Saturday, August 18, 2012

Good Old-Fashioned Forgotten Hits

This weekend we're going to be featuring a BAKER'S DOZEN worth of Forgotten Hits, all worthy of a spin now and again on oldies radio. 

(Hopefully some of the jocks on the list will follow suit and feature a few of these on their programs next week.)

It's what I like to call GOOD OLD-FASHIONED FORGOTTEN HITS ... and this is the way we used to do it way back when.

Our first seven features come courtesy of FH Reader (and noted Rock and Roll Journalist / Historian) Gary Theroux ...

As we've been slowly rebuilding the archives, we ran across this feature that Gary wrote for Forgotten Hits a few years back (2007 to be exact!) ... and have decided to resurrect seven of his Forgotten Hits favorites from that series. Enjoy!

COMING ON STRONG – Brenda Lee (Decca 32016)
Charted 13 weeks beginning October 1, 1966; peaked at #11. Brenda Lee cut so many great records that radio ignores today (“Johnny One Time,” “Dynamite,” “Too Many Rivers,” etc.) it’s hard to pick out just one, but this one does have a special place in pop music history. It’s the track the Dutch group Golden Earring liked so much that they sang about in their first U.S. hit, “Radar Love” (1974). “The radio plays a forgotten song / Brenda Lee’s ‘Coming On Strong’.” Over her 16-year pop career – encompassing 55 Hot 100 hits – “Little Miss Dynamite” sent us a lot of “radar love.” Too bad there is NOTHING on the Hot 100 today even CLOSE to being as emotionally rich and satisfying as any of today's selections.

TONIGHT (COULD BE THE NIGHT) – The Velvets (Monument 441)

Charted nine weeks starting May 29, 1961; peaked #26. Roy Orbison is credited with discovering this R&B quintet from Odessa, Texas, which was led by Virgil Johnson. Yes, Texas is pretty far from the L.A., Philly or New York base of so many doowop groups, but that didn’t stop these guys from crafting some of the finest recordings of the genre (check out their thrilling take on “That Lucky Old Sun” sometime). Like Dusty Springfield's “I Only Want To Be With You” or the Crystals' classic "Then He Kissed Me," this record perfectly captures the swelling excitement that comes when you realize you're at an all-time emotional turning point peak in your life. "For tonight ... is - the - NIIGHHT!"


JOY - APOLLO 100 (Mega 0050)

“The aim and final reason of all music,” wrote Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750), “should be none else than the glory of God and the recreation of the mind.” The German classical composer certainly had Divinity on his mind when he composed “Jesu, Joy Of Man’s Desiring” as part of his contata “BVW 147” in 1723. 248 years later, arranger-keyboardist Tom Parker formed the British studio group Apollo 100 (featuring organ, brass and harpsichord) and recorded this euphoric, innovative adaptation. Incredibly, “Joy” bombed in the U.K. but rocketed to #6 in the U.S., where it had been released on the tiny Mega label out of Nashville. (Mega’s other claim to fame: Sammi Smith’s 1971 pop and country masterwork “Help Me Make It Through The Night.”) “Joy” broke one year after that hit on New Year’s Day, 1972 and rode the charts for 14 weeks. One minor annoyance for DJs trying to cue the record up was the fact that it FADED IN, rather than starting on a single note. Regardless, fans (and DJs, too) loved the way “Joy” built and built like a glittering tornado up to its final shattering moment. In April 1972, Apollo 100 tried again with a second track off the “Joy” album, this time “Mendelssohn’s 4th,” but the novelty of “classical rock” (if you want to call it that) has already subsided. Every once in a while, though, it comes back. Check out Walter Murphy’s “A Fifth Of Beethoven” (1976), or The Toys’ “A Lover’s Concerto” (1965; adapted from Bach’s “Minuet From The Anna Magdalena Notebook”).

AN AMERICAN TRILOGY - Mickey Newbury (Elektra 45750)

Houston's own Milton S. Newbury, Jr. earned his initial fame after moving to Nashville in 1963 and writing both a string of country hits and the 1968 debut rock single of The First Edition: “Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In).” Mickey seemed to specialize in slow, aching, heartfelt ballads, although he did turn relatively upbeat now and then (“How I Love Them Old Songs”). Following an unsuccessful run as an RCA artist, Newbury signed with Elektra and was handed a micro budget to record with. He pulled in a few favors and managed to turn out the classic 1971 album “Frisco Mabel Joy.” Starkly soulful, the LP featured “An American Trilogy,” his deeply moving medley of three all-time standards: “Dixie,” “All My Trials” and “Battle Hymn Of The Republic.” Upon release in November 1971, a lot of people confused “An American Trilogy” with another song out at the same time with a similar title: “American Pie.” Regardless, “An American Trilogy” climbed to #26 over am electrifying 11-week run and was eventually covered by both Elvis and Kenny Rogers (among others). Remarkably, Newbury’s other greatest vocal performance is on the B side of “An American Trilogy” – the brilliantly conceived and hauntingly performed story song. “San Francisco Mabel Joy.” For some odd reason, Elektra left “San Francisco Mabel Joy” off the “Frisco Mabel Joy” album and issued it instead on Mickey’s follow-up LP, “Heaven Help The Child.” Both deeply introspective albums are certified gems – and just think: you could have gotten both of Mickey’s top two classics on one 45 -- Elektra 45750 – had you had a dollar in your hand at Musicland at the tail end of 1971. 

