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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Playlist for Week of July 31.2013

The playlist for this weeks show is as follows:

Billy Idol—White Wedding 1983
Danny Hutton—Big Bright Eyes 1966
Redwood—Time To Get Alone 1967
Three Dog Night—Liar 1971
Brian Hyland—Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini 1960
Brian Hyland—Sealed With A Kiss 1962
Brian Hyland—Gypsy Woman 1970
Paul Hyde and the Payolas—You’re the Only Love 1985
Eric Clapton—After Midnight 1970
Eric Clapton—Cocaine 1976
J.J. Cale—Crazy Mama 1972
 Lynyrd Skynard—Call Me The Breeze 1974
The Ides of March—Vehicle 1970
Icehouse—Electric Blue 1988
The Icicle Works—Whisper to a Scream 1984
Juilo Iglesias & Willie Nelson—To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before 1984

Hour 2:
Janis Ian—Society’s Child 1967
Janis Ian—At Seventeen 1975
The Illusion—Did You See Her Eyes 1969
Billy Idol—Hot in the City 1982
Billy Idol—Eyes Without a Face 1984
Billy Idol—Mony Mony 1987
Frank Ifield—I Remember You 1962
The Impalas—Sorry (I Ran all The Way Home) 1959
Jerry Butler & the Impressions—For You Precious Love 1958
The Impressions—Amen 1964
The Impressions—Finally Got Myself Together 1974
Jerry Butler—Only the Strong Survive 1969
Curtis Mayfield—Superfly  1972
Impact—Happy Man 1976
The Beatles—Let It Be 1970

Where can you hear the show?  (all times US Central)

Monday evenings 9pm--11pm
WRFN--LP 107.1 Pasquo TN

Friday Mornings 2am-4am
KPVL 89.1 Postville IA

Friday Mornings Midnight-2am
WERU 99.0 Bangor, ME
WERU 89.9 Blue Hill ME

Saturday Afternoon
WYAP-LP, 101.7, Clay, WV

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Hall and Oates--You Make My Dreams (1981)

     Hall and Oates have by far become the most popular duo in the history of rock music. Their blend of genres, which they called, rock and soul resulted in 34 chart entries with six of them hitting number one and ten others being in the top 10.
     Darryl Hohl and John Oates met as members of rival bands. At the Adelphi Ballroom in Philadelphia in 1967, there was a "battle of the bands" competition. Darryl was a member of The Temptones, and John, The Masters. Sometime during the proceedings a fight broke out between members of rival street gangs and shots rang out. Both men headed towards a service elevator for safety. While in their hiding place they got to talking and discovered that not only were they into the same music, but they both were students at Temple University. They began to hang out together, and eventually became roommates although they wouldn't actually begin working together musically for another couple of years.
     In 1970, they began working seriously as a duo and in 1972 was offered a contract. They were obviously talented, but an early problem developed as both men skipped around different genres. Listening to their early/mid 70's output now, you can hear them struggling to find a sound. They would skip from folk to rock, to soul. On several occasions, this would catch fire as it did with the singles, "She's Gone" (released in 74'...became a top ten hit on re-release in 76'), "Sara Smiles" (76) and Rich Girl (77).
      It was the blue eyed soul path they would eventually head down towards as the 70s turned into the 80s, and it was there they struck gold.. "You Lost That Lovin' Feeling" in 1980 got things rolling, but it was, "Kiss On My List" in early 1981 that put the duo on the path of becoming one of the biggest artists of the decade. The massive years from a chart perspective was from 81-84, but they were to put songs on the charts as late as 2005.
     They will still perform together from time to time, but both men have spent individual projects..  Both  have released solo albums, and Hall has been a part of the successful, "Live from Darryl's House" 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Bill Haley & the Comets--Rock Around the Clock (1955)

