Saturday, June 13, 2020

June 13th, 1970

The Beatles earn their 20th #1 Record on Billboard’s Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart when “The Long And Winding Road” hits the top of the chart.

Friday, June 12, 2020

June 12th, 1970

1970:  June 12th – Pittsburgh Pirates Pitcher Doc Ellis throws a no hitter against the San Diego Padres.  Years later he will reveal that he did so while under the influence of LSD.  (Psychedelic!!!)

Also on this date, Janis Joplin plays to a crowd of 4000 people in Louisville, Kentucky, for the very first time with her brand new group, Full Tilt Boogie.  In less than three months she would be dead of a heroin overdose.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Thursday This And That

From Ronnie Barrett’s posting on Facebook

Kudos to ALL parties involved with the making of this outstanding documentary.
The footage was stunning ... SO many things we've never seen before (and such high quality, too!)
Everybody who had any hand in making this should be especially proud of this one.  
 (Available for On Demand viewing on EPIX)  kk

And appreciation for your review in today's edition of Forgotten Hits.
Everyone collectively worked very hard on this endeavor. 
I know my coffee table size 2009 book on Laurel Canyon helped re-open the paths that were walked and subsequently chronicled on this screen venture. 
Kudos have to be given to director Alison Ellwood.   
It's inevitable there will be more Laurel Canyon examinations and products. 
"Imitation is the sincerest form of strategy."  
I met Henry Diltz and Nurit Wilde in 1967 when I was going to high school in West Hollywood. I took my Driver's Education class in Laurel Canyon. Try learning how to parallel park listening to Love's "Forever Changes!"  
Henry and Nurit along with Gary Strobl have always supported my literary and celluloid ventures. It's a dream team. To quote hoopster Jalen Rose, "We got squad."   
You and your website have always touted my titles as well. Nameste.   
Next book is out July 30th ... "Docs That Rock Music That Matters." 
Harvey Kubernik  

Hello Kent,
Thank you for the kind words.
It was a major team effort … just like the Cubs winning the World Series in 2016.
I think there is a weekly TV series that needs to be produced called The Wonder Years in Laurel Canyon of Dreams.
What do you think?
There are so many characters that lived in Laurel Canyon and some that still live there that were not represented like Danny Hutton.
He was living there in 1965 and his neighbors downstairs were Jack Nicholson and Harry Dean Stanton.
Stay healthy and keep away from the danger zones!
Hope In My Heart,
Gary Strobl

Gary also sent me a couple of photos of The Cryan’ Shames, taken by retired photographer Tom Morton at The Chase Hotel in St. Louis, Missouri, circa 1967-1968.  (Seems he has just come into possession of four rolls of black and white negatives and sent these for us to share with our readers.)  We have also put him in contact with Tom Doody, Jim Pilster and James Fairs, all original members of the band, who I’m sure would LOVE to see these again after all these years.  (I’m guessing none of these ever saw the light of day at the time.)
Anyway, here are two that he sent me to run in Forgotten Hits. 

The Cryan’ Shames never got the recognition that they deserved.  While their records sold very well here in Chicago (where they had SIX Top Ten Hits, including the #1 Hit “It Could Be We’re In Love,” which topped our local charts for four weeks back in 1967), none of these (other than “Sugar And Spice,” #39, 1966) ever made much of a mark on the national scene.  (Here in Chicago, all our of other popular bands of the day cite The Cryan’ Shames intricate harmonies as their inspiration for working on this aspect for their own stage show and recordings.)

Of course, we’ve been featuring their music here ever since Forgotten Hits began in 1999 … and, as a result, have won over hundreds (thousands?) of new fans in the process.

Scour YouTube and check out some of these goodies if you get the chance:

1966 – Sugar And Spice (#4 Chicago / #39 National … 10 spots lower in Billboard)
1966 – I Wanna Meet You (#6 CHI / #62 NAT)
1967 – Mr. Unreliable (#7 CHI / #100 NAT)
1967 – It Could Be We’re In Love (#1 CHI / #52 NAT … but only #85 in Billboard, a spread of over 30 points))
1968 – Up On The Roof (#7 CHI / #60 NAT … but only #85 in Billboard)
1968 – Young Birds Fly (#12 CHI / #86 NAT)
1968 – Greenburg, Glickstein, Charles David Smith and Jones (#9 CHI / #73 NAT … and only #115 in Billboard … that’s a spread of over 40 points)
1969 – First Train To California (#26 CHI / #103 NAT)

More on the Shames ... and some of our other Local Heroes ... below.  (kk)

