Mary Birdsong
  • music
  • April26th


    I didn’t even realize until after I started recording this little project that Israel Kamakawiko’ole died back in 1997. And that made me sad. But I’m so grateful he left his now famous recording behind as his legacy.  For my money, it’s the only recording that captures the essence of everything the song is.

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    • It captures the song itself- a gorgeous composition that is so familiar to us now that it’s easy to forget that two men actually sat down at a piano and wrote it!  They just plain made it up out of thin air! This delicate yet powerful composition by Harold Arlen and Yip Harburg has remained not only relevant to today’s ears, but necessary.
    • It captures Judy Garland’s original recording of the composition back in the  1930s – she was only about 13 or 14 when she committed it to vinyl- and it captured her interpretation of the song at that age; the innocence of it- a heartfelt daydream of a simple farm girl. Even in LIVE recordings from that time, her vocal is flawless… tempering all of her unmistakable vocal power with the delicate vibration of what sounds like what I imagine angels’ wings would sound like fluttering from cloud to cloud.  I can’t think of many vocalists today (especially young ones) who have the ability to actually HOLD BACK a little bit in a song.  And Judy had that.  Today’s recording artists, for the most part, are all so bombastic.  Every singer comes out shouting more insistently than the last one and pelting the listener with so many riffs and “fingerpainting” trills that it feels a little like the boy who cried wolf.    Nothing is important or meaningful because everything is important and meaningful.  You know? Judy would hold back… she’d reign herself in, and then BAM!  She’d punch you in the gut with her power by the end.  But it meant something.  It was special.  It was EARNED.
    • It even captures Judy Garland’s late interpretations of the song: as a middle aged (and damned tired) woman who’d been through it all and then some, Judy approached the song much differently than in her early Micky & Judy years, naturally.  She was broken now.  She approached it as someone who’d obviously TRIED LIKE HELL to get over the rainbow, but failed.  Yet still hoped.  Still daydreamed.  But this was no longer the daydream of a Kansas virgin on a farm.  This was the daydream of someone who desperately needed to believe she could still do it. Even if she knew deep down she never would.
  • April19th

    In 99 Cent Whore’s beloved Easter special, you’ll learn the origin of many Easter and Passover traditions. And keep watching, because you don’t want to miss her special Easter song she sings to Jesus (it starts at minute 1:29). One of the most beloved easter songs on youtube- you’ll be sure to make it a family tradition!

    You can even sing along- the lyrics are below… (and if you are allergic to video- click here to play the song only):

    HAPPY EASTER JESUS (“Pasqua Felice”)

    easter songs youtube

    Jesus is risen (he is risen) so our prices are staying low (just 99 cents).

    Jesus is risen (Christ is risen!) so all our Easter stuff has to go.

    All our sins are forgiven (like murder & stealing) so jellybeans are just 59 cents.

    Because Christ is risen,

    (Christ is risen!) get your Easter grass cheap and smoke it while you repent.

    Chocolate covered marshmallow bunnies have never been crucified and left to die, but they taste awful good (Mmm!)

    I wish that I could give some to Jesus when he was crucified and left to die on that old cross of wood. It would have done him some good.

    So Happy Easter to you Jesus. You deserve a basket filled with Easter grasses and Peeps®, Marshmallow Peeps®. We all say “Muchos Gracias!” (Muchos Gracias!) 4 getting up on that cross. You’re the bomb! You’re the boss! Pasqua Felice. Pasqua Felice. And Peeps®.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    #easter songs youtube

  • December14th

    o-TINA-AMY-EW-COVER-570If the comedy world got it’s own city like the Catholic Church has Vatican City, then that would mean I’d have the honor of saying I’m now a proud resident of that city.

    Why?  Because I am one of the lucky actors to be cast in the cult-hit Off-Broadway musical, DISASTER!, which has just been kissed by Comedy City’s two female popes- Tina Fey and Amy Poehler in this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly magazine.  These two gals (arguably the co-Popes of all things “funny”) deemed us worthy of inclusion on EW’s “must see” list.  In fact, we’re not just on the list, we’re number five on the list!!

    Yes, this little twisted “show that could” can now say with some authority exactly what the ring of a Comedy Pope tastes like.

     And yes… it tastes just like chicken.  A rubber chicken.  But chicken, nonetheless.

    Disaster!'s Mary Testa in the Shelly Winters-esque role of Shirley, tapping out morse code on a sinking ship.

    Here's me as "Jackie" in the show.  The beauty of DRAWING a selfie instead of using a camera is you can make yourself super-skinny!

    Here’s a sketch I did of myself as “Jackie” in Disaster! The beauty of DRAWING a selfie instead of using a camera is you can make yourself super-skinny!

     

     

     

     

    Here's a doodle of Jack Plotnick in the role of Tony DelVecchio.  He's divinely devilish. And he LOVES to blatantly disregard important safety codes.

    Here’s a sketch I did of Jack Plotnick as Tony DelVecchio. He’s divinely devilish. And he LOVES to blatantly disregard important safety codes.

     

  • December8th

    Lewis Black's The Root of All Evil

    Wait! Did you hear that? Someone just asked me to star in a new musical with only four rehearsals in which to learn 16 songs and 123 pages of dialogue! Well I’m just crazy enough to DO it! Sure, this COULD be a disaster. But in this case, that’s a GOOD thing!

    The creative team has promised me that in the big budget production of the show, I will get to wear a purple sequin dress like this, but it will rip and tear and get smaller and smaller to the point that by the end of the show, it’s a sort of purple sequin loincloth w/matching tube top.

    The creative team has promised me that in the big budget production of the show, I will get to wear a purple sequin dress like this, but it will rip and tear and get smaller and smaller to the point that by the end of the show, it’s a sort of purple sequin loincloth w/matching tube top.

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    Tomorrow night at 7:30, in the middle of Hell’s Kitchen I’ll be going through a long series of torments, traumas and catastrophes, ranging from rabid rats to earthquakes to killer bees.   And I’ll be singing and dancing my way through them all- like a real trouper!  Why?  Because like all good crisis junkies, I love a good disaster.

    DISASTER! is a new musical parody of all those fantastic popcorn movies from the 1970s in which the world of sexy starlets and bickering alpha-males was falling apart.  Some of these movies were good, and some were pretty stinko.  But Jack Plotnick  and Seth Rudetsky have mined comedy gold out of the good, the bad, and the ugliest of this genre.

    This show is considered a “Jukebox Musical,” meaning the songs in it are not original tunes written expressly for the show.  All the tunes are recognizable “one hit wonders” from the 1970s–  great songs like “Knock On Wood,” “Hot Stuff,” and “S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y Night.”

    The best way I can describe the show DISASTER! is this… if you love the movie Airplane, then this show is for you.

    I’ll be playing the role of “Jackie” starting Monday Dec 9th for the whole month of December, and possibly longer. You can buy tickets here.  And to get a quick glimpse of creator Seth Rudetsky’s last minute tap-instruction to a very dance-dyslexic me, click here!

    Want to follow Disaster! on twitter?  Click here: @Disastermusical

    … and then they broke out into a big disco number!

    Pre- Bronco chase O.J., in Towering Inferno!

  • October15th

    Name That Tunesday w/Mary Birdsong! by Mary Birdsong on SoundCloud – Hear the world’s sounds.

    See if you can name that tune. Cuz it’s Name That Tunesday! (I don’t really know what the prize will be yet. We’ll sort all of that out later. (Maybe on a Wednesday (or maybe a… a… a WINSday?! Bwah haw haw!)

    And no cheating with Shazam! (Whatever you win, you’ll get an extra bonus if you name that tune and you’re under 30).

    (If you think this is fun, lemme know, and I’ll try to post a different tune every Tuesday.)

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