Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Sunday Comments ( 01 - 22 - 12 )


Hi Kent, 
Has your site been down or is my PC that’s not updating?
– Dereck Staines
We have had a number of distractions and "real life" dramas going on here these past two weeks ... but I'm still trying to post whenever I can.  Normally I'd say check the website every day just to see what's there ... but last week we even missed a couple of "Sound Advice" columns ... and that's never happened before.  
I'm doing my best to keep up but sometimes it's difficult to feel creative and inspired when in reality it feels as if your whole world is crumbling around you.  Doing my best to keep things going ... but lately each and every day seems to present another insurmountable challenge.  (And those are the GOOD days!!!)  
Thank you all for your patience and understanding ... 
Hopefully there are brighter days ahead.

Special thanks to Charles Amann III for giving us a GREAT plug on his awesome American Bandstand Website.  Hop on over and browse around a bit ... all kinds of great Bandstand memorabilia and memories to be found.  (In fact, he's already got a book deal in the works ... and Bandstand fans will want to jump on this one!  (kk)
Much Thanks, Kent ...
When the book is released this year, I'll be sure to give you a heads up as it is about to arrive on the shelves.
Again, thanks for all you do. Your site is really special.
Best regards,

Hello Kent:
As I was perusing around your Forgotten Hits website / blog I came upon an idea for a series that I haven’t seen done yet.  How about one on the groups that have sort of the “big band” or “lots of horns and brass” sound?  You know the main groups in this, Blood Sweat and Tears, Chicago , Chase, Tower of Power, Lighthouse, TJB and I’m sure there must be more.  You would know better than I of other groups that would fit into this category.
This would be a bit different and quite interesting.  If this sounds like something you would do I can get you some email addresses of a couple of people that are very well versed in the history of BS&T.  I’m sure they would be willing to share with you stories and the like. 
Great website, great blog.  Keep up the good work.
Pete Heger 
Thanks, Pete!  You're right ... we've never really done a series of this nature.  Let's put it out the masses ... is this something you guys out there might like to participate in?  Make it more of a "Readers Forum" ... you guys supply the details and the memories and we'll provide the posting and sounding board?  Let us know.  (kk)

>>>After 40 years of guessing and wondering, Carly Simon has revealed who her iconic "You're So Vain" song is written about.  (We almost don't want to tell you. The mystery is what makes the song!)  Ah well, it's out there already. The song, which was rumored for years to be about one of her ex-boyfriends (like Warren Beatty or Mick Jagger), was actually written about gay record label boss David Geffen.  The answer came to fans after Carly admitted the name of the Vain person was whispered in the new acoustic version of the song off her upcoming album Never Been Gone. After listening to it, sources say the singer whispers Geffen's name backwards on the track.  (Renfield)  
And so what would that sound like? 
Divad Neffeg?
Has anyone heard "Paul is dead" on the track? 
Sorry.  If this is the way Carly has chosen to reveal the secret, then fine, but I pictured Warren entering with the scarf on and then Mick strutting around.  Will try to replace my visuals now.
Shelley J. Sweet-Tufano 

We got this notification too late to include it in our special Saturday Beatles-related Comments Page (scroll down below if you missed it!) ... but wanted to be sure to draw attention to it today.
George Harrison: Living In The Material World (A Martin Scorsese Picture) has been earned FOUR prestigious film nominations.  First it received The Critics Choice Award for Best Documentary Feature ... and now it has been nominated by The British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) for Best Documentary ... Director Martin Scorsese has been nominated by The Director's Guild Of America (DGA) for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentaries ... and the film's editor David Tedeschi has been nominated by The American Cinema Editors (ACE) in the Best Edited Documentary category.
And I still haven't seen it yet!!!  (Unreal!!!)  Tried to watch it during a "Free HBO" Weekend (but naturally it wasn't airing then!) ... but the DVD release is due out in February to coincide with George's birthday ... so we're hoping to pick it up then!  (kk) 

A few weeks back we told you about a brand new book coming out telling the story of Kenny Rogers and the First Edition. 
Here are a few more details ... along with another excellent Jeremy Roberts interview:  
Click here: I Found A Reason: Rediscovering the legacy of Kenny Rogers & The First Edition - National Pop Culture | Examiner.c

