Thursday, March 24, 2016

Thursday This And That

Great News About A Great New Release!:
PERFECT timing for the PERFECT follow-up piece.
We've been telling you about the brand new Joel Whitburn / Record Research book "America's Greatest Hits, 1940 - 2015", listing every Top Ten Billboard Pop Chart from that time period.  Folks who've already received their copy are raving about the wealth of information contained in these pages ... and we'll be giving away a free copy (courtesy of Joel) this weekend to one lucky Forgotten Hits Reader.  (GREAT response to this one ... we've heard from readers we've NEVER heard from before!!!)
And, right on the heels of this release comes news of the soon-to-be-released companion piece, "America's Greatest Albums, 1956 - 2015" ... Billboard's Top Ten Album Charts.
You can order BOTH books through Joel's website ... and at a specially discounted price right now, too!
>>>Our listeners can probably come up with some GREAT threesomes ... first three lead-off tracks from an LP.  If you guys want to put together some of your all-time favorite threesomes, we'd be happy to run them.  The tracks have to have been the first three tracks on a new, commercially released LP (greatest hits collections don't count, nor do live LP's).  This could become a VERY interesting topic ... and just might get some folks to dig out their albums again!  (kk)
Mine would be the first three cuts from "Abbey Road" being "Come Together" "Something" and "Maxwell's Silver Hammer." A lot of people dismiss "Maxwell" (including John Lennon, who was so disgusted he didn't even participate on the record) but I like it! That was the first time I'd heard a Moog synthesizer. For that reason alone it's worthy of inclusion.
- Larry Cave
This And That:
Robin Leach (yes, THAT Robin Leach) talks about the relaunching of The Righteous Brothers in this great interview with Bill Medley ...
That was a great Jim Shea video. 
"The Next Awesome thing is right around the corner, man!"
Thank you for sharing this with us today, Kent.
David Lewis
Jim's was the very first radio show I was ever on, dating back to our Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame expose several years ago ... I used to really enjoy listening him in the mornings and we did several projects together after that ... he was (and hopefully still is) a big fan of Forgotten Hits.  We haven't seen him in a few years now, especially since he's gone down to Florida to continue his education.  We ALWAYS hate to see somebody so gifted in radio be out of radio through no choice of their own ... but I think everyone would agree Jim will be serving "the greater good" in this new career.  (I remember years ago when Larry Lujack and Tommy Edwards reteamed to do the morning show at Real Oldies ... and Larry was reading a story about Mother Theresa's latest life-changing adventure and then paused for a moment afterwards and said something to the effect of "I know we think we serve a lot of people being on the radio ... and we do ... we reach a large audience and we have some effect ... but then you look at all that Mother Theresa has done over her lifetime and stop for a moment to consider how much of OUR lifetime has been spent telling listeners to dial 1-800-Mattress."
When I first played the video for my wife, I said "Kind of a different side of Jim, eh?" to which she immediately replied "No, that's EXACTLY Jim ... that's EXACTLY who he is."  (It's hard to watch without getting a little choked up and teary-eyed, especially KNOWING the guy!!!)  She said "He has just always been true to himself ... whether it's cracking jokes on the radio ... or playing piano at our table in some funky little bar that was supposed to be holding open mic night but then cancelled it without any of us knowing ... or talking about his new career, hopes and dreams ... he has always been "just Jim" ... true to himself and a kind-hearted human being."  Every bit of that comes out in that short seven minute clip ... so I'm happy to have been able to share it with all of you.  (Scroll back to Tuesday's "This And That" page if you missed it.)  kk
Heard from several Forgotten Hits readers about this one ... sounds like fans are anxious to pick up Bobby Rydell's new book featuring his life story ... 
TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS - The Bobby Rydell Autobiography 
From Rise to Superstardom through Alcoholism and Life-Saving Double Transplant Surgery, the ‘Justin Bieber of the Camelot Era’ Releases His Candid and Compelling ‘Tale of Second Chances’
“Crosby, Sinatra, Como, Damone, Lawrence, Darin, and — in a different idiom — Frankie Laine, Johnnie Ray, and even Elvis Presley. To be such an artist takes more sweat, strain, intense devotion, and dedication than most people can conceive of. Bobby Rydell is that type of artist.” —FRANK SINATRA, JR.
PHILADELPHIA (March 22, 2016) From his vivid childhood on the fabled mid-20th-century streets of South Philadelphia, to his reign as the Justin Bieber of the “Camelot” era, his battles with alcoholism, and his lifesaving double-transplant surgery, multi-talented entertainer BOBBY RYDELL has one hell of a story to tell. 
On May 4, Bobby will share his incredible tale as he releases his candid and compelling autobiography, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances (Doctor Licks Publishing, 249 pp., $16.95).   
Co-written with award-winning musician-author-filmmaker Allan Slutsky (Standing in the Shadows of Motown), TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS not only tells the story of Bobby Rydell, but that of American pop culture through the past six decades. In its pages, Bobby writes of his encounters with such giants of 20th century show business as Frank Sinatra, Ann-Margret, The Beatles, Red Skelton, Jack Benny and Dick Clark, whose Philly-based American Bandstand helped make Rydell the world’s biggest teen idol in the years between Elvis Presley’s army induction and the advent of Beatlemania. A time when Frank Sinatra called Bobby his “favorite” pop singer.   
But TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS also is a very personal — and often-painful – story. Bobby delves into the darker and more dramatic aspects of his life, including the death of his beloved first wife, Camille, his decades of alcohol abuse, and the last-ditch transplant surgery that saved his life.   
Among other topics covered in the book:   
The circumstances of how Bobby lost his virginity in a Hollywood hotel suite at the age of 17.   
How a Philadelphia mob boss helped him take a movie acting job.   
His becoming, at age 19, the youngest-ever headliner at New York’s legendary Copacabana nightclub.   
How The Beatles paid homage to Bobby in one of their biggest hits — and how the Fab Four’s emergence as a global phenomenon all but killed his career.   
Humorous, tragic, fascinating, inspiring and always entertaining, TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS stands as one of the most important non-fiction books of 2016.   
TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS (Doctor Licks Publishing) will be available May 4, 2016 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and book stores throughout America.   
TEEN IDOL ON THE ROCKS: A Tale of Second Chances
By Bobby Rydell, with Allan Slutsky
Doctor Licks Publishing
Softcoverǀ 249 Pages ǀ ISBN 978-0-9973851-0-6| $16.95 
Official website:  
YouTube Channel:
Gotta love this quote!
I've been telling you about this new series of Uncut Magazines spotlighting "The History Of Rock And Roll" on a year-by-year basis ... and I'm making my way through 1967 right now when I found this quote from Mick Jagger ...
"It's alright leaping about the stage at 20, but when you get to 25, 26 ..."
By the way The Stones (still going strong) are currently touring South America ... and you can expect to still see Mick Jagger, at the age of 72 , still "leaping about the stage" for most of the show!  (kk)  
Here is an interesting article about the state of radio today and how it effects musicians and the listeners.
So now you know about Clear Channel Communications.  Now read about CBS.
End of an era: CBS to sell its historic radio division
CBS Corp. is poised to exit the radio business that it helped create.
Eighty-eight years ago, the company's founder, William S. Paley, bought the nascent Columbia Broadcasting System, and those radio stations became the nucleus of a budding broadcast empire.
But on Tuesday, CBS Chairman and Chief Executive Leslie Moonves said the company was exploring strategic options, including a sale or spinoff, of its entire radio division.
“The aim here is to unlock value for our shareholders,” said Moonves, who made the announcement during an investor day in New York.
LOTS of talk this past week about the future of CBS Radio ... it'll be interesting to see where this all lands.  Radio as we knew hasn't been the same for decades now ... that's why it's so exciting when a new station like Me-TV-FM kicks up and mixes up the playlist a little bit.  More people listen online now via the Internet than ever before because variety is king ... and yet despite this very obvious shift in filling those desires, terrestrial radio still doesn't get it ... and continues to program to the consultants instead of the listeners.  Too bad ... most of us grew up experiencing the pure joy of listening to the radio ... hearing our favorite songs and artists ... AND deejays.  (kk)
Thanks for telling us FH readers that Lee Andrews passed away. News like that is never seen here in our local papers and or radio / television.
One thing that has somewhat fascinated me through the years is why a record sometimes re-charts years later after it's initial appearance in Billboard. For example, you mentioned Gogi Grant's re-charting of THE WAYWARD WIND in 1961. Kind of curious why Era Records did that. I am sure there was a reason or reasons.
One place to ALWAYS get the latest oldies news (good, bad or otherwise) is Ron Smith's EXCELLENT website.  (We've officially dubbed him our "Grim Reaper" because he always reports the latest rock and roll casualties with a brief bio of the artist.)  You should make this part of your daily reading as well.  (Unfortunately most of the news of late has been sad in nature ... we have lost SO many beloved artists already this year.)
Here's his post on Lee Andrews: 
Arthur Lee Andrew Thompson, lead singer of Lee Andrews and the Hearts, died Wednesday (March 16) in his native Philadelphia at the age of 79. Born in Goldsboro, North Carolina, (his father had sung with the Dixie Hummingbirds), he was raised in Philadelphia, where he formed the Hearts quintet (originally called the Dreams and later, the Dreamers) in 1952 while still in high school. First recording for Reco-Arts and Rainbow Records, they then moved on to Mainline Records (which sold their masters to Chess), as “Long Lonely Nights” (#45 Pop, #11 R&B - 1957) became a doo-wop staple. It was followed by “Tear Drops” (#33 Pop, #3 R&B) the following year and “Try The Impossible” (#33 Pop) on United Artists Records in 1958. Lee moved on to a solo career on Swan and then Cameo Records before semi-retiring and opening a local dress shop. His son, Ahmir Thompson became known as Questlove and served as drummer and producer for the Roots, who charted three times themselves in the late ‘90s. The Hearts and the Roots were inducted into the Philadelphia Music Alliance’s Walk of Fame in 1992.
-- Ron Smith
Diane Diekman files these country music updates in her latest newsletter ... 
For the second time, Kenny Rogers, 77, has postponed his upcoming Tulsa farewell show due to health issues. The Kenny Rogers' Final World Tour: The Gambler's Last Deal was originally scheduled at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on January 28. Tulsa World reports it was rescheduled to April 7 due to his health, and the date is now July 14. Linda Davis will join him for that show. Kenny has not offered details on his health struggles.

