Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Sunday Comments ( 03 - 20 - 11 )

Taking a break from our "What Is An Oldies?" discussion long enough to bring you another killer edtion of The Sunday Comments!

Congratulations to Ed Pond of Lebanon, Oregon ... he won a copy of Eric Lefcowitz's new Monkees Book "Monkee Business: The Revolutionary Made-For-TV Band". (Yes, he won again ... because HE was the first one in with the correct answer to the question "What was The Monkees' highest charting B-Side?" We received several other guesses but Ed was the first one in with the CORRECT answer.) Ya gotta play if you wanna win!!!
The top charting B-Side the Monkees had was "Words", the flip side of "Pleasant Valley Sunday". It went to #11 on the pop charts, according to the liner notes using Billboard chart placings, from the Rhino CD "The Monkees' Greatest Hits".
Also, Kent-Man - if I don't wint the book, just remember MY birthday is April 7th (46-eech!), and I'd love a copy of the book myself (if you can hint for "Smile", I can hint for The Monkees!) I hope I'm correct or I'm embarassed. Drop me a line and let me know whas'sup. Later!
Ed Pond
If all was right in the world, it SHOULD have been "Steppin' Stone" ... but because "Words" actually started out as the A-Side ... before "Pleasant Valley Sunday" became the public's favorite ... this is the biggest Monkees one-two punch on record ... pun intended!
Check out our Top 200 All-Time Biggest Two-Sided Hits List and you'll see that The Monkees have TWO entries in The Top 20 ...
... ranking was determined by the COMBINED point total accumulated by BOTH sides of the record on the national charts. (Actually, "Words" did even better in Cash Box, where it peaked at #5!) I'm A Believer / Steppin' Stone is their other Top 20 Two-Sided Hit.) Congratulations, Ed!!!
That's so cool! I have my copy of his first book, "The Monkees' Tale", which is very dog-eared. I remember I ordered two copies from Last Gasp (the then-publisher of 'The Monkees' Tale'), one for me and one for a friend. Then a few weeks later, I received two more in the mail. Wanting to be honest, I called Last Gasp about the mistake, and they told me to forget about it and keep them. So, I was able to give two more friends books about The Monkees! I probably won't be able to see them on this new tour unless I can get back to work, but I have a new book to read! Thanks, Kent, and Eric.
Have a great day!
Ed Pond

And then this from Eric Lefcowitz himself ...

Hi Kent!
I hope you like the book. I think the tour is going to be a good one. It's an impressive roster of dates and I think they'll draw. Hopefully they get along but, of course, as their biographer whatever happens will end up being fascinating. Hope to meet you at one of the shows. I think the Greek could be special ... I'm hoping Nez shows up.
Thanks again for the support.
Would LOVE to see the show at The Greek ... but I doubt that we're going to be able to pull that off! On the other hand, if you think you'll be heading out Chicago way, please drop me a note! Thanks again, Eric!
By the way, it's great to see that once again a life-time Monkees fan won a copy of your new book ... sometimes there really IS justice in the world!!! (lol) kk
I feel the same way. I'm glad that someone who bought the original book won this one.

Kent ...
Is there a Rolling Stone who hasn't written a book? After reading what Mick has to say, would you buy this book? I say no.
Frank B.
Frannie got me the Keith Richards book, which I am really looking forward to reading ... but I keep getting distracted by OTHER books I've picked up since ... right now I'm about half way through the Danny Seraphine / Chicago book (thanks, Tom Cuddy!!!) ... and then I'm going right into the new Eric Lefcowitz Monkees book mentioned above. (kk)

re: AND VIDEO ...:
Kent ...
A Concert Celebrating The End Of An Era:
The Beatles Opened It (August 15, 1965)
Billy Joel Closed It (July 16 & 17, 2008)
2 CD's + 1 DVD.
I liked it a lot.
CD Guests - "New York State Of Mind" with Tony Bennett
"Shameless" with Garth Brooks
"This Is The Time" with John Mayer
"I Saw Her Standing There" and "Let It Be" with Sir Paul McCartney
DVD Guests - "Walk This Way" with Steven Tyler
"My Generation" with Roger Daltrey
"Pink Houses" with John Mellencamp.
+ Billy Joel's Hits.
How can you go wrong ? I say buy it.
"Billy Joel Live At Shea Stadium"
This show is also making the rounds on PBS Stations.
Frank B.

... and, speaking of PBS Shows ...


Hi Kent,
Watched TJ's Rock, Pop and Doo Wop Show and it was good seeing those great performers. I was particularly impressed with the lead singer of the Orlons, Ronnie Spector and the lead singer of the Cascades.
The Black and White shots of the singers was a good touch. They were all probably courtesy of Dick Clark and his old Saturday night Dick Clark Show where he featured the popular singers at that time.
I was at one of TJ's shows when Jay Black was on. He has a real sense of humor! I had the opportunity to thank TJ for doing these shows and had my photo taken with him.
There are allot of one hit wonders out there that he is trying to get to perform. Hoping he gets the Shangrilas and Cozy Cole and his Topsy Part Two!!!!

Kent, Frank B. & Wild Bill -
What about sharing all your great ideas with Henry Farug @ Canterbury Productions, which stages great oldies / doowop shows across the country?
While T.J. clearly loves the music (his dad owned NY's Savoy Records, I believe) Henry sings it, lives it, and is truly committed to keeping it alive.
Heck,if we could get Henry on this great website we could all share our suggestions (and see more of his shows!)
Clive Topol
Then by all means, tell him about our awesome site ... and our commitment to keeping this great music alive. We've been talking with Ron Onesti here locally, too, about putting together some more great oldies shows for his Arcada Theatre in St. Charles ... a great place to see a show. And there's been some discussion with members of our list and the local PBS Branch about some oldies specials as well. (The hit PBS Series "Soundstage" has been filmed here for YEARS ... why not a series of oldies specials ... clearly they are amongst the most popular shows being shown on PBS across the nation!!!) Seriously, if ANYBODY out there can lend support in these areas, we're all for it ... and I believe Forgotten Hits can be the link to both the artists, the deejays for local promotion and the fans!!! So bring us on board! (kk)