CASINO ROYALE - Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass (A&M 850)

If you saw the 2006 version of “Casino Royale” with Daniel Craig as James Bond, you didn’t hear this -- the ORIGINAL “Casino Royale” movie theme from April 1967. It seems that when Eon Productions snapped up the movie rights to Ian Fleming’s 007 novels in the early ‘60s, they were unable to secure a claim on “Casino Royale” -- as those rights had already been sold to CBS. And after “Dr. No” (1962), “From Russia With Love” (1963) and “Goldfinger” (1964) proved that James Bond was, ahem, a marketable movie franchise, interest in cashing in was in high gear at the rival United Artists studios. From CBS, UA bought the movie rights for $10 million -- but what to do about the fact that Sean Connery demanded an additional million (a lot of money at the time) to again play the lead role? This problem was solved by hiring a whole bunch of actors -- from David Niven and Peter Sellers to Orson Welles and Woody Allen -- to all play James Bonds in what evolved into a raucous parody of the franchise. The movie was, in fact, billed as “Too much for one James Bond.” The 1967 version of “Casino Royale” went on to become the third most money-making movie of the year and even nabbed an Academy Award nomination for “Best Song.” Ironically, though, it wasn’t Herb Alpert’s catchy title theme. Instead it was “The Look Of Love,” as popularized by Dusty Springfield. In a further ironic twist, SONY (CBS) bought MGM (Bond’s studio) in 2005, clearing the path for the 2006 “serious adaptation” of Ian Fleming’s classical novel. The back of the DVD packaging of the latter day “Casino Royale,” by the way, includes the hype line “Daniel Craig is the best James Bond in the franchise’s history.” Nice try, but everybody knows Sean Connery will forever rule.

JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE MIND - The Amboy Dukes (Mainstream 684)   
While not engaging in blood “sports” -- taking enormous pleasure in causing mortal suffering within the animal kingdom -- Ted Nugent got his rocks off as a longtime heavy metal rock singer and guitarist (1977’s “Cat Scratch Fever” was his biggest solo single). A dozen years earlier, though, the Detroit native had formed the Amboy Dukes with John Drake, Steve Farmer, Rick Lober, Bill White and Dave Palmer. The seven signed with Mainstream Records, a label otherwise noteworthy chiefly as the original home of Big Brother & the Holding Company (with Janis Joplin). It was Drake who sang lead on the group’s surging, soaring, solitary hit, “Journey To The Center Of The Mind,” which reached #16 in the summer of 1968. After 15 years as a solo artist, Ted Nugent again joined a band, the Damn Yankees, in 1990. They’re best known for their million-seller that year, “High Enough.”


ROLL ON –The New Colony Six (Sunlight 1001)

The Windy City’s own New Colony Six never cut a bad record – be it an LP or 45 issued on one of the four labels they released on between 1966 and 1971 (Centaur, Sentar, Mercury and Sunlight). Starting out as a garage band, they chose their name and initial look in order to fit in among all the British Invasion groups that were hot at the time (even though the band itself was from Chicago). They even wore Revolutionary War uniforms – having thought up that idea at the same time that another band, Paul Revere & the Raiders, independently came up with the same gimmick. Incredibly, the two bands later become housemates --- for a while – in Los Angeles. (The Raiders then landed a TV gig through Dick Clark that gave their look television exposure; the less fortunate New Colony Six did not.) The NC6’s first relatively crude releases (“Love You So Much,” “I Confess”) earned heavy hometown airplay over WLS and WCFL, as did their one-time hook-up with the Chess rhythm section (“I’m Just Waitin’, Anticipatin’ For Her To Show Up,” which was written by Tony Orlando!). The NC6 evolved into a romantic soft-rock band upon signing with Mercury, the label that released nearly all of their best stuff but never fully understood how to market their talents. Regardless, gems like “I Will Always Think About You,” “Things I’d Like To Say” and “Barbara, I Love You” became huge in Chicago, despite receiving scant airplay elsewhere. (Seek out their Rhino compilation CD for proof; the only weak material being early lo-fi experiments like “Marmaduke”). After their Mercury deal ended, the boys released several singles (but never an album) on their own label, Sunlight, starting with the catchy, engaging “Roll On.” Despite being on a tiny label, the 45 did reach #56 over a seven-week Billboard run in the fall of 1971.


Please Note: ALL of the material supplied by GARY THEROUX for this special FORGOTTEN HITS Feature is © 2007 Pop Record Research

We'll have six more Forgotten Hits favorites (suggested by our readers) coming to you tomorrow ... ya'll come back now, hear?!?!?  (kk)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Catching Up (One More Time!)

Quite a few more comments to share today ...

So let's dig right in!

Here are a few with a decidedly Beatles flavor ...

Hi Kent -
What a bummer to hear about the loss of the hard drive. So glad to see you are up and running again.
We happen to share the same sign-off, KK. I've used it ever since I have been on the net.
Anyway, I had found this in an old album sleeve and thought you may want to share it with your readers.
I thought of it when I was reading the sign off, asking DJs to just play good music of any genre. Those were the days, when the music just had to be good. Feel free to post or use however you like.
Keep the faith,

Cool chart ... and VERY 1964 ... four Beatles chart entries ... and two more titles that they wrote for other artists! A pretty impressive Top 40. And neat to see "Ain't She Sweet" so high on the list ... always one of my favorite John Lennon vocals! (kk)