"Pearl" is my favorite Tommy Roe song.  There’s something about that laid back groove, the music backing, and Tommy's sublime vocal delivery during the verse - then bammo - that chorus and modulation at the end ... perhaps Tommy could chime in if he cares to, and let us know some of the backing musicians and singers on this cut. I've always wondered about it over the years.
Locally where I live (in New Haven, Connecticut), "Pearl" peaked at #6.
Keep rockin', Tommy! So glad to know your health is getting better!
Mike Markesich

I reached out to Tommy and this is what he told me …

Hey Kent,
Thanks for sharing this with me.
The legendary Wrecking Crew were playing on Pearl. Hal Blaine on drums, Larry Knechtel on keys, Joe Osborn on bass, and Ben Benay and me on guitar. The singers were, Ginger Blake, Julie Tillman Waters, and Maxine Waters.  The track was produced by Steve Barri, with string arrangements by Jimmy Haskel.
Pearl was just covered by K Michelle DuBois. You will have to take a listen.
K Michelle did a very interesting take on the song. Quite different … but very good.

Did you happen to catch Tommy’s remake of “Dizzy” a week or two ago (with the new Covid 19 lyrics?)  Scroll back on the site in case you missed it … or check it out on YouTube here …

And now, because we’re ALL curious, here’s what K Michelle DuBois’ version of “Pearl” sounds like …

Enjoying your post today, as always.
Did you notice that three of the top forty, namely #1 My Baby Loves Lovin’ by White Plains, #9 United We Stand by The Brotherhood of Man, and #24 Gimme Dat Ding by The Pipkins, are all Tony Burrows songs?
For those not aware, Tony is considered the King of One Hit Wonders (He also was the voice of Love Grows Where My Rosemary Goes by Edison Lighthouse) and once appeared in three different groups on the great Top of the Pops TV show in England.
The story goes the show’s producer was furious when he discovered the same guy appearing three times, but the songs were all big hits on the British charts that week (even though Tony does not appear as the lead singer on My Baby Loves Lovin,’ he really was.)  Interestingly, Edison Lighthouse had a great follow-up to Love Grows with It’s Up To You, Petula, but this was sung by a different lead singer. All these songs were “manufactured” as singles and Tony Burrows never received the credit he deserved.
Interested readers may also enjoys a You Tube video of Tony and partner Roger Greenaway doing Gimme Dat Ding years later.
Bob Verbos
Tony Burrows had quite the winning streak there for a while!  (He sang the lead on the First Class hit “Beach Baby,” too!)  I’ve always wanted to see him perform live as part of one of those ‘70’s package tours ... but have never had the chance.
But now I’m intrigued to check out their remake of “Gimme Dat Ding,” which I just recently named as one of my Favorite Songs of 1970 on Phil Nee’s “Those Were The Days” program!  (kk)

I don’t know if this is the clip Bob was talking about, but I chose this one because the interview portion touches on most of the songs listed above.  (kk)

Please let Joel Whitburn know the impact of a mention in  Forgotten Hits.  I had purchased his most popular book (Top Pop Singles) when the latest edition came out.  But when I read in FH about the discount he was offering, I was inspired to buy another copy, which I did today.  Also, please share with him, the morning man at our sister station here in NYC, Jim Kerr at iHeart’s Q104.3, told me that the last edition of Joel’s book that was placed in the control room for all the DJ’s to access, was falling apart from so much use over the years.  So I donated one of my copies to replace it.   I’m sure he’ll be happy to know that the most listened to classic rock station in the USA still has his music bible front in center in its control room.  The jocks were thrilled to have any updated copy with all the pages intact!
Tom Cuddy
New York, NY
It IS the Music Bible … I don’t know of any radio station programming pop, rock or oldies who doesn’t have a copy right there close at hand for the disc jockeys to reference as needed on the air.  (Of course now I’m wondering if the 2018 book is being discounted because next year we’ll see the latest revision, taking us through 2020!!!)  I will say this … there has not been ONE single edition of this book since 1972 that I have not had at least one copy of to use for reference.
Cash Box books and Music Vendor / Record World books are also available … but Billboard has always been the industry standard.  (“It ain’t Number One till it’s Number One in Billboard.”)
That being said, for me his greatest compilation has been The Comparison Book, showing the highest chart position for all three major trades side by side in one edition.  There is not a day gone by that I haven’t referred to this book for SOMETHING!  (kk)

ALL of Joel Whitburn’s book are available here …
Just browse around the site … there’s something here for EVERYBODY … and every genre of music.  To quote Joel, “If you have a heart for the charts” … this is the place for you!  (kk)

Me-TV-FM’s got an interesting specialty weekend planned this week …

They’re calling it their Trifecta Weekend … featuring songs that crossed over to at least THREE different Billboard Charts.

