Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Sunday Comments ( 06 - 14 - 15 )

re:  The Beach Boys and Brian Wilson:
Former Beach Boys promoter and manager Fred Vail shared a few memories with us on Friday that we're sharing with you today.
Be sure to check back to The Forgotten Hits Website next week for more of your "Love And Mercy" movie reviews and comments.  (This is probably the most critical response I've ever received after a single review ... which has inspired me to see the movie again and see if upon a second viewing I may be persuaded to modify my opinion.)

Meanwhile, please enjoy Fred Vail's recollection of June 12th, 1983 ... 

It's a bittersweet day for me today (Friday, June 12th).
On this date in 1983 I saw the original five Beach Boys -- Dennis Wilson, Carl Wilson, Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and Mike Love -- together on stage for the final time -- and it couldn't have been a more fitting way to see all of them -- on the south lawn of The White House with President and Mrs. Ronald Reagan -- and later that evening, celebrating George H.W. Bush's 59th birthday at the Vice Presidential Residence. Bush, 41, even took the stage to sing "Barbara Ann" to his lovely wife, Barbara, and sang along with 'the boys.'
The White House performance was a benefit for Eunice Kennedy Shriver for her "Special Olympics", which I had orchestrated as a favor for a good friend, Tom Carter, who was managing a singer who was recording in my studio at the time.
That night -- June 12, 1983 -- would be the final time I'd see Dennis sing with his band mates. On December 28, barely three weeks after his 39th birthday, he would drown in a Marina del Ray swimming accident. I had seen them go from a $350 a night surf band -- driving them to gigs in my folks' '54 Chevy wagon -- to being "America's Band", taking private jets, arriving in limos and staying in plush hotel suites. It doesn't get much better than that. 
Fred Vail

re:  Me-TV-FM:  
>>>Today's 1970 Super Chart is packed with a wonderful mix of great music. We've sat here and gone through this entire chart and marveled at what a great collection of tracks appear on this list. So sad that only about 20% of these are ever played by our local oldies station. When was the last time you heard Tome Jones's "Daughter of Darkness" on the radio?  (David Lewis)
>>>Believe it or not, since Me-TV-FM signed on here, I've heard it quite a few times ... along with several other
long forgotten Tom Jones tracks.  I can't wait for these guys to start streaming so that others on the list can
enjoy it too. There doesn't seem to be a day that goes by where I don't hear one or two complete surprises.  (kk) 

I just checked and Me-TV-FM is still not streaming.  Although it's still something they're planning on doing, I'm being told they're still trying to "get Chicago right" first.  And I will admit that there is still some fine-tuning that needs to be done.  (They're working from a playlist of just over 2500 songs right now ... and adding new ones all the day.  As such, I'm not sure why I'm hearing "Strawberry Letter 23" and "Love Or Let Me Be Lonely" every single day ... seems like both of those songs, good as they are, could be spread out a little thinner.  Worse yet, of those 2500 tracks there are times where it seems that only about 300 of them are NOT by James Taylor!!!  I swear, I can turn this station on at virtually ANY time of day, set it to play for one hour, and hear a James Taylor song EVERY single time.  Unfortunately, he's now become my new Steve Miller Band / John Mellencamp over-saturated artist.  I turn him off on the very first note ... and I LIKE James Taylor ... I just don't need him as my primary diet!!!) 
On the other hand, let me show you what a typical set on Me-TV-FM sounds like ... I'll bet there isn't an oldies fan out there that wouldn't kill to have a radio station like this in THEIR hometown that they could listen to in the car.  We still fall asleep to it nearly every single night ... and will often put it on as background music when we're just doing things around the house.  Despite any negative comments I may make it is STILL the most variety being offered on the dial today in Chicagoland.  

And they regularly salute our Chicago Local Heroes, too.  The other day in the course of a round-trip drive, I heard "I Will Always Think About You" by The New Colony Six (hear that one quite a bit, actually), "Mercy Mercy Mercy" by The Buckinghams and "Up On The Roof" by The Cryan' Shames.  Not a bad set for a local fan like me!

re:  This And That:
I tracked down Question Mark of ? and the Mysterians, and asked him a bunch of questions about "96 Tears," a few of which he almost answered. It was quite an adventure:
Be Well,
Carl Wiser
You guys have GOT to read this ... absolutely HYSTERICAL!!!
(I was supposed to call Question Mark a few years ago and do a FH interview and just never got around to it ... but somebody gave me his number and said he'd like to do something with Forgotten Hits.  Now I'm wishing I had done it just to experience the craziness of it all!!!
Great job, Carl ... had to frustrating (and funny) as hell!!!  He made that long story short at least half a dozen times ... and STILL never told you anything!!!
(I almost want to call him just to hear him carry on!!!)
Great job!  (kk) 

The Glen Campbell documentary "I'll Be Me" will air on June 28th on CNN at 9 pm Eastern.  We've been waiting a long time to see this one ... and I know a lot of you out there are anxious to see it too.  Check your local listings for encore presentations.

Campbell's long time friend songwriter Jimmy Webb posted a loving tribute on his Facebook Page about Glen's current condition.  (Webb was responsible for many of Glen's earliest hits, including "By The Time I Get To Phoenix" (#26, 1967), "Wichita Lineman" (#2, 1968), "Galveston" (#3, 1969), "Where's The Playground Susie" (#13,1969) and "Honey Come Back" (#10, 1970).

