Once upon a time there was a video jukebox called a Scopitone. It was placed in bars, upper level clubs and places where people got to see the performers of the day do their thing while knocking back a Martini.
I can't do the whole history justice but I highly recommend a visit to the Scopitones blog. There are videos from France, Europe and a few Americans you might recall like Lou Rawls, Della Reese and Brook Benton.
I want to introduce you to a gentleman by the name of Henri Salvador. Henri was a well respected jazz performer and vocalist. He was also a clown in the best sense of the word. I can't speak a lick of French but for this video you don't need to.
We need some fun after the past two weeks. I think you are gonna like this.
Sound familiar? This is not a cover of the song "Along Came Jones." This is the original that inspired the American version of the song.
I got one more for you. Tout ça c'est pas grave which translates to It's All Okay.
I wish the heck I paid more attention in French class but I think I get the gist of it. Some of his videos are pure uncured ham; others are just strange without a translation or cultural background to get the joke.
Mr. Salvador appeared in a couple of French movies in the 1940s and 1950s. Looks like he had a television show too. I have to stress that he wasn't just a prankster; he seems to have the kind of career that allowed him to have the flexibility to try new things and not lock him into one format.
In any case, I blame him for my new Scopitone habit.