Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Sunday Comments ( 10 - 20 - 13 )

re:  IT'S COMING!:  
In what amounts to a worldwide exclusive, we've got your very first sneak preview of Joel Whitburn's next all-new chart book ... this time (for the first time EVER), profiling the Cash Box Charts, 1952 - 1996!!!

We've been waiting a long, long time for this one ... In his constant quest to bring us the history of the pop charts, Joel spun collective industry heads a couple of years ago when he published "Hit Records", the history of the Record World / Music Vendor Charts, 1954 - 1982, a series that had never been attempted before ... and it sold in record numbers.  It was his first foray into waters outside the Billboard arena, whose charts he has been bringing us for over 40 years now.  Joel's book have become The Music Bible, used in EVERY form of music media, be it radio, print or simply the collectors' market ... so news of this brand new Cash Box release is a VERY big deal ... and, as such, we are EXTREMELY proud to be the first to bring you this look at this brand new publication. 
No release date yet ... but it's coming.  (Best guestimates right now put the release date as mid-to-late January, 2014.  In fact, now that we've taken a sneak peek behind the curtain, I expect Joel will announce something next week on his website and via an email blast, opening up the doors for pre-orders ... and all I can say is that I CAN'T WAIT!!!) 
There have been other attempts at documenting the Cash Box Charts before ... I've got chart books by both Pat Downey, George Albert and Frank Hoffman as well as the Frank Hoffman "solo" book published in 1981 ... but Joel's promises to be the most accurate and complete book EVER done on the subject ... and, as usual, presented in the style and class we've come to expect from all of his publications. 
We will now have the golden opportunity to have ALL of the chart records at our fingertips, side by side, for the very first time. 
Joel's #1 Best Seller, "Top Pop Singles", was recently expanded and revised, too ... now covering 1955 - 2012, it's the COMPLETE History of The Billboard Hot 100 Pop Chart, along with nearly 5000 "Classic Songs" by your favorite artists that never made the charts, including the most popular album tracks and songs that pre-date the 1955 Rock Era, as well as #1 Hits on Billboard's Country and R&B Charts, along with nearly one thousand "break out" and "territorial hits" ... and nearly 8000 "Bubbling Under" hits that fell short of Billboard's Hot 100 Chart.  In addition now you not only get the B-Side of every charted record but you also get the songwriting information for every hit to make the charts.  In short, there's simply NOTHING like it ... the most complete and comprehensive history of the charts available on the planet ... and all brought to you by Joel Whitburn's Record Research. 
Keep watching these pages for more updates on this hot new Cash Box release ... and be sure to check out Joel's site as well for all of the ordering (and pre-ordering) information.  This one's going to be a MONSTER!!!  (It's also a great chance for you to pick up some of the other books in this amazing series that you might have missed out on ... or simply update your collection to the most recent version!)
Click here: Joel Whitburn's Record Research | Music & Billboard Charts Data


I hope that the Rascal tickets go down ... I just can't afford it! Do you know if they discount tickets the day of performance if they have tickets left? I believe the theaters that had plays used to discount them the day of the performance, but that was when I was working downtown years ago. 
Mike DeMartino  
I've not heard anything like that about these shows ... and it's SUCH a gamble to wait that long in the hopes of snagging something last minute.  (You might do better with a ticket broker / scalper who's trying to unload something before the first curtain goes up!)  It's a shame they're as expensive as they are ... I mean, I get it that it's a premium show and all ... but they're leaving several of their fans out in the cold but not making this a bit more affordable.  (kk)   

