Geezer Alert and Bonus Geezer Alert

Cidu Bill on Jun 28th 2017

Carl Fink sent me this with the comment:

I know the song “Girl from Ipanema” but I didn’t associate it with its Brazilian composer, because I’m not a jazz or bossa nova fan. I’ve really only heard various cover versions. I don’t know that I had ever heard of Jobim and I’m a 55-year-old who likes the song. Would anyone under 40 who isn’t a music nut have a chance?

Jobim died in 1994. I had to look up “Jobim” to figure out what the heck was going on, though I could guess once I figured out the not-very-close song lyric parody.


“Didn’t we just run a Girl from Ipanema comic here?” sez I.

“Yes,” sez he, and he reminded me by sending me this link. Which is also a Loose Parts strip, which suggests that Dave Blazek really does like the song.

Filed in Bill Bickel, Dave Blaek, Girl from Ipanema, Hey Geezers! Comics!, Loose Parts, comic strips, comics, humor | 19 responses so far

19 Responses to “Geezer Alert and Bonus Geezer Alert”

  1. Minor Annoyance Jun 28th 2017 at 02:00 pm 1

    A summer or so in Santa Cruz, saw a sorry old singer / guitarist rendering “Girl From Ipanema” as young girls in beach attire walked on by. He didn’t acknowledge their existence, and visa versa. Bleak joke, unwritten novel, or just a moment?

  2. Powers Jun 28th 2017 at 03:08 pm 2

    I’m under 40 (barely) and know the song quite well but did not know the name of the composer.

  3. ja Jun 28th 2017 at 04:05 pm 3

    Not-very-close song parody? I could have told you the song

    Tall and tan and young and lovely
    Short and pale and old and craggy

    That’s about perfect in my book. I probably could have guessed the target from the first three words, but the first five would have made it a dead giveaway for me, and I could have told you the composer. But while I’m also 55, I play jazz-influenced fingerstyle guitar, have played in jazz bands, etc. For me, knowing Jobim wrote “The Girl from…” is about as obvious as knowing who wrote “Yesterday.” And to that point, “The Girl from…” has been called the second most covered song ever (after “Yesterday”).

    FWIW, Jobim only wrote the music. The original (Portuguese) lyrics are by Vinicius de Moraes. The English lyrics are by Norman Gimbel.

  4. Boise Ed Jun 28th 2017 at 05:52 pm 4


  5. larK Jun 28th 2017 at 06:10 pm 5

    It just occurred to me that most here might even know the name of the composer, but not make the connection to the written form: Jobim is pronounced “zho-bie[ng]” (”Tom” is pronounced “toh[g]”) ([ˈtõ ʒoˈbĩ]); seeing the last name out of context threw me for a second as I’m trying to processing what the heck a “Joe-bim” is…

    (And not for nothing, the words in Portuguese go more along the lines of: “Look at this, the most beautiful, the most graceful thing, this girl swaying and swinging as she makes her way to the sea…”)

  6. Bob Jun 28th 2017 at 06:57 pm 6

    Boise Ed - possibly the best comment ever!

  7. narmitaj Jun 28th 2017 at 07:19 pm 7

    And here’s the original inspiration for the girl… . We heard a lot of and about the song here in the UK during the Rio Olympics, including a BBC docco on bossa nova (not currently available, but some info on it here: ). Though I can’t say the name of the writers ever stuck in my head more than ten minutes after I heard them. The same will be true this time.

  8. narmitaj Jun 28th 2017 at 07:22 pm 8

    In fact, I said most of all that the last time this song theme cropped up!

  9. Ian D Osmond Jun 28th 2017 at 07:46 pm 9

    And I can find, like, five variations of this, right on the first page of Google…

    Short and pale and thin and sickly
    The girl with emphysema keeps smoking
    And when she passes she flicks her ashes
    And goes… [WHEEEEZE]

    When she smokes she’s like a chimney
    That shoots up clouds and smells so nasty
    That when she passes she passes gas
    And goes…

  10. Boise Ed Jun 28th 2017 at 08:01 pm 10

    Thank you, Bob [6]. And thank you, narmitaj [7], for the Pinheiro link.

