OK...maybe I'm being unpatriotic here, but watching A Capitol Fourth on PBS this evening has provided me enough blog material to last a lifetime.
Barry Bostwick hosts the show. His hair...well...that would be too easy. His drunken state...you have to see it to appreciate the humor.
So...The latest rendition of the Beach Boys leads off the performance part of the show. It looks to be one original member in his eighties, and the rest are kids who look to be too young to even remember the Beach Boys in their original form.
As for their actual singing...I'm being kind when I say this...what the hell happened to them?!?!? They're horrible! To say they can't carry a tune in a bucket is the understatement of the year. Now I know they're the Beach Boys (sort of) and everyone knows their music...so it isn't really a necessity that they sing the words because the crowd will fill in the blanks. But, my God! It's almost painful to watch.
Next, we get Sharon Lawrence in her adorable Shirley Temple red dress. She's singing patriotic show tunes...and dancing. She's actually selling it now that she's got some backup dancers and she's not left hanging out there on her own. Bring on cute kids dressed like Uncle Sam and you've always got a winner. Even if she does look ridiculous in that dress. Steve is currently shouting, "Bring back the Beach Boys."
By the way...is it a rule that all tuba players have to be fat? I mean, when they show up in the fifth grade to pick out instruments, do they say, "Hey, you, fat kid...tuba?" (Steve wants to know)
At the end of her performance, they forget to shut off her microphone and we can all hear Sharon Lawrence heavy breathing. Lovely.
The O'Jays...a bunch of old guys wearing PJ's. The guy on the left end has his pants pulled up to his armpits...old man style. Hey...at least they can sing.
And I thought this July Fourth would suck. I'm laughing so hard my sides hurt. And Steve says he's just getting warmed up...he hasn't even had any beer yet.
There is something about A Capitol Fourth that lends itself to show tunes. The Impossible Dream...from Man of La Mancha...an adaptation of Don Quixote, the story of a crazy man tilting at windmills...seems perfect performed on the steps of the Capitol on Independence Day in this year of all others. Where IS GWB today anyway?
I'm slightly disappointed in the finale. Didn't they used to do a segment that honored the various branches of the military? Or did I miss that on one of my various trips to the kitchen window (see post that follows this one)?
All in all, not bad...definitely improved after the Beach Boys left the stage.
New York's Macy's fireworks show is definitely better, though. Someday I would like to actually travel there and see it in person. It looks quite spectacular.
We went to the show in Cleveland one year. After parking several blocks from the beach in what did not feel like a great neighborhood, and walking down the closed shoreway for about half an hour, we made it to a grassy hillside overlooking Lake Erie. We spread a blanket and were treated to some really bad canned renditions of oldies tunes and a fifteen minute display. It was NOT New York, that's for sure.