Songwriter Jimmy Webb is commemorating the 80th birthday (April 22) of his friend, Glen Campbell with a special edition of his national touring show, Jimmy Webb: The Glen Campbell Years. It is a multi-media concert that includes virtual duets and stories of how songs such as "Galveston" and "Wichita Lineman" were created. The pair shared more than 100 collaborative recordings. "I created this show to honor my friend and collaborator," Rolling Stone Country reports Webb as saying. "I know Glen would want us to concentrate on having a good time and enjoying the music." The performance will be May 3 at Nashville's City Winery, and three of Glen's children--Ashley, Shannon, and Cal--will be part of the show.

March 25 is the scheduled release date for the Hank Williams biopic, I Saw the Light. Tom Hiddleston, who plays Hank, tells Taste of Country how musical director Rodney Crowell gave him a key piece of advice: "Before you do anything else--before you think about sounding like Hank, playing like Hank--learn the songs. And learn them for yourself. Find out what they mean to you." Hiddleston says, "Essentially just to invest myself in the meaning of those songs, and then come see him again in a few months' time, and Rodney would work on modulating tone and rhythm. But initially, the simple work was actually just to mean it ... because that was the only way I think I was ever gonna translate the power of his music to people."

The Florida Strawberry Festival in Tampa Bay had to do without Tanya Tucker this year. She was scheduled to perform on March 11, but was admitted to the hospital due to complications from bronchitis. "I never want to postpone or cancel a show," Tanya, 57, wrote on Facebook. "However, if I am going to perform for the fans who spent their hard-earned money on a ticket, I want to give them the best performance possible. Right now, I am just not able to do it." reported that John Anderson would take her place. The Florida Strawberry Festival has been an annual celebration for over 80 years. Tanya's hospitalization is of special concern because her brother died from pneumonia several years ago.

You can subscribe and get all the latest country news by dropping Diane an email at ... be sure to tell her that Forgotten Hits sent you!

Todd Rundgren's BOX O'TODD Limited Edition Live Box Set To Be Released
Los Angeles - Purple Pyramid records will be releasing a special limited edition collector's box titled BOX O'TODD featuring previously unreleased live in-studio recordings from the early '70s by legendary guitarist / songwriter / producer, Todd Rundgren! All shows were originally broadcast on the radio at the time.

This unique box features both stripped down solo performances by Rundgren as well as full band recordings with The Hello People, and includes some of Todd's most well-known songs including “Hello, It's Me,” “I Saw The Light,” “It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference” and many more!

In addition to three full-length CDs, the box set comes with a 20-page booklet featuring a full set of insightful liner notes by Dave Thompson and full color photos plus a signature guitar pick, 3 collectible pins, and a backstage pass!

Track List:

DISC 1 - Live From Philadelphia 1971 with the Hello People (originally broadcast on WMMR-FM)
1. Banter & Soundcheck
2. Believe In Me
3. Lady On The Terrace
4. I Got My Pipe
5. It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference
6. Rock All Over Again
7. Everybody In The Congregation
8. Broke Down & Busted
9. Tonight I Wanna Love Me A Stranger
10. Ooh Baby Baby
11. Hold Me Tight (Excerpt)
12. Before I Grow Too Old
13. Be Nice To Me
14. I'm Feelin' Better
15. The Ballad (Denny & Jean)

DISC 2 - Ultrasonic Studios 1972 with the Hello People (originally broadcast on WLIR-FM)
1. Broke Down & Busted
2. Georgia Swing
3. Outside Love
4. Piss Aaron
5. A Dream Goes On Forever
6. I Saw The Light
7. It Wouldn't Have Made Any Difference
8. Feels So Good to Be Alive
9. Mad Red Ant Lady
10. Blaze
11. Lady On The Terrace
12. Slut

DISC 3 - Counterpart Studios Cincinnati 1973 with Utopia (originally broadcast on WKRQ-FM)
1. Intro
2. I Saw The Light
3. A Dream Goes On Forever
4. Piss Aaron
5. Lord Chancellor's Nightmare Song
6. Hello It's Me
7. Banter
8. Utopia Theme
9. Black Maria
10. Hungry For Love
11. The Ikon (Segments)
Download on iTunes: