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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!)


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

Date:  4/8/23

Host:  John Simon

Feature:  Sixties Soul


One more score from my trip to Southern California: a long out-of-print boxed set (that now goes for up to $300 on the internet) that - missing Disc 5 - was on sale for $29.99. I'd given this to my brother Doug when it first came out, so he was able to burn me Disc 5 from his copy. Tonight I build my Rockin' Remnants show around it (from 6-9pm Eastern Time on WVBR). I also have theater tickets AND concert tickets (Snarky Puppy!) to give away. It'll be a fun night on the radio - with lots of punchy mono mixes!


Rock ‘n’ Roll Trivia



What's the first thing you think of if I were to ask "What might Arthur Conley want to know about you?"


(scroll down to find the answer below the playlist – and to find a glossary of terms)





·      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

· Bold Type = punchy mono mixes





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


Sweet Soul Music - Arthur Conley (4/67; #2 Pop & R&B for 5 weeks - Otis Redding and Arthur Conley adapted the melody and rhythm from Sam Cooke's "Hey, Man" - and they got away with murder for not crediting him. It's a tribute to some of the biggest Soul stars of the day, and a fitting start to the show.)

Bruce Springsteen Lyrics: SWEET SOUL MUSIC [Original Arthur Conley version]


(Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone - Aretha Franklin (4/68; #5 Pop, #1 R&B for three weeks - this one left no doubt that Aretha was a force to be reckoned with now that Atlantic Records had unleashed her full powers. In stunning mono, here she is!)

Aretha Franklin – (Sweet Sweet Baby) Since You've Been Gone / Ain't No Way  (1968, Vinyl) - Discogs


Only the Strong Survive - Jerry Butler (4/69; #4 Pop, #1 R&B for two weeks - Jerry had left the Impressions back in 1962, and finally left Chicago to try his luck in Philadelphia. It was a wise career move, because Gamble & Huff had a new sound for him, and this was it. Again: it's the punchy mono mix!)


Express Yourself - Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band (4/70; #12 Pop, #3 R&B - there was a funky new sound coming out of LA on the Warner Brothers label. The band name was longer than the title of the song, but you knew just where they were from!)


Heavy Makes You Happy (Sha-Na-Boom-Boom) - Staple Singers (4/71; #27 Pop, #6 R&B - this was the very first charting single from the family gospel act led by Pops Staples and his daughter Mavis. Fifty years later, she's still releasing new music, but Pops is long gone. This was just a hint of what was to come....)

The Staple Singers – Heavy Makes You Happy (Sha-Na-Boom Boom) / This Is A  Perfect World (Vinyl) - Discogs


Devil Or Angel - Clovers (1/56; #3 R&B - there were a slew of Black vocal groups making beautiful music that never reached beyond "race radio." It would take Bobby Vee to bring this one to a wider audience a couple of years later, but this is the original.)

The Clovers – Devil Or Angel / Hey, Doll Baby (Vinyl) - Discogs BOBBY VEE - Bobby Vee 45 RPM Devil or Angel / Since I Met You Baby - Music


Jim Dandy - LaVern Baker (12/56; #17 Pop, #1 R&B - she was dubbed "Little Miss Sharecropper," and her diminutive size belied her powerful voice. Black Oak Arkansas would have a hit with this record twenty years later, but this was the template - and their version paled by comparison.)


Up On the Roof - Drifters (12/62; #5 Pop, #4 R&B - this song was very good to songwriters Goffin & King, but The Drifters cut the original version in their inimitable classy style. These last three songs all came to you tonight from an Atlantic Records mono sampler, and not the Rhino box - but they are punchy and solid!)

Rhino Presents: Atlantic & Atco Remasters Series - CD - Various Artists -  EX | eBay


Angel On My Shoulder - Shelby Flint (12/60; #22 Pop - we take a short break from the Soul extravaganza to bring you the very first single released on the fledgling Valiant Records label. She was a teenager from San Diego with a guitar and a song, and she only had a couple of charting records. This was the most successful.)