It all kicks off at 7 pm (central time this Friday Night and it’ll run throughout the weekend … in Rick O’Dell’s words:

We’ll be spotlighting a very select group of pop songs — songs that made three different Billboard charts at the same time. It’s our first “Timeless and Memorable Trifecta Weekend.” Tune in as we reveal the identity of the ultimate crossover songs.

You can listen live here:

Last week we ran the video for the new Cornerstones Of Rock song, “Pandemic Blues,” which featured all kinds of great snap shots of the various members of the bands that make up this incredible line-up:  The Ides Of March, The Buckinghams, The New Colony Six, The Cryan’ Shames and, of course, The Shadows Of Knight.  (In fact, that’s Jimy Sohns of The Shadows on lead vocals.  We ran a Sneak Peek of his new solo record, too, last week!)

Well, THIS week the guys have all gotten together at Jim Peterik’s home studio and brought the thing to life … and it’s a whole lotta fun.

You can check it out here:

Who’s Who? 
The Cornerstones of Rock, featuring Jimy Sohns of The Shadows of Knight ©2020 Cornerstones of Rock
Based on "Summertime Blues" by Eddie Cochran / Jerry Capehart, ©1958 Liberty Records (American Music) BMI
Parody lyric by Jim Sohns
Original track by Michael Weber
Additional recording by Larry Millas at World Stage Studio Burr Ridge, IL
Mixed by Larry Millas and Jim Peterik
Jimy Sohns of The Shadows of Knight: Lead Vocal
Jim Peterik of The Ides Of March: Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Spoken Vocals, Claps, Gang vocals
Larry Millas of The Ides Of March: Guitar, Gang Vocals
Bob Bergland of The Ides Of March: Bass, Gang Vocals
Mike Borch of The Ides Of March: Cowbell, Gang Vocals
Scott May of The Ides Of March: Hammond B3, Gang Vocals
Carl Giammarese of The Buckinghams: Guitar, Gang Vocals
Ray Graffia of The New Colony Six: Solo Vocal, Claps, Gang Vocals
Ronnie Rice of The New Colony Six: Spoken Vocals, Gang Vocals
Bruce Mattey of The New Colony Six: Guitar, Gang Vocals
Jim Pilster of The Cryan’ Shames: Tambourine, Gang Vocals
Ted Aliotta: Blues Harp, Gang Vocals
The Cornerstones would like to dedicate this song to the first responders, front-line heroes, and all those who have suffered loss of loved ones in these tragic times. May we rise together in healing.
Also dedicated to the memory of one of the true pioneers of rock & roll - Eddie Cochran

Hello, Kent! 
The official live-action band video is here!
To all the fans of Forgotten Hits and the fans of the Cornerstones of Rock.
Here is a world premier of our behind the scenes video … The Making of Pandemic Blues.
On behalf of all the ‘Stones, (not THOSE Stones … The CORNERStones!!! - kk) this was a labor of love for us all.
Thanks to Jimy Sohns and Michael Weber for getting the ball rolling and everyone else for getting in the spirit.
Rock & Roll is here to stay! 
Hope you all enjoy this. Rock steady.

It looks like everybody had a whole lotta fun doing this one - and it’s a whole lotta fun to watch, too.  Thanks Jim!  (Now I’m dying to see a real show!)  kk
Glad u dig it, mon frère!  
I’m getting restless to hit the fricking stage!! 

After we ran those two radio promos for The Cryan' Shames "A Scratch In The Sky" and Ides Of March "Common Bond" albums, we got these comments ...
>>>This is awesome, Kent!!!  Thank you!  I wonder whose voice that is. (Jim Peterik)
Hi Kent –
The guy doing the voice over sounds like a young Fred Winston.
Clive Topol
Funny because at first I thought it sounded like Ron Britain … but I talked myself out of that one the more I heard him talk.  (For all I know, it could just be one of the Warner Brothers PR guys … which is probably the most likely case of all.)
Anybody out there know for sure?  (kk)    
As to the voice over question, I am thinking Ron Britain did the Cryan’ Shames one, too.  It SOUNDS like Ron.  The Ides one sounds like Charlie Van Dyke or possibly Kris Erik Stevens, but I’m finding no proof.  I will email a few friends who may know.
Clark  Besch   
For more from ALL of our Local Heroes, be sure to tune in to Jeff James’ new “Windy City Wednesday” program on WHRU-LP – FM 101.5 / Huntley Community Radio.  They’ve already doubled his airtime (from 4-7 pm now every Wednesday) … and within just a half hour I heard a Ronnie Rice solo tune, “Take Me Back” by The Flock, The New Colony Six’s “You’re Gonna Be Mine,” a two-fer from The Ides Of March, “Mr. Unreliable” by The Cryan’ Shames and more … including soul cuts and tracks dating back to the 1920’s!!!  It all makes for a fun, educational experience.  Write yourself a note to catch next week’s show!  (kk)  
(And don’t forget that Jeff also does his Saturday Night Live At The Oldies here, too, every Saturday Night from 6 pm to Midnight)  

