Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tuesday This And That

re:  Our Monday Morning 50-Year Flashback Series:
FYI, Elvis' DO THE CLAM peaked at #11 here in OKC. I couldn't find anything really online by the group Squares with the tune THE "OUT" CROWD. Maybe this was a takeoff of some kind of Dobie Gray's IN CROWD. I know about a year later, Sam the Sham recorded a song called I'M IN (WITH THE OUT CROWD. My first guess was that the Square's tune is an instrumental but I really don't know.
Also in today's FH, the song at chart position #26 , DID YOU EVER by the Hullabaloos, which incidentally I have and made our local survey here, without checking, wasn't that the band that appeared on the weekly music show Hullabaloo? The show Shindig had a group I believe called the Shindogs and they also made a record which also made our local survey.
"Do The Clam" is one of those songs that achieved far greater success than it deserved, especially when weighed against the other music on the charts in 1965.  (Evidently Elvis still had a very loyal following at this time that bought his new releases no matter WHAT they were!!!  lol)
Rich Appel does his annual I.R.S. Countdown, listing songs (as voted on by music fans around the globe) that THEY feel really shoulda been a Top Ten Hit.  "Do The Clam" is one of those that, in hindsight, really shouldn't have even made The Top 40!  (We've seen similar lists about the "least deserving #1 records" ... quite a few come to mind on THAT list, too!)
For more on Rich Appel's upcoming countdown ... and your last chance to file YOUR returns, check this out ...
The deadline is approaching ... you've got until April 1st to file your I.R.S. form at http://www.musicradio77.com/IRS.html  (full details can be found on the site)
This year we'll also be giving away copies of the books “Ranking the ‘60s” and the not-yet-out “Ranking the ‘70s” to random filers … and that we’ll be counting down the 8th Annual I.R.S. Top 104 the weekend of April 10-12 on Rewound Radio. 
Here’s everything you need to know about the 8th annual I.R.S. (“It Really Shoulda” been a Top 10 hit!).
To file your I.R.S. form, simply go to http://www.musicradio77.com/IRS.html by the April 1 deadline. Everyone who files AND leaves his /her mailing address is eligible to win the prizes we’re giving away, such as the books Ranking the ‘60s http://www.amazon.com/Ranking-60s-Comprehensive-Listing-Golden/dp/1492156280 and the not-yet-out Ranking the ‘70s.
Over the weekend preceding the deadline for that other I.R.S. - April 10-12 -  Rewound Radio will play back this year’s I.R.S. 1040, based on the songs you declared on your I.R.S. forms. As always, we’ll count down the upper 10% - the I.R.S. Top 104 - that weekend: Part 1 starts 6 pm Eastern Friday April 10 on Bob Radil’s show; Part 2 plays back on “That Thing with Rich Appel,” Sunday April 12 at 6 pm Eastern.
If you haven’t joined our Facebook group, where there’s currently lots of pre-I.R.S. activity, here’s where that is: https://www.facebook.com/groups/731369260214413/. For any other questions about I.R.S., email me anytime at IRS104@verizon.net. Thanks!
ALWAYS a fun time ... with TONS of songs you just don't hear anymore ... you'll want to tune in and listen to this.
We're also anxious to see Dann Isbell's new book "Ranking the '70's", the follow-up to his "Ranking the '60's" book reviewed here in Forgotten Hits a couple of years ago ...
Speaking of variety in radio again ... and songs you don't hear very often ...
re:  Me-TV-FM:
I'm in Rockford and love this station. Hope it streams soon!! I'd listen every chance I could.  
