The death of Ronnie Spector jumps to the top of today’s headlines. According to her family, it came after a brief battle with cancer. She was 78.
Producer Phil Spector heard and saw something in young Ronnie Bennett that he liked. (Truth is, ALL of us did!!!) and he took Ronnie and her group The Ronettes (which included her sister Estelle and her cousin Nedra Talley) into the studio and made them Wall Of Sound fixtures. (Fixtures on the wall ... get it???)
The Ronettes had five quick Top 40 Hits in sixteen months, kicking off with their chart topper “Be My Baby” in 1963, followed by “Baby, I Love You” (#24, 1964), “The Best Part Of Breakin’ Up” (#39, 1964), “Do I Love You?” (#34, 1964) and “Walking In the Rain” (#20, 1964.) Their sound led the pack of The Girl Group Sound of the ‘60’s (which is really saying something when you consider The Shangri-Las were part of that pack and sang the #1 song about “The Leader!” And, of course, it was the The Velvelettes who sang the song about “Really Sayin’ Something!”) [yeah, sometimes I just crack myself up!]
You’ll find The Ronettes to be part of our VERY large Tribute to The Phil Spector Sound (here: Phil Spector Revolutionized The Way Records Were Made ... (fhphilspector.blogspot.com), which includes lots of rare tracks as well as some of the work they recorded for Phil Spector’s Christmas Album.
In 1964, The Ronettes toured England with The Rolling Stones (who were their opening act!) … and were also befriended by The Beatles. (One might say that John Lennon was more than a little bit smitten by Ronnie … all the more incredible when you consider that only a few years later Lennon would be turning over The Beatles’ “Let It Be” tapes to Phil to sort out … and soon be recording his first few solo albums with Spector in the control booth!) When The Beatles asked The Ronettes to be one of their opening acts on their final tour of America in 1966, the girls agreed ... but Ronnie had to stay home (on Phil's orders) and send her cousin Elaine instead! (Nedra sang the leads and between the distance to the stage and all the screaming going on anticipating The Beatles' appearance, it's said that the audience was none the wiser.)
I just recently reread Ronnie’s autobiography “Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara Miniskirts and Madness, or My Life as a Fabulous Ronette” (which I see is now going for ASTRONOMICAL PRICES on Amazon!!!) … I can only tell you that if you can somehow find and pick up a copy, you will not be disappointed … this is a GREAT read … and shows how Ronnie was literally imprisoned by her husband Phil who, in the process, completely derailed her career, refusing to share her with the rest of the world as he spun closer and closer to what many feel had to be some form of mental illness.
Her voice was truly unique. (She says she was inspired by Frankie Lymon … which is a story all unto itself!) Rocker Eddie Money help to immortalize her with a whole new generation of fans with his 1986 Top Five Hit “Take Me Home Tonight,” on which Ronnie reprised her “Be my little baby” line from nearly 25 years earlier.
She was still performing as recently as a couple of Christmases ago (until Covid hit and shut the whole entertainment world down.) She had a look and a style that helped to define the ‘60’s … and she will be missed. (kk)
I Just Heard That Ronnie Spector Died Of Cancer ... 78 Years Old.
Ronnie & The Ronettes Were Murray The K's Dancing Girls … Saw Them At All The Shows I Went To Before They Did Any Recording.
Murray LOVED The Ronettes and was instrumental in helping to break their career … but you’re right … they’d dance during and between the other acts and, on special nights, maybe even be allowed to sing a song or two (usually a cover tune or something like “Shout”) to keep the audience revved up.
If you have not read Ronnie’s bio, I can highly recommend it … I'm just really surprised to see the prices jacked up the way they are. I bought my paperback copy brand new last year and paid less than $20 for it! I suppose the prices will only go higher now that she’s gone. (They really should reissue this … it’s a story many will want to read.) kk
The Arcada Theatre has played host to Ronnie Spector before … and CEO Ron Onesti has prepared a piece that’ll run in weekly column in The Daily Herald on Friday … but we’ve got a few excerpts to share with you today … along with a great pic of Ron and Ronnie!!!
In my humble opinion, few individuals embody the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the way '60s girl-group superstar Ronnie Spector did. We lost Ronnie to cancer yesterday. She was 78.
