Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Some Of Your Mid-Week Comments

re:  Paul Revere's Raiders:
We all know how bad radio is in not playing all the great hits we grew up with ... but it is extremely sad that a band doesn't play all their hits. Too Much Talk and Don't Take It So Hard were big hits here in Chicago and just so happen to be two of my favorites. If Paul Revere and the Raiders weren't playing them, why should radio? 
C'mon guys! People who make the effort to go see Paul Revere & The Raiders or now Paul Revere's Raiders know your songs ... so play 'em all. If I go to the Arcadia Theater to see them this spring I'd like to hear Mr. Sun, Mr. Moon too. I really don't need to hear any cover songs ... unless it's your cover of The Shape of Things To Come which is a fantastic cover.
Mike Hartman
Because much of the old act consisted of more comedy and antics on stage, many of the band's biggest hits were reduced to medley form ... my understanding is that they are now performing full-length versions of many of these tunes.  (One highlight for me a few years ago was seeing a healthy Paul Revere crank out a KILLER version of "Like Long Hair" on the keyboard ... an absolutely STELLAR performance.)
The Raiders had a LOT of hits ... 21 Top 50 National Hits ... I'd love to hear them do "Mr. Sun, Mr. Moon", "Him Or Me, What's It Gonna Be", "Birds Of A Feather", "I Had A Dream" (one of MY personal favorites), "Ups And Downs", "Let Me" and a few other classics, too ... but you can only squeeze so much into a show.  That being said, this has ALWAYS been one of the most entertaining bands out there ... so I'm anxious to see the revamped show when it hits The Arcada Theatre on May 17th.
Meanwhile, Mark Lindsay fans can catch him as part of the Happy Together Tour again this year.  (Talk about feeling "shorted" ... during a show like this you're lucky to get SIX Raiders and/or solo hits all night.  I'd be curious to see what Mark does during a full-length solo show!)  He DOES put on one heck of a concert, however, and with a line-up this year that also includes The Cowsills, The Buckinghams, The Grass Roots and The Turtles, it'll be one heck of a show to see!  (You'll find more on The Raiders, Buckinghams and Grass Roots below.)  kk  

Here's a photo sent to me from Paul Revere's Raiders Show mentioned today in FH.
We ran a short comment from Mark Lindsay after Paul Revere's passing last year.  Now, you can read his full-length tribute to his former partner here:  
Click here: In Tribute - Mark Lindsay   

Hi Kent, 
The letter you received from Tommy Scheckel, the Raiders' drummer, was remarkably engaging.I met Tommy for the first time last summer at Ron Onesti's place in what I assume was Paul Revere's last Chicago area appearance.Tommy really struck me as a down to earth guy whose passion for the band and its musical legacy is absolutely air tight.As for his drumming, son of a gun, he torments the skins. His every punch to the snare reminds me of Joe Frazier throwing a left hook.Plus, and this is the take home point ... Tommy Scheckel is a complete showman. His body language behind his drum set is a show in itself.  I've seen one hell of a lot of great drummers over the years, as I know you have.  I also know the world great is applied too liberally in a society where every "kid gets a ribbon." 
But, stop the music ... Tommy is great! He's a show stopper, a guy whose appeal is worth price of admission.  Can't wait to catch up with Tom and the group May 17th at the Arcada."Good ... good ... good ... good thing ... such a good thing girl."
Chet Coppock
Author: Chet Coppock: Laying it on the Line  
Host: Chicago Blackhawks Heritage Series 
As another Forgotten Hits Reader put it after seeing the Paul Revere and the Raiders show at The Arcada last year, "Tommy is the tit's nipples!"  (And, for the record, no, I will NEVER let him live that down!!!) 
You're absolutely right ... Tommy is a TRUE showman ... it's hard to take your eyes off him when all of that's going on.  Prior to joining up with The Raiders a few years ago, Tommy drummed for The Buckinghams for 25 years ... and before that, he kept things rockin' for Jonathan Brandmeier's Leisure Suits ... and he's just one heck of a genuinely nice guy ... I'm happy to know him and count him as a true friend.  (Of course that STILL didn't get me a ticket on the upcoming Where The Action Is cruise, but that's ok ... who'd want to leave Chicago now with the kind of winter we're having this year?!?!)  kk   

