Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Sunday Comments ( 09 - 12 - 10 )

It's another SUPER-SIZED Edition of The Sunday Comments this week in Forgotten Hits ... Enjoy!!!

>>>Big Jay Sorenson is back in New York Today and Tomorrow, helping us with our 1001 Countdown. I like Big Jay. Wish he was here on a permanent basis. (Frank)
>>>Big Jay's a big fan and supporter of Forgotten Hits ... we wish him the very best ... 'cause we dig him, too! (kk)
And, if you're a Big Jay Fan, too, then you'll really like this next piece of news ...

Jay Sorensen, a.k.a. “Big Jay” on WNBC, New York and still a live wire on the radio, takes on an additional role as South Jersey Vice President for the New Jersey Radio Museum, based in Dover (Morris County), NJ. NJRM co-founder Carl VanOrden notes that when the effort got rolling a decade ago, it was mostly driven by folks from North Jersey. He says Sorensen has the contacts and energy to take the effort to all corners of the state. You might hear Jay doing weekend airwork at classic hits WCBS-FM, New York (101.1), and if you’re in the Garden State, you might be getting email from him about the museum.
-- Tom Taylor / Taylor On Radio
WTG, Big Jay ... congrats!!! (kk)

And our VERY SPECIAL CONGRATULATIONS go out to Janis Johnson of Chicago, IL, who won a free pair of ticket to see Peter Noone and Micky Dolenz at The Star Plaza in Merrillville, Indiana, on Saturday, October 23rd ... courtesy of Peter Noone himself! Have a GREAT time at the concert! (kk)
Ohmygosh, Kent! You are kidding me, right?????

Okay, got to tell you what a fan I am but before I say another word:
THANK YOU!!!!!!!!
I have been his fan 4Ever, am the age of an original fan, and have entered every Herman concert every time he has had one! I don't win, but I just sit and daydream (used to be to win a kiss from Herman, date from Herman, jacket from Herman ... modern day contests have been concert tickets, or backstage passes ... I have NEVER won, but then, most people don't of course! He has a zillion fans who enter!!!!!
I am stunned!!!!!! And I couldn't believe when I read your site and also the email updates and saw that he had given tickets! I just thought, how beyond cool!
Yes, I am absolutely able to attend this concert, I mean, come on!!!! Are you kidding me????? I feel like driving there tonight and "queuing" up! (I always start throwing British words around when I think of 'erman!!!! I always wanted to be his fab bird!!!!!)
Totally, totally thrilled. Can't believe it.
Thank you!!!!!!!!
Best, Best, Best!!!!!
We know her very well ... she's a lifetime member of the fan club.
Jana / Peter
It is SO great that a major, life-long fan won these ... thanks again to Peter for making it all possible ... should be a GREAT night of music ... I can't wait!!! (kk)

We just got this little note from Davie Allan ...
There's an Eight Episode "Showtime" series titled "Wild Things" starting September 10th at 12:00 a.m. (or you could say it's midnight on the 9th). I don't know if the show will be anyone's cup of tea but I figured a contest might be in order. The first person to tell me the original name of the theme will receive a copy of my latest album. Hint: the tune is not from the 60's. If you already have "Retrophonic", please send me the name of someone you think might like it OR ... wait and receive a copy of "Retrophonic 2 - The Home Demos" (no release date scheduled yet).
Davie Allan
Got an idea as to what it might be? Then email Davie at ... and Good Luck!!! (kk)

Speaking of Davie Allan, he just sent me THIS note, too ... I think there may be a few others on the list who might want to participate in this. You can check it all out here:

Hi Kent,
I had to share this with you! (too cool)
Rock on,


I have listened to Trade Martin's WORK SONG twice today, the first being of course the 45 rpm version I played earlier here at home and the attached MP3 which you just sent to me. The early records that Trade Martin made, were in my opinion, similar to what the Crests and Johnny Maestro made, in that both boys and girls enjoyed them. Or in other words, they were COEDucational.
Speaking of record labels, indirectly, design wise, my all time favorite was the ABC PARAMOUNT label with the various colors in the name. I don't know if you have had on your website any discussion on record labels, as to favorite design, color, etc. but the ABC PARAMOUNT was always my favorite.

