Thursday, January 18, 2018

January 13, 2018 - JS - Instrumentals

Rockin' Remnants

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Date:  1/18/18
Host:  John Simon
Feature:  I Have No Words!

Like singing along to the Oldies? Well, tonight you're out of luck (😟) as JS shines a spotlight on INSTRUMENTALS all night long. Dance tunes, Surf tunes, Movie tunes, TV commercials - it's all fair game! We'll take a short break for the B'day Calendar at 7 (and we'll fold in some vocal versions of some classic instrumentals), but we're basically unplugging the vocal mic and shining a light on the melodies and the instruments. 6-9 p.m. Eastern time, streaming at and airing on 93.5 FM locally. Snow, schmoe bro! C'mon by!

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Birthday Calendar

January 7 – Paul Revere (Raiders) – born in 1938

January 8 – Elvis Presley – born in 1935
            – Little Anthony (Imperials) – age 78             
            – Robbie Krieger (Doors) – age 72

January 9 – Scott Walker (Walker Bros.) – age 75
            Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin) – age 74


[songs in bold are from the spotlight date of DATE; yellow song titles are YouTube links; 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]


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

Our Winter Love - Bill Pursell (2/63; #9 - Bill was a session piano player and bandleader. This moody piece featured a fuzz bass and a lilting melody, and this is how we get things rolling tonight.)

Image result for Our Winter Love Bill Pursell   Image result for Our Winter Love Bill Pursell

* Telstar - Tornadoes (1/63; #1 - this was a studio group in England assembled by producer Joe Meek. It captured the Cold War perfectly, which prompted a listener to request it in light of today's ballistic missile scare in Hawaii.)

* Pipeline - Chantay's (3/63; #4 - a group of high school kids from Southern California brought this to near the top of the charts!)

Image result for Pipeline Chantays         Image result for Pipeline Chantays   

Atlantis - Shadows (1/63; #2 UK - The Shadows were England's equivalent of America's Ventures, with an uninterrupted string of charting singles that spanned a decade. Curiously, they failed to land a single record on the US charts.)

Green Onions - Booker T & M.G.s (8/62; #3 Pop, #1 R&B for four weeks - this mixed-race quartet doubled as the house band for Stax Records in Memphis. This was their first really big hit, named by guitarist Steve Cropper because it was "downright nasty  -  like green onions!")

Image result for booker t and the mg's

* Pavane - Brian Auger (1971; dnc - from their Befour LP, this instrumental features the big fat Hammond B3 organ of Brian Auger.)

Batman Theme - Marketts (2/66; #17 - this is one of three versions on the chart on this date, and the highest-charting of the three. Composer Neal Hefti had a version that stalled at #35; singers Jan & Dean also had a charting version.)

Image result for Batman Theme Neal Hefti

Hawaii 5-0 - Ventures (3/69; #4 - exposure on television helped record sales, and this TV theme got lots of help from the popular show. The Ventures were busy touring, so this was really recorded by members of LA's "Wrecking Crew.")

* Harlem Nocturne - Viscounts (3/60; #52 Pop, #17 R&B - requested by a listener who vividly remembers listening to this from an old-school jukebox back in the day.)

* Hang 'Em High - Hugo Montenegro and His Orchestra (6/68; #82 - the call was for "some Clint Eastwood music." Montenegro's big hit was The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, and he also released For a Few Dollars More. The big hit for Hang 'Em High, though, was Booker T & The MGs, who went Top Ten.)

  Image result for Hang 'Em High       Image result for Hang 'Em High Booker

Spooky - Mike Sharpe (1/67; #57 - instrumentalist Mike Sharpe wrote and recorded this one, but it would really take off when lyrics were added and the Classics IV took a crack at it a year later. They recruited Mike Sharpe to lay down a sax solo!)
Image result for Mike Sharpe Spooky

45 Corner:  Love Is All Right - Cliff Nobles (5/68; dnc - poor Cliff Nobles was sure he had a hit record coming - but DJs flipped it over and flipped for the instrumental bed called The Horse. The James Boys rode it all the way to #2 for three weeks, but it was attributed to the guy who didn't even appear on it! Here's the side with vocals.)

