Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Millions Saddened by Temporary Closing of Walley World!

Sorry folks, park's closed.

Moose out front shoulda told ya.

Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! Oh my goodness,
give me a moment to catch my breath. Hello, folks.
I'm Shady Del Knight. If you're like me, your sides
are splitting right about now as you recall the mis-
adventures of wacky Clark Griswold and his clan in
Gone With the Wind National Lampoon's Vacation.
Reminding you of this particularly hilarious scene
in the movie is my way of letting you know that,
effective immediately, I need to take yet another
break from blogging. I urge you to remain calm.
Please don't run through the streets in panic.
Shady's Place is not really "closing." Your
home away from home will remain open
24-7 just as it has for the last 57 years.

The only difference is that I will not
be here to publish new posts or to visit
your blog and leave comments. You see,
Mrs. Shady and I are moving yet again
(the third time in five years) and I need
to remain unplugged for the next three
weeks until we get settled in at our
new location. I hope to return to
blogging the second week of
February. Take good care of
yourself, dear friend, and
I'll see you next month!


Have a Shady day!

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Remembering John

January 16, 1993...
27 years ago today...

John Ettline died.

John spent the last nine years of his life without his wife Helen.
Imagine the strength and courage it took for John, a man in his 80s,
to go it alone, enduring the hardships of winter and keeping the Dell
in operation even as the teenage patrons became increasingly
rough, rowdy and disrespectful. How many of us
could have stood up to that challenge?

This year as we remember John, I selected three
songs that I believe John would have enjoyed.


John Ettline had style, class and swag. He reminded me
of The Duke of Earl as he walked through his dukedom,
The Shady Dell, a paradise he and his Duchess Helen
shared with thousands of grateful teenagers.

"Duke Of Earl" - Gene Chandler
(perf. on Apr. 3, 1965, ep. of Hollywood A Go-Go)


"Somethin' Stupid" was written by C. Carson Parks, brother of composer
Van Dyke Parks. The song was originally recorded in 1966 by Parks and
his wife Gaile Foote, the duo known as Carson and Gaile. The following
year a cover by “Ol ' Blue Eyes," Frank Sinatra, a duet with his daughter
Nancy, shot to #1 on the chart. I think this is John's kind of song.

"Somethin' Stupid" - Nancy Sinatra And Frank Sinatra
(Apr./May 1967, highest chart pos. #1)


"It Was A Very Good Year" was written in 1961 by Bob Shane, the only surviving
founding member of The Kingston Trio. and introduced on the group's album
Goin' Places. The song was famously recorded by Frank Sinatra and earned
The Chairman of the Board the 1966 Grammy Award for Best Vocal
Performance, Male. 1966 was my first full year at the Dell, my
first year of knowing, loving and respecting John Ettline.
I was 16. It was a very good year.

"It Was A Very Good Year" - Frank Sinatra
(Jan./Feb. 1966, highest chart position
#28 Hot 100/#1 Adult Contemporary)

John, you were the King of all Dell Rats.
If we have anything to say about it, you
and Helen will always be remembered.

We love you and miss you, John!

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Potpourri For 100: Get Psyched as Shawn & Gus
Make a Triumphant Return to Rock Jeopardy!

Hi, I'm Shawn Spencer,
psychic sleuth and boy toy to the stars.

And this is my partner, Wolfgang von Glockenspiel,
world renowned designer of erotic swizzle sticks.

Not true, Shawn!

Recently, Gus and I were celebrity contestants
on the new TV game show Rock Jeopardy
and it went something... like... this.....

Shawn Spencer, you control
the board. Please select a
category and amount.

Alex, after eating up
three minutes of air
time to think it over,
I've decided to take
Food Songs for 100.

The answer is: A familiar face and
frequent guest on TV variety shows
and sitcoms of the 60s and 70s -
actor, comedian, singer and
impressionist Guy Marks had
a hit on both sides of the Atlantic
with this novelty song parody
recalling the big band era.
(DING) Shawn...

I sense a disturbance
in the Force. It's as if
someone...or something
is trying to contact me.
My inner eye has 20-20
vision, and my future's
so bright I gotta
wear shades. 

Please hurry with your response,
Shawn. Don't let the buzzer sound.

What is "I Got Ants
in My Pants and I
Want to Dance"?


No... no... that is incorrect. (DING)
Gus Guster, can you take it?

"Loving You Has
Made Me Bananas."

