Uriah Heep - May 15, 2014

The American Treasure Tour blog has been honoring the bands whose records are displayed in the Music Room for a few weeks now, bands including the hard-rocking British band Deep Purple, considered as one of "The Big 4" heavy metal bands of the early 1970s, along with Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, and today's headliner:  Uriah Heep.

The British band lifted their name from a character from Charles Dickens' novel David Copperfield.  The fictional Heep was a shameless yes man, whose willingness to play into the egos of the rich and powerful made him a despicable character in the book.  The band was formed in 1967, and has seen many changes in its lineup since then.  Its only original member is Mick Box, the lead guitarist.  Influenced by contemporary bands, they incorporated the distinct sound of the Hammond organ and operatic stylings, to very mixed reviews.  They must have done something right, though, because they were internationally popular by the time their fifth album, Sweet Freedom, was released including the highly popular song "Stealin'."  Within a year, the album had obtained gold status, and helped Uriah Heep reach the peak of their popularity. They recently released their 24th studio album, and they are still touring.

QUESTION:

Which of the following is NOT an album released by Uriah Heep?

a)  ...Very 'Eavy ... Very 'Umble

b)  Outsider

c)  Abominog

d)  Sonic Origami

e)  Into the Ether

Answer Below

HISTORY TODAY:

Every now and then, a historical event is looked back upon with dramatically different perspectives:  some people regard them as the worst events to ever occur, while others celebrate them.  Today's anniversary is a perfect example of one of these events, as it marks 109 years since an important transaction occurred.  110 acres of fertile land in the middle of the Nevada desert was sold to enterprising settlers who made sure the railroad came through.  It was not long before a city emerged.  That city proved to be an oasis in the deep of the desert.  And then, Las Vegas legalized gambling in 1931, it has never looked back since.  

When it comes to popular culture, there are few icons as recognizable as Mickey Mouse, Walt Disney's most famous invention.  Although most people know that the first film that hit the theaters starring Mickey was Steamboat Willie (a play on a Buster Keaton short called Steamboat Bill, Jr.), few know that his first actual cartoon came out in May 15, 1928, called Plane Crazy.  Plane Crazy was a silent film, and Disney could not get anyone to show the film because talking pictures were all the craze.  Distribution of it was held off until three later Mickey Mouse films were released.  First and most famously Steamboat Willie, then The Gallopin' Gaucho, and The Barn Dance.  To abuse an over-used cliche, the rest is history....

BIRTHDAYS:

If the American Treasure Tour blog had its way, the calendar would be chock full of celebrations of special birthdays.  May 15th would definitely be L. Frank Baum Day!  In 1856 Chittenango, New York, the baby boy was named Lyman after his dad.  Hating the name, he always went by Frank.  He also was not the athletic type, despite his parents' hopes for him.  They sent him to military school, but he wanted only to write and paint and dream.  He tried many careers - as a journalist, a chicken farmer, a store owner, and the manager of a theater.  All of them failed.  Then, he tried his hand at writing children's literature.  In 1900, he wrote The Wonderful World of Oz, which changed everything for him.  In the last nineteen years of his life, Baum wrote 14 novels about his fantastical world of Oz and produced successful plays about it.  He also wrote dozens of other stories - some of them offering visionary predictions of the future, including early descriptions of cellphones, laptops, and most importantly advertising on clothing.  Well, we're grateful for his Oz stories, anyway.

If there is one family that can be described as American royalty, there are arguments to suggest their last name is Bush.  With at least five generations of Yale graduates, the Bush clan not only has intellectual pedigree, but also government.  Today is the birthday of Prescott Bush, born in 1895 and the father of President George H.W. Bush and the grandfather of President George W. Bush. Born into a family made wealthy through steel, Prescott expanded that wealth and entered politics - a Republican Senator representing Connecticut, he initially made a name for himself with his dedication to Planned Parenthood, an organization created to provide care o the underprivileged.  In office, he supported President Eisenhower's efforts to halt the Communist witch hunts of Joseph McCarthy, and also the Interstate Highway System, civil rights initiatives, and the development of the Peace Corps.

QUOTE:  We must maintain strong defenses, military and spiritual. - Prescott Bush

Answer:  e)  Into the Ether.  The ATT blog staff made that name up, but now that we think about it, we may want to start our own 'Eavy Metal band and use that name....