Click here: Heed The Call: Listening to the music of Kenny Rogers & The First Edition - National Pop Culture |
We did a Kenny Rogers feature a few years back (when Forgotten Hits was still in its email newsletter configuration) ... maybe we'll run that again down the road so that this information is permanently posted on the web.  (kk)   

Hi Kent - Enjoying FH as usual.
Visual Radio in Boston asked me on for an interview about The Fifth Estate and the new Time Tunnel record primarily, but a lot of 60s history in there also.
It's 40 min or so, so I don't expect with the schedule you have that you'd have time for all this .. but it does at least scratch the surface about us, The 5E, and what was going on in the 60s as it related to us.  Thought it might be of some interest both as to that musical decade and a little as to how we did the record.
Ken Evans
Great to see you guys getting some press for the new release ... we, too, have heard good things from those who have heard the new CD.  No time to watch this tonight ... but maybe over the weekend.  (And I'm quite sure some of our readers will check it out, too, so thanks for sending!)  kk 

And, in other "New Releases" news ...

A BBC radio performance by the Jimi Hendrix Experience from August 24, 1967, has recently been unearthed by the U.K.-based Top Sounds Records. 
The Experience performed “Burning of the Midnight Lamp” on host Simon Dee’s BBC TV program Dee Time. Dee had become tremendously popular at the time having been part of the pirate Radio Caroline entourage before joining the BBC where he hosted the twice weekly TV chat show Dee Time. 
Licensing material from the BBC archives, Top Sounds has been digging through the vaults, having previously released three, “excavations” as they call it, of 1960s and early 1970s BBC radio session anthologies in their Shapes And Sounds series.  
This time around Radio Tymes (TSSCD006) delves into the lost and found of British Pop on TV and radio.  (  
Sourced from professionally recorded reel to reel tapes and BBC transcription discs, Radio Tymes presents these rare recordings from some of the 60s top British bands, and indeed some groups who would find wider acclaim during the following decade.  
Track list for the disc includes:

DEEP PURPLE – The Painter(7/6/69 BBC radio show Chris Grant’s Tasty Pop Sundae) 2.45

YARDBIRDS – Think About It(3/10/68 BBC radio show Top Gear)

THE MOVE - So You Want To Be A Rock N Roll Star(10/1/67 BBC radio show Top Gear) 2.36

TOMORROW featuring KEITH WEST - My White Bicycle(10/1/67 BBC radio show Top Gear) 2.33

LOVE SCULPTURE - Do I Still Figure In Your Life(4/21/68 BBC radio show Top Gear) 2.25

YARDBIRDS - White Summer(3/10/68 BBC radio show Top Gear) 4.29

THE MOVE - Cherry Blossom Clinic(10/1/67 BBC radio show Top Gear) 2.23 

BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST - Night(8/4/68 BBC radio show Top Gear) 3.30 

THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE - Burning Of The Midnight Lamp(8/24/67 BBC TV show Dee Time) 3.57

LOVE SCULPTURE - The Inner Light(3/9/69 BBC radio show Top Gear) 4.01

DEEP PURPLE - Hush(6/30/68 BBC radio show Top Gear) 3.56  

All the music has been professionally restored, with the Deep Purple tunes having been worked on at Abbey Road Studios no, and the results of restoring music from old reel to reel tapes in particular is startling to say the least. Radio Tymes is a legitimate collection licensed from the BBC and the relevant record companies, and as per usual the LP comes with a 16 page booklet whilst the CD has a 32-page book full of illustrations and information. Available on both CD and vinyl (TSLP006).


