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American jazz legend Dave Brubeck passed away today at the age of 91.
Like many people, I heard The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s “Take Five” many times growing up, but it wasn’t until around 2002 that I started their buying albums.
Over the past few years, I’ve started listening to those albums more and more (mostly because I can’t listen to anything with lyrics when I write).
Ninety-one years is a pretty good run. Creating what Brubeck did within those 91 years makes it a pretty great run.
I know what I’m listening to today,
This week, I decided I would no longer be publishing “dead” posts on “The Blarg.”
Over time, I’ve come to feel those posts are too easy. That, and a shitload of people have been dying recently, and I’m nervous of “The Blarg” becoming an obituary site. I decided that the Phyllis Diller post would be the last of its kind; I figured she was a good one to go out on.
And then yesterday, legendary Muppet performer Jerry Nelson died.
So instead of ignoring Nelson’s passing, I’ve decided that every once in awhile, when the situation warrants it, I’ll handle “dead” posts like this.
Nelson was the hands beneath and the voice behind many of the Muppets greatest characters. On “Sesame Street,” he was the Amazing Mumford, Herry Monster, Sherlock Hemlock, Snuffleupagus, and (probably his most well-known character) Count von Count. On “The Muppet Show,” he was Robin the Frog, Camilla the Chicken, Dr. Julius Strangepork, Uncle Deadly, Lew Zealand, and (my personal favorite) Sgt. Floyd Pepper. And for “Fraggle Rock” fans, he was Gobo.
Nelson was a Muppet original. Sadly, there aren’t very many of them left.
Back in December 2001, some friends, my sister (to be clear, my sister is also my friend) and I had an opportunity to meet Jerry at a Muppet convention in Los Angeles. (Don’t judge us!) It was very brief, but at the end of it I got an autograph from him. That’s somewhere in a box back in Los Angeles (I’m writing this from San Francisco), otherwise I’d scan it and show it to you guys.
But who needs an autograph when I’ve got a little piece of Jerry Nelson right here on my arm?
That sounded gross, but you understand what I mean.
Every time one of the Muppet Men go it bums me out, and Jerry Nelson was one of the best. The Muppets were different after Jim Henson and Richard Hunt died. Somehow, today, the Muppets are different than they were yesterday.
He’ll be missed.
One! One amazing performer! Ha-ha-ha,
PS: Listen to Jerry doing the Count on this commercial.
This one sucks.
We had an opportunity to interview Diller back in 2002 for “Tastes Like Chicken.” Weeks after we interviewed her, she sent the interviewer, our good friend Marla, a card; inside was a short note thanking her for the interview.
You can read the interview here.
Diller was a class act. On top of that, she was hilarious, and a trailblazer for every comedienne who followed her.
She will be missed.
Somewhere, Fang weeps,