Just to remind you, Gus, that your
response must be in the form of a
question or we cannot accept it.

What is "Loving You
Has Made Me Bananas"?


Right you are! "Loving You Has
Made Me Bananas" by Guy Marks,
a record that reached #51 in the
states in 1968 and the top 30 in
the UK ten years later.

"Loving You Has Made Me Bananas" - Guy Marks
(Apr./May 1968, highest chart pos. #51 Hot 100,
re-released in UK in 1978 and peaked at #25,
perf. on May 1978 ep. of Top Of The Pops)

Gus, the board is yours.
Pick a category and amount.

Food Songs for 200, Alex.

The answer is: A popular breakfast
cereal introduced in 1965, its adver-
tising jingle was borrowed from a
1957 hit by Jimmie Rodgers.
(DING) Shawn...

What is Count Chocula?


No... not what we were looking for. 
(DING) Gus, over to you.

What is "Honeycomb"?


That's it, you got it! "Honeycomb" -
a chart-topper in the fall of 1957!

"Honeycomb" - Jimmie Rodgers
(Sept./Oct. 1957, highest chart pos. #1)

Gus, the board is still yours.
Please select.

Let's go with
Dirty Ditties
for 100, Alex.

The answer is: Half of a popular brother
and sister recording act of the 60s, her
first single, released in January 1951,
entitled "Don't Do It," a controversial,
racy song about couple parked on
lovers' lane and sung in a breathy,

seductive manner, was banned by
radio stations. (DING) Shawn...

Who are Ma & Pa Kettle?


(Alex pauses in stunned silence)
No... no... not even close, Shawn.
Gus, can you take it?

Who is... who is.....

Hurry... five seconds, Gus.

Who is...
Connie Stevens?


No, I'm sorry, Gus. You were on the
right track, but it's April Stevens...
that's the name we were looking for,
April Stevens of the famous sibling
duo Nino Tempo and April Stevens.

"Don't Do It" - April Stevens & "The Day Dreamers"
(Jan. 1951, B side of "The Sweetest Day")

We need to take a short break right here.
Checking the score, we see that Gus is
in the lead with 300 and Shawn is not yet
on the board. Why am I not surprised?
We'll be back with more of Rock Jeopardy
after this word from our sponsor, Shady
Del Knight's Fake Mustache Boutique.

Men, if your fake mustache isn't becoming to you...

...then you should be coming to me.
I'm Shady Del Knight, and I’m not only
the Fake Mustache Boutique president

... I'm also a client!

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Happy Birthday, Helen!

This is a very special occasion.

 Helen Trostle Ettline 

was born 109 years ago

on January 9, 1911.

Every evening Helen was stationed behind the counter of the
Shady Dell snack bar preparing treats to feed the masses.

As Helen worked, a steady stream of 1950s
doo-wop records played on the jukebox.

Let's celebrate Helen's birthday by listening to songs by one of her favorite groups,
Little Anthony Gourdine and The Imperials. We begin with the fine ballad released
in 1958 on the B side of another great ballad, the Imperials' first and biggest hit
"Tears On My Pillow." This side played so often on the box in the snack bar
that I have come to think of it and and refer to it as "Helen's Song."

"Two People In The World" - Little Anthony And The Imperials
(Sept./Oct. 1958, B side of "Tears On MY Pillow")

The following year, Little Anthony And the Imperials climbed to the lower rungs
of the pop chart with another ballad that shoulda been, coulda been and
woulda been a bigger hit-- "A Prayer And A Juke Box."

"A Prayer And A Juke Box" - Little Anthony And the Imperials
(June/July 1959, highest chart pos. #81 Hot 100)

The Imperials bounced back big in the early weeks of 1960 with an uptempo number
that has a strange title and an exotic theme-- "Shimmy Shimmy, Ko-Ko Bop"

"Shimmy, Shimmy, Ko-Ko Bop" - Little Anthony And The Imperials
(Feb. 1960, highest chart pos. #24 Hot 200/#21 Cash Box/#14 R&B)


 We love you and miss you. 

Sunday, January 5, 2020

The Good Girls, Robert W. Morgan & Dr. Don Rose Join Hepcat Black as the Newest Members of "The Bunch"!



...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 to meet
six more new members of


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


"A Quiet Place" - Garnet Mimms And The Enchanters
(July/Aug. 1964, highest chart pos. #78 Hot 100 & R&B/#89 Cash Box)

"Lady lady lady... why do you holler? Ain't nobody seen your Johnny Dollar!"
From the summer of '64, that was a fab uptown soul classic by my main man,
the sensational Garnet Mimms along with The Enchanters-- "A Quiet Place."

Hello & happy new year! Yours truly Hyski, Hy Lit,
The South Philadelphia Kid... The Potentate of the
Keystone State... welcoming you to part 2 of our
New Year's Spectacular on S-P-M-M Retrosonic
Radio where all the cool oldies come to play.
We're kicking off 2020 in a big big way by
introducing a total of 8, count 'em - EIGHT
new boss jocks down here at the plant.
Time for you to meet one of them now.
He's a cool kitty and that's a fact, Jack.
Here's my buddy, my pal... my feral
feline friend-- Hepcat Black!

Hey hey, thank you, Hy Lit...
and happy 2020, everybody!

I'm Hepcat Black... I got the knack...
and my new show's called Pink Cadillac!

I'm here to prove that old school is cool. I'll be playing rockabilly, psychobilly,
outlaw country, 50s rock & roll and the best of the modern rock & roll revival.

Here's a smooth operator who needs no
introduction, but I'm gonna introduce him
anyway. He's a tavelin' mana teen age idol
from lonesome town. He's Ricky Nelson...
and this week in 1958 his latest single was
climbing the chart on its way to the top 20.
It's the song on the B side of his smash hit
"Stood Up." Ricky's record follows the
same story line as "School Day," a
Chuck Berry hit the previous year.


Our boy Ricky's startin' to feel like a poor little fool,
'cause it's late and he's sick and tired of-- "Waitin' In School!"

"Waitin' In School" - Ricky Nelson
(Jan./Feb. 1958, highest chart pos. #6 Cash Box,
#18 Hot 100B side of "Stood Up")

From the early weeks of 1958, Ricky Nelson
is "Waitin' In School" for the dang bell to ring,
a song written by Johnny and Dorsey Burnette. 

Now here are three pretty little ladies recruited by
Shady as new members of his Shady Bunch deejay
crew. They're the stars of Good Girls Revolt, an
Amazon Video TV series that's been called the
female version of Mad Men. Let's give a warm
welcome to Patti Robinson, Cindy Reston and
Jane Hollander! Take it away Good Girls!

Thank you Hepcat Black, and hello everyone!

My name is Patti. I'm a go-getter. I believe in
free love, partying hard and shaking up the
establishment. Jane, Cindy and I welcome
this opportunity to take our rightful places
alongside The Shady Bunch men and prove
ourselves as radio announcers. Our show is
called Libbin' It Up With The Good Girls
featuring the great sounds of the mid to late
60s, the revolutionary period in music and
pop culture that produced the fabled
Summer of Love and Woodstock.

Scottish folk rocker Donovan is responsible for some of the grooviest
sounds of the era. Donovan wrote the song "Hurdy Gurdy Man" in India
where he was studying Transcendental Meditation with the Beatles.


Released as a single in the spring of 1968, "Hurdy Gurdy Man" reached
the top 5 on both sides of the Atlantic. Singing one of his greatest and most
memorable songs of love, here now is Donovan with-- "Hurdy Gurdy Man!"

"Hurdy Gurdy Man" - Donovan
(July/Aug. 1968, highest chart pos.
#3 Cash Box/#5 Hot 100)

Hi, I'm Cindy, pleased to meet you. I am polite,
soft-spoken and mild-mannered, but I am also
a newly empowered woman who has finally
gained confidence and found her voice at
 the microphone here on S-P-M-M Radio.
Sunshine pop, the feel good music of the
mid to late 60s, is one of the categories
you can expect us to play on our show
Libbin' It Up. One of the most popular bands of the genre started out as a
California surf-rock group
called The Crossfires.


They found success when they changed their name to The Turtles and
switched to folk-rock and psychedelic pop. Here's their biggest hit,
a record that bumped the Beatles "Penny Lane" from the top
of the chart in 1967. The Turtles-- "Happy Together!"

"Happy Together" - The Turtles
(Mar./Apr. 1967, highest chart pos.
#1 Hot 100 & Cash Box)

I'm Jane, a society girl turned serious career woman
as a member of The Shady Bunch here at S-P-M-M
Radio. I'm sick & tired of being nothing more than
eye candy, a trophy on a man's arm. I know I've
got what it takes to be a great DJ. I promise I
won't let you (or myself) down. One of the
most distinctive sounds on the radio at the
end of 1969 was a song written and first
 recorded by Laura Nyro. The song became
a hit for the soulful LA-based rock trio
Three Dog Night. A favorite tune of high
school marching bands in the decades
that followed, here's 3-Dog's
top 10 single-- "Eli's Comin'."


