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I'm the co-host of THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO with Dana & Carl (Sunday nights, 9 to Midnight Eastern, www.westcottradio.org).  As a freelance writer, I contributed to Goldmine magazine from 1986-2006, wrote liner notes for Rhino Records' compilation CD Poptopia!  Power Pop Classics Of The '90s, and for releases by The Flashcubes, The Finkers, Screen Test, 1.4.5., and Jack "Penetrator" Lipton.  I contributed to the books Bubblegum Music Is The Naked Truth, Shake Some Action, Lost In The Grooves, and MusicHound Rock, and to DISCoveries, Amazing Heroes, The Comics Buyer's Guide, Yeah Yeah Yeah, Comics Collector, The Buffalo NewsThe Syracuse New Times, Big Stir magazine, and AHOY Comics.  I also wrote the liner notes for the four THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO compilation CDs, because, well, who could stop me?  My standing offer to write liner notes for a Bay City Rollers compilation has remained criminally ignored.  Still intend to write and sell a Batman story someday.

Monday, March 18, 2019

THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO # 966



Was the late Hal Blaine pop music's all-time greatest drummer? Very possibly so. And the accolade doesn't come just because of the sheer volume of his body of work, though that certainly doesn't hurt his case; in our lives as pop fans, we've probably heard Blaine more often than we heard Ringo and Bernard Purdie combined. That's not exaggeration; that's just how much work Hal Blaine did on so many records we all know.

Blaine didn't get all those gigs just because he was available; he was good. He was great. "On Drums: Hal Blaine" is a terrific video on YouTube, well worth 11:17 of your time. That video starts with this credit: "35,000 Tracks, One Drummer." Those tracks include unforgettable classics by The Beach Boys, The Mamas & the Papas, The Byrds, The 5th Dimension, The Monkees, Ike & Tina Turner, Love, The Everly BrothersPaul Revere & the Raiders, Simon & GarfunkelTommy Roe, The Association, Nancy Sinatra, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Roy OrbisonHerb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass, The Grass Roots, The Vogues, Glen Campbell, Sonny & Cher, The Carpenters, The CrystalsBarbra Streisand, and so many more that this isn't even a thumbnail introduction to a perfunctory partial list. Hal Blaine is responsible for the single most iconic drum intro in rockin' pop history, the majestic boom-boomboom-chuk-boom-boomboom-chuk of "Be My Baby" by The Ronettes. If you loved pop music in the '60s and '70s, then Hal Blaine was a part of your life. He always will be.

There was a brief temptation to turn the entirety of this week's show over to Hal Blaine's legacy. We could have done that, and it would have been epic. But you could do that, too. You have the records. You know the songs. You will listen to them forever and ever, and we'll listen right along with you. Tonight, we'll play a few of those songs ourselves, alongside works by other musicians, new and old. This is pop music. This is the beat. Hal Blaine has left this mortal world behind. He left us a gift. The beat goes on.

This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio with Dana & Carl, Sunday nights from 9 to Midnight Eastern, on the air in Syracuse on The Spark WSPJ-LP 103.3 and 93.7 FM, and on the web at http://sparksyracuse.org/

Spark Syracuse is supported by listeners like you. Tax-deductible donations are welcome at http://sparksyracuse.org/support/


You can follow Carl's daily blog Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks Do) at 

https://carlcafarelli.blogspot.com/

Our new compilation CD This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4 is) now available from Kool Kat Musik! 29 tracks of irresistible rockin' pop, starring Pop Co-OpRay PaulCirce Link & Christian NesmithVegas With Randolph Featuring Lannie FlowersThe SlapbacksP. HuxIrene PeñaMichael Oliver & the Sacred Band Featuring Dave MerrittThe RubinoosStepford KnivesThe Grip WeedsPopdudesRonnie DarkThe FlashcubesChris von SneidernThe Bottle Kids1.4.5.The SmithereensPaul Collins' BeatThe Hit SquadThe RulersThe Legal MattersMaura & the Bright LightsLisa Mychols, and Mr. Encrypto & the Cyphers. You gotta have it, so order it at https://tinyurl.com/ycnly8oz Digital download version (minus The Smithereens' track) now available -at 
https://tinyurl.com/ycauy9xt


