Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Helping Out Our Readers

Let's take one last crack at HELPING OUT OUR READERS for 2014 ... 

>>>I am a fan and listener of the 60's oldies music.  I used to listen to the UK Top 20 as released  by the New Musical Express. I was very fond of a nice song of which I only remember some of the lyrics.  I am in search of its title and the name of the singer.  After writing down the following lyrics, I wonder if you can be of any help.
I studied Shakespeare when I was in school, thought Romeo was a joy.  I like the true way he loved Juliet, it was my ideal of a boy.

Romeo, why am I so in love with you? Romeo, is it you or the thing you do? 
Are you mine from the moment you said hello ... are you mine or just bluffing my Romeo?
That's all I remember.
Thank you for a reply. 

Al Fredazar  

The song is called Romeo by Petula Clark here is the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SX6LWek--6Q    
Take care, 
Rockin’ Lord Geoff (in England) 

The song with the references to Romeo was titled "Romeo" by Petula Clark recorded in 1961.  
Greg Campbell

You seem to know a lot about the older music.  I am 46.  When I was 13, my mom had a 45 and on the flip side of what she listened to was a song I loved. It was about a woman who had lost her love / spouse. She talks and sings in this song. 
The words I know go something like this: 
I met someone not so long ago - oh, I think you would have liked him.
I call him sugar and honey but I don't call him baby, my baby,
I can't call him baby, my baby. 
You were the only baby, my baby, for me. 
I have been looking for this for years ... do you think you could help me???  
Penny Seggerman
Well, Penny, we'll certainly give it a shot.  This one isn't familiar to me ... but perhaps one of our readers out there will recognize it and be able to provide the answer to your mystery.  Stay tuned!  (kk)

While doing a Google search for information about the band Horatio, I stumbled upon your post where Clark Besch talks about their version of Jim Croce’s song “Age” and makes the suggestion that it may just be Cashmen, Pastelli and West under another name.  Attached is the sleeve to the 45 rpm of the song and another song they did and, as you can see, it’s not a trio but a group who sang the song.  The song charted on Billboard in July 1969 at #119, but I’ve not been able to find any other info about this band.  Any clues? 
Jennifer V. 
Sorry, no ... when Clark introduced me to their version of "Age" that was the first time I had ever heard of them.  Whitburn's book describes them as "a folk-pop singer from Canada" ... so obviously that's not right either.  Let's see if anybody on the list comes back with anything.  (kk)

If anyone would like any more info on Birdlegs & Pauline (as mentioned in your column by Phil Nee), they're in my books.
Gary E. Myers / MusicGem  

Seems to me there was another club in Elgin called The Lottery that had bands and booze so maybe that takes it out of teen clubs. Also there was a Mousetrap Club for a short while in Elmhurst ... either on a Lake Street or the Frontage Road ... was about a half mile east of Coffee Break and believe me the clientele did not mix with each other.  I cannot believe the Riddles played there ... I thought they were loyal to the CB. 
Jim Sather 
Calling Guy Arnston, calling Guy Arnston ... can you help out with this one?  (kk)   

A long time back I tried to have a song identified with text lyrics only to no success.  I want to give it one more shot using the clip of the song I taped off the radio nearly 40 years ago on CKLW in Windsor-Detroit.  My guess is this is a minor / regional hit which helped satisfy CANCON requirements.  Any ID on the song and / or group would be appreciated.  
Uncle T. Jay 
The Vinyl Arkhives  
Well, I don't recognize it ... but if you're right, maybe one of our many Canadian readers will.  Let's give it a shot!  (kk) 

