I have made a great discovery: many great old movies and many great readings are available on YouTube. I can pick up YouTube for free on computer and through my Xbox, (into my TV.) I can pick it up on my tablet and on my phone.
I pull up YouTube for great old songs, how-tos and videos of interest, including back or front stories which are musical history. There are videos on world history. There are cooking shows, including one that my cousin introduced me to: “Cooking with Nonna”. “Nonna” is the Italian word for “Grandma” and the young woman who hosts the show brings in her nonna, along with other people’s nonnas, to teach the world their recipes before they are lost. My own nonna, along with my grandson’s nonna, (my mom), took many recipes and secrets to their graves. Knowing Italians, I doubt that we get EVERY secret from EVERY nonna who go on the show, but we get the gist of their dishes. (Italian women are defined by their cooking. Even Sophia Loren felt the need to write a cookbook.)
There are a few video blogs and discussions that interest me, some on intricate shows and movie series which I enjoy. There are series featuring Americans who live overseas and the differences they face. I wish I had time to see all that interest me.
My husband and I like to watch movies together and YouTube now contains an incredible number of classics. Among those I had seen long ago and showed to him recently have been, “A Letter to Three Wives”, “Portrait of Jennie” and “Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid”. Do you know them?
He is keen on war movies and there are quite a number of them, many British and very well done.
How I have been utilizing YouTube, though, is mostly for audiobooks.
I have said before that I much prefer reading books and stories for myself. I like to ‘hear’ in my mind the voices of the characters without the sometimes bad vocalizations done by the narrators on audiobooks. However, my time is at a premium, as is my energy. I can put stories on and cook, clean, sort, tend to the cats and do anything but write. (I listen to music when I write.) I have discovered that if I think of a well-read audio book as a movie, I can enjoy it very much. I had Bluetooth headphones which had limited range. My grandson gave me Bluetooth earpods that work wonderfully in almost every part of my one-level house.
I think my appreciation started with the podcast of the stories from Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. Often, the writer themselves read their work. If you like mysteries, you should check it out; they are short stories, ones printed in the magazine. I went looking for more stories to listen to and found them on YouTube.
Throughout YouTube all sorts of stories are available. I found that I had an appreciation for the way Stephen King writes by listening to him read some of his short stories, or by hearing famous actors read them. I can’t say that I appreciate all of his context, as some of it is definitely not for children, (or anyone, for that matter), but the man really has a way with words.
But then, shoot, I loved to read Hemingway to the point where I think I read everything that he published, even though I can’t say that I actually LIKED even one of his stories.
There are every possible type of reading recorded and available on YouTube, of varying quality. Not only the quality of the stories themselves, but the also the technical quality and the rendition.
Some have glitches in the recordings, with repeats or ‘hiccups’ and sometimes the sound volume vacillates.
Some stories are read straight through, with the speakers’ abilities ranging from pretty bad to fantastic.
Some are performances with the narration done with voices of other people doing some of the characters, and they, also, have varying degrees of success.
One that was done extremely well and had me enthralled. I would like very much to speak about it in the next Free Week, because it deserves a post of its own.
Have you taken a good look around YouTube lately?
Have you enjoyed the performances, movies or book and story recordings?