Saturday, July 2, 2022

This Week with Phil Nee - SIX by The New Colony Six

Today we go back to the interview archive and pay tribute to one of our favorite groups here at WRCO.  
The New Colony Six are fondly remembered in Wisconsin.  Our state was like a second home to the group when they were first starting out.  
We were pleased to host the group for a couple of station events in the late 90's.  
Founding member Ray Graffia has long been a friend to us and has graced our airwaves several times.
Ronnie Rice became the lead singer of the group in 1967.  He has been our guest several times on the radio.  He was on the show with us back in the late 2000's and we talked about the groups 'Attacking A Straw Man' album.

The first NC6 drummer was Chic James.  I remember noticing the almost
cadence style in the back ground of the ballad 'Things I'd Like To Say,' which was the highest charting song for the group (#16 Billboard).  
In 2007, I talked to Chic about his drumming and the creative process for
the group.

Wally Kemp was the bass player for the New Colony Six until 1967.  He
remembers the early days when playing live was the most important thing
for him and the group.
No one knows the history of the New Colony Six better than Gerry Van
Kollenburg.  He was with the group from its start until 1974. 
He joined me in 2007 on WRCO.

It has been fun digging out six from the six today.  This last audio cut is from Craig (Greg) Kemp.  He played organ for the group until about 1966.    
During our talk in 2009 he remembered the start of the group in the mid-60's.
Chicago groups ruled the airwaves here in Chicago during the 1960's ... The Buckinghams, The Cryan' Shames, The Ides Of March, The Shadows Of Knight, The American Breed, The Mauds, The Flock and several others ... 
And between our two rock and roll AM Radio giants, WLS and WCFL, these groups were charting right alongside some of the biggest names in music history ... and holding their own every step of the way.
Of these, The New Colony Six was always my favorite ... and I was fortunate enough to meet and talk to most of the guys along the way of doing Forgotten Hits.  (In fact, we even did a month-long series on the group back when FH was still just an emailed newsletter!)
I would have a tough time picking six favorites by "the six" ... but I'm going to do my best to show the wide diversity the band exhibited during their eight year chart run from 1966 - 1974.
First, we'll feature their first ... "I Confess" from late 1965.  
This record went all the way to #2 here in Chicago and, although nobody knew it or was calling it that at the time, it was the perfect example of their garage band phase, the precursor to punk rock that wouldn't hit for another two decades.
In 1967 (with the addition of Ronnie Rice), the group began their pop phase ... and charted four times that year with irresistible tracks like "Love You So Much" (also a #2 record in Chicago), "You're Gonna Be Mine" (#8), "I'm Just Waitin', Anticipatin' (For Her To Show Up)," #14, a track written by Tony Orlando, of all people, 3-4 years before he'd be back on the charts again with his new group Dawn and the fun track "Treat Her Groovy." (#12)
Then, in 1968, their ballad phase began.  THIS is the way The New Colony Six are best remembered today, earning a #1 Hit in 1968 with "I Will Always Think About You" and following that up with the #2 record, "Things I'd Like To Say in 1969.
Things cooled down briefly before they came back in 1971 with another one of my favorite records by the band "Roll On (#10.)
And finally, my all-time favorite New Colony Six record ... "Long Time To Be Alone" (#13, 1972.)  This one only made it to #93 nationally ... but was a #1 Record in Hawaii ... and earned the group a chance to fly over to perform it there!
The New Colony Six still perform today, both in solo shows as well as as part of The Cornerstones Of Rock revue, featuring several of the other big name groups of the day, The Buckinghams, The Ides Of March, The Cryan' Shames and The Shadows Of Knight.  (In fact, they have a concert coming up October 1st at The Genesee Theatre in Waukegan.)
Thanks, Phil, for featuring one of my all-time favorites today!

Be sure to listen to Phil Nee's THOSE WERE THE DAYS radio program tonight … and EVERY Satuarday Night on WRCO ... 6 pm – Midnight (Central):

WRCO AM FM Radio Richland Center Wisconsin

Just click on the 100.9 headphones and start streaming!

Friday, July 1, 2022


Sheri and I were both blown away by the new Elvis movie. It's powerful and sad, especially since we know how it ends.  The actor playing E is freakishly good.
From all of the books I've read, it's very accurate. Like any film, a couple of creative license points, but overall, absolutely wonderful.

I got into Elvis much later (like with Michael Jackson, it took time and some maturity to look past the circus/freakshow elements that were presented to the public) to truly understand. He was a little before my time when he was in his prime, especially since I really didn't start listening to music deeply until four years after his death. But Sheri was a huge fan and of the right age to be swept up in the whole thing. For her, it dug up a lot of memories and emotions that she had forgotten.

Paul Braun

I totally agree, Paul …

I was fortunate enough to see Elvis live three times when he performed here in Chicago - first in 1972, when he was all fired up about performing in front of an audience again and then twice in 1976 near the end where it seemed like he had all but given up in trying to impress anybody.

The scene in the film where the real Elvis sings Unchained Melody is heartbreaking / and breathtaking at the same time - that scene alone is worth the price of admission!  (kk)

Sheri saw him at Notre Dame, also near the end.
I'd seen that clip of E singing "Unchained" on YouTube before - it's heartbreaking. You see the core of who he is trying to come through the shell of what he'd become.
We've got the Aloha and the Comeback Special on DVD - stunning. That shows the man at the height of his power - strong, confident.
We toured Graceland a few years ago. After hearing about it for so many years, how weird and creepy it was, both of us agreed that we couldn't see any of that. First, it's a lot smaller than I envisioned. The decor overall wasn't out of line. And when we got to the Jungle Room, we both agreed that we'd be totally fine with that as our living room.
I guess, compared to the 200,000-sq-ft monsters that some of today's super-celebs live in, it's really just a nice, somewhat-large house. Maybe back then it seemed outrageous.
I remember going by there when I was in High School and our family drove from Southern Illinois to Florida on vacation, and remembering all of the tacky gift shops across the street. It was nice to see that the family managed to grab all of that land and clean it up and use a lot of it for extended museum stuff.

My own impression of E's life is that as a simple kid from Tupelo, he wasn't prepared for "Elvis" because nothing like that had ever happened before. And unfortunately, he was surrounded by people who used him for a paycheck and wouldn't tell him "no." When you start to get successful, and suddenly you ask for something a little out of the ordinary and it appears, I think human nature is to try and push those boundaries. If you don't have someone to keep you grounded and tell you that you're getting out of control, things will just start to spiral. From what I know, the only one who would stand up to him and tell him things were wrong was George Klein (I was lucky to have met George a year or so before his death, and got to talk to him for a bit, mostly about Jimi) and the others would tell George to shut up and not ruin things for them.


It’s funny … I’ve shared a piece of an interview with Elton John from a few years back where he as much admitted that he lost complete contact with reality once he had people taking care of every little incidental thing for him. 

He was out walking in New York City one day and it was very windy out when all of a sudden he caught himself telling his assistant, “Can you do something about that?”  It was then that he realized how ridiculous it had all become.

I’ve never toured Graceland (although we’ve talked about it numerous times … and even drove by once several years ago … yes, a lot of the gift shops are gone, but the surrounding area has REALLY deteriorated over the years.)  I imagine we’ll still make it there someday.

But I DO have a very unique, one-of-a-kind Graceland story … I think I may have told it here before a time or two.

Back in February of 1976, my drummer Bob ("Cookie") and I drove down to Nashville to see if we could find anybody interested in listening to our songs.  After being pretty much turned away from every stop we made (“This isn’t the way it’s done down here, son” ... which really surprised me, as all I had ever heard was that this was EXACTLY the way it was done down there), we decided to make the drive to Memphis and see Graceland.  (You have to remember that this was 1976 … so Elvis was still alive then … and this was WAY before his home was open to the public and they started conducting tours.)

There was a small gathering of fans around the brick wall … but nothing at all like what you might expect (or what it eventually became.)

