6th & 7th December, 2004
Rod in “The Best is Yet to Come” 11/6/04
Photo by Shira Greenburg ©2004 by Broadway.com. Used by Permission
A Thought for Today
I’ve never known a cat that couldn’t calm
me down just by walking slowly past my chair.
CATS ARE PEOPLE TOO?
I'm looking for a poem by you, but I can't
remember the name. It included the line, "After all, cats are people,
too." Can you help me? It would mean a lot! Thank you, Karon
Dear Karon, I’ve written quite a bit about cats but don’t remember ever
coming up with that line. So I asked my friend Jay Hagan and here is his
“This line might be from one of the small Stanyan
books.... The Stanyan Book of Cats. Or it might be from a Bobby
Goldsboro song called Kids Are People Too.”
There is a poem of mine entitled “Some Thoughts on Capitol Punishment”
that was first published in Stanyan Street & Other Sorrows that ends,
“Who kills a man kills a bit of himself but a cat too is an extension of
God.” Hope this helps. Cheers, Rod
I NEVER MET A CAT I DIDN’T LIKE
Dear Rod, Sometime in the seventies, you were on a
late night talk show and read a poem about the best cat you'd ever met.
It was not about Sloopy, but I remember nothing else about it. Do you
have clue what this poem was...and how to obtain a copy? Thanks, A
lifelong fan, Ann
Dear Ann, Tough question. I've written a number of poems about cats and
my life with them. Off hand I can think of "Nikki's First Snow,"
"Atlantic & Pacific," "When I Was Nine" and "The Leaving of Little Joe."
This doesn't even take into consideration poetry and prose where I
mention felines in passing.
Animals of all kinds have always been a part of my life and since my
work is my life they even creep into my songs, "Me and the Cat" being a
good example. I'm afraid for me to answer your question properly you'll
have to give me a little more to go on since to paraphrase Will Rogers,
I never met a cat I didn't like. All my best, Rod
HOUSE, HEARTH & CHRISTMAS
We met years ago at a book signing at the Richs
Department Store in Atlanta, and talked for a while after the crowd
subsided. You kindly mailed me a couple of your albums that you
autographed. I don’t think there are any of your books that I don’t have
in my library or CDs that I don’t own and play with some frequency.
I even remember your 1968 Christmas special, which was on TV and would
love to watch it again, but it’s not available on DVD.
Take care with your renovations. I’m in the middle of a complete
renovation of my little condo – pay as I go, so it will take a few
Dear Tom, Renovations? In my dreams. We're talking about building a
two-story house and four-story barn/studio from scratch. Have no idea
how long it will take but I'm dancing as fast as I can. Think good
thoughts because the quicker I get it finished the faster I can hit the
concert trail again.
The Christmas special with Dusty Springfield hasn't made it to DVD yet
(so far we haven't gotten a good enough copy of it to master for that
medium.) It has been issued on VHS & copies are available from Stanyan
Have a happy holiday season Tom & when I'm next in concert I'll yell.
There may be something in Southern California in the next year or so. I
just have to stick pretty close to home while I'm planning and building
the new digs. Warmly, Rod
Rod, If no one has, I wanted to thank you for
those free downloads, Especially the Christmas music and poems. I
downloaded "Birch," listened to it (Several times} and it is a lovely
piece. I am going to order your CD of concert pieces, sometime later
today, I do detect a hint of Beethoven in "Birch Trees”.
Incidentally, I shopped one of the Salvation Army stores and found a
Glenn Yarbrough album with some of your songs he sings. I’ve posted a
link to your website on my AOL Blog (Journal)Phonsie.
Dear Phonsie, Thanks for the post. No matter how many people know about
and occasionally stop by A Safe Place to Land we always welcome new
readers so I appreciate your link. Glad you like the downloads. There
will be more. Considering its origin “Birch Trees” is more likely
influenced by Rachmaninoff than Beethoven. I wrote while I was living in
Moscow working on the score for the American / Soviet co-production “The
Unknown War.” It grew out of a music cue I wrote for that series and I
later based a piano quartet on the same music.
You might note that the November Best-Seller list includes a couple of
my classical LP’s. For some reason my classical and instrumental work
seems to be enjoying a kind of vogue right now in the US, sort of
catching up with those buyers in Europe who embraced it early on.