I visited my friend Glen Campbell Wednesday in Nashville. Laura and Kim Campbell were there as well.  
You may be aware that Glen has bravely been living with Alzheimer's Disease. Along with his strong and courageous wife, they have changed the face of Alzheimer's forever. The world watched as Glen traveled from city to city, to continue doing what he loves to do: perform and share his music. Doctors were amazed at how the music and activity appeared to slow the pace of the disease for awhile. With his family, they showed the world that you don't have to hide when you become ill. They raised awareness, and in turn, funds for Alzheimer's research.  
Glen is currently residing in a memory support community — it reminded me of one of the nice hotels he would stay at while on tour. Kim has found this place for Glen that is safe, where he is cared for 24 hours a day. The ratio of caregivers to residents astounded me -- he is never alone. And there are only 17 other residents; his neighbors are former lawyers, doctors, teachers and others who are living with the same challenges that dementia brings. Glen has been my friend for a long time and I love him like a brother. I am sure that Kim has made the right choices for and with my friend of 50 years.  
Glen has his private room and bathroom, all decorated by Kim with custom paint, lots of photos murals and framed memorabilia. The place is bright and clean. He loves color and still wears his blue suede shoes from time to time!  
The memory center has elaborate arrangements for activities. There are many different rooms and spaces for him to experience each day, each furnished tastefully and safely.  
There is an airy screened-in porch where Glen likes to sit and where we visited with him. He has a full time caretaker, Brody. Brody is in his early twenties with long blond hair -- he looks like a surfer! Brody is patient and kind. He plays the guitar with and for Glen. They sing, they walk around the grounds and converse almost constantly. We instantly fell for Brody and thanked him for the care he gives to Glen and the important breaks he gives Kim so she can rest and work.   
Glen has always been a happy guy and a jokester. He still is. For longer than I'd like to remember, he has imitated Donald Duck and during the visit, he did his Donald voice for us. He sings in a low register all the way to high clear notes that are reminiscent of the performances we are all familiar with. He seems almost to go from song to song, under his breath at times. He looked at me after singing one song and said, "that was a good song wasn't it?" Music is still at the very center of who he is. It is almost as though he is giving a never-ending performance.   
The last thing he said to me when it was time for us to go was, "Was it a good one?" like he used to say to me at the end of a concert. That phrase made me think that he recognized me, that and the fact that he said my name to Kim and Laura when I left the room briefly.  
He sees his family all of the time; Kim and two of his younger children live just a few minutes away. And his oldest daughter Debby was visiting just the day before.  
He is loved. He is cared for. He is respected. And most of all, he has his dignity. We can all be comforted by that.
Yours very truly,   
Jimmy L. Webb

How's this for an interesting promotion???
Hey, Kent, 
Styx is coming to the Nebraska State fair.  They were here not long ago, but I found it a bit funny when our most famous local sandwich business, Runza, did some special advertising for the band.  FYI, Runza is a meat sandwich that most all Nebraskans know, but the franchise has never ventured outside of Nebraska very much (, despite its huge popularity.  Check out the custom Runza cup I drank from and was surprised by last weekend!  At first, I thought it was a grand illusion!

I've had John Fogerty's biography on pre-order for awhile now ... can't wait to read it and hear his side of the story.  (Too often, John comes across as the villain in all of this ... and I'm the first to admit that I may have presented him this way as well in our extensive Creedence Clearwater Revival piece several years ago.)  It just didn't seem fair to me that he would shut out his long-time friend and musical partners Doug Clifford and Stu Cook.  While it's true John wrote and sang all of the music, these two guys (and John's older brother Tom) were all instrumental in perfecting the sound that captured the hearts of our nation.
Below find links to both a new article on Fogerty's biography ... as well as our Forgotten Hits piece on the whole band.

>>>In honor of its 50th anniversary, we thought it would be fun to share the Billboard Hot 100 from the week that "Satisfaction" first entered the chart. There aren’t many, if any, artists whose hits are chronicled here who are still at after all this time but, of course, “Satisfaction” and the Stones aren’t like anything that’s come before or since.
(Bob Merlis)
Although Mick couldn't get any satisfaction with girls, he also didn't have any luck getting the number one song of the year in Billboard.  The Hot 100 you showed with the Stones song debuting also showed "Wooly Bully" at its peak #2 on the Hot 100.  In just five weeks, "Satisfaction" was number one and "Wooly Bully" was still in the top 5.  Amazingly, Billboard's year end chart in December of 1965 claimed Sam the Sham's hit was the NUMBER ONE song for the entire year of 1965!!!  It only reached number two on the weekly chart!  "Satisfaction" claimed the number one spot for a whole month!  Yeah, "Bully" was top 10 for nine weeks and stayed on the Hot 100 for a (then) quite lengthy period of time of 18 weeks, BUT I gotta think there was some "Rock & Roll Hall of Fame" tactics going on at Billboard then.
Clark Besch
"Wooly Bully" capturing the #1 Song of the Year Award in Billboard has always one of rock and roll's greatest mysteries ... but apparently it earned enough point during its lengthy chart run to eclipse ALL of the records that DID hit the #1 spot during 1965 ... and that's some pretty ritzy company to say the least.
In addition to "Satisfaction" topping the Billboard chart for four weeks, other #1 Hits included "Yesterday" by The Beatles (also #1 for four weeks), "Downtown" by Petula Clark (a HUGE hit), "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" by The Righteous Brothers, "Mrs. Brown, You've Got A Lovely Daughter" by Herman's Hermits (#1 for three weeks), "Mr. Tambourine Man" by The Byrds, "Help!", also by The Beatles and the Motown hits "My Girl", "Stop! In The Name Of Love" and "I Can't Help Myself".  Hard to believe that the party song "Wooly Bully" could outrank any of these ... but apparently it did.  (kk)  

re:  Diggin' Forgotten Hits:
I am 66 and had a transistor radio in my ear since I was 9.  I thought, and have been told, that I was a freak as to knowledge of the OLDIES ... BUT YOU are from another planet!!! 
I can't tell you how much happiness your Blog gives me every week you post your intelligent passionate thoughts. 
Thanks, Gary ... your letter made my day!  (kk)

Friday, June 12, 2015

The Charts ... And Another Lucky Forgotten Hits Winner!

Recently we ran a week-long, year-by-year analysis of the records that reached the #1 Position on all three of the major trade publications, 1955 - 1981.

Our research was based on the new Joel Whitburn "Chart Comparison" Book that compares, for the very first time EVER, the peak position of EVERY record to make the Billboard, Cash Box and Music Vendor / Record World Charts during this period known as "The Rock Era".

Today you'll find some of your comments from this series.  (Scroll back to Tuesday, May 26th, and read forward to catch the entire series.)

Joel agreed to pick his favorite comment and send that Forgotten Hits Reader a copy of his brand new book. (You'll find some of Joel's comments at the end of today's piece, reflecting back on how these various publications gathered their data in order to compile these charts way back when.)

If you didn't win, don't despair ... you can still pick up a copy of this EXCELLENT book (and reference tool ... we use it EVERY SINGLE DAY) through Joel's Record Research website.  (Link below)  It's an invaluable way to compare what was REALLY going on in music at the time ... rather than the very distorted view we're presented with now of "The Greatest Hits Of All-Time" thanks to the narrow-minded programming of most oldies radio today.


