Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Quincy Jones And His Previous Reincarnation

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Quincy Jones

Strike Up The Band - 1959-1961

Renowned musician, performer, writer, arranger and producer, Quincy Jones is one of American music's greatest multi- talented artists.

Here we have four of his classic jazz albums in one package for the first time ever, featuring such greats as Zoot Sims, Clark Terry, Lee Morgan, Art Farmer and others.

Quincy Jones is a man who can boast a career that has spanned six decades and is also one of America's greatest multi-talented artists.
Full recording session details and extensive liner notes in this deluxe package.


Quincy Jones last CD was released late in 2011 and entitled “Soul Bossa Nostra”. It featured
new versions of several of the classic recordings he has made over the past 60 years. The 25
plus guest stars, mostly from the world of Hip Hop, like LL Cool J, Ludicras, Q Tip and
Snoop Dogg were joined by singers like Mary J. Blige, Usher, Amy Winehouse and Jennifer
Hudson and made it clear that this was not a CD for those who might have enjoyed Quincy
Jones between 1959 and 1961 when these four albums were originally released. It did though
illustrate just how wide reaching and influential he has always been, as a trumpeter, arranger,
conducter, producer and talent spotter, embracing all of the many tributaries of Black music
and pop throughout his career. “Soul Bossa Nostra” contained no biographical details
confirming that most music fans know exactly who he is, if only for his production work on
the best selling album of all-time, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”.
It is impossible to do justice to Quincy Jones career in a few hundred words in a CD booklet
but nevertheless here briefly are the salient points.
Quincy was born in Chicago on March 14th 1933 and raised in Seattle from the early 40s. At
the age of 14 he began trumpet lessons and by the age of 16 had befriended, Ray Charles,
then a Nat King Cole and Charles Brown imitator, who had recently moved to Seattle. In
1951 he won a scholarship to what would become the prestigious, Berklee School Of Music
and by the end of the year had accepted an invitation to join the band of Lionel Hampton,
where he remained until 1953. Recording and touring the world with Hampton honed his
skills as an arranger becoming much in-demand for these talents amongst jazz musicians. In
1954 he played trumpet in Dizzy Gillespie’s Orchestra and arranged dates for Sonny Stitt and
Art Farmer. In 1956 he became musical director, arranger, composer for Dizzy Gillespie’s
big band and toured the Middle East with them. On his return he signed to ABC Records as
an artist recording two well received albums. In May 1957 he settled in Paris studying and
working for Barclay Records. On his return in 1958 and worked for Count Basie at Roulette
and did some arranging for his old friend Ray Charles on the classic “The Genius Of Ray
Charles” album. And then he signed to Mercury Records where our four albums begin. The
liner notes by Count Basie and Dizzy Gillespie neatly exemplify his career to this point and
are reproduced below. Special note should also be made of the vast array of talented jazz
musicians present on these dates many of whom were recording stars in their own right.
His career at Mercury eventually involved general A&R duties, as a vice president, where he
handled the careers of artists like Roland Kirk and in 1963 broadened his horizons by
producing a string of pop smashes for Lesley Gore, which began with the No. 1 hit “It’s My
Party”. For the rest of the 60s he concentrated on scoring and composing for movies and TV
before joining A&M Records in the 70s as an executive and an artist. Here he began his
involvement with the then current sounds of soul, jazz and R&B producing a string of
jazz/soul bestsellers. On into the 80s his production work, with artists like The Brothers
Johnson, George Benson and of course Michael Jackson made him a household name.
It is arguably the period that our collection covers that was his most creative and his work on
these four albums set the scene for all that followed.

The Beginning of Greece Colonization By Germany ?


160 German Tax Collectors Volunteer to "Help" Greece

Goodness gracious, how gracious! The German business weekly WirtschaftsWoche reported Saturday that Germany offers to send tax men to Greece

    The German government is prepared to send 160 financial experts to Greece to help the country overhaul its tax collection, the business weekly WirtschaftsWoche reported Saturday.

    Hans Bernhard Beus, deputy finance minister, told the magazine that the tax officials are ready to jump in to help the ailing country. They would need to at least speak English, but about a dozen of the volunteers speak Greek, he said.

    A large number of the volunteers would come from western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, where state Finance Minister Norbert Walter-Borjans of the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) told WirtschaftsWoche: “Greece is facing the problems that former East Germany faced in 1990.”

    The central German state of Hesse is also prepared to send in volunteers, the state’s Finance Minister Thomas Schäfer of the conservative Christian Democrats (CDU) said.

    “In helping Greece, we should also entertain the idea of bringing in retired tax collectors, because considerable practical experience could be used here,” he told WirtschaftsWoche.

    In January, the Greek government released a 170-page list of 4,000 tax evaders, who owe the state approximately €15 billion. The Greek government under Prime Minister Lucas Papademos has announced that it will be seriously pursuing tax evaders.
Great Rarity From Marvin Gaye


Marvin Gaye - By The Time I Get To Phoenix
 (Rare clip) - YouTube

Marvin Gaye - Stubborn Kind Of Fellow (Live, 1963) [HD video]by ... Marvin Gaye - Ain&#39 ...

The 10 Biggest Stax/Volt Hits

The ten biggest smashes that made the Southern soul label a national treasure

The Stax/Volt labels were Memphis' homegrown product, more directly related to the musical history of the community and more of a symbol of its heritage than even Motown. Like many such roots labels, this meant that they sacrificed commerce for authenticity, but that doesn't mean they didn't get over -- and sometimes in a very big way indeed. This list represents the most popular Stax/Volt singles of all time, weighted toward crossover success. (Black success, for a label this real, was always a given.)

1."I'll Take You There," The Staple Singers

#1 R&B, #1 Pop (May 1972) Producer/songwriter Al Bell was Stax's resident financial genius as well as a creative one, capitalizing on soul's rise in the mid-'60s and then, when Atlantic had no more use for the label, rebuilding it from the ground up by signing several acts at once. Staff songwriter Isaac Hayes was one; another was gospel group The Staple Singers, who Bell decided to turn into semi-secular hitmakers. This classic, written and produced by Bell, did just that, though the recording is "just" lead singer Mavis backed by the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section. Score it as an assist for both Memphis and Alabama, sitting atop the pop charts for one week and the R&B charts for a solid month.
2. "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," Otis Redding
#1 R&B, #1 Pop (March 1968) Designed specifically by Otis Redding as a way to turn get through to the white youth after hearing what The Beatles were doing with Sgt. Pepper, Redding retreated to a boathouse in Sausalito, CA, and wrote this soon-to-be-standard, essentially a brooding take on his daily routine and how it reflected his own emotional crossroads. For a lot of listeners at a very tumultuous time in America, it naturally struck a chord; sadly, Otis' plane crashed into Lake Monona in while house guitarist Steve Cropper was still mixing the single, depriving the great shouter -- and us -- of a potentially fascinating new direction.

