Monday, December 25, 2006

James Brown The Godfather of Soul R.I.P.

Very sad news today...James Brown the Godfather of Soul has passed away.

The full story after a video highlighting some of his best performances.

The Associated Press
Monday, December 25, 2006; 12:05 PM

ATLANTA -- James Brown, the dynamic, pompadoured "Godfather of Soul," whose revolutionary rhythms, rough voice and flashing footwork influenced generations of musicians from rock to rap, died early Christmas morning. He was 73.

Brown was hospitalized with pneumonia at Emory Crawford Long Hospital on Sunday and died of heart failure around 1:45 a.m. Monday, said his agent, Frank Copsidas of Intrigue Music.

He initially seemed fine at the hospital and even told people that he planned to be on stage in New York on New Year's Eve, Copsidas said.

Brown was one of the major musical influences of the past 50 years. From Mick Jagger to Michael Jackson, David Bowie to Public Enemy, Brown's rapid-footed dancing, hard-charging beats and heartfelt yet often unintelligible vocals changed the musical landscape. He was to rhythm and dance music what Bob Dylan was to lyrics.

"He was an innovator, he was an emancipator, he was an originator. Rap music, all that stuff came from James Brown," entertainer Little Richard, a longtime friend of Brown's, told MSNBC.

"James Brown changed music," said Rev. Al Sharpton, who toured with him in the 1970s and imitates his hairstyle to this day.

"He made soul music a world music," Sharpton said. "What James Brown was to music in terms of soul and hip-hop, rap, all of that, is what Bach was to classical music. This is a guy who literally changed the music industry. He put everybody on a different beat, a different style of music. He pioneered it."

Brown's classic singles include "Papa's Got A Brand New Bag," "(Get Up I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine," "I Got You (I Feel Good)" and "Say It Loud _ I'm Black and I'm Proud," a landmark 1968 statement of racial pride.

"I clearly remember we were calling ourselves colored, and after the song, we were calling ourselves black," Brown told The Associated Press in 2003. "The song showed even people to that day that lyrics and music and a song can change society."

He won a Grammy for lifetime achievement in 1992, as well as Grammys in 1965 for "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag" (best R&B recording) and for "Living In America" in 1987 (best R&B vocal performance, male.) He was one of the initial artists inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986, along with Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry and other founding fathers.

Brown, who lived in Beech Island, S.C., near the Georgia line, triumphed despite a turbulent personal life and charges of abusing drugs and alcohol. After a widely publicized, drug-fueled confrontation with police in 1988 that ended in an interstate car chase, Brown spent more than two years in prison for aggravated assault and failing to stop for a police officer.

From the 1950s, when Brown had his first R&B hit, "Please, Please, Please" in 1956, through the mid-1970s, Brown went on a frenzy of cross-country tours, concerts and new songs. He earned the nickname "The Hardest Working Man in Show Business" and often tried to prove it to his fans, said Jay Ross, his lawyer of 15 years.

Brown's stage act was as memorable, and as imitated, as his records, with his twirls and spins and flowing cape, his repeated faints to the floor at the end as band members tried in vain to get him to leave the stage.

His "Live at The Apollo" in 1962 is widely considered one of the greatest concert records ever. And he often talked of the 1964 concert in which organizers made the mistake of having the Rolling Stones, not him, close the bill. He would remember a terrified Mick Jagger waiting offstage, chain smoking, as Brown pulled off his matchless show.

"To this day, there has been no one near as funky. No one's coming even close," rapper Chuck D of Public Enemy once told the AP.

Brown routinely lost two or three pounds each time he performed and kept his furious concert schedule in his later years even as he fought prostate cancer, Ross said.

With his tight pants, shimmering feet, eye makeup and outrageous hair, Brown set the stage for younger stars such as Michael Jackson and Prince. And the early rap generation overwhelmingly sampled his music and voice as they laid the foundation of hip-hop culture.

"Disco is James Brown, hip-hop is James Brown, rap is James Brown; you know what I'm saying? You hear all the rappers, 90 percent of their music is me," Brown told The AP in 2003.

Born in poverty in Barnwell, S.C., in 1933, Brown was abandoned as a 4 year old to the care of relatives and friends. He grew up on the streets of Augusta, Ga., in an "ill-repute area," as he once called it, where he learned how to hustle to survive.

"I wanted to be somebody," Brown said.

By the eighth grade in 1949, Brown had served 3 1/2 years in Alto Reform School near Toccoa, Ga., for breaking into cars. While there, he met Bobby Byrd, whose family took Brown into their home. Byrd also took Brown into his group, the Gospel Starlighters. Soon they changed their name to the Famous Flames and their style to hard R&B.

In January 1956, King Records of Cincinnati signed the group, and four months later "Please, Please, Please" was in the R&B Top Ten.

Pete Allman, a radio personality in Las Vegas who had been friends with Brown for 15 years, credited Brown with jump-starting his career and motivating him personally and professionally.

"He was a very positive person. There was no question he was the hardest working man in show business," Allman said. "I remember Mr. Brown as someone who always motivated me, got me reading the Bible."

While most of Brown's life was glitz and glitter _ he was the manic preacher in 1980's "The Blues Brothers" _ he was plagued with charges of abusing drugs and alcohol and of hitting his third wife, Adrienne.

In September 1988, Brown, high on PCP and carrying a shotgun, entered an insurance seminar next to his Augusta office. Police said he asked seminar participants if they were using his private restroom. Police chased Brown for a half-hour from Augusta into South Carolina and back to Georgia. The chase ended when police shot out the tires of his truck.

Brown received a six-year prison sentence. He spent 15 months in a South Carolina prison and 10 months in a work release program before being paroled in February 1991. In 2003, the South Carolina parole board granted him a pardon for his crimes in that state.

Soon after his release, Brown was on stage again with an audience that included millions of cable television viewers nationwide who watched the three-hour, pay-per-view concert at Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles.

Adrienne Brown died in 1996 in Los Angeles at age 47. She took PCP and several prescription drugs while she had a bad heart and was weak from cosmetic surgery two days earlier, the coroner said.

More recently, he married his fourth wife, Tomi Raye Hynie, one of his backup singers. The couple had a son, James Jr.

Two years later, Brown spent a week in a private Columbia hospital, recovering from what his agent said was dependency on painkillers. Brown's attorney, Albert "Buddy" Dallas, said the singer was exhausted from six years of road shows.

Brown was performing to the end, and giving back to his community.

Three days before his death, he joined volunteers at his annual toy giveaway in Augusta, and he planned to perform on New Year's Eve at B.B. King Blues Club in New York.

"He was dramatic to the end _ dying on Christmas Day," said the Rev. Jesse Jackson, a friend of Brown's since 1955. "Almost a dramatic, poetic moment. He'll be all over the news all over the world today. He would have it no other way."

Brown is survived by at least four children _ two daughters and sons Daryl and James Brown III, Copsidas said. Friends were making flight arrangements Monday to come to Atlanta to determine how to memorialize Brown, Copsidas said.


Associated Press writers Hillel Italie in New York and Harry R. Weber in Atlanta contributed to this report.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Freddie Marsden from Gerry & The Pacemakers R.I.P.

From The Independent
Freddie Marsden
Merseybeat drummer
Published: 13 December 2006

Frederick John Marsden, drummer: born Liverpool 23 October 1940: married 1964 Margaret Naylor (one son, one daughter); died Southport, Lancashire 9 December 2006.

Of all the successful Merseybeat musicians, Freddie Marsden was the most down-to-earth. He was a friendly, charming man who enjoyed his success in the Sixties as the drummer with Gerry and the Pacemakers and then happily settled down to the routine of a daily job.

In late 1962, Gerry and the Pacemakers were the second band to be signed up by Brian Epstein - the Beatles were the first. When the Beatles rejected Mitch Murray's light-hearted "How Do You Do It", Epstein told the record producer George Martin that he had just the group to do it. On 22 January 1963, Gerry and the Pacemakers travelled from Liverpool to London to record the song, as Marsden recalled:

We were sat in the back of a freezing van for 10 hours in the worst weather you can imagine. The road manager slept through it all because he was shattered. We knew that the Beatles had turned down "How Do You Do It" and I thought they were silly to do that, as it was a much better song than "Love Me Do".

