Friday, February 28, 2014

Parrot Identifies Murderer

India Times
27 February 2014

Neelam, wife of a local Hindi newspaper editor Vijay Sharma, was found murdered at her residence in Balkeshwar colony here on February 20, police said.

While the police were looking for the killer, Sharma noted a change in the behaviour of their pet parrot whenever his nephew, Ashutosh Sharma Goswami, came to the house.

"It sulked every time Ashutosh passed its cage," Sharma's brother Ajay said.

Growing suspicious, the victim's family started taking names of possible suspects in front of the parrot.

When Ashutosh's name was taken, the parrot started shouting 'Usne maara, Usne maara' (He has killed), Ajay said. […]

Times of India
26 February 2014

Ishita Mishra, TNN

AGRA: In a case that seems straight out of an Agatha Christie potboiler, a parrot turned detective and helped nab its mistress' killer.

The question of who murdered Neelam Sharma, 45, and her pet dog, had been baffling the city police for almost a week till they got a clue provided by Hercule, the parrot.

Neelam, wife of Vijay Sharma, the editor of a Hindi daily, was found murdered at her residence on February 20. Her husband noticed a change in the behaviour of the parrot whenever his nephew Ashutosh visited their house after the murder.

"During discussions too, whenever Ashutosh's name was mentioned, the parrot would start screeching. This raised my suspicion and I informed the police," said Sharma. […]

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Children Raped, Organs Taken (Dubai)

Khaleej Times
27 February 2014

Amira Agarib

The Dubai Police on Wednesday denied reports of a Dubai-based gang which purportedly kidnapped and raped children, and sold their internal organs. […]

Gulf News
26 February 2014

Warns those who circulate such stories on social media will be severely punished

    By Nawal Al Ramahi, Special to Gulf News

Dubai: Dubai Police have denied rumours on social media regarding gangs luring children and killing them after raping them. […]

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Fast Frankie

Dave Van Ronk with Elijah Wald, The Mayor of MacDougal Street (Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 2005), p. 189.

[One of two of Mississippi John Hurt’s songs that were included on the seminal collection, Anthology of American Folk Music, was] this gorgeous piece of fingerpicking called “Frankie’s Blues.” It was a beautiful arrangement, and when those albums came out in the early 1950s, we all immediately set ourselves to learn that thing. It was incredibly fast, though, and after a week or two I dropped by the wayside. A few persisted, and my friend Barry Kornfeld, for one, disappeared into his chambers and emerged six weeks later, blinking like a mole, and he had it. Note for note, just as clean and fast as on the record.

When I first saw John at the CafĂ© Yana, there he was playing “Frankie’s Blues.” I noticed that it was a lot slower than on the record. Of course, he was a good deal older, but it also struck me that it sounded better at that tempo. I wanted to ask him about it, but I wanted to be as diplomatic as possible – I didn’t want to just say, “So, Pops, can’t cut it anymore, eh?” Very tentatively, I said, “You know that ‘Frankie’ thing you played…”

Apparently, I was not the first person to have asked, because John intervened and saved me any further embarrassment. He just smiled and said, “Oh, you want to know why it’s so much slower than on the record?”

I said, “Yeah…”

He said, “Well, you know, that song was so long that they had to speed it up to get it on one side of a 78.”

All I could think of was Barry, sidelined with acute carpal tunnel syndrome.

[In his notes in the booklet accompanying the 1997 reissue of the Anthology, John Fahey writes that it was rumored that when Hurt’s version of “Frankie” “was played for Segovia, he couldn’t believe there were not two guitars at work” (p. 10).]