Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Sunday Comments ( 09 - 11 - 11 )

Here's some of what's been on your minds this past week ... 

Kent ...
I know you're looking forward to this show.  Thought you'd find this interesting.
Frank B.

This is a review of an HBO special that Martin Scorsese did on George Harrison.  It is airing in October.  Thought you might find it interesting.
An HBO Documentary Films, Grove Street Pictures presentation of a Spitfire Pictures / Sikelia Prods. production. Produced by Olivia Harrison, Nigel Sinclair, Martin Scorsese. Executive producer, Margaret Bodde. Directed by Martin Scorsese.
With: Neil Aspinall, Jane Birkin, Pattie Boyd, Eric Clapton, Ray Cooper, Terry Gilliam, Dhani Harrison, George Harrison, Olivia Harrison, Eric Idle, Jim Keltner, Astrid Kirchherr, George Martin, Paul McCartney, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty, Ravi Shankar, Phil Spector, Ringo Starr, Jackie Stewart, Klaus Voormann.
Those who know a fair amount about the Beatles will look at "Living in the Material World" and marvel at just how much ground Martin Scorsese's George Harrison opus covers in 3 1/2 hours. But those of us who aren't as familiar with the band's most spiritual member are in for an unexpected treat: More than mere rock-doc hagiography, "Material World" reveals how a tortured millionaire struggled to tame his soul, understand life and ready himself for death. Sadly, sprocket-opera screenings in Telluride and New York appear to be the engrossing two-parter's only bigscreen engagements before it premieres Oct. 5 on HBO.
Considering the involvement of George's widow, Olivia Harrison (who also produced), and comments from those who knew him well, including Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Phil Spector, Klaus Voormann, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty, Eric Idle and Terry Gilliam, it's no surprise that Scorsese's sources offer emotionally choked and overwhelmingly fond remembrances of the late Beatle. As Harrison himself advised in "The Answer's at the End": "Scan not a friend with a microscopic glass / You know his faults, now let the foibles pass."
Still, while "Material World" takes a generally respectful tone toward its subject, through the combined testimony of all these sources, a decidedly conflicted picture of Harrison emerges. In their words, he was "a red-blooded man" (McCartney) prone to "anger" (Starr) with "no filter" (Ono) and "a very extreme personality (that led him) very heavily into drugs" (Voormann). By acknowledging but not belaboring these faults, the film hints at what made Harrison such a restless individual   --  albeit primarily though euphemism, supported only once by visual evidence (when he threw a drink in a photographer's face).
The first hour or so of the 94-minute Part I covers Harrison's childhood and early days with the Beatles. Scorsese clearly assumes auds are already up to speed on Harrison and his collaborators, opening the film with testimony from intimate acquaintances who aren't identified until nearly three hours in (including son Dhani and Handmade Films partner Ray Cooper) before blazing through the Beatles' meteoric, decade-long existence.
Audiences of a certain age shouldn't need hand-holding to understand the "Is God Dead?" cover of Time magazine or the significance of Harrison's Bangladesh charity concerts, though the docu does no favors to neophytes for whom the title "Living in the Material World" is more likely to evoke Madonna than Harrison. Scorsese features a virtual slideshow of Astrid Kirchherr's photos from the Beatles' early days in Hamburg, Germany, but fails to identify Stuart Sutcliffe by anything more than his first name. It's among the many small details omitted along the way. But opting not to mention that Sutcliffe served as the band's first bass player before leaving the group, and then dying unexpectedly at age 21, undercuts the power of the subsequent portraits of a grief-stricken John and George  --  images that, in light of profound fear-of-death issues raised late in Part II, might have captured a key turning point in Harrison's life (echoed five years later when manager Brian Epstein died).
Other visuals  --  a mind-boggling mix of formats, including hundreds of terrific photographs available in a companion coffee-table book  --  often beg for further context. Scorsese's approach spells a complex connect-the-dots game for the uninitiated, though there's plenty here to encourage further exploration  --  not least of which is the music, which sounds incredible in the film's mix, even if the tracks have a nasty way of cutting off to dead silence just as they're getting good. Editor David Tedeschi, who also assembled Scorsese's comparably ambitious "Bob Dylan: No Direction Home," organizes Harrison's chronology into manageable chunks while juggling multiple arcs.
Clearly, fame transformed the four Liverpool kids. In a vintage television interview, Harrison explains, "By having money, we found that money wasn't the answer." And so begins a "journey inward," as Starr describes it, that led Harrison to experiment with LSD, Eastern religion, meditation and Indian music. Each of those influences trickled into Harrison's songwriting, which took on an evangelical quality as he tried to teach future generations how to live free of the assumptions he'd had to unlearn.
Later, an older-and-wiser Harrison reflects, "People say I'm the Beatle who changed the most, but to me, that's what life's about." That ongoing transformation also makes Harrison the Beatle best suited to a portrait of this magnitude, not only for dramatic reasons, but also because his issues seem to run deepest.
When it comes to "Living in the Material World" or his similarly formatted Dylan doc, it's hard to ascertain just how involved Scorsese is as director. Nearly all the interviews were conducted by Warren Zanes (though a phone call from Marty no doubt got them in the seat), and a small army of researchers dug up the staggering mix of archival material featured in the film (including home movies shot by Harrison himself). Still, there's no question the movie finds its footing just as Lennon begins bad-mouthing religion  --  a moment that must have struck a chord with the Catholic-raised helmer.
Part II picks up in 1970 just as the band is about to break up, and hits the key historical points along the way: Harrison's solo albums, the Bangladesh benefit, his involvement with Monty Python and backing of "Life of Brian," the creation of Handmade Films, his move to Friar Park, the formation of the Traveling Wilburys, his 1999 stabbing and eventual death from cancer. Still, these incidents would not be nearly so fascinating without the undercurrent of his search for faith.
In the last half hour, starting with Lennon's assassination, we learn that Harrison spent much of his life practicing how to leave his body. Not everyone frets about death, but those who do face a daunting uphill journey en route to accepting their mortality. As "Living in the Material World" draws to a close, ending as countless musician biopics have before, Scorsese poignantly shows that Harrison left the world as he wanted: positive-minded, wiser and at peace. Now, through not only his music but also this thoughtful portrait of a lifelong seeker, part of that enlightenment can be ours.
Camera (color / B&W, HD / 16mm / 35mm / VHS), Russell Carpenter, Stuart Dryburgh, Simon Harding, Martin Kenzie, Ellen Kuras, Lisa Rinzler, Harris Savides, Peter Suschitzky, Robert Richardson; editor, David Tedeschi; supervising sound editor, Phil Stockton; re-recording mixer, Tom Fleischman; visual effects, Rob Legato; associate producers, Erin Edeiken, Rachel Cooper. Reviewed at Telluride Film Festival, Sept. 3, 2011. (Also in New York Film Festival.) Running time: 208 MIN. (I: 94 MIN., II: 114 MIN.)

