Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Helping Out Our Readers

I have a long lost song I am searching for. It was in the Boston area in the late 50's early 60's. It was called 'The Montreal Express', about the cold weather blowing down from Canada to New England. It was used in commercials for the Boston Gas Company and / or local Oil Dealers to promote their heating solutions.
With this abnormally hot summer perhaps we could use a shot of cold Canadian air.
Love your site and admire all the energy you put into it.
Feels like "Summer In The City" ... 'Walking on the sidewalk, Hotter Than a Match Head'
Keep Cool,

I couldn't find a national chart listing for this one ... not even in my CHUM Chart Book. Anybody out there "North of the Border" able to shed some light on this one??? (kk)

>>>I have a question for anyone who grew up in Chicago who might remember: Back in '89, I was at Round Records' closing sale on Sheridan Road. Among the wonderful 45s I picked up there at amazingly low cost was an M- copy of "Little Darlin'" by The Diamonds -- on the black Mercury label, which was already quite a collector's item in the year vinyl officially deceased -- for 25 cents. When did Round Records first open, was it in the 6Ts or the 7Ts? Also does anyone happen to know if Round was connected to the "Round" label (Capes of Good Hope, etc.)? Much appreciated and groove on! (Bob Rashkow)

>>>To the best of my knowledge, there was no affiliation between the record store and the record label ... but let's see what comes back from our readers. (kk)
Hi, Kent.
Hope you are well.I went to Loyola University in Chicago beginning in fall 1981. Round Records was right across the street from my dormitory, and so became the site of many, many visits over the next five years. I bought countless 60s records there in the upstairs "used" section, as well as picking up the occasional album (the first three REM releases, as I recall) from the downstairs "new" section.One thing I recall about Round Records is that the owners were either in the band Mountain Bus or affiliated with them. Mountain Bus released an album in 1971 on a custom label called Good which may have been their own creation. That album, said to have elements of jam and psych rock and country, is now a reasonably valuable ($50-100) collectible. Most of the people who worked at Round were themselves musicians, including Baird Figi of 80s psych band Eleventh Dream Day. Had I been aware of Mountain Bus back in the early 80s I would have wanted to know more about them, asked questions, etc. I miss the store; it was a big part of my musical education.

Stu Shea

Hi Kent ,
There was a group from my N.E. PA area in the mid - to late 60's called Mel Wynn and the Rhythm Aces and later they called themselves The Mel Wynn Trend. They had a pretty big R & B hit with Stop Sign on Wand records, but the later Mercury releases never get heard. If you can dig up any 45's by them and play them, it would be great!

Another one I'm not familiar with ... but we've got a heavy concentration of Philly Readers, so let's see what comes back on this one! (kk)

I recall a few issues back the mention of "The Jordan Brothers". I had forgotten to ask you about another Jordan Brothers band from out in the southwest back in the late 60's. They were fronted by a cat named Little Stevie Jordan who was a monster player. The Jordan Brothers had a big hit called "Aint No Big Thing" which I can't find anywhere. Maybe your master collector would have it in his archives. It was a real good record and can only be found on some of the compilations dedicated to the Latino cruising scene. Those versions are done by others and not the Original Jordan Brothers.
I found this youtube clip of him where he kicks ass on the squeeze box. I didn't know Jerry Garcia had those kind of chops either. My Latino brothers be doin it!

YouTube - Steve Jordan, Carlos Santana, and Jerry Garcia
Alex Valdez

Thanks, Alex. Let's run it up the Forgotten Hits Flagpole and see what comes back! (kk)

Hey, here's one that digs deep ...
Do you remember when Bob Hale opened his East of Midnight Show every night with a Ray Conniff piece?
Any idea what the name of that song was?
A little before my time ... and WAY past my bedtime!!! (Although I AM one of those who used to listen to Art Roberts' show with my transistor radio under my pillow at night!!!) I asked Ron Smith (who basically told me the same thing!) ... but he ALSO put me in contact with Bob Hale. If we hear back, I'll be sure to pass along the answer to your question.  For good measure, I also asked Clark Weber (who was there at the time), Scott Childers (who maintains that awesome WLS History Website at, Bill Hengels (who has supplied most of the WLS Surveys we've displayed on our website) and Jack Levin (who compiles the Chicagoland Summer Charts for us) to see if any of them can help us nail down this mystery tune.  Nothing to report yet this morning, but watch for this one to pop up again in a future edition of "Helping Out Our Readers".  (kk)
THIS JUST IN:  Ray Conniff did have a minor hit called Midnight Lace back in 1960, but that would be too easy.
Actually, that just might be it ... and a pretty clever tie-in, too.  Let's run a copy today and see if Bill (or anyone else on the list) recognizes it!  Thanks, Jack!  (kk)

Kent --
A few of your members recently asked about the Four J's (also known as The Fabulous Four) and their song "Here Am I Brokenhearted", a great doo-wop version of the ballad that Johnny Ray originally put on the charts around 1952. We entered an a cappella talent show in NYC back in 1996 and chose to do this song as one of our two songs and we began the song with a barber shop intro as the song was originally done in the 1920s. We ended up putting it on our CD "Heart of Saturday Night" from 1999.
If you would forward this to John (can't remember the other interested member) I would appreciate it.