On January 22, 2012, "Under African Skies," the new Joe Berlinger-directed documentary chronicling the creation and lasting influence of Paul Simon's classic Graceland, will premiere at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, kicking off a year's long celebration commemorating the 25th anniversary of Simon's musical and cultural achievement. One of the most eagerly anticipated documentaries of the year, "Under African Skies" is slated for international film festival screenings and a limited theatrical run, as well as airings on A&E, following its Sundance premiere.  
The story of the making of Graceland, and the controversy created when Simon went to South Africa to record with local artists, is told in "Under African Skies," the new full-length documentary from two-time Emmy and Peabody Award winning filmmaker Joe Berlinger ("Brother's Keeper," "Metallica: Some Kind of Monster," the West Memphis Three / "Paradise Lost" trilogy) and producers and A&E IndieFilms.
More here: 
This track available as a 'Free' Download in memory of Tim Bowen, Philadelphia musician, artist.
The track features alto saxophonist, Ed Palermo (of Frank Zappa Big Band- see info below). 
Featuring: Ed Palermo - alto sax (of Frank Zappa Big Band - see below),  Ernie Trionfo - lead guitar, Su Teears (of Clutch Cargo) - backing vocals, Lynda McLaughlin - backing vocals, Marty Ahearn - bass, George Manney - drums, producer, Tim Bowen - guitar, lead vocal RIP 1953-2012.  Recorded at Geo Sound Studio, Philadelphia.
All Music Guide
Biography by Bradley Torreano 
Frankie & the Avalons were the first post-millennium project from Tim Bowen, one of the establishing forces of the Philadelphia garage scene via the band, The Boneheads. Using Bowen's previous experience in the genre and adding a touch of irony to the mix, Frankie & the Avalons became the poppiest project he had been a part of, but with a campy twist. Bringing in producer George Manney to play the drums, Bowen turned to two different vocalists to complete the lineup. Both Su Teears and New York-based Lynda McLaughlin handled the vocal duties and often harmonized to produce hypnotic, interesting variations on the melodies within. Their first single was released in 2002. 
The Ed Palermo Big Band is a big band that has been active for nearly 30 years playing the compositions and arrangements of their leader and namesake Ed Palermo. They are best known for the arrangements of the music of Frank Zappa that Palermo has prepared for them. To date they have released two LP records of original content and three CDs of arrangements of Frank Zappa music. 
George Manney
And our "Spotlight New Release of the Week" goes to Mel Carter!   
Read on!

re:  MEL CARTER:  
>>>Mel Carter, who delivered one of the most memorable ballads of the 60s, “Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me,” has just released a new self produced CD titled “The Other Standards.”  The Cincinnati born singer-actor says the 12 tunes included on the new release “is a collection of standards I grew up listening to. I have always admired the artists who made these songs popular.” Among the tunes “Carterized” are “Goody Goody,” the Frankie Lymon 1958 smash; “Crying in the Chapel,” having been popularized by everyone from the Orioles in the 50s to Elvis Presley in the 60s and “Cry Me A River,” a Julie London favorite.  (Tom Cuddy)  
Mel Carter is a *great* singer and nearly all but the first of his Hot 100 chart singles were remakes. He also did a great remake of "I Only Have Eyes For You" in the mid-70's that made the A/C chart. 
Gary E. Myers / MusicGem  
I always enjoyed the tone of his voice ... and honestly "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me' has grown to become one of my all-time '60's favorites.  (I couldn't STAND this song when it first came out ... I wanted rock and roll, dammit!!!  But I have certainly come to love and appreciate it in the years since ... and it's one of those extremely rare oldies that I've never gotten tired of hearing ... so I let it play virtually every time it comes on the radio!)  kk 

Hi Kent,
"What's On Your Mind" has always been one of my favorite Mel Carter songs. Thought you might want to hear it.

Nope, I'm not familiar with this one ... evidently it never charted.  Pretty song 'though!
From what I've been told over the years, Mel Carter was quite the "prankster / cut-up" on the old Dick Clark Caravan tour buses ... I've heard that from several artists who shared the road with him back in the day.  Cool to see that he's still making new music!  (kk) 

Here's an mp3 of Mel Carter's new single ... CRYING IN THE CHAPEL.  The video will be filmed later this week in Hollywood and once it is edited, I'll get you a copy to post.
Mel will also be interviewed this Saturday, January 21st, on 77 WABC Radio in New York from 7 - 9 pm.  The interview will be streamed at:  www.wabcradio.comThanks.
-- Tom Cuddy
Thanks, Tom.  As you can see, we've got some Mel Carter fans on the list ... great to hear him in such good voice ... can't wait to see the video! (kk)  

