No fortune in my fame: “The Nameless Murderess”

The Once (promotional image, photo credit: Renita Fillatre)

  One, two, three,    can we play the game Of the murderess    who had no name? Lucifer was waiting,    but Saint Francis came And said her name is    nowhere on your deeds So she will come to heaven    now with me.     We have a “whodunit?” of a particular stripe … → read more

On the flip side

Molly Ringwald OK, admit it.  After the last post, this is not the face you were expecting to see in our next installment.  But, if you were the Psychedelic Furs, what better song to be the B-side of “Pretty in Pink” (Spotify and YouTube), than “Mack the Knife”?  Give a listen, … → read more

Mackie, how much did you charge?

Bobby Darin I fear I’ve become a bit of a crank.  My previous post likely creates the impression that I insist that somehow all songs that involve crime or murder must be serious, and that there’s no room for a song that just inherently swings.  I actually don’t think this. … → read more

Mack the Knife

Louis Armstrong SatchmoIf there’s any one person to thank for bringing this bit of murderous, Marxist musical-theater satire to a large English-language audience, it’s none other than Louis Armstrong.  He was not the first performer of an English version of the song, but he made it swing, and he certainly … → read more

Die Moritat von Mackie Messer

Rudolf Forster in G.W. Pabst’s 1931 “Die 3-Groschen-Oper “ One challenge of exploring how music allows people to respond to murder, tragedy, and other forms of violent hardship, is that it makes one attuned to, well,  murder, tragedy, and other forms of violent hardship.  This can be a bit of a … → read more