And how cool is this???  Tying in with the HBO Special, The Grammy Museum has put together a special George Harrison Exhibit, which will open to the public on October 11th ... check below for full details!  (kk)

The Grammy Museum in Los Angeles will mount a major exhibition on the life and music of George Harrison opening Oct. 11 in conjunction with the forthcoming Martin Scorsese documentary with which it shares the title “George Harrison: Living in the Material World.”
The museum is working closely with Harrison’s widow, Olivia Harrison, in putting together what’s being described as the first major look focusing exclusively on Harrison, both during his years with the Beatles and his post-Fab Four solo career that included a stint with the Traveling Wilburys supergroup with Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne.
“'Living In the Material World’ will provide an in-depth look at all aspects of Harrison’s creative life,” according to a statement the Grammy Museum issued Thursday.
It will include several of his guitars, stage clothing, handwritten lyrics, personal journals and sketches and photographs taken by him.
“As a Beatles fan, working on this exhibit has been a fascinating journey for me personally,” said Robert Santelli, the Grammy Museum’s executive director who also is serving as  co-curator of the exhibit with museum curator Tory Millimaki and Grammy Award-winning designer Masaki Koike.
“I came to realize George Harrison was a more deeply complex musician than I previously knew, and a beautifully spiritual man whose interests touched not only songwriting and music, but also included photography, filmmaking and book publishing,” Santelli said in the same statement. “Hopefully, the exhibit will bear this out, enabling other fans of George Harrison to see him and hear his music in a brand new light.”
Olivia Harrison said “Bob and his team have brought a great deal of passion and commitment to the project; their collective efforts have resulted in a wonderful exhibit. We look forward to sharing our memories of George with his fans through this first major exhibition about his life.”
The timing of the show also roughly coincides with the 10th anniversary of his death from lung cancer on Nov. 29, 2001. Scorsese’s 3 1/2-hour documentary, which premiered last weekend at the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado, is slated to premiere in two parts on HBO on Oct. 5 and 6.

2-CD Package Available For The First Time On October 4
New York, NY (September 6, 2011)—Styx will have its entire career encapsulated within the 16 tracks of Regeneration, Volume I & II on a double-disc to be released via Eagle Rock Entertainment on October 4.
With over 30 million records sold in North America alone, Styx is one of the most beloved rock bands on the planet. Tommy Shaw, James “JY” Young, Chuck Panozzo, Lawrence Gowan, Ricky Phillips and Todd Sucherman have been together longer than any other lineup in the band’s 40-year existence.  
In addition to thirteen Styx classics and a brand new song “Difference In The World,” Regeneration, Volume I & II also includes interpretations of “High Enough,” and “Coming Of Age,” originally recorded by Damn Yankees, which featured Shaw, along with Night Ranger’s Jack Blades, Ted Nugent and drummer Michael Cartellone.” The band had originally re-recorded these acclaimed anthems to sell only at their live shows, as they continued to tour the globe and introduce a new generation of fans to their chart-topping hits. Now, for the first time, this music is being made commercially available.
Eagle Rock Entertainment has previously released Styx: One With Everything, a DVD and Blu-Ray filmed with The Contemporary Youth Orchestra Of Cleveland. Upcoming in December will be The Grand Illusion/Pieces Of Eight – Live, on DVD/CD, DVD, and Blu-ray.
For more information on Styx, please visit
Eagle Rock Entertainment is an international media production and distribution company operating across audiovisual entertainment programming. Eagle Rock Entertainment works directly alongside talent to produce the highest quality programming output covering film, general entertainment and musical performance. Eagle Rock Entertainment has offices based in London, New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, Hamburg, & Paris.
For more information regarding this and other Eagle Rock Entertainment releases, contact Carol Kaye at Follow us on Facebook at:!/pages/Kayos-Productions/102922656447240.
To access photos and/or cover art, please visit, and click the photo tab.
Track Listing:
DISC 1:  The Grand Illusion / Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man) / Lorelei / Sing For The Day / Crystal Ball / Come Sail Away / Difference In The World
DISC 2:  Blue Collar Man (Long Nights) / Miss America / Renegade / Queen Of Spades / Boat on The River / Too Much Time On My Hands / Snowblind / Coming Of Age / High Enough