This past Thursday evening I did watch the PBS special on Rock,Pop, Doowop, My Music. I was madder than a wet hen though. It said in our TV guide in the paper that it would come on at 9 PM our time. It even said that on their website. So I turn the channel on about 8:30 our time and here is T.J. Lubinsky tellling about the DVD's you can send off for from the show. I said "What?" They had the Norman Foster special at 9 PM instead of at 7 PM like they had listed. Anyway, I did see the rerun later on that evening at 11 PM.
Tomorrow night, Wednesday, they are supposed to replay on PBS the show ROCK, POP, DOOWOP, MY MUSIC. I will watch it again and I do believe that I will send off for the DVD of the show. Last week I was going to send off as well for the 5 CD's of the music but decided against it since I have all the music here at home on 100% vinyl. I noticed in the show, and a friend of mine e-mailed me as well with this comment, that some of the acts featured in
black and white performances were edited down somewhat. Still a great show.
The vintage clips make for a nice "extra" when spotlighting this music. All-in-all, a pretty enjoyable show. (kk)

Hi Kent,
Lots of folks applauding the Oldies shows on PBS. Some I like and some not so much, but from what I can tell by watching them, there's a lot of post-production going on. You look at how many folks are onstage in a band doing backing vocals and then listen, and there's a lot more going on than what's on screen. Live isn't really live anymore. I don't mind a little fixing, but sheesh!

I, too, caught the PBS special with Jay Black, Ronnie Spector, et al. I guess you can say I've been jaded, but I was impressed that Jay Black still has his voice. Not a lot of his contemporaries can say that. Don't get me wrong as I love Ronnie Spector, but with those sunglasses, she's a dead ringer for Joey Ramone.
I was impressed with a number of the vocal performances on this program. Jay Black was certainly a stand out ... liked Len Barry and The Orlons, too. Honestly, ALL of the artists sounded particularly good that night (even if there was a little after-the-fact editing, as has been implied.) kk

>>>I've been thinking about this for awhile and I've got a great idea for a show. In fact, I sent this idea to Richard Nader ... got an answer ... from one of his lawyers ... didn't understand me at all. (Frank B)

Just as an FYI -- the reason Frank B heard from the lawyers regarding his suggestion to Mr. Nader is that Richard passed on sometime in 2010 IIRC. He is certainly no longer among us.
Well, THAT makes sense then, doesn't it?!?! (kk)

>>> I've heard really good things about the "At The Drive-In" PBS Special from a few years back ... but I've never seen ... it's not one of those that they rerun regularly like so many of their other programs. I know it was available at the time through your pledge donations ... but I don't know if you can still order it through PBS' website or not ... does anybody out there know for sure? (kk)
I checked WLIW's website to see if it's still available on DVD, but it seems the only thing they have listed there is the CD soundtrack from the show ...
Here's the link to that:

Hi Kent,
I must have too much time on my hands, but your discussion of the PBS program "Night at the Drive-in" caught my attention. So I took a little time to google it and came up with this link that has the show available for 39.99. I may get this one myself!! The tracklist is included here too.
The following site also gives a track list and description. By going to the external links, the program is also available at Amazon through outside sellers but at a much higher price. This is where I found the link to the site above.
This sounds like a bargain at 39.99!!
Peggy McLaughlin
It looks like that first link is the CD Box Set and not the DVD ... meaning just the music, no program. (This must be the one Mitch Schecter was talking about.) However, the other link appears to be for the DVD. Honestly, I think quite a few of our readers might be interested in obtaining a copy ... thanks for the info! (kk)

Kent ...
Has this PBS Show reached Chicago yet?
The Rat Pack - Live and Swingin' (6/65)
Dean, Sammy and Frank
MC - Johnny Carson
--- Dean Martin: Send Me The Pillow You Dream On; Everybody Loves Somebody; Volare; An Evening In Roma; You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You
--- Sammy Davis Jr.: My Shinning Hour; Who Can I Turn To; I've Got You Under My Skin
--- Frank Sinatra: Get Me To The Church On Time; Fly Me To The Moon; Luck Be A Lady Tonight; I Only Have Eyes For You; Please Be Kind; You Make Me Feel So Young; My Kind Of Town
Finale = Birth Of The Blues (Johnny Carson joins the other three to close the show.)
Highly recommended .
Frank B.
I think this is an old one ... seems to me it first cropped up on PBS a few years back ... but you're right, well worth watching. Thanks, Frank! (kk)

This past weekend here on the outskirts OKC were performers Tommy James and the Grassroots. No promotion whatsoever from any radio station here in town. I just happened to notice it in the small print of Friday's entertainment section of the paper.

Initially known as one of The Young Rascals, Felix now performs as one of The Old Rascals!
Not an insult're the one who calls them Oldies, not I!!! :-)
Come one, come all!!!
Felix Cavaliere’s Rascals perform live at Parx Casino
Singing The Hits: Groovin’ (on a Sunday afternoon), Lonely Too Long, Good lovin', It’s a Beautiful Morning and many other favorites!
Saturday, March 19th
Showtime – 7:30 pm at 360 nightclub in the casino
Open to the public – free admission
Standing room only
Must be 21 years of age to enter casino
visit for more details
2999 Street Road – Bensalem, PA 19020
exit 37 off I-95. exit 351 (westbound) / exit 352 (eastbound) off the pa turnpike.
1.888.588.parx (7279)
Hey, if any of our East Coast Readers were able to catch this show last night, please drop us a line. Meanwhile full-blown Rascals Reunion Rumors are still flying around ... now THAT'S a show I'd love to see!!! (kk)