Hi Kent -  
I love your site and especially liked your interview with Burton Cummings. 
Having spent all of my 47 years living in Toronto, I have long been aware of the many great Canadian hit songs that never got airplay in America.  But after reading your interview with Mr. Cummings and hearing your comments about the Cliff Richard song “Don’t Talk to Him” on the Bachman Cummings Jukebox CD, it occurred to me that there are also an enormous amount of great British hit songs that never got airplay in America (or in Canada for that matter). 
A few months ago, I was downloading some music when I happened to find five files of fantastic British 1960’s hits.  Someone was good enough to upload all the songs that made the British Top 30 for the years 1964 to 1968.   After deleting the well-known songs we’ve all heard a thousand times, and after suffering through some of the awful MOR music that middle-aged Britons seemed to love, I found an absolute treasure trove of amazing songs that I’d never heard before.  For someone like yourself who loves discovering forgotten hits, I was over the moon with my discovery.  I was making playlists for my friends of all these great songs none of us had ever heard before. 
Among many, many others, I have developed a real appreciation for the songs of Sandie Shaw, Cliff Richard and the Shadows, and Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mick and  Tich.  None of these acts ever put a song in the top 40 in America but they dominated the British charts.  I never realized, for example, that the Shadows were a vocal group as well as an instrumental act.  Check out the song “I Met a Girl” from 1966.  I’ve never heard a group sound so much like the Beatles, and that includes The Knickerbockers!   
As far as Canadian acts are concerned, and having a sense of what your musical tastes are, I would strongly recommend that you find a greatest hits compilation of April Wine.  They had two or three American hit singles, but put about 20 on the Canadian charts.  They were, and still are, a great band.   
My other recommendation would be the Staccatos / Five Man Electrical Band.  Les Emmerson was the creative force behind both bands.  It is hard to believe that the same person was responsible for the following 5 songs:    
Thanks for all the great work you do.  I love reading your weekly blogs.   
Jeff Rechtshaffen  
It's always fun to discover "new" / old music that we may have missed the first time around.  I, too, have always thought of The Shadows as an instrumental band ... and the back-up support for Cliff Richard.  They scored DOZENS of hits in the UK that never crossed over to our shores.  The "Guinness World Records British Hit Singles And Albums" book describes them as "Britain's most influential and imitated act before The Beatles." 
We've actually run into quite a few Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tish fans over the years.  One of my favorite tracks to feature by them has always been "Bend It" ... how this failed to chart here is beyond me.  (And the strange thing is, I remember hearing it on the radio all the time!)  Instead, they're best remembered Stateside for "Zabadack", which is hardly their best work. 
I've been exposed to some of the work of April Wine and The Staccatos / Five Man Electrical Band over the years ... again, you're right ... while each having a few chart successes, they barely made a dent here.  This is a point Burton Cummings brought up during the interview ... SO many acts were HUGE in Canada but never really extended that success beyond the Canadian border. (In all fairness, however, there was a broadcasting rule in place for DECADES that stated that a certain percentage of all recordings broadcast over the airwaves HAD to be by a Canadian act ... and, as we've all seen over the years, "repetitive familiarity" has made MANY a hit record ... often for songs we can't STAND!!! (lol) 
Glad to hear you're enjoying Forgotten Hits ... ALWAYS something something new and interesting going on here.  Spread the word!  Thanks, Jeff.  (kk)

BY THE WAY: I was curious about that "Canadian Content" rule so I went to FH Reader (and Canadian Radio Guru) Doug Thompson for a more thorough explanation:  
The CRTC regulations took effect in 1971.  Radio stations were required to play 30% Canadian Content, which consisted of any two of four parts of what became known as the MAPL System.
M = Music (Music is composed entirely by a Canadian)
A = Artist (The performer is Canadian)
P = Production (Song recorded in Canada)
L = Lyrics (Lyrics written entirely by a Canadian)
Celine Dion, for example, usually doesn't count as Canadian content, because she doesn't write anything.  Therefore, the only way she would qualify is if her album was recorded in Canada ... then she would have two qualifying parts A & P.
The only exception to that is anything recorded prior to January, 1972, which then only requires one of the four MAPL parts. 
A few years ago, the CRTC (Canadian Radio, Television & Telecommunications Commission) upped the quota.  Canadian stations are now required to play 35% Canadian Content.
It's an interesting concept ... kind of like the whole "Buy American" idea here in the States ... although that is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to do these days with the discounted overseas market being what it is.  However, in principle and theory, this is a GREAT concept.  Neat to see that it's still be enforced, too, some 40 years later!  Thanks, Doug.  (kk)   

When I saw that you had posted the song by Sammi Smith, it reminded me that years ago she did pass away here in OKC with her remains being buried in another town here in Oklahoma.
In 1962 on local record label Reece-Rawson, she had a duet with a singer by the name of Bob White with a song called HEART OF A CLOWN.  She recorded under the name of Jewel Faye which was her real name I believe. Most local artists and groups made our local top 40 radio station's weekly survey.
Incidentally, the owner of the label, Dude Rawson, passed away just this past week here in the city.

