Hot Air: Everybody’s Talkin’ At Me

The Limestone Post and its regular feature, Big Mike’s B-town, both still exist, oh yeah.

This week my profile of Adam Nahas, the big potato at Artisan Alley, ran in the online mag that covers everything vital and interesting in So. Cent. IN. Here’s the link to that story. It’s the partner piece — in spirit if not in time — of my Big Talk of May 16th featuring Nahas himself.

You may listen to the podcast either here:

… or here on the WFHB website. If you’ve got a spare few minutes, I’d recommend going to the ‘FHB site anyway because it’s chock-full of other great radio things, including countless episodes of Interchange hosted by the program’s now-emeritus host/producer, Doug Storm.

In any case, tune in to Big Talk next week for a convo w/ Dr. Rob Stone, our town’s most prominent voice calling for real, effective health care reform. Big Talk airs every Thursday at 5:30pm, immediately following the Daily Local News, on WFHB, 91.3 FM. As an added bonus, Big Talk Extra, continued conversation with the previous week’s guest airs every Monday during the Daily Local News at 5pm.

Half A Century?

Speaking of “Everybody’s Talkin’,” the Top 40 hit by Harry Nilsson was played constantly on my hometown pop stations, Chicago’s WLS and WCFL, during the fateful summer of 1969. Fifty goddamned years ago, kids! And, yeah, that was the two-word name of the ditty, even though most of us refer to the 45* by it’s memorable four-word opening line.

[ * If I need to explain what a 45 is, you prob. aren’t going to be interested in this entry at all anyway, so there. ]

Click Image To Hear The Song.

The song hit No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart that summer and later won a Grammy award. It charted on both Billboard’s Adult Contemporary and Pop Singles lists in ’69. ET also gained widespread fame as the signature tune in the movie Midnight Cowboy, the very first X-rated flick ever to win the Academy Award™ for Best Picture. The song was written by legendary folkie, Fred Neil. Midnight Cowboy director John Schlesinger tabbed Nilsson to croon a tune for his upcoming pic about a male prostitute, Joe Buck, and his pimp with a limp, Ratso Rizzo. Nilsson wanted to do a song of his own writing called, “I Guess the Lord Must Be in New York City.” Schlesinger nixed that tune and called for Nilsson to sing the Neil-penned cover instead, a wise choice. ET went on to sell more than a million records and has been described in the New York Times as “a landmark in the classic rock era.”

A little more trivia: the Mad magazine parody of Midnight Cowboy, to the best of my recollection, Senator, was entitled Midnight Wowboy and the main characters were named Joe Cluck and Ratface Ratfink. God, I loved Mad magazine. Buck and Rizzo were played in the movie, respectively, by Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman.

Times change, natch, and Midnight Cowboy would likely be aired on network television now with minimal bleeping. Back in ’69, though, its themes of male prostitution and homosexuality made half the population faint dead away. For my money, MC is one of the bleakest, most depressing movies I’ve ever seen. If the movie’s very last scene doesn’t chill your heart for days after viewing it, you’re probably dead in the soul.

Fade Out.

One thought on “Hot Air: Everybody’s Talkin’ At Me

  1. Larry Phelps says:

    My girlfriend, at the time, had just graduated from Michael Reese Hospital School of Nursing at the age of 20. We were living on North Paulina and went to see Midnight Cowboy at a theater on Irving Park. They carded her and were not going to let her in. When I explained she was an RN and had worked in the ER on the Southside and therefore probably wouldn’t be too shocked by what she might see, they let us in. LOL.

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