"Eli's Coming" - Three Dog Night
(Nov/Dec. 1969, highest chart pos. #8 Cash Box/#10 Hot 100)

That's all from us for now.

Please joins us for Libbin' it Up with The Good Girls, our first full show
coming soon to S-P-M-M Radio. Now here's one of the boss jocks
at one of the most popular radio stations on the west coast or
anywhere else in the country for that matter. Here he is,
from Boss Radio 93 KHJ-- Robert W. Morgan!

Thank you Good Girls Patti, Cindy and Jane,
and good Morgan to you! I'm Robert W. Morgan
here on loan from KHJ Boss Angeles, moon-
lighting on S-P-M-M as a new member of
The Shady Bunch. I'm on a mission to
Morganize you by playing the greatest
AM radio hits of the 60s with a focus
on the laid back, fun-in-the-sun
sounds of Southern California.


No one does it better than The Beach Boys.
This song reached the top 10 during the holiday
season in '64 and was still going strong at
the start of  '65-- "Dance, Dance, Dance!"

"Dance, Dance, Dance" - The Beach Boys
(Nov./Dec. 1964, highest chart pos. #8 Hot 100/#10 Cash Box)

From Christmas 1964, The Beach Boys there with "Dance, Dance, Dance,"
a single that needed to plow through a log jam of British invasion records
to crack the top 10 on the national chart. In early March of '65 the
song was released on the album The Beach Boys Today!

That does it for me. Now here's my good friend, a guy who does his
thing on the east coast while I am doing my thing on the west coast.
He's the pride of "Quixie in Dixie" - WQXI, Atlanta-- Dr. Don Rose!

Thank you, Robert W. Heavens to Betsy...
you got me Morganized after just one song!
Dr. Donald D. Rosey good morning to you,
folks! This Rose is tickled pink to be part
of The Shady Bunch here on S-P-M-M...
the station that's #1 for music and fun.
I'm sitting at the mic with my pet cow
Lulu-Belle (MOOOOO!) Like my buddy
Robert W., I'll be bringing you the cream
of the crop, the best 60s music on your
AM dial. Try this one on for size. It's
lovely Lesley Gore with a song from
her late 1963 album Lesley Gore
Sings of Mixed-Up Hearts.


As a single it climbed the chart during the Christmas season
of '63 and landed in the top 5. Give lovely Lesley's lilting
lament a listen-- "She's A Fool!"

"She's A Fool" - Lesley Gore
(Nov./Dec. 1963, highest chart pos. #5 Hot 100/#6 Cash Box)

S-P-M-M Radio by way of "Quixie in Dixie" - that was Lesley Gore with
"She's A Fool." That'll do it for me, Dr. D, and Lulu-Belle (MOOOOO!)
To wrap up our New Year spectacular, here's a guy who's nobody's fool.
He's that fugitive from the Shady Dell still searching for the one armed
man who stole his youth, the host of Jukebox Giants-- Dell Rat Tom!

Thank you very much, Dr. Don Rose! I remember you
on WFIL in Philadelphia and on TV as the host of
Speed Racer and other cartoon shows on WKBS
channel 44. It's great having you as a new member
of The Shady Bunch. I'm looking forward to your
first show here on S-P-M-M... the station with
personality.  My first spin of the new year is
too cool for school, a seldom heard alternate
version of the song ranked #68 on my list
of The 200 Greatest Hits of the Shady Dell.


Retrosonic Radio in Futuresonic Stereo Surround - Michigan
garage rockers Question Mark and the Mysterians with their
chart-topper, a number everybody knows-- "96 Tears!"

“96 Tears” (alternate stereo version)
(?) Question Mark & the Mysterians
(Sept./Oct. 1966, highest chart pos. #1 Hot 100 & Cash Box)

A super cool alternative version of "96 Tears"
in stereo here on S-P-M-M... where all the cool
oldies come to play. That does it for our 2-part
New Year's Spectacular. Now for Hy Lit, Hepcat
Black, The Good Girls - Patti, Cindy and Jane -
Robert W. Morgan, Dr. Don Rose and the entire
Shady Bunch deejay staff, I'm Dell Rat Tom.
Thanks for being here, and once again...