Speaking of The Beatles, FH Reader Clark Besch recently sent us THIS amazing piece of information ... $35,000 for a Beatles single?!?!? Damn, wish I had a copy! (That'd solve a few problems!)  kk
Guys, the below site gives thought to the idea that the recent sale of a rare mint Beatles 1964 Vee Jay 45 for $35000 might have come from the unearthing of the WGN record collection sale. Any thoughts? Mr. Weber, do you think it possible that you might have been sitting on this gold mine for a few years? This would be a REAL Lyle Dean report!! Nick, as a current WGN staffer, moving to that plus new studio might have unearthed an amazing find?? Worth a segment on your show if so! Melissa, hope Dusty Groove finds some 45s like this in the stash your store bought from WGN!!
Rarest U.S. Beatles Record Fetches $35,000
The rarest Beatles 45, a promotional record, featuring the songs "Ask Me Why" and "Anna," has fetched $35,000 (after buyers premium) in an auction on July 24th.
The record, by Vee Jay Records released in 1964 (Vee-Jay Special DJ No. 8), is thought to be extremely the rarest Beatles Promo released in the United States. It's believed that only five or six copies were ever produced.
It's also one of the top rare vinyl sales of 2012. "This is the highest-priced vintage (record) vinyl sale I've seen all year." Says James Massey publisher of , a website tracking rare item sales worldwide.
According to (the seller) Heritage Auctions; "This is, by far, the rarest Beatles 45 in the entire USA, period. Purportedly as few as five copies of this promotional 45 were ever produced (for reasons still unclear to this day)."
According to Ultimate Beatles Collection; "The record was given out to a few Los Angeles radio stations in 1964 to test the market for the single." UBC claims there are only six (6) examples known, which is one more than Heritage's claim of five (5). Either way it appears to be extremely rare.

"Ask Me Why" has never really been one of my favorite Beatles tunes ... but even I have to recognize the complexity and sophistication of this tune coming along this early on in their career.  The overall construction of this piece of music (with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight) just shows what lay in store for the talented songwriting team of Lennon and McCartney.  (kk)

In other Beatles-related news, it sounds like the "live in the studio" performance Paul McCartney did a few months back to launch and promote his latest CD "Kisses On The Bottom" will be making its way to PBS shortly ... here's the scoop, courtesy of FH Reader Frank B (by way of WCBS-FM):
Earlier this year, Paul McCartney released Kisses On The Bottom, a new album of pop standards that pre-date the rock and roll era (along with two new songs written in that style). And while he didn’t tour to promote it, he did perform the songs at Capitol Studios in Los Angeles (where he recorded the album) on February 9. That set, called Live Kisses, will air on PBS’s Great Performances, which premieres Friday, September 7th at 9 PM (check local listings).
For this performance, he opted not to play instruments (fans know that Paul plays bass, guitar or keyboards while singing at his concerts), and simply concentrated on his vocals at this one-time-only (so far) event. His backing band included jazz superstar Diana Krall on piano, and highlights included his drummer Abe Laboriel Jr. harmonizing with him on “I’m Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter,” “The Glory Of Love” and “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive.” Meanwhile, Eagle (and brother-in-law to Beatle Ringo Starr) Joe Walsh plays acoustic guitar on “My Valentine” and “Get Yourself Another Fool.” The set is already available online: it’s called iTunes Live From Capitol Studios.
Meanwhile McCartney, who also put out an expanded reissue of his 1971 album Ram earlier this year, is said to be working on a new record that sees him returning to the more familiar territory of rock and roll.
I happened to catch this the first time around ... and it will play very well on PBS' Great Performances series. Definitely worth tuning in. Meanwhile, we've been watching the "My Valentine" video (featuring Natalie Portman and Johnny Depp, signing the lyrics ... albeit sometimes incorrectly!) quite a bit lately. It took a while for this song to catch my ear ... I found it very contrived in the beginning ... but there's something about a McCartney melody that attaches itself to you (whether you want it to or not) ... and my hunch is that years from now, music fans will be calling this one another one of his classics. (kk)

Here's more on not only Paul McCartney's PBS Program but some other great rock and roll events coming to PBS ... including another batch of Ed Sullivan Television Appearances! (kk)
Click here: VVN Music: Paul McCartney, Ed Sullivan and Doo Wop Set For PBS

And, if by any chance, you happen to be free tonight ... and are reading this out on the East Coast ... here's a Beatles extravaganza you may want to check out!


Friday August 17, 2012 - 7pm



at "DANBURY FIELDS FOREVER" Beatles Music Festival

featuring CT's own Mike "Ringo" Streeto on drums
240 Naugatuck Ave Milford, CT
Includes Dinner - Dancing - Prizes - Surprises - Open Bar
Hosted by Boppers DJ Charles F. Rosenay!!!

$40.00 Per Person - Call for reservations
Aldario's Reservations: (203) 874-6096 Event Info: (203) 795-4737

Here in Chicago, this past weekend was "The Fest For Beatles Fans" (formerly known as Beatlefest).
We weren't able to attend ... but FH Reader Clark Besch posed an interesting query for Beatles Historian (and fellow FH Reader) Bruce Spizer:

Hi all you Chicago friends.
I hope you were able to go to this ... Bruce Spizer is THE Beatles expert, especially in respect to tracking down legal documents and facts about the Beatles' facts and records. His books are amazing. He was in Chitown Aug 10 - 12, which relates directly to the 1966 Chicago Beatles visit at which the Cryan Shames supposedly reserved a whole row, from what I remember hearing.
Something Bruce should track down is the fact that there was a planned concert here in my town of Lincoln, Nebraska, on August 13, 1966! A local promoter at the time contacted Brian Epstein and received info and contracts for a concert to take place at NU's Memorial Stadium that would have been similar to the Shea Stadium concert of a year earlier. I spoke with the promoter's son 20 years ago here and he said they still have the contract somewhere. From my memory, he told me the Beatles would take a gate percentage AND an added flat fee as well, but I'm not 100% sure if that was correct in my memory or not. Everything was supposedly headed to a great concert until football coaching legend Bob Devaney nixed it by saying the fans would wreck his football field. Despite the fact that the promoter assured Devaney and the university that he would have plenty of police security to keep fans off the field, time ran out as the U drug their feet and eventually things fell apart and (I think) Chicago got two concerts on the 12th and Detroit got the Lincoln gig on the 13th and did NOT have a sellout in the motor city. I imagine Lincoln would have had a 70,000 crowd, not to mention what a publicity memory it would have today! It would be great to see if Bruce's sleuthing would get to the truth of this item. His recent appearance on the PBS History's Detectives show on the Beatles' 65 Miami appearance was just great!
Anyway, I hope you guys spread the word and maybe get American English's guys to go, too!
Clark Besch
As I said, we didn't attend this year ... but Beatlefest typically brings their own excellent Beatles sound-alike band, Liverpool ... one of the very best I've ever seen. I'm sure a splendid time was guaranteed for all ... maybe some of the folks who WERE there will chime in and drop us a line of their own. (kk)

And here's a Beatles-related question that we were saving for our next edition of "Helping Out Our Readers" ... but it seemed to fit here, too ...

I really like your site.
Here's a question: Most of us are familiar with the Beatle tribute songs that came out after the boys hit the states in '64 (and continued forever after): "We Love You Beatles" by the Carefrees, etc. ... BUT were there any tribute songs to other British Invasion artists? A song about Herman's Hermits, the Dave Clark Five, the Kinks, Gerry and the Pacemakers, etc?
I know there are songs written about the Rolling Stones, for example, but not in the same vein (novelty?) as those Beatles songs. Much appreciation!
Gene Laufenberg
Hey, GREAT question, Gene! And you're right ... The Beatles and Rolling Stones songs are most familiar ... but I wonder if there WERE any other songs written about the British artists invading our shores at the time. I can't think of any off the top of my head ... but maybe some of the MAJOR British Invasion Fans on our list can shed some light on this. (Even cooler would be if you could send in a couple of examples so that we can share them with everybody else!) kk

Still at War
Lawsuits steal glory from Lowrider Band

by Gabe Meline
It starts with a cowbell and then that amazing, ascending bass line, landing off-time on the upbeats. A quick roll of the drums and the rhythm kicks in, full of syncopation and soul. Congas, organ and harmonica propel the action, punctuated by a Spanish-tinged lead guitar lick that every 14-year-old in Los Angeles has learned how to play for the last 40 years.
"Low Rider," the song, has become such an anthem that it almost no longer belongs to its creators but to the world at large. It's been endlessly covered, featured in movies, and used as a joke every time a kid with a banana-seat, chain-link-handlebar bike comes rolling down the sidewalk, from Whittier to White Plains.
And in fact, the legacy of "Low Rider" doesn't belong to its creators. Well, four-fifths of them, at least.
Howard E. Scott, B. B. Dickerson, Lee Oskar and Harold Brown are four of the five original living members of War, but due to one of those unfair, cutthroat lawsuits you hear about so often in the music industry, they can't perform under the name War. They can't even mention that they're original members of War on their concert posters. The venues they play aren't allowed to mention War in any advertisements for their shows. There's another band, fraudulently called "War," who by court order gets to do all those things—and it contains just one original member.
The "Lowrider Band" might sound like a name for a War cover band, but the fact is they're far closer to the real thing. Drummer Harold Brown once went to see War, and watched as keyboard player Lonnie Jordan was introduced as "the man who wrote all the songs." As he told Joel Selvin of the San Francisco Chronicle in 2009, he registered his complaint in direct fashion: he picked up a pie and hurled it at his former band mate.
Want to hear hits like "The World Is a Ghetto," "The Cisco Kid," "Spill the Wine" and "Why Can't We Be Friends" played by a bunch of hired hands and one original member? Then go see War, whose guarantees are so high that when a local promoter once called me for advice on whether to book the show, the ticket price would have been set near $50 just to cover expenses.
But if you want to hear that timeless, classic soul, played by the very people who absorbed Los Angeles' melting pot of African-American and Latino culture and swirled it into musical history, then you know which band to go see.

Buddy Holly's have been returned to Lubbock, Texas!!! (Who'da thunk?!?!?)

Check out this poster from Chicago's "Summer of Stars", circa 1966, that FH Reader Frank Buongervino, Jr., sent in ... and look at some of these ticket prices! Man, we missed some GREAT shows back then! (Or course in 1966 I was only 12 years old ... and had really been making the concert scene yet ... but still ... this is pretty amazing!) kk

The twelve-date Monkees reunion tour has already completely sold out ... got this from FH Reader Tom Cuddy regarding their east coast dates ...

How about some Good Old-Fashioned Forgotten Hits?  We've lined up a dozen of 'em for ya ... so be sure to check back on Saturday and Sunday for some long-forgotten gems.  (kk)

Thursday, August 16, 2012


Here's an offer that can't be beat for all of our local readers ...
This Saturday Night Ron Onesti has got Big Brother and the Holding Company booked to play at The Arcada Theatre ... that's right, Janis Joplin's original back-up band ... and they'll be doing all of Janis' best known hits like "Down On Me", "Bye, Bye Baby", "Coo Coo", "Summertime", "Piece of My Heart," "Turtle Blues," "Ball 'n' Chain," "Try (Just A Little Bit Harder)," "Maybe," "To Love Somebody," "Kozmic Blues," "Work Me, Lord," "Move Over," "Cry Baby," "A Woman Left Lonely," "Get It While You Can," "My Baby," "Trust Me," "Mercedes Benz," "One Night Stand," "Raise Your Hand" and her number one hit, "Me and Bobby McGee." Lead vocals are being handled by "The Voice", Lynn Asher ... and it's sure to be a jammin' evening. And get this ... tickets are only $19 and $29 ... and right now, for Forgotten Hits Readers, Ron is offering a 50% discount ... all you need to do is visit the OShows Website ... WWW.OSHOWS.COM ... and enter the code "JANIS12" ... now how can you beat that?!?!?  

