Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Sunday Comments ( 07 - 05 - 09 )

Some cable issues this morning ... but better late than never. Here are this week's Sunday Comments!!!

Allen Klein, 77, Dies; Managed Music Legends
Allen Klein, a music executive who managed the business affairs of
Sam Cooke, the Rolling Stones and, for a short time, the Beatles, and who was both admired and feared for his reputation as a fierce negotiator, died on Saturday in Manhattan, where he lived. He was 77.
The cause was complications from Alzheimer’s disease, said Bob Merlis, a spokesman for Mr. Klein’s company,
Abkco Music and Records.
Mr. Klein rose from humble origins to become a powerful figure in the music business. Born in Newark, he spent much of his childhood in an orphanage, and graduated from Upsala College in East Orange, N.J., with a degree in accounting and a keen appreciation of the value of a dollar.
At the invitation of one of his college friends, Don Kirshner — who would go on to become a successful music publisher and record executive — Mr. Klein began to work in the music business. He gained a reputation early on as an effective sleuth who could root through record companies’ books on behalf of artists and find thousands of dollars in unpaid royalties.
In the early 1960s, he performed those miracles of accounting for
Bobby Darin and Cooke. He also became Cooke’s manager, negotiating an usually favorable deal with RCA Records that gave the singer a strong royalty rate and the rights to his own recordings. By the height of the British Invasion of the mid-1960s, Mr. Klein was rapidly acquiring clients in England, among them Mickie Most, who was the producer of the Animals, Herman’s Hermits and many other groups.
In 1965, Mr. Klein was hired by the Rolling Stones’ young manager, Andrew Loog Oldham, to handle the band’s business affairs. With his working-class New Jersey accent and aggressive, direct negotiating style, Mr. Klein convinced the Stones, as he would many other musicians, that he would be a powerful advocate.
“Andrew sold him to us as a gangster figure, someone outside the establishment. We found that rather attractive,”
Mick Jagger was quoted as saying in Stephen Davis’s 2001 book, “Old Gods Almost Dead: The 40-Year Odyssey of the Rolling Stones.”
For the Stones and others, though, Mr. Klein was sometimes also an adversary. He negotiated a new deal for the band with Decca, its label at the time, but soon bought the rights to both the band’s recordings and its publishing. The band would later sue for their return, without success. (The Stones settled with Mr. Klein in 1984.) Through Abkco, Mr. Klein retained control of the band’s music before 1971, when the group formed its own record company, Rolling Stones Records.
In 1969, Mr. Klein began to work with the Beatles, as that band was beginning to splinter apart. According to some accounts, he urged
John Lennon not to announce that he wanted to quit because it would jeopardize Mr. Klein’s negotiations with E.M.I. over royalties. A highly favorable royalty rate was achieved, and shortly afterward, the Beatles broke up, although Mr. Klein continued to work with Lennon and, for a time, George Harrison. He was a producer of the concerts for Bangladesh, with Harrison, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and others, at Madison Square Garden in 1971.
Mr. Klein was convicted of tax fraud in 1979 and served two months in prison for failing to report income from sales of promotional records, according to the Associated Press.
Abkco owns the rights to many recordings by the Stones, Cooke and others, and administers many more. Mr. Klein also worked as a producer on the films “The Holy Mountain” in 1973 and “The Greek Tycoon” in 1978, as well as on a number of Italian spaghetti Westerns.
Mr. Klein is survived by his sister, Naomi; his longtime companion, Iris Keitel; his wife, Betty, with whom he had not lived with for many years; two daughters, Robin and Beth; a son, Jody; and four grandchildren.