3. "Theme From Shaft," Isaac Hayes

#1 Pop, #2 R&B, #4 UK, #6 Adult Contemporary (March 1968) Believe it or not, the largely-instrumental track that would come to define mainstream music for the next decade only makes the #3 spot on this list, because while it shot straight to #1 on the pop charts, it stalled out at #2 R&B, held back by The Chi-Lites'"Have You Seen Her." This, the song by which all "blaxploitation" funk is judged, was actually a little too pop for some black listeners, its swooping cinematic strings seeming to work against the grittiness of the rhythm. The great irony is that the arrangements for both this  Isaac Hayes number and the Chi-Lites song would form the basis for Philly Soul, and later, disco, proving that this was the (immediate) future of R&B.

4. "Mr. Big Stuff," Jean Knight

#2 Pop, #1 R&B (July 1971) It's unusual for two big hits to be recorded at the same session, rare for them to be cut on two different artists, and even more so for both songs to achieve iconic status. Yet that's just what Wardell Quezerque, the "Creole Beethoven," did by arranging and producing this song and King Floyd's "Groove Me" with the same musicians in one afternoon. When DJs started spinning "Groove Me" (at first relegated to a b-side!), Atlantic came calling, and Stax figured their might be more gold in that session. They were right, of course: Floyd's hit peaked at #6 pop, but Jean's made it all the way to #2, moving an unheard-of three million copies of the 45.

5. "Soul Man," Sam and Dave

#2 Pop, #1 R&B (October 1967) The song that retroactively gave "soul music"  its name was written by Isaac Hayes as a subliminal response to the infamous Watts riots of 1965, where several burned buildings had been tagged with the word "soul." Realizing he could make the word into a signifier for black pride, a code of sorts, Hayes and partner David Porter gave the song to their funkiest call-and-response artists,Sam and Dave,  who scored another #1 R&B for the label and then, after Atlantic picked it up, took it all the way to #2 pop. Ironically, it won a Grammy the following year for Best Rhythm and Blues Performance, a black music term it would weaken considerably.

6."(If Loving You Is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right," Luther Ingram

#3 Pop, #1 R&B (July 1972) Arguably the quintessential marital infidelity ballad, Ingram's one and only big hit was actually released on a tiny label called KoKo, but since it was distributed by Stax, and penned by one of the label's songwriting teams (Homer Banks, Carl Hampton and Raymond Jackson), this agonizingly sexy smash is a Stax victory in all but name. It was, perhaps predictably, turned into a hit all over again via a long "rap" by Millie Jackson, and very unpredictably revisited once again by Barbra Mandrell. Rod Stewart even took a crack at it. But the sexiest, saddest, most deliciously tortured version is still the original.

7."Green Onions," Booker T. and the MGs

#3 Pop, #1 R&B (September 1962) The Stax label's Memphis house band,Booker T. and the MGs were appropriately one of the first to tale over the pop charts, second behind only Carla Thomas' decidedly non-Stax sounding ballad "Gee Whiz." A Memphis DJ, also appropriately, broke it wide open, "Onions" having also been ignominiously relegated to a b-side afterthought. Not only was this the first Stax single to go gold, the band had already come up with a million-seller a year earlier, as the Mar-Keys, when their instrumental smash "Last Night" moved a ton of copies for Stax's precursor, Satellite.

8. "Who's Making Love," Johnnie Taylor

#5 Pop, #1 R&B (November 1968) Taylor is often an afterthought when considering the impact of Stax, which is strange, since lots of the label's artists struck pop gold once and only once, and especially since Taylor, the "Philosopher of Soul," had more hits after the label folded, most notably the very non-philosophical 1976 single "Disco Lady." Ironically, the Blues Brothers phenomenon rectified this somewhat -- the comedy/bar-band SNL duo took their own version of this to the Top 40 during the disco era, helping to revive the style of Memphis soul Taylor was forced to leave behind.

9."If You're Ready (Come Go With Me)," The Staple Singers

#9 Pop, #1 R&B (December 1973) James Brown,  upon hearing "I'll Take You There," advised the Staple Singers to "stay in that groove" and never leave it. In many ways they didn't; this follow-up, which actually came a year and four disappointing interim singles later, was designed to create that magic twice, and it almost succeeds. But while the first hit envisioned a place where there "ain't no smilin' faces / lying to the races," this one is more universal, and therefore more utopian: "Peace and love / will grow between the races." In fact, Mavis goes so far as to issue personal invitations to "liars," "troublemakers," "backstabbers," possibly "terrorists," and even "genocides."

10. "Time Is Tight," Booker T. and the MGs

#6 Pop, #7 R&B, #4 UK (May 1968) Another example of blaxploitation synergy, with this tighter-than-tight instrumental doing double duty as background for the film Up Tight!? Yes and no. This classic groove, part of a more traditional soundtrack album, came out three full years before Shaft -- and the film in question, a gritty crime drama, was therefore less about ass-kicking and silk suits and more about the black activist community and what direction it should take in the immediate aftermath of Martin Luther King's death. Unlike most Stax smashes, this one translated into a hit across the pond, becoming a direct influence on both punk (The Clash played it often) and New Wave (Squeeze paid homage to it on their classic "In Quintessence").





首先,「廉政公署」從何而來?如果不失憶,都知道全名叫「港督特派廉政專員公署」──看到沒有? 「港督特派」這四個字,不是僭建,而是這座建築本來結構無敵海景的頂樓。

是哪個港督特派的?是麥理浩勳爵。麥理浩是什麼人?他是出生蘇格蘭、畢業牛津的英國外交部公務員, 在六十年代,他一度官至英國外相布朗的秘書。

布朗是工黨首相威爾遜的外相,六十年代,美蘇冷戰很緊張,蘇聯滲透英國的工黨。麥理浩雖然是公務 員,但個人氣質傾向工黨──蘇格蘭人,而且在工業城市格拉斯哥出生,麥理浩內心支持工黨是很自然的 事。

一九六七年,麥理浩犯了一件大錯。他把英國首相威爾遜打給美國總統詹森的一份機密電報帶下班,不小 心遺忘在一家銀行的櫃枱上。這份電報討論越戰的狀況,是頭等敏感的文件。幸好,銀行在外交部附近, 另一個外交官也是銀行顧客,把電報文件撿回來。英國政府大驚,因為美國人早就懷疑威爾遜的工黨政府 裏有蘇聯的卧底,下令徹查麥理浩,但威爾遜和布朗,都認為麥理浩是一位忠誠樸實的幹才,丟失機密, 純屬無心,叫停調查。

然後,麥理浩調去南越西貢當大使。此時越戰很猛烈,這一年,香港也爆發了共產黨暴動,港督戴麟趾獨 力平息。麥理浩在西貢短短一年多,又轉派英國駐北京代辦處,做了一回丹麥大使,再調來香港。

一來到,發現香港的警察貪污受賄,麥理浩成立廉政公署,把自己的公譽押上去:「港督特派」,意思 是:我是上帝,我絕不貪污,專員只給我打電話,你們舉報,不必顧慮層層官僚包庇和威嚇。麥理浩關懷 民生疾苦,他是香港中國人的活菩薩,建立區議會,九年免費教育,拆木屋建居屋,留下的許多德政,新 加坡模仿,香港在交回主權之後,有的很平庸的人罵英國人「埋地雷」,很好,居屋、免費教育、廉署, 都是地雷了,為什麼你當寶貝,死死抱住?

