Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Tuesday This And That

I think I posted some Louise Harrison clips last year during our Saturday features.  I had a great interview with her.

Phil Nee – WRCO

You sure did …

In fact, it was in honor of George's birthday (which is coming up right around the corner again.  George Harrison would have turned 80 this year!!!)

Here's a link so you can enjoy them once again.  (kk)

http://forgottenhits60s.blogspot.com/2022/02/phil-nee-february-26th-george-harrison.html

 

An ultra-deluxe edition of my favorite Alan Parsons album, “The Turn Of A Friendly Card,” is coming out later this month.

The four disc set (3 CD’s and 1 DVD) features a ton of outtakes and early rehearsals, including demos from Eric Woolfson’s Musical Diaries.

(We’ve seen them perform the album live a couple of times now and it really is quite impressive.)

More information here:

https://www.cherryred.co.uk/product/the-alan-parsons-project-the-turn-of-a-friendly-card-3cd-blu-ray-limited-edition-box-set/

 

Here’s an interview with the late Jerry Blavat, “The Geator With The Heater,” courtesy of Timmy C …

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbQe9gRIFiI

 

More memories from Charlie and Pam Horner … courtesy of their Classic Urban Harmony Newsletter, sent in by Frank B …

 

First we hear from Pam:

 

Legendary Philadelphia Radio Icon, Jerry Blavat, dies at age 82

We are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of legendary Philadelphia radio personality, TV program producer and host, concert and dance promoter, entertainer, author and music industry icon, Jerry Blavat.

Jerry died January 20, 2023, at the age of 82. Born Gerald Joseph Blavat in South Philadelphia, Jerry began his career in music dancing on Bandstand at the age of 13. His career progressed from road manager of Danny & the Juniors to record promoter and then host of popular radio shows on WCAM and then WHAT. It was there that Jerry became the "Geator with the Heater" and the "Boss with the Hot Sauce."

Jerry had a superb ear for R&B music and playing his own records shared that taste with us. Jerry played for us records he liked, many of which had never been played in Philadelphia when they came out. Jerry exposed his listening audience to songs like "They Say" by the Rainbows or "Prisoner To You" by Enalouise & the Hearts." Growing up, we all listened to Jerry Blavat and he shaped our tastes in music. His TV dance show, the "Discophonic Scene" gave us appearances by numerous recording artists. You can read about Jerry's life story in his autobiography, "You Only Rock Once." See my (Charlie's) remembrances of Jerry Blavat, below.

And now Charlie Horner's memories of Jerry …

So saddened to hear of the passing of Philly radio icon, Jerry Blavat.

 

I grew up listening to Jerry Blavat on the radio. While in high school, I listened to Blavat every evening and used to jot down the names of records he played. Jerry Blavat had a vital impact on my musical tastes and my whole life. I would never have been involved in music at all, had it not been for Jerry Blavat.

 

My first appearance on radio was on WXDT-AM, Drexel's carrier current radio station in 1970. I produced an evening panel discussion on the roots of R&B including Joe Marchesani, Sal Tee, Ron Greilich and others. I'd never met Jerry before, but I sent him a letter inviting him. I was a complete unknown and I never expected him to come, but he answered my letter and did take part in that event.

 

Fast forward 25 years to 1995, when my then popular radio show on WXPN was cancelled after 20 years. Jerry called me up and offered me a regular program on a popular commercial radio station where he was program director. He felt I meant a lot to Philadelphia radio. I thanked him for the offer but told him I would not be a good for fit commercial radio. I liked to do my own thing, without reading commercials and traffic reports. Jerry understood and told me that if I ever changed my mind, he'd love to have me on his station.

 

Fast forward again to 2011 at the Philly Doo Wop Festival. Jerry was autographing his autobiography, "You Only Rock Once," and I asked Pam if she'd like to meet Jerry Blavat. We walked over to his booth and Jerry recognized me immediately. I finally got a chance to tell him the influence he had on my life. Jerry turned to Pam and said something to the effect, "Pam, your husband knows more about R&B and Doo Wop music than anyone in the world, including me." As long as I live, I'll never forget that. Just a few of my memories of Jerry.

Thank you, Jerry, for introducing me to a world of music that changed my life. RIP. - Charlie Horner

 

More from Frank …

kk …

My Pal Kojak Just Told Me That Lillian Walker Moss Of The Exciters Died.

I Heard The Best "Charlie Thomas Tribute" Last Night On Wild Wayne's "MEMORY MACHINE."

Most Of The Other Jocks Just Played A Few Songs Charlie Sang Lead On. Wild Wayne Told Us About His Whole Career.

Of Course, He Played The Hit Songs … Plus A Few I Never Heard Before Like "A MIDSUMMER NIGHT IN HARLEM."

The Last Concert I Went To Was Charlie Thomas & Drifters At An Outdoor Summer Concert In Valley Stream, New. York. (That Was Five Years Ago.)

WILD WAYNE ALSO SENT ME A PICTURE OF MY FAVORITE GROUP …


Also This Past Weekend, Cousin Brucie Interviewed Martha Reeves. She Said 2023 Is Her 65th Year In Show Business.

"DANCING IN THE STREETS":  When Martha Was A Teenager In Detroit, The City Allowed Them To Close One  Block Every Saturday Night, Which Led To Dancing In The Street.

She Also Told Us About A New Motown Museum Opening March 22nd.

Might Be Worth Checking Into.

FB

And congratulations to Bob Lind, who tells us …

TO MY FRIENDS AND FANS who might have missed it on FaceBook,

My one-act play "Spain" has been selected from hundreds of submissions for the CURTAIN CALL PLAYHOUSE SHORT PLAY FESTIVAL. It will be given a full production and presented in May along with seven other plays in three separate Florida venues, and directed by Gary Solomons.

I will inform you of the dates and theatres as the time approaches, but for now, I just want to say this delights me. Hope to see a slew of you there.

Yers,

Bob Lind

www.boblind.com

Kenny Loggins has added some dates to his farewell tour (aptly titled “This Is It”) … as well as Richard Marx as his opening act to his show at The Venue at Thunder Valley Casino Resort in Lincoln, California.

(Now THAT would be a cool show to see … but sadly Kenny’s show at Ravinia in August won’t include an appearance by our hometown boy)

 

His updated tour schedule is shown below …

 

March 10th – Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall – Sarasota, FL
March 12th – Florida Theatre – Jacksonville, FL
March 26th – Good Life Festival – Queen Creek, AZ
April 28th – Dickies Arena – Fort Worth, TX
April 30th – New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival – New Orleans, LA
May 11th – FirstBank Amphitheater – Franklin, TN
May 13th – Ameris Bank Amphitheater – Alpharetta, GA
May 15th – Peace Center – Greenville, SC
June 15th – Wolf Trap – Vienna, VA
June 17th – Virginia Arts Festival – Williamsburg, VA
August 17th – Family Arena – St. Charles, MO
August 19th – Ravinia Festival – Highland Park, IL
August 31st – Bronze Buffalo Sporting Club at Teton Springs – Victor, ID
September 2nd – Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater – Park City, UT
September 8th – Fallsview Casino, Niagara Falls, ON
October 13th – The Venue at Thunder Valley Casino Resort – Lincoln, CA
October 14th – The Mountain Winery – Saratoga, CA
October 27th – YouTube Theater – Inglewood, CA
October 29th – Yaamava Theater – Highland, CA

 

So, Kent,

You “revealed” a link in Forgotten Hits that led to the story about June Carter Cash sitting out in front of a stage watching the taping of a “Johnny Cash Show” and was shocked by seeing Linda Ronstadt’s lack of an integral, and intimate, part of her wardrobe.

June reportedly said, “That girl doesn’t have any panties on! She can’t sing with my Johnny like that!”

Imagine June actually noticing that! Someone then did go to a nearby department store and got Linda an acceptable under garment.

Johnny afterwards asked ”Linda, you got your drawers on?” She confirmed she did and added “Yeah, but I sing better bare-assed!”

Whew!  “Just One Look” indeed!

And this incident does beg the question: This certainly wasn’t the inspiration for Sharon Stone’s famous “Leg Uncrossing Scene” in her film “Basic Instinct” which reveals her lack of a similar “undergarment” under her skirt, right?!

CB ( which stands for “Censorer(?!) Boy!” )

I’m not so sure … but that’s a scene I will remember for a “long, long time.”

Thanks, Chuck … now you’ve got me thinking about the perfect Weird Al parody to Billy Joel’s big hit “Uptown Girl” …

“Upskirt Girl, I would love a peek into your world …”

OK, I got you started … now you guys can make up the rest!  (kk)

 

HELPING OUT OUR READERS:

We got this from one of our overseas readers this past weekend …

Anybody able to help?  (kk)

If I can only send you some lyrics, do you think you can you recognize the song?

Bill Advance

We can try - or run it by our readers -

If you happen to have a music clip, even better -

Or give us the approximate year / era -

The more information the better, obviously -

But if this was a UK hit, it may not have been released here in The States

Still - I am happy to give it a shot!

Thanks, Bill  (kk)

 

Thanks for getting back to me.

This song I heard many years ago.  I’m sure it was on a b-side of a very popular artist that I played often so I was sure I would always be able to find it again ... but now I am having no luck locating the tune.

It was on a early 60s by a 45 male singer like a Bobby Vee. I can only remember a few lines of the song … I don’t know the title, but here are the words:

 

You whispered softly that you love me  but then again you broke my heart in two 

You seem to think that I was lonely -  whoa, whoa - when I fell in love with you.

Seems that I would have to get along – I’ll have to face this misery ... that’s it.

I’ve typed these words into google and that’s how I found you.

Hope you can help me. 

Kind Regards,

Bill

Anybody out there recognize this one? 

Send us a note and we’ll be happy to pass it along …

Or, even better yet, an MP3 of the track so we can forward it to Bill over in Jolly Ole England!  Thanks, Gang!  (kk)

Monday, February 6, 2023

A Monday Morning Quickie

Hey, Kent,

So much Good Stuff in your "Weekend Catch Up" Posts this past weekend! I found it fascinating and so interesting to read all the details regarding February 3, 1959, some of which I knew, others I did not.

And as a Big Fan of Linda Ronstadt, it was nice to see your mention of her again.  While I agree, "Long, Long Time'' is just a terrific song, it's hard for me to pick a Favorite of hers because so many bring back particularly Special Moments in time of one kind or another.  ”Buell Bayou'' is right up there for me, as you might imagine.

BTW, did you ever see "The Sound of My Voice," the documentary about her life?  I really liked it.  For a Ronstadt Fan, it's definitely on my "should,” if not "must" see list. 

 


CB ( which stands for Unofficial "Certified Bayou-Boy!" )

 

Yes, we did -   

In fact, we went to a special theater screening of this about a year before it was released on home video and shown on TV thru PBS - EXCELLENT piece.

I have long been a fan of her music, which broached just about every genre known to man during the course of her long and very successful career.

(Yet for some reason ... despite ALL the accolades and awards ... the very first thing I always think of is how she wasn't wearing panties when she appeared on The Johnny Cash Show!!!)

kk

 

This particular accounting cracks me up ... 

https://americansongwriter.com/the-shocking-backstory-to-this-johnny-cash-performance-will-have-you-in-stitches/

 

It is pretty rare that I can pick a “favorites” list for an artist that I really like … as, like you, SO many songs fit the bill … but “Long, Long Time” hooked me the very first time I ever heard it … and it can STILL bring a tear to my eye and lump to my throat all these years later.

 

Since you mentioned Buddy Holly (we got quite a bit of mail on LJ Coon’s piece, actually … and he sent links to every media service known to man to draw attention to it!), Linda was no slouch when it came to her appreciation of Buddy’s music.  She had huge charted hits with “That’ll Be The Day” (#11, 1976) and “It’s So Easy” (#5, 1977) and released “It Doesn’t Matter Anymore” (long associated with Buddy Holly … but actually written for him by Paul Anka) as the B-Side to her 1975 #2 Hit “When Will I Be Loved.”  (A good chunk of Linda’s chart success came through remakes of earlier hits … everything from Betty Everett’s “You’re No Good” (a #1 Hit for Ronstadt in 1975) to The Everly Brothers to Martha and the Vandellas, to Smokey Robinson and the Miracles to Roy Orbison (“Blue Bayou” that you mentioned) to The Rolling Stones to Chuck Berry to Doris Troy to Little Anthony and the Imperials to The Hollies to Billy Joe Royal … the list goes on and on … and in many instances, Linda’s versions of these tunes charted higher than the originals did.

 

If I had to pin down my Top Five Linda Ronstadt hits (and believe me, this took some doing!!!), I would have to say:

 

#1 – Long, Long Time (1970, #25)

#2 - You’re No Good (#1, 1975)

#3 - Blue Bayou (#3, 1977)

#4 - Don’t Know Much (with Aaron Neville, #2, 1989)

#5 – Different Drum (with The Stone Poneys, #13, 1968)

 

And that’s QUITE a list!!!  (kk)

 

I am glad that you mentioned Long, Long Time by Linda Ronstadt in your posting yesterday.  There were a handful of requests for that song on Saturday night.  I have not had anyone ask for that song since I had afull head of brown hair!  It is cool that it has been used in a current show.

Phil Nee - WRCO

Like I've said a thousand times before, I don't care HOW this music gets out there for new people to discover it ... whatever it takes (and this seems to be a popular way of sharing it right now) ... because once they hear it, they'll fall in love with it, too ... just like WE did when these songs were brand new.  

We've just got to continue to get the word out ... SO many great "new" memories to share and discover.  (kk)

Many of us remember Bobby's 13-show series that ran in '73, but it was hard for me to place this clip from 1970. Turns out this was a one-time 1970 Canadian TV special featuring Susan and Terry Jacks (The Poppy Family), George Burns, Pat Carroll, and Linda - with Bobby as host. The special was recorded in Toronto, and the title was alternately known as "The Darin Invasion" and "A Night With Bobby Darin." 

But that's not really why I planned to email and comment on this video. The thing is, Linda's studio performance of this song was her penultimate moment, and it's always been significant to me that her very best performance of all time occurred so early in her career. This live TV recording is nothing short of superb.

The LP that delivered this track, "Silk Purse," was recorded right here in the northern burbs (not on Nashville's Music Row) at Cinderella Sound, the longest-running, still-operating studio in Nashville. Cinderella Sound was, and still is, owned by studio musician Wayne Moss. Music fans would be surprised to see the list of monster artists and bands that recorded there at the small, independent shop. Wayne played on hundreds of well-known tracks, but he's most-remembered for inventing and playing the memorable riff on Roy Orbison's "Oh, Pretty Woman." A variation of that same riff is heard on "Day Tripper." Roy was touring the UK and strongly influenced the sound we hear from the Fab Four on that song.

I should add here that the excellent arrangement of "Long, Long Time" was done by musician/producer Norbert Putnam, who also conducted the musicians on the track recorded in early 1970. The producer was Elliot Mazer, who was recommended to Linda by Janis Joplin. 

Oh, yeah - Radio is missing this because radio is programmed weeks in advance and the programmers have never heard this masterpiece anyway. The public knows what sounds good, though. Just put a great song in the final scene and the credits of a TV show and watch what happens.

David Lewis

Fascinating stuff.

When I was putting together my Bobby Darin series, I made it a point to watch and listen to anything and everything I could find on this incredible artist … and MY copy of this dvd is, indeed, called “The Darin Invasion.”  (I also have most of his tv programs, too.  Bobby was in drastically failing health at the time he filmed these episodes … but just wouldn’t give up.  It was critical to him to enjoy that one last moment in the spotlight … and by “last moment,” I mean he pretty much knew by then that he wouldn’t be around for very much longer. 

Sad … and the programs a less than great, to say the least … but they would prove to be our last look at a one-of-a-kind star.  (kk)

 

From our Bobby Darin Series …

(you can read the whole thing here:  http://forgottenhits.com/the_bobby_darin_story )

 

‘60’s FLASHBACK:

In July of 1972, BOBBY was given his own television series.  Running as a summer replacement for THE DEAN MARTIN SHOW, THE BOBBY DARIN AMUSEMENT COMPANY was a summer hit spotlighting BOBBY's musical and comedy talents.  This was the time of the television variety / musical / comedy series ... SONNY AND CHER, DONNY AND MARIE, TONY ORLANDO AND DAWN and several others had their own network series.  Opening night, BOBBY's guests were his old pal GEORGE BURNS and the recently Cosmo-nude BURT REYNOLDS!  ALAN THICKE, later of GROWING PAINS, was one of the writers.  Comic RIP TAYLOR and future-BARNEY MILLER cop STEVE LANDESBERG were both regulars.  Musical guests ranged from '70's soft-rock popular mainstays like BREAD and SEALS AND CROFTS to the more traditional PEGGY LEE and DEBBIE REYNOLDS.  In fact, one of the regular spots in the show featured BOBBY doing a duet (often referred to as the "mouth to mouth" duet) with his female guest of the week such as BOBBIE GENTRY (whom he also dated), NANCY SINATRA, PETULA CLARK or DUSTY SPRINGFIELD.  (His duet with PETULA CLARK was on the Everly Brothers classic, ALL I HAVE TO DO IS DREAM ... in true "mouth-to-mouth" fashion, the song ends with a silhouette kiss.) 

Another popular comedy sketch featured DARIN and his old pal DICK BAKALYAN portraying CARMINE AND ANGIE, two guys from the old neighborhood in the Bronx.  Each week they would reminisce about the old days in the neighborhood and this sequence became a popular favorite with fans of the show.  (I seem to remember comedian BILLY CRYSTAL doing a similar bit dressed in his New York Yankees jacket many years later.)  All in all, BOBBY's television show was no better or worse than many of the others on the air at the time and, in January of 1973, it was renewed as a regular series.  The stress and rigors of churning out a weekly television series took its toll on BOBBY ... it was a tremendous drain of his energy and his health most certainly suffered.  After seven episodes, the new series was canceled.

 

It sounds like a Dino Danelli Tribute Concert is being put together in New York City.  Still a few more details to be worked out before we can officially announce anything ... but stay tuned to these pages.  (kk)

 

Kent,

Two quick things about Sunday's FH ...

First, and you probably already know this, the posted version of George Jones' WHITE LIGHTNIN' is not the Mercury Records version. Also, the green M & M's at the bottom always did remind me of years ago when I first became well aware of that candy. I thought at first that they were called W & W's. (Ugh)

Larry Neal

I knew the “White Lightnin’” track didn’t sound right to me – but I just posted what Mike sent me … I just figured there must have been some reason he selected the tracks he did and I didn’t want to mess with them … nor, quite honestly, did I have the time.

As for the M&M’s, a popular joke many decades ago was that my uncle got fired from his job as an inspector at the M&M Factory because he kept throwing out all the W’s.

Yep … that one’s been around for a while!  (lol)  kk

 

>>>Sometimes I think we overlook the truly important things in Life.  For instance, a change late last year to the shoes of the Green M&M Spokesperson, from go-go boots to sneakers, caused outrage on social media, with many bemoaning the loss of the character’s signature look.

A petition to “keep the green M&M sexy” garnered over 20,000 signatures.  (Chuck Buell)

 


Notice her legs and arms are fully covered … and she has become an "every woman."  Although that is impossible!

We can't strive for acceptance of all types while trying to make everyone look the same.

Just let her be who she is ... a sexy chick.

You know, next we will have to change the candy name ...

Can't have people saying “MMmmm” while eating this colorful candy.

On another front ...

The only downside of Sirius Radio's Cupid Countdown is that it starts from 1970 and goes to present. Yes, plenty of songs that I will like, but a large group of 50s and 60s that obviously don't stand a chance of being considered. 

Shelley

Sirius XM seems to be going out of their way to make people dismiss (or outright forget) about all the great music that came out during the ‘50’s and ‘60’s.

When they moved their Decades Channels from “The ‘50’s on 5” and “The ‘60’s on 6,” it became pretty apparent that they were giving up on these channels.  (They’re now channels 72 and 73 respectively.)  Meanwhile, the ‘70’s on 7, ‘80’s on 8 and ‘90’s on 9 continue to broadcast from their original locations on the dial.