A few days ago we ran a blurb about a brand new release by The Portraits, now made available thru our FH Buddy Gary Myers ... but when some of you visited his web page to check it out, you weren't able to find any more information or ordering links ... so we talked to Gary about this and he has now provided us with the following:

Yes, I realized, after I did my 1st batch of mailings, that I should have included a link directly to this page:
And then you can order from this page:
But I also realized that I should have said ("However, a sample music link is not yet available"), since a few people have asked about that.
Perhaps I'll revamp things a bit and add a complete separate page for the CD.
Gary E. Myers / MusicGem
Anyway, hope this gets you guys the info you need (and it'll probably do Gary some good, too! lol)  In the meantime, we're still hoping he'll let us "sneak peek" a track here in Forgotten Hits somewhere down the line, too, so you can get a better idea as to what this new release is all about.  (kk)

Hi Kent, 
I guess they are copying The Tygers by coming out with a new album forty years later ..
40 years ago this year, a few guys came together in the Ozarks and began one of the most legendary, unique and successful musical groups in the last four decades. 
On November 11, The Ozark Mountain Daredevils will reunite for one night at the O’Reilly Family Events Center.  Tix go on sale this Friday.
The Ozark Mountain Daredevils recorded an oldies classic with "Jackie Blue", a #1 Smash back in 1975.  (We featured their OTHER Top 40 Hit a short while back in our "Today's Forgotten Hit" feature:  "If You Wanna Get To Heaven" peaked at #21 in 1974 ... and actually pre-dates their #1 Hit!  Talk about your "One You Know ... One You Didn't Even Know You Forgot" pairings!!!)  Hey, more power to them ... there are an AWFUL lot of artists out there who have made a career out of performing their One Hit Wonder for DECADES now!!!  (At least these guys had TWO hits!!!  lol)  kk

Kent ...
Here are some pictures from the Buddy Holly Hollywood Walk of Fame Ceremony, including a couple of Maria Elena and Gary Busey at the ceremony.
Frank B.
And here's a review of the new Buddy Holly Tribute CD "Listen To Me", featuring Brian Wilson, Stevie Nicks, Ringo Starr, Linda Ronstadt, Jeff Lynne, Jackson Browne and several others, courtesy of our FH Buddy David Beard:  
It’s difficult to say if Don McLean’s epic “American Pie” completely summarizes the “day the music died,” but the day we lost Buddy Holly should be considered the first true rock and roll tragedy (in music history). It was February 3, 1959, when Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson boarded their small plane that crashed near Clear Lake, Iowa, killing the three pioneers. Holly’s effect on music has become immeasurable over the years, finding its way into country, pop, contemporary, rockabilly, folk, etc.

Listen to Me: Buddy Holly – released on September 6, 2011 – mirrors Holly’s broad reach and influence on everything musical. The set features completely new arrangements and adaptations from each artist (that) breathe new life into Holly’s songbook.
Peter Asher (Peter & Gordon fame) produces the new 16-track compilation that gathers together Stevie Nicks (“Not Fade Away”), Ringo Starr (“Think it Over”), Lyle Lovett (“Well All Right”), Jackson Browne (“True Love Ways”), ELO’s Jeff Lynne (“Words of Love”), 10,000 Maniac’s Natalie Merchant (Learning the Game”), The Fray (“Take Your Time”), Imelda May (“I’m Looking for Someone to Love”), Chris Isaak (“Crying, Waiting, Hoping”) and others.
Linda Ronstadt’s re-recording of “That’ll be The Day” is the perfect reminder of her early chart success, but this new version is pure electric guitar-infused rockabilly. Uniquely, actress / singer Zooey Deschanel bravely tackles Ronstadt’s second signature Holly song “It’s So Easy.” To Deschanel’s credit, she delivers a tribute that fits comfortably among her contemporaries.
The big surprise in this collection is the last track; Eric Idle’s broad take on “Raining in My Heart” with his comedic delivery of the lyrics atop a bed of Monty Python-esque instrumentation. You might have a knee-jerk reaction when it first comes on, but by the time the song comes to a close Idle wraps it up with a perfect nod and wink.
Brian Wilson handles “Listen to Me,” and (music director/arranger) Paul Von Mertens’ beautiful adaptation is so good that it had me wondering what it would be like if Brian released an album called, Brian Wilson Reimagines Buddy Holly. That’s a thought worth pondering.
Remarkably, Buddy Holly was a mere 22 years old when he died. Here we are 52 years later celebrating great music that will live on forever.
Suggested listening: “Listen to Me,” “Not Fade Away,” “Words of Love” and “Raining in My Heart”

And check out this cool "Making Of 'Listen To Me'" video on Wild Wayne's Website:
Kent ...
Check out Wild Wayne's clip of the week.  Behind the scenes - making of Buddy Holly
Tribute: Listen To Me.
Frank B.

And, for even MORE on Buddy's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star Ceremony, click on the article link below: 

I recall seeing the MC5 LPs in the drugstore bargain bins. Now that they've been ID'd as a Detroit group,I realize that the "MC" stands for "Motor City." -- dB
Healdsburg's Wurst is the best
Published: Saturday, August 13, 2011 at 3:00 a.m.
The SMASHburger at the Wurst Sausage Grill & Beer Garden in Healdsburg.
In the late 1960s, Detroit spawned the MC5, a raucous, obscenity-shouting, proto punk band of bad boys who made Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels sound like bubblegum music. One of the guys who played bass with the MC5 in its late phase was Charles Bell. You can meet Mr. Bell and see his black and white Fender bass hanging behind the bar at The Wurst Sausage Grill & Beer Garden, his new restaurant in Healdsburg.
The sausages are delicious, and we'll get to them in a minute, but The Wurst (Wurst is the German word for sausage — hence liverwurst, bratwurst, etc.) has one of the best burgers in Wine Country.
It's called the SMASHburger ($8.75, 3½ stars). The cook starts by tossing a handful of spice blend (salt, pepper, spices) onto a griddle, then laying a slice of raw onion on top of it. He puts a half pound of ground, grass-fed beef, grown locally in Healdsburg, on the onion, and smashes the ground beef into a round patty with his fist so the onion is held by the meat.
This stays on the hot griddle until the onion is caramelized and the patty is done on that side, then it's flipped and a slice of sharp cheddar laid on top to melt while the meat finishes cooking. The burger is done medium, so there's still pink showing in the middle. Next, fry sauce is spread on the bun.
What's fry sauce, you ask? It's a mixture of ketchup and mayonnaise and sometimes a little pinch of cayenne to spice things up. If you've spent any time in Salt Lake City, you'll have encountered fry sauce. What it's doing in a German beer garden in Healdsburg run by someone from Detroit is anyone's guess, but it's perfect on this burger. Now the top of the bun is put on.
It's a big sloppy burger, so lean over your plate or you'll get it all over yourself. There are plenty of burgers served around Healdsburg, but The Wurst's are the best.
Among fried things for dipping, there's a hit and a miss. The hit is Fresh Cut French Fries ($4, 2 stars), decent fries, although not up to some of the perfect fries that have been showing up in some of the new casual restaurants in this region. These are a trifle soggy, but good. They're served with your choice of dipping sauces. Choose among Buttermilk Maytag Blue, Truffle Aioli, Roasted Garlic Parmesan Aioli, Spicy Harissa Aioli, Liar's Dice Barbecue, and Lemon Pepper Tarragon Ranch. The Harissa Aioli was particularly snappy. The miss is Onion Rings ($5, 1 star), which are commercial rings purchased from a purveyor. These are almost always a disappointment.
The sausage sandwiches are served on toasted hot dog buns. The links are grilled and you get your choice of two toppings from among sweet onions, hot peppers, sweet peppers, and sauerkraut. Adding a third topping will cost you an additional 50 cents. The sandwiches are $6.75 each. They all earned a solid three stars, except for the amazing Detroit Polish, which was as good a Polish kielbasa as I've encountered. It earned three and a half stars.
Two of the sausages are imported. The bratwurst is made in Sheboygan, Wis. It's not boiled in Pabst and onions before grilling, like they do in Milwaukee, but it's plenty good nevertheless — and it's a favorite among Giants fans at AT&T Park. The Detroit Polish is made in Dearborn, a suburb of Detroit a few miles southwest down Route 94, and it is true to its Polish heritage, with pork and beef ground and mixed with beer, onions, spices and garlic. Of course, there are dozens of kinds of Polish sausage, but this is what you think of when you think kielbasa — red in color, spicy and succulent. If you want to be really authentic, horseradish and mustard would supplant those other toppings.
The Wurst offers six other kinds of sausage made under contract by a shop in Sebastopol. They include The Wurst (pork, sage, fennel seed, parsley and smoked paprika), Harissa Hottie (pork, beef, apricot, harissa, habaƱero peppers and coriander), Smoked Beer Sausage (pork, beer and hot spices), Sweet Italian (classic pork, fennel and spices), Tricky Chicken (chicken, smoked paprika, preserved lemon, pine nuts), and Chicken Apple (chicken, apples, sherry, thyme and sage). All the sandwiches come with good, tangy-sweet Memphis style cole slaw.
You can take a bag of these sandwiches outside and sit under the umbrellas on the long patio tables, or go farther afield on a picnic. Or if you want to cook them yourself, there's a cold case with the sausages on display, ready to go home with you.
Eight beers and ales, including Dale's Pale Ale, Bear Republic's Racer 5 IPA, Tiburon Blond, Scrimshaw Pils, Deschutes Black Butte Porter, Sudwerk Hefeweisen, Boont Amber and Arrogant Bastard Ale, will help the brats go down.
Dessert was a chocolate malted milkshake ($6.75, 3 stars). Man alive, that was good!
To sum up: Sausage and burgers and beer, oh my!
Jeff Cox writes a weekly restaurant review column for the Sonoma Living section. You can reach him at
Apparently quite popular here in the Midwest, we covered The MC5 once before in Forgotten Hits (featuring their biggest ... and ONLY ... chart hit, "Kick Out The Jams", #65 in 1969) ... but they never were my cup of tea.  (Just a little bit too head-banger for my taste!)  Judging by this review, it sounds like the burgers taste better than the music!  (kk)


