Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Sunday Comments ( 07 - 24 - 11 )

It's another SUPER-SIZED Edition of The Sunday Comments!!!
(Of course it'd be a whole lot "prettier" if blogger would stop messing with my font sizes and spacing again!!!  But I'm tired and I want to go to bed ... so here it is AS IS!!!)


Here's a great movie review of The Wrecking Crew documentary we've been telling you guys about, courtesy of FH Reader Tom Cuddy:

'The Wrecking Crew' documentary recalls heyday of '60s session players

Movie review - Thursday, July 21, 2011

By Rich Kienzle

"The Wrecking Crew" tells the story of the studio musicians of the 1960s such as Glen Campbell, left, and Hal Blaine who made up The Wrecking Crew. 
Studio musicians are the Navy SEALS of instrumentalists. These anonymous versatile players earn top dollar for their skills, their ability to quickly master musical arrangements and collectively create new arrangements on the spot. Several studio bands are iconic: Motown's Funk Brothers, the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section and Nashville's A-Team come to mind. In 1960s LA, an aggregation of players informally dubbed The Wrecking Crew played pivotal roles in many classic pop and rock hits. 
Unknown to most of the public but legendary to other musicians, core members included drummers Hal Blaine and Earl Palmer; bassists Carol Kaye, Joe Osborn and Ray Pohlman; guitarists Glen Campbell, James Burton, Bill Pittman, Al Casey and Tommy Tedesco; pianists Leon Russell, Don Randi and Larry Knechtel; and saxmen Steve Douglas, Plas Johnson and Jim Horn. 
Before Tedesco died in 1997, his son Denny, who's produced programs for A&E Biography and Comedy Central, began filming "The Wrecking Crew." He'll appear at a screening for the as yet unreleased documentary Sunday at Duquesne University's Power Ballroom, kicking off the 25th anniversary of the Pappert School of Music's annual Guitar and Bass Workshop, which runs Monday through July 29. 
The group's nickname originated in the hostility that older big band-era Hollywood studio musicians held toward these younger, rock-minded players. "Somebody said they're gonna wreck the business," Denny Tedesco explains. "It stuck ... and it's been a great name." While they worked often with singers, Crew members also played on records by some noted '60s rock bands. 
Why would a great rock band need studio help? "Let's just say the Beach Boys, the Association or whoever, were good musicians live," Mr. Tedesco says. "But they were not great musicians to knock out two or three songs in three or four hours. That wasn't what they did. These [studio] guys could." 
Case in point: the Byrds' "Mr. Tambourine Man." Playing on the record were five Crew players and one Byrd, singer, frontman and 12-string guitarist Roger (then Jim) McGuinn. David Crosby and Gene Clark added vocal harmonies. Producer Terry Melcher, says Mr. Tedesco, wasn't yet confident in other members' instrumental skills. 
Two of rock's most eccentric luminaries, Phil Spector and the Beach Boys' Brian Wilson, also availed themselves of the Crew's services. The players, Mr. Tedesco insists, went with the flow. "They had respect for both individuals. Brian was a gentle kid, and they knew that. And whatever Brian needed, they gave him. Phil, they just knew it was gonna be a long session."
While the Byrds and Beach Boys escaped criticism for using studio players in the '60s, the Monkees were outed and assailed for the practice. In the film, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork, reminding everyone the group was originally conceived as a sitcom, praise the Crew. Says Mr. Tedesco, "Micky said if they had given the guys credit on the album originally, there probably would not have been a big problem."
Working four or more sessions a day, the players took everything in stride. "I asked all the musicians, were you ever intimidated by any of the artists you played for? They all [said] no, not at all." But when recording with a certain Chairman of the Board, everyone, says Mr. Tedesco, snapped to. "With Sinatra it was not intimidation as much as you were on your game."
Wrecking Crew's selected hits:
• "Ramblin' Rose," Nat King Cole (1962)
• "Be My Baby," The Ronettes (1963)
• "Surf City," Jan & Dean (1963)
• "Everybody Loves Somebody," Dean Martin (1964)
• "California Dreamin'," The Mamas and Papas (1965)
• "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'," The Righteous Brothers (1965)
• "Mr. Tambourine Man," The Byrds (1965)
• "A Taste of Honey," Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass (1965)
• "California Girls," The Beach Boys (1965)
• "Good Vibrations," The Beach Boys (1966)
• "Strangers in the Night," Frank Sinatra (1966)
• "These Boots are Made for Walkin'," Nancy Sinatra (1966)
• "Windy," The Association (1967)
• "Valleri," The Monkees (1967)
• "The Beat Goes On," Sonny & Cher (1967)
• "Wichita Lineman," Glen Campbell (1969)
• "Close to You," The Carpenters (1970)
-- Rich Kienzle
"Glen Campbell [filmed years before his Alzheimer's issues] had a great line, and this works for all the sessions. When you were in a room together, it was like playin' with Michael Jordan. The thing is there were five, six, maybe 10 Michael Jordans in that room playing together. When you're on a team, doing maybe three, four sessions every day with the same group, you kind of get that groove going ... you know where that other person's goin'. That's what made it work."
Did the musicians realize they were making history? "There was no way they thought these songs would last 40 years," Mr. Tedesco says. "As my father said, 'We recorded hundreds of hits, but we did thousands of bombs.' Going to work every day for 15-20 years, think of how much they recorded that never made history.
"I started this documentary because my dad was gonna die," Mr. Tedesco admits. "I knew I had a limited amount of time to record his history and the guys around him, and I wasn't gonna waste time. What I didn't have was financing." He finished the film in 2008. "[It] got into South by Southwest, into film festivals and it was gold! People were reacting. It was wonderful."
The barrier to release: licensing 133 clips of tunes these musicians played on from record companies and music publishers. Respecting the film's historical mission, they agreed to special licensing terms, but Mr. Tedesco is still raising the required amount. "We know it's not going to be a moneymaker," he admits. "It's impossible. But you know what? I want this story out there." He accepts donations at his website (

Of the film itself, he says, "You don't have to be a musician to get it. "You'll hear music differently once you see the movie."

