Wednesday, September 7, 2011


As promised, another edition of HELPING OUT OUR READERS!

>>>The Brill Building, NY ... I don't know much about the place, other than a lot of hits were composed and recorded there! The odd thing though, during (a hit), with studio talk and ambient noise, I can hear a wooden chair dragged across the floor as well as a metal object hitting the floor. No doubt, the "studio" had a concrete floor!!! I envisioned the studio being in the basement!!!  Maybe one of the FH readers can confirm my suspicion about the Brill Building basement studio!!  (John)
>>>I have a DVD set that traces some of the history of The Brill Building ... will have to watch that again to see what they have to say.  But with SO many artists on the list now who have passed through those magical halls, maybe we can get a first-hand report from somebody!  (kk)
Here's an interesting article about The Brill Building Sound.  I found this on Ron Smith's website:  
Frank B.

>>>Your August 4th edition was fun to read and the one article about The Iveys becoming Badfinger caught my eye because, relative to their song "Maybe Tomorrow", I had to think for about 20 minutes but I finally remembered where I'd heard that song title, and I finally came up with the buried memory / fact that there was an original song released by The Rembrandts 25 or so years ago that was also titled "Maybe Tomorrow".   I think that The Rembrandts are probably out of the 'time area of research' of Forgotten Hits, but still, that Rembrandts song is a great track.  You might remember that they had a very "Beatles" sound to their writing and singing and guitar work ... they wrote and produced some very interesting tracks.  If you don't think that The Rembrandts version is too 'current' to include in Forgotten Hits, maybe your fans would enjoy hearing it as much as I do.  (Veeder Van Dorn)
>>>The Rembrandts are best known for their theme song from the hit television series "Friends", "I'll Be There For You" ... had they released it in its prime, it would have been a guaranteed #1 Hit ... but they didn't want to be saddled down with this one hit record so they held it back instead.  I don't see anything by them titled "Maybe Tomorrow" hitting the charts at all so I'm not really sure if it was ever released as a single.  (In fact, a quick check of doesn't turn up ANYTHING with that title by The Rembrandts, so I'm guessing you're confusing it with another song ... unfortunately, I don't know which one so I can't even help you with this one.  Maybe one of our readers has an idea???  (kk)
Here you go ...
That's got to be the one!  Thanks, John!  (See, that's what HELPING OUT OUR READERS is all about!!!)  kk
I wasn't sure if I had another song in mind when I told you about The Rembrandts being in my head with a song I thought they released on a CD titled, MAYBE TOMORROW. I knew those "words" were in one of their songs, but I knew that I could have been wrong about MAYBE TOMORROW being the actual title of it, but I found their discography on Wikipedia and they DID have a tune by that name that actually went to number 59 according to "Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks" coverage that Wikipedia pointed to. 
I have the CD so I'll send the song to you.  I think you'll enjoy it because it has a sort of Beatles slant to it and I remember a song you wrote has a definite Beatle sound.  You should put YOUR song in one of the newsletters.  It's really good. 
I think MAYBE TOMORROW was released on a CD before the success they had with their "Friends" theme song.  Another one of their good tunes on that CD is "ROLLING DOWN THE HILL".  I played that CD all the way across the US one summer ... excellent driving music and I never got tired of it. 
All the Best Kent,
Veeder Van Dorn
The Denver Moonrakers

I heard one time that Millie Small's version of "My Boy Lollipop" features a very young Rod Stewart on the harmonica. Is this true?
While that rumor circulated for many, many years ... and was even printed as "fact" in numerous publications ... it apparently was NOT true. 
Interestingly enough, I did a quick search after I received your email. still gives Rod Stewart credit (although Rod has reportedly stated on the record that he did NOT play harmonica on this track ... and also states that he never claimed he did.)  Meanwhile, both Pete Hogman and Jimmy Powell are credited on different websites as insisting that THEY played harmonica on the track ... and both artists have taken credit for doing so ... so perhaps we'll never know once and for all definitively who did ... other than it WASN'T Rod Stewart.  (kk)