Image result for Love Is All Right - Cliff Nobles & Co.   Image result for Love Is All Right - Cliff Nobles & Co.

Am I The Same Girl - Barbara Acklin (2/69; #79 Pop, #33 R&B - Brunswick Records had a big instrumental hit with Young-Holt Unlimited and Soulful Strut, which reached #3 a couple of months earlier. Brunswick label mate Barbara Acklin added a vocal track and they sold a whole other batch of records using the same instrumental bed!)

Music to Watch Girls By - Andy Williams (3/67; #34 - Bob Crewe's instrumental version of this one went to #15. Two months later Andy Williams added words and followed him right up the chart.)


Like, Long Hair - Paul Revere & Raiders (8/61; #38 - Paul Revere played piano on this rocked-up version of a Rachmaninoff piece!)

Image result for Like, Long Hair - Paul Revere & RaidersImage result for Paul Revere & Raiders

Beck's Bolero - Jeff Beck (3/67; dnc - this was the b-side of a non-charting single, featuring Jimmy Page on second guitar, Keith Moon and John Entwistle of The Who on drums and bass, respectively, and Nicky Hopkins on piano.)

The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Any More - Walker Brothers (4/66; #13 Pop, #1 UK - we interrupt tonight's Instrumentals show for a couple of the era's finest male vocalists. The Walker Brothers couldn't buy a hit here in The States, but their career took off when they relocated to England.)

Image result for The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Any More - Walker Brothers

You're Lost Little Girl - The Doors (1967; dnc - the second track on their Strange Days LP features the tasty guitar stylings of Robbie Krieger.)

If I Remember to Forget - Little Anthony & The Imperials (1965; dnc - another album track that should've been a single, this one from the Reflections LP on the Veep Records label.) 
Image result for Little Anthony & The Imperials

* In the Mood - Glenn Miller Orchestra (1940; #1 for thirteen weeks - we never go this far back unless it's for a special cause. This was a request from our friend Betsy who recently lost her mom - and this was her parents' favorite. Seventy-eight years later it still swings like nobody's business!)

* Cast Your Fate to the Wind - Sounds Orchestral (3/65; #10 - there were several charting versions of this one, including a vocal one from Shelby Flint  -  but listener Greg requested this one. We aim to please!)

Image result for Cast Your Fate to the Wind - Sounds Orchestral

Peter Gunn - Duane Eddy (10/60; #27 - Ray Anthony had a higher-charting version, but Duane Eddy had more twang. Another case of television exposure helping create interest in a record.)

* The Rockford Files - Mike Post (5/75; #10 - Mike Post had an ear for private eye/cop dramas. He'd reach #10 six years later with the Theme to Hill Street Blues.)

Image result for Rockford Files Mike Post Image result for Rockford Files Mike Post

In the Ghetto - Elvis Presley (5/69; #3 Billboard, #1 Cash Box - this record solidly ushered in Elvis' third career comeback, and the lyrics go perfectly with tonight's weather forecast.)
Image result for In the Ghetto - Elvis Presley

Burning Spear - Soulful Strings (2/68; #64 Pop, #36 R&B - this one opens with an African thumb piano and light percussion, and builds with flute and drums and ultimately swirling strings.)

45 Corner:  Theme Without a Name - Dave Clark Five (8/64; dnc - this was quietly tucked on the flipside of one of the greatest rock ballads of the British Invasion. Because made it to #3 in the States, and I'll bet that more than half of the kids who bought the single flipped it over at least once....)

Image result for Theme Without a Name - Dave Clark 5

Cold Sweat - Mongo Santamaria (7/68; #45 R&B - this Latin-tinged treatment of the big James Brown hit failed to register on the Pop chart, but got enough play on Black Radio to make a ripple. Tonight we hear the original 7" single.)

Love In Every Room - Paul Mauriat & His Orchestra
(5/68; #60 - this one arrived just as Love Is Blue was falling off the chart, but didn't come close to matching its predecessor's chart success. Of course Love Is Blue spent four weeks at #1. No simple feat.)

