Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Sunday Comments ( 08 - 24 - 14 )

re:  The Ides Of March:  
It seems a week doesn't go by lately when we aren't celebrating somebody's 50 Year Anniversary in the Music Business ... and this week was no exception.  
Here comes word that Chicago's own Ides Of March will be releasing a special, commemorative box set ... and doing a special live concert which will also spotlight some of the many other famous voices of Chicago rock.  
I doubt that there is any single publication in the world that has published as many features on The Ides Of March as we have here in Forgotten Hits ... yet last week it was Vintage Vinyl News who was reporting:  
The Ides of March will officially be fifty years old on October 16 and they are celebrating with a new box set and a special anniversary show.  
The band formed on October 16, 1964 as The Shon-Dels and released their first record, Like It Or Lump It, the next year.  By 1966, they were officially The Ides Of March and had a local Chicago top ten hit with You Wouldn't Listen but it wasn't until 1970 that they broke big nationally with the number 2 hit Vehicle.  
Two years later, the band broke up. Jim Peterik, who was one of the original members, went on to form Survivor and have hits with songs like Eye Of The Tiger and The Search Is Over.  
The Ides of March, including Peterik, reformed in 1990 and have been together ever since, one of the lengthier success stories of the rock era.  
The band is currently working on a new CD/DVD box set to commemorate fifty years together.  Laar Band Standing will include tracks from throughout their career and a few new songs  along with special videos, live concert tapes and special guests.  Look for it this fall.  
Then, on Saturday, September 27, the band will have an anniversary blowout at the College of Dupage with a concert that will include special Chicago band guests such as Tom Doody (The Cryan' Shames), Carl Giamarese (The Buckinghams), Jimy Sohns (The Shadows of Knight) and Ronnie Rice (The New Colony Six). The evening will be hosted by Dick Biondi and Bob Sirott.    
If all of that wasn't enough, Jim Peterik recently released his biography, Through The Eye Of The Tiger.  Rock 'n' Roll Life of Survivor's Founding Member and Keyboard Player Scott May put out his first solo album, Outside The Inside.

And, speaking of 50th Anniversaries, look for a brand new 3-CD Hollies Box Set ... 50 At 50 (which, unfortunately seems to be missing some key tracks that Hollies fans would DEFINITELY want included ... and seems to be somewhat heavy on their 1983 reunion material ... which makes me wonder if ANOTHER reunion might secretly be in the works!!!  
Click here: 50 at Fifty: Music

And, speaking of 50 Year Anniversaries, I got this "heads up" from PR Guru Bob Merlis last week ... sounds like they're launching a big campaign to celebrate the 50th Anniversary release of Roy Orbison's #1 Hit "Oh, Pretty Woman" ... which ties in nicely with our own weekly feature, "50 Years Ago This Weekend" ...   

The anniversary of "Oh, Pretty Woman" going to #1 isn't until 9/26, but we wanted an early start to our awareness campaign.  seems like a good fit for FH.  
Indeed it does!  Read on!       


“Oh, Pretty Woman” ad in Billboard issue of August 22, 1964;  
the record had entered the chart at #10 that week.  