re:  GIRL:
How you be?  Hope all is well. 
The song "Girl" by Davy Jones was featured in a longer version as the theme of the Sandy Duncan film "The Star Spangled Girl", by Neil Simon.  Would you know who, how or where to find a copy of that?  I remember taping it on audio cassette when the movie came on local television a hundred years ago.
I wonder why the Monkees stopped touring?  They never were very close as friends.  A shame. 
Ed Pond
Honestly, I wasn't aware that there was a longer version of "Girl", a long-time list favorite (despite never making the charts).  Seems once Davy performed this on "The Brady Bunch", a very loyal legion of fans have loved the song ever since.
As for The Monkees Tour, it's a REAL shame.  I've heard numerous takes on what happened but nobody seems will to speak definitely "on the record" about it.  Too bad.  Despite postings to the contrary, I don't expect to see them do a 50 Year Anniversary Tour ... unless Mike Nesmith is interested in doing one. 
Meanwhile, here's "Girl" by Davy Jones (the single version anyway) ... a complete bomb when it came out but evidently still a list favorite ... this has got to be the 6th or 7th time we've featured it!!!   (kk)

Just got this from FH Reader Frank B, who heard Davy Jones being interviewed on WCBS-FM yesterday ... here's what Davy had to say about The Monkees' Reunion Tour:

Kent ...
WCBS-FM morning man, Dan Taylor, just interviewed Davy Jones.  Here's Davy Jones version of what happened to The Monkees Tour:
I feel like I should be playing "One Monkey Don't Stop No Show" the background.
Davy said they just finished the first leg of their tour, 46 shows.  They didn't have time to sit down with management and plan the rest of the tour. Management booked these shows before
consulting with the group.  Davy Jones and David Cassidy are appearing together in New Jersey. He didn't rule out a Monkees Tour for 2012. After listening to the interview, it doesn't sound like there's bad blood between them.
Frank B.
I think there's probably a LITTLE bit more to it than that ... and I seriously doubt that they'll get back together in 2012 ... but I'd love to be proven wrong so let's just wait and see what happens.  (kk)
No, not the Mike Nesmith tune recorded by Linda Ronstadt and The Stone Poneys ... although that WOULD make for a neat tie-in reference to the Davy Jones piece above ... this is in reference to a piece run over a year ago during our "commercial" phase ... proving once again that sometimes it just takes a little longer to get the answers in our "Helping Out Our Readers" segment ... but that, invariably, we seem to get them!!!  (kk)
For Marsha Ahrenkiel, who asked about it in July 2010. The cologne was Bravura. My band, the Honus Huffhines, played it live a couple of times. 
No one seems to know who actually recorded this, but there's a fairly lengthy reference to it here:

And, speaking of commercials ...

>>>Can you believe that we're STILL getting mail on our coverage of the old "Heaven Sent" commercials?!?!?  Unreal!!! That's because new people are discovering Forgotten Hits every day.  (kk)
In the 1968 era, WLS was playing the Heaven Scent commercial and National Coffee "Think Drink" commercial and Compoz commercials and Nutriment commercials every hour!  BUT, that Heaven Scent one just had such a great jingle to sing along to, with lyrics that got you thinking!  I loved all of these commercials. 
Clark Besch

Hi Kent!
Haven’t chatted with you for a while — had reason to visit your site again today and thought you might be able to assist me with a DJ problem.
I’m still plugging away on the 25-year print version of Blast from Your Past while the 5-year ebook is picking up steam online.

I recently picked up an LP with a great cover which might be fun to use in the print book, with an art rendition of 6 DJs at WMEX — but no names or date. It’s part of the Cruisin’ Collection, but I’ve never seen this cover before. Besides no date the only name that might help to date it is Don Daniels as station PD, but I can’t find his name in a search.
Can you or your subscribers help me ID them? My primary interest is in Wolfman Jack, who is easily identified; but I’d like to obviously give credit to the others — it’s a terrific image. Please see the attached. I’m thinking Arnie Ginsburg, and maybe Larry Glick?

