Elaine Stritch, the famed actress and singer, died today at the age of 89. The clip above is her performing "The Ladies Who Lunch," from Company; this clip of her struggling to record the perfect take for the cast recording is worth watching, too. Shoot Me, a documentary about Stritch that came out last year and is available for streaming on Netflix now, includes this perfect anecdotal tribute from the late James Gandolfini:
I first met her at a Sopranos premiere. Somebody was behind me and said, "I think you're wonderful!" And I turn around and I look down and I [...]
I have a tendency, which I think is good, to just sing from my heart. I want to feel it myself. Pops taught me that, to sing from my heart. I can’t just sing from the top of my head. I gotta get into the song. I see it like a movie, in my head, when I’m singing. I got Chester, I know what he looks like. And when Pops says, “Go down, Moses,” I know Moses. I took it as Moses in the Bible, you know. I just make up my own vision to make the song feel good for me, and make it my own.
Ellen Willis was born in 1941 in the Bronx, grew up in a middle-class family, and, for a while, did what was expected of her: she married “a nice Jewish boy from Columbia while majoring in English at Barnard,” writes her daughter, journalist Nona Willis Aronowitz, in her introduction to her late mother’s recently published compendium of essays, The Essential Ellen Willis. At 24, though, Willis divorced her husband, got an apartment in the East Village, and started writing about rock, politics, culture, feminism, and sex. She went on to become the first rock critic for The New Yorker, an editor and columnist at the Village [...]
The girls are back June 6. What will be Natasha Lyonne's personal tagline after this season?