Kent ...
I call this the "Gloria Show"
Opening Act = Vito Balsamo & The Salutations ... Do their hits, close with "Gloria"
Next Act = Jimmy Gallagher & The Passions ... "Just To Be With You", "I Only Want You", etc. ... End with " Gloria."
Closing Act = Earl Carroll & The Cadillacs ... "Speedo", "Peek-A-Boo", "The Girl I Love" ... I'd like to hear Mr. Earl sing "Duke Of Earl". Close with their original version of "Gloria".
Finale = Vito, Jimmy and Earl - Just the three lead singers come out and sing "Gloria" together.
Take that T.J.Lubinsky!
Frank B.
WHAT?!?!? How can you do a "Gloria" show and NOT invite Van Morrison and Jimy Sohns and The Shadows Of Knight?!?! And shouldn't Sally Struthers be there to MC??? (kk)

I also heard commercials last week about the 2011 Happy Together Again Tour ... this time they're coming to the Genesee Theatre in Waukegan, IL ... never been there ... but a damn good line-up: The Turtles / Flo and Eddie (Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman), The Buckinghams, The Association, Rob Grill and The Grass Roots and Mark Lindsay, former lead singer of Paul Revere and the Raiders. Hopefully, we'll get reports from the road again from some of these artists. Be sure to check the schedule to see if they may be coming to a town near you! (kk)
(More dates to be announced ... in fact, the Genesee Theatre isn't even listed here!!!)

Good evening, folks. If you happen to be traveling through Middle Tennessee tonight you might notice the late, great Ferlin Husky being escorted up to Heaven on the "wings of more than a few doves." The country legend passed away today at his daughter's home near Nashville at the age of 85. He had been ill for several years and his death, although tragic, did not come as a complete surprise. I'm saddened for his family but I'm so thankful that the good Lord let him live to see his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame last year. His plaque rests in the Rotunda with so many of his friends who went on before him, including Jimmy Dean, who lived to see the announcement of his induction, but didn't make it for the actual "Medallion" ceremony. I'm sure the Museum folks have already placed a Lilly and condolence book under Ferlin's plaque ... just as they've done for other HOF members far, far too many times in recent years.
As my old friend Tex Ritter would say, Ferlin's arrived in "Hillbilly Heaven" and it's a star studded night. Some of you may not know this but back in 1957, it was Ferlin, and his producer, Hall of Famer Ken Nelson, who were the first to feature what became known as the 'Nashville sound.' The record was "Gone" and Ferlin had actually recorded the song and released it nearly five years earlier under the name Terry Preston. Prior to his entry into country music, Ferlin had served in the US Merchant Marine in World War 2 and then moved from his native Missouri to Bakersfield where he continued his work as a deejay and early participant in the fledgling country music scene there. His manager was another future Hall of Famer, and one of my dearest friends, Cliffie Stone, who brought Ferlin to the attention of Ken and Capitol Records.
Ferlin's earlier version of "Gone" was more traditional country, and it 'stiffed,' but when Ken decided to add strings, acoustic piano and background singers (The Jordanaires along with Millie Kirkham singing the high soprano part), all of a sudden country music had gone 'uptown' appealing to country, as well as pop audiences. It could now compete with rock & roll for radio listeners and record buyers. It stayed at the top of the country music charts for ten weeks and also became a 'crossover' pop hit as well.
When my friend, George Van Win, and I visited with Ken near his Ventura, CA, home in 2006, (Ken was 96 at the time), he refused to take credit for 'inventing'' the Nashville sound, but I know that he did. Ken had a rare gift for recognizing "God-given" talent. He would never sign an artist who couldn't sing -- let alone resort to using Pro Tools to artificially tune one of his singer's lead vocals.
If you want to know who Ken is also responsible for, try at least five other Hall of Fame members: Faron Young, Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, Sonny James and Glen Travis Campbell for starters. Yep, he signed and produced them all. (Note: it was Ken who brought The Beach Boys to the attention of Nick Venet and the Capitol Records pop A&R department after Beach Dad Murry Wilson submitted 'the boys' to him).
Keep in mind that during the 50's, there were less than 80 full time country music stations in the entire USA. Many were in the deep south, many were 'daytimers' (on the air sunrise to sundown) and many were located in small secondary markets -- like Chester Smith's KTRB Radio in Modesto, CA, where I was introduced to country music in the mid-50's. At the height of the country music (i.e. Garth Brooks) explosion in the early and mid-90's, there were nearly 2,600 full time country stations! But for many 'city slickers' growing up on the west coast, they heard mainly 'crossover' country music stars on Top 40 radio -- which played a mixture of country, rock and roll, r & b, and even an occasional jazz or inspirational single. Yes, it was Top 40 radio who introduced millions of 'baby boomers' to Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins, Don Gibson, Sonny James, Johnny Horton, Claude King, and, of course, Ferlin.
Ferlin Husky also had a bit of luck using his 'alter ego' Simon Crum for another country classic, "Country Music Is Here To Stay," which went to #2 on the country music charts, whereas "Gone" and "Wings of A Dove" went all the way to #1.
As I said earlier, I'm just so glad that Ferlin was recognized during his lifetime. So many are not. My friend Marty Robbins -- songwriter, singer, NASCAR driver and the 'total' entertainer' -- made it into the HOF by barely six weeks. He was inducted in late October and died in early December. Talk about 'cutting it close.' Others, many nearly as deserving, never made it into the HOF during their lifetime. Politics, or stupidity, I'm not sure which.
But the 'missing in action' include Johnny Horton, the great Rose Maddox (Johnny Cash's favorite female entertainer), producer / performer Danny Davis (of "Nashville Brass" fame), rodeo tailors Nudie Cohn, "Rodeo Ben" and Nathan Turk, publisher / producer Buddy Killen, Irving Waugh (poor Irving held out as long has he could waiting for that telephone call, but finally passed away at age 94 without receiving it. Irving was responsible for talking NBC into adding country music stars to the Kate Smith Show, talked Kraft Foods into sponsoring the Country Music Association (CMA) Awards show, and helped plan the world famous Opryland Hotel and Opryland, USA theme park). Oh, and lets not forget Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman, songwriter Ted Daffin, and Edwin Craig.
Who's Edwin Craig you may ask? Well, he's the singular reason why Nashville became "Music City, USA." He talked his father, the president of the National Life and Accident Insurance Company, into starting a radio station way back in 1925, and while he was at it, came up with the idea of bringing in hillbilly singers, comedians, and assorted bands, to create a 'live' show called "The Grand Ole Opry." Without that brilliant idea, Nashville might have become "Insurance City, USA," "Healthcare City, USA," or "Bible Publishing, USA," but certainly not "Music City, USA."
Fortunately, there's still plenty of time (or so it would appear) to induct The Oak Ridge Boys, Kenny Rogers, Connie Smith, Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson and a few more.
So, when you hit your knees tonight, say a little prayer for old Ferlin. There's one more star in Hillbilly Heaven this evening and we're all blessed to have been around for all the great music he shared with the world.
Fred Vail / Nashville
"Music City, USA"

