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“Jammin’ with Jamie” on Hiatus Until September

Hi, everyone!

WNUR is undergoing renovations, so Jammin’ with Jamie will be taking a break until September. Check back here to find out when we’ll be jammin’ again!

Thank you, Jammers, for your patience as WNUR continues to improve your listening (and jammin’) experience. I hope you consider jammin’ with us when we resume jammin’ Saturdays at 7 am ET/6 am CT on 89.3 WNUR FM! If you want to hear it in the meantime, let me know: I record every show and will happily send it to you! For more information about Jammin’ with Jamie, go here!

Thank you for reading, listening, and “jammin’,”
Jamie Lee

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Christmas/Holiday Movies: “It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie”

Hi, everyone!

I had a pretty hectic Halloween season this year, so I wasn’t able to continue my series about Halloween movies. However, I know that my subsequent series on holiday/Christmas/winter movies (and specials) only had half the amount of entries… that is, only two. Yikes.

So, I’m going to rectify that this year, starting…

now!

For those of you who are new (or just don’t remember), this is how this series works…

This month, I’m going to watch (and, in some cases, re-watch) some movies that are perfect for the holiday/Christmas/winter season. These are not reviews, because I’ll only be writing about films I love and recommend. There’s no plan, method, or scientific algorithm to what movies I’m going to watch or how I’m going to structure these entries. I’m just going to have fun with it, and I hope you will, too!

First up, a TV movie that I believe is ridiculously underrated…

It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie (2002)!

I do not own any of the following images or videos!

Here’s the trailer:

It’s ALWAYS a merry Christmas with The Muppets!

It’s ALWAYS a merry Christmas with The Muppets!

It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie (2002)
Plot: The Muppets are putting on a big Christmas show to save their theater, but when everything goes wrong and Kermit the Frog’s spirit seems broken, an angel comes to show him what the world––– and his friends––– would be like if he’d never been born.

I also have a very personal connection to this movie, which you’ll have to read on to find out about!

Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

Continue reading

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Thoughts On: “Pee-wee’s Big Holiday”

Before we get started, follow Pee-wee Herman’s adventures on his official website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and his new YouTube channel, and join his FREE Premium Diamond Platinum Fan Club!

I’ve written about Pee-wee Herman twice before. Both times, I predicted I’d end up writing about Pee-wee’s Big Holiday when it was released on Netflix.

… I’m psychic!

I was so excited for Pee-wee’s Big Holiday that I stayed up until 12:00 am PT––– 2:00 am my time––– to watch it the second it premiered!

This was how I looked just before 2:00 am on March 18.

This was how I looked just before 2:00 am on March 18.

Thank goodness I was on a different floor with the door closed… otherwise, my constant laughter would’ve woken everybody up!

All of the following images, videos, and GIFs belong to their respective owners!

Here’s the poster…

That’s about how high I jumped every time I heard news about “Pee-wee’s Big Holiday.”

That’s about how high I jumped every time I heard news about “Pee-wee’s Big Holiday.”

Here’s the trailer…

Pee-wee’s Big Holiday is written by Paul Reubens and Paul Rust, directed by John Lee, and produced by Judd Apatow. (You all know how much it means to me to see someone who’s both a writer and a performer!)

Let’s do this!

“Ha ha!”

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Christmas/Holiday Movies: “The Muppet Christmas Carol”

I had so much fun writing about Halloween movies, I decided to extend the series and write about films perfect for Christmas/the holiday season! Most will probably be about Christmas, but I’m leaving myself wiggle room for other holidays and general winter movies.

Remember, these are not reviews: I’m writing about films and TV specials that I love and recommend.

My favorite Christmas movies generally have a nice mix of humor, fun, wackiness, and heart––– and some good music doesn’t hurt, either.

This first film has all of that, and more. Warm up your voices, because it’s time for…

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)!

By the way, if you like the Muppets, make sure you check out The Muppets on ABC!

I do not own any of the following images or videos!

Here’s the trailer:

I’m not sure why there’s music from Beetlejuice in the trailer, but it works.

I'm smiling already!

I’m smiling already!

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

Plot: Ebenezer Scrooge, a wealthy, bitter businessman, despises Christmas and all forms of kindness and charity; but this Christmas, he just might get a chance to redeem himself…

Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

Continue reading

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Halloween Movies: “The Monster Squad”

This month, I’m going to watch (and, in some cases, re-watch) some movies that are perfect for the Halloween season. These are not reviews, because I’ll only be writing about films I love and recommend. There’s no plan, method, or scientific algorithm to what movies I’m going to watch or how I’m going to structure these entries. I’m just going to have fun with it, and I hope you will, too!

The one promise I’ll make is that I’ll only include spoilers after the jump.

For this inaugural entry, I’m going to write about a movie I just saw for the first time––– well, all the way through, anyway…

The Monster Squad (1987)!

I do not own any of the following images or videos!

Here’s the trailer…

I’ve known about The Monster Squad for a while, though I don’t know exactly how long. When you love the Universal Monsters as much as I do (and I’m sure many of you do), you read a lot about them and other films that reference or utilize them. I was bound to come across The Monster Squad at some point. And I did. I read about the plot, found out some trivia, and watched some clips. All signs pointed to this being a film I’d love.

So recently, I finally ordered the twentieth anniversary DVD online. I watched it with my family, who had never even heard of it until I told them about it. Luckily for all of us, my gut instinct turned out to be a bullseye: we loved every minute of it––– and if you love monster movies, you will, too!