OK, now I'm dyin' to see it again!!!

And, speaking of Glen Campbell ...

GREAT to see Glen Campbell getting some rave reviews during his final tour ...

Kent ...

Glen Campbell's first show after he talked about his sickness - was a good one.
Frank B.

By the way, Frannie just told me that her uncle hand-made Glen Campbell a saddle many years ago ... for the tune of $25,000!!!  (We've been trying to get a picture of it to share with our readers ... so stay tuned!)  kk

Okay, so here I am, post reunion, pre Happy Together again tour, and what pops up ... Chicago. The group will be here August 9th. Now ... I bought the best tickets for the Happy Together again tour and with all of the reunion expense like the actual ticket price ... the reunion tan ... the reunion hair coloring ... the reunion mani / pedi ... the reunion wardrobe with accessories for three different functions and a few incidentals ... I am broke!
The ticket prices for the Chicago concert are $41.00 to $77.00. I can't even swing the cheap ones. About eight years ago Chicago and Earth, Wind and Fire were performing together at the Verizon Ampitheater close to Kansas City. My little sister and I bought tickets ... $65.00 each. Turns out we had just started dating two new guys. We decided to miss the concert and spend that Sunday with them ... and where the hell are they now??? Yep ... not with us.
Maybe they will go see Chicago with other girls ... LOL!
We are looking forward to Micky Dolenz (next Tuesday, right on the heels of The Monkees Reunion Tour), The Happy Together Again Tour (when it makes its way into the Chicagoland area next month), Chicago live at Ravinia (also in August ... and the PERFECT birthday treat ... last year on my birthday we saw Paul Revere and the Raiders!!!) and Brian Wilson, who's coming to The Arcada Theatre in St. Charles ... which should be an absolutely AMAZING show since this place only seats about 900 people!!!  So yes, some really good local shows are in our immediate future!  (We saw Earth, Wind and Fire a couple of years ago and they were FANTASTIC!  By the way, a DVD of the Chicago / Earth, Wind And Fire show IS available ... and well worth the $20 it'll probably set you back ... plus, now you can watch it at home with every NEW boyfriend you want to!!!  lol)  kk

And next weekend Paul McCartney starts a two-night stint at Wrigley Field!  (First time for that one ... The Beatles played at old Comiskey Park back in 1965 ... and McCartney did a solo show at Soldier Field in the '90's ... but this is a first for Wrigley.  Last week we told you that Weird Al made headlines when he announced that years ago Macca refused him permission to remake "Live And Let Die" as "Chicken Pot Pie" because he was a vegetarian ... this week McCartney made headlines when, during his performance at Yankee Stadium, he asked the crowd, "By the way, who is this Derek Jeter guy?  I heard he's had more hits than me!"  (kk)

And, speaking of The Beatles ...

re:  THE BEATLES: ...
Scroll down below the pictures.  Play clip to hear about Beatles strip club years.
Frank B.

Bill's comment about Rob Grill giving Three Dog Night's Cory Wells a fishing lure was cool. 
I have been reading a book "Canyon of Dreams: The Magic and the Music of Laurel Canyon" by Harvey Kubernik from a few years ago and I HIGHLY recommend it.  Amazing stories of how things were then when it was all happening on the Strip and in LA's music bed of Laurel Canyon.  Wild Bill needs to read it for sure.  Plenty of Byrds stuff in there.  Anyway, there is a reproduction of an Elton John letter to Danny Hutton dated December, 1969, where he writes three pages thanking Danny for getting "Lady Samantha" on their "Suitable for Framing" album.  He said it allowed he and Bernie Taupin to stop asking for advances on royalties!!  This book has amazing pictures AND amazing stories told by those here were there and lived the 60's dream. 
Clark Besch
First of all, thanks for plugging Harvey's book ... he's a long-time Forgotten Hits Reader and I know he'll appreciate it.  
(I still need to pick up a copy of this one!)
Secondly, I clearly remember going to see Three Dog Night at The Chicago Auditorium when they were right in their prime, early 1970 ... and the warm-up act was a COMPLETELY unknown British singer named Elton John ... they had taken him out on tour with them because they had already covered a couple of his tunes on their most recent LP's (including "Your Song", the song that finally put Elton John on the map here in the States ... and he's been going gang-busters ever since!)
Rob Grill hung out with a lot of these stars back before they were stars, all trying to make it in the music business.  His website biography talks about how, right after High School Graduation, Grill regularly hung out with Cory Wells and John Kay of Steppenwolf!  What an incredibly cool time this must have been ... and, by all accounts, a real "mutual admiration society", too!  (kk)
Here's a publicity pic of the Grass Roots from 1968.  My best guess left to right:
Warren Entner (rhythm guitar / lead and backing vocals), Creed Bratton (lead guitar), Rob Grill (Bass / lead singer), Rick Coonce (drums).  What a great group they were / (are).

We are saddened by the tragic death of Rob Grill, who -- along with Warren Entner -- comprised one of my favorite, and often underrated, groups.  Those guys were great. "Midnight Confessions" is a classic, as are several others, including Steve Barri and Phil Sloan's "Where Were You When I Needed You." Although they never hit #1, they were a great band just the same.
Fred Vail

>>>Okay, I know some said “enough already,” but the reference to the booklet included in Gary Lewis’s “Complete Liberty Singles” is not correct.  According to the booklet, Gary sang the double-tracked lead vocal alone on “This Diamond Ring” with Ron Hicklin adding the harmony vocal.  Thereafter, according to Ron (not Gary), Gary and Ron sang the leads together, with Gary as the prominent voice but with Ron either doubling Gary, with both singing into the same microphone at the same time and with Ron matching Gary’s phrasing, and / or with Ron adding background vocals.  There is no quote from Gary about this.  The booklet also states that “The Loser” was the first single after “TDR” for which Gary did the lead vocal entirely on his own.  So, if what Ron said is correct, then Gary did sing on every one of his songs, but Hicklin ghosted with him and / or did harmonies on many of them after “TDR” until “The Loser.”  But it’s wrong to suggest Ron did all the lead vocals, implying Gary did not.  And how could anyone question that anyway, when it is so obviously Gary who is singing on every one of them?  Give Ron his due for contributing, but I believe Gary deserves a lot more credit.  And for the record, the booklet also states Gary alone played drums on “Everybody Loves a Clown.”   (Michael Thom) 
Good to see my good friend Michael Thom commenting in FH.  He's another great OKC connection to go with KOMA's Larry Neal.  They might both be interested that my whole family got to see Gary Lewis and the Playboys in June, 1965, in Oklahoma City.  "Count Me In" had just dropped off the KOMA "Sing-A-Long-Survey" but there was a big crowd at the amusement park that night.  ALL of the KOMA Good Guys were there signing autographs.  The attached photo collage is from my collection from that trip.  We visited the KOMA transmitter site and took the photo you see.  Above it, the crowd gathering just before the concert.  The KOMA Good Guy is in a suit at left.  ALL of the GG's were wearing blue suits.  Being a radio fanatic and BIG fan of KOMA (age 9), I remembered that more than the concert!  To the right, Gary Lewis' autograph my brother Steve snared by just walking up to him behind a roped off area and asking.  He was kind enough to oblige and the photo below that shows the young Lewis signing!  If you look close, you will see him autographing KOMA surveys!  The one in the lower left corner shows a KOMA survey upside down much like the one from that week that is in the other photo scan.
That scan shows the KOMA Good Guys from the bottom of the survey for June 10, 1965, and beside it, the back side with all the DJ's signatures.  You had to roam a bit to get all the signatures, but all 4 of us boys got them.  My copy has them in different areas, but the one pictured is my brother Roger's copy and Fred Moore even said "Best Wishes Roger"!!  They were all GOOD guys and happy to sign us teen and preteen surveys and (in my case) spiral notebook pages.  Dale Wehba was my fave at the time.  Incredible voice!  I think that MIGHT be KOMA's Bill Grady behind Gary in the photo.
Anyway, the one thing I can say is that none of us fans were disappointed by Gary's vocals.  I remember when they came to the false end in "For Your Love" (#1 song in OKC), the crowd started clapping and I wondered why they did not know better, since it was a #1 hit in OKC.  We also saw Roger Miller and Johnny Horton that trip and got their autographs. 
For more KOMA pics and a GREAT aircheck from May, 1965 (!!), please check out my buddy in Omaha's site, Deane Johnson.
He was a KOMA Good Guy right up until about the time of my 1965 visit and he has incredible photos of the KOMA station inside as well.  They "went border to border and coast to coast" as they said back then.  50,000 watts clear channel.
Gary had four top 10 hits on KOMA in 1965 and the fifth release, "She's Just my Style" was up to #12 the last week of '65 on KOMA.  Chicagoans may not realize that KOMA was THE station to pick up nationwide and all across the midwest.  I go to the Rockies in Colorado a lot and KOMA still is one of the few non-locals that can be heard throughout that area as well as nationally.  Back then, they had top DJs and the music was great too.
I think it is cool that Gary started singing his own leads when "The Loser" came out.  Great song and the B side ("Ice Melts in the Sun") got airplay (bubbled under) on WLS.  I have Art Roberts playing it on tape. He had lots of great songs after that, so he COULD sing.  Speaking of "The Loser," there was another song with that title that KOMA played a lot in 67.  I think it was done by a young kid, but a groovy song, as I remember it.  Larry Neal must have it, because I first heard it on his KOMA countdown one early Saturday morning. Larry?
BTW. my 1965 KOMA / Gary Lewis story omitted that
Clark Besch

Just to let you know, Marshall Lytle (of Bill Haley's Comets) and Jimmy Jay, DJ of the Stars and host of the Rewind Show, will tour England in September for the Rewind Rock Around the Clock Sock Hop. We are adding dates and if anyone in the UK is looking for a fun night of entertainment for their club radio station or private event you can contact Jimmy at:
Here is a copy of the poster with out show dates on it.
Jimmy Jay
Hi, Kent,
What inspired you to do an article on Bill Haley and what's the "chilling secret" pertaining to him?  I knew he became a has-been here in the States - I've always thought it was criminal that he wasn't even among the inductees at the first Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame ceremony in 1986 - and that, like a lot of '50's rockers, he achieved greater fame overseas (Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent, & Buddy Holly are further examples of this). 
Attached is a tune by one of our favorites, Dave Alvin, backed by his then-band the Guilty Men, and his song about Haley entitled 'Haley's Comet'.  It comes from his live CD entitled 'Out In California,' which, interestingly enough, I purchased while in your company when you took me to a record shop in Chicago when we flew there for the Dave Edmunds / Marshall Crenshaw gig.  Hard to believe that was ten years ago!
Also, we've got a copy of the Winter Dance Party poster framed and hanging by our front door.  We got it at the Surf Ballroom when we traveled there for our vacation one year, but I wouldn't doubt if one is available through Ebay.
Ed Parker
Here's the link again to the rather sad Bill Haley piece. 
I checked a few places for a copy of that poster (it was Henry Gross who first asked about it) but didn't see anything listed.  Best suggestion at this point in time is to just keep looking!  (kk)
Great article.  Me being who I am, it's nice to see this:
Of course, no one invented rock and roll:  not Elvis, not Chuck Berry, not Jerry Lee Lewis, not Little Richard, and not Bill Haley.
But then, lines like this don't help:
Down these streets walked Bill Haley, the very first rock star
Regardless, Bill Haley deserves far more recognition!

And, speaking of Henry Gross ...

Big thanks for sending this!
On the surface it's a sad story. I feel that performers are very lucky people. Unfortunately the craziness or eccentricity required to attract public attention often fails to jibe with a strong sense of self able to accept fame for the paint job it is, allowing one to be be happy to serve the music itself. I think the lives of everyday people who struggle to raise families while being named designated losers and played for chumps by the political and financial crowd are far more tragic. 
Bill Haley (with his Comets), a guy I idolized, who I did manage to share the stage with one time, when I was with Sha Na Na in 1969 at The Felt in Madison Square Garden on the first Rich Nader Rock & Roll Revival show, put on a truly phenomenal show. He lived a life most mortals can only dream about. It's always sad when people take on the identity in real life of the act they portray on stage. It's almost guaranteed to end badly unless you're a particularly well adjusted and managed genius like George Burns or Bob Hope! Most talents, however great, don't get more than a precious few moments in the sun. That's the show business reality. The musical reality is that you can find happiness by never abandoning your pursuit of writing better songs, making better records and believing in a sunnier future. I think a little belief, naiveté or whatever you want to call it, is a blessing. It certainly makes my life a pleasure to live. I just wish the wonderful and talented Bill Haley had pursued making the great country record of his dreams as opposed to mourning the past. It's hard for some folks to see past the dark side of the music business, which granted is pitch black, but the incredibly bright lights can be worth the price if you can keep your head on straight - obviously easier said than done! However, from this article, one might surmise that in his last years Mr. Haley may indeed have been suffering from a chemical imbalance, which is indeed sad. 
In the final analysis, his legacy continues to drive the culture and bring joy to millions. Though it's great to know more about Bill Haley the man than was previously revealed, in the final analysis his music speaks the loudest to all of us, past, present and future who knew, know and will know the joy of "Rockin' Round the clock" courtesy of the gifted Mr. Haley and his Comets!
Henry Gross
It HAS to be a sad existence to only be allowed to recreate your greatest crowning achievement time and time again because this is all the public wants and expects from you.  You're absolutely right ... had Haley stuck to his convictions and MADE that great country record that he clearly had inside him, a whole new career may have opened up to him.  However, the way the public works ... and the way the media works ... it just as likely never would have stood a chance.  We've already reduced the contributions of the great Bill Haley to One Hit Wonder status, COMPLETELY overlooking the fact that he ALSO had Top 40 Hits with records like "Shake, Rattle And Roll" and "See You Later, Alligator" (both of which USED to receive oldies airplay but don't anymore) as well "Crazy, Man, Crazy", "Dim, Dim The Lights", "Birth of the Boogie", "Mambo Rock", "Razzle-Dazzle", "Burn That Candle", "Rock-A-Beatin' Boogie", "R-O-C-K", "The Saints Rock And Roll", "Rip It Up", "Rudy's Rock" and "Skinny Minnie".  That's FIFTEEN Top 40 Hits ... and all we get is one ... a rock and roll anthem that has been played to death and rarely comes up at all anymore.  Bill Haley was a Founding Father of Rock And Roll ... and THIS is how we remember him.  Tragic.  (kk)

Kent ...
Look for a new 3-CD set from the 1974 Crosby, Stills & Nash tour.
Find out how Graham Nash got to sing with Buddy Holly!
Frank B.

>>>Kent ... Check this out ... Goldmine Magazine picks the 20 Best Doo-Wop Groups. 
(Frank B)
Since you've been talkin' DooWop on Forgotten Hits and I had just expounded to Mike about the Rays follow-up to "Silhouettes" called "Elevator Operator" (XYZ 106), I finally found it and transferred the 45 to MP3.  I think it's a really cool tune, but obviously was not a hit.  It may have been the B side actually, but I think it should have been a hit. 
Clark Besch

As far as I am concerned, it is better to have had ONE hit than none at all.  Just ask fellow Lincolnites, Zager & Evans, who rode the wave with '2525' in 1969.  Yes, they won't talk to each other to this day because Rick gets the writing royalties, but no one can ever take that hit away from them.
Clark Besch
Speaking of One Hit Wonders, WLS-FM (94.7) is releasing their second radio station CD later today with a live debut party being held at Navy Pier.  The CD features a collection of "fourteen of the biggest One Hit Wonders of all time!".  Not many rarities, however ... most of these tracks have been readily available on a variety of compilation CDs for years ... "Hooked On A Feeling" by Blue Swede (#1, 1974 ... and not exactly a One Hit Wonder, since this group hit The Top 40 ... AND The Top Ten ... a second time with their similar reworking of "Never My Love" later that same year), "Double Shot" by The Swingin' Medallions (#17, 1966), "Beach Baby" (#4, 1974), "Do You Love Me" by The Contours (#3, 1962 ... and #11 in 1988 after it was featured in the film "Dirty Dancing"), "My Maria" by B.W. Stevenson (#9, 1973), "Ooh Child" by The Five Stairsteps (#8, 1970 ... this "One Hit Wonder" group hit Billboard's Hot 100 Chart 18 times!), "Little Bit O'Soul" by The Music Explosion (#2, 1967), "The Night Chicago Died" by Paper Lace (#1, 1974), "Nobody But Me" by The Human Beinz (#8, 1968), "Montego Bay" by Bobby Bloom  (#8, 1970), "Play That Funky Music" by Wild Cherry (#1, 1976), "More Today Than Yesterday" by Spiral Starecase (#12, 1969), "Sunshine" by Jonathan Edwards  (#4, 1972) and "Na Na, Hey Hey, Kiss Him Goodbye (#1, 1969) by Steam.  It's all for a good cause, however, so we still may venture downtown for the festivities later this afternoon.  Entertainment is being provided by August, one of the best local bands around ... and all of the WLS-FM jocks will be on hand, too!  Full details on the radio station website:   Click here: 94.7 WLS-FM

-- submitted by David Lewis

Kent ...
Check out Goldmine article about Syd Nathan.
Frank B.

>>>‘Unchained Melody’ lyricist Zaret dead at 99 - Hy Zaret died at his home Monday, about a month shy of his 100th birthday, his son, Robert Zaret, said Tuesday.  (Shelley Sweet-Tufano) 
>>>How weird that this would happen now in the midst of so much discussion of this tune in Forgotten Hits!  (kk)
>>>When I read this, I actually said "again?" -- I was thinking he had passed away several years ago, and a google search revealed that he passed away July 2, 2007, just shy of his 100th birthday.
Tom Diehl
>>>Sorry about that, folks ... Shelley's email didn't indicate a date so I just assumed it was a current news item ... all the more timely because of all of our "Unchained Melody" dialog lately!  (kk)
I am thinking that the AP News Release that I sent you from Westport, CT, on Unchained Melody's lyricist's death did not arrive with the date, as indicated by you and another.  For some reason the release would not "share" and as I indicated, I needed to cut and paste it.  The date was on the cut and paste, but apparently did not make the airlift to your computer.  I ended up sending you two emails, so I apologize if the date was lost in translation.  I knew it was 2007, but was most interesting thing in the section was the fact that it showed a legal name change for the usurper.  It was just to show that there are TWO men with the same name connected to Unchained Melody and with info on both floating around on the internet.  
I was then overcome by the notice I received on Rob Grill's death and have not been on top of things here.  Sorry.
On to better days.
No problem ... as the writer of one of the most recorded and charted songs in history, we can certainly take an extra moment to remember Hy Zaret (and the song that each and every one of us has tried to hit Bobby Hatfield's high note on!!!  lol)  kk ...
I've never heard of Gil Bernal ... till now.  Why is it that we don't hear about these great musicians till after they're dead?
Frank B.

Hi Kent ! 
I saw the comments lately about Freddy Cannon and Gary U.S. Bonds not getting into the Hall. I'd like to add another to the list ... Jan and Dean. They seem to have been excluded also. I'm not sure why. Maybe some people on here have some opinions about that. 
Thank you. 
We've been bitching about the selection process of The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame for YEARS now ... and ALL of these artists are "Deserving and Denied" ... we've left this organization alone the last couple of years because SOME of the artists that made our Top 40 Most Deserving And Denied have FINALLY been making there way into the hallowed Hall.  Maybe after the NEW  nominations are announced we'll poll our readers once again to see who else they most feel belong enshrined.  (You'll find two of OUR favorites featured below ... The Monkees and The Guess Who.  While the vote seems to be mixed regarding The Pre-Fab Four ... how on EARTH do you deny The Guess Who their rightful place in the Hall?!?!?)  kk


Hey guys, Camilla McGuinn just sent me this link, really a cool story of the Byrds.
Roger got this pic back from his mom Dorothy (who btw is 102 years young) and he wanted to share it with us all
Video of Roger McGuinn: Priceless Photo at
It's just a small publicity photo -- or is it? What makes this photo so important to rock and roll hall-of-famer Roger McGuinn? Why is it a priceless memento from the early days of The Byrds?
Bill Cody
OK, now THIS is VERY cool!!!  Thanks for sharing, Bill!  (kk)

Very cool that she saved it all these years. Priceless memories. And so neat she's still around. A friend of ours passed away last month at 102.
David Lewis

Great picture, great story.

Yes, Kent, it is, it shows how all things start and grow.
Jim Shea
I just love how his Mom sent him five bucks ... and it really helped him out!!!  TOO cool!  (kk) 

And how bout Ritchie Furay getting front page ink the the Denver Post yesterday (full front page and another full page)? He's the pastor of a church in Denver and has services each Sunday where he performs as well, I'm heading out there next Sunday to take it all in.
My man the Reverend Richie (as in Richie Furay) brought the house down at the Bluebird Theatre last night in Denver with this tune, my all time favorite Poco tune ... "Good Feelin' To Know" ... sounds like he knocked 'em dead!
"Colorado Mountains, I can see your
Distant skies
You're bringin' a tear of joy to my eyes"
It just doesn't get better than this!
Wild Bill

(YES, WE SEE!!!) :
This looks like an AMAZING book ... scroll through the samples on this link!!!  It's Rock And Roll History right before your very eyes!!!  (kk) ...
Check out DJ Tommy Edwards' great pictures.     
Frank B.