We figured we’d just get some pictures in front of the gate and as we were doing this, Cookie got the brilliant idea that if we could push the gate in just a little bit, he could slip thru that opening and get his picture taken from INSIDE the gate.  (I mean, this made PERFECT sense to us 22 year old geniuses … let’s face it, ANYBODY and EVERYBODY can get their picture taken in FRONT of the Gate … but how many people get their picture taken THROUGH the gate!)

So he starts trying to push it open enough to squeeze thru when all of a sudden, the gates opened!  The two guys in the guard house came out (and we figured for SURE we were about to be under-arrested!) but instead, they invited us in!!!  (I guess they figured if we wanted to get in THAT bad, they’d just open ‘em up for us!!!)

We came in and sat with the guys for about twenty minutes … they even had coffee and donuts for us inside!

They told us how Elvis wasn’t home … he was out on tour at the time (which may have explained the much smaller crowd of “in the know” fans who knew they weren’t going to have any kind of chance encounter with The King.)

They let us snap a couple of pictures from inside the gate … and even a couple inside the guard house (including one next to a giant painting of Elvis that hung on the wall.)

Let me tell you, we thought we were the shit!!!  Who else on earth could tell a story like this about their trip to Graceland!!!  It really was a once-in-a-lifetime experience!  (kk)


Shot from INSIDE the gate, looking through the gate and out into the street, to prove that we had actually made it inside – even more incredible, this photo was snapped by one of the guards from Elvis’ Guard House!!!


I was totally hooked since like ‘55/’56 when one of my sisters brought home the 45 of Heartbreak Hotel. I was four years old.  When I saw him on Ed Sullivan, it was world changing.  

Looking so forward to seeing this new film.

Jim Peterik


Kent -

Loved reading about the interview you did with Jann Wenner and the Monterey Pop Festival. I was a there and to this day no words can describe what it was like. Talk about a great ... unusual ... time!

Jann is now 75!!~~!!! Any idea how I can get ahold of him? We had met while I was at KYA 1965-1969.

Hope you are good ... I will be in Cleveland July 14th as Cleveland Rocks Presents "The Life and Times of Radio Legend Johnny Holliday."  (I was shocked to read they think I'm a radio legend.)

Stay well -


Wow – congratulations!!!  It is indeed a well-deserved honor … wish I could be there for it.  (We’re still trying to coordinate a trip to Cleveland to see the Beatles Let It Be Exhibit at The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame before it disappears … but have some difficulties working out all the timing and logistics. Still hoping we can find a way to make it happen.)

Actually, the interview was done by Harvey Kubernik, a frequent contributor to Forgotten Hits.  I will ask him if he is able to provide any kind of connection for you to speak with Jann.  (I’ve never met the man … and probably am not on his “favorites” list after all the slamming of The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame I’ve done over the years!!!)

Congratulations again.  Enjoy your big day!  (kk)


We haven’t heard from Jim Shea in AGES!!! (Excuse me … DOCTOR Jim Shea!!!)  So it was quite a surprise to receive this email from him over the weekend …


Some Prose For A New Summer Of Love …

When the sun is hot like a direct kiss, I am still a 10 year old kid watching a record go round and round and all the hippy trippy optimism flows turbulently through my elder veins and my really should know better heart 

but the sun shines equally for the haves and may never haves and is the one truly essential element of life and the messages are just as fresh: I admit it’s getting better man I was mean but I’m changing my scene and I still talk about the people who’ve grown so cold who gain the world and lose their soul and all we can do is all we could ever do: shine on with love ❤️ the only thing that gives life color as vivid as those outa sight Beatle duds

Pepper Time is now 



Iconic Philadelphia Radio, Film and Television Personality Bob Charger returns to Philadelphia Television hosting "Wages of Spin" TV Show !

The Wages of Spin is a television interview show hosted by iconic Philadelphia radio show host, Television and Film producer Bob Charger. In each episode Bob will interview a music industry notable about their career in the music industry and the pitfalls, inner workings of and emotional toll of a career in the music industry. Our show will also explore many of the corrupt practices perpetrated on artists and the public throughout the sordid history of the music industry.

The show is produced by the creative team behind the feature length documentary film "Wages of Spin" that has had over 2,000 PBS affiliate airings and is in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Archives.

Production on "Wages of Spin" series starts in July!

Bob Charger

We did a lot to help promote the “Wages Of Spin” documentary several years ago … and were thrilled to see it running on PBS (although we haven’t seen it airing there in quite a while!)

This was Paul Sword’s baby … and we worked closely with Paul Russo of Cool Scoops as well (who we had the pleasure of visiting with several years ago!

Will this just be a local program … or are there plans for syndication or YouTube showings?

Keep us posted as this may be something our readers would be very interested in seeing!  Thanks, Bob!  (kk)


In your recent article on Lee Hazlewood, you neglected to mention that he wrote the Al Casey classic "Surfin' Hootenanny," which 2 out of 3 Forgotten Hits readers agree should have been a bigger hit.

Ed #1


From Bob Lind … who’s making a return stop at his favorite Florida spot next month …

TO MY SOUTH FLORIDA FRIENDS & FANS  (or friends and fans who may be in South Florida next month and like to plan early):

After almost three gigless years (Covid), I'm sticking my toe back into those still-dangerous waters and playing my favorite Florida venue.

Here are the specifics:

Bob Lind


775 N.E. 125th St.

North Miami, FL 33161

(305) 799-7123

Saturday July 16, 2022

Showtime: 8 p.m.

Tickets: 15 of the wisest dollars you'll ever spend.

I don't kid myself that the virus isn't still kicking ass. But I've weighed the pros and cons and decided to take the gamble.

I would love to see you there. Masks are recommended but not required.

Two things:

1. Besides the cover charge, there's also a $15 minimum.

2. They don't take credit cards, so bring cash.

My advice, come early and have dinner. The food there is wonderful.

I will send a reminder closer to the date.

Love to you all,

Bob Lind

Here is an interesting question ...

What recording artist whose early death have you found to be the saddest? Not necessarily because of their career or loss of the future, but someone whose death just affected you. This would be an interesting question to pose to your readers.

Mike De Martino

Wow, for me there have been several … far TOO many as far as I’m concerned.

I’m sure our list could come up with dozens and dozens of names … besides the most obvious candidates like Buddy Holly, Sam Cooke, Jim Croce and several others who were cut off in their prime, never having the chance to share their incredible potential with the rest of the world.

It hurt so bad to lose even some of the older artists … like Elvis and Rick Nelson … Carl Wilson of The Beach Boys … obviously, the shooting of John Lennon … Michael Jackson, George Michael, Prince … artists that had SO much to give and inspired so many others.  Freddy Mercury … my God, the list goes on and on.  (Two that hit me the hardest have to be Jim Croce and Carl Wilson … but now, after all these years of doing Forgotten Hits, losing someone we became close to through this connection hurts pretty badly, too.  Guys like Billy Hinsche and Alan O’Day became GREAT Friends of Forgotten Hits … and I will miss their connection forever.)  If I really stopped to think about it, I’m sure I could easily come up with another fifty more. At some point, you just realize how precious our time here really is.

I’m not opposed to making up a master list where we tally the responses we receive in order to determine which losses hurt us the most.  I think it might make for an interesting future piece.  (kk)

Thursday, June 30, 2022

THURSDAY THIS AND THAT: Super Heroes Edition


I went to see the new Elvis movie this weekend, too, and I really enjoyed it –

But the whole time I was sitting there, I kept thinking that there was something that wasn’t really clicking – but I couldn’t put my finger on what it might be.

Then I read your review this morning and it all made sense …

Film’s too long … CHECK!

Too much time spent on the early pre-fame years … CHECK!

Several of his early big hits missing … CHECK!

No Ed Sullivan??? No re-enacted movie clips?  No Elvis and Priscilla love story in Germany and then him moving her into Graceland with him with her parents’ blessing when she was still just a teenager???  And an Army Brat at that?!?  CHECK – CHECK – CHECK

(How DO you do a movie about Elvis and leave out the “Only shoot him from the waist up” part???  That was a big part of what helped to fuel the fire!)

Your review pointed out all the things I was feeling while I was sitting there in the theater yet all the time I sat there, I couldn’t formalize my thoughts and express in words what all those feelings were … your review brought it all together … EXACTLY what I was feeling and thinking.

Yes, the film is breathtakingly beautiful and I’m glad I saw it … and I know I’ll see it again.  (Truth is, I could have lived without the Colonel Parker story altogether if it meant getting a little more Elvis!)  Austin Butler did an excellent job of portraying The King Of Rock And Roll and I hope he gets some recognition for the wonderful job that he did.  Meanwhile, I hope you're right … and that as good word of mouth spreads, we’ll start to hear more of Elvis’ music on the radio again.  (I’ll bet he has half a dozen premiers on next week’s Billboard chart … because that just seems to be the way these things happen these days.  But I’ll also bet that Suspicious Minds is still the biggest!)


Hi Kent,

I just saw "Elvis" yesterday, so it is still fresh in my mind, and reading your comments helped me better appreciate it. 

I am often distracted when I watch artist biographies by factual errors, though I recognize poetic license and that many events have to be consolidated or eliminated to keep the plot moving. It helps for me to think of these movies as "based on biographies." Nevertheless, I found "Elvis" truer to life than many films that claim to be documentaries, such as Ken Burns' "Country Music."

There were some "Easter eggs" in "Elvis" for me, as I could appreciate that effort went into capturing the look and mannerisms of some of the most minor characters whom I met or saw in those days. In the first Las Vegas Hilton scene Elvis' conductor Joe Guercio was depicted. Joe was a friend and Nashville neighbor of ours, but I don't think anyone else in the theater would have recognized his appearance.

Ed Salamon



Without focusing too deeply on any of your details regarding your well-expressed review of “Elvis,” because most of my thoughts would literary [not sic] just be repetitious, I do agree with it overall. I think you framed it quite well with all its positives and negatives (a bit too long, missing some important historical highlights of his life and out of order songs … also see "Rocket Man," "Bohemian Rhapsody," and the like for similar song "disorders") and that Austin Butler and Tom Hanks were terrific! This is where I’ll predict that there will be some Cinematic Award Nominations and Wins for both of them.

As a young boy, Elvis was a major part of my early Forgotten Hits Pop Music foundation.  I heard, became extremely familiar with and really liked, all his early songs and those that followed by hearing them on the radio. His stylings were impressive. I remember my best friend saying after hearing one of his slow songs, “Man, he sure can sing a lot of different kinds of songs!”

As I got older and started going to Junior High School Dances at our local YM-YWCA, I and my Guy Friends would pre-plan just which girl each of us was going to ask to “slow dance” with as soon as the first notes of Elvis’ record "Don’t" was played! Oh, whew . . .

Much later on, when my Radio Career was in its full trajectory, the announcement of Elvis’ death is another date that for many of us is remembered by where we were at the time we heard it. I was on the air at that moment when I related the news and it was an emotional stunner even for me having played so many of his songs on my radio shows throughout the years. 

After the studio phones lit up with listeners weighing in with their sadness and grief and the impact he and his songs had on them, I immediately broke away from our current station’s On-Air Song Rotation “Hot Clock,” and with the help of others on staff, began pulling and playing his songs exclusively (hopefully in some factual resemblance of order!) interspersed with what relatable stories we could find on that pre-Internet day and, as well as we could under the circumstances, create and air in real time an informal and instant on-the-fly “Elvis Memormium Radio Special.” (Yeah, another time when a Joel Whitburn Book came in handy for reference!)

I had to smile when you shared that you and Frannie went to a “late Sunday matinee” to see the movie "Elvis" and that “the theater was less than half full.” Such was the case for Linda and me one afternoon last week. But then, she and I generally go to a movie in the afternoon for that very reason. When we went to see “Elvis,” there were only eight others there! We call those movie-going experiences our own “Personal Private Screenings!” 