-- submitted by GeoSound

Music mogul Allen Klein dies at 77(CNN)
— Music manager Allen Klein, whose clients included the Rolling Stones and the Beatles, died Saturday after a lengthy battle with Alzheimer’s disease, his publicist said. Klein was 77. The son of Jewish immigrants from Hungary, Klein founded his firm Allen Klein & Co. in the late 1950s before the label evolved into ABKCO Music & Records in New York. The independent label holds the copyrights to music by the Rolling Stones, Sam Cooke, the Animals, the Kinks, Chubby Checker, Bobby Womack and hundreds of others. Klein represented dozens of artists, including Sam Cooke, the Animals, Bobby Darin and Herman’s Hermits. He changed the music industry when he represented Sam Cooke in negotiations with RCA, winning the artist control of his own master recordings. Known for a tenacious and often blunt style in negotiations, Klein’s greatest coups were inking contracts with the Rolling Stones and the Beatles, though both relationships ended in legal battles. ABKCO built up a catalog of copyrights to more than 2,000 songs, including much of the Stones’ 1960s catalog. Klein retained ownership of those titles even after splitting with the Stones. In 1969 John Lennon persuaded the other Beatles that Klein should take over the group’s business affairs, but Paul McCartney resisted the move and some music historians say the appointment hastened the Beatles’ split. Lennon later fell out with Klein, who was thought to be the target of the former Beatle’s 1974 song “Steel and Glass.” Defending his tough style, Klein told Playboy magazine in 1971: “The music business is about 99 per cent no-talent losers who can’t stand a winner in their midst.” In 1971 Klein worked with Ringo Starr to organize the “Concert for Bangladesh” at Madison Square Garden, one of the first major benefit concerts of the rock era. Late in his career, Klein agreed to license a sample of a Rolling Stones song to the British group the Verve for their hit single “Bittersweet Symphony.” But after the song was released, ABKCO successfully argued in court that the Verve had used too much of the sample and won 100 percent of the song’s royalties.Klein is survived by his wife Betty, their three children and four grandchildren. Services will be held in New York on Tuesday.
submitted by Clark Besch
Without question, Allen Klein seems to be one of the most controversial men in show business history. I tried (without success) to secure an interview with Allen a couple of years back, knowing that he was in failing health and thinking that perhaps NOW would be the time to set the record straight on some of the business deals that had transpired in the decades beforehand. I got as far as talking to Jody Klein, his son, and Bob Merlis, the head of ABKCO, Klein's long-standing publishing company, BOTH of whom quickly shut me down. The feeling I got from both of these gentlemen was that Allen Klein had NOTHING to explain or apologize for ... and we simply left it at that. Several folks on the list including Sam Cooke's nephew, who had his OWN book out at the time blasting the way Klein handled his uncle's career, Peter Noone, who had nary a nice word to say about Allen Klein in our Forgotten Hits interview and a few with Cameo-Parkway ties advised me to just leave it alone ... that most likely this WASN'T a road I wanted to go down ... so ultimately that's what I did. I can assure you that there WILL be books written about Allen Klein in the future that will delve deeply into his character as well as some of what these authors will refer to as his shadiest business deals ... MY take was to let Allen present things in his own words and if, as I was led to believe, the end truly was near, allow him the forum to better-explain and / or apologize for ANYTHING that might give him peace of mind or restitution. One thing is certain ... his success rate throughout his career is unparalleled ... he was able to negotiate higher royalty rates and find money hidden by the record companies for virtually every client he represented. I have always stated that if his philosophy was "I just found you an extra million dollars that you didn't even know you had coming ... so what if I kept another million for myself", that probably WASN'T a bad trade off between manager and artist. In all likelihood, it was that type of success record that inspired many of these artists to hire a shark like Klein in the first place!!! I wish that I had had the opportunity to speak with him, as I feel it would have been, at the very least, an enlightening and educating experience. While I doubt that any earth-shaking news would have been divulged during the course of our conversations, I was really interested to get inside the mind-set of such an aggressive negotiator. Sadly, that chance now is gone. Like I said, you'll be reading the story of Allen Klein for years to come ... MY goal was to have HIM present it, addressing many of these issues that have simply fueled the flame of his legend. Even if he had dismissed nearly all of it as gobbledegook, at least we would have heard it in his own words. (kk)