TIRnRR # 966: 3/17/19

This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio FRESH SPINS! (tracks we think we ain't played before) are listed in bold
*Tracks with an asterisk feature Hal Blaine

THE RAMONES: Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio? (Rhino, End Of The Century)
--
*THE RONETTES: Be My Baby (Phil Spector, VA: Wall Of Sound)
THE ENGLISH BEAT: Mirror In The Bathroom (IRS, What Is Beat?)
THE WELL WISHERS: Feelin Fine (thewellwishers.bandcamp.com, single)
CLOCKWORK FLOWERS: Luminous Spinning Discs (theclockworkflowers.com, Colours Vol. 4 Green)
DICK DALE & THE DEL-TONES: Miserlou (Ace, VA: The Birth Of Surf)
THE RAMONES: Surfin' Bird (Rhino, Rocket To Russia)
--
THE KEYS: Femforce Theme (Zero Hour, Grand Reopening)
THE WAG: She's A Devil (thewagband.com, We Carry On)
*THE CARPENTERS: We've Only Just Begun (A & M, Singles 1969-1981)
STIFF LITTLE FINGERS: Alternative Ulster (Rhino, VA: Punk & New Wave Smash Hits)
*SONNY: Laugh At Me (Time-Life, VA: Classic Rock 1965: Blowin' Your Mind)
THE KINKS: I'm Not Like Everybody Else (Sanctuary, The Ultimate Collection)
--
THE STALLIONS: Why (Junk, Hey Baby, It's The Stallions)
THE UNDERTONES: Jimmy, Jimmy (Rykodisc, The Undertones)
*DINO, DESI & BILLY: She's So Far Out She's In (Sundazed, The Rebel Kind)
HARMONIC DIRT: Maybe (n/a, Anthracite)
*HERB ALPERT & THE TIJUANA BRASS: A Taste Of Honey (A & M, Whipped Cream & Other Delights)
DONOVAN: Mellow Yellow (Sony, Super Hits)
--
*THE MONKEES: A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You (Colgems, single)
THE WHO: The Ox (MCA, My Generation)
*NANCY SINATRA: Drummer Man (EMI, The Essential Nancy Sinatra)
THE UNDERTONES: Jump Boys (Sanctuary, The Undertones)
JIM BASNIGHT: Best Lover In The World (Precedent, Not Changing)
WRECKLESS ERIC & AMY RIGBY: Do You Remember That (Southern Domestic, A Working Museum)
--
CHUCK BERRY: Sweet Little Sixteen (MCA, The Anthology)
THE ROLLING STONES: Not Fade Away (Virgin, Forty Licks)
*SIMON & GARFUNKEL: The Boxer (Columbia, Old Friends)
HUSKER DU: Don't Want To Know If You Are Lonely (Rhino, VA: Classic Punk)
*THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY: Somebody Wants To Love You (Razor & Tie, The Partridge Family Album)
PSYCHEDELIC FURS: Pretty In Pink (Sony, VA: Pure...Alternative 80s)
--
*THE T-BONES: No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach's In) (BGO, No Matter What Shape [Your Stomach's In]/Sippin' 'N Chippin')
THE UNDERTONES: Get Over You (Sanctuary, The Undertones)
*TOMMY ROE: Dizzy (Varese Sarabande, VA: Bubblegum Classics Volume Two)
THE ARCHIES: Sugar, Sugar (Varese Sarabande, VA: 25 All-Time Greatest Bubblegum Hits)
*THE BEACH BOYS: Wouldn't It Be Nice (Capitol, Pet Sounds)
JOSIE & THE PUSSYCATS: You've Come A Long Way Baby (Rhino Handmade, Stop, Look, & Listen)
--
*IKE & TINA TURNER: River Deep, Mountain High (Phil Spector, VA: Wall Of Sound)
ASTROPUPPEES: Over Her Head (Manatee, Little Chick Tsunami)
*GLEN CAMPBELL: Guess I'm Dumb (Capitol, THE HONEYS: The Honeys Collection)
THE UNDERTONES: Here Comes The Summer [original version] (Sanctuary, The Undertones)
*THE 5TH DIMENSION: Aquarius/Let The Sun Shine In (The Flesh Failures) (Arista, The Ultimate 5th Dimension)
COTTON MATHER: My Before And After (Copper, Kontiki)
--
*THE BYRDS: Mr. Tambourine Man (Columbia, Mr. Tambourine Man)
BIG STAR: September Gurls (Big Beat, VA: Thank You Friends)
*THE MAMAS & THE PAPAS: Go Where You Wanna Go (MCA, All The Leaves Are Brown)
THE UNDERTONES: Male Model (Sanctuary, The Undertones)
*[?]PAUL REVERE & THE RAIDERS: Kicks (Sundazed, Midnight Ride)
THE MERRYMAKERS: I'll Feel A Whole Lot Better (Not Lame, VA: Full Circle)
*THE SUPREMES: The Happening (Time-Life, VA: Classic Rock 1967: The Beat Goes On)
HOLE: Heaven Tonight (Geffen, Celebrity Skin)
*NEAL HEFTI: Batman Theme (Varese Sarabande, VA: Batmania)
THE BEATLES: Hey Bulldog (Apple, Yellow Submarine Songtrack)
*SONNY & CHER: The Beat Goes On (Time-Life, VA: Classic Rock 1967: Shakin' All Over)
THE UNDERTONES: Teenage Kicks (Sanctuary, The Undertones)
*HAL BLAINE: Topsy '65 (Dunhill, Drums! Drums! A Go Go)