     Growing up, I was always under the impression that "Rock Around the Clock" was the "first" rock and roll song. Time and a broader view of music (and history in general) has shown that rarely does something develop out nothing. Rock and roll developed over a series of years, a mix of rhythm and blues and country that culminated in this song and others becoming the watershed moments. However, Bill Haley DID have a major hand in this development.
     Haley was born in Michigan, but spent much of his childhood near Chester, Pennsylvania. Both of his parents were musicians with his Dad, from Kentucky, playing the guitar and mandolin and his mother, from England, being a pianist. It was his father's influence which won over as the  youngster took up the guitar and soon was playing in western swing bands.
     It was in this genre where Haley began to get notice, as his band, "The Four Aces of Western Swing" began recording in 1948. A year later the group was disbanded and Bill formed, "The Saddlemen". The first singles were Bob Willis' influenced Western Swing, but over the next few years the band took a decidedly bluesy turn with their take on Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats', "Rocket 88'" in late 1951 and then, "Rock This Joint" in 1952. It was this turn in musical style that convinced Haley to change the name of the group, "The Comets".
      Listening to the music by now, it was obvious that the lines between rhythm and blues and country were getting blurred. Listening to the The Comets' first hit, "Crazy, Man Crazy" in 1953 and "Shake Rattle and Roll" in 1954, it was easy to see that this was a new kind of music, even if the public at large had not truly identified it as of yet. We know it now as Rockabilly.
     There is speculation concerning the first recording of "Rock Around the Clock". There are some who suggest it was first recorded in 1953, but the latest and probably best evidence points to early 1954, but still well before it became a hit. The Comets had five top twenty hits on the pop charts before a movie propelled the group and the song into superstardom.
     "Blackboard Jungle", starring Glenn Ford, Sidney Poitier, and Vic Morrow, started and ended the the Comets song. It became a phenomenon in England and was also a hit here in the states. More importantly it linked this new music that had been given a name (courtesy of DJ's like Allen Freed), to juvenile delinquency and began the initial firestorm of protest by parents and those who felt the need to defend moral decency.
      As for Haley and the Comets, "Rock Around the Clock" not only became a number one song, but became the first musical touchstone for a new generation . The big hits didn't last long however as the top twenty hits stopped coming after 1956, although they kept charting songs all the way up to 1960. He was already 30 by the time Elvis appeared on Ed Sullivan, and with influx of younger, (and sexier) personalities, Haley was already seen as old in a young man's game.
     Throughout the 60's he continued to tour around the world as his star never abated in Europe and Latin America. He began to become "rediscovered" in the 70's because of the song's use as the opening theme of ABC's, "Happy Days" in 1974 (the song actually went back into the top 40 for a few weeks). During all of this time, he had problems with alcohol, and this contributed to his death in 1981. The remaining members of The Comets continued to perform until the mid-00's.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Sammy Hagar--Your Love is Driving Me Crazy (1982)

     The quintessential Californian rocker, Sammy Hagar's career has spanned four decades which includes roles in two top bands of their respective decades, as well as an impressive solo career. He was born in Salinas,  California,, but his family soon moved to Fontana where he grew up.
     Sammy played in a number of bands starting in 1967, until joining the band Montrose in 1973. He stayed there three years (73-75), until leaving after a dispute with Ronnie Montrose. However, this gave him his first taste of success and a couple of members of this group also left and became part of Hagar's backing band.
     This lead to his first solo success from 1976 to 1984. He began plowing the hard rock ground that was established with Montrose. "Your Love is Driving Me Crazy" was his best showing on the charts, reaching #13 in the winter of 1983. He had three other top 40 songs in his career to this point, but has had moderate success with other songs throughout. His credentials and appeal to the hard rock crowd has continued unabated.
     For many of a younger vintage, he is best known as the lead singer for Van Halen for 11 years. For 80's hard rock aficionados, debate has always raged about which version of Halen was better, the David Lee Roth version, or the Sammy Hagar. For me, they are both great, but two different kinds of bands. Roth's version was more playful, but the spotlight was (in his mind) Roth's alone, which of course caused the friction between the real star (Eddie and his guitar) and the lead singer. This made for some epic music, but it also paved the way for Roth's exit. For my money, Hagar's version of the group was a much more interesting one musically, but that perhaps had more to do with the group stretching out a bit more. I've personally always like Hagar's voice anyway.
     After his stint with VH, he began mixing a solo career with other group work, such as Los Tres Gusanos, Planet Us, Sammy and the Waboritas, and Chickenfoot. He is probably best known now for his businesses. He has a couple of restaurants in Las Vegas and St. Louis where all profits go to local charities, a couple of mountain bike shops in California, and of course Cabo Wabo Tequila.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Arlo Guthrie--The City of New Orleans (1972)

