The Wrecking Crew

I went to work and put in five hours. I went over to Safeway to buy some pineapples and berries and yogurt. I went home and listened to the Giants game on the radio. They lost their home opener, 2-0. I walked over to the library, and then to the theatre to see “The Wrecking Crew.” It wasn’t a Matt Helm movie with Dean Martin. It was about a group of musicians who weren’t well known, but played on famous records like “Good Vibrations.” Actually, there were two pretty big names in the group, Glen Campbell and Leon Russell. This movie was something along the lines of “Twenty Feet from Stardom” and “Standing in the Shadows of Motown.” It gave us an idea of what the music business was like. The Wrecking Crew played on Beach Boys albums, and The Association, and the Byrds’ “Mr. Tambourine Man.” It was not unusual for them to play on tracks, with the band members not playing at all. They were The Monkees, except for the lead vocals. Peter Tork said that he was upset at the time, and rather naïve about the way things worked. I was rather surprised that Herb Alpert used the Wrecking Crew for his big records. Cher and Jimmy Webb were two of the people who shared their memories. When Glen Campbell spoke, I wondered how long ago he was interviewed, considering his struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. I’ve always liked “Gentle on My Mind.” I was hoping for some comments about Elvis Presley. I thought the discussion of women in the music business was interesting. It seemed that the woman would quit once they got married in the old days. These people worked together and could be counted on to come in and do a good job. Sometimes this movie seems more like it’s about work in a workplace than about creativity and music. The musicians had a skill and were paid to come in and do what they could do. They said that they made a lot of money. How many people said that Brian Wilson was a genius? Everyone respected his talent. Wilson was one of the people interviewed, and he gave a lot of praise to the Wrecking Crew. They said that they put in an incredible amount of work into “Good Vibrations.” I wonder what Brian had them do for all those sessions. The movie didn’t get into the Partridge Family, because that topic had been covered with the Monkees. Micky and Peter both offered their thoughts. It seemed that the Monkees got drowned out by the young girls in the audience when they played in concert. Nancy Sinatra talked about “These Boots Are Made for Walkin’” and “Somethin’ Stupid.” The Wrecking Crew played on The Mamas and the Papas’ “California Dreamin’” and “Monday, Monday.” This period in pop music wouldn’t last forever. It seemed that the Captain and Tennille’s “Love Will Keep Us Together” was something of a last gasp. These musicians played on many, many records, going to different sessions every day. I thought the movie ran a bit long during the second hour. How many people were in the Wrecking Crew? I guess there’s no formal list of the people, but supposedly there were twenty to thirty people. It was enjoyable to hear this music and to get a bit of the story behind the recordings. I sympathized with these musicians who were working hard and not getting any recognition. I thought that within this group some were getting more recognition than others. What this movie made me think of was how Eric Clapton wasn’t credited for his work on “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” while Billy Preston was credited on “Get Back.” They pointed out how rock groups like Buffalo Springfield changed the atmosphere for studio musicians. It’s too bad that the story had a sad ending. There is a limitation to how interesting the supporting player can be. We’re more interested in the stars. I felt that the movie could have gone through another round of editing, but I was glad that I spent two hours watching it. I stuck around to the end to look at all of the music credits. The usher came in to ask us how much we liked the movie. Only five people were in the room to see it. I think I might like to see the Disney documentary about the monkeys. The Warriors game was on the radio, and I listened to a bit of it. The Warriors had a big lead. I returned home to watch the Twilight Zone episode called “A World of His Own” with Keenan Wynn. The airdate was July 1, 1960. I liked the ending with Rod Serling involved. I also liked the elephant. There is a hostility towards a certain type of woman. I can see the feminists not being too happy about this episode. Only three actors were in the cast. I liked that simplicity. I couldn’t see why the relationship between Gregory and Victoria ever started in the first place. When I saw the beginning of The Bob Newhart Show, he complained to Carol that someone broke his car antenna, but I always thought that he commuted to work using public transportation. I watched the news and wondered if it was a good idea for Hillary Clinton to take to the road to Iowa. I would be afraid to make that kind of an announcement to the public. You don’t know what kind of crazy people are out there trying to get near her. I saw Stuart Margolin in “It Takes a Thief.” I haven’t seen The Bionic Woman on any of the channels here recently. I didn’t really like The Six Million Dollar Man. One television show that I wanted to see again was “The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd.” I kept thinking about how money is going to change my life. I’m not motivated to work extra hours or seek a promotion now. With my increase in net worth, I don’t want to work myself to death. I thought that Jimmy Kimmel had a good list of guests, but I didn’t want to stay up to watch the show. Some of the people who died on April 14 include Rachel Carson (1964), Fredric March (1975), Burl Ives (1995), Ellen Corby (1999), Anthony Newley (1999), and Don Ho (2007). Today is a birthday for Brad Garrett (55), Julie Christie (74), Shani Wallis (82), and Loretta Lynn (83). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for April 14, the David Bowie song “The Laughing Gnome” was released as a single in 1967. In 1969, Barbra Streisand and Katharine Hepburn tied for the Best Actress Oscar for “Funny Girl” and “The Lion in Winter,” respectively. In 2012, Jonathan Frid, who played Barnabas Collins in “Dark Shadows,” died of pneumonia at age 87.

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