Monday, February 25, 2019

Remembering Helen


Whenever I hear this song, it reminds me
of a very special person, the first lady
of the Shady Dell... Helen Ettline.

Unforgettable, Helen...

That's what you are!

We love you and miss you.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Hey, Hey Paula!

Today is a very special day.

It's my cousin Paula's
70th birthday
and I'm taking her (and you)
on a trip down memory lane!

Tommy and Paula at the beach in Wildwood, NJ

Among my happiest childhood memories are those made with Paula in the
early 50s when our families vacationed at the beach in Wildwood, New Jersey.
Here, just for you, Paula, is one of Philly's Phinest, Bobby Rydell, singing
about "Wildwood days, party lights and wild, wild Wildwood nights!"

"Wildwood Days" - Bobby Rydell
(May/June 1963, highest chart pos. #17)

As I display a few more pictures taken by my dad,
the shutterbug, at fun-filled family gatherings of the 50s...

sweet girl Paula on right

...there are a few more things I'd like you
to know about my cousin Paula.

Paula, more than anyone, was responsible for getting me interested in
pop music and pop culture. In the late 50s Paula got me started watching
Dick Clark's American Bandstand. She introduced me to the music of teenage
idols like Ricky Nelson and the boys from Philly which included the singer you
just heard, Bobby Rydell, along with another young Philadelphia dreamboat
and heartthrob - Fabian. In this scene from Bandstand, you will catch
glimpses of Fabian signing autographs (at 52 sec. and 1:20) as the
kids in the studio dance to the Newbeats' hit "Bread And Butter."

"Bread And Butter" - The Newbeats
(Sept. 1964, highest chart pos. #2, ep. of American Bandstand
with Fabian signing autographs at :52/1:20 mark)

Speaking of Philly teenage idols, let's not forget the very popular Frankie Avalon.
In recent years, Frankie toured with Bobby Rydell and Fabian as a trio called
Dick Fox's Golden Boys. (Dick Fox is a Manhattan producer and promoter.)
Now let's turn back the clock to 1959 as cute and cuddly Frankie Avalon
performs his signature song-- "Venus."

"Venus" - Frankie Avalon
(Mar./Apr. 1959, highest chart pos. #1)

Cousin Paula and I lived in York, PA. Down the road a hop, skip and a jump is
the city of Hanover, hometown of the much loved girl group The Pixies Three.
To honor Paula on her special day, The Pixies sing their hit "Birthday Party."

"Birthday Party" - The Pixies Three
(Aug./Sept. 1963, highest chart pos. #40)

Cousin Paula was named after her dad, Paul, (above right) and that brings
to mind the Texas duo of Paul & Paula and their chart-topper "Hey Paula."

"Hey Paula" - Paul And Paula
(Jan./Feb. 1963, highest chart pos. #1)

"Hey Paula" by Paul and Paula reminds me of "Tall Paul," a top 10 hit
for Mouseketeer Annette Funicello in 1959. Here's a wonderful hybrid
video combining two vintage clips of Annette performing the ditty,
including the time she shrank to puppet size on Bandstand.

"Tall Paul" - Annette
(Jan./Feb. 1959, highest chart pos. #7,
perf. on American Bandstand)

Paula, my dear cousin...

Feb. 1951 - posing before we went to Sunday school

... you were close to me from the
very start - a wonderful companion.

Thank you very much, Paula...

for being my childhood chum.

Thank you for igniting my passion for
 pop music and for helping to make
my childhood years so much fun.

In closing, here's Neil Sedaka with a
musical message just for you, Paula:

"Happy birthday, sweet sixteen!" (+ 54)

"Happy Birthday, Sweet Sixteen" - Neil Sedaka
(Dec, 1961, highest chart pos. #6, perf. on American Bandstand)

Hey, hey, Paula... I love you!

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Austin Powers Swings Again - Yeah, Baby, Yeah!

 Allow myself to introduce.....myself. 

 I'm Austin Powers, super secret spy, 

 international man of mystery, 

 bon vivant, swinging playboy 

 and irresistible babe magnet. 

 London is my home, shag is my bag, 

 planet earth is my playground and 

 danger is my middle name, baby. 

Your regular emcee, Shady, couldn't be here today to host the annual
Valentine's dance. On Saturday night, the poor chap got himself
cuffed and carted off to the clink. Seems our boy dipped into
his mum's cooking sherry earlier in the day, got himself
daft bonkers sloshed and crashed a wedding reception
completely starkers. Mr. Knight was charged with
indecent exposure but... when the magistrate
caught a glimpse of the Shadster's Mini-Me,
the case was dismissed forthwith due to
"insufficient evidence."

 Gotcha, mate - that was a gag! 

 You should have seen your face 

 just then, luv... your expression 

 was priceless! 

Whilst Shady is rotting in a jail cell, I will fill in for him and
play a stack of groovy Brit girl records. These thrushes are
Tops of the Pops so Ready Steady Go!


Joining the English sparrows performing at this year's
V-day dance is Scottish singer, songwriter, actress and
fashion model Lulu, best known for singing the theme
and appearing in the movie To Sir With Love. In 1965
Lulu released her debut UK album entitled Something
to Shout About. In the fall of the year, Lulu streeted a
single with one of the songs from the album, "Tell Me
Like It Is," on the A side and "Stop Fooling Around"
as the killer bee. Lulu wowed the crowd singing
that fab flip along with "Call Me" on English
comedian Arthur Haynes' popular TV show.

 "Stop Fooling Around"/"Call Me" - Lulu 
 (Oct. 1965, B side of "Tell Me Like It Is", 
 live perf. on 1966 ep. of The Arthur Haynes Show


Lyricist and singer Yvonne Burgess derived her
stage name, Jackie Trent, from her birthplace
Stoke-on-Trent. With her boyfriend and later
husband Tony Hatch, Jackie formed a very
successful composing team that wrote hits
for Petula Clark and other UK artists.

In 1964, at the height of Spectormania,
Hatch amd Trent collaborated on a
castanet clacking stormer with an
arrangement similar to recordings
made by Phil Spector girl groups
The Crystals and The Ronettes.
Prepare to bask in Spectorian
Splendor as Jackie Trent
sings "If You Love Me."

 "If You Love Me" - Jackie Trent 
 (March 1964) 


Now here's smoky voiced Dusty Springfield. In September, 1964,
Dusty released in the UK a self-titled four song EP that contained
her hit "Wishin' And Hopin'" along with the number you are about
to hear. Stateside "All Cried Out" brushed the top 30 on Cash Box
and just missed the top 40 on Billboard. The following year Dusty
appeared live on The Ed Sullivan Show and demonstrated her
greatness with this stunning live performance.

 "All Cried Out" - Dusty Springfield 
 (Oct. 1964, highest chart pos. #41 Hot 100/#31 Cash Box
 live perf. on May 2, 1965, ep. of The Ed Sullivan Show


The song "Around And Around"
was penned and first waxed in
1958 by Chuck Berry. in 1964
three British boy bands covered
Chuck's recording - The Rolling
Stones, The Swinging Blue Jeans
and The Animals. English one hit
wonder Louise Cordet beat them
all to it, releasing her version of
the song in May 1963. Here again
the B side is the focus as Louise
performs "Which Way The Wind
Blows" in the British musical
comedy film Just For Fun!

 "Which Way The Wind Blows" - Louise Cordet 
 (May 1963, B side of "Around And Around," 
 scene from June 1963 film Just For Fun


Petula Clark racked up a string of U.S. hits
thanks to her own talent, beauty and poise
and, as previously mentioned, the quality
songs supplied to her by the composing
team of Tony Hatch and Jackie Trent.
In 1966 Pet Clark was 33 years of age,
but had no problem clicking with the
teenage dancers on The Lloyd Thaxton
Show as she performed a lip sync to her
international hit from the previous year.
Here's Pet doing "I Know A Place."

 "I Know A Place" - Petula Clark 
 (Apr. 1965, highest chart pos. #3 Hot 100/#2 Cash Box, 
 perf. on April 1, 1966 ep. of The Lloyd Thaxton Show


Here's more proof that Brit girls love to cover
American hits. In the spring of 1964, Motown
songbird Mary Wells achieved the biggest hit
of her career with "My Guy." That year, Brit-
popper Helen Shapiro covered the song on
her album Helen Hits Out! Helen did a
spiffy job of it, too. In this magnificent
live performance, Helen channels Mary
and comes across as an English version
of the sultry soul siren!

 "My Guy" - Helen Shapiro 
 (from 1964 album Helen Hits Out!

 I hope these super sounds put you in 

 a shagadelic mood, baby. Oh behave! 

 This is your old chum Austin Powers 

 international man of mystery 

 (and music history)... 

 saying ciao for now. 

 Let's do it again real soon, baby... 

 You know you want to... YEAH! 

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Stuck Like Glue On Shady Blue Volume 2:
"Don't," Pleads Elvis the Pelvis.. "I Beg Of You!"

...and the cow was returned to its rightful owner.

And that's the latest from S-P-M-M news...
fast, up-to-the-minute, completely fake
and proud of it. Now stand by for


on the station that's #1 for music and fun - S-P-M-M!