     I wonder what it must be like to be the child of a musical icon? Some go into the same musical profession such as what Lisa Marie Presley or Nancy Sinatra has done, but there must be an enormous amount of pressure since the father of those two ladies were true musical superstars. For Arlo Guthrie however, it was probably even more so because his father was as much a political and social icon than he was a musical one. There isn't a person that was raised in this country over the last 50-plus years that hasn't committed to memory at least one Woody Guthrie song. "Roll on Columbia" and of course, "This Land is Your Land" is a major part of this county's musical lexicon
      For Arlo, who was born in 1947, his father's influence was mostly transmitted to him through his mother and friends as Woody, because of what was eventually diagnoses as Huntington's disease moved from New York to California when Arlo was 5 because he thought his erratic behavior would be a danger to his children. His parents would eventually divorce although when he was admitted to a hospital for the last time in 1956 (for the next 9 years), his mother Marjorie would help care for him until his death in 1967.
     Arlo grew up surrounded by some of the greatest folk artists of his time. Pete Seeger, Leadbelly, Ramblin' Jack Elliot and many others. Given that, it's not surprising that from the first time he sang on stage in 1961 at the age of 13, he was singing folk. It was a perfect time for that as well as folk music was going through a major renaissance. He worked on his craft, and when he went into the studio for the first time, it was to record the album that he is best known for, the classic, "Alice's Restaurant". The eighteen minute long title track was a song which tapped into his dad's political legacy, without seeming heavy handed (in fact it's very funny). Arlo was never much of a force on the charts however, except for, "City of New Orleans".
     Written by Steve Goodman, it is a song which Guthrie makes his own. The haunting lyrics and a production that gives a real warmth to the proceedings, propelled the song into the top 20 in the late summer of 1972. Guthrie continues to record, and tour non-stop, with his blend of folk and political songs. He has also done some acting, writing and promotes the group founded by his mother, The Committee to Combat Huntington's Disease  Much more about Arlo can be found here:


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Guns N' Roses--Sweet Child O' Mine (1988)

     Just like in the day to day life of millions of people, the artificial existence of those who are exalted in our media culture gives us many who have had lots of talent, but finds a way through mismanagement of  their lives. It's easy to put the blame on the glare of the spotlights on their lives, but let's face it, more than a few of them were headed for a fall long before it actually occurred.
     I bring for your consideration on Axl Rose, lead singer of Guns N' Roses. I personally think that Axl had one of the greatest rock voices of his generation, and one of the best in the history of rock. The album, "Appetite for Destruction" was one of the best (perhaps THE best rock album of the 80's if you only count American acts) rock albums of the 1980's. A whole decade of new wave, dance music, and hair metal was swept away from the mind of those wanting to hear rock on the top 40 by the distinctive sounds of Slash playing the opening riff to "Sweet Child O' Mine". Now, I'm not trying to be pollyanish here, many times from it's development, rock has always pushed the envelope when it comes to behavior their own and what they expected from the audience. Axel always seemed to be angry, and it came across in his lyrics. Instead of being cathartic however, it continued to spill out in his relationship with other band, his own band members, and finally his audience.   
     The band began in early 1985 as a combination of two bands. Axl and his school friend Izzy Stradlin from their group Hollywood Rose, and Tracii Guns, Ole Beich, and Rob Gardner from L.A. Guns. After just a couple of gigs, Beich was replaced by Duff McKagan and later by Slash. Within a year because of relentless touring, and being billed on some of the top places in the Hollywood strip scene, they were signed by Geffin records in 1986.
     "Welcome to the Jungle" was actually the first single off of, "Appetite for Destruction", but the single and album had problems at first catching on. Again the relentless touring and the reception of the video  of "Jungle" on MTV when it was first aired (at four in the morning) got the ball rolling. It was the release of "Sweet Child O' Mine", which was written for Axl's then girlfriend Erin Everly, that broke the group into wide acceptance. It reached number one in the late summer of 1988, and the re-release of "Welcome to the Jungle" as well as "Paradise City" went in into the top 10.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Guess Who--American Woman (1970)

     The Guess Who's roots go all the way back to 1958 with the formation of Al and the Silvertones with Chad Allan at the helm. A few years later the name developed into Chad Allen and the Reflections by 1962. By this time Randy Bachman was with the group on guitar. Because of the success of a US group called the Reflections, they were forced to change once again to Chad Allen and the Expressions. During this time, they had released a few singles, but had not really made much of a name for themselves.
      This changed in 1965 with the release of "Shakin' All Over", which not only caught on in Canada, but which almost cracked the top 20 in the US. In a ploy to have listeners mistake them for a British Invasion group, the record company (Quality) printed "Guess Who?" on the 45's. No one knows if this had any influence on it's popularity, but before you knew it, DJ's and radio listeners knew the band as "Guess Who". The band's hand again was forced, and the name changed for the last time.
     Late that year, the keyboard player left and was replaced by Burton Cummings, who also shared vocals with Chad Allan. This only lasted a few months before Allen left the band and Cummings became lead singer. The next several years were spent writing and touring. They had a gig on a Canadian TV show called, "Let's Go" where they were the house band. The network wanted them to play covers that were as close to the originals, but also encouraged them to work on their own material as well. This allowed them to get a paycheck, but also to work on songs that would eventually produce fruit by the end of the decade with the album, "Wheatfield Soul" in 1969.
     A classic album, "Wheatfield Soul" and it's follow up, "Canned Wheat" produced four top 40 singles in the US. The peak of the popularity however, was with the number one single, "American Woman" from 1970. In an interview, Cummings explains the genesis of the song:

     "  …it was jammed onstage one night in Mississauga, Ontario, we were playing at a club called the Broom & Stone which was actually a curling rink and doing two shows that night. I guess we hadn’t gotten that big yet. Between the two shows, I was outside bartering with this kid, he had some old Gene Vincent records that I wanted to get for my collection and tried to strike-up a deal with this guy. The next thing I know, it’s time to start the second show and the other three guys have gone back onstage and I hear them start this riff … (Burton began mimicking the opening riff to “American Woman.”) I said to this guy … Oh my God; I’m supposed to be onstage man, I’ve got to run, I’ll see you later about these Gene Vincent records.”
“I run inside and run up onto the stage and just grab a microphone and started singing whatever came into my head; it was all stream of consciousness at the moment stuff … all that stuff about war machines and ghetto scenes, colored lights can hypnotize …it was all just spur- of- the- moment. And nobody would have ever heard it again but there happened to be a kid bootlegging the show that night. This was way back in the 60’s and he had a cassette machine, and those machines were a relatively new invention at that time. But this was 1968, forty-five years ago. We noticed this onstage as the night went on and he still kept recording. So we motioned to our road manager… go get that tape-go get that tape! He got the cassette tape and we listened to it later and heard this jam about American Woman stay away from me. So we actually kind of learned it from that tape, otherwise nobody would have ever heard it again. So talk about a Cinderella story. And that was a monstrous hit record for us; it was number one on Billboard for three weeks. So it was all an accident, I guess the music Gods were smiling on us. The music Gods probably sent that kid with the cassette machine.”
“When RCA heard “American Woman,” the guy that was head of A&R was listening and he threw up his newspaper in the air and said, “That’s a number one record!”" (courtesy of, July 23, to full interview here:  http://ww(

    Bachman left the group because of some physical issues. He was to surface later with his own group, Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Am not sure how this effected the writing (him and Cummings co-wrote many of their hits), but they never had the same success after American Woman. This isn't to say they didn't have success as three more top 20 songs would attest ("Hand Me Down World", "Share the Land", "Clap for the Wolfman") , but as the decade of the 70's went on they became fewer and fewer until the group disbanded in 1975.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Henry Gross--Shannon (1976)

     Inspiration for songs come from a myriad of places, in the case of the song, "Shannon" it was from a dog, and not just his dog, but Carl Wilson's as well. Here, let him tell you the story.