Joel Whitburn's book shows her real name as Jewel Fay Smith. She passed away in 2005 of emphysema.  Although she was born in California, she was raised in Oklahoma, so that's what she called "home".  Despite only one pop hit, Sammi charted 37 times on Billboard's Country Chart between 1968 and 1986.  Her version of "Help Me Make It Through The Night" is my all-time favorite ... although I've got to say that I really enjoy Gladys Knight's version, too, which I heard for the first time last week while working on my Motown project.  (kk)   

Great stuff!
I grew up with the Sacred Cow version, and only heard the Birth Control version on an obscure compilation recently, and was intrigued. 
BTW, you may be interested to know that a series started here (Australia) in the late 1990s called Good News Week, which used the chorus of the song as the theme. The show has been on and off TV ever since, and is a comedy panel quiz show. It is apparently adapted from a show in the UK.
Andrew Dickinson

Hello there Kent!   
I just noticed your blog on Angie Baby while I was doing research on the song.  I was and still am a big Alan O'Day fan.  I wanted to share our cover of the #1 worldwide Helen Reddy mid-70's hit, "Angie Baby,"  (by Wahl Collins) here, on youtube:      
I hope you enjoy!  We're starting to get quite a few adds and features with our version of "Angie Baby" up here in Canada.  A few stations in the states and overseas have also said they'll do something with the song too.  I still have lots of work to do with regards to do with promotion of the song. 
Kent, this is the information I've been sending out to radio with the mp3 of the song.  We also have our version up on iTunes worldwide.  Here you go:
Alan O'Day, the writer (he also had his own big hit "Undercover Angel" in 1977 ... plus he wrote "Rock N Roll Heaven" by The Righteous Brothers) gave me his blessing when I told him I wanted to get the song covered up here in Canada. He even said, "If you get Angie Baby covered up in Canada, I'll gladly treat you to dinner the next time you're in LA." 
Sadly, Alan died of cancer a few months ago ... and I never did get the song done in time to share with him. Boy, am I still hurting over that one. One of his best friends just emailed me with the comments "This is awesome, James ... Alan would've love it! 
Here's Wahl Collins' biography:
Wahl Collins (Jeff Wahl and James Collins) is a Canadian pop / rock duo out of Toronto, Canada. Their debut single is a cover of the # 1 Billboard Hot 100 hit, "Angie Baby" (originally recorded by Helen Reddy). 
Jeff and James met on a film set in the fall of 2012 and became fast friends ... both having a passion for the film and music industry.   The also share a love of retro music from the 50's thru to 70's.  Yes, they're even big fans of Helen Reddy.
Jeff Wahl was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He now resides in Toronto, Ontario, where he's currently pursuing an acting and music career.  Jeff can be seen in the hockey comedy feature, "Goon," (where he gets punched out by Sean William Scott's character), the dark comedy series "Todd And The Book Of Pure Evil" (where he has a recurring role of the blind student, Arron) ... as well as other various film and TV shows.
Before Jeff moved to Toronto, he also starred in various musicals and plays throughout Winnipeg, including "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest," "Alice In Wonderland," and "The Chrysalids."   
James Collins is from Oshawa, Ontario - he currently resides in downtown Toronto.  As a songwriter, James has co-written over 20 Top 40 national Canadian hits, including, "Tell Me You Love Me" (by Carol Medina), "Can I Get Close" (by Gavin Hope) and "It's Just My Luck" (by VIP).   He also co-wrote "My Christmas Song For You" with the incredibly talented, Melissa Manchester.  
As an actor, James can be seen in various TV shows, such as:  "Rookie Blue," "Flashpoint," "The Listener," "My Babysitter's A Vampire" and the east coast feature film, "Lakefront," where he plays Ralph, the town bully.
Wahl Collins' debut single, "Angie Baby" is currently being sent to radio everywhere. We're receiving some pretty amazing feedback, so far.  It's also now available worldwide on iTunes.  
James Collins
Happy to put this one out there, James ... our family has a lot of deep, personal affection for this song.  (Have you ever heard Alan O'Day's version?  We ran it as an exclusive in Forgotten Hits several years ago.)  And somehow, for some strange reason, this track seems all that much more appropriate here at Halloween time!!!  (See, now THERE'S a marketing tool for you ... which means you'll have to buy ME dinner next time you guys happen to be in Chicago!  Lol) Anyway, it's a great track ... glad to hear you're getting some mileage out of it. I, too, think Alan would have approved.  Good luck to you.  (kk)  

