Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Happy B-Day Brian Wilson: Hoorah! You’ve reached the big 070 and still on top! Is 70 the new 50?

“ The fact that we could still harmonize after 50 years – that’s quite a reunion … we put a lot of love in our harmonies…there’s some real love in there!”
~~ Brian Wilson, American Icon
June 14, 2012 on The Beach Boys VEVO’s channel

June 20th, the first day of summer, Brian Wilson, American musician, co-founder and brains behind The Beach Boys, turns 70 years young.

Wilson and the rest of The Beach Boys have been celebrating their 50th anniversary with a tour that began in 2011. The Beach Boys is the first pop band in America to reach the 50 year milestone. Many of their songs were all about summer -– sun, beach, surf -- everyone loves summer and everyone loves Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys! Happy B-Day to you Brian! Wishing you many, many, more. And Happy 50th Anniversary to The Beach Boys!

From the look and sounds of his latest performances, and from various snippets of interviews over the years, Wilson still has "good vibrations." As a child growing up listening to his music, Wilson still sounds great and is still the best at what he is – singer, songwriter, composer, arranger, producer, musician, actor, genius.

Known by many as “the Mozart of Rock and Gershwin of his generation,” Wilson, for the first time in 20 years, is back with the original Beach Boys (except late Dennis and Carl) touring again and singing their latest, “That’s Why God Made the Radio.”

The official Beach Boys Facebook page had over 950,000 likes as of mid-June – “God only knows how the world feels about Brian and The Beach Boys.”

In March 2011, nearly 50 years after the group formed, the long lost, legendary album “SMiLE,” regarded as the most famous unreleased album of all time, was released as a CD box set titled "The Smile Sessions" and received unanimous critical acclaim. This was Brian Wilsons follow-up project to Pet Sounds, but was never completed in its original form. Photo left, "SMiLE" original album cover design by artist Frank Homles.

Earlier in 2012, Rolling Stone listed SMiLE as #381 of their 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list. Just when you think you've heard all of their masterpieces, another opus surfaces. I can listen to Brian Wilson and The Beach Boy’s music forever and have posted several links below to videos of their music so you can hear and see for yourself.

"Pet Sounds" Wilson's psychedelic rock style album, has been "championed and emulated for its dramatic and revolutionary baroque instrumentation" and ranked at #1 in several music magazines' lists of greatest albums of all time, including New Musical Express, The Times and Mojo Magazine. It was ranked #2 in Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list.
The Beach boys Historic Landmark (photo left), was dedicated at 3701 W. 119th St., Hawthorne, CA, childhood home of Brian, Carl, and Dennis Wilson, on May 20th, 2005. Their home was demolished in the mid-1980s during construction of the Century Freeway.

Timeline of awards and recognitions

• Wilson and the Beach Boys were inducted into the Rock Hall of Fame in January 1988.
• In 2000, Wilson was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Paul McCartney introduced Brian, referring to him as "one of the great American geniuses."
• In March 2001, TNT and Radio City Music Hall hosted "An All-Star Tribute to Brian Wilson." This event featured performances and appearances by Elton John, Billy Joel, Chazz Palminteri host, David Crosby, Dennis Hopper, Paul Simon, Carly Simon, The Go-Go's, Cameron Crowe, Sir George Martin, Vince Gill, Brian's daughters Carnie & Wendy Wilson along with Chynna Phillips (Wilson Phillips), Jimmy Webb, Darius Rucker, Matthew Sweet, Ann and Nancy Wilson of (Heart), The Boys Choir of Harlem, and others.
• Pet Sounds has been ranked as one of the most influential records in popular music, and has been ranked #1 on several music magazines' lists of the greatest albums of all time. It is ranked #2 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
• On May 10, 2004, Wilson was honored as a BMI Icon at the 52nd annual BMI Pop Awards. He was saluted for his "unique and indelible influence on generations of music makers."
• A 2005 concert, "Musicares: A Tribute to Brian Wilson," was held in Wilson's honor, during which he was named MusiCares Person of the Year. Performers included Jeff Beck, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Earth Wind & Fire, Barenaked Ladies, and Backstreet Boys, among others.
• On May 20, 2005, Wilson and two of the other original-era Beach Boys (Al Jardine and David Marks) were honored with the unveiling of the Beach Boys Historic Landmark on the former site of the Wilson family home in Hawthorne, California.
• In 2005, Wilson won the Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance for Mrs. O'Leary's Cow.
• In November 2006, Wilson was inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame by Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour. Wilson performed "God Only Knows" and "Good Vibrations" at the ceremony.
• On December 2, 2007, the Kennedy Center Honors committee recognized Wilson for a lifetime of contributions to American culture through the performing arts in music.
• May 20, 2011, Wilson received the UCLA George and Ira Gershwin Award at UCLA Spring Sing.