CB ( which stands for [1967’s] “Clambake Boy!” )

Lol  - so funny you say that –

After sitting there for the first two hours I asked Frannie “Can you please hit pause - I have to go to the bathroom!” 

But trouper that I am, I stuck it out till the very last end credit -

And then went and pee’d like a race horse!  (kk)


Kent –

I totally agree with you. I enjoyed the movie totally for the music and not the accuracy of the facts. I thought the performances were top ranked. I may go and see it again. When I went last Friday, the theater was only half-full. I hope word of mouth helps this movie cuz it was very enjoyable.

Mike DeMartino


Well, I went to see the new Elvis movieyesterday.  In the end, I liked it, but that first hour goes SO fast!  It seemed like it went thru 1950 - 1958 in tne minutes and then ’62 – ‘68 and other five minutes.  Once it slowed to a normal pace with the Comeback Special, the story really got better. 

BUT 2 1/2 hours to cover a life -- whether it be Elvis OR Colonel Tom (shouldn't the movie title be "Colonel Tom" instead?), it jumped thru hoops to get to Elvis' death.  We really missed most of Elvis life and we really didn't learn a lot of things along the way because the movie left asking about the Colonel as well. 

I guess the goal was to show that the Colonel played Elvis for his whole life and Elvis couldn't shake it.  (Well, he COULD shake it, but you know what I mean.) 

The rap music didn't detract too much, but I guess they had to make it current.  I never heard some of the songs listed at the end, either.  SO many songs NOT played, while "That’s All Right Mama" gets three different era Elvis performances.  NO Sullivan mentions or appearances?  Lots about singing Hound Dog to the dog, but no view of what that looked like, so anybody unknowing watching this film would have no idea what they are talking about. 

It was good, but maybe should have been made into two two hour movies instead –the early and the late years(?)

That said, the acting was TREMENDOUS!  Both the Elvis and Priscilla performers looked and acted perfectly!

Clark Besch

It’s SO hard to try and document a story that is already so well known.  Of course, EVERYBODY knows the crazy bits … one hopes that a film like this turns some NEW stones over to help expand the story … and I think to a degree that’s what they were trying to do.  I believe that’s why they made so much of the story about Colonel Tom Parker.  But the truth of the matter is, comparatively speaking, Colonel Tom Parker isn’t anywhere NEAR as interesting as Elvis Presley. (There were moments where it felt like Parker lived his entire life vicariously through Elvis … and maybe he did, to a degree.  I mean over the course of their partnership, he actually made more money than ELVIS did!!!  So who was the REAL star?!?)

Like I said, there are better documentaries out there.  (For a two-part look at The King’s career, check out “The Searcher.”  It originally ran as a 2-part / 4 hour biography on HBO and it is VERY well done.

For me, seeing the Baz Luhrmann film was just for the fun of it … a couple of hours of fun entertainment presented with as much gloss as possible.  (kk)


Personally, I could have lived without The Colonel Tom Parker Story … and that’s a shame because you’ve got a Big League, Academy Award Winning Actor like Tom Hanks assuming the title role … but WE WANT TO SEE ELVIS … and there is SO much more of the Elvis story that could have been told.  (Let me rephrase that just a bit … I probably WOULD be interested in seeing a Colonel Tom Park Story if that’s what the filmmakers set out to make … and give us enough of the story to make it compelling to watch for a couple of hours … but here, in this context, he’s just a distraction … like swatting away at the flies at your backyard barbecue.  If you’re going to make a movie about Elvis … and call it “Elvis” … that’s what people want to come out and see.

Actually, I think a Tom Parker movie (if done as a true and realistic expose) could make for a very interesting profile … and Hanks just might be the perfect guy to play him (although I personally found it distracting trying to accept him in this role.  It’s not that Hanks did anything specifically wrong … it’s just that you can’t look at the guy without seeing all of the other major characters he’s played in his lifetime … and Forrest Gump just doesn’t fly as Elvis’ manager!)

