Category Archives: Musical Appreciation

Ian Whitcomb ► Monday Musical Appreciation

Born on this day in 1941: Ian Whitcomb, still performing to this very day.

Ian Timothy Whitcomb was born in Woking, Surrey, England, to a family that already had show biz in its blood. His grandfather Jack founded British Screen Classics, an early entry in the motion picture business, which eventually bankrupt him. Before that, Ian’s father Pat worked there, and even co-starred in the 1929 flick, Mr. Nobody (not to be confused with the 2009 SciFi film), a movie that seems to be lost, without even an entry on the Internet Movie Data Base.

His father also played piano, which is probably where Ian’s love of music came from. But, it was also a musical family. As the WikiWackyWoo tells us:

Ian’s younger brother, Robin, accompanied him on drums in their first bands, notably The Ragtime Suwanee Six (1960–62) whose manager was Denny Cordell, later to produce records by Procol Harum and Joe Cocker. Robin went on to play tambourine on Sonny & Cher‘s hit “I Got You Babe” (1965).

Growing up, Whitcomb’s chief musical inspirations were Phil Harris, Johnnie Ray, Guy Mitchell, Elvis Presley, and George Formby. He was sent away to boarding school in 1949 (Newlands, Seaford, Sussex) at age 8 and there he soon formed a tissue paper-and-comb band to entertain staff and boys with current hits such as “Riders in the Sky“.

In boarding school he formed a Skiffle group (1957) and, later, a Rock and Roll band (1959). While at Trinity College in the ’60s, he formed what was to become Dublin’s first Rhythm and Blues band, Bluesville.

I became aware of Ian Whitcomb in 1965, like most everybody else, when his unlikely tune “You Turn Me On” — credited to Ian Whitcomb and Bluesville — raced up the charts on both sides of the Atlantic, hitting #8 on the hit parade.

That tune brought him to ‘Merka, where he performed on a number of tee vee shows, like Shindig! Here he appears along with some of the other musical stars of the day: Beau Brummels, Shelly Fabares, Bobby Sherman, and Billy Preston, among others.

[Click HERE to hear an unadulterated single version of
You Turn Me On” without all the background noise.]

His follow-up tune, “N-Nervous”, did not do nearly as well, but still charted in the mid-50s on both Billboard and Cashbox. However, Rock and Roll didn’t appear to be his real muse. Whitcomb’s music started looking backward to earlier eras, to some of the tunes taught to him by his other grandfather, also named Jack.

That’s when I rediscovered Ian Whitcomb, but it would be a while before I connected him to his earlier hit song.

Back in the day, when I was a DJ at Radio Sheridan in Oakville Ontario, Canada, we were sent the LP “Under The Ragtime Moon“, which captured my attention immediately. It harkened back to an earlier era of Tim Pan Alley tunes.

The LP was produced by the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band‘s Neil Innes, who had already demonstrated a fondness for the era with some of the tunes the Bonzos covered.

As different as it was from the music of the day, I played the grooves off that record and eventually bought one for my own collection so I could play it whenever I wanted.

These days Ian Whitcomb is known as “America’s Foremost Tin-Pan Alley Man, Ukulele Virtuoso, and Grammy Award-Winning Recording Artist“, according to his website. It may be just be a coincidence that Whitcomb was born the day that Jelly Roll Morton, one of the greats of Ragtime, died.

Enjoy this early tee vee show:


The Guess Who Live ► Monday Musical Appreciation

On this day 45 years ago The Guess Who set up their equipment on the stage in Seattle, Washington, and performed the music that would eventually be released as “Live at the Paramount.

At this point the band consisted of Burton Cummings, Kurt Winter, Don McDougall, Jim Kale, and Garry Peterson. Randy Bachman left the group almost 2 years to the day earlier, following a show at the Fillmore East on May 16.

According to Ultimate Classic Rock:

The band’s classic lineup wouldn’t reunite for more than a decade and Bachman and Cummings would never write another song together.

Even without their founding guitarist and main songwriter, the Guess Who continued to have success in the early ’70s. The band brought on guitarists Greg Leskiw and Kurt Winter, who took the role of Cummings’ new writing partner. The Guess Who still landed hits on the charts (including “Share the Land,” “Bus Rider” and “Clap for the Wolfman”), albeit to diminishing returns. As hitmakers, the Guess Who were eventually eclipsed by their former bandmate.

In 1971, Bachman formed Brave Belt, which morphed into Bachman-Turner Overdrive. And in 1974, with “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet,” another one of Bachman’s bands topped the charts.

Live at the Paramount would be Jim Kale’s last with the band.

Please read Me and Jim Kale, about an ill-fated trip to Sudbury Arena.

The original LP consisted of 7 tracks and clocked in at 48:32. For the 2000 CD re-release the music was remixed and padded out with another 6 tunes from the same night, bringing it in at just over an hour 15. ENJOY!!!

Crank it up and CanCon Corner!!!

Beatles, Elvis, Dylan & Johnny Cash ► A Mega Monday Musical Appreciation.

When it’s Monday Musical Appreciation time, I consult several Day in Musical History sites, choose a topic, and write the post — all before most of my readers are awake.

I take pride in choosing a topic that morning, researching it, choosing tunes and pics that best illustrate that research, and then writing it up. It makes me feel like I’m back in the Citytv Newsroom and given an assignment to write. I like the pressure of it.

All of that is preface to say: I couldn’t choose a single event, person, or band today. Any one of the following could sustain its own stand-alone post. Additionally, the more I researched the date, the more I began to see points of synchronicity. That’s when I decided to wrap it all up in one big bow.

The following all occurred on May 1st:

Johnny Cash

On this day in 1956 Johnny Cash released “I Walk The Line”, his most recognizable tune. Thirteen years later — when he was a big star with his own tee vee show — he hosted Bob Dylan who sang 2 tunes and then a duet with Johnny Cash on “Girl From the North Country”, a song originally on the LP The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. The duet became the lead off track of Dylan’s Nashville Skyline LP.

On a personal note: This televised performance happened on my birthday and was my entry into Country music. If Dylan could cozy up to Johnny Cash, maybe there is something I was missing. I went out and bought the relatively recent Johnny Cash At Folsom Prison, which I fell in love with. I’ve been a Johnny Cash fan ever since.


Elvis Presley

Elvis was already an up-and-comer when, on this date in 1957, he appeared on the cover of the first issue of 16 Magazine. Many magazine covers would follow.

Ten years later, to the day, he wed 21-year old Priscilla Beaulieu — who he had met while in the Army almost 8 years earlier — in his suite at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas. He was 11 years her senior.

The next year, on the same day, Elvis would release “Speedway”, the soundtrack album his latest boring movie of the same name, despite the appearance of Nancy Sinatra. The LP never went any higher than #82 on the Billboard LP charts.

Elvis would only make 4 more movies, none any better.

The Beatles

On this date in 1962, The Beatles began a month long stand at The Star Club, Hamburg, Germany. The Beatles have always pointed to the pressure of having to MAK SHOW under the relentless pressure of playing set after set, night after night, as when they solidified as a band. Listen to how tight they were before Beatlemania struck.

After they hit it big, The Beatles were offered money for licensing rights to everything from Beatles’ Wigs to lunchboxes. On this day in 1964, manager Brian Epstein accepted $140,000 from a bubble gum company to have their pictures inserted into the packages sold in ‘Merka.

Two years later, on this date in 1966, The Beatles gave their last last British at Empire Pool in Wembley, appearing as New Musical Express poll winners. Their performance consisted of  “I Feel Fine”, “Nowhere Man”, “Day Tripper”, “If I Needed Someone”, and “I’m Down”.

Who else appeared on this bill? If you were lucky enough to have gotten a ticket, you would have seen The Spencer Davis Group, The Fortunes, Herman’s Hermits, Roy Orbison, The Rolling Stones, The Seekers, The Small Faces, Dusty Springfield, The Walker Brothers, The Who and The Yardbirds.

1968 Paul McCartney and John Lennon watch Bill Haley play Royal Albert Hall in London.

Other items I would have included had I wanted to turn this post into an epic:

In 1930: Little Walter was born.

In 1955 Chuck Berry was signed to Chess Records.

In 1965 Spike Jones dies.

In 1967, Carl Wilson, of The Beach Boys’ is arrested by the F.B.I. for draft evasion.