And he has some other AMAZING shows coming up, too ... we're hoping to catch a few of these ourselves!   
August 25 - Comedy Legend Andrew Dice Clay - Two Shows (7 PM and 9:30 PM) ...
And get this ... they'll be FILMING these shows for a television special that'll air on New Year's Eve!
Here's your chance to be in the audience for a major media event!  

September 4 - Lindsay Buckingham (of Fleetwood Mac)  

September 7 - Kenny Rogers  

September 14 - Three Dog Night 

September 15 - The Three Faces of Elvis (Starring the winners of the International Elvis Competition at Graceland ... Shawn Klush, Cody Slaughter and Chicago's own Rick Saucedo)  

September 21 - Kansas   

September 22 - Branford Marsalis, the Tonight Show's legendary jazz sax man  

October 6 - The Original Crickets, Buddy Holly's Band! 

November 2 - Asia - reuniting all four original members! 

November 10 - The Bronx Wanderers Sock Hop (featuring the music of Frankie Valli, Dion and more) 
November 16 - Shirley MacLaine 

November 17 - UFO 

December 7 - Air Supply (also a Christmas show)  

December 15 - The Diamonds (also a Christmas show)  

Hop on over to the OShows Website and get your tickets NOW!!!   

Here are some great shots from a recent Ringo Starr (and his All-Starr Band) concert in St. Augustine, FL, courtesy of FH Reader David Lewis:

New York, NY (July 2, 2012)—Eagle Rock Entertainment will release Produced By George Martin on September 11, 2012 on three configurations: DVD, Blu-ray and Digital Video
The documentary is a feature-length profile of Britain’s most celebrated record producer. In this very personal film, Sir George talks about his childhood, his war experience and his early days as a music student. Originally broadcast to great acclaim in 2011 as part of the BBC’s “Arena” series, this version contains over 50 minutes of additional interviews not included in the TV broadcast version. These extras include contributions from Rick Rubin, T-Bone Burnett, Howard Goodall, Jimmy Webb and Ken Scott.
Truly, George Martin has had a career like no other. In the early ‘50s, he joined EMI/Parlophone and started working on orchestral music, music for children and single handedly pioneered a range of hugely successful comedy records with Peter Sellers, Spike Milligan, Peter Ustinov and others. Then, in 1962, he signed The Beatles and everything changed. Together, George Martin and The Beatles revolutionized pop music and recording techniques, forging probably the greatest producer/artist collaboration there will ever be.
Produced By George Martin features numerous classic clips of the artists he has produced, and new interviews with many of them including Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Michael Palin, Jeff Beck, Rolf Harris, Cilla Black, Millicent Martin and Bernard Cribbins. A fascinating man, and a compelling film. 

With the Eagles on hiatus for a little bit, a number of the band’s members have been on the road doing solo tours, including Glenn Frey, Joe Walsh, and the guy with the famous middle initial who landed at the Ridgefield Playhouse in Ridgefield, CT earlier this month: TIMOTHY B. SCHMIT.
Timothy, who will turn 65 later this year (October), pumped out a 16 song set that included three Eagles songs and two from Poco. All the remaining songs were from his solo career. On stage he bounced back and forth between bass and guitar.
He brought three soulful and gifted back-up singers with him on this spring tour and the crowd just loved them.
The most radio friendly songs that Timothy performed were:
I Can’t Tell You Why — Eagles
Love Will Keep Us Alive — Eagles
Keep on Trying — Poco
What Am I Gonna Do — Poco
I Don’t Want To Hear Anymore — Eagles
-- Tom Cuddy
Timothy B. Schmidt at the Ridgefield Playhouse
Exclusive Forgotten Hits Photo by Brad Joblin 

We recently told you about an upcoming special event that will celebrate Jimy Sohn's 66th Birthday. We heard from Rick Barr (who we first got to know as the drummer for The New Colony Six ... but who actually has SEVERAL different musical ventures going on right now, including drumming for Jimy's latest version of The Shadows Of Knight!) He brings us up to speed on some of them in the email below:  

Hi Kent!
Yes, I've been working with Jimy Sohns for a year and a half. I was a Shadow one summer about 10 years ago, subbing for Bean Wang, who had broken his hand in a vehicle rollover right at the start of the concert season. Those were the days! There were a few dates where Shadows would open for Colony. I'd play the Shadows set, race to change into costume and play the Colony set as the headliner. Great times.
Jimy's been doing a number of the "singers tours" for the past many years, frequently with Sonny Geraci, Melody Rush, and others, and then came back to Chicago from Florida a few years back. He's been working in the Chicago area off and on for over 30 years with a husband and wife, Mike and Cindy Gotshall, whom I played with 10 years ago in the Vacations.
There are two presentations ... Jimy Sohn's Rock N' Roll Sideshow is a smaller, more pop oriented, and very controlled atmosphere, with no amplifiers on stage, an electronic drum kit, etc, all designed to control volume for small venues. Recently we've been at Blues Bar in Mt. Prospect, Carlucci Restaurant in Oakbrook, with their summer concert series, Eaglewood Resort in Itasca, also for their Summer Concert series, and a freaky-strange club in Crystal Lake called the Living Room. We're booked again at Blues Bar 8/25.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: It's at the Blues Bar on August 25th that this special birthday celebration will take place ... in fact, we're hoping several of our '60's Local Heroes will stop by and hop on on stage that night, too! kk)
The Shadows of Knight feature more of Jimy's hits and album cuts, uses an acoustic kit and backline, and has a rotating roster of players including Gregg from the Cryan' Shames, Billy Sullivan from the Rasberries (currently in Gary Lewis' band), Mike Brock (also from Lewis' band), and others. The Blues Bar date was actually the Shadows presentation, and we had standing room only -- the band was named after Jimy's high school team, the Prospect Knghts, after all.
It's a terrific act. Jimy has a lot of remarkable stories to tell and he interweves them between the songs, and Mike and Cindy play and sing very well. Cindy is a fine keyboardist, and a classically trained mezzo-soprano, so we get to play Spanky and Our Gang, Cindy Lauper, Carly Simon, and KT Tunstall, while Jimy does a great job with some pop stuff from bands in the Shadows' past -- the Grass Roots, the Turtles, Dylan and the Byrds.
For me, it's a great time, since I absolutely love every song we're playing ... and really enjoy playing them.
The website is rocknroll ... Check it out.
My little work band, the Original Rockin Fenderskirts, continues to work like crazy, with a lot of park district dates. We were at Carol Stream Windsor Park last night, at the Cary Park District in Lions Park Thursday, at Gurnee's Summerfest 7/14, Wildwood's Park District 7/22, Deerfield's Community Center 7/27, Highwood Days 7/28, Lakemoor Fest 8/12, so interspersed with Sohns dates, I played 47 shows last summer, and this summer looks pretty busy as well.
Meanwhile, we're all still on best terms with The New Colony Six, too, but the Colony has suffered, like the Shames, in the shrinking of municipal budgets over the last 2 - 3 years. All the bands that used to open for us are now the headliners, at about 1/2 or 1/3 the price. The Colony does have a few corporate dates in the fall, but they're private, so we don't advertise them. Hopefully, the economy will improve and some towns will want to book us next summer.
Thanks for giving me the chance to share the details. Come on out and see us with the Sideshow. It's an enjoyable evening of pop, Shadows and stories.
Sounds like a great time, Rick ... love the fact that you're doing so much to help keep this great, classic music alive. (kk)   