And today I received a very nice, pleasant surprise!  I just received a copy of the new CD along with a handwritten note from Mel Carter, thanking me for my consideration in featuring two of the tracks.  (Now THAT'S a class act by a class performer!)  A VERY nice personal touch, not unlike a phone call I received several years ago from Al Martino after Forgotten Hits "Sneak Peeked" his brand new release.  Very, very cool!
In addition to the "Crying In The Chapel" track mentioned above, Mel asked that we also feature "Goody Goody", the old Frankie Lymon hit ... so here's that one, too!  (kk)

re:  DION:
The Facebook link doesn't work ... are they presuming we've logged in before going to it?  More reasons why I HATE FB!
Bob in Jersey
I tried it a couple of times, too, without success ... not quite sure what the deal is ... but I'm not on Facebook either so I don't really have an alternate "in"!  Sorry!  (kk)
>>>After reading Sunday's comments, I thought of something I might do ... I am going to get out my charts and see how many DJ's here in OKC put out a vinyl record while they were working for the local top 40 radio station at the time. It'll be interesting to see how high it got on the local charts. Needless to say, if a certain jock did make a record, it was never played on a competing radio station.  (Larry)
>>>We had a few of them do it here, too ... and some of the more successful ones are well-documented.  One of my favorite '70's radio memories came while listening to the above-mentioned John "Records" Landecker playing down the biggest hits on WLS (where radio rival / competitor Steve Dahl had topped the charts with his Rod Stewart parody "Do You Think I'm Disco") ... instead of announcing the artist, the record was always referred to as being by "Teenage Radiation", which was the name of Dahl's back-up band.  And, as you mentioned, it NEVER actually got played on the air ... but one night (after it came in at #1 again), Landecker fittingly blew the record up on the air, in tribute to Dahl's infamous Sox Park Disco Demolition debacle!  All I can tell you is it made for GREAT radio!!!  (kk)
In regards to local top 40 DJ's that came out with their own record, I decided to check the ones here in OKC. Of course none of these made the national charts and needless to say, none were played on a competing radio station. I realize that probably 99 & 44/100% of your readers (maybe 100 %) wouldn't be interested in this, but a few comments anyway if I may.
The following DJ's at the time they made the record worked for top 40 radio station WKY 930AM at the time, while their competitor at the time was cross town KOMA 1520AM.
1. Danny Williams -- ALL AMERICAN GIRL / FIDEL CASTRO ROCK (1959)
2. Danny Williams -- DECK OF CARDS / IF JESUS CAME TO YOUR HOUSE (1959)
5. Dale Wehba -- I LOVE YOU DARLING / BABY (1962)
6. Don Wallace -- MY DAD / THE SQUARE (1965)
7. Ronnie Kaye -- THE KING IS DEAD (1977)
Numbers 1 and 2 by Danny Williams (not the singer from 1964 who recorded WHITE ON WHITE) worked mornings for many many years on WKY. Song #1 was a answer / parody of Bill Parsons' ALL AMERICAN BOY while the flip was a  parody of Castro's takeover in Cuba back in 1959.
Wink Martindale's version of DECK OF CARDS was never played on WKY because they played and pushed Danny Williams' version. The Number 6 Don Wallace's song was the Paul Peterson song from years earlier while number 7 was a tribute to the passing of Elvis.
Steve Dahl is probably the one who charted most successfully here ... and he charted on a competing radio station's list (which is pretty much unheard of!)  In addition, he regularly recorded parodies that were heard on his program but not commercially released.  The recently-returned Jonathan Brandmeier had a HUGELY successful recording and touring career ... his shows regularly sold out (and were often the hottest ticket it town).  Even the aforementioned John "Records" Landecker did a Dickie Goodman-type cut-in record called "Press My Conference" that we featured a long, long time ago in Forgotten Hits.  Heck, Super Jock himself, Larry Lujack, released a God-Awful record called "The Diary Of A Mad Streaker", trying to catch on with that crazy '70's fad.  (He also released a best-selling book called "Super Jock" which, from what I understand, now commands big bucks on eBay and the used book circuit.)  These are probably the most famous ones of my generation anyway ... but jocks have been doing this since the beginning of rock and roll.  (You may remember a guy by the name of The Big Bopper, for example!)  Even George Jones started first in radio before launching his enormously successful country singing career.  (Lately the trend seems to be going the other way ... now it's these artists who are scoring their own radio shows, long after their peak singing careers are over.)  kk
Kent ...
Do you know what day it is?  (1/20/12)
I guess I'm too late to make today's edition of Forgotten Hits.
Happy National DJ Day to all Disc Jockeys among your readers.
It's also the day Alan Freed died, 1965.
Frank B.