In 1969, Jimi Hendrix was arrested at Toronto International Airport for drugs and was released on $10,000 bail.

May 1st was an epic day in music.

Pérez Prado ► Monday Musical Appreciation

On this day in 1955: Pérez Prado had a #1 hit with “Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White”.

While almost no one knows his name today, or the name of his biggest hit, this tune is immediately recognizable.

As the Wiki is quick to tell us:

Dámaso Pérez Prado (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈpeɾes ˈpɾaðo]; December 11, 1916 – September 14, 1989) was a Cuban bandleader, singer, organist, pianist and composer, who also made brief appearances in films. He is often referred to as the King of the Mambo.[1][2] He became known and professionally billed as Pérez Prado, his paternal and maternal surnames respectively.

Crank it up and D A N C E ! ! !

The tune was used as a them for the Jane Russell movie Underwater! in which producer Howard Hugues had her running around in a bathing suit for almost the entire move:

A Wiki page about the song itself says:

“Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White” or “Cerezo Rosa” or “Ciliegi Rosa” or “Gummy Mambo”, is the English version of “Cerisiers Roses et Pommiers Blancs”, a popular song with music by Louiguy written in 1950. French lyrics to the song by Jacques Larue and English lyrics by Mack David both exist,[1] and recordings of both have been quite popular. However, Perez Prado‘s recording of the song as an instrumental with his orchestra featuring trumpeter Billy Regis,[1] whose trumpet sound would slide down and up before the melody would resume, was the most popular version in 1955, reaching number one for 10 weeks on the Billboard chart. It became a gold record. Perez had first covered this title for the movie Underwater! (1955), where Jane Russell can be seen dancing to the song.[1] Billboard ranked this version as the No. 1 song of 1955.[2] The most popular vocal version in the U.S. was by Alan Dale, reaching No. 14 on the chart in 1955.[3]

I never even knew the tune had lyrics.

Lee “Scratch” Perry ► Monday Musical Appreciation

Celebrating his 81st birthday today is the Grandfather of Reggae and the father of Dub Reggae, Rainford Hugh Perry, aka Lee “Scratch” Perry.

Back in the days before the word Reggae even existed — when it was still called Ska, or Bluebeat, or One Drop — Perry apprenticed at Kingston’s Studio One. There he performed a number of chores for owner Coxone Dodd, including selling records. During his short time there he managed to record some 30 songs for the label. However, Perry and Dodd didn’t get along, so Perry moved on to Joe Gibbs and Amalgamated Records. That relationship, rocky as it was, lasted longer. However, Gibbs’ money woes had him strike out on his own and Perry started up his own label, Upsetter Records in 1968. According to the WikiWackyWoo:

His first major single “People Funny Boy”, which was an insult directed at Gibbs, sold well with 60,000 copies sold in Jamaica alone. It is notable for its innovative use of a sample (a crying baby) as well as a fast, chugging beat that would soon become identifiable as “reggae” (the new kind of sound which was given the name “Steppers”). Similarly his acrimonious 1967 single as Lee “King” Perry Run for Cover was likewise aimed at Sir Coxsone. From 1968 until 1972 he worked with his studio band The Upsetters. During the 1970s, Perry released numerous recordings on a variety of record labels that he controlled, and many of his songs were popular in both Jamaica and the United Kingdom. He soon became known for his innovative production techniques as well as his eccentric character.[1] In 1970 Perry produced and released The Wailers track “Mr Brown” (1970) with its unusual use of studio effects and eerie opening highlighting his unique approach to production.

Perry produced some of the earliest tracks for the Wailers, before they signed with Island Records. Chris Blackwell took the original tracks, removed the rough edges, renamed the band Bob Marley and the Wailers, and nothing was ever the same again.

FULL DISCLOSURE: I worked for Island Records Canada in the mid-’70s, where my first contact with Lee “Scratch” Perry and Dub Reggae was the amazing LP Super Ape by The Upsetters. I loved Dub Reggae from the start because it was like Psychedelic Reggae. The fun was trying to identify the original tunes that Perry Dubbed up. It’s one album from that era I still put on and CRANK it up to 11.