One of the more unique things we've done in regards to MP3's is pair
with our friends at P22 Font Foundry. The new P22Stanyan Autumn font
disc comes with 16 MP3's condensed by our own scientist of sound Eric
Here's the list of tracks:
Rusting in the Rain; Je Vien De Loin (I've Been to Town); When the Bars
Close; Solitude's My Home; Love Let Me Not Hunger; Blame it on July; A
Gift I Give You; People Change; I'm Not Afraid; When Summer Ends; Camera
/ Thread of Hope; About The Time; Some of them Fall; Heaven Here on
Earth; Where Would I Be; Night: A Newly Painted Bench.
The fonts designed by Richard Kegler are based on Anthony Goldshmidt's
hand lettering for the boxed & numbered edition of ". . . and
autumn came." The type was first used in my newest book "Rusting in the
Rain." There are two complete fonts containing all the standard
characters & numbers plus a set of extras based on my own artwork from
various books & publications.
You can order the disc or download a test at:
At under $30 for the fonts and the MP3's it's a helluva deal.
Thanks again for the kind thoughts. Cheers, Rod
IN PRAISE OF PERRY
Did you really make a comment on a Perry Como
page? I responded to it, but do not believe it was this address. You
need not publish this, but would appreciate an answer if at all
Dear Anne, I'm confused. Perry Como page? I've made many comments over
the years about the great Como, to him, to reporters, to friends.
Perhaps something I have said in the past has been repeated. But, if
what you're talking about is a message board, I don't do message boards.
Not even my own. I have enough problems meeting the thrice weekly
deadlines for my own website, let alone visit and contribute to MB's.
Please elaborate because I have no clue as to what you are referring to.
For the record let me say this. Almost from the moment I fell in love
with the canon of American popular songs (long, long before Perry ever
sang one of my songs) I've loved his voice. Starting with 78's, LP's,
45's and finally CD's I own every recording in one form or another that
he has ever made. Even V-Discs, transcriptions & reel-to-reel copies of
his radio and TV shows. He's part of the 'The Four C's" that Sinatra and
I talked about often. Crosby, Colombo, Como & Cole.
Perry Como has given me so much pleasure over the years that it would be
hard to say enough good things about his style, vocal quality and his
ability to record anything and everything with feeling and ease. If you
are a true Como fan, check out the RCA albums licensed to Collectable
Records that they have issued as twofers CD's at (www.oldies.com).
Some of my personal favorites include 'Como Swings/ Young at Heart,' 'So
Smooth/We Get Letters' & 'By Request/Sing For Me Mr. C.'. Every track on
every album is as bright and relevant today as they were on their
original vinyl release in the 50's and 60's.
As for Como's rendition of I Think of You, it is one of the finest
treatments ever accorded one of my lyrics. Best Regards, Rod
JUST IN TIME TO SEE A YELLOW UNICORN
Hi Rod, Your record in 1960 or so, Stanyan
Street...had Japanese music and your poetry, among other things. It was
a bonding agent for me and various friends. We wore out two copies and I
seem to recall one friend actually stole a copy, it was that important
to her. Any idea how I can get a copy of the content? It was wonderful,
although I think today, it is "As fast as acne runs across a young boy's
face, the wrinkles encroach...." All the best, Rita Ashley
Dear Rita, The album you remember was entitled "The Yellow Unicorn." It
featured four spoken word tracks by me, four by instrumentalist Tak
Shindo and four by folk singer Julie Merridith. The selections I
performed Kearny Street, The Yellow Unicorn, Stanyan Street and Third
Avenue are contained on the CD In Search of Eros. We were unable to
obtain the clearances for Tak & Julie's performances. Hope this helps,
ROD ON FILM
There was a song Rod sang in a circa 1956 movie
about the beach or the water. I was wondering if it was available. I
believe the movie also starred Sal Mineo. Mike
Dear Mike, The film was Universal’s “Rock Pretty Baby” and the song I
sang was entitled Picnic by the Sea. I wrote it with singer-songwriter
The song isn’t available on CD but you might run across it on the Decca
Rock Pretty Baby soundtrack album. I picked up a second hand copy of it
at a local record shop [Ameba} not long ago. Good Luck, Rod
SPECIAL STANYAN HOUSE HOLIDAY SALE
The guys who head up
StanyanHouse.com have come
up with an interesting sale just in time for the holidays. To cover
Boxing Day and Quanza the sale will run through January 1st 2005.