What I mean by that is the way her remarkable career has intertwined with so many legendary figures in music.
It is truly amazing to speak to her about it, as I did backstage prior to her last holiday show at the Arcada Theatre. It is equally amazing to the degree that her Christmas songs have become international staples, almost musically branding the holiday itself!
As we all sang along to "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree," I thought of what she told me about her humble beginnings. "In Manhattan's Spanish Harlem where I grew up, we didn't have any fireplaces or chimneys," Ronnie said. "My father told us that Santa came in through the fire escape … it made sense then! We didn't have much, so Christmas was such a big deal to all of us. My best family memories have always been around a Christmas tree, and that is why recording those songs were so important to me."
Veronica "Ronnie" Bennett, who changed her name to Spector after marrying her producer, Phil Spector, in 1968, was very sweet, and very appreciative of her fans. To this day she still had the charm and beauty that made her one of the most stunning figures in rock history.
Later on stage, she spoke a bit about her close relationship with John Lennon of the Beatles. "He was such a close friend ... he really understood me and my music." But ironically, a wall was put between the soon-to-be legendary groups.
Her tumultuous relationship with her ex-husband was legendary. Ronnie's own accounts of her "enslavement" are both startling and heartbreaking. Although The Beatles requested her to tour with them in 1966, she was forbidden to by Phil Spector for his fear of the "backstage antics." But the Beatles remained huge fans as they later wrote and produced with her.
George Harrison wrote a single for Ronnie titled "Try Some, Buy Some," on which John, Ringo Starr and George even recorded background vocals!
Forming the Ronettes in her basement in 1961 with her sister Estelle and cousin Nedra, she wrapped her strikingly good looks, exciting dance moves and powerfully unique voice and made the group one of the biggest acts of that era.
"We became huge in England and everybody wanted to go on tour with us. The Stones were one of those groups. We became friendly and they even stayed by my family's house, sleeping on the couch and on the floor when they first came over to the States. They were very innocent back then.
"All the stories about the drugs and alcohol really came later because, in the beginning, the young boys were as clean as could be."
This close relationship was evidenced by the Stones' Keith Richards referring to his crush on Spector as being "the love of his life" in his autobiography. Additionally, he even became the one to personally induct the Ronettes into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.
Not only did the Stones open for the Ronettes, but other luminaries-to-be that opened for the group included the Yardbirds (with Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck) and the up-and-coming comic Richard Pryor. She even sang on a Jimi Hendrix record! She was definitely the queen of that generation.
As we continued to talk in her dressing room, she all of a sudden said: "You know, he was a big fan of ours, too," as she pointed to a photo hanging on the wall of former St. Charles resident Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys.
"After 'Be My Baby' became a No. 1 hit, Brian wrote 'Don't Worry Baby' for me as a follow-up song in 1964. Phil Spector didn't own any of the publishing rights to that song so he wouldn't let me record it. But through the tough times, that song and its message helped me get through it all; it even got me back into singing after I gave it up for a while. So even though I didn't record it, the song wound up being written for me for another purpose," she said with a smile.
In 1986, Eddie Money recorded the pop/rock megahit 'Take Me Home Tonight' where he references her by singing the lyric "… just like Ronnie sang." She also sang on that single, and another rebirth happened for Ronnie Spector.
Bruce Springsteen, the Ramones, James Brown, Ray Charles … even Elvis! The list goes on and on of legendary rock stars who have bowed to Ronnie's royal status. She even won a historic 15-year court battle with her ex-producer / husband that paved the way for other recording groups from the '50s and '60s to collect past royalties. Just that alone puts her at Hall of Fame status, as far as I am concerned. It is all documented in her book, "Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts and Madness."
As we said our goodbyes, she gave me a big hug (with an extra squeeze … so cool!) and said she loved the history of the theater. The history of the theater? How about the history SHE carries? It was at that moment I realized just how much hugging her was like stretching my arms around all the icons who made rock 'n' roll what it is today. It was like hugging Mick Jagger's mom and the Beatles' Little League coach!
The Hall of Fame in Cleveland may house the memorabilia, but the true rock 'n' roll memories are housed within the buxom yet petite frame of Ronnie Spector. She was to play The Arcada last Christmas, but the show was then moved to 2022. I will miss her and her “Ronnie” way.