One final thing. I was talking to a friend of mine years ago, and he was surprised that there were so many vocal versions of hit instrumentals we know of today. For example, Apache was done vocally by Sonny James, Wonderland by Night done vocally by Anita Bryant, Stranger on the Shore done vocally by Andy Williams, etc. Have you ever done a piece on this topic?
We've never really done anything on the labels themselves ... might make for some interesting conversation. As for vocal arrangements of well-known instrumentals, we touched on this briefly when we posted our readers' Top 40 All-Time Favorite Instrumentals ... in fact, Gary Pike of The Lettermen even sent us a few vocal versions of popular instrumentals that HIS group recorded. (Unbelievable how many people SANG "Sleep Walk", the #1 Favorite Instrumental of All-Time according to The Oldies Nation. Not that ANY of them are particularly BAD versions ... there's just something haunting about that Santo and Johnny original ... MY all-time favorite instrumental, too!)

You can check out the COMPLETE list here:
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Top 40 Instrumentals, 1955 - 1979
The list shows both an actual chart ranking based on these songs' performance on the national charts as well as a SECOND list of your personal favorites, as voted on by The Oldies Nation. Check it out!
By the way ... you'll find more from Larry ... and Trade Martin ... further down the page today. Be sure to check out the "Sounds Like ..." posting below!!! (kk)

Hi Kent!
Gotta tell you about our upcoming convention ...
Oct 21/24 - in Newark, NJ
They will be coming great distances for this.
You'll note the music panel listed for Saturday the 23rd. The panel is run by me and Brian Gari (Eddie Cantor's grandson).
Two of the panel members are Dick Heatherton (famous Dee Jay). His dad was Ray Heatherton "The Merry Mailman" and his sister is Joey Heatherton. Just so you have an idea of who Dick is.
Ed Rambeau will also be on the panel. He sang "Concrete and Clay" besides writing "Navy Blue" and "Kiss Me sailor" for Diane Renay.
Please check the web site listed below for more details.
DJ Stu Weiss

Hi Kent!,
You did such a wonderful job with The Fleetwoods, having Gretchen write, now it's The Shangri-Las' turn!
Seeking any information about this recording, in general. I know the music was recorded first then vocal Takes, up to 19, were added.
Would like to know:
A.) Recording Date(s)
B.) Recording Studio(s) Names / Locations(s)
C.) Musicians
D.) Studio Personnel
E.) Etc.
Mary-Ann and who else is heard here? No doubt from NY!
Here's an Early Take with studio talk.
Remember (Walkin' In The Sand) - 1964 - The Shangi-Las
From what I've read, there was an initial version that had to be trimmed to a more friendly airplay size. Since the "hit" song really didn't have an intro, could this (touching) spoken word intro be what was edited out?
The Animals: We Gotta Get Out Of This Place - 1965

As heard on a past French EP, with a hint of Stereo:

Johnny Tillotson: Poetry In Motion (Take #2+) - 1962
Finest sounding Stereo version of it, to date:
Dionne Warwick: I Say A Little Prayer (Take #10) - 1967
Trying to obtain inside information:
Chuck Jackson: Any Day Now (My Wild Beautiful Bird) - 1962
Nothing uncommon, just a great song!

Elton John: Rocket Man - 1972
As it sounds (stereo) "remixed", with my own little twist:
Brandy (You're A Fine Girl) - 1972 - The Looking Glass.
There are two or more "mixes" of this (Stereo) song. What I'd find on CD and vinyl (45) wasn't what I remember hearing (later) on radio! Not much difference between the two or mixes, but the "bridge" (I guess you call it) is where the main difference is. I went for years trying to find what I heard playing on radio, on CD and finally did. Assume what radio plays (WOGL, etc.) is from vinyl. However, this (audio enhanced) version includes bongos during the bridge.
This is the more common version played on radio, with a more dominating horn section, evident keyboard work, excluding bongos. Maybe you can round up The Looking Glass and find out how and why this happened! lol. Would like to see this song remixed / remastered, though it would probably require multiple tapes and a lot of luck.

