Thursday, April 25, 2019

Geator Gold - Vol. 2: The Duck Across the Pond!

...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!


"Can You Do It" - The Contours
(Apr. 1964, highest chart pos. #41 Hot 100 & R&B)

A fantastic sound coming out of Detroit, those were the mighty Contours
with "Can You Do It," a record that brushed the top 40 on both charts -
R&B and pop, in the spring of 1964. If you're watching my simulcast
on YouTube you saw the def dancing of the teen kings and queens
on my good friend Dick Clark's TV show American Bandstand.

Greetings and salutations! I am The Geator
with the Heater. I am The Boss with the
Big Hot Sauce, welcoming all my yon
teenagers to another bombastic edition
of Geator Gold here on S-P-M-M...
the station that's #1 for music and fun.
We're plowing through 7-in-a-row on
the Jerry Blavat show, doin' the bop
at the Geator's sock hop... and lawd
have mercy, we won't stop til we drop.


Ready for a quack attack? Here's my man
Jackie Lee with his swan song-- "The Duck!"

"The Duck - Part 2" - Jackie Lee
(released Mar. 1973 in the UK)

That was Mr. Jackie Lee keeping us out
on the floor and beggin' for more. If you're
livin' in the U.S.A., I'm willing to bet that
was the first time you heard that particular
version of "The Duck." Quick story: Back
in the fall of 1963 the duo of Bob & Earl
wrote and recorded "Harlem Shuffle."
"Bob" was Bob Relf who made solo
singles using his own name and two
others - Bobby Valentino and Bobby
Garrett. "Earl" was Earl Nelson who
took the name Jackie Lee and had a
solo hit with the dance ditty "The Duck."

What you just listened to was Part 2 of "The Duck" which was not released
on a single in the U.S. It was issued in the UK in 1973 on the B side of
Part 1. If you are familiar with Part 1 you noticed that Part 2 contains
different lyrics and the female backing singers are featured more
prominently, making it even more of a groove than side one.

Back to Detroit we go now for a nifty number by one of Motown's top
girl groups and another version of a popular song that I'm betting is
new to your ears. It's the Marvelettes and their hit "When You're
Young And In Love," only this is an alternate version with
a spoken intro. This one's too cool for school!


"When You're Young And In Love" (alternate mix) - The Marvelettes
(May/June 1967, highest chart pos. #9 R&B/#23 Hot 100)

From the vaults of Motown, those were the marvelous Marvelettes
with the seldom heard spoken intro version of their top 10 hit
from the spring of 1967, "When You're Young And In Love."

Up next on Geator Gold, more of the girl group
sound, this one by a group from New York. In
1957 the duo Johnnie & Joe had a top 10 hit
with "Over The Mountain Across The Sea."
"Johnnie" was Johnnie Louise Richardson,
daughter of "Zell" Sanders, founder of the
New York based R&B label J&S, one of
the few record companies ever owned by
a woman. Johnnie was also a member of
The Jaynettes, the Bronx girl group that
hit with "Sally, Go 'Round the Roses."


In 1958 Zell signed a girl group called The Bouquets and changed their
name to The Click-Ettes. Featuring lead singer Barbara Jean English
here is one of their great ballads-- "Lover's Prayer."

"Lover's Prayer" - The Click-Ettes
(June 1959, uncharted)

On Geator Gold we play 'em from the heart... not the chart, and you just heard
the fabulous girl group The Click-ettes proving that old school is cool with
a great late 50s snuggle song for my yon teens, "Lover's Prayer."

If you're just tuning in, we're in the middle of
a 7-in-a-row block party on Geator Gold with
yours truly Jerry Blavat, The Geator with the
Heater, The Boss with the Sauce, right here
on S-P-M-M... home of The Shady Bunch.

Speaking of school, here are The Students,
a doo-wop group from Ohio that recorded
two classics of the genre, "I'm So Young"
and "Every Day Of The Week," both
songs penned by William H. "Prez"
Tyus, Jr., a high school pupil.


The two monumental songs were released back-to-back on the same 45.
Here now are The Students with the B side, "Every Day Of The Week,"
a dance number that inspired The Dovells' "Bristol Stomp!"