If anybody's got any ideas on this, drop us a line and we'll forward them along.  (Who knows ... maybe some of the jocks on our list were even part of this whole thing!) kk

In a related note, here's another "Inside Look At Radio" book that we've just been told about:
From Wall Street to Main Street and Silicon Valley to Hollywood, Bob Sherwood brokered multi-million dollar mergers and transactions. Prior to becoming President of Mercury/Phonogram, CBS Music, and Sony's New Business Development -- Bob Sherwood was 'on the radio' at KROY in Sacramento. 
“For those  who fondly recall R ‘n R radio from the  mid-50s  to the ‘80s,  and great music from the Golden Years of the business -- boy, do I have a book for you!   It’s “Dead Air - The Rise and Demise of music radio” by Bill Young.  For those few not familiar with Bill, he was the enormously creative and successful PD for Gordon McLendon’s KILT from the mid-60’s to the early 80’s.  He’s also a terrific guy.The stories he relate, the visions he offers and the memories he stir’s are wonderful.I’ve only known Bill as a business associate so this endorsement is not ‘hawking a friend’s wares’  but purely about the book. He’s self-published, so you’re not likely to find “Dead Air” at your poor, beleaguered local bookseller but you can certainly find it on, where I got mine (full retail!). It’s also available on Kindle.   I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.”  -- Bob Sherwood
~The name ‘Kent Burkhart’ conjures a lifetime of accomplishments - talent, action, and industry leadership.  Kent has been a radio owner, manager, program director, consultant, satellite and international radio pioneer,  NAB’s ‘Living Legend’ and Radio Executive of the Year.   
“Bill Young’s book is terrific! It is filled with history ...  not just radio history, but the society that supported it.  Young  has  painted a picture of exactly the way radio was in a state full of brilliant talent.  Bill Young  has  cooked a wonderful pie!  Kent Burkhart
Art Holt is recognized in the National Forensic Registry as one of radio’s leading experts.  For over forty years, his Holt Media Group has become internationally known for media appraisals and as radio management consultants. Holt sits on the International Committee of NAB and the International Institute of Communications. “Bill Young wrote a darn fine book!  Much better than just ‘darn good’ -- actually, it is reliable, accurate and a real guide to a vanishing era in communications!  Personally, I am a fairly obsessive reader of books about radio history, all the way back to the beginnings of broadcasting. I’ve gone through about two dozen interesting books on the subject so far.  This includes both the Rather and Cronkite reminiscences about growing up in Houston and starting out in radio back in the day ... but Bill Young’s  Dead Air is the best book on broadcasting yet!"  Art Holt
Scott Shannon first came to national attention when he and partner Cleveland Wheeler created the successful ‘morning zoo’ concept in Tampa.  His move to Z100 in New York took the station to #1 in just 74 days!  Shannon has been inducted into the NAB’s ‘Hall of Fame’ and the ‘National Radio Hall of Fame’ in Chicago.  "Bill Young's KILT in Houston had the crispness & discipline of a Bill Drake station, but with more personality and local involvement.  I never really worked with a mentor, I just studied people that I admired from afar and there were only two -- Bill Drake & Bill Young."  -- Scott Shannon
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Music Radio's' magical power captured brilliantly!, July 14, 2011
James H. Cahill "Jim Cahill" (Southern California) - 
This review is from:  Dead Air: The Rise and Demise of Music Radio (Paperback)
As a long time fan of music radio, I found this book to be a fun filled rocket ride. For anyone who experienced the 'wonder years infatuation' of falling in love with a great radio station that captured the imagination of an entire metropolis -this book brilliantly captures the inside story of music radio from the programmers perspective. Before government deregulation allowed the 'Clear Channel neutering' of the entire industry-rock radio was once the province of the most creative, imaginative and skillful people in all of electronic media. Bill Young is one of the foremost practitioners of this long lost art form. Our nation is much poorer for having lost the types of radio stations described here. Bill's rock n roll radio stations were epic productions that echoed a very real love for the common man and his favorite music. Imagination and 'theatre of the mind' production were the rocket fuels that powered up the great successes of Bill Young's universally admired, often imitated KILT / Houston. With personal insights to some of the all time great programming minds in radio history including the legendary Gordon McLendon among many others, Bill tells a compelling, richly detailed story here. How a programmer thinks of trends as well as active and passive audiences is truly fascinating reading. This story is not just a 'those were the days' victory lap, as Young looks inward and honestly examines the price he paid for his well earned spot at the top. That extra layer of honesty makes this story human, soulful and at times, surprisingly emotional-delivering a satisfaction to the reader rarely found in books of this type. Bravo Bill Young! Well done! 5 very enthusiastic Stars!!!
Although I haven't personally seen a copy of this yet, I've heard very good things about it.  If you're one of those who wants to know the behind-the-scenes story of great radio, this sounds like a book that you'll enjoy.  (kk)

