Saturday, November 30, 2013

Chicago Al Capone and The Wrigley Building New Postcards On Zazzle

We have added two new designs to our ChiTownView postcard collection on Zazzle. First we have Al Capone Chicago gangster and his thoughts on corruption. Our other new card offers a original photo of another Chicago landmark. The iconic Wrigley Building on Michigan Ave. at the beginning of the "Magnificent Mile".

    Al Capone                               The Wrigley Building

You can check out our Zazzle store and the rest of our world at

Friday, November 29, 2013

Can’t Take No More, Banned OSHA Documentary

New upload on OakParkVideo

One of three films produced during the Carter administration about the history of labor safety. They were banned in 1981 by the Reagan White House because they were favorable to labor.
Copies were recalled and burned those that didn’t return their copies had their funding threatened. It’s only recently that they became available again and are now part of the National Archive.This film “Can’t Take No More” traces the history of the workplace safety movement and is narrated by Studs Terkel and features an original score by Oscar Brand.

This film was preserved through the years through the efforts of Mark Catlin, who made this and other censored OSHA films available for digitizing.

Narrator: Studs Terkel
Executive Producer: Ginny Durrin
Producer/Writer: Janet Hayman
Original Score by: Oscar Brand
Cinematographer: Kip Durrin
Editor: Terry Halle
Produced by Durrin Films, Inc. for the Government.

OakParkVideo is a sister or brother, maybe a cousin station of ChiTownView 
both are productions of MindsiMedia

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Seinfeld Years / A Look At The First And Last Episodes

Sorry to say but this series of posts has been cancelled because I'd rather just watch and enjoy them.

Two coincidental things happened to me last week. I read an article where TV Guide had a list of the 50 greatest TV shows of all time. The 1990’s comedy Seinfeld was ranked as the best. A couple of days later I was out thrifting when I came across the first five seasons of this best show of all time for $10. So of course I had to pick them up.
Now I’ve seen all of them and am a big fan. I didn’t know about it when it was first on but then one night in  November of 1992 when I had my first encounter. It was shortly after we had our first child and I was getting him to bed. A task made more difficult by the chortteling of my wife who was watching some TV show. Now Judy was not a person given to open guffawing at network television. So after I got the lad to sleep I asked her what she had been watching. Something called Seinfeld and I promptly forgot all about it, until next week.
Once again I was putting Michael to bed and once again something on TV was very funny. This time I finished earlier and walked up to see what sooo was funny. And what do I walk into but some chubby balding guy got caught by his mother masturbating to Vogue magazine. He didn’t say the word but there was NO doubt what was being discussed. That was my first moment.
Anyway since I have the first five seasons I’m going to watch them in order. And write about the experience here.

Season 1 Episode 1 “The Seinfeld Chronicles”
And how does the greatest TV series of all time begin? With comic Jerry Seinfeld working in a nightclub doing a monologue on how great it is to go out. It’s the first of a few of these club act cutaways that are sprinkled throughout the episode.
The story revolves around Laura a woman Jerry met while on the road. She is coming to New York and after picking her up at the airport Jerry lets her stay at his apartment. It’s not until after he agrees to let her stay she finds out she’s engaged.
While this all unfolds Jerry, George & Kramer explore the situation in hilarious conversation. There’s a great scene in the Laundromat where George watches Jerry do his laundry and the scene ends with the line “You can’t over die and you can’t over dry”..
There is also Kramer’s opening line “You got any meat?” Here's a clip from the episode.

The first season starts on July 5, 1989 the next episode doesn’t air until May of next year. And since this isn't going to be a series I thought I'd add a clip showing the last moments of the show.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Frank Lloyd Wright In Oak Park, Two Homes On North East Ave.

Oak Park Il., a western suburb of Chicago, is known worldwide as the home of architect Frank Lloyd Wright. He was the father of the prairie school style of architecture that flourished at the start of the 20th century. Regular readers of our blog will know on ChiTownView we have posted videos of all his Oak Park structures he designed and many of the others that abound in the Chicago  area. Besides those videos MindsiMedia also offers photos, Wright related items on our on linestore, a Google map with all his surviving Chicago are designs and more.