Melody Thoren
All cards on the table, I'll have to admit I'm becoming a little disenchanted with the new station ... as they get closer to their live launch, they seem to be drifting further and further away from the original concept of the station.  I'm hearing more repeats, more often, than ever before ... more programming errors (the same artist twice within a three or four song rotation) ... and less and less of the variety that a playlist of this size can afford.  (Six Fleetwood Mac songs in a day, six James Taylor songs in a day, etc, etc, etc.  Yesterday it was The Eagles and The Bee Gees ... today I'm sure it'll be somebody else.)  Despite this annoyance, they are still playing some GREAT tracks long-absent from the radio from time to time ... at least half a dozen times a day I'm amazed at hearing something new or different that I haven't heard them play before ... but we're no longer anywhere close to measuring up to the potential they originally exhibited.  VERY disappointing ... because ALL of this can be fixed and then better managed ... yet, as mentioned before, nobody seems to be watching the store.  SOMEBODY should be dedicated to correcting these glitches NOW before listeners start turning away in aggravation.  (I myself turned the station off at least a dozen times yesterday ... yet when they're "on", nothing beats it.  You seem to either get an INCREDIBLE set of music ... 18-20 GREAT songs in a row ... or you get annoyed by hearing something again that you just heard only hours before.)  The big launch campaign should be kicking in in high gear right now with advertisements, billboards, etc ... but asking folks to tune in now during their "construction zone" phase may ultimately turn listeners off ... and then turn them away.  SOMEBODY needs to step in a clean up this mess ... as this COULD be the greatest radio station in Chicago ... and a role model for other cities across the country.  The "construction zone" should be offering up something in the way of improvements ... yet instead I'm finding more and more to complain about.  (A couple of weeks ago I mentioned the Jose Feliciano version of "California Dreamin'" being played on the station, stating at the time that while this wouldn't necessarily be MY choice for a track to feature, something like this once or twice a year might cause a listener's ears to perk up ... I've just heard it now for the fifth time ... it does NOT belong in rotation ... and SOMEBODY over there needs to realize this!  Don't lose your audience at this most crucial point in BUILDING your audience!!!)  kk
re:  Our Brand New Monthly Playlist Feature:
I like the new feature for each month ... very colorful and great to see the picture sleeves!  
Love your new feature you began today in FH.
You asked the question at the beginning where one was in 1962. Well, I was in high school listening to my favorite top 40 radio station here in OKC, buying the records that made the survey. I still have them and I'll tell you what! I bet I'm not the only reader of yours that will say that.
Great Feature.
Larry Neal 
It's interesting to see the hits that never got as far as #25 on any given week included in this top 25 list.  By my calculation there are six songs that fall into this category ... e.g. The Marvelettes' "Twistin' Postman" is listed at 25, but had positions #'s 34, 43, 46 and 57 on the four weekly Billboard 100 charts from which the list is calculated.    
 I've taken another look at the March listing and find it strange that Gene Chandler's "Duke of Earl" isn't included as I believe it was in the top 20 for the entire month.  Can any comments be provided on how the rankings are esablished?
I guess this is a testament to the durability of records like the above, that hang around the charts a long time, whereas others are up and then down the chart in no time at all.  
Mike Ogilvie
I asked Joel Whitburn if he could better explain how a record that never got above position #34 in the month of March could end up as the 25th biggest hit of that month ... and can now offer clearer insight into how the points were tabulated ...
The ranking is taken strictly from my “Pop Annual” book.  If you go to year 1962, page 78, check out the Peak Date column.  Look for March dates and you’ll see that the #25 hit “Twistin’ Postman” peaked on 3/3 at position #34 and ranked at #260 for the year.  Moving up the column, next in line is the Paris Sisters “He Knows I Love Him Too Much” at #257, etc., etc., all the way to the top peak hit in March of 1962 “Hey! Baby” by Bruce Channel.
