Saturday, November 5, 2022

Phil Nee Talks To TOMMY JAMES

Phil Nee recently interviewed Tommy James on his "Those Were The Days" radio program ...

And this seemed like a timely spot to run some of those excerpts, since Tommy's new album is out this week ...

Tommy James has long been a favorite with our Those Were the Days listeners.  He has played in every major city and many small towns across Wisconsin.  He even lived in the state for a couple of years (Monroe) while he was growing up.
He joined me in September of this year and we talked about how he has survived in the business and is happy to still be touring.

In 2010, Tommy released his excellent book Me, the Mob, and the Music. 
It is one of the best ever written about the music business.  
Plans continue for the book to become a movie.
Tommy was one of the first guests on my radio show.  
In 1990 he had a song called 'Go' which did well for WRCO back when we were an Adult Contemporary reporting station for the Gavin Report. That was the last time we had the chance to have Tommy join us by phone.  It was great to
get caught up.  
He has a new release that he is excited about.

Tommy has always been a good friend to Forgotten Hits (and we have been fans since we heard his very first hit record, "Hanky Panky," back in 1966.)  I've owned that "40 Year" package for several years now and it is an excellent collection.  (I also recently purchased and listened to his complete Roulette package, featuring every track he ever recorded for the label, and made some new discoveries along the way while listening to that one, as I didn't typically buy Tommy James and the Shondells albums when they were first released.)
His music has always done very well here in Chicago ...
Seven of his records have made it all the way to #1 here on our local charts ...
And he has earned a total of thirteen Top Ten Hits here in The Windy City!
TOMMY's BIGGEST HITS on the Chicagoland Charts:

1966 Tommy James and the Shondells    Hanky Panky  1
1966 Tommy James and the Shondells    Say I Am (What I Am)   2
1966 Tommy James and the Shondells    It's Only Love 10
1967 Tommy James and the Shondells    I Think We're Alone Now   1
1967 Tommy James and the Shondells    Mirage   1
1967 Tommy James and the Shondells    I Like The Way 13
1967 Tommy James and the Shondells    Gettin' Together 12
1967 Tommy James and the Shondells    Out Of The Blue 14
1968 Tommy James and the Shondells    Get Out Now 22
1968 Tommy James and the Shondells    Mony Mony   1
1968 Tommy James and the Shondells    Somebody Cares 14
1968 Tommy James and the Shondells    Do Something To Me 19
1969 Tommy James and the Shondells    Crimson And Clover   1
1969 Tommy James and the Shondells    Sweet Cherry Wine   4
1969 Tommy James and the Shondells    Crystal Blue Persuasion   1
1969 Tommy James and the Shondells    Ball Of Fire   9
1970 Tommy James and the Shondells    She 23
1970 Tommy James and the Shondells    Gotta Get Back To You 19
1971    Tommy James           Adrienne 35
1971    Tommy James           Draggin' The Line   1
1971    Tommy James 
           I'm Comin' Home   4
1971    Tommy James           Nothing To Hide   2
1972    Tommy James           Tell 'Em Willie Boy's A'Comin' 25

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, November 4, 2022


It will be 56 years ago on Saturday, November 5, 1966 that "Last Train To Clarksville" reaches #1 in most parts of the country.

Thursday, November 3, 2022

Thursday This And That

Beatles fans were thrilled last week to see the release of the deluxe box set edition of their 1966 album (and sessions) “Revolver.”

And now Monkees fans can experience a similar joy when Rhino Records releases the ULTIMATE deluxe edition of their 1967 album “Headquarters” later this month.

Much like “Revolver” was a game-changer for The Beatles … it showed The Beatles using the studio to experiment and create new sounds ... and set the stage for “Sgt. Pepper” released the following year … “Headquarters,” too, upped the ante for The Pre-Fab Four … as this was the album that broke them free from the clutches of Don Kirshner and allowed them to call all their own shots, play their own instruments and select their own tracks.

Under the watchful eye of Producer Chip Douglas (of The Turtles), “Headquarters” became The Monkees’ third straight #1 album (although it only stayed there for one week as the aforementioned “Sgt. Pepper” was released at the very same time, displacing it quickly and riding the summit for the next fifteen weeks.  During that time, however, The Monkees held down the #2 spot on Billboard’s Top LPs chart for eleven of those fifteen weeks.)

In fact, The Monkees had the #1 Album in the Country for 32 out of 33 consecutive weeks starting with their debut album in late 1966, followed by “More Of The Monkees” in February of 1967 (which held down the #1 spot for eighteen consecutive weeks ... even more than "Pepper"!), interrupted for a lone week by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass’ “Sounds Like” LP before “Headquarters” took over the top spot for its week.

The ”Headquarters” sessions have been well-documented in the past … but this one pushes things beyond the limit of all expectations.  (The official press release copy follows below.)

And, to top things off, Micky Dolenz (literally the hardest working man in show business these days … I mean seriously, this guy NEVER stops!) will do a Spring Tour next year performing the “Headquarters” album in its entirety along with his Tribute To The Monkees, featuring all of their biggest hits.  (We’re going to see THAT show later this month – thank you very much, David Salidor!  I hear it’s an amazing show, interspersed with video of his former bandmates who have now sadly moved on.) 


This Limited Edition 4-CD / 7” Vinyl Set Revisits The Entire Headquarters Project With 69 Previously Unreleased Recordings, Including The Entire Album Newly Remixed, The Debut Of Backing Tracks Made For An Abandoned Version Of The Album, The Band’s Earliest Demo Recordings, And More Monkees Studio Outtakes

Micky Dolenz has announced the details of his upcoming solo tour, “The Monkees Celebrated By Micky Dolenz.” The tour begins next year on April 1st in Orlando, Florida, and includes 19 shows where Dolenz will present The Monkees’ triumphant third album Headquarters with live performances and videos plus all of the band’s biggest hits. Tickets go on sale this Friday, November 4th. Click here for more information about tour dates and on sales.

Dolenz is right to celebrate. The album represents a peak moment for The Monkees in terms of both creativity and camaraderie. Released in May 1967, Headquarters was the first album the group recorded after winning a hard-fought battle for control over its music earlier that year. It sold three million copies and topped the charts, making it the band’s third consecutive #1 album in less than a year.

Rhino honors the landmark recording’s 55th anniversary this year with an expansive new set that shows the genesis of the Headquarters project in full. It boasts 69 previously unreleased recordings, including the entire album newly mixed from the original multitrack elements which were resynched to create the best fidelity version of the album ever available. It also boasts the debut of backing tracks made for an abandoned Don Kirshner-led version of the album, as well as the band’s earliest surviving demos, plus recordings that would be completed in 2016 for The Monkees’ final studio album, Good Times!.

HEADQUARTERS: SUPER DELUXE EDITION contains 4 CDs and a 7” vinyl single with “All Of Your Toys” b/w “The Girl I Knew Somewhere.” Limited to 4,000 copies worldwide, the set will be released on November 18 for $69.98, exclusively at Pre-orders are available now. A new line of Monkees holiday merch also launched today, including a Christmas ornament and sweater. Shop now.

After completing our first tour as a four-piece band in late 1966, Nez perceptively remarked that, 'Pinocchio had become a real little boy.' By the end of March 1967, Pinocchio had actually become quite a cool little dude (if I do say so myself) with the completion of Headquarters, the first studio album that we had been allowed to create entirely amongst ourselves.  

Monkee music was great music. Terrific songs crafted by gifted writers and produced by skilled producers. But Headquarters will always hold a special place in my heart.  I remember the camaraderie, the collaboration, the enthusiasm and the occasional creative angst. And I particularly remember lying on the floor behind my drumkit between takes eating sunflower seeds.

-- Micky Dolenz

The creative journey that led to Headquarters unfolds chronologically on the new Super Deluxe Edition. It documents The Monkees’ struggle for artistic control with Don Kirshner, the group’s music supervisor. The group wanted to write and perform its own music, while Kirshner preferred to continue using outside songwriters and studio musicians to record backing tracks, with the band adding vocals later.

In January and February 1967, Kirshner oversaw sessions in New York where more than an album’s worth of backing tracks were recorded for the band’s planned third record. At the same time, in Hollywood, the Monkees – Dolenz, Davy Jones, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork – began recording songs with producer Chip Douglas. The Super Deluxe Edition includes the debut of the band’s earliest demos for “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” and “All Of Your Toys.” The band recorded them in January 1967 at Gold Star Studios to convince Kirshner the group should have more creative input.

Kirshner balked at the idea, and the showdown continued until late in February when he was dismissed from the Monkees’ project after unilaterally removing Nesmith’s “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” as the B-side on the band’s new single and replacing it with a different song. With Kirshner gone, the band quickly took creative control and began recording the album at RCA Victor Studios in Hollywood with Douglas producing (credited as Douglas Farthing Hatlelid).

While previous reissues like Headquarters Sessions (released by Rhino Handmade in 2000) have focused exclusively on The Monkees’ time in the studio, the new collection is the first to revisit the songs Kirshner planned to include on the album. The Super Deluxe Edition introduces 23 previously unreleased backing tracks from those sessions.

Many were recorded by producer Jeff Barry in New York early in 1967. They include several songs he wrote or co-wrote (“99 Pounds” and “Gotta Give It Time”), plus contributions from other songwriters, including two from Neil Diamond, who penned “Love To Love” and “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You.”  

Along with selections from Headquarters Sessions, the new Super Deluxe Edition digs deep into the vault to uncover even more unheard outtakes from the band’s time in the studio in February and March 1967. The unreleased highlights from those sessions include “Detuned 12-Bar Jam,” an informal recording of Tom Paxton’s “The Last Thing On My Mind,” and different versions of album tracks, like “You Just May Be The One,” “Forget That Girl,” “No Time,” and more.

Grammy®-nominated producer/engineer, Andrew Sandoval compiled and remixed the audio and penned the detailed liner notes that accompany HEADQUARTERS: SUPER DELUXE EDITION. In them, he writes: “Rather than plunder the previous reissues...the entire three-month period surrounding the creation of Headquarters has been reexamined to offer a deeper view…The primary goal has not been modernizing or reinventing what is now a legendary work but rather presenting it in the best possible light.”


April 1           Orlando, FL                      The Plaza Live

April 2           Clearwater, FL                  Bilheimer Capitol Theatre

April 4           Virginia Beach, VA            Sandler Center for the Performing Arts

April 5           Annapolis, MD                  Maryland Hall

April 7           Atlantic City, NJ                 Ocean Resort

April 8           Vienna, VA                       The Barns At Wolf Trap

April 10         Chester, NY                      Sugar Loaf PAC

April 11         Huntington, NY                  The Paramount

April 12         Englewood, NJ                  Bergen PAC

April 14         Ridgefield, CT                   The Ridgefield Playhouse

April 15         Beverly, MA                      The Cabot

April 16         Jim Thorpe, PA                 Penn’s Peak

April 18         Warren, OH                      Robins Theatre

April 19         Kent, OH                          The Kent Stage

April 22         Royal Oak (Detroit), MI      Royal Oak Music Theatre

April 23         Milwaukee, WI                  The Pabst Theater

April 25         Niagara Falls, ON              Fallsview Casino Resort - Avalon Theatre

April 26         Niagara Falls, ON              Fallsview Casino Resort - Avalon Theatre

April 27         Niagara Falls, ON              Fallsview Casino Resort - Avalon Theatre


4-CD Track Listing

Disc One: Headquarters (& More) Remixed

1.     “You Told Me”

2.     “I’ll Spend My Life With You”

3.     “Forget That Girl”

4.     “Band 6”

5.     “You Just May Be The One”

6.     “Shades Of Gray”

7.     “I Can’t Get Her Off My Mind”

8.     “For Pete’s Sake”

9.     “Mr. Webster”

10. “Sunny Girlfriend”

11. “Zilch”

12. “No Time”

13. “Early Morning Blues And Greens”

14. “Randy Scouse Git”

Bonus Material

15. “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – Version One

16. “All Of Your Toys” *

17. “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – Version Two *

18. “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” *

19. “She Hangs Out” *

20. “Gotta Give It Time” *

21. “Love To Love” *

22. “99 Pounds” *

23. “You Can’t Tie A Mustang Down” *

24. “If I Learned To Play The Violin” *

25. “Sally” 1969 Version *

Disc Two: January 1967 Sessions

1.     “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” (Gold Star Demo) *

