Saturday, September 27, 2008

It's all jake with me

In 1982 the scruffy little city hosted a World's Fair. That's right, that ketchup packet is the official ketchup of the World's Fair.
Apparently, not everyone was rapturously excited by this upcoming event.
Bruce McCoy penned today's little ditty, and Knoxville legend Terry Hill produced it (I wonder if it was Terry's idea to include a clarinet* solo in a country tune?). The song is the same on both sides (must have been too busy to pen a b-side). I don't recall ever hearing this song on the radio, but I really wasn't listening to country radio at the time, so I don't know what kind of play it got. I have no idea where I got it, but it must have been serviced to non-country stations too, since I only worked in non-country radio.

*or is it a mellow soprano sax?

Bruce McCoy - 1982 Expose

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New Wave, Old Waves

For the past 25+ years I've had it filed away in the back of my brain that Jeff Huggins was not the first host of WIMZ's WAVES program, but I had no confirmation until this week, when I repaired the terribly abused cassette pictured below. A little splicing tape, a little re-applied masking tape, and a digital transfer leads us to today's audio.

Turns out that little brain worm was correct - Bill Cartwright (presumably not the 90's Bulls' center) was the initial host of the program. I know even less about Bill than I do about Jeff, so if you have any info please pop in on the comments and fill us in. This show is from 1981, and my memory tells me that this was the first time I heard (or at least the first time that I taped) WAVES.

Since it's Tuesday (even though it's not midnight EST), it's the appropriate time to post this show.

WIMZ-WAVES-Bill Cartwright 1981 01
WIMZ-WAVES-Bill Cartwright 1981 02

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Mike Love, Not War

Since I spent the weekend camping at the beach, I thought it would be appropriate to throw a little Beach Boys on here. No, we're not revisiting the classic sounds of the 60s, or even the odd "Johnny Carson" era of the 70s. No, we're taking a trip into the EE decade (Ewww Eighties).

Today's special is an RKO-produced and Dave Roberts-hosted radio show called "The Hot Ones" that features music from and interviews with the Beach Boys of 1985. Of course, by this time Dennis had passed away and Brian was playing in Landyland, so it's not exactly the strongest lineup of the band (Landy has four (4!) songwriting credits on the album - someone needed to beat him about the head and shoulders with a 2" reel of BASF). Oh, and Boy George contributes a tune to the album they're promoting.

Beach Boys aficionados will probably find something to complain about every couple of minutes - Mike in particular makes some egregiously wrong-headed comments - but it's still worth a listen. And, yes, Bruce gets in a plug for "I Write The Songs" - it wouldn't be a proper interview without it.

This disc came into my possession during my brief early 90's sales gig at Blount County's 1470 WMDR-AM, which was at that time running an easy listening format but which had previously been top-40 as "The Music Doctor". The top-40 format had replaced an earlier easy listening format when the station dropped its original call letters of WEAG (on which we listened to the Jerry Collins Show every morning on the way to school in the 70's in my Dad's '72 Impala with the one oval speaker in the dash).

The Hot Ones - Beach Boys - Side One
The Hot Ones - Beach Boys - Side Two

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Last One Left

Here are three random bits of memorabilia from WUTK of the 1980s.

First is the front logo from (what I think) is the first WUTK t-shirt design, the famous "The Last One Left" design. My shirt is green, but I think there were a couple of other colors, too.

Speaking of "The Last One Left", here's the back of the shirt:

Meh, sorry that picture is such crap. Blogger wouldn't take my high-resolution version.
The dial reads (l-r) TV, WUTK-FM, Old Folks, Headbangers, Hillbillies.

Lastly, anyone who had a late-night (10-2) airshift at WUTK during the 1980's will be well-familiar with this sign-off. Whoever was on the air this night was waiting by the transmitter switch as the cart played, immediately killing the transmitter as the final note fades out. Just hearing this again brings back very specific sights, sounds (and smells) of the basement of Andy Holt late at night.
Anyone know who voiced this?

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Monday, September 01, 2008

Tokyo Boogie

A patron donated a giant collection of 78s to the library, so I've been going through them looking for interesting finds (the little yellow Golden Records of previous posts were one such find). Since I had to work this past weekend, I decided to pass the office time by sorting through some of the boxes. Most of the cache is album sets of classical music, a lot of which has seen later album/cd reissue. Today's primary selection is a fairly legendary Japanese pop song:Tokyo Boogie-Woogie (1948) as sung by Shizuko Kasagi, which appears on a Columbia Records 10" 78rpm record #39954 (RHCO 10416).

Shizuko Kasagi (1914-1985) was an entertainer who had been active in singing, dance, stage and movies as a star member of the Japan's girls' opera company SGD before the World War II, and became a very popular singer with Tokyo Boogie-Woogie and other boogie hits in the postwar occupied Japan . A set of 3 CDs which includes almost all her recordings (only four songs are not included) is available. As is today's selection, almost all of the songs are composed by Ryoichi Hattori. The music is based on the American jazz and modern in style. Other well-known songs include: Rappa to Musume (Bugle and Girl) (1939), recorded with a big band before the war in a jazz style; Aire Kawaiya (1946), in a folk song style, which was a popular song during the war (and was recorded after the war); Jungle Boogie (1948) is the theme song of the movie "Yoidore Tenshi/Drunken Angel" directed by Akira Kurosawa.

Apparently it is still being sung in American Idol-like contests.

The flipside (listed as the A side, but I like the other side better, and this is my blog) is by a different vocalist, Richard Bowers, an army NCO stationed in post war Japan who favors us with Gomen-Nasai (Forgive Me). Richard also sings the song in the film "Mission Over Korea" (1953) in which he also appears (as a soldier, natch). It made it to #15 on the US pop charts in 1953.

Both tracks feature the Columbia Tokyo Orchestra.