>>>I have a question for anyone who grew up in Chicago who might remember: 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)>>>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)
Thank you so much for posting Stu Shea's reminiscence of Round Records. I actually met this wonderful collector at one of the record fairs in Hillside IL a couple of years ago, and we shot the breeze about obscure Midwestern pop and soul for a few minutes. Not surprising that he used to hang around -- at Round!
BTW, for Mitch Schecter - I love everything the Rip Chords ever recorded. Thanks to Beverly Records I now have a VG+ copy of "Here I Stand", which should have been a much bigger hit, and a M- copy of "Three Window Coupe." And of course "Hey, Little Cobra" is one of the great surf / hot-rod records of all time!
Bob Rashkow

I passed your note along to Mitch Schecter of The Rip Chords ... and here's what he had to say:
Thanks Bob Rashkow!
I agree that the original recordings are great and are classic today. Maybe you would enjoy our newer recordings as well ... we stay true to the original sound throughout ... with great respect to Terry and Bruce. The new CD's feature Original Touring / Recording Members Richie Rotkin and Arnie Marcus.
Thanks again Bob ... And thanks for forwarding Bob's letter to me Kent!
Mitch Schecter / The Rip Chords

And, speaking of The Rip Chords, some of our East Coast Readers are in for a treat if they can make it out to this concert event:
Kent ...
Here's a poster of a great show that we are included on at The Allentown Symphony Hall in Allentown Pa. on Saturday, September 25th.
If any of the F.H. readers are in this area, grab a ticket and stop on out and catch the show, then stop and say hello!
Mitch Schecter / The Rip Chords

Hi Kent -
Just wanted to drop a line to let you know that I have in my possession a program guide of the 1959 Dick Clark Caravan of Stars given to me by a good friend. It's good to have great friends. I remember that you asked for any programs from those great tours starting at the 60s. Here is one from 1959. We are in there along with many big stars of that year like Paul Anka, Jimmy Clanton, Bobby Rydell, Annette Funiccelo, The Coasters, The Drifters, Duane Eddy, The Skyliners, Lavern Baker and many more. It was a great tour. I am going to send you that via e mail.

But I would also like to mention that our hometown of Frackville, Pa. is going to present us with a plaque to be placed at the borough hall on October 9, 2010, Saturday at 3 PM. Man, what an honor. In case of bad weather it will be held in the gymnasium right there at the site. The borough hall is now at the old high school on Oak Street. I would like to invite you or any of your subscribers or the many people we met throughout the years in the business too numerous to mention, but they know who they are. It would be great to see all of you. It promises to be a big day for everyone.
Keep up the great work in keeping the forgotten hits remembered and ...
Frank Jordan

Congratulations, Frank, that's a great honor. (Wish we COULD be there to see it!!!) And thanks for the tour program photos ... they'll be posted up on our Scrapbook Memories Page right after our Special Summer Countdown Series runs. (You can check it out here:
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Scrapbook Memories) kk
Please check out – new music by a ‘60s - ‘70s band with a top-ten regional hit that never did get our album released (always “a heartbreak away from a contract”).
Flash forward: I was their keyboard player, and after 39 years, I’m in a new band – now called Rob Carlson & Benefit Street – with the original group’s lead singer / chief songwriter: (And we’re still doing new original music, as well as three songs from the old album. Yes, we’re all still alive and well, and many of us are still playing out both for love and for money!)
Thanks for any kindness you can show the CD. The guys (and lady) in the band appreciate it!
(Think there’s a story there, perhaps?)
Many thanks,

Country Paul
Paul Payton
Not sure if there's a story here or not ... but I'm certainly happy to promote your latest efforts. Thanks, Paul! (kk)


I'm a long-time reader but have never written before.
My good friend Mike Clifford who recorded the hit "Close To Cathy" back in 1962 has just released "Mack The Knife" backed by the 38 piece PTPOPS Orchestra. It's available at
I feature Mike prominently on my station, which has been running 24 / 7 for the last 3 1/2 years ... I'll be playing this new cut on the station, but I encourage anyone who loves great music to give his version a listen ... the instrumentation is superb and Mike has NEVER been in better voice.
I grew up on Cleveland and my station is modeled after WHK, my favorite station growing up ... I play a 60 / 40 mix of charted tunes and what I like to call "songs you should have heard"... I'm proud to say that Tom Diehl is one of my enthusiastic listeners.
Keep up the great work ...
Chuck Benjamin

Hey Kent,
Have you seen this about the world's rarest car?
It's the 1954 Oldsmobile F-88 Convertible Concept Car
After spending decades as a collection of parts stuffed into wooden crates – the F-88 was reassembled.
In 1954 – the F-88 was a Motorama “Dream Car” and was one of only two – or an unconfirmed possible three - ever created. The F-88 seen here is literally the only car left of its kind – and was sold to John and Maureen Hendricks at the prestigious Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona for an unbelievable $3,240,000. This acquisition made automotive history and is the “cornerstone” of the Gateway Colorado Automobile Museum in its own special room in a rotating display worthy of the F-88!
Alex Valdez

(click photos to enlarge ... they're really quite amazing!!!)

