the beatles

Charles Manson's Hollywood Part 4: Spahn Ranch and The Beatles' The White Album by Karina Longworth

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Find the episode on iTunes.

After wearing out his welcome at Dennis Wilson’s house, Manson moves his family to Spahn Ranch, a dilapidated Western movie set where the cult starts preparing for Helter Skelter, Manson's made-up apocalypse inspired by The Beatles. There, Manson becomes aligned with the Straight Satans motorcycle gang, and finds a new antagonist in ranch hand-turned-stuntman Shorty Shea.

Show Notes:

The base list of sources for this series can be found here

Gary Kent's stories about Spahn Ranch come from his memoir Shadows and Light: Journeys with Outlaws in Revolutionary Hollywood. This is a book that I only became aware of when researching this series, and I'd recommend it to anyone interested in the genre films of the 60s. 

Catherine Share's stories of her life as Manson family member "Gypsy" come from aLos Angeles Magazine "oral history" of the Manson murders, published in 2009. 

Gay Talese wrote a typically excellent story about George Spahn and his ranch for Esquire in 1970. Curbed published an also very good longform piece about the history of the ranch last year.

And, the story of Windy Bucklee comes from an interview conducted with her published in 2013 on The Manson Family blog in two parts.

I've been getting a lot of emails about music in the episodes (ie: which song is playing at which specific point in a given episode), so I'm going to try something new with the discography (see below). If you totally hate it, let me know, but if I can manage to do the extra work every week I think it will be useful. 

While I'm on the subject, a note on email: I read everything I get, and try to respond to anything that has an active question in it, as long as the question isn't hostile or insulting. Sometimes it takes me awhile. I'm trying to get better. But, you will probably receive a faster (albeit briefer) answer if you contact me on Twitter @RememberThisPod -- and this would be an especially good way to get in touch if you have a question that other people might want to know the answer to. 

Episode breakdown:

Intro: "Album Tag Song" by Dennis Wilson, Royalty free "Modern Rock Heavy" guitar riff

Gary Kent's story about meeting Tex Watson and Patricia Krenwinkle on Spahn Ranch:  "Blues Guitar Jam" royalty free loop

Spahn Ranch's silent film origins: "Piano Sonata in C minor" (royalty free)

Manson Family moving onto Spahn Ranch: royalty free "clean strumming guitar" loop

Manson Family rituals on Spahn Ranch: "Roads that burned our boots" by Jahzzar

Catherine Share's first night at Spahn Ranch: "Psychedelic Guitars Movie Soundscape" royalty free loop

Spahn Ranch ranch hands Juan Flynn, Shorty Shea and Steve Grogan: "Last Dance" by Jahzzar

Juan Flynn's confrontation with Charlie: "Atmosphere Movie Guitar Transition" royalty free loop

Shorty Shea's campaign against Manson, the family's nomadic life, The Yellow Submarine house and Manson's beating of Windy Bucklee: "I'm Not Dreaming (Instrumental version)" by Josh Woodward

Manson goes all in on Spahn Ranch as base for Helter Skelter: "Dramatic Metal Guitar" royalty free loop

The White Album writing process: "Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da" by The Beatles

Manson's nutty, narcissistic, racist interpretation of The White Album: "Meditation, Re-energize, Beatles vibe" royalty free track (Yes, this is its actual title.); "Sexy Sadie"; "Piggies"; "Rocky Raccoon"; "Happiness is a Warm Gun"; "Revolution 1"; "Honey Pie"; "Helter Skelter"; all by The Beatles.

Manson's attempts to contact The Beatles: "Deep End Echo Piano" GarageBand loop

Manson's racist interpretation of "Helter Skelter": "Dark Melodic Metal Guitar" royalty free loop

Why the Family believed Charlie's Helter Skelter theories: "Magical Space Sound Effects" royalty free loop

Preparing for Helter Skelter: "Horror Sfx Falling Down Down Down" royalty free loop

Charlie tries to pimp out the girls: "Au coin de la rue" by Marco Raaphorst

The Straight Satans and drug deals: "Key of A (Slow Heavy Metal)" royalty free loop

Signs Charlie was becoming a bad guy, Tex Watson's defection and Paul Watkins choking: "I Need to Start Writing Things Down" by Chris Zabriskie

"Death is Charlie's trip" and Charlie pulls a gun on Gregg Jakobson: "The Sun Highlights the Lack in Each" by Palace (Will Oldham)

End credits: "Pop Rock Guitar Rhythm Loop 3" royalty free loop

Outro: "The Sun Highlights the Lack in Each"

YMRT #24: Mia Farrow in the 1960s, Part Two: Mia and Dory by Karina Longworth

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In our last episode. we learned about Mia Farrow’s transition from Catholic school girl to wife of Frank Sinatra, and her breakout role in Rosemary’s Baby, which cost her her first marriage. This episode, while continuing the story of Mia Farrow’s life and career in the 1960s, is a little different. We’ll trace Mia’s flight to India, her time studying transcendental meditation with the Beatles, and the production of two of her most interesting movies, Secret Ceremony and John and Mary. It was whilst shooting the latter film that Mia fell in love with Andre Previn, who was married at the time to lyricist DoryPrevin — whose story will guide the second half of this episode. A schizophrenic pill addict who was afraid to fly, DoryPrevin tried, and failed, to fly to London to stop her husband from leaving her for Mia. Instead, Dory wrote a song about it — and touched off a new career as a groundbreaking autobiographical singer-songwriter.

