Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Iowa? More like YOU owe ME...

... some decent music...

In fairness to Iowa, they are not the blight on harmonious recorded sound that Alaska is, they have actually produced some musicians, and musical acts, just not ones I enjoy or listen to. I guess what I'm saying is it's not you Iowa, it's me...

I guess I owe a(n) apology...

Man, that's traction for a poorly formed pun I just made up whilst typing the state's name into the title box on blogger... I'm a regular Carrot Top.

For what it's worth, there's NOTHING 'regular' about Carrot Top. He's a scary dude and something really needs to be done about him. I suggest we all put our minds together to build the necessary technology to shoot him into space in a state of suspended animation. Perhaps he'll crash back to earth in a few thousand years and the planet's current inhabitants can put up with his crap.

No, Carrot Top is not from Iowa. He actually has nothing to do with this entry, or anything relevant to my life in any way shape or form, which leads me to wonder why I harbor such a deep seeded animosity toward him... Perhaps this is something I should discuss with a professional...

Anyhoo... Now that we've established that this entry is about Iowa, not my inexplicable fear of prop-comics, and that we've established that I'm pretty much going to mail-in the selections on this one as I don't really listen to any Iowans and have no plans to start, we might as well dig into some fascinating facts about Illinois' neighbor to the northwest:

- Iowa is the easiest state to pronounce without closing your mouth.

- Ohio is a close second.

- Iowa is known as The Hawkeye State, mostly because it's residents are known to be HUGE fans of M*A*S*H.

- Iowa is bordered on the east by the Mississippi river, separating it from Wisconsin and Illinois. It is bordered on the west by the Missouri river separating it from Nebraska and South Dakota.

- Iowa is bordered by a thick black line on the north and south, separating it from Minnesota and Missouri respectively. At least it is on MY map... I've never actually seen the thick black line...

- If Iowa were for sale, and the purchase price was determined by the number of counties located in the state, the television commercial for Iowa would say 'And ALL of this can be yours for UNDER one-hundred counties!!'

- Iowa has 99 counties.

- If you're looking for a county based pricing bargain, you're in the market for Delaware.

- Iowa has the highest average radon concentrations in the nation, making it a perfect yet untapped locale for all sorts of sci-fi/horror films.

- If you have a script for a film called 'Radonsquito' and just can't come up with a state in which to set it, than you're welcome...

- If you work for the Sci-Fi network and have been tasked with writing next month's Sci-Fi original feature, may I suggest 'Radonsquito', a re-imagining of the already infamous Mansquito in which Mansquito is subjected to high levels of radon, allowing him to... ummm... Let's say shoot lasers from his eyes that infect his victims with an insatiable need to buy all three seasons of Parker Lewis Can't Lose on DVD.

- The horror begins when the now zombie-like Parker Lewis craving Radonsquito-fodder realize that IT'S NOT YET AVAILABLE!!! MUHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

- Seriously, you can get the short-lived Weird Science TV show on DVD, but no love for television's wanna-be Ferris Bueller? That's messed up, but I don't blame Iowa...

- Iowans love to synchronize their Swatches.

- Iowa has roughly three million residents. That's roughly two and a half million more than I would have guessed.

- Iowa has an extremely small range of elevations for it's size, guaranteeing that I would get lost if I attempted to drive through it. In coastal southern California, the hills are east, the mountains are north and if you run into the ocean you're going either west or south. I don't do flat and ocean-less.

- Principal Financial was founded and is headquartered in Iowa, or as I like to call it, where my 401K went to die.

- The state motto of Iowa is 'Our liberties we prize and our rights we will maintain'.

- The on-set motto of The Price is Right is 'Our prizes we shall retain if you overbid on the Showcase Showdown.'

- Iowa, unlike Missouri, isn't a very big fan of company and would really prefer to be left alone.

OK, on to the selections:

Solo Artist: Glenn Miller
OHHHHH YEAHHHHH!!! Let the rockin' madness begin!!!

