Saturday, October 8, 2022

PHIL NEE - October 8th: Looking Back At The British Invasion

The music from the first wave of the British Invasion still gets requested often on my radio show.  Today I am proud to feature three acts from that era.  

It was my honor to call across the pond in July of 1993 and speak with Mike Pender, who was a founding member of The Searchers, a group that was formed in Liverpool in 1960 and rivaled the Beatles in their hometown in those early days.  

They charted 14 times in the U.S. and had their biggest record with  'Love Potion Number Nine' in late 1964.

The second group that we are featuring today is Manfred Mann.  
They were formed in England in 1964 by Manfred Mann (Michael Lubowitz).  The talented lineup was not as successful here in The States as some of the other British Invasion stars, however, they did have a two week number one in 1964 with Do Wah Diddy Diddy. 
Lead singer Paul Jones joined me in December of 1993 on WRCO.
The third group that I am featuring from the archives is Gerry and the Pacemakers.  They were another group from Liverpool and were signed in 1962 by Brian Epstein.  
They had eleven songs make the Billboard charts including three Top Ten hits.  In 1994, Gerry Marsden joined me on my Those Were the Days radio show.

Fans in America got to see Gerry and the Pacemakers on The Ed Sullivan Show,  the theatrical release The T.A.M.I. Show and a film named after one of their hits, 'Ferry Cross The Mersey'.

It was The British Invasion that turned me on to popular music back in 1964.  SO many great hits coming from across the pond ... it just seemed to be an endless supply at the time.
Here's a brief HIT LIST of the three artists Phil interviewed today ...
(ranked by US Peak Position / followed by UK Peak Position as tie-breakers or stand-alone entries)
1964 - Do Wah Diddy Diddy - Manfred Man (US - # 1 / UK - # 1)
1965 - Love Potion Number Nine - The Searchers (US - # 1 / UK - #xx) 
1968 - The Mighty Quinn - Manfred Mann  (US - #4 / UK - # 1)
1964 - Don't Let The Sun Catch You Crying - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - # 4 / UK - # 6)
1965 - Ferry 'Cross The Mersey - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - # 4 / UK - # 8)
1964 - How Do You Do It - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - # 9 / UK - # 1)
1964 - Sha La La - Manfred Mann (US - #12 / UK - # 3)
1964 - Needles And Pins - The Searchers (US - #12 / UK - #xx)
1964 - Don't Throw Your Love Away - The Searchers (US - #13 / UK - #xx)
1965 - I'll Be There - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #14 / UK - #15)
1964 - I Like It - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #17 / UK - # 1)
1965 - Bumble Bee - The Searchers (US - #18 / UK - #xx)
1965 - It's Gonna Be Alright - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US -#20 / UK - #24)
1965 - What Have They Done To The Rain - The Searchers (US - #25 / UK - #xx)
1966 - Pretty Flamingo - Manfred Mann (US - #27 / UK - # 1)
1966 - Girl On A Swing - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #28 / UK - #xx)
1964 - When You Walk In The Room - The Searchers (US - #29 / UK - #xx)
1964 - Some Day We're Gonna Love Again - The Searchers (US - #34 / UK - #xx)
1965 - Come Tomorrow - Manfred Mann  (US - #42 / UK - # 4)
1965 - Goodbye My Lover Goodbye - The Searchers (US - #42 / UK - #xx)
1964 - Sugar And Spice - The Searchers (US - #44 / UK - #xx)
1965 - You'll Never Walk Alone - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #48 / UK - # 1)
1968 - My Name Is Jack - Manfred Mann (US - #57 / UK - # 8)
1966 - Just Like A Woman - Manfred Mann (US - #67 / UK - #10)
1964 - I'm The One - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #82 / UK - # 2) 
1968 - Fox On The Run - Manfred Mann (US - #94 / UK - # 5)
1965 - If You Gotta Go, Go Now - Manfred Mann (US - #100 / UK - # 2) 
1965 - Walk Hand In Hand - Gerry and the Pacemakers (US - #103 / UK - #29)
1969 - Ragamuffin Man - Manfred Mann (US - #125 / UK - # 8)
1966 - Semi-Detached Suburban Mr. James - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - #2)
1967 - Ha Ha Said The Clown - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - # 4)
1964 - 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - #5)
1965 - Oh No, Not My Baby - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - #11)
1964 - Hubble Bubble Toil And Trouble - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - 11)
1966 - You Gave Me Somebody To Love - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - #36)
1967 - Sweet Pea - Manfred Mann (US - #xx / UK - #36)

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

WRCO AM FM Radio Richland Center Wisconsin

Just click on the 100.9 headphones and start streaming!