但且慢,看看「廉政公署」,少了「港督特派」,現在真變成了把「中國人民當家作主」的特首炸個稀巴 爛的地雷了──麥理浩果然給中國人埋了地雷,長達四十年,今日方爆,這位卓越的殖民家,智商之高, 令人讚嘆。


麥理浩當年成立的「總督特派廉政專員公署」,這副招牌,設計得很聰明,要點不在「廉政公署」,而在 「總督特派」。只有「總督特派」,才畫龍點睛,令廉政公署神速變成信譽可靠的國際品牌。

為什麼加上「總督特派」,香港的中國人有信心?因為港督,是英女皇的特派代表。把英女皇的信譽押下 來,人人都會相信,港督直接控制的廉政公署是公正的,因為港督不會貪污。這點,跟中國北大的品牌知 識份子孔慶東說:香港人其實並不「崇洋」,香港人只崇優,智商和見識所限,他再投胎十次,也不會 懂。

麥理浩是智慧優秀的殖民家。他一早看出來:殖民地的管治,要維持公正,統治者要了解民情,但不可以 與殖民地的土著混得太熟而攀上交情。殖民地香港警察,有「四大華探長」,全部是貪污犯,文化基因, 不足為奇,但是,連英國的警司葛柏、韓德之流,跟中國的江湖人混在一起,必然受中國社會的貪污文化 ──為了顧全香港知識份子的學術標準,貪污不是罪惡,是「文化」──污染。

殖民地時代的文職英官,跟拿槍的英國白人警司不同。葛柏和韓德之類,平時吃潮州菜、打麻將、食牛 雜,警署開幕,也裝模作樣學中國人焚香拜關公,不跟「基層」打成一片,收不到黑社會活動的情報,但 定力不夠,隨時會「土著化」( Gone native),變成跟他們一個樣。

殖民主義的真諦,是文化的歧視,土著面前,保持優越感的尊嚴。英文的一句成語:「稔熟會引起鄙視」 ( Familiarity breeds contempt),麥理浩、衞奕信、尤德、彭定康,絕不跟中國人攀私交,不管你有錢沒錢,召見社會華裔名流,公事公辦。麥理浩有英國牛津的紳士修養,不 愛錢,有原則,這一點才是真文化,才是香港的真精神。

中國官場貪污,是永恆的常態。特首是中國人,對不對?這就好辦了。還「出身寒微」呢,真好。「出身 寒微」向上爬的中國人,金榜駙馬,一定想過帝皇的豪奢生活,有得貪,一定貪。不錯,以前有一個「君 子」的清廉品種,但這個國家經歷過「文革」,沒有了,攀近這個革命唱紅新中國的中國官,一定貪慕享 受,你不貪,「國家」絕不會看上你。這是「港人治港」絕不可能成功的生物理由。



中國語文是培養貪污人才的土壤。小孩從小學會這樣的做人道理:「禮多人不怪」、「做事留一線,日後 好相見」,還有成語,叫「盛情難卻」、「恭敬不如從命」。

什麼叫「盛情難卻」?為什麼恭敬一定要從命?中國的生活文化,很喜歡勉強人。一桌盛宴,你說夠了, 飽了,主人家一定要往你碗裏塞。這就叫「盛情難卻」。主人家按道理應該尊重賓客的意志,他說飽了, 就是不要了,但中國的生活文化講「面子」,你拒絕,即是不給面子,就是一場掀桌子的腥風血雨了。

中文的「禮」字雖然古老,「禮記」是禮,「送禮」也是禮。使用這種語文的民族,怎會不貪污行賄呢? 明明是黑白分明的不平之事,旁人會勸告你:留一點餘地好,不然將來怎相見呢?

中國人貪污,有許多自我解釋的名句:「人在河邊走,哪能不濕鞋」,在河邊走,只要謹慎,是可以絕對 不必濕鞋的,但如果有貪小便宜之心,想到這句古訓,必然心安理得。

人際文化是一種倫理。中國不是一個現代意義的國家( State),三千年來,是無數條村落聚居的一個所在。這個國家以人情和倫理來維繫感情,絕不是以契約和規則來維持法理。香港做了一百五十年英國殖民地, 歷史不夠長,香港式的法理,只從英國人手上學到交通燈的紅燈前要停車,層次甚低。領袖的人格和尊 嚴,是如何定義,管治的公正和威儀,是如何實踐,由秦始皇開始就一直中了毒,是不會改變的,香港一 旦向這種文化主流回歸,也不例外。

當然,中國的一些人會不斷在呼喊「政治改革」。同樣的口號,同樣的理念,他們重複了一百五十年。香 港從此會與他們一樣。

記住:下次在飯桌上,不要接受他人的勉強,夾菜、敬酒, No就是 No,沒有「盛情難卻」這回事。告訴他:你接受西方教育,不接受這一套。他再來,你可以拂袖而去。這是你能力內能做到的,社會的其他問題,你不必替他們操 心,真可憐呀,由他們繼續盼望下去。


马来西亚 - 亚洲第3大地下经济体?

在21世纪首10年,马来西亚 非法外流资金共计达约3,500亿美元或1万1200亿令吉,名列世界十大资金非法外流榜第五位。

这是美国福特基金所赞助的环球金融廉正组织在 2011年12月间发布的报告书中透露的。



中国大陆名列第一,累计总额为2.74万亿美元。俄罗斯第二,5,040 亿美元、墨西哥第三,5,010亿美元、沙地阿拉伯第四,3,800亿美元。排名榜显示:在亚洲,大马名列第三。

人口贩运、贩毒、走私、地下赌博,以及其他非法活动。它们是构成 地下经济的主要部分。

即出口极低价而入口极高价)为渠道,将53.9%资金转移至 外国。

从亚洲非法外流的资金虽然平均90%是通过“出入口价差”或贸易价格转移而外流的,不过, 它的外流资金仅占全球总额(8.44万亿美元)的44.9%或3.79万亿美元,其中中国就占去2.74万亿美元或 72.30%。但大马只占3500亿美元或约9.23%,当中有多大的分额是通过出入口价差而外流的?该报告只字不提。
环球金融廉正组织声明:它是采用各国国际收支 表中的“来往账户”的“贸易往来”账目和“资本/金融账户”的误差与遗漏账目来核算非法金融流向。

扣除保费和船运费等后)。“误差和遗漏”是指采用其他非法渠道转 移的资金,如贪污和人口贩运等所得的无记录资金。

在前首相马哈迪医生执政22年期间,贪污费用(成本)共计达1000 亿美元左右,以当时1美元对3.6令吉的汇率来兑换,相等于3,600亿令吉,平均一年贪污费用为163.63亿令吉, 或1天4400万令吉。

贪污成本占GDP 2%

在继任首相阿都拉巴达威任期内,世界银行研究报告宣称,大马贪污费用每年高达100亿令吉或约等于大马国内生产总值 (GDP)1至2%。

除了钜额的贪污费用外,另一项庞大的非法活动所得是人口贩运。美国曾经将大马列入世界人口贩运国家黑名单中,而迫使大马 订立反人口贩运法令。

内政部长拿督希山慕丁于2011年9月间曾宣布,在外劳漂白(6P)计划下,截至8月31日共登记232万多名外劳,其 中非法外劳人口高达130万3,126名,比合法外劳人口还多出近30万名!究竟非法外劳人口有多少?