Kent ...
A friend of mine asked me if I thought that Michael Jackson was, “so fearful of his upcoming shows in the UK, that he took more pain killers than usual to shut out the thought of competing with younger video versions and “Accidentally on purpose” killed himself. Then he asked if I thought Michael would make the “ultimate sacrifice” to increase the value of his estate for his family, to satisfy his creditors, and to become an icon who never grows old?”
I snapped back, “Are you crazy? Michael was all about life, even with all of the prescription drugs he was taking, including oxycontin and Demerol. Even with the risk of the deadly side effects, including suicide impulses, I believe that his spirit was strong enough to prevail!
I just posted THE TOP, THE BEST, AND THE GREATEST MICHAEL JACKSON VIDEOS which were shot during some of the most difficult time in his life. There is an honesty and innocence I see in his face and demeanor that I’m sure most of his fans will recognize, which is why we’ve stood behind him all these years.
I knew him slightly in this life and will continue to be inspired by him from the next.
Artie Wayne
copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne
It's with great sadness, but even greater pride that I just posted THE STORY BEHIND MICHAEL JACKSON'S CLASSIC "LITTLE CHRISTMAS TREE", which I co-wrote with George Clinton Jr.
Kent ... one more!!!
You can imagine how I felt when I found another song on YouTube Michael Jackson recorded that George S. Clinton, Jr. and I wrote!

Kent ...
This past season Kris Allen and Adam Lambert wore extreme handpainted shirts and jackets on “American Idol”, so did Jay Z, Kanye West, and Lady Gaga in their videos. A look, style, and technique I pioneered 25 years ago!

And this just came in from FH Reader Ken Voss:

Clark Weber Remembers:

I was the morning disc jockey at WLS, and the program director [from 1965 to 1968]. I chose the music. Every week I had to decide what records would go on the air. It was a neat job. You weren't always smart enough to recognize a hit. A police detective from Gary, Indiana brought his little kids in one day and they actually danced in front of my desk. And he said, "Well, what do you think, Clark?" And I said, "No, I don't think so." That was Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5. So I was not all that wise!

Click here: WTTW - Rock Music (How Chicago Rocked the 60s)
Lots of OTHER great memories can be found on this web page, too, including info and links about all of our '60's Local Heroes that we talk so much about here in Forgotten Hits!!! Check it out! (kk)


Regarding the failure of automated radio when the Michael Jackson story broke, I remember being on the air in the late '90s on a Clear Channel station that had recently put in their Prophet system. I was doing 10 am - 3 pm on a Sunday when the weather got real dodgy - anything that wasn't tied down was blowing all over Hartford. The show after me was voice-tracked: a famous New York DJ that would record some generic pander each week along the lines of "For Steve in Bloomfield, here's some Red Rider." I called the PD to get some instructions, and he had me just delete her tracks. Basically drop back and punt. It's a shame, but we can't count on most radio stations to tell us what we need to know if a story breaks.
Be Well,
Carl Wiser
I got calls from a couple of frustrated (read: out of work) disc jockeys who just cannot believe what the market has deteriorated to trying to control costs ... the whole SERVICE part of radio has been sacrificed in favor of putting out the most economical programming available. (There was a time where we got ALL of our news on the radio first ... obviously, those days are gone.) The shame is that recent tornadoes and flooding have ALSO gone unreported on stations that listeners USED to rely on for this type of information. And it's only going to get worse. (kk)

Addison, TX – (June 30, 2009) – Earthworks Entertainment, Inc. (EWKS-PK) announced today that its Hit Parade Radio oldies format is now being broadcast on WiFi Radio.
Earthworks Entertainment’s CEO Steven Humphries in making the announcement said “this is great exposure for Hit Parade Radio, as WiFi Radio reaches nearly 60 million monthly radio listeners. The WiFi carriage of Hit Parade Radio will allow us to promote the upcoming September 2009 launch of our 24 / 7 Oldies format, to be broadcast on major radio stations throughout the USA”.
John Rook, Hit Parade Radio President said “Hit Parade Radio features music that you don’t hear anywhere else today on oldies radio stations. It’s the most popular music of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s featuring songs and artist not currently broadcast. Now that we are on WiFi, listeners can experience our format prior to it being broadcast on AM and FM stations throughout the USA”.
WiFi Radio’s popularity has grown significantly over the past several years now with nearly 60 million monthly listeners. WiFi radio is quickly becoming a major player in the broadcasting industry as it a free alternative to satellite radio.
Company official are currently negotiating with major broadcast groups to carry the 24/7 oldies programming featuring Larry Lujack and Wink Martindale. Hit Parade Radio management expects to sign more than 100 broadcast stations in the first 12 to 18 months, which will generate more than $5.0 million in revenue for the Hit Parade Radio Network.
-- submitted by John Rook


