Going through Youtube I just found out today that Vesta Williams died last year, apparently in a hotel room from a prescription drug/alcohol overdose, at the age of 53. Perhaps because it happened so close to Teena Marie’s death and in light of Whitney Houston’s death by similar circumstances, not to mention Michael Jackson. She was one of my favorite singers and should have been a far more popular singer because she had an amazing, innate talent.
Thanks for coming out of the closet on my birthday, Anderson. Now it’s less of a big deal that I saw you and your boyfriend at Chat & Chew in Greenwich Village a few years ago when I was visiting my adoptive second home NYC (where, of course I lived during my 20′s and 30′s).
I was really impressed, especially with her emotion. The writing wasn’t always spot on, but it was a good watch and had some unpredictable surprises. The most poignant moment for me was the way they weaved the Dolly Parton song in as a country song first. Having it reworked the way it was to express something so different in such a different genre shows the universality of good music. I’ve always loved Dolly’s writing and I still think she’s underrated for the genius she is.
I really enjoyed the colorblind casting as well. This was the first big hit of a movie I believe to do that, but it was in Whitney’s other favorite movie of mine (made for TV) which contained nothing but Rogers & Hammerstein songs that was truly colorblind. In Cinderella with Brandy as the princess (casting suggested by Whitney herself when she had decided she was too old to play the role herself and instead played a young fairy godmother), Whoopi Goldberg and a white man had an Asian son, for example. The entire medieval town had people of all shades, especially within families.
I hope people enjoy this picture I include of Whitney which I had never seen until after she died and I found it from what I believe was a European magazine spread.
I cried when she died because like Michael Jackson, she was definitely part of my life’s soundtrack.
Let me tell you that while the poignant story of her discovery was amazing, the woman is a POWERHOUSE. Don’t be fooled for a moment that she is not a talent to be reckoned with as she approaches fifty and was only discovered within the last few years. Her voice is unstoppable and there is absolutely nothing that could be done in a studio that could make her voice do the things that they do on her latest album. Take a careful listen to “Return” on her latest album called “Someone to Watch Over Me”. I also find that the song choice in this third full album of hers is quite deliberate and appropriate. She continues to move people, and I think that’s what makes the difference between her and the fly-by-night dance troop that actually won the reality TV show she first appeared on.
My mother and I have a good memory of her speaking at my college graduation on Staten Island, New York in 1993.
She was an interesting character with lots of inspirational words for the large graduating class. Her choice for the commencement speaker was a surprise to me since Staten Island is pretty conservative for being inside of New York City.
I don’t understand the details of the controversies over Palin and Obama with her, I’ll let her rest in peace and keep the fond memories I had of her.
I think it made an unintentionally strong impression on my daughter when she was a little girl when I had long-argued with other people that Barbra Streisand was the most talented woman in the world, and Elizabeth Taylor was the most beautiful. Of course it was not intended to take away from my obvious bias that my daughter is the most beautiful creature on the planet, but it probably hurt her feelings. I found out through the grapevine that my daughter hated Liz for what I said, which reminded me of a scene between the father and daughter from What Dreams May Come.
My admiration for these two women for various reasons made the reposting of this article at this sad time apropos:
Streisand Remembers Her Friend Taylor
By Advocate.com Editors, Posted on Advocate.com March 23, 2011
The two celebrated entertainers and outspoken activists were close friends for several decades and nearly costarred on Streisand’s 1996 film The Mirror Has Two Faces.
Streisand’s full statement: “It’s the end of an era. It wasn’t just her beauty or her stardom. It was her humanitarianism. She put a face on HIV/AIDS. She was funny. She was generous. She made her life count.”
My Yorkie Monte got a stimulating two mile round trip walk to BART station this morning, that lucky dog. Bobby joined me and made the walk much more interesting. We’re thinking about dressing the dog up as an ewok for a dog costume contest in Alameda if not too rainy on Halloween.
I wish I was with my friend Rick at Sanity rally in DC; I had my moment on Colbert once, though. See the link on the contents here.
I’m excited about the permaculture yield from backyard that Bobby already orchestrated. We worked pretty hard on it (more him than me).
I gave mom a lesson in the content management system called WordPress, and she seems to have it down. She is going to help me with the Trupa.com genealogy site.
Spoke t my old high school friend Jan today. She married my other high school friend Mike and they live in Colorado. Bobby and I are going to visit there for the holidays, so I will see them in Fort Collins, north of Denver. She told me to be prepared for some really cold weather, but probably not as cold as New York.
I’m very surprised Christina Aguilera is already divorcing, and more surprised that I care. Love her pipes. Supposedly she was going out with the lesbian DJ that Lindsay Lohan was seeing before rehab (again).
Auguri to Celine Dion on her twin boys. My favorites divas never have girls! Very cool gesture that Celine named one of her sons after Nelson Mandela, who she met.
Had a great polyglot dinner and art discussion at Tropisueno with friends on Yerba Buena Lane last night before we went to the Badass Bear-aoke at Deco Lounge.
Oprah touring Yosemite is inspiring me to make concrete plans. We’re seeing Grand Canyon in 7 days!
Most of what I watch is Hulu, CNN Video, NYTimes video, ComedyCentral.com, LogoOnline and MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show. So, inspired by a friend who has Netflix (like I used to ) and Hulu “premium” (I only use Hulu for many fewer dollars per month than what Comcast and other cable companies charge for television, I discontinued my cable tv service and I’m saving $100/month. I literally watch all of my shows on one pc or another (usually a laptop I bring around the house with me, even when I’m cooking and doing other chores). I watch everything online anyway and now I have a spare monitor my daughter can use on her laptop to use as an extra television, although she’s a little upset that we no longer have television in the living room. I’ve found playing dvd’s on laptops is far more reliable than the cheap dvd players I’ve bought in stores anyway, so there was no point in letting my flat screen TV languish. Therefore, it is main PC monitor now! As per this picture, it dominates my desk. I don’t have it all worked out yet, as I still need to fix the resolution with drivers. However, the manufacture web site “Element Electronics” doesn’t seem to have Windows 7 drivers for their television, probably because they didn’t expect a geek like me to use it as a main monitor on a daily basis.