Denny Tedesco just let me know about some upcoming screenings of his AWESOME flick spotlighting The Wrecking Crew. This is MUST SEE Viewing for every music fan on our list! If any of these locations are near you, do yourself a favor and check this film out ... you will NOT be disappointed. (kk)
Hi Kent!
Just letting you know about a few Upcoming Screenings / Fund-Raising Events that are happening in the near future. If you’re in the area or know someone that might be able to go, please let them know of the event.
And, if you’re interested in hosting private fundraiser, please check out:
Thousand Oaks, CA
Sunday, September 19th
1401 E Janss Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362
Time: 4:30 PM
Q&A with Don Randi and Denny Tedesco
Non-profit Screening - Suggested Donation
Dallas, TX
Saturday, October 9th
1409 South Lamar, Basement #012
Free parking on Belleview Street entrance
Dallas, TX 75215
Time: 8:00 PM
Phone: 214.565.0383
Non-profit Screening
Q&A with Director, Denny Tedesco
Salinas, CA
Saturday, October 16th
National Steinbeck Center Announces: Night at the Museum
Saturday, October 16th with the Rock n’Roll Evening with The Wrecking Crew
One Main StreetSalinas, CA 93901
TIME: 7:30 PM (doors open at 7:00 PM)
Non-profit Screening
Q&A with Director, Denny Tedesco
Screening is followed by a mixer with music and cash bar in the Rotunda.
They're still trying to raise funding to get this film commercially released ... and it's a film that deserves to be seen ... so please check out these special screenings if they happen to be playing in your area ... or visit the official website to learn more and watch outtakes from the film:

Just wondering if any of your members remember this? I have looked for this forever and it finally made you tube. Thought you might get a kick out of it as I did.

YouTube - Red Rose Tea Marquis Chimps Commercial
I honestly don't remember this ... but with all the commercial-savvy folks on our list I'm sure many will be totally charmed by seeing this neat little ad again! (kk)

Great to hear from Walter Podrazik, and neat story about switching channels back and forth ... I seem to recall doing that a few times myself when there were two shows I just had to see on together, like maybe a monster movie and a Red Sox game! Don't know what made me think that run of the Scarecrow was the 2nd, not the first, but over the years, I've come to accept with a humble shrug all those "memories" that turned out to be bum. And when something I recall turns out to be dead on, I appreciate it, each and every time!
To Walter: Did you see my comments on viewers living in Upper Upstate NY? They got Disney on Canadian TV earlier in the evening in those days, and so watched both. I looked up the TV schedules in old newspapers at the library to confirm it. There are other interesting Canadian sidebars to classic American TV ... the Great White version of Howdy Doody comes to mind, of course. Also, several of the 60s / 70s Peanuts specials aired on the CBC on an earlier date than their US premiere. And don't forget all those Canadian Beatles records. This even extends to food products ... like, occasionally I'll run across an old breakfast cereal or chewing gum that I seem to remember, but that isn't on the standard "lists"...and it turns out to be Canadian, and apparently infiltrated stores in New England where I grew up.
I personally didn't know that the Canadian version singles of "Roll Over Beethoven" and "All My Loving" had charted here in The States until I saw Joel Whitburn's first Billboard Pop Singles book back in 1970 ... I certainly don't recall seeing these records in the stores here in the Chicagoland suburbs. What REALLY stands out in my memory, however, is all the Vee Jay "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" Beatles sleeves that were on the shelves that first year ... man, I wish I would have thought to buy a couple hundred ... because I certainly had the opportunity to do so ... the shelves were JAMMED with these picture sleeves! (Of course back then, when I was ten, I probably never had more than $2 in my pocket at any given point of time ... kinda like now!!!) kk