2.     “All Of Your Toys” (Gold Star Demo) *

3.     “She’s So Far Out, She’s In” – Backing Track (Take 2)

4.     “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – Version One, Backing Track (Take 10) *

5.     “All Of Your Toys” – Backing Track (Take 1)

6.     “Love To Love” – Backing Track (Take 1) *

7.     “Love To Love” – Backing Track (Take 14) *

8.     “You Can’t Tie A Mustang Down” – Backing Track (Take 5) *

9.     “Gotta Give It Time” (Rehearsal) *

10. “Gotta Give It Time” – Backing Track (Take 4) *

11. “99 Pounds” – Backing Track (Takes 3 & 4) *

12. “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” – Backing Track (Take 2) *

13. “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” – Backing Track (Takes 3 & 4) *

14. “She Hangs Out” – Backing Track (Take 2) *

15. “I Wanna Be Your Puppy Dog” – Backing Track (Take 10) *

16. “Love Is On The Way” – Backing Track (Take 7) *

17. “Sally” – Backing Track (Take 2) *

18. “Sugar Man” – Backing Track (Take 6) *

19. “Poor Little Me” – Backing Track (Take 14) *

20. “If I Learned To Play The Violin” – Backing Track (Take 4) *

21. “Black And Blue” – Backing Track (Take 6) *

22. “Eve Of My Sorrow” – Backing Track (Take 7) *

23. “The Love You Got Inside” – Backing Track (Take 9) *

24. “Seeger’s Theme” – Demo (Takes 1 & 2) *

25. “Seeger’s Theme” – Demo (Take 3) 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

26. “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – 1967 Mono Mix 1

27. “All Of Your Toys” – 1967 Mono Mix

28. “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – 1967 Mono Mix 2

Disc Three: February 1967 Sessions

1.     “99 Pounds” – Alternate Vocal (Take 1) *

2.     “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” – Alternate Vocal (Take 1) *

3.     “She Hangs Out” – Alternate Backing Vocals *

4.     “If I Learned To Play The Violin” – CD-Rom Mix

5.     “99 Pounds” – Alternate Vocal (Take 2 with Handclaps) *

6.     “A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You” – Mono Single Mix

7.     “99 Pounds” – 1967 Mono Mix *

8.     “She Hangs Out” – Mono Single Mix

9.     “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – Backing Track (Take 11) *

10. “Sunny Girlfriend” – Take 7 With Scratch Vocal *

11. “Mr. Webster” – Alternate Vocal Mix *

12. “She’ll Be There” – Demo, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

13. “Midnight Train” – Demo, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

14. “Can You Dig It” – Demo, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

15. “Nine Times Blue” – Demo, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

16. “Until It’s Time For You To Go” – Davy Demo, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

17. “Until It’s Time For You To Go” – Mike Demo *

18. “Sunny Girlfriend” – Acoustic Remix

19. “The Girl I Knew Somewhere” – Mono Single Mix

Disc Four: March 1967 (& Beyond) Sessions

1.     “Randy Scouse Git” – Alternate Version (Take 18) *

2.     “You Told Me” – Take 15 With Alternate Vocal *

3.     “Peter Gunn’s Gun” – Backing Track, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

4.     “Forget That Girl” – Take 15 With Alternate Overdubs *

5.     “Where Has It All Gone” – Backing Track (Take 12) *

6.     “The Last Thing On My Mind” – Informal Recording *

7.     “Randy Scouse Git/East Virginia” *

8.     “Forget That Girl” – With Alternate Backing Vocals *

9.     “Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho”

10. “Fever” – Backing Track, 1967 Mono Rough Mix *

11. “Pillow Time” – Alternate Take Of Demo Version *

12. “Masking Tape” – Backing Track (Take 16, Called “13”) *

13. “Detuned 12-Bar Jam” *

14. “You Just May Be The One” – With Alternate Backing Vocals *

15. “No Time” – Version One, Backing Track (Take 2) *

16. “Cantata & Fugue In C&W” – Unedited Version *

17. “The Story Of Rock And Roll” – Version One, Backing Track (Take 18) *

18. “Untitled Jam” *

19. “The Story Of Rock And Roll” – Version Two, Backing Track (Take 28) *

20. “Early Morning Blues And Greens” – Alternate Vocals *

21. “No Time” – Backing Vocal Mix *

22. “Just A Game” – Demos (Takes 1-3) *

23. “Zilch” – KHJ Radio Spot

24. “For Pete’s Sake” – TV Edit

25. “Tema Dei Monkees” – Mono 45 Version

26. “Love To Love” – 1969 Mono Mix

27. “You Can’t Tie A Mustang Down” – 1969 Mono Mix *

28. “Tema Dei Monkees” – Stereo LP Version

29. “99 Pounds” – Mono Album Mix

* Previously Unreleased

Damn!  101 Tracks!!!  This is unreal!