"Every Day of the Week" - The Students
(B side of "I'm So Young" single orig. released in
July & Aug. 1958 and charted #26 in June 1961)

Waxed in the summer of 1958 and popular three years later in the summer of '61
as the fab flip of the top 30 hit "I'm So Young," that was the up tempo side
"Every Day Of The Week" by The Students of Cincinnati, Ohio.

Fiction and Fact From the Geator's Almanac:
He is known as the singing barber of Pine Hill,
New Jersey, a town not far from Philadelphia.
I'm talking about Mr. Billy Harner. In the 60s
Billy's high voltage performances of R&B
material invited comparisons to Mitch
Ryder and earned Billy the nickname
“The Human Perk-u-lator.”


In the 70s, Billy's records were hot in
Northern Soul clubs of the UK. Here's
Billy's biggest-- "Sally Sayin' Somethin'!"

"Sally Sayin' Somethin'" - Billy Harner
(Aug. 1967, highest chart pos. #118 Bubbling Under)

That was Billy Harner - “The Human Perk-u-lator” - and his signature song
"Sally Sayin' Something," a big hit on the East Coast in the summer of 1967.


And as all good things must come to an end,
so too must this edition of Geator Gold.
Thanks for listening. Don't touch that dial,
because my puppy pal Toto Moto is coming
up on the other side of news with a special
show called Toto's Tutorial. You don't wanna
miss it. After that, my good buddy Dell Rat
Tom drops in to play stacks o' wax on Juke-
box Giants, and I'll be back soon with more
Geator Gold... so keep it here on S-P-M-M
where the cool oldies live on and on.

To play us off, gospel-tinged disco done right, just inches across the border
into secular territory. The song is "Mighty Cloud of Joy," and the group
is called the Mighty Clouds of Joy. Now this is Jerry Blavat, The Geator
With the Heator... The Boss With the Big Hot Sauce, reminding you to
keep on rockin', baby, 'cause you only (woo-HOO!) rock once! Bye y'all!

"Mighty Cloud of Joy" – Mighty Clouds of Joy
(Feb./Mar. 1975, highest chart pos. #47 R&B)

Thursday, April 18, 2019

An Amazing Life -
A Daughter's Birthday Tribute to Her Mother

Tom Anderson with you today to welcome back
my very dear friend Kathleen Mae Schneider.
Kathleen is here to remind us that this is a
special day on the Shady Dell calendar.
It's time for us to remember and honor
her mother Margaret Schneider on the
anniversary of her birth. In her later
life Margaret became a celebrity on
Shady Dell Music & Memories and
earned the nickname "The Oldest
Living Dell Rat." Margaret's father
built the Shady Dell in the early part
of the 20th century and Margaret and
her family were the the first people
to reside at the estate. Now, here's
Kathleen with this year's birthday
tribute to her mother Margaret.  

An Amazing Life

A Daughter's
Birthday Tribute
to Her Mother

by Kathleen
Mae Schneider

"Life is not measured by the number of
breaths we take, but by the moments
that take our breath away."
- Maya Angelou

Pointing to the collaged "104" on the wall
above Mother's chair a few months before
her last birthday, a neighbor chuckled, "Wow,
it won't be long before we see "105" up here!
What's your secret, Margaret? How come
you've lived so long?" Mother flashed a
look across the room to me and replied,
"Oh, I don't know. Maybe God's just
keeping me going to pester my kids".
It was true that we "kids" (retirees all!)
had been through much with her those
last six years. However, instead of feeling
"pestered", I felt truly blessed to be one
of this sweet woman's caregivers.

In honor of the anniversary of Mother's birth 107 years ago on this day,
I want to share just a few of her pictures and memories that she gave me
during that time she referred to as "borrowed". We had many both
poignant and happy sessions as we looked at these photographs
together. Because she remained in sound mind and strong
spirit, she often had stories to go with them.


This unassuming house where Mother was born on April 18, 1912, still stands
right along the main street in Violet Hill, York County, PA., at the base of the hill
where the Shady Dell is located. My grandparents operated a small general store
on the first floor at the time of her birth. Since the house has since been divided
into apartments, it looks vastly different than when the Brown family lived there.