Sad to hear that we lost Bonnie Pointer, one of the original Pointer Sisters, on Monday, June 8th.  (Sister June died back in 2006.)
They kicked off their career with some quirky, throw-back tunes like “Yes We Can Can” (#11, 1973) and “Wang Dang Doodle” (#61, 1974) … and one of my very favorite LPs of all time was their “Steppin’” album from 1975, which featured everything from modern R&B funky tracks like “Going Down Slowly” and “How Long (Betcha Got A Chick On The Side)” to send-ups of 1920’s-sounding tunes like “Save The Bones For Henry Jones” and a Duke Ellington melody.
Bonnie went solo in 1978 and scored he #11 hit “Heaven Must Have Sent You” a year later for Motown Records, where she also redid a Motor City Classic the following year when her remake of The Four Tops’ song ”I Can’t Help Myself” eeked into The Top 40 at #40.
Truth be told, The Pointer Sisters (continuing on as a trio) saw their career skyrocket, too, after Bonnie departed.  The Bruce Springsteen song “Fire,” “He’s So Shy,” “Slow Hand,” “Automatic,” “Jump (For My Love),” “I’m So Excited” and “Neutron Dance” all made The National Top Ten.  (They even backed up Bruce Willis on his Top Five remake of “Respect Yourself” in 1987.)
They brought us a good amount of joy over the years … and their music still sounds fresh and vibrant today.  I’m a long-time fan.  (kk)

FH Reader Tom Cuddy asks the musical question … 
How Did The 1960s Band The Zombies Come Up With Their Strange Name?
And then provides us with the answer!  
As well as a brand new interview with Rod Argent … 
Keyboardist Rod Argent On The British Invasion

I wrote the Tremeloes review and I can't disagree with Geoff, especially since he got it straight from the artists' mouths. The Blakely/Hawkes songwriting team as members of The Tremeloes had already authored some of their b-sides. You can't blame them for wanting to keep all of the lucrative songwriter royalties for themselves. And "Call Me Number One" proved they could pen a major a-side chart hit. But I have read in so many places that the group wanted to move in an edgier, more experimental musical direction. They felt their past pop hits had appealed more to young teens and their parents than serious rock music fans. They hastily released an ill-conceived album of progressive heavy rock, MASTER, that stiffed and quickly sank into oblivion. The members faced backlash from a Melody Maker interview in which they said their earlier records were rubbish and fans were suckers for buying them. (I read a lot of those UK weekly music papers back then and I wish now I hadn't tossed them out).
Anyhow, The Tremeloes released the self penned "By The Way" that March instead of "Yellow River."  Could it be compared to The Monkees' rejection of "Sugar Sugar" in favor of their own material? "By The Way" stalled at UK#35 and I don't know if I even heard it on the radio (Radio One, Radio Luxembourg, and USAFN were listened to a lot at my flat). Their next single, "Me And My Life," was certainly different than anything they released before. Another Blakely/Hawkes song a year later, "Hello Buddy," would disappoint at UK#32 and end The Tremeloes' chart run.
The Melody Maker article wasn't as serious as John Lennon's Jesus blunder (that might have led to a nut job assassinating him), but is said to have contributed to The Tremeloes' diminishing record sales.
Mike Gentry

What Clark Besch said about the group the Fabulous Flippers is true. This group came out with one LP, that being in 1970 and right at ten singles beginning with the year 1964. They recorded the song HARLEM SHUFFLE twice, both on different record labels. One version had "canned" live crowd noise and one didn't.
The Fabulous Flippers were a very successful recording group back in their day, but they just had one big problem ... and that was they had NO HIT RECORD. Nothing on vinyl ever conveyed what they were able to deliver live in their concerts. Clark knows this as well as I. Apparently the powers that be at Cameo don't.
Larry Neal

Larry also suggests …

With everything going on in our country right now with the protests, virus, etc., I don't know why, but I thought of the record that the Robins came out with in 1955 called FRAMED. It was written by that famous song writing team of Leiber and Stoller. If you are not familiar with the record, play it and listen to the lyrics ... sort of representative of what's happening nowadays.

Interesting how things time out sometimes.
A few weeks back, we recounted (briefly) the history of the song “Unchained Melody” … and then featured a few versions of this song that have been popular over the years.
Now Frank B. just sent us THIS brief history of the tune (it pretty much echoes exactly what WE told you, quoting from a piece that was originally published in Forgotten Hits over a decade ago) … but Frank has also sent us this video clip offering samples of several prominent versions …

Read all about it here:
Or here:
(Scroll down to find it)  kk

kk …
Here’s an interesting clip … Roy Orbison doing a Ricky Nelson Tribute Interview on TV.  (I think the BIG O had a TV show in Odessa, Texas.)

We’ve been reading (and saying!) nothing but good things about Dion’s new blues album “Blues With Friends” … here he talks a little bit about it himself …

Also from Tom Cuddy …

Rick Levy here, having a blast with my first band, THE LIMITS, projects being released thru Cleopatra Records in LA.
The brand new single, I WONT TELL, features STAN LYNCH, the original drummer for TOM PETTY.
Song attached ... give it a listen … and spread the word!
Stay safe


This is a good tune … I like it!  Glad to see you’re getting some press … so throwing our support behind it, too.  (Will you be performing this one with The Box Tops once you guys are able to get out on the road again?)  kk

We also received this press release about the new single … which tells you how to get a copy … as well as a copy of Rick’s book, which we plugged last year … 

Iconic '60s American Garage Band THE LIMITS
Release New Single “I WON'T TELL”
THE LIMITS, who formed in the mid-sixties in Allentown, Pennsylvania, have been called “the quintessential American Garage Band” by the late, legendary Alex Chilton. Recently, two collections, GARAGE NUGGETS 65-68 (highlighting their earliest teen efforts) and the more sophisticated SONGS ABOUT GIRLS ('80s compilation) have been reissued on all digital musical platforms courtesy of a licensing arrangement with Garage Masters, a division of Cleopatra Records, Inc.
“I WON’T TELL,” penned by RICK LEVY, is the new single from THE LIMITS. Levy is currently manager and guitarist/vocalist with Memphis Music Hall of Fame legends, THE BOX TOPS, and said, “Interviewers, fans, and some radio folk really heard something great in 'I WONT TELL,' so we decided to drop it as a single to test the waters … and THE LIMITS' popularity. Making a rare guest appearance is Stan Lynch (original member of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers) on drums.” Levy adds, “I played slide, as well as using the great Keith Richards open G guitar tuning to keep a melancholy vibe going throughout the song.” Levy's memoir, “HIGH IN THE MID 60s - How To Have A Fabulous Life in Music Without Being Famous,” (Crossroad Press) is available at and in print, digital, and audio formats.

I have to share this one with you …
I heard Sammy play it on his Lost And Found Oldies Show last weekend and my ears immediately perked up.  (Who would have ever thought to put THESE two songs together?!?!)
They call it “You Should Be Smoking” … and it’s a whole lotta fun … and (in the words of Robert Palmer), simply irresistible.
Give it a look and a listen and see if you don’t agree.  (kk)

And, talk about your “This And That” …
This one touches on ALL kinds of things we’ve covered over the last few weeks! 

Hi Kent ...
Thanks as always for your super blog.  Hope you are all well in the "Windy City."  Here is my recap response to your most recent blog ... 
Love the 70's countdown.  It brings back good memories.
Sometimes your blog reads like a soap opera, only kidding.
What did they really throw off the Tallatchee Bridge?
Does the word Coca-Cola really mean cocaine on the Kinks record? 
Hmmm ... Does champagne taste like cocaine?  Hmmm … 
Love the band Association and their greatest hand-picked vintage songs.
Love the drive in theater idea.
Congrats to Ron Onesti as being chosen as president of the NIASHF.
Keep rockin', Billy Hinsche … looking cool. 
WmBradspa must have had great intuition back in 2006 ... a book about a pandemic. Wow!  The fiery and spicy foods would be too much for my tummy.  
Pandemic Blues ... lol.
Lovin Frank B's budget list ... lol
And finally, you are right. We probably all look the same right about now, mask and sunglasses. lol  
Be well and Stay safe.