Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Sunday Comments ( 01 - 10 - 13 )

Believe it or not, it's IRS Time again! 
Our FH Buddy Rich Appel is putting together a brand new list of songs selected by YOU that YOU feel really should have been Top Ten Hits. (I.R.S. ... as in It Really Shoulda ... been a Top 10 Hit ... get it?!?!?) Our Forgotten Hits Readers have ALWAYS responded really well to this survey ... and this is now the SIXTH anniversary of Rich's countdown.   
Hop on over to his website via the link(s) provided below and cast your votes ... and then watch these pages for the final results. (kk)  
Less tax-ing, more fun. That’s Hz So Good’s 6th annual I.R.S., as in “It Really Shoulda” been a Top 10 hit.    
Help build this year’s Top 104. Here’s how to file your “I.R.S. form”:     
Put together your list of songs that make you say "THAT really shoulda been a top 10 hit!" Any song that didn’t reach the Top 10 in the U.S. is fair game, whether or not it was ever on any chart, ever released as a single, or ever released in the U.S. 
It doesn't matter if you don't know (or care) whether songs were Top 10 or not. We'll take care of all corrections.    
Send as few songs as you’d like, or as many, up to 100. We know some of you can come up with more, but please limit your list to 100 songs.  
Unless you specify otherwise, lists are assumed to be in rank order, with your favorite/most deserving listed first.  
Make sure to list the title AND artist for every song. And please, in that order, title followed by artist.  
Since this is a ranking of songs, do not list two sides of a single as one entry.  
Likewise, do not list two or more versions of the same song as one entry.  
Send your completed list, along with your full name and complete mailing address, to The absolute deadline for all “I.R.S. forms” is 11:59:59pm Eastern time, April 1st – April Fool’s Day - 2013.  
Random I.R.S. filers will receive “refunds” in the form of either merchandise from RadioLogoLand or 4-disc sets of the I.R.S. Top 104! And for the first time this year, everyone filing an I.R.S. form receives a free one-year membership to, including a 20% discount off non-sale items. Remember to include your full name and complete mailing address in your email to be eligible for any of these prizes.  
Over the weekend leading up to this year’s other IRS deadline (Friday April 12 to Sunday April 14), we’ll count down the 6th annual I.R.S. Top 104 on a radio or computer near you (and in Hz So Good) and draw winners – details soon. If we’re not already connected, friend me on Facebook (richappel7) or follow me on Twitter (@RestOfTheWeek) for regular updates.  
So, let the 6th annual I.R.S. begin. Preparers are standing by.  
H&Z ROCK ... a division of HzSoGood   

See, even my COUSIN knows I'm oldies music crazy!!! (And she got to go SEE The Beatles back in 1965!!! In fact, it was with her family that I was supposed to go ... they had an extra ticket for me ... but my dad didn't want to drive all the way back the next day to pick me up so he put the kabosh on my one and only chance to ever see The Fab Four live!!!)  kk 
Hi Dear Cousin Kent!  
Thought you'd enjoy this, from Garrison Keillor's the Writer's Almanac.  
On this day in 1964, the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show for the first time, as teenage girls screamed hysterically in the audience and 73 million people watched from home — a record for American television at the time. Their appearance on the show is considered the beginning of the "British Invasion" of music in the United States. The Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show the following two Sundays in a row, as well. On this first time, exactly 49 years ago today, they sang "All My Loving," "Till There Was You," "She Loves You," "I Saw Her Standing There," and finally "I Want to Hold Your Hand" — which had just hit No. 1 on the charts.   

We've just added Kenny Rogers' memories of appearing on The Ed Sullivan Show to our on-going Forgotten Hits tribute.  
Click here: Forgotten Hits - FORGOTTEN HITS REMEMBERS THE ED SULLIVAN SHOW ... From Both Sides Of The Screen
They come from Kenny's brand new autobiography, "Luck Or Something Like It", which we'll be reviewing on the website tomorrow. In fact, we'll be saluting Kenny Rogers (from his First Edition days) on The Forgotten Hits Website all of next week ... so you'll definitely want to stop back and check that out! (kk)

An FYI, Kent ...

