Remembering Annette Hanshaw on Her Birthday

Cladrite sweetheart Annette Hanshaw was born 120 years ago today in Manhattan. For us, she’s the gold standard for songbirds of the late 1920s and early ’30s; we think she’s keen. She retired after only a few years—the spotlight didn’t suit her—but what a legacy she left. We’ll featuring her music all day today on Cladrite Radio, so why not tune in now?


Annette Hanshaw


Happy 133rd Birthday, Max Fleischer!

Max Fleischer and friendToday marks the 133rd birthday of animator Max Fleischer, who, along with his brother Dave, was responsible for creating Betty Boop, the first Popeye the Sailor Man cartoons, and the beautifully rendered Superman cartoons of the 1940s.

In the 1940s, Fleischer was the head of animation for The Jam Handy Organization, an industrial film company. This lighthearted newsreel from that outfit, illustrated by Fleischer, shows how versatile an illustrator he was.

Happy birthday, Max Fleischer, wherever you may be!

A New Deal in Video Games

We’re not what might be termed avid gamers. We kill a few idle minutes now and then playing Bejeweled on our smartphone, and we’ll play Mahjong on our laptop and then. We even own a first-generation Wii and have flirted with bowling a perfect game on it more than once.

But we own no XBox, no PS4, no … em, Gameboy? (Are those still a thing?) And we certainly don’t pretend to have our fingers on the pulse of what’s the latest and greatest thing coming down the gaming pike at any given time.

But there’s a game currently garnering a good deal of buzz that we’re quite excited about (and we think you will be, too). It’s called Cuphead, and it’s the first effort from a Canadian developer called Studio MDHR. Its animation is hand-drawn, as was the norm long ago, and best of all, it very faithfully reproduces the look of 1930s cartoons (particularly, to our eyes, the work of the Fleischer Brothers, best known for their Betty Boop and Popeye the Sailor cartoons).

The soundtrack will feature original jazz tunes, composed by Kristofer Maddigan, that will, according to the company’s website, “be recorded live with a group of musicians in the vein of 1930′s music.” We do hope, however, that the final product will feature music that is more authentically 1930s in flavor than is heard in the trailers below; that’s our only hesitation about the project at this point in time.

Cuphead won’t be available for purchase until 2015, but we trust it’ll be well worth the wait. Hec, we’ll likely come to consider Cuphead the Official Video Game of Cladrite Radio!