22 January 2013

More Marlene Dietrich YouTube Tutorials

I'm in the midst of writing about Hollywood costume collector John Lebold, the movie Manpower, and hopefully also songwriter Hertha Koch, but I'd like to direct your attention to some of the latest Marlene Dietrich-related YouTube tutorials that I've discovered. Pin curls and Shanghai Express seem to be all the rage. That is, if one can call two videos a rage. I'd rather see YouTube's gurus recreate the scalp-wrenching look of Kismet, but--tell me--who did Shanghai Lily better?

If you want to go off the beaten path and emulate a look from one of Marlene's lesser-known movies, Desire, take a look at this. It may be in Portuguese, but you won't need an interpreter to see that this stunning look will help you snatch jewelry like you're Madeleine de Beaupre (or Lindsay Lohan):


  1. Who wants to look like Marlene when you can sing like her? Nicky Haslam!

    1. What sublime instrumentation! I should be tarred and feathered for writing this, but I preferred Bryan Ferry's rendition of "Falling in Love Again" to Marlene's. In fact, I'd like to hear a Marlene Dietrich tribute album with only male vocalists.

      I do enjoy female vocalists, though, and Janice Hall was kind enough to put up a medley of "Where Have All The Flowers Gone"/"In den Kasernen" after I had asked about it.

    2. Shame on you if you don't know "Dietrich Hotel" by Michel Hermon :

    3. Joseph:

      Fabrice, thanks for the link!

      Gotta run, have to finish my tutorial about tape lifts.

    4. Fabrice, I could have lived without knowing that album! I'd rather spend a night in the Bates Motel than the Dietrich Hotel. Too bad I couldn't hear a full clip of Hermon's "Alles aus Leder" (which probably snuck into the Dietrich Hotel for a sleazy encounter in the stairwell with "Just a Gigolo") because I bet it would have made my skin crawl.

      Missladiva, I've posted that clip and am a fan of Klaus Nomi. He could have been a great children's television show host. Do share your tutorial about tape lifts when you're done! I'm working on a tutorial myself--about perfecting the stage fall.

    5. Joseph, you're the salt in my coffee :

    6. Fabrice, that's good! Whose rendition was Marlene spinning on her gramophone back when that song was hot? I forgot.

      In case you get sick of the salt in your coffee, how about a few spoonfuls of cyanide?

      "Allein in einer grossen Stadt" sampled in Marsimoto's "One Love Song"

      "Wo ist der Mann?" sampled in Mr B and Stacey Stamps' "Return of the Native"

      "Berlin Berlin" sampled in Joe Rilla's "Ostberlin

      Who knew Marlene had the beats for the streets? The first two acts sound like amateurs, but Joe Rilla's track was executed well.

    7. Joseph,
      Yves Montand ou Henri Salvador (89 yo) with Caetano Veloso

      Max Raabe is a alchemist, he transforms lead into gold : and (where is Marlene ?)

      P.S. : I never drink coffee. Please be a good boy and tell me first the taste of cyanide.

    8. Fabrice, why are you overlooking the best version of "Cherche la rose" in history?

      Max Raabe seems to have a penchant for Max Martin-penned Britney Spears tunes! Not only is he an alchemist, he is also a musical necromancer. He did a spot-on cover of "Du bist meine Greta Garbo", and his orchestra even made a nod to the Dajos Bela orchestra arrangement.

    9. Versions originales françaises et autres versions masculines :

      Symphonie, Jacques Pills (Monsieur Piaf)

      Que reste-t-il de nos amours, Charles Trenet

      Ne me quitte pas, Jacques Brel

      Je tire ma révérence, Jean Sablon

      Je sais que vous êtes jolie, Jean Sablon avec Django Reinhardt

      Quand l'amour meurt, Reda Caire

      La vie en rose, Yves Montand

      Auprès de ma blonde

      Je suis Fabrice et j'approuve ce message.

    10. "Que reste-t-il de nos amours"/"I Wish You Love" is sublime melodically & lyrically in French and English! Trenet's version is much more quirky than a lot of the comatose lounge/bossa nova covers, yet not as unique as Bette Davis' rendition.

  2. My vote for the better Shanghai Lily is video #2. The hairstyle is much closer to Dietrich's in the film and the woman is more attractive than the lady in #1 who has admirable nerve but not much in the way of looks. My only criticism of video #3 is that I wish he had donned a blonde wig to make it a completely classic Hollywood look. Thanks for putting a bit of fun in my day.

    1. About #3, I've noticed that many young male YouTube gurus are only serving a half portion of glamor by making their faces up and not putting on a wig. Some may find an appeal in the gender-bending, but it looks to me like they rushed out of their dressing rooms half-done because a fire alarm started ringing.

  3. Where have I gone wrong.I slavishly combined all three and now look like Wallace Beery's grandmother.Must be doing something wrong.Paul

    1. You didn't do a thing wrong! You can always tell the ignorant that you were going for Marlene's "Wanna kiss me, ducky?" look.