NOTE: A few sources list "Kicks" by Paul Revere & the Raiders among Hal Blaine's session work. Blaine did work with the Raiders on several occasions, but Raiders lead singer Mark Lindsay is positive that the group's drummer Mike "Smitty" Smith laid down the beat on "Kicks." I'm inclined to believe Lindsay on this one. So, just pretend we played "Indian Reservation" or "Him Or Me--What's It Gonna Be" this week instead of "Kicks."

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Tonight On THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO



Sunday nights can offer a time for relaxation, contemplation, a gentle respite before the start of another work week. Or one could prefer to jump up and down with manic glee as a great radio show plays irresistible rockin' pop from then and now, from Chuck Berry to The Well Wishers. One sounds like our kind of people. One should join us: Sunday night, 9 to Midnight Eastern, on the air in Syracuse at SPARK! WSPJ-LP 103.3 and 93.7 FM, and on the web at http://sparksyracuse.org/ One, meet more. More, One.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

VIRTUAL TICKET STUB GALLERY: My Favorite Concerts

Carrier Dome, Syracuse September 23, 2017. Waiting for Paul McCartney to perform
What was your favorite concert?

It's a frequent question asked among pop fans. Since I've already written about my top concert memories, I figured I should collect the links here for handy reference.

PAUL McCARTNEY



The Beatles have always been my favorite recording act, and that will never change. Finally seeing McCartney in 2017 was the fulfillment of more than five decades' worth of pop dreams come true. Magic.

THE MONKEES



It was not fashionable to be a Monkees fan in the '70s and early '80s, but I learned early on that I should never back down in my affection for something just because my peers don't get it. I knew me a lot better than they knew me. And I knew I liked The Monkees. Between my work for Goldmine and my 21st century blogging, I think I've written more about Micky, Davy, Peter, and Michael than I have about any other act (with The Flashcubes the only possible exception). Seeing The Peter Tork Project in 1983, and then Dolenz, Jones, & Tork in 1986 and 1987 were dreams come true; but seeing Dolenz, Tork, & Nesmith in 2012 was transcendent.

THE KINKS



I had only been a Kinks fan for maybe a year and a half when I had the opportunity to attend my first Kinks show in 1978. It was everything I could have hoped it would be, enhanced in memory by its emotional tether to who I was and what I was feeling when I was eighteen.

THE RAMONES, THE RUNAWAYS, AND THE FLASHCUBES




I've said it many times, and will continue to say it: the best four bucks I ever spent.



