April 8th, 2010

carole lombard 04
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Carole goes artsy

As we all know, Carole Lombard posed for thousands of portraits during her life, and many of them are stunningly beautiful. Now, several are getting high-end treatment worthy of a museum.

As part of a collection called "The Celebrity Gallerie," four Lombard images -- two by herself, two with co-stars -- are being offered as large photographs. Three of them are also available as canvas renderings as large as 36 by 48 inches. They're not cheap; the most inexpensive option, a 16" x 20" photograph, will cost you $295. Moreover, the price for the photographs doesn't include a frame. But if you'd like to have Carole gracing your living room or den, this is a fine way to do it.

First, here's an image of Lombard from her first Paramount film, "Safety In Numbers," a portrait I've never come across before:



Next, a publicity still from her lone Warners film, "Fools For Scandal." One wishes the movie had been as good as this portrait:



Here's Lombard with Fred MacMurray in a scene from their first film together, "Hands Across The Table":



All three of those pictures are also available as canvas, either rolled or ready to hang. The next one doesn't have that option...but it does have Clark Gable from "No Man Of Her Own," made at a time when neither he nor Carole suspected they'd ever become an item:



If you think you might like to buy one, or are merely curious, go to http://www.screenlegendsart.com/carole-lombard-L.asp.

Two other things worth noting, both with a Washington, D.C. bent. First, tonight at 8 at the Avalon Theater on Connecticut Avenue, Turner Classic Movies is presenting a free screening of the 1943 film "The More The Merrier," starring Jean Arthur and Joel McCrea. (The movie, set in wartime Washington, is a comedy dealing with the housing shortage.) TCM weekend host Ben Mankiewicz and George Stevens Jr., son of the film's director, George Stevens, will host the event. (Stevens' work is being featured on TCM this month, and the Lombard film "Vigil In The Night" will be among those movies shown.)

The screening is meant to promote the TCM film festival set for Hollywood later this month. For more on the D.C. screening, go to http://washington.going.com/event-732218;TCM_Free_Screening_of_The_More_the_Merrier.

On Tuesday at Howard University, jazz vocal legend Jon Hendricks gave a concert. Hendricks, a pioneer of "vocalese," is still going strong after all these years. He's probably best known as part of the vocal trio Lambert, Hendricks & Ross, whose work in the late 1950s and early 1960s was probably the most exciting turn in jazz group singing since the heyday of the Boswell Sisters. (Annie Ross, who's occasionally acted in films, is also still with us.)

Lambert, Hendricks & Ross hit the scene in 1957 with their brilliant album "Sing A Song Of Basie," in which 10 Count classics were imaginatively reworked, vocal style. Here's a live version of them on TV doing "Every Day I Have The Blues," although there's some narration over the start. Embedding has been disabled for this, but you can see it at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anrXYEAkg8U. Dig!
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