FH Reader Dave Barry sent us this one ... TRULY amazing!!!  (How'd you like to stumble into THIS discovery!!!) kk
OMG. This man is my hero!--dB 
A Record Hoarder's House
A two-story house was filled to the brim by a 68 year old collector who had lived in the house since his childhood. He passed away in 2011 and the family was shocked at what they discovered. They soon realized why they had never been invited over and why he had been so reclusive. His car was filled to the brim with records and the family suspected that he had been sleeping there over the last few years, as it was impossible to enter the house. The bathroom and shower were also full of records. We didn’t know it was the bathroom until we came upon a toilet.
The family tried to sell the house as is, but found it difficult and general word of mouth led them to call Apollo Records (he had previously been a customer). At first glance, we wanted to “pass on it” as it looked like a nightmare, but we knew the collector well and figured there could be something worthwhile under all that.
There was piles of dust from over the years. And not to mention the odors emanating from the house.
What kind of records are they?
All kinds. While he combed thrift shops and bought anything interesting to him over the last 10 years, the older stuff showed he also bought a variety of Rock and Rockabilly & Elvis records (his favorite) back in the 50s and 60s and kept them on shelves in pristine condition.
The best thing there? The 45′s, about 20,000 on shelves, mostly all original ‘as new’ store stock Rock & roll & rockabilly, and oddball stuff, plus hundreds of pristine EPs ranging from Elvis, Ricky Nelson, country artists, to the rare Carl Perkins Columbia EP.
Apollo Records spent just over 6 months boxing and transporting truck loads to their warehouse, where they sit today. (They sorted only approx 25% in the last year)
At the same time, CBC Radio Vancouver contacted Apollo about purchasing their 60,000+ collection so "we really had our hands full for several months".
Are they for sale? Yes, but they are still being sorted and it will take some time.
This picture was taken after Apollo had already cleared part of the room! Downstairs media room.
Downstairs basement already partially emptied the room before the picture could be taken!
More pictures of the downstairs basement already partially emptied the room before the picture could be taken!
The kitchen !
Check out the Photos galore via simple searches, such as HERE:
WAIT!!!  There's "worse"...!:  

Speaking of Over The Rainbow again, the 1961 hit by the Demensions used very little of the actual melody.
Gary Myers
This is true ... and, if you listen to the Eva Cassidy version below, you'll see that she takes some liberties with it, too ... but is still able to present an incredibly moving version.  Hers is now amongst my favorites ... although I've gotta tell you ... I really like the version that YOU guys did, too!  Iz, on the other hand, completely reinvented the tune ... and I absolutely LOVE what he did with  it ... it was totally new and unique ... what I DON'T love is the fact that everyone seems to have felt the need to copy his arrangement ever since ... instead of letting it stand alone on its own merits like it deserves to.  (kk)
That Israel feller looks like he'd be tough to argue with.
Easton, PA   

Another great version of "Over the Rainbow" would be the late Eva Cassidy's.  She died just as her first recordings were released and has gone on to sell quite a bit in DC area and nationally as well.  Sad story, great voice.
Clark Besch

It certainly is a beautiful version.  I played this the other night and my daughter came into the room and was mesmerized ... "Who IS this?" she asked ... followed by "Man, she's REALLY good."  I'll admit to getting a little teary-eyed myself listening to it.  (kk) 

re:  MOTOWN:
I say this in a jokingly manner, but since you did a top 100 of Motown from the sixties, why not do a bottom 100 from the sixties?
If so, surely the record that came out in 1960 on Motown #M-1002 would have to be listed. If you are not familiar with it, it is a spoof of Larry Verne's MR CUSTER from a few months earlier. It is called CUSTER'S LAST MAN done by a group known on the label as Pop Corn & the Mohawks. The songwriting credits, and I am sure they probably would deny this today, belongs to three gentlemen whose last names were Gordy, Wylie, and Robinson.
Larry Neal
No, probably NOT one of their proudest moments!  (lol)  kk   