We had another reader send us EIGHT instrumental tracks to try to decipher ... as I've said SO many times before, instrumentals are ALWAYS the toughest as we simply have NOTHING to go on ... so unless somebody recognizes it IMMEDIATELY, we're probably not going to solve these.   Plus (quite honestly) it's hard enough to figure out ONE track, much less EIGHT!!!  (We're just not that type of "service").  And eight's a WHOLE lot!  (Most of these are lo-fidelity instrumentals and while I do recognize the melodies on a couple of them, I don't know that ANY of them ever achieved "hit status" to the degree that we'd be able to figure out the artist featured in these clips.  We're going "beg off" on these for the website ... we're just not set up to handle it ... and quite honestly, EIGHT is a little bit "greedy"!!! (lol)  But if anybody out there feels up to the challenge, we will email you the entire folder to tunes for you to try and identify.  If you DO come up with the correct answer(s), please respond by "Pista Number" and list the title and/or artist for each.  Just drop me a line at forgottenhits@aol.com if you're interested.  Thanks!  (kk)   

Hi, guys!
I was looking for two songs and you had one: 7-up [the only good one, #38].  The other one I wanted was "Lemon Up".  It was sung in a soft voice reminiscent of the 1910 Fruitgum Company or the Ohio Express. 
All I remember is ... "We've got the juice of one whole lemon in lemon up".  I loved the song except for one thing: the singer was one of those people who couldn't pronounce the short "e" properly if you spread it on his tongue and clapped him on the back.  He kept singing "limmon", for which I have no patience.
I tried finding the songs on-line; I thought they'd be on a site like youtube, but, no such luck.
Thought maybe you might recognize it (?)
Anyway, thank-you, and Happy Christmas, Hanukkah, or whatever (________!!!)
M.R. Greene-Peluso
Once again, I'll defer to the list.  Anybody???  (kk)   

A few weeks back we helped this reader unload THOUSANDS of radio station surveys ... and now he's got more collectibles in his midst ... figured we'd run this one past the list to see if anybody was interested.  If so, drop me a line and I'll hook you two guys up!  (kk)
Ok ... now I have 765 stickers from USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, England including 1980's PIRATE RADIO stickers and promotional items.
Also have over 1500 radio station coverage maps all from the early 70's.
Think any of your readers might be interested in these?
Austin, Texas  

Hey Kent,
Last night, I watched the classic sci-fi space movie from 1972, "Silent Running", starring Bruce Dern. I've probably seen it at least twenty times. When I saw the flick, as it first hit the theaters, I was pleasantly surprised to hear Joan Baez singing a couple songs on the soundtrack. Her voice is so recognizable. I really liked one of them, "Rejoice in the Sun", but didn't know how to get a recording of it, until years later, when the whole soundtrack became available through Nostalgiphon Records. Before that, I had to resort to recording it, using a reel-to-reel tape recorder, with the mic close to the speaker of my TV set, when the movie was first broadcast. Recently, I have been researching Baez's "Diamond's and Rust", and found out that Decca did release "Rejoice.." and the other song from the movie, "Silent Running", on a 45, back then. I had no idea it was out there, or certainly would have gotten a copy. I'm really surprised that the record didn't go anywhere, because it was on the heels of her big hit, "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down". Do you have any info on if it charted?
- John LaPuzza 

Checking the most authorative source on this subject, I immediately went to my Joel Whitburn book collection.  Neither side charted in Billboard, Cash Box or Record World ... I even checked each of their "Bubbling Under" charts.  (kk)

Hello ...
I'm from Turkey. Could you please tell me the name of the song? I couldn't find anywhere. Thanks!

Murat Inci
This is going to be a tough one ... it very likely could be an original composition posted by the author's band. (Instrumentals are ALWAYS tough ... but my hunch is that we're not going to find this one!)  Unless somebody out there has a clue???  Let us know!  (kk)

Here's one we WERE able to solve right before going to press ...

