Food For Thought
"Truth Is What Matters"

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In Memory Of Those Icons
And Celebrities
Who Passed On In 2008
January 10, 2009
by columnist
David Lawrence Dewey
"Reading provides knowledge...
knowledge leads to answers."
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~ ~ Postscript from David Lawrence Dewey

We have lost great stars in the past like Lucille Ball, Katherine Hepburn, Jane Wyman, Cary Grant, John Wayne, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Jessica Tandy, Christopher Reeves, Don Knotts, James Brown, Journalist, Ed Brown, Jack Palance, Shelley Winters and singer Kate Smith who could sing 'God Bless America' better than anyone. And we have lost more great bright stars in 2008. We also lost two great political columnists that kept us informed, Tim Russert and and Jim McKay in 2008. It will be hard to find someone with the tenacity of these two journlists that reported what needed to be reported and what needed to be talked about.

These stars of the past and those that are still living like Elizabeth Taylor, Merle Streep, Jack Nicholson, Shirley McClaine, are "stars". They are unlike the new "breed" of actors and singers like Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Nicole Kidman or singer Fergie. And most of the new teenage sensations are nothing more than marketing machines to mass merchandise for profit, forget the talent. Remember the Olson Twins. Do I need to say more?

Another such teenage so called "sensation" is Mylie Cyrus/Hannah Montana daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus. In my opinion, there are unknowns that have a much better voice than she does, but she is just an example of the marketing machine of Disney. And there are certainly much better teenage actors than she is as well. Disney has put massive amounts of dollars behind marketing these new teen "sensations" who do nothing but gyrate all over the place and show little talent compared to the great stars of the past. Then there is Disney's High School Musical! Zac Efron and Vanessa Anne Hudgens play Troy and Gabriella who are teenage high schoolers. Talent, yes, they have the "looks" and can "sing", but outstanding talent, I don't think so.

It makes me wonder.. are Americans losing their sense of what real talent is? Is it better to simply watch someone move all over the place gyrating their hips to the beat, making sensual moves regardless their voice is common? Has it become nothing more than selling "sex" in music form. Now there are a few that are truly gifted like, Josh Groban. Groban has a beautiful voice and is a remarkable songwriter, they need to find more like him. And there is Carrie Underwood, now this young lady has a voice, and again a remarkable songwriter, she is in the same league as Dolly Parton. Garth Brooks is another super star, as well Paul McCartney of the Beatles.

And don't get me started on the "rap" music. Most of this music depicts violate acts against woman and others. How in name this music ever became what it has become making billions for these so called "artists" totally amazes me. I guess there is a new defintion of "artist" and that is, write a song where you beat your girlfriend or wife then go out and kill someone and you make a billion dollars from it and it doesn't matter if it actually a melody to it, three notes is all it takes. 99% of these so called "artists" couldn't carry a tune even with a pitch pipe in my opinion. There is music and their is "noise".

I am probably going to take some hits over my comments, but I leave you with this thought...

Would you rather listen to a beautiful song sung with full orchestra and by someone with a beauiful voice or, would you rather listen to a dum,dum drum beat song that has 3 beats to it and maybe 3 notes in the whole song? I think American needs a culture shock, watch some old movies and shows from the past and see "real" talent, not this mass merchandising, we want you to buy t-shirts, mugs, CD's and even key chains designed by these so called sensation "stars". Talk about hype!

I wish you a happy, healthy and prosperus 2008.

~ David Lawrence Dewey


~ In Memory Of Those Who Passed On In 2008 ~
Barry Morse
Barry Morse
Actor
Bernie Mac
Bernie Mac
Actor
Bettie Page
Bettie Page
Pin-up Queen
Beverly Garland
Beverly Garland
Actress
Bo Diddley
Bo Diddley
SongWriter
Brad Renfro
Brad Renfro
Actor
Arthur Clarke
Arthur Clarke
Writer - 2001 Space Oddesey
Christian Brando
Christian Brando
Son of Actor Maron Brando
Cyd Charisse
Cyd Charisse
Dancer
Danced with Gene Kelley
David Groh
David Groh
Actor
Dody Goodman
Dody Goodman
Actress
Charleston Heston
Charleston Heston
Actor
Eartha Kitt
Eartha Kitt
Singer
Eddy Arnold
Eddy Arnold
Actor
Edie Adams
Edie Adams
Actress
Estelle Getty
Estelle Getty
Actress
George Carlin
George Carlin
Comedian
Harvey Korman
Harvey Korman
Comedian
Heath
Heath Ledger
Actor
Issac Hayes
Issac Hayes
SongWriter
Jim McKay
Jim McKay
Political Columnist
Lois Nettelton
Lois Nettleton
Actress
Margaret Truman
Margaret Truman
Daughter of Harry Truman
Nina Foch
Nina Foch
Actress
John Law
John Law
Actor
Paul Scofield
Paul Scofield
Actor
Richard Widmark
Richard Widmark
Actor
Robert Prosky
Robert Prosky
Actor
Paul Benedict
Paul Benedict
Actor
Paul Newman
Paul Newman
Actor
Roy Scheider
Roy Scheider
Actor
Suzanne Pleshette
Suzanne Pleshette
Actress
Syndey Pollack
Syndey Pollack
Director
Tim Russert
Tim Russert
Political Commentary
Van Johnson
Van Johnson
Actor
Vampira
Vampira
Actress
Yves Laurent
Yves Laurent
Clothes Designer