In my opinion, there are two different ways to choose these songs. Probably the most common is the songs you prefer to listen to right now. The second, and I believe, more accurate way, are the songs that have provided you the most enjoyment over the years, especially when it first came out. For me, some of the songs in the second group have dropped out of the first group, because I have heard them enough to tire somewhat of them. A Day In The Life and In My Life are not in my top half of Beatles' song.
-- Dwight Rounds
Short of a personal favorites list, I don't know how else you could accurately rank something like this ... certainly you could list the biggest hits in order but that would confine the list to just the singles ... and even if you incorporated album sales and rankings into the mix, how would anybody distinguish between the significance of one album track over another short of playing favorites or monitoring long-term impact?
A list of most IMPORTANT and world-changing songs would put "I Want To Hold Your Hand" at the very top of the list ... but it's far from their "greatest" song. Likewise, with seven weeks at #1 here in The States, it would rank second only to "Hey Jude", which topped the charts for nine weeks in 1968.
And you're right ... some of these songs have worn thin over repeated listening for the past 40+ years. Even a great song like "All You Need Is Love" ... certainly another one that belongs on the "Important and Significant List" (if only because of its worldwide "Our World" broadcast ... and the fact that it became the unofficial anthem of The Summer Of Love) ... REALLY drags for me now. Yes, it's still a great song ... but in hindsight picking up the tempo even half-a-notch probably would have made for a more listenable song all these years later.
After all the hoopla surrounding the Rolling Stone Magazine List, I started to divide The Beatles' catalog into five categories ... beginning with songs that I've ALWAYS loved and still love to this day ... and ending with songs that I have NEVER liked ... EVER!!! (As I said earlier, it'd be far easier for me to list my twenty LEAST favorite Beatles songs than my twenty favorites!!! 'Cause THESE songs have NEVER caught my ear!!!)
The bottom line is that a list like this is all purely subjective and designed by nature to spark controversy and conversation ... which is exactly what it's done. There are no right or wrong answers ... that's kinda the cool thing about music. (kk)

Kent ...
This young lady was ahead of her time. She found the Beatles in 1963.
Frank B.
And here in Chicago, WLS Radio Legend Art Roberts formed the very first Beatles Fan Club in the U.S.A. ... literally Beatles Fan Club #1!!! He, too, believed that something big was about to happen ... guess you could say he was kinda right! Read our "Who Played The Very First Beatles Record In America" article and you'll see that some folks knew a little bit about The Beatles before "I Want To Hold Your Hand" burst the scene wide open ... but getting a copy of the "Please Please Me" that early is amazing ... it just might have been the ONLY copy here in The States at the time!!! (kk)

Have you guys seen this one? Over the weekend, AOL Music ranked The 100 WORST Songs Of All-Time. You'll find some songs you 'Love To Hate" on the list ... some obvious titles of choice (aka The Usual Suspects) ... and some songs where you'll simply shake your head and say "Are you kidding me?!?!? I LOVE that song!!!" A little bit of everything for everyone can be found here:

And, on a related note, Hz So Good this week announced The Top 50 LEAST-Deserving #1 Songs (as voted on by the oldies nation). If you'd like to see a copy of the list, drop an email to Rich Appel at: ... and tell him that Forgotten Hits sent you! (kk)

GREAT article on Bobby Fuller. I found your article online at
I am Bobby Fuller's birth son and was adopted out at birth. Just wanted to say great article! I do have a question I hope you can help me with. You stated in the article, "Most importantly, we know that these mob figures were named as beneficiaries on FULLER's reported $1,000,000 life insurance policy." Can you tell me where this information comes from? I've been trying to find it for awhile now. Thanks,
John Novak
Hi John!
Thanks for your letter on Bobby Fuller ... unfortunately, I'm not going to be of very much help to you here. That article was first published back in 2002 ... and a wide variety of sources were used in compiling the information used in the article ... DOZENS in fact, including material submitted by many of our readers at the time. ... so I can't say for certain specifically where that one quote came from ... and all of my original notes from this series were lost two dozen computer crashes ago!!!
The circumstances surrounding Bobby's mysterious (and horrifically violent) death have been put under microscopes for over 40 years now and nobody is any closer today to proving what happened than at the time of the original incident. Everybody who's ever looked into this case has drawn their own conclusions and suspicions (and even most of those seem to vary in some fashion, depending on who you talk to.) OUR report was written WELL after the fact and simply summarized all of the different research resources used in originally preparing the article.
I can say that, over the years I talked to Bob Keane several times through Forgotten Hits and my personal opinion is that he was devastated by Bobby's death ... it would be hard for me to imagine Bob being in someway responsible. (We lost Keane recently, too, so any mysteries he was privy to died along with him at that time.) Then again, after reading Tommy James' recent book exposing some of the behind-the-scenes activities of Roulette Records Boss Morris Levy, who knows what was REALLY going on in rock and roll back in the mid-'60's!
Sorry I can't be of more help ... but the death of Bobby Fuller is truly one of the great tragedies of rock and roll. (kk)

