IF: mysterious

In the early 1950s, years before the world became aware of Bob Dylan or Joni Mitchell, Connie Converse wrote and performed songs for her friends at parties around the blossoming “bohemian” scene of Greenwich Village. Her delicate, poetic lyrics, her plaintive voice and her simple acoustic guitar accompaniment gave birth to the “singer-songwriter” genre before …

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DCS: denise nickerson

Denise Nickerson was best remembered for her iconic role as “Violet Beauregard,” the gum-snapping daughter of a pushy used car salesman in the 1971 film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Fresh from her multi-character casting on the Gothic soap opera Dark Shadows, Denise’s popularity was given a huge boost as a result of her appearance …

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DCS: mac rebennack aka dr. john

“Come Get It, Get It, Come, Come / Walk on guilded splinters Come Get It, Get It, Come, Come / Walk on guilded splinters” Dr. John explained that the song “Walk On Guilded Splinters” was based on a traditional voodoo church song. He said, “It’s supposed to be ‘Splendors’, but I turned it into ‘Splinters’… …

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DCS: frank kameny

In 1953, President Dwight Eisenhower issued Executive Order 10450, establishing who could receive a federal security clearance. The order named security risks as Communists, subversives, drunks and drug users, and “sexual perverts.” As far as this order was concerned “sexual perverts,” meant homosexuals. Frank Kameny was employed as an astronomer for the US Army’s cartography …

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IF: war

In 1969, Motown’s mighty Temptations released their Psychedelic Shack album with the title track as the lead — and only — single. The second track on side two of the record was a Norman Whitfield and Barrett Strong composition that offered fierce opposition to the continuing conflict in Vietnam. The song, “War,” featured three-way vocals by Dennis …

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DCS: gilbert baker

From 1970 until 1972, Gilbert Baker served as a medic in the US Army while stationed in San Francisco at the beginning of the gay rights movement. He always exhibited artistic tendancies and was taught to sew by a fellow activist. After his discharge from the service, he began to create banners for demonstrations in …

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