Perry’s career has had its ups and downs over the years, including a December 2015 fire at his Secret Laboratory Studio. According to Rolling Stone:

Lee “Scratch” Perry‘s “secret laboratory” studio in Switzerland burned down Thursday, destroying the dub legend’s collection of studio equipment, art, stage costumes and music. “Something very very sad happened. I forgot to [put] out a candle and my whole secret laboratory burned out,” Perry wrote on Facebook, “My whole life collections, arts, my magic hats, my magic boots, all my crazy show outfits and costumes: king, pope, general, magician… All my electronics and studio equipment and my magic mic, books, musik, CDs… Everything gone.”

On Facebook, Perry also posted photos of himself standing in the burnt-out ruins of the studio, which lent its name to Perry’s 1990 LP From the Secret Laboratory. Perry also noted in his letter, “I am so sad and my wife is so mad.” As a result of the fire, Perry is asking fans to provide specially made costumes for his upcoming trek; fans who contribute an outfit will be placed on the guest list and given backstage access when the Upsetter’s trek comes to their town.

This was Perry’s second fire. In 1981 he torched his earlier Black Ark studios himself, the episode eventually blamed on a mental breakdown.

I had the extreme thrill to see Perry perform live at DubFest in Hollywood, Florida, in September of 2009. I never thought I’d have the opportunity to see him because he spends most of his time in Europe. But, I was able to knock him off my bucket list on the same day I also saw Bunny Wailer live.

Lee “Scratch” Perry is still going strong and he’s already tweeted out his own birthday greetings.

You can find many biographical details on the interwebs, but Not Now Silly is all about the music. Here’s a small sample of the hundreds of tracks that Lee “Scratch” Perry has produced and recorded over the years, starting with one of my all-time favourite Reggae tracks:

Hair Today; Gone Tomorrow

This video is dedicated to —

Oh, hell. Just watch.

I miss Pops every day.

At the same time I was fighting the The Hair Wars, I lived 4 houses south of David Palmer, original drummer for The Amboy Dukes, which would practice in his garage on Gilchrist Street in northwest Detroit.

David Palmer, far left

David and I went to the same school, of course. When I was getting kicked out for having long hair — and then no hair — David also had a run-ins with the administration of Coffey Jr. High over the issue of his hair length.

To see the current condition of
Coffey Jr. High, click HERE.

At this point, The Amboy Dukes had already had a hit, or two. So David showed up with a note from his lawyer. It said (translating legal lingo into English), “David Palmer is in Show Biz. Today’s Show Biz requires long hair. Forcing Master Palmer to cut his hair could negatively impact his earnings. We’ll sue.”

The school, which had been fumbling with its hair policy ever since The Beatles invaded these shores, decided to fold. They agreed that Palmer need not sheer his locks, but would have to keep it inside his shirt collar. From that day on Palmer wore his hair beneath the collar of his psychedelic shirts, while wearing a wild tie to hold it all together.

It was always fun to be walking behind him as we were leaving school at the end of the day. The second he crossed the threshold he’d reach around and, with one motion on the back of his neck, would sweep his hair out of his shirt, where it would cascade down to the middle of his back.

Here are a few of the Amboy Dukes greatest tunes, starting with them miming their biggest hit:

It’s too bad about that douchenozzle Ted Nugent, though.

Reprise Records Launched ► Monday Musical Appreciation

On this day in 1961 Frank Sinatra launched Reprise Records, the first record company owned by an artist.

Sinatra started his recording career at Columbia Records, but eventually moved to Capitol. However, after 7 years Sinatra was dissatisfied with his latest contract negotiations with Capitol Records. The sticking point wasn’t money.

Sinatra wanted to own his masters and Capitol was not having it. That’s when he decided to look for a new deal. At first he tried to buy Verve Records, where Frank Zappa later started his recording career. However, Norman Granz wasn’t selling. It wasn’t a total loss. Sinatra was able to steal Mo Ostin, one of the executive directors at Verve, to help him head up the new concern.

Reprise didn’t have a smooth launch. Not only did Sinatra still owe Capitol 2 LPs and a single before he was free, but Capitol exacted other revenge.

“As soon as Frank started Reprise, we began to exploit our whole Sinatra catalog, because we weren’t going to have him anymore,” [Capitol President Alan] Livingston’s quoted as saying in Charles L. Granata’s Sessions with Sinatra: Frank Sinatra and the Art of Recording. “We had so much Sinatra product on the market that Reprise couldn’t get off the ground!”

