Sunday, November 30, 2008

Childhood, the 1960s

Although The Lucky Strike Papers concerns the late 1940s and early 1950s—the end of the big-band era, and the early years of television—I was born later, in 1956. In the early and mid-1960s (like so many others), I spent much time watching, listening to, the performers of the era: the Beatles, of course, as well as the Dave Clark Five, the Beach Boys, Gerry and the Pacemakers, many others.

I recently came upon a wonderful 1960s video of singer Petula Clark, whose signature song, “Downtown,” I loved, in childhood. The dancers, in the video, offer an enjoyable reminder of 1960s choreography. Clark’s physical movements are spare, understated, sexy; her easygoing vocal ad-libs, interpolations, are lovely, hip. Her singing, in the video—typical of her talent—is strong, and rich, and beautiful.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A review

A very kind review of The Lucky Strike Papers was posted November 8th on Michael Coston’s enjoyable (and cleverly-named) nostalgia-oriented blog, “Master of My Public Domain.”

The blog ( focuses on (and provides links to) “Public Domain Movies, TV Shows, and Old Time Radio shows available for free download off the Internet.”

I had sent Michael a copy of the book. Here are some of his comments:

“For anyone curious at all about the early days of live television, and the transition from radio to TV as being the dominant form of home entertainment, this book is a delight.

“Fielding guides us through the early years of TV, mostly through his Mother's career, which took her from the Kay Kyser Show, to the Freddy Martin Show, and onto Your Hit Parade

“It makes a worthy addition to anyone's library, and would make a terrific Christmas gift for anyone with a love of nostalgia..."

The full review can be read here: