Monday, November 11, 2013

Helping Out Our Readers

Hi Kent, 
Regarding The Tornado(e)s ... as Doug Thompson has correctly pointed out, the UK group which recorded Telstar was only ever spelled "The Tornados" on their many releases on the Decca label in the UK, although it does appear that at least some of the corresponding releases on the London label in the USA changed the spelling to "The Tornadoes". This is a little surprising, as there was already an American (mainly) surfing instrumental band, also called "The Tornadoes", whose first (and best known) recording, Bustin' Surfboards, was issued before Telstar in the US. The US group's management took note of this potential confusion, and their second and third single releases were issued under the name of "The Hollywood Tornadoes". (This actually caused a bit more confusion, as the group were from Redlands, some 60 miles away from Hollywood!) From their third single onwards, the US group reverted to the name of "The Tornadoes", presumably because the UK group's short run of hits in the US had dried up. 
The US group's 1960's discography:  

1962: Bustin' Surfboards / Beyond the Surf (Aertaun 100) 
         The Gremmie (Part 1) / The Gremmie (Part 2) (Aertaun 101) 
1963: Moon Dawg / The Inebriated Surfer (Aertaun 102) 
          Shootin' Beavers / Phantom Surfer (Aertaun 103) 
1964: Lightnin' / Phantom Surfer (Aertaun 103)  

1964: "Bustin' Surfboards" (Josie 4005) 
Tracks: Bustin' Surfboards / Maleguena / Summertime / The Tornado / The Gremmie (Part 1) / Bumble Bee Stomp // Moon Dawg / Vaquero / Old Shep / Shootin' Beavers / Johnny B. Goode / The Inebriated Surfer

Their singles were all consecutive releases on the Aertaun label, whose name was a combination of their two managers' names, Dave Aerni and George Taunton.

Their fourth single has the same catalogue number as the third. This is because the title of (and vocal interjections contained in) Shootin' Beavers were considered too suggestive. Lightnin' is the instrumental track of Shootin' Beavers without the vocal interjections. (However, it does appear that, by the time of the issue of the Josie LP, the title Shootin' Beavers was back in favour!)

All of the above tracks are included in Sundazed's 1993 CD reissue of Bustin' Surfboards (SC 6003), except for Lightnin' (which is just a stripped down version of Shootin' Beavers), and Phantom Surfer (which appears on the same label's 1993 CD compilation Surf and Drag Volume 2 (SC 11015)). The Bustin' Surfboards CD also includes a previously unreleased track from the Shootin' Beavers sessions, Charge of the Tornadoes.

One other 1960's release by a group called "The Tornadoes" is Little Sally Walker / Road Man on the Sure Shot label (#5032) (Sure Shot was a subsidiary label of Duke records) - this is a Northern soul single, and presumably nothing to do with the two instrumental groups under discussion, but whilst we're on the subject it would be interesting to know who these Tornadoes were!

Keep up your fabulous work!

Chris Chapman (Swindon, UK)  

>>>Has Forgotten Hits ever done something on misspoken (or, I guess, mis-sung) lyrics?  One that springs to mind is Bobby Vee's singing "One of these days you're going to be sorry" in "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes" from 1962.  As written, the words were "One of these days you're going to be crying," to rhyme with "without really trying" in the next line.  Unaccountably, instead of "crying," Bobby sang "sorry," and they didn't bother to do a retake.  In "Do You Want To Know a Secret," George Harrison sings "I've known a secret for the week or two," when the words really are "I've known THE secret for A week or two."   There are several other mis-sung lyrics in the Beatles' catalogue -- mostly in remakes of American records in which they had to figure out the words simply by listening to the radio.  Joan Baez famously botched some of the words to "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" (1971), again, she later said, because she mis-heard the Band's original.  I'll bet Forgotten Hits' followers could come up with a big list -- might be fun --
(Henry McNulty)
Another record with mistakes in the lyrics might be Roll Over Beethoven by ELO. In place of trifle further [like Chuck and Beatles], they sing run for cover.
How about this one from "I'll Get You"?
David Lewis

Hi Kent:  
For the help of the reader for “oop doobie oo” or whatever, he might check out “Doo-Bee Dum” by the Four Evers on Smash from ’64. A 4 Seasons sound alike group. Good record as well.   

>>>Does anyone know about this group? Steve Miller had an Ardells and there were at least two others (Pennsylvania and Florida). I am curious about the recording of Effenanny that came out in '63 in two versions. I have played both in my surveys of music 50 years ago that I do weekly on KPOO.  (Charlie Miller)  
If you check the wikipedia article, the Ardells that did Eefinanny were the Chester, PA, group.  Just discovered this on my research for my Friday Time Machine post.  
CW Martin  

Hi Kent,
For the last five years, I've been assembling playlists from the WLS Silver Dollar Surveys from the 60's.
Once completed, I'll have the Top 40 songs, for any day, from the first Survey to the last Survey of 1969.
These five songs are all that I need to complete my endeavor and I am hoping that you and the Forgotten Hits readers can help me out.
They are:
1)  George Greeley (With The Warner Bros. Orchestra) - Love Theme From "Tristan And Isolde" (1961) [A Side - Warner Brothers #5175]
2)  Bob Vegas - Playboy (1961) [A Side - IRC #6901]
3)  Joe Burton - St. Louis Blues (1963) [A Side - Joday Records, #JDS-1000]
4)  Paul Anka - Can't Get You Out Of My Mind (1968) [B Side of "Happy" - RCA #47-9457]
5)  Vic Dana - Aren't We The Lucky Ones (1969) [A Side - Liberty #56137]
If you, or anyone out there, would have an mp3 of these songs that you could put up on Forgotten Hits or they could send me, it would be greatly appreciated.
Sound quality, at this point, does not have to be great.
Thanks for your help,
Happy to throw this out there to all the collectors on the list, many of whom have tried to build a similar library over the years!  Good luck!  (kk) 

Just stumbled across your Forgotten Hits website ... excellent.  By any chance have you ever come across a song with the lyrics “maybe tomorrow things may change, but for now I love only you”?   Possibly from a band called The Road ... not the one from Buffalo ... I think maybe from California. Would have been 1969 / 1970.  Thanks, and once again ... great site. Regards - 
Throwin' it out there to our team of experts ... let's see what they come back with!  Thanks for the kind words, Grant!  (kk) 

Last year we told you about the new licensing agreement between Reeling In The Years and The Merv Griffin Show.  The musical archives for this program are HUGE ... but they're still missing some ... so now, for the first time, they're reaching out to the collectors out there who may be able to help fill in some of the gaps.

We're posting their request.  Sadly, it sounds like there are still no plans to release these vintage music clips commercially.  Instead, they're simply licensing them for use in other documentaries and such.  I still say that this is a HUGE mistake.  The audience most likely to embrace these clips in dwindling ... put together a couple of "Greatest Hits" packages (similar to what Andrew Solt has done with the Ed Sullivan Library) and release them to the public.  People will buy them.  New "Hullaballoo" compilations are hitting stores now.  Things like The Beatles Anthology and recent similar pieces on everyone from The Rolling Stones to Nilsson to The Cowsills have proven that our generation still has an appetite for this material if it's presented well.

Meanwhile, here's their pitch:

We at Reelin’ In Years Productions, on behalf of The Merv Griffin Estate, are looking for lost episodes of the program which ran from 1962 – 1986. While we’ve recovered over 1,800 episodes (spanning over 2,000 hours), many are still missing and we’re hoping you can help. We’re looking for any shows (or segments) that are missing from our archive. We will accept any format, including  2-Inch Tape, 1-Inch Tape, Film / Kinescope, Umatic Tape (3/4”) Open Reel, or VHS & Betamax (1/2” tape).
We are willing to pay a finder's fee -- depending on what the footage is and how it looks -- for material we lack.  We will also pay any tape or film transfer costs and can supply you with a copy in the format of your choosing. If you are an artist who appeared on the show and have a copy of the episode in which you guested, we’re willing to discuss the possibility of  your  using the footage for your own projects (such as your own web site) in exchange for a copy for our archive.

We believe this archive is truly one of the most important pieces of modern popular culture history and we’re hoping to preserve as much of it possible for future generations to appreciate.
If you have any footage of The Merv Griffin Show (whether it be an entire episode or just a segment) please email us at

The collection is nothing short of incredible ... more information below ...

Reelin’ In The Years Productions (RITY), the world’s largest music footage library, has announced an agreement to exclusively represent all of the footage from The Merv Griffin Show for licensing.
Acknowledged as one of the premier talk shows in the history of television, The Merv Griffin Show ran daily for some 25 years -- from October 1962 to September 1986.  Over the course of that time, a massive archive containing thousands upon thousands of hours of footage with over 5,000 guests joining Merv.  Reelin’ In The Years Productions will be bringing its vast experience in the field of licensing to market the footage from the show. The company has already begun the process of meticulously cataloguing the library, and has started making footage available for clips to be used in various documentary productions. RITY is also exploring the possibility of repackaging the programs for television, digital and home video markets.To view a sampling of the unique content from The Merv Griffin Show that is now represented by RITY click here for a 7-minute trailer:
The Merv Griffin Show archive contains a “who’s who" of notable guests including many significant cultural, political, social and musical icons of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.  Four U.S. Presidents -- Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan appeared as did Dr. Martin Luther King and Senator Robert Kennedy. Legendary actors and directors that appeared on the program include Orson Welles, Robert De Niro, Sophia Loren, Dustin Hoffman, John Wayne and Grace Kelly. Musical performers and composers ranging from Devo to Aretha Franklin with Andrew Lloyd Weber, Marvin Gaye, The Bee Gees and Johnny Cash all guesting. The Merv Griffin Show hosted the late Whitney Houston’s first TV appearance in 1983. Sports figures interviewed by Merv on the show include Joe Namath and Reggie Jackson.  There's even a segment featuring Muhammad Ali and Larry Holmes promoting their 1980 heavyweight bout at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. In addition, many of the most important comedians of the era were on the show including early performances by George Carlin, Richard Pryor, Andy Kaufman, Steve Martin and Jerry Seinfeld. The fashion industry is also well represented including interviews and fashion shows of the day with Bill Blass, Oscar de la Renta, Halston and Giorgio Armani.
Commenting on the The Merv Griffin Show archive, Reelin’ In The Years founder and president David Peck stated, “Representing The Merv Griffin Show is truly a great honor. Of course, the archive is one of the most prestigious in all of television and the holdings are nothing short of incredible in terms of being both historically relevant and entertaining. Many of the most important names in the fields of music, entertainment, politics, sports, fashion and literature are part of this monumental archive. My company has long specialized in music footage, but with the addition of The Merv Griffin Show archive, we’re excited to branch out and represent footage of all of the great guests that appeared on the program - many of whom helped shape the culture of America and the modern world.Reelin’ In The Years Productions was founded in 1992 and represents over 40 television stations and independent archives in Europe, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. Representing a combined library of over 20,000 hours spanning seven decades, RITY has become a world leader in placing footage in movies, television, digital / online media, DVDs and CDs.  The signing of The Merv Griffin Show comes close on the heels of RITY’s recent signings of the music performances from The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson (1962 – 1992), The Jack Benny Show and The Bob Hope archive containing over 280 Bob Hope Specials from 1950 – 1994.
Reelin' In The Years Productions LLC is the world’s largest music footage archive. In addition, the company has directed and produced over 70 music films including the Grammy®-nominated The American Folk Blues Festival 1962-1969 series and the continuing British Invasion DVD series.  For further information, please visit

I'm wondering if you ever did a follow-up piece on The Princetons? That would be interesting. 
No, I never got around to it.  I interviewed a couple of the children of the guys a while back and got a few interesting tidbits ... they even shared a couple of rare tracks not typically available to the public.  But then I had the massive computer crash and lost everything.  Quite honestly, I'm not even sure how I'd get ahold of anybody anymore.  But it WOULD make for an interesting piece ... so one of these days (if I can ever string enough hours together to do so), I might try and pick it up again.  We've had several inquiries over the years ... so thanks for the nudge!  (kk) 

Look for a very special, in-depth HELPING OUT OUR READERS Segment tomorrow ... as Joe Klein answers a couple of the questions raised during his Russ Terrana series a week or two back.