Thurber’s Dogs Set to Music; The Spill Responds to a Response; Time Traveling: Saturday Evening Post Cartoons From the 1950s

Thurber’s Dogs Set to Music

Attempted Bloggery has posted this curio: Thurber’s Dogs set to the music of Peter Schickele.  Until yesterday, I’d never heard of this. 

It’s not the first time Thurber’s work has crossed over from print to music. In one of the many high points of Thurber’s career, his best-seller, The Thurber Carnival was transformed into a  a very successful playwith Thurber himself taking the stage. 

A soundtrack for the show was issued –it includes a booklet of his drawings.

The play won a Special Tony Award in 1960.  Video exists of Thurber accepting the award (with Burgess Meredith). You can see it here (Thurber takes the stage at the 25:50 mark).

 

 

 

 

 

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Blog of Interest

In response to The Spill‘s mention of Arnold Zwicky’s Blog the other day,  Mr. Zwicky posted this on his site:

“Note from Michael Maslin on his Inkspill blog (“New Yorker Cartoonists News and Events”), appearing as a comment on a recent posting of mine here:

As you see, Mr. Zwicky’s blog is “mostly about language”; when it’s about the language of New Yorker cartoons it will be mentioned here

This could get burdensome. I’ve posted here over a hundred times about New Yorker cartoons and covers; these are indexed in a Page on this blog, with subpages for (so far) 25 specific artists…”

Ink Spill’s response to Mr. Zwicky’s response:

Dear Mr. Zwicky,

It is a burden The Spill will happily bear.

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Time-Traveling: Saturday Evening Post Cartoons From the 1950s

Mike Lynch’s has posted Eisenhower-era  Saturday Evening Post cartoons (and a few that appeared in Collier’s) including this one from the late great New Yorker cartoonist,  Barney Tobey.

Here’s Mr. Tobey’s A-Z entry on the Spill:

Barney Tobey (photo above from Think Small, a book of humor produced by Volkswagon) Born in New York City, July, 18, 1906, died March 27, 1989, New York. New Yorker work: 1929 -1986. Essential collection: B. Tobey of The New Yorker (Dodd Mead & Co., 1983)

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Note:  An exhibit of Bob Mankoff’s work will run from July 20 through Oct. 20 at the Charles P. Sifton Gallery in the Theodore Roosevelt United States Courthouse in Brooklyn.

 

 

 

 

John Lennon: “I was about 15 when I started Thurberizing the drawings.”

Back in December of 2013 Ink Spill ran a piece, “John Lennon & James Thurber: A Sunnier Connection.”  To celebrate John Lennon’s birthday, I’m re-posting that piece, albeit in slightly edited form.

 

thurber

Anyone familiar with John Lennon’s and James Thurber’s drawings can’t help but see some cross-pollination from Thurber to Lennon.  Lennon’s drawings, published in 1964’s In His Own Write immediately drew comparisons to Thurber’s work. According to a Lennon biographer, Ray Coleman, Lennon at first scoffed at the suggestion, telling a BBC interviewer in 1965, who brought up book reviewers mentioning Thurber and Edward Lear (among others) as influences on Lennon’s work, “I deny it because I’m ignorant of it.”

Not too many years later, in 1971, during an appearance by Yoko Ono and Lennon on The Dick Cavett Show, Cavett brought up the subject, saying, “You know, your drawings look a little like James Thurber’s.”

lennon-spaniard-in-the-works

In a funny moment as Lennon begins to respond to Cavett, Yoko Ono turns to Lennon and says, “His work does look a bit like yours, y’know, I think” to which Lennon replies, “Well he’s older than me, so he came first, so I look like him.”  And then he went on to say:

“I used to love his stuff when I was a kid. There were three people I was very keen on—Lewis Carroll, Thurber and an English drawer, or whatever you call him, called Ronald Searle. When I was about 11, I was turned on to those three. I think I was about 15 when I started Thurberizing the drawings.” (Another Lennon biographer, Philip Norman, credits Lennon’s Aunt Mimi with introducing her nephew to Thurber’s work).

[Top drawing, from  The Thurber Carnival.   Lower drawing from Lennon’s A Spaniard in The Works]

 Note: In His Own Write and the follow-up, A Spaniard in the Works are still in print.  You can see many of the drawings in those two books by Googling: John Lennon +drawings    (then select “Images”)

 To see the Yoko Ono & John Lennon Cavett moment, click here.  The discussion turns to Thurber at around the 6:05 mark.