Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Heartbreak No Stranger to This Redhead

Born in Georgia, now living in New York City, Allison Moorer is an American alternative country singer who overcame the early horror of her parents' death to become a star. She signed to MCA Nashville in 1998 and made her debut on the U.S. Billboard country charts with the release of her debut single "A Soft Place to Fall", which reached No. 73. 


Since the release of her debut album Alabama Song, she released seven albums and 11 singles, five of which reached positions on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.

Allison was raised in Frankville, Alabama, just north of Mobile. Raised on George Jones and Tammy Wynette, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash and Emmylou Harris, she sang harmonies as a toddler, eventually thinking she'd make a career of it. Following the murder-suicide of her parents in 1986, she moved into her aunt and uncle's home.

Allison moved to Nashville after her high school graduation. She sang for a while but returned to Alabama to earn a degree in public relations. She skipped the graduation ceremony to move back to Nashville. There, she met Doyle "Butch" Primm, an Oklahoma-reared musician who soon became her husband and frequent songwriting partner. In June 1996, she took part in a series of tributes to her songwriter friend, the late Walter Hyatt, singing his "Tell Me Baby" at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium. Nashville agent Bobby Cudd was sufficiently impressed to hook her up with producer Tony Brown. After a few meetings, Brown asked her to cut some demos, from which two tracks -- "Pardon Me" and "Call My Name" -- ended up on her first MCA album, Alabama Song.

Her song "A Soft Place to Fall" was tapped for The Horse Whisperer in 1998, and she also appeared in the movie. Because the ballad earned her an Academy Award nomination, she performed it on the 1999 Oscars ceremony. However, none of her singles from Alabama Song or its follow-up The Hardest Part caught on at radio, though both projects were highly praised by critics.

Allison enjoys sewing and keeping her southern accent. Here's a recent entry from her journal (which you can find and read yourself on her website.)

"There’s something about being born in the south that you just can’t shake. It never leaves your blood, no matter where your life may take you. I’ve been all over the world and still have Spanish moss hanging all over me. It’s in my vowels and dropped g’s, in my gestures, in my tendency to want to monogram anything that will stay still long enough, in my longings, in my music, and in my dreams. Someone asked me once how long I’d lived in New York City, and when I replied that I’d lived here for years, he asked me how I hadn’t lost my accent yet. I told him I couldn’t if I wanted to and that just for the record, I did not want to."

-- Thanks to Wikipedia and Allison's website


Friday, May 16, 2014

HOT TIPS: Treasure Hunter Stock Under $2

Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (OMEX), which recovered nearly 1,000 ounces of gold during an initial reconnaissance dive, is currently salvaging what it can find from the wreck of the SS Central America, a 280-foot wooden-hulled, three-masted side-wheel steamship.

In operation during the California Gold Rush, the ship made 43 successful round trips between New York and Panama, but on the 44th was caught in a hurricane and sank 160 miles off the coast of South Carolina.

When lost on September 12, 1857, the Central America carried consignments of gold for commercial interests, mainly in the form of ingots and freshly San Francisco-minted U.S. $20 Double Eagle coins.

OMEX recovered five gold ingots (shown in photo above) and two $20 Double Eagle coins (one 1857 minted in San Francisco and one 1850 minted in Philadelphia) during a two-hour reconnaissance dive. The gold ingots were stamped with assayer’s marks and weights that range from 96.5 to 313.5 troy ounces.

Odyssey was selected for the project by Ira Owen Kane, the court-appointed receiver who represents Recovery Limited Partnership (RLP) and Columbus Exploration LLC (CE). The contract has been approved by the Common Pleas Court of Franklin County, Ohio, which has given Mr. Kane responsibility with overseeing the recovery project.

The archaeological excavation, valuable cargo recovery and ship-board conservation will be conducted and underwritten by Odyssey on behalf of RLP. In return, Odyssey will receive 80% of recovery proceeds until a fixed mobilization fee and a negotiated day rate are paid. Thereafter, Odyssey will receive 45% of the recovery proceeds.

Remember: Before taking a tip from this website, Austin Carr -- that's me, the guy giving you the tip -- is a fictional stockbroker. Like, he doesn't exist.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Happy Cinco de Mayo You Gringos!

Don your sombreros, mi amigos y mi amigas. The Famous Author is making tacos and enchiladas tonight, but being the front-runner he is, you'd better get there by eight if you want to eat.

The fifth of May is not Mexican Independence Day, by the way. Nor does May 5 celebrate the anniversary of tequila's creation, a noble holiday in its own right. So then, what IS Cinco de Mayo, exactly?

The Famous Author sponsored a contest back in 2007 asking just that question, and the grand prize-winning entry by Fred Pellerito explained it all:

"Cinco de Mayo is a date of great importance for the Mexican and Chicano communities. It marks the victory of the Mexican Army over the French at the Battle of Puebla.

"Although the Mexican army was eventually defeated, the "Batalla de Puebla" came to represent a symbol of Mexican unity and patriotism. With this victory, Mexico demonstrated to the world that Mexico and all of Latin America were willing to defend themselves of any foreign intervention. Especially those from imperialist states bent on world conquest.

"Cinco de Mayo's history has its roots in the French Occupation of Mexico. The French occupation took shape in the aftermath of the Mexican-American War of 1846-48. With this war, Mexico entered a period of national crisis during the 1850's. Years of not only fighting the Americans but also a Civil War, had left Mexico devastated and bankrupt.

"On July 17, 1861, President Benito Juarez issued a moratorium in which all foreign debt payments would be suspended for a brief period of two years, with the promise that after this period, payments would resume.

"The English, Spanish and French refused to allow president Juarez to do this, and instead decided to invade Mexico and get payments by whatever means necessary. The Spanish and English eventually withdrew, but the French refused to leave. Their intention was to create an Empire in Mexico under Napoleon III. Some have argued that the true French occupation was a response to growing American power and to the Monroe Doctrine (America for the Americans). Napoleon III believed that if the United States was allowed to prosper indescriminantly, it would eventually become a power in and of itself.

"In 1862, the French army began its advance. Under General Ignacio Zaragoza, 5,000 ill-equipped Mestizo and Zapotec Indians defeated the French army in what came to be known as the "Batalla de Puebla" on the fifth of May.

"In the United States, the "Batalla de Puebla" came to be known as simply "5 de Mayo" and unfortunately, many people wrongly equate it with Mexican Independence which was on September 16, 1810, nearly a fifty year difference.

"Over the years Cinco de Mayo has become very commercialized and many people see this holiday as a time for fun and dance. Oddly enough, Cinco de Mayo has become more of a Chicano holiday than a Mexican one. Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on a much larger scale here in the United States than it is in Mexico. People of Mexican descent in the United States celebrate this significant day by having parades, mariachi music, folk lorico dancing and other types of festive activities."

Fred knows his stuff, huh?