Friday, February 25, 2022

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 19, 2022

Rescue Me (from Boring Music & Dull DJs) - Meet SPMM Newcomers Asher, Antonia, Sloan, Emily, May and Grace!

Hi, I'm Asher Keddie...
 one of Australia's leading actresses. According
to Shady Del Knight, I'm part Meryl Streep,
part Jennifer Aniston... and all that. 

I "absolutely shined" (Shady's words) in 3 hit Australian TV series -
Love My WayOffspring and Party Tricks -

  I also had the iconic lead role in an Aussie miniseries - Paper Giants:
The Birth of Cleo and was in the main cast of the American
dramatic miniseries Nine Perfect Strangers.

I'm Antonia Prebble...
one of New Zealand's most popular actresses. Shady says
I'm part Audrey Hepburn, part Liz Taylor... and all that. 

DON'T "MISS" WITH "Lo-ritta Wist" 
Antonia Prebble as OUTRAGEOUSLY OUTSPOKEN Loretta West

Shady calls me a Kiwi Kewpie Doll, because I starred in four TV series he
 watched and loved- Outrageous Fortune, The Blue Rose, Westside and Sisters.

I also starred in the gripping indie film White Lies and
in The Cure, a science-fiction thriller he enjoyed.

Asher and I share the distinction
of being the only presenters on
S-P-M-M radio shows that hail
from the lands down under...
Australia and New Zealand.

Plus we are the only members of
The Shady Bunch that will go by
our real names, Asher & Antonia,
not the names of characters we play.
Shady says it's because Antonia and
I have appeared in so many things he
has watched and liked that he couldn't
pick just one character for each of us
to play here at Shady's Place.  

Asher and I will be hosting a new
show coming soon to S-P-M-M called
Thunder Down Under.
Inspired by the Weekly Song Challenge and
similar blog hops, Thunder Down Under
asks us to pick and play songs in one of
the following three categories: songs
with titles or lyrics that mention
weather phenomena like thunder,
lightning, rain, wind or storms,...
songs with titles that contain the
word "down" or songs with titles
that contain the word "under."

 See how it works? Sound like fun?
Remind you of the WSC?
Asher's got a sample. 

The words to this hit song include
the following weather references: 
Bus stop, wet day, she's there,
I say "Please, share my umbrella" 


All that summer, we enjoyed it
Wind and rain and shine
That umbrella, we employed it
By August, she was mine. 

The Hollies! 

"Bus Stop" - The Hollies
(Aug./Sept. 1966, highest chart pos. #5 Hot 100 & Cash Box

Oops, sorry. You caught me in the
middle of  sexting  texting a friend.
Hi... I'm
Sloan Sabbith
...a reporter and anchor on the highly
acclaimed HBO series The Newsroom.
I'll be joining four other women
journalists hosting the new
Shady's Place radio series
The I-Team.
 Like the show hosted by Asher
& Antonia (maybe we should
call them The A&A Team...)
ours has a twist. Every song
my colleagues and I play will
have an "I" word in the title. 

I've got a sample, an I-Team
"I" song by The Regrettes, a
Los Angeles based punk rock
and riot grrrl band fronted by
innovative songwriter and
charismatic lead singer
Lydia Night. Regrettes
songs feature elements
of garage rock, 60s
doo-wop and surf,
rockabilly and pop. 
The song you are
about to hear was
released as a single
from The Regrettes
2019 album How
Do You Love?


As you listen to the sound and watch the choreography in this official music video,
they might remind you of the opening theme from FriendsHere now are the
captivating Lydia Night and her band of Regrettes playing- "I Dare You!" 

"I Dare You" - The Regrettes
(June 2019) 

I'm Emily
Special Advisor to the President
of the United States on the ABC -
Netflix political thriller drama
TV series Designated Survivor.
Join me and other White House
Wonder Women as we host our
new radio show starting soon
on S-P-M-M. It'll be called:

The 1600 Club:
Meet The Supremes
of Pennsylvania Ave

The 1600 Club
will feature the greatest hits and
performances of Motown's most
popular girl group The Supremes.
As a sample, I'd like to play a clip
of the ladies performing their first
#1 charting hit in October, 1964,
on The Steve Allen Show.