More Monkees memories tomorrow in Forgotten Hits!  (kk)

And back to The Beatles for just a moment, too, so we can share this brand new video released in conjunction with their new “Revolver” box set … VERY cool!  (kk)

The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony takes place this Saturday Night (November 5th) … and highlights will start broadcasting two weeks later on the 19th.

Inductees this year include Pat Benatar (along with hubby Neil Giraldo), Eurythmics, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon, Duran Duran, Eminem and Dolly Parton. (I can’t WAIT to hear Dolly’s speech at this thing!!!)

Also being honored are Judas Priest, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Harry Belafonte, Elizabeth Cotton, Allen Grubman, Jimmy Iovine and Sylvia Robinson.  (kk)

Bruce Springsteen made his first appearance ever on Howard Stern’s radio program last week and, from what I’ve heard, made for a VERY interesting guest, literally talking frankly and honestly about his whole career.  (Springsteen had his first chart success in 1975 when “Born To Run” came crashing thru the airwaves … and he’s been going non-stop ever since.)

Stern asked him about everything from the early days to his first (failed) marriage to his recent selling of his music catalog to Sony (for a reported $500 Million!)

Stern’s program airs exclusively on Sirius XM … but you’ll find all kinds of video clips posted on YouTube from this soon-to-be landmark interview.  (kk)

>>>For those of you who may be wondering, yes, this is another picture of me (R) and Chuck (L) from his recent visit to Chicago.  (kk)


HA-Ha-Heh-heh!  Good one, Kid!


>>>I miss my old cassettes collection, too, other than when the tape would unwind inside the tape machine and then the cassette would have to be taken out of it and rewound! (kk)


I always thought that famous old phrase was more pertinent to audio tape cassettes than to what we heard so often in radio commercials ~~~ "Have Your Pencil Ready!"


Which brings up another age-old question ~~~ "Did you rewind your cassettes by inserting the pencil into it and turning it? Or, Did you insert the pencil into it and then twirl the cassette around it?!

CB ( which stands for "Cassette Boy!" )

I always let the pencil do all the work as I VERY carefully and strategically turned it, sometimes even stopping to try and smooth out some of the wrinkles and kinks … got pretty damn good at it, too … although sometimes the tape would literally break … and then you had to try and fish it out of the tape player without doing any damage should it be wrapped around one of the capstans.

I kept my “home-made” collection … just in case I ever had the opportunity to put a cassette player back in one of my vehicles.  (Insert Jim Peterik comment here)

Seriously, I’ll bet I had 300 tapes covering nearly every song that made the charts between 1955 and 1980, randomly selected and placed to where you would NEVER know what song might be coming up next.

I always fantasized about getting something like a vintage Chevy or ’65 Mustang and then souping it up with all the modern technology in the way of sound … and then hooking the cassette player up to that and just cruising around with the top down listening to the oldies!  (kk)



I don't know if you have the Jumble Puzzle in your local newspaper, but this was the one in our paper today. You got it! First thing it reminded me of was FH.



>>>The fact that Chuck Buell had THIS much stuff ready to post for Halloween is just a little bit ... well ... scary!!!  Lol  (kk)

>>>I went from laughing ---  (Shelley)

HA!  Thanx for your kind comment, Shelley!  (CB)

>>>--- to worrying about CB's mental state!  (Shelley)

(Ahhh, thanx. Visiting hours are on the 32nd of every month except February when it's on the 30th.)  CB

And how about one last Halloween smile from Chuck Buell …

Be sure you check any and all Halloween Candy you may have gotten!

CB  ( which stands for "Cautious Boy!" )