And this just in ... a great shot of Dino, Desi and Billy from Ron Smith's website:

>>>Tell the truth ... how many of you girls out there made those crazy gum-wrapper chains back in high school ... raise your hands!!!  (kk) 
To add to the fun, WCFL DJs got into a competition in April, 1966, competing for who would get the MOST Love Chains sent in to them.  Here's Dick Williamson laying out the challenge to Joel Sebastion!  Where have these days gone when you could have had good clean fun with our radio heroes?  April, 1966, in Chicago for teens was a great time.  More Chicago groups had songs on the WLS chart than any other time and the first Chicago Teen fair was just a couple weeks away featuring so many of our great 60's heroes.  As CFL's jingles said: "HERE is LOVE in your EAR!  WCFL!"
Clark Besch  

Barry McGuire posted these pics on his site this week. The trio shot is a keeper for sure.
David Lewis

Sure, a good number of these titles made Scott Shannon's "Cheezy Easy Listening Song of the Day" ... but there just SOMETHING about many of these ... and the way they crossed over and still made their impact on Billboard's POP Singles Chart, too.
Here's a list of The 100 Biggest ... as well as the 50 Biggest Artists ...
all courtesy of FH Reader Tom Cuddy ...
If you haven't seen this already, please check out one of’s most-visited pages, “Chart Beat, our longtime chart highlights column. We post new entries each weekday, spotlighting all charts, including our Nielsen BDS-based radio airplay charts and Nielsen SoundScan-based sales surveys.
Please visit and bookmark the main page:
This week, Billboard celebrates the 50th anniversary of our Adult Contemporary chart, which launched in the July 17, 1961, issue (as the “Easy Listening” survey). In honor of the milestone, we’ve compiled rankings of the top artists and songs in the chart’s history. You can count down each list here:
C'mon, jocks ... share your stories with our readers ... you KNOW there are just TONS of stories you're dying to tell!!!  Meanwhile, here comes one more from Clark Besch ...
I had a radio show back in the 80's called "60 / 80 Hindsight" and even 'tho "Bohemian Rhapsody" was not a 45, I played it on the air (my show was obscure oldies / newies / rarities), there were plenty like it that had quiet spots that were killer for any scratch, let alone cue burn!  I ruined a few good 45s by back cueing, even when I did it carefully.  (Hey, I could always go to Goldmine and buy another copy from Kent Kotal, right?  Haha). 
As far as playing Herb Alpert's "Rise" at the wrong speed on the air, most all of us have played a song on the air at the wrong speed.  When I was doing my show, I did this intentionally once when a couple years before, I was playing the great Atlanta Rhythm Section album "Champaign Jam" at home and put it on at 45 and low and behold, out came Stevie Nicks!  Check this out.  If this isn't a dead ringer for Stevie's '79 sound (albeit a bit faster tempo than she ever likes), I don't know what is.  Just plop that album on your turntable and you set the speed to 45 (or vary it to "perfection Stevie" setting) and you have a new Stevie Nicks cover song!!  I played it on my show as I have sent here.  The following week, just to make sure people were paying attention and to have a bit of fun, I aired the next tape too.  Enjoy.  Who knew????
WLS Clark 
lol ... I remember a LOT of people talking about "Stevie's version" of "Imaginary Lover" at the time ... tried that one myself a few times at home, too!  I had forgotten ALL about this one!!!  Sure to bring back a few memories!  Thanks, Clark! (kk)


>>>I promise this is the last time I'll mention the WCBS-FM A to Z Countdown. Here's a list of every song in their library.  (Frank B.)
>>>Reading some of the comments, there appear to be some GLARING omissions ... it's tough 'though ... because you can't please everyone ... just ask Rick Nelson!!!  Can you imagine the DEFINITIVE A-Z Countdown ... with let's say 10,000 songs in it?!?!?  Now THAT would be something to hear! (kk)
I'm still running my weekly oldies A to Z series playing 15,000 oldies alphabetically by title
It is available at my website: 
Go to radio shows.  Two shows are available.  I'm in the Os.
Older shows are available on live365 ... MTS Top 800 Oldies / Oldies A To Z
Take Care
Kent ...
This is something they've never done before.
Frank B.

Here are some upcoming airdates for the Carolyn Travis-produced radio documentary "Airplay" ...
Chicago  (WYINDT - 12:30 AM, 7/24)
Chicago  (WYINDT2 - 12:30 AM, 7/24)
Los Angeles  (KOCEDT - 1:30 AM, 7/27)
San Francisco  (KCSMDT - 9:00 PM, 7/31)
San Francisco  (KCSMDT - 3:00 AM, 8/1) 
Not ideal viewing times in many cases ... but if you HAPPEN to be up, this is a film you'll want to check out!  (kk)

Hey Kent ...
Did you ever pick a winner of the Rip Chords CD? I was wondering if I missed the winners name. Let me know so we can get the CD right out if a winner has been chosen.
Thanks ...
Mitch Schecter
No, we haven't ... in fact, we've got a lot of things to give away right now ... including the new Rip Chords CD, a very first Alan O'Day CD, copies of Artie Wayne's new book ... and more "goodies" on the way.  All you need to do to register is drop me an email and we'll put you on the list.  Then, in another week or two, we'll clean out our prize closet!!! (We've got a few more "gems" hidden in there, too ... if you're already registered, get ready to "pick your prize"!!!  If not, drop me a line STAT!!!)  kk


