While dozing off the other night, TCM was screening the 1967 beach classic, Don’t Make Waves which is remarkable for several reasons. First it’s based on a book entitled Muscle Beach and the beach scenes in this movie feature lots of vintage muscle men like David Draper and skimpy bikini clad women.
Second it stars Tony Curtis just moments before his delicate boyish beauty faded into middle aged Italian wrinkled alcoholic .
Thirdly it introduces Sharon Tate in a spectacular slow motion acrobatic herkie jumping trampoline scene. Just beautiful and then two years later she was...well you know...she was dead.
The next day while street walking in a lavish shopping centre, I overheard a Christmas song by Doris Day. I began thinking back on Doris and how she was the oldest living virgin and how Phyllis Diller once made a comment on a Doris True Hollywood Story about how, “You know it was that Marty Melcher her husband and manager that swindled her career into bankruptcy.”
So I wikipedia’d old Doris to refresh my memory. I love the reliable wikipedia and how it’s one of those sites that everybody can just make up something and post it five minutes ago. Well, turns out Doris has recorded more than 650 songs and is currently the top-ranking female box-office star of all time, ranked 6th in the top ten of mostly male stars, the only other female is Shirley Temple.
Doris married trombonist Al Jorden who was outraged when he found out that she was pregnant, he had demanded Day get an abortion. Doris refused and in turn, Jorden physically abused Day throughout her entire pregnancy. Then on February 8, 1942 she gave birth to a son, Terry, filed for divorce, left the baby with her mother and went back to work. Later she married Martin Melcher and Terry Jorden took his name and became Terry Melcher.
Terry Melcher worked for Columbia records producing for artists such as the Byrds, Glenn Campbell, and The Mama’s and The Papa’s and worked with the Beach Boys.
This is where it gets interesting;
“In 1968, Beach Boy Dennis Wilson introduced Melcher to ex-con and aspiring musician Charles Manson. Manson and his "family" had been living in Wilson's house on Sunset Boulevard. Melcher was interested in recording Manson's music, as well as making a movie about the "family". During that time, Manson met Melcher at 10050 Cielo Drive, the home Melcher shared with his girlfriend, Candice Bergen. Manson eventually auditioned for Melcher, but Melcher declined to sign him. There was still talk of a documentary being made about Manson's music, but Melcher abandoned the project after witnessing his subject becoming embroiled in a terrifying fight with a drunken stuntman at Spahn Ranch. Both Wilson and Melcher severed their ties with Manson, a move that angered Manson.
After severing ties with Manson, Melcher and Bergen moved out of the Cielo Drive home. The house's owner, Rudi Altobelli, leased it to film director Roman Polanski and his wife, actress Sharon Tate. Manson visited the house looking for Melcher, but was turned away as Melcher had moved. On August 9, 1969, the house that was once occupied by Melcher was the site of the brutal murders of Sharon Tate (who was eight months pregnant at the time), coffee heiress Abigail Folger (known as Gibby to her friends), hairdresser Jay Sebring, writer Wojciech Frykowski, and Steven Parent, by members of Manson's "family". Some authors and law enforcement personnel have theorized that the reason that 10050 Cielo Drive was selected by Manson was to target Melcher as revenge for Melcher's earlier rejection of his music for a recording contract, and that Manson did not believe it when told that Melcher and Bergen had moved out.”
Could have been Candice Bergen instead of Sharon Tate.
So kicking off my Seasonal Holiday Christmas Play List here is the first song, that song from Doris that started me on yet another one thing leads to another and then ends up with Charles Manson as usual.
Happy Manson Holidays