Roy Orbison began making his mark on the music world in 1956 at Sun Records, which boasted a roster of unparalleled talent that also included Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash. However, it was during his years on Monument Records in the early-to-mid '60s when Orbison’s commercial success reached stratospheric levels, the apex of which was “Oh, Pretty Woman,” a song co-written by Orbison and Bill Dees. The blockbuster hit, first appeared at #101 on Billboard’s “Bubbling Under” chart in the issue dated August 22, 1964.  It would go on to spend three weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, with sales of 7 million copies.  It also topped the British charts for three weeks, an unprecedented achievement for any American to have this kind of chart-topping power simultaneously on both sides of the Atlantic in the Beatles-dominated year of 1964.     
This week, Roy's Boys LLC, the Nashville-based company formed by the sons of the late Roy Orbison, begins a countdown / celebration of the 50th Anniversary of “Oh Pretty Woman” and its rapid rise to #1.  Alex Orbison commented, “My brothers and I thought it would be fitting to call attention to what ‘Oh, Pretty Woman’ was able to achieve 50 years ago.  The song endures to the present and we certainly acknowledge it as one of the keystone elements in our dad’s brilliant career.  It’s just about the purest expression of his art and we’re happy that it’s been the source of so much joy for so many for so long and we’re delighted to share in the celebration of its Golden Anniversary."  
“Oh, Pretty Woman” kept close chart company with hits by The Beatles,  The Animals, The Dave Clark Five, Dusty Springfield, Gerry & The Pacemakers and Manfred Mann, reflecting the tremendous impact of the British Invasion as well as with domestic drama-infused smashes from  The Shangra-Las, Gene Pitney, Drifters and The Four Seasons, representing the NY-based Brill Building school of pop rock. There were also Nashville-spawned, and decidedly non-country, hits like “Bread & Butter” by The Newbeats and Ronny & The Daytonas’ ode to Pontiac-powered performance, “Little GTO.” Also burning up the charts at the time were The Supremes and Martha & The Vandellas, the apotheosis of Motown’s girl group juggernaut while The Beach Boys, Elvis Presley and Dean Martin all had significant chart presence at the time.   
To be sure, releases by Roy Orbison had found their way into these realms over the course of the previous five years, starting in 1959 with “Only The Lonely” getting as far as #2. 1960 saw “Blue Angel hit #9, followed by Orbison’s very first #1 -- “Running Scared."  The next year “Crying” went to #2 and “Dream Baby” to #4. “In Dreams,”  released in 1962, made it to #7 and the next year “Mean Woman Blues” hit #5, followed by the less than prophetic “It’s Over” getting to #9.  When Orbison went into the studio early in August of 1964 and recorded “Oh, Pretty Woman” with Fred Foster producing, he was undaunted by the British Invasion. In fact, he had embraced it by reversing the trend by “invading” Britain for a 21-day tour in 1963, sharing the stage with locals The Beatles and Gerry & The Pacemakers, his special guests.  His life-long friendship with George Harrison, with whom he collaborated 35 years later as part of The Traveling Wilburys, along with Tom Petty, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne, dates from that tour. 
Roy Orbison with The Beatles and Gerry & The Pacemakers on tour in 1963

“Oh, Pretty Woman" was written by Roy Orbison and his songwriting partner Bill Dees who had co-written “It’s Over,” a #1 record in the UK earlier in 1964.  Legend has it that Claudette, Orbison’s wife — and inspiration for the Everly Brothers “Claudette” that Orbison had composed — told her husband that she was going shopping and when Roy asked if she needed money, Dees attempted to compliment her by quipping,  “A pretty woman doesn’t need any money.”  The song was written almost immediately thereafter and the recording session was soon booked.  Orbison played the famous “Oh, Pretty Woman” guitar riff on his 12 string Epiphone guitar while singing in the vocal booth, all captured live in one take with no overdubs.  Dees was in the booth with him and his voice is heard in a vocal harmony that works quite perfectly against Roy’s main melody line. Other musicians on the session that day included Jerry Kennedy, Wayne Moss, Billy Sanford, Floyd Cramer, Boots Randolph, Charlie McCoy, Buddy Harman and Paul Garrison — a who’s who of Nashville elite session players of the era.   
The signature  guitar riff that Orbison came up with and played that day was honored, just this year, by the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum at a ceremony in Nashville with the posthumous presentation of its Iconic Riff Award to Orbison and a performance of the song by Orbison admirer Chris Isaak. This was not the first kudo for “Oh, Pretty Woman.”  The recording is both in the Grammy Hall of Fame as well as on the National Recording Registry at the Library of Congress.  Roy Orbison is, of course, a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, having been inducted by Bruce Springsteen, as well as an inductee into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. “Oh, Pretty Woman” has been recorded by a richly diverse group of artists including Al Green, John Mellencamp, Johnny Rivers, Bon Jovi, Green Day and Van Halen whose 1982 version was the group's biggest singles success during the first five years of their recording career.  The song inspired the title of and is heard on the soundtrack from Pretty Woman, the blockbuster film starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere, considered the most commercially successful romantic comedy of all time based on number of tickets sold. 
Above: Original Monument 45
Below: Original UK release on London Records

