Saturday, February 10, 2018

The Saturday Surveys (February 10th, 1968)

*Survey courtesy Frank Merrill

At least half a dozen songs on this week's survey might imply that WRIU out of Kingston, Rhode Island, must have been a soft-rock, middle-of-the-road station.  ("Love Is Blue," "Spooky," "Everything That Touches You," "Theme from 'The Valley Of The Dolls,'" "Walk Away Renee" and "Words" by The Bee Gees to name just a few)

But playing right alongside them were the psychedelic sounds of "Itchycoo Park" by The Small Faces and "Tomorrow" by The Strawberry Alarm Clock, the bubblegum hits "Green Tambourine" by The Lemon Pipers and "Simon Says" by The 1910 Fruitgum Company" and hard-driving tunes like "Nobody But Me" by The Human Beinz and "Tell Mama" by Etta James.

Musical Diversity, 1968 style!  (kk)

2-8-68 WRIU Kingston, Rhode Island

Despite its 5000+ population, this town is home to the main campus of the State University.  In 1968, it was also the home of a very cool top 40 radio station.  One of the songs that was a regional hit in MANY areas of the country but never hit nationally was the beautiful "Another Time" by Sagittarius.  The band was made up of a group of studio musicians pulled together by producer Gary Usher that never performed live, despite some very groovy 45s and an incredible LP, "Present tense."  Their 1967 hit "My World Fell Down" was groundbreaking with its use of sound effects and lead vocal by Glen Campbell.  Besides Campbell, Bruce Johnston and Terry Melcher helped provide vocals for the fictitious band who deserved better and has gotten it in the following century.
-- Clark Besch

That Was The Week That Was:

Milestones from This Week in 1968 ...

2/4/68:  Michael and Phyllis Nesmith welcome son Jonathan into the world

2/7/68:  Frank Zappa and Herb Cohen form Bizarre Productions and sign Alice Cooper

2/10/68:  The Jimi Hendrix Experience headline the Shrine Exposition Hall in Los Angeles

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Thursday This And That

Just got done reading the Sundays Comments. The piece by Tom Cuddy about Chicago reminded me of something. I was one of the lucky ones who got to see Chicago last year at the WTTW studios for a taping of Soundstage. My question is, Does anybody have any insight and know if this show will actually be produced for TV? And if there will be a DVD/Blu-ray available. I thought the show was great. They also performed the complete second album at that show, with the second half being more hits.
It seems like any Soundstage shows that are produced recently are really hard to find on DVD. I believe they are only available from Wal-Mart if produced. And then again I do not think they put all shows on disc. Must be a money issue
Thanks to Ron Onesti, who hosts the majority of the music specials you see on WTTW, our PBS Station, I can officially (and exclusively) announce that the Chicago Soundstage Special will air for the very first time on April 12th.  (I can’t wait to see it!!!)
As for a DVD / BluRay, these are typically used as draw-ins to get subscriptions during the broadcast … so I’d say it’s pretty likely there’ll be something available for purchase … but I do not have official confirmation on this.  It just seems like this would be one of those PERFECT opportunities to give fans a chance to own a piece of the show … and generate some income for the station.  Stay tuned!  (kk)

Speaking of Chicago, it looks like they’ll be doing several dates with REO Speedwagon this summer …
The two groups will hit 30 cities together, including The Allstate Arena right here in Chicago on June 24th.  (kk)

And, speaking of Ron Onesti, The Fab Four hit The Arcada Theatre tomorrow night for a much-anticipated show.  We’ll be there with a few of our Forgotten Hits Readers, thanks to a recent concert ticket give-away.  Ron has also announced a VERY special Beatles Acoustic Show TONIGHT at Club Arcada … VERY limited seating … featuring The Fab Four.  Check out for more details.  (Hopefully this major snowstorm they're forecasting for our area misses us completely ... if not, they're saying as much as 10-12 inches of snow could bury us by tomorrow!)

If you live in the area and would like to know more about local concert events, special ticket offers, etc., get on our Locals List … just drop me an email at and we’ll sign you up for updates!  (kk)

One of the big Arcada shows I’m looking forward to will feature our FH Buddy Lou Christie, who had a couple of big shows with Rocky and the Rollers this week … I can’t wait to see him again when he hits The Arcada Theatre here in St. Charles on April 15th.  It’ll be a heck of a double bill, with my OTHER FH Buddy Bobby Rydell (he’s one of my biggest fans!) appearing with Lou that night.  Should be one heck of a show!  (kk)

And, speaking of local shows (can you tell we’re on a roll here?!?!?), The City Winery has just booked a second Christopher Cross date due to popular demand.  Cross will now be appearing on March 31st and April 1st.  They’ve also added a show featuring Al Jardine on April 2nd.  More ticket information here:

Well-know character actor Mickey Jones has died.  Who?  Trust me, you’ve seen him in hundreds (if not thousands) of roles over the years … everything from “Justified” to “Home Improvement” to “Sling Blade” to “M*A*S*H” … but we first came to appreciate Mickey when he was the drummer for Kenny Rogers and the First Edition!!!