I grew up in Flint, MI. My stations of choice as a toddler were WTAC, WTRX, CKLW and WAMM ... during the day anyways. Night time was my magic DXing time. But I remember this market got Motown's releases on the radio before anyone else. In Flint, we heard all new Motown songs pushed hard, even though some other markets may not have added the songs at all. A few of my favorite "bubblers" heard in Flint are listed below:
Eddie Holland - Just Ain't Enough Love (Motown, 1964)
Chris Clark - Love's Gone Bad (V.I.P., 1966)
Contours - Just A Little Misunderstanding (Gordy, 1966) 
Isley Brothers - There's No Love Left (Tamla, 1966 - Flip of "This ol' Heart of Mine")
Marvelettes - Destination, Anywhere (Tamla, 1968)
Diana Ross & the Supremes - Going Down for the Third Time (Motown, 1966 - flip of "Reflections")
There were tons more. These are just my top favorites.
Eddie Husak
Yes, I'm sure every now Motown release was an "automatic add" on the stations in the Detroit vicinity, if only to help support their own local talent.  The strongest survived and became national hits ... but folks growing up in that area probably heard all kinds of "hopeful hits" that the rest of the nation never got a chance to enjoy.  (That's what's so cool about these Motown Box Sets ... they're already up to Volume 12A ... The Complete Motown Singles ... featuring EVERY single Motown release (A-Side and B-Side) on EVERY label and subsidiary for EVERY year, 1959 - 1972.  (Talk about your "complete" collections!!!)  kk  

On a related note, FH Reader David Lewis sent us this sad piece of news ...   

Without question, one of the most successful and prolific composers to come out of the Motown Era was Lamont Dozier ... here's an update on what he's been up to lately!



Christopher Paul Curtis, author of the book Mr. Chickee's Funny Money
(from left) Motown legend Lamont Dozier, writer / lyricist of 
Mr. Chickee's Funny Money, and director Derrick Sanders

