Friday, June 5, 2015

Spinners – "Rubberband Man" (1976)

Hand me down my walkin' cane
Hand me down my hat
Hurry now and don't be late
'Cause we ain't got time to chat!

Today, you're invited to join me and Lily (my sweetheart of a yellow Lab) on one of our recent Cape Cod walks.
Walkin' canes are optional – I don't need one yet, but you may – but hats are mandatory because we all need to minimize our UV exposure . . . right?

The first part of walk is along Scarsdale Road, a quiet residential street in Dennis Village, Massachusetts.  Lily takes the lead – this will be my view of her for most of the walk:

The most notable building on Scarsdale Road is the Dennis Inn, which was the site of my daughter's wedding reception last September:

The older homes on Scarsdale Road are generally quite modest:

But the newer houses are large and luxurious:

These wild golden asters are in bloom on Scarsdale Road at this time of year:

Scarsdale Road deadends at Whig Strret.  Lily and I will continue on a footpath through an overgrown area that my kids used to call "the jungle."

Hidden in "the jungle" is a cemetery containing the remains of a number of descendants of John Hall, who came to Dennis from Coventry, England, in 1651:

The oldest headstone in the Hall family cemetery marks the grave of Mrs. Bethiah Hall, who died in 1696.

After crossing Nobscussett Creek, the footpath takes you to the extensive grounds of the Cape Cod Center for the Arts in Dennis Village, Massachusetts, which is home to the Cape Playhouse (the oldest professional summer theatre in the United States) and the Cape Cinema (best known for its Rockwell Kent ceiling mural).

The Cape Playhouse, which seats about 365, opened for business in 1927:

Bette Davis worked as an usher at the Cape Playhouse one summer before returning the following summer to act.  Other famous actors who worked at the Cape Playhouse include Humphrey Bogart, Henry Fonda, Jane Fonda, Gregory Peck, Robert Montgomery, and Shirley Booth.

Here's the playbill from a 1981 production of "Educating Rita":

Here's the Cape Playhouse's scene shop:

That building is named after scenic designer Herbert Senn (who created more than 350 sets for the Cape Playhouse, as well as sets for Broadway and Lincoln Center productions) and his collaborator, Helen Pond:

The Cape Cinema opened in 1930:

Rockwell Kent (1882-1971) was an author and artist who is remembered mostly for his book illustrations.  Here's the cover of his illustrated edition of Moby Dick that was published in 1930:

That same year, he designed a 6400-square-foot ceiling mural for the Cape Cinema that depicts the heavens and is populated by figures inspired by the constellations:

The day Lily and I took our walk, the Cape Cinema was showing Far from the Madding Crowd.

If I had been able to extend my visit by a day or two, I could have seen Love and Mercy, a biopic about Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys:

The Spinners were a Detroit group that had little commercial success until they switched from Motown to Atlantic.  With the help of famed "The Sound of Philadelphia" producer Thom Bell, the group cranked out five straight gold album sin the early 1970s.

"Rubberband Man," a song about an entertainer who hooks a rubber band around his toe and plays it, was co-written by Bell and Linda Creed.  It reached #1 on the Billboard R&B chart and #2 on "Hot 100" chart in 1976.

Here's "Rubberband Man":

Click below to buy the song from Amazon:

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