Why don't we just share this one with ALL the readers ... there seems to be a real affection for this song amongst the list! (kk)

>>>The Four J's - Here Am I Broken Hearted - 1962 -- I can't claim that I know anything about the group, but my eyes and ears lit up when I heard it in Stereo! Must have been a regional hit!!! I later learned that they're a Philly group! Jerry, Joe, Jimmy and Jeffrey???? Charted? Reminds me a bit of The Bongo Stomp! Who has the master tape!? Great song! (John)
>>>The song "Here Am I Broken Hearted" found its way on to a Jamie Records reissue in 1997 called "A Million $$ of Doo Wop", (Jamie 4002). I have liner note credit on this project. The original release was on 45 on Jamie 1267. I would suggest you contact Frank Lipsius at Jamie Records for information. Jamie Records is still very much in business and would have the master. This group was the original backup vocal group to Fabian. (Clay Pasternack)
Thanks, Clay. Yes, I have the CD, too. I don't believe Frank (at Jamie / Guyden) has the actual session tape (master) for The Four Js - it just sounds too poor. Sadly, not all those CD tracks are from tape, even though it states differently. Notice no mastering or remastering credits appear. It was just nice to hear it in stereo. And with Philly groups / artists, that's a big plus!!Best,

>>>I've got a Radio Special coming up with Mark 'Hoss' Amans that will include the music of Paul Revere and the Raiders, the Robbs, Billy Hinsche, The Viceroys, The Who - The Butts Band (Robbie Krieger & John Densmore) on August 7th and 8th --- just to let you know.   (Mason Ramsey / Rock And Roll Heaven)
>>>We ran a few plugs for Hoss' book project a while back here in Forgotten Hits, hoping to get some support from our readers to help him secure a publishing deal ... it's certainly a book that I would like to read. (In fact, we even had some comments from Mark Lindsay and Gary Puckett, whom Hoss had worked with back in the day.) Haven't heard any more as to how that's developing, but we certainly wish him well. (kk)
Hi Kent!
I have been trying to find an email of Dick Dodd of The Standells. I have been having people search for me and I am unable to find anything on him either. I wanted to talk to him about my new book.
By the way, I have a second interview coming up on August 13, 2010 from 7- 9 pm CST. Remember to listen in on the web at and click on the button to get the streaming web hookup.
Thanks again,

PS: If you haven’t signed the petition to induct the Raiders into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame there is still time. The deadline is Aug. 31 and signatures are desperately needed. Please go to to sign. Thank you
I personally don't have any contact information for Dick Dodd but I know some of our readers have stayed in touch with him. Let me see what I can find out for you. (Readers should respond to me privately.) Actually, I think he'd dig what we do here in Forgotten Hits, too! (kk)

Could you run the original version of Bill Medley's Brown Eyed Woman sometime? One of my listeners was complaining to me the other night that the only version on the internet is the remake. When I checked my collection and the stations, I realized that the only one that I could quickly find was his remake for Curb records from the late 80s early 90s.
The original on MGM records is the best version by far.
This was a big record in a lot of markets. It does not appear that it charted in Chicago. It did get some play in Madison, WI. The original features the Blossoms (Darlene Love) in the background.
Phil - Wrco

My copy comes from the 1989 Rhino Release "Anthology, 1962 - 1974". It is identified here as being MGM single 13959, so I'm assuming it's the take you're looking for. (As I'm not familiar with the Curb remake, I can't honestly say ... but this is the only version I know so I'm guessing it's the right one.) I've never quite understood why Mike Curb, who worked as a pretty big honcho for MGM Records back in the early '70's, then went on to release so many remakes and / or alternate takes on his own label. Worst part about it is that they were never identified that way ... so an unsuspecting public shelled out good money thinking they were getting the songs they remembered growing up with only to find different versions on these CDs. (This was especially true of some Osmonds recordings ... both group and solo work. See the email below) kk

I have to admit, I like many of The Osmonds' hits, and even had one or more of the 45 singles. Some time back I purchased their CD, Osmonds 21 Hits, on Curb Records, 1995. I was always curious why I didn't "rip" any songs from the CD if I liked the music. Yesterday, I finally did. It reminded me why I didn't initially "rip" any songs, since the sound quality is horrendous, to say the least. Their 45 singles on MGM sounded loads better, from what I recall. I was even more disappointed with another Curb Records Osmonds CD that contained remakes - without warning. This is why I cringe at the thought of Mike Curb being willing to issue such putrid sound of a great group, The Osmonds, even being instrumental in their production at the time. I spent close to three hours trying to restore the sound of two songs, "Double Trouble" and "Yo-Yo", just to make them more tolerable to listen to, but they still have quality flaws. The sound quality should knock your socks off, per se'. Who knows ... maybe this is why I never hear any Osmond songs on radio.
I see no mention as to who did the CD mastering on these. I wish I could target one problem with the sound, but it appears to be compounded, even with careless transfers from tape, if that's what the source was. Maybe a FH reader can recommend a better sound quality CD, containing their US Top 40 Hits?
Thanks, Kent!
As mentioned above, I've been disappointed, too, with the sound quality of some of the Curb Records CD reissues ... and don't understand at all the reasoning behind substituting so many of the tracks with inferior versions. I'm hoping that if Mike sees today's posting he will contact us and shed some light on this topic.  (If I'm not mistaken, there were a couple of releases that had an "Original Recordings" banner plastered over the front cover ... yet many of the tracks were STILL outttakes and alternate versions!)
Meanwhile, a recently released two CD set called "Osmondmania!" (on Polydor Chronicles) covers nearly ALL of the group and solo hits in very good sound quality ... so look for that one! (kk)