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Thursday This And That

Yesterday we told you about Mama Cass Elliot receiving her Star on The Hollywood Walk Of Fame ...

Mama Michelle, the last surviving member of the remarkable quartet, was on hand and remembered ...

“On our first meeting, Cass and I experienced our very first acid trip.  

"It was 1965. We never came down. We bonded. She was my best friend. She gave me courage to sing when I thought I couldn’t make a note … 

"She was born to be onstage.”

She was there with her daughter Chynna (as well as Wendy and Carnie Wilson, collectively known as Wilson Phillips, who enjoyed their own bit of pop success in the '90's) to pay tribute to their legendary "Aunt Cass."  Also on hand were Michelle's daughters Bijou and (by marriage) Mackenzie and Mamas and Papas Record Producer Lou Adler, along with Micky Dolenz, John Sebastian and Stephen Stills, all part of the Laurel Canyon Crowd of the '60's.

Tributes from Paul McCartney, David Crosby, Graham Nash, Carol Burnett, Richard Carpenter and others were also read.

David Salidor, Micky's PR Guy, sent us this clipping from "The Glorious Corner" to share ...

A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was unveiled Monday honoring the late singer "Mama" Cass Elliot, fulfilling a longtime quest by the daughter of the member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame pop group, The Mamas & the Papas.

Bandmate Michelle Phillips and John Sebastian, an original member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame rock band Lovin' Spoonful, were among those speaking at the ceremony at 7065 Hollywood Blvd. between La Brea and Sycamore avenues.

"On our first meeting, Cass and I experienced our very first acid trip," Phillips joked. "It was 1965. We never came down. We bonded. She was my best friend. She gave me courage to sing when I thought I couldn't make a note. She'd say, `Hey, just go for it. You know I'm going to make it.' And so I went for it.

"She was born to be on stage. I was sick. I was terrified. But she took my hand in hers and walked me on to face 18,000 fans — our very first Mamas and Papas appearance at the Bowl."

Elliot's daughter, Owen Elliot-Kugell, and the singer's sister, singer- turned-attorney Leah Kunkel, accepted the star on behalf of the family.

The crowd cheered loudly as Owen Elliot-Kugell walked to the microphone, recognizing her long-fought effort to have her mother honored on the Walk of Fame.

"What a fantastic day," she said. "It's amazing to see all the people who have come out to celebrate my mother and her achievements nearly five decades after she's gone. It speaks volumes of the wonderful human being that she was to be remembered today with such fervor and such love.

"Of course, she's never really left us, because her voice and the music she's a part of creating live on today across the world. And I know that wherever it is heard, her voice makes life a little brighter for whoever hears it, as it does for me."

The Hollywood Walk of Fame's selection committee approved Elliot- Kugell's application for a star for her mother in 2015. She had not been previously nominated, according to Ana Martinez, producer of the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Elliot-Kugell said it was a "grassroots effort" to finally get the star installed and unveiled.

The star is the 2,735th since the completion of the Walk of Fame in 1961 with the first 1,558 stars.

Born Ellen Naomi Cohen on Sept. 19, 1941, in Baltimore, Elliot initially sought a career in theater, including auditioning for the role of Miss Marmelstein in the 1962 Broadway musical, "I Can Get It For You Wholesale," according to the biography on her website, The role went to an actress with no previous Broadway experience, Barbra Streisand.

In 1963, Elliot, Tim Rose and John Brown formed a folk trio initially known as the Triumvirate, later known as The Big 3, who recorded two albums and appeared on "The Tonight Show" and the variety shows "Hootenanny" and "The Danny Kaye Show."

The group metamorphasized into Cass Elliot and The Big 3, which included singer Denny Doherty, and later The Mugwumps, who released a single for Warner Bros. Records.

In mid-1965, Elliot joined Doherty, Phillips and her husband John, who had been performing as the New Journeymen, to form The Mamas & the Papas. The group's first album "If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears," released Feb. 28, 1966, was 112th on Rolling Stone's 2012 list of the 500 greatest albums of all time and part of the 2010 book, "1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die."

"If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears" was the group's only album to reach the top of the Billboard 200 chart.

The album included "Monday, Monday," which brought the group its only four Grammy nominations, and a win for best contemporary rock 'n' roll group performance, vocal or instrumental in a field that also included The Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" and The Monkees' "Last Train to Clarksville."

"Monday, Monday" was also nominated for record of the year, which was won by Frank Sinatra's rendition of "Strangers in the Night"; best performance by a vocal group, losing to the Anita Kerr Singers' "A Man and a Woman"; and best contemporary rock 'n' roll recording, losing to "Winchester Cathedral" by the New Vaudeville Band.

The group initially recorded from 1965-68, recording four albums and 16 singles. It reunited in 1971, recording the album "People Like Us" and the single "Step Out." Its other memorable songs include "California Dreamin"' "Dream a Little Dream of Me," "Creeque Alley" and "Dedicated to the One I Love"

The group's first concert was at the Hollywood Bowl and it closed the famed Monterey International Pop Festival in 1967.

Elliot recorded five solo albums with hits including "It's Getting Better," "Make Your Own Kind of Music" and "New World Coming."

Elliot starred in prime-time television specials in 1969 and 1973, guest-hosted "The Tonight Show" multiple times, co-hosted "The Mike Douglas Show" for a week in 1974 and appeared on "The Ed Sullivan Show" and "The Carol Burnett Show."

Elliot died of a heart attack on July 29, 1974, at age 32 following a series of sold-out performances at the London Palladium.

Cass Elliot was always a huge favorite and Monkee Micky Dolenz, who was invited to the presentation by Cass' daughter Owen, met up with Stephen Stills; who avid Monkees-fans will know originally tried out for the band, didn't get it, and then suggested roommate Peter Tork, who got the gig.

Dolenz sent us this AM an early-photo of them both  which paradoxically references the new photo. Dolenz said of the similarity, "The strangest and most wonderful coincidence."


Harvey Kubernik (who was there for the Cass ceremony ... and even posed with Cass' daughter Owen ... see yesterday's post) sent in this reminder that Jefferson Airplane will ALSO be so-honored later this month ...

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

The Loss Of A Country Music Legend ... And A Very Special Event That Happened 60 Years Ago Today ... (Plus A Quick Round of Congrats to Mama Cass!)

The big news yesterday, of course, was the passing of Loretta Lynn, one of the Queens Of Country Music ... The Coal Miner's Daughter ... and, without question, the most famous resident to ever make their way out of Butcher Holler, Kentucky.
While Lynn didn't have quite the cross-over appeal as some of her contemporaries ... just a little TOO much twang, I'm guessin' ... there is no denying the impact she made on The Country Music Charts. 
She scored her first country hit in 1960 with a little tune called "I'm A Honky Tonk Girl," which peaked at #14.  
Her first #1 Record came seven years later when "Don't Come Home A-Drinkin' (With Lovin' On Your Mind)" ... and the hits just kept on comin' ... 79 Billboard Country Chart Hits in all thru 2010, including fifteen more #1 Records.  (Her list of Country Chart-Toppers includes five with frequent singing partner Conway Twitty.)
There is no shortage of press coverage for Loretta ... a true Country Music Icon.  She passed away peacefully in her sleep at the age of 90 on Tuesday Morning.  (Truth be told, I thought she was even older than that ... 
Didn't she perform at The White House for President Lincoln back in the day???)

Her sister Crystal Gayle proved it ran in the family by scoring a string of eighteen of her OWN #1 Hits on the Country Charts, actually besting her sister's tally!  (And several of Crystal's hits DID cross over to the pop charts, most notably "Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue" (#2, 1977), "Talking In Your Sleep" (#18, 1978), "Half The Way" (#15, 1979) and "You And I," a duet with Eddie Rabbitt, which went all the way to #7 in 1982.)  Incredibly, the two never recorded a hit single together.
Her statement upon hearing the news was brief but to the point ...
"The world lost a legend. We lost a sister. Love you Loretta,"

Read More: Crystal Gayle Makes Statement After Death of Loretta Lynn |
"The world lost a legend.  We lost a sister.  Love you, Loretta." 
"The world lost a legend. We lost a sister. Love you Loretta,"

Read More: Crystal Gayle Makes Statement After Death of Loretta Lynn |
Hi Kent,
I expect that you are aware of this, but just in case it has escaped you, today, 5th October, sees the 60th anniversary​‌ of the release of Love Me Do, the Beatles' debut single, in their home territory of Britain. 
Although not a major hit at the time it could be argued that the seed for the "Swinging Sixties" was planted on this day.
Please find attached a cutting from the New Musical Express (Britain's equivalent to Billboard) from a couple of weeks later when the song entered the charts.

Kindest regards,
Alan Mannings
Southern River
Western Australia
And finally, a tip of the cap to Mama Cass Elliot, who earned a Star on The Hollywood Walk Of Fame this past Monday (October 3rd.)  
Cass, of course, rose to fame with The Mamas and the Papas ... but also enjoyed a successful solo career after the break-up of the band, even moving on to television before she was taken from us much too soon.
Here's a photo of regular Forgotten Hits Contributor Harvey Kubernik with Cass' daughter Owen Elliot-Kugell at the ceremony ...

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Tuesday This And That

Ringo Starr’s All Starr Band has been sidelined once again due Covid, THIS time with the former Beatle himself testing positive for the virus.

In all, seven shows had to be cancelled (two in the US and five in Canada) but Ringo hopes to be back on stage again beginning on October 11th in Seattle.  (Poor guy couldn’t wait to get back out there again after seeing his tour postponed numerous times over the past two years ... and he is not the first tour member to test positive to the disease.)

Remaining shows on this leg of the tour include:

October 11th - Seattle, WA – Benaroya Hall
October 12th - Portland, OR – Arlene Schnitzer Hall
October 14th - San Jose, CA – San Jose Civic Center
October 15th - Paso Robles, CA – Vina Robles Amp
October 16th - Los Angeles, CA – Greek Theater
October 19th - Mexico City, MX – Auditorio Nacional
October 20th - Mexico City, MX – Auditorio Nacional

And Lindsay Buckingham had to cancel the balance of his European dates due to “ongoing health issues” … but says he plans to honor his US appearances, beginning October 26th at The Paramount Center For The Arts in Bristol, TN

Other dates include: 

Thursday, OCT 27th at The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts in Louisville, KY

Saturday, OCT 29th at Hoyt Sherman Place in Des Moines, IA

Monday, OCT 31st at The Pablo Center at the Confluence in Eau Claire, WI

Tuesday, NOV 1st at The Meyer Theatre in Green Bay, WI

Thursday, NOV 3rd at The Brown County Music Center in Nashville, IN

Friday, NOV 4th at The Lerner in Elkhart, IN

Sunday, NOV 6th at The Appell Center for the Performing Arts in York, PA

Monday, NOV 7th at The Paramount in Huntington, NY

Wednesday, NOV 9th at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY

Thursday, NOV 10th at The Garde Arts Center in New London, CT

Saturday, NOV 12th at The State Theatre in New Brunswick, NJ

Sunday, NOV 13th at The Maryland Hall For the Creative Arts in Annapolis, MD

Tuesday, NOV 15th at The Jefferson Center in Roanoke, VA

Wednesday, NOV 16th at The Carolina Theatre in Durham, NC

Friday, NOV 18th at The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, TN

Saturday, NOV 19th at The Bell Auditorium in Augusta, GA

Remember when keyboard legend Rick Wakeman hosted Gastank in the 80s?

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Here you’ll be able to view many of Rick’s TV appearances and old concerts amongst many other hidden treasures, offering films for either rental or purchase, whichever takes your preference.

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Hi, Kent.
This may be of some interest to many of your readers …

WDCB (90.9 FM) at College of DuPage which, as most locals know as a jazz and blues station, is going to run a program on Wednesday, October 5th, from 8 to 9 PM called
"The Vee Jay Story."

I don't have any insight as to how much of the program will pertain to rock music, but it'll probably be worth a listen, as many of the specials that run on DCB are really top-notch.
They stream on-line, so you can get them anywhere on the planet.