Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Tuesday This And That

For the first time, The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame has begun inducting songs that revolutionized the music industry.  It's a brand new category called The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Singles and the first six inductees are all by artists who are not IN The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.  

Little Steven Van Zandt worded it this way: 

This category is a recognition of the excellence of the singles that shaped rock 'n' roll, kind of a rock 'n' roll jukebox, records by artists not in the Rock Hall … which is not to say these artists will never be in the Rock Hall … they just are not in the Rock Hall at the moment.
We all know the history of music can be changed with just one song, one record. In three minutes we suddenly enter a new direction, a movement, a style, an experience. That three-minute song can result in a personal revelation, an epiphany that changes our lives.

The first inductees in this new category (listed alphabetically by song title) are:

"Born to Be Wild" by Steppenwolf  (1968)
"Louie Louie" by The Kingsmen (1963)
 "Rocket 88" by Jackie Breston and his Delta Cats (1951)
"Rumble" by Link Wray and his Ray Men (1958)
"The Twist" by Chubby Checker  (1960)
 "A Whiter Shade of Pale" by Procol Harum (1967)

We have long campaigned for the induction of The Kingsmen and Chubby Checker, as these records truly did change the face of music at the time … and the course of music thereafter.  I suppose we can take some comfort in knowing that they have finally (at least in some way) been recognized for their impact by The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame.

The Kingsmen single-handedly ushered in the era of Garage Band Rock with their 1963 anthem, “Louie Louie” (which, one could argue, was a precursor to the Punk Rock Movement of the ‘80’s) and Checker’s record, “The Twist,” kicked off a dance sensation so big that it actually went to #1 TWICE … the only record in the Rock And Roll Era to do so … first when the kids picked up on it in 1960 and then again nearly two years later when it became all the rage at the adult discotheques that had sprung up all over the country.

The same would be true of "Rocket 88," often regarded as the very first Rock And Roll Record.  It sparked a change in the way Rhythm and Blues Records were recorded and promoted, which soon gave birth to what we now all call Rock And Roll.

Steppenwolf (“Born To Be Wild”) actually have been nominated for induction before but didn't make the cut.  While "A Whiter Shade Of Pale" is, without question, one of my favorite songs of all time … as well as one of the greatest recordings of all time … I'm a little bit surprised to see it inducted in the very first round.  Likewise, "Rumble" … Link Wray has been nominated before and fans have long lobbied on his behalf in the way of petitions to The Hall … but there are probably more deserving instrumentals that should have been recognized first.  (Still, "Rumble" does have a very unique sound and, in a way, created a new genre of music at the time.)

Rolling Stone Magazine (aren't they really the same thing as The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame???) have published lists in the past of The Top 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time … but the fact that this new category will only honor artists NOT inducted is its greatest selling point.

How do these six records rank on the Rolling Stone List?

#457 – The Twist
#130 – Born To Be Wild
#57 – A Whiter Shade Of Pale
#54 – Louie Louie
Apparently “Rocket 88” and “Rumble” weren’t deemed significant enough to make Rolling Stone’s list.

See the full list here:

Congratulations to all of the artists who helped change the course of music … and to all of this year's regular inductees as well.  

The edited television event (one awkward and unusual highlight included Dire Straits inducting themselves into The Hall!!!) will begin airing on HBO on May the 5th.  (kk)

Speaking of HBO, have you seen the seen the new 3 1/2 hour Elvis documentary "The Searcher" yet?  Pretty incredible stuff, much of it from a perspective not often shown in regards to The King's legacy.  Excellent commentary throughout … and quite a bit of it from the late Tom Petty (which is kinda eerie in a way.)  Petty even performs Elvis' hit "Wooden Heart" during the film's closing credits.

A great choice of music in crystal clear sound … some incredible photos and film footage (with special attention paid to his 1968 NBC Singer Comeback Television Special … I especially liked the way they cut back and forth between Elvis' original recording or performance of a given song and them jumped ahead to show his rejuvenated take for the TV cameras in '68 … VERY well done.)

Highly recommended (and available on HBO On Demand) … definitely worth checking out.  (kk)

Huey Lewis is experiencing severe hearing loss and has cancelled all of his tour dates for 2018.  (So sad to hear this … we LOVE Huey and were hoping to see him again this year!)

Doctors believe that Lewis may be suffering from Meniere's disease, a disorder of the inner ear that (in addition to hearing loss) can also cause vertigo, tinnitus and the feeling of pressure.  According to The Mayo Clinic (where Lewis has been treated) it can lead to a permanent loss of hearing.
Huey posted this message to his fans:
Two and a half months ago, just before a show in Dallas, I lost most of my hearing. Although I can still hear a little, one on one, and on the phone, I can’t hear music well enough to sing. The lower frequencies distort violently making it impossible to find pitch. I’ve been to the House Ear Institute, the Stanford Ear Institute, and the Mayo Clinic, hoping to find an answer. The doctors believe I have Meniere’s disease and have agreed that I can’t perform until I improve. Therefore, the only prudent thing to do is to cancel all future shows. Needless to say, I feel horrible about this, and wish to sincerely apologize to all the fans who’ve already bought tickets and were planning to come see us. I’m going to concentrate on getting better, and hope that one day soon I’ll be able to perform again.
Wishing you a speedy and complete recovery, Huey … we love ya!  (kk)

Ron Onesti just booked The Bay City Rollers for a show on Sunday, September 23rd.  (We may just have to go to this one … I wonder who’s even in the band anymore!!!)  Tickets go on sale tomorrow at noon at The Arcada Online Box Office:  www.oshows.com  (kk)

I have a concert April 29th with Lou Christie, Gary Lewis and The Vogues. If it is still snowing then … I am still going! I’ve had it! I need sunshine even if it is from stage lights!
Lou was telling us on Sunday that he had just spoken with some friends in Minnesota who had 19” of snow!!!  (We had more today along with the cold temps … c’mon already!!!)  kk

1975 - Saturday Night  (#1)
1976 - Money Honey  (#7)
1976 - Rock And Roll Love Letter  (#28)
1976 - I Only Want To Be With You  (#8)
1976 - Yesterday's Hero  (#49)
1977 - You Made Me Believe In Magic  (#7)
1977 - The Way I Feel Tonight  (#19)