material!

Here, from the now top-notch Cabin Fever Little Rascals DVD box set, is a very funny 1-reeler directed by Gordon Douglas, the same guy who made Robin & The Seven Hoods 26 years later. Every time cranky, fussy and persnickety character actor Johnny Arthur, portraying Darla Hood's beleaguered father, calls his wife "Mama," this Our Gang aficionado is ROFL.

One of the funniest Our Gang comedies in tne entire series, Beginner's Luck, is all about stage mothers. Spanky's stage mother is the worst - but funny!

As far as Mother's Day humor goes, love this classic bit by Jerry Stiller & Anne Meara.

At Way Too Damn Lazy To Write A Blog, we regard Stiller & Meara as comedy royalty!

No Mother's Day post would be complete without this incendiary 1967 hit by Etta James, penned by Clarence Carter. The song isn't about mothers and their children, but "mama" as an all-powerful righter of wrongs.

She rocked the house with "Tell Mama" at many a concert.

Unfortunately, it looks like Etta is lip-synching "Tell Mama" in the following appearance on the TV show What's Happening '68, hosted by the pride of the Pacific Northwest, garage rockers turned popsters Paul Revere & The Raiders.

Tough to follow Etta James, but Janis Joplin's fire-breathing cover of Tell Mama from the Festival Express documentary (beginning at 2:17) does the job - and then some.

In more recent years, the mighty Tedeschi-Trucks Band has been opening and closing sets with a show-stopping cover of "Tell Mama." Love those vocal harmonies by Susan Tedeschi and Sharon Jones.

Happy Mother's Day!

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