The Supremes ask
the musical question
"Where Did Our Love Go?" 

"Where Did Our Love Go" - The Supremes
(July/Aug. 1964, highest chart pos. #1 Hot 100 & Cash Box ,
#1 R&B, Oct. 7, 1964, perf. on The Steve Allen Show )

I'm May Grant...
a young 911 operator serving LA on the first responder rescue TV series 9-1-1.

BOLO (be on the lookout) for me and six other women as we host
The M Squad...
 yet another new radio show coming soon to S-P-M-M Retro Radio



Now if you'll excuse me, I need
to dispatch units to the sets of
the TV music shows Shindig
and Hollywood A Go-Go.
There's a report of a woman
in distress. Witnesses I.D.
her as Fontella Bass and
say she's shouting--
"Rescue Me!"

"Rescue Me" - Fontella Bass
(Oct./Nov. 1965, highest chart pos. #1 R&B/#3 Cash Box,
#4 Hot 100perf. on Nov. 6, 1965, episode of Shindig! 
and on Oct. 23, 1965, ep. of Hollywood A Go-Go

I'm Grace Ryder...
 May Grant's counterpart. May is a
911 operator living in Los Angeles.

 I'm a 911 operator in Austin, Texas, and the wife of a firefighter
on the spin-off Fox TV action first responder rescue series
9-1-1: Lone Star. Be watching for my new show
Grace Kelly Rear Window
coming soon to S-P-M-M Retrosonic Radio


To close this special sneak preview, I'm dispatching all units to a structure fire
in progress. Witnesses report a group of Trammps are burning down the house.
They call the scene a "Disco Inferno." Now this is Grace Ryder saying thanks
for tuning in and we'll be seeing you soon! Stay safe. It's a jungle out there! 

"Disco Inferno" - The Trammps
(from OST of Dec. 1977 film Saturday Night Fever,
single Feb./Mar. 1977, highest chart pos. #1 Dance,
#9 R&B/#53 Hot 100, re-release Apr./May 1978,
highest chart position #8 Cash Box/#11 Hot 100


Sunday, February 13, 2022

Austin Powers Presents: Hands Across the Water
(and all over your mum's bum)…. Birds Across the Sky -
a Shagadelic Valentine's Day Salute to Warbling
Thrushes on Both Sides of the Pond!

 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 host, Shady Del Knight, is indisposed. He's in Cabo playing
beach volleyball with the Swedish Bikini Team. Lucky bugger! Since our
boy Shady has his hands full, he asked me to pop over and fill in for him
again this year as host of his Valentine's Day dance potty. Shady wants
me to spin stacks o' wax. To each his own, mate, but I think you might
have more fun if I play vinyl phonograph records instead.  

These ditties by stateside sweeties and beauteous Britties are perfect
for V-Day because they teach you all about the birds and the bees.
Reminds me of the time a burly bloke in Liverpool accused me
of being the son-of-a-bee that pollinated his daughter.

 That's a gag, baby ... 
 I abso-bloody-lutely saw you 
 crack a smile just then, dove... 
 Go on now... admit it! 

Okay, enough levity. On with the show as I present a shagadelic
Valentine's Day salute to warbling thrushes on both sides of the
pond doing original songs along with some very groovy covers!


In the fall of 1968, English sparrow
Pet Clark released Petula, her last
album of original material produced
by Tony Hatch who, along with song-
writing partner Jackie Trent, was
responsible for several of Pet's
biggest hits. Here's one of the
Hatch - Trent compositions
from the album released that
year as a single. Petula Clark
sings-- "Don't Give Up!"

 "Don't Give Up" - Petula Clark 
 (Aug. 1968, highest chart pos. 
 #23 Canada, #27 Cash Box, 
 #37 Hot 100from Sept. 1968 
 album Petula


Now we're back in the U.S... back in the U.S... back in the U.S. of A., baby...
to hear one of the biggest and best by the drama queens of Queens, New York,
The Shangri-Las. In the summer of 1965, Mary Weiss and her streetwise
girl group appeared on Dick Clark's TV show Where The Action Is
and performed a song that cracked the top 20 earlier that year.

