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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Cathartic Choruses (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

Many of us are in the middle of a long heat wave, we’re in that weird awkward time between summer and fall where summer activities are winding down, but fall activities haven’t officially started yet, and we’re stuck in the in-between. Maybe you’re feeling lonely. Maybe you’re feeling frustrated, exasperated, angry… or just down.

Bottling it up isn’t healthy, so don’t worry, we’re going to jam to a cavalcade of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” 200th Show

Hi, everyone!

On Saturday, November 2, Jammin’ with Jamie celebrated its landmark 200th show on 89.3 WNUR FM!

Since this show’s so special (and because there’s no copyrighted music in it), I posted it on my YouTube channel, along with bonus content.

So let’s get started!

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Thoughts On: “The Man Who Invented Christmas”

Hi, everyone!

Whew, what a year I’ve been having! But more on that in a post I’ll put up just before the new year…

Anyway, without further ado, last Sunday, December 17, I saw a film that inspired me to pen another installment in my series on holiday/Christmas/winter movies and specials.

What film was so special that it woke me out of my writing reverie (in terms of this blog, anyway)?

The Man Who Invented Christmas (2017)!

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

Here’s the trailer:

No, Mr. Dickens, I wasn’t trying to read over your shoulder! Don’t mind me!

The Man Who Invented Christmas (2017)
Plot: Charles Dickens, after a rush of inspiration, tussles with writer’s block, deadlines, and personal struggles as he strives to crack his latest work… A Christmas Carol.

There have been nigh countless adaptations of A Christmas Carol, from film, to TV, to stage––– from verbatim, to musical, to modernized, to gender-flipped––– from live action, to animation, to The Muppets! If you like A Christmas Carol at all, you have your favorite version or versions. You have your favorite ghost, your favorite scenes, your favorite lines… this story touches the hearts and souls of so many. Some may say such nearly-universal appeal cheapens it: I say, it enriches it. How special to be able to take a singular story about one person’s extremely personal journey and make it accessible and even relatable to so many.

Full disclosure: I’ve loved A Christmas Carol and so many of its adaptations for as long as I can remember. In fact, my very first acting role was as The Ghost of Christmas Present (my favorite ghost in the story)! Even though I was twelve at the time, I still remember so many of my lines, and would love to be involved in another adaptation of the tale someday.

Since The Man Who Invented Christmas is still in theaters as of this writing, and I do highly recommend it, I’ll do my best to avoid any spoilers of surprise moments. However, everyone has different definitions of what counts as a “spoiler,” so I shall still include my traditional warning…

Spoilers lurk beyond this point!

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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!

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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!

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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!

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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: “Curious Choruses (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

I wondered for a while what to make the theme for this week. We’re in the middle of summer, but the “big” summer holidays have ended, and many of us are already planning for what’s coming up in the fall or beyond. What we do now is up to us… so what to do?

Maybe you’re waiting for something. Maybe you’re working toward something. Maybe you took a risk. Maybe you’re going for something that is, in one way or another, a big question mark.

Then I realized… the question is the answer!

Hear me out on this.

Wonder no longer, as we jam to a cavalcade of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Me Time Melodies (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

From social distancing, to virtual events, to outright canceled events of all kinds, we’ve all had quite a bit more alone time than we all planned for in the past couple of years. Isolation can get lonely, but, if you take a step back and think about it, it’s also an opportunity.

It can be time to rest, relax, unwind, and recharge your batteries. It can be time to work on anything you’d like, try something new, or study or practice something. It can be time to make a plan, strategize, or refine parts of yourself. So when it is time to come out of your comfort zone, you’re ready for whatever you want to do!

So, let’s take advantage of our time at home and look for inspiration while we jam to a mix of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Fourth of July Follies (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

Last week was another holiday, so we’re going to celebrate it!

If you are in or near Highland Park, Illinois, or know someone who is, we extend our heartfelt condolences and well wishes. We’re going to be sensitive to that on this week’s show. If you’d rather listen to it later on your own time, that’s okay. I can get you connected to the archive where recordings are stored.

Let’s light it up (safely!) and let the sparks fly from a flock of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Birthday Beats (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

It’s my birthday! … Give or take.

WNUR has been having scheduling issues, making scheduling specific shows for specific days difficult. They’re working on it, and we DJs are doing our best to make sure you get the shows you love every day! Thank you for your patience and listening loyalty!

So, I gathered a mish-mash of melodies that I love and that all of you love to mix together for a batch of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Super Sizzling Summer Songs (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

It’s scorching outside in so many places, so whether you’re sweating it off in the sun or hiding out indoors, let our cool jam session help you beat the heat with these beats!

It’s time to warm up our vocal cords to the tune of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Father’s Day Follies (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

We’re running ahead of schedule this week, but it’s all to get our jam sessions in in a timely manner!

Next week is Father’s Day!

… And in case you’re currently panicking because you forgot, fear not! For we at Jammin’ with Jamie are here with a flock of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Travel Tunes (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

As the weather warms up in this hemisphere, this is generally the time of year when people get restless. Whether you’re off of school or work, your work is lighter in these warmer months, or you do more during the summer, but it’s something you enjoy, this is when many people start to fantasize about venturing outside. Maybe you sit outside for some fresh air, or maybe you yearn for a more substantial trip outside.

But many of us still can’t travel, whether because of the pandemic, cost, time, or some combination of the three.

So, whether you’re vacationing for real or vicariously, let’s hit the road with a suitcase full of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Studious School Songs (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

This week, a lot of us are hitting the books and working hard as various classes come to an end. So, if you just pulled an all-nighter studying, or just pulled an all-nighter celebrating because you’re finally done––– for now––– this jam session is for you!

Let’s crack open the books and finish a crash course of…

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“Jammin’ with Jamie” Theme: “Lucky Lyrics (2022)”!

Hi, everyone!

If you’re reading this, we’ve successfully survived another Friday the 13th! Whether you were at summer camp dodging machetes or huddled up at home, let’s celebrate!

You’re lucky to jam with us on Jammin’ with Jamie this week, because what better way to celebrate than by singing at the top of our lungs to a load of…

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