You can read more about him here …
And here:

We’ve got another retirement to announce (although he told us in our exclusive interview a couple of years ago that he pretty much already considered himself retired at the time … coming out now and again to do a special show or two here and there.)
‘60’s Pop Legend (and Bubblegum King) Tommy Roe has officially announced his retirement this past week, joining the list of Paul Simon, Elton John, Neil Diamond, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Ozzy Osbourne and more. 
Too bad … Tommy put on a GREAT show at The Arcada Theatre a couple of years ago and we thoroughly enjoyed it.  (And you’re not going to find a more pleasant entertainer to talk with!)
Best of luck to you, Tommy … enjoy your free time … and if you DO happen to get coaxed back to the stage from time to time, please let us know so we can help get the word to your fans … there are still a lot of us out here who love and appreciate all the great music you’ve given us over the years.  (Tommy continues to record new music, too … and it’s some damn good stuff, too!!!)  kk
From Tommy’s musical arranger Rick Levy …

It is with great sadness, yet understanding, to announce TOMMY ROE's retirement from performing due to his wife, Josette's extended illness. It has been my honor and joy to perform with and represent TOMMY for over 25 years. His music brought happiness to millions of fans worldwide, including The Beatles, who opened for TOMMY in the UK in 1963.  Hopefully Tommy will feel the urge to do one or two shows in the future. 
Best of luck to Tommy and Josette Roe ... the whole world loves you.
-         Rick 

And from Tommy …

To be fair, I believe it would be best to announce my retirement. Under the circumstances, I don't see how I can accept any dates at this time or in the near future.  Maybe in the future if my situation changes we can revisit the idea of taking a few dates. I will just have to see how things go. 
Thanks again for your friendship and your caring for Josette.
Your bud,

From FH Reader Tom Cuddy …

BILL MEDLEY: Super Bowl Ad Was "Very Cool"   
-         Exclusive Premiere Radio Interview
He didn't know in advance that "(I've Had) The Time of My Life" would be used in a spot. 
Bill Medley calls the Super Bowl ad in which New York Giants stars Eli Manning and Odell Beckham Junior re-create a classic Dirty Dancing scene "very cool." Not only did the players copy the moves made famous by Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey, the spot's soundtrack used Medley's classic duet with Jennifer Warnes "(I've Had) The Time of My Life.".
Bill Medley discusses the NFL Super Bowl Sunday ad that evokes Dirty Dancing.
"When it came on, I didn't know it was going to be on, so it was a huge surprise to me. It's very cool."
Bill didn't know the ad had been produced. He tells us that, as the recording artist, he didn't have to consent to it being used -- "but they had to pay us."
Bill and Bucky Heard are beginning the third year of their Righteous Brothers residency at Harrahs in Las Vegas . He says the reaction to their new partnership has been "phenomenal." They won't be exclusive to Las Vegas much longer. Bill tells us that the duo will do some shows in the New York area "sometime this year," adding, "we'll be there sooner and later!"
Medley has read about the soon-to-open Resorts World Casino on the site of the former Concord resort -- which inspired Dirty Dancing. While he hasn't been offered a deal, he admits that -- due to the movie connection -- "We'd love to be there."    

Oops ... you did it again.  
Re:  Reba McEntire.  She is a, yes, aging and greatly beloved by many singing star, and I was not at all horrified by her portrayal in the latest KFC ad.  I thought it was clever, innovative and funny … and, most of all, attention getting, which is the whole idea of commercials anyway.  She, unlike so many stars, has a good grip on her audience and I think she's managed to shake off her young and sexy image and walk gracefully into her aging star self.  Remember, Minnie Pearl was her idol! 
(and I still love you and thank you for continuing 'Forgotten Hits' thru the debacle of the revamped AOL.) 
Let the record show that I hold absolutely NOTHING against Reba McEntire … I consider her to be one of the greatest country artists of our generation.  I just think this may be the dumbest ad campaign I've ever seen (so we'll just have to agree to disagree on this one)

This whole idea of revolving Colonel Sanders wore then the minute they passed the baton to Norm McDonald and George Hamilton.  And now we're supposed to think Colonel Sanders was a woman?!?!  Aunt Jemimah, yes.  The Southern Belle hawking Popeye's chicken, sure, why not.  But Colonel Sanders is an icon … a long-standing tradition that goes back for generations … and I honestly can't believe KFC went along with the whole idea of femmin' things up!  (kk) 

