Wednesday, July 17, 2024

July 13, 2024 - JS - Low-Charters, High Voices


Rockin' Remnants

Rockin' Remnants is broadcast from WVBR-FM Ithaca. Check out our webpage, like us on Facebook, and tune in to 93.5 or stream the show every Saturday night from 6-9pm! (Or download the WVBR+ app now available for iOS and Android!)


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Date:  7/13/24

Host:  John Simon

Feature:  Low-Charters, High Voices


  Tonight from 6-9pm on WVBR's Rockin' Remnants: low-charters and high voices (mostly from July through the years). Cool tunes to take with you as you tool around or hang out on the deck or by the Lake, plus a Hangar Theatre ticket giveaway (Ragtime) and your requests. It'll be a groove!






·      YouTube links follow certain entries

·      songs with * were requests

·      all chart information comes from the Billboard Top 100 (for chart dates before/during July 1958) or Billboard Hot 100 (for chart dates during/after Aug 1958) unless otherwise noted

·      a glossary of terms is below the playlist





OPENING THEME:  Good Old Rock ‘n’ Roll – Cat Mother & the All-Night Newsboys (1969, #29, produced by Jimi Hendrix)


High On a Hill – Scott English (3/64; #77 – this record came out right in the thick of the British Invasion, which already would have been a strike against the Brooklyn-born singer, but it also sounded about eight years out-of-date with its “Doo Wop” leanings. Scott English would later scrape the lower reaches of the chart with “Brandy.” Luckily for him, Barry Manilow would change that one to “Mandy,” and it would reach #1 in 1974.)

 45cat - Scott English - High On A Hill / When - Spokane - USA - 45-4003


Peanuts – Rick & The Keens (7/61; #60 – just about every group with a falsetto singer took a crack at this novelty tune by Little Joe & The Thrillers, but this one stands out as a lost nugget by a one-hit wonder from rural Texas. Unfortunately, the lead singer was too shy to continue to perform, and this would be their only charter.)



Impressions – The Jones Boys (9/66; #101 – they weren’t really brothers, but they were both songwriters who recorded three singles together for Atco Records. In reality, they were Dickey Lee and Alan Reynolds. This one deserved a better fate.)

 45cat - The Jones Boys [Nashville] - Impressions / I Remember Barbara -  Atco - USA - 45-6426


Rag Doll – 4 Seasons (7/64; #1 – one of the greatest falsetto singers of the era is still singing sixty years later, and this was one of his greatest records. We interrupt the “low-charting” portion of our show with one of the biggest hits of that summer, featuring the inimitable Frankie Valli.)



Can’t Get Over Losing You – Donnie Elbert (11/70; #98 Pop, #56 R&B – Donnie Elbert made a career out of reimagining big Motown hits by the Four Tops and Supremes with his powerful falsetto voice, but this is a lost nugget that should’ve been a bigger hit.)



Let Her Dance – Bobby Fuller Four (8/65; #133 – this is an inexplicably lost treasure that pre-dated the group’s big well-known hits, and then Bobby Fuller met a tragic and early death that silenced one of the true innovators of the American popular music scene.)

 Bobby Fuller Four – Let Her Dance (1965, Monarch Pressing, Vinyl) - Discogs


Georgy Girl – Julius Wechter & The Baja Marimba Band (8/67; #98 – The Seekers had a massive worldwide hit with this song that had been written for the popular movie, and their version was nominated for an Academy Award. This instrumental version was recorded by a group of studio players who also played on the Tijuana Brass records. It spent two weeks on the chart.)



San Francisco Girls – Fever Tree (6/68; #91 – this low-charting single on the Uni Records label got much more airplay on college and FM stations than it did on AM radio, which didn’t translate to charting success – but its psychedelic vibe was a signature sound of that Summer.)

 Fever Tree / San Francisco Girls / 1968 UNI 45rpm / NM - Etsy


Goin’ Back – Dusty Springfield (7/67; #10 UK – listener George asked for “something low-charting from Dusty Springfield” this evening, and this one fits perfectly. The Byrds had a charting version here in the States, but Dusty’s was basically unknown.)



Get the Message – Brian Hyland (8/67; #91 – Brian Hyland’s career started with a series of summer-themed novelty records in 1960, but he matured as an artist and was later teamed with a crack production team that included Snuff Garrett and Leon Russell. This record deserved a much better showing than #91 that summer.)

 45cat - Brian Hyland - Get The Message / Kinda Groovy - Philips - USA -  40472


I Could Be So Happy – Magnificent Men (7/67; #93 – they were a powerhouse Soul band from Central Pennsylvania with a full horn section and multiple lead singers, and they recorded for a major record label. The fact that they were all white may have worked against them, though, because R&B radio wouldn’t play them and Pop radio wasn’t interested.)

 The Magnificent Men – I Could Be So Happy (1967, Vinyl) - Discogs


I.O.I.O. – Bee Gees (7/70; #94 – between their Folk/Pop and Disco eras came a series of cool transitional tunes. Some clicked, but this wasn’t one of them – despite its infectious percussion base and a catchy melody line.)



Zabadak – Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich (1/68; #52 Pop, #3 UK – NME, the British equivalent of Billboard, said it best: "loaded with appeal and yet completely different from anything they have previously waxed. The basic influences are a blend between Afro-Cuban and Peruvian Incan. Add to this a catchy and continually-repeated chorus, some very attractive counter-harmonies, a pulsing beat with throbbing conga drums and a lush string section in the background – plus a haunting tune that nags at the brain – and you've got a Hit."

 Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick And Tich – Zabadak! (1967, Paperfold Cover,  Vinyl) - Discogs


*  Midnight Blue – Melissa Manchester (5/75; #6 – this one goes out to Donna on her birthday and to Mecklenburg Peggy, and will transport you directly back to the summer of ’75 if you let it.)



*  I’m Gonna Make You Mine – Lou Christie (8/69 #10 Pop; #2 UK – this may have been falsetto singer Lou Christie’s last truly great record, recorded just the way Phil Spector may have recorded it and featuring background vocals by Ellie Greenwich and Linda Scott. You can thank listener Slade for this one!)







 Birthday Calendar



July 7 – Ringo Starr – age 84



July 8 – Steve Lawrence – born in 1935

            – Jaimoe (Allman Bros.) – age 80



July 9 – Debbie Sledge (Sister Sledge) – age 70

            – Mitch Mitchell (JH Experience) – born 1947

            – Lee Hazelwood – born 1929



July 10 – Mavis Staples – age 85

            – Arlo Guthrie – age 77


July 11 – Bonnie Pointer – born 1950

            – Jeff Hanna (NGDB) – age 77



July 12 – Christine McVie (Fleetwood Mac) – 1943

            – Walter Egan – age 76



July 13 – Roger McGuinn – age 82






Act Naturally – The Beatles (9/65; #47 – this was issued as the B-side of Yesterday, and managed to chart on its own. Ringo took the lead vocal on this Buck Owens hit, and songwriter Johnny Russell would never have to work again!)

 Dalton Tucker MUSIC - Today In 1965, The Beatles Released The Single  "Yesterday" Through Capitol Records. Produced By George Martin, & Featured  On The Band's 5th Album "Help!" (1965), The Song Was



It Don’t Come Easy – Ringo Starr (5/71; #4, #1 on Cashbox – after the breakup of The Beatles, Ringo released this solo single which outperformed his other three former bandmates’ early solo attempts. Lending studio support were George Harrison, Klaus Voorman, Stephen Stills and a couple of members of Badfinger.)




Don’t Want You No More – Allman Brothers Band (11/69; NR – the opening two tracks from their first album should never be played without the other – unless you’re showcasing the dual-drumming of Butch Trucks and Jai Johanny Johnson, better known as “Jaimoe.” That’s him on congas here, and he’s the last surviving member of the original band.)

 Robot Check



Fire – Jimi Hendrix Experience (5/67; NR – this is one of about a dozen tracks from the Are You Experienced LP that could’ve been released as a single. Mitch Mitchell plays drums and this is an alternate stereo take from a long out-of-print boxed set. Turn it up!)

 The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Are You Experienced - Music


I Want to Stay Here With You – Steve & Eydie (7/63; #28 – they first met on Steve Allen’s Tonight Show, and their chemistry was undeniable. They’d soon marry, and their career as a duo lasted for over fifty years. This Goffin-King composition was one of their tastiest hits.)

 45cat - Steve And Eydie - I Want To Stay Here / Ain't Love - CBS - UK - AAG  163



Summer Wine – Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazelwood (3/67; #49 – this had been tucked onto the flipside of her “Sugar Town” single, and marked the beginning of the duo’s collaborative run. Deejays eventually started playing the B-side and it became a hit on its own.)


We Are Family – Sister Sledge (6/79; #2 Pop, #1 R&B – this single was produced by Nile Rogers and became an enduring anthem of sisterhood and family unity, and was the sisters’ most shining moment. Birthday girl Debbie Sledge is the one remaining member of the original group.)




If You’re Ready (Come Go With Me) – Staple Singers (10/73; #9 Pop, #1 R&B – here’s another family group, led by patriarch/guitar player “Pops” Staples. The star of the show, though, was lead singer Mavis, who continues to perform and who will be a headliner at this year’s Grass Roots Festival of Music and Dance.)




Motorcycle Song – Arlo Guthrie (12/67; dnc – this was selected as a single from Arlo’s Alice’s Restaurant LP, but sharp-eared listener JR noted that this promo 45 is an alternate version. Arlo has also appeared on multiple occasions in Ithaca, but he seems to have officially retired as a touring musician.)

 45cat - Arlo Guthrie - The Motorcycle Song (Part I) / The Motorcycle Song  (Part II) - Reprise - USA - 0793



Buy For Me the Rain – Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (4/67; #45 – this was the Southern California band’s first charting single in a career that has lasted for nearly sixty years, and founding member Jeff Hanna is still leading the proceedings, with his son also now firmly in the line-up.)




Eight Miles High – The Byrds (4/66; #14 – the group was profoundly affected by their trip to the UK, as well as by their exposure to psychedelic drugs, and by repeated listenings to John Coltrane and Ravi Shankar records. Mainstream radio tried to ban it as a “drug” record, but the critics and cool kids gobbled it up. Rolling Stone ranks it at #151 in their RS500.)




Say You Love Me – Fleetwood Mac (7/76; #11 – pianist and singer Christine Perfect joined the group and later changed her name to McVie when she married the bass player. This song was one of three charting singles selected from the band’s breakthrough album, and tonight we hear the single edit with guitar overdubs and studio “sweetening.” BTW – she wrote two of the three.)




Magnet & Steel – Walter Egan (6/78; #8 – the Fleetwood Mac influences were strong, and helped propel to this record to great heights when band members Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks added their background vocals. Buckingham was also a co-producer of the LP.)








Please Come to Boston – Dave Loggins (6/74; #5 – news had just broken that singer/songwriter Dave Loggins had just passed, and this was his biggest hit as a writer OR a performer. BTW, he actually was a cousin of Kenny Loggins.)

 Prime Video: Please Come To Boston in the Style of Dave Loggins



Looking for An Echo – Kenny Vance (4/75; dnc – Kenny had been a member of Jay & The Americans, and continued to carry the vocal harmony torch. This was released on the Atlantic Records label, but failed to catch on. Many people would first become aware of it when the Persuasions recorded their own version.)

 Kenny Vance - Looking For An Echo [Mono] / Looking For An Echo [Stereo] -  Atlantic - USA - 45-3259 - 45cat



One Boy – Joanie Sommers (7/64; #50 – several songs from the musical Bye Bye Birdie were released as singles and this one is one of the best. Joanie Sommers is best known for the hit “Johnny Get Angry,” but continued to get lots of airplay as the voice of “The Pepsi Generation.”)