The single went to No l, as did its cheeky follow-up, "I Like It". Having seen Paul McCartney's success around the Liverpool clubs with "Over the Rainbow", Gerry and the Pacemakers wanted a similar, emotional show-stopper and they picked "You'll Never Walk Alone" from the 1945 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel. With George Martin's arrangement, they became the first UK beat group to record with strings. They also became the first act to reach No l with their first three singles. "You'll Never Walk Alone" was subsequently adopted by Liverpool football club and became the Kop anthem.

Freddie Marsden was born in the working-class Dingle area of Liverpool in 1940 and his brother, Gerry, followed two years later. Their father, Fred, was a railway clerk who entertained the neighbours by playing the ukulele. With the vogue for skiffle music in the mid-Fifties, he took the skin off one of his instruments, put it over a tin of Quality Street and said to Freddie, "There's your first snare drum, son."

In 1957 the brothers appeared in the show Dublin to Dingle at the Pavilion Theatre in Lodge Lane. Studies meant little to either of them - Freddie left school with one O-level and worked for a candlemaker earning £4 a week, and Gerry's job was as a delivery boy for the railways. Their parents did not mind and encouraged their musical ambitions.

The Marsdens' first group was called the Mars Bars, but when the confectioners complained, they became Gerry and the Pacemakers. The line-up changed from time to time and, in 1959, Les Chadwick joined on bass. They were featured on a beat show with Gene Vincent at Liverpool Stadium in 1960 and, later in the year, followed the Beatles to Hamburg, with a residency at the Top Ten Club, playing for five hours a night. "We had to drive from Liverpool to Hamburg," Freddie Marsden recalled.

We had our own van and I did most of the driving. We got to Hamburg about two o'clock in the afternoon and when we got to the Top Ten Club, the manager said that we were on at seven. We were given [the slimming drug] Preludin to keep awake. Gerry was our main singer, and all the singing and the smoking battered his voice. When he was 12 or 13, he was in the church choir and his voice was absolutely brilliant, but he got that huskiness from Hamburg.

In 1961 they were joined by Les Maguire on piano and thus the hit-making Pacemakers line-up was complete. They alternated at the Cavern club's lunchtime sessions with the Beatles and, one famous night at Litherland Town Hall, they combined their talents to form the Beatmakers. Freddie Marsden had his 21st birthday party in the Dingle with the Beatles as guests. It is sometimes reported that he was considered as a possible replacement for the Beatles' drummer Pete Best after Best was sacked in August 1962, but "That's rubbish," he told me.

Look at my high forehead. I could never have had a Beatle haircut for a start. I considered myself a very basic drummer. I laid the beat down and didn't do anything fancy. I knew my limitations and I stuck with the strong off-beat and it seemed to work. We were nice and tight. Ringo was definitely more technical than me.

After the three No 1 hits for Gerry and the Pacemakers in 1963, their fourth single, Gerry's own song "I'm the One", went to No 2 the following year. Freddie felt that they would have had a fourth chart-topper if they had picked their stage favourite, "Pretend". Freddie co-wrote "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Cryin'", which became their biggest US hit, reaching No 4 in 1964. He was immensely proud when José Feliciano recorded the song. Freddie Marsden also co-wrote "Why Oh Why" and "You've Got What I Like", and sang the occasional vocal, joining Gerry on harmony for "A Shot of Rhythm and Blues".

The group were featured on scooters for the film Ferry Cross The Mersey (1965), which was written by the creator of Coronation Street, Tony Warren. Although the plot is trite, the film offers invaluable views of Merseyside sights and clubs of the Sixties. The title song, written by Gerry Marsden, charted for the group in 1965. "There were lots of songs about Chicago, Broadway and London," said Freddie, "but nobody had mentioned Liverpool until then."

In 1968 Gerry Marsden replaced Joe Brown in the West End musical Charlie Girl, and effectively broke up the group. Freddie never criticised his brother publicly but I always sensed some resentment. "We were left without a singer and instead of looking for another one, we called it a day," he said.