Goin' Out of My Head - Little Anthony & Imperials (1/65; #6 Pop, #22 R&B - here's a case where Pop radio was friendlier to a young Black act than R&B radio was. Little Anthony was born in Brooklyn and had a sound all his own. This is the hard-to-find mono 45 version of what has become a veritable Pop "standard.")

45cat - Little Anthony And The Imperials - Goin' Out Of My Head / Make It  Easy On Yourself - Veep - USA - V-1241


Reach Out I'll Be There - Four Tops (10/66; #1 Pop and R&B - here's our first Motown record of the evening. These guys cut four singles in a row that were career-defining, but they kept going long after their writing/production team had left the fold. That team was Holland-Dozier-Holland.)


* Funk #49 - James Gang (8/70; #59 - a short departure from our theme, although it DOES have "funk" in the title. Going out to John-from-Vermont, who had recently seen Joe Walsh in concert. Apparently, Joe has still got it!)


* The Locomotion - Little Eva (5/63; #1 - going out to listener Chickie, who wanted to hear some Girl Group sass! This was another one written by Goffin-King, and Grand Funk would later take it to the top of the charts again in the Seventies. Kylie Minogue would almost do it again in the Eighties - getting stuck at #2.)




 Birthday Calendar


April 2 – Leon Russell – born 1942

            – Marvin Gaye – born in 1939

            – Emmylou Harris – age 76


April 3 – Jeff Barry (songwriter) – age 85

            – Billy Joe Royal – born 1942

            – Don Gibson – born 1928


April 4 – Muddy Waters – born 1915

            – Major Lance – born 1942


April 5 – Allan Clarke (Hollies) – age 81

            – Tony Williams (Platters) – born 1928


April 6 – Merle Haggard – born 1937          


April 7 – John Oates (Hall & Oates) – age 74

            – Mongo Santamaria – born 1922

            – Percy Faith – born 1908

April 8 – Steve Howe (Yes) – age 76



A Song for You - Leon Russell (5/70; NR - he was a touring musician, an LA session player and an oft-covered songwriter. This one was covered by artists as varied as Donny Hathaway, The Carpenters, Ray Charles and Amy Winehouse. Not bad for an Oklahoma kid.)


Good Lovin' Ain't Easy to Come By - Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell (3/69; #30 Pop, #11 R&B - Tammi Terrell's brain tumor was getting so bad that she had to record her half of this duet one line at a time, and there's some speculation that songwriter Valerie Simpson had to put the finishing touches on it. Nonetheless, it was yet another stunning duet between Marvin Gaye and his perfect singing partner.)

Thom's Motown Record Collection: Marvin Gaye Duet Album Covers


Love Hurts - Gram Parsons & Emmylou Harris (1/74; dnc - speaking of sublime duets...Emmylou Harris and former Byrd/Burrito Brother Gram Parsons had a blend that was perfect on this Everly Brothers cover. He would die young, but Emmylou kept going, and is now a revered "elder" in the business.)


I'm Nobody's Baby Now - Reparata & The Delrons (4/66; dnc - this is one that certainly should've charted! Hash Brown & his Orchestra got second-billing on the label, but songwriter Jeff Barry oversaw the session and played the opening piano that you hear. He's subsequently gone on record as saying that this is one of his personal favorites.)

45cat - Reparata And The Delrons - I'm Nobody's Baby Now / Loneliest Girl  In Town - RCA Victor - USA - 47-8820


I Knew You When - Billy Joe Royal (9/65; #14 - this follow-up to "Down in the Boondocks" was an equally good record, but his chart success declined after this one - and then he headed to Nashville to try his hand at Country music. He did okay.)


You Need Love - Muddy Waters (1962; dnc - Willie Dixon wrote a lot of Chicago Soul hits, and deserved royalty payments from some British bands as well -  like Led Zeppelin, who modified this one and turned it into "Whole Lotta Love." Willie Dixon's people should've hired a better lawyer....)

You Need Love (Muddy Waters song) - WikipediaLed Zeppelin – Whole Lotta Love US Mono 7 Single (1Single CDR) Atlantic  Records.45-2690 – DiscJapan


Um, Um, Um, Um, Um, Um - Major Lance (1/64; #5 Pop, #1 R&B for two weeks - from the pen of Curtis Mayfield and under the production guidance of Carl Davis, this was a different example of the Black music coming out of Chicago. Major might be best known for The Monkey Time, but this was his biggest hit.)


Smoke Gets In Your Eyes - Platters (12/58; #1 for three weeks Pop, five weeks R&B - The Platters were the first Black group to find acceptance with white audiences. Part of it was their choice of classy material, but a big piece of it was the smooth baritone of lead singer Tony Williams. This was their fourth #1 between 1956 and late 1958. When he left for a solo career, the hits stopped coming.)


I Can't Let Go - The Hollies (3/66; #42 Pop, #1 UK for two weeks - British bands were notorious for finding obscure American R&B and Girl Group records and reworking them into hits. In this case, the original was done by Philadelphia singer Evie Sands, and in this case the British "cover" might be superior to the original!)


I Take a Lot of Pride In What I Am - Merle Haggard (11/68; #3 C&W - he'd been in and out of trouble throughout his teens, and ended up doing five years in San Quentin as a young man, but he was a fine performer who turned his life around to become one of Country music's biggest stars. Here's one you rarely hear on Oldies radio.)


Lilly (Are You Happy) - Hall & Oates (11/72; dnc - before they became superstars on the RCA label, the Philly-based Blue Eyed Soul duo recorded a couple of albums for Atlantic. This was plucked from their first album as a B-side, but mostly fell on deaf ears. Five years later, it was released as a single to capitalize on the duo's success, but it fell flat. Wait for the long false ending - and the wild guitar outro!)

45cat - Daryl Hall And John Oates With Whole Oats - I'm Sorry / Lilly (Are You  Happy) - Atlantic - USA - 45-2939


Roundabout (45 Edit) - Yes (2/72; #13 - this was the classic line-up for the Prog Rock supergroup, and their albums were in constant rotation on FM stations. Many thought it was blasphemous for Atlantic Records to edit this 8:36 album masterpiece down to a 3 1/2-minute single, but AM radio listeners gobbled it up!)

 Fragile (Expanded): Yes: Music




The Dark At the Top of the Stairs - Percy Faith (10/60; #101 - Canadian composer and orchestra leader Percy Faith had the biggest hit of the calendar year with "Theme From a Summer Place," but this one didn't even crack the Hot 100. Perhaps it's because there were two other versions that did, but his was the best!)

Percy Faith & His Orchestra – Theme From "The Dark At The Top Of The Stairs"  (1960, Vinyl) - Discogs 45cat - Ernie Freeman - Theme From "The Dark At The Top Of The Stairs" /  Come On Home - Imperial - USA - X5693 Vinyl Album - Billy Vaughn And His Orchestra - Theme From The Sundowners -  Dot - USA


Cloud Nine - Mongo Santamaria (2/69; #32 Pop, #33 R&B - this was released hot on the heels of the Temptations' big hit version, and its pulsating percussion and slashing horns sent it storming up the charts.)


* A Ray of Hope - The Rascals (12/68; #24 - this was the follow-up to the chart-topping "People Got To Be Free" and would be the final co-writing credit for Eddie Brigati, because Felix Cavaliere would take the reins from here on out. This record was inspired by young Ted Kennedy, who they hoped would pick up where his brothers had left off.)


We Did It - Syl Johnson (12/72; #95 Pop, #23 R&B - this one was released on the Hi Records label, recorded in Memphis and produced by Willie Mitchell, just like Al Green's singles. It should've been a bigger hit!)


* Tramp - Otis & Carla (5/67; #27 Pop, #2 R&B - going out to listener Tom on Long Island, this was a pairing of two of Stax Records' biggest stars, carrying out an old tradition of "smack-talking" each other. She wants a refined fellow, but he insists that he's a lover who has outgrown his rural roots. Record buyers gobbled it up.)

45cat - Otis Redding And Carla Thomas - Tramp / Ooh Carla, Ooh Otis - Stax  - UK - 601012


Boogaloo Down Broadway - The Fantastic Johnny "C" (10/67;  #7 Pop, #5 R&B - this funky jam featured the back-up band called The James Boys, who would soon morph into the ensemble called MFSB and back most of Philly's biggest musical acts. The label was Phil-LA of Soul, and check out their crazy logo!)