贩运一名非法外劳入境,蛇首及有关移民官员可分得多少黑钱?移民官员每批准一名外劳入境,又可得多少贿金?否则何来外劳 越来越多?


300万外劳如果平均每月汇出300令吉,1年共达1,080亿令吉;据报导,其中通过非法汇庄Hawala系统外流的 金额1年最少10亿令吉。

大马国际收支账表的“误差与遗漏账目”显示,在 2000至2009年期间,总共有1,510.32亿令吉外流,其中2008年非法外流的金额最高,计达311.74亿令 吉,该年也是大马发生政治海啸之年。
2009年外流黑钱则缓减至179.39亿令吉。 然而,纳吉首相上任后的2010年,外流黑钱的金额却暴升至707.13亿令吉。(参阅2000-2010年大马黑钱外流 表)




内政部长希山慕丁于2010年6月间曾宣称,在大 马的黑色(金)经济约值100多亿令吉,政府必须采取更严厉的措施给黑色经济的活动分子沉重的打击。
这些分子从事地下博彩、贩运妇女和未成年人从事卖 淫、贩运非法外劳入境、洗黑钱、贩运毒品,甚至与恐怖主义有关的活动、走私烟酒等高税品,以及逃税活动。

金融分析员认为,内长的100多亿令吉黑色经济的 估值是过度的保守,因为环球金融廉正组织的测算,是每年平均337.9亿美元或约1081.28亿令吉,相等黑色经济估值 10.8倍。

黑钱外流金额的快速增长说明了地下经济也快速发 展?富人外移财富?或者更大的政治变天将来临?

Americans Are NOT Worried About High Petrol Price 

 So Government Can Go To War With Iran

UBS: No, Gas Prices Are Not Fazing the Consumer

Pulled some pretty key charts from an economic roundup this morning put out by the UBS Global Economics Research team.  The report looks at Consumer Confidence from every perspective imaginable - the broad strokes are that people are getting more confident still and things are headed in the right direction, regardless of higher gas prices.

Check it out:

Sunday, February 26, 2012

KCPO - Weekly Chart Signalling Bull ? - 2/27/2012

The market hardly move for the past 5 trading days. Though the ADX has been rising but it is still below 20's, so there is hardly any trend to talk about. I begin to get worried over the overbought Stochastic. So I am placing a tighter stop at the prior day low minus 2 points.

The weekly chart continues its bullishness as both the MACD and Stochastic rise. The DMI stays positive and the ADX has stopped falling. Most important is that the recent resistance of 3270 has been take out. I start to ponder whether the market would take off from here next. When this month ends, I would like to check out whether the monthly chart supports this bull talk.

The weekly chart is more biased toward the bulls but the daily chart remains muddled. My plan is to take profit at the daily chart first and wait for the next buy signal in order to get really bullish on this market.

FKLI - Still The Same game Plan - Trade Very Short Term Only-2/27/2012

Though I am not too convinced about the latest buy signal but I still stick to the trading plan and bought again when price went above 1565. Almost immediately soon afterward I had to close the position off when price went back below the top Bollinger Band of 1560. I engaged in new short position with price below the top band and a negative Stochastic. This may be a little imprudent as the Stochastic still has not cross down its 80's signal line. So I have to place an immediate stop at 1569 just in case the market flip flop again.

Flip flop in the market is very common when the ADX is flat and below 20's. That is why I have been advocating very short term trading for the past few weeks. As there is another new bearish divergence at the indicators, so I would watch out for a drastic correction soon. But with the low ADX, the market could drag on for a while before that happen. But I would place more emphasis on any new sell signal over the buy signals.

The weekly chart is still fairly nice as price stays above the upper band and MACD is still rising. But the ADX is still falling and now it is below 20's. With this, I am paying more attention to the Stochastic which is now inside the overbought zone. The Japanese candlestick is a small black body  . So I would be extremely cautious for a possible reversal. If you are trading on the weekly chart, be prepared to take profit at the soonest.

the game plan remains same as previous weeks' - trade only very short term and be ready to take profit / loss at the slightest as major reversal may be just across the horizon.

High Fidelity: Jack Black Covers 
Marvin Gaye
What to say about Jack Black, the over the top comedian who rose to prominence with his role as Barry, the obnoxious record store clerk, in the 2000 film, High Fidelity? As the final installment of this site's coverage of the tenth anniversary of the release of that film, we pause to reflect upon Black's performance at the end of the film, during which he covers Marvin Gaye's immortal classic, "Let's Get It On." His emotive version of this tune is important, as the viewer is left with the impression throughout the film that Barry is nothing but a pretentious hack lacking any talent whatsoever. He brags about his musical efforts, but none of his friends or co-workers really believe that he has any musical chops whatsoever. Throughout much of the film, he banters about his band, Sonic Death Monkey, which is renamed several more times during the movie, once to Kathleen Turner Overdrive and again to Barry Jive and the Uptown Five. Thus, when he rises to take the stage at the film's end, everyone, the viewers of the film, assume that he will crash and burn. But he does not. He delivers a fine rendition of the song. And the film ends.

In 2000, I didn't know much about Jack Black, and I suppose not many others did, either. Of course, I had seen some of the films in which he appeared before High Fidelity, but I doubt I knew who he was at the time. (I adore the 1992 film Bob Roberts, in which Black appears as a sycophant of the rebel conservative title character.). He had already appeared in the Tenacious D television series, but I wasn't really familiar with it. But it was High Fidelity in which he truly came to light as a comic actor (although he has certainly appeared in his fair share of stinkers since then, including the wretched Shallow Hal and the even worse King Kong remake). But for every few instances of cinematic detritus, he charms us in a film like School of Rock. What to do?

And so it was with his first major role in High Fidelity, featuring his fateful homage to Marvin Gaye. How did that come to pass? In fact, it was Black himself who chose the song he would cover in the film, as one news account from April 2000 notes:
Tenacious D fans will be shocked to hear lead singer Jack Black sing "Let's Get It On" at the end of "High Fidelity," but it was Black himself who chose the song. Black is known more for his heavy-metal parodies than the sweet rendition of the Gaye standard that closes the movie starring John Cusack. "I pushed for the song that they ended up using just 'cause I thought I could sing it well. They were talking about me doing another Marvin Gaye song that I didn't think rocked as hard. I wanted to really get a good clop in the chops at the end of the movie." Black plays a bombastic music snob who works in a record store.1
Curiously, though, the soundtrack to the film featured not the live version depicted on screen but a far more restrained studio version. I recall reading an article at the time, or shortly thereafter, indicating that Black had hoped one of the live versions recorded on film would appear on the soundtrack, but that when the soundtrack was released, the studio (or the record company) had included the studio version, which can only be characterized as lifeless. Alas.

Since 2000, Black has become a major star. Whether this is a good thing, the jury is still out. Well, it's probably a good thing, as he does make us laugh, every so often.