The world of music has lost another legendary icon. Ferlin Husky has passed away at the age of 85 years old. Ferlin as we all know, had been battling health issues for several years. His Master came to bring him home.
Ferlin was member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. As an entertainer, there were none better, and his list of hit songs included “GONE - WINGS OF A DOVE - I FEEL BETTER ALL OVER,” and so many more. Our industry will sadly miss his high-kicking show stopping music. I have been honored to know him as a great friend and human being.
Please keep Ferlin’s family in your thoughts and prayers during the time of sorrow in their life’s at this great loss.
Ferlin Eugene Husky was born in Flat River, Missouri. Ferlin attended school as a youngster in Irondale, Missouri about ten (10) miles west of Flat River, (Park Hills), Missouri. As a United States Merchant Marine, he entertained the troops on his ship in World War II. His official website states that his ship participated in the D-Day invasion of Cherbourg.
After the war, Husky became a DJ in Missouri and Bakersfield, California, where he began using the moniker Terry Preston to hide his rural roots. As a honky tonk singer, Husky signed with Capitol Records in 1953 under the guidance of Cliffie Stone, also the manager for Tennessee Ernie Ford. With Capitol Records, he reverted to his given name. A few singles failed before "A Dear John Letter" with Jean Shepard became a No. 1 hit. The follow up was called "Forgive Me John".
In 1955, Husky had a solo hit with "I Feel Better All Over (More Than Anywhere’s Else)" / "Little Tom", and developed "Simon Crum" as a comic alter ego. As Crum, Husky signed a separate contract with Capitol Records and began releasing records, the biggest of which was 1959's "Country Music Is Here To Stay" (No. 2 for three weeks).
In the late 1950s, Husky had a long string of hits, including the No. 1 "Gone"; in 1957 (he first recorded "Gone" as Terry Preston in 1952, but the earlier version lacked the strings and backup singers of the newly-emerging Nashville sound). "Gone" was a crossover success, also reaching No. 4 on the pop music chart. It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc.[1] He then began an acting career, appearing on the Kraft Television Theatre program, and in the film Mr. Rock & Roll (his website states he has had bit parts in 18 films). Bob Ferguson's "Wings of a Dove" became his biggest hit in 1960, topping the country charts for ten weeks and attaining No. 12 on the pop chart. Husky was also known for his ability to mimic other popular country singers.
Although he did not have any more chart-toppers, he had more than two dozen hits between 1961 and 1972, with the biggest being "Once" (1967) and "Just For You" (1968). In late 1972, after over 20 years with Capitol, Husky signed with ABC Records, where he scored several Top 40 hits into 1975 with the biggest being the Top 20 "Rosie Cries A Lot" (1973). Husky briefly retired in 1977 following heart surgery but resumed touring. He remained a popular concert draw, performing at the Grand Ole Opry and elsewhere.
Husky has suffered from heart problems for many years and has been hospitalized several times since the late 1970s, most recently for heart surgery in 2005 and blood clots in his legs in 2007. He was admitted to St. John's Hospital in Springfield, Missourion April 19, 2009, with congestive heart failure and pneumonia. On July 15, 2009 his spokesman said he was recuperating at home after being released from a Nashville hospital.
On February 23, 2010, the Country Music Association announced his induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
On January 16, 2011, Husky was honored at West St. Francois County High School in Leadwood, MO where local singers and the high school choir sang some of his hits. Husky also donated several items of memorabilia, including his Country Music Hall of Fame award, to the city of Leadwood. They will be permanently stored at the High School.

Country Hall of Famer Ferlin Husky passed away Thursday (March 17) at the age of 86. Ferlin had been hospitalized with breathing trouble in suburban Nashville earlier in the month and at one time was in critical condition. Upon his release he was under hospice care. Ferlin has been hospitalized each of the last two years with pulmonary and cardiac problems. Born in 1925 in Cantwell, Missouri, he served in the Merchant Marines in World War II before returning as a disk jockey in Bakersfield, California. It was there he performed under the name of Terry Preston. He initially recorded under that name for Capitol Records before switching to his real name, but also recorded parody records as Simon Crum. He joined the Grand Ole Opry in 1955 and moved to Nashville. Ferlin appeared 51 times on the Country charts from 1953 - 1975. More importantly, six of his songs crossed over to the Pop charts, including "A Dear John Letter" (with Jean Shepard, #4-1953), "Gone (#4-1957) and "Wings Of A Dove" (#12-1960). He was elected to the Country Hall of Fame in 2010.
-- Ron Smith

>>>When Warner Bros. edited "Tonight's the Night", they left the 'Spread Your Wings and Let Me Come Inside' lyric, but they cut out some woman sexually cooing French lyrics. After Rod sang "Woo!", that's when the woman did her bit, all they way through the fade (she faded out, also). I never really understood why the did that, considering a lot of people probably had no idea what she was saying. All the copies I have of that song have the 'Spread Your Wings' lyric.