“Oh, Pretty Woman,” a staple of Roy Orbison’s live performances, is also featured as an encore in the Black & White Night DVD, released by Roy’s Boys through Sony’s Legacy Recordings. The concert, filmed in September of 1987, features an all-star line up that includes outspoken Roy admirers Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello, Jackson Browne, JD Souther and Tom Waits, among others, joining Orbison on the show’s closer, “Oh, Pretty Woman.” The time-honored tune was, in fact, the last song Roy Orbison ever recorded. On December 4, 1988, just two days before his sudden passing, he performed at a Cleveland-area venue, at a concert that was taped and released as The Last Concert – 25th Anniversary Edition through Legacy Recordings.
Late last year “Oh, Pretty Woman” became the title track of a Roy Orbison album for the first time. It’s one of four LPs that comprise The Monument Boxset, released by Roy’s Boys via Legacy. The set is comprised of the three classic Roy Orbison Monument studio albums -- Lonely and Blue, Crying and In Dreams as well as Oh! Pretty Woman, which did not exist in immediate wake of the song’s breakthrough, but came more than 49 years later.  Roy Orbison was signed to  MGM Records after the success of “Oh, Pretty Woman” and Monument never saw fit to release an album built around that track but chose, rather, to ‘mine the hits’ with a Greatest Hits album instead. The Oh! Pretty Woman LP included tenure in the The Monument Boxset consisting of tracks reflective of the period and determined, by the team at Roy’s Boys, to be the songs that would have comprised that fourth Monument album.

re:  Beatles Memories:  
My brother sent me an article on Beatles at Red Rocks, a relatively small crowd for such a large theater. BTW, Chicago's stop was 13th in the tour and drew 15,000 at the Ampitheatre.
Some things left unsaid in this article from the Denver Post today ...
During the concert, oxygen canisters were left onstage to use in case the Beatles became light headed in the ountain air!  According to my new TV Guide Special Edition "The Untold Story" Magazine on The Beatles' '64 tour (in grocery stores now thru August 28 -- an 8 1/2 x 11 style magazine), the Denver concert was only 7000 in attendance -- WELL below all their other dates except for the final of the 33 concerts, which was a high society charity concert at the Paramount Theater in NYC that drew 3600, who paid $100 a ticket at that concert!  Red Rocks was the 6th concert on the tour in '64. 
Cleveland was the 21st and fans rushed the stage and forced the curtains to come down while the band regrouped and then the show went on after the audience was told to stay seated and the house lights were left on.  Attached is how the Besch Bros heard it and recorded it as it aired on KYW Cleveland in 1964 from our reels.

Cincinnati was the concert directly after Red Rocks and served up 10,000 more fans, with 17,000 total in attendance.  Our family friend and emcee for the show, Dusty Rhodes was on hand.  (Dusty is actually quoted in that TV Guide Special Magazine mentioned earlier) saying, among other things, "If we were smart, we would have plugged in the soundboard".
Clark Besch 

WCBS-FM took a poll of their listeners' favorite Ringo Starr songs since he left The Beatles ... man, I don't even KNOW some of these!!!  (kk)

“She Loves You” by Jude Southerland Kessler Released on Ebook 
Jude Southerland Kessler is pleased to announce that her third book, She Loves You, is now available for Kindle readers and will soon be available for all Ebook formats.
Beatles expert and author Jude Southerland Kessler, author of the nine volume John Lennon Series, has announced that her third book in the series, She Loves You, is now available for Kindle and soon to be available in all eBook formats.
She Loves You takes the reader from John Lennon’s trip to the Spanish Rivera with the Beatles’ manager, Brian Epstein, in the spring of 1963 thru the Beatles taking America by storm as they star on three Ed Sullivan shows in Feb. 1964, the concert at the Washington, D.C. Coliseum, and Carnegie Hall.