High Fidelity (2000 - 2010)

High Fidelity (2000 - 2010)
得知女儿要平生第一次离开中国、去南苏丹打 工,卢志芳(音译)的母亲惊恐万分,试图阻拦她办护照。因此,今年初(卢志芳抵达不到一个月时)29名中国工人在苏丹被亲南苏丹的反政府 军劫持时,这位母亲最担心的事算是应验了。
对于东方明珠(Eastern Pearl)餐厅的经理来说,南苏丹首都朱巴给人的印象跟“危险”毫不沾边。“它就像一个奇迹。以前我只在电视上看过非洲和非洲人,”她说,“南苏丹本身 可能就是一颗明珠。”这家餐厅是一座已开业1年的中资酒店的一部分,提供包房、自助餐和夜间KTV。
酒店的鲜红色灯笼与朱巴灰蒙蒙的街道形成鲜明反差。在南苏丹首都,中国商铺如雨后春笋般兴起,这座酒店就是其中之一。在这个新成立的国 家,中资企业不仅主导了石油业,还涉足酒店业、餐饮业、电信业和建筑业。
从卢志芳的母亲身上可以看出,1月份的劫持事件之后,北京方面面临外派工人的安全所引发的国内民意哗然。不过,更重要的一点可能是,中 国如今还卷入 了长期盟友苏丹与成立仅1年的南苏丹之间的石油争端,这对中国与这两个国家的经贸和外交关系都构成威胁。多年的战事导致两个苏丹互不信 任,加上许多南苏丹 人眼里中国在这场战争中扮演的角色,为这一切蒙上阴影。
南苏丹议会能源与矿产委员会主席亨利•奥德瓦(Henry Odwar)表示:“过去的事很难让人忘怀——
不过,自2005年南苏丹与昔日的宿敌苏丹达成和平协议(该协议为南苏丹去年的独立扫清了道路)以来,中国一直在向南苏丹及其石油示 好。
苏丹四分之三的石油出产于南部,但这些石油的出口要依赖中国在北部援建的基础设施(包括输油管道和一家炼油厂)。中资主导的企业集团为 现已独立的南苏丹开采石油,中国和南苏丹上月还签署了一些新的合同。
但南苏丹与苏丹之间的转运费谈判破裂后,南苏丹上月决定停止石油生产,这让人们再次担心两个苏丹可能开战,对中国的投资和石油供应构成 威胁。
这也让中国陷入外交上的两难境地。南苏丹希望停产将迫使中国(中国进口石油的5%来自两个苏丹)说服苏丹降低转运费要求。奥德瓦说: “他们不应坐视不管,而应向他们在喀土穆的朋友们施压。责任仍在中方。”
一位西方高级外交官在谈到北京方面的作为时表示:“他们没有做得更多,这让南苏丹人感到不爽。”这位外交官称,中国在苏丹的影响力是国 际上最大的。
这场争端考验中国长期奉行的外交政策——不干涉贸易伙伴的国内事务。伦敦大学亚非学院(SOAS)亚非中心主任丹尼尔•拉奇 (Daniel Large)表示,如今这项政策的“指示性作用大于实际作用”。但拉奇说:“中国的问题在于,(苏丹和南苏丹)正试图利用中国达到自己的目的。最终而言, 中国的回旋余地非常有限。”
去年12月,因为苏丹和南苏丹双方就石油款支付问题争执不下,中国派出了一名协调员,协助双方谈判;今年,中国开始向南苏丹派出维和部 队,包括少量步兵——这是中国首次向海外派遣作战部队参与维和。

中国也一直在向南苏丹献殷勤。南苏丹总统萨尔 瓦•基尔 (Salva Kiir)、内阁一些高级成员、南苏丹执政党资深党员,甚至连一些低层公务员都曾访问过北京,费用都由中国政府承担。中国外交部发言人刘为民最近向媒体表 示:“苏丹和南苏丹互为邻居,只有和平共处,才能实现共同发展,这也有利于促进该地区的和平与稳定。”
然而,中国未能保持当地石油生产和出口的顺利进行,这是中国的主要关切。中国还让这个只有830万人口的新生国家的领导层感到,面对中 国这个新兴的超级大国,自己罕见地处于实力地位。
尽管石油占南苏丹财政收入的98%,且该国可能需要中国提供大量贷款才能生存,但南苏丹副外长埃利亚斯•尼亚穆雷尔•瓦克森 (Elias Nyamlell Wakoson)表示:“用一句话可以很好地说明他们所处的两难困境:他们的问题比我们更大。”
就在外交游戏如火如荼地进行之时,朱巴的许多中国人的主要烦恼是生活无聊、天气太热。北京朱巴酒店前台董红梅(音译)不愿离开酒店去外 面,她说:“天气实在太热了。”为了跟丈夫团聚,董红梅平生第一次离开家,来到这里。她的丈夫是这家酒店餐厅的糕点师傅,餐厅是预制房 屋,在一次火灾中部分烧毁。
Marvin Gaye And 
High Fidelity Movie

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Other Great moments from High Fidelity Movie:-

Rob: Liking both Marvin Gaye and Art Garfunkel is like supporting both the Israelis and the Palestinians.
Laura: No, it's really not, Rob. You know why? Because Marvin Gaye and Art Garfunkel make pop records.
Rob: Made. Made. Marvin Gaye is dead. His father shot him.

Rob: Marvin Gaye.
Laura: I know.
Rob: Let's get it on. That's our song. Marvin Gaye is responsible for our entire relationship.
Laura: Oh, is that so? I'd like a word with him then.

Barry's Customer: Hi, do you have the song "I Just Called To Say I Love You?" It's for my daughter's birthday.
Barry: Yea we have it.
Barry's Customer: Great, Great, can I have it?
Barry: No, no, you can't.
Barry's Customer: Why not?
Barry: Well, it's sentimental tacky crap. Do we look like the kind of store that sells I Just Called to Say I Love You? Go to the mall.

Laura: Listen, Rob, would you have sex with me? Because I want to feel something else than this. It either that, or I go home and put my hand in the fire. Unless you want to stub cigarettes out on my arm.
Rob: No. I only have a few left, I've been saving them for later.
Laura: Right. It'll have to be sex, then.
Rob: Right. Right.

Barry: Rob, top five musical crimes perpetuated by Stevie Wonder in the '80s and '90s. Go. Sub-question: is it in fact unfair to criticize a formerly great artist for his latter day sins, is it better to burn out or fade away?
Meet The Citigroup Trader Who Gets Prostitutes To Pose For Him

While most Wall Street investment bankers either head the Hamptons or a ski resort after a long week at the office, one Citigroup banker likes to unwind on the weekends by spending time with prostitutes in the Bronx.

Well, photographing them, that is.

From The New York Times' City Room blog:

As a foreign exchange trader for Citigroup, Chris Arnade, 46, makes a good income, and lives with his wife and three children in a spacious apartment he owns in Brooklyn Heights.

But during much of his spare time, he can be found driving the family minivan around Hunts Point in the Bronx, photographing prostitutes and documenting their lives.

Arnade's work can be found on his Flickr photostream where he posts a photograph and a description of his subject's story. "I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen," he writes underneath each picture.

According to the City Room blog, Arnade has been spending time in Hunts Point since 2010 when he was a volunteer at the Hunts Point Alliance for Children.

He's also very open about the fact that he's a Wall Streeter and that this is one of his hobbies, the report said.

Initially, some of his co-workers at Citi would tease him about his weekend endeavors, but now they're more supportive of his work, according to the City Room blog.

A Citigroup Trader Took These Pictures Of New York Prostitutes


Wall Street is talking about a New York Times blog piece today featuring a Citigroup employee and his passion for photographing and documenting the stories of prostitutes in the Bronx.
Chris Arnade, 46, a forex trader spends a lot of his spare time in Hunts Point with his camera snapping pictures of not only prostitutes, but also homeless people and drug addicts. He also chronicles their stories usually writing underneath each photo, "I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen."

Vanessa: Hunts Point, Bronx

Vanessa: Hunts Point, Bronx
Vanessa: Hunts Point, Bronx

Vanessa, thirty-five, had three children with an abusive husband. She "lost her mind, started doing heroin," after losing the children, who were taken away and given to her mother. The drugs led to homelessness and prostitution. She grew up on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, but now spends her time in Hunts Point, "trying to survive everyday. Just doing whatever it takes." She was standing on the cold street corner looking for business, wearing only flip flops and smoking with her two friends. When I asked her how she wanted to be described, Mary Alice jumped in and said "She's the sweetest woman I know. She will give you the shirt off her back, if she has one on."

Cynthia: Hunts Point, Bronx

Cynthia: Hunts Point, Bronx
Cynthia: Hunts Point, Bronx

Cynthia, forty six, started working as a prostitute at the age of thirteen. She turned to the streets after battling her single mother in Brooklyn. "I didn't want to listen to her. She didn't give me any time." Cynthia is now the mother of fifteen children, eleven of whom are still alive. Her "baby" is sixteen, her oldest child thirty. We talked about the child prostitutes in Hunts Point now. She told me "Hunts Point isn't what it used to be, when the girls would stick together. Then came crack and heroin, that fucked up everything. A girl out there at that age. She got no choice. It ain't right."
Cynthia was strung out, agitated and slurring. When I asked her how she wanted to be described she looked me in the eye, thought for a second, then said "An honest person. Thats what I am. An honest person."
I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen.

Diane on Christmas eve: Hunts Point, Bronx

Diane on Christmas eve: Hunts
                                Point, Bronx
Diane on Christmas eve: Hunts Point, Bronx

I was worried I would not see Diane again, the police having nastily chased both of us away last time we talked. When we did run into each other, she apologized before I could, and suggested we finish taking pictures.
Seeing her in the cold, waiting for customers in the parking lot of a 7-11 at the end of Christmas Eve, got to me. The caustic attitude of the police before ("why would you want to photograph that ugly thing") and the indifference of the johns was too much. I took her picture, all the while feeling like crap.
Fill up on pump 7, three powerballs and a match five, Camel lights, and ten minutes with the hooker outside.

Sonia: Hunts Point, Bronx

Sonia: Hunts Point, Bronx
Sonia: Hunts Point, Bronx

Sonia, forty-six years old and the mother of five, is a crack addict who "sells her body for drugs." Smart, polite, and well-spoken she told me and my friend Nina of her life-long battle with her addiction. She started when she was twenty-two, an overwhelmed single mother of three children working two jobs. She got into prostitution, becoming "a five dollar whore," trading sex for drugs with neighborhood dealers.
When we asked her how much money she needs a day for the drugs she said "as much as I can. I can't stop. I get some money, go and buy it, smoke crack, relax for thirty minutes. I have to get some more. It's non-stop. Until I keep walking back and forth and nothing nothing nothing gives, that's when I will say, 'God says go home.'" She has a "significant other," a wonderful man who's been with her for seventeen years. He does not drink, smoke, or do any drugs.
She has been clean before, something she says can only come from her. She started crying telling us of the eight-year period when she was clean. "I went to a program, mothers and children, everything was great, I came out, got a job, felt good, had money." She fell back four years ago.
When I asked her how she wanted to be described she responded, "I am good person with a very bad disease. If I had all the money in the world I would own all the crack in the world."
I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen.

Mary Alice: Hunts Point, Bronx

Mary Alice: Hunts Point, Bronx
Mary Alice: Hunts Point, Bronx

'I got into hookin late, when I was thirty one. Developed a bad dope problem, lost my job, needed money. I once had a pimp, but no more. Pimp stands for "Put in my pocket," they just rip you off.' I asked her how she wanted to be described 'I am an African American woman, half Jamaican, mother of two wonderful children. I fell on hard times, but do what I got to do.'

Lisa P: Hunts Points, Bronx

Lisa P: Hunts Points, Bronx
Lisa P: Hunts Point, Bronx

Despite the weather, Lisa was in front of her house, looking for customers in the evening warehouse shift-change. She was cold and high. Her eyes shifted with each passing car, her feet stamping to stay warm.
Addicted to crack early, she turned to prostitution. 'I only use it now and then. I'm no longer an addict.' She is the mother of eight children, the first born when she was fifteen.
I asked her how she wanted to be described. She said 'I am conflicted, complex. I ain't bad. I got many things going on. People are not simple.'

Takeesha: Hunts Point, Bronx

Takeesha: Hunts Point, Bronx
Takeesha: Hunts Point, Bronx

Takeesha asked what I was doing in the neighborhood. I explained to her and then she asked to have her picture taken. I then asked her how she wanted to be described.
"As what I am. A prostitute, a mother of six, and a child of God"

Maribel: Hunts Point, Bronx

Maribel: Hunts Point, Bronx
Maribel: Hunts Point, Bronx
Chris Arnade

Maribel approached me and my friend Nina, looking for fifty cents. I asked her if I could take her picture and listen to her story. She replied, "If I tell you my story, I´ll make you cry, but I wanna do the before and after, and I promise a year from today you are gonna take my picture again and I´m gonna be bloomin."
An addict (mostly crack), Maribel is the mother of five children. Her five-month old and her husband were killed in a car accident when she was just 19 years old. A year ago she lost her baby boy, James Alexander, to the courts and since then has been in a downward spiral, her health is failing and she is back into drugs. With tears in her eyes she said "You know how heartbreaking that is? I had five children and never had one been removed."
When I asked her about prostitution she said, she used to, but "now I get in the guys cars but I don't do nothing. I rob them, honest to God." When I told her I was going to write that she said, "I know who I am, I know where I stand, and I know where I´m heading. I can always hold my head up high."
I post people's stories as they tell them to me. I am not a journalist. I don't try to verify, just listen.
Pictures and stories posted with permission from Chris Arnade.

Want to see more of his work?

Check Out Chris Arnade's "Faces of Addiction" on Flickr >>
Yoh! KFC Malaysia Go Learn From This

This Undercover CEO Got So Angry At A Manager That He Revealed Himself And Shut Down The Restaurant On The Spot
The fast food business is rough for the workers on the front line. You earn minimum wage, deal with rude customers, and sometimes, you get an abusive manager that makes your life miserable.

Checkers CEO Rick Silva found this out first-hand on an episode of the CBS reality show Undercover Boss, where CEOs go undercover as regular workers to find out what things are really like.

And what he found was startling.

He was working with employee Todd at the fry station, and as Todd was talking to him, the manager Stevens told him to be quiet. Later, Stevens even threatened to beat Todd for not working hard enough.