So the total points are based on the record's accumulation for the year (which is how Joel's Pop Annual book shows the biggest records ranked for any given year) ... and then recalculated by records that peaked in each particular month (or, in this case, March of 1962).  The Pop Play Lists also only list a record ONCE ... meaning that it is only eligible for ranking in the month it first reached its peak chart position.  This way you get 25 unique songs for each and every month with no repeats. After all, a record only peaks once.  (I've addressed this issue before ... because of the formula used, we tend to get a distorted reality in certain situations.  Where I feel this method goes incredibly wrong would be with a record like "I'm A Believer" by The Monkees.  It first reached its peak position (#1) the last week of 1966 .. so technically it only spent seven days in the #1 spot of that year.  However, it spent all 31 days of January in the #1 spot, making it a FAR bigger record than any other record to hit the charts that month ... but because it peaked the previous month, it isn't listed again in January ... only in December of 1966, where the record first peaked.  But if "Believer" spent seven weeks at #1 on The Billboard Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart and only ONE of those weeks was during 1966, it will ALWAYS be (to me anyway) the Biggest Hit of 1967.  (Year-End cross-overs are the toughest.  Billboard Magazine themselves used to cut off their year on November 1st, meaning the biggest hits from the previous year would reach their highest peak position just about the time the calendar page turned, thus placing the proper credit into the correct annual timeframe.  Breaking it down by month is even tougher ... I'd have to wager that nearly EVERY record that ever charted with any great success crossed over into multiple months, earning high points overall but not enough in any given 30 day period to rank as high as that record would on the overall year-end chart.  In THIS respect, I feel Joel better accomplishes "the big picture" ... but I guess who can't have it both ways.  (Personally, for me, I would have organized a Top 40 List for each month ... it's a "format" we're more familiar with ... and I would have let records cross-over to any month in which they earned enough points to warrant doing so.  (By expanding the list to 40 titles, you're still getting a large influx of new material each month ranked appropriately against the biggest hits of that month.)  But then make it VERY month specific ... if a deejay picked up this book as a programming tool and then said, "Today we're going to play back The Top 25 Biggest Records of January, 1967" ... and then COULDN'T play "I'm A Believer" by The Monkees, a record that topped the charts for EVERY DAY of January, 1967, he really isn't giving his listening audience a true picture of that moment in time.  If the book were broken down ONLY by points earned during each specific month shown, I believe you'd have a FAR greater outcome ... and a more accurate representation. 
That being said, once you get the proper methodology down, it all makes sense ... the charts ARE representative of the biggest records to peak in each month shown.  Plus, in  addition, you get a GREAT visual with each and every month ... full color charts with photos of original picture sleeves and more.  Be watching for our April selection to hit The Forgotten Hits Website on April 15th!  (kk)
Hi  Kent -
GREAT  email on what's happening with Brian Wilson!
Thank you for all the information. Really looking forward to Love and Mercy. May be going to his Ravinia Concert, too!
I still treasure "The Beach Boys Today" album ... a great effort that clearly told us (in hindsight)  Brian Wilson was advancing from "409" and "Shut Down" towards the genius of "Pet Sounds."
However, that being said, Brian illustrated his continued appreciation for doo wop on "Today"  with the Boys' cover of "So Young", a great song done originally by "The Students."
I saw Ronnie Specter do a bang up job on the tune at Ron Onesti's Arcada Theatre few months back, but the Beach Boys' harmony and  "Wrecking Crew" band track developed a very ethereal slice of musical bliss.
Kent, you may know this. Did Brian turn out two versions of "So Young?"
Chet Coppock
Host: Chicago Blackhawks Heritage Series
Over the years, numerous alternate takes and versions of The Beach Boys' tracks have made their way to CD and specialty box sets ... they were also notorious for writing and recording a song one way and then doing a COMPLETE reworking (sometimes as a totally new and different song) at a later date.  They even did this on their #1 Hit "Help Me Rhonda"!!!
I went to David Beard, Publisher of ESQ, on this one for his expert opinion ...
Apparently so!  1965 and 1975.
David Beard
Hi Kent -  
Fantastic information!I love anything to do with the Wrecking Crew.  Hal Blaine is amazing. He keeps supplying me leads on people ... best contact I ever had ... he's a star.