Acting Filmography:

• Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him?) (2010)
• Himself Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of "Smile" (5-Oct-2004)
• Himself Mayor of the Sunset Strip (17-Jun-2003)
• Himself Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey (29-Jan-1994)
• Himself My Own Private Idaho (12-Sep-1991)
• Live Aid (13-Jul-1985)
• Himself The Monkey's Uncle (23-Jun-1965)
• Himself The T.A.M.I. Show (29-Dec-1964)
• Himself Official Website: http://www.brianwilson.com/

Author of book:

•Wouldn't It Be Nice: My Own Story (1991, memoir)

Other Resources

ABC News BackStage Pass Digital Original
Brian Wilson Web Site
About Brian
Facebook page for Brian Wilson
YouTube.com: Brian Wilson Plays “Surf it Up” on Piano
The Beach Boys 51 year discography

Fifty-year discography:

(source: http://www.beachboys.com/albums.html)

• Lost and Found: 1961-1962 DCC 1961-62
• Surfin' Varese Sarabande 1961-62
• Surfin' Safari Capitol 1962
• Surfin USA Capitol 1963
• Surfer Girl Capitol 1963
• Little Deuce Coupe Capitol 1963
• Shut Down Vol. 2 Capitol 1964
• All Summer Long Capitol 1964
• The Beach Boys' Christmas Album Capitol 1964
• Beach Boys Concert Capitol 1964
• The Beach Boys Today! Capitol 1965
• Summer Days (and Summer Nights!) Capitol 1965
• Beach Boys' Party! Capitol 1965
• Pet Sounds Capitol 1966
• Best of the Beach Boys Capitol 1966
• Smiley Smile Capitol 1967
• Wild Honey Capitol 1967
• Best Of The Beach Boys Vol. 2 Capitol 1967
• Friends Capitol 1968
• Stack-o-Tracks Capitol 1968
• Best Of The Beach Boys Vol. 3 Capitol 1968
• ABC, 20/20 Capitol 1969
• Sunflower Brother/Reprise 1970
• Good Vibrations Capitol 1970
• Greatest Hits (UK)Capitol 1970
• Surf's Up Brother/Reprise 1971
• Carl and the Passions: So Tough Brother/Reprise 1972
• Holland Brother Reprise 1973
• The Beach Boys In Concert Brother/Reprise 1973
• Endless Summer Capitol 1974
• Spirit Of America Capitol 1975
• 15 Big Ones Brother/Reprise 1976
• Beach Boys '69 (Live In London) Capitol 1976
• The Beach Boys Love You Brother/Reprise 1977
• M.I.U. Album Reprise 1978
• L.A. (Light Album) Caribou 1979
• Sunshine Dream Capitol 1980
• Keepin' The Summer Alive Caribou 1980
• Ten Years Of Harmony Epic 1981
• Rarities Capitol 1983
• The Beach Boys Caribou 1985
• The Beach Boys: 1962-1967
• Time-Life 1986
• Made In The U.S.A. Capitol 1986
• Still Cruisin' Capitol 1989
• The Absolute Best Vol. 1 Capitol 1991
• The Absolute Best Vol. 2 Capitol 1991
• Summer In Paradise Brother Entertainment 1992
• Good Vibrations: 30 Years of the Beach Boys Capitol 1993
• The Instrumental Hits Toshiba EMI 1994
• Greatest Surfing Songs CEMA 1995
• Little Deuce Coupe - Greatest Car Songs EMI Special Markets 1996
• The Best Of The Beach Boys [TEN BEST SERIES] EMI Special Markets 1997
• Perfect Harmony Capitol 1997
• The Pet Sounds Sessions EMI/Capitol 1997
• Endless Harmony EMD/Capitol 1998
• Ultimate Christmas Capitol 1998
• Greatest Hits Vol. 1 Capitol 1999
• Greatest Hits Vol. 2 Capitol 1999
• Greatest Hits Vol. 3: Best of the Brother Years 1970-1986 Capitol 2000