Happy Belated DJ DAY to all the jocks who became such a big part of our lives.  (kk)
And congratulations to our FH Buddy ... and long-time Chicago-area deejay Scott Childers for his recent promotion at WSSR-FM. 
Scott also monitors this EXCELLENT WLS Tribute site:
You'll find the whole story here:
And it looks like John "Records" Landecker has landed on his feet over at WLS-FM.  According to Robert Feder's Friday column, John is the new "evening jock" at the station, airing from 6 - 11 PM, pushing Dick Biondi into the 11 PM - 2 AM slot (and shortening Greg Brown's program to 2:30 - 6 PM ... which, I guess, in effect shortens Scott Shannon's stint, too ... Shannon will now air here locally (in material recorded exclusively for WLS) from 10:15 am - 2:30.  Rumors that Landecker was going to be the new mid-day host were apparently unfounded ... but Landecker has LONG been a Chicagoland radio favorite ... so here's hoping this new arrangement works out well for everybody concerned.  (I've also heard that Dick Biondi may get a weekend program dedicated to remembering the glorious history of WLS-AM ... still waiting for the final details on this one.)  kk
I just read your comments from December 29. I can't wait to read your take on WLS's decision to bring back John Landecker and move Dick Biondi to a late-night spot and cut Greg Brown's hours. These are both popular deejays. I'm not sure the audience is going to view it as a good move. I wrote to give them feedback, although I'm not going to hold my breath for a response. It's about that almighty dollar. I hope it serves them well. 
And, in a related email ...
You recently referred to Greg Brown and Dick Biondi as sounding "tired" ... do you think your comments had anything to do with WLS's decision to revamp their deejay lineup, cutting Greg Brown's hours, moving Dick Biondi to the 11 PM to 2 AM time slot and adding John Landecker back into the mix? 
LOL ... no ... I do NOT think ANY of my comments ever influence ANYTHING that happens in radio.  (Jeez, if it were ONLY that easy ... there are SO many things we could fix!!!)  But thanks for the flattering supposition ... if Forgotten Hits had just one-tenth the power to influence and change, many (if not most) of our readers would find radio a more pleasant experience these days!  (kk)
WLS-FM - - - Don't Break The Heart That Loves You!!!!!!!
Oh, wait!!! WLS-FM wouldn't know that song, because they never play it!!!
Anyway, in the words of Connie Francis, WLS-FM has broke my heart.  I'm NOT HAPPY with these new changes:
The hours are bizarre and, although I like Landecker, I got SICK of his HORRIBLE Into the 70's show.  Naturally, I was excited to see it gone a few weeks ago.  But now to hear of Brown and Biondi taking cuts --- I DON'T THINK SO!!!!  What about the Friday Night Request Party???
I'm not listening to Landecker do it (if he even would)!  And by the time our dear friend The Wild-Itralian plays "Good Night Sweetheart" at 2 AM, who will be listening?
Of course we still have our Dave Fogel, who although I like as a person, I don't like his show.
And we have the incredibly annoying voice tracked Shannon whose every other word is CHICAGO, for Pete's Sake he's in NEW YORK!!!!!!  Shannon was incredible as the TOC, but that's gone too.
I left 103.9 after they took away my shifts of Jeff James, and now I might leave 94.7 for a while.  K-Hits ... looks like you're up!
AJK, The Youngest Oldies Freak Around
Greg Brown and Dick Biondi are Chicago radio institutions. When Magic 104 closed a few years ago (to make way for the ill-fated Jack-FM), there was a HUGE public outrage displayed for messing with our favorite jocks.  Both of these guys have huge, loyal followings.
(I'll never forget Bob Stroud saluting these guys on his program after word got out about the Jack-FM take-over ... a VERY classy thing to do for a competing radio station and I give MAJOR kudos to Bob for making that statement.)
I've NEVER been a Dave Fogel fan (and have made that known since he first signed on here) ... I never thought much of Scott MacKay or Brant Miller in this slot either ... but MacKay has been reborn and rejuvenated on The River (95.9) and I thoroughly enjoy listening to him now ... now I tune in for a little while every single morning!  
Landecker would have made an excellent morning jock for the station (and then they wouldn't have had to mess with anybody else's schedule!)  He did a GREAT job hosting mornings for Magic 104 way back when and we really enjoyed waking up to his program.  (He also used to do a thing at 5:30 in the morning  where he'd play nothing but obscurities and listener requests for a half hour, which we viewed as "must listen" radio at the time.)
Personally, I prefer Tom O'Toole and Danny Lake over both Greg Brown and Dick Biondi and wish they could have gotten more air time out of the deal ... but Biondi's Friday Night All Request Show should have been left intact.  (Talk about hearing music you completely forgotten about!!!)  To give up Biondi's largest listening audience just doesn't make any sense to me at all.