So pleased for Denny that the film is getting bigger exposure ... he deserves it. I am going to get Don Randi on my radio show, too .I must get the new book "Sound Explosion" ... I wonder if its available in UK yet?  
Not yet ... sounds like we're still in the pre-order stage right now ... but I'll bet it's fascinating!  (Amazon is showing a release date of September 15th ... wonder if you'll get it sooner through The Wrecking Crew website.)  kk
The "Wrecking Crew" movie opened in New York last night (Friday, March 13), and I was there to see it. What a fantastic look back at the inner workings of the music industry in the '60s, from the points of view of many of the artists, producers and especially the session musicians who provided the magic behind so many of the hits we heard on the radio back then. It's amazing not only how many hit records featured Wrecking Crew members on the music tracks but also how much work they did day in and day out -- sometimes recording the backing tracks for an entire LP in two sessions in a single day! I highly recommend this movie to anyone who grew up listening to the radio during the '60s, or even anyone who's a fan of the music from that period.
– Randy Price
If you grew up loving the music of the '60's, this is an absolute MUST SEE film ... we've been raving about it for the past eight years ... in limited release (but also available through other means of viewing ... scroll back to our March 12th posting for more details), it is now readily available to anybody who wants to see it.  Don't miss your chance!  (Sounds like the official DVD release has been pushed back to June.)  kk
Brian Wilson has a couple of brand new releases planned for Record Store Day this year ... first up a special single release, "The Right Time" / "Sail Away", two tracks from his upcoming "No Pier Pressure" CD that feature former Beach Boys members Al Jardine, David Marks and Blondie Chaplain.
Then a 10" LP of tracks originally written and produced for The Honeys and The Castells back in 1964 ...
Billboard Magazine is reporting:
For Record Store Day on April 18, Omnivore Recordings will release Sessions '64, a collection of songs Wilson wrote and produced for the Honeys, the Castells and the Timers. The Record Store Day pressing, on 10-inch gold vinyl, is limited to 1,500 copies.
Wilson produced the tracks with Jimmy Bowen with Sandra Glantz, aka Ginger Blake of the Honeys, and Gary Usher arranging. The tracks, which included Wilson's then-wife Marilyn in the Honeys, were originally released on Warner Bros. Records in 1964.
Sessions '64 Track Listing:
The Honeys:
"He's a Doll" (mono master)
"He's a Doll" (stereo mix)
"He's a Doll" (stereo backing track)
"The Love of a Boy and a Girl" (mono master)
"I Can See Right Through You (Go Away Boy)" (stereo backing track)
The Castells:
"I Do" (stereo mix)
"I Do" (stereo backing track)
The Timers:
"No Go Showboat" (stereo mix)
"No Go Showboat" (stereo backing track)
And, speaking of Record Store Day ...
Lots of special releases coming ... 
Saturday, April 18, marks Record Store Day 2015, celebrating the culture of the independently owned record store.  ABKCO Records, one of the world’s leading independent record labels, is participating with a slate of unique releases on vinyl – including one that has never been issued in the U.S. one that has been unavailable on any format in the U.S. for almost five decades.
Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015, this is the Animals’ third British Extended-Play record. Never before released in the U.S., it is being reissued as a 45 rpm 10 inch (the original was a 45 rpm 7 inch) for optimum audio fidelity. The Animals No. 2 is part of a series of EP reissues for ABKCO, which earlier released 10 inch vinyl editions of The Animals (RSD 2014), The Animals Is Here and The Animals Are Back (RSD 2013).
SIDE ONE:  I’m in Love Again / Bury My Body  
SIDE TWO:  I’m Mad Again / She Said Yeah 
Considered an underappreciated psych-pop gem, Blaze was the final studio album to contain all new material from the Herman’s Hermits lineup of Peter Noone, Keith Hopwood, Derek Leckenby, Karl Green and Barry Whitwam. Produced by Mickie Most, the album features several originals, plus songs by Donovan, Graham Gouldman and the duo John Carter-Geoff Stephens. Blaze hasn’t been available in the U.S. on any format since its original release in October 1967.