Here's a recent shot of Tommy Roe backstage right before a performance in LaGrange, GA ... along with a photo of his brand new CD album cover, courtesy of Rick Levy.

My two favorite Tommy Roe songs are on the same 45. Sheila & it’s flip “Save Your Kisses”. That’s one he should do in concert!

Kent -
Ken Evans here. Nasty business computers!! But were would we be without them?
Ahh?? - probably fishing.
We are just in the process of signing a deal as to our "old" material, with a re-release date
of Sept 21.
Fuel 2000 Records will be doing numerous releases of our material much of which, and I feel some of the best of which, has never been heard before. This includes double CDs at first and then CD and Vinyl releases - just as this music "should" have been released all through the 60s. The entertainment and number of mentions you have given the band has been a big part of our inspiration to get this music back together and now finally re-mastered and out like never heard.
Ken / Furv
The Fifth Estate
Glad to hear this stuff is FINALLY coming out ... I know how hard you guys have been working on getting this out to market ... looks like all that effort is finally paying off.  Congratulations!  (kk)
Classic Rock Legends Jefferson Starship To Release Exclusive Live 4-CD Set 'Tales From The Mothership' ... The Paul Kantner Science Fiction Rock & Roll Motion Picture Show!
June 26, 2012 - London, UK - “Roswell UFO Parade & Festival Hosts Jefferson Starship Sci-Fi Extravaganza” read the headlines for the annual July 3rd event that took place in Roswell, New Mexico in 2009. Jefferson Airplane founder Paul Kantner and his legendary band Jefferson Starship and special guests, which included original Grateful Dead keyboardist Tom Constanten, performed a one-of-a-kind sci-fi concert at Pearson Auditorium in Roswell in honor of the town's famed annual parade. The group was also bestowed the honor of being the parade's 'Grand Martians' that year and rode atop a special float especially built for them. The entire concert was filmed and recorded, and in addition to such iconic hits as “White Rabbit”, “Somebody To Love”, “Volunteers”, “Wooden Ships” recorded by its forebear Jefferson Airplane (the last two penned by Kantner), a special programme of science fiction themed compositions and select recordings were performed, some for the first time ever! Now, much to the excitement of Jefferson Starship fans across the globe UK's Gonzo MultiMedia is releasing the the entire concert in an extravagant 4-CD box set.
In 1971 the band's first album (Paul Kantner's first solo album actually), 'Blows Against The Empire' was also the first rock music recording ever nominated for literary science fiction's prestigious Hugo Award. In addition to Kantner, 'Blows' featured a 'Who's Who' of Bay Area musicians including David Freiberg from Quicksilver Messenger Service. Freiberg and Kantner, later launched the ongoing Jefferson Starship, eventually writing the hit “Jane.” David rejoined the band full time in 2005.
In 1991 the late great rock impresario Bill Graham signed on to produce 'Blows' from a 'scripted stage play concept' co-written bu Paul Kantner and his (then) new manager Michael Gaiman, a lifelong fan. Sadly, Bill was killed in a helicopter crash and the idea was shelved until Sony Pictures pitched an 'option' for a 'Blows' motion picture in 1996. “That was a big year for sci-fi,” recalls Gaiman. Stemming from a shared interest in 1950s science fiction film and literature, Paul and Michael have worked together for nearly 25 years. In 2008 they co-produced (along with David Freiberg), 'Jefferson's Tree of Liberty,' Jefferson Starship's first studio recording in a decade. The album garnered stellar reviews worldwide. In 2009 Jefferson Starship headlined 'The Heroes of Woodstock', the authorized touring commemorative of the 1969 Woodstock Music & Arts Festival.
“On July 3rd, 2009, thanks to the Roswell UFO Festival Committee and Cool 94.9 Radio, we got to scratch that itch and assuage a long time desire to stage a mosh of rock music and science fiction,” says Gaiman.
Along with Paul Kantner and David Frieberg, Jefferson Starship also features lead singer Cathy Richardson (who played Janis Joplin on Broadway in 'Love, Janis') and longtime band members Slick Aguilar, Chris Smith and Donny Baldwin. In addition to Grateful Dead's Tom Constanten, special guests include Pete Sears (the band's former bass & keyboard player on all their hits), Barry Sless (guitar & pedal steel with Phil Lesh & Friends), former lead vocalist Darby Gould and legendary folk artist Jack Taylor, one of Paul Kantner's early musical influences.
Renegade Productions, the band's frequent collaborator ('Jefferson's Tree of Liberty' was the first album ever recorded in their new studio at the time) staged the production and provided custom sound, lighting and image projection. Karl Anderson of Global Recording Artists filmed the event dubbed 'Tales From The Mothership,' a joint production of The Roswell UFO Festival Committee and Jefferson Starship. “It's not a documentary, not a 'rockumentary', not a 'mockumentary'... it's a 'Spockumentary,” Gaiman quips.
Along with the entire concert from July 3, 2009, the 4-CD set also includes rehearsals from 6/27/2009 and the band's soundcheck before the show.
For more information:
File this under "What's The Point" ...
This year's Schaumburg Septemberfest (which has ALWAYS provided top-name entertainment year after year after year) released their rather disappointing line up recently.
Headliners include Grand Funk Railroad (featuring original members Don Brewer and Mel Schacher ... but NOT frontman, guitarist and lead vocalist Mark Farner, the guy who sang and wrote most of their biggest hits ... before they turned into a "remakes band" under the direction of Todd Rundgren) ... and "The Family Stone" (as in "Sly and the" ... but without frontman Sly Stone!!!) Seriously, what's the point? The most defining members of these mega outfits won't be on hand to provide the memories. (Sounds like if we go at all this year, we'll be spending our time in the BINGO Tent, scarfing down Texas de Brazille sausages!!!) kk   