One Step Ahead – Aretha Franklin (5/65; #119 Pop, #18 R&B – Columbia Records signed her as a young Gospel singer, but she never quite broke through until she was signed to Atlantic Records. This was one of her final Columbia singles, and was a glimpse into what she’d sound like just two years later – with proper material and soulful accompaniment.)





Across the Street (Is a Million Miles Away)Ray Peterson (12/64; #106 – this one opens and closes with a flourish of horns; in between you get 2 ½ minutes of a terrific Pop single, produced by Ray Stevens!)



Don’t Cross Over (To My Side of the Street) – Linda Brannon (1/64; #115 – this brassy single was released on Epic Records, and was the closest she’d come to having a Pop hit, although she did release a string of rockabilly records that sold regionally.)


L.O.D. (Love on Delivery) – Billy Ocean (8/76; #106 Pop, #55 R&B – this was the second single released from his debut album, and was a preview of what was to come. It’s a much better song than its chart showing indicates, and become a major recording artist in the early Eighties.)





Morning Glory – James & Bobby Purify (7/76; dnc – this is another one that should’ve gotten a lot more attention than it did. Session guitarist Reggie Young added some really tasty guitar licks, but these guys were basically through.)



*  Dawn (Go Away) – 4 Seasons (2/64; #3 for three weeks – this record got swept into the raging currents of the early British Invasion, and still managed to hold its own. The Beatles famously held down the top three slots on the Billboard chart in late March, but The 4 Seasons were firmly in there at #4.)

 45cat - The 4 Seasons - Dawn (Go Away) / No Surfin' Today - Philips - USA -  40166




Beach Baby – First Class (7/74; #4 – British session singer Tony Burrows was the voice of the fictional groups White Plains, The Brotherhood of Man, The Flying Machine, The Pipkins….and this one. It’s one of the great summertime songs, and tonight we hear the full 5+ minute version.)




Ridin’ In My Car – NRBQ (6/77; dnc – this was a big regional hit in Connecticut, and it did get lots of play on College radio – but it never quite made a splash on a national level. Al Anderson wrote it, sang it, and played the guitar licks.)

 Ridin' in My Car / Do the Bump by NRBQ (Single; Red Rooster; RR-1001):  Reviews, Ratings, Credits, Song list - Rate Your Music


*  Home – Karla Bonoff (10/77; NR – this one was requested by listener Greg, who saw Karla Bonoff in concert in Homer just two weeks ago. Her eponymous debut LP on Columbia featured some of the songs that she’d written for other performers like Linda Ronstadt and Bonnie Raitt, but she was pretty good herself.)

 Karla Bonoff (album) - Wikipedia



Heaven Must Have Sent You – Bonnie Pointer (6/79; #11 – I’d promised some Bonnie Pointer during our Birthday Calendar, but we’re just about out of time. Here’s a snippet of one of her big solo hits: a re-make of Motown labelmates The Elgins’ great record from 1965. See you in a month!)


 Bonnie Pointer of the Pointer Sisters ... 45cat - The Elgins - Heaven Must Have ...




CLOSING THEME:  Sleepwalk – Santo & Johnny (1959, #1 for two weeks)





Congratulations to Roxy from Trumansburg, for winning a pair of Day Passes to this year’s Grass Roots Festival!




Glossary of Terms:

dnc = did not chart

nr = not released as a single at the time

AC = Billboard’s chart for “Adult Contemporary” records

BB = Billboard Magazine, which publishes the Hot 100 chart (previously known as the Top 100), along with several other charts

Bubbling Under = songs that were ranked but fell below the top 100

C&W = Billboard’s chart for “Country & Western” records

R&B = Billboard’s chart for “Rhythm & Blues” records

RRHOF = Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

RS500 = Rolling Stone Magazine’s ranked list of the top 500 singles of all-time





Host Next Week (7/20/24):  Kim Vaughan with a spotlight called “Library Road Trip, Pt. II”




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Thanks, too, to our sponsors Island Health & Fitness and Rasa Spa for their support every week!