Billboard Magazine has essentially been doing the same thing, discounting ANY charts before The Hot 100 debuted in August of 1958.  All of Elvis’ earlier hits (32 charters in all) have now been eliminated from all Billboard statistics when they run their ridiculous comparison charts these days.  We’re talking about The King Of Rock And Roll here … rock and roll would have NEVER reached the heights it did without Elvis … and damn, if the success of last year’s Austin Butler movie and the recent death of Lisa Marie doesn’t prove just how relevant the King still is, then I don’t know what could better prove the point.

It's kind of like some of these CD compilations that are coming out now that also eliminate the ‘50’s and ‘60’s from the equation.  Without naming any names, I actually had one of these companies executives tell me one time “We are programming music to people who are still alive.”

WHAT?!?!?!

The music of the ‘50’s and ‘60’s has proven timeless … each new generation who discovers it falls in love with it just as we did.

(Maybe we need to compile The Greatest Love Songs of 1955 – 1969!!!)

And honestly, if they’re letting Billboard compile the list, all bets are off … because records today stay on the charts for a year and a half!!!  Back in the ‘70’s (and there were some INCREDIBLE love songs in the ‘70’s) a hugely successful single MIGHT stay on the charts for four months.  There is just NO way to accurately compare these performances side by side!  (I’ve not seen the list … but AM curious to know what placed where … just to better experience the ridiculousness of it all!!!)  kk

 

Here is Billboard’s List of The Hot 100 Songs of All Time:

https://www.billboard.com/charts/greatest-hot-100-singles/

(See how many of THESE you agree with!!!)  kk

 

Beyonce set a new Grammy record when she was awarded her 32nd golden statuette Sunday Night.  This award, her fourth of the night, was for Best Dance / Electronic Album for her “Renaissance” album.

And it sounds like she won this one all on her own …

Without any commandeering of the stage by Kanye West!

Congratulations to Beyonce for hitting this new mark.  (kk)

 

Mick Fleetwood made the announcement that the passing of Christine McVee last year will likely signify the end of the band.

He made the announcement at the Grammy Awards, where he told a Los Angeles Times Reporter: 

“I think right now, I truly think the line in the sand has been drawn with the loss of Chris.  I’d say we’re done, but then we’ve all said that before. It’s sort of unthinkable right now.”

Heart, The Supremes, Nirvana, Chic’s Nile Rodgers and Rapper Slick Rick were all presented with Lifetime Achievement Awards.  (OK, so I guess it’s not just The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame that has their heads up their asses.)

I’m sorry … Slick Rick??? A LIFETIME Achievement Award???  For what exactly???

I just check Whitburn’s book and it shows two chart entries for Slick Rick … one from 1994 that peaked at #87 and one from 1995 that peaked at #101.  So I guess I’m a little confused by this one.

Nile Rodgers?  This man had his hands in EVERYTHING there for a while, producing hit after hit after hit for not only his own band but also a wide variety of other artists.  Nirvana???  Not sure I get that one either … but they had a HUGE cult following (and Dave Grohl’s a great guy) … but a LIFETIME Achievement award for one notable single that Weird Al did the PERFECT parody of, with marbles falling out of the lead singer’s mouth.  Seriously, I thought a Lifetime Achievement Award meant an act had to contribute music that withstands the strands of time.

(This would make for a FAR more feasible argument for The Supremes and Heart than some of these others.)

And let’s face it, The Grammy Committee is a pretty starched group of old foggies … what do THEY know about any of these acts??? Especially somebody like Slick Rick, who I had to look up for myself just to see what outstanding lifetime contribution he has made that most music fans are completely unaware of.

Oh well, the music world’s gone to hell … and there’s nothing we can do about it.

The saddest thing is that I have dedicated the past 25 years to preserving this music and these artists by telling their stories in the most accurate truth possible … and now ALL of that has just flushed down the tubes and a distorted history is being presented instead … one that generations from now will discover and similarly scratch THEIR heads and say things like “But wait a minute … what about Herb Alpert … and Elvis … and Chuck Berry and John Sebastian and Tommy James and The Monkees and, and, and, and, and ... " (kk)