Showing posts with label Monty Python. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Monty Python. Show all posts

Bonzo/Python/Rutle - New BBC Radio series remembers the great Neil Innes

You can listen to the first of four episodes of "Neil Innes: Dip My Brain in Joy" now.


Diane Morgan celebrates the life and work of Neil Innes, the music and comedy legend of The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band & The Rutles. A towering talent, occasionally known as the 7th Python & regularly found with a duck on his head. His legacy of music and comedy is rich, inspiring and inspired.

Neil said of his work, “Shakespeare wrote comedies as well as dramas. I’m just like Shakespeare, except with better songs.” His influence permeates modern comedy and his back catalogue is diverse and prolific. Neil wrote and performed anarchic rock with The Bonzos, he penned and performed pitch-perfect pastiches of the Beatles for The Rutles, he appeared in Monty Python and the Holy Grail and Monty Python’s Life of Brian and he is one of only two non-Pythons with a writing credit on Monty Python’s Flying Circus – the other being Douglas Adams. He released over 20 albums including How Sweet To Be An Idiot, Innes Book of Records, and Recycled Vinyl Blues. And on top of being comedically and musically gifted, he was also a really nice man. A beautiful, kind, gentle soul. Considered, absurd, and delightful.

Over the next three weeks, we’re going to celebrate his life, work and absurdist tendencies in this three hour collage of scraps and archive. There are old interviews, performances and programmes, conversations with family, friends and fans including his wife of over fifty years Yvonne, Stephen Fry, Adrian Edmondson, Kevin Eldon, Rick Wakeman and Arthur Smith, bandmates Rodney Slater, Phil Jackson, Ken Thornton, and John Halsey (better known to Rutles fans as Barry Wom), TV producer Ian Keill, record producer Martin Lewis, studio engineer extraordinaire Steve James, musical arranger extraordinaire John Altman, and Pythons Terry Gilliam and Michael Palin.

In Part One, Bangs, Belches, Smut & Smoke, we look at Neil's early life and his musical and artistic influences. And we go out on the road, and into the recording studio, with the group of absurd young men who came together by chance, to mutilate the trad jazz movement of the 1920s, to subvert the new wave of psychedelic pop and to nurture a quite deliberate misunderstanding of anarchy - The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band.

Neil died on Sunday 29th December 2019. He was 75. At the time of his death, he was working on a new album, and a project called Radio Noir, part-audio memoir, part-experimental work of art, part- exploration of the human brain and you will hear some extracts and some unreleased songs throughout the programme – that have never been broadcast.

New BBC archive site celebrates 50th anniversary of Monty Python

The first episode of "Monty Python's Flying Circus" aired 50 years ago today on BBC 1. Now, the network is observing the occasion with an archive website featuring an array of photos and a collection historical documents related to the show. Check out here.

More info:
The images from the Monty Python Archive, lovingly and painstakingly restored by the BBC Photo Archive team and held in the BBC Photo Archive, include behind-the-scenes photos of the group, made up of John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, and the late Graham Chapman. Dated between 1969 and 1974, the rarely seen images show them on set filming sketches including The Ministry of Silly Walks, And Now for Something Completely Different and The Attila the Hun Show. 
The archive release also includes a 1969 audience research report revealing viewers’ initial reaction to the series and its “delicious sense of the ridiculous”, as well as a memo from the then Head of Comedy requesting the “peculiar titles” be changed. 
Shane Allen, BBC Controller Comedy Commissioning, says: “These archives are comedy history Holy Grails! They highlight that long-standing BBC reputation of being the vital place that champions pioneering new talents. The Pythons tore up the rule book of comedy grammar, conventions and traditions, but thankfully the support for creative freedom won the day and has certainly paid off in the long run as audiences continue to celebrate and revere their enormous impact on comedy. 
BBC History has also collaborated with the Ministry of Stories to introduce children aged 11-14 to Monty Python and released a teaching resource to support young people across the country to write their own comedy sketches. 
As part of the project, pupils from Swanlea School, in Whitechapel, East London, got to grips with Hell’s Grannies and The Ministry of Silly Walks to create new comedy inspired by Monty Python. BBC History then produced their final sketches, performed by professional actors and under the guidance of writer/actress Gem Ahmet. 
Robert Seatter, Head of BBC History, says: “When Monty Python’s Flying Circus began in 1969 it radically changed the face of TV comedy. By introducing these famous Python sketches to today’s young people we want to change it all over again - with the same spirit of surreal invention!”

Video: Mick Jagger introduces Monty Python press conference!

Complete Monty Python LP and CD sets now up for order!

Amazon is now listing Monty Python's Total Rubbish - a complete collection of all the troupe's audio releases -- on both vinyl and CD.

The set will feature all nine of Monty Python’s albums: Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Another Monty Python Record, Monty Python’s Previous Record, Matching Tie and Handkerchief, Live at Drury Lane, Holy Grail, Life of Brian, Monty Python’s Contractual Obligation Album and The Meaning Of Life.

Both the CD and vinyl sets comes with a 45 rpm vinyl copy of the group's 1974 flexi-disc, Monty Python’s Tiny Black Round Thing.

Both sets are out July 8.


Want to be a Bruce? Charity auction offers winner the chance to appear on stage with Monty Python

Many of us know entire Monty Python sketches by hear. Here's a chance to put that skill to more than trivial use -- if you have lots of money.

As part of their upcoming reunion shows in London, the Python's are auctioning off a chance to appear with the troupe during their "Bruces" skit. Proceeds from the auction benefit charity. Here's a video with all the info:

New Monty Python music video: The Silly Walks Song

The old gang is getting back together for a series of shows in London. They have a new video, too:

Hear Monty Python on the BBC's Desert Island Disks

In celebration of the recent news that members of Monty Python are reuniting for a stage show, the BBC has posted the Pythons' appearances on its classic "Desert Island Discs" program, in which guests talk about their favorite music, literature and more.

Listen here:

John Cleese

Eric Idle

Terry Gilliam

Michael Palin

Terry Jones

Upcoming flick is a Monty Python reunion of sorts

The surviving members of Monty Python are reunited for an upcoming live action/CGI film, reports Variety.

Members of Monty Python's Flying Circus are reteaming for "Absolutely Anything," a sci-fi farce combining CGI and live action, with Terry Jones to direct and Mike Medavoy to produce.

Plans are for filming to begin in the U.K. this spring, with the Pythons voicing key roles as a a group of aliens who endow an earthling with the power to do "absolutely anything" to see what a mess he'll make of things -- which is precisely what happens. There's also a talking dog named Dennis who seems to understand more about the mayhem that ensues than anyone else does. Robin Williams will voice the character.

Neil Innes performs NPR Tiny Desk concert

Ex-Rutle, former Monty Python collaborator and late of the Bonzo Dog Band, musician Neil Innes performs a Tiny Desk concert on NPR.