I bought Joel Whitburn's Billboard Top 40 book (covering 1955 - 2009) yesterday from Borders going-out-of-business sale. I was surprised to see Whitburn describing the Ronettes as a "black girl group" cuz I had always considered them to be of Puerto Rican descent. 
So I consulted the book, "He's a Rebel: Phil Spector, Rock and Roll's Legendary Producer"
(currently available at Dollar Tree for $1). Author Mark Ribowsky also calls the Ronettes a black group. This was starting to gnaw on me as Ronnie Spector does not appear to be black on the picture sleeve of her Apple single "Tandoori Chicken / Try Some, Buy Some."
And so, on my first day back at a computer (the fall semester started this week at Santa Rosa JC) I had the opportunity to research the Ronettes ancestry and learned that: To begin with, all three were of mixed-race decent; all young beauties.  Ronnie and Estelle were the children of a white father and a mother of African-American and Cherokee descent.  Nedra Talley was black, Indian and Puerto Rican. 
Another biographical website also referred to the Ronettes as "multi-racial." Whitburn's and Ribowsky's credentials are now being questioned. As is my memory.
Dave Barry
Thinking that some of our readers might know a little bit about this, I forwarded this first to Steve Knuettel, who wrote the Phil Spector Series that ran in Forgotten Hits a few years back. 
(I figured that with the amount of research he did on this subject, he might be able to shed some definitive insight on this most unusual topic!)  Unfortunately, I haven't heard anything back from him yet so I'm throwing this out there to the rest of our readers ... if any of you guys out there have some more info to share on this otherwise "unusual" topic, please let us know ... after all, that's what "Helping Out Our Readers" is all about.  Just drop us a line and we'll cover this in greater depth in a follow-up feature.  Thanks!  (kk) 

re:  FIRST 45's:

Hi Kent - 
Thank you so much for your blog and website.  I just discovered it and am spending all my free time on it.
My first 45 was Robot Man by Jamie Horton, in about 1958 or ‘59.  She had another record “My Little Marine” after that.
My second 45 is one that I’ve been trying to figure out for years now.  I can remember a light-blue label, and the song had something to do with a soldier sitting under a tree reading a letter.  Or maybe it was a girl sitting under a tree reading a letter from her soldier boyfriend.  Not sure, but I’d love to know what it was.
Like many others on your site, I got a 25-cent allowance back then ... and 45s were 50 cents ... so I had to save up for two weeks and then buy a record I just “had to have”.  Never a week went buy that I didn’t have a favorite song that played on WCFL or WLS.  “Itsy Bitsy ...” was one of those, as was Del Shannon’s “Runaway”.  I still have most of those 45s although I can’t vouch for what shape they’re in.
Kathy Reilly
Rediscover Music
We've got a pretty astute list here, Kathy ... I'll betcha MOST of them can identify your mystery record just by the label color!!!  If you read MY First 45 entry, you'll see that it was, in fact, "Itsy Bitsy Teenie-Weenie Yellow Polka-dot Bikini" by Brian Hyland.  ("Speedy Gonzales" by Pat Boone was my second!)  Still a very popular feature, we still get "First 45's" stories all the time.  Thanks for yours.  (Now let's see if our readers can come up with the name and artist of your SECOND 45!!!)  kk