Even before I got to the end of today's segment  of the "Being #1" Series and the reference to having a chance to win the Chart Comparison book, I had decided to write to thank you for the series of articles.  
You obviously spent a great deal of time reviewing the Chart Comparison book, coming up with an easy to follow mix of analysis and commentary, even over the period before you got into the music yourself.  A fascinating read, and a great advertisement for the book.  
Personally, I also found the series interesting, as it ties into the latest "Rockword" crossword puzzle that I'm compiling, entitled "Did Better on Cash Box Than The Hot 100".
Mike Ogilvie
Mississauga, ON

In 1977 I was working for Warner Brothers, parent company of Atlantic Records. At least a dozen of us were having lunch when one of the salesmen came in with two records.  One was Solisbury Hill by Peter Gabriel, and the other was Feels Like The First Time by Foreigner. Keep in mind that we were all music geeks. We were asked about our opinion and unanimously we preferred Peter. The complaint about Foreigner was it sounded like everything else that wasn't disco at the time. It was OK, but nothing special. 38 years later, since Foreigner is one of those acts you hear right after radio plays the obligatory Journey song, I kinda feel the same way. 
Now having worked for record distributors for about six years, I saw and heard firsthand about some amazing stunts record labels pull. A few weeks ago I mentioned a stunt that A&M records pulled in regards to Styx. I didn't go into detail, but since you started a series on how a record gets to chart where it does, the story now fits.
For years Styx played every teen club in the midwest. Who can forget those commercials for Dex Card's Wild Goose clubs? They released four albums on Wooden Nickel that went nowhere until some jock, and I don't think it was a local jock, came across Lady from their second album. It got them signed to A&M Records, which helped in that they had better distributorship. But it wasn't until their third LP, Grand Illusion, that Styx came thru for the label. But now their contract, for three albums, was up ... and other major labels came calling, notably Columbia. A&M's argument for resigning with them was that Columbia had Springsteen, Streisand, Neil Diamond, Paul Simon, etc., and Styx wasn't in that tier of performers, yet. So if it comes down to Babs, or Styx, they're gonna use the promo dollars on Babs. To prove their point, the first two Styx albums had re-charted and the Grand Illusion regained its bullet. A&M argued that we're working our asses off for you and it's paying off.  Dutifully impressed, Styx signed a new deal. What happened was A&M shipped 25,000 albums to each of their distributors, 250 - 300K. There weren't any preorders for that amount, nor was A&M expecting it. But it was more than adequate enough to get the releases back on the charts. Three months later A&M took the excess back, no questions asked. To be fair, A&M did come thru for the band. Not counting a greatest hits package, their next four studio albums went top 10 or better.  
As an LP and 45 buyer, I sat in on numerous sales meetings where various label reps would give a speech about how they thought the next album by so and so would put them over the top. So our sales people were urged to work the record stores, call in favors, call into radio stations, etc., to create a "buzz" for a record. There were record stores all over the country that would report to the various radio stations as well as the trades. You'd give some of the kids some promos, t-shirts, concert tix, if they said the new Charlene record was one of the top 10 selling singles. Of course the store owner would get to fly to Jamaica in January to see some unknown reggae artist. No one asked questions if the woman he was with was his wife. One week it's top 10, then top five, then top three, until it was certain the record was a dud, or a smash. Sometimes a label would deliberately send defective records just to screw over an artist. Sometimes they'd send a rep to clubs where there were a lot of kids and sell directly to the public, and keep the money for themselves, but still reporting it as a sold record. Motown was famous for that. Jack Levin

Interesting series you wrote about the No. 1 records on the three national trades. While I didn't agree with many of your assessments of what makes for a deserving No. 1, you certainly started a worthy discussion, and I do agree that it's mind-boggling that some of those records did NOT make the top of at least one of the magazines' lists. (How did Record World possibly explain not having "How Deep Is Your Love" at No. 1?)
-- Stephen Elders  

Having done something similar with Australian top 40 charts, I found between 1956 and 1990 there were 1500 songs that hit in one of these cities but not the other (3000 altogether) 
Brian Bell 
Glenbrook NSW 
I would LOVE to pick up a Whitburn-type documentation of the Australian charts to add to my collection and database.  Are you aware of such a publication?  Or do you have this information available?  Please let me know.  Thanks, Brian!  (kk)  

Dear Kent,
Thanks for your series on #1's. 
One of the reasons for the differences might be that Billboard for most of the time included radio airplay in their charts for all positions ... only between 1968 and 1973 were the Top 50 was purely based on sales. Cash Box and Record World for most of the period didn't include airplay in their calculation as far as I'm aware. I do believe Cash Box was purely sales based until the late 70's and Record World based at least the top of the chart on sales only.
This could explain also the big difference for a novelty record like Mr. Jaws or the spoken word record Americans. For both of them I can imagine that radio stations might not plat them too much.
Living in Europe where charts were sales based until the 90's, a sales based chart seems a better reflection of the popularity. 
Kind regards,
Bauke de Vries
I've always heard that Billboard's charts were based on an accumulation of sales and airplay.  (Early on they offered deejay charts, jukebox charts, best sellers, etc., so I think they had been geared up for this before rock and roll took over the airwaves.)  Cash Box, on the other hand, was more based on sales, I believe.  (Perhaps Joel Whitburn can clarify this a bit better for all of us.)  Record World?  I rarely ever saw a copy ... Billboard and Cash Box seemed to be the main two back in the day.  I know there were others ... Radio and Records ... even Variety published song charts at one point ... who knows, maybe Joel will take us down THOSE routes one of these days!!! (kk)   

CONGRATULATIONS to Bauke de Vries of The Netherlands ... 
Joel Whitburn selected YOUR email as the winning entry for a copy of his new Chart Comparison book.
The reader who will be awarded a copy of my “Comparison” book, it will be Mr. de Vries.  Billboard’s “Hot 100” chart was the first national chart to combine sales and airplay into its calculation of the top 100 songs each week.  He made that point, so I think he deserves the award. 
Again, another good series, Kent! 