Within the next four weeks, She Loves You will be available in the following ebook formats:
  • iBooks
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Kobo
  • Copia
  • Gardners
  • Baker & Taylor
  • eSentral
  • Scribd
  • Flipkart
  • Oyster
  • Ciando
To order She Loves You on Kindle, go to:
Jude Southerland Kessler is the author of The John Lennon Series – a nine book series on the life of John Winston Lennon.  She is also the host of The John Lennon Hour a weekly radio show that can be heard every Thursday night at 8 p.m. (CT) on BlogTalkRadio radio.  For more information on Jude Southerland Kessler and her books, go to:  

And check this out ...
Click here: 'The Magical Mystery Tour' Podcasts Roll Up To CRM  
A very special new addition has come to the Chicagoland Radio & Media website. The long-running Beatles-themed radio show, "The Magical Mystery Tour" will now be featured in podcast form in this website's Podcasts section. All original podcasts by the show's host and creator James D. Jones can be heard exclusively on CRM.

Frank B. sent us a couple of cool Beatles-related videos this week ... first up ... a dog who will only respond to his master's voice if he talks like one of The Beatles!!!  (Too funny ... my favorite part is when the dog flat-out ignores him and starts to walk away until the owner adopts his best John Lennon!  lol)

And this one's just too cool not to share!!!  It's an AWESOME  Beatles mash-up ... with The Knack!!!  (Very special thanks to Frank B for sending this one along ... I've already watched it several times!)  kk  

re:  Wayne Newton:  
>>>Neil Sedaka was a surprise guest on Hoda and Kathi Lee this morning. She apparently has known him for years. He sang "Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen" only he changed the lyrics to fit Kathi Lees' 60th birthday. Then he and Kathi Lee sang her favorite song by Neil. It was "The Hungry Years". What a powerful song. I don't know how popular this song was but it has to be one of my all time favorites, too.  (Stacee)  
>>>"The Hungry Years" never hit the charts for Neil Sedaka ... although I remember hearing it quite a bit on the soft-rock stations at the time.  The closest thing to a hit single went to Mr. Las Vegas, Wayne Newton ... his single reached #81 in 1976. (kk) 
Hi Kent ... 
Here's a copy of "The Hungry Years" by Wayne Newton. I produced this in 76.  This was done with The Wrecking Crew. I hope things are good with you my friend!  
Best ...  
I had absolutely NO idea that John Madara produced this Wayne Newton record.  (Or, if I did, I completely forgot!!!)  Thanks SO much for sharing!  (Damn, and we already had John mentioned TWICE in last Sunday's Comments Page ... he could have won the Triple Crown!!!)  kk

I noticed in Saturday's Surveys that on the Fantastic 40 Survey out of Eau Clair, Wisconsin, that Wayne Newton had song position #29 with the song HEART. I don't know how big it got in Eau Clair but here in OKC it made it all the way to #1 and did it earlier in the year. For the week of February 28, 1963, it made it's initial survey position at #46. Five weeks later, for the week of April 4, 1963, it was #1 here in OKC. His recording of DANKE SCHOEN did quite well here as well.  
Speaking of Wayne Newton, he along with his brother (whose name I don't know offhand), had a record that made our survey back in 1961. It was the old Johnny Ray tune THE LITTLE WHITE CLOUD THAT CRIED on George Records.  
Larry Neal 
"Heart" was Wayne's first big break-through hit (although it only reached #82 in Billboard.)  "Danke Schoen" was the follow-up and it scored very well.  (Today I doubt that there's anybody out there who can hear this song without thinking about that classic parade scene in "Ferris Buehler's Day Off"!!!)  
Wayne had some healthy support from some key players back in the day, early in his career.   
It was Bobby Darin who convinced him to quit "the brother act" and go solo ... and then Darin (at a time when he really could have used a comeback hit of his own), gave up "Danke Schoen so that Wayne Newton could record it instead.  It really put him on the map (although I'd still have LOVED to hear Bobby Darin tackle this one with all his "Mack The Knife" splendor!!!)  
A few years later, Newton recorded one of those rare Brian Wilson give-aways when he cut "Comin' On Too Strong" (which also featured Bruce Johnston and Terry Melcher on background vocals.)  Wayne's "surfin' sound" didn't take off, however, and the record stalled at #65.  
He did come back in a big way with his version of "Red Roses For A Blue Lady" later that year (peaking at #23) ... and even tackled the Sinatra favorite "The Summer Wind" that same year.  (I always liked his take of "Dreams Of The Everyday Housewife" [#60, 1968], too.)  
Wayne's BIGGEST hit came in 1972 when "Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast" reached #4.  In 1980 his recording of "Years" topped many a local chart, despite only reaching #35 on Billboard's Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart.  
I finally got the chance to see Mr. Show Business in Las Vegas in the late '80's.  A coworker and I stayed at The Riviera just so we could see what all the fuss was about.  It was okay ... in a very Vegas / showy sort of way ... but I felt he was over-rated.  I would see him next many years later at The Flamingo when he gave a VERY touching and emotional speech at the Bobby Darin Star Ceremony and opened up about how much Bobby helped him gain a foothold in his early career.  A VERY emotional moment in which Wayne expressed sincere gratitude for his mentor.  (kk)