Glenn Miller was born in Iowa, went to grade school in Nebraska, his family moved to Missouri when he was eleven, and finally, he ended up in Colorado where he went to high school and college, and was discovered.

My enjoyment of big-band standards is passing at best, so I'm not going to try and pretend that Glenn Miller has played a pivotal role in my life, but I've heard of him, I own a copy of In The Digital Mood, and have even listened to it once or twice. That's about it. That's my glowing endorsement...

Perhaps more interesting than Miller's musical career is his military service, and his subsequent disappearance over the English Channel.

At thirty eight years old, Miller decided to join the war effort. The nation had just entered into WWII months before, and Miller felt his services could be utilized by heading up a modernized army band. Miller was too old to be drafted into combat services, but was eventually picked up none the less as a Captain. While in the army, Miller did form a new and modernized band that would play in recreation clubs around his training base in Maxwell Alabama, and in near by Montgomery.

In December of 1944, Miller, now a Major, was to fly from an air base in England across the English Channel to France. He got off the ground safely in England, but never landed on the other side of the channel, disappearing for what has now been more than sixty years.

Band: Slipknot

So, I read the article about them, and I looked through their discography, and I even listened to some samples on youtube, but I've just got to say that even though I tend to be pretty 'up on things' when it comes to rock-based music, my only real knowledge of Slipknot what that their images are screened onto a plethora of t-shirts at Hot Topic.

Regardless, they were formed in Des Moines, and no other band that even gets marketed via graphic tees has come from Iowa, so Slipknot is the winner.

Yay?

Here's some of their stuff, maybe you've actually heard this before...

Honorable Mention: Meredith Wilson

OK, so Glenn Miller, and the Meredith 'composer of 'The Music Man'' Wilson is pretty much what I'd expect from Iowa's music history, so where the hell did those psychopathic carnival freaks above come from? Must be the radon...

Robert Meredith Wilson was born Robert Meredith Reiniger in Mason City, Iowa right about the turn of the century, putting him in the same generation as Glenn Miller. Early in life, Wilson played with John Phillip Souza's band and the New York Philharmonic before making his way to Hollywood to write music for motion pictures.

Wilson scored films for Charlie Chaplin and William Wyler before penning his most notable achievement, the script and music for the hit Broadway, and eventually Hollywood, musical, 'The Music Man'.

He makes the list for Iowa because he's from Iowa, and The Music Man is a not-entirely-horrible musical that I have seen. I know, my standards are pretty high...

Here is a scene from The Music Man, the only musical featuring the song Shipoopi.

And since I dissed Glenn Miller by including no clips, here's the intro for Parker Lewis Can't Lose.

Next time, we've finally schucked the 'I's and will move on to Kansas. Watch out for twisters, and your little dog too...

4 comments:

Michael Doss said...

Am I the worst Pop Culture student in the world for never hearing that Glenn Miller went missing in a never-found airplane crash? Where the hell have I been?

For more fun, check out Corin Nemec's imdb page - that guy only stars in awesomely-named movies.

OCKerouac said...

Corin apparently has that 'looks like he could kill a house full of women' face.

Dude's played Ted Bundy AND Richard Speck... Somehow he missed out on playing Albert DeSalvo in his Boston Strangler flick, losing out to David 'Bud Bundy' Faustino.

Moral of the story? Spend your teen years on Fox, end up playing a serial killer...

CSD Julie said...

I see your Parker Lewis and raise you Eerie Indiana: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eU-DAWveB_g

There doesn't appear to be any serial killers in the bunch...

OCKerouac said...

You are correct dear, there is a derth of serial killer portrayers who were also in Eerie, Indiana, but Mary-Margret Humes who played Marilynn Teller WAS on an episode of Manimal...

By the conversion/backward principle, I think I've just proven that Simon MacCorkindale is a serial killer...