The 'woman sexually cooing French lyrics' at the end of Rod Stewart's big hit "Tonight's The Night" was Rod's girlfriend-at-the-time, Britt Eckland. I can only assume that she got paid for her efforts by Warner Bros. (Rod may well have put her name on the AF of M contract).
But then, they split up. I always figured that Rod mixed her out of the song to avoid having to continue to pay her royalties.
Doug Thompson
LOL ... I've always known it was Britt Eckland ... but this is the first time I've heard the royalties theory!!! TOO funny!!! (And therefore probably true!!!) kk

>>>And in an interesting twist, here's The Gentry's "Keep On Dancing" on Hit Records. Yep - they recorded for Hit Records before getting this released nationally. It's the same recording.
(David Lewis)
>>>From what I understand, this version of "Keep On Dancin'" released on Hit Records is not by THE Gentrys but rather a Nashville knockoff group and the name just happened to accidentally get put on the label. I believe David is wrong by saying it is the same recording, as some web research shows posts on the Spectropop website stating that the version on the Hit 45 sounds more amateurish and raw. Indeed the hit (um, that is, the MGM version) was first issued on the Youngstown label, as the group's second 45 under that group name for the label. I don't have a copy of the Hit label version but Paul Urbahns might ... he's the first person I always go to when it comes to anything relating to the Hit label. (Tom Diehl)
Tom is correct. This HIT Records version is indeed a knock-off even though it says The Gentrys. Talk about a ripoff! I hadn't listened to this since I was 12, and thought it was the same as the real Gentrys, but stand corrected.
We're all about setting the record straight ... thanks for clearing this up. (kk)

For all those interested in top 40 surveys, hopefully by mid-May I'll be getting a shipment of around 10,000 charts. (No, that's not a typo!)
I'm not certain of what's included. I gotta tell you all out there, the more variety of surveys I've looked at thru the years, the less sense any of it makes. Check out this chart from WAEB Allentown, PA., from 1969. More specifically the area where it lists new WAEB power sounds. About halfway down is a listing for the song Good Times Bad Times, the first Led Zeppelin charted single. The problem here is the group is listed as Leo Zepplin. To me, although the song is 42 years old, I feel it qualifies as classic rock than an oldie.
Jack (I'm an oldie too!)

>>>I love where you're going on this, but for me to limit a play list to 40 or 50 songs, let alone 5, is equal to "Mission Impossible." We're talking nearly 60 years of music here! (Fred Vail)
With a playlist of a hundreds or thousands of your personal favorite songs, you'd probably never tire of them.

But with a short list ... even favorites lose their shine (for the moment) ...
I have 50 or 60 gigs of music and try to ONLY keep what I like ... (why would I do otherwise?) ... but when I listen from a short list of MY favorites to pass the time at work, or in the car, I find myself looking for the 'good' song, even though I made the list ...
and, in my case, the 'remains' aren't obvious and sometimes surprising ...
(ie.. I never seem to remove ROYAL GUARDSMEN - SNOOPY XMAS ... and I'd never consider that a great of all time, but it still remains)...

We're all about MORE variety here!!! (lol) As I've said before, I'm not sure I could get my iPod down to less than 20,000 favorites ... well, not necessarily "FAVORITES" but still stuff that I'd always want to have with me "just in case"!!!
I love this quote from Joel Whitburn's most recent "Top Pop Singles" book ... imagine trying to compile an iPod when you're a "completist" like Joel Whitburn!!!
"Back on August 17, 2004, I purchased my first iPod at a Best Buy in Appleton, Wisconsin. My original goal was to download every Top 10 song from 1955-on; then every Top 20 hit. I blew through that 40GB pretty quickly. Then it was every Top 40 song and there went the 60GB. I couldn't stop; it had to be every title in the "Top Pop Singles" book (many Top 40 songs, let alone songs peaking at #60 and down are not available digitally). The 80GB was history. It became an obsession ... I had to download every song from my "Pop Hits 1940-1954" book (good luck in finding digital copies of 22 Hugo Winterhalter titles or 19 Charlie Spivak songs), then every song in my "Bubbling Under the Hot 100" book (approximately 10% are available digitally). The 160GB was the only way to go ... and, luckily, it held up. As of today, 41,520 songs are nestled safely in my handy little iPod. Imagine that: every song in "Top Pop Singles" (including the "Classics"), "Pop Hits" and "Bubbling Under the Hot 100" are just a quick click away. The whole process would have been much easier had everything been available in digital format; however, I estimate that at least 60% had to actually be played from analog sources ... my personal archive of 78's, 45's and cassette singles. To say that was an arduous task is putting it mildly."
-- Joel Whitburn

The 4 Seasons:
All True Stereo (snippets) below.

How rare, I'm not sure. Maybe just variations in Stereo mixes. However, it is interesting to find two variations of "Dawn", especially, how it opens, with and without vocals, maybe just 45 and LP Stereo mixes. Even though I spent a small fortune on these, I had to clean them up (possibly from acetate), and enhance the sound ...
1.) Dawn (Go Away) (1964)
2.) Dawn (Go Away) (1964)
3.) Big Man In Town (1965)
4.) Let's Hang On! (1965)

And how about this ... while doing some Four Seasons reseach I saw: "Frankie Valli initially tried to purchase the entire collection of master recordings the group made for Motown; upon hearing the amount needed to buy them all, he arranged to purchase one recording for $4000 (US): "My Eyes Adored You"."
Damn, that's cheap! You and I, Kent ... we could have purchased it and made millions by licensing it!!!!!

Jersey Boy, Jersey John :)
Except Valli didn't record "My Eyes Adored You" for Motown ... he cut that track four or five years later for Private Stock Records. (Actually NONE of the Motown tracks cut by The Four Seasons ever even charted ... which, I guess, makes them collectible in some fashion ... but most often I've found that there's probably a pretty good reason for this! lol) kk

Here's more on the upcoming release of SMiLE ... I can't wait!!! (kk)
ent ...
The more they talk about it, the less I believe them.
Frank B.

