Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Helping Out Our Readers

re:  A Few Loose Ends From Last Time:  
>>>Do you remember off the top of your head if there was ever a 60s pop duo that lived briefly in or near the Palatine, Arlington Hts, Des Plaines area?  Perhaps someone who sounded like Dick & DeeDee or Paul & Paula or someone of that vintage.  I remember one of the WLS DJs talking about it back in the mid-80s and can't remember anything more specific about it.  I can't even remember if they lived there during the 60s or much later.  (Jon M)  
Jon M. wanted to know some information about a record put out by a Paul and Paula and or Dick and DeeDee sound alike. There was a record that made our surveys here called LARRY TO SHERRI. It was recorded by two singers known as Donnie and Diane on the label, which was Dee-Jay Records.  The flip was called BONGO RHYTHM. They most definitely sounded like a combination of Paul and Paula and or Dick and DeeDee. This probably isn't the song or group he's thinking about, but who knows?  

I agree with Guy Arnston that it could be Friend And Lover or, in the case of the solo of the duo, Jim Post of F&L was solo much of his career.   

>>>For a few days here in OKC, they have been running an Arby's roast beef commercial spotlighting an Hawaiian BLT. You probably have seen it on your television. In the background is an instrumental which I am somewhat familiar with, but can't quite name. Have you seen the commercial and do you happen to know what instrumental they are playing in the background ... or perhaps this is something new?  (Larry)  
>>>Sorry but I can't help you out with this one ... as I've never seen this commercial ... but maybe somebody else out there has.  Anybody able to help Larry out with this one?  (Instrumentals are the toughest to track down ... but knowing absolutely NOTHING about it, I can't help but wonder if they didn't take something like "Hawaii Tattoo" by The Waikikis or something like that if they're pushing a Hawaiian sandwich!  (If not, it probably would have been a pretty clever choice!  Damn, I should have gotten into marketing!)  kk  
The instrumental in the background of the Arby's commercial is definitely not the one by the Waikikis. I am familiar with that and agree with you, it would have been a natural to include in the background.  

Here's the Arby's commercial, sent in by Tom Diehl ... anybody recognize it?  (kk)

>>>Before the group Salt and Peppa of the 90's, there was another group called Salt and Pepper. I don't think they were well known but they did have an instrumental soul song called Salt and Pepper. When I was in high school it was used for one of the dance pieces in our music program and I have never forgotten it. I have tried to find it but every time I do research, I keep on coming up with the updated group. Is it possible for you to find out any information about this group that performed around 1973-75?  (Charmin Wells)  
No luck on either of these. I know of a SONG called Salt N Pepper ... in fact I just put it on youtube, but it may not be what the requestor is looking for. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2jr2CPP1Ng   

And here are a couple of tracks by a group called Salt And Pepper sent in to us by Clark Besch ...  
Would the attached be the Salt & Pepper single your reader was looking for?  Both sides attached.  

re:  And Some NEW Challenges As Well!:   
Hi Kent,   
I don't know if you've ever heard of this show. In my area it would air on Sundays from noon to 4 pm on WPIX, Ch.11 from NYC.
It featured music culled from various sources, mostly TV performances or promotional videos and also in-studio productions with special effects and hippie type dancers. It was all music of the day and recent years. I can recall seeing Mungo Jerry, Stevie Wonder, Friends of Distinction and many more. This was very much a precursor to what MTV did.
Sundays for my family were visit the relatives day, but by 1970 I was finally old enough (14) to stay home by myself, so when this show went on the air, I was in heaven! I'd get a big bag of pretzels and a six pack of grape soda and park myself in front of the TV. No siblings or parents to bug me, a great afternoon!
I've only ever met one other person who saw these shows during the Summer of 1970, so I was wondering if you or any of your subscribers had ever seen them.
Too bad most of the tapes of this were destroyed, but a few managed to survive and have been preserved and archived.
Anybody out there remember this show?
Thanks, Kent
Eddie, Orange, CT
I've heard of the show and may have seen some of these clips shown on various tv shows and YouTube ... but quite honestly checking out the link didn't really register as being at all familiar ... and I don't remember ever watching it at the time.  (In fact, I can't say for certain that it aired here in Chicago ... but it may have.)  Anybody else out there got some "Now Explosion" memories to share?  (I think there was also one of those K-Tel Albums out around this time called "Now Explosion", too ... maybe THAT'S what I'm thinking of!  (kk)

Hi Kent -   
I'm a freelance writer working on an article about OTR singing commercials for Nostalgia Digest magazine.  I happened upon your neat site while trying to check the lyrics of the Wildroot tune that I remember from the Sam Spade program.   Thanks for providing them.  
But are you sure about that spoken line "Hiya, baldy"?  Although I remember a sexy female voice interjecting about there, that does not seem to fit with the commercial message.  Are you sure it wasn't something like "Hiya, handsome"?  
Dan McGuire   
Wow!  You're going back a ways ... I barely remember this at all (but I know we've run numerous pieces on favorite radio and television commercials in the past ... the most popular favorite of all being "Heaven Sent" which garnered a tremendous amount of mail and clips.)  
As for "Wildroot", those lyrics didn't come from me ... they had to be submitted by a Forgotten Hits reader.  Maybe somebody out there will recall or have a sound clip they can provide.  Meanwhile, have you checked YouTube?  We found a number of these vintage commercials had been posted there.  Good luck.  (kk)   
Hey, that would be great, Kent.  And maybe you could elaborate a bit and tell your audience that I'm looking for the words to any old time radio singing commercial that was on the order of a song as opposed to a short jingle, i.e., "Rinso white, Rinso bright!"  I already have collected the words for the songs about Cream of Wheat (Let's Pretend), Shredded Ralston (Tom Mix), Wheaties (Jack Armstrong), Pepsi Cola (hits the spot etc.), Gillette Blue Blades (look sharp, feel sharp, be sharp etc.).  Any others they can come up with would be great to flesh out my article.  And perhaps I could reward them with a copy of the Digest when it's published.
Are you a nostalgia buff, Kent?  If so, I think you'd appreciate Nostalgia Digest.  It's a quarterly publication filled with articles about old time radio, early television, Hollywood's big studio days and lots of other topics about life in a bygone era that some of us refer to as "the good old days."  
Dan McGuire  
The two tracks that seem to have garnered the most attention here in Forgotten Hits are the aforementioned "Heaven Sent" commercial as well as the commercial that became "She Lets Her Hair Down", a minor hit for Don Young.  Obviously there are other, better-known examples ("We've Only Just Begun" perhaps?) but I'm sure some of our readers out there can help you with your search.  Stay tuned!  (kk)


"Number 11" on your page here: http://forgottenhits60s.blogspot.com/2010/01/jingles-all-way.html  
indicates the 2nd line of the Miller High Life song lyric is "Miller takes too good to hurry through." 
The actual lyric is: "Miller tastes too good to hurry through." I just thought you might like to know. 
David Lund
Again, this ranking (and the lyrics contained therein) were supplied by our readers and not by us ... but I DO find it amazing that folks are still so fascinated with these jingles!  It just shows you again how greatly we were influenced by virtually EVERYTHING happening around us at the time!  (kk)

I was wondering if you ever heard of the group The Robbs. I believe they were from Chicago in the 60's and they were brothers and cousins. They had local hits such as "Bitter Sweet" and "Cynthia Loves". I don't believe they had any national success, but I can't find anything about them on the internet.  
John Gehring  
Waupaca, WI  
Actually they're more from up YOUR way than Chicago ... and we've covered them NUMEROUS times before in Forgotten Hits ... The Robbs are considered "The Kings Of Bubbling Under" ... SIX Billboard Hits that all fell short of The Hot 100 Chart.  And they were quite popular in the teen magazine as well as television programs like Where The Action Is.  
Here is a link that will probably get you most of what you're looking for ...  
Click here: Forgotten Hits: Search results for the robbs  (kk)

And then ...

Thanks for the information on the Robbs. 
In 1969 I saw The Hollies in concert at Carthage College and the opening act was a group called The Skunks from Milwaukee. They had a song called "I Recommend Her".   Have you ever heard of them or that song? 
Also, Their was a group called Tony's Tigers that I believe was from Appleton, Wisconsin. They had a song called "Little By Little". Have you ever heard of them? 
Thanks -
John Gehring 
Waupaca, Wisconsin   
Yep!  (To both questions!)  In fact, we gave Tony's Tygers the spotlight treatment a few years ago in Forgotten Hits when we helped them promote their brand new reunion album!  Again, check out this link for more information (and an exclusive interview with the members of the band!) ... and your mentioned local hit "Little By Little"!  (kk)
MAN, we've covered a LOT of ground here over the past fifteen years!!!  (kk)

Hi Kent,  
I know you have discussed this before in FH and even featured the song, but I'll be darned if I can't think of the name of it.  It was simply listed as a bonus track on my Dave Clark 5 History set.  It even confused Shazam.  
Bill in Ft. Worth

Instrumentals are always the toughest to track down ... but since we have the complete Dave Clark Five collection we just had to spot check a few tracks in order to narrow this one down.  
It's called "When I'm Alone" and it comes from their "Having A Wild Weekend" album, released here in The States in 1965 ... and it's a pretty darn good instrumental at that!  ("Having A Wild Weekend" was the Dave Clark Five film also known as "Catch Us If You Can"  (kk)  

Now here's somebody that needs some LEGAL help ...   

When 30k was a #1 and 50k was a Mega Hit in gospel music in 76, Sammy Hall's recording of Monte Stephens's "It's Too Late" sold over 200k.  
I was told every major gospel artist also recorded the song after Hall did. I had the song recorded on a 45 and Halls bus driver heard me sing it. He bought the 45 and took it to Hall that very night. The next day Hall called his record label and they record it and I was never told about it until after it was heard on radio.  My question is...I never got any pay for this Mega Hit except $98.00 from Skylite Sing Records Nashville, TN who had Hall on their label.  
The song was copy written by me with BMI and my name appeared on the album cover as the writer, but after all these years BMI nor anyone will come forth with any information about my song.  
What can you, kk, find out, about this song and how many artist recorded it through the years? Someone or a lot of someone's need to PAY UP.  
Thank you for your time,  
Bishop Monte Stephens  
Jefferson City, TN   
This is beyond my range of expertise ... but hopefully there are enough movers and shakers and industry big-wigs on the list that maybe we can investigate this a little bit further and help this guy out.  Let's see what we come up with Monte ... just don't forget my 10%!!!  (lol)   
Ironically, I was JUST reading this in the aforementioned Harvey Kubernik book "Turn Up The Radio!" ... which is a VERY timely tie-in.  
Written by songwriter Mario Roccuzzo (and reprinted here in edited form), this will just go to show you what kind of royalty magic CAN be done.  (Several years ago we tried to help Bobby Parker collect some long-due royalties for his song "You Got What It Takes", a big hit for both Marv Johnson and The Dave Clark Five.  Parker had written and recorded the song a full year before Marv Johnson's record came out ... and, at that time, had the publishing credit ... but then somehow, someway, Berry Gordy was able to also publish this song as his own, wiping out any and all future royalties that Bobby Parker might have legitimately earned.  Sadly, Bobby passed away about a year ago with this matter still unresolved.  Hopefully we'll have better luck this time around.)  
And, since our FH Buddy Bob Merlis is also plugging a brand new gospel release from Sam Cooke's SAR Record label (below), maybe HE knows the right legal parties to pursue to help litigate this matter.  (Again, just don't forget my 10%!!!)  kk   

MARIO ROCCUZZO (from Harvey Kubernik's book TURN UP THE RADIO!):  
I wanted to be a songwriter in the worst way.  That was my dream, to be a songwriter.  In 1957, when I was seventeen years old, I was working in a record store called Wallichs Music City in Hollywood, which at that time was the number-one store.  
This young kid came in, and he said, "I hear you want to be a songwriter."  I said, "Yeah."  He said "Have you written anything?"  I said, "Yeah, I write love songs, ballads, sad things."  He said, "Well, I got a couple of hit records out right now.  Why don't you write something for me?  But I don't sing sad songs.  You got to write rock 'n' roll for me."  I said, "Okay, let me give it some thought."  He said, "What are you doing tonight?"  I said, "Nothing."  He said, "Let's get together.   I'll bring my guitar over and we'll write something."  I said, "All right."  On a napkin, I wrote a song in about five minutes called "Nervous Breakdown."  The kid was named Eddie Cochran.  
A week later, I'm at Music City working.  I get this call.  "What are you doing on your lunch hour?"  "Nothing."  "Come on down to Gold Star Studios.  I'm recording your song."  I go down and there's Eddie Cochran, recording my song." Eddie sang and recorded the song ... and then he got killed in a car crash [in England on April 17, 1960.]  The song came out on Eddie's very last album.  It only sold a few copies, so I didn't make anything off the song.  Fade out and fade up.  It's now twenty-three years later.   
In 1982, my agent calls and says I have to do a show at CBS in the Valley.  So I go, and I'm like forty-five minutes early.  I'm walking on Ventura Boulevard to kill some time.  I pass by this music store.  I say, "Jesus, I haven't been in a record store in years.  Let me go in and see what's selling."  I walk in, and there's this whole punk rock section ... guys with orange and yellow hair.  There's this punk rock album out by some guy I've never heard of.  But there's a sticker on the front of the album that says "Featuring the hit single 'Nervous Breakdown.'"  
I look.  I say, "Hit single?  I wrote a song once called 'Nervous Breakdown'."  When the guy at the counter isn't looking, I slit the cellophane. I  pull the record out.  "Words and music by Mario Rocuzzo."  What do you mean, hit single?  What hit single?  Where's my bread?  I couldn't believe it.  
The next morning I called BMI, right down here on Sunset and Vine.  I made an appointment.  I went down that afternoon.  I brought a copy of the album I bought.  I told them the story.  They said, "Hey, Mario.  When you wrote this song for Eddie, you weren't a member of ASCAP or BMI.  You just gave it to Eddie.  Somebody published it.  But who the hell knows who Mario Roccuzzo is?  Do you live in Italy, Russia, Japan, America?  Who is he?  There's no way to pay you any money.  What you have to do is now join ASCAP or BMI and then you have to get in touch with the publisher of 'Nervous Breakdown'."  I said, "Well, what do I do?"  "Join us or them."  I said, "I'll join you."  
So I filled out the application.  I got it notarized that afternoon and went back.  The lady explained to me that BMI would pay me only for airplays, jukebox plays, where it's performed ... and 'Nervous Breakdown' hadn't been performed too much.  You got maybe a hundred dollars coming for all the performances.  I said, "Okay."  The lady said, "Where you'll make some money is if you go to the people who published your record.  They can pay you for the sales."  I said, "Well, on the album it says it's published by Elvis Presley Music."  I knew that Elvis was in Nashville.  I couldn't go to Elvis.  She said, "No, Elvis was bought out by Chappel Music."  I said, "Oh, where are they?"  "On the nineteenth floor."  I was in BMI's penthouse.  I walked down to the nineteenth floor.  All these executives were having their coffee break.  I had the album.  I held it up.  I said, "Excuse me, did you people publish this hit record 'Nervous Breakdown'?"  Silence.  They looked at it.  I said, "I wrote it.  Where's my bread?"  
They called me into the office.  Within forty-eight hours, I had a check for $7500.  It sold 250,000 copies by this punk rocker, whoever he was.  Terrible version of it.  But, to this day, I still get royalty checks on that song."   

Mario tells one other related story that I have to share ... showing you again the underside of the music business belly.  