New Music Video & Podcast from touring Beach Boys Band member

NEW ~ Pray For Surf ~ an interview with Philip Bardowell ( former member of the Beach Boys Tour Band)

Philip Bardowell talks about Carl Wilson, Mike Love, John Stamos, the spiritual nature of Beach Boys music, his journey into faith, and his new music video and album.

We saw Philip a couple of years ago when he was performing as part of The Surf City All-Stars, backing up Dean Torrence in concert ... GREAT show. (In fact, Bob Greene was on hand that night, too!)  kk   

Thanks for the Rick Stevens article. I've been a Tower of Power fanatic since the Bump City album, which is the album he sang on. I knew that he had major troubles in his life when he left the band, but never heard the whole story, and always wondered if he was even still alive. He had a great soulful voice. If you ever get a chance to see the Tower of Power live, do it. Even after 44 years they are incredible live performers.  
Bill in MN.   

Here's a book I think you might like. Neale and I used to work at a few radio stations together, he’s beat my 27 stations by 40.   Click here: Radio on the Run: Neale Blase : Books

Kent ...
Turned off WCBS-FM, turned on Eric Burdon = "'Til Your River Runs Dry"
I say Eric Burdon's new album lived up to expectations.
First time I played it, without reading Eric's explanations ... second time I played it, reading Eric's explanations of each cut.
My favorite cuts:
"Memorial Day", "Wait", "Bo Diddley Special", "27 Forever" and "River Is Rising".
If I remember correctly, they released "Memorial Day" last year to give us a sneak peek at the new CD. I'm pretty sure I was at the Animals first appearance in New York. It was at the New York Paramont . They were just one act on a Rock-n-Roll Show. They had that brash, in your face attitude. Didn't like them that first time. After listening to their music, they became one of my favorites.
Let me know what you think after you listen to it.
Frank B.
My copy came yesterday ... stuck it in the car to listen to on the way to work on Monday. I'll let you know what I think ... but I'm anxious to hear it ... pretty good buzz all around on this one! (kk) 

Outspoken columnist Bob Lefsetz (he's an acquired taste) has just put together a piece that TOTALLY fits here in Forgotten Hits ... a flashback, if you will, of This Week in 1968 ... right up our alley.   

Here are some of Bob's memories of The Top Ten that week:   

10. "I Wish It Would Rain" The Temptations - 
I always think of the Faces version, from "Coast to Coat: Overture and Beginners," an eminently forgettable live album. But that's just how big a Rod Stewart fan I was, I had to have everything he put out. This is from Anaheim, back in '73. I saw the band in Anaheim, a stadium show, in '75. Opener was Fleetwood Mac, riding the initial success of the "White Album" with Buckingham and Nicks. I loved hearing "Over My Head," but the audience was not enthusiastic, they were barely paying attention. There was a riot in the infield after Loggins & Messina, all to the soundtrack of Bruce Springsteen's "Spirit In The Night, " and this was before "Born To Run" made him a star, I seemed to be the only bloke who knew the track. And the string section for the Faces never arrived, and Rod couldn't stop expressing his regret, but by that time we were hungover anyway.
But the Temptations' take is definitive.

9. "Goin' Out Of My Head / Can't Take My Eyes Off You (Medley)" The Lettermen
Nearly sacrilegious.
The definitive versions were done by Little Anthony & the Imperials and Frankie Valli. Both done within half a decade, the Frankie Valli track was a hit only the year before!
Meanwhile, the most famous Lettermen take is a live one. Which has enough magic to be a hit. I just can't remember whether the live take was the one on the radio! I think it was! (And Web research is not definitive!)
"Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You" is not Valli's best work. For that, go to his classic early sixties stuff with the Four Seasons. But the Little Anthony vocal on "Goin' Out Of My Head" will blow your mind. It's as if Little Lupe sang (that's a Howard Stern reference, in case you're scratching your head.) He sings like he means it, like it's the most important thing in the world.