Forced to discount its new-release prices to compete with the slew of budget Capitol titles, Reprise found it difficult to gain traction, and as Livingston gleefully noted, the label was rumored to be in financial straits not long after its launch. Compounding the problem was that unlike the biggest labels of the day, Reprise didn’t own and operate its own recording studios, adding a major chunk of overhead to an increasingly besieged operation.

Sinatra, meanwhile, remained in demand as a recording artist — and unlike most pop stars, he was also a proven commodity as a movie star, which made obtaining the rights to distribute his work an appealing prospect even for a studio forced to sign over creative control and ultimate ownership of his master recordings. Enter Warner Bros., where top execs enthusiastically pursued a deal that would bring Reprise into the Warners family while making Sinatra a member of their film stable. In the summer of 1963, Warners purchased two-thirds of Sinatra’s Reprise stake.

Years later, when Warners absorbed Reprise, it gave Sinatra a seat at the table. That’s when he got the nickname Chairman of the Board. It also gave him oodles of money, the sale pegged to be around $80 million.

The first Sinatra LP on Reprise was Ring-a-Ding-Ding! and according to the Blog Critics web site:

It would continue his commercial popularity by reaching number four on the Billboard Pop Album Chart.

The original idea was to issue an album without ballads, which was very close to the concept that Capital had used to put together Sinatra’s Swingin’ Session, which they had issued two months previous, after he had left the label.

The music comes very close to returning Sinatra to the big band idiom of the 1940s. It is finger snapping light jazz, with a beat. While Jimmy Van Heusen and Sammy Cahn wrote the title song specifically for the album, Sinatra mainly recorded older songs from the Great American Songbook.

Sinatra eventually went back to Capitol Records for his Duets albums in 1993 and 1994.

As great as his music, Sinatra’s greatest contribution to the industry may have been his hire of Mo Oston, who eventually went on to run Warners. At both companies, he signed artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Frank Zappa, the Fugs, The Beach Boys, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Neil Young, Paul Simon, Van Halen, Eric Clapton, Prince and many more. Later Ostin went to work for DreamWorks records.

Here is Sinatra’s first Reprise LP, released 56 years ago:

Crank it up and D A N C E ! ! !

Bob Marley ► Monday Musical Appreciation

Read: The Day I Met Bob Marley

He was born Robert Nesta Marley in 1945. By the time of his 1981 death of melanoma, he was known worldwide as the Honourable Bob Marley, OM, and given a state funeral by the Jamaican government.

Starting in relative obscurity in Trenchtown, Jamaica, with The Wailers, Marley’s career lasted less than 20 years. By the time he died of cancer as a solo artist — at the far-too-young age of 36 — there were few places in the world where Bob Marley‘s name was not known, especially by people of colour and the downtrodden.

This tribute song makes the point far better than I could.

Scoot Irwin, friend to the Newsroom, reminded this writer of Marley’s upcoming birthday on the weekend, making today’s choice for a Monday Musical Appreciation a no-brainer. Then, as if by Jah, before Not Now Silly even began preparations, a news story came in unbidden over the transom. It turns out that some of Marley’s earliest live recordings were rediscovered and cleaned up. In the Guardian article ‘Spine-tingling’ lost Bob Marley tapes restored after 40 years in a cellar we learn:

The 13 reel-to-reel, analogue master tapes were discovered in cardboard box files in a run-down hotel in Kensal Rise, north-west London, the modest lodgings where Bob Marley and the Wailers stayed during their European tours in the mid-1970s.

The tapes – known as “the lost masters” among elements of Marley’s huge fanbase – were at first believed to be ruined beyond repair, largely through water damage. Yet after more than 12 months of painstaking work using the latest audio techniques, the master reels have been restored, with the sound quality of Marleywho died in 1981 but would have been 72 on Monday– described as enough to “send shivers down one’s spine”.

The tapes are the original live recordings of Marley’s concerts in London and Paris between 1974 and 1978, and feature some of his most famous tracks including No Woman No Cry, Jammin, Exodus and I Shot the Sheriff.