Silva was so appalled that he took Stevens outside, broke character and confronted him right there—a rare occurrence on the show. He shut down the store on the spot, ending the shift.

Fortunately for the employees, it wasn't permanent. The restaurant opened the next morning with a new manager. Silva sent the previous one off for more training, because he felt he was unprepared to handle the job.

Here's what Silva had to say about the incident to Mark Brandau at Nation's Restaurant News:

"This one restaurant had a brand new general manager, just put in the position, and he wasn’t running the restaurants to the standards we expect. There was nothing posing a danger to our employees or guests, but his tone with his team members was different, too terse. I came to the conclusion that he wasn’t prepared to run that shift and wasn’t convinced that when I walked away the restaurant would provide the level of service we need.

Employees need to hear the kind of leadership I expect, and general managers need to provide support and coaching. We closed the unit down during that Sunday night shift temporarily. The next morning, it reopened with a new manager, and it’s been running fantastic since then."

Silva's incident reveals something every big company has to deal with: training its employees.

The manager exhibited a plethora of traits that will make employees miserable. How did the company allow someone like that to be put in charge?

Silva knows, and accepts responsibility for it. He admitted that his company didn't have the proper training procedures and checks put in place, and as a result, its own workers suffered.

Check out the video of Silva's confrontation below:

Go back to the boardwalk with The Drifters’ 

