Thursday, September 25, 2014

Herding cats!

Why is it that I find the background of this picture so fascinating?

Well, of course I love the main part of the picture!  It's a SELFIE by none other than Richard-freaking-Armitage!!

But those cats on the wall in the background?  I can't help thinking....  Is it a hidden message?
Is he playing cat and mouse with us?  That ginger cat folk art painting looks very familiar to me.  Does it have any other significance?  Could it be sort of a visual apologia to all us cat-loving RA fans for his infamous dog preferential statement? Does he even look remorseful?

Let's look at those background items more closely...

#1 is very familiar, in fact I thought I once had this same picture as a ceramic tile that I used as a trivet until it broke.  But after searching google images for quite some time I have not been able to find out anything about it.  But I did find a picture of my old trivet (and it wasn't the same at all!).  If anyone has any information about this cat painting - I would be very interested!

I did however, find plenty of other very interesting pictures of orange tabby cats. My favourites were the ones inserted into famous paintings over at Fatcatart blog -- especially (because of my fondness for Monet paintings) this one:

#2 appears to be a Felix the Cat clock.

Here is a still from the animated film Felix the Cat in Hollywood (1923)

#3 (The Hidden picture) is the real problem.
Luckily, I was able to find this picture of the same room where the picture is visible.
Note the Felix the Cat clock has moved.  In this picture it is just over the girl's shoulder. 
The little figurine between the cat painting and the now visible blue matted photo looks like a cat playing a musical instrument.
From Soundtrack's' Facebook Page

The photo of the figurine is very blurry but it does appear to be a cat playing a bass violin, or could it be -- a cello?  Hmmm... Curious and curiouser...RA fans know that Richard has been known to play the cello.

The above photo on the right is more of a mystery. It appears to be a handsome man playing an instrument which I have come to believe is called a Vibraphone.  My first impression of the blurry picture was that it was of Elvis (the King) but since my research didn't turn up any evidence that Elvis ever played a vibraphone, I had to look for other options. The best looking vibraphone player I could find was this man Tito Puente, otherwise known as the Mambo King.
Even though RA is also known by his Hobbit film character's nickname of the King Under the Mountain, I knew I was grasping at straws here...  I really didn't think his hairline looked correct, and besides where was the cat reference?!!  I was going to go with the fact that Jazz musicians are also known as Hepcats... but I wasn't fooling myself.  So I kept looking for another good looking vibraphone player.

Finally I came up with this man, Terry Gibbs.

His hairline looked spot on, and when I researched his music 
this album fairly sprang up and dug its claws into me!

There's that orange cat again!
Even more strange... this album was released the year I was born (1961). 
I have no idea what all this means but it seems that somebody around here must be some crazy cat!

Before you give up on me have a listen to the cool vibes of
 Terry Gibbs and Buddy DeFranco playing 

That orange kitty has found someone to love!
Manip from Richard Armitage with Cats Tumblr


JeannieGisborne said...

I love your analysis. And I love cats and Richard. Even if he doesn't.

jazzbaby1 said...

Richard Armitage + amazing vibraphones + a Tito Puentes namecheck = I heart this post!

Faboamanto said...

I love this post! What is that mysterious cat painting?

Guylty said...

That is some amazing detective work. And it made me laugh. Great stuff. However, could you please spell out the hidden message of that selfie for me now? I didn't quite catch it :-D

Servetus said...

that's it! HE REALLY LOVES CATS!!! Somebody tell Traxy.

Anonymous said...

He really does look great with cats :) I appreciate your work, I had no idea that was the real message of the tweet, but it makes me happy! lol

Hariclea said...

indisputable proof!! puurrr :-)

Joanna said...

Ha!This is brilliant,Phylly!
Ps:Hmm, maybe he likes cats...
I know several cats and they do not care! ;)

meryl said...

I think the cat playing the instrument is a figurine from the nursery rhyme-Hey diddle diddle the cat & the fiddle the cow jumped over the moon! I think it's part of a series of nursery rhythm characters that I've seen before.

J. said...

Nice post Phylly. Not sure about whether the cats in background are coincidental though. Bit of a sceptic ;)

J. said...

Sorry - above comment didn't make sense. What I meant to say is that I think the cats in background are a coincidence ... but happy to be proved incorrect.

angie long said...

such a fun post and on this cat lover's birthday, too! ;)

I think he looks great with cats, too, big ol' gorgeous feline that he is.

Anonymous said...

Love it, girlfriend! Buildin' it up just to break it down ... fine job. Seriously. :)

See, he can't fool you. He may have written 'woof', but we all know he meant 'meow'.

Phylly3 said...

Thanks so much for all the awesome comments!
If you had a laugh, learned something new or enjoyed the music then my post has been successful.
If you don't quite get where I was going with this... don't worry -- I didn't really either!
I start with something and it leads to something else and I soon get lost for a long while until I finally come up for air and decide to bring it all together somehow (hence the cat herding)!
I know I enjoyed myself, and once again, Mr. Armitage has led me to discover more to love about this crazy world we live in.
Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts!

Anonymous said...

The cat painting looks a lot like one of Martin Leman's - e.g., the kids ABC book "Comic and Curious Cats". Maybe?

Phylly3 said...

That's it!! Thank you SO MUCH dear Anonymous commentor! I checked out your suggested artist's name and up popped that picture called "Cat on the Mat".