Sunday, March 29, 2015

Happy Birthday to Rooftop Reviews!

It was on this date in 2009 that I posted my first blog. I celebrate it each year by either skipping a post that day or re-posting an old post; sometimes the first one; which is what I did last year. Sometimes I tell the story about how I started this thing to begin with. And each year it gets harder to think of something special to mark the occasion.

So, this year I decided on fireworks and a big festival. It was great. Wish you could have been there. The food was delicious, too! Seriously though; and I hate to be like that; what I have actually decided to do is to do nothing. It’s just another day.

Here is a clip of two of my favorite performers; Billie Holiday and Louis Armstrong. Did I ever tell you how Louis Armstrong got me involved in coin collecting? I was about 9 years old at the time. I had read that Louis Armstrong was born in New Orleans on July 4, 1900. That set my imagination on fire! July 4th was the birthday of our nation and 1900 was a new century.

Man, I wanted a piece of that for myself! Something tangible to hold in my hand that would make me feel as if I were holding a part of history itself; something which had actually been there at the time; a penny.

So, I went to the Hobby Shop on Coney Island Avenue and bought a 1900 Indian Head penny for about 50 cents. I was hooked. I wore that penny out; turning it over and over in my hands; even sleeping with it. The book I’d read said that Armstrong played for pennies in New Orleans as a kid. I couldn’t help but feel; make that know; that this was one of those pennies.

Anyway, this is what I do here. I tell stories to myself in the hope that someday my grandkids; and even great grandkids; will sort through all of the flotsam and jetsam of these posts, and obtain a better picture of the “old man” as a result.

Meantime, enjoy the video. It’s from the 1947 film “New Orleans” and serves as the title song, performed here by Billie Holiday on vocals and Louis on vocals and coronet. The song appears in the film several times as background music, and also by Armstrong and Holiday in a big band setting; but this is what I call the “performance” version. It’s also my favorite one.

And, if you really would like to see the first post of Rooftop Reviews from March 29, 2009 (which was also a Sunday) just hit this link;

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