Charlie Thomas

It’s nearly 5 o’clock as Charlie Thomas steps onto the stage of the vintage New England theater where he’ll be performing on this warm spring evening. Despite the fact that the 74-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer has only had four hours of sleep to recover from the previous night’s show 1,100 miles away, he and his Drifters — Lou Bailey, Stephen Brown and Jeffrey Hall — eagerly take the stage with keyboardist Jack Colombo and his band to rehearse some new material Thomas has asked his musical director to prepare.
The other acts have finished their sound check early, and The Drifters now have a rare hour to themselves. The band sets a thumping R&B groove for a rocking medley of the Bill Pinkney chestnut, “Steamboat,” segueing effortlessly into “Drip Drop,” originally led by Bobby Hendricks. The chart works well, and the two-dozen lucky individuals watching the rehearsal mirror Thomas’ smile as the final chord rings out.
          Drifters in May 2011 The Drifters — Jeffrey Hall, Louis Bailey, Charlie Thomas and Stephen Brown — performed May 21, 2011, in Cranston, R.I. Todd Baptista photo.
Someone mentions “Kiss and Make Up,” Thomas’ first lead committed to wax with The Crowns on Doc Pomus’ tiny R&B label in 1958.
“We were at the Apollo Theater on the amateur show,” the Richmond, Va., native recounts. “We took the amateur show, and they kept us there for two weeks, opening for Ray Charles and Duke Ellington’s band. Clyde McPhatter had gone into the Army, and George Treadwell, the manager of The Drifters, was looking for a new lead singer. That ended up being Ben E. King, who was singing with me and Dock Green, Elsbeary Hobbs, and Poppa Clark, who ended up leaving. So Benny told George he would take the job if he would give us, The Five Crowns, the backup. He took the job and wrote ‘There Goes My Baby,’ and that’s what put us on top as The Drifters.”
          Drifters The Drifters in 1963 (clockwise, top center): Charlie Thomas, Rudy Lewis, Johnny Moore, Johnny Terry, Gene Pearson. Photo courtesy Todd Baptista.
Thomas brushes off the offer of a lyric sheet and remembers most of the words to “Kiss and Make Up” from memory. “Don’t go away, come back and stay where you belong,” he repeats as the band vamps the ending, waiting for Charlie’s cue to end the tune.
“I haven’t done that one since I was a kid,” he laughs before jumping into “Baltimore,” a rarity from the group’s initial 1959 Atlantic session. Scanning a fat, three-ring binder bulging with close to 50 charted tunes is a collector’s dream. From the original group’s heyday — “Ruby Baby,” “I’ve Gotta Get Myself A Woman,” “Bells of St. Mary,” even “The Way I Feel,” are ready should Thomas call them out, which he frequently does. An authentic, driving “At The Club” is next, followed in rapid succession by “Please Stay.”
“If I got on my knees, and I pleaded with you …” Charlie implores, his soulful tenor augmented solely by a mellow guitar and auxiliary percussion. “We’ll do that one tonight,” Colombo affirms.
On occasion, Charlie selects the emotional flip of “Under The Boardwalk.” “I Don’t Want To Go On Without You,” recorded in tribute to one of the group’s greatest lead voices, brings back memories.
“Rudy Lewis was supposed to record that song,” he explains, remembering his close friend who died unexpectedly in a Harlem hotel room on May 20, 1964, at age 27. “Rudy had a heart attack. When he died, I was the one who closed his eyes. They gave me the song to record after he passed on. I really do love that song because that one, in particular, brings back a lot of memories.”
During a quick pause, a fan asks Thomas about “Only In America,” whose line about growing up to become president became a reality in 2008.The
“We recorded that first, but that was back in the time when they had a lot of prejudices,” he explains. “They told us it wouldn’t be right for a black group to sing it because people might take it as a racial thing, so they gave it to Jay and the Americans. I think it was truly a beautiful song. I didn’t care who did it. It was about the United States. It was about our hometown, whether we were black or whatever, you know. We should record that again.”
Bringing a bit of theater to the group’s stage show, the auditorium’s lighting technicians spot a round card table at stage right with Bailey, Brown, and Hall easing into three of four nondescript chairs encircling it.
“Looks like I’ll spend another night with the boys,” Thomas sings alone, as his Drifters play a mock poker game a few feet away. “Deal ’em,” Charlie barks, taking the lone empty chair at the table at the song’s end as the stage lights fade to black.
Before time runs out, discussion turns to “A Midsummer Night In Harlem,” an often overlooked 1974 gem that the group is working to bring back to the stage.
“That was the last big one we had,” Charlie states. “We were going back to The Apollo Theater, because they were thinking of tearing it down. This was before they did the Motown special in the ’80s. A guy named Freddie Anisfield wrote that song for me to sing on the stage. It was a beautiful song, but it seemed like he disappeared off the map after we recorded it, and we couldn’t put it out the way we wanted. Maybe we can put the song out like it’s supposed to be put out, because it was a truly beautiful song.”
From the mid-’70s into the 21st century, new recordings by Thomas have been few and far between.
“We are trying to go forward, but we were standing still for a long time,” he explains. “We’ve been standing still for years doing the great songs that The Drifters have recorded. It didn’t seem like we could go into the studio to bring out anything new or fresh. The music of the day didn’t seem to agree with us. I don’t know what was wrong with it, but I made more money off radio stations and studios calling me back in to do my songs over again. But I would like to have a No. 1 hit again so the people would know that The Drifters are still around and kicking.”
          Drifters Saturday Night At The Movies“Take Me Back To The Boardwalk,” the first all-new studio recording by Thomas’ Drifters in years, is the title track from the CD the group sells at its performances. A nostalgic look at The Drifters’ golden years, it’s an authentic piece that blends nicely with the live show highlights that fill the remainder of the disc.
“Jack Colombo wrote that one for me,” Charlie explains. “Jack runs across the globe with me, and he really does help me a lot. He’s younger than I am, but when he first came to me he said, ‘Charlie, I don’t want to play with anyone but you. Please let me play with you.’  I took him on, and he hasn’t failed me yet. He’s been with me almost 11 years. He learned everything The Drifters did, and he’s helped me put it out to the people on the stage. He’s a magnificent gentleman.”
A native of Brockton, Mass., Colombo initially refined the group’s existing arrangements. “There wasn’t anything fresh or new,” Colombo, a Hammond enthusiast explains. “It was routine. Individual parts in the arrangements got lost over time, so I went back and listened to the recordings and rewrote all the charts. I felt Charlie’s legacy and show needed more thought, so we added new material that no one ever bothered to tackle. The set list is different every night. I always ask, ‘How can I keep the audience on a constant roller coaster ride? How do we keep the energy constant and climbing, taking into account the tempos, balancing the hits with the B-sides, what to hit hard, what works unplugged and when to hit lightly and emotionally.’ For those who have seen us before, the challenge is how do we keep surprising them and making it a new show?”
“Some of my old friends have gone, but they’re still singing for me … and the song we sang together is still part of my best memories,” Thomas sings in the last verse of the new tune, his voice filled with emotion and pride. “Even though we weren’t born from the same mother or father, we called each other brother, and that’s love right there,” he relates, glancing at images of his old singing partners. “All my childhood friends I loved: Elsbeary Hobbs, Dock Green, Johnny Moore — I used to call him ‘pie’ because of his bald head — Rudy Lewis, and Bill Pinkney.  I loved them like brothers.”
With the exception of his longtime friend Ben E. King, who left the group to go solo in 1960, Thomas is keenly aware that all the men who sang the hits with him have passed away. His attention quickly turns back to the task at hand.
“But life goes on. We can only pray for each other, and when we meet each other again, we’ll hug each other and love each other in the name of God.”
Asking Thomas about any of the non-original Drifters groups trading off the name elicits genuine distaste — the revulsion of someone who’s been robbed.
“It takes jobs away. People are getting the phonies. I realize that the world is a small place and people need money, but we’ve got a whole lot of friends across the country that get disappointed, and it hurts our hearts when I get mail saying ‘We went to see The Drifters, but it wasn’t you, Charlie’. That makes me feel bad, makes them feel bad, and I have to explain and explain. I hate it when my friends in the public go someplace and see faces they’ve never seen before. I’d tell these people, ‘Don’t hurt my friends.’”
A radio interviewer asks Thomas what he thinks of today’s music, and where The Drifters fit into the modern music scene.
“They told me from the beginning that rock ’n’ roll will never die, and I believe that, because I think in my heart there are a lot of kids out there that love it,” he says. “I would hope that some of the kids today would pick up on some of the good old rock ’n’ roll.  We had good times back in the day.  I miss people like Sammy Davis Jr., Jackie Wilson and Sam Cooke. I miss those kinds of guys, and it’s a shame to see that legacy fall apart. The kids today are walking around McDonald’s with their hats turned backwards and their britches falling down. They’ve got to pull their britches up and be somebody. I can’t see myself walking around pulling up my britches. You’ve got people whose waist is 28 and they buy 38 pants. Maybe I can teach them how to wear a belt. And they’re hitting me left and right with these names. Who is Lady Gaga? Hootie and the Blowfish?  I respect the entertainer, but these names get me. I love the singing, don’t get me wrong. I do love the music.”
By now, it’s past 6, and the theater staff is beginning to prepare to open the theater doors for the evening’s performance.
“Let’s do a little bit of ‘Boardwalk’,” Thomas tells Colombo, drawing a puzzled look. It’s the set closer at all the group’s performances, and a tune they all know in their sleep. Still, the bassist begins the familiar six-note pattern and Charlie sings, “When the sun beats down and burns the tar up on the roof…” Slowly, it starts to dawn on the band and the singers that Thomas is not rehearsing — but performing the group’s signature classic especially for the theater staff and those who have stayed to watch his rehearsal. Not surprisingly, he takes the tune to its conclusion, smiling and singing to a wheelchair-bound guest before retiring to his hotel room for a quick pre-show nap.
It’s just after 9, and The Drifters, decked out in red, white and black, stand just off stage in the wings, watching Colombo and the band kick off the group’s overture.
“I don’t eat too much before I go on,” Charlie explains. “I drink a couple of bottles of water to keep my nerves down, and then we’re on stage for an hour. After I do my show, I start snacking on whatever I can: grapes, yogurt, maybe cake. I try not to eat too many sweets, but I love cakes and pies. Maybe I’ll eat a little lasagna.”
Hall, Brown and Bailey harmonize to the familiar passages emanating from the overture, smiling and loosening up with a few precision dance steps. Thomas stands apart, closest to the curtain, intently watching the band and studying the audience’s reaction.
“Back in the day, Pigmeat Markham and Ruth Brown told me if you don’t get nervous on the stage, you won’t do a good show. Every night before I hit the stage, I get a little nervous. Then, I look up in the air and say, ‘Thank you, Lord, for the blessing,’ and I walk out on the stage.”
As the band begins vamping the familiar opening of “On Broadway,” Thomas purposely emerges to claim the spotlight, his Drifters following closely.
“Hey, hey, hey … we’re here to have a party today …” he sings with an equal blend of joy and attitude. For nearly 90 minutes, the group breezes from one Drifters favorite to another. While the first three or four tunes are unchanged nearly every night, Charlie rarely knows what’s coming next. He and Colombo understand and trust one another. The singer never asks to see the set list. Thomas picks up on the band’s vamp and jumps into “Saturday Night At The Movies” and “Sweets For My Sweet” without missing a beat, honors requests for “When My Little Girl Is Smiling” and “Drip Drop,” and calls for Louis Armstrong’s “What A Wonderful World” when someone special in the audience touches his heart. The new material draws raves alongside staples “Up On The Roof,” “Save The Last Dance For Me” and “This Magic Moment.”
“Drifters is all we do,” Charlie explains. “We have so many songs, we don’t need to do other people’s material. We do all of them from ‘White Christmas’ and ‘Money Honey’ on down.”
Minutes after the finale, the group members slide into four waiting chairs in the theater lobby. For nearly 30 minutes, they sign autographs, pose for pictures, chat with fans and thank their audience. Fans remark that Thomas and his group sound better than ever.
“For an old man, 74 years old, I’m still loving rock ’n’ roll, and I’m still doing what I used to do,” he sums. “I love my audience. The connection with my audience is memories and love. I appreciate it, and I love what God put me here to do. I’m a Drifter, and I’m proud to say that, because I’ve been a Drifter ever since I was 20 years old. I’m still going, and I’m not thinking of leaving here for a long while.”
After five short hours of sleep, the fellows are waiting to board an early-morning flight back to Baltimore-Washington International Airport. They’ll have the week to rest before resuming their touring schedule. Gigs in Biloxi, Miss.; Detroit; Little Rock, Ark.; New Jersey and even Deadwood, S.D., lie on the road ahead. Fifty-three years into his career, the veteran road warrior seems indefatigable. If Charlie’s tired, he doesn’t show it.

 By Todd Baptista