Kent ...
When was the last time you heard this song written by Neil Diamond for Jay And The Americans ... "Sunday And Me" (1965). I bought this 45. Can't remember the last time I heard this song, except on my record player.
Frank B.
Then you haven't been listening to Forgotten Hits ... we've featured this one two or three times now ... and as recently as just a couple of months ago!!! (kk)

I couldn't help but read your interview with John Madara, especially when it came to Hall & Oates. Sad to read he received no credit for discovering them. Forget when I first heard them on radio. However, in and around Philadelphia, decades back, I seem to remember hearing "Fall In Philadelphia", I'm Sorry", "When The Morning Comes", and, of course, "She's Gone" (unedited). Later, I'd hear tracks from their War Babies album, a stranger sound from the duo, but songs such as "Is It A Star" was played on radio and I bought the LP. Enjoyed their music up till the '80's, when they began to sound a bit too bubbly for my taste. Nice to hear an early version of "Fall In Philadelphia"", I guess, John Madara published that! Thanks! For me, their most memorable songs were with Atlantic Records, where they had their most natural sound, even though they apparently overdubbed vocals. Nice sound quality engineering (maybe Tom Dowd in action). Here's a portion of "I'm Sorry", where you'll hear "Western Union" mentioned...
That brings up a question for FH readers.
We all remember "Western Union", by The Five Americans (1967) ...
Somewhere on the internet it is written a different version was issued, because of some dispute, that altered the "Western Union" name. Don't think it'd fly with the BBC either. Would be nice to hear that version!
p.s. Understand the Morse code test (AKA CW (Continuous Wave) is no longer a requirement to obtain an amateur radio license! Hey, I wonder if you can play Oldies over amateur radio? They do have Single Side Band, all I need is Double Side Band for Stereo! LOL!
Thanks, Mr. K!

Kent ...
Got this one from Ron Smith.
He should've been satisfied - making the snowman at the airport.
Frank B.

I liked your recent posting about Sun Records and how they had to absorb other record labels' material to have something decent to offer!!!!
Just the other day, I was thinking how The Jelly Beans would have sounded singing rockabilly, rather than their fine hit, "I Wanna Love Him So Bad" (1964)!!!
Man, great girl group!! Where were they from? Oh, never-mind, New Jersey!!!! Gee, was any other US state producing hits? :-)

Kent ...
How ya' doin'?
On my first trip to Paris in 1974 I went to Alcazar night club. I was told by the manager that this is where Jim Morrison really died of a drug overdose and was carried out of the club over the heads of some dancers, as if he was part of the act!
Here's my complete Youtube video music collection ... I hope you enjoy it!
Artie Wayne

Sam Cooke Bio-Pic is Moving Forward ... Screenplay Complete
Start singing "Ain't That Good News": A Sam Cooke biopic has taken a significant step toward becoming a reality. The screenwriters behind the all-Beatles musical "Across the Universe" have finished their adaptation of Peter Guralnick's definitive biography of Sam Cooke for ABKCO, which owns Cooke's publishing and the bulk of his master recordings. ABKCO CEO Jody Klein is now looking for a director.
Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais recently completed their adaptation of "Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke," which Klein optioned in the fall of 2009. The book was published in 2005, two years after Guralnick had written the script for "Sam Cooke: Legend," the only authorized documentary on Cooke. It won a Grammy for longform video.
"We had been looking for a long time for a writer to develop Peter's book," Klein told Billboard, "and it clicked when we met them. They understood the artist, they understood the times. It's one of those things, like when you meet the love of your life and you know you have met your (future) wife. They have written a fantastic script."
Klein says the script covers Cooke's entire life -- 1931 to 1964 -- from childhood through his years as a gospel singer, a pop star, civil rights activist and eventually a label owner and music publisher. His music ushered the transition of R&B into soul music.
Cooke is widely regarded as the first significant R&B performer to appeal to black and white audiences as well as multiple generations through songs such as "You Send Me," "Twistin' the Night Away" and "Only Sixteen." Shortly before he was murdered in 1964, Cooke penned and recorded "A Change Is Gonna Come," a song often listed as the most significant musical piece to emerge from the civil rights struggle of the 1950s and '60s.
Klein listed Jay-Z, Frank Sinatra and Peter Gabriel among the "great artists who can spot talent" and run a business, noting "Sam was the first one to possess it all."
Screenwriters Clement and La Frenais have worked together since the late 1960s when they collaborated on numerous British television shows. Their first major music film project was 1991's "The Commitments"; their most recent film is the U2-rooted "Killing Bono," which opens April 1 in the U.K. but does not yet have a U.S. distributor.
Klein, whose father Allen was Cooke's business manager, expects to continue to self-finance the project through ABKCO.
"All of the elements have aligned themselves," Klein says, noting the usual roadblocks in biopics -- music and life rights -- are already in hand . "We have secured rights from the Cooke family. One of the benefits of being a private company is that it enables us the appropriate amount of time to develop the script and make this happen. It will not get lost."
-- submitted by Bob Merlis
Now THIS is one that I've been waiting to see ... and the Marvin Gaye bio-pic, too! Wonder what's going on with that one!!! (kk)