Hey Kent
We got several DJ requests for this on MP3 and it mushroomed to 150 stations playing it this weekend and fourth of July! The song is in the new Tiki Lounge Vol 2 DVD & CD set on Gonzo Multimedia. Several new releases coming out in the months ahead: My way out Surf Space Instro CD "Area 51 Suite"on Gonzo, my 1992 "Flying To Machu Picchu" album reissued on Global Recording Artists Records and they are also releasing the Sky Saxon tribute compilation that Spirit drummer Ed Cassidy and I are on with my song "Two Guys From The 60's !
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manfrommu has shared a video with you on YouTube:
Merrell Fankhauser respectfully presents the world's very first surf instrumental version of our national anthem, the Star Spangled Banner. In true pioneer fashion, Merrell brings a clear surf style to a song that has been revered over the years and presents an honorable and interesting version for your pleasure and use. Dedicated Memorial Day 2010 to the men and women of the armed forces and others who have helped make this country great and a safe place to live.
Actually, this is a VERY cool reading of our National Anthem, Merrell ... thanks for sharing! (Wish we could have caught the wave for the 4th of July push but we were still down for the count at that point!) Meanwhile, I'm still happy to share it now so that others may enjoy it, too! (kk) 
And here's a release Hendrix fans will want to know about ... and we've got plenty of THOSE on our list!  (By the way, Jimi ALSO did a pretty cool reading of The National Anthem ... just in case anyone forgot!)

Jimi Hendrix

The Ultimate Lyric Book

Compiled by Janie L. Hendrix

Arriving in time for Hendrix’s 70th birthday
 is this collection featuring
never-before-seen songs, photos,
and handwritten lyrics.

MONTCLAIR, N.J. – Jimi Hendrix was such an extraordinary guitarist, it is easy to forget that just as much passion, soul, and precision went into his lyrics. Inspired by Bob Dylan, Hendrix was a fearless lyrical innovator, willing to let his imagination guide him to uncharted landscapes within the pop music realm.

From the existential euphoria of “I Don’t Live Today” to the elusive beauty of “Little Wing” to the psychedelic blues of “My Friend” to the otherworldly “1983 (A Merman I Should Turn to Be),” his lyrics remain among the greatest in the pantheon of rock, infused with the same inventiveness, virtuosity, and courage that informed his guitar playing.

Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book (Backbeat Books, November 2012, $40) contains all the words to the Hendrix classics fans have rocked along to for years, as well as unpublished songs from “Valley of Neptune” and other previously undiscovered sources. Compiled by Jimi’s sister, Janie L. Hendrix, Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book is extraordinarily personal, and includes numerous examples of Jimi’s handwritten lyrics, often scribbled on hotel stationery, as well as photos of him that accompany every song. Much of the material has never been seen before.

"When I was a child, I was always fascinated by my brother Jimi's handwriting," recalled Janie Hendrix, who compiled this collection. "It was an art form in and of itself. I remember the feeling of being captivated the first time I saw his handwritten lyrics, thinking how beautiful, how complicated both the writing and the words were on paper. Even now they offer such an insight into who my brother was and is."

Jimi Hendrix: The Ultimate Lyric Book will give fans a glimpse of the lyricist behind the songs, a songwriter whose words were just as searing as his solos.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Janie L. Hendrix, is president and CEO of Experience Hendrix™, LLC, the official Jimi Hendrix Family Company, and sister of the legendary guitarist. Her mission as head of the family company is to continue Jimi’s legacy and to preserve the integrity of his artistic contribution to musical history. She lives in Seattle.
November 13, 2012 $40 Hardcover 978-1-42349-268-9
304 pages 12" x 12" Heavily illustrated throughout
Backbeat Books is an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group |