As for Scott Shannon, he is one of the most talented jocks on the planet ... if they would just let Scott Shannon BE Scott Shannon ... instead of simply giving the station call letters 15 times per hour ... he could brighten up the whole day.  Honestly, I've hated his "local slant" ever since it started ... because it serves the station only ... and not the disc jockey or the listening audience.  Let Shannon do his thing (the way only HE knows how to do it) and keep the personality alive on the dial.
We all miss Jeff James over at Y103.9 ... Jim Shea, too ... I think we've all learned that too much Tom Kent is NOT a good thing ... and I barely tune in at all anymore.  And for me, K-Hits just plays WAY to many '80's tracks (since they promote being our '60's, '70's and '80's station.)  There isn't even anything close to an even distribution of music spread out between these three decades.  And the fact is, you're NEVER going to hear any surprises here ... their playlist is the most predictable of all.
I say we give Landecker a chance ... if he can get back anywhere near to where he was at his peak, he will provide fun and entertaining radio.  (But then again in order for THAT to happen, WLS-FM would have to allow their jocks to TALK once in a while ... and that does NOT seem to be the current policy at the station.)  kk 
From the Chicagoland Radio and Media article:
WLS-FM has given its fans a "Good News / Bad News" situation today. The good news is the full-time return of John Records Landecker to its airwaves, returning to the nighttime hours that first made him a household name on WLS-AM in the 1970s. The bad news is that to make room for Landecker's shift, hours are being cut back from station mainstays Dick Biondi and Greg Brown and their shifts are moving. The changes all take effect on this coming Monday, January 23rd.
John Landecker's return to full-time status is not a surprise at all. Just last week, it was reported
HERE that he had left his full-time job at Michigan City, IN's WIMS-AM to focus on his new part-time job with Chicago's WLS-FM. At WLS-FM, he had been working Saturday and Sunday shifts, as well as being a weekday fill-in host. For the most part, he had been filling in on the midday shift, which is the one daytime shift done via voice-tracking from New York by True Oldies Channel boss Scott Shannon. Landecker had been filling in for that shift pretty consistently since the week after Christmas, including on days when Shannon was not really on vacation and was available to work. It was widely assumed that Landecker was being groomed to take over that shift in the very near future.
What was indeed a surprise was the shift that was given to Landecker. Instead of the available midday shift, a new evening shift was created for him, giving him the hours of Monday - Friday 6:00 pm - 11:00 pm.
As mentioned here last week, Landecker's return to WLS was a triple reunion. He was a DJ on the station, after it had flipped from Alternative Rock to Oldies and was still known as WZZN-FM. He was there for just over a year as its afternoon host before parting ways with the station in 2007. It also reunited him with Jan Jeffries, who was Landecker's Program Director at WAGO-FM. Jeffries is the Senior Vice President of Programming for Cumulus Media, as well as now the acting PD for WLS-FM since forcing out the former PD in October. The two worked well together in the past and wanted to work together once again at WLS-FM. Perhaps biggest of all, the move reunites Landecker with the famous WLS call letters, which he was most associated with in the 1970s.
With this afternoon's announcement of John Landecker's new time shift on WLS-FM, it becomes a quadruple reunion. From 1972-1981, it was primarily the evening shift on WLS-AM that turned John Landecker from DJ to superstar legend. For the most part, Landecker worked from 6:00 pm - 10:00 pm on WLS-AM. He will now be doing the same hours (only until 11:00pm), hoping to reignite some of that nighttime magic.
In an
interview with the industry website All Access today, John Landecker said: "I am just so grateful for this opportunity that Jan has given me and am so psyched to do this. Totally reminiscent of when the Big 89 was in play in the '70s. I don't know of any other situation or opportunity like this. The calls of the heritage AM station on FM, the same music, the jocks and the programmer who knows how to put this together. I start on Monday and can't wait to get started."
Unfortunately, the great news of Landecker's return to WLS nights is tempered with the bad news for the legion of fans of Dick Biondi and Greg Brown. To make room for this new airshift for John Landecker, Dick Biondi now loses one hour per night from his show and has been pushed into the extremely late hours of 11:00 pm - 2:00 am, far later than the time many of his longtime fans can listen. Greg Brown will now have to end one hour earlier each weekday -- 6:00 pm, instead of 7:00 pm -- to make room for Landecker. To help make up some of that lost time, Greg Brown's afternoon show will now start 30 minutes earlier, at 2:30 pm. It is a net loss of 2.5 hours per week for Brown.
For Radio Hall of Famer and living legend Dick Biondi, it is a net loss of 5 hours per week, plus he is now forced to work into the wee hours of the morning. To help make up some of the lost air time for Biondi, he is being offered the chance to do a weekly one-hour weekend special (most likely pre-taped in advance), which will focus on the history of WLS-AM's Musicradio years from the 1960s and 1970s. This special will begin in February.
Still, many are seeing these new changes as a slight against the beloved Dick Biondi. Although he turns 80 years old later this year, he still has the energy and excitement of a DJ a fraction of his age. He has said many times that he has no plans on retiring. With the man still sharp and on top of his game, listeners have no desire to have him retire anytime soon, either. Now that his hours have been cut back and shifted to a less desirable time slot, one has to wonder if the
fairly new ownership and management of WLS-FM isn't trying to force the hand of Biondi and make him consider taking the retirement he previously hasn't wished to take.
Dick Biondi has been with WLS-FM / WZZN-FM since 2006. He first joined WLS-AM and Chicago radio back in 1960. Greg Brown joined WLS-FM / WZZN-FM in 2007, after being a fixture on Chicagoland radio since 1974.
Not seeing any changes at this time is the WLS-FM morning show with Dave Fogel and Marti Jones, who will continue to work their regular shift (with the odd times) of weekdays 5:30 am - 10:15 am. Scott Shannon's syndicated and voice-tracked True Oldies Channel programming in mid-days will only be losing a half hour (2:30 pm - 3:00 pm) and three hours from the overnight shift, which Dick Biondi is now being forced to occupy.
-- Chicagoland Radio and Media
A couple of corrections to this ... Scott Shannon's Monday - Friday mid-day show is NOT a syndicated broadcast of his True Oldies Channel show but rather material recorded exclusively for the Chicagoland audience.  (Frankly, it doesn't work ... Shannon is MUCH more at ease and entertaining doing what he does best on The True Oldies Channel.)  Typically, after midnight, WLS-FM used to run Scott Shannon's True Oldies Channel until Dave Fogel picked up the reigns at 5:30 ... and they used to run a "True Oldies Showcase" on the weekends.  I'm not really sure where either of these programs fall into the new mix.    Honestly, if you want to listen to Scott Shannon ... and many of us DO ... you'll do a WHOLE lot better to listen online and catch him in his real element rather than the watered down version airing on WLS-FM.  FAR more entertaining ... and with a GREAT music selection.  (Incredibly, despite all the references above to Shannon voicetracking his voice from New York to be aired here, Scott used to have the highest ratings of ANY of the WLS-FM jocks, proving that his old show was superior to what we were getting here locally.)  Unfortunately, he has since been reduced to simply giving out the call letters (often 9-15 times per hour!) with about one or two lines of "ad lib" thrown in per hour ... what a COMPLETE waste of his extraordinary talent! (I go back to my original rant from a few months back ... isn't there ANY other outlet here in Chicago that can pick up and give us back The True Oldies Channel???  We miss it!!!  And we want it back!)  Scott Shannon single-handedly SAVED the oldies for the Chicago market ... and now we have THREE stations embracing this format.  Give us back the BEST one ... the guys who shares the passion ... and move on!  (kk)
Kent ...
What's WCBS-FM doing this weekend?
Frank B.
Should make for an interesting mix of music.  One of our readers, Don Effenberger, came up with a theme concept for The True Oldies Channel a year or two back called "First And Foremost" ... it was kinda cool because you heard the first chart hit by an artist (usually their first national Top 40 hit), followed up by the biggest hit of their career ... thus "First ... and Foremost".  To use the WCBS-FM example, Don's concept would have featured "I Want To Hold Your Hand" and "Hey Jude".  I suppose we could take issue with The Beatles in general ... their first chart hit, of course was "Love Me Do" back in England ... but "I Want To Hold Your Hand" was, indeed, the song that broke the band here in America.  As for their LAST hit, I would have figured "The Long And Winding Road", a #1 Record in 1970.  (Honestly, it was probably more of an afterthought ... "Let It Be" was most likely the last INTENDED single ... but EITHER of these would have fit as at least at this point, the band was still together.)  If you're going to stretch the boundaries and include "Free As A Bird" (a #6 Hit from the first "Anthology" CD in 1996, recording by adding Paul's, George's and Ringo's parts to an old John Lennon demo recording), then why wouldn't you include their ACTUAL last hit, "Real Love", which went to #11 a few months later?!?!?  We could debate this forever ... but I still LOVE the idea that WCBS-FM goes through so much trouble to come up with a new and inventive way to present the music every single weekend!  (kk)