Dear Kent,

You mention Clark Besch's essay on psychedelic music. He couldn't think of a Mamas and Papas song. How about Creeque Alley? McGuinn and McGuire couldn't get much higher. Maybe you could also add Groovin' by the Rascals (if it can be called psychedelic). I really think the LP version of Light My Fire was the best of the psychedelics. The short single version really isn't much without the instrumental run / bridge. What if the stations had played the long version? The Beatles' Hey Jude was also 7 minutes long a year later. The Flower Children by Marcia Strassman reached #2 on KFRC in San Francisco in 1967. It is hard to rank obscure songs that did not make the national charts (some were huge regional hits) unless you follow oldies polls voted on by listeners.
Thanks for Forgotten Hits.
Scott Doten
Glad you're enjoying Forgotten Hits ... our Top 20 All-Time Favorite Psychedelic Songs (as voted on by our readers) is STILL our most popular page, viewed more than any others. If ANYBODY out there hasn't checked it out yet, here's a quick link to take you there:
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Top 20 Favorite Psychedelic Songs

And, speaking of the website ... I just got this from FH Regular David Lewis:
Remember the flip side of Indian Giver? The track was called Pow Wow, and when you played it backward it was a real song called "Bring Back Howdy Doody"! Honest. Not good on the needle, though!
Yep, this is one of the tracks that we featured while trying to determine your Top 200 All-Time Favorite, Forgotten B-Sides. Although "Pow Wow" didn't make the list, believe it or not it DID earn 25 of your votes!!! (Go figure ... but hey, backwards B-Sides like "noollaB wolleY" and "!aaH aH, yawA eM ekaT oT gnimoC er'yehT" ALSO earned votes during this little contest!!!) For the COMPLETE Top 200 List, check out the website:
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Your Top 200 Favorite, Forgotten B-Sides

>>>There's a "sneak peek" of the first couple of chapters of Bob Greene's new book in the back of the paperback edition of "When We Get To Surf City" ... looks interesting (and with Greene's newspaper background, should be spot on.) kk
Thanks, Kent --
My new book -- "Late Edition: A Love Story" -- is coming out next week; if you get a chance to read it, I'll be interested in what you think. It takes place during those Beatles / Rolling Stones / Beach Boys summers when every kid's dream started shifting from the idea of being a baseball star, to the idea of being in a touring rock band.
It's about a part of American life that seems to be drifting into memory. I hope you'll enjoy it. Here's a link that will tell you a little more about it:
Speaking of summers, I hope yours is a great one.

Bobby Keys is performing in Berwyn on July 1st ... Check this out:,1073952
David Lewis
Unfortunately, I couldn't get this out fast enough to let anybody know ... but at least we know that Bobby is alive and well and still out there performing!!! Thanks, David! (kk)

Paul McCartney keeps adding more dates to his U.S.A. itinerary ... could a full-blown tour be in the not-so-distant future???:
What began as
Paul McCartney christening the New York Mets’ new Queens stadium is beginning to develop into a mini tour as Sir Paul has added shows in Boston, Washington, DC, and Atlanta, Georgia, to his summer schedule. And his Website implies more dates are on the way: “Look out for more news on additional dates here on very, very, soon …” The Atlanta concert on August 15th will be a benefit to raise money for the upkeep of the city’s Piedmont Park, which will host the concert.
Piedmont Park was founded in 1887, but local authorities in recent years have struggled to find the funds to maintain it. In 2007, the Dave Matthews Band and Allman Brothers attracted 50,000 concert-goers to the park for a benefit show, and Macca’s August 15th concert is expected to eclipse that crowd, the
AP reports.
Additionally, McCartney has also booked an August 1st concert at Washington, DC’s FedEx Field, home of the Washington Redskins.
According to a press release, Paul’s set will be stocked with Beatles, Wings and solo career hits, plus some songs from Paul’s side project the Fireman and their new album Electric Arguments. The concert will be McCartney’s first in the nation’s capital since October 2005, however the Beatles’ played their first-ever concert in America at the Washington Coliseum in 1964. Tickets for the FedEX Field show go on sale tomorrow, June 26th. McCartney’s pair of shows at Boston’s Fenway Park (where Phish and Dave Matthews Band recently performed) go down August 5th and 6th.
headlining set at Coachella was his most recent stateside gig before he announced a pair of shows at New York’s new Citi Field. The structure is a replacement for Shea Stadium, where the Beatles played their legendary concert in 1965; McCartney helped Billy Joel play the last-ever gig there before it was demolished. McCartney’s shows at the new stadium are July 17th, 18th and 21st.

