August 17, 2012

L.A. Music: Judy Garland, and Righting A Wrong

I've featured some older artists here in my L.A. Music series, but I've never gone so far back as this one.  And yes, I know Miss Frances Gumm was born in Minnesota, but since she landed in Hollywood and became a contract performer as a mere child, this totally counts.  Hell, Judy is one of those iconic artists who puts the H on the Hollywood sign. 

I'm featuring Judy Garland this week to honor my righting of a terrible wrong: At the ripe old ages of 10 and 7,  my children had never sat down to watch The Wizard of Oz.  {Pausing here to wait for your gasps and outraged mutterings to simmer down.}

I know.  I know!  How did things get to this point? Me! The daughter of two of the biggest old movie buffs around.  Me, who grew up watching both my parents sing and dance around the living room to MGM and Rodgers & Hammerstein musicals -- and my daddy was one fine dancer. 

Me, for whom the annual TV broadcast of The Wizard of Oz was one of the highlights of my year.   You know, back before VCRs and DVDs and Netflix and such.  (According to family lore, after my first viewing at age two, I cried at the end because I didn't want it to be over.) Me, who for too many years to count, blew out the candles on my birthday cake with the same fervent wish: that these beauties would somehow, some way become mine:
Image via
So on the last day of summer break, with the blinds shut tight against the sun and the A/C humming in the background, the kids and I sprawled out on the sectional and finally had us a viewing. Now, both kids have seen clips and snippets of the movie, but they'd never sat and watched the whole thing from beginning to end.  Is this just a dream? my analytic Tucker kept asking. Or is this really happening? Hmmmm, said I. 

My children may be of the modern age, but they watched it, and they loved it -- not enough to sob when it was over or demand to watch it again... but still.  Whew.  Major parenting tragedy averted.  And there are still so many wrongs to right, so many musicals and movies yet to watch.  (Every Christmas season I watch Meet Me in St. Louis, so at least that one's covered.) 

I'm not showcasing a song from the Wizard of Oz, because (hopefully) you know them all and they're all great. (Except for the Cowardly Lion's "King of the Forest." Hated it then, hate it now.)

Here's Judy singing "I Don't Care" from the smaller hit, In the Good Old Summertime.  I'm feeling very a bit anxious and self-conscious about meeting up with other bloggers and creative folks later tonight at the Craft Cabinet event in Long Beach.  In fact, I feel a little like this:
Image via.
"I Don't Care" is a good tonic for feeling overwhelmed and self-critical.  (Think"I Have Confidence" from Sound of Music, or "Don't Rain on My Parade" from Funny Girl.)   Judy is a little spazzy and slapstick here, but as ever, she's wonderful.
I don't care, I don't care
If people frown on me,
Perhaps it's the wrong way, 
But I go my own way
That's my philosophy!

Happy Friday! And here's to embracing your inner drama queen. 

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