FYI, this was a damn good piece. 
However, TIME OUT on the field!
The Sunday list of #1 songs during the mid to late 60's seemed hopelessly inadequate. The Monkees lackluster "I'm a Believer" turns up at 3, while so many Rolling Stones classics just never found their way to the top of the mountain. This confirms what I have been saying for 40 plus years ... the 60's were magical, but truly great and diverse rock 'n roll was often overshadowed by the bubble gum junk. It hurt me to see a list that didn't include Spirit, The Chambers Brothers or the Stones' "Let's Spend The Night Together."
Really, this top 200 list insults those of us who were diggin' Velvet Underground in 1966 ... "I'm Waitin' For My Man."
I am going to provide you with my own top 200 list of the best songs of the mid to later 60's!!! Naturally, I'll tick people off but, hey, that's show biz.
You game?
Chet Coppock
Author: Buffone: Monster of the Midway-due out in late July 

Keep in mind this list only shows records that reached #1 on the national charts ... and "I'm A Believer" was HUGE ... eight weeks on top in Cash Box, seven more in Billboard and an additional five weeks in Record World. 
Artists like Spirit and The Chambers Brothers, both of whom produced classic '60's hits to be sure, never even came close to topping the charts.  (Spirit's biggest hit "I Got A Line On You" peaked at #25 while The Chambers Brothers did a little better, reaching #11 on all three major charts in 1968. 
The Rolling Stones had SEVEN #1 Records in the '60's, the biggest of which (by far) was "Satisfaction", logging eleven weeks on top of the collective heap between the three trades.  "Let's Spend The Night Together" was the B-Side of "Ruby Tuesday" (which also reached #1 in all three publications) ... but back then each side of a record was listed separately.  As such "Let's Spend The Night Together" (banned on any number of stations at the time) only peaked at #28 in Cash Box ... it didn't even make The Top 40 in Billboard or Record World. 
As for The Velvet Underground, that truly was an "acquired taste" ... they never hit the charts at all!!! 
I don't know if I could narrow down my list of '60's favorites down to just 200 ... (although radio seems to have no problem narrowing down "the greatest hits of all time" to about 300 tracks!) ... and ALL of our lists would vary drastically, I'm sure.  (I, for one, LOVED The Monkees back then ... and for awhile there, they were out-selling The Beatles"!)  But hey, I'm always up for a new controversy so bring it on!  (In fact, I'm kicking around one of my own which we may launch next week!)  kk   

On your point below concerning TOP 500 or 1000 songs ... YEARS ago I gathered all the BILLBOARD chart data for the chart paths of songs that hit the TOP 50 on their publication.  I then devised a points system that 'ranked' those songs based on their chart paths. (Essentially, I gave 210 points for a week at # 1, and 1 point for a week at # 50, with a sliding scale between those 2 positions.)  My focus was on the 1960's, but I have this data from about 1957 - 1988. 
Recently, I have been entering a list on my computer of the "TOP SONGS of the 1960's."  I take it from the biggest single hit (which you likely can guess ...) which had in excess of 5,000 points on my system down to 300 points.  That is about the TOP 1600 singles of the 1960's. 
It has a number of flaws that I've never been able to completely work out to my own satisfaction.  
Biggest among these is the 'imbalance' in years.  By this I mean there was FAR MORE competition is some years (1964 - 1967) than others (1960, 1968 and 1969).  This led to 'shorter' time periods on the chart for the former years, and thus more weeks (and more points) on the charts for the latter.  Thus, there appear to be 'more bigger hits' from certain years than others. 
I also penalize those songs which had chart runs partly in 1959 and 1960, and partly in 1969 and 1970, by counting only those weeks between January 1, 1960 and December 31, 1969. 
At present, I have about the TOP 750 songs entered on my computer and can share that list if you'd like. 
Many of us have tried to rank the hits over the years, including several successful books that have been published on this topic.  Each applies its own methodology of assigning point values in some type of weighted descending order and, essentially, the results come out reasonably close to being the same.  My idea of listing the top 500 or 1000 #1 Records was a very simple method ... just COMBINING the weeks spent at #1 in all three major trade publications between 1956 and 1980. 
As for your comment regarding an 'imbalance" due to variance weeks spent on the charts due to the trends of the time, this has been a point of contention of mine for quite some time.  This is why I have always suggested a "hit index ratio" that takes the total points accumulated divided by the weeks spent on the charts in order to determine a relative popularity factor that would allow you to compare the hit impact regardless of time or trend.  (The downside of this ... and we will always find a downside to ANY method we come up with ... is that it makes a record like "They're Coming To Take Me Away, Ha-Haa!" or "Harper Valley PTA" amongst the very biggest hits of all time simply because they SKYROCKTED up the chart in a short few weeks and then dropped off to oblivion once the novelty wore off.  I just get tired of comments like "Mariah Carey is bigger than Elvis" or "Garth Brooks is bigger than The Beatles" simply because of one single chart accomplishment that distorts all reality as those who were there know it.  (As stated before in this column, I don't recall ever seeing 13 year old kids walking around wearing fake Mariah boob cleavage or receding hairline Garth Brooks wigs.  Elvis and The Beatles transcended ALL of their musical achievements by influencing the entire world in the way we looked, the way we thought and the way we grew and expanded our horizons as human beings.  This is taking nothing away from Mariah or Garth ... they're both exceptional artists ... and they both sold a boatload of records ... but they did NOT turn the world on its collective ear in the process.) 
The other night we were watching a 51-year-old episode of "The Fugitive" and during the commercial break they announced that "Two Broke Girls" was coming to that same television station this fall.  I couldn't help but wonder aloud if, 50 years from now, folks would be gathering around their tv sets to watch old episodes of "Two Broke Girls" ... somehow, I just can't believe this will be the case! 
In any event, we may still do "The Top 1000 #1 Records Of All-Time" somewhere down the line ... based on the accumulated totals derived from all three charts ... and, honestly, I believe this will be a very viable countdown ... who knows, maybe we can even turn it into a radio program.  (Any willing partners out there if we do all the legwork???)  Radio doesn't offer a lot of "calculated countdowns" anymore ... and I think this could be a good one, offering a wide variety of styles and artist spread out over a 25 year period.  Meanwhile, we'll have to deal with these lists as we see them (and grit our teeth when appropriate.)  kk

This week's Number One series has been quite interesting. Today's 1970 Super Chart is packed with a wonderful mix of great music. We've sat here and gone through this entire chart and marveled at what a great collection of tracks appear on this list. So sad that only about 20% of these are ever played by our local oldies station. When was the last time you heard Tome Jones's "Daughter of Darkness" on the radio? 

David Lewis  
Believe it or not, since Me-TV-FM signed on here, I've heard it quite a few times ... along with several other long forgotten Tom Jones tracks.  I can't wait for these guys to start streaming so that others on the list can enjoy it too. There doesn't seem to be a day that goes by where I don't hear one or two complete surprises.  The other day I heard "Virginia" by Bill Amesbury, a #11 Hit here in Chicago that topped out at #38 on the national charts.  We've featured it a few times before in Forgotten Hits and have it posted on the site again today.  (Amesbury is probably more famous for his sex change operation than for his hit record!)  I always loved this one!  (kk)

WOW!!!!!! A great list of # 1's indeed. But I'm bummed that The Tears of A Clown by Smokey Robinson and the Miracles didn't make the cut ... 
Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the compilation of HITS!  As always thanks for all you do for all of us music junkies.   
Petey G

Does Randy have a book or web site featuring all the super charts? Must have been a ton of work.
Mark the Shark   

Hey Kent, 
I'm sure you've been asked this question a million times - but seriously, where can I get ALL of Randy Price's amazing Super Charts.  Tell me he's putting a book or a website together with all that data?  I want to see them! 
We've been looking for a home for these for several years now ... ever since we came up with the concept really.  SO many people have expressed an interest in seeing the whole collection.  It truly does provide a cross-section of ALL of the research done at the time used to establish each individual list.  (Hey, maybe after he finishes publishing all of the Cash Box and Record World decade charts, we can persuade Joel Whitburn to help us with this!)  Sirius / XM Radio even talked to us at one point about programming special countdowns designed around these charts.  I thought it'd be great if they would fund this project and then we could sell copies of the book through their service ... but that never went any farther than the discussion stage either.  (To tell you the truth even I don't have a complete collection!  I came up with the original concept years ago ... but then Randy did ALL of the heavy lifting, scouring thousands of pages of data, making repeated trips to The Library Of Congress to find copies of published charts he didn't have in his own collection, talking to several folks in the industry and hitting places like eBay daily trying to find them all.  At one point I hooked him up with Joel Whitburn, who was also missing some of the Music Vendor / Record World charts ... and between the two of them they were able to assemble the most complete collection of charts anywhere ... all the more reason I hope that Joel will some day help us launch this project to the fans.  (I understand his ties to the three major publications ... but once all of that data is published and made available, this just might make the next "hot product" for Record Research to sink their teeth into.  Never say never!) 
Developing a website around these charts is always an option ... but at this point I'd sure like to see the people involved with developing this project rewarded in some fashion for all their efforts.  I'll bet he's got THOUSANDS and THOUSANDS of hours devoted to this!  (kk) 

Kent ... 
Just got back in my office from a nice long holiday weekend.  I’ve got a busy stretch ahead as I’m presenting Johnny Mathis with a special Billboard presentation later this week at his concert at Milwaukee’s Riverside Theater; then two of Billboard’s chart managers are coming here along with the president of Atlantic Records for a close-up tour of my Record Archive and some other interesting business.  Then, next week my school is inducting me in the fine arts Hall of Fame with some celebrities on hand including Andy Hurley of Fall Out Boy who went to the same school as I did and was inducted two years ago.  And, finally, we’re behind the 8-ball in getting two new music books introduced to the world.  Time is just flying by way too fast and it just seems harder and harder to keep up with all the demands of running a business at full throttle.
While I appreciate your Comparison Book discussion, I have to tell you that I am completely partial to Billboard, because I have been to their chart department and seen them in action pulling in data from all across the nation.  I have also been to the offices of George Albert and Cash Box – very quiet indeed.  You need only answer one question:  how did Wayne Newton’s “The Letter” hit #1 in 1992?  A commercial single of it does not exist.  It did not make Billboard’s or Record World’s Top 100 or “Bubbling Under” charts!  
As far as Record World goes, the editor and chart director, Michael Sigman, called me and thought it was funny that I was publishing a book on their charts and he was writing a story for a newspaper about his time at Record World.  I told him to make sure he sent me a copy, which he did.
Here is a small excerpt from Sigman’s story:  
“When I took over the editor’s desk at Record World in the fall of 1972 our charts sucked.  The research staff comprised two smart, hard-working, thoroughly untrained staffers.  The methodology was primitive: check out the previous week’s Billboard; call a tiny fraction of the nation’s important radio stations and retailers; collate a stack of mailed-in playlists and sales reports.  A few hours of educated guesswork later and voila, the charts were a fait accompli.”   If Record World’s charts lacked credibility, Cash Box’s weren’t much better.  Rumors swirled about the correlation of ads to bullets.  And Billboard, with its massive resources, was widely known as the bible of the industry.” 
I think Sigman pretty much hit the nail on the head.  “Billboard’s massive resources”, and, of course, the other trades using them as their first reference does rank Billboard, unquestionably, as the all-time #1 music trade.  I could go on and on about this and other factors, but I’m leaving it at this ... Billboard was regarded as "the bible of the industry" for good reason ... the other publications did their best to emulate them ... but paled drastically in comparison.  
I’ve worked with many publishers, editors and chart directors at Billboard, all of whom were hard working, honest and well respected gentlemen within the music industry.  I’ve always had and still have complete trust in their charts! 
Joel Whitburn

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Thursday This And That

Man, THIS sure sounds like a fun night out ... I would LOVE to see all these acts performing together ... how cool that Tony Burrows is doing shows now ... think of all the bands he was associated with back in the early '70's!!!  (I know we have a lot of Tony Burrows fans on the list ... hopefully this will turn into more of a tour than a one-off performance so others around the country will have the chance to see him, too.)  kk

Hi Kent,
I just wanted you to know that our new and improved website,, is up. We've added some new interviews and hope to shoot some more soon. We just posted our first trivia quiz. We'll randomly select one of the people with the highest score and they'll win a DVD of "Airplay". Comments are welcome. We'd also really appreciate it if you guys would like our Facebook page, "Airplay: The Rise and Fall of Rock Radio".  I'm hoping to get a schedule of where and when it's airing. We really appreciate the support you've given us.
Carolyn Travis  

Always glad to help.  As you know, I love this film and am happy to help spread the word.  Please do send us a list of airdates and we'll be happy to pass it along to our readers.  Thanks, Carolyn!  (kk)  

I really enjoyed seeing the 50 year old KRLA chart ... a lot of memories there.  At that time, I was playing 'good music' doing the all-niter on KKOP-FM in L.A.  I listened mostly to KRLA during my awake hours and have to tell you it was a magical summer.
The year before, right after I left active duty with the USAF, I got a job in a local factory to tide me over until I could adjust to civilian life.  Working in the mail room was Randy Nauert, who moonlighted as the bass player with the local surf band, The Challengers.  Once he found out my DJ experience in Texas and AFRTS, we became fast friends.
Fast forward to the summer of '65.  I was grabbing a late bite to eat at the local "Bob's Big Boy" just before I had to start my shift at the station.   While I was sitting there, in walked Randy and the rest of the band.  They joined me in my booth so I sat and listened as they talked about the gig they had just finished.
As I was leaving, Randy mentioned that they were playing at the "Orange County World Teen Fair" the next weekend and I should be there.  That sounded good to me so I made my plans.
I showed up about 7:45 and caught the last 20 minutes of their set.  I also found out they would be the back-up band for the various headliners that would be appearing that evening.  When Randy saw me in the crowd, he waved at me to come up to the stage and when I got there, he invited me to join him backstage.  I accepted, and that visit was to be one of the most memorable of my life.
In addition to The Challengers, I was able to hang out with The Dixie Cups ("Chapel Of Love"), Jay and The Americans, Sam The Sham and The Pharaohs and (best of all) The Righteous Brothers.  I didn't say anything, just shook some hands and listened to the conversations.  It was about 30 minutes of Rock And Roll Heaven.
50 years have gone by since that memorable night, but hardly a day goes by that I don't recall that special moment and give thanks that I was there.  I still exchange E-Mails with Randy once in a while and I thank him most every time for that thrill.
Thanks for your good work ... "Keep On Truckin'" and doing it right!!!
Jim (Southern) Pritchard


Sound of Philadelphia legends come together to salute The O’Jays and Jean Carne

at the 12th Annual Phillies African-American Heritage Celebration.

L-R: Dexter Wansel, Kenneth Gamble, Eddie Levert, Eric Grant, Jean Carne, 
Walter Williams, Leon Huff, Billy Paul. Photo Credit: Mitchell Leff 

PHILADELPHIA – Forty years after releasing the Family Reunion album on the iconic Philadelphia International Records, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Inductees The O’Jays were a primary catalyst behind a family reunion of their former label mates June 5 at the 12th Annual Phillies African-American Heritage Celebration, hosted by fellow Rock & Roll Hall of Famers and “Sound of Philadelphia” architects Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff at Citizens Bank Park in honor of Black Music Month.   
Gamble & Huff presented The O’Jays and R&B and jazz legend Jean Carne with the Phillies Gamble & Huff Community Partnership Award and were joined in the celebration by fellow PIR greats Billy Paul (“Me & Mrs. Jones”), producer Dexter Wansel, and pop-R&B songwriter Bunny Sigler, who sang the National Anthem. Ms. Carne performed her PIR hit single, “Don’t Let It Go to Your Head.”
With Gamble & Huff, The O'Jays emerged at the forefront of Philadelphia soul with "Back Stabbers" (1972), and topped the Billboard Hot 100 the following year with "Love Train". Numerous other hits followed for PIR, topped by “For the Love of Money,” “I Love Music,” and “Use Ta Be My Girl.” The O'Jays were inducted into the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2004, and The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005. 
Gamble & Huff's Philadelphia International Records became the birthplace, incubator and launching pad for the Philly Soul sound aka “The Sound of Philadelphia (TSOP),” a unique blend of R&B rhythms, sweet soul vocals, deep funk grooves, pulsing horn charts and lush string arrangements with melodic structures combining elements of pop, jazz and world music. With a stable core of artists led by The O'Jays, Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes, Billy Paul, MFSB and the Three Degrees, Gamble & Huff co-founded Philadelphia International Records and began creating monster hits from nearly the first day of its inception in 1971. They continued to record, collaborate and produce major hits with a galaxy of stars from the pop, rock, soul and jazz universes, including Michael Jackson and the Jacksons, Elton John, Lou Rawls, Teddy Pendergrass, Patti LaBelle, the Spinners, the Stylistics, the Delfonics, Dusty Springfield, Jerry Butler, Wilson Pickett, LaBelle, Archie Bell & the Drells, the Soul Survivors, Laura Nyro, the Trammps, McFadden & Whitehead, Phyllis Hyman, the Dells and many more.    
Gamble & Huff created and are credited for launching one of the most celebrated and historic songwriting partnerships that spawned into a sophisticated sound lovingly crafted in the studio by some of the 20th century's most influential producers and studio teams -- including Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff, Thom Bell, Linda Creed, Gene McFadden and John Whitehead, Bunny Sigler, Dexter Wansel, Bobby Martin, MFSB Orchestra, Baker, Harris and Young, Joe Tarsia (Sigma Sound) and others Philly Soul set the stage for disco, smooth jazz, adult contemporary music and more. Gamble & Huff began celebrating their 50th Anniversary this year. The celebration will continue in 2016 with the projected release of their Autobiographical Book and the launch of their Theatrical Play on their historic Life Story and creation of one of America’s great music catalogues, known as “The Sound of Philadelphia.   

Here's a satisfying anniversary worth celebrating ...  

We’ve been celebrating the fact that The Rolling Stones epochal hit “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” the band’s first U.S. #1, was released 50 years ago.  It soon became the band’s signature song and, of course, occupies a special place on their current Zip Code Tour set list: it’s the finale.
We thought it would be fun to share the Billboard Hot 100 from the week it first entered the chart. There aren’t many, if any, artists whose hits are chronicled here who are still at after all this time but, of course, “Satisfaction” and the Stones aren’t like anything that’s come before or since.
Scroll down past the chart for news of ABKCO’s release of a special limited edition “I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction 12” single that will be released on the 50th anniversary of the original record going to #1.


Released during the first week of June in 1965, “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” by the Rolling Stones proved to be a monumental single, not just in terms of airplay and chart position (their first U.S. #1), but also in terms of shaping popular music. The song that, according to Newsweek, contains the “five notes that shook the world” has proven itself timeless. A half-century later, the Rolling Stones played the song as their finale on the opening night of their Zip Code Tour of North America 2015.   
The idea of writing a song around a riff (a repeating sequence of notes), rather than a vocal melody or chord progression, though not unprecedented at the time, had yet to take rock music by storm. “Satisfaction” was the storm. Over the course of the next several years, the shift in focus towards the riff took hold, and can be still heard in popular music today.  
On July 10, ABKCO Records will celebrate the golden anniversary of “Satisfaction” by releasing a limited edition, numbered 12-inch version of the single on 180-gram vinyl. While the smash hit comprises the entire A-side, the B-side consists of both original U.S. and UK “Satisfaction” flip sides: “The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man” and “The Spider and the Fly,” respectively. The record is housed in a sleeve featuring award-winning photographer David Bailey’s shot of the group, recreating the original 7-inch single artwork.  Mastered by Carl Rowatti at Trutone Mastering Labs and cut from the original mono master tapes, the 45-rpm 12-inch format makes this a true audiophile pressing, allowing for wider grooves that yield louder levels, broader range, deeper bass and better high frequency response.
London Records (the Stones’ U.S. label at the time) released “Satisfaction” in the first week of June, less than a month after the track was recorded at RCA Studios in Hollywood, CA on May 12, 1965. By June 12, the single had entered both the Billboard and Cashbox charts. Over the course of the next month, “Satisfaction” shot straight to the top, hitting #1 in Record World on July 3, where it held its position for three weeks; Billboard and Cashbox followed suit, declaring it #1 on July 10, where it stayed for four weeks. Sales-wise, “Satisfaction” was an unparalleled success – it became the group’s first RIAA-certified gold record on July 19, 1965.
The UK version of the “Satisfaction” single, released by Decca on August 20, 1965, would become the band’s fourth #1 single in their home territory. The track made its LP debut on July 30 of that year, when it was included on the U.S. version of Out of Our Heads. ABKCO Films’ much-lauded documentary The Rolling Stones Charlie is my Darling – Ireland 1965 features the band’s first ever performance of “Satisfaction” to a paying audience, played Dublin’s Adelphi Theatre on September 3 of that year. (See link below)
The iconic guitar riff that opens the song was composed by Keith Richards who recorded the sequence of notes on a home tape recorder while in a dreamlike state in the middle of the night when the band was on tour in the U.S.  After listening to his own recording and devising the song title “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” he played the riff for Mick Jagger by the pool at the Gulf Motel in Clearwater, FL in early May, 1965. Jagger immediately composed the lyrics. 
Having scrapped a version of “Satisfaction” that was recorded at Chess Studios in Chicago on May 10, the group re-recorded the song at RCA Studios in Hollywood, CA on May 12. It was this version that would take over the airwaves and shoot up the charts the following month.
Textured by the aid of a Maestro Fuzz-Tone pedal, Richards’ riff was originally intended to be replaced by a horn section, but the recording sounded complete to producer/manager Andrew Loog Oldham and engineer David Hassinger. Jagger’s lyrics, simultaneously expressing sexual frustration and disdain for consumerist messages, would strike a nerve with the mostly young, rock ‘n’ roll buying public. Ironically, the only two people in the Stones’ camp who were initially against turning “Satisfaction” into a single were Mick Jagger and Keith Richards.
“The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man,” credited to Nanker Phelge (a pseudonym used on compositions written by the entire band), is a lighthearted jab at George Sherlock, an employee of London Records at the time, who accompanied the group on their first U.S. tour. The Stones saw Sherlock as a vain, toupee-topped, seersucker suited music biz flunky who was ultimately harmless. In later years, Sherlock expressed pride in having been the subject of the song. Loosely based on Buster Brown’s hit “Fannie Mae,” it is the lyrical content that gives the tune historic importance; the prodding of authority figures through song was almost unprecedented at the time. In the UK, Decca decided to instead use the country-blues composition “The Spider and the Fly” (also by Jagger/Richards) as the B-side to “Satisfaction,” the company assuming that the abundance of American references on “The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man” may have gone over the heads of British listeners.
Pressed by Quality Record Pressings in Salina, KS, and limited to 10,000 numbered copies in North America, ABKCO’s “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” 12-inch single will be released a half-century to the day after the landmark song dominated U.S. charts and helped transform the course of pop music history.
Pre-order link:  

Side A:  (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
Side B:  The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man / The Spider and the Fly

ABOUT ABKCO -  ABKCO Music & Records is one of the world’s leading independent entertainment companies.  It is home to iconic music catalogs that include compositions and recordings by Sam Cooke, The Rolling Stones, Bobby Womack, Eric Burdon, The Animals, Herman’s Hermits, Marianne Faithfull, The Kinks as well as the Cameo Parkway masters by such artists as Chubby Checker, Bobby Rydell, Clint Eastwood, The Dovells, ? & The Mysterians, Charlie Gracie, The Tymes and Dee Dee Sharp. Soundtrack releases include the 2015 Academy Award, GRAMMY and BAFTA winning soundtrack to Wes Anderson’s Golden Globe winner The Grand Budapest Hotel, 2013 Academy Award nominated Moonrise Kingdom, the 2010 Academy Award nominated Fantastic Mr. Fox, and The Darjeeling Limited, Edgar Wright’s The World’s End and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Independent Spirit Award Winner Safety Not Guaranteed, the international blockbuster Fast Five, Boardwalk Empire Volumes 2 & 3: Music from the HBO Original Series, the soundtrack to the first season of the hit Showtime series Californication and through ABKCO’s Little World Records imprint, American Girl:Isabelle Dances into the Spotlight. Releases on ABKCO’s SAR label include albums by L C Cooke, The Soul Stirrers, Johnny Taylor and the Valentinos.  ABKCO is active on many fronts including the release of critically lauded compilations and reissues from its catalog, film and commercial placement of its master recordings and music publishing properties in all media. ABKCO Films most recent release is Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Dance of Reality. The renowned cult director’s classics El Topo and The Holy Mountain, fully restored and remastered to HD, were shown at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival (Classics section) and at the prestigious 44th New York Film Festival. Other releases include the 2014 GRAMMY Award winning The Rolling Stones Charlie is my Darling – Ireland 1965. In 2003 ABKCO won a GRAMMY® for the DVD release of Sam Cooke – Legend and the following year released the DVD of The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus to universal acclaim. Upcoming releases include a restoration of the Spaghetti Western Blindman starring Ringo Starr.  ABKCO Films is in pre-production on a biopic on the life of Sam Cooke.

More Stones news ... 


First Release By Spotlight Gallery, A New
Business From The Parent Company Of Time Life

