Saturday, September 29, 2007

Happy Anniversary to Me!

The actual official first anniversary of this Blog was back in August, but I thought I'd take a moment now to celebrate, what with the lack of recent posts.

I started this Blog as a way to communicate with my students about classes, movies, music and other things that interest me. Looking at the "Labels" I use to categorize each post, you'll see over 130 posts about movies, most of them reviews of films I have seen. I see about 60 movies a year in the theater, but I see the vast majority of them during "Awards Season," which starts around November and ends with the Oscars. So this time of year is very slow for movie posts.

The next-highest number of posts is for baseball. Last year I wrote so much about baseball that students stopped coming to the Blog, so this year I promised I would only write about events I had personally attended. This year I saw 40 baseball games in person. With post-season coming up and the Dodgers out of it, I'll probably write a little about some of the other teams I follow (the Angels and the Red Sox in particular) even if I don't make it to any more games in person (although I certainly hope to!).

I've been to 2 USC football games so far this year. With baseball dwindling, I'll probably start posting more about football. I've been a Patriots fan my whole life, and even with the cheating incident, I'll probably continue to follow them. I also follow the Bills because the head coach is a friend of my family, but they are off to a weak start, are decimated by injuries, and are in the toughest division.

So don't stop reading just because it's been slow lately, it will definitely pick up as we get later in the year.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


USC looked absolutely fantastic tonight against WSU, winning 47-14. If there was any doubt about Booty's passing game, it was erased with his performance tonight. He completed 28 of 35 for 279 yards and 4 touchdowns. The team also rushed for 207 yards, showing a good balance for the first time this season.

It rained lightly in the 1st quarter, leaving the ball and field wet for a while, but it did not seem to effect the Trojans. Considering the gloomy weather early in the day, the attendance of over 86,000 was quite strong.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Vote B!

Then this travesty will be remembered forever!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Dodgers Beat D'backs

It didn't look good in the first few innings. Penny looked terrible. It took him 103 pitches to get through 5 innings, giving up 6 hits and 3 walks, and many full counts. Hendrickson, Saenez, Beimel, and Saito combined for the remaining 4 shutout innings. Saito actually got the last 5 outs, the first two with 1 pitch.

Nomar got 3 hits, including a homer, and Loney, Kemp and Ethier each got 2 hits. Alas, San Diego and Philadelphia won, so the Dodgers are still 1.5 games behind the Padres and tied with the Phillies.

Friday, September 14, 2007

RIP Zawinul

I met Joe Zawinul when Herb Pomeroy retired from teaching at Berklee. Joe had moved to the US is the late 50s to study and perform here. He studied with Herb when he first started teaching (they were the same age) and Zawinul (in later years he went by his last name) returned to the US to perform at Herb's retirement party in 1990. It's a bizarre coincidence that they died within weeks of each other.

Zawinul was a brilliant musician and composer. He wrote "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" when he was with Cannonball Adderly, and later wrote "Birdland" when he was with Weather Report, which was probably the only band to come from the Jazz-Rock fusion era that had an real, lasting and substantial impact on jazz as an art. He was one of the first jazz musicians to make extensive use of electronics.

Like Herb, he will be missed by many.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Dodgers Beat Padres, Again!

Who would have thought that Greg Maddux would have his worst outing of the year against the Dodgers and David Wells? Maddux gave up 10 hits and 6 runs in only 3.1 innings of work.

Wells on the other hand did extremely well until the 6th, when 2 homers cost him 3 runs. Perhaps the highlight of the evening was Wells 300-pound frame chugging into a stand-up double off of Maddux. (He got thrown out at third after a Furcal grounder.) 44-year old Wells had his first multi-hit game of his career.

Proctor and Broxton pitched well and got holds, and Saito got his 38th save of the season, striking out 2 and getting the third batter to ground out on 1 pitch. The final three pitchers faced the minimum number of pitchers.

James Loney had 3 hits and 4 RBI.

The game was surprisingly poorly attended, especially considering that two living legends were pitching, with both teams vying for the wild card. The Dodgers are now only 1.5 games behind the Padres for the WC spot. They face #1 Arizona over the weekend.