CHICAGO, October 18, 2013 - Chicago Children's Theatre is tuning up to present the world premiere of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money, an all-new, rhythm and blues family musical based on the book by Christopher Paul Curtis, featuring music and lyrics by Motown legend Lamont Dozier and his son, co-music writer/lyricist Paris Dozier, book by David Ingber, directed by Derrick Sanders, musical supervision by Brian Usifer
Performances are January 18 - March 2, 2014 at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 1016 N. Dearborn, Chicago. Press opening is Friday, January 24 at 7 p.m. 
Single tickets to Mr. Chickee's Funny Money are on sale now, and start at $25. To purchase, visit or call (872) 222-9555. For information on discounted group rates for schools, playgroups, birthday parties and scouting organizations, visit or call (773) 327-3778Mr. Chickee's Funny Money is recommended for ages 6 and up. 
Mr. Chickee's Funny Money is adapted from the best-selling young adult book by Christopher Paul Curtis, who also penned Bud, Not Buddy, the Newbery Award-winning book which spawned Chicago Children's Theatre's 2013 smash hit, world premiere play Bud, Not Buddy
CCT's newest family musical follows the misadventures of 9-year-old Steven, a self-proclaimed spy and president of the "Flint Future Detectives Club." At the heart of this whimsical story is a highly intelligent, out-of-the-box thinker, and entrepreneurial boy, who discovers that family, friends, imagination and determination are the true keys to success; and sharing the spotlight with others can make one even richer. 
Throughout, Mr. Chickee's Funny Money rocks to a diverse new set list of original songs, all so high-energy and entertaining that kids won't even know they're being treated to a live medley of popular musical genres ranging from Motown, disco, rap, rock, jazz and hip hop. 
As a member of Holland-Dozier-Holland in the 1960's, Lamont Dozier (music writer / lyricist) is credited for being one of the primary architects of the Motown Sound, responsible for writing, co-writing and producing more than 54 #1 hits for The Supremes, Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Freda Payne and a host of others. His hits include Stop in the Name of Love, How Sweet It Is, Reach Out I'll Be There, Where Did Our Love Go and more. Dozier has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, from which he received the 2009 Johnny Mercer Award, the highest praise a songwriter can achieve. He has worked with such contemporary acts as Alison Moyet, Aretha Franklin, Simply Red, Phil Collins, Boy George, Eric Clapton, Kanye West, Joss Stone, Solange Knowles, Dave Stewart, Sir Cliff Richard, Phil Collins and George Benson. His music catalogue is one of the most sampled to date by everyone from rappers Notorious B.I.G., Tupac Shakur, Lil Wayne, Dr. Dre, The Alchemist, Common, Lupe Fiasco and Three 6 Mafia, to soul icons Mary J. Blige, Nas and Usher, and even alternative rockers Linkin Park.
Paris Dozier (co-music writer / lyricist) is a native of LosAngeles. Dozier's professional career in music began when he was 15, writing songs for artists on Hollywood Records, Disney, where he would be signed two years after as a singer / songwriter and producer. While at Hollywood Records, Dozier was mentored by and produced an album with Rob Cavallo, most notably regarded as the producer who discovered Green Day and is now the CEO of Warner Music Group. Dozier later became musical theme writer for B-InTune Television on UPN 13. He continues to write and produce for various artists in just about every genre of music.
Derrick Sanders (director) is Founding Artistic Director of Congo Square Theatre Company, a Chicago Tribune Chicagoan of the Year in 2005, and winner of multiple Joseph Jefferson Awards and Black Theater Alliance Awards. His most recent collaborations with Chicago Children's Theater - last season's world premiere of Bud, Not Buddy and the 2011 world premiere of Jackie and Me, written by Steven Dietz, based on the book by Dan Gutman - both enjoyed widespread critical acclaim and nearly sold-out runs at the Ruth Page. CCT's version of Jackie and Me has since received productions at Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis, New York's Atlantic Theatre Company, and in Seattle, Houston and St. Louis. The script was recently published by Dramatic Publishing.
Brian Usifer (music supervision, arrangements and orchestration) was Music Director of Kinky Boots on Broadway, Associate Music Supervisor of The Book of Mormon on Broadway, and played in the orchestra of Broadway and off-Broadway productions of The 25th Annual Putman County Spelling Bee, Avenue Q, Altar Boyz, Sister Act, Wicked and Burnt Part Boys.   
David Ingber (book) is a New York-based writer/composer. His musicals include Fantasy Football:  The Musical and Zombies Actually. He writes video content for the Major League Baseball Fan Cave, and he has written for web series including ESPN's Mayne Street with Kenny Mayne and Microsoft's Fasterpiece Theater.
The design team is Courtney O'Neill (scenic design); Rebecca Jeffords (lighting design); Ray Nardelli (sound); Christine Pascual (costume design); Kevin Iega Jeff (choreography); Margaret Goddard-Knop (properties design); and Sam Deutsch (puppet design). Dennis Conners is production stage manager.  The cast is TBA.
Mr. Chickee's Funny Money was workshopped in Summer 2013 at the American Music Theatre Project at Northwestern University's In the Works program, supported in part by an Arts Work grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.      
Chicago Children's Theatre's world premiere of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money is presented in association with Funny Money Enterprises and Bisno Productions
Chicago Children's Theatre's world premiere of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money will be followed by a New York production at The Atlantic Theater Company in Spring 2014.   
Mr. Chickee's Funny Money performance schedule
Previews of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money are Saturday and Sunday, January 18 and 19 at 11 a.m; and Tuesday through Friday, January 21-24 at 10 a.m. Press opening is Friday, January 24 at 7 p.m.  Performances that weekend are Saturday, January 25 at 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., and Sunday January 26 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.  
Performances continue through February 2: Tuesday at 10 a.m., Wednesday at 10 a.m. and 12 p.m., Thursday at 10 a.m., Friday at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., Saturday at 6 p.m., and Sunday at 11 a.m.  Starting the week of February 3 through February 23, regular performance times are Tuesday at 10 a.m., Wednesday at 10 a.m. and 12 p.m., Thursday at 10 a.m., Friday at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., Saturday at 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., and Sunday at 11 a.m.      
*Please note: The Friday, February 14, 6 p.m. performance of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money is Autism-Friendly. The entire house is reserved exclusively for families with children on the autism spectrum. This creates a safe, welcoming environment for children with autism, where nobody needs to worry if a child gets loud or active. All seats are $25.
The final week of performances are Wednesday and Thursday, February 26 and 27 at 10 a.m.; Friday, February 28 at 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, March 1 at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., and Sunday, March 2 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.    
Tickets are $25 for children and adults to Friday night performances. Tickets to weekend shows are $28 for children, $38 for adults. To purchase, visit or call (872) 222-9555. For discounted school, scout, playgroup, extended family and other group rates, visit or call (773) 327-3778.  Running time is 75 minutes with no intermission.
Save with a CCT Family Membership Pass    
The most affordable way to enjoy CCT's 2013-14 season is to purchase a Family Membership Pass, on sale now and offering a 20 percent discount on all three plays this season including A Year with Frog and Toad (now through November 24, Mr. Chickee's Funny Money (January 21-March 2), and the return of Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia's The Very Hungry Caterpillar (at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie April 25 - 26, moving to The Ruth Page April 29 - June 1.) 
Family Membership Passes also come with exclusive benefits like invitations to members-only behind-the-scenes events and discounts at nearby family-friendly restaurants. To purchase a Family Membership Pass or for more information, visit or call the Chicago Children's Theatre Box Office,  (872) 222-9555For more information about Chicago Children's Theatre visit, call CCT's dedicated box office line, (872) 222-9555, or the administrative office, (773) 227-0180.

