Monday, September 19, 2016

Pheaturing Claire Dickson

Hey, kids, it's Monday, welcome to the Phile. What's up? I hope you've got a tissue nearby, because you're going to need it for this one. More than 400 students gathered last week outside the home of Ben Ellis, a teacher at their Christ Presbyterian Academy in Nashville, TN, who is battling cancer. Nate Morrow, headmaster of the school, told "ABC News," "It was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen in my entire life... He is one of the kindest and intentionally loving people I've ever met in my life... I think that's what really characterizes him. He's always pursuing other people in wanting to get to know them and love them." Ellis has been teaching at the school since 2008 and was diagnosed with cancer last year. How did he feel about the students gesture? Ellis told "ABC News," "In that moment, I felt like I was not alone." Oh, what's that spill on the ground? Just our melted hearts. Get well soon, Mr. Ellis, there are students waiting for your triumphant return.
Mere days after you stopped imagining Hitler's alleged micropenis, a new rumor about the Fuhrer's sex life has emerged... he liked to lay on his back and have women poop on him during sex. This story isn't going to get any less gross, just as a heads up, and not just the man's-inhumanity-to-man grossness that Hitler facts usually involve. According to the "Daily Star" (and Wikipedia), it wasn't just on him, but in his mouth. In fact, it was even suggested he couldn't have normal sex. He supposedly even had scat sex with his niece Geli Raubal once, which is, astonishingly, so far away from the worst thing that Adolf Hitler ever did. These are the findings of a psychological assessment dossier from the U.S. Office of Strategic Services, the precursor to the CIA, according to the "Daily Star." The dossier was first published to the world in 1972, but they're getting a lot of attention now because Hitler's sex life is, like, trending on Facebook and stuff. Anyway, the documents supposedly also reveal that Hitler liked to be kicked during sex (bet there are a lot of people reading this that are going to be like "me too, Hitler!") and that he loved boning "peasant girls." Said one Nazi informant, "When they stand in the fields and bend down at their work so that you can see their behinds, that’s what he likes, especially when they’ve got big round ones. That’s Hitler’s sex life. What a man." You are what you eat, and Hitler literally liked to eat shit. Allegedly.
A 5th grader from Riverview Elementary School in Fort Mill, South Carolina was forced to wear a jacket all day at school, including in the heat when she went out for recess, because her teacher deemed her top "inappropriate." Alicia Rogers is speaking out on behalf of her daughter, Jordan, claiming that her top was not in violation of the school's dress code when she wore a criss-cross back top to school on September 1st, and that the teacher mishandled the situation according to the school's own policy. According to "KFVS12," the school's dress code says that kids (or, let's be real... girls) are not to wear "tank tops, tops with spaghetti string straps over the shoulders, and other tops that expose a student's stomach or midriff," and Rogers is confident that her daughter's top did not fall into those categories. Plus, possible heat stroke is a bit more important than bare shoulders, right? Come on, Riverview Elementary School. This is the shirt at the center of the controversy...

Furthermore, according to the school's website, teachers who have issues with student's apparel are supposed to send them to the principal. Rogers is claiming that this teacher failed to comply with policy when they took the matter into their own hands. Rogers is now demanding an apology from the school and is planning on speaking in front of the Fort Mill School Board about the incident. She also says that she is speaking up to set an example for her daughter. "I wanted to take this situation where she felt completely powerless, and I wanted to give her a chance to kind of turn that into empowerment to stand up."
A new study in the "Journal of Marriage and Family" is saying that couples who share the chores have more sex. This study contradicts studies done as recently as 2012, which said couples have more sex when women are in charge of the chores, because gender roles are out, and sharing responsibilities with your significant other is in, baby! Another study, done by The University of Alberta in 2015, had a similar outcome: "male-female couples had better and more frequent sex when men chipped in with the chores," according to the Huffington Post. It makes a lot of sense. If you split the work load, you fight less and have more time to bone. Plus, no one is "in the mood" after having to clean someone else's pubes out of the drain. Wanna get laid? Go scrub the toilet.
Despite being completely fictional, Princess Jasmine from Aladdin is getting heat over the updated, more conservative costume that she wears as a face actor in Disney Parks... and yet no one seems to care about Aladdin's more covered-up look. Here they are side-by-side...