With Jeri Lyn Stapleton of The Action Kids dancers working it out on
the right, here are The Shangs and-- "Give Him A Great Big Kiss!"
You know you want to, baby - YEAH!

 "Give Him A Great Big Kiss" - The Shangri-Las 
 (Jan. 1965, highest chart pos. #15 Cash Box/#18 Hot 100,  
 perf. on July 29, 1965, ep. of Where The Action Is

Hey now... it's time for me to introduce another
New York-based songstress, pop queen Lesley Gore.

 The poster above is fibbing, mate, because the seldom heard "Hey Now"
turned out to be one of the lowest charting non-hits of Lesley's career. 
The recording style is R&B influenced, a departure from Lesley's
earlier recordings. As such, it didn't tickle fan fancy. Sales also
suffered from controversy over the B side, "Sometimes I Wish
I Were a Boy," which some people thought contained misogynistic
lyrics. Just before Halloween, 1964, Lesley performed "Hey Now"
on the star-studded T.A.M.I. Show which alternately stood for
"Teenage Awards Music International" and "Teen Age Music
International," an event that was released as a film at the
end of the year. "Hey Now," here's Lesley! 

 "Hey Now" - Lesley Gore 
 (Oct. 1964, highest chart pos. #54 Cash Box/#76 Hot 100
 Oct. 28 & 29, 1964, perf. on T.A.M.I. Show, film released Dec, 29, 1964) 


In 1980, the American new wave band Blondie scored the biggest hit
of their career with "Call Me," the theme from the movie American Gigolo.
The Blondie platter spent six weeks atop the U.S. pop chart. Fast forward
42 years to present and enjoy frontwoman Audra Miller and her popular
Erie, Pennsylvania, rock band First To Eleven aka F211, doing their
exciting cover of the Blondie classic-- "Call Me! 

 "Call Me" - Blondie cover by First To Eleven 
 (January 2022) 


In 1958, the song "Everybody Loves a Lover" was a big record for Doris Day,
the last major hit in the U.S. for the veteran singer and actress. In the fall of '62,
the New Jersey girl group The Shirelles released a cover that made the top 20
in the early weeks of 1963.  Here now are The Shirelles, one year later at
the start of '64 appearing in the UK TV movie It's Little Richard and
wowing the crowd with their New Orleans R&B-style
performance of-- "Everybody Loves A Lover!"

 "Everybody Loves A Lover" - The Shirelles 
 (Dec. 1962/Jan. 1963, highest chart pos. #15 R&B/#17 Cash Box, 
 #19 Hot 100, Jan. 8, 1964, perf. in UK TV movie It's Little Richard)  


The Paper Dolls were a Brit girl pop trio of the late 60s. Seeing
as how each bird had a nickname (lead zinger Susie 'Tiger' Mathis,
Pauline 'Spyder' Bennett and Sue 'Copper' Marshall)... the act
predated The Spice Girls and paved the way for future
girl-pop trios like Bananarama and Atomic Kitten. 

In 1963, "My Boyfriend's Back"
by the U.S. girl group The Angels
spent three weeks at the top of the
chart, earning it a spot high on
Billboard's list of 100 Greatest
Girl Group Songs of All Time.
Here now, for your listening
and dancing pleasure, are those
pretty Britties, The Paper Dolls,
with their toe-tapping cover
released in 1970.

"My Boyfriend's Back"
- The Paper Dolls
(Feb. 1970, uncharted)

We started the party with a number by Petula Clark, and Pet gets the nod
to sing the last song of the night. Everybody knows Petula is one of
Britain's biggest singing stars, but you might not know that she is
also a gifted songwriter. Ironically, some of Petula's songs and
recordings were more popular in the U.S. and France than
they were back home in the UK.

Along with famed British composer Tony Hatch, Petula co-wrote "You're the One"
and it became a top 5 hit stateside for the vocal group The Vogues. Pet released
her own version of the song as a single and it fell short of the UK top 20.
The B side, an English version of a French song that Petula co-wrote
with French poet Pierre Delanoë, might have been a better choice
to promote as the A side. To wind up this year's V-Day bash
and send us running along home to mum, here's Pet Clark
 with her killer bee entitled-- "Gotta Tell The World,"

 "Gotta Tell the World" - Petula Clark 
 (Nov. 1965, B side of "You're the One") 

 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! 

Monday, February 7, 2022

That Was Then - This Is Now, Volume 9: The Jarring
Juxtaposition of Female Vocalists Past and Present!

 You've come a long way, baby... 

 and these jarring juxtapositions 
 offer indisputable proof! 

Welcome to Vol. 9 of my series

Jarring Juxtapositions:
That Was Then - This Is Now!

It is not my intention to pass judgement. (That's your job. :) This series
merely invites you to compare apples and oranges. Hard as it might
be for you to believe, I enjoy all of the female recording artists
you are about to see and hear. Join me on this jarring journey
back and forth through time as we compare the look,
the sound and the attitude of female singers
then... and now!


It's a different world, my friend. When I was a boy, girls looked, sounded
and acted like Connie Francis and the other coeds in the coming-of-age
romantic comedy film Where the Boys Are (Spring Breakers 2012 was
 light years away!). Return with me now to the age of innocence as
Connie sings a song from the Brill Building songwriting team of
Neil Sedaka and Howard Greenfield, the theme from the movie
that hit theaters at the end of 1960 and marked her acting
debut-- "Where The Boys Are.""

"Where the Boys Are" - Connie Francis
(Feb./Mar. 1961, highest chart pos. #4 Hot 100 & Cash Box)



Like Connie Francis and her girlfriends, Trinidad-born rap star Nicki Minaj
loves to go where the boys are- the beach. And, wouldn't you know it,
Nicki's wearing an itsy bitsy teenie weenie bikini. Nicki believes in
partying hard, and she does just that on two Hawaiian islands,
the filming locations for the 2012 music video "Starships,"
an international hit single from her second studio
album Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded.

"Starships" - Nicki Minaj
(May,June, July 2012, highest chart pos.
#2 Dance Club/#5 Hot 100/#2 UK/#1 UK R&B)


Nearly identical to Nicki Minaj in every single way 😋 are the singing sweethearts
of Sheboygan - The Chordettes. The traditional pop quartet made the hit parade
in the 1950s and early 60s with "Lollipop," "Zorro," "Never On Sunday" and the
song you are about to hear, a #1 charting best seller from Christmas time 1954
through the early weeks of 1955. Here are The Chordettes performing their
first single, the biggest hit of their career-- "Mr. Sandman."

"Mr. Sandman" - The Chordettes
(Dec. 1954, Jan. 1955, highest chart pos. #1 Hot 100 & Cash Box)

 & HALOCENE feat. 

Lead zinger Addie Nicole's hair ranges from fire engine red to carrot orange,
and the exciting frontwoman is back at Shady's Place along with her fierce
 Phoenix-based rock band Halocene. They're here to perform a metal/rock
cover of "Bang Bang," the chart-topping 2014 hit by English singer
Jessie J in collaboration with American singer Ariana Grande and
the spark-plug who just sang "Starships," Trinidadian-American
rapper Nicki Minaj. Joining Addie Nicole on lead vocals is
Alanna Sterling aka "Mermaid Unicorn."  YouTube star
Lauren Babic will blow you away when she jumps in
on the rap part. Yessum, it's three rockin' ladies for
the price of one - Addie, Alanna  and Lauren -
comin' atcha with guns blazing, doing their
electrifying version of-- "Bang Bang!"

"Bang Bang" - Jessie J/Ariana Grande/Nicki Minaj
metal/rock cover by Halocene ft. Lauren Babic
and Alanna Sterling (Feb. 2022) 


Marianne Faithfull turns age 76 this year.
I repeat. Marianne Faithfull turns 76 this year.
The English singer, songwriter and actress was
discovered by Rolling Stones manager and
producer Andrew Loog Oldham. Marianne
had a long and turbulent relationship with
Mick Jagger and the two were part of the
hip Swinging London scene of the mid
to late 60s. Here is Marianne singing
her best known hit, a song penned by
Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and
Andrew Loog Oldham entitled--
"As Tears Go By."