In 1965, I ran into a couple, Sonny and Cher.  Sonny said, "Write a song describing Cher and me.  We're going to record our first album.  I said, "Okay."  He liked the words I wrote.  So, I wrote this song describing him and Cher, the clothes they wear, the long hair.  So I wrote this song called "Look At Us."  I wrote the lyric and gave it to Sonny.  It was too late.  He had recorded all twelve tracks to their album.  He said, "But I love your song so much.  Can we call our album 'Look At Us'?  And can we use the lyric?  Instead of liner notes on the back, just print your lyric and put your name ... 'written by Mario Roccuzzo'?"  I said, "Sure."  So they put out their first album.  It's called "Look At Us", and on the back is my song.  It sold three million copies.  He gives me fifty dollars.    

ABKCO To Release The Complete SAR Records Recordings by L.C. Cooke   
Tracks Recorded Over 50 Years Ago For Sam Cooke’s Label Finally Available July 29

On July 29, ABKCO Records will release soul / gospel singer L.C. Cooke’s The Complete SAR Records Recordings both digitally and on CD.  The vast majority of this historic material has never before been released on these formats.  The world will finally have a chance to hear what could have easily been considered a classic album in its day were it not for a set of tragic circumstances that buried the release for more than a half century. L.C. Cooke recorded what was to be his debut album (tracks 1-10 on this collection) during the first half of the 1960s for his older brother Sam’s SAR Records, notable for being one of the first artist-owned labels and having a roster that included Billy Preston, the latter-day Soul Stirrers (featuring Johnnie Taylor), and The Valentinos, the secular iteration of gospel’s Womack Brothers.  
Sam Cooke not only acted as label boss, but also producer and principal songwriter for L.C.’s studio efforts. “Sam had that canny thing about him, where he could just look at you and say, ‘I’m going to write something that fits you,’” reminisces L.C., now age 80. However, “Put Me Down Easy,” possibly the crown jewel of L.C.’s recorded output, was a song Sam had originally written for himself. “I said, ‘That’s my song, Sam.’ So he laughed and said, ‘Oh, you’re going to take it just like that, huh?’ I said, ‘Yeah, I’m taking it.’”  
Shortly after Sam Cooke’s death in December of 1964, L.C.’s album was shelved. SAR did manage to release the bulk of these recordings on a series of singles between 1960 and 1964, which are all included on The Complete SAR Records Recordings. Along with the projected 10 track album, the release includes alternate takes and unreleased tracks. The set is augmented with two tracks L.C. Cooke recorded for Checker Records in 1959 (“If I Could Only Hear” and “I’m Falling”) as well as “Do You Wanna Dance (Yea Man),” recorded and released in 1965 on Destination Records, making it the only post-Sam Cooke track on the collection. Track 13 (“Gonna Have A Good Time (Session Chatter)” offers unique insight into the Cooke brothers’ studio interaction and cultural identity, wherein the elder Cooke instructs the younger to pronounce the lyric “before” as “’fore.”  “Don’t forget our heritage,” admonishes a mirthful Sam Cooke to his brother from the control room.  
L.C. Cooke was backed by numerous talented musicians on the SAR sessions, which variously included Wrecking Crew notables Rene Hall (guitar), Earl Palmer (drums) and Plas Johnson (tenor sax). Label mates occasionally joined in, with Billy Preston on organ, and brothers Cecil and Bobby Womack on guitar.  
ABKCO, which stewards the SAR Records catalog, is releasing this 18-track package that includes liner notes from renowned music historian and Cooke biographer (Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke) Peter Guralnick who is also the author of Lost Highway: Journeys & Arrivals of American Musicians.  
L.C. Cooke - The Complete SAR Records Recordings track list:  
1. Take Me For What I Am  
2. The Wobble  
3. Magic Words  
4. Sufferin’  
5. The Lover  
6. Put Me Down Easy  
7. You’re Working Out Your Bag  
8. Tell Me  
9. Chalk Line  
10. Teach Me  
11. The Lover (previously unreleased version)  
12. Miss Sally (previously unreleased)  
13. Gonna Have A Good Time (Session Chatter)  
14. Gonna Have A Good Time (previously unreleased)  
15. Put Me Down Easy (Single Version)  
16. If I Could Only Hear  
17. I’m Falling  
18. Do You Wanna Dance (Yea Man)  
Pre-Order the Album: http://smarturl.it/LCCookeCD