Hi Kent, 
With regards to your comments on how long Motown were at the top of the US charts, here in the UK on August the 11th, 1956, according to the New Musical Express, Doris Day went to number 1 with Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Sera, Sera). On the 22nd of September, Anne Shelton took over at number 1 with Lay Down Your Arms. On October the 20th, Frankie Laine was at number 1 with A Woman In Love. On November the 17th of 1956 it was Just Walking In The Rain by Johnny Ray that was number 1. On January the 5th, 1957 Guy Mitchell was at number 1 with Singing the Blues. What is the connection with Motown? All the above records were released in the UK on the Philips label, which meant that the Phillips label had the number 1 hit in the UK for a staggering twenty straight weeks. The run came to an end when Tommy Steele and his inferior version of Singing The Blues topped the chart for one week, but the next week Guy returned for a further week before being replaced by Frankie Vaughan singing his version of the Garden of Eden for four weeks. This effectively means that Phillips held the number 1 slot for twenty five out of twenty six weeks ... in other words for over half a year. Some record!  
Take care,
Rockin’ Lord Geoff  

Your recent mention of "For Once in My Life" brings up the tale of Stein & VanStock, the ancient-sounding music publishing company which published it.  While Motown founder Berry Gordy was impressed with the songwriting skills of Ron Miller and wanted his works for Motown artists, Gordy was aware of the fact that Miller was white and did not write in the same style as the other composers in his stable (Mary Wells, Smokey Robinson, Holland-Dozier-Holland, etc.)  As his other songwriters' work was published by Motown's Jobete Music division, Gordy decided to set up a second publishing house just for Miller and call it Stein & VanStock.  Why?  "It sounded old line," Gordy recalled, "classy and Jewish."  Gordy's belief paid off, with a completely fooled Billboard praising "For Once in My Life" as "an old classic from Stein and Van Stock Publishing" when first released -- even though both "Once In My Life" and "Stein and VanStock" were actually both brand new at the time!  Gordy wanted non-Motown artists (like, say, Tony Bennett) to cover songs he owned the publishing rights to and believed that such performers shied away from Jobete titles because of their obvious link to Motown.  By setting up what appeared to be an unrelated old-time, Tin Pan Alley based publishing house full of long-established musical standards, Gordy hoped to generate a lot of extra revenue for his firm -- and the trick worked.   Today more than 270 versions of "For Once In My Life" exist, including those by Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland and Harry Connick Jr.   In 2007 (the year of Miller's death) Tony Bennett's rendition of "For Once In My Life" with Stevie Wonder won a Grammy Award for "Best Duet." 
Gary Theroux

And, as promised, be watching for Joe Klein's special piece spotlighting Motown Sound Man Russ Terrana, running later this week exclusively in Forgotten Hits!