>>>Here comes word of a brand new Bobby Darin Series.  (No, not MINE ... I haven't even TOUCHED that yet!!!)  But Bobby fans will surely want to tune in and listen to this radio special!  (kk)
>>>LARRY KING, CONNIE FRANCIS, STEVE BLAUNER (Bobby's Manager) and many others close to Bobby Darin joined Baltimore Net Radio to bring you their upcoming BOBBY DARIN TRIBUTE which will start on Monday, September 12th, from 3:00 PM (EST) to 5:00 PM and repeated at @ 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM (EST) on Monday. It will air again that week on Friday, September 16th from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM (EST).  There are four, two-hour segments starting Monday, September 12th, filled with his great music and wonderful, insightful interviews from those who knew Bobby Darin well.  This special series will run for four weeks with the final show airing the week of October 3rd.  Check program schedule here:
Here's a link to the official Press Release for Baltimore Network Radio's BOBBY DARIN TRIBUTE:  (Mary Anne Barothy, Public Relations Manager, ... "Where We Speak To The Stars")

Thanks, Kent, this is great news ... but this doesn't let you off the hook.  You still have to keep your promise to re-run your Bobby Darin Series. LoL !!
Frank B.
I know, I know ... I was just hoping that this might tide you over for a little while!  (kk)
And, speaking of Bobby Darin, check out this new musical being put together in Australia!!!

This week in Melbourne, Simon Phillips will direct a workshop of the new musical Dream Lover, written by Frank Howson and John-Michael Howson. 
John Frost, Managing Director of The Gordon Frost Organization, acquired the rights for this new yet-to-be produced musical in 2010 and is producing the workshop with John and Barbara Gilbert f Gilbert Theatrical.
Dream Lover tells the story of Bobby Darin, the singer, songwriter, actor and entertainer whose sensational career spanned the 1950’s and 60’s. Young Walden Robert Cassotto overcame a life threatening illness and a poor background to become one of the great entertainers of the mid-20th century. His marriage to movie star Sandra Dee was a match made in heaven until the clouds rolled in. Bobby’s fight to reach the top of the entertainment world before his death at 37 is an emotional and triumphant story. The music of Dream Lover is composed of the songs of Darin and others, including “Splish Splash”, “As Long as I’m Singing”, “Mack the Knife”, “Beyond the Sea”, “If I Were a Carpenter”, “Inka Dinka Doo” and “Mammy”.
Performers taking part in the workshop include:
Hugh Sheridan (Packed to the Rafters) as Bobby Darin
Christy Sullivan (Next to Normal - MTC, Anything Goes - TPC) as Sandra Dee
Robert Grubb (Mamma Mia!, My Fair Lady- OA)
Sheridan Harbridge (Cabaret – Sydney)
Trisha Noble (Doctor Zhivago)
Christen O’Leary (Urinetown - MTC, The Boy From Oz - TPC)
The workshop is being directed by Simon Phillips (Love Never Dies, Priscilla).

re:  ELVIS:

I thought you might find this press release for an upcoming Elvis Presley movie I'm a consultant on interesting for Forgotten Hits. We have a big name director attached to the project with the talents of John Scheinfeld.

All The Best,
Cory Cooper
Elvis Historian, Consultant, Technical Advisor

Kent ...
Just read this in my newspaper.  The Gagosian Gallery will be exhibiting 18 drawings and paintings by Bob Dylan, created while the musician was touring Asia. It will run from Sept. 22 to Oct. 22. His first exhibit in the Big Apple.
Frank B.
Dylan draws and paints ... McCartney draws and paints ... Freddy Cannon draws ... John Lennon drew ... cool to see these musicians express their images in different ways.  (kk)

re:  VMA's:
Since I have been somewhat critical in the past of music award shows and the poor sound ... singing ... and acoustics ... I would like to say that I actually enjoyed the VMA'S. The highlight for me was the tribute to Amy Winehouse from Russell Brand's words to the great clip of Amy with Tony Bennett and then of course Bruno Mars singing Valerie. He's amazing ... loved every minute of it.
I still haven't seen this year's show all the way through, just bits and pieces here and there.  My guess is that Amy's duet with Tony Bennett is going to help sell quite a few copies of his new album.  And Russell Brand has been most eloquent thus far with his remembrance ... VERY high class from a guy we might not normally expect this.  (kk)

re:  PBS:
Did you happen to catch the "'60s Pop, Rock & Soul" program on KQED? If not, it's bound to be repeated. It was great to see old acts like:
The Ventures, Mitch Ryder & Detroit Wheels, Paul Revere & Raiders, the Vogues, Chad & Jeremy, the Kingsmen, ? and Mysterians, Jefferson Starship (with a young blond lead singer) doing doing "White Rabbit" and "Somebody to Love", Gary Lewis & Playboys, Steam, Percy Sledge and the Miracles.
The program was followed by Billy Joel Live at Shea Stadium, joined by Paul McCartney.
Check local listings or website(s) for re-runs.
Dave Barry
Watch for this one, guys ... PBS tends to run these programs multiple times ... and this sounds like a pretty good line-up!  (kk)
Kent ...
Here's the whole countdown, if anybody wants to take a look.
Frank B.