The two Leses got a garage and I had no qualifications and despite what people thought, I hadn't got much money. Looking back, I underrated myself as a drummer. I was always more into sport than playing drums and when I compared myself to some of the drummers I'd heard in America, I didn't fancy getting up to their standards.

Freddie Marsden became a telephone operator for £14 a week but later opened the Pacemaker driving school in Formby. Although he was always courteous to his fans, he never returned to music. A few years ago, when I asked him if he still had his drums, he said, "No, I got rid of them. They took up too much space in the garage."

Spencer Leigh

Monday, December 18, 2006

Here's a Fantastic Christmas TV Show

A friend of mine just sent me a great link to the Best Of Ed Sullivan's Christmas Shows. I know you will really enjoy it. This one-hour special captures and warmth and joy of the season with over a dozen of your favorite Christmas songs from the biggest stars, such as Bing Crosby, Johnny Mathis, Connie Francis, Count Basie, The Supremes and Mahalia Jackson. Share favorite holiday moments with Alvin & The Chipmunks; Rich Little recounting "The Christmas Carol"; The Muppets; George Carlin; and Brook Benton singing "It's Christmas Tomorrow."

Here's the link:

Special Holiday Greeting from Michael Godin

Click here to get your own player.

Thank You for 2006!

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you, dear reader, for taking the time to come to the Treasure Island Oldies Blog. In less than a year, there has been a considerable amount of traffic every week, and it has become a nice compliment to the radio show, the home website and the podcasts. I endeavour to make the postings of interest to you as an oldies music fan, and your comments and feedback have been very welcome and encouraging. I look forward to more interaction with you in 2007.

Speaking of 2007, it will be quite a year as we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Treasure Island Oldies. As those old Virginia Slims cigarette ads went, "we've come a long way baby". Keep visiting the website for new features in the new year.

I would also like to congratulate the winners of the Jerry Lee Lewis contest, and special congrats to Terry DeLance in Oak Lawn, Illinois, the winner of the Grand Prize of an autographed copy of the Last Man Standing CD and poster, signed by Jerry Lee Lewis himself. And thanks to everyone who entered the contest. Keep listening to the show for more contests.

Enjoy the 10th Annual Christmas Special, plus some vintage specials from the Treasure Island Oldies vaults. All these shows are at the Christmas website.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to you, your family and friends.


Denis Payton from Dave Clark Five R.I.P.

Sad news...

CBC Arts

Denis Payton, saxophone player and founding member of 1960s pop group the Dave Clark Five, has died at age 63.

He died in Bournemouth, England, on Sunday after a long struggle with cancer.

The Dave Clark Five, creators of hits such as Glad All Over and Bits and Pieces, were part of the "British invasion" of the 1960s.

They were one of the first English groups to tour North America, after the Beatles, appeared several times on The Ed Sullivan Show, and were briefly considered competition for the Fab Four.

Payton played saxophone, harmonica and guitar for the popular band, a five-man group created in Tottenham in 1961.

Drummer and band leader Dave Clark called Payton "a very dear friend who I've known since we were teenagers."

Clark said Payton had been "thrilled" by the news that the Dave Clark Five has been nominated for induction to the 2007 US Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame.

The band made more than 100 million records and had more than 17 hit singles worldwide, including Over And Over and Because, before breaking up in 1970.

Another band member, lead singer Mike Smith, injured his spinal cord in 2003 after a fall at his home in Spain.

Payton is survived by his partner and two children from a former marriage.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Ahmet Ertegun - Founder of Atlantic Records - R.I.P.

Ahmet Ertegun, the founder of Atlantic Records has passed away. Here's the full story...

NEW YORK — Ahmet Ertegun, who helped define American music as the founder of Atlantic Records, a label that popularized the gritty R&B of Ray Charles, the classic soul of Aretha Franklin and the British rock of the Rolling Stones, died Thursday at 83, his spokesman said.

Ertegun remained connected to the music scene until his last days — it was at an Oct. 29 concert by the Rolling Stones at the Beacon Theatre in New York where Ertegun fell, suffered a head injury and was hospitalized. He later slipped into a coma.
“He was in a coma and expired today with his family at his bedside,” said Dr. Howard A. Riina, Ertegun's neurosurgeon at New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical Center. Ertegun will be buried in a private ceremony in his native Turkey, said Bob Kaus, a spokesman for Ertegun and Atlantic Records. A memorial service will be conducted in New York after New Year's.