Hi Kent:
I enjoyed reading about the recent anniversaries from the happy (the Beatles' rooftop concert) to the tragic ("the day the music died"). I hope you're right in suggesting that next year's 50th anniversary of "Let It Be" might prompt a new DVD release. But I also have to anticipate a lot of references to it being the Beatles' "swan song" or "their last album" which, to this day, is often mis-labeled as such.
It's always been a pet peeve of mine to see the "Let It Be" sessions referred to as their break-up album, or how the film documents their disintegration. I've always maintained that these descriptions are unfortunate exaggerations. First of all, the sessions all took place during a relatively short span of time: the month of January, 1969, on the heels of the final "White Album" sessions. And, while we do see about 30 seconds of George and Paul having a spat, it was hardly a knock-down, drag-out brawl. We also get to see happier moments among the group, where they are clearly enjoying each other's company as they jam. Remember, these sessions were initially rehearsals for a TV special they had been considering. When they eventually decided against the idea, director Michael Lindsey-Hogg still needed some kind of climactic piece to provide an ending for his film. Thus, the idea of the rooftop concert was born. Most importantly (to me), the Beatles went on from there to record the astonishing "Abbey Road, " which is often treated as not much more than a footnote in their history together (I have examples of this which I won't bore you or your readers with now). I hope the rumors are true that their last few albums will be getting the same treatment as "Sgt. Pepper" did last year, via elaborate re-issue sets. Fingers crossed! 
Best regards,
Garry Berman 
One can only hope that the 50th Anniversary might FINALLY spur Apple into getting this film released to the public (while there's still a public out their dying to see it again!)  I've heard Paul mention several times that he'd like to see it come out … and even admit that NOBODY comes off looking worse in the film than he does … yet it's STILL a key part of Beatles history.  I would LOVE to see a MAJOR 50th Anniversary "Let It Be" campaign.

As for "Abbey Road," I have to disagree with you … I think hands down it is regarded as The Beatles' finest achievement … especially in light of the fact that they were nearly ready to call it quits before agreeing to go back into the studio one more time and leave their audience with a landmark statement.  (Amidst all the hub-ub for the 50th Anniversary of "Sgt. Pepper" it also became clear that the FANS' FAVORITE Beatles LP seems to be "Revolver" … that while "Pepper" set the benchmark  and achieved untold acclaim at the time, it is "Revolver" that best showed the evolution of what The Beatles had become.  Think about it … from "She Loves You" to "Tomorrow Never Knows" in just three short years.  Who could have EVER guessed!!!  (kk)

Hi Kent; 
Regarding the Clear Lake, Iowa, crash and the day the music died:
I don’t know the guy who says he’s trying to reopen the crash investigation but that’s a lotta nonsense. As an old Instrument rated pilot with a couple of thousand hours at the controls, I can tell you what happened.
The young pilot of that ill-fated Beechcraft Bonanza was not qualified to fly on instruments and when he found himself immersed in snow and unable to see the horizon, within a matter of seconds he stressed the V tail of the plane far beyond its designed strength, it snapped off and in they went. It wasn’t but a few years later that RCA singer Jim Reeves, while flying his own plane at night, also poked his nose in a cloud and it spit him out all over the Oklahoma countryside.
Moral of the story is that clouds and / or women can bite if you don’t know how to pet 'em!
In answer to another question raised in your column, yes, I replaced Bob Hale on the WLS Silver Dollar Survey Show. It was awkward as we were and still are good friends.
Clark Weber
Have you read any of LJ Coon's queries into the investigation?  He's an ex-pilot, too, and I believe he raises some interesting points.  I'll send you a copy of his latest report.
Will it ever go anywhere?  Probably not.  But isn't it amazing that they've kept the wreckage of that flight all these years???  (kk)
Hi Kent;
Reading the NTSB report brought back the long ago but not forgotten crash once again. I don’t know if Mr. Coons is attempting to re-introduce the case or just highlight the history of it. One thing stands out in my mind and that is it appears that there may have been pilot error involved.
The report states that the aft loading (Backseat) was 70 lbs. out of CG. That alone makes for touchy elevator control making the plane tail heavy. Combine that with the pilot unable to flying without reference to visual clues and it’s very easy to overstress the V tail of the plane, snap off one of the ruddervators and spin in.
A few years after the crash I had the opportunity to fly a C model Beech Bonanza (They were killed in an A model) and I could well understand that without instrument training, that airplane could build up in airspeed quickly and snap off a ruddervator. Beechcraft later re-enforced the V tail … however there are still rare cases of that airplane shedding its tail when pilots severely overstress the airplane. It takes a pretty ham-fisted pilot to do it but it can be done.. Once that happens even the most skilled pilot would lose control.
It’s an interesting report … and LJ Coon has dedicated the last couple of years of his life doing his research and campaigning for the case to at least be re-examined based on some questionable evidence he has uncovered.  I say more power to him!
Again, if any other Forgotten Hits Readers would like to see a copy of LJ’s research, just drop me a line at and I’ll send it off to you.  (kk)

kk …
I believe you're over thinking this story.
Love your Foghat comment.
37 condoms each. 6 in a pack. 1 leftover.
Maybe "Love-Making" is a new Olympic Event and they're practicing.