Since the Wright videos were among our first original productions the there are some I’m unhappy with. In a lot of the cases I converted the HD footage to regular .wmv files so I could add titles, music or narration. Our production facilities here are somewhat limited. Sometimes the video was shot in the summer or fall when landscape elements can obscure parts of the homes.Whatever the reasons this winter we are going out and reshooting some of the videos and adding a new playlist of the some of the other rich architecture that there is in the area.

If you are planning to visit our area to see these magnificent structures we suggest you subscribe to our blog and explore the rest of our world. We offer a somewhat different look at Chicago and the rest of the world for that matter. We would love to hear from you and let us know how we can do better.

Anyway here are our first two updated videos and a look at our map of Wrights Chicago area designs, a  map that includes links to videos.

The Edward H, Cheney House, 520 N. East
A little bit east and north of the Wright  Historic District  are two gems by the prairie school master and are well worth visiting. First we have the Edward H, Cheney House which was built in 1903. It's a quietly stunning house that is so low to the ground it seems to be part of the landscape.

It was the construction of this house when Mr. Wright began an affair scandalous long running affair with Mrs. Cheney. That culminated in 1909 when Wright abandoned practice and traveled Europe with Mrs. Cheney. He eventually left Oak Park as well leaving it build his country estate Taliesin in Wisconsin. The affair ended tragically in 1914 when an insane servant slaughtered Mrs. Cheney and the children while Wright was away.

The William E. Martin House, 636 N East
A block and a half north of the Cheney home on East Ave. we have the William E. Martin house at 636 N. East. It offers a most interesting contrast in styles. While the Cheney home is low to the ground and almost seems to be part of it the Martin home is like a staircase leading up to the sky. The home caught the eye of Martins brother who was a wealthy industrialist living in Buffalo. This led to Wright to Buffalo where he did six homes and an office building.

At one time there was a formal garden with a pagoda to the south the part that juts out at the beginning of the clip was a passageway to these gardens.

View Frank Lloyd Wright In Chicago in a larger map

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Early Live Footage Of Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash & Carl Perkins

Today on Mikes Diggs Music we offer clips from three of the "founding fathers" of modern music from the early part of their respective careers.

From February1 1964 we offer this "woodsy"look at Bob Dylan as he plays a half hour set on Canad ian TV just after releasing the  "The Times They Are A-Changing" Lp. It is kind of a farewell to his acoustic era as within a month he would rent an electric guitar. 
Here is the set list : 1. The Times They Are A Changin'  2. Talkin' World War III Blues  3. Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  4. Girl From The North Country  5. A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall  6. Restless Farewell

And from 1957 we offer a pair of Tex Ritters "Ranch Party" TV shows that just throw thmusic at you.

Ranch Party Starring Johnny Cash (1957)
Johnny Cash ("I Walk The Line"), Ranch Party Gang ("Blue Tail Fly"), Patsy Cline ("I've Loved and Lost Again"), Les 'Carrot Top' Anderson ("Dimples or the Dumplins"), Joe Maphis and Fiddlin' Kate ("Instrumental Hoedown"), Dorothy Wright ("Just a Closer Walk with Thee"), Bobby Helms ("Long Gone Daddy"), Collins Kids ("Let's Have A Party"), Lorrie Collins ("Young Heart") and the Ranch Party Gang ("Deep In the Heart of Texas").

Ranch Party Starring Carl Perkins (1957)
 Carl Perkins ("Blue Suede Shoes", "Your True Love"), Lorrie Collins ("There He Goes"), Ranch Party Gang ("Night Train To Memphis"), Smiley Burnette ("Hominy Grits"), Wes and Marilyn Tuttle ("Hey Good Lookin'"), Tex Ritter ("Children and Fools"), Mac Wiseman ("Wabash Cannonball") and the Collins Kids ("Kaw-liga").

Click Here And Visit Mikes Diggs Music

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Chicago Postcards From ChiTownView Vintage On Shopify And Original On Zazzle

ChiTownView has a new store on Shopify that offers books, postcards and other assorted odd objects. We will eventually be offering mostly Chicago related items but as I am also housecleaning there’s going to be all manner of odd things popping up for awhile. We offer free shipping to the lower 48 states and if you live in the Chicago area and can pickup in Forest Park there is a substantial discount offered. Also if you live in the area and have some Chicago related items you think we might be interested in contact me.