Ertegun, a Turkish ambassador's son, started collecting records for fun, but would later became one of the music industry's most powerful figures with Atlantic, which he founded in 1947. The label first made its name with rhythm and blues by Charles and Big Joe Turner, but later diversified, making Franklin the Queen of Soul as well as carrying the banner of British rock (with the Rolling Stones, Cream, Led Zeppelin) and American pop (with Sonny and Cher, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, and others).
Today, the company, part of Warner Music Group, is the home to artists including Kid Rock, James Blunt, T.I., and Missy Elliott. “Ahmet Ertegun was a true visionary whose life's work had a profound impact on our cultures musical landscape, as well as around the world,” said Neil Portnow, president of The Recording Academy.
Rolling Stone magazine founder Jann Wenner said Ertegun was a mentor to many in the music business. “Ahmet was perhaps the most revered, respected figure in American popular music of the modern era,” Wenner said in a statement.

Ertegun's love of music began with jazz, back when he and his late brother Nesuhi (an esteemed producer of such jazz acts as Charles Mingus and Ornette Coleman) used to hang around with Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington in the clubs of Washington, D.C.
“My father was a diplomat who was ambassador to Switzerland, France and England before he became ambassador to the United States, and we lived in all those countries and we always had music in the house, and a lot of it was a kind of popular music, and we heard a lot of jazz,” Ertegun recalled in an interview with The Associated Press. “By the time we came to Washington, we were collecting records and we amassed a collection of some 25,000 blues and jazz records.”

Ertegun parlayed his love of music into a career when he founded Atlantic with partner Herb Abramson and a $10,000 loan. When the label first started, it made its name with blues-edged recordings by acts such as Ruth Brown. Despite his privileged background, which included attending prep school and socializing with Washington's elite, Ertegun was able to mix with all kinds of people — an attribute that made him not just a marketer of black music, but a part of it, said Jerry Wexler. “The transition between these two worlds is one of Ahmet's most distinguishing characteristics,” Wexler said.

Black music was the backbone of the label for years — it was Atlantic, under Wexler's production genius, that helped make Franklin the top black female singer of her day.
“We had some pop music — we had Bobby Darin ... and we developed other pop artists such as Sonny and Cher and Bette Midler and so on,” said Ertegun. “But we had been most effective that set a style as purveyors of African-American music. And we were the kings of that until the arrival of Motown Records, which was long after we started.” But once music tastes changed, Ertegun switched gears and helped bring on the British invasion in the '60s. “If Atlantic had restricted itself to R&B music, I have no doubt that it would be extinct today,” Wexler said. Instead, it became even bigger.

In later years, Ertegun signed Midler, Roberta Flack and ABBA. He had a gift for being able to pick out what would be a commercial smash, said the late producer Arif Mardin, who remembered one session where he was working with the Bee Gees on an album — but was unsure of what he had produced. “Then Ahmet came and listened to it, and said, ‘You've got hits here, you've got dance hits,”' Mardin once told the AP. “I was involved in such a way that I didn't see the forest for the trees. ... He was like the steadying influence.” One strength of the company was Ertegun's close relationships with many of the artists — relationships that continued even after they left his label. Midler still called for advice, and he visited Franklin's home when he dropped into Detroit.

“He cared first and foremost about the artist and the music — much more than the business,” Daryl Hall of Hall and Oates said. “He believed that if the artist was true to him or herself, good business would follow. Sadly in today's atmosphere, this isn't the case. But, during Ahmet's days of influence it was.” His friendships extended to the younger generation, too, including Kid Rock and Lil' Kim.

Besides his love of music, Ertegun was also known for his love of art, and socializing. It was not uncommon to find him at a party with his wife, Mica, hanging out until all hours with friends. Although he was slowed by triple-bypass surgery in 2001, he still went into his office almost daily to listen for his next hit.