re:  The Seeds / et al:  
Thanks for this ... it was a great event.  
Harvey Kubernik  

Hey Kent,  
I have the 45 of "Can't Seem to Make you Mine" ... I won it from one of our local radio stations here in Missouri back in sixty-eight or sixty-nine. I really wasn't familiar with "The Seeds" when I won it but I really liked the song.  

Hi Kent ...
I cant say that I ever heard of "The Seeds", but I enjoyed their "sound."  I was surprised how much they sound like T Rex on "I Cant Seem to Make You Mine."  Hmmm ... Interesting ... wondering if Marc Bolan ever heard of them.  I could swear I was listening to Marc's style and singing!  Enjoyed it immensely.   LOL  Sounds like you had a great time.   Thanks for sharing the music.
It really wouldn't surprise me at ALL to find out that Mark Bolan heard and was influenced by The Seeds ... that's the thing about all of this great music and wide variety of styles ... everything helps to inspire everything new ... which helps build a new audience every time.  (kk)   

From Timmy's Seeds review:  
>>>Another noted D.J., from the era of 1960's Top-40 L.A. radio was Don Elliott, (KMEN, KBLA and KROQ), smiling and joking about.    
Hey, we just heard from Don the other day about doing the airport gate announcements on "Next Plane To London." David Lewis  
I've heard from Don now a couple of times since our article ran ... seems like a really nice guy.  He wanted to get together and do something on the radio ... but I'm not ON the radio (so that fell apart rather quickly!  lol)  Glad to hear that he's involved with this new Seeds project.  (kk)  
It would be extra cool for him to do the gate announcing at a show where Boomerang plays "Next Plane To London." I wonder if that would be a first, for a non-artist who had a part in a hit record to recreate his part all these many years later.  
Probably so! (lol) kk   

Hi Kent,
A huge thanks for your really awesome review on Neil Norman's and Alec Palao's masterpiece of 60's in-depth life of Sky and the Seeds! And more specifically, for mentioning my name and making me feel like I have been acknowledged (and the Strawberry Alarm Clock) as one of the contributing psychedelic keyboard players and bands of the 60's.  It means  a lot to me. I'm going to forward on to others to read!
Keep up the groovy vibe and be well!
Best regards,
Mark Stephen Weitz   
(PS: I'll keep you in the loop of future new original music from the SAC!)  
Hi Mark!  
Great to hear from you!  
You'll get a kick out of this feature we did several years ago ...  
We polled our readers trying to determine the all-time greatest psychedelic songs ... and naturally The Strawberry Alarm Clock came in in 1st Place!!!  (The whole contest was put together around the idea of my then nine-year-old daughter wanting to know what "psychedelic music" was ... she just turned 18 and we took her up to college this past week!)  
You guys have come up a number of times in Forgotten Hits.  ("Tomorrow" was a big hit here in Chicago, too!)  In fact I remember running a feature a few years back about you guys getting back together again for some shows ... going strictly from memory here but I wanna say it had something to do with a Roger Ebert Film Festival or something.  (Of course being from Chicago, Roger Ebert was KING in our minds!!!)  
Anyway, check out the link below ... and please do stay in touch ... ALWAYS happy to help promote the band and let folks know what you guys are up to (whether it be concert appearances, new releases or whatever!)  Feel free to "use us" as part of your publicity machine!  
And please tell folks about us ... what makes Forgotten Hits work (and unique) is the input and feedback from ALL the music lovers out there ... from BOTH sides of the stage (or the radio dial!)  So please help us to spread the word.   
Thanks again for taking the time to write.  (kk)  
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Top 20 Favorite Psychedelic Songs   