These were among Marley’s first concerts after going solo, recorded with the Rolling Stones mobile unit, said to be the only 24-track mobile studio in England at the time. Shows on these tapes include the London Lyceum (1975), Hammersmith Odeon (1976), and Pavilion de Paris (1978). There’s no word on whether these shows will be released commercially.

Live, with special lyrics name-checking President Barack Obama

Recently one of Marley’s earliest interview was released online. While the sound quality is not that great, it’s still wonderful to listen to a musician just on the cusp of international fame.

Bob Marley also popularized the Rastafarian religion, adopted by so many people who know and care nothing about Emperor Haile Selassie, whose name was Tafari Makonnen Woldemikael. Ras was his title, which roughly translates as “head” or “ruler.”

The shame of Marley having died so young is that we were deprived of the songs and collaborations that would have come.

There’s an entire school of thought (on which NNS is reserving judgement) that Bob Marley was assassinated by the CIA, because his brand of pan-Africanism was perceived dangerous to The Powers That Be. [Read: White people.]

As we are fond of saying here in the Not Now Silly Newsroom: It’s in the grooves. Here are some Bob Marley tunes you should never be without . . . and they’re not the ones that most people know, nor are they all political. However, the first one should give hope to all opposed to Emperor Trump.

Crank it up and D A N C E ! ! !

The Last Beatles Concert ► Monday Musical Appreciation

It was 48 years ago today when The Beatles gave their last live performance, although no one knew that at the time. It’s come down through history known as The Rooftop Concert.

John, Paul, George, and Ringo — at that point the most famous musicians in the world — had been filming the recording of their ‘back to basics’ LP, that was supposed to do away with overdubs and studio trickery. The idea of a movie started out as a tee vee documentary ending with a live concert, before it morphed into a major motion picture.

Originally the album was to have been called “Get Back,” but was eventually released as “Let It Be,” the same name as the eventual movie and the biggest hit on the soundtrack.

The recording sessions were fraught with tension, with the Beatles bickering with each other.  Even the level-headed and Transcendental Meditationizer Harrison had enough. He also quit the band for a period. When he returned he did so with Billy Preston to play keyboards, correctly guessing that the presence of a musician they all respected would cut down on the fighting.

According to the WikiWackyWoo:

Harrison recalled that when Preston joined them, “straight away there was 100% improvement in the vibe in the room. Having this fifth person was just enough to cut the ice that we’d created among ourselves.”[14]

While most of the bickering was left on the cutting room floor, this clip was left in the final cut of the movie:

They were stumped for a location for the ending of the movie. The documentary was always going to end with a live show, but they were stumped where to hold it. Suggestions ranged from an ocean liner, to the pyramids, to Pompeii. However, logistically those shows would have been difficult. At almost the last minute, as time was ticking away before Ringo had to start filming The Magic Christian, the decision was made to perform on the rooftop of Apple Corps, the Beatles’ own building on tony Savile Row.

The 42 minute concert was the last time The Beatles played for an audience. However, they would go on to record one more LP, Abbey Road, actually released before the movie and Let It Be album. By the time the movie was release, The Beatles were history.

The songs performed on the roof that day were Get Back (five versions), I Want You (She’s So Heavy), Don’t Let Me Down (two versions), I’ve Got A Feeling, One After 909, Danny Boy, Dig A Pony (two versions), and God Save The Queen.

Also cut out of the movie was all of the genesis for the song that eventually became Get Back. It started off much differently than the song you hear now and could NEVER have been released in this form:

The Beatles have been criticized for these 2 songs once bootlegs started to appear, but it’s clearly a protest song of sorts, condemning the racism that they had been seeing at home. It’s just not a very subtle character study, like Elanor Rigby, f’rinstance.

Ironically, the session tapes of Let It Be were eventually given to Phil Spector, who laid all kinds of overdubs on the songs. This appalled Paul McCartney, who had been outvoted. Eventually, in 2003, Let It Be… Naked was released, without all the sweetening in a form that McCartney could live with.

The movie Let It Be was briefly available to purchase on VHS, Betamax, or LaserDisc, however the 1981 release was the first and last time it was available legally. There are reports that the entire movie was remastered by Apple in 1992. Apparently there was another remastering in 2003, including outtakes and bonus material, that was to have been released with the Naked CD, but that never happened either.