You can read the whole article in The Daily Herald starting tomorrow. (1/14) It's all part of Ron's weekly column, BACKSTAGE WITH THE ARCADA THEATRE'S RON ONESTI.
More on Ronnie Spector …
With all the focus on Ronnie Spector’s passing, little attention was paid to the death of Rosa Lee Hawkins, a founding member of The Dixie Cups, another one of the great ‘60’s Girl Groups.
They topped the charts in 1964 with their '60's classic "Chapel Of Love" ... and earned two more Top 20 Hits with their follow-up, "People Say" (#7, 1964) and "Iko Iko" (#19, 1965), which showcased their New Orleans sound.
Michael Lang, one of the organizers of Woodstock (and apparently the KEY guy who made it all happen), has passed away at the age of 77. Another end to The Woodstock Generation.
Also passing this past week … Bob Saget and Dwayne Hickman (TV’s Dobie Gillis) … and, of course, Sidney Poitier ... Director Peter Bogdanovich, and, on New Year’s Eve, Betty White. That’s a lot to digest in just two weeks, making this a VERY rough start to 2022. (kk)
I just now heard that Gerry Granahan has passed away. I did like his NO CHEMISE PLEASE on Sunbeam Records. He did have a follow-up to that … and who could ever forget NEE-NEE-NA-NA-NA-NA-NU-NU as Dickey Doo and the Don'ts? Swan Records could really put them out.
You probably already know this, but back in the day when the Chemise dress became popular with women, naturally someone would want to put it into a song. Remember also the Sack dress? Remember the record SACK DRESS by a group called the Beavers on Capitol Records?
Nope! I don’t remember that one! (lol) But I DO see that it charted (in Music Vendor Magazine only) in 1958 and reached #68.
Gerry Granahan participated with Forgotten Hits MANY years ago … and then we just sort of lost touch.
He was originally a dee-jay who many said had an “Elvis-like voice” … so in 1957 he took a stab at recording (under the name of Jerry Grant) and released a rockabilly tune called “Talkin’ About Love” that sank without a trace.
“No Chemise, Please” went to#14 in Cash Box Magazine in 1958. “Nee-Nee-Na-Na-Na-Na-Nu-Nu” snuck into The Top 40 (at #40) that same year … but the biggest hit for Dicky Doo and the Don’ts was “Click-Clack,” which reached #28 earlier that year.
(The story goes that the group took their name from Dick Clark’s son, Dicky Doo, and as such, Clark signed them to Swan Records, a label he had a hand in owning. In fact, the single “Click-Clack” became Swan Records’ first release. He also guaranteed them airplay and an appearance on “American Bandstand.” No, no inappropriate circumstances going on there!!! Lol)
Granahan probably achieved his greatest success behind the scenes. In 1958, he also founded Caprice Records and produced many of their hit records. (Their artist roster included The Angels, who had two Top 40 Hits for the label before jumping ship to Smash Records and recording the #1 Record “My Boyfriend’s Back.)
I had not heard that he died … so thanks for sharing the news, Larry. (kk)
LOOK FOR ANOTHER BRAND NEW FORGOTTEN HITS FEATURE FOR 2022 …
WHEN THE FIRST EDITION OF MAGICAL MONKEES MOMENTS PREMIERS TOMORROW IN FORGOTTEN HITS!
AS YOU CAN SEE BELOW, THE MONKEES ARE STILL MAKING HEADLINES 55 YEARS LATER …
SO DON’T MISS THIS LATEST DOSE OF MONKEES MADNESS, COURTESY OF OUR LONG-TIME BUDDY GARY STROBL!!!
Tom Cuddy sent us this great final interview with Michael Nesmith, conducted by Andy Greene of Rolling Stone Magazine …
And this from Felix Cavaliere … who’ll be hitting the road this year with Micky Dolenz …
Pre-order MEMOIR OF A RASCAL with forward by Cousin Brucie today …
And, if only as a companion piece, let me ALSO recommend Gene Cornish’s book …
NEWSFLASH: The Felix Cavaliere / Micky Dolenz kick-off show of their tour has been re-scheduled for Friday, June 3rd at New York's Palladium.
Once again, Covid rears its ugly head … but safety precautions MUST take precedent … more details as they become available.
>>>Good article about Chuck Berry today! Unlike most people out there, I've long (going back at least forty years) considered him, not Elvis Presley, to be the true King of Rock and Roll. (Frank Merrill)
I don't remember if I've ever sent this to you before.
This shot was taken at the main entrance to Von Steuben High School on Kimball near Foster in Chicago, and was said to have been taken by the wife of Leonard Chess; she and Leonard were living in the area at the time. I used to sit on that concrete "stoop" every morning waiting for the bell to ring and classes to start.
Ring Ring Goes The Bell!!! VERY cool, Mike! (kk)
Also got this cool photo from Chuck Buell (who’s always good for a laugh!!!)
We have this really cool new bar here in Parker that caters strictly to Forgotten Hitters!
It doesn’t play loud music, there’s no Millennials, Centennials, Generation Z-tennials or any of those there.
Just Great Music from the 60s, Cold Beer on Tap and specially-designed seating.
This is a picture of their bar!
(What first caught my attention about this place was their sign out front that said "Streaming Available!" HA!)
CB (which stands for "Cold-brewski Boy!")
What’s that they say … you never really own beer … you just rent it???
I think we should open up a chain of these pubs in London so that when some drunken bastard tells you to “Piss Off,” you actually can!!! (kk)
Rod Stewart has cancelled his tour of Australia and New Zealand due to Covid concerns.
From an official statement released by Live Nation …
Live Nation wishes to advise that due to the ongoing surge of Covid in Australia and the reimposition of entertainment venue capacity limits in several states, SIR ROD STEWART’s scheduled March/April tour of Australia and New Zealand has, regrettably, been cancelled.
Sir Rod Stewart said: “My dear friends, once again I feel we’ve all been cheated by this evil disease, so it is with great regret that I announce my shows for 2022 have had to be cancelled.
My thoughts are with all your families at this difficult time as we come out of the joyous and hopefully safe holiday season and I look forward to returning to Australia as soon as the health situation permits.
I’m absolutely gutted with disappointment and when I do eventually get there we‘ll have the party to end all parties. Guaranteed!”
The tour was due to begin in Perth on March 12 and conclude with A Day On The Green dates in Queensland on April 2 and 3.
Let’s see how long this one lasts!
(These links seem to disappear as fast as we post them when it comes to CBS Sunday Morning!)
From Tom Cuddy, a profile of Sonny Curtis …
"Dionne Warwick Souled Out," a CBS Television
Special that aired on September 17, 1969 (in Black and White) was posted just a
couple of days ago on youtube (with all of the original commercials included!)
Guests include: Burt Bacharach, George Kirby, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Glen Campbell
Dionne doing her own spin on "We Can Work it Out" BEFORE Stevie did it two years later! A Monte Carlo ad done to SHANGO!! How odd. Glen Campbell gets to show off his guitar expertise, even on a ballad. Glen offers up the oddest compliment to Dionne she ever heard, I'm thinking. Unusual duet with her -- glad this one was not released like those Glen & Anne or Glen & Bobbie or Glen & Tanya, etc. ones. Glen really showcases his guitar talent on these songs. CCR singing "Proud Mary" with LIVE vocals (and maybe even music, too, I am thinking. It sounds almost too perfect on the music, but sounds slightly different, so IF it is all live, it is just about PERFECT!!! I think it is all LIVE!)
Next, a pretty cool GOSPEL church setting for Dionne to wail out her gospel roots. Dionne does some of her own unique and nice interpretations of hits of the day. George Kirby does a fun impersonation bit and stand up routine. Then, an amazing ballet routine by Dionne! Who knew??? Then, Burt Bacharach, with full orchestra, but this HAS to be faked by what I see and hear with his fingers playing. Dionne and Glen do a medley of both of their songs and more. THEN, oddly, they hawk an album of Burt, Glen and Dionne that you can buy at Chevrolet for $1.39, ONLY at Chevrolet dealers!!!