" I was touring around the country quite a lot in 1975 promoting an album called HENRY GROSS, the one with the yellow cover on A&M Records. I had the pleasure of doing long strings of dates with The Beach Boys, a group whose music always inspired me, Carl Wilson, lead singer on God Only Knows and Good Vibrations, was warm and welcoming from the very first show I played with them. Carl invited me to his house in Los Angeles to spend a day talking guitars, cars and rock & roll. While he was preparing lunch his two Alaskan husky dogs reached up on the counter and inhaled our food. Carl was no nice he couldn't stop apologizing but I told him, while admiring the military perfection of the raid executed by his huskies, that I had an Irish Setter at home named Shannon and had seen this act many times before! He was quite moved as he told me that he had an Irish Setter named Shannon that had been killed only recently when hit by a car. We spent the rest of the day jamming and driving around Carl's world, which as a friend and to be honest, a Beach Boy's fanatic, was quite a thrill.' (courtesy of Henry Gross' website:

     His career actually is quite varied. At the age of 18, he helped form, Sha Na Na, which was a rock and roll nostalgia act (quite likely the first as well). They played Woodstock and was a surprise hit of the festival, he was the youngest participant in the concert, and it launched their careers as performers. He didn't stay there long however, as by 1971 he was working on a solo career. He had several songs in the lower rungs of the top 100 before "Shannon", and except for it's follow-up ("Springtime Mama"  #36--1976) Henry never approached those heights again. In 1980 he performed in the road company of the musical, "Pump Boys and Dinettes" with fellow musicians Johnathan Edwards and Nicolette Lawson. In the mid-80's he moved to Nashville and began focusing mostly on songwriting, although he continues performing and recording as well.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Larry Groce--Junk Food Junkie (1976)

     Those who are listeners to NPR might recognize the name Larry Groce, or better yet the show he founded in 1983, "Mountain Stage" which is produced by West Virginia Public Radio. His first claim to fame however, was this song which reached the top 10 in the winter of 1976.
     Groce, who was born and raised in the Oak Cliff area of Dallas which has produced many musicians and songwriters, started recording in 1969 and by 1972 had been named a National Endowment for the Arts, "artist in-residence", a title which he kept until 1985. He had enjoyed writing for children and after his success on the charts, did a series of albums for Disney which netted him six gold and two platinum albums. One of those albums, "Winnie-the-Pooh for President", won a Grammy in 1976.
     His show, mentioned at the beginning of this article is one of NPR's longest running shows, having aired over 750 broadcasts and highlighting established artists as well as up and comers. You can see more about the show here:

Friday, July 19, 2013

Norman Greenbaum--Spirit In The Sky (1970)

     As the 60's hippie movement began to sour for many, the need to find something substantive on one's life led many back to more carnal pursuits (such as becoming yuppies in the 80's and attempting to make a pile of money), others continued to seek more spiritual things. This blossomed into what was known as the "Jesus Movement" on the west coast of the United States, many men and women became, "Jesus Freaks" and attempted to change the world through spiritual means.
     This manifested itself artistically into what was first known as "Jesus Music" and later morphed into what we now know as Contemporary Christian. In the world of pop and rock, other artists became more comfortable in using Christian imagery. Some were sincere in their reflections, others were just using it as another tool in the toolbag of lyrical creativity. Between a press which was pretty ignorant about all things spiritual, and a generation of Christian teens who praying for some merging between the church and the rock music they loved, any use of the word, "Jesus" or any inkling of Christianity brought a great deal of debate and discussion.
     For some reason, "Spirit In The Sky" was thought to be a Christian, and the use of the imagery WAS apparent, but Norman Greenbaum, who was and continues to be Jewish, pointed more towards his inspiration being television westerns...well that and a spiritual that he saw Porter Wagoner and 
Dolly Parton sing on TV. You can read more on him here:

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Al Green--Let's Stay Together (1971)

     Whatever church preachers or atheists might say to the contrary, the line between the sacred and the profane is a pretty narrow when it comes to Soul music. After all, Ray Charles basically took the music from the Sunday morning meeting to Saturday night dance with no diluting of the form whatsoever. Of course, it could be argued that the emotions which fuel love for God are similar to the ones which fuel our passions in other areas. No one artist in the early 70's exemplified those emotions on both sides than the Reverend Al Green.
     Albert Greene was one of ten children born into a sharecropper's family in Forrest City, Arkansas. There was music in the home, and as they moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan Albert joined in a singing group with his brothers. They did some touring around the area, until his devoutly religious  father kicked him out of the group after catching the youngster listening to Jackie Wilson.
     While in high school, he started a group called, Al Greene & the Creations (later The Soul Mates), where they made a few recordings and caught the attention of a musician named Willie Mitchell who also owned Hi Records. The band leader hired Greene to front the band for a gig, and after it was impressed enough to offer the young singer a contract.
     Mitchell not only became his boss, but his mentor as they tried to find a vocal style. The first thing the men did was drop the "E" from Greene's name. His first two albums and several singles showed promise, and with the top 20 single, "Tired of Being Alone" in the fall of 1971, the ball really began to roll.  "Let's Stay Together" became his first and only number one, although the next seven singles over the entirety of 1972 and 73 all went top 20.  
      His life began to change however in 1974 after an incident where his then girlfriend, threw boiling grits on him after he told her that he was not interested in marriage. she then found his .38 pistol and killed herself. Besides being burned badly, her death started him on a path which led him to the ministry. He became an ordained minister at the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Memphis in 1976. He continued to tour and record, but by 1978 he was totally devoting himself to gospel music, which he would do for the next ten years.
     In 1988 he returned to secular music with, "Put a Little Love in Your Heart", a duet with Annie Lennox which was featured in the movie, "Scrooged" with Bill Murray. This began a comeback which is still ongoing as his latest album, "Lay It Down" in 2008 was his first top ten album in 35 years. He still continues  minister as the pastor of the Full Gospel Tabernacle.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

R.B. Greaves--Take a Letter Maria (1969)

     Sometimes you find songs that are interesting, and people who sound like they really have a story, but just fall off the face of the earth, with just the musical document left to help decipher the kind of person they were..
     R.B. Greaves (Ronald Bertam) was born on an Air Force base in Georgetown, Guyana in 1943. He was a nephew of Sam Cooke and spent much of his growing up years on a Seminole Indian Reservation in the states. At the age of 20 he traveled to England in hopes to start up a music career. Under the name Sonny Childe with his group the TNT's, they had released records in the UK and in the Caribbean. He wrote the song, "Take a Letter Maria" in 1970, which impressed Atlantic Records president Ahmet Ertgun so much that he insisted that not only should Greaves record the song himself (it had already been covered by several), but that Ertgun would produce the record himself.         
     The result was a Latin flavored vocal which had the lyrical feel of a Bacharach/David song and a musical vibe of early 60's mariachi music thanks to the well placed horns. It soared to number two on the charts in the Winter of 1969, and it's follow up, "Always Something There to Remind Me" also went top ten. After several more charting songs, he fell off the radar in the early 70's. There is a long stretch where I cannot find any information concerning the singer/songwriter until his death last November of cancer at the age of 68.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Dobie Gray--Drift Away (1973)

     About ten years ago, Uncle Kracker did the song, "Drift Away" with Dobie Grey. Many older types recognized it from the hit which Grey did in 1973. What many of both generations didn't know was the extent of his long career.
     Dobie, who was born near Houston, Texas in 1940 and who's career spanned soul, country, pop and even musical theater. His real name is a matter of conjuncture, but many think he was born Lawrence Darrow Brown. His grew up in a family of sharecroppers, and learned music from his grandfather who was a minister. In the early 60's, he moved to LA and recorded a few sides for local companies before meeting Sonny Bono who directed him to Stripe Records. Success eluded him, but it was there he was given the moniker, "Dobie Gray" as a take off the popular sitcom, "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis". It was 1963 that he had his first taste of chart action with the song, "Look at Me" which did well regionally. It was two years later before he found his way there again, but this time it was all the way to the top 20 with, "The In Crowd" which had been an instrumental hit for Ramsey Lewis earlier that year. Gray's vocal rendition made it to number 13.
     Getting a follow up success was difficult and in the meantime he took up acting, getting a spot in the LA production of the musical, "Hair" which he stayed on for over two years. When joining a band in 1970 called, "Pollution" which was probably best known for it's manager, Max Baer Jr. (Jethro from the Beverly Hillbillies) than for anything they put on vinyl.  During this time, he also recorded a series of demos with songwriter Paul Williams. It was Paul's brother, Mentor who produced Dobie's first solo album with Decca, who signed him in 1972. They went to Nashville to record, and it was one of Mentor's songs, "Drift Away" which became the single. It went to number 5 on the charts, and it's redo in 2003 with Uncle Kracker also hit the top ten.
     Although he recorded throughout the 70's with minor success, he moved to Nashville and concentrated on songwriting, writing for artists as diverse as Don Williams, George Jones, Johnny Mathis, and Ray Charles. He even had a moderate hit on the country charts with his single, "That's One To Grow On" in 1986. After his comeback to the charts in 03, he continued to tour until after a long battle with cancer he died in December of 2011.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Grateful Dead--Truckin' (1971)