Today we highlight our collection of Chicago related postcards. Most of them are from the early 20th century before 1920 and feature everything from the cities beautiful parks to tragic scenes like the recovery of bodies from the Eastland disaster. Stop by and visit us.


We also have started a series of original postcards that we have made available through our  Zazzle shop

Friday, November 15, 2013

British Folk Singer Roy Harper Arrested For A Sex Crime He Committed in the 1970's

Roy Harper is a British folk musician who has released some thirty lps. Although he is best known for providing the vocals for Pink Floyd's hit "Have A Cigar". The long, long arm of British justice caught up with the 72 year old Harper as he has been arrested for a sex crime. It seems that somewhere between 1975-77 he had sex with a 14 year old girl. Mr. Harper has been charged with nine offences. 

Update July, 2014. a trial date is set for August 2014

And how about a sample of Mr. Harper's music here's from an lp called Jugla that  he did with Jimmy Page in the 1980's.

And here's an interview with the two of them recorded as they were making the lp.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Moist Guitars & Donnie Biggins @ Val’s Halla Records 11/9/2013

Nothing beats  live music on a Saturday afternoon at your local record store. At Val’s Halla Records in Oak Park Il. we were treated to two completely different musical presentations this past Saturday.This was part of the "Saturdays On Stage" series that Val's is hosting in conjunction with Friendly Tap in Berwyn. For the month of November every Saturday afternoon Val's will be presenting three musical guests. For a listing of performers check out our web site.

 First up were the Moist Guitars. They are five purveyors of musical mayhem who slogan is "those loveable characters you've never heard of, but will learn to love." After seeing them for the first time at 1:30 on a Saturday afternoon recently I think they are right. It was a little early in the day and they turned in a restrained performance because of the venue but they still provided a very entertaining set. This song on this clip is "What About Our Love"
For more on Moist Guitars visit their site.

Shortly afterwards we saw Donnie Biggins. Donnie Biggins is not wearing a hat in this video but perhaps he should start. Because as a solo performer, member of Chicago's own The Shams, and activist for the cause in helping local musicians earn more money he seems to be wearing a number of them. He has been
called a linchpin by some but that sounds almost painful. After seeing him perform a solo acoustic set at Val's Halla records on a recent Saturday afternoon I'll just say he's a mighty fine singer/songwriter.This number is called "Whiskey From The Trunk"
For more on Donnie Biggins and the Shams check out their web site. 

This video and its distribution across the Internet is a service of MindsiMedia. My name is Mike Beyer and I am an online content producer of video, photo & stories. Long before I became digitized I had vinyl running through my veins. I worked for Val for more than a decade and would be best remembered as the one who built the Elves shrine. Visit us at

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

A Google Map Of Chicago Area Designs By Frank Lloyd Wright and Links To More About Him

Frank Lloyd Wright the prairie school master was one of the giants of 20th century architecture. For many years he made his home in Oak Park Il. A western suburb of Chicago has more of his designs than anywhere else. I grew up in Oak Park and still live in the western suburbs. I have shot and posted videos of most of his Chicago area designs. One of the reasons I started ChiTownView / YouTube was to showcase his work.

We have just posted this Google map of all of his Chicago area designs. that still stand. We have added links to the videos on our map where we found them. The red pins signify a  major Wright design that was torn down.

View Frank Lloyd Wright In Chicago in a larger map

We offer throughout MindsiMedia other Wright related photos, videos, interviews and more.
We also have a set of Wright photos on Flickr.
And a board for him posted on Pintrest.
You may find Wright related items at ChiTownView, our Shopify store.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Fall Colors and A Trip To Trailside Museum In River Forest Il.

Out in Chicago's western suburb of River Forest is a tiny nature museum and rescue .center that has been there forever. The "Hal Tyrrell" Trailside Museum is located on Thatcher just south of Chicago. It is a great place for young children and animal lovers of all ages. I stopped for a visit on a nice fall Sunday. .Afterwards I took a little walk through the woods behind the museum for the fall colors and a visit to a quiet pond.

They have been rescuing animals and educating nature lovers since 1931. About fifteen years ago the county was considering closing Trailside and that touched off a series of demonstrations from outraged citizens. Before long word of the protests made the media alerting local leaders that this might not be a popular move. One of them Hal Tyrrell came to the rescue and saved the museum. 

Presented by ChiTownView & produced by MindsiMedia. Visit our web portal at