Damn, that new costume seems kind of warm for Agrabah, but at least it will protect her from those Arabian sunburns. According to "Orlando Weekly," people have speculated Jasmine's costume has changed due to guests complaining about her original outfit showing too much skin. Others have speculated Disney covered her up because the actress playing Jasmine was getting catcalled or harassed by adult male park goers. That's stupid as Jasmine is not played by an actress... she's real. Preserve the magic, people. Regardless of the reason, change is hard, and people are having a hard time warming up to Jasmine's new duds. Not surprisingly, no one is really talking about Aladdin's updated look. He went from wearing a chest-baring vest and fez to wearing what looks like an ill-fitting marching band costume complete with bejeweled headpiece. But his change of costume hasn't created much of a hubbub at all. Even for fictional women... you are damned if you do, damned if you don't.
So, Halloween is not to far away and there's some costumes I'm already tired of seeing. Like the Zika virus...

After the 2014 sexy ebola costume happened, this was inevitable. People already tried out the Zika costume during the Rio Olympics, and it's a soul-sucking idea. It's back to school season and this month I am showing you some awkward back to school pics.

The '80s were a magical time. Recently I went to the book store and saw this book that kinda made no sense...

Hmmm. I don't get it. There's one thing I noticed this year on CNN, and that is the graphic department is trolling Trump. Check it out...

That's real, people. Do you kids like Oreo's? There's a new flavor of Oreo's that just came out.

Get it at Walmart now. Speaking of Walmart, the greeters are slightly different nowadays.

Ha! Hey, did you see Hillary Clinton's Monica Lewinsky impersonation?

Man, could that picture be anymore blurry? You get the idea. Alright, so, you know I love in Florida, right? Well, there's things that that happen in Florida that happen nowhere else in the universe. That's why I have a pheature called...

On a Saturday morning, 19-year-old Carmen Chamblee was arrested for setting her ex-boyfriend's car on fire in Clearwater, Florida only to find out after the fact that, oops, she'd burned the wrong car. Ladies, let's remember... when planning to go all Left Eye on your ex's ass, it's really important to make sure whatever property you're setting on fire actually belongs to them. She started the fire in the trunk of what she thought was her ex-boyfriend's car on August 28th and was seen by witnesses leaving the scene of the crime on a bicycle. A few days later, the Clearwater Police Department released footage of the suspect feeding the flames, and Chamblee was identified. She's now being charged with second-degree arson and probably first-degree poor decision-making.

If you spot the Mindphuck please let me know. Okay, so, the other day my son and I were talking about how we used to watch "Sesame Street" together. That show is not exactly how I remember it...

"Oscar, I've got fifty bucks and I need a sample of Bert's DNA. And it's go to be... fresh."
"Sure. I've got Ernie's toothbrush and Abby Cadabby's shoes."
"You can't be serious... I mean, you've got to have better than that!"
"Maybe, but nothing I feel like parting with."

Meet 9-year old Amariyanna “Mari” Copeny from Flint, Michigan. She is currently serving as “Little Miss Flint.” Last May, she participated in a historic visit to Flint from President Obama after she wrote him a letter about what she was doing to bring attention to Flint's water crisis. The Trump campaign decided to go to Flint, too, and he also met with the 9-year-old darling. Here was their photo together...

Mari is the face of what many voters are thinking. So much so that she should be allowed to vote. The lucky Trump guard seems to be the only person who avoided seeing it at all. But Mari's face says it all.

Oreo is a delicious sandwich cookie that never wanted to be the go-to metaphor for interracial threesomes.

Today's guest is a talented jazz singer whose album "Scattin' Doll" came out when she was 14-years-old. Please welcome to the Phile... Claire Dickson.

Me: Hello, Claire, welcome to the Phile. How are you?

Claire: Great! Thanks so much for interviewing me!

Me: You are one the youngest guest I ever had on the Phile, Claire. How old are you?  

Claire: I'm 19-years-old.

Me: I think it's amazing someone your age is into jazz and the blues. Did you grow up listening to jazz, Claire?

Claire: When I was 11 my dad played an Ella Fitzgerald CD for me and I fell in love with the music immediately. I'm always trying to recruit more young people into the jazz world!

Me: As far as blues music goes, how can someone so young like really know what the blues is?

Claire: I don't know, I just sing them!

Me: What music do you listen to?

Claire: Jazz and blues, of course!!

Me: Okay, but who exactly?