re: FIRST 45's:
You guys are still sendin' 'em ... and we're still publishing them ... so keep 'em coming, folks! (kk)
Click here: Forgotten Hits - FIRST 45's
Click here: Forgotten Hits - More of Your FIRST 45's
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Even MORE Of Your First 45's
I was living in Crailsheim, Germany. It was Christmas, 1965, when I got my first record player and my first 45s. They were "It Ain't Me Babe" by the Turtles on the original blue White Whale label. I remembered the original "B'" side was the fine rocker "Almost There". Also "Sunshine, Lollipops & Rainbows" by Lesley Gore, short and sweet at 1:37. I remembered the flip was a dramatic ballad "You've Come Back" written by Van McCoy. Another one was "A Taste Of Honey" by Herb Alpert. I remembered the record would skip at certain points. I remembered the flip side was a sprightly version of Anton Karas' "The Third Man Theme". I liked the Tijunana Brass so much that I bought the follow-up "Zorba The Greek" that was edited to 2:48 from a 4:26 version. In addition to the edits, there was some extra crowd noise, an overdubbed trombone towards the end, and adddtional reverb.
I've always LOVED the whole idea of the "punched-up" single versions ... and wish that EVERY single mix would come back again in CD format so we can TRULY relive our youth.
The B-Side of "Sunshine, Lollipops And Rainbows" is one of my ALL-TIME Favorite, Forgotten B-Sides, and we've featured it a few times before in Forgotten Hits. "You've Come Back" is one of Lesley Gore's FINEST vocal performances, too ... so we'll give it another spin here today! (kk)

Based on comments I saw in Forgotten Hits, I've just finished reading "Little Girl Blue: The Life of Karen Carpenter." Randy Schmidt has done an outstanding job of telling the complete, tragic story of Karen's life and her slow death. His meticulous attention to detail is really appreciated by those of us who like to get "the most accurate truth." Randy even tells us about Richard's and Karen's first 45s; certainly a nod to Forgotten Hits.
Things must've gotten hurried toward the end, since it appears the copy editor either quit or rushed through the final third of this volume, as evidenced by the increase in grammar problems and typos. For anyone who is at all interested in the music of our era, or in psychology and family dynamics, this book is a must-read. This isn't the first, and won't be the last story chronicling the tragedy that sometimes results from the melding of extreme talent and family dysfunction.
LOL ... as soon as I read about Richard's "First 45" I posted it on the website! (Links above ... guess it's just a force of habit at this stage of the game ... with literally hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of responses!) Still a pretty hot topic 'cause if you were into the music at all the way that WE were, you remember stuff like this.
I was VERY pleased with Randy's accounting ... so much so, in fact, that I read Ray Coleman's Karen Carpenter bio right behind it to see what kind of new factoids Schmidt had uncovered. (Coleman's book is over ten years old now ... and, if your read Randy's preamble, you know that it was heavily edited ... or influenced by ... Richard and Mama Carpenter!)
A tragic tale about a disease that nobody knew too much about at the time ... makes you wonder if part of Karen's true purpose in life was educating the rest of us ... (quite honestly, I could probably use anorexia for about ten days myself!!!) The GOOD news is, she left behind some BEAUTIFUL music with some unparalleled vocals that will charm many, many generations to come. (kk)

I've just read a story of fame, fortune and incredible drug abuse. It's the life story of Chuck Negron of Three Dog Night called "Three Dog Nightmare".
I never knew any of this. So unbelievable it's almost like a tale of fiction.
If you're interested in this type stuff, I heartily recommend it. Got it from my local library. I knew the group was big but had forgotten just how big. Read it and weep ... and sometimes chuckle.
Yep, one of my all-time favorite rock biographies ... we've been telling people about it for YEARS!!! "Three Dog Nightmare" (or as I like to call it, "The Exciting Adventures Of Chuck's Exploding Penis") is MUST reading for any fan of their music. (The guys are still on the outs ... Negron performs as a solo act, often in conjunction with Blood, Sweat And Tears, and Danny and Cory have been doing the "Two Dog" version of Three Dog Night for decades now ... BOTH acts sound GREAT in concert ... in fact, there's a DVD available of the Danny and Cory version performing with The Memphis Symphony Orchestra that is just out of this world ... look for THAT at your local library ... or video store ... too!)
People sometimes forget just how big Three Dog Night really were ... truly the biggest act on the planet for a couple of years in the early '70's. Talk about having it ALL and then blowing it. (It's really no wonder that Hutton and Wells have never forgiven Chuck Negron for effectively ending their run at the top.) Three Dog Night scored 21 consecutive Top 40 Singles ... that's their ENTIRE chart career ... and 13 of those made The National Top Ten on either the Billboard or the Cash Box Chart ... and, in most instances, BOTH!!!
The book is an incredible journey from "Hero to Zero" ... from "First to Worst" ... from "Success to Excess" ... at this point it's fair to say that Negron is lucky to be alive and a TRUE survivor.
Absolutely recommended ... as is the Karen Carpenter bio above. (kk)

