Saturday, November 5, 2016

A Shady Dame Sings a Song

Because I am spending this weekend doing everything possible to avoid thinking about politics in any way, shape or form, here's a rich little gem from Peggy Lee, going Latin with a vengeance.

"El Toro," credited to Lee and the great Brazilian guitarist Laurindo Almeida (father of the Jazz Samba), may not be the greatest song ever written, but this clip offers up a plethora of joys: a dishy toreador, a mantilla, and not least, of course, the lady herself, who gives it her all right up to the rather startled expression at the end, as if even she can't quite believe she's carried it off. I suppose today's killljoys would descend upon any good North Dakota girl (née, after all, Egstrom) who indulged in such rank cultural appropriation, but I think it's good fun.

And if anything else, it's a reminder that, each in our way, we've got some bulls to fight...


  1. This is my favorite Peggy Lee era -- high shellac -- before she became "A Natural Woman." The song's a big "meh" but she gives it her all.

    1. "Natural" in the Peg context, is a pretty relative and elastic term. I saw her at one of her (very) later shows, and believe me, she was plenty shellacked...

      (But still magical)

  2. That's a whopper of a mantilla!