Celebrity Detail Information: ( Other Celebrites Not Shown Above Are Listed )

Bill Belew, the costume designer who created Elvis Presleyís jumpsuits. Age 76. Jan. 7.

Actor Brad Renfro, whose career began promisingly with a childhood role in The Client but rapidly faded as he struggled with drugs and alcohol. Age 25. Jan. 15.

Actor Allan Melvin, best-known for playing Sam the Butcher on The Brady Bunch. Age 84. Jan. 17.

Lois Nettleton, a Daytime Emmy-winning actress who had a long career on Broadway and television. Age 80. Jan. 18.

Bobby Fischer, Americaís best-known ó and most controversial ó chess grandmaster. Age 64. Jan. 17.

Suzanne Pleshette, best known for her role as Bob Newhartís wife on The Bob Newhart Show. Age 70. Jan. 19. Lung cancer.

John Stewart, the former Kingston Trio member who wrote the Monkees hit Daydream Believer and had a 1979 hit of his own with Gold. Age 68. Jan. 19.

Heath Ledger, the talented 28-year-old actor who gravitated toward dark, brooding roles, including the Joker in The Dark Knight, that defied his leading-man looks. Age 28. Jan. 22. Drug overdose.

Christian Brando, Marlon Brandoís troubled son. Age 49. Jan. 26. Pneumonia.

Margaret Truman,a concert singer, actress, radio and TV personality, mystery writer and the only child of former President Harry S. Truman. Age 83. Jan. 29.

Actress Shell Kepler, who for years played the gossipy nurse Amy Vining on the TV soap opera General Hospital. Age 49. Feb. 1.

Barry Morse played the detective pursuing the wrongly accused Dr. Richard Kimble in the 1960s TV series The Fugitive. Age 89. Feb. 2.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, guru to the Beatles who introduced the West to transcendental meditation. Age 91. Feb. 5.

Roy Scheider, two-time Oscar nominee (The French Connection, All That Jazz) best known for his role as a police chief in the blockbuster movie Jaws. Age 75. Feb. 10.

Steve Gerber, the comic-book writer who created Howard the Duck. Age 60. Feb. 10. Pulmonary fibrosis.

David Groh, actor best known as the easygoing man Rhoda Morgenstern married and divorced in the 1970s sitcom Rhoda. Age 68. Feb. 12. Kidney cancer.

William F. Buckley Jr., the conservative editor/columnist, novelist and star of TVís Firing Line. Age 82. Feb. 27.

Jeff Healey, blind musician who had a hit single in 1990 with Angel Eyes. Age 41. March 2, of the rare form of retinal cancer that had made him blind since age 1.

Gary Gygax, co-created the fantasy game Dungeons & Dragons. Age 69. March 4.

Ivan Dixon, an actor, director and producer best known for his role as Kinchloe in Hoganís Heroes. Age 76. March 16. Kidney failure.

Oscar-winning director Anthony Minghella, turned such literary works as The English Patient, The Talented Mr. Ripley and Cold Mountain into acclaimed movies. Age 54. March 18. Hemorrhage.

Paul Scofield, the British stage actor who won an Academy Award for the film A Man for All Seasons. Age 86. March 19.

Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction writer who co-wrote 2001: A Space Odyssey. Age 90. March 19.

Israel "Cachao" Lopez, the Cuban musician who was a pioneer of mambo. Age 89. March 22.

Richard Widmark, who made a sensational film debut as the giggling killer in Kiss of Death and went on to a lengthy TV and movie career. Age 93. March 24.

Abby Mann, writer of scripts for movies and TV and winner of the 1961 Academy Award for adapted screenplay for Judgment at Nuremberg. Age 80. March 25.

Charlton Heston, won the 1959 best actor Oscar as the chariot-racing Ben-Hur and portrayed Moses, Michelangelo, El Cid and other heroic figures in movie epics of the í50s and í60s. Age 84. April 5.

Stanley Kamel, the veteran character actor who played Adrian Monkís long-suffering psychiatrist on the TV show Monk. Age 65. April 8. Heart attack.

Al Wilson, soul singer and songwriter who had a number of 1970s hits, most notably Show and Tell. Age 68. April 21.

Paul Davis, singer-songwriter whose soft rock hit - Go Crazy, in 1977. Age 60. April 22. Heart attack.

Jim Hager, one of the Hager Twins who satirized country life with cornball one-liners on TVís Hee Haw. Age 66. May 1.

Eddy Arnold, whose baritone voice on songs like Make the World Go Away made him one of the most successful country singers in history. Age 89. May 8.

Dick Martin, the zany half of the comedy team whose Rowan and Martinís Laugh-In took television by storm in the 1960s. Age 86. May 24.

Academy Award-winning director Sydney Pollack, achieved commercial and critical success with movies such as Tootsie (in which he also acted in ) and Out of Africa. Age 73. May 26. Cancer.

Harvey Korman, the tall, versatile comedian who won four Emmys for his outrageously funny contributions to The Carol Burnett Show. Age 81. May 29.

Yves Saint Laurent,the designer who redefined the rules of fashion by putting women intoelegant pantsuits that came to define how modern women dressed. Age 71.June 1.

Mel Ferrer, the tall, darkly handsome leading man who starred in such classic films as Lili and The Sun Also Rises and who produced and directed several movies starring his ex-wife Audrey Hepburn. Age 90. June 2.

Bo Diddley, one of the founding fathers of rock íní roll whose distinctive "shave and ahaircut, two bits" rhythm and innovative guitar effects inspiredlegions of other musicians. Age 79. June 2.

Jim McKay, the venerable and eloquent Wide World of Sports host thrust into the role of telling Americans about the tragedy at the 1972 Munich Olympics. Age 86. June 7.

Danny Davis, Grammy-winning band leader and record producer who blended swing music with a country style. Age 83. June 12.

Tim Russert, was host of Meet the Press, whose exact and blunt journalism made him beloved in Washington. Age 58. June 13.

Stan Winston, Oscar-winning special-effects genius responsible for bringing the dinosaurs of Jurassic Park and other iconic movie creatures to life. Age 62. June 15.

Cyd Charisse,the long-legged Texas beauty who danced with the Ballet Russe as ateenager and starred in MGM musicals with Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly.Age 86. June 17. Heart attack.

George Carlin, the former Fort Worth DJ who went on to be the dean of counter culture comedians, and whose often stinging insights on language were immortalized in his "Seven Words You Can Never Say on TV" routine. Age 71. June 22.

Tony Snow,the former television and radio talk show host who became President George W. Bushís chief spokesman Age 53. July 12.Colon cancer.

Estelle Getty, the wonderful defined actress who spent 40 years struggling for success before landing the role in 1985 of the grumpy octogenarian Sophia on TVís The Golden Girls. Age 84.

Randy Pausch, whose "last lecture" facing cancer became a worldwide sensation and best-selling book. Age 47. July 25.August

Bernie Mac, one of the "Original Kings of Comedy" who connected with audiencesacross a wide spectrum through his stage work, as well as TV series such The Bernie Mac Show and movies such as Oceanís Eleven. Age 50. Aug. 9. Pneumonia.

Isaac Hayes, baldheaded, baritone-voiced soul crooner who laid the groundwork for disco and whose Theme From Shaft won Academy and Grammy awards. Age 65. Aug. 10.

Leroy Sievers, a National Public Radio commentator who turned his battle with cancer into a popular radio and online series. Age 53. Aug. 15.

Pervis Jackson, was the man behind the deep, rolling bass voice in a string of 1970s R&B hits by The Spinners, most notably Games People Play. Age 70. Aug. 18.

Bill Melendez, the producer-animator who gave life to Snoopy and Charlie Brown in Peanuts TV specials. Age 91. Sept.

Paul Newman,the Oscar-winning actor/race-car driver/philanthropist who never lost the heart throb cool of his anti-hero performances in movies as Cool Hand Luke, Slap Shot, The Verdict and The Color of Money. Age 83. Sept. 26.

Sources: The Associated Press


Have a Good Year Everyone !

~ David Lawrence Dewey


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