If you want to read a nightmare, read David Crosby's "Long Time Gone" ... talk about close to death and a roller coaster ride ... David is one lucky dude.
You also might want to check out the Woody's "Message from Michael", a song about the nightmarish death of the Byrds' original drummer, Michael Clarke (who also drummed for the Flying Burrito Bros and Firefall).
He took his first drink at 14 and never quit drinking ... quite sobering!
This is an all encompassing video of the letter that Michael wrote just days before his nightmarish death. Get a kleenex, you're gonna need it. Let this be a wake-up call to all of us that may have a drinking problem!
"Wild" Bill Cody
I've always wondered about some of these rock star biographies ... you cannot help but wonder how they can possibly remember ANYTHING about their glory days, being as fucked-up as they were at the time ... generally they spent this time in a COMPLETE state of unconsciousness and obliteration. Remarkably, some of them not only lived through it but lived to tell about it, too ... but honestly, how can they POSSIBLY remember a thing?!?!? (I especially felt that way reading Eric Clapton's bio recently ... Grace Slick's, too ... truthfully, the list goes on and on. That's why I try to sneak in something "sane" once in a while like the Andy Williams biography I mentioned the other day! lol) kk

re: SOUNDS LIKE ... :
>>>I don't know if you remember it or if it was playing on your favorite rock and roll station at the time, but there was an alternate vocal version of "The Work Song", too. It didn't chart nationally, I believe, but it was by the Bobby Vee sound-alike, Trade "THAT STRANGER USED TO BE MY GIRL" Martin on RCA. (Larry Neal / The Wax Museum)
>>>I'm not sure if he likes mine, but I love all the Bobby Vee records ... still, I've never heard anyone say that we even 'slightly' sounded alike. (Trade Martin)
My father used to have an expression he used a lot and it went something like this ... "If I say or do anything in particular again, please have my head examined."
Remember a few weeks ago when I said that the Dual's 1961 recording of STICK SHIFT was very, very similar to BLUES' THEME by Davie Allan and the Arrows? Well, after my comments ran (along with yours and Davie Allan's, too!) I played them back to back really for the first time here at home and, sure enough, there was really no similarity.
Now it's happened again with me calling Trade Martin a "Bobby Vee Sound-a-like"! I really meant that on his earlier recordings with COED records. However, a while ago, I went in there and played his THAT STRANGER USED TO BE MY GIRL as well as a follow-up, HULA HULA DANCING GIRL. Now, in my opinion, on those recordings, at various parts of the song, I still think he sounds a little bit like Bobby Vee, but less now than I did some years ago.
So from this point on, I will never again say a certain singer or group sounds similar to another singer or group.
Please don't ask my opinion on Ral Donner or Terry Stafford, or Marvin Benefiel, aka Vince Everett.
LOL ... first of all, I think Trade took it as a COMPLETE compliment ... sounds like he's a Bobby Vee fan himself. But how INCREDIBLY cool is it that a comment like this can be made ... and Davie Allan ... and Trade Martin ... and even Bobby Vee can ALL read it because they're all regular Forgotten Hits readers ... and we can bring you their responses right here on our web page. Now THAT's a dream come true for me ... everything I EVER hoped Forgotten Hits would be.
And I, for one, LOVE your comments and observations ... that's what it's all about here in FH ... and the fact that you're as knowledgeable about this music ... and have played it all ... and OWN it all ... and LOVE it all ... speaks VERY highly of your opinion credibility-wise. So keep 'em comin', Larry!

Oh, by the way, you left Ronnie McDowell off your list! (lol) And personally, I think Vince Everett's recording of "Such A Night" is every bit as good as Elvis' ... and that Terry Stafford SURPASSES The King with his rendition of "Suspicion" ... so wait'll you see what kind of Elvis hate-mail I get in the next week or two!!! (lol) kk

No doubt about it ... folks are happy about us reinstating our new website posting email reminders ... over the past two days, we've received a couple thousand emails from folks asking us to put their names BACK on the list. (If you haven't signed up yet ... but would like to receive an email letting you know each time we make a new post ... just drop us an email that says PUT ME ON THE LIST and we'll add your name to the file. Send it to:
All-righty then ... 'Nuff said ... you're on the list!!! (lol) kk

yes yes yes, a trillion times yes! ... what am i saying yes to again? ... oh yeah, right ... YES!!!!
--- stolf

Hi Kent!
Your website is always fun and informative; hope you keep it going for a long time.
Karen Thompson
Oklahoma City

If you're still interested in keeping in touch with old bass players from the New Colony Six, then keep me on the list, please. Thanks.
Walt (Wally) Kemp
LOL ... ALWAYS interested in THAT!!! Thanks, Wally! (kk)

I'm getting old too, and a reminder is always welcome in my inbox!
Thanks for all you do, it's much appreciated and enjoyed.

Hey Kent ...
KEEP ME ON THE LIST!!!!!!!!!!!! Having been out of radio for 10 years now, you guys are THE BEST at keeping this old jock informed about our beloved oldies! Thanks for staying the course and doing us ALL a great service!!!!!!!!!!!!

I want to thank all the FH readers, especially Carolyn, (who came thru for me big time!) who helped me in my quest to obtain 45 45s that were popular this week 45 years ago. My wife loved the gift. Sadly I don't think there were any 78s back in 1965, so I can't work on 78 78s for her 78th birthday in 33 years. Not to mention I'll be 94 and in a home for senile rock and rollers, assuming I'm alive.
It was a VERY clever birthday idea ... and a GREAT musical tie-in to boot! Glad we were able to help in some small way! (Frannie's birthday is next week ... kinda freaky that she turns 50 just hours after my odometer passed 50,000!!! Some bizarre symetry there or what?!?!? lol) kk

Hi Kent,
Please put me on the list. I have always appreciated the straight forward approach you take when sharing and have learned so much from you.
Thank you.

YAY!!!!!! Great to have you back!
I know that I'll appreciate the reminders. As much as I love to read Forgotten Hits (and I don't think I've missed a single issue since you first added me to the list), it's hard for me to remember to check the website every single day -- and time just gets away from me. Now I'll know exactly when to check -- and never miss another posting. Thanks again for reconsidering -- I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels this way.
No, you're definitely NOT the only one ... we received literally hundreds and hundreds of letters just like yours ... so hopefully by redoing the list we're not only giving you guys what you really want but we're also eliminating all of the bounce-backs we were getting. So far, so good ... for everybody! (kk)

David Green-Manley here.
Since my Father passed away it appears more and more groups want to use his car collection. When he felt all was forgotten, you and your team came into his life. The vehicles will still be available and of course the loan of the vehicles are always free. The Tires and Rims shown are some of the gifts we send along with the classic cars and hot rods to be given away. My Dad was great man ... he and Tony Orlando were real close.
David Green-Manley J

Thanks, David ... it's a pretty tight group, this oldies community of ours! (Hey, what do you think of that awesome Oldsmobile featured above?!?!?) kk

Love you man, in a totally non-homosexual, non-anal penetrative way! :-D
LOL ... thanks, Ed ... this one TOTALLY made my day!!! (kk)

PLEASE put us back on the list. I / we deeply appreciate all of the effort you put into this fabulous site ... can't even imagine how difficult it is to do. It's definitely a labor of love. "We" includes Mom and Dad (aka boomers) and two teenage daughters who ADORE "our" music. They HATE, as many of their friends do, the music of their own era. So, thank you for keeping the greatest era in music alive!
Marianne Van Zandt & family

Wow ... thanks, Marianne ... 'cause THIS is what we do it for!!! (kk)

Kicking off tomorrow ... and running all week long ... it's our VERY Special Top 50 Summer Countdowns, featuring The Biggest Hits of Summer, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966 and 1970 ... as we do our best to present The Official Last Blast Of Summer ... right here in Forgotten Hits! Be sure to check back Monday - Friday to see the results! (kk)