The picture above was taken around 1914, and Mother's personality already shines
forth as a happy and contented two-year-old. She sits on her older sister's lap
along with the newest Brown family's baby, Mildred. Some of her siblings
and a decidedly un-photogenic cousin also pose for the camera. Mother
would have moved with her large family into the newly-built Shady
Dell house probably the year before, in 1913.


Mother credited her father's homemade cough medicine for her survival at age
six from the world's first pandemic, the Spanish Influenza of 1918. Note the
list of ingredients contains turpentine - making true in Mother's case
"That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger."

Nine-year-old Margaret Brown stands for her 1921 Violet Hill School
group portrait, smiling sweetly among the very classmates who cruelly
bullied her because of her father's less-than-savory reputation.
The teachers don't appear much better.

Mother's ever-present large dark bow identifies her, standing to the left of the very tall
girl with a dark sweater in the 5th row. "At least SHE was nice to me," Mother said.
Mother's shy younger sister, Mildred, with delicate features and also wearing a
large hair bow, stands in the 4th row, second from the left. Ethel, the eldest of
the Brown sisters in the picture, is 6th from the left in the next to last row,
looking none-too-happy about having her picture taken. I wonder
whether the two older girls to her left with the cocked heads and
formidable come-hither expressions were her friends or rivals!

The "Daughters of the Dell" (the Brown sisters)
can be seen better at right in this detail cropped
from the group shot. Mildred is in the first row,
far left. Margaret is in the second row, far right.
Ethel is in the back row, second from right.

Mother was fourteen and rapidly growing
into a beautiful young woman when
this picture of her was taken with
her dog named "Tiny", in Florida.

The Brown family ended up in a
"tourist" camp in Miami after losing
their Shady Dell home to bankruptcy.
The picture shows Mother next to one
of the small wooden cabins built by
the locals to contain new arrivals.
They replaced the temporary tents
belonging to the surge of "Tin Can"
migrants who poured into the
Miami community, seeking a
better life during the 1920s'
Florida homesteading boom.

The name of the group comes from the 5-gallon tin cans of fuel stowed on
early automobiles because there were few "filling stations" to service them.
Once there, my grandparents, like some of the other migrants, discovered
that the long distance "deeds" they had bought were to land that either
didn't exist or were just swamps with snakes and alligators.
The Browns didn't even stay a year!

In this picture Mother is
Sweet Sixteen! Her father
died soon after returning North.
Her mother and some of her
siblings dispersed to other cities,
but Margaret decided to stay in
York, where she lived with an
older brother and his wife, and
got a job in a sewing factory
that made coats.

Here Mother is held in my father's
arms. She met Ralph Schneider,
the love of her life, when she was
16 and he was 23. They dated for
six years before they married,
often taking excursions to the
beach with Mother's many
siblings and their families.


In the picture above, Mother, standing second from the right, poses with sisters
and members of her extended family at Bay Shore, NJ. Victorian covered-up
beach fashion was now obviously passé, judging by the women's swim suits
that left nothing to the imagination! Hubba, hubba....!!

I laughed when I found this
unsigned "Heart Trouble"
postcard from the nineteen-
twenties in Mother's attic.

If asked to visualize "Washington, D.C.", "women" and "wall"
at the same time, one probably would never imagine this:


Mother told me that when she and my father dated they regularly danced
"the Charleston" which was all the rage at the time. I found this picture online
while researching it. Apparently the gentleman on this picture is a senator
from Charleston, South Carolina, and he and the young ladies on the wall
demonstrate the proper groove needed for the dance by the same name.

On March 30, 1934, my mother
and father, Mr. and Mrs. Ralph
N. Schneider, posed after their
marriage in Harrisburg, PA.
They had no honeymoon
because this was during
the Great Depression and
they had to go to work
the next day!

Within a few years, the Schneider
family included two children:
James Ralph and Betty Jane.

The picture at left was taken
February 18, 1947, two years
after Mother miraculously
survived a near-death bout
with typhoid fever. Doctors
claimed the illness left her
unable to have any more
children, but in this picture,
Margaret triumphantly holds
her youngest child, one-and-
a-half-month-old Kathleen Mae.
10-year-old Betty, on the right,
was happy to have a little sister,
but 12-year-old Jim, mugging
for the camera, not so much.
He wanted a brother!