This is actually TOTALLY different from any variety TV
special of 60's that I have ever seen -- some good and some not so good, but
After reading the Gene Pitney book we’ve been talking about, I jumped right into Burt Bacharach’s biography (which is EXCELLENT, by the way … another book that shouldn’t be out of print but, for some reason, is … although I was able to order a Kindle edition for Frannie!) Also highly recommended … and it’s put me in the mood to listen to more Dionne music this past week or so … so I am DEFINITELY watching this 1969 television special! (Dionne is portrayed in varying lights in Burt books … sounds like she’s got a personality that can turn on a dime … and I can’t say that this totally surprises me … although the few times I’ve talked to her in the past she’s been just as sweet as could be … and VERY appreciative of the amazing career she was able to enjoy in the ‘60’s.)
Anyway, thanks for letting us know about this one, Clark … there have been a couple of PBS documentaries recently spotlighting both Dionne Warwick and Burt Bacharach and they have all been very well done … wouldn’t mind being able to see these again, too, but they’re apparently not available for purchase thru the PBS store. Too bad. (kk)
The latest to endorse Harvey and Kenneth Kubernik’s new Jimi Hendrix book???
How about Prescott Niles of The Knack!
Well, one might say I’ve been acquainted with Jimi Hendrix in one way or another for many years. I witnessed many concerts including Fillmore East Philharmonic Hall, Madison Square Garden Salvation Club and Woodstock. Meeting Jimi with Velvert Turner made quite a lasting impression on me. From the day I met Jimi Hendrix till the day he passed away there has been a deluge of books written about him offering different personas and perspectives. I have read some of them, looking for the best combination of information about him as a person and musician. I am happy to report that Harvey and Kenneth Kubernik's book "Jimi Hendrix: Voodoo Child" is like a room full of mirrors in portraying the various personalities and talents that made for an accurate portrait about Jimi Hendrix. Also included were incredible interviews with notable musicians, engineers, friends, etc. I’m very grateful that Harvey chose to interview me and included me in this masterful book. I endorse it and say anybody that loves Jimmy and has a passing interest in the great legacy of Jimi Hendrix will love this book for all the reasons I mentioned. I salute the Kubernik brothers for an extraordinary job done." --Prescott Niles
Prescott Niles had the privilege to have been born in New York City.
His childhood dreams revolved around the world of baseball. His goal was to play shortstop for The New York Yankees. Prescott had a natural gift for the game.
As a boy, his house was filled with music – Ricky Nelson, Bobby Darin, Bill Haley, and The Ronettes. After The Beatles took the stage on The Ed Sullivan Show his life was changed and sealed his fate as a musician. Music, fashion and the culture of the 60’s were changing the world, and Prescott was not only there to witness it, but also to partake in its many blessings.
Prescott’s bass playing was inspired by the music and bands from the British Invasion, the music of Motown, the California sound of the Beach Boys, Jefferson Airplane and the omnipresent spirit of the times.
He started playing the bass guitar as a teenager, picking up quick lessons with his friends or whoever happened to know any Beatles, Stones, or Yardbirds songs. After a serendipitous family trip to California, Prescott knew that music was his sole passion and the destiny that awaited him. His father was wise enough to know that Prescott was serious about his new path and helped purchase his beloved 1962 Fender Precision Bass, which he still plays to this day.
His bass playing talents soon became evident to many neighborhood musicians and soon Prescott was sought after by many name bands in Brooklyn. A fateful meeting with a singer guitarist named Velvert Turner, was a turning point in his musical career. After auditioning Velvert for a Blues Band that Prescott was in, Velvert shared that he knew Jimi Hendrix, and that Hendrix was interested in backing a band that Velvert had put together. As a result, Prescott not only met Jimi Hendrix but also jammed with him at the famous club, Ungano’s in Manhattan. After Jimi Hendrix died, Velvert and Prescott secured a recording contract form Sunshine Records which was formed by Michael Lang (founder and organizer for the Woodstock Festival). Prescott and Velvert moved to Los Angeles to record an album produced by Tom Wilson. They recorded at Record Plant studios with Jimi Hendix’s engineer Gary Kelgrin.
After finishing the album with Velvert, (Prescott also composed three songs on the record), Prescott hooked up with Arthur Lee (Love) and did concerts and TV appearances with him. Prescott also played and recorded with Randy California (Spirit.) Through another quirk of fate, Prescott was flown to England to play in a band with his L.A. friend and guitarist.
He lived in London for two years. Whilst in England he played with and befriended Jeff Beck, Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones) and other London notables. In 1975, Prescott moved back to Los Angeles.
