Wednesday, July 08, 2009

THURSDAY THIRTEEN #115 -- Why Believe in Yesterday?


Almost every time you hear about Michael Jackson's estate, someone mentions that he owned The Beatles Catalog, and that it's worth mucho dinero. That the rites to the Lads' music are highly profitable isn't surprising. After all, Beatles albums have been selling consistently for 45 years now. Cirque du Soleil's LOVE and recent the Across the Universe film generated new interest in the Beatles … and new income, as well. Every time you're on hold and you hear "Michelle," whenever a high school band plays "With a Little Help from my Friends," somewhere a cash register rings.

And most of all, there's "Yesterday." According to The Guiness Book of World Records, this Paul McCartney composition has been recorded and re-recorded more times and by more artists than any other pop song in modern history. The most up to date tally I could find is 1,600.

To give you an idea of the song's popularity across every demographic, here are 13 of the artists who have recorded "Yesterday."

Chet Atkins
Boyz II Men
James Brown
Ray Charles
Perry Como
Placido Domingo
Marvin Gaye
Tom Jones
Gladys Knight and the Pips
Elvis Presley
Smokey Robinson
Diana Ross & the Supremes
Frank Sinatra

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I'm trying not to be embarrassed

A woman I used to work with -- a sweet, generous girl -- had her first baby last weekend. I got an excited email, along with some photos, from her husband.

I wanted to send her something because she's that kind of person: You WANT to celebrate her happy times. This isn't a professional obligation, she's genuinely that nice. While farting about on the Internet, I found that she's registered at Toys 'R Us. However her baby registry was pretty picked over by the time her baby arrived.

I decided to send a $25 Toys 'R Us gift card and a "Welcome, Baby!" greeting card instead. Then I had a nice long, talk with myself. I really can't afford $25.

My friend John's birthday celebration is this Friday. I gave my niece money to help her buy cell phone minutes before she goes off to culinary summer camp at a nearby university. Last month I paid for everything when my nephew and I went to Springfield. Not that long ago I bought graduation gifts for another friend's children. Unforeseen things will undoubtedly come up. I have to start economizing.

So I sent the new mom a $15 Toys 'R Us gift card and a "Welcome, Baby!" greeting card. Somehow the $15 card looks significantly cheaper.

I am being silly. The new mom is such a nice woman, I know that she will be happy that so many people thought of her, and she won't waste her time monetizing the birth of her first child. I can be such an ass at times.