re:  Ron Dante / Sugar Sugar:  
Hi Kent:  
Thank you very much for sharing our new Beach Boys tribute song. We have been honored by the response and requests from radio stations for MP3's! I also wanted to tell you about "We Still Sing Sugar Sugar", another song that I also wrote with Jack Servello. Ron was very complimentary and we are very fond of this one as well. Check out the youtube video we made for it here: I am certainly glad that Fred Vail suggested your site. It is a definite winner and you can bet that we will be spreading the word. We think a lot of Fred. He left a nice narrative comment on our video today. A real class act. Thanks again for your consideration, and we are more than glad to share our songs here.  
Bill Dann   

We heard from Fred Vail after the clip ran, too ... check it out below ...  

Glad Bill sent you a link to the track "They Bring the Beach To Us".  It's starting to get a few hits on Nice melody, some great vintage graphics.  
This year is the 50th Anniversary of "Fun, Fun, Fun." That will make it 2036 when we can celebrate the 50th Anniversary of their last #1, "Kokomo." Hey, if the good Lord is willin', I'll be there to rock out. That will make me 92. But you know what they have always said: "the music biz keeps us young.':)  

And, believe it or not, we heard from Ron Dante, too!!!  (Sounds like he's got some great shows coming up!)   

Hi Kent.  
Really enjoyed your column this week. Lots of totally interesting stories about the music we all love and the artists that made the songs famous.  Keep up the great work, my friend.  
I'm doing a special private benefit Labor Day for Wounded Warriors with my pals Mark Lindsay, Chris Montez, Peter Asher and Mickey Dolenz here in Los Angeles. Great guys and a great cause.  
All the best,  
Man, I'd love to see that one!  Thanks, Ron.  (kk)  

And, speaking of "Sugar Sugar", I also found THIS fun clip on YouTube ... Ginger or Mary-Ann???  No contest!  (kk)

re:  And, Speaking of GREAT Shows, This One Sounds Like A REAL Winner ... :  
Anybody out Huntington Beach way?  Would love to get a review (and maybe some photos?) of this one!  (kk)   
Here's one for you ... the Huntington Beach (California) Food, Art & Music Festival, September 5 - 7. Being promoted as "the largest collection of classic rock greats, all together for one big weekend."  
The lineup: Jefferson Starship, Jim Peterik (Survivor / Ides of March), Bobby Kimball (original lead singer of Toto), Mike Reno (Loverboy), Kelly Keagy (Night Ranger), Dave Jenkins (Pablo Cruise), John Elefante (Kansas), Gary Wright, Al Stewart, Bill Champlin, Dale Bozzio (Missing Persons), The Gin Blossoms, John Popper (Blues Traveler) and more.  
Ken Voss   
Click here: Huntington Beach Music and Art Festival   

