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Dude-a-palooza

25 Aug
Maude Lebowski bowls

“Your roll, New York,” says Lebowski Fest. Maude Lebowski (Julianne Moore), daughter of the Big Lebowski, not the Dude Lebowski.

This weekend Lebowski Fest was scheduled to bring fans of the Dude (Jeff Bridges in the The Big Lebowski [1998]) to Lucky Strike Lanes on far-west 42nd Street and Gramercy Theater on East 23rd Street. Although I have no reason to think the festival didn’t take place, I can’t say with certainty that it did, because I’m not a big enough Lebowski fan to have taken part. My lack of fandom for what’s been called a stoner masterpiece is of no consequence; easily enough without it, “The Dude abides.”

I had to do a Google search to be reminded whether there were any dream scenes. I have a poor enough memory for plot details, and this is a Coen Brothers movie about which, according to Wikipedia quoting an Indie Wire article, “Joel Coen stated: ‘We wanted to do a [Raymond] Chandler kind of story – how it moves episodically, and deals with the characters trying to unravel a mystery, as well as having a hopelessly complex plot that’s ultimately unimportant.'” As Roger Ebert described it, “‘The Big Lebowski’ is about an attitude, not a story….Only a steady hand in the midst of madness allows them [the Coen Brothers] to hold it all together–that, and the delirious richness of their visual approach.” All of which explains this film’s cult-fest worthiness. (Ebert’s review provides interesting backstory about the Coens’ inspiration for the main character.)

It turns out there are at least two major dream scenes, beloved of fans. One is a flying dream. The other is a Busby Berkeley* type of dance number to  Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In) by Kenny Rogers & the First Edition (1968). Continue reading

Joe Bonamassa dreams

2 May

Meaning: both blues guitarist Joe Bonamassa’s dreams (at least he’s written songs saying so) and dreams of Joe Bonamassa (not mine; I didn’t know his name or his music until today).

I get to write about this here because today Amazon pointed me to one of his albums (still not sure why, or what the connection was) when I looked up a book mentioned in some work for a client in New York City. (Bonamassa is also from New York, but way upstate: New Hartford, near Utica.)

“Woke Up Dreaming” is a track on Blues Deluxe. This live version, recorded at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts in Green Bay, Wisconsin, on March 11, 2011, is more fabulous guitar work than vocals—and that’s just fine:

“Woke Up Dreaming,” Joe Bonamassa in Green Bay

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