"Don't" - Elvis Presley
(Mar./Apr. 1958, highest chart pos. #1)

Hey, old school's cool and old school's the rule here on S-P-M-M
Retrosonic Radio, where we go huntin' for the great songs of the past...
and bring 'em back alive!

You're Stuck Like Glue on Shady Blue. That's me. Howdy-do?
That was Elvis Presley opening our show with "Don't," a dramatic
ballad written and produced by Leiber & Stoller, and the eleventh
#1 charting single in the U.S. for The King of Rock and Roll.

BOOTH ANNOUNCER: It's another Shady Blue
(echo chamber) DOUBLE PLAY-ay-ay-ay!

That's right, folks... Elvis sings "Don't," and Shady Blue shouts
don't touch that dial, because I've got a double dose of The Pelvis!


I'm flipping that Presley platter, freeing the killer bee,
and urging you to keep it here on S-P-M-M... "I Beg Of You!"

"I Beg Of You" - Elvis Presley
(Mar. 1958, highest chart pos. #8)

Elvis Presley with one of his great double-
sider singles from the 50s, "Don't" backed
with "I Beg Of You." My next spinner is
another winner, a doo-wop - rock & roll
record that topped the chart in January,
1958, and went on to become one of
the best selling singles of the year.


Here they are, ladies and germs, one of
Philly's Phinest vocal groups, Danny
And The Juniors, doing their smash
hit and signature song "At The Hop!"

"At The Hop" - Danny And The Juniors
(Jan. 1958, highest chart pos. #1)

Danny and the Juniors "At The Hop" and Shady Blue at the mic.
If you're just tuning in, you're Stuck Like Glue On Shady Blue
here on S-P-M-M Radio - more music with less talk and
always a guaranteed 7-in-a-row commercial free cruise.

56 years ago this next song topped the
charts in Ireland and Australia. If you
happen to be watching our simulcast
on YouTube, you'll be able to enjoy
The Action Kids doing their thing.


They, of course, were the talented
dance company on Dick Clark's
TV series Where The Action Is.
Here now is the late great
Del Shannon with--
"Little Town Flirt!

"Little Town Flirt" - Del Shannon
(Feb. 1963, highest chart pos. #12 Hot 100/#11 Cash Box,
perf. on Sept. 28, 1965 ep. of Where The Action Is)

"Little Town Flirt," one of the many great hit
singles by rock 'n' roll legend Del Shannon.

Now here's a taste of the early 60s Nashville
sound. "Send Me the Pillow You Dream On"
was written and first recorded way back in
1949 by country music singer and Grand
Ole Opry star Hank Locklin. At the time
Hank's song didn't chart, but it became
a major crossover hit when it was
re-released at the end of 1957.


Hit versions of "Send Me The Pillow" were also released in the 1960s
by The Browns, by Dean Martin, and by this man- Jacksonville,
Florida, country-pop singer Johnny Tillotson!

"Send Me The Pillow You Dream On" - Johnny Tillotson
(Sept. 1962, highest cart pos. #17)

That was "Send Me The Pillow You Dream On," the version
recorded by Johnny Tillotson, the country crossover artist
who became a teen idol of sorts two years earlier with
the biggest hit single of his career "Poetry In Motion."

At the end of 1962 this next song was well
on the way to becoming a million seller.
Sung by Brooklynite Marcie Blane, it is
one of the many boy name teen pop
singles released in the pre-Beatles era.
Marcie's record shot to #2 on Cash Box,
blocked from the top spot by "Telstar,"
the international hit by the English
instrumental band The Tornados.
Here now is Marcie Blane with her
one and only hit-- "Bobby's Girl."


"Bobby's Girl" - Marcie Blane
(Dec. 1962, highest chart pos. #3 Hot 100/#2 Cash Box)

One hit wondergirl Marcie Blane there with her signature song
"Bobby's Girl," a record that enjoyed a long 16 week ride on
the pop chart and was still hanging on this week in 1963.


Hey, time's up and I gotta scoot. As the Bill Black Combo plays us out with
"Smokie - Part 2," another great instrumental that was charting 59 years ago
this week, I wanna thank you for joining me. Stay tuned on the other side
of news for my good friend Hy Lit who will put you on a Natural Hy.
I'll be back soon with another nostalgic stack of wax. I hope by
now you're Stuck Like Glue On Shady Blue and that you'll keep
it here on S-P-M-M, the station that's #1 for music and fun!

"Smokie - Pt. 2" - Bill Black's Combo
(Jan. 1960, highest chart pos. #17 Hot 100/#13 Cash Box