Kent ...
The only reason I'm sending you this song is to brag about my current hometown, Valley Stream, New York. This big 1958 hit was recorded by The Aquatones from Valley Stream, New York. Now you can talk about Chicago, if you want to get even. LoL!!
Frank B.
I got a call from our FH Buddy Quent Lang the other day ... and he was all excited about a brand new show coming up in a couple of weeks at a place called SPACE in Evanston.  Quent (and his former Mauds bandmate Mike Flynn) are performing in a new band featuring top Chicago-area session musicians called Crash Landing ... and it sounds like this is going to be quite a show.  (The guys have put together some brand new arrangements of some long-forgotten classic rockers that you just don't hear anymore ... but will be instantly recognizable the minute you hear them.)  Personally, I can't wait to check 'em out.
All the details can be found here:
I will again be reuniting with my Mauds band mate, Mike Flynn, for a show at SPACE in Evanston on Saturday, February 4th. Mike has assembled some of the top Chicago session musicians for what promises to be a very enjoyable tour de force of  Classic Rock . The band is called CRASH LANDING ... here are more details.
Hope you and our old fans can join us !!!!!
Quent Lang
YOU are the first to know about our upcoming new edition, Top 10 Pop Hits 1940-2011!  The first edition sold out in just nine months and it spawned a series!  A lot of musical ground is covered in this artist-by-artist listing of every Top 10 hit on Billboard's pop singles charts, from radio's earliest swing stars to the latest YouTube sensations.  It's the book with something for everyone.  And it can be yours at $7 off the regular price ($24.95) for just $17.95 plus you can still take advantage of our current promotion 'Get More, Save More'!  This very low price and the extra savings end January 31, 2012, so order today.
Joel Whitburn
Click on over to Joel's Record Research Website for all the details:
And how about a smile to end your reading experience this Sunday?  (We started off all "doom and gloom" ... I figured that this was the LEAST I could do!!!)
I got this from Fred Glickstein of The Flock, who tells me that "this was actually ... (allegedly) ... on Craigslist:
Looking for someone special who would kill my drummer for $100.00.
Do not fear any negative consequences for this act.
Any self respecting law enforcement agency would gladly turn the other cheek once they hear this guy "play" ...
I am tired of hearing his 70's style fills put in the wrong spot and ending one half beat early or late depending on how much he's had to drink.
I am tired of him standing up behind his drums between songs and ripping his shirt off and flexing his muscles at wedding receptions where we were hired to play Air Supply, Carpenters, and Ann Murray songs because "chicks dig the pecs, dude".
I am tired of him showing up 20 minutes late for rehearsals, then pouting until someone helps him load in his drums, then taking 30 minutes to set them up and needing a smoke break every 15 minutes, then wanting to leave early because "this chick is so fine, I can't say no, and she knows record people dude, so it's for the band."
I am totally done with him calling me up at midnight to play me some damned jazz fusion album from 1981, crying and saying how we shouldn't have sold out to "the man" and asking if I know anyone who can get him some weed knowing full well I smoked twice in '69 and never touched it after that.
I am sick of him farting on stage where the drum mics pick it up and thinking it's funny.
I am tired of kicking off slow ballads at well under 80 bpm only to have them morph into the methamphetimine version of flight of the bumble bee, because that's the tempo he "feels" it at.
I am tired of having to carry jumper cables to the gig because "I must have left the dome light on again, dude," instead of admitting his '84 Oldsmobile is a worn out piece of crap.
I am tired of him asking when he's gonna get a drum solo.
I am tired of paying his tab at restaurants because "that chick must have stole my wallet man, but it was worth it 'cause she was a phreak".
I will not move my amp again so he can put another new cymbal on the stage, because "when we learn some fusion I'll need this sound".........
Please ... somebody kill this motherfgucketr.
I can't do it because he's my brother and mom would be so pissed —
even though she too thinks the band would probably sound better.