In a Parker biopic, Elvis would have to be the incidental background … we’d want to see them delve into Parker’s shady past … how he immigrated to America (reportedly illegally), how he assumed a new identity and how he built himself into the PREMIER Entertainment Manager.  (Hell, call the film “The Snowman” … and run with it!)  But for me, the Parker story slowed the new “Elvis” movie down … and forced extremely relevant part of Presley’s career to be cut or flat out eliminated from the film.  (kk)


Art Vuolo (aka “Radio’s Best Friend”) sent us this clip of Dick Clark discussing Colonel Tom Parker at a radio function.  Clark has ALWAYS been the diplomat … always cool, calm and composed, he represented the “level head” of Rock And Roll … but you can see that he gets a little emotional here when talk of Parker gets his blood boiling …


With all the buzz currently about the "Elvis" movie and the curiosity by fans about Col. Tom Parker and exactly how he treated "The King of Rock & Roll," this brief clip should answer that question.  Dick Clark was being interviewed by the late radio personality Kidd Kraddick at the 1998 R&R Radio Convention in LA and this is the only recording of that exchange. I'm glad I got it.  If you use it in your column (and I hope you do) ... please just credit.  Thanks!

Art Vuolo Jr.

Radio's Best Friend



It always takes me out of the movie a little when they screw up the chronology of hit records.  I noticed that in "Bohemian Rhapsody" also.  And in "Animal House," when they were partying to "Louie Louie" in the fall of 1962.  

It didn’t bother me so much in the Elvis movie (nor was I ever really aware of it.)  The one that abused this the most has gotta be “Rocket Man,” the Elton John biopic, that used Elton’s songs (in TOTALLY random order) to illustrate the various phases of his life.  (They also distorted a large number of facts in that movie, too … which is always a turn-off … like Elton choosing his stage name “John” after John Lennon.  Nope … that’s NOT what happened … it’s almost like Elton felt he could earn a bit more street cred by changing his story and then having it forever documented on film. (kk)

We got DOZENS of emails from people telling us “Seeing today,” “Seeing it tomorrow,” “Going this weekend,” etc., etc., etc. 

Send us your thoughts after you see the film.

My goal is never to influence you opinion on these things …

I just try to bring a perspective that the average movie critic or movie fan might not have considered, looking at things from more of a music perspective.  Are there things that aren’t historically accurate?  Of course there are … and there will be in any biopic you see, no matter who it’s about.  This one was dressed up in vibrant colors and brilliant sound and achieves the goal it set for itself.  Would I liked to have seen more important events as the pertain to the life of The King?  Of course I would … but I was still able to sit there and enjoy the two hour spectacle that is the movie “Elvis” … and I think you will, too.  That’s why, despite all of it’s flaws, I still recommend seeing this film. (kk) 


Hi Kent,

What an emotional, yet beautiful couple of days it's been.

Friday was Joel's "celebration of life" service at his church in Richfield, Wisconsin.  I had the distinct honor of delivering the main eulogy.  His grandson Nathaniel read the scripture and his granddaughter Samantha shared some personal memories.  Towards the end of the service, Joel's "adopted" son Oscar (from Honduras) delivered an amazing speech that brought equal amounts of tears and laughter.  I saw many old, familiar faces, along with some new ones.

Saturday was the private graveside service in Waupaca, Wisconsin.  Joel chose to be buried near his beloved lake home, which has been in his family for decades.  This crowd was smaller, but many stepped forward to share stories of Joel over the years.  Again, a few tears, but also much laughter.  Afterwards, we congregated at Joel's lake home and it was more stories, plenty of food and of course, music.  Joel would've loved every minute of it.

Once again, I'd like to personally thank everyone who has shared a memory with me, either online, on the phone or in person.  As I've stated many times, Joel wasn't only my boss, but also a dear friend.  I will miss seeing him every day.  However, life goes on and so does the business that Joel built.  I hope to do whatever I can to see that his legacy continues for many years to come.

I love the idea of an annual "Joel Whitburn Day"!  For many years, I've lobbied to have Joel inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  I'm hoping that it still may happen someday.  Even if it doesn't, his name will live on.  Every time someone picks up a Record Research book, Joel will be remembered.