I thought this one was really interesting (which is why I stole it from the most recent Bob Lefsetz Newsletter).  It comes from Jay Jay French, guitarist for Twisted Sister, who had a Top 20 Hit back in 1984 with their rock anthem "We're Not Gonna Take It".  It's some cold, hard facts for all you aspiring musicians out there thinking, "Damn, shouldn't I be famous by now?!?!?"  (Believe me, I can relate!!!)  Check this out!  (kk)
I have a record of every night and the amount of performances Twisted Sister has played since the first one on March 20th, 1973, up to the present.
Here are some statistics regarding our years learning our craft in the bars and nightclubs, all of which were within a 50 mile radius of Manhattan between March, 1973 and December, 1982, when we signed with Atlantic Records that I think your readers would find interesting. It speaks directly to the 10,000 theory.
We averaged 250 nights a year for this 10 year span. Also remember that as a "show band' we did full costume changes for every performance.
We spent the first year 1973 playing five 40-minute shows per night night
From 1974 - 1976, we played four 45-minute shows a night
From 1977 - 1980, we played three 1-hour shows per night
From 1981 to the end of 1982, we played two 75-minute shows per night
What this means is that we played an average of 3 hours per night x 250 nights per year x 10 years (or about 7,500 hours of live performance)
Add to that the 250 hours per year of rehearsals and studio time recording demos for record labels and you have 10,000 hours .............. ALL OF THIS BEFORE WE GOT A RECORD DEAL!!
We are now headlining more festivals in more countries (33 and counting) and getting paid more money then ever.
What 10,000 hours does is make you an iceberg, meaning that what you see on the surface is the astounding end product.  Beneath the surface lies 90% of ones experience.
That is our business model ... it's called hard work ... not that the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame would ever recognize the blood, sweat and tears that we put in.
We really did embody all that is too patronizingly called the "American Work Ethic".
It's just something that people should know.
After reading these numbers, I'm tired
Good night.
-- Jay Jay French

Hi Kent.
We had an interesting chat with Van Dyke Parks recently. He did some math and realized he's been in the industry for 58 years, and his work with Brian Wilson is just a small part of it. The great thing about speaking with a professional lyricist is that you get answers like, "I wanted to remind him that he had an absolute ability to go back into a studio and to be a functioning musician. And that's what Orange Crate Art did, his Rubicon, the river that he had to cross."
Van Dyke is now working with another generation of musicians - he arranged the orchestra for Inara George, who is the daughter of Lowell George from Little Feat, who Van Dyke worked with in the '70s. The technology has changed, but the artistry hasn't. 

Here's the full interview: 
Be Well,
Carl Wiser

Hey bro, you know the Beach Boys and the Colorado Symphony Orchestra will be playing together tomorrow at 1 pm at Civic Center in Denver in memory of 9-11. There are rumblings that Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and the Boys will get together for their actual 50th Reunion with this Show.
Any chance you can make it? Lemme know and we'll get together.
Wild Bill
Man, I WISH it were that easy!!!  (lol)  Unfortunately, one of this week's challenges is having enough money to put gas in the car, much less purchase an airline ticket!!!  Should be a great show 'tho ... but I kinda doubt that Brian and Al will be there.  The Beach Boys (meaning Mike and Bruce) are scheduled for an oldies cruise next month (so this won't be the launch of any kind of 50th Anniversary Reunion Tour ... although NONE of the guys have ruled out this possibility from what I understand.  Soonest that would start might be at year's end.)  Meanwhile, Brian's doing a show in Scotland tomorrow ... and I believe Al Jardine is splitting his time between The Endless Summer Band and The Surf City All-Stars these days.  Send us your concert review and we'll run it next week!  Thanks, Bill!  (kk)

More from our on-going "Dee Jay Stories" series!
Facebook is really becoming an amazing tool in our lives.  It used to be a place to meet people you've missed in your life, but now had become so much more. people  are putting up forums on everything and anything ... like this forum for radio people ... "You know you were in radio when ... "
I'll never forget getting roped in to the cattle drive they have every year before the rodeo. Mr funny guy dee-jay that had never ridden a horse was now out there for two and a half days of riding and roping. The first night I was so sore I could hardly move. The next day was a bit better, but the soreness intensified. Finally everyone came across a creek bed and their horses went through it.  Mine ... stopped and threw me ... I flew 15 feet high and landed on my back on some huge rocks. I was toast ... couldn't move.  They put a neck brace on me and airlifted my dumbass outta there. The next day I was at the camel races! The worst thing I ever did ... just ran around this ring twice and HOLDING ON FOR DEAR LIFE! I finished first and didn't fall off, but did break three ribs. The good thing though, my neck collar didn't fall off!!!
Needless to say my horseback and camel riding days are in the past!
Some of you brought up broadcasting school.  I never went ... was self taught by the genuine legends of the time. But when teaching school in Cincinnatti (I was doing Mornings at WYGY at the time, in the LATE 90'S), they would bring in kids that had lisps, speech defects and who couldn't read as well as a 3rd grader, JUST TO GET THEIR MONEY!  Besides that, they'd have some moron with a great flowing radio voice tell them in a matter of months they would be WORKING AT THE Best Stations in New York, Southern Cal, et al, and be the next Rick Dees, Don Imus, whatever. I only taught for about four months, but I taught it not out of a book but how it was, and what you could expect. I believe the people I taught got a good education from someone that ... TOLD IT LIKE IT WAS!
Wild Bill Cody

