ELVIS SHOW BULLETIN
The LA City Council is declaring Saturday, January 8th, Elvis Day, with a ceremony
and sign posted outside Radio Recorders, Orange & Santa Monica, that morning.
Elvis show goes from 4 til 9 sharp, at Henry Fonda Theater, Hollywood & Gower
The lineup so far:
Kevin Banford, Blasters, Ray Campi, Count Smokula, Justin Curtis, Levi
Dexter, Keith Joe Dick, Dusk Devils, Doug Fieger, Lisa Finnie, Glen Glenn,
Groovy Rednecks, Carlos Guitarlos, Austin Hanks, Barry Holdship, Travis
Howard, James Intveld, Merle Jagger, Linda Kay, Marcy Levy, Rip Masters,
Rod & The Tonemasters, Evie Sands, Tommy Sands, Russell Scott, Fur & Steve,
Ian Whitcomb, Young Jessie
FIRST RECORD / FIRST CONCERT
Disney records don't count, right? You can't be talkin'
'bout no Peter
Pan or 101 Dalmatians no matter how good the songs actually
were..for what they were. SO...the first rock'n'roll
record I got was Rick Nelson's Decca album, "For
You," with Fools Rush In on it. It's amazing that it was an LP as
opposed to a single..but I asked my mom for that song and she obliged. Fools
Rush In was the track Ricky and band mimed at the end of the Ozzie and Harriet
show and it definitely tripped my young monkey nerve.
When I listen to that
album now (and I thought it was divine providence when it got re-issued
on cd), the cool phrasing and smooth vibe against the really jumping tracks
still work for me. The balance he hit between the early rockabilly/country
feel and the glossy pop/LA rock is masterful in its execution while still
being as innocent as all rock 'n' roll was at the time. It was only
a month or two later that my mom brought me the 45 of The Beatles
first Capitol single that changed the whole world.. But Ricky was first.
As for the first concert.. I was ridiculously young when I was allowed to
go to a concert at the college arena with my neighbor Don and his older
sister.. I was only in the third grade. Laurie, who was
only a few years
older than we were, was supposed to be looking
after us but, as I remember, we ran all over the auditorium and only occasionally
actually sat and listened to the music. That kind of loose parenting just
isn't commonplace these days but that was a different time. Back to the show..it
was Dick Clark's Caravan of Stars. I've tried,
over the years, to find a list of the whole lineup
because the memory starts to go.. But the acts I distinctly remember making
an impression on my young mind were The Supremes and The Crystals. I'm thinking
that Lou Christie was on the bill as well too but, the acts just kept a'comin'
and I was REALLY young.
The Supremes closed the show with Baby Love which
caused near-pandemonium. The girls were all screaming like it was a
Beatles concert which puzzled my young mind because, as I understood
it, the girls usually screamed at the boys. Real life is full of grey
areas and figuring out that the screaming for a hit song was just that
and not a sexual preference matter was a mind-expanding occurrence!
Seeing The Supremes in those shiny dresses singing a song that everyone
knew from the radio was over-the-top excitement for me, and my first
concert "moment". Two or three years later,
Paul Revere and the Raiders came through town on another Dick Clark package
show and I remember SO many more details about that show. I was older and
a dedicated music fan by sixth grade! But seeing The Supremes was the
first time I felt swept up in that kind of feeling. Thanks
for asking, Art!
Bill Lloyd is a Nashville-based songwriter/recording artist best known for
his work in country music (Foster & Lloyd and The
Sky Kings) who now makes melodic, guitar-driven
classic pop-rock solo albums, the most recent of which, "Back To Even",
has been lauded in USA Today, Uncut and No Depression.
Fein Mess December 2004
AF STONEs MONTHLY
This is for men only. Ive always been interested in mens --
my -- underwear. In February, 1967, my girlfriend and I went to San Francisco
and were astonished at the brevity of the male undies in store windows
on Polk Street1. She bought
me a pair of somewhat briefer Jockey briefs, which, I learned subsequently,
had no escape flap in the front. I wrote to Jockey about their familiarity
with male anatomy, and began an amusing correspondence with their rep, who
claimed some men liked the security of no front opening - men unlike myself,
apparently. I dropped those drawers in the early 70s -- briefs I mean -- as
I disliked the rubberbandlike leg openings and went over to boxers. Then they
offered tapered shorts, which I chose, as I was a slim young man.
Today I must deal with relaxed fit. While my waist is a few
inches bigger than age 21, I do not abide by a trouser style that seems
to allow room for a diaper, so I stick with standard, comparatively-slim
fit. That causes a clash with underwear manufacturers, who supply such
excessive yardage one leg alone could surround a 34-inch waist3.
The problem is that its not pre-1960, when mens slacks were ample
and pleated. In those days men customarily put their pants on last, while wearing
their shoes (LADIES: I said MEN ONLY. I know youre reading this for titillation
and its not the intent!) because the wide comfortable legs allowed
it. Now that pant legs are relatively slim, blousy shorts bunch up and
cause lumps AND escape-hatch dislocation.
Ive found that Jockey still makes slim-fits, but the pair I got I disliked.
Woe was me til one of my frequent treks to J.C. Penneys, where Ive been
buying the same socks -- thin all-cotton, I fear theyll discontinue
for 35 years. I saw phony-silk black boxers and felt their heft. Hmm, the
weight of these babies could solve the bunching problem AND theyd probably feel
nice. (I am NOT looking wistfully back to Polk Street!) So I got a pair and
they are, like Papa Bears porridge, just right.
So now my shorts feel right, and Im a happy man. Bought ten pair, and
Im saving up for ten more. (I fear theyll discontinue them.) And
now when I get run over, I dont worry what theyll think of
me at the hospital.
1 This was my first exposure to overt2 Gay
anything. That night we went to Cafe Cantata and at the next table were
a bunch of guys celebrating a bday. When the cake came one of them, speaking
-- I thought in jest -- like Paul Lynde, said And may all of your children be boys! I
was flabbergasted. The Marine sitting near us gritted his teeth.
2 In Chicago, the intersection of Clark & Diversey
was known as Gaytown (hence the brief popularity of a Gerry & The Pacemakers
parody , Fairy Cross Diversey) but as I never assayed the
area I dont know if things were equally out there, though
I strongly doubt it, being Chicago.
3 The legs of a pair of Arrows I bought
could be pulled out 90-degrees left and right. Why?
Mama Bear, What A Big Mouth You Have
Early this year4 Bostonian
Frank McCourts purchase of the local baseball team inspired an attack
column in the L.A. Times by Patt The Hatt Morrison: she was infuriated
that she never heard of him. (Why didnt he call HER before making
his move?) Her weapon of humiliation was his questionable heritage: He
made his money in parking lots, which is simply not classy enough for --
Patt Morrison?5 Cloddishly,
she wrote Rich guy, at least by bean-and-cod standards. Owns a huge parking
lot, which in L.A. is as good a pickup line as having your own oil well is
in Houston -- Hey, baby, wanna go check out my parking lot?
Her mockery of the McCourt broke no new ground. Boston Globe columnist
Steve Bailey called him our parking lot attendant, which she gleefully
quoted. But New England attitude doesnt travel well: its
Boston that reveres Old Money. In L.A. hairdressers become movie studio
heads every day. And vice versa.
4 It was 1/24/04 -- this IS a year
end roundup. Two days later, hot on The Hatts trail, Times Staff Writer Bill
Shaikin wrote that an image of the new owner, who had yet
to explain (grrrr... AF) his vision for the club, has emerged (GRRRR!!!!!!
AF) of a New England carpetbagger with one hand held out for money and the
other behind his back, hiding a plan to blow up a beloved local landmark. The
only blowing here was the writers hot air, heated by the rumormongering
of his fellows.
5 Shes no classy broad. She
endlessly writes about her humble Ohio origins, so whats with the snobbishness?
She may have constructed the whole column just to confuse McCourts
name with a best-selling authors, incidentally telegraphing that she
is an intellectual.
Everyone says Empire STATE building as if theres an Empire CITY Building.
New York is the EMPIRE state, and thats where the emphasis lies:
the EMPIRE State Building. Likewise, Madison SQUARE GARDEN I always thought
was a square garden, til I learned that the garden, or auditorium, was
in Madison Square.
The movie They Shoot Horses, Dont They is always mispronounced,
stressing HORSES. The film is about the futility of marathon dances and refers
to what happens when horses, like dancers, are exhausted: They SHOOT Horses,
I Hear A Rhapsody
Some old songs.
-- On Blues Originals, Volume 6 of a 1993 Rhino blues series, I heard for
the first time Big Walter & The Thunderbirds 1956 recording Pack
Fair & Square. The liner notes invite you to compare it to the J.
Geils version. I wont. Ive heard plenty of good-rockin Jump
songs and loved them like life itself, but this one slipped by me til just
recently. What a record!
-- Someone gave me an Edith Piaf song, Les Amants De Paris, on
a tape, then couldnt remember where they got it. I have three EP albums,
two calling themselves Greatest Hits, but none contained it. I went to a local
full-stock record store and found it. Sacre bleu, what a knockout, with an
accordian, waterfall fiddles, and sweeping male and female choruses. Its
about the lovers of Paris.
-- Good god! I played the first track on The Looms Desire, the
Laura Nyro 2-CD concert album on Rounder, and heard to my astonishment Oh
Yeah, Maybe Baby, a little-known Crystals song. Nice.
-- And, this holiday season, I must point out that Santo & Johnnys Twistin`
Bells is one of the greatest records ever made.
Its The Same Old Song
The L.A. Time chief rock crit, The Major6,
penned a front-page story about John Fogertys recent concert. He who
praises Fogertys every breath found the show deeply satisfying7.
But not content to re-gush, The Major brought in opposition to raise the stakes.
Writing that many rock fans were surprised by Springsteen equating
Fogerty with Hank Williams8,
the Maj pseudodramatically vanquished them with this terse snipe: They
shouldnt have been. In so doing, The Maj imparted that he,
valiantly, knew the Boss was right9,
but it took (his opinion of) the concert to convert the doubters.
Many rock fans are The Majs trademark, imaginary boogymen who
naysay his judgment and blashpheme his faves. Its a simple and transparent
technique that would embarass better writers.
6 Many readers find him
a major embarassment.
7 I love Fogerty too, but when the
Maj wrote that opening the show with Travelin Band proved
(?) something, he chose a song which John stole, however unconsciously,
from Little Richard. (He had to pay.)
8 They must read the same interviews as
the Maj, as this earthshaking pronouncement got clear by me.
9 The Maj is out to set the World Springsteen-Mention
Record. This time he got his name in the first sentence. Major-watchers
eagerly await the day when the Bosss name LEADS a story on another
Lets Talk About Us10
I go for the obscure, and I read specialty media for my meat, just like you,
probably. But I question whether average people should have that stuff shoved
down their throats.
What if, like most people, you never heard of Brian Wilson til this year?
You may have liked the Beach Boys, but never bothered to learn their personnel:
music is to enjoy, not study. So you read, endlessly, in general-circulation
media about this genius and run to the store and buy Smile. What
have you got? Another installment of that Pet Sounds album
that disappointed you in 1966 and threw you off the Beach Boys train. This
stuff is ethereal and pointedly aimed at the faithful: preaching to the
might say, like some Beach Boy fans of 1966, Wheres the car and
girl songs? I think hes over-covered by zealous fans in the media12 who
impose their views on uncaring hoi polloi whod (whichd?) rather
hear about the new Rod Stewart monstrosity.
Im talking about the media misleading itself. Why
is that gal from Sex In The City on the debut cover of the new lowbrow
Life Magazine? Because everyone in America loved that show? It was a favorite
of newspaper people living in big cities. And not all of them.
I just feel for the normal person who gallops out to
rent or buy Citizen Kane bec its the best film of all time. Who
ENJOYS that movie? Its a feast for film students, but we aint all
that. The average American wants to see Shrek or Martin & Lewis At
War With The Army.
10 A pretty good Jerry Lee song. Once heard
it by Rockpile.
11 NOT preaching to the choir!
12 Some crits gush over big-sellers
too, like U2. That band is being equated with the Beatles, incredibly.
(Like you cant make a move without hearing their music or reading about these loveable
.... what ARE their names?) A recent photo of Bono on the ground wearing colored
glasses reaching to an audience member is like Johnnie Ray gone berserk, very
clownish. But maybe he means to be ridiculous. I didnt get the humor
of Bob Dylans songs for a long time.
13 Am I the first person to notice
you dont actually need to put an apostrophe in aint? It aint
a contraction for any currently known pair of words, and it aint
proper any which way.
In est, they gave an example of how you can follow a perfectly logical
path to a wrong conclusion. You back your car out of a garage holding the
rear view mirror. When youre far enough out, you put the car in Drive and
turn the mirror right, and the wheels turn, and you go straight. This technique,
which has worked fine so far turns out to be all wrong as you go to make a
sharp right at the next stop sign and the car goes straight into the ocean.
You didnt realize that you were in San Francisco where a car automatically
straightens its path going down a steep hill.
You mistake a mirror for a steering wheel. It could happen. Like this.
I heard that Rolling Stone had released a list of the 500 greatest rock & roll
records. I wasnt exactly on the edge of my seat, as their writers are
the same ones who vote in the R&R Hall of Fame, so would probably choose thinking records
rather than good ones, but was startled out of my indifference when at 3 pm
a recent Friday I heard Little Richards rocking, shocking Long
Tall Sally blasting out of my AM radio. To hear such primal music
on radio is tantamount to revolution.
My gosh I hopefully thought, This must be the winner of the
Rolling Stone poll! What will be next? Indeed, the next song was Reveille
Rock by Johnny & The Hurricanes.
I NEVER KNEW THEY WERE SO HEP! I thought. Be My Baby was
up next, which seemed natural. Then Gotta Get A Date by Jan & Arnie,
the flipside of Jennie Lee. Say, I thought, I gotta readjust
my opinion of those Rolling Stone guys14.
I eagerly awaited Lets Get Together by Wilbert Harrison, and I
Hear You Knocking by Dave Edmunds (tied with Smiley Lewiss original,
probably.) But my excitement abated when I learned it was just a normal set of
songs on that wide-ranging syndicated radio program Real Oldies.15
For a few minutes, though, the world was a sensible place.
14 Indeed, I soon learned that Like
A Rolling Stone was the best record of all time. RS rep David Fricke
said it changed the way we look at rock music. So thats good? The funs
over, lets get ponderous? Little Richards Long Tall Sally is
as revolutionary as things get: the Big Bang. Everything came in its wake.
To say the guy who changed Rock is the king is to overlook the guy who started
it. Its preferring the invention of Viagra to the invention of sex.
15 This station, which turns a bag of 5000
records upside down and plays them all, is run by deejay Scott Shannon. Its
virtue is almost enough for me to forgive his hand in ruining the music of
the Heaters, the best band I ever heard in L.A. In 1978, as head of Ariola
Records, he signed them and put them in the hands of his producer friend Jack
Stack-A-Tracks, who killed their music. In the hands of a better producer --
or the best, Phil Spector, who was a fan of the group -- they could have shaken
Not to belabor the obvious --
A Christmas Gift To You From Philles Records is
a gift that sure keeps on giving.
If, as someone just wrote, Brian Wilson is the Judy Garland of white nerds,
maybe P.F. Sloan is the Laura Nyro -- a great singer and songwriter seldom
seen. (But alive.)
- 57 -
from Dave Stuckey, L.A.:
re: Weird Connections You Love Dept: when I first came to work here at
XXX, I got to talking to one of the writers in the kitchen; GUY: "You like
rockabilly? My Dad cut some really obscure rockabilly records in the 50's" ME: "Really?
Who is he?" GUY: "Oh you wouldn't know - he wasn't famous -- you
can't find them in stores" ME: "Just try me" GUY: "His
name was Bob Callaway" ME: "What? Not
Bob Callaway & the Spiro Hep Cats?! 'Native' on RCA? I've got that - want
a copy?" This kid just flat fell out...
Then years later I find out in casual conversation
that one of my bosses is the grandson of Karl Davis, half of the legendary
country duo Karl & Harty ("I'm Just Here To Get My Baby Out Of Jail")
from the National Barn Dance in Chicago! Or that my buddy Jim Stephenson
is second cousin to Tennessee Ernie Ford! Or that I share a birthday with
Wanda Jackson, Granpa Jones... and Bela Lugosi.