8. "Nobody But Me" The Human Beinz
A one hit wonder which captured the zeitgeist, a cross between psychedelia and garage that was instantly addicting and we all sang along with.
Play this with a baby boomer in sight and you'll be shocked as he or she starts to shimmy and sing every note.
Nobody can do the SHING-A-LING!
No, no, no...
Pure magic.

7. "Love Is Blue"
We sat through everything on the AM radio waiting for the Beatles and the rest of the British Invasion. As a result, I know every lick of Louis Armstrong's "Hello Dolly" and this too. But unlike Louis's hit, I LOVE "Love Is Blue." It sets your mind adrift, it's life itself. We're all individuals, our intersection with others is tenuous at best. Funny how we can connect with music more than people. This song plays and it's like I'm disconnected from my present environment and hooked into one removed, yet more real.

6. "Woman, Woman" The Union Gap
The first hit, but not the best. Tolerable, but schmaltzy. But what came next ... YOUNG GIRL! An utterly fantastic concoction that they opened their show with at Fordham University and closed it with too. It had just been released. This was in March '68. We went to see the headliner, Arlo Guthrie, do one of his three versions of "Alice's Restaurant." But we stood on our chairs and sang along with "Young Girl," it's just that good.

5. "Bend Me, Shape Me" The American Breed
My favorite song on this playlist. I first heard it on the jukebox in the Bromley base lodge, I had to buy the single, and by this point I only bought albums.
There was just something about the sound. I played it incessantly, to the point where my father, who was anything but a fan of rock, would sing it with a smile on his face to tease me.
It's the way the singer almost whispers, sings nearly sotto voce. And then there's a bridge with balls that leads to the exuberant chorus...and then the drums start to beat, the horns start to wail, the hands start to clap and we're back in the verse, we're doing it all over again.
To think such magic could be encapsulated in barely two minutes.
My memories are embedded and triggered by this.

4. "Spooky" Classics IV
And if you want to lose some time online, you can research the intersection between this original hit version and the one done years later by the Atlanta Rhythm Section. Still, this is the definitive take. It's the pauses that hook you, but then there's the vocal, everybody was such a stylist back then. But how can I not mention that guitar riff and the sax solo? This is the soundtrack to house parties in the basement, where you first kissed and danced close.

3. "Chain Of Fools" Aretha Franklin
"Respect" gets all the kudos, but I prefer this. Because of the intro, which most people would eliminate, and the groove, like rocking in a boat. You just can't help but have your body move. And Aretha dances atop the track in a way that blows your mind without showing off.
Give Jerry Wexler props.
And to this day, Aretha knocks it out of the park. When I saw her a few years back, "Chain Of Fools" was the highlight of the show.

2. "Judy In Disguise (with Glasses)" John Fred & His Playboy Band
Also on that Bromley jukebox. My sister bought the single and I came to love it by osmosis.
Yes, we all had our own record players. You know, those cheap boxes with the lift top. We all had our own records. And we didn't swap them. But we heard them coming out of each other's rooms.
This was one of those songs where the lyrics were debated.
Was he singing "kite," or was he being anti-Semitic?
There was never another John Fred hit, but after fading, this became an oldies staple.

1. "Green Tambourine" The Lemon Pipers
Even though there was no Internet, no cell phones, music moved faster in '68 than it does today. Songs didn't last as long on the chart. Influences were consumed and spit out fast. Even though the Beatles had only broken in '64, psychedelia had penetrated the hipster circuits and we ended up with "Green Tambourine," a bizarre concoction of underground and mainstream, of psychedelia and bubble gum.
Yes, if you just listen to the instrumentation, the track seems almost cutting edge. But then you listen to the lyrics...
Still, the sounds are so entrancing.
And it was cowritten and produced by Paul Leka, from Bridgeport, the city next to the suburb I grew up in, Fairfield!
But we didn't know that back then.
Trivia has come to the fore as a result of the Internet.
But back then, we only had the radio.
And these were the hits forty five years ago.
Seems like yesterday.