re:  Speaking Of The Arcada Theatre:  
Man, the hits just keep on coming!!!  Ron Onesti has added some MAJOR shows to the line up this year!  Just announced ... Poco with Firefall (September 25th), Blood, Sweat and Tears (featuring Bo Bice) October 30th, the return of Johnny Rivers (November 14th), Christopher Cross (November 21st) ... they join Alan Parsons (May 29th), Herman's Hermits featuring Peter Noone (May 30th), Gino Vanelli (one of the best shows I've seen there these past few years), May 16th, Edgar Winter and Rick Derringer (May 23rd), Loverboy and The Romantics (on Valentine's Day, February 14th), Eddie Money (March 20th), David Cassidy (March 26th), Randy Bachman (April 2nd), The Charlie Daniels Band (April 10th), Country Legends Loretta Lynn (March 27th) and Mickey Gilley (October 25th) and much, much more. 
Full details and ticket information are ALWAYS available on the OShows Website:!upcoming-shows/cnbn   

re:  The Little River Band:  
Congrats on a great job handling the L.R.B. fiasco!
You kicked the fake, phony, imposter bands collective arses.
Scott Shannon  

Nice work, Kent, on the Little River Band saga.  
Why doesn't someone book Jim Peterik and the Ides of March on the Tonight Show!   Jim and his original bandmates have been together for 50 years!   Now that would be legit and a great show!    Somebody call Fallon!  
We have actually been working behind the scenes for the past two years trying to get The Ides Of March (or, at the very least, Jim Peterik) booked on The David Letterman Show.  Now that Letterman is stepping down, it's less and less likely to every happen.
Band leader Paul Shaffer regularly will go into a commercial break by playing "Vehicle" or "Eye Of The Tiger", so he's clearly a fan ... our suggestion has been to let Jim sit in with the band one night and perform full-length versions of both of these hits ... yet we can't seem to get past the armed-guards surround Shaffer from even considering this suggestion.
If anybody out there has an "in" to help make this happen, we'd love to hear from you ... I think it would be a blast!  (Coolest night of all to do this would be March 15th ... The Ides Of March)!!!  (kk)   

I think Forgotten Hits did a great job of exposing the current line-up of The Little River Band for what they really are. Maybe the other media sources didn't cite your research as a source of their own, but WE all know when and where this story really started.  Congratulations on another great job.
Hi Kent,
With all the controversy regarding The Little River Band over original and non original band members, it got me thinking about how many concerts My Wife and I have enjoyed over the years of our favorite bands that didn't have all original members.
For example, over the summer we saw Boston and while they put on a great show, there is only one original member, Tom Scholz. Sadly, we know that Brad Delp passed away a few years and those are big shoes to fill because of Brad's talent and unique vocals. At what point though does a band start to actually become somewhat of a tribute band because of the lack of the original band. I know sometimes band members come and go over the years you and can't expect a band to stay together and still have all the original members, I understand that. I just find that some of the excitement is lost when the classic lineup of a band are no longer together.
I'm interested in how you and your readers feel about this?
All The Best,
Cory Cooper
Elvis Historian, Consultant, Technical Advisor   