Fairfax, VA (June 10, 2015) –Time Life, today announced the release of three Limited Edition Clear Vinyl + Album Art Lithographs from the iconic and acclaimed Rolling Stones albums  – ABKCO Records’ 12 X 5, Let it Bleed and ‘Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!’  
Only 2,500 of these hand-numbered and embossed museum-quality lithographs signed in the plate by Rolling Stones members will be available through a special license granted by ABKCO Music & Records, Inc. 
These highly valuable collectible LP and lithograph sets, each with a Certificate of Authenticity, will be available at on a first-come, first-served basis.  The lithographs are printed on acid-free, 100# Opus dull cover stock measuring 20” x 24” with an image area of 16” x 16.” 
It should be noted that no additional copies will be produced after the initial press run is exhausted and the signature plates will be destroyed. The printing plates contain the facsimile signatures of the band’s personnel at the time each album was recorded: Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Brian Jones and Bill Wyman on the 12 X 5 and Let It Bleed lithographs, and Jagger, Richards, Watts and Wyman on Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!’ 
Time Life will debut Spotlight Gallery and The Rolling Stones Clear Vinyl + Album Art Lithograph Collections with receptions in Los Angeles and New York.  The Los Angeles event will be hosted by Chris Carter, heard weekly on Sirius XM’s Radio’s Chris Carter’s British Invasion and on KLOS. The event takes place at Mr. Musichead Gallery, 7420 W. Sunset Blvd., in the heart of Hollywood’s “Rockin Row” on Thursday, June 18 from 7 to 10 PM and will be preceded by a VIP reception at 6:30.  The New York event is set for Thursday, July 9 at the ARChive of Contemporary Music, 54 White Street in Soho. Jonathan Clarke, whose Out of the Box show is heard on Q104.3 will host the event. Both the Los Angeles and New York launch receptions will provide an onsite opportunity to purchase The Rolling Stones Clear Vinyl + Album Art Lithograph Collections.  Both events will feature custom cocktails curated by Pura Vida Tequila. 
12 X 5, the Rolling Stones’ second full-length U.S. release, in October 1964, combines tracks from the band’s earlier U.K. EP Five by Five (recorded at Chess Studios in Chicago) with additional material, including the smash hit singles “It’s All Over Now” and “Time Is on My Side.” 12 X 5 is dominated by the Stones’ takes on R&B and the blues, which would shape and inform the hard blues/R&B wing of the British Invasion in ensuing years. This “Clearly Classic” vinyl edition is sourced from the album’s original mono mix. The album’s cover, thought to be a visual riposte to Meet the Beatles, was shot by David Bailey. One of the most celebrated fashion/celebrity photographers of all time, Bailey was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire for his “services to art” and was awarded the Royal Photographic Society’s Centenary Medal and Honorary Fellowship “in recognition of a sustained, significant contribution to the art of photography.”  
The thoroughly cohesive and highly regarded Let It Bleed is considered by many to be the Rolling Stones’ best album. Tracks include “Midnight Rambler,” “You Got the Silver” featuring Keith Richards’ first lead vocal, the apocalyptic-themed “Gimme Shelter,” the band’s faithful take on Robert Johnson’s country blues “Love in Vain,” and the epochal “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” The Let It Bleed album cover art is by Robert Brownjohn, the American-born graphic designer known for creating the title sequences of such films as Goldfinger and From Russia with Love. The Let It Bleed cover features a Dadaist LP-shaped cake created by cookbook author Delia Smith, the design inspired by the album’s original title, “Automatic Changer.” Let It Bleed’s innovative imagery has resonated over the years since its release in late 1969. The cover art was a recent addition to the design collection of New York’s Museum of Modern Art and was the subject of a commemorative postage stamp issued by Great Britain’s Royal Mail in 2010.  
‘Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!’ The Rolling Stones in Concert holds the distinction of being the first live album by any artist to reach No. 1 on the U.K. charts. Recorded at New York City’s Madison Square Garden on November 27 and 28, 1969, the featured concert was part of the U.S. tour during which the group was introduced for the first time as “the greatest rock and roll band,” as heard at the start of the album. Ya-Ya’s is considered the Stones’ finest live album and includes concert versions of the hits “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” “Street Fighting Man” and “Sympathy for the Devil,” but is most notable for a nine-plus-minute version of “Midnight Rambler” with extended harmonica solos by Mick Jagger, widely considered the greatest recorded version of the song. Shortly after the album’s release, rock critic Lester Bangs noted in his Rolling Stone review, “It’s still too soon to tell, but I’m beginning to think Ya-Ya’s just might be the best album they ever made. I have no doubt that it’s the best rock concert ever put on record.” The album’s cover was shot by David Bailey in February 1970 and the original design is by John Kosh (art director for over 100 album covers, including The Beatles’ Abbey Road, The Who’s Who’s Next, the Eagles’ Hotel California, and Rod Stewart’s A Night on the Town) and features an atypically exultant Charlie Watts holding two guitars alongside Jack, a donkey burdened with some of his drum kit and a guitar. It has been suggested that Bob Dylan’s song “Visions of Johanna,” which includes the line “jewels and binoculars hang from the head of the mule,” was the inspiration for the Ya Ya’s cover concept.  
The Rolling Stones Limited Edition Clear Vinyl + Album Art Lithographs will be available for purchase now at or by calling 1-877-914-3040, where future distinguished entertainment collectibles will also be presented.
About Spotlight Gallery
Spotlight Gallery features a selection of distinguished entertainment memorabilia and collectibles from renowned music icons, legendary artists, and acclaimed performers from stage and screen.  Each item is a piece of history to be treasured for a lifetime by any collector, art enthusiast, or fan.  Spotlight Gallery is owned and operated by Spotlight Collectors Gallery®.
About Time Life
Time Life is one of the world's preeminent creators and marketers of unique music and video products and has extensive experience partnering with leading artists and performers in the entertainment industry. The company specializes in creating distinctive multi-media collections that evoke memories of yesterday, capture the spirit of today, and can be enjoyed for a lifetime.
Time Life and the Time Life logo are registered trademarks of Time Warner Inc. or an affiliated company. Used under license by Direct Holdings Americas Inc., which is not affiliated with Time Inc. (NYSE:TIME) or Time Warner Inc. (NYSE:TWX). More information is available at
All of the above courtesy of Bob Merlis, Merlis For Hire  (kk)

I just discovered your great blog, which overflows with information, enthusiasm, and passion.
I host a weekly radio show in Central Florida, on WPRK 91.5 FM.  Below is a link to a two-hour interview with Colin Blunstone and Rod Argent of The Zombies (within a four-hour program devoted to the group).  Recorded in-studio on their 2014 US tour, I think you'll enjoy.  It was nice to read Dennis Tufano's kind raves about the group on your blog (and his is an underrated voice, isn't it?).
Best to you. 
-- John Riley
Host, Magic Transistor Radio
WPRK 91.5 FM
Winter Park, FL
We were fortunate enough to catch Argent and Blunstone when they opened for Burton Cummings a couple of years ago at The Arcada Theatre.  (See our review below)
GREAT show ... and one I felt very fortunate to see.
Thanks for the kind words about Forgotten Hits ... mention us on your program sometime!!!  (kk)  

re:  SMILE:   
From FH Reader Clark Weber ...  
We who have taught, or love children who have been taught, know this is funny!  
From the diary of a Pre-School Teacher:   
My five-year old students are learning to read.  
Yesterday one of them pointed at a picture in a zoo book and said,  
"Look at this! It's a frickin' elephant!"  
I took a deep breath, then asked ... "What did you call it?"
"It's a frickin' elephant! It says so on the picture!"
And so it does ...

" A f r i c a n Elephant "

Hooked on phonics! Ain't it wonderful?