And I really love 60's Elvis (ie. the "movie years")... not ironically...
Ok, I'm getting carried away here...
from Bob Paton, Peoria, Illinois:
Just saw today that Ronnie Spector's Christmas Party
is coming to Peoria in early December. Would
go, but can't find out much about it. Was
thru my 45's the other day and came across the great
"You Came You Saw You Conquered" on A&M.
Once I got
past the fact that the opening line sounded like "You
Oughta Be in Pictures" I really dug it. My
weird like that, always linking same or similar
melodies. Oh well.
RE: Jerry Lewis and product placement. I was thumbing
thru bound volumes of Esquire at the college library
years ago and every time Jerry had a movie about to
open, there was a full-page ad with a commercial
tie-in. Jerry eating Kentucky Fried Chicken,
wearing a Botany 500 suit etc. And there was
tag-line, "Jerry wears only Botany 500 suits
new movie, "Don't Raise The Drawbridge, Lower
River," or whatever he was plugging. After
lots of these throughout the years in those Esquires,
you figured Jer was onto something, i.e. nobody else
seemed to be doing it.
I, too, see "qualifying" statements as
Like people try to distance themselves from things
that aren't cool. "Well, the French think
genius, something (insert critic name) I can't for the
life of me figure out. But upon recent viewing
his films, they do have a certain charm etc." I
to laugh. I saw a similar thing when Democrat
hopeful John Edwards' wife was unveiled and she was
very fat. In many magazine profiles they more
said, "yes, she knows she's fat and she's working
it." They never failed to mention early in
that she's on the Palm Beach Diet or whatever. The
implication being, "gosh John is so youthful,
and vital. How can his wife be in such bad shape?" Or
"she must know how badly this comes across." Struck
me as funny.
John Lennon's "new" version of "Rock
and Roll" gets
good reviews today? I don't get it. I
used to say
put enough time between certain music and it becomes
cool (or "good") again. Happened
to both Abba and
Queen and even KC and Sunshine Band. Hard to tell
if it's sincere or just people feeling nostalgic for "Boogie Shoes" or
Man, I'm getting kind of long here. Enjoyed
Shaw obit. I too loved the mag and was turned
many great things. I think Shaw was the first
put together all of Jimmy Page's great session work.
Think of how many people got exposed to that via Shaw.
That was his great mission; exposing people to unknown
cool stuff. I was that way with my friends
early 80's, exposing them to stuff I knew via Shaw as
well as my own discoveries. It becomes very circular
in the long run.
from Kent Benjamin, Austin, Texas:
I never owned a wood-burning set. Must've had a deprived lifestyle. Although
I didn't know I was deprived as none of my friends did either. I was a chemistry
set kinda guy.
The Beatles have a song named "Revolution." Jefferson
Airplane have a song called "Volunteers" with the word revolution
in the call and response chorus. (Oy, I made a mistake! AF)
Loved your reminiscences on Bill and Greg.
Whole Paycheck Market is funny as hell! I got such sticker shock my first
time in I never went back. Well, that and the fact that hordes of hippies,
yuppies, and New Age types scare the bejeesus outta me.
from Neal McCabe, L.A.:
I've been immersing myself in the oeuvre of Jerry
Lewis, auteur, recently out on DVD. I've also been reading the original
which kicked off the whole "Jerry, le Roi du Crazy" thing in
France. What's interesting is that on the "Nutty Professor" DVD,
Jerry says that he was absolutely not parodying Dean Martin
in the despicable Buddy Love lounge-singer character - no, he loved Dean
like a brother (see, the guy's dead, and they had reconciled). Yet in
1965, when the feud was still going strong, Jerry said to the French
writer that it was obvious that the character was based on Dean.
from Randy Jones, NYC:
I just caught you doing your thing on "Poker Party" on MNN Cable
tonight. Your guests were DUST DEVILS. Cool, man.
AF: Randy, that was the DUSK Devils, from Bakersfield.
And youre pretty cool, too. (Randy was the cowboy in the Village