That's a pretty good Top Ten ... you still hear most of these songs today (although probably the two you hear the least are both #1 Records ... "Green Tambourine" and "Love Is Blue". "Judy In Disguise" also topped the charts ... as did "Bend Me, Shape Me" in some circles. (Especially here in Chicago!)  
I had the exact opposite reaction to "Chain Of Fools" when it came out ... HATED it when I first heard it (and turned it off for many years afterwards.) Then I saw the John Travolta film "Michael" and watched Travolta dance during the bar scene to this song ... and I have LOVED it ever since. (Only took me thirty years to catch up to everybody else!!! lol) Funny how music works that way ... the timing just wasn't right for me in '68 ... but in the '90's it totally hit home for me. (kk)   

This is a bit unusual but I am asking for prayer for Dartmouth, MA. They have 90% power loss and with downed lines, they can't rescue people. My son, daughter-in-law and 2 month old grand-daughter are there and getting cold. Thank you.
Yeah, a bit ... but if you believe that there's power in numbers, I'm happy to give it a shot. The East Coast just seems to be getting continuously hammered with bad weather ... we have a lot of readers out that way, some of whom still haven't been able to return to their homes since Super Storm Sandy ... so if the power of prayer can help, I'm all for it. (kk)  

Hi Kent,
Regarding The Dovells, their song “Out In The Cold Again” originally appeared on their LP, “All The Hits Of The Teen Groups”. It was one of a series of “All The Hits” LPs issued by Cameo - Parkway artists in the early 60s. All Cameo - Parkway material was very late in coming to CD, so there were many issues originating in Europe that met the needs of those looking for such recordings. One of these was a 64 track double CD from the Dovells entitled "All Their Hits And Much More”. “Out In The Cold Again” is there, as is just about everything else they cut for Parkway, including Len Barry’s “Hearts Are Trump”. The quality is excellent but the set could set you back around $45 or so.
For those wanting the Dovells hits, their “Best of 1961 - 1965” CD, issued by Abkco in 2005, as part of their official launch of the Cameo-Parkway catalog, is a great buy at around $6 used.
Best regards,
Mike Edwards


You were right about what you said about Friday's FH by Hayley Mills. It was also very popular with a guy by the name of JOHNNY JINGO.

>>>I just about fell out of my chair the other day when I heard a co-worker singing this one!!! (There can't be six people in this entire company that would know it ... talk about obscure!) But it was a #1 Hit here in Chicago ... and peaked at #5 nationally in 1961. Here's Hayley Mills (and Hayley Mills) singing "Let's Get Together" ... from the ORIGINAL pre-Lindsay Lohan motion picture version of "The Parent Trap"!!! (kk)  
Now that's a good one! LOL!
I'd like to know if anyone from the over 60 crowd cannot remember this song. Hayley Mills was to all young boys what Marilyn Monroe was to all the adult men of the day. Me and my crew had a clubhouse and, displayed on one of the walls, was a photo of Hayley torn out of some teen mag. Everybody I knew bought that 45 because of her. By the way, I can't forget to mention that next to Hayley's photo was our prized possession, a photo of Annette with two scud missiles and mouse ears. It really seems blasphemous that it is necessary to even mention Lindsay Lohan, but the younger groups have to have a basis for connection. After the Parent Trap, Hayley's next movie was Tiger Bay, and me and all my hoodlum buddies were at the first day of the opening. Yeah, I remember ... thanks for the memory. Still laughing!  
Alex Valdez    