In April of 1978, Prescott got a call from Bruce Gary, his good friend and the best drummer on the L.A. scene. Prescott had played with Bruce before but each time they came close to a deal, Bruce was flown back to England to continue his playing legacy with Jack Bruce (Cream.) Bruce called Prescott and said that the band that he was working with needed ‘a bass player with the looks of Paul McCartney and the chops of John Entwistle.’ After the audition, Prescott got the gig and the ‘The Knack’ was now complete.
Prescott was lucky to have had the rare privilege to work with George Harrison for the soundtrack “Shanghai Surprise” (starring Madonna and Sean Penn.) He will never forget working with such a fine man and brilliant musician, (let alone that he was a Beatle.) Prescott also played with and did an album with Josie Cotton and was in the movie and soundtrack ‘Valley Girl’, which became a cult classic for many rock music fans.
In addition to this, Prescott continued to write songs, teach, compose and has fathered three wonderful and talented children, Noah, Liv and Gabe, who play their music in many top clubs in Los Angeles.
And then this from Roger Steffens, author of “So Much To Say: The Oral History of Bob Marley” …
"'Jimi Hendrix: Voodoo Child' is a landmark work that will, in the future, become the first book to read for any serious fan of the Sixties' most innovative guitar god. With scores of intimates revealing first-hand glimpses of genius in the making, you feel you are right there with Jimi at both historic moments and private revelations. History will thank the Kurberniks for their devotion to the truth and glory of Hendrix, and his continuing impact on the world."
Here's an interesting observation that in all my THOUSANDS of times of hearing it, I never picked up on …
I was listening to my Planet Money podcast today: https://www.npr.org/2022/01/07/1071399505/hbo-2-0
They were re-broadcasting another podcast from Twenty Thousand Hertz on their show: https://www.20k.org/episodes/hbo20
Because I have always thought that the Heaven Sent commercial jingle and the HBO jingle sounded so similar, I decided to research the Heaven Sent commercial jingle and came across your website: http://forgottenhits60s.blogspot.com/2009/12/heaven-sent.html
Their song was created by Eugene Harold “Buddy” Weed for Heaven Sent perfumes.
What I can’t understand is why no one from the family of Buddy Weed (deceased) who composed that music in 1968 has not sued HBO for their first HBO "Feature Presentation" sonic jingle attributed to Ferdinand J. Smith who “composed” it in 1983. I am no musicologist, but the similarities could not be more obvious.
Your thoughts? Any light that you could shed on this would be appreciated.
It's funny - I've heard this HBO theme a thousand times and NEVER would have made the connection had you not pointed it out. You're right ... it IS very similar ... and so short I'm not sure many would notice. (Plus how many average listeners even remember the Heaven Scent commercial from over fifty years ago!!!)
But WE sure do ... you would not believe how much mail we've received over the years pertaining to this one special advertising spot.
You raise a good point but after THIS much time, I don't believe that there is anything anybody could do about it.
Great catch 'tho ... you've got a good ear! (kk)
Our buddy Rick O’Dell of Me-TV-FM is interviewed in the new edition of The Illinois Entertainer … again pointing out that the demographic of the “older” listener offers the path less traveled for decades now … as well as a far more appreciative audience …
We talk often about pop songs being used in commercials … and I have always been a big supporter of this as it not only helps to keep this great music alive, but it ALSO helps to introduce to a whole new generation of fans who may not have had the pleasure of experiencing it the first time around.
That being said, I have already had enough of the use of the “Cheers” Theme (“Where Everybody Knows Your Name”) in the new Applebees commercial … as well as Diana Ross’ “Upside Down,” which is now being used to plug Nutella.
The saturation of these two tunes (and I believe these are both relatively new ads) has already ruined them for me. No lie … we saw each spot SEVEN TIMES in three hours the other night on NBC. That’s not only saturation, it’s overkill. Even new people discovering these tracks for the first time will soon tire of them at this rate of exposure! (kk)
And finally, if you're one of the few people left in the world who has never had the opportunity to lick the back of Mick Jagger's head, you will soon have YOUR chance to do so ... as The Rolling Stones will now have their own set of UK postage stamps! 12 new designs hit the market on January 20th.
You'll find a wide variety of packages available to preorder now …