The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia
Lifetime Achievement Award Gala
Honoring Music Icons
Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, a founding resident company of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, presents its Lifetime Achievement Award Gala in honor of Philadelphia legends Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff on Saturday, May 21, 2011 at 6 PM at The Westin Philadelphia. The event is black tie.
“There is no other duo like Gamble & Huff. As a fellow music lover, innovator and director, I have the utmost respect for these men. Without them, the popular music of today would have no soul,” says Chamber Orchestra Music Director Dirk Brossé.
The gala will kick off with cocktails and a three-course sit-down dinner, followed by Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff’s recognition ceremony and an evening of dancing with a live band and open bar. A collection of Gamble & Huff’s biggest hits will be performed live by special guest artists and musicians.
Mr. Gamble and Mr. Huff are also eagerly looking forward to the event. “We are extremely honored to be recognized by this prestigious institution for the 40th Anniversary of the founding of our record label, Philadelphia International Records,” the duo says. “Further, we are especially honored because we created the historic Sound of Philadelphia (TSOP) with a combined foundation of rhythm and orchestral sounds through our MFSB Band featuring members of the local orchestra community.”
Gala Chairman The Honorable Edward G. Rendell says, “I am extremely proud that the groundbreaking team of Gamble and Huff came from our city of brotherly love. All Philadelphians take great pride that our city produced such legendary music icons.”
In addition to a night of exciting musical entertainment, silent and live auctions will take place featuring unique and hard-to-find items, including travel opportunities, sports and music memorabilia, concert tickets and much more. Each gala attendee will go home with a commemorative CD to ensure an evening they will always remember.
"It is our exceptional good fortune and honor to present two of the world's greatest living musical producers, Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, for our orchestra’s benefit. On this occasion we are also proud to honor Gamble and Huff with The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at The Westin Philadelphia," says Chamber Orchestra president William H. Roberts.
Several levels of ticketing are available so please visit
or call 215.545.5451, extension 29, for more information.
“We are thrilled to pay tribute to Philadelphia legends Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff with our Lifetime Achievement Award. Over the past fifty years, their ear for music has truly made them the pioneers of the soul and R&B genres. They have played an incredibly important part in making our great City a cultural powerhouse,” says Chamber Orchestra Executive Director Peter H. Gistelinck.
Forty years ago, legendary producers Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff created the world renowned Philadelphia International Records label and gave birth to The Sound of Philadelphia. With over 100 Gold and Platinum records, their extraordinary roster includes artists such as Patti LaBelle, The O’Jays, Lou Rawls, and Teddy Pendergrass and hits such as Me and Mrs. Jones, For the Love of Money and Love Train.
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia is a 33-member professional ensemble, founded in 1964 by Marc Mostovoy and now led by Music Director Dirk Brossé, with Ignat Solzhenitsyn as Conductor Laureate. The Chamber Orchestra brings intimate experiences of world-class small orchestral performances to the greater Philadelphia area, enriching the musical life of the City and region by the integrity and excellence of its musicianship, the boldness and vitality of its programming, and by building the loyalty of its audiences, musicians and supporters.
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia
Lifetime Achievement Award Gala
Honoring Music Icons
Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff
Saturday, May 21, 2011
6 PM
The Westin Philadelphia
99 South 17th Street, Philadelphia
And, the dynamic duo were honored again this weekend, too ...
SATURDAY, MARCH 19 @ 12:30 p.m. CST,
Austin Convention Center - Room 18ABC
Panelists Include:
KENNETH GAMBLE, Co-Founder, Philadelphia International Records
LEON HUFF, Co-Founder, Philadelphia International Records
JOE TARSIA, Sound of Philadelphia Recording Engineer; founder of Sigma Sound Studios
BRUCE WARREN, WXPN Asst. Station Manager, Programming
Moderator: CHRIS M. JUNIOR, Contributing Editor, Goldmine Magazine
This year marks the 40th anniversary of Philadelphia International Records (PIR), one of the most successful African-American owned record labels of all time, which has given the City of Brotherly Love a label to call its own, like Motown was to Detroit and Stax was to Memphis. PIR produced a distinct, successful brand of R&B / soul with sophisticated, seductive, string-laden music that often carried poignant messages. Philadelphia International's Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff created what “people all over the world” know as "The Sound of Philadelphia," making stars of The O'Jays, Teddy Pendergrass, Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes and Billy Paul during the 1970s and playing a key role in reviving the careers of The Jacksons, Lou Rawls and Jerry Butler.
Gamble & Huff are among the most prolific professional songwriters of all time, having written and produced over 3,500 songs within 50 years, an output that rivals such famed songwriting teams as Lennon - McCartney and Jagger - Richards. They are enshrined in five music Halls of Fame, including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, with a massive catalogue that includes numerous pop #1 hits, R&B #1 hits, 100 gold and platinum records, Grammy winners and BMI songwriters' awards honorees. Featured prominently in TV programs ("The Apprentice," "Cold Case"), films ("The Nutty Professor") and advertising spots (Verizon, Chevrolet, Coors Light, Old Navy, The Gap, Office Max) for more than 30 years, Gamble & Huff's songs have entered the musical DNA of contemporary culture. In fact, one of their songs is played on the radio somewhere in the world every 13.5 minutes. Songs they have written and produced together, like "Back Stabbers," "Love Train," "For The Love Of Money," "If You Don't Know Me By Now," "Cowboys to Girls," "Don't Leave Me This Way," "Enjoy Yourself," "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me," "Only the Strong Survive" and "TSOP" (better known as the "Soul Train" theme), have received songwriters' awards from Broadcast Music International (BMI). Their songs comprise the most sampled R&B catalogue in the world, by artists such as Jay-Z, Usher, Cam'ron, Ja Rule, Jaheim, and Avant.
In 2010, Gamble & Huff were presented honorary doctor of music degrees – their first together in a distinguished partnership that is nearing its 50th anniversary – at Berklee College of Music’s Commencement. A few months later, Gamble & Huff became the first people in Philadelphia history to be so honored on Broad Street with the renaming of a historic section of the city’s major artery as Gamble & Huff Walk.
Earlier this month, Gamble & Huff signed with William Morris Endeavor (WME) in all areas, including film, television, theater, books, and lecture appearances - the first time the legendary songwriting duo has enjoyed agency representation of this magnitude.
Earlier this week, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia announced it will be presenting its annual Lifetime Achievement Award Gala in honor of Gamble & Huff, and they will be collaborating on an orchestral recording of TSOP music by early 2012 – the 50th anniversary year of the historic Gamble & Huff partnership.


The phenomenal musical lineup of the first-ever Rock Legends Cruise has been significantly augmented with the announcement this week of several additional noteworthy artists set to perform onboard The Royal Caribbean Line’s Liberty of the Seas. The cruise, in support of the work of the Native American Heritage Association, departs Ft. Lauderdale December 1 with an amazing array of world-class talent aboard including top-billed ZZ Top and George Thorogood & The Destroyers. The line-up now includes Edgar Winter, the Artimus Pyle Band, Devon Allman’s Honeytribe as well as The Chris Hicks Band along with previously announced John Kay & Steppenwolf, The Marshall Tucker Band, Dickey Betts & Great Southern, Foghat, Molly Hatchet, Johnny Winter, The Outlaws, Blackfoot, Pat Travers and Swampdawamp.