45cat - The Fantastic Johnny C - Boogaloo Down Broadway / Look What Love  Can Make You Do - Phil-L.A. Of Soul - USA - 305


The Love I Saw In You Was Just a Mirage - Smokey Robinson & The Miracles (3/67; #20 Pop, #10 R&B - there was a stretch of about four years during which this group could do no wrong. This is a song that doesn't get much airplay, but it's a true gem - and it's the one that Rhino selected for this cool boxed set, where they limited themselves to one song per artist. By the way, this is the first Miracles single that gave Smokey top billing.)


My Whole World Ended the Moment You Left Me - David Ruffin (2/69; #9 Pop, #2 R&B - the Temptations were at the peak of their powers in 1968, but David Ruffin's erratic behavior and oversized ego caused the group to make an unprecedented move: they fired their superstar lead singer. Motown management sent him into the studio with the back-up singers known as The Spinners, and this was his first release as a solo act. The title was prophetic, because his career might just as well have been over - and there may be nothing sadder in the world than this video of him lip-syncing while doing those Temptations-style dance moves all by himself.)



The Love I Lost (Part 1) - Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes (9/73; #7 Pop, #1 R&B for two weeks - Harold Melvin was the founder  of the group, but the real star of the show - in addition to the session players known as MFSB - was lead singer Teddy Pendergrass. He'd continue to grace their recordings for two more years before going solo.)


It's a Shame - Spinners (7/70; #14 Pop, #4 R&B - co-writer, producer and session drummer Stevie Wonder was the genius behind this single, and this may have been the group's finest moment as members of the Motown family. They'd soon leave for Atlantic Records, and that's when they truly came into their own.)

The Spinners - It's A Shame | Releases | Discogs


* Ooh Child - Five Stairsteps (4/70; #8 Pop, #14 R&B - they were dubbed "The First Family of Soul," but they were much more than a sibling novelty act. Meanwhile, there has been local news of the tragic kidnapping and death of a young mother from Ithaca. A listener called this request in with hopes that it would help to ease the community's pain. Maybe someday "we'll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun....")


45 Corner:  Nothing You Can Do - Average White Band (10/74; dnc - this was the debut single from their eponymous debut album on Atlantic Records, but it went absolutely nowhere. Who'd ever heard of  a white Scottish Soul band  - let alone one with a name like that??? Things would change with their next release, though: it was a little number called "Pick Up the Pieces!")

Average White Band – Nothing You Can Do (1974, SP - Specialty Pressing,  Vinyl) - Discogs


Dark End of the Street - James Carr (2/67; #77 Pop, #10 R&B - he was a journeyman with a handful of low-charting singles to his name, but this one had that certain "something" that resonated with the public, and it would end up being covered by acts as varied as Clarence Carter, The Flying Burrito Brothers and Aretha Franklin.)


Son of a Preacher Man - Dusty Springfield (11/68; #10 Pop, #242 in the RS500 - we end with one of the most soulful white singers of them all: the UK's Dusty Springfield. The song was originally offered to Aretha Franklin, but she - the daughter of a preacher - felt uneasy about it. She'd eventually record her own version, but this one - recorded in Memphis - is the gold standard.)

 DUSTY SPRINGFIELD: son-of-a preacher man / just a little lovin' ATLANTIC 7"  | eBay



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



Trivia Answer


Studio guest John Rudan knew the answer to this one and introduced the first song of the show by asking "Do you like good music?"


Congratulations to JR from Vero Beach, FL, for correctly answering the question and winning bragging rights for another year!




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 (4/15/23):  Jan Hunsinger with a spotlight called "Let's Go Get Stoned" (songs with "stone" or "stoned" in the title).


Thanks for tuning in - and for voting us Ithaca's Best Local Radio Show in this year's Ithaca Times Readers' Poll! You can listen to Rockin' Remnants every Saturday night from 6-9pm on WVBR (93.5 FM in Ithaca, NY) or at


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

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