Those were my top four. Just bubbling under would be a wonderful club performance by The Searchers. Also worthy of mention were the times I saw Prince & the Revolution, David Bowie, and The Beach Boys, though I haven't written about those yet (other than a general appreciation of Bowie that was my first blog post, and an emotional essay about seeing Brian Wilson's band perform Pet Sounds). My first concert was KISS, so that's a keeper even if it's not quite in the realm of those listed above, and my first Flashcubes show was an essential, unforgettable ticket to unending rock 'n' roll delight. Honorable mention to the first time I saw The Rolling Stones, dishonorable mention to the truncated performance by Elvis Costello & the Attractions, and hats off to the varied likes of Joe Jackson and David Johansen. I was lucky enough to see a lot of other great shows, from Artful Dodger to Earth, Wind & Fire, Cheap Trick to The Smithereens. But my top four? Yeah, I had a terrific top four.



TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

You can support this blog by becoming a patron on Patreon: Fund me, baby! 

Our new compilation CD This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4 is now available from Kool Kat Musik! 29 tracks of irresistible rockin' pop, starring Pop Co-OpRay PaulCirce Link & Christian NesmithVegas With Randolph Featuring Lannie FlowersThe SlapbacksP. HuxIrene PeñaMichael Oliver & the Sacred Band Featuring Dave MerrittThe RubinoosStepford KnivesThe Grip WeedsPopdudesRonnie DarkThe FlashcubesChris von SneidernThe Bottle Kids1.4.5.The SmithereensPaul Collins' BeatThe Hit SquadThe RulersThe Legal MattersMaura & the Bright LightsLisa Mychols, and Mr. Encrypto & the Cyphers. You gotta have it, so order it here. A digital download version (minus The Smithereens' track) is also available from Futureman Records.

Friday, March 15, 2019

SNARKY A & R



Last week, journalist and power pop expert Jordan Oakes posted this challenge on Facebook: "What's a song that a given band should cover -- based on having common thematic elements with the band's name? Example: Earthquake should cover 'All Shook Up.'" I was delighted with the question, and I came up with a number of responses. Let's play SNARKY A & R!

GIRLS SAY YES: Tell Her No
AC/DC: Make A Circuit With Me
THE FLASHCUBES: Photograph
THE GO-GO'S: Stay
HERMAN'S HERMITS: Solitary Man
DAWN: Morning Has Broken 
SIMPLE MINDS: Dazed And Confused
THE 13th FLOOR ELEVATORS: Shaft
THE CASTAWAYS: Six Months In A Leaky Boat
THE WEEKEND: Friday On My Mind
THE KINKS: Love Is Strange
THE COASTERS: Take It Easy
THE MIRACLES: I'm A Believer
TALK TALK: Rumors, Gossip, Words Untrue
THE INMATES: We Gotta Get Out Of This Place
999: Help!
SWEET: Sugar Sugar
THE ANIMALS: At The Zoo
BIG STAR: Little Star
CREAM: No Milk Today
THE WARLOCKS: I Put A Spell On You
THE RUNAWAYS: She's Leaving Home
THE ELECTRIC PRUNES: Run Run Run
VANITY: I'll Be Your Mirror
THE ADVERTS: Get A Job
THE BUDDY SYSTEM: You've Got A Friend
THE STROKES: Do The Swim
PILOT: Leaving On A Jet Plane
THE GRASS ROOTS: D.I.Y.
THE SPINNERS: Round And Round
THE LORDS OF THE NEW CHURCH: I Say A Little Prayer
BREAD: Money
MEN AT WORK: Earn Enough For Us
X-RAY SPEX: I'm Looking Through You
20/20: I Can See Clearly Now
STATUS QUO: It's Not Unusual
THE STRANGLERS: Take My Breath Away
THE DAMNED: Highway To Hell
THE KNACK: Nobody Does It Better
THE PRETENDERS: Imagine
JOURNEY: Heading Out To The Highway
THE LOVELESS: Alone Again Naturaly
THE MOTHERS OF INVENTION: The Bare Necessities
THE WINDBREAKERS: It's A Gas

And my favorite:

SANTANA: History Never Repeats

Thenkyew. We're here all week.




TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

You can support this blog by becoming a patron on Patreon: Fund me, baby! 