I love your forgotten hit of the day.  It motivates me from time to time to play the ones we are not already spinning.  
Phil - WRCO
Thanks, Phil ... we try to pick some things that are most definitely worthy of airplay ... but not of the "heavy rotation" kind ... just another "Wow!" Factor song that might spark a response or two from your listeners along the lines of "Man, I haven't heard THAT song in AGES!!!"  (kk)

I, for one, love the Forgotten hit of the day feature ... it is one of my favorite parts of the site. I can not tell you how many songs that I had completely forgotten about that were brought back to life for me. And then there are those I have never hear of before but found interesting anyway. I do check the site everyday just to see what you have chosen for us and I really enjoy reading your comments about the featured songs ... so ... PLEASE ... DON'T ... STOP ... unless you want to ... LOL!

Here's one that falls into that "Forgotten And Shoulda Been A Big Hit" category ... The Foundations and "In The Bad, Bad Old Days".
David Lewis
Never heard this one before ... but coming off of two HUGE Top Ten Hits ("Baby, Now That I've Found You" and "Build Me Up Buttercup"), this one CERTAINLY should have fared better than #51.  (By the way, it actually DID reach #26 in Cash Box ... so clearly SOMEBODY was playing it ... and BUYING it!!!)  kk

I must be blind, but I seldom see WHERE this shows up until people are commenting on it. 
I guess I am just not looking in right place?
Dude, you can't miss it!!! It's right in the upper right hand corner ... first thing you see as you scroll down ... different track each day, Monday - Friday ... and we've done some GREAT ones so far this year!  Die-hard Forgotten Hits Fans should be checking the website EVERY SINGLE DAY to insure not missing ANYTHING!!!  (kk)

Sorry to hear that you are considering dropping the “Today’s Forgotten Hit” feature. 
It’s not a must for me to listen to it every day;  it’s just good to know that every morning there’s something I can listen to that is out of the ordinary.  
However researching and setting up the feature all takes up your time, and if you’re not getting the feedback that you expected, especially from DJ’s, then I can understand why you’re thinking about dropping it.  I know that with the Oldies crosswords “Rockwords”  that I compile and Ron Smith posts on his site, I would love to get more feedback good or bad.
Mike Ogilvie
Ontario, Canada
I enjoy doing it (although it has become a "deadline" issue more than once lately ... especially when I'm working crazy hours in the REAL world!!!) ... and I feel that it allows for the original purpose of Forgotten Hits to still come through on a daily basis ... as we get off the subject sometimes in our regular postings.  I figured this would be a good way to serve BOTH purposes ... but it would be cool if a few more jocks on the list incorporated this into their daily broadcasts.  (kk)

I remember several forgotten hits that are never played or they just can't find them.
I will list a few and see if you can help me out.   
1. "I Who Have Nothing" by Terry Knight and the Pack.
2. "Conquistador" by Procal Harum
3. "I'm Alive" by the Hollies (my all time favorite group)
4. "Question of Temperature" by the Balloon Farm
5. "Can I Carry Your Balloon" by Mashmakhan
6. "Treat Her Groovy" by The New Colony Six
7. "Little by Little" by Tony's Tigers
8. "Mama Said" by The Next Five
Don't end the forgotten hits. It's great to here them again!
John Gehring
Waupaca, WI.
We've done a few of these in various different context over the years ... we recently featured "Treat Her Groovy" as part of our Grooviest Week Ever
and did a spotlight feature on Tony's Tigers last year, too!
Stay tuned for more of your favorites!  (kk)

Hello Kent,
My name is Kenny and I have been following your Forgotten Hits site for about a month now and it is pretty cool to say the least. I'm 52 soon to be 53.  Anyway I used to listen to all those forgotten hits on the old 45's and some 78's. Thanks to my older brothers and sisters, who were like 5 to 10 years older than me, we had a lot of them, too:
Honey, Rose Garden, To Sir With Love, etc.
My question is what about the song The Ballad of the Green Beret by Staff Sgt. Barry Sadler I think it was? What a cool tune that was back then in those times. Maybe it didn't chart very long but it was a classic tune. Oh, and the song My Boy Lollipop ... we had that one on a 78 record. Can't remember the artist but it was a catchy song also. Don't know how long that one charted for either, maybe you can tell us how these these two tunes charted for?
Well, that's all for now ... thanks for listening ... hope to hear from you soon.
Keep on publishing those Forgotten Hits too :))))
Oh yeah ... Eve of Destruction by Barry McGuire, too!
Sincerely Yours,
We did a special feature on the two Barry's a short while back (McGuire and Sadler, that is!)  Here is a link to that article:

Both artists topped the charts with their respective hit singles ... "The Ballad of the Green Beret" in 1966 and "Eve Of Destruction" in 1965.  Barry Sadler is no longer with us (and his turned into quite a tragic story ... ready the article at the link above.)  Meanwhile, Barry McGuire is still active, recording and performing ... in fact, you'll find a photo above of Barry with Peter Tork and Micky Dolenz of The Monkees!!!
As for "My Boy Lollipop", the U.S. Hit was by Millie Small, who took her record all the way to #2 back in 1964.  It stayed on Billboard's Hot 100 Chart for twelve weeks.  Sadler's record reigned for thirteen weeks, including FIVE at #1 (despite being banned on various radio stations around the country ... including here in Chicago!)  Barry McGuire's hit topped the charts for a week back in 1965 as part of its eleven week chart run.
Glad you're enjoying Forgotten Hits ... it's folks like you that make doing this all worthwhile!  (kk)