Image result for Love is Blue - Paul Mauriat & His Orchestra Image result for Love in Every Room - Paul Mauriat & His Orchestra


* Classical Gas - Mason Williams (6/68; #2 for two weeks - this is another record that got lots of exposure on television: Mason Williams was musical director for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour and his piece was featured several times on the show. It ended up winning a Grammy for Pop Instrumental of the Year.)


Love's Theme - Love Unlimited Orchestra (2/74; #1 - majestic swirling strings on top of a driving beat propelled this record to the top of the charts. The orchestra, under the direction of Barry White, included a young saxophonist who would later become....Kenny G.)

Whole Lotta Love - King Curtis

Tubular Bells - Mike Oldfield (2/74; #4 - best known as the theme from The Exorcist, this is the original single edit, pared down to 3 1/2 minutes from a 49-minute LP piece.)

* Water Song - Hot Tuna

Hijack - Herbie Mann (2/75; #14 - this one has nearly as much vocalizing as it does flute. Tonight we hear the heavily-edited DJ Promo 45. "Hi-jack...your love!")

Theme From Electric Skateboard - Brother Jack McDuff (12/69; #95 - swingin' Jazz single on the Blue Note Records label.)

Image result for Theme From Electric Skateboard - Brother Jack McDuff

The Mule - The James Boys (8/68; #82 Pop, #23 R&B - these are the same James Boys who did The Horse for Phil...L.A. of Soul Records. The Fantastic Johnny "C" added vocals and they called it Hitch It to The Horse, so they got two hits out of it.)

Image result for The Mule - The James Boys  Image result for Hitch It to The Horse

(We'll Be) United, Pt. 1 - Music Makers (2/68; #78 Pop, #48 R&B - Gamble & Huff recruited the James Boys to their record label and had them change their name to The Music Makers. This same instrumental track was used to back up the Intruders' record of the same name. Later Peaches & Herb would also chart with it.)
Image result for (We'll Be) United Gamble Records

TSOP (The Sound Of Philadelphia) - MFSB (3/74; #1 Pop and R&B - The Music Makers finally morphed into the studio band called MFSB - the label said it meant "Mother, Father, Sister, Brother," but word on the street was that it was a more colloquial translation. This group would back up The O'Jays, Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, Three Degrees, Jerry Butler and more  -  and this song would become the theme music for television's Soul Train.)
Image result for TSOP - MFSB

You Keep Me Hanging On - Funk Brothers (10/66; #1 Pop and R&B - we've heard the Philadelphia studio players, the Stax players and from L.A.'s Wrecking Crew. Now it's time for the Motown Records studio group: The Funk Brothers, who played on more #1 records than the Beatles and Elvis combined. This is what the song sounded like before the Supremes added their vocals. Bam!)

45 Corner:  Keep That Same Old Feelin' - Crusaders 6/76; #21 R&B - these Jazz players were signed by Motown in the late Sixties, and did some session work when the label moved to L.A. This is an edited version of an album track that got airplay on the R&B circuit, edited down from 7+ minutes to 3:27.)

Sophisticated Cissy - The Meters (3/69; #34 Pop, #7 R&B - Art Neville of the first family of New Orleans Soul: The Neville Brothers, who played on lots of hits with The Meters.)

Image result for Sophisticated Cissy - The Meters

Theme From A Summer Place - Ventures (7/69; #83 - one of the biggest Instrumental hits of all-time was Percy Faith's version of this back in 1960 - nine weeks at #1. Here's a very tasty and retro-sounding cover from the Summer of '69.)

When Will I See You Again - Three Degrees (9/74; #2 Pop, #4 R&B - one more featuring the playing of MFSB. See you again next month!)

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

Host Next Week (1/20/18):  Jan Hunsinger with a spotlight on Rhino Records' Rock Artyfacts Boxed Set.

Thanks for tuning in! You can listen to Rockin' Remnants every Saturday night from 6-9pm on WVBR (93.5 FM in Ithaca, NY) or at

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