Our new compilation CD This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4 is now available from Kool Kat Musik! 29 tracks of irresistible rockin' pop, starring Pop Co-OpRay PaulCirce Link & Christian NesmithVegas With Randolph Featuring Lannie FlowersThe SlapbacksP. HuxIrene PeñaMichael Oliver & the Sacred Band Featuring Dave MerrittThe RubinoosStepford KnivesThe Grip WeedsPopdudesRonnie DarkThe FlashcubesChris von SneidernThe Bottle Kids1.4.5.The SmithereensPaul Collins' BeatThe Hit SquadThe RulersThe Legal MattersMaura & the Bright LightsLisa Mychols, and Mr. Encrypto & the Cyphers. You gotta have it, so order it here. A digital download version (minus The Smithereens' track) is also available from Futureman Records.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

100-Page FAKES! presents: ADVENTURE COMICS # 448

100-Page FAKES! imagines mid-1970s DC 100-Page Super Spectaculars that never were...but should have been!



My intent was for this to be the final 100-Page FAKE! edition of Adventure Comics for the time being, leaving open the possibility of going back to do some older issues eventually if the mood were to strike me. But I figured this issue's book-length Aquaman story was a good spot to step off; Manhunter From Mars took over the backup slot with the following issue, a serial which crossed over with Superman and Batman in the pages of the real-life dollar comic book World's Finest Comics. This seemed like an appropriate time to move on to other titles.

Then I got the idea to reprise Deadman's spectacular three-issue crossover run from 1970's Aquaman # 50-52, and my series of faux 100-page Adventure Comics was the obvious place to do that. Those three issues of Aquaman mixed separate-but-connected tales of the Sea King (by writer Steve Skeates and artist Jim Aparo) and the late Boston Brand (by Neal Adams). The Skeates-Aparo run of Aquaman has always been among my all-time favorites, and it really needs to be reprinted in its entirety. For now, we'll do our little part right here at Boppin' (Like The Hip Folks Do). And I'll figure out later how I want to include the conclusion of the upcoming Martian Manhunter serial.

The 1976 Aquaman and 1970 Aquaman and Deadman stories leave us just enough room to fill in with the 1968 debut of Steve Ditko's The Hawk And The Dove, a 1949 Wildcat adventure, and a 1955 Charlton Comics story starring the original Blue Beetle. Roll credits!

Aquaman in "Crown, Crisis, And Cataclysm," Adventure Comics # 448 (November-December 1976)
The Golden Age Blue Beetle in "The Unmasking!," The Blue Beetle # 21 (August 1955)
The Hawk And The Dove, Showcase # 75 (June 1968)
Wildcat in "The Secret Mine!," Sensation Comics # 85 (January 1949)
Aquaman in "Can This Be Death?," Aquaman # 50 (March-April 1970)
Deadman in "Deadman Rides Again!," Aquaman # 50 (March-April 1970)

All characters and properties copyright DC Comics Inc. The Blue Beetle story is now public domain, while the rest can only be shown here in sample pages; I share the whole thing with my subscribers. Looks like 100-Page FAKES! will continue to alternate between Adventure Comics and Detective Comics for a little while longer, with some other titles still waiting in the wings. And now: ADVENTURE!


TIP THE BLOGGER: CC's Tip Jar!

You can support this blog by becoming a patron on Patreon: Fund me, baby! 

Our new compilation CD This Is Rock 'n' Roll Radio, Volume 4 is now available from Kool Kat Musik! 29 tracks of irresistible rockin' pop, starring Pop Co-OpRay PaulCirce Link & Christian NesmithVegas With Randolph Featuring Lannie FlowersThe SlapbacksP. HuxIrene PeñaMichael Oliver & the Sacred Band Featuring Dave MerrittThe RubinoosStepford KnivesThe Grip WeedsPopdudesRonnie DarkThe FlashcubesChris von SneidernThe Bottle Kids1.4.5.The SmithereensPaul Collins' BeatThe Hit SquadThe RulersThe Legal MattersMaura & the Bright LightsLisa Mychols, and Mr. Encrypto & the Cyphers. You gotta have it, so order it here. A digital download version (minus The Smithereens' track) is also available from Futureman Records.















COVER GALLERY