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He raised a glass to her and winked. Five blocks away, I heard the noise Raymond had complained about.

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A thumping, grinding, steel ripping into steel, monstrous noise that called to mind the destruction of falling buildings, tornados, and riots. I turned through the studio gates and drove straight to the backlot, around buildings and down alleys, dodging wagons and stacks of plywood until I reached the warehouse, past the trucks, trenches, coils of barbed wire and stacks of prop wagons and guns under tarps.

A pulsing glow came from the scene shop, red and muted like a sunset, and for a shocked moment I thought the building must be on fire. Raymond was only partly right. A dozen vehicles had been picked over and were missing engines, tires, axles, skins. I got as close as I could in the car and parked. This close, I could feel the noise through my feet, vibrations coming up through the ground.

I picked my way around dismantled tractors and reached the doorway, which was open just a crack. Through that crack, a light shone bright as a sun and throbbed like a heartbeat, throwing off streamers of sparks, some of which bounced outside the door before fading. A metallic heat rolled toward me, pressing into the cool night, a breeze of it tugging at my hair.

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Inside, a giant canvas tarp hung from the rafters like a curtain, hiding the machines Peter was building behind it. A rhythmic pounding might have been a riveter. The smell of hot iron and brimstone made me cough. But the screeching metal ground to silence, the cackle of hot steel faded, and the red-hot flares of light went dim. What would pulling it back reveal? Peter came tromping around the edge of it, and I craned my neck to try to get a look beyond, but he was careful to put it back in place behind him.

Wearing heavy canvas coveralls, thick gloves, and heavy boots, he pulled a pair of dark goggles off his eyes and set them on his forehead, leaving pale circles in a face covered in soot. I crossed my arms. He looked like he weighed a thousand pounds. He chuckled, took the flask from me, drank, and passed it back. I drank. We made the circuit like that a couple more times. He stayed quiet, frowning, jaw tight, looking like a prisoner up for execution. He shook his head. Will she still want him then?

George and Annabell live happily ever after. Annabell would marry him anyway because that was what true love was all about, and this was a movie about true love. A movie about true love with a raging full-scale tank battle in the middle of it. Not really. I imagined what I would see if I pulled back the canvas, a row of tanks like Martian war machines. He lived in an apartment building a mile or so from the studio, where lots of the shop people lived. Palmer had probably got him the place.

It was wooden and battered, with a couple of drooping palm trees out front.


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He managed a smile before leaving the car. Which he was all ready to do, except he needed his tanks. Then, all the noise stopped. Granger assumed that meant the tanks were ready. The wall of the scene shop fell outward in a cloud of dust and splinters. Wells rolled into one. The machine rumbled into the open, crushing what was left of the warehouse, throwing off the roof that had crashed down on it. The engines sat on a platform built on scaffolding that rose up from a wide base.

Ridged treads looped around the rhomboid base, a half a dozen rows of tracks that pulled the machine forward, pressing deep grooves into the hard-packed earth between studio buildings. A cockpit, with the shadow of a person sitting inside, driving. He was in a suit of armor as big as the warehouse he had just destroyed. Nothing could touch Peter in there. Treads grinding, the machine crept forward, sending a hundred extras dressed as doughboys scattering across the set of fake trenches and strung-up barbed wire.

A couple of cameramen stayed by their equipment, turning their lenses on the machine, cranking away and catching the monster on film. A woman from the costume department screamed, then everyone screamed. Glowing with heat, engines throbbed, turning drive shafts and belts that ran the gears that moved the treads, and the super-tank kept moving. A marvel of engineering, really. Too bad, would have made a great movie. We could do War of the Worlds with this thing. It continued on to the wood plank fence enclosing the studio backlot.

The fence shattered, and the monster crushed through without stopping and onto the traffic of Melrose Avenue, tearing up asphalt as it went. I ran to my car. I had to dodge swarms of extras, screaming actors, fleeing crew. Granger lay on the ground by a scaffold, curled up under the rickety tripod of an abandoned camera, as if that would protect him. I followed the trail of black smoke, the noise of industrial thunder, and the flurry of panicked screams, screeching tires, crashing cars.

As it progressed to the next block, the beast seemed more sure of itself. The steel frame rattled as the tracks picked up speed, trundling onward, pieces of asphalt skittering away from it. Black smoke trailed from chimneys sticking from the engines like cigars. The muzzles of machine guns bristled from the hull, running up the legs and along the cockpit atop the scaffolding.

Metal crunched and screamed, and the treads only hiccupped a moment as they ground the broken pieces under. It peeled off the fronts of buildings on one side of the street, then the other. It smashed into cars, the multiple treads churning them under, crushing steel with its sheer weight. If only we could replicate this noise for our audiences. The studio could send a phonographic record along with the print of the film. Put in a title card to cue when to set the needle down. I paralleled it, catching glimpses of it through alleys and around buildings.

The thing seemed to be heading for Hollywood Boulevard. I dodged fleeing traffic and raced ahead of it, reaching Hollywood the same time the monster did. The cockpit on the scaffold peered out from behind a billboard. For a terrible moment, I thought it was going to turn away from me, that I would have to turn back around and try to race ahead to cut him off again.

Stan Getz & J.J. Johnson - Crazy Rhythm

But he turned toward me. Meaning I would have to face him. I pushed on the gas and skidded forward. The tank-beast dipped as it lurched over the curb of a sidewalk. The treads whirred and moaned, the structure wobbled, rumbling harder. It should have become unbalanced and fallen over. But it stayed upright, as it was designed to do, settled on those wide treads.

It would be on me in moments, crushing my car like it mangled that truck. I set the brakes, grabbed my white cardigan from the passenger seat, and tumbled out of the car. Then again, the thing seemed pretty sure of itself. It breathed out furious smoke, and the heat of its furnace eyes flared. No way Peter could hear anything over that driving, pounding engine. But I tried anyway. There came a grinding, squealing, crunching noise, louder and sharper than what had come before, stabbing through my brain instead of rattling through my feet.

Momentum carried it a few more feet down the street, and finally it swayed, and tipped. It fell sideways, like a monument chopped off at the ankles. The treads came off the ground, and the rest arced down, welds and rivets coming apart, trailing smoke and burning fuel. When the dust settled, the impromptu battlefield seemed unnaturally calm and silent. Everyone had fled, except for me. I dared to straighten, looking around the edge of my shelter, then to go over the top, into the open. The beast lay in pieces before me. The treads had come apart; the scaffolding had cracked, and the cockpit with its platform lay isolated amidst a mountain of broken bricks.

Fire licked the metal as the last of the fuel burned off the engines. Then —. Through the cockpit window, I caught a flicker of movement. Can you pull on the handle from the outside? I found the hatch in the back of the cockpit, a square door set into the steel. Peter was rattling it from the other side. Gripping the thin handle, I pulled.

It had warped on its hinges, jamming it in place. God, no. I automated the transmission and connected the drive shaft, but not the guns. Peter was drenched in sweat and covered in soot. His whole lean body gleamed, and his coveralls, belted around his waist, were soaking. His hair was plastered to his head, and blood ran from a cut on his cheek.

Closing his eyes, he leaned against the door and turned his face to the open air, taking in the scant cool breeze.

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Heat rolled out of the steel box. I laughed. The entire force must have been called out. Their cars turned every corner to surround us, tires squealing on the pavement as they came to a stop. They even had guns, as if regular bullets would work against that armored hull. Twenty cops yelled, Peter and I put our hands up, and they arrested us both. It took ten hours for me to explain the whole thing. Later, the city threatened to sue the studio for all the damage done to the streets and buildings. Not to mention all the individual lawsuits from the owners of vehicles and buildings that had been destroyed.

No matter what some people said, there was such a thing as bad publicity. I got Peter out on bail and set him next to me in the editing room while we took the footage we had and put together a war movie, a real war movie. And that was how I finally got my first full director credit.


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There had to be easier ways to make a living. Delayed onset of shell shock, the doctors called it, and I figured they were right. I told him he had a job back at the studio just as soon as he was ready for it. Enjoyed this story? Dick Award, and its sequel, The Wild Dead. She wrote the New York Times bestselling series of novels about a werewolf named Kitty, along with several other contemporary fantasy and young adult novels, and upwards of 80 short stories, two of which have been finalists for the Hugo Award.

Martin and a graduate of the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop. An Air Force brat, she survived her nomadic childhood and managed to put down roots in Boulder, Colorado. Visit her at carrievaughn. Queers Destroy Science Fiction! Women Destroy Science Fiction! In England. Been in the States long? Peter and I approached slowly, the machine drawing us close, almost against our wills. What the hell do you know? Ross paced, script to his face, mouthing the words as he read them.

It was kind of cute. I thought you were making a war movie. You tell me, we can try to make it happen. Look at me having fun. I mean besides the usual? Will you be all right if I leave? Of course she would. Putting my hands to my mouth, I hollered. Ten tanks, just like that? How late is it?

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You need a ride home? No mortars falling. Oh, I know that there are times when the instrument takes on a sort of tear-in-the-beer-garden sentimentality, but even then, somehow, it's buoyant and bouncy and brisk, though it's always had the feeling of old world built in. The accordion always seems to be around when it's waltz-time or polka-playing or hop-along happiness. Or it has been The sound is fresh and imaginative and creative. Don is practiced and perfect. His arrangements are clean and crisp and qualitative. He is stimulated and stimulating.

Don Lee is young, but he is no correspondence-course cacophony. He started studying the accordion when he was 8 years old and was making radio appearances and sight-transpositions when he was 9. That was around a town called Lansing, Michigan. That five years later made him all of Naturally, he had to learn as much more about music as a lad with that much talent had to know so he was coasting through courses in harmony and theory at Michigan State University.

At that time Don was 18 , and he opened his first accordion studio in Lansing, Michigan. A year later, there was a second one in Mason, Michigan.

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His knowledge and training in electronics goes back almost as far as the beginnings of his accordion training. Actually, it started when he was 12, and his sound-engineering has a basis in the experimentation and pioneering Don has done with the professional equipment he has been accumulating since then. Log in to write a review. Computergeek Amazing Can't believe this was released in the 50's! Best accordion player I've ever heard, and I've heard a lot. A lot of fun to listen to this. The amazing thing about this album is that it was created in the 's.

Before computers, before multi-track tape recorders, before digital signal processors, etc. A true technological marvel! If you only wanted this to listen to an amazing technological achievement, it would be enough, but combined with Don Lee's incredible talent it is a real joy to listen to. I am shocked at how fast his fingers move on the keyboard. I know of no one to this day who can play any keyboard instrument this well.

This is really a great find! Thanks for making this available. Been playing accordion for a long time and have never heard an accordion played this well. Incredibly fast fingers! Really great sound overall and not your typical accordion music. Well worth it. He had a music studio in the 50's- early 60's and now at 81 is still entertaining folks with his talent of making that accordion talk. He's fantastic. My former teacher - one on one and the accordion band class that we had. We did concerts in parks, traveled to Chicago for one concert, and just had lots of fun with the music we made with his expertise in teaching us.

God love him - and though the years have gone by - I still talk to him regularly and keep up on how he is doing. He wants to put out a new CD with gospel music and hopes it will do as well as Echo Echo Echo did in the late 50's - early 60's. That made the top 10 billboard charts back then. Don would love to find all the former Don Lee Music Studio students and create a website just for them. He has asked me to help locate as many as possible and I am finding that is not an easy task to do.

I have located one former teacher from those days and two former students.