     There have been artists who have had overall greater success, there has also been musicians who created a greater stir among fans. However, with the possible exception of Elvis, there hasn't been a group of musicians who have elicited a more loyal and dedicated fan base over the course of 40 years as The Grateful Dead.
     Up until his death in 1995 (and even for several years after that as the band traveled as 'The Dead') this band spent much of it's time on the road, followed by fans who would literally follow the group from city to city. This isn't as crazy as it sounds, as if you were truly into the music, you'd know that not only did the set list change nightly, but the way it was played was as well. Fans were encouraged to record and trade concerts with each other. They truly did keep a 60's ethos for all of those years.    The group was intertwined with the San Francisco scene in just about any and every way possible. If there was a major scene going on in the West Coast, the Grateful Dead were there either as participants (most of the time) or observing it. If there was a pied piper of the summer of love, it was Jerry Garcia. 
     The music was a mish-mash of many different styles. A listen to their best music during the late 60's/early 70's showed doses of rock, folk, bluegrass, reggae and country with a smattering of space rock and psychedelia and jazz. They started out as The Warlocks, a jug band in San Francisco with Jerry Garcia (guitar, vocals), Bob Weir (guitar, vocals), Ron "Pigpen" McKernan (Keyboard, Harmonica, vocals), Phil Lesh (bass, vocals), and Bill Kreutzmann (drums). There were several others who were with the group over long periods of time: Mickey Hart, Keith and Donna Godchaux, Brian Mydland, and Vince Weinick among others.
     They were known mostly as an album band, and never had a top 40 hit until 1987's, "Touch of Grey", but probably their best known song to the novice was, "Truckin'". The song was written by Garcia, Weir, Lesh, and lyricist Robert Hunter and was part of the classic, "American Beauty" album. It's story of travels on the road as a metaphor for life still resonates today with it's, "what a long strange trip it's been" tagline.


Playlist for the Rock and Roll Omnibus Show #96 Week of July 15, 2013

The show's first broadcast will be found at  from 9pm Central US to 11pm. Locations and times of broadcasts throughout the week can be found to the right.

Whitney Houston—How Will I Know 1985
Hot—The Angel in Your Arms 1977
Jimmy “Bo” Horne—Dance Across the Floor 1878
Hounds—Under My Thumb 1979
Johnny Horton—The Battle of New Orleans 1959
Bruce Hornsby and the Range—The Way It Is 1986
Bruce Hornsby and the Range—Mandolin Rain 1987
Hot Butter—Popcorn 1972
Mary Hopkin—Those Were The Days 1968
Hudson Brothers—Rendezvous 1975
The Hues Corporation—Rock the Boat 1974
Hot Chocolate—Emma 1975
Hot Chocolate—You Sexy Thing 1975
Hot Chocolate—Every 1’s a Winner 1978
The Mindbenders—Groovy Kind of Love 1968
Hotlegs—Neanderthal Man 1970
10cc—Rubber Bullets 1973
Cissy Houston—Be My Baby 1971
Whitney Houston—Saving All My Love For You 1985
Whitney Houston—You Give Good Love 1985
Whitney Houston—Greatest Love of All 1986
Hotel—Half Moon Silver 1980
Hot Sauce—Bring It Home (And Give It To Me) 1972
David Houston—Almost Persuaded 1966
David Hudson—Honey, Honey 1980
Fred Hughes—Oo Wee Baby, I Love You 1965
Freddie Hughes—Send My Baby Back 1968