How can you - within the same 24 hour period - praise Paul Revere's Raiders for carrying on without a single original member and then criticize The Little River Band for keeping the music alive with no original members but a lead singer who's been with the band for 30 years?  Kinda sounds like you're talking out of both sides of your mouth on this one.
Addressing both emails above:
As time goes on, I realize (no, not singing Chicago's "Colour My World" ... all right, well KINDA singing it) it's getting tougher and tougher to keep original members on board.  This could be for any variety of circumstances, the most FINAL deciding factor being the death of said members.  THEY ain't comin' back.
In the case of Paul Revere's Raiders, some of these guys in the current line-up were with Paul for 30-40 years ... if that doesn't make them a Raider, I don't know what does ... and, at the time, because Paul was still up there running the show, it all made sense.  Just before Paul passed away it was one of his dying wishes that the band carry on without him ... preserve this great music and keep it alive.  He rechristened the band "Paul Revere's Raiders" ... NO misconceptions about who they were or what they were doing.  As such, they now feature video clips of their fearless leader as part of their show ... and by all accounts, the fans seem to love it.
Paul wasn't the lead singer of the original band ... that title belonged to Mark Lindsay and the band was often listed as Paul Revere and the Raiders featuring Mark Lindsay.  Mark also handled a lot of the songwriting and producing duties ... and was VERY instrumental in the band's overall sound and direction.  Paul, however, WAS the leader on stage ... HE was the showman who made sure things stayed entertaining ... that (and his namesake) were what drove the band and kept them around 40-something years after the hits stopped happening.  While I think a LOT of Raiders fans would find it to be INCREDIBLY cool if Lindsay joined the current line-up as their front man (much as I LOVE Darren Dowler's vocals, showmanship and presence), I just don't think it's ever going to happen.  (Even if he did, they'd STILL have to bill themselves as Paul Revere's Raiders.  As such I can accept them as two completely separate entities ... and enjoy them both accordingly.
If you read Forgotten Hits regularly, you already know that there's been a lot of fuss recently about Creedence Clearwater Revisited ... Stu Cook and Doug Clifford made up (depending on what part of their history you're referring to) either 1/2 or 2/3 of the original band.  While John Fogerty wrote and sang every hit Creedence Clearwater Revival ever had, the one-two punch of their rhythm section helped drive that sound home.  While I've never seen them (and I've chosen NOT to see them ... because if I want to hear CCR songs performs, I want to hear them by the guy who wrote and sang them, and NOT the drummer and bassist who provided the beat). However, from what I've heard, they're supposed to be very good ... just not who (if given the choice) I'd pay to see.  I will say this, however ... their very name "Credence Clearwater REVISITED" implies the fact that they are doing a TRIBUTE to this music ... and, to me, the fact that the band still contains two original members, makes the whole thing that much more legitimate.
Now I can already hear the arguments coming in ... how come 40 years as a Raider makes you a "Raider" but 30 years in The Little River Band doesn't make you a bonafide member.  It does ... Wayne Nelson has devoted the last three decades of his career to keeping this music alive and as such, I commend him for it.  What I disapprove of when it comes to The Little River Band is the fact that they PRETEND to be the original band when clearly they're not.  They seem to have to problem with putting on false illusions with their audience to make a buck off the songs that they had absolutely NOTHING to do with.  (Think about this for a second ... it takes a LOT of balls to be willing to go on TV and participate in a 40th Anniversary salute when, in fact, not a SINGLE member of the current band was there 40 years ago ... or had ANY hand in creating those hits ... yet, until they got busted, they were perfectly fine with doing so ... and then LIE about it on their Facebook Page stating that the reason the booking broke down was because THEY wanted to do new material but The Tonight Show wanted them to do the old hits, never mentioning the fact that they were legally blocked from performing those old hits by the original guys preventing the performance rights to the songs they had originally written.  The whole premise of their appearance was their 40th anniversary ... and they were "disappointed" because The Tonight Show wanted them to perform two of their biggest hits???  Would ANYBODY out there really buy this line of crap???)
Dennis Edwards and The Temptations Review is a somewhat similar situation.  (We saw them last year two.)  The group contains NO original members (although original Temp Paul Williams' son is in the line-up.)  Edwards, however, sang lead vocals on some of The Temptations' very biggest hits so, to a degree, this can be forgiven, as long as the show stays faithful to the original music.  A competing version of The Temptations (featuring Otis Williams) is also out on the road right now.  Williams' claim to fame is that he is the only remaining "common thread" to all things Temptations-wise since the very beginning.  But Otis never sang lead on any of the hits ... so he has surrounded himself with some stellar singers to do justice to those songs.  NEITHER group is 100% legitimate in my eyes ... but again, the death of four out of five original members GREATLY changes the rules in this regard.
Much like Paul Revere's Raiders, Rob Grill reportedly designated the current Grass Roots line-up to carry on his music after his death.  We've ripped hard on these guys, too, over the years, because I believe they are misleading their audience by continuing to use The Grass Roots' name without a single original member on board.  The LEAST they could do is call the band The New Grass Roots ... or The Grass Roots Legacy ... or how about "Golden Grass: The Music Of The Grass Roots"?  ANY of these would be preferable to continuing to use the name The Grass Roots when, in fact, not a single member of the current line-up had anything at all to do with creating this music.
Yet they'll be part of The Happy Together Tour again this year, joining The Buckinghams (who still have TWO original members, but not the original lead singer) and, believe it or not, Mark Lindsay, performing as "original lead singer of Paul Revere and the Raiders".
Like I said, tougher and tougher to keep the "real deal" up there on stage when so many of these guys aren't even speaking to each other anymore.
Peter Noone, the voice and look of Herman's Hermits, has to perform as Herman's Hermits featuring Peter Noone because Drummer Barry Whitwam owns the Hermits name and uses it in Europe.  And how about The Guess Who, continuing to perform under that name without the incredible, one-of-a-kind vocals of Burton Cummings?  The list goes on and on ... and it all boils down to one thing ... and it's something we've been preaching for the past fifteen years now ... BUYER BEWARE ... KNOW in advance just who and what you're seeing BEFORE you lay out the money for tickets.
Truth be told, MOST people in the audience don't know and don't care ... they just love the songs and want to hear them performed again in a live setting ... and that is how many of these artists have been able to survive for decades now, churning out the hits of yesterday.  But some of the "purists" need to know what they're paying for.  (We have the same problem here in Chicago on a local level with some of our '60's bands.  I've seen fans come up to Bruce Mattey of The New Colony Six after a show and gush about how his performance of "I Will Always Think About You" sounded "just like the record" ... but Bruce wasn't ON the record ... he didn't join the band until the '80's.  That's Ronnie Rice singing the hit single.  Now don't get me wrong, Bruce does a GREAT job singing this tune ... but using the collective "we" when relaying band experiences from 40-50 years ago ... when today only ONE original member is still on stage ... IS a bit deceiving to the audience ... yet we see this done all the time ... by virtually EVERYBODY who's still out there making music.)  Folks will say, after a Buckinghams concert, "they still sound pretty good" ... but the guys on stage never sang a single note of the hits other than the background vocals.  Most fans simply don't care ... they just want to hear the music.  All we try to do here is "educate" those fans ahead of time so that they know in advance just what they're paying for and what they're going to see.  (kk)    

re:  This And That:
Vintage Vinyl News is reporting that Kenny Rogers will be reuniting with The First Edition later this month for a special Q&A Session at his "Through The Years" Exhibit, currently on display in Nashville through June 14th.
This special event will take place on Saturday, January 17th, at 2 pm Central Time ... and fans who can't be there live and still watch the whole thing unfold via this link:  
VVN reports that Rogers will be joined for this very special event by Mike Settle, Terry Williams, Mary Miller and Gene Lorenzo.  (I'm a bit surprised to see drummer Mickey Jones' name missing from this list ... Mickey has gone on to have quite an acting career since the break up of the band.)
The First Edition were formed by former members of The New Christy Minstrels, Rogers, Settle, Williams, Mickey Jones and Thelma Comacho.  Comacho left the group in 1968 and was replaced by Mary Arnold (now Miller) and Gene Lorenzo came on board in 1972, just before the band's demise and the launch of Kenny's incredible solo career.
We've covered these guys extensively in Forgotten Hits over the years ... here's a 4-Part Series we did back in 2013 ...
And you'll find a review of Kenny's biography "Luck ... Or Something Like It" (HIGHLY recommended, by the way ... one of the best and most entertaining music biographies I've ever read) here:    

Incredibly, Rolling Stone (of all people!) ran a piece on Rogers about a week ago, spotlighting the 35th anniversary of his "Coward Of The County" topping Billboard's Country Singles Chart.
Joseph Hudak writes:
After a pair of consecutive Number One love songs in 1979 - "She Believes In Me" and "You Decorated My Life" - Kenny Rogers released about the furthest thing possible from a sappy, soaring ode:  the revenge story-song "Coward Of The County".
"Coward" addressed some pretty serious topics, even in a genre known for its depiction of tragic lives.  To sum up:  the titular wimp, named Tommy, is by all accounts "yellow", steering clear of any and all confrontation because of his father's dying words to "walk away from trouble".  But when his girlfriend Becky is victimized by the dastardly "Gatlin boys" well, all hell breaks loose.
(Kenny changed the lyrics to "The Gatlin Boys" as an inside joke to his tour-mates Larry Gatlin and The Gatlin Brothers, another huge country act at the time. - kk) 
"Victimized," however, is putting it mildly. In one of the most uncomfortable lines in the country lyrics canon, the Gatlins "took turns at Becky" — and as Rogers intones ominously, "and there was three of them." Taking a moment to picture the meaning behind those words, it's hard to stifle the "ew" that inevitably rises up from within the gut. Yet fans of all ages were innocently singing along as "Coward" became both a country and pop hit, peaking at Number Three on the Billboard Hot 100. 
But perhaps we were all just cheering Tommy's metamorphosis, as he transforms from wuss to ass-whipper when he tracks down the Gatlin boys in a local bar. Locking the door behind him, he has it out with the rapists and drops a movie-hero one-liner when he watches the last of the trio fall: "This one's for Becky." 
Now, "Coward of the County" doesn't expressly state that ol' Tommy shot up his nemeses, but a little gunplay is more than likely — three-against-one odds aren't exactly in Tommy's favor. And what's a revenge anthem without a murder? Or three.
The first time I ever heard "Coward Of The County" my IMMEDIATE reaction was "He just sang the whole movie of 'Straw Dogs'!!!"
Of course back then "Straw Dogs" meant the Dustin Hoffman - Susan George movie, which I found to be very powerful at the time ... especially since Hoffman was and remains one of my all-time favorite actors ... I love the way he completely embodies EVERY role ... and this was a good one.  (They remade this film a few years ago with James Marsden and Kate Bosworth and, while somewhat "modernized" ... and with a GREAT soundtrack ... the film kicks off with The Monkees' "Goin' Down", one of my "frantic favorites", this one just didn't have the "pop" and appeal of the original.  You'll find the remake on cable tv all the time - with a one star review - but RARELY see the original listed.)
I will admit to being a Kenny Rogers fan throughout my life ... and his country career caused him to skyrocket in a ways no one thought imaginable.  (As mentioned earlier, his biography is a fascinating, entertaining read ... pick it up if you get the chance.)  Kenny was open to trying just about ANYTHING ... and during those magical moments, EVERYTHING seemed to work ... including collaborations with everyone from Barry Gibb, Dolly Parton and Sheena Easton to Lionel Richie, Michael Jackson, Ronnie Milsap and Kim Carnes.
As Hudak mentions in his piece, "Coward Of The County" went to #1 on Billboard's Country Chart ... but what he FAILS to mention is that this was Kenny's FIFTH solo #1 Record in a row ... or that he topped Billboard's Country Singles Chart an incredible 21 TIMES between 1977 and 2000.  That list includes classics like "Lucille", "The Gambler", "She Believes In Me", "Lady", "Love Will Turn You Around", "Islands In The Stream" and "Buy Me A Rose" (featuring Alison Krause and Billy Dean), which topped the chart at the turn of the century.  (kk)

In case you missed Jim Peterik on the Jim Bohannon show, you can hear it here:
I believe it starts about 50 minutes into the show.
Some of the stories you've heard before, but there's also a clue to some of the medley songs they will be adding to Ides set soon.
Clark Besch
I wasn't able to "listen live" the night he appeared ... so, for the benefit of any other FH Readers who happened to miss it, the archive link is above.  Thanks, Clark!  (kk)   

Don't be surprised to find '60's pop star Andy Kim back on the charts in the not too distant future.  Rolling Stone is reporting a new collaboration between Kim and Kevin Drew on a remake of his Top 40 Hit "Shoot 'em Up Baby".  You can read all about it ... and hear the reworking here: 
>>>Eddie Albert, of course, would go on to most famously portray Oliver Wendell Douglas on the hit TV Series "Green Acres", becoming ALMOST as famous as Arnold Ziffel in the process.  I always liked Albert as the warden in the original film version of "The Longest Yard" ... a TOTALLY different type of role for him after his television sitcom days.  (kk) 
I forget sometimes how much older I am than the bulk of the Forgotten Hits group. It's not a bad thing or even a good thing, it's just a thing thing. Reading about Eddie Albert drove it all home once again. You see "Green Acres" and I see the classic "Roman Holiday" for which Eddie received a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination. He lost to another relic of the past, Frank Sinatra. You see "The Longest Yard" and I see "Attack" with Eddie as a sniveling cowardly army captain who manages to get his people killed while he stays alive. I also see "Oklahoma!" and a host of old classic movies.  
On the other hand, I never knew about his recording career. So age differential notwithstanding, I get a kick out of Forgotten Hits and I'm glad I get to read it every day.
I knew Eddie Albert had a long-standing career PRIOR to "Green Acres" ... but that's probably the role that most popularized his career with the masses. (By the same token, those "old timers" who had stuck with him earlier on for his Academy Award-worthy roles must have been APPAULED to see Eddie succumb to the boob tube and take on the role of Oliver Wendell Douglas!)  I don't know if I'd go so far as to say that Albert had a "recording career" ... probably more of something that he dabbled in than anything else ... although he certainly had a career in musicals and theater ... I just mean I don't think most would consider him to be a recording star.
Age is relative ... Eddie took the role of Oliver Wendell Douglas at the age of 59, ten years before he made "The Longest Yard".  (I only mentioned that one because A) it is SO far superior to the Adam Sandler remake that seems to be airing on cable 24/7 and B) it was SUCH a departure from the last really big role we knew him from ... I totally LOVED him playing the hard-assed warden.
But thank you, Hil ... as a long-time, ORIGINAL reader of Forgotten Hits, you've managed to reaffirm my boast that we continue to offer something for EVERYBODY!!!  (lol)  kk    

I am like Gary in that I did not know that Eddie Albert had a record called FALL AWAY.  I found the same you tube on the internet and played it just like he. I was also reminded of a record Eddie Albert made in 1956 called LITTLE CHILD which I do believe charted.
Larry Neal
"Little Child", recorded by Eddie Albert and Sonrda Lee, peaked at #56 on the Billboard Chart in 1956.  According to Joel Whitburn's book, Sondra Lee is his daughter.  (kk)

Hi Kent,
I can’t recall the name of the Joel Whitburn book coming out this month that you had recommended so highly a few months ago. Can you remind me of the title? I enjoy your great newsletter!  (I’m a former Sony sales / marketing manager [25 years!] who worked with Bill Hengels … he’s the one who set me up with Forgotten Hits! I sent him a note yesterday, and he seems really positive … I hope to catch up with him soon.)
Thanks much,
Mike Stineman
Joel's latest is his Comparison Chart Book ... for the first time EVER, listing the peak performance of every charted record in Billboard, Cash Box and Record World, side-by-side for the years 1954 - 1982.  (I've been waiting a LONG time for this one!!!)  More information can be found here: ... and you can still take advantage of the $5.00 off pre-order special sale price.  (Books are expected to start shipping later this month!)  If this is your first Record Research Book, you couldn't make a better choice!  (kk)
Hi Kent -
Happy New Year!
I had the privilege today to get to see a small, intimate setting concert by two former members of the Highwaymen, Alan Scharf and Roy Connors. All of us "oldies" in the audience were just singing along, having a grand old time, I felt like I was back in the Folk Music Club in high school in the 60's! They not only played their songs, and a few folk show tunes like "They Call The Wind Mariah" and "Summertime", but told stories about how they appeared on Hullabaloo with the Everly Brothers, when they had just gotten out of the service and were two young kids with guitars on their backs. We heard "This Little Light of Mine", "If I Had A Hammer", "This Land Is Your Land" and many others. I am enclosing a photo and some videos that I hope work. Unfortunately, the one of "Michael" decided half way thru on my camera that it could not record any more so I picked up the end on my phone. I'm not sure if any of them are print-worthy. Just wanted to say how cool it was!
Thanks, Eileen.  The Highwaymen, of course, were part of the folk boom that hit The States in the early '60's.  They hit Billboard's Top 20 with "Michael" (#1, 1961) and "Cotton Fields (#13, 1962), both of which are represented on video here. 
Unfortunately, the website doesn't treat these videos well ... so I was unable to post them.  However, for anyone interested in seeing them I'll be happy to forward via email.  (There are three clips total, each running about a minute, featuring the two above mentioned hits as well as "This Land Is Your Land".)  Cool to see that these guys are still out there doing it ... but in the event that you don't already know, Joel Whitburn's book doesn't show EITHER of these guys as original Highwaymen.  He says the hit-making line-up consisted of Dave Fisher (who died in 2010), Chan Daniels (who died in 1975), Bob Burnett, Steve Butts and Steve Trott ... so who the heck are THESE guys???  (Once again it sounds like they might be out there telling stories about songs and events that they didn't actually take part in ... check out our Little River Band piece above!!!)  
I did a little more research and, according to Wikipedia, the original group broke up in 1964 ... Fisher then reformed with all new sidemen and this is where Scharf and Connors came on board ... so I guess they WOULD have been in the line-up that appeared on Hullabaloo ... but had nothing at all to do with the hits.  (The original Highwaymen charted for the very last time in 1962.)  kk 

Curtis Lee, best remembered for his early Phil Spector production of "Pretty Little Angel Eyes" (#7) in 1961, died Thursday (January 8) of cancer while visiting doctors in San Diego. The Yuma, Arizona, native was 75. Groomed to be a teen idol after Elvis went into the Army (he had previously recorded three singles while still in his teens in Arizona as well as two more in Hollywood), Curtis was signed by Ray Peterson's Dunes Records in New York in 1960. However, his early recordings -- including the bubbling-under "Pledge Of Love" (#110 - 1961) -- made no one forget the King. Dunes pulled out all the stops for Curtis on "Angel Eyes" though, getting Tommy Boyce to write it (based on a title suggestion by Curtis), Phil to produce it (Spector had also produced Ray's version of "Corrina Corrina") and pairing him with the Halos ("Nag") for the catchy background. Phil also produced the follow-up, "Under The Moon Of Love" (#46 - 1961) but without him, Curtis was back to bubbling-under on "Just Another Fool" (#110 - 1962) and soon he and Dunes parted company, leaving him as just another one-hit wonder. In later years, he became a home builder in Yuma.
-- Ron Smith    

'60's FLASHBACK:  
From our widely read series on the music of Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart:
Tommy Boyce placed his first chart hit record with 1950's rock and roll pioneer FATS DOMINO back in 1959 and BE MY GUEST went all the way to #8 on the National Charts. (BOYCE found that continued songwriting and chart success was not so easily coming ... he wouldn't hit The Top Ten again until he teamed up with singer CURTIS LEE to write PRETTY LITTLE ANGEL EYES a couple of years later.)   

Bobby Hart remembers:   

A high school buddy introduced me to his college mate, Curtis Lee, and asked if I could help him break into the business. When I introduced him to my manager at a recording studio, we both met Tommy Boyce and we all became good friends. Tommy and I began writing together in 1960. Tommy, my first wife, Becky and I were involved in a freeway collision driving home from a Long Beach show where Curtis was discovered by Stan Schulman, signed to Dunes Records and summoned to New York. Once there, it didn’t take Curt long to convince Stan that he needed Tommy to write with.
In 1961, while still recovering from the injuries he suffered in a head-on collision in Los Angeles, TOMMY BOYCE was given the opportunity to go to New York and try to write a song for an up-and-coming young singer named CURTIS LEE.

BOYCE was met at the airport by LEE, as well as recording artist RAY PETERSON.  Both artists were looking for a hit (and both would find one, as they were about to be produced by the legendary PHIL SPECTOR!)  Tommy and Curtis were sanctioned off with the simple instruction to "write a hit record".  (Easy, right???)

After a few weeks without so much as a single inspiration, BOYCE's publisher gave him an ultimatum ... write a hit for CURTIS LEE NOW or accept a plane ticket back home to Los Angeles. Now under just a LITTLE bit of pressure, TOMMY BOYCE and CURTIS LEE moved in together as roommates in the publisher's living room so that, in the event an inspiration struck, they would both be there to capitalize on it. In his book HOW TO WRITE A HIT SONG AND SELL IT, BOYCE says he lived and breathed songwriting, turning in song after song after song, only to be turned down each time with a comment like "It's good ... but write me a hit for CURTIS." This went on for two more months!!!

While CURTIS LEE and RAY PETERSON went out on tour, TOMMY stayed behind trying to come up with that elusive hit. As LEE was leaving, BOYCE told CURTIS to just "think of a title while you're down there in Florida ... come back with that, and I'll write you a hit song." (This would be a trait TOMMY would carry on for the rest of his songwriting career, regardless of which other partners he may have been working with ... coming up with a good title first to help inspire the "groove" of where the song would go from there.)

When they returned, LEE told TOMMY of a girl he had met down in Florida who had the prettiest eyes he had ever seen. CURTIS even had a title for his idea: he called it "ANGEL EYES."

One of the most popular songs on the radio at the time was EBONY EYES by THE EVERLY BROTHERS. TOMMY started to play the chord progression of that tune, hoping for some spark of inspiration. When that didn't work, he began to play the chords to that week's Number One Song, BLUE MOON by THE MARCELS. BOYCE says that the accelerated tempo of THE MARCELS' song got them to singing their first lyrics: "Angel Eyes, I really love you so. Angel Eyes, I'll never let you go." They felt that they were on to something. By evening, the lyrics were nearly complete.

Feeling pretty good about what they had done, BOYCE decided to take a walk and, while passing a record store, heard the old CLEFTONES' hit LITTLE GIRL OF MINE coming out of the loudspeakers. As soon as he heard the beginning: "Little, little, little, little, lit ... yeah, little, little, little, little, lit," he knew that he had the intro for their new song. Quickly, the opening lyrics became "PRETTY LITTLE ANGEL EYES, PRETTY LITTLE ANGEL EYES" (and, ultimately, so did the title of the song!)

Amazingly, when they first performed the song for their publisher, he wasn't impressed. "I thought I told you to write me a hit!" he said again. But BOYCE and LEE were convinced that they HAD written a hit and decided to play it for their publisher's girlfriend, who immediately loved the song. She convinced her boyfriend that they had a smash on their hands and he finally gave the green light for CURTIS to record the tune. And a smash it was ... PRETTY LITTLE ANGEL EYES shot up the charts to #6, becoming CURTIS LEE's only Top 40 Hit!!!

re:  Diggin' Forgotten Hits:  
This one made my week ...  
Hey my brother, Kent!
I just wanted to take this opportunity to not only thank you and Forgotten Hits for all the kind words you given to my Arcada Theatre, but also to thank you for being a pillar of support to all those superstars of REAL music from days gone by.  So many incredible performances and life-long memories are still alive because of the passion people like you possess.  Forgotten Hits is absolutely one of my favorite things to read, something I truly look forward to receiving.  I produce close to two hundred shows annually, most of which are performed by legendary hitmakers from the 50s, 60s and 70s.  So from one fan to another, I wish you, Forgotten Hits, and all the other TRUE music fans out there, a healthy and prosperous new year.  
Keep on rockin' my friend and may 2015 be the grandest year in Forgotten Hits history!
Onesti Entertainment Corporation
Historic Arcada Theatre
Ron, it means the world to me to be associated with your fine establishment ... and knowing how much you personally love this music and the artists who created it does indeed make us brothers of the heart.
Looking forward to MANY more great shows at The Arcada next year ... the line-up is already staggering ... and I know there's SO much more to come.
So thanks again, Ron ... it means a lot.
All the best to you in 2015 ... and beyond!  (kk)   

Happy New Year Kent! 
Keep up the great work of forgotten hits! Long Live Elly May! 

Mornin' Kent,
Man, thank you again for the help on getting my tunes out there.  Sales are picking up nicely ... and it is greatly appreciated my friend.  I hope all it going good for you.
Blessings -
Barry Winslow 
Always happy to help get this music out there ... please stay in touch with us ... and check out the website from time to time ... ALWAYS something interesting going on here in Forgotten Hits.  Thanks, Barry!  (kk)

This one was sent in by FH Reader Tom Cuddy ... and it's a goodie!
(Watch your back, Danny Seraphine!!!)