Dodgers Beat Padres

Including pitcher Chad Billingsley, the Dodgers started 6 rookies tonight. Throw in Broxton's scoreless inning of relief, and the 7 rookies made outstanding contributions to a 6-1 win over the Padres, pushing the Dodgers into a 3-way tie for 2nd place on the Wild Card list.

James Loney was the star of the game. He got 3 hits, including a home run. Billingsley pitched 6 innings and gave up only 1 run. This after Lowe was scratched when he injured his pitching hand yesterday "playing catch" with hard-throwing Broxton. Hopefully he'll be ready to return this weekend against#1 Arizona.

It's been one day shy of a month since the last Dodger game I attended. I have to admit that a big part of the off time was my disgust with the team's play and Little's inept management of the team. I think playing the rookies is a very good idea against the Padres and I hope they do it tomorrow night was well, even though it's geriatric pitcher night. 44 year-old David Wells will be pitching against 42 year-old Greg Maddux, two amazing career pitchers. It should be a night to remember.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Korngold Event/Concert

There will be a reception at 5:30 tonight at Doheny, followed by a 7:30 concert featuring the music of film composer Erich Wolgang Korngold at the Newman Recital Hall.

If you are on campus, this should be a treat.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

499 Assignment 1

499 Students:
Assignment 1

All students should have received an e-mail from me.
If you have not, please contact me .

Please post a proposal for your final project here NO LATER THAN 8PM WEDNESDAY NIGHT, including a brief description of your proposed sound design.

Remember that the scene should be 3-4 minutes long and include DIA, MX, FX, BG, and Foley. If you choose an already existing scene, you should not attempt to reproduce the sound design of the scene exactly as in the film. The point of the assignment is to be creative and create an entirely new sound design. Consider it a blank slate.

If you are in doubt about your choice, you should list more than one possibility and I will try to guide you towards a good choice. If you choose something obscure or if you choose one of your own films, you must bring in a copy of the scene to the next class so that I can look at it before I approve it.

Click on “Post a Comment” immediately below to post your assignment. If you do not see it, try clicking here.

Monday, September 03, 2007

End of Summer

The official, astronomical end of summer is still a few weeks off at the autumnal equinox, but this week brings fall upon us in a number of ways. Classes started at USC last week, Labor day is today, USC football started Saturday, and most of all to us, we went to our last Hollywood Bowl concert tonight.

It was a fantastic end to the season. David Newman conducted an evening of film music from Paramount. Leonard Nimoy hosted the evening. There were many highlights, almost too many to mention, including hearing a live orchestra accompanying the climax to the 1928 best picture winner, WINGS. Jerry Goldsmith was represented with both STAR TREK and, one of the best scores ever written, CHINATOWN. One of my favorite composers, Franz Waxman, was represented with his beautiful theme from A PLACE IN THE SUN and the twisted SUNSET BOULEVARD.

Bernstein's TRUE GRIT and Mancini's BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S and Nino Rota's THE GODFATHER were also great. Hearing a live orchestra play the opening of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK was worth the price of admission alone.

The evening ended with a sing-along tribute to the hot weather with my favorite Jewish Christmas carol, WHITE CHRISTMAS.

It's a bittersweet ending, as I'll miss the summer. I look forward to the fall classes, the football season, and the cooler weather, but I'll miss the concerts.

This year I also worked on a summer series for Lifetime television, STATE OF MIND. The show mixes their final episode of the season this week, and it airs next Sunday. The show was a complete pleasure to work on. It was well-written, very intelligent, and everyone involved was great to work with. I'll miss that too.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Trojans Win

It's no surprise that USC won their opening game with a lopsided score, the #1 team up against the #113 team, but it was still somewhat of a letdown. USC was expected to win by 45 points, and only won 38-10. Neither the offense nor the defense sparked the way they were supposed to. Booty played well, but his passing game was not as strong as his predecessor, Matt Leinart. Even worse, the defense against Idaho's passing game was very weak. They were held to ten points, but it really should have been a much bigger blowout.

USC's first real challenge will be in two weeks against Nebraska.