It Is Not Too Late to Join Everyone on the Malt Shop Memories Cruise!The 2012 Malt Shop Memories Cruise is 85% SOLD OUT! Don't miss Dion, Frankie Avalon, Bobby Rydell, Darlene Love, Ronnie Spector and many more performing live on the luxurious Holland America's m/s Eurodam.
Honor the amazing life and music-industry contributions of Dick Clark at our star-studded tribute. You are invited to participate in the Q&A as the marquee stars of the cruise share their personal memories of Dick Clark.
Newly added comedian David Brenner Brenner will keep you laughing with his side-splitting monologues. This legendary funny man holds the record for most appearances on The Tonight Show.
Only a few cabins remain. Reserve your spot now and tell your friends. If your friends book too, you both earn a $150 onboard credit.
This cruise is almost sold out! Don’t miss out on the fun! This boat is rocking with amazing artists, incredible dance parties, an Elvis tribute contest, and more!
It's easy to book your cabin. Just go to, call 877.700.MALT (6258), or email if you have questions.
Don't miss the boat,
book today!
I'm not so sure Bobby Rydell will still be taking part in this cruise ... he's had some MAJOR health issues recently ... but I did hear that Chicago Radio Legend Dick Biondi is now going to be on board. (Think you can fit me in your suitcase, Dick?) kk 

And, Speaking of Bobby Rydell ...   

We have now learned what the "major surgery" was that forced Bobby Rydell to cancel a tour of Australia. Bobby was released from a Philadelphia hospital Wednesday (July 18) after undergoing a double organ transplant July 9 - liver and kidney - after suffering cirrhosis of the liver due to excessive drinking. Doctors said without the transplants, Bobby would not have lived much longer. The 70 year-old hopes to spread the word in the future about organ donation.
-- Ron Smith  

Then this from Frank B:  

Kent ...
Wild Wayne talked to Bobby Rydell via phone.
I'm sure by now you know about Bobby's double organ transplant (Liver & Kidney).
Bobby said he was on the waiting list for six months. The doctor told him that without a new liver, he'd
be dead in three weeks.
The surgery was done at Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia. It took 20 hours. He's been home about a month. He has blood work done every Monday. The female donor who helped Bobby saved eight lives.
He plans to resume his career in late October.
He's supposed to go on "Malt Shop Memories Cruise".
He was really choked up during interview. Bobby said he received get well cards from fans all around the world.
Frank B.
Great to hear that Bobby's on the mend. From what I've always been told, he's a SUPER nice guy who truly loves and appreciates his fans. Maybe he'll make that Malt Shop Memories Cruise after all! (kk)  

And, in related "Wildwood" news ...  

*MORE CONCERT EVENTS: Charlie Gracie, the 5 Satins and the Del Satins at PENNS LANDING on SEPT. 9TH!

Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Gregg Rolie, best known for his vocals and keyboard work with legendary music groups Santana and Journey, just wrapped up a tour with Ringo Starr's All Star Band ... and now he's got some solo shows coming up that you might be interested in seeing.
The Gregg Rolie Band will be playing select dates this August, 2012. The Gregg Rolie Band will be performing electrifying versions of several Santana classics such as "Evil Ways", "Black Magic Woman" "Soul Sacrifice", "Jingo" and "No One To Depend On" as well as tracks from Rolie's previous effort 'Roots' and new songs. The Gregg Rolie Band consists of Adrian Areas (son of original Santana percussionist Jose Chepito Areas) on Timbales, drummer Ron Wikso (who was also in The Storm), Elliot "Toby" Borrero on congas, Rocket Ritchotte on guitars, internationally acclaimed bassist Gary Brown and former Jean Luc Ponty keyboardist Wally Minko.
As you might imagine from his work with Santana and Journey, Gregg is no stranger to great musicianship. Given his experience and his desire to make the music the best it can be, he has chosen some of the best musicians in the world to bring his band and its music to life. Gregg was determined to resurrect the sound he helped shape and make famous as Santana's original lead singer and keyboard player, while at the same time bringing it forward to the 21st century. To do that required finding just the right mix of experience, musicianship and chemistry. Having worked with some of the biggest names in music over the years and having toured the world many times over, these musicians have the skills to interpret this music in the way it is meant to be interpreted, as Gregg so intimately knows.
“The band are great, because we all really enjoy each other and I think the sound reflects the fun we are having," says Gregg.
Up-Coming Gregg Rolie Band tour dates:
Sat Aug 18 - 2:00 PM - Salem Riverfront Park, Salem, OR
Sun Aug 19 - 8:00 PM - Columbia Gorge Hotel Amphitheater, Hood River, OR,
Wed Aug 29 - 8:00 PM - Lakes Performing Arts Center, Okoboji, IA
Visit Gregg Rolie's website for more information:

Congratulations to Tommy James, whose book "Me, The Mob And The Music", has just been named one of The Top 25 Rock And Roll Memoirs Of All-Time" by Rolling Stone Magazine ... and deservedly so.
Tommy's book (soon to be a major motion picture!) pulls no punches as he tells the whole back story of his success. (I'm actually re-reading it right now in conjunction with another project that I'm working on ... and it's a winner all the way!)
And, if you're one of the few folks out there who HASN'T already read it, you can pick up a copy for only TEN BUCKS at right now: Click here: Me, the Mob, and the Music: One Helluva Ride with Tommy James & The Shondells: Tommy James, Martin Fit
The complete list of winners can be found here:
(Steven Tyler's book ... which I just finished ... came in at #25 ... and Tommy's book finished 12th. And you can't do a list like this and leave out Keith Richards' book. Lots of other great titles on the list, too ... but two of MY favorites didn't make the cut. I absolutely LOVED Grace Slick's biography ... it showed me SO many things beyond the music ... and Chuck Negron's "Three Dog Nightmare" is MUST reading for any serious music fan. Talk about a guy who had it all ... and then LOST it all. And the incredible tales of Chuck's exploding penis will stay with you for the rest of your life!!!) kk