  11. ja Jun 28th 2017 at 08:06 pm 11

  12. billybob Jun 28th 2017 at 08:56 pm 12

    The discarded and crumpled papers seem to show this was a first draft. But the paunch, receding hairline, and glasses might suggest “the dark years” were a later time of older age and lower standards. This brings to mind the Rolling Stones revising lyrics to “she was shifty, nifty, she looked about fifty.”

  13. Mark in Boston Jun 28th 2017 at 09:56 pm 13

    My music history professor said that he saw a production at Radio City Music Hall that was presented in all seriousness:

    We see a scrim curtain with the scene spotlit from the back, so that the actor and props appear in silhouette. Center stage is a piano, circa 1800. A shaggy-haired actor representing Beethoven sits down at the piano and begins writing music.

    Narrator: “Ludwig van Beethoven worked long and hard at composing his music. It was never easy for him. He struggled to find exactly the right note.”

    Beethoven plays notes in octaves with both hands: G, G, G, short pause, E natural. He shakes his shaggy head in disgust.

  14. Bob in Nashville Jun 29th 2017 at 06:14 am 14

    Any reference to the song reminds me of the “Big Bang Theory” gag in which Amy is playing with her harp on that song when Sheldon came in with his trademark door knocking behavior at just the right moment:
    “…and when she passes each one she passes goes…”
    (knock knock knock) “Amy” (knock knock knock) “Amy” (knock knock knock) “Amy”

    But references to Sausalito remind me of an old pop song about a road trip in a worn out “rambler with a whirlpool in the tank.”

  15. padraig Jun 29th 2017 at 09:00 am 15

    I don’t think of the song’s writer so much as I do the singer, Astrud Gilberto, who apparently only sang the English version with Stan Getz because she was the only member of the band who spoke English.

  16. Irene Jun 29th 2017 at 09:41 am 16

    I am 51, and know “Ipanema” enough to recognize it in the background music when we are out to dinner. My problem is when I simply hear the title, in my mind the lyrics are “Little Old Lady from Pasadena”…which made this an LOL for me.

  17. Bob Jun 29th 2017 at 12:48 pm 17

    Go, granny, go granny, go - go - go. Thanks, Irene.

  18. ja Jun 29th 2017 at 01:20 pm 18

    I love it, Irene…

    Small and old, from Pasadena
    With a bed of white gardenias
    She’s a terror– a speed terror– in her Dodge

    Driving fast and driving hard, she
    Tears up Colorado Boulevard
    Don’t ever choose her—you’ll never lose that Dodge!

    Oh… there is no one that’s meaner…
    Oh… shiny Super Stock Dodge…
    Oh… little lady from Pasadena…
    She’ll get a ticket, now or later
    With her foot always on that accelerator…

    Small and old, but very speedy
    Granny from Pasadena’s a demon
    Don’t ever choose– you’ll ever lose– that Dodge

    (Now to go dig out a nylon-stringed guitar…)

  19. ja Jun 30th 2017 at 10:39 am 19

    >>Astrud Gilberto, who apparently only sang the English version with Stan Getz because she was the only member of the band who spoke English.

    I’m pretty sure Stan Getz spoke English. ;^) Astrud Gilberto wasn’t actually in the band– she was João Gilberto’s wife. Mr. Gilberto is credited with creating bossa nova, and became an international sensation when he combined his talents with Antônio Carlos Jobim. American jazz saxophonist Stan Getz became infatuated with bossa nova, and after a successful foray into the style with guitarist Charlie Byrd, offered to make an album with Mr. Gilberto and his band. They decided to include “Impanema” on the record and needed a singer. Getz wanted the English lyrics, and Mrs. Gilberto was the only one of the Brazilians who spoke English. She had no professional experience, but they gave her a go at it, and it worked… She ended up singing on a second song on the album as well.

    Anyway, “Impanema” and the album it comes from are credited to Getz/Gilberto, but the Gilberto in question isn’t Astrud, it’s João. The Gilberto’s marriage did not survive Astrud’s resulting stardom.

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