Can you shed any light on the song that Ray is looking for?
Clark Weber  
I'm sure you have had experiences where you tried to remember a song, an artist, a record from the past, and just couldn't put your finger on it.  
Well, I've been racking my brain trying to zero-in on a record I played often on the air in the late 1950s.   
The song title was "Circus." Upbeat, but not rock 'n roll.
I think it was recorded by Tony Martin several years earlier, but the version I'm trying to remember / obtain, was by a black-sounding male vocalist ... someone like Billy Eckstine, Al Hibbler or Arthur Prysock.  
The song  was composed by Louis Alter and Bob Russell, and one of the lyric lines is ... "daring young love on a high trapeze, we certainly flew through the air with the greatest of ease ..."
I've been all over the Internet trying to nail it down, but to no avail. Maybe you remember, or know someone who might.  
Sorry, but I have no recollection of this one at all ... a bit before my time ... but nothing charted during "The Rock Era" with the title "The Circus".
I'm happy to put this in our next Helping Out Our Readers segment and see if anything comes back.
Using Ray's Tony Martin reference as a guide, I see that Martin charted with "Circus" in 1949 ... it went to #24 on the Billboard Chart.  A competing version charted by Bill Farrell.  My guess is the black vocalist he's referring to simply covered the song several years later on an LP ... but it was not a hit.  I even checked Billboard's R&B Charts for this era and found nothing.
I did find a copy of this recorded by Sammy Davis, Jr. ... could THAT be the one he's thinking of?
Sorry I can't be of more help.  Let's see if the list comes back with anything!  (kk)  
Thanks so much for doing the due diligence on the song. I’ve vaguely remember the song and have passed along your e-mail to Ray. Incidentally Ray was the Production Director at WLS back in the 60’s and created all those wonderful promos for Ron Riley, Art Roberts and the Silver Dollar Survey!
And then ... after Ray had a chance to review my email ...
Musical Mystery Solved ... See below.
Thanks again, Kent, and Merry Xmas!  
Thanks for looking
into this, and thanks to Kent for the info he supplied.  
I was aware of the Tony Martin version, but Kent's mention of Bill Farrell struck a note. I looked into that further on the Internet, and even found a youtube posting of the entire recording by Farrell, with a picture of the MGM 45 rpm label that I remember so well!
Farrell's single of "Circus" is the exact one that I recall playing as a deejay back in the late 1950s at a small radio station in Schenectady, NY, my first commercial job right out of the Air Force.  It was a kick to hear it again!
Again, thanks a lot ... and please pass my thanks along to Kent, too.
Merry Christmas.
Glad we could help ... because quite honestly I NEVER would have found Bill Farrell otherwise ... truth be told, I've never even heard of him before!  Not at all the direction I started investigating, especially when Ray was referencing "NAME" singers like Billy Eckstine, Al Hibbler or Arthur Prystock.  (I started thinking "Maybe Brook Benton?  Russ Hamilton? Nat King Cole? Or Sammy Davis, Jr., which is why when I found that Davis HAD recorded the tune, that might be the version he was referring to.) 
Now here is that YouTube clip so the rest of our readers can enjoy it, too!  (kk)

>>>"Go Go Radio Moscow" is another forgotten oldie worth pursuing due to its reflection of the Cold War state of affairs in the 60's and due to its humor and use of current tunes in 1967 (I think).  Nikita the K is the credited artist.  (Riley Cooper) 
>>> This one never made the charts so I was not familiar with it at all ... is it a break-in record (ala Dickie Goodman?)  I know Dickie did "Russian Bandstand" (as Spencer and Spencer in 1959) and also did something called "Radio Russia", too.  According to Joel Whitburn's book, Nikita the K was Ed Labunski, a jingles writer from Buffalo, New York.  His record "Go Go Radio Moscow" featured parodies of "Tell It To The Rain" by The Four Seasons, "Georgy Girl" by The Seekers and "We Ain't Got Nothin' Yet" by The Blues Magoos, all tracks from 1967, which is when this single was released.  It "bubbled under" in Billboard for three weeks, peaking at #105. Would love to hear the Nikita the K track ... anybody got a copy to share?  (kk)

UPDATE:  Several FH Readers sent in copies of this one ... so here's YOUR chance to hear it now, too!