"As Tears Go By" - Marianne Faithfull
(Jan. 1965, highest chart pos.
#22 Hot 100/#30 Cash Box)

 and imy2 

Lastly but not leastly, here's eye and ear candy for your feastly. Her name is
Annalise Mahanes and she fronts the Nashville-based pop trio imy2 which
stands for "I miss you, too."  The band writes and records original music
with, in their own words, "a dose of confidence, individuality and self-
love... powerful, nostalgic female vocals supported by the band's
undeniable chemistry." Here's Annalise supporting a woman's
right to chews... performing a song you can really
sink your teeth into-- "Bubblegum!" 
"Bubblegum" - imy2 (June 2020) 

'Til he holds me
I wait impatiently
Where the boys are,
where the boys are
Where the boys are,
someone waits for me

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

How Sarah Got Her Groove Back -
Vol. 5: Betcha By Golly Wow it's Jackie

Jackie, hmm, hey what you doing now
It seems like yesterday, when we were working out

Jackie, oh, you set the world on fire
You came and gifted us
Your love it lifted us higher and higher

Keep it up, and we'll be there at your side
Oh, say you will, sing your songs
For evermore, evermore, evermore

Gonna be some sweet sounds
Comin' down, on the nightshift
I bet you're singing proud
Oh, I bet you'll pull a crowd

Gonna be a long night (Gonna be a long night)
It's gonna be alright, on the nightshift
You found another home
I know you're not alone, on the nightshift 

Welcome to vol. 5 of my series

NADV 1502031AM1 Sarah Collins. Picture : Adrian Murray (1502031AM1)

Sarah Collins, as you recall, is the mum of two in Yorkshire,
England, who underwent surgery to remove a brain tumor,
bounced back to health and became a YouTube sensation
in recent years with shot-at-home videos in which she
sings covers of Northern Soul favorites.

Sarah also appears at clubs
in England and other parts
of Europe fronting the
Northern Soul band
Keep The Faith.
So inspired am I by
Sarah's touching story
and her soulful singing
that I created this series
to showcase her covers
along with the originals.


The song "Reet Petite (The Sweetest Girl in Town)" was originally
subtitled "The Finest Girl You Ever Want to Meet." The up tempo
1957 R&B ditty was co-written by Motown founder Berry Gordy
and recorded by Jackie Wilson. It was Jackie's first solo hit after
leaving his post as lead singer for Billy Ward & His Dominoes.
Strange as it seems, "Reet Petite" failed to register on the R&B
chart, but reached #62 pop and brushed the top 5 in the UK! 

 "Reet Petite" - Jackie Wilson 
 (Sept. 1957, highest chart pos. #62 Hot 100/#6 UK) 


Now listen to Sarah Collins' cover of "Reet Petite," the
song made popular by The Titan of Soul, Jackie Wilson.

 "Reet Petite" - Sarah Collins cover 


In vol. 4, Sarah covered three Etta James songs. Today Sarah
will do a second Jackie Wilson number. This one is Jackie's
signature song. In the fall of 1967, "(Your Love Keeps
Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" topped the R&B
chart and brushed the top 5 on the pop survey. 

 "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" 
 Jackie Wilson (October 1967, highest chart pos. 
  #6 Hot 100 & Cash Box/#1 R&B


Now here's Sarah's rousing rendition of Jackie Wilson's
big crossover hit "Higher And Higher." 

 "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" 
  Sarah Collins cover 


In 1972, Philadelphia's smooth, sweet soul group The Stylistics,
featuring the lead vocals of Russell Thompkins Jr., gained their
first top 3 crossover hit with a cover of "Betcha By Golly Wow,"
a song originally recorded by actress and pop singer Connie
Stevens. Released in 1970, Connie's single was entitled
"Keep Growing Strong." Here are The Stylistics on
Soul Train doing their soulful cover. 

 "Betcha By Golly Wow" - The Stylistics 
 (Apr./May 1972, highest chart pos. #2 R&B, 
 #3 Hot 100/#4 Cash Box, performance on 
 Apr. 13, 1974, episode of Soul Train


Now listen to Sarah's cover of the Stylistics'
tender soul ballad "Betcha By Golly Wow." 

 "Betcha By Golly Wow" - Sarah Collins cover 

I hope you enjoyed the originals
along with the killer kovers by
my good friend in England
Sarah Collins.

Have a Shady day!