I ran into Rene's Album Liner Notes site; I thought it's great! Took a lot of work with little reward. Maybe I'll contribute!'m e-mailing this to Rene, too. Maybe you can mention this fine site at Forgotten Hits.
Thanks, Kent. And thanks again, Rene!,
Jersey John
Actually, this is a VERY cool site, John ... and I have to imagine that our readers could contribute VOLUMES of information to this site.  Cool concept ... a very novel idea ... so we're happy to help give them a plug!  (kk)

Great article on Peter Tork friend & musical collaborator James Lee Stanley:
A while back we featured a short audio clip from the brand new Herman's Hermits / "Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daugheter" / "Hold On" Soundtrack CD's ... it was unique because if featured a short bit of dialog from Peter Noone not previously released on earlier versions.

One of our readers (Jersey John) investigated further and got this response from Ron Furmanek - who was involved with the final production:
The Peter Noone bit was recorded specifically for a 7 minute "featurette" promo film made by MGM Film studios in 1968 to promote the new movie "Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter"!  Its a "making of" behind the scenes promo filmed in color in 16mm.  At the end of the film Peter is seen (I believe) with the dog in the film, singing this newly recorded short song.  I haven't watched the short film in ages, so I am going by memory here that the dog is indeed in the shot!  Its a 16mm film, and its buried in my archives somewhere!
The recording session for this short version of the song runs (by memory again) around 10 minutes total, and its in twin track stereo, a simple recording session that did not need to go to 3 or 4 track, it was recorded on a 1/4 inch tape, vocals on left, and music on right in 1968 specifically for this MGM films short promo film, and no way in 1965!
I guess Abcko folded it to mono?  I don't have the CD.
-- Ron Furmanek

>>>The group you saw perform didn't include Chad Allan, Burton Cummings or Randy Bachman ... as the current rights to the name belong to drummer Garry Peterson (who never sang ANY of their hits) ... he and bassist Jim Kale are the surviving members of the band's biggest hey-day.  The lead vocals these days are handled by a guy named Derek Sharp (who ALSO never sang any of their hits!!!)  When Bachman and Cummings reunited a few years back (for a mini-tour and album) they had to call themselves The Bachman - Cummings Band, despite the fact that these guys wrote MOST of The Guess Who's biggest hits.  Good to hear that they put on an entertaining show (as neither Bachman or Cummings make it here to The States much anymore.)  Your glowing endorsement makes this sound like a show well worth seeing.  (kk)
Absolutely correct, Kent.  This was Garry and Jim's group of Guess Whos.  I knew that going in to this concert as I always do my homework ... (wish I could make this email a mandatory reading assignment for my kids)  I know they have the legal rights and may have to deal with issues about the ironic exits of their songwriters, but I have to hand it to this group ... they got the act together.  All the performance flairs and flourishes simply add to the fact that these musicians and the music are fantastic.  They have not added the gimmicks to hide bad musical quality as others may do.  They are good musicians.  Rob Grill had great musicians, Peter Noone has great musicians and there are more than I can take the time to list here. But my point is:  Don't try to add stunts and gimmicks to camouflage a lack of talent.  

The Grassroots will never be the same without Rob.  They should change the name to the "New Grassroots" or the "Grassroots 2011" or just maybe a contest and let the fans vote.
Mike De Martino
I think I could live with "The New Grass Roots" ... and then update their bio page accordingly ... and then get out there and play all this great music that they clearly love ... and we'll get behind them 100%.  What do you say, guys?  (kk)

I just recently discovered you website / blog, while searching for versions of the Grass Roots' "Sooner or Later" featuring radio station call letters over the intro.
Your post mentions that you have several, and you feature one from WMAK.
Is there any chance you could send me the others?
I have attached one from WKNR Detroit, which is where I heard it all those years ago.
Frank J. Hartge

Actually, the only one I've heard was the WMAK version posted on the site.  (It's funny 'cause since I've heard this version, I expect to hear it every time it comes on the radio now ... but it'll probably never be played that way on the air again!)  I didn't realize that there were jingles done the same way for other radio stations around the country, too ... we didn't have one here in Chicago that I can remember.
I think what you saw on the site was the fact that this same practice was applied to several other hit records at the time ... and, over the years we have featured an odd one here and there (but unfortunately, off the top of my head I can't think of any right now ... I'm sure one of our astute readers will let us know pronto which other ones we have on hand to feature!)
This all DOES make for a very unique "collectible" piece, however ... this makes for a very special memory for all of us who grew up as fans of our favorite radio station.  (kk)
Well, there WAS one from WLS ... and it's attached!
Thanks for the feedback. I'll keep looking!
Keep up the good work on your site!

Why don't I remember this?!?!?  I listed to WLS almost non-stop back in 1971 (when "Sooner Or Later" was a Top Ten Hit!)  I wonder how many of these they did!  Thanks, Frank!  (kk)

I can't wait for that new "Hollies" video!! Thank for spreading the word, Kent.
Mike De Martino
President of the LOVEJOY MUSIC CLUB

Just thought you should know that your review of the disc sent me right to Amazon for a preorder.  Can't wait to see it.

