News and events within. If you recall our recent dissertation on context, that concept is on display.
Despite the world's pledges of "Never Again!" the same kind of torture and murder on massive scales has in fact repeated, in Rwanda, Cambodia, the former Yugoslavia, the Horn of Africa, and the deserts of the Middle East.
It seems incredible that today's world holds a Holocaust denial movement. Even after Gen. Dwight Eisenhower, Supreme Commander of Allied Forces on the Western Front, ordered that every possible member of the Allied military, down to the rank of private, be routed through the liberated death camps "so that the world can never doubt or deny that this really happened."
Incredibly, extreme right-wing political movements are on the rise, worldwide. Some are cloaked in nationalism. Some are cloaked in the fear of "others" who are "different." Many proclaim religious or other purity as justification for intolerance and atrocity. All advocate some kind of strong authoritarian "leadership" with power to override bothersome minorities, or obstruct their access to voting, or to intimidate or dismissively brush others aside.
Knowing history is not a satisfying intellectual luxury. It is an absolute necessity in a complex, contentious world where wealth seeks power for its own greedy, manipulating, ultimately controlling, purposes.
Even Israel, the nation born from the ashes of the Holocaust, born for Europe's dispossessed Jews, has emerged in our time as an intolerant nation that disenfranchises and dispossesses its own non-Jewish Palestinian citizens.
At the risk of inciting the wrath of those whose blinders allow only a focus on their agendas, still more begs to be said. We would do well to consider the accelerated pace of another and ongoing Holocaust -- of the Earth's necessarily diverse plant and animal species. Our planet is now experiencing an actual great extinction through the apocalypse of climate change and the cycles of widespread drought and wildfires it brings, along with insect infestations that resultingly weakened plants cannot endure; and polluted water due to extraction of resources for the economic gain of the few; and poisoning of soil and crops by toxic pesticides and herbicides; and poisoning of livestock by growth hormones and megadoses of antibiotics; and ultimately genetic damage and induced susceptibility to neurological and other disorders, in our own human species, as a direct result. And yes, it is absolutely relevant because once again, we are allowing insidious self-serving interests to control life and death. And thus, perhaps for what will unavoidably become the final time, we are all too tragically doing it to ourselves.
THOUGHT FOR TODAY from one born on this date...
"Find what you really care about and live a life that shows it."
"Love is born in fire, is planted like a seed. Love cannot give you everything, but it gives you what you need."
-- Kate Wolf (b. 1942, d. 1986), American singer-songwriter and guitarist for whom the annual "Kate Wolf Music Festival" in Northern California is named.
Ironies abound, always. Inherent in them is the challenge for life to go on.
Happy birthday today to these music artists...
⊙ Tracy Lawrence, American country singer.
⊙ Pat Wictor, American blues and folk musician, slide guitarist, singer-songwriter recording artist.
⊙ Mikhail Baryshnikov, Russian-American dancer, choreographer, and actor.
⊙ Nedra Talley, American singer.
⊙ Mike Patton, American singer, composer, and voice artist.
⊙ Ashley Grace, American singer-songwriter.
⊙ Katy Rose, American singer-songwriter and producer.
⊙ Tamlyn Tomita, Japanese-American actress and singer.
⊙ Seth Justman, American keyboard player and songwriter.
⊙ G. E. Smith, American guitarist and songwriter.
⊙ Bibi Gaytán, Mexican singer and actress.
⊙ Michael Kulas, Canadian singer-songwriter and producer.
⊙ Margo Timmins, Canadian singer-songwriter.
⊙ Jean-Philippe Collard, French pianist.
⊙ Nick Mason, English drummer, songwriter, and producer.
⊙ Janick Gers, English guitarist and songwriter.
⊙ Roberto Paci Dalò, Italian director and composer.
⊙ Patrick van Deurzen, Dutch composer and academic.
In Memorium to these departed musicians and other notables...
● Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (b. 1756, d. 1791), Austrian pianist and composer, and one of the greatest musical prodigies and geniuses who ever lived.
● Lewis Carroll (b. 1832, d. 1898), English novelist, poet, and mathematician, best remembered for "Alice in Wonderland."
◇ Edward Smith (b. 1850, d. 1912), English captain with the White Star Line, his final assignment before retiring was intended as a reward for his service: he captained RMS Titanic on her first and only voyage, and was among those who died in the icy North Atlantic when his ship sank after hitting an iceberg.
● Jerome Kern (b. 1885, d. 1945), American composer and songwriter.
◇ William Randolph Hearst Jr. (b. 1908, d. 1993), American journalist and publisher, son of both the builder of Hearst Castle and founder of a newspaper empire that was a prototype of today's mega-media conglomerates that manufacture public opinion by presenting a single point of view.
◇ Elmore James (b. 1918, d. 1963), American singer-songwriter and guitarist.
● Skitch Henderson (b. 1918, d. 2005), American pianist, composer, and conductor.
● Ross Bagdasarian Sr. (b. 1919, d. 1972), American singer-songwriter, pianist, producer, and actor, created Alvin and the Chipmunks who won the first "Comedy Song GRAMMY" in 1959.
● Helmut Zacharias (b. 1920, d. 2002), German violinist and composer.
● Fritz Spiegl (b. 1926, d. 2003), Austrian flute player and journalist.
● Bobby "Blue" Bland (b. 1930, d. 2013), American blues singer-songwriter.
● Fred Åkerström (b. 1937, d. 1985), Swedish singer-songwriter and guitarist.
● Kate Wolf (b. 1942, d. 1986), American singer-songwriter and guitarist for whom the annual "Kate Wolf Music Festival" in Northern California is named.
● Maki Asakawa (b. 1942, d. 2010), Japanese singer-songwriter and producer.
● Björn Afzelius (b. 1947, d. 1999), Swedish singer-songwriter and guitarist.
◇ Keith Olbermann, American journalist and author.
◇ Ed Schultz (b. 1954, d. 2018), American radio and TV talk show host, sportscaster, journalist, news anchor, he left corporate cable tv news (MSNBC) so he could research and report on corporate abuses, anchoring RT America's evening news until his sudden death. He is greatly missed in an industry with little tolerance for the work he did.
|Juliana Hatfield (photo, rollingstone.com)|
|Eric Andersen (image, baursmagic.com)|
OF COURSE, the rest of January is still there for you. Click the link for our Jan 21 edition and spin your scroller like a slot machine to find the dates of interest. It's right here: January won't end when the calendar page turns.
☆ Jan 21: January won't end when the calendar page turns.
THE ABOVE LINK IS THE ONE FOR THE REMAINING DAYS OF JANUARY.
☆ Jan 19: "Top honor for Joni Mitchell amidst 35th annual NAMM Tech Awards' comprehensive recognitions"
☆ Jan 17: "News from NAMM, day one"
☆ Jan 12: "A week of concerts and events, before the news from NAMM" (A very photo-heavy edition)
☆ Jan 8: "Special edition: We're Already Against the Next War."
☆ Jan 8: "2020: Ch-ch-ch-changes, and what's happening out there in the land of Musica Acoustica"
...a here are a few from our fully-archived December editions...
☆ Dec 25: "Merry Christmas. A few words. A few pictures."
☆ Dec 11: "Greta Thunberg named 'Person of the Year.' Special edition"
☆ " Impeachment: What it is, what it means, where we go from here. Dec 10 2019 special edition"
☆ THE ENTIRE CATALOGUE of all past editions of The Guide is available (and searchable!) FREE, in our archive. If you don't see the navigation pane on the left side of your screen, just click "view web version" and it'll magically appear (along with the correct photo, art, and page formats that you've been missing if you don't see that left-sidebar.)
features in the works, and they'll
be along as we get them dressed,
shoes tied, cowlicks combed down,
bowties cranked straight,
and strings tuned.
Find a comfortable spot by the
wood stove, play a round or two
of checkers, and we'll be along...
in this new decade...
"Hee Haw" voice: "THAT's all!"