re:  This And That:  
When you mentioned TOBACCO ROAD the other day, I had to get out John D. Loudermilk's early
1960's version and play it. It did make our local top 40 radio station's weekly survey.  Needless to say, his version didn't do as well as the later on Nashville Teens.
You also mentioned that Diane Ray's PLEASE DON'T TALK TO THE LIFEGUARD made its only appearance in chart position #30 in Chicago. Probably the no hit status of it in Chicago may have to do with the number of beaches or swimming holes in that area.  It's just like here in OKC where records by Dick Dale and his Deltones were for all practical purposes, non-existent due to non-California type of outdoor swimming games.
Also, a few personal comments, if I may, over your posting of the surveys this Saturday.
The first survey, "solid gold" of WLS ... I always did like #24 by Kyu Sakamoto and probably it is my all time favorite foreign language song of the rock era. I also like his followup, (yes, he did have a followup), and the song was called CHINA NIGHTS.
Just last night I got out and played #28, WONDERLAND BY NIGHT. Oklahoma's own Anita Bryant had a vocal version on Carlton. There were several vocal versions of instrumentals that seem to get lost through the years.
Here in OKC we always had two rock and roll stations competing against each other, that being WKY-AM 930 and KOMA-AM 1520. Several times through the years one would play a particular record while the other one didn't or wouldn't. A good example would be the song you posted by The Third Rail. KOMA played it while WKY never charted it. I always liked the record, got a copy. Sort of reminded me of IT'S GOOD NEWS WEEK by the Hedgehoppers Anonymous.
You asked the question of when did one hear last the song MORNING MUCH BETTER by Ten Wheel Drive? Well, I've got to be honest. I have never heard it, don't have a copy of the record, it never made our local survey. First time I ever heard it when I played your posting of it.
Larry Neal
Actually surf music did pretty well here in Chicago on a regular basis, particularly for artists like The Beach Boys and Jan and Dean, who had more #1 Hits here in Chicago than they did nationally.  Even the '70's "Beach Baby" by First Class hit #1! 
The Third Rail single always reminded ME of "It's Good News Week", too!
As far as competing radio stations go, WLS and WCFL (our two 50,000 watt powerhouse AM radio stations) often did the same thing ... one would jump on a particular record and play the heck out of while the other station didn't even acknowledge its existence.  Occasionally, they would each chart different versions of the same record ... two that immediately come to mind are "Beautiful People" by Bobby Vee (#6 on WLS) and Kenny O'Dell (#17 on WCFL) and "Son Of My Father", #23 on WLS for Georgio, and #9 on WCFL for Chicory. (kk)
As for the Ten Wheel Drive song, it wasn't a particularly big or memorable hit here (although it DID reach #16 on WCFL and #21 on WLS at the time) ... but it probably hasn't been played here in Chicago since it's brief chart run in 1970.  Meanwhile it only climbed as high as #70 on The Billboard Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart.  (kk)

A week or two ago we ran a clip of British songstress Cilla Black in the recording studio working with Burt Bacharach ... now comes word of a brand new British made-for-TV bio-pic.
We might never get to see this one here in America (where Cilla only had one Top 40 Hit).  Back home in the UK she had nearly 20 and rode the charts for 12 years.  (Five of these made The Top Three including "Anyone Who Had A Heart" [#1, 1964], "You're My World" [#1, 1964], "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' [#2, 1965], "Surround Yourself With Sorrow" [#3, 1969] and "Something Tells Me Something Is Gonna Happen" [#3, 1971].)  She also hosted her own popular TV Series.  (kk)   

Is something wrong with Chet Coppock?  
It's been at least a week since I have heard that the legendary sports broadcaster has released a new book on August 15, called "Laying it on the Line," a look inside the mind, the life and nearly five-decade career of the colorful and exceptionally humble and modest Chicago-based sports media personality.
Thank you,
Steve Sarley   

Here's an update on that new Glen Campbell Documentary we told you about last week:    

They have set a release date for the new Glen Campbell documentary that follows him on his final concert tour.  It’s Oct. 24th.  Here a link for the powerful trailer for the movie.       
- Tom Cuddy   