You will NOT be disappointed.  (Man, I wish I could be there for the official first-screening of The Hollies DVD in California ... with Graham Nash and Allan Clarke on hand ... what a day THAT'S going to be!!!)  kk

9 - 11

Of course tomorrow marks the tenth anniversary of 9-11 ... a day we'll never forget ... and a day whose impact has affected us each and every day since.

Trying to stay away from the politics and the preaching ... (which isn't always so easy to do, by the way!) ... and stick with the music format of Forgotten Hits ... here are a couple of emails we received from you guys in the past week:


Since I no longer have a radio show, I was hoping you could share with your vast readership a really amazing song that I would certainly play if I did. "The Reading of the Names", by Jon Morrell and Tony Leventhal, two brothers, NYC born and raised. It is currently posted on You Tube and getting wonderful reviews.  Not really sure what you had planned for 9/11 ... but, as I said, this is something I'd be sharing with everyone, so I'm hoping you will.

Jim Shea

Here's one well worth repeating, courtesy of our radio buddy Jim Shea.  (kk)

Kent ...
Here's a good clip for next Sunday's edition of "Forgotten Hits".
Frank B.
Very Powerful -- This will be worth the trip to NYC to see.
Fleetwood Girl
While we have promised to always focus on the music, we would be remiss in not acknowledging the tragedy that befell our country ten years ago.  It certainly changed OUR lives ... forever.  I guess in the end that's exactly what terrorism is.  If we can't find a way to rebound as a country ... set things right again ... concentrate on solving some of our OWN problems for a change and provide solutions for unemployment, poverty, better health care, etc., then in the end, THEY have won.  No, our lives will never be the same ... but let's show the world what a great country does when its threatened ... and NOT cave in to the economic structure in which we currently live.  We're better than that.  (kk)

Dear Friends:
Nils Lofgren has written and performed a wonderful and touching song regarding 9-11 
titled, "When You Are Loved."
In memory of all who were, and continue to be, affected by this tragic day, he wanted to share this song with you.
We hope you take a listen.
Thank you,
Jeff Albright
--Publicist for Nils Lofgren

"When You Are Loved" - a 9-11 song honoring heroes, victims and families
"When You Are Loved" is a song written to honor the love, courage and spirit of the 9-11 victims and their surviving family members. In this instance, a grieving wife and mother, with a young son, finds the strength and spirit to carry on, honoring her fallen husband and loving their child.
Whether a fireman, policeman, EMT or any of the hundreds of first responders and citizens who heroically gave their lives saving others, in addition to the thousands of victims, the surviving parents and family of every age, now have a mountain of grief to navigate and we all remain inspired and grateful at their dignity and spirit on this lifelong, overwhelming journey.
May God bless you all and may God bless America.
-- Nils Lofgren --

"When You Are Loved"
The crumbling towers, the widowed wife, fatherless son, to share my life
And when the grief has me convinced, I won't survive
Our son holds my face in two soft hands and I'm impossibly alive
When you are loved, when you are loved
Life can be lived, when you are loved
Wakes in your Yankee cap every day, wears it to school, what can I say
And sorrow's dark promise is broken and I'm free
When our sweet little Yankee cries, "Ma, come lay down with me"
When you are loved, when you are loved
Life can be lived, when you are loved
Fatherless son, the widowed wife
We honor you dear, embrace our life
Words and Music by Nils Lofgren
The song is also available on the site (free download) -

And, just a quick reminder (for those of you with Showtime), the brand new Paul McCartney "Making of the Benefit Concert for the Victims of 9-11" documentary special, "The Love We Make" will air this evening (8:00 Central Time) for the first time.  (Meanwhile, VH-1 will air The Concert For New York City" in its entirety on Sunday afternoon, beginning at 4 PM Eastern Time.  It'll run as a 6-hour, uninterrupted event to commemorate this tragic attack on our country.  (kk) 

And, speaking of "The Love We Make", we just received this blurb from FH Reader Dave Barry:

"The Love We Make," 7 p.m. Sept. 10 on Showtime
Paul McCartney was in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001, and spent days walking the streets, dropping in at firehouses and eventually joining in the planning of a huge benefit "Concert for New York City" at Madison Square Garden.
Filmmaker Albert Maysles ("Gimme Shelter," "Grey Gardens") followed McCartney, filming him in the same cinema verite style Maysles used for "What's Happening! The Beatles in the U.S.A."
The documentary, by Maysles and Bradley Kaplan, hasn't quite been 10 years in the making, McCartney (via satellite) told TV critics meeting in Los Angeles.
"Albert took some great footage back then that we never did anything with, and it just seemed like it would be a good opportunity," McCartney says. "So I got in touch with Albert and said, 'Is it still all around? You know, would it make into a film?' And he was very enthusiastic. So I think it was reawakened by the 10th anniversary."
In New York after the attacks, "The whole mood of the world, the country of America and particularly the city of New York had changed," McCartney says. "There was fear in the air, and I never experienced that, in particular, in New York. So this was where the idea of doing (the concert) came about."
And during the concert, some of the fear seemed to go away, McCartney recalls.
"It was a really great feeling," he says. "We actually felt like we were doing a bit of good."

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