Sunday, February 28, 2010

Golden Starlight in Your Eyes of Blue

Today’s post is gonna be cornier than Kansas in August, but it’s about Bing and, well…with Bing, there are only soft edges and best angles, lovers not fighters and everyone bein’ their best selves. I’m really not sure what that means, but thank gawd art and music can say it for me.

When I first saw the above painting on eBay, there was no question—it was mine to be. (How do you find somethin’ like this? Type in “Siamese” & “60s” in the search box.) I pretend it’s me and Bing, though the cat in the painting actually has a tail, and the lady guitarist probably doesn’t take 6 minutes to get through “Lovely Rita” (dang you, chord changes).

Anyway, they’re a team, and so are me & Bing.

Music for when you’re feeling blue (and brown)
A. These are dedicated to the cat I love
Drivin’ N Cryin’, The Friend Song

Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell, Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
This is one of my favorite vocal duets ever. Actually, it probably is my favorite, ‘cause I can’t think of anything else to compete with it. As Elyse would say, they’re totally invested in the song—ahh, it just gives me chills! And I got even more chills when I watched this video (don’t you adore her?! and he is soooo smooth) and found out that Tammi died of a brain tumor at age 24, sending Marvin off in to 4 years of self-isolation. Arrrghhh!! Anyway, the love’s here to hear.

B. Bing sings of himself…
The Carpenters, Close To You
Me & Bing were selected to appear in the ASPCA calendar, featuring staff and their pets, about 4-5 years ago. He was such a pro at the photoshoot it was almost scary, but it all made sense when he later told the animal communicator he sees himself as a “matinee idol,” and that all the lady cats would fall in love with him when they saw his photo (Mr. November, ahem…) He’s a dreamboat indeed, not unlike the subject of this classic song.

Too hokey for you? OK then, you go write a song like Burt Bacharach’s and then go sing it as beautiful as Karen Carpenter does. (Ooops! I guess that’s a sore point for me…)


  1. Yes, Karen Carpenter sang with a yearning in her voice. If heartache could be bottled and sold, it would sound and smell and look just like that vocalist. Even her Christmas songs have a soulful and doleful quality to them. I imagine real love is going to have those peaks and those valleys, and it's not always going to be climbing and soaring. Glad we pet owners have cat companions to help us scale the hills and, best of all, rest along the lakes and lulls along the way. Beautiful column, Pune, and incredible piece of art. It captures both a moment in time and an entire era! Enjoyed reading your column once again!

  2. I love both the songs you mentioned, and yes, they are so very, very invested! That song is really, really hard in karaoke, by the way. Harder than one would think.

    I'm so honored to be mentioned in a Ssspunerism!

    Hey, I didn't know you played any guitar at all!!!!