The years went by, we three
grew up and gave Mother 6
grandchildren and 5 great-
grandchildren, who continued
to be sources of joy for her
after my father died in 1980.

Fast forward to this picture of the same four of us taken a few years ago -
a true role reversal if ever there was one. Here is Margaret with her
"kids"/caregivers. Do we look like we're being pestered?


Happy Birthday, dear Mama! Thank you for your strength and long life,
and the 72 birthdays you were by my side. I will carry your wonderful
stories and caring ways in my heart as long as I live. As you taught
me, I will share them like all good things that come my way,
especially here where Tom has given me the space to do so.

I love you more than words can express.

Saturday, April 13, 2019

80 is the New 18 - Happy Birthday to My Big Brother!

My brother Keith was
born April 16, 1939.

I did the math, and unless
I am mistaken, it means that
he turns 80 this coming week!
(I am publishing this tribute now because
another VIP birthday is coming up on the 18th!)

The picture above was taken in the mid 50s
when Keith worked at the Flying A gas station
a couple of blocks from our house. My second
cousin, Albert Anderson, sent me the photo
a few weeks ago. It was the first time I ever
saw it. Thank you very much, cousin Al!

You might recall seeing my brother two months ago
in my post celebrating cousin Paula's 70th birthday.
Here above is a previously unpublished picture
of Uncle Paul, Paula, Keith and me taken
by my dad at the seashore.

Seems like only yesterday
that Keith and I were
doing the fun things
captured in these pics
taken a couple of
years earlier.

In winter we bundled up,
built snowmen and forts
 and threw snowballs
at each other.

When my little legs
and feet got bogged
down in the white stuff,
my big brother was
always there to
give me a lift.

In warm weather
months, Keith and
I enjoyed exploring
fields and woodlands
around our home in
rural York County, PA.

Thanks for the pictures,
dad, and thank you,
big brother Keith,
for happy memories
of good times spent
palling around with
 you in the country
in the early 50s!

Here's wishing you a very

happy 80th birthday,

(...and many more!)

Sunday, April 7, 2019

Shady Train - Ep. 12: Philly's Phinest!


Shady Train...

the hippest trip in America!

60 nonstop minutes across the

tracks of your mind into the

exciting world of Soul!

And now, here's your host...

Don Cornelius!

Hi and welcome aboard. You're right
on time for a beautiful trip on the Shady
Train, and if the sight and sound of soul
is your pleasure and what you treasure,
you can bet your bottom we got 'em,
baby. On today's show we are saluting
The Sound of Philadelphia with some
of Philly's Phinest. If you're all set,
let's roll this train down the track
to The City of Brotherly Love
and Sisterly Affection. 

And our first guests are members of a music act that formed in the mid 70s.
Since that time the group has been responsible for some of the hottest
sounds around. They are with us today to do a song from their latest
album I'll Do My Best on the RCA label. The song is entitled
"One And Only" and they are-- The Ritchie Family!

"One And Only" - The Ritchie Family
(from 1981 album I'll Do My Best)

Our next guests are here to sing about
bad luck, but it is our good fortune to
have them aboard the big train for this
special all-Philadelphia edition. For a
dozen years these gentlemen paid their
dues, but ever since signing with Phila-
delphia International. they have been
rackin' 'em back with one big hit after
another. As they join us to do their
latest single for the label entitled...
you guessed it... "Bad Luck," let's
make some big noise, gang, for-- 
Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes!

"Bad Luck" - Harold Melvin And The Blue Notes
(May/June 1975, highest chart pos. #15 Hot 100/#4 R&B)

And we're gonna slow things down
right now with the mellow sound of
another fine Philadelphia group. As
they join us to do their latest single
on the Atco label, a biggin' every-
body's diggin' entitled "Sideshow,"
let's get some hands together, gang,
for the masters of the sweet soul
ballad-- Blue Magic!

"Sideshow" - Blue Magic
(June/July 1974, highest chart pos. #8 Hot 100/#1 R&B)

And we are delighted to have with us
three extraordinary canaries who have
earned a reputation as one of the best
groups in our business. Among their 
hits is the Shady Train theme "TSOP-
"The Sound Of Philadelphia." As they
join us to do their latest single for
Philadelphia International, groove
that makes you wanna move real
smooth entitled "When Will I See
You Again," a warm welcome,
please, ladies and gentlemen,
for-- The Three Degrees!

"When Will I See You Again" - The Three Degrees
(Nov./Dec. 1974, highest chart pos. #2 Hot 100/#4 R&B

(Don's intro
is on video.)

"Betcha By Golly, Wow"
The Stylistics (Apr. 1972,
highest chart position
#3 Hot 100/#2 R&B)

And look out now, don't hurt yourself.
The Shady Train line's gettin' into the
swing with a pretty little thing. It's
a slick sound comin' out of Philly
that's a sho 'nuff dilly. These are
The Philly Devotions and this is
-- "I Just Can't Say Goodbye!"

"I Just Can't Say Goodbye" - The Philly Devotions
(Feb./Mar. 1975, highest chart pos. #81 R&B/#95 Hot 100)

AT 2:30 MARK!

And the young ladies you are about
to meet have more than just their
last names in common. They are
all very talented and very lovely.
As they join us to do their latest
single on the Cotillion label
entitled "Thinking Of You,"
a big welcome, gang,
for-- Sister Sledge!

"Thinking of You" - Sister Sledge
(April thru Sept. 1979, B side of "Lost In Music,"
1984 UK re-release peaked at #11 UK/#20 Ireland,
from Jan. 1979 album We Are Family)

And if that didn't get it it can't be
gotten. We wanna thank you for
joining us on this special edition
featuring some of Philly's Phinest.
We hope you'll come on back and
jam with us again next time, and
you can bet you last money it's
all gonna be a stone gas honey.
I'm Don Cornelius and as
always in parting we wish
you love... peace... and soul!

Monday, April 1, 2019

What's Cookin' with Mazola & Oils?

The following made up ditty should be sung
(by you) to the melody of the theme song from

The Patty Duke Show.

To refresh your memory of the song, click below.

Now sing the song using these lyrics:

Meet Maura...

...who's lived most everywhere,
From Zanzibar to Barclay Square.

But Janie's only seen the sights.
A girl can see from Boston Light.

What a crazy pair!
But they're like cousins,
Identical cousins all the way.

One pair of matching bookends,
Different as night and day.

Where Maura adores a minuet,
The Ballet Russes, and crepe suzette,

Our Janie loves to rock and roll,
A hot dog makes her lose control
What a wild duet!

Still, they're like cousins,
Identical cousins and you'll find,

They laugh alike, they walk alike,
At times they even talk alike --
You can lose your mind,

Mazola & Oils
are two of a kind!



Mazola & Oils:

"Me Maura - You Jane."








I'm Jane Mazola.

I'm a detective with the Boston P.D.
Homicide Unit. Care to arm wrestle?

You know I'll beat you like I beat my brother
Frankie and all the other guys on the force.

(rt.) I'm Dr. Maura Oils, Medical Examiner.

The guys (and girl) down at the precinct
nicknamed me "Queen of the Dead."

Jane and I are BFFs. We spend a lot
of time together and do lots of things
together... like take yoga classes.


...and give each other peculiar,
provocative and telling glances.

Actually they're called PDMAs, Jane -
public displays of mutual admiration.

We're best buds, besties...

... so close we're practically
joined at the hip.

(below) Angela Mazola, Jane's mother:
I swear to you, Jane, I haven't slept a wink since you
got it in your foolish, stubborn head to become a cop.

Being a cop is a man's job. Looking pretty and
cooking meals for him is a woman's role in this world.
Look at the clothes you wear!

The man is supposed to wear the pants.
Would it kill you to put dress on now and then?
Yes, actually it would, ma.

Jane, you need a man
in your life. There's a
cute billionaire doctor
I'd like you to meet.

I'm good, ma.

She's good,
Mrs. Mazola.
Believe me,
she's good.

Watch rizzoli & isles...

one of my favorite TV series...

now playing on TNT and Hulu...

a recipe for entertainment...
with a dash of spice!