Is anyone else watching Sky Atlantic's series Smash!. US TV at it's best, this follows a stage show production based on the Marilyn Monroe life story. Here we see the writers (including an excellent Debra Messing); a single minded Brit director in the form of Jack Davenport (This is the best i've seen him - totally beleivable as bastard!); Angelica Houston as a recently divorced producer trying to find her business feet on her own for the first time. The stars really are Megan Hilty (Wicked on Broadway) and Katherine McPhee (apparently a runner-up in American Idol a few years ago). Hilty clearly shows her stage show experience and is mesmerising - with a powerful voice. If this ever makes it to the stage I want to hear her do it (sorry lost in the story there for a moment). McPhee is a revelation as her green newbie character gets to sing songs from the show and others whilst we see her at karaoke bars, performing at a bar mitzvah etc - she has an all round voice - I particularly like her take on Florence's "Shake It Up"
This is good TV and a great Saturday night music fix rolled into one. I'm so taken I've just ordered the soundtrack. Be warned keep way from the Smash website as it will spoil the plotline, iflike me you are watching outside the US where the first season is only mid-way through.
Ronnie Laine's take on an old song about the US depression. This was used in a 1975 David Puttnam BBC2(?) TV documentary on the subject and the track was used as the closing credits rolled. Good version of a powerful song.