FOLIO BOX #1
At long last one of our most requested items. A BOX of 10 Selected
editions of the Legendary FOLIOS. Contains the following: #4 Winter,
1974; #8 Winter, 1975; #12 Winter, 1976; #17 Spring, 1978; #19 Fall,
1978; #32 Fall 1981; #35 Spring, 1982; #37 Fall, 1982; #49 Spring, 1985
& #51 Fall, 1985
Contents include over 60 original McKuen works of poetry and prose with
beautiful artwork. Each of the ten Folio’s is signed.
$35,00 until January 31, 2005. $40.00 thereafter.
YOUR CHANCE TO OWN
AN INSTANT CLASSIC CHRISTMAS CD LIBRARY!
ANY 6 STANYAN CHRISTMAS CD’S for $25.00
That’s a combined savings of over $20.00
Choose any 6 from these great CD’s, each produced with love by Rod.
Bing Crosby: Christmas Through the Years
Frank Sinatra: Christmas Through The Years
Guy Lombardo: Merry Christmas
Glenn Miller: Christmas Concert NO PHOTO
Hollywood Angels: Soft Lights, Sweet Christmas
Judy Garland: Christmas Through the Years
Liberace: Christmas Through the Years: Liberace
Louis Armstrong: Christmas Through the Years
Benedictine Monks: Noel At The Monastery
Crosby & Sinatra Christmas Sing with Frank and Bing
Bah! Humbug! • Christmas Songs For Grouch & Grinch
Sinatra, Shore, Garland, Miller, Rod & more: A 1940's Christmas
Malcolm Sargent & Royal Choral Society: Olde English Christmas
Christmas Music for Guardian Angels
The Stanyan Brass: Joy to the World
Christmas in New Orleans
Christmas For Friends And Lovers
Corky Hale: Harp! The Herald Angels Sing
Lynn, Clark, Springfield & More Christmas in London NO PHOTO
And don’t forget these great compilation albums
featuring dozens of all time holiday hits by major artists:
A Stanyan Christmas • Christmas Blues & Shout • Christmas Around The
World • A Very Cherry Christmas • The Christmas Strings and Christmas
Treasures Vol’s 1 thru 5
NOTE: the following albums are not included as part of this sale:
McKuen: Carols for Christmas; Winter Wonderland; Santa's Greatest Hits;
Holiday Magic or Boxed Sets.
NOV. 2004 STANYAN HOUSE BEST SELLERS
1. Tie: Rusting in the Rain (Reg. & Boxed, signed, edition)
2. A Safe Place to Land (Boxed Complete Book with 2 CD's)
3. . . . .and autumn came (Boxed, signed & numbered edition)
4. McKuen at Carnegie Hall (songbook
5. Beyond the Boardwalk (Boxed, signed & numbered edition)
6. McKuen: New Carols for Christmas (songbook)
7. A Man Alone: Sinatra sings McKuen (songbook)
8. The Power Bright & Shinning
9. Suspension Bridge
10 Through European Windows (songbook)
CD'S / CASSETTES & LP's / VIDEO
1. In Search of Eros+/Beatsville+/Listen to the Warm (3 CD Set)
2. Listen to the Warm (CD)
3. In Search of Eros (CD includes Yellow Unicorn 7 More & Fonts)
4. Tie: Pastorale (Double LP) / Concerto #2 for Guitar & Orch. (LP
5. Rod & Dusty Springfield Christmas Video (Video only/No DVD)
6. McKuen: New Carols for Christmas (CD HandMade Series)
7. A Man Alone / Frank Sinatra (Deluxe Gatefold LP)
8. The Platinum Collection (2 Cassette Set)
9. Beatsville+ (CD Includes additional material & Font Sets)
10. McKuen: Piano Concerto #3 (LP)
AND KEEP IN MIND:
McKuen Holiday Cards
LONDON PALLADIUM POSTER
McKuen Prime of Your Life T Shirt
Corky Hale: Harp the Herald Angels Swing! (CD)
McKuen: The Plains of my Country / Seascapes (LP)
McKuen: Symphony #1 (LP)
on the Stanyan House logo to buy Rod McKuen books, CD's and lots more
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Catch Rod McKuen live!
Click on the links below for details of
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