Claire: I listen to Sarah, Ella, Duke, Bird, all those jazz greats! I also like Roberta Gambarini and Kurt Elling. Although now I mostly listen to jazz and blues I also listen people like Joni Mitchell and Paul Simon. Also, my sister is currently obsessed with Sondheim musicals, so lately I've been having to hear a lot of that.

Me: Most kids your age listen to Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga and would not even know who Ella is. Do you have your friends listen to the records you like... broaden heir horizons?

Claire: I know a few people my age who like jazz, but mostly they're into pop music. But at least, because of me, they know about it. Part of what I would like to do is to get more young people into jazz.

Me: Claire, where are you from?

Claire: I live in Medford, MA. Which is near Boston.

Me: When did you first start to perform? My son is 16 and has done a few plays in school when he was younger. Is that how you first started to realize you wanted to be a performer?

Claire: I used to do a lot of musical theater, but I've wanted to perform and be on stage ever since I can remember! I officially started performing when I was three.

Me: When you perform on stage doing your own music, do you get nervous?

Claire: I hardly ever get nervous. I'm so comfortable and have so much fun with this music.

Me: You mentioned your sister... what other siblings do you have? What do they think of your music?

Claire: I have an older brother and older sister who are both in their twenties. They both think my singing is cool. Then I have a younger sister who likes jazz in moderation. But she puts up with it.

Me: Are your parents musical as well?

Claire: Yes! My dad plays the clarinet and my mother sings.

Me: Congrats on winning the Downbeat Student Award. "Downbeat" is a jazz magazine, right? What did you win and when did you win?

Claire: I won as a blues/pop/rock soloist in the junior high school level and I won as a vocal jazz soloist in the junior high school level. "Downbeat" is the granddaddy of American music magazines and I am really honored to have received these awards!

Me: Did you ever think about trying out for "American Idol" when it was on TV?

Claire: I let my parents worry about that stuff, I just concentrate on singing and learning.

Me: Okay, let's talk about your album "Scattin' Doll," Claire. When did that album come out?

Claire: It came out in April 2011.

Me: I am lucky enough to have a copy of it, Claire. It was recorded when you were twelve, right? How did you end up recording an album of jazz material so young?

Claire: It was recorded in two sessions. One when I was twelve and one when I was thirteen. I actually wanted to record so that I could enter the "Downbeat" competition.

Me: Jazz pianoist Ran Blake discovered you when you were performing at a Cambridge Club, is that right? Tell the readers that story. He had you perform somewhere after, am I right?

Claire: I had my thirteenth birthday concert in January 2010 at a place called the Lilly Pad. Ran Blake happened to stop in. He actually only heard me sing one or two songs but he emailed me the next day and said he wanted me to perform on a concert in October. He kept his promise and more than six months later I got to sing at Jordan Hall. It was really fun!!

Me: I have to ask, what were you doing performing at a club so young?

Claire: Well, I love the music and clubs are one of the places available to perform it. The places I have played are nice restaurant-type clubs, not seedy bars! I have also played at arts centers, parks, folk clubs, concert halls.

Me: Anyway, back to your debut album. Did you pick out the songs personally on what you wanted to record?

Claire: For the first session I hadn't even been singing jazz for a year, so I didn't know many songs. I just did the songs I was most comfortable with and knew the best. But for the second session there were a lot more songs to choose from, so for that really did pick the songs I wanted to record.

Me: Who named the album "Scattin' Doll"? It sounds better then "Scattin' Kid," doesn't it?

Claire: My dad thought of that. It's kind of a play on the song "Satin Doll."

Me: There's one song on it I have to ask you about, Claire. The last song on the album is called "Ornithology/How High the Moon." I am 47-years-old and don't know what ornithology is, and there's you at 12 or 13 singing about it. Do you know what it means?

Claire: Yeah. I read about it in the Smithsonian. Basically, it's the study of birds.

Me: Ahhh. Claire, thanks so much for being on the Phile. What's next for you? Will you be recording a new album?

Claire: Thank you!! I hope to do more performing and maybe more recording.

Me: Why don't you go ahead and plug your website or anything else you want to. I wish you a lot of luck and continued success and I hope you come back to the Phile one day. All the best, Claire.

Claire: Buy my cd:, become a fan on Facebook: Website is:

Me: Thanks, Claire. Great job.

That about does it for this entry of the Phile. Thanks to Claire for a great interview. The Phile will be back next Sunday with jazz saxophonist Geoff Vidal. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

Not if it pleases me. No, you can't stop me, not if it pleases me. - Graham Parker

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