Mike Dow

Mike Dow

edge staff writer

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Comedian and actor Tommy Davidson’s journey has been marked with exhilarating highs and soul-crushing lows.

Thirty years after appearing in the groundbreaking sketch comedy show “In Living Color” with Jim Carrey, Jamie Foxx and members of the Wayans family, Davidson has penned the truth about his life in and out of the spotlight in the candid memoir “Living in Color: What’s Funny About Me” (Kensington Publishing), written with Tom Teicholz.

During an interview with The Maine Edge, Davidson discusses the white family that adopted him after his birth mother abandoned him at the age of two in a pile of garbage, as well as the woman he considers his real mother, who pulled his battered body from that trash pile to raise as her own.

Davidson speaks of the painful early lessons he learned about race, his break into standup comedy and his five incredible years as a featured cast member on “In Living Color.”

Davidson opens up in “Living in Color” about his recovery from addiction, his remarkable adoptive parents, his interactions (good and bad) with some of Hollywood’s biggest names and how it felt to finally meet his birth family, including the woman who had left him for dead.

Some 40 years after the death of AC/DC’s original lead vocalist and lyricist Bon Scott, rock writer Greg Prato’s new book on the singer presents a fresh perspective on the beloved figure, who has previously been the subject of numerous biographies.

Drawing upon his own interviews with many of Scott’s friends and associates who hadn’t previously gone on record, Prato says his book “A Rockin’ Rollin’ Man: Bon Scott Remembered” differs from earlier volumes in that he spoke with as many people as possible who knew and worked with the singer to get closer to the truth of what made him so special.

DEDHAM - The 13th annual polar dip, to benefit children and adults with disabilities at Camp Capella, is set for leap day, February 29, when dozens of camp supporters plan to leap into a hole carved into the ice on Phillips Lake in Dedham. The event is sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Hampden.

Proceeds raised during Camp Capella’s polar dip allow children and adults with disabilities to enjoy a fun and exciting summer camp experience, regardless of their ability to pay, and it’s an event that keeps growing, according to camp executive director Harvey Chesley.

“For a number of years, this polar dip event raised about $10,000 to $12,000 each year,” Chesley said during an interview. “Last year, it took off and raised $15,000, and that’s also our goal for this year.”

Tuesday, 11 February 2020 11:50

The love songs singers most love to sing

As the man said, some people want to fill the world with silly love songs, and what’s wrong with that?

Since love in its myriad forms has always been and probably always will be the most frequently addressed subject in popular song, I thought it would be fun to discover the titles of the love songs singers most love to sing.

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I reached out to some of my performing musician friends via Facebook to ask this question: What is your favorite love song to perform, and why?

An emotion-filled story of selfless heroism from one of the Vietnam War’s bloodiest battles – and how politics and incompetence kept it from becoming widely known for more than 30 years – is at the heart of writer and director Todd Robinson’s “The Last Full Measure,” and it’s a story that had to be told, according to actor William Hurt (“Altered States,” “The Big Chill,” the “Avengers” series).

“The Last Full Measure” tells the true story of William H. Pitsenbarger (Jeremy Irvine), a U.S. Air Force special operations Pararescue medic, responsible for saving the lives of more than 60 men during an intensely bloody battle in April 1966 known as Operation Abilene.

Actress Jamie-Lynn Sigler will forever be associated with “The Sopranos,” thanks to her memorable portrayal of the complicated character Meadow, Tony and Carmela Soprano’s first-born child, during six seasons of HBO’s classic mob-drama.

You might be surprised to discover that Sigler hasn’t seen many episodes of “The Sopranos.” She explains why in an interview with The Maine Edge, in which she also discusses her latest project, “The Neighbor in the Window,” one of Lifetime network’s “ripped from the headlines” movies based upon actual events. It premiered on February 8 and is available now on demand.

In “Neighbor in the Window,” Sigler plays Karen, who moves to Seattle with her husband Scott (Geoff Gustafson) and settles in a neighborhood next door to Lisa, played by Jenn Lyon (TNT’s “Claws”).

Lisa and Karen click like old friends until Karen’s life is turned upside down by a series of increasingly bizarre events masterminded by her dangerously delusional neighbor.

This case of false victimization is based on the real-life story depicted in author Kathie Truitt’s book “False Victim,” and is a reminder of how it could happen to anyone.

“You take a real journey with this movie when you see how this happened to Karen,” Sigler says. “It’s always the stories that really happened that give us a lot to think about and this is one of those.”

If you haven’t heard “This is How We Roll,” the new LP from Down ‘n’ Outz, the periodically active all-star side project from Def Leppard front man Joe Elliott and friends, you’re missing out on a truly great rock record that Elliott says has been five years in the making.

Down ‘n’ Outz formed more than a decade ago when Elliott teamed with members of The Quireboys, and Raw Glory, to open for glam-rock legends Mott the Hoople on the final night of that band’s 2009 reunion tour.

Jazzed by the joy of that initial experience and the glowing reaction from fans led to the recording of two Down ‘n’ Outz studio albums and a live record mostly dedicated to songs plucked from the Mott the Hoople family tree. Elliott admits that he and the band considered a third album of covers but is glad they decided against it.

“That conversation lasted about five minutes,” Elliott said during an interview with The Maine Edge. “We contemplated a third covers album made up songs by a bunch of different artists, and it would have been very easy to pick 10 songs and go record them, but I told the guys we’d try to come up with some songs ourselves.”

From his humble beginnings as Reg Dwight, the insecure pianist prodigy sideman, to his parallel rule of the charts and box office receipts in the ‘70s, ‘80s and beyond as the 300 million-selling superstar we know as Elton John has flown closer to the sun than most mortals, his lowest ebbs have been similarly extreme.

All of Elton’s successes, scandals, triumphs, tragedies and tantrums are chronicled in “Rocket Man: The Life of Elton John,” (Pegasus Books) from Mark Bego, author of the three-million selling Michael Jackson biography, “Michael!”

When Willy T. Ribbs became the first African American race car driver to compete in the Indianapolis 500, the first to test a Formula One car and the first to win a Trans-Am race (all in the 1980s and 1990s), he got there in spite of overwhelming odds.

Comedian, director and podcaster Adam Carolla is co-director of the powerful and revealing documentary “Uppity: The Willy T. Ribbs Story,” and says the story of how Ribbs confronted racism during an allegedly enlightened era is one that must be told.

“I grew up in the ‘70s in southern California, and if you’d asked me then about racism, I would have said it was something we dealt with a long time ago. I didn’t know it was still going strong in the south,” Carolla said during an interview with The Maine Edge.

Jonesing for a new episode of “Rick and Morty?” Actress Sarah Chalke says the interminable wait is about to abate for fans of Cartoon Network’s surreal animated adult sci-fi comedy.

“It won’t be much longer, and I can’t wait,” said Chalke, who provides the voice of Beth on the series, which airs Sundays at 11:30 p.m. as part of the network’s Adult Swim programming block.

The last new installment of “Rick and Morty” aired in mid-December, with five episodes remaining in the show’s fourth season. “I can’t give you an exact date, but I know they’re coming soon,” Chalke said during an interview with The Maine Edge.

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