• Hawthorne, CA: Birthplace of a Musical Legacy Capitol 2001
• Live at Knebworth 1980 Eagle 2002
• The Beach Boys Classics: Selected By Brian Wilson EMI/Capitol 2002
• The Very Best Of The Beach Boys Capitol 2003
• The Very Best Of The Beach Boys: Sounds Of Summer Capitol 2003
• Sounds of Summer: The Very Best of The Beach Boys Toshiba EMI Japan 2004
• Songs From Here and Back Hallmark 2006
• Songs Covered By The Beach Boys Sterling/EMI 2006
• Good Vibrations 40th Anniversary Capitol/EMI 2006
• Pet Sounds 40th Anniversary Capitol 2006
• The Beach Boys Greatest Hits: Live At Knebworth Laserlight 2006
• The Warmth Of The Sun Capitol 2007
• The Platinum Collection EMI Australia 2007
• Summer Love Songs Capitol 2009
• Christmas Harmonies Capitol 2009
• 10 Great Songs Capitol 2010
• The Smile Sessions Capitol 2011
• 50th Anniversary Retrospetive 'ZinePak Capitol 2012
• That's Why God Made The Radio Capitol 2012

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Happy 200th B-Day to Citi: Citi Celebrates bi-centenary ~ 200th years in business on June 16, 2012 with theme, brand and innovation

“ One bank. Two centuries. And millions of thanks.”
~~ Citibank Web site Welcome page, June 2012

Today, Citi celebrates 200 years. City Bank of New York was chartered by New York State on June 16, 1812, with $2 million of capital. Serving a group of New York merchants, the bank opened for business on September 14 of that year, and Samuel Osgood was elected as the first President of the company.

The company's name was changed to The National City Bank of New York in 1865 after it joined the new U.S. national banking system, and it became the largest American bank by 1895.

Citi also became the first contributor to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in 1913, and the following year it inaugurated the first overseas branch of a U.S. bank in Buenos Aires, although the bank had, since the mid-19th century, been active in plantation economies, such as the Cuban sugar industry. (Photo above left, Federal Reserve Bank of New York)

The 1918 purchase of U.S. overseas bank International Banking Corporation helped it become the first American bank to surpass $1 billion in assets, and it became the largest commercial bank in the world in 1929. As it grew, the bank became a leading innovator in financial services, becoming the first major U.S. bank to offer compound interest on savings (1921); unsecured personal loans (1928); customer checking accounts (1936) and the negotiable certificate of deposit (1961).

Citi’s bi-centenary will also mark the first time Citi sponsored the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams. As the official bank sponsor of the 2012 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams, last month Citi unveiled the largest and most integrated U.S. sponsorship campaign the company ever had. Featured are 13 Olympic and Paralympic qualifiers, hopefuls and alumni who are members of Team Citi, that includes broadcast, print, out-of-home, digital, events, promotions and retail activation.