I, for one, check your website every day for "Today's Forgotten Hit". I hope you continue it. Most of these songs were never really forgotten by us, but by the station programmers. I mean, God forbid we don't hear "Louie Louie" or "Hang On Sloopy" every two hours! I must add also that I have heard WLS loosen up a bit on the playlist, as you have mentioned before. A couple of weeks ago I heard WLS play "Come On Up" by The Young Rascals. Totally out of left field, it was neat to hear them play a great song that I don't think even charted on WLS at the time. Those are the kind of things that will keep me listening.
Thanks for doing your part to keep the Forgotten Hits alive!
Thanks, Ken ... it IS great to hear more and more of the stations starting to push the envelope a little bit more often!  (kk)

I listened to your month long "station break" composite jingle and was surprised to hear "Do You Miss me Darling" at the end. The Guess Who had some KILLER B sides in those early 70's days.  "Bus Rider" and "Runnin' Down the Street" were two that got plenty of airplay in Kansas as well as the above mentioned "Do You Miss Me Darling".  That, along with their actual HIT
B-sides like "Undun", "No Sugar Tonight", "Albert Flasher", "Bye Bye Babe", and "Road Food" (which got airplay when stations airing Wolfman Jack's show had competitors that refused to play the A side), the Guess Who was often the group to give you the most bang for your buck when purchasing 45s!
Clark Besch
Every single one of those B-Sides is a certified winner that any other group would have been proud to call their brand new A-Side single!  How is it even REMOTELY possible that these guys are NOT in The Rock And Roll Hall of Fame?!?!?  (kk)

Hi Kent,
I check your Forgotten Hits feature EVERY day (M - F, that is), though I have to admit that, as a sixties gal, I'm not really a fan of much that was recorded in the '70s.  I'm sure there are many folks out there who do relate to that decade, though.
So, everyone, if you want Kent to continue his efforts to feature those Forgotten Hits for our enjoyment, why not take just a moment to send him a short comment about it.  I'm sure you appreciate his efforts as much as I do, so step up to the plate and let him know before a decision is taken to cross it off the list.
Thanks, Marie!  Couldn't have said it better myself!  (kk)

Keeping up with your Forgotten Hits theme of the Bells and "Stay Awhile, here's one of their 1972 Coca-Cola spots, recorded off WLAP in 1972.   It's followed by a Sprite ad that I also left on there, as an extra added bonus.

Thanks for today's Forgotten Hit by The Bells. I love ... love ... love that song. I had forgotten all about it. I looked it up on youtube and it shows it being played in an episode of Days of our Lives. It was a Patch and Kayla segment. Since I was a Days junkie back in the day, I probably saw that one. You did it again, Kent!

FH's is getting better and better ... you're just knocking me out!
Wild Bill
Keep up the great work at Forgotten Hits, Kent!
Danny Lake
Host - "The Saturday Night Party" (7 pm - 12 Midnite)
Saturday Night Party Requests: 312-922-9470  
Sunday Afternoons  ( 3 pm - 7pm )
94-7 WLS-FM
And be sure to check out Danny's "Where Are They Now" column, a weekly feature on the Danny Lake Facebook and WLS-FM webpage at!

Love the column my friend.
All the best,
Ron Dante

>>>Hmmm ... maybe it IS time to start calling this "Kent Kotal's Forgotten Hits" after all!!!  Check this out:  (kk)
>>>Steve's Forgotten Hits
Steve Randall's Forgotten Hits is coming soon to Andover Sound ... so if there's a Top 20 hit from the last 40 years that you never seem to hear on the ...
>>>All I know is that I've been calling it "Forgotten Hits" since 1999 ... so that oughta count for SOMETHING, right?!?!?  (kk)
Man, that is rude of Steve (at Bendover Sound) to steal your name idea, Kent!!!!
I caught another slime-ball doing the same! ...! Just kidding! :-)
Meanwhile ... Look, you two do have something in common!!!!!
You were where he was born!!!
"Born in Kent, Steve's lived in Hampshire for ten years and has been at Andover Sound since the start and is also the station's Programme Controller." 


I enjoyed looking at the survey WAVZ which featured Dotty Daniels record at number one. The thing
that fascinates me about these surveys is the record or records that make the survey but did
not make ours here in OKC. Looking forward to Sunday's Comments. The "Swinging Sixty
Survey". Ours was called for a period of time the "Nifty Top Fifty"

And thank you, thank you, thank you ... not only have we OFFICIALLY passed ONE MILLION WEBSITE HITS, but we're very quickly closing in on a million and a half!!!
Taking the advice of several of our readers, we have now COMBINED the stats of our two Forgotten Hits websites.  It makes sense, really, since they are, in fact, completely different websites with completely different content.  Our Daily Blog Posts keep you up to date with all of the current goings-on ... while our "Archive" Website preserves many of your favorite features that we've run over the past several years.  (We'll be posting more there in the weeks to come!)  This means that , as of 10 PM Central Standard Time on Saturday Night, July 23rd, we have now had a total of 1,471,397 visitors!!! 
So thank you ALL very much for your continued support ... and for continuing to help spread the word.  (For the first time ever, our brand new counter is now proudly displayed on the website ... hard to believe that we started with a mailing list of 35 AOL Oldies Music Roomies and have grown to THIS!!!  (kk)