Way Back 2022

September 27, 2022 - Handmaid's Plays with Everly Tunes, Don't Worry Darling Takes Mindbending Liberties with Classic Songs

On TV: Season five of The Handmaid's Tale has begun streaming on Hulu and the first two episodes have something musically in common. The opening scene of each starts with "All I Have to Do is Dream" by The Everly Brothers, though episode one features the original chart-topping 1958 version recorded for Cadence Records while the second plays the re-recording done by the Everlys for Warner Bros. in 1963. This seldom (if ever)-used tactic must have been done on purpose, though only the show's creators know why; has anyone else noticed? Meanwhile, ABC's series Big Sky does its part, in promos at least, to make older songs darker than intended. "Walkin' After Midnight" by Patsy Cline is the latest to get the treatment.

In movie theaters: Dizzy Gillespie's 1966 cover of The Joe Cuba Sextet's hit "Bang! Bang!" along with 1958 classics "(Night Time Is) The Right Time" by Ray Charles, "Tears on My Pillow" by Little Anthony and the Imperials and "Twilight Time" by The Platters enhance the twisting, turning storyline in the weekend's number one moneymaker Don't Worry Darling. Also included on the film's soundtack are "Comin' Home Baby" by Mel Torme, "Sh-Boom" by The Chords, "Need Your Love So Bad" by Little Willie John, "Sleep Walk" by Santo and Johnny, perennial creepy-movie favorite "The End of the World" by Skeeter Davis and the often-heard 2020s oldies fave by Brenton Wood, "The Oogum Boogum Song."

September 12, 2022 - Ronettes, Donovan, CSN&Y Acquire Horror Movie Meanings, Spiral Starecase Stunts for Bathroom Fixtures

Those horror movie directors just to love to attach negative meanings to favorite songs of the '60s! Box office topper Barbarian puts the twist on The Ronettes' classic "Be My Baby" and edge-of-the-decade hits "Riki Tiki Tavi" by Donovan and the Jeff Beck Group and the formerly not-so-disturbing "Our House" by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Orphan: First Kill (a prequel to 2009's Orphan) goes even further out with "The Glory of Love" from Jimmy Durante's 1965 Hello Young Lovers LP.

On the small-screen commercial front, Delta Bathroom Fixtures are selling their goods to the tune of Spiral Starecase's 1969 hit "More Today Than Yesterday." Worth mentioning again: the Hershey's S'mores spot continues airing, well into its second year, with the feel-good vibe of Eddie Cochran's 1958 hit "C'mon Everybody." Gotta get me some marshmallows!

August 14, 2022 - Bullet Train, DC Secret Life of Pets: "Sukiyaki," "Batman" and More Plus Holly's Walking Dead Connection

Bullet Train starring Brad Pitt is currently leading theatrical/multiplex attendance figures, a return of sorts to number one for Kyu Sakamoto's 1963 hit "Sukiyaki," still the only Japanese-language recording to reach number one on the charts in the U.S.A. A trio of popular '60s tunes move the action along in the animated DC League of Super-Pets: TV's original "Batman Theme" by Neal Hefti, "(Theme from) A Summer Place" by Percy Faith and Burt Bacharach's 1967 vocal chorus recording of the song he composed with Hal David, "What the World Needs Now is Love."

The premiere episode of AMC's TWD spinoff series Tales of the Walking Dead features "Dearest" by Buddy Holly. The song, penned by Bob Ellis, Prentice Herman Polk, Jr. and Bo Diddley, was first recorded in 1959 as "(Ummm, Oh Yeah) Dearest" shortly before Holly's death; several versions were mastered before The Fireballs finally added a music track in '68 for a 1969 release.

July 22, 2022 - Stevie, Dean, Ricky and the Rolling Stones at the Movies, Lavette and Anka Vids, Lloyd Price Ballpark Tune

"Fingertips," Little Stevie Wonder's number one hit from 1963, enters the horror realm through its use in director Jordan Peele's latest creepy-scary film Nope, currently pulling in big box office numbers. French comedy My Donkey, My Lover and I has some fun with a song from the 1960 John Wayne epic The Alamo: "My Rifle, My Pony and Me," sung by costars Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson. And Minions: The Rise of Gru gets into a Stones zone with "You Can't Always Get What You Want."

The so-called interpolations of classic songs in current recordings are getting trickier and trickier to identify. A current example is "The Last Goodbye" by Odesza, which heavily samples Betty Lavette's 1965 soul classic "Let Me Down Easy" and is being heard on a commercial for MacBook Air. Another is Doja Cat's video for "Streets," which opens with Paul Anka's 1959 hit "Put Your Head on My Shoulder."

Finally, Major League Baseball's All-Star game broadcast from Dodger Stadium included a nice slice of Lloyd Price's 1959 million-seller "Personality," for no apparent reason than...it sounds great!


Walkin' After Midnight The Flying Platters Around the World Sleep Walk Batman Theme Fingertips Put Your Head on My Shoulder Mr. Personality's 15 Hits