Irishman Gilbert O'Sullivan scored six straight National Top 40 Hits in a two year period back in the early '70's.  The biggest and most popular of these was his US chart debut "Alone Again (Naturally", which topped Billboard's Pop Singles Chart for six straight weeks in 1972.  
He followed that up with the #2 Hit "Clair" ... and then hit The Top Ten one more time in 1973 with "Get Down", a record that peaked at #7 on the Billboard Chart but went all the way to #1 here in Chicago.  (It fared a little better on both the Cash Box and Record World charts, where it peaked at #4.)  
Other Top 40 Hits included "Out Of The Question" (#17, 1973, and one of my favorites); "Ooh Baby" (#11, 1973) and "Happiness Is Me And You" (#34, 1974) ... yet you rarely if ever hear any of Gilbert's music on the radio anymore today.
We've got a Sunday Salute Two-Fer for you today ... jocks on the list would do themselves well to feature at least one of these on their programs next week ... your audience will be pleased that you did!  (Radio may have forgotten most of the Top 20 Hits ... but WE haven't!!!  And neither have your listeners! kk


Kent ...  
Check this one out. Possible clip of the week.  
Frank B.  
You've Got To See This! Amazing!    
For those of you that are old enough to remember him (Yes! I mean you ... or most of you) ... Little Richard!!!  
You have to see this! Watch how he uses his fists and elbows and doesn't even look at the keys when he sings! This is amazing to see.  
It's Richard Wayne Penniman (aka Little Richard) about fifteen years before "Tutti Frutti, Oh, Rudy ...

A - whop bop - a - lu - bop, a - whop bam boom.

Here is some very rare footage of "Little Richard" as a child, when he was just starting out in the music biz' ... from a movie with Van Johnson ... /  
Great clip ... except it's NOT Little Richard! This one has come up a few times now over the years ... I think the first time I got it, they said the kid was Billy Preston! But it's actually "Sugar Chile" Robinson ... and if you read Forgotten Hits every day, you'd know that we've already set the world straight on this one a few times now! (kk)  
Great piece of footage ... but it's not Little Richard. It's Frankie "Sugar Chile" Robinson. This misidentification makes the Internet rounds every couple of years.  

OK, THIS one goes back awhile!!!
Last year, Skip Haynes (of Aliotta, Haynes and Jeremiah) gave us an EXCLUSIVE "Story Behind The Song" feature for their cult classic hit "Lake Shore Drive".  In it, he mentioned a couple of guys who were instrumental in helping to get the record made ... namely Stu Black and Joe Golan.  Then TODAY we got a letter from a guy who just happens to have ties to BOTH of these guys.  I guess he was surfing the net and came across our article ... and then dropped me a line to check in.
Quite honestly, we never know WHO we're going to hear from ... new folks are discovering Forgotten Hits every single day.  (The other day I was looking for some information about Wayne Cochran's C.C. Riders, googled it and was referred to four of my own articles on the topic!!! lol  I just LOVE it when that happens!!!)
Anyway, here's his note ... along with a link to the original article, just in case you missed it!  (kk)  
Saw your post the other day.
You might be amused by some nostalgia
I was Stu Black's boss at Sound Studios in the mid 60s. I was a partner in the ownership of that studio. He had been at Chess but had a falling out and came to work for us. SS was in the Carbide Building, now called THE HARD ROCK HOTEL, on north Michigan Ave.
I left SS in the late 60s and went to work for WFMT as broadcast engineer and recording - producer. I was engineering producer for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for over 20 years (also Lyric Opera) and engineered a Grammy award album with CSO in 1992 when I was nominated for Grammy.
I was a high school and college classmate of Joe Golan at the University of Chicago and he was principal second violin with the Chicago Symphony for almost his entire career. He is missed.  
Click here: Forgotten Hits: The Story Behind "Lake Shore Drive" (Part Two)   

In memory of Reg Presley -- and the Chip Taylor classic, "Wild Thing" -- here's a parody mimicking Robert F. Kennedy. I don't recall anyone mentioning this one.  
Fred Vail  
Click here: Wild Thing RFK - YouTube  
Actually ... WE did ... in fact, we included the clip in our salute to Presley the day after he died!  
(See ... that's why you've got to read Forgotten Hits every single day!!!) lol (kk)  
Click here: Forgotten Hits: Forgotten Hits Remembers Reg Presley  
One of the most memorable things I remember about listening to Top 40 radio back in the late 50's and early 60's was that they would play parodies such as this, along other comedy recordings.  
How many of you remember the Stan Freberg classic, ''Green Chri$tma$,'' (also ''Banana Boat'' and ''The Great Pretender''), or monologs by Shelly Berman and Bob Newhart, among others.  
As I've said in previous pieces, you could get a complete musical education (and appreciation) by listening to Top 40 on your transistor: jazz, rock, country crossovers, blues, bluegrass, even the Mormon Tabernacle Choir -- who hit #13 -- and won a Grammy -- in 1959, for their recording of ''The Battle Hymn of the Republic."  
Fred / Nashville  
PS Stan Freberg is still alive and turns 87 this year. How many of you remember his commercials, especially the classic, "Marsha and John?" Maybe you can hook up with him and do an interview, Kent. Freberg was one of a kind, a very creative mind who always pushed the envelope a little bit. I love his "Banana Boat" parody ... and his take on "Heartbreak Hotel", too! (He had a hit with his version of "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" back in 1955, too!) Man, I'd LOVE to talk to him ... but wouldn't even know where to begin!!! (kk)  

I asked FH Reader Gary Theroux (who wrote "The History Of Rock And Roll" radio special several years ago ... and is STILL producing great radio programming today, like last year's "Top 100 Greatest Christmas Hits Of All-Time" special that ran during the holiday season just past) if he had had any encounters with Stan Freberg during any of his worldly travels over the years ... and this is what he sent back:   

When I worked at KIIS in the Playboy Building on Sunset Boulevard in the mid-'70s, Stan Freberg's office ("Freberg, Ltd. -- But Not Very") was only one then vacant lot away. I used to walk by his office all the time (the door held his distinctive seal, which was a picture of, well, a seal). I peered in a few times but never saw anyone in the place. I very much wanted to meet Stan but didn't want to just barge in uninvited so I never did get inside or met him.

Freberg's CBS program was network radio's last attempt to stage a comedy revue series on the same scale as had been done in the '30s and '40s. It was Stan's misfortune to come into his own as an audio comic just at the point when the pre-rock "golden age of radio" was just ending. Some of his broadcast material. however, was later transferred to vinyl and released on various Capitol albums. One of those best bits was Stan's explanation of the "theatre of the mind" inherent in audio only entertainment such as radio, where vivid, imaginative pictures can be painted in your mind using only music, dialogue and sound effects. Stan's daughter asks, "But doesn't television stretch you imagination, too?" "Yes," replies Stan," but only up to 21 inches."

I've always loved Freberg's stuff and while some of it is dated now (due to his inclusion of long faded pop culture references), a lot of it isn't. To really get the humor in Freberg's satires it helps to know and understand what he was satirizing, be it "Dragnet," "The Honeymooners," Les Paul & Mary Ford, Harry Belafonte-styled calypso music, '50s television, doo-wop, etc. But there's certainly enough timeless Freberg material to make exploring his legacy worthwhile. Few audio comics went to as much trouble as Stan did to perfect his productions and his dedication shows. Rhino's box set of Freberg material is quite exhaustive and even includes examples of Stan's TV commercials, such as his famous Ann Miller tap-dancing-on-a-can spot and his attempts to promote prunes. Freberg even turns up momentarily in my all-time favorite movie, "It's A Mad, Mad, Mad. Mad World." Sadly, though, he has no dialogue and is only seen in the background behind Andy Devine.

Among Stan's distinctions is the fact that he is one of only a handful of artists to have charted hits on music radio with TALKING records. He was hardly the first -- Cal Stewart and others were doing that about a century ago -- but Freberg's decidedly offbeat string of hit singles in the '50s were incredibly popular. After his parody of "Dragnet" featuring Daws Butler and June Foray became a smash in 1951, Stan followed it two years later with "Christmas Dragnet" (which was also issued as "Yulenet"). Both sides of "Christmas Dragnet" (Parts I and II) turn up in "The 100 Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time," the 10 hour radio countdown special I wrote and produced last year with Wink Martindale narrating.