Citi's leadership presence in the global financial market can be seen from their timeline which stems as far back as financing the Panama Canal in 1904 to introducing ATMs in 1977.

Other Resources

Brand Channel: Citi Prepares 200 Anniversary, April 2, 2012
Here Is The City: On Citigroup’s Anniversary, Don’t Forget Its Brutal Past
CBS US: Citi celebrates 200th anniversary with CBS outdoor UK
The Smith Family: Citi 200 Kids Campaign, Citi supports 200 kids on its 200th birthday
NY Sports Journalism: Citibank Opens Olympic Checkbook For Campaign Supporting Team USA
Market Watch: Citi Launches Advertising Campaign for First Ever Sponsorship of U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams; Campaign to showcase brand and innovative product portfolio
HuffingtonPost Tech: Apple WWDC 2012 Liveblog
CBS News: Apple WWDC 2012: Apple announces next generation MacBook Pro with Retina Display
Huffington Post: Apple's WWDC News: Which Announcements Clicked, Which Products Clanked And Everything Else You Should Know by Jason Gilberg

Please share this on your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media networks you enjoy! Thanks!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Apple Gets Prettier at 2012 Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) ~ unveils “the most beautiful computer ever made”

“ iOS 6 The world’s most advanced mobile operating system.”
~~ Apple Banner, June 11, 2012

WWDC, Moscone Center, San Francisco, CA

The Apple digital banner at Moscone Center (photo above) showcased the new iOS logo with the caption: “The world’s most advanced mobile operating system.” The creative revision for iOS 6 Logo is the use of water ripples vs. the droplets from iOS 5 in 2012.

The next four days will be a whirlwind of innovative, integrative, technologies at The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC)2012 at downtown San Francisco's Moscone Center.

Tickets to the event were $1,599 and sold out in 1 hour and forty-three minutes. Shortly after that, scalpers were outside selling tickets to many willing to pay thousands more during this grand opening. Live streams of the event will be available on Apple's website.

The minimum age requirement dropped to 13 years young from 18 years illustrating the trend in more 13 year old Apple software developers. Of course eligible members between 13 and 17 years of age must have their parent or guardian purchase tickets.

Apple CEO Tim Cook began with compelling statistics of software on Apple's gadgets. “The App Store has some 650,000 apps, over 30 billion downloads to date, and payments to Apple developers a total of more than $5 billion,” Cook said. The theme this year was not about new product hype but more about mobility, interoperability and the impact this will have from a usage perspective on people’s lives.

"Designed by Apple from the ground up, Maps gives you turn-by-turn spoken directions, interactive 3D views, and the stunning Flyover feature.1 All of which may just make this app the most beautiful, powerful mapping service ever."
~~Apple Web site, iOS6 Preview page

The main iOS 6 improvements are Apple's own mapping application, switching from Google Maps, that will have a 3D map app, deep integration with Facebook, and enhanced photo-sharing features.

Last year’s WWDC keynote, Apple revealed more about OS X 10.7 Lion, and debuted iOS 5 and iCloud. This year, the event unveiled latest mobile iOS 6, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion and the new line of laptops.

Next up was Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing who unveiled the new MacBook Pro, describing it as “The most beautiful computer we’ve ever made.” Known as the New MacBook Air, it weighs less than 4.5 lbs, is less than .71” thick, and has high definition retina display, so sharp that you don't see the pixels.

The "beautiful" laptop will retail in July starting at $2199 and will be a new industry standard for screen sharpness with higher screen quality, a 15-inch screen, 4X resolution of previous models, better video quality, and a much longer battery life.

Developers are already able to download a version of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, which narrows the gap between the PC and phone software packages, making Mac personal computers work more like iPhones.

SIRI will not be just for your car but also speak to your iPad and iPhone. There are also added virtual assistant features to SIRI which interprets voice commands and talks back to the user and is integrated with other apps – for example, you can have voice commands integrated with Yelp and Apple Maps.

Also, according to Apple, the new version of its Mac operating system, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, will go on sale next month for $20. The update brings features from Apple's phone and tablet software, like the iMessage texting application, to the Mac. There is a broader integration with social media, not just Facebok and Twitter but sharing info from devices, friends devices, etc.

So what was not mentioned at this year’s event? The Apple TV and specifically what new features will come with iOS 6, or when it will be released to consumers.

For more information, visit this FoxNews link

Other Resources

MacRumors, June11, 2012
imore.com, Apple releases WWDC 2012 schedule, Keynote set for Monday, June 11, 10am PDT
Apple expected to show fresh software.
Phil Schiller unveils new MacBook Pro
Fox News
HuffingtonPost Tech: Apple WWDC 2012 Liveblog
CBS News: Apple WWDC 2012: Apple announces next generation MacBook Pro with Retina Display
Huffington Post: Apple's WWDC News: Which Announcements Clicked, Which Products Clanked And Everything Else You Should Know by Jason Gilberg

Please share this on your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media networks you enjoy! Thanks!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee ~ 60 years on the Throne

“In a welcoming of bells, the Queen arrives at Westminster... The Queen anointed, blessed and consecrated...

And in cloth of gold with a golden girdle...

And as poetry and music may speak great meanings and little sounds, so now thoughts of her too and history are lived in moments of short sentiment...

And so out of the Abbey and into the London which waits to receive her.”

~~ Sir Laurence Olivier
English actor, director, and producer; Narrator, The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II on June 2, 1953

Today, 4 days of Diamond Jubilee festivities, marks a multinational celebration throughout 2012 and begins with the Queen taking in a 41-gun salute by the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery at Horse Guards Parade in central London.

Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee marks a historic milestone in the iconic monarch's reign.

On June 2nd, 1952 Queen Elizabeth began her reign and the Queen still rules 21,900 days later (60 years).

Elizabeth II is the constitutional monarch of 16 sovereign states known as the Commonwealth realms, head of the 54-member Commonwealth of Nations, and head of state of the Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories.

Queen Elizabeth II experienced the most change, traveled widely, and became acquainted with so many heads of states than any other monarch in history. She is the patron of over 600 charities.

The Coronation ceremony of Elizabeth II followed a similar pattern to the coronations of the kings and queens before her, being held in Westminster Abbey, and involving the peerage and clergy. However, for the new Queen, several parts of the ceremony were markedly different.

The coronation of the Queen was the first ever to be televised (although the BBC Television Service had covered part of the procession from Westminster Abbey after her father's coronation in 1937), and was also the world's first major international event to be broadcast on television.
Today also marks the second time in history a Diamond Jubilee is celebrated. The last was Queen Victoria -- great, great, Grandmother to Queen Elizabeth -- who celebrated 60 years on the throne some 115 years ago back in 1897.

Other Resources
CTV News: 60 Facts you didn’t know about Queen Elizabeth II
CTV: The Diamond Jubilee: Schedule of Events
CTVNews: The Day Princess Elizabeth became Queen
BBC History: The Queen
NY Daily News: Queen Elizabeth off to the races as jubilee events begin
Wikipedia: Queen Elizabeth II
BBC History: The Queen – The early life of the Queen
BBC History: The Queen – How Princess Elizabeth met her Prince
BBC History: The Queen – Princess Elizabeth becomes Queen
BBC History: The Queen – The coronation of Queen Elizabeth II
BBC History: The Queen – The Queen on the world stage
BBC History: The Queen – Britain celebrates the Queen’s Silver Jubilee
BBC History: The Queen – Annus Horribilus
BBC History: The Queen – The Queen returns after the death of Diana
BBC History: The Queen – Golden Jubilee Party at the Palace
BBC History: The Queen – A Diamond Queen
Please share this on your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media networks you enjoy! Thanks!