-- Charlie Gracie, Jr.

The September 5th Bachman - Cummings Band Show still isn't posted on The Schaumburg Septemberfest Website yet ... but they HAVE posted the line-up for September 6th ... Starship, featuring Mickey Thomas and Bobby Kimball (of Toto)!!! Frannie's been Snoopy-dancing ever since she saw this ... with the REAL Guess Who performing there as well, this promises to be an EXCELLENT weekend of musical entertainment. (kk)

Not only is it a brand new book ... but it just may turn out to be the Chicago Concert Event of the Year!!! Check this out ...
Hello again folks,
I've now received word from Arcadia Publishers that my book, The Chicago Music Scene: The 1960s and 1970s, will be going on sale November 9th. So, with that date in mind, I'm seriously thinking about the Thanksgiving Day weekend for the concert.
After hinting at this date in a prior e-mail, several out of town musicians immediately got on board telling me it would work in perfectly with their plans to be home for the holidays.
I’m thinking it could be the right date for the show. What musician can turn down a free dinner from mom and this is the perfect excuse to come home to Chicago for a visit! Also, keep in mind that, if performers continue to sign up at the rate they already have, this could possibly become a two day Saturday - Sunday event, in which case everyone would hopefully have a chance to perform.
And as becomes obvious, with this many performers, it could become a logistical nightmare if we’re not careful.
Things to consider right off the top:
·Single performers may only be allowed one song, depending on how far they’ve traveled. Someone who has come a long distance will be allowed special consideration.
·If you know a performer on the list and would like to team up with them, that would also help.
·Out of towners, if you don’t feel you can make the trip just for a couple of songs, you might think about sending a note which can be read onstage by the MC. I’m sure folks would love to hear from you.
You also get extra points if you ask me to play bass with you. JUST KIDDING! (Well ….half kidding ;^)
I still need technical help - a director, people with knowledge of ticket sales and concert organizing, video people, still photographers, etc. If you know someone who might be interested, please let me know.
If you’d like to help out, please let me know in what capacity and what your specialties are.
As soon as possible, I will announce the charities that will benefit from the ticket sales.
Meanwhile, we’re still trying to decide on a venue. I’ve already been told by a few people that, with a bill like this, we could be looking at 1,000 to 1,500 people attending. (And of course, that would be great, but I'm not that optimistic that I would be necessarily counting on that.) Which Chicago venue do you think would be right for this type of event? I’ve had many suggestions, but I’d like to hear what you think.
Tracey Surface has also put up a page with info on it at this link:
This will be a celebration of Chicago music of the 1960s and ‘70s, a phenomenal period in the history of music in Chicago and throughout the world, and you folks were not only there when it happened, you made it happen.
Below is a list of responses I received after announcing the concert. Now that we have an exact date in mind, please let me know if you’re on board. (If you’re a performer and you’re not on the list, that means I haven’t heard back from you. )
Tricia Alexander; Muriel Anderson; John Benischek; Thom Bishop; David Bragman (Unity Bluegrass); Michael Brook (The Other Half); Greg Cahill (Special Consensus Alumni Band); The Cascades; The Casualaires; Bob Centano; Al Day; Bobby Diamond (For Days and a Night, Dick Eastman Band); Dirty Wurds; Mike Dunbar; Josie Falbo; Chris Farrell; Sally Fingerett; Al Goldberg (Yama & the Karma Dusters); Grope; Heartsfield; Nate Herman & Warren Leming (Wilderness Road); Ed Holstein; Dave Humphreys (Two Way Street); Ides of March; Rusty Jones; Jamestown Massacre; Steve Justman; Joe Kelley; Kathy Kelly and Sue Kessell (WNUR); Lilli Kuzma (WDCB); Jeannie Lambert; Doug Lofstrom; Bob Long; Rich Markow; The Mauds; James McCandless; Megon McDonough; Jerry McGeorge (Shadows of Knight, H.P. Lovecraft); Mesa; Michael Miles; Steve Miro (Fifth Street); Ed Mooney (Mountain Bus); New Colony Six; Marty O’Connell; Pentwater; Paul Petraitis; John Priola (For Days & a Night); Larry Rand; Ronnie Rice; Judy Roberts; Byron Roche; Victor Sanders; Claudia Schmidt; Mick Scott; Norm Siegel; Barb Silverman; Jack Skalon (Morning After, Jerico); Ken Slauf (Train, OTS Jazz Ensemble); Jimmy Sohns (Shadows of Knight); Streetdancer; Marge Summit (His N Hers); Greg Trafidlo (Greater Chicago Bluegrass Band); Dennis Tufano (Buckinghams); Rich Warren (MC); Amy Wooley; Mark Zeus (Tumbleweed)
-- Dean Milano

