The YouTube Playground: Patrick Swayze TV, Dick Van Dyke Antics, Alfie Boe Silliness!


, Blogger: Orry's Orations
I love YouTube. I have spent hours there over the years, searching for music by my favorite artists. It amazes me how it has grown. So many super hard to find songs are on there now, but it is not just songs that make the site fantastic, it is the other things, too -- full movies, TV shows, vintage commercials, concert clips, fan made clips. It is a fan's playground.

Recently, I enjoyed watching some bloopers from the wonderful The Dick Van Dyke Show. This sixties show is the essence of comedy and seeing the performers mess up was a blast. One of the other treats (which is actually also on the DVD release) has Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore doing a scene straight and then doing it again but with Van Dyke playing his Rob Petrie with Moore's Laura's personality. What a hoot that is!

As a huge Patrick Swayze fan, I've enjoyed seeing some rare footage of him on YouTube, like a Burger King commercial he made at the start of his career. His movie, Skatetown USA that has never been released on DVD and rarely gets shown on television, is there, too. In fact, so are episodes of Swayze's short-lived TV show, The Renegades! Now those are indeed a treasure, even though they are low quality.

Another favorite, Patty Duke who was just seen in a fabulous appearance on the Glee finale, is seen in an old black and white toy commercial. It is just a blast to see performers in these clips from days gone by.

Of course, these days I am admittedly obsessed in finding anything and everything Alfie Boe. Alfie is a British singer trying to hook Americans into riding his train of eclectic musical stylings, ranging from country and folk music to rock and roll, pop, and even classical. In fact, his latest album, Storyteller, that was released in the UK last November, is finally being released in America on August 6 (it's available from Amazon).

There is a bonus track on the CD - Angel. Yes, that's a Jimi Hendrix song which may startle some of Alfie's original opera and classical music fans. During his March/April sellout Storyteller tour in the UK, he introduced the song by saying, "This is a Jimi Hendrix song, but don't get scared." It is actually a beautiful ballad, rendered tenderly and with passion as only Alfie can sing it.

Hopefully, those unaware will see Alfie on the May 26 National Memorial Day Concert that airs live from Washington D.C. on PBS and decide to board the train, hopping over to Amazon to order the CD that features songs like Elvis Presley's If I Can Dream and the Rolling Stones' Angie. On the program, he will be singing his signature song, Bring Him Home, that he performed as Jean Valjean in Les Miserables both during the 25th Anniversary Concert of the musical and for five months on the West End in London.

I admit that I, too, have gotten into the creative fan-made videos where Alfie is concerned. My silliness includes videos where he giggles, bows, and plays with the microphone, and that's just the tip of my creative iceberg.

What is fun with YouTube is just clicking on suggestions that pop up after you find something you are searching for. It is like taking a spontaneous road trip, full of surprises and good times!

This is the Van Dyke clip mentioned above: