Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Sunday Comments ( 08 - 30 - 15 )

re:  Happy Birthday To Me:

This year's birthday concert was The '70's Pop Fest at The Arcada Theatre, featuring Bo Donaldson and the Heywoods, The Ohio Express, The 1910 Fruitgum Company, Elliot Lurie of Looking Glass and Kyle Vincent of The Bay City Rollers.  (Look for a review next week in Forgotten Hits).  Frannie's will be The Stylistics on September 11th, also at The Arcada ... and, as a birthday gift, we'll be going to see Stevie Wonder at The United Center in October.  (To clarify, we'll see him ... but he won't see us.)  

Meanwhile, thanks to all the well-wishers!  

Happy Birthday YOU OLD FART!!!  You are NOT a Forgotten hit!!  
Clark Besch  

Belated birthday wishes ... Sorry for missing the 39th again, Kent!  
Ray Graffia, Jr / The New Colony Six   
I've actually taken the opposite approach ... told everybody I was turning 77 and then got a lot of "Man, you look GREAT for your age" compliments!  (lol)  Thanks, Ray!  (kk) 

My friend and I wanna wish you a happy birthday ... 
Take care,
Rockin’ Lord Geoff

Hey Kent!!!  Happy Birthday!!!  Hope you find that "nooner!"  LOL  
Hope you are having a wonderful Birthday!!!  
Mark Bego

Happy birthday to you, our music man. Thanks for all that you do. I owe you a drink next time I see you, HAVE A GREAT B-DAY!  
Mike De Martino

Happy Birthday, Kent!
May your year ahead be filled with free promo copies, concert tickets and backstage passes, better radio and all the standard wishes of good health and happiness.
Thanks for keeping us diehard musicheads connected and entertained!
Scott Paton

re:  Lou Christie:  
Happy Birthday ... yesterday!  
I think this guy is shadowing you ...  
He again has several more posted as he did with the Happy Together Again concert.    
I think you may be right!  First the Happy Together Bolingbrook show ... and now Lou Christie in Addison!  I wonder who he is ... I may even know the guy!  Good video 'tho!  (kk) 

Loved the Lou Christie piece ... he's among the best!
- David Salidor

And the topper on the cake ...   

Happy Birthday!!!  
Thanks so much for all the kind words in your column. I had a great time at the Italian Fest. The audience was great, the weather was dry and, it was fun for all of us. So nice to meet you after the show. I'm definitely looking forward to returning to Chicago.  
Lou Christie  

re:  The Happy Together Tour:     
You are right on the mark when you stated, " that The Turtles need to mix it up a little more from year to year ... too many repeat performers doing the same songs each time out ... but there is absolutely NO doubt that The Cowsills were a GREAT addition to the line-up this year." 
I suggest they consider Freddy Cannon, and throw a little "Action" into their show assuming his health is good enough for the tour!    
Paul Urbahns 
Radcliff, Ky 
Freddy "Boom Boom" Cannon would be a GREAT addition to the tour ... although they'll probably argue that he's "not '60's enough" ... which is complete bullshit of course.  (29 of Freddy's 35 chart hits came during the '60's ... the other six include three from the '50's, two from the '70's and one from the '80's!!!)  He has back doing shows again after heart surgery last year ... and we would LOVE to see him come to Chicago, with or without The Happy Together Tour.  (Actually Mark Lindsay sings "Action" as part of his set these days ... but this is ... and will always be ... Freddy Cannon's song!  (kk)   

Hi Kent -  
Enjoyed the Happy Together last year but couldn't go this year and really appreciate the reviews and photos!   
This might be a stretch but what about adding a girl group or female singer from the 60s!  Shirley Austin Reeves of the Shirelles, the Shangrilas, or Martha Reeves and the Vandellas just to name a few!!   Maybe your readers can suggest some more names.   
Just a thought. Don't forget the great woman of rock n roll!!!  
You should have caught the free show in Bolingbrook!  
The possibilities are endless once you look beyond the confines of the Paradise Artists stable of artists ... there is absolutely no shortage of great '60's talent still on the circuit ... and if they're only going to get to sing four or five songs anyway, they should be able to find some GREAT talent to meet that criteria.  (Problem is the artists for Happy Together 2016 are typically booked before the 2015 show runs its course ... so maybe NEXT year The Turtles and company can step outside the box a little and be a bit more creative.)  kk   

I'm happy to get to go to this year's Happy Together tour. It stops at the MN. State Fair here in the twin cities but I always have something going on, probably gigs of my own. Can't wait to finally get to see Mark Lindsay. etc.  
When I was 10 I had a huge crush on Susan Cowsil. I'm going to try and figure out a way to meet her.  I probably won't have much luck, but it sure would be fun.   
Tickets here were only 21 or $22 plus the admission to the fair.  Think I'll listen to all the various acts' songs today. BTW Forgotten Hits is still my favorite place on the WWW. Still hoping for a Chicago Meet up -- a Forgotten Hits Get Together some day.   
My biggest hope this year was to meet The Cowsills when The Happy Together Tour stopped in Chicago but, after seven years of covering this event, our backstage access was denied this year for some reason by The Paramount Theatre so I never got the opportunity.  (It's always fun to visit backstage after the show and take a few pictures for the website ... The Turtles, The Buckinghams and Mark Lindsay have been very accommodating in the past ... but the chance to finally meet The Cowsills ... and tell them how much we have enjoyed seeing their shows this past year ... would have been a welcome opportunity for me as both a FAN and a journalist.)  It just wasn't to be, however. If you are fortunate enough to get back there, snap a couple of shots and send them in ... would love to see them.  And please tell The Cowsills about Forgotten Hits ... they've been getting some GREAT coverage here for fifteen years now ... and the last year and a half in particular! 
As for a Chicago-area get-together, I would love to do something like that ... it's been YEARS since we've attempted one.  I'd love to block out a set of seats at The Arcada for The Ides Of March Christmas Show and get a few dozen readers to participate and meet up either before or after that show.  Maybe even have Jim Peterik come out and say hello to everybody.  Let's see if we can find anybody else out there is interested in doing so!  Thanks, Bill!  (kk)

re: This And That:
FH Reader Tom Cuddy sent us this article ... Darlene Love talks about her new solo album and working with Bruce Springsteen and Steven Van Zandt ..   

Darlene's received quite a bit of press regarding her brand new release.  Here's the first video clip released from Darlene Love's new album (produced by Bruce Springsteen), "Introducing Darlene Love".  (Yeah, that makes sense ... she's just been a "hidden treasure" for the past 55 years!!!)  Be sure to watch for the super-star cameos as Tom Cuddy describes below ...  

Darlene Love breaks out the beachwear and the celebrity cameos in her new “Forbidden Nights” music video. Bruce Springsteen, Elvis Costello, Steven Van Zandt, Joan Jett, David Letterman, Bill Murray and Paul Shaffer all make guest appearances for her summertime single. 
The video shows Love driving to her beach concert with backup singers, picking up Jett and Shaffer along the way. Her packed red convertible passes by Costello playing soccer, Murray with a surfboard and Springsteen and Van Zandt choking each other out.  
Letterman’s appearance doesn’t come until the end of the video. The retired latenight host can be seen eating a bowl of cereal with a full beard shouting, “Hey! I love you.” 
Love has been a longtime favorite of Letterman’s. Every year, the singer would perform her most notable record and Phil Spector-produced seasonal classic, “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” on his “Late Night.”  
Love’s album, “Introducing Darlene Love,” bows Sept. 18.


re:  More Cool Clips:  
OK, this one's pretty clever ...  
Kent ... 
This is a garage in Chicago.  Maybe you can find out where it is and check it out for your readers.  
Frank B.   

Kent ...  
Check out this funny commercial.  Can I add another "Clip Of The Week" to my resume ? 
Frank B.

It was fantastic those last five songs you posted on your website today. Always did like BEG, BORROW AND STEAL.
P.S. No need to post this to FH. This is just one of the many thank you's to you.
Happy to post it, Larry, because I agree ... those are five GREAT songs that just never seem to get played on the radio anymore and represent the very essence of what Forgotten Hits is all about.  Each and every one of them was a good-sized hit at the time ... and are still fresh in our memories.  WHY does radio keep on insisting in squashing those memories by beating the same 200-300 songs into our heads every day?  (kk)

The picture you posted of Dennis, Vern, Gary and Ron was from the Jamaica Queens concerts with Tony Burrows, Bo Donaldson and Kyle Vincent.  There were as many names off-stage as on.
Yes, I had a feeling that the case ... and is why I mentioned that Bo Donaldson and Kyle Vincent were both coming to Chicago later this month to perform in what's being billed as "The '70's Pop Fest" along with The 1910 Fruitgum Company, The Ohio Express and Elliot Lurie of Looking Glass, singing their #1 Hit "Brandy".  Other adsfor this show Ron Dante and The Archies but Ron has already told me that he'll be in The UK that day due to a prior commitment.
The guy I REALLY want to see now is Tony Burrows ... but I checked three sources last night and they all say he has no shows currently scheduled ... so if somebody hears something about Tony coming out Chicago-way, please let me know.  (Memo to Ron Onesti ... THIS would be a good guy to book!  He was the "hidden voice" on SO many great early '70's hits like "Gimme Dat Ding" by The Pipkins, "Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes" by Edison Lighthouse, "United We Stand" by The Brotherhood Of Man, "Beach Baby" by First Class and "My Baby Loves Lovin'" by White Plains.  (kk)
You can read Shelley's review of the "Feelin' Groovy" show she saw featuring all these great acts here:
And watch for OUR review of the '70's Pop Fest coming up later next week in Forgotten Hits!  (kk)  

FH Reader Tom Cuddy tells us about a brand new radio documentary ...   

And, speaking of radio ... and our on-going Monday Morning 50th Anniversary Survey Flashbacks ...
Just a few things I was pondering while going over Monday's survey of 50 years ago according to KOMA's Sing-A-Long-Survey ...
I really don't know or remember why LOUIE LOUIE made it to #1 a second time and even why it was reissued at this time. Going over the records listed under KOMA KLIMBERS and other records similar to that on other surveys, it's good to see which records would turn out to be hits as we know them today and, of course, which records didn't quite make it.
Now as for the record listed at #37, LONELY GIRL, by a local group known as the Centuries ... this record would go higher on the survey and would turn out to be the biggest record this group had, recorded on a local label by the name of Rich Records. This group went to my high school in OKC, Putnam City High School. The group was composed of some 4 - 5 members. Through the years, I have spoken to almost all of the members and the one thing that has surprised me is that none of them to this day has a copy of said record. That boggles my mind. I believe if I had been in high school and made a record, no matter how big it would turn out to be, that today I would have at least one copy of it. It's funny, no member of that group has a copy of the record, yet I do here at home. As one member of the Centuries told me recently, copies of that record are few and far between. They did have a follow-up with a Buddy Holly song they recorded. As far as the 11 KOMA personalities pictured at the top of the survey, at the bottom Paul Miller did mornings and every weekday spoke with the mayor on the phone. At the top, Dale Wehba is, of course, retired from broadcasting and currently lives here in OKC. Occasionally, he and I talk on the phone.
Has ANYBODY out there got copies of this Centuries record so we can send them to the original group member???  (kk)

I just now revisited your Last Kiss section. Wow! I’m worn out from all of your research.
I loved your comment “Must have been 200 in the studio that day”
Just dropped by to hello. And no, it should not have been all that complicated but for so many out there telling lies like politicians. Take care,
Sid Holmes

Coming up September 17 - 19th ...
My wife and I are going!
Hope to see you there.
Stu Weiss

Well, unfortunately you won't see ME there ... but this sounds like a pretty cool event ... exceptional line-up ... so hoping that some of our East Coast Readers can attend.  (And please report back to us if you do!)  Thanks, Stu!  (kk) 

Vintage Vinyl News is reporting an incredible continuous 54-year stretch of live Beach Boys concerts.  (In fact, Bruce Johnston is celebrating his official 50th year anniversary with the band this year!)  Here's the set list that the Mike Love / Bruce Johnston led Beach Boys are performing in 2015 ...
The current Beach Boys show features 42 songs: 
Surfin’ / Catch A Wave / Its OK / Don’t Back Down / Little Honda / Do It Again / Goin’ To The Beach / Surfin’ Safari / Surfer Girl / Farmer’s Daughter / Good To My Baby / You’re So Good To Me / Please Let Me Wonder / Kiss Me Baby / Getcha Back / I’m So Young / Why Do Fools Fall In Love / When I Grow Up (To Be A Man) / Darlin’ / Be True To Your School / Don’t Worry Baby / Little Deuce Coupe / 409 / Shut Down / I Get Around / Ballad Of Ole Betsy / Sloop John B / Wouldn’t It Be Nice / Then He Kissed Me / California Girls / Dance Dance Dance / Let Him Run Wild / God Only Knows / Pisces Brothers / Good Vibrations / Do You Wanna Dance / All Summer Long / Help Me Rhonda / Barbara Ann / Surfin’ USA / Kokomo / Fun Fun Fun

For months now we've been asking you to email the NTSB to reopen its investigation into the plane crash that took the lives of Buddy Holly, Ritcie Valens and The Big Bopper on February 3rd, 1959.
Now comes this appeal from the family of Ritchie Valens ... who simply wants to see justice done ... and the truth be told ..
The Day The Music Died Plane Crash Investigation ... 
The plane crash that took the lives of our brother Ritchie, The Big Bopper, Buddy Holly and pilot Roger Peterson has been a hot topic in the news, saying that The National Transportation Safety Board has agreed to consider re-opening the investigation. The key word being "Consider".  
A few years back,  a close friend of our family explained what he and a friend of his that works in aviation had discovered during their own investigation.  The plane, a Beechcraft Bonanza, was very popular with the doctors of the time ... they were relatively inexpensive as planes go, and easy to learn to fly. The Beechcraft Bonanza earned a nickname "Doctor Killers". The unsuspecting / inexperienced doctors would load too much weight into the planes causing them to become over- weight and unbalanced. The planes, being lightweight, would take off but were unable to gain altitude.  
No one really knows what happened on February 2, 1959, as the plane took off. It has been 56 years this Febuary, The world lost three great artists with budding music careers, and the pilot, who was recently married.
What will this investigation change? The original report said pilot error.  We were told that Roger could have flown this plane blind folded, that's how competent he was. Other theories state that Buddy had a gun.  Buddy was a brilliant song writer and musician. We, Ritchie's family, would love to see Roger Peterson's name cleared ... imagine what his family went through.  
Accidents happen. Are they going to go after the plane manufacturer for not labeling this plane as "may crash if over-weight or unbalanced"?  What about all the other people who lost their lives in the same type of plane? 
Closure is a good thing, but sometimes we can only receive little bits and pieces at a time, as we allow sweet memories and friendships to heal us. Forgiveness of others and ourselves also help us along this journey called life.  The word "Consider" is the key to this mystery.  The NTSB, may or may not go forth with the investigation ... they said it will take a couple of months for them to decide. 
The Family of Ritchie Valens
This is why it's important for the public to contact the NTSB ... let their feelings be known regarding reopening this investigation.  LJ Coon has listed some key email addresses below as points of contact.  Please, if you want to see this investigation reopened and reexamined, contact the folks below and let your feelings be heard.  (kk)
Dear NTSB:
I am sending you this e-mail in Support of The NTSB going forward with the Investigation into The Mason City Iowa accident of February 3, 1959, that took the lives of Roger Peterson, Buddy Holley, Ritchie Valens and J P Richardson.

Please Send SeparateCc or Bcc email's to: 
L J Coon

Batgirl is gone.  Yvonne Craig, who portrayed the super hero on the Batman television series, died from complications of breast cancer.  In addition to the female caped crusader, she also starred in TWO Elvis movies ("It Happened At The World's Fair" and "Kissin' Cousins") and made guest appearances on several popular TV shows of the day including Star Trek,Mod Squad and The Man From U.N.C.L.E.  (kk)

Here's the word on a brand releases we tipped here a couple of months ago ... the Micky Dolenz live shows at 54 Below, "A Little Bit Broadway, A Little Bit Rock And Roll" are being released as a live concert CD, which is now available for pre-order.  More information below ...   

BROADWAY RECORDS ANNOUNCES THE RELEASE OF Micky Dolenz: A Little Bit Broadway, A Little Bit Rock & Roll Live AT 54 BELOW

August 20, 2015- New York, NY)- Broadway Records has announced that the newest addition to its Live at 54 BELOW series, “Micky Dolenz: A Little Bit Broadway, A Little Bit Rock & Roll – LIVE at 54 BELOW” will be released on September 25, 2015. The album is now available for pre-order at  

In early July, Micky Dolenz performed several sold-out evenings at 54 BELOW, the famed performance venue in New York City. This charming Broadway performer and legendary rock ‘n’ roll star will be back to 54 BELOW September 25th and 26th by popular demand to celebrate the launch of his album.   

This brand new show was a way for Dolenz to combine his love of Broadway with his love for rock ‘n’ roll into one exuberating concert. The album consists of The Monkees greatest hits and some rarities, along with songs from the musical roles he has performed and the shows he loves. Dolenz framed each song with personal anecdotes and behind the scenes intel, such as his friendship with the Beatles, how he met his wife and the fact that stalwarts Neil Young and Ry Cooder played on the original recording session for “As We Go Along.” The compilation of songs and stories creates a joyous and nostalgic atmosphere for both Dolenz and the audience.  

“It was a little bit out of my usual comfort zone, but each show was better than the last and I guess our original concept worked. If the truth be known, the original TV-series was a lot like a half-hour Marx Brothers musical on TV. It’s great that we’ll have the live recording as a permanent record,” said Dolenz.

Van Dean, founder of Broadway Records adds, “I grew up on the Monkees re-runs and having the opportunity to create this show and resulting album with one of my idols is definitely a ‘pinch me’ moment.  It’s thrilling to see how much his fans have embraced this new show.  We anticipated they would sing along with some of the Monkees songs at the concerts but to also hear them sing along with his rendition of ‘Pure Imagination’, was pure magic.”

Hollywood Reporter said, “Delivering exuberant versions of several classic Monkees hits interspersed with theatrical songs both familiar and relatively obscure, the still youthful 70-year-old singer performed with an obvious joy that proved infectious.”

The Huffington Post said, “The highlight for me was the show tunes, ranging from "Don't Be The Bunny," from Urinetown, to "Mr. Cellophane" from Chicago. The guy's an amazing actor, and he emotes the hell out of these tunes. He's a little bit of a ham, on the over-the-top side, to be sure, but in a cabaret setting, it works. Oh man, does it work.”
Micky Dolenz was one of the stars of the sixties TV show "The Monkees," about a rock-and-roll band. The group sold over 65 million records (with Dolenz as their lead singer), and their albums included "The Monkees," "More of the Monkees," "Headquarters" and "Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn & Jones, Ltd.” Dolenz also starred in the West End musical The Point and later became a producer-director for the BBC and London Weekend Television. In 1996 the Monkees reunited for a 30-year summer tour around the U.S., and Dolenz directed an episode of the hit TV show "Boy Meets World." His other theatre credits include the National Touring Company of Grease, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the ForumTom Sawyer, Disney’s AIDA on Broadway; Pippin’; and, Hairspray in the West End where he essayed the character of Wilbur.

Micky Dolenz: A Little Bit Broadway, A Little Bit Rock & Roll – LIVE at 54 BELOW is produced by Michael J. Moritz, Jr. and Executive Produced by Van Dean.

This album is the latest in the “Live at 54 BELOW” series that started in 2012 with albums by Patti LuPone, Norbert Leo Butz, Christiane Noll, Andrea McArdle, Aaron Tveit, Laura Benanti and the most recently released Ahrens and Flaherty, Marin Mazzie, Danielle Hope, Jarrod Spector, Sierra Boggess and Shapiro Sisters. Many more titles in the series are currently in the works and more albums will be announced shortly.

BROADWAY RECORDS is one of the preeminent record labels in its industry and has produced cast albums for many major Broadway shows (i.e. the Grammy® nominated Matilda The Musical, the soon-to-be released Doctor Zhivago and the recently released The Visit and Side Show Original 2014 Broadway Cast Recording) as well as the preservation of shorter run Broadway shows (i.e. Bonnie & Clyde and Big Fish) and NBC’s television event, Peter Pan Live!. Broadway Records believes in delivering the best cast recordings to its customers, while also striving to innovate with the critically acclaimed "Live at 54 BELOW" series featuring top Broadway stars including Patti LuPone, Aaron Tveit, Norbert Leo Butz, Sierra Boggess, Marin Mazzie, Laura Benanti and many others. Recently, nominated 19 of Broadway Records’ albums for their inaugural 2014 Album Awards, all of which can be found by visiting 

54 BELOW, Broadway’s Supper Club, is the new performance venue in the grand tradition of New York City nightlife.  A few blocks from the heart of Times Square and just below the legendary Studio 54, 54 BELOW is a classically designed state-of-the art nightclub in the theatre district that hosts audiences with warmth and style.  The venue provides a food and beverage menu from early evening through the wee hours of the morning that is worthy of the world-class entertainment on the stage.  In their description of 54 BELOW, The New York Times writes “the club has the intimacy of a large living room with unimpeded views and impeccable sound; there is not a bad seat. Its sultry after-hours ambience is enhanced by brocade-patterned wall panels planted with orange-shaded lanterns. And the atmosphere is warmer and sexier than in Manhattan’s other major supper clubs.”   Located at 254 West 54th Street, 54 BELOW features up to three shows nightly with cover charges ranging from $15-$95. Tickets and information are available at

and one for the locals ...

Hey Kent,

AJK here - I am looking for a particular Jim Shea interview he did on Y103.9 that I am hoping maybe someone (perhaps Shea himself) might have recorded.  In 2008 (April / May?) he interviewed Peter Benjaminson, author of the book on Florence Ballard of the Supremes.  I seem to remember the interview was not only extensive and interesting, but included lots of great songs that would not normally be played.  Could you maybe see if he's got this show?  It's a long shot I'm well aware - so your help would be appreciated!

Y103.9 sure was great - I'd love any air checks from that station to be honest!



I asked Jim if he kept any of his interviews from the station and it sounds like he has a TON of them ... but he won't have access to them until Christmas break.  Believe it or not, he's down at The University of Miami right now in Medical School!  Jim tells us ...

  Hi Kent -

Good to hear from you! As I'm reading this I'm eating breakfast before my first day of medical school here in Miami

Before I drove down I was looking at some old air checks ... and one of them was you and me kicking off a Beach Boys weekend!
It will be a while before I can even look for that one with the Supremes but I remember it well. Maybe around Christmas I'll be home and I will dig that one out for u.
LOTS of folks missing the old Y-103.9 these days ... you guys really did have a lot of freedom as to what you could play "off the list".
The main thing I remember about the Peter Benjaminson book was that I got a very negative vibe ... as if no real fact-checking was ever done.  I dug through the archives trying to find the review I did many moons ago ... but once again came up empty.  (I DID find the winner of a FH give-away where a reader won a copy of the book but the actual review itself is missing.  It would have been in May of 2008, which pre-dates the website.)
Enjoy the Miami weather, Jim ... and we'll talk to you when you get back!  (kk)
It's hotter than blazes here!