I'm a long time fan of the NC6 amd actually went and saw them a few years back up north at a fest. I sat in the trailer with Ray and asked him about "Can't You See Me Cry" and what the inspiration was behind that song and he told me where he grew up in Chicago is where he would walk by and see this beautiful woman up above on a 3rd floor room and wonder how he could met her.
What a wonderful song and Ray and I would meet again when he moved out to the northwest suburbs and he needed a security system for his home. I work for ADT Security and we were able to take care of his home and we shared some nice NC 6 stories.
Bob Morrow

Yes, Ray shared the inspiration for that song a few days back with our readers ... always one of MY favorites, too! Thanks, Bob! (kk)


The recent discussion around ticket prices reminded me of the price on this concert poster (attached) from the spring of '73. In the fall of '72, Dave had come to our school and done a show that was quite well received by the students despite the seeming lack of interest in folk-type music in that era. His "Pieces of April" had just been released by Three Dog Night, though he had recorded it himself earlier that year. At that show he did a collection of his earlier material, similar to what I've attached. He did several new, unpublished, in-process songs as well, one of which was "Please Come To Boston". His popularity on campus was so strong that we has invited back for this $1 concert in May of '73. He brought along his friend Guy Clark this time, and together they did many of Dave's songs known to his fans, and once again he did "Please Come To Boston". We encouraged Dave to record and release "Boston", since it seemed to us to be such a great tune. Not knowing much at all about the record business, I don't know if he'd published it as yet, or if he even had a recording contract since he'd left Vanguard (label of his first LP). After checking in many times over the next year, asking when "Boston" is ever going to be released, it was finally released in the spring of '74. We of course played it immediately since the students knew Dave. It moved into the Top 40 in July of '74 - 35 years ago this month. I'm also attaching Dave's original version of "Pieces of April". He re-recorded it in '79, but this one's far better.
David Lewis

Dave Loggins' BIG hit, of course, was "Please Come To Boston", which reached #5 in the Summer of 1974. He was ALSO best known of being Kenny Loggins' cousin (although many reported, at the time, that he was Kenny's BROTHER) ... and writing the Three Dog Night hit you mentioned, "Pieces Of April". It's always nice to hear the composing artist's original version of the song ... so thanks again for sending this one. (Kinda like our recent Jimmy Webb / MacArthur Park piece!)

Another PERSONAL favorite is Dave's duet with Canadian songstress Anne Murray ... in 1984, they topped Billboard's Country Chart with the beautiful track "Nobody Loves Me Like You Do", which somehow inexplicitly completed missed Billboard's Pop Chart!!! (kk)

Hey Kent...
Happy 4th Of July from "The Rip Chords"!!!!!
And A Happy Summer To All Of Our "Forgotten Hits" Friends.
Right backatcha, guys!!! I hope ALL of our readers had a VERY nice Fourth of July Weekend!!!

Have you had a chance to listen to any of the Y103.9 / Fourth Of July / Beach Boys Weekend yet?!?! It's absoutely AWESOME as usual ... and you've still got all day today to tune in and listen. ALL of the hits are here ... plus album cuts and B-Sides ... live stuff, rarities and alternate takes ... and TONS of it, too. Here's a Listen Live Link:
Click here: Y103.9 - The Greatest Hits of All Time - *
Kudos to Jim Shea for putting together another spectacular tribute to America's Band this year ... in their THIRD Annual Beach Boys / 4th of July Weekend!!! (kk)