Thank you, Kent, for all you do to keep Joel's flame burning.  I plan on keeping all of your readers posted on our activities at Record Research in the months and years to come.

As Joel would say, "keep rockin'!"

Paul Haney

Record Research


Please thank Paul for his support of my Joel Whitburn Day idea! I am so glad he's on board with this and I truly appreciate his backing!

Maybe someday I'LL be honored at Record Research as the instigator of the Forgotten Hits "Whitburn Day!" as endorsed by Paull Haney!

The Mind just Boggles.


We've got several idea in motion right now for an Annual Forgotten Hits "Joel Whitburn Day" ... we'll share them as we get closer to the date.  (kk)




Tom Cuddy sent us this to share with our readers …


And believe me, I have been every bit as guilty as most in saying how absolutely MISERABLE Brian Wilson looks when he’s up on stage these days … that he can’t POSSIBLY be having any fun doing this … so why IS he doing it???  (He looks like he wishes he could be ANYWHERE else!)  And WHY does he still goes out there after all these years ... and in poor health, too?  What satisfaction can he possibly get from it anymore?  (Let's face it ... he never liked touring in the first place!!!  Even when he was a young man!!!)


So it was interesting to read this, as it comes from Tom by way of Brian Wilson’s manager, Jean Sievers … and as a direct result of a similar post by music blogger Bob Lefsetz.


Very few know what Brian Wilson is like behind the scenes. 

Below is a posting that Brian’s manager Jean sent the day after Brian’s 80th to music blogger Bob Lefsetz.


From: Jean Sievers

Re: Brian Wilson 80th Birthday


Thanks, Bob ... I’ll show him your post.


He had a happy and fun day today filled with LOTS of love from his friends and peers (I’m sure you saw the video )


BIG cake from the Chicago guys at the show.


He IS on the road where he wants to be … forget the naysayers who say he should stay home … huh?

He calls and asks when is the bus leaving and is Marc getting my oatmeal cookies?


He is feeling love on the road

He loves soaking it up ... the music and applause for his music …


Watching the band …


Watching Al sing and Blondie killing it on guitar and vocals like a teenager.


He loves a steak for dinner and Popeyes on the bus.


Watching the baseball or basketball game … or football depending on the season


Is he running around like Mick?


He doesn’t have to and after a horrible back surgery he can’t … BUT he loves being there ... it means the world to him.


He thanks the Ladies and Gentleman and waves goodbye and hangs with his band and sings songs backstage off the cuff …

Zero prompters or lyrics …

He knows them all and sings whatever is floating his boat


Did you ever hear the Billy Idol story from the Greek before the pandemic?


Billy was coming to the show and his manager wondered about parking and saying hello.  We told him to come do an encore.

He came to the soundcheck to work out some songs.

It was HOT so Brian was in his dressing room … people thought he wouldn’t know Billy.

Paul, our MD, said “Brian … Billy Idol is here.”  Without any pause he replied, “Eyes Without a Face Billy Idol??!!” (which is what we call Billy now)


And demanded to see him right away.


He made Billy sit next to him on the couch and wanted to talk about the production of that track and said “I fucking LOVE that song” and he meant it !


Then he asked Billy if he was from England (classic Brian lol)

Billy was floored as were we and they had a great night at the Greek doing the encore and we had She & Him there as well ... they just did a beautiful tribute album with his songs ... you should check it out.  MELT AWAY … A Tribute to Brian Wilson … it’s wonderful.


Just when you think he’s not paying attention, you are wrong!!!


He remembers everything!

He remembers what Paul McCartney was wearing the day they met, right down to his shoes!


I’m so happy for Brian …

And happy for us all to have lived in his world with his music

Happy 80th, Boss!

We love you!


REMINDER:  The Beach Boys Channel kicks off again this Friday (July 1st) and runs thru Sunday, August 28th … all your favorites, solo tracks, interviews, live cut, alternate takes and more. Tune in to Channel 105 on Sirius / XM beginning THIS FRIDAY … for a whole lot of Fun, Fun, Fun!!!  (kk)