Here’s the basic, spoiler-free rundown…

The Monster Squad (1987)
Plot: Some young friends obsessed with monsters suddenly find themselves face-to-face with the Universal Monsters and must stop Dracula’s plan before it’s too late.
Monsters: Count Dracula, Frankenstein’s monster, the Wolfman, the Gillman, and the Mummy
Scare Factor: It may be scary to kids about five years old or younger, but it all depends on the kid. If this kid has already seen some monster movies, especially ones with the Universal Monsters, he or she will probably be fine. For everyone else, watch it and have fun!
Gore Factor: The gore’s pretty minimal.
Family-Friendly Factor: There’s some scattered swearing and some suggestive comments. Some people may find a couple of words offensive.

Look out! Behind you!

Look out! Behind you!

ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK! Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

Continue reading

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Thoughts On: “Frozen”

Hi, everyone!

This is the first of what I hope to make a series of posts in which I write down and share my thoughts on various films. Some will be new releases you can experience in theaters, while others will be films you can check out on DVD. No matter which film I’m writing about, I will always take great care in regard to spoilers: if I feel compelled to write about one or more spoilers, I will mark them very clearly so you can choose to skip them and come back to read them later. (You’re welcome.)

I’m starting this series because I saw a film entitled, Frozen, and felt so strongly about it that I wanted to share it and my thoughts on it with anyone and everyone I could. This is why these posts are not intended to be “reviews” or summaries, as well as why I will neither be going out to see every single new release so I can post about it here, nor writing about every movie I do end up seeing. None of those prospects is why I started this series.

When the credits began rolling on Frozen when I saw it for the very first time, I had an overwhelming feeling (one of many, actually) that I just couldn’t shake, and didn’t want to, anyway: I have to tell everyone I can about this film. That feeling inspired not only this post, but this entire new series of posts, and I want to stay true to it.

All images belong to Walt Disney Pictures.

All images belong to Walt Disney Pictures.

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get to our inaugural “Thoughts On” post! The film: Frozen, from Walt Disney Animation Studios, originally released on Wednesday, November 27, 2013: Thanksgiving weekend. (You can check out Frozen‘s very “cool”––– pun intended––– official website here!) To start off, let’s get one thing straight…

Should I see “Frozen”?

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Sizzling Summer Songs”!

Hi, everyone!

In one of our many grand Jammin’ with Jamie traditions, break out your sunscreen, sunglasses, and short sleeves, because now that the heat and humidity are up, we’re going to again salute this sunny season with some…

Let’s heat things up!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Job Jams”!

Hi, everyone!

We’re celebrating the 4th of July on Jammin’ with Jamie, though in a different way than you might expect.

Since we jammed to politically-adjacent pieces recently, we’re going tackle this jam session from a different angle. We’re going to turn our focus to a subject that gets a lot of political attention from every side of the proverbial aisle.

So spruce up your resume and brush up on your interview skills, because we’re going to be jammin’ to some…

You’re hired!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Location Lyrics”!

Hi, everyone!

At this time of year, many of us travel, whether for day trips or full-blown vacations.

It’s time for the next leg of our Jammin’ with Jamie road trip that we started last week!

We’re already packed, so let’s set off!

Set your destination…

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Travel Tunes (2017)”!

Hi, everyone!

At this time of year, many of us travel, whether for day trips or full-blown vacations.

We’ve done this a couple times before, which means we have some “frequent Jammer miles” on this Jammin’ with Jamie theme. This will be the first part of a two-part jam session, so make sure you stay with us next week, too!

No need to pack anything: just bring your singing voice and your senses of humor and adventure as we head out toward the horizon with a trunk full of trailblazing…

Let’s head out!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Rise Up Refrains”!

Hi, everyone!

Here at Jammin’ with Jamie, we jam to a lot of songs celebrating people (and other individuals) who take a stand. So I’ve decided to gather a whole group of them to create a powerful demonstration of…

What do we want?!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Politically-Adjacent Pieces”!

Hi, everyone!

There’s been a lot of grassroots political action lately. People who are generally not politically active have been spurred to action.

We’ve done this a couple times before, and I’ve “elected” to do it again!

So whether you’re marching in this year’s Pride Parade, giving a speech, or calling your representatives to voice your opinion, we’re here to give you the perfect background music with a party––– pun intended––– of…

Cast your vote!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Superhero Songs (2017)”!

Hi, everyone!

I’m putting out a call for another grand Jammin’ with Jamie tradition!

But first, I’ve been doing musical improv at The iO Theater in Chicago in the group Charge Me Up!

Here’s our show from May 8, when the audience suggestion was, “Wedgie!”

Here’s our show from May 15, when the audience suggestion was, “Snowboard!”

And here’s a playlist of all the musical improv shows I’ve been in at The iO Theater so far!

Jammers… ASSEMBLE!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Mother’s Day Melodies (2017)”!

Hi, everyone!

It’s time for another annual Jammin’ with Jamie tradition!

This Sunday is Mother’s Day!

… Now that you’re done panicking because you forgot, let me help you out!

1. Jam with us on Jammin’ with Jamie this Saturday at 7 am ET/6 am CT.
2. Ask me for the recording afterwards.
3. Instant gift for your mother or mother figure!

So with that, let’s roll into our annual mix of…

Call your mother/mother figure!

“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Halfway to Halloween (2017)”!

Due to technical issues, this Jammin’ with Jamie will happen Saturday, May 6!

Hi, everyone!

It’s time for another annual Jammin’ with Jamie tradition… that started last year.

But it was a ton of freaky fun, so we’re doing it again!

You’ve heard of Christmas in July, now get ready for an early celebration of another holiday!

Six months from now, we’ll be having a ghoulishly good time celebrating, so let’s start now with a haunted house of harmonies reminding us that we’re…

Clear away those cobwebs to reveal…