Monday, August 11, 2008


August Blues

A rather depressing weekend past -- even without Russia's invasion of Georgia:

The rather spectacular Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics on Friday were immediately overshadowed by the Beijing slaying of the father-in-law of the men's volleyball team. The assailant promptly committed suicide. The action was said to be "random" by a clearly deranged individual. That may be the case. However, such an action could well have the the by product of potentially discouraging any Westerners who might consider speaking out on human rights abuses.

Then, Saturday morning brought the news of comedian/actor Bernie Mac's death at the relatively young age of 50. It was surprising only because more recent reports were that he was recovering from the pneumonia that had hospitalized him a week before.

Then, on Sunday comes word that Isaac Hayes, a true pioneer in soul, funk and disco died in his home. While a younger generation knew him as
South Park's Chef, his contribution to modern popular music is looms far higher. A songwriter, singer, actor and proto-rapper, he was something of a Renaissance man. Among other achievements, with his "Shaft" soundtrack, he became the first black musician to win an Oscar.

The following is a live recording of Hayes doing "Walk On By":

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