Welcome to the second-half of the 31-Days of Halloween! We have 16-songs left to go, which of course means plenty of opportunities for us to chat about classic horror films and their stars, as well as other frightful topics as we count down to Halloween!
Today we say Happy Birthday to British-Irish-American actress, Angela Lansbury, who turns 93 today! With an awe-inspiring list of film, stage, and television roles stretching back into the 1940's, she's probably best remembered here in America her role as crime-solving sleuth, Jessica Fletcher in the hit TV show, "Murder She Wrote," which ran for 12-seasons from 1984 to 1996 and will likely play for eternity in syndication. But did you know she played a much darker character just prior that?
From 1979 to 1984 Lansbury starred alongside Len Cariou in the Broadway production of "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street" at the Uris Theatre (now Gershwin Theatre) in New York. She won a Tony Award for her performance as Nellie Lovett, the London pie shop owner, who forms a partnership with the vengeful & bloodthirsty Sweeney Todd to turn his customers into meat pies after he has slit their throats in his barbershop chair. Though her character does take pity on a homeless orphan, Nellie is described as a childless widow.
That brings us to the song of the day and it's a fittingly dark track after just talking about Sweeney Todd. Today we tap El Paso, Texas prog-rock powerhouse, The Mars Volta for a tune off their 2005 "Frances the Mute" album, entitled "The Widow." Believe it or not, this track actually cracked the Billboard Hot-100, making it to #95. It went as high as #7 on the U.S. Alternative charts and finds its way to Day #16 here on the 31-Days of Halloween playlist. Happy listening! -Kristen