I have to tell you that your website brought tears to my eyes last week.  I came across your First 45's feature for the very first time ... and memories came rushing back to me about my Mom ... who used to tell us whenever "Happy Together" by The Turtles came on the radio that this was the very first record she ever bought.  She would make all of us kids listen to it and sing along ... and a look of absolute joy would show on her face.  Mom's been gone for a while now ... and I haven't revisited that memory in a long, long time ... but last week you brought it all back.  (I couldn't have been more than 6 or 7 at the time.)
And then when I saw that you were going to see The Turtles in concert over the weekend it made me smile and wish that my mom could have seen it, too.  Thank you for making me remember something that otherwise may have stayed long forgotten.  It's what we would call "a good cry". Maureen  
We talk about it all the time ... it's the Power of the Music ... it cannot (and will not) be denied.  It means different things to different people ... but there is nothing stronger.  Certain songs have certain "trigger points" that emotionally effect each and every one of us ... good, bad or otherwise.  Like I've said SO many times before ... I know of no other medium that connects us the way music does.  
Our First 45's feature has been popular for quite some time ... for a while, Scott Shannon was even running it as a daily feature on The True Oldies Channel.  We still get additions to our rather lengthy list all the time.  (Seems like every time somebody new discovers it, they feel compelled to tell THEIR story too ... because, you know, EVERYBODY remembers their first!!!)  
You can check out HUNDREDS of entries at any of the links below:  
Click here: Forgotten Hits - FIRST 45's   
Click here: Forgotten Hits - More of Your FIRST 45's   
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Even MORE Of Your First 45's
Click here: Forgotten Hits - Can You Believe It?!?!? Even MORE Of Your FIRST 45's Memories!!!   

Speaking of The Turtles "Happy Together" concert, at the very last minute we were unable to go ... but fortunately long-time Forgotten Hits Reader Carolyn Mondragon was there ... and she files this report ...  

Hi Kent -  
I was trying to look for you but there was a good size audience! I had great seats, second row from the stage.  
No formal announcement was made of Gary Lewis not performing, but they had paper signs hanging by each entrance saying that he wouldn't be performing.  
Below is the order each performer came on and I will give you my opinions:   

MITCH RYDER: Talked to the audience reminiscing some old stories and his voice was in good form and he looked great.  The only song he sang that I thought was a bit "slowed down" was "Sock It To Me Baby". He closed with his rocker "Devil With the Blue Dress On" which sounded like the record!  

MARK FARNER, GRAND FUNK RAILROAD: By ALL means, in my opinion, the HIT of the show! I didn't realize all the hits his group had.  Very patriotic performer, and wowed the crowd with "We're An American Band", dedicating it to all our troops. He had three other songs including "The Locomotion", which was on target.  He showed off his great guitar skills and was an overall explosive entertainer dancing over the complete stage!! Wish I could have seen him and Grand Funk Railroad in their hey day!!  

CHUCK NEGRON, THREE DOG NIGHT: I've seen Chuck a few times prior and I felt he was in good voice. He had a comedic rapport with the audience with his funny stories in between songs! He opened with my favorite, "Mama Told Me Not To Come".  His set included "One is the Loneliest Number", Eli's Coming, and ended with "Joy to the World". He was first class in mentioning Corey Wells and Danny Hutton of the original group. He mentioned that he just turned 72 and has a 13 year old teenager, among two or three much older children and that's why he is working! Good, steady performance and the audience enjoyed him.
FLO AND EDDIE, THE TURTLES: What can I say? Flo is the clown and has the audience laughing from the beginning. Eddie is the one with the voice. They opened up with "She'd Rather Be With Me". They followed with "It Aint Me Babe' (getting the audience involved with the song), "You Babe", "Elenore" and closing with "Happy Together".  They were all over the stage, singing, dancing and talking to the audience! There was a lot of energy and motivation.  

What made the show EXTRA entertaining was the back drop showing each one in one of their old clips while they were singing!! The band was fantastic! I especially liked the keyboard player that did a lot of the back up vocals. There also was a bass guitar, lead guitar and a drummer - all very good musicians!  
Eddie announced all of the band members and where they were from and then each performer came back out and sang one of their numbers.  They ended all on the stage singing "Joy To The World", thanking the audience. I think everyone went home very entertained! And they mentioned another "Happy Together Tour in 2015". These great performers are like the Energizer Bunny: they keep going and going and are worth the price of admission!!!!!  
Carolyn Mondragon  
Thanks, Carolyn!  We looked forward to seeing this one all summer long so we were pretty disappointed that we had to miss it ... but thanks to you, we've got a nice play-by-play to share with our readers!  (kk)