With more than eight months remaining until Rock Legends Cruise sets sail, NAHA reports that bookings are brisk, with reservations for almost 50% of the ship’s staterooms in hand. Booking information and ticket purchase: or dial toll free: (888) 666-1499

As many as 3,200 music fans, served by a crew of 1300, will be aboard the ship, one of the biggest (160,000 tons / length equal to almost four football fields / 18 decks), fastest (21+ knots) and luxurious passenger vessels in service today. Scheduled port stops in the Bahamas include Coco Cay and Nassau. The main attraction of the cruise is, of course, multiple performances by the Rock Legends bands aboard in four different on-board venues though Liberty of the Seas also features on-board surfing thanks to its FlowRider wave generator, a boxing ring, a full-sized volleyball / basketball court, cantilevered whirlpools and a range of gourmet restaurants.

The unprecedented cruise will benefit Native American Heritage Association’s mission to provide emergency assistance and self-help programs to the Sioux Native Americans living on reservations in South Dakota. Since 1993, NAHA has worked with Lakota (Sioux) Reservations, strengthening the Native American communities and families one member at a time. The challenges are difficult as unemployment rates on the Reservations are at 80%, 70% have no transportation, the average life expectancy is 58 years of age, infant mortality is 10 times the national average and 31% of Native American children under the age of 4 are obese because of lack of proper nutrition. NAHA, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization, in partnership with Feeding America and Gifts In Kind International, has provided food, clothing, heating assistance, personal care items and home care items to the many Native Americans in need. NAHA has a 17-year history of executing its mission in a fiscally responsible way, outperforming most other charities. Thanks to its financially sound business practices, NAHA has earned 6 consecutive 4 star rating with 92.4% of all NAHA revenue goes toward its program services. More at

Ahhh, Youtube. Hope it NEVER FILLS UP.
Thousands of songs there.
Waiting for Bobby Darin's MILORD to be submitted.
June, 1963, grade 8 graduation dance. I'd never been at any dance prior to this night, but always wanted to.
On a dance floor, two gals could fast dance together, but NOT TWO GUYS. There was roller skating at the area, but I didn't know that yet. I had to be content with ice skating to the pop stuff, October through April or May. HARD to ice skate and "DANCE" at same time.
Grade 8 graduation ... turns out the chaperone, well, I think everyone knew her, but, I knew her a tad better because Id hang out with her younger brother occasionally. She brought a stack of 45s.
The SOUND(???) SYSTEM ... Put a small record player at edge of the stage and a mic in front of it.
Went through her 45's and "You don't have any ELVIS stuff!"
Our house was a five minute walk from the high school so I went over and got the ONLY 45 I had ... Good Luck Charm. For graduating grade 8, I was given $4 or $5. First LP??? Elvis Golden Records. Wasn't listed as Vol 1 as RCA had noooo id as to where he'd go after 1959.
Soooo, after a few songs, the gal put on Good Luck Charm.
CanNOT recall how the situation took place, but she came down on the floor level, and the FIRST gal I ever danced with (we did the twist) was the chaperon!
Anyone else do this?
Play the record till you go a line or two, then take the needle off and go write down the lyrics.
My older brother bought regular magazines that had the lyrics printed up. I'd steal into his room and go through the books every couple of months.
The big screw up to the customer was the intro of CDs ... GONE are the single hits.
Again, in the small town, there was one store that handles records, especially 45s, and the latest issue.
When a new Elvis 45 came out, my curiosity was, is it from a movie, and who WROTE IT.
Lyricist and composer name were under the song in brackets.
THAT was the big ballyhoo when the Beatles came out ... THEY wrote, for the most part, their own songs.
Elvis was NO MUSICIAN, having someone else write all his stuff.
Here's my question to WHOEVVVVER ... When a 45 was issued, who decided what song was to be promoted? There are so many stories of how when songs that were not cutting it, the D-J played the flip side and bang. Am told that SPLISH SLASH and IT'S ONLY MAKE BELIEVE happened thata way.
To RCA, who chose THE song or songs off the Soundtrack that'd be put on the 45??
Ironically, Loney Man from the movie WILD IN THE COUNTRY was not the hit, but its flip side Surrender was ... THENNNN, Lonely Man got deleted from the movie!
Weird eh eh eh
Robert Black of Willowdale, CANADA

>>>Thanks Clark (and Kent!) ... for recognizing how Capitol Records' too quick release of Barbara Ann sabotaged Little Girl I Once Knew, already in the top twenty (after only a few weeks) and moving up the charts. If Capitol had waited 3-4 weeks, LGIOK would have certainly been top ten. (Phil)
>>>We DO make a pretty "Super" Team, don't we??? (lol ... Must be that Clark / Kent combo!) kk
Honored to be in the company of Clark and Kent!
Phil /

Always great to read your magazine.
Please don't forget that Friday night March, 25th, I'll be doing a major tribute to the memory of Johnny Maestro. He passed away on the 24th of March a year ago.
DJ Stu
And you can catch that show on Top Shelf Oldies! (kk)

One of your readers gave a list of song suggestions for your FH, one of those being Wade Flemons' 1958 recording of HERE I STAND (VJ). I always liked that song, played it the other night. You may or may not remember the Rip Chords had a version in 1963.
Actually, yes, we featured The Rip Chords' version a few years back as part of our spotlight feature on the group. While the Wade Flemons version didn't chart here in Chicago, The Rip Chords' remake went all the way to #13 in 1963. (kk)
Watch for more "What Is An Oldie?" comments coming next week as we wrap up this discussion ... some good points made during this series ... scroll back to read any of the chapters you may have missed! (kk)