Kent ... 
According to Ron Smith's book "Eight Days A Week", on 11/19/1957, WCFL radio in Chicago bans all Elvis Presley records and is promptly picketed by the local Elvis Fan Club. 
Maybe you can ask one of your DJ friends who were around at the time about it.  
Frank B.    
It seems to me that we've addressed this one once before.  In that WCFL wasn't a rock and roll radio station yet in 1957 ... (they wouldn't turn to popular Top 40 / Rock And Roll Music until late 1965) ... there's got to be some sort of mix up.  Possibly another Chicago radio station (???)  Back in the mid-'50's, WIND, WJJD and WGN were all playing Top 40 Music.  It wouldn't have been WJJD as we have charts from this era showing Elvis doing quite well ... so I'm thinking maybe it was one of the others.  (Any clarification on this Ron?)  kk  

I've attached the Billboard magazine article about it. It was WCFL.
Thanks for telling Frank my book must be wrong.

By the way, you're right. You covered this four years ago -- and the same person asked the question.  

From Forgotten Hits on 11/23/2010: 

Kent ... 
Got this off Ron Smith's Oldies Calendar:
On 11/19/57 - WCFL radio in Chicago bans all Elvis Presley records and is picketed by local Elvis Fan Club.  Sounds like an interesting story.  Is there anybody you can talk to at WCFL to get more details ?
Frank B.

Honestly, I've never heard this before ... and at first thought it must be an error of some sort ...
WCFL wasn't playing rock and roll music in 1957 ... they didn't switch over to Top 40 until late 1965 ... but I did some Internet searching and found that WCFL WAS, in fact, broadcasting in 1957 ... just not (as I suspected) playing rock and roll. So honestly, banning Elvis seems like a moot point to me ... seeing as how they weren't even playing him in the first place! (I mean, who would notice?!?!?)
I found a couple of other websites that state this same historical anniversary as fact ... one of which attributes the banning to the release of Elvis' new film "Jailhouse Rock" ... so who am I to argue? (I had just never heard this before!)
Being otherwise totally unclear and unknowledgeable in this area, I went straight to YOUR source ... and asked Ron Smith about it (kk):
Like most stations in those days, WCFL had individual shows. Guys like Art Hellyer, in fact, worked for several stations at one time. You've certainly seen the "DJ Roundup Of Top Tunes" published in the Chicago Tribune each week in those days where individual DJs would list their own top five tunes. I always assumed that the station bosses told any music announcers working for them not to play Elvis. But no, there wouldn't have been an official station "playlist" with him on it. The edict would have kept the jocks though, from playing Elvis' newly-released Christmas album, which many stations found blasphemous. (Bandleader Sammy Kaye said that it, “borders on the sacrilegious.  Presley has gone too far this time”). A DJ in Portland, Oregon, was fired for playing three cuts -- "White Christmas," "O Little Town Of Bethlehem" and "Silent Night"! Dick Whittinghill in Los Angeles wouldn't play the album because he said, it would be "like having [stripper] Tempest Storm give Christmas gifts to my children." Elvis had played the International Amphitheatre eight months earlier and it wouldn't surprise me if the Chicago Federal of Labor - Industrial Union Council -- owners of the
station -- had decided to make hay by getting moralistic and banning the King altogether. Of course, if anyone had actually listened to the album they would have heard perfectly respectful versions of the gospel tunes "Peace In The Valley," "It Is No Secret What God Can Do" and "Take My Hand Precious Lord." Of all the stations in town who could have banned Elvis, it's true that WCFL doing so probably would have hurt him the least. I'm sure the Colonel laughed about it all the way to the bank.  And when Elvis was drafted by the Army a few months later and served his country overseas, everything blew over.  

Ron Smith   
So there you have it ... again (apparently!)  Didn't realize that we had gone this in-depth the first time around.  Well, at least we're consistent!!!
Thanks, Ron ... was in NO way implying that you must be wrong ... it just didn't add up ... and, looking at the facts, I have to reiterate my earlier point ... WHO would have noticed WCFL banning The King???  (lol)  Thanks for clearing this up ... again!  (kk)