“Some people say” it’s Paul who has held off release of the movie because he comes off looking like a dick. The Wiki has something to say about that, too:

In February 2007, Apple CorpsNeil Aspinall said, “The film was so controversial when it first came out. When we got halfway through restoring it, we looked at the outtakes and realised: this stuff is still controversial. It raised a lot of old issues.”[43]

An anonymous industry source told the Daily Express in July 2008 that, according to Apple insiders, McCartney and Starr blocked the release of the film on DVD. The two were concerned about the effect on the band’s “global brand … if the public sees the darker side of the story. Neither Paul nor Ringo would feel comfortable publicising a film showing the Beatles getting on each other’s nerves … There’s all sorts of extra footage showing more squabbles but it’s questionable if the film will ever see a reissue during Paul and Ringo’s lifetime.”[44] However, in 2016, McCartney stated he doesn’t oppose an official release, stating, “I keep bringing it up, and everyone goes, ‘Yeah, we should do that.’ The objection should be me. I don’t come off well.”[45]

Maybe one day we’ll finally get to see this movie again. Until then, enjoy some bootleg recordings of the Rooftop Concert while they’re still on the YouTubery.


1st Rock and Roll Hall of Famers ► Monday Musical Appreciation

The Not Now Silly Newsroom is still waiting for the musical movers and shakers to correct a grievous oversight and FINALLY induct Harry Nilsson for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Regardless, let’s take a look back at the first field of RnRHoF inductees, announced on this date in 1986.

As everyone knows, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was built in Cleveland, Ohio — aka the mistake on the lake — because … well … err … Alan Freed! However, the decision to drop it there may have had more to do with money than because Cleveland was the location of what’s generally accepted as the first Rock and Roll concert ever: the Moondog Coronation Ball. As always, the WikiWackyWoo tells all:

Cleveland may also have been chosen as the organization’s site because the city offered the best financial package. As The Plain Dealer music critic Michael Norman noted, “It was $65 million… Cleveland wanted it here and put up the money.” Co-founder Jann Wenner later said, “One of the small sad things is we didn’t do it in New York in the first place,” but then added, “I am absolutely delighted that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is in Cleveland.”

The Rock Hall didn’t open until 1995, but the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation started inducting Rockers and Rollers in 1986, soon after it incorporated. Mike Greenblatt at Goldmine tells us:

New York, New York. By all accounts, it was a night to remember. Despite nobody yet knowing where the museum would be constructed, and Bill Graham on hand to argue long and loud that it deserved to be built in San Francisco, the First Annual Rock ’n’ roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony took place in the Grand Ballroom of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. More than 1,000 music bizzers and invited guests dined on smoked river trout and fruit sorbet, drank California wine and witnessed a glittering array of rock stars dressed up and getting down with the kind of all-star jam one could only dream about. (The Harlem Blues & Jazz Band performed during pre-show cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.)

[…] Then came the jam.

Paul Shaffer led the house band which featured saxophonist David Sanborn, guitarist Sid McGinnis, bassist Will Lee and drummer Steve Jordan. Their rousing ceremony-starting overture featured the signature tunes of all 10 inductees. At one point, towards the end of the night, Chuck Berry, Keith Richards and Hank Williams Jr. stood side-by-side wielding guitars while Billy Joel, Fats Domino and Jerry Lee Lewis shared two pianos for a balls-to-the-wall ragged-but-right jam on Berry’s “Roll Over Beethoven.” “Johnny Be Goode” had Berry with John Fogerty, Neil Young, Ron Wood and Richards playing guitar. Berry took over for “Little Queenie” and even sang a duet with Julian Lennon. Joel and Steve Winwood shared a piano, Winwood switching to organ in blasting out “Gimme Some Lovin’,” the song he recorded as a teenager with The Spencer Davis Group. Berry did some blues. Chubby Checker materialized to sing and dance “The Twist.” Fogerty let loose with “Proud Mary” to close the night, the first time he played the song in public in 14 years.

The first class of inductees set the mark for the years to come:

Chuck Berry

James Brown

Ray Charles

Sam Cooke

Fats Domino

The Everly Brothers

Buddy Holly

Jerry Lee Lewis

Little Richard

Elvis Presley

Here are some of the performances and acceptance speeches from that first induction ceremony:

Rock and Roll is here to stay!!!