Show notes!

Once again, special thanks are owed to Amy Nicholson of the LA Weekly and The Canon podcast, who played Mia Farrow. 

If you haven’t listened to part one of this episode, please do! All of the sources used last time were relevant this time, but this episode is heavily indebted to DoryPrevin’s two autobiographies, Midnight Baby (the super crazy, jazz poetry version of her bad childhood), and Bog-trotter (the much more lucid account of her adult life, with lyrics). Both are out of print, but if you can find them used, they’re great, particularly Bog-trotter. Also, any of Dory’s music that you can get your hands on is incredibly worthy. In addition, this episode references the following articles: 

“I’m Insane,” says DoryPrevin PEOPLE, January 17, 1977

“An interview with DoryPrevin” Croydon Municipal

“DoryPrevin, Songwriter, Is Dead at 86” New York Times, February 14, 2012

See also these two radio interviews (the BBC clip is excerpted in the episode):

Bernadette Cahill interview, 2005

DoryPrevin BBC interview

Discography:

Sun King by The Beatles

This Protector by The White Stripes

Blue Jay Way by The Beatles

Goodbye Charlie by Dory and Andre Previn, performed by Bobby Darin

Dear Prudence by The Beatles

Calabash by Co.fee

Quasi Motion by Kevin MacLeod

Back in the USSR by TheBeatles

Lady Jane by The Rolling Stones

Holy Thursday by David Axelrod

Cylinder One by Chris Zabriskie

Whole Lotta Love performed by Ike and Tina Turner

In Pompei by Joan of Arc

Bobby’s Dream by Ralph Burns

Theme From Valley of the Dolls by Dory and Andre Previn, performed by Dionne Warwick

For Better or Worse by Kai Engel

Benbient by Canton

Once Tomorrow (instrumental version) by Josh Woodward

Undercover Vampire Policeman by Chris Zabriskie

I am a Man Who Will Fight For Your Honor by Chris Zabriskie

Mary C Brown and the Hollywood Sign by DoryPrevin, performed by Kate Dimbleby and Naadia Sheriff

Exlibris by Kosta T

How’m I Gonna Get Myself Together by DoryPrevin

live recording of Mary C, Brown and the Hollywood Sign, performed by DoryPrevin

You Must Remember This Episode 2: Frank Sinatra in Outer Space by Karina Longworth

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Welcome to the second episode of You Must Remember This, the podcast devoted to exploring the secret and or/forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century. Today, we look back to 1979, when — while the music world was full of punk and post-disco coke rock, and the movie world was making the transition from the “New Hollywood” of the ’70s into the blockbuster age — Frank Sinatra recorded Trilogy: Past, Present and Future, a triple album with one disc each devoted to big band standards (“The Past”); covers from “the rock era” including Billy Joel and Beatles songs and also “Theme from New York, New York” (“The Present”); and, most amazingly, a 40 minute song cycle about life, love, death and visiting outer space (“The Future”). We’ll take a look at how and why “The Future” was made, and theorize as to why it’s fallen into the dustbin of pop cultural history.  

Show Notes

Songs

Tracks from Trilogy: Past, Present and Future, performed by Frank Sinatra:

“Let’s Face The Music and Dance”

“Theme from New York New York”

“Something”

“What Time Does the Next Miracle Leave?”

“World War None!”

“The Future” 

“The Future (Continued)”

“The Future (Conclusion)”

“Before the Music Ends”

“Can’t Get Started” performed by Frank Sinatra, from the album No One Cares

“Come Rain or Come Shine” performed by Frank Sinatra, from the album Sinatra and Strings

“New York is My Home” composed by Gordon Jenkins, from Manhattan Tower

“This is It” by Kenny Loggins, from The Essential Kenny Loggins

Other audio

“Jonathan Schwartz’s Good Time” from NPR http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1831872

Bibliography

Sinatra! The Song is You by Will Friedwald 

Why Sinatra Matters by Pete Hamill 

Goodbye: In Search of Gordon Jenkins by Bruce Jenkins 

“Frank Sinatra’s Heat-Seeking Missive Finds Two New Targets: a Columnist and a Deejay” by Cherie Burns, PEOPLE Magazine, May 5, 1980 

"Sinatra: The Legend Lives" by Pete Hamill, New York magazine, April 198