SIDE ONE:  Museum / Upstairs, Downstairs / Busy Line / Moonshine Man / Green Street Green  
SIDE TWO:  Don’t Go Out Into the Rain (You’re Going to Melt) / I Call Out Her Name /  One Little Packet of Cigarettes / Last Bus Home / Ace, King, Queen, Jack
Also planning Record Store Day new releases are Paul McCartney, Joan Jett, Peter Gabriel, The Bee Gees, The Doors, Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Johnny Cash, the aforementioned Marvin Gaye, Jimi Hendrix, Simon and Garfunkel, The Zombies, The Everly Brothers, The Kinks, Todd Rundgren, Otis Redding, Gregg Allman, Jeff Beck, Blue Oyster Cult, Dionne Warwick, U2, Frank Sinatra, Sly and the Family Stone (Whew!) and Brian Wilson.  (see the above Beach Boys piece for more details.) 
For a complete list and more details, check out: 
From FH Reader Scott Paton ... the never-ending debate continues!
The qualitative debate seems to have been resolved here, but people still prefer what they prefer:  http://www.laweekly.com/music/why-cds-may-actually-sound-better-than-vinyl-5352162
For me personally, I've totally succumbed to the digital age ... I can't even remember the last time I threw a record on the ol' turn-table ... unless it was to make a digital copy of something for use in Forgotten Hits!  (Plus it's REALLY hard to play record in the car on the way to work!  lol)  kk
Happy almost Spring! 
Growing up during the late 50's and 60's as I did, all of my memories are encapsulated within the music of the time. The best music ever! Our family never sat down to dinner without the console stereo playing music in the background. All kinds of music ... folk, instrumental, rock and roll, big band, and male and female singers of the day. There was never a holiday or birthday on which we did not give or were given music in some glorious form. I can remember receiving "Meet The Beatles" and the joy that I felt holding that album in my hands.
My first 45 was Eydie Gorme singing "Blame It On The Bossa Nova. I had gotten a particularly good report card and the gift of the 45 was slipped under my bedroom door by our older sister. I will never forget that day!
August Moon
Came across the Forgotten Hits webpage and found the article on the Beatles' first airplay to be fascinating.
As far as the flipsides, I can't believe that I saw no mention of two of the best B-sides ever (post 1959 only) - HB Goose Step which was a wonderful Johnny and the Hurricanes styled instrumental that backed the Rivieras' California Sun.  And Butchie's Tune - an original Lovin' Spoonful song (unusual in that it is not written or sung by John Sebastian) that was the flipside of Summer in the City.  Both are on youtube.  Butchie's Tune was even featured as the ending song on a Mad Men episode. 
And isn't it funny how some songs hold up and others don't?  I have nothing against Paperback Writer - I bought the single when I was a kid.  But the B-side, the Lennon tune Rain - the stature of that song has continued to grow over the years until it has easily become one of their very best.
Welcome aboard!  "HB Goose Step" was written up in on of our chapters when this series first ran several years ago as it was inspired by local Chicago record promoter and manager Howard Bedno, who had a "funny way of walking" and was immortalized in song in this fashion.  The Lovin' Spoonful had a couple of B-Sides nominated ... but "Butchie's Tune" wasn't one of them.
And I agree that in hindsight "Rain" would seem to be the stronger track in a battle between both sides of The Beatles' Summer of '66 release.  I personally never cared much for "Paperback Writer" and I can think of a few instances where John got the short end of the stick when the group split up their A's and B's.  Another good example is "Hello Goodbye", a record that inexplicably reached #1 ... but sounds like it could have been written by a four year old ... while the magical, mystical "I Am The Walrus" "tagged along" as its flip.  (kk)