Music mogul Quincy Jones called Ertegun “definitely one of the pioneering visionaries in this whole scene.” “He was a very 360-degree person. He loved to have a good time. He knew how to party, which is my kind of guy, and he knew how to work. He knew how to look into the future and how to execute to bring it to fruition,” Jones said in a phone interview from Los Angeles.

Finding those hits were among the most wonderful moments in his life, Ertegun said.
“I've been in the studio when you go through a track and you run down a track and you know even before the singer starts singing, you know the track is swinging ... you know you have a multimillion-seller hit — and what you're working on suddenly has magic,” he said. “That's the biggest.”

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Jerry Lee Lewis Contest Deadline December 15

Just a reminder that the deadline to enter the Jerry Lee Lewis - Last Man Standing Contest is December 15th. To be eligible to win a copy of the album or perhaps the Grand Prize: an autograhped copy of the album and poster, signed by the Killer himself, send your full name and postal mailing address to

The winners will be announced on the 10th Annual Treasure Island Oldies Christmas Special this Sunday, December 17 beginning at 6 p.m. Pacific, 9 p.m. Eastern. Good luck and enter now!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Georgia Gibbs R.I.P.

My thanks to listener Fred Waterer for this news bulletin.

Associated Press Writer
December 11, 2006, 4:06 PM EST

NEW YORK -- Georgia Gibbs, a versatile singer who starred on radio and television's popular "Hit Parade" in the 1950s, performed with the big bands of Tommy Dorsey and Artie Shaw and was perhaps best known for the song "Kiss of Fire," has died.

Gibbs, 87, died on Saturday at New York's Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, family friend Leslie Gottlieb said. The cause was complications from leukemia.

Gibbs, born Freda Lipschitz, in Worcester, Mass., in 1919, began singing in Boston ballrooms as a teenager, using the name Gibbons, and went on to a career that included novelty songs, pop, country and smoky ballads. She was one of the first white singers to cover rhythm and blues hits, sometimes upstaging the original versions with sanitized lyrics.

She took the name Georgia Gibbs around 1942 and a few years later was dubbed Her Nibs, Miss Georgia Gibbs, by radio and TV variety show host Garry Moore. The rhyming sobriquet stuck as a way of introducing her on the air.

Besides a stint on "Hit Parade," which showcased the most popular songs each week, Gibbs was a regular on programs hosted by Moore, Jimmy Durante and comedian Danny Kaye and was a frequent guest on other radio and early television variety shows hosted by Ed Sullivan, Milton Berle, Bob Hope, Red Skelton, Ed Wynn and Steve Allen. She was interviewed by Edward R. Murrow on "Person to Person."

Given her versatility, Gibbs was well suited for the post-World War II era of transition from radio to TV and from big-band music to R&B-influenced pop and early rock 'n' roll.

Among her 15 Top 40 hits, mostly for Mercury Records, were three gold records _ the tango-based "Kiss of Fire," which went to No. 1 on the pop charts in 1952, "Tweedle Dee," a No. 2 R&B adaptation in 1954, and "Dance With Me Henry," another R&B cover, which reached No. 1 in 1955 with cleaned-up lyrics. The latter two outsold the originals by Lavern Baker and Etta James, respectively, according to the Web site

Other memorable Gibbs recordings included the novelty "If I Knew You Were Coming, I'd've Baked a Cake" in the early 1950s and her last Top 40 record, "The Hula Hoop Song," in 1958.

Although Gibbs was semiretired after 1960, her singing career spanned more than 60 years, "a remarkable and enduring talent, and very persistent," Gottlieb said.

A highlight of Gibbs' life, Gottlieb said, was performing for Israeli soldiers in 1949, after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, which helped establish the Jewish state.

Gibbs was married to Frank Gervasi, an author and World War II correspondent for United Press, who died before her. She is survived by a grandson, Sasha Gervasi, a brother, Robert Gibson, and a niece, Patty Turk.

Treasure Island Oldies 10th Annual Christmas Special

I hope you will join me for our 10th Annual Christmas Special LIVE this Sunday, December 17th. This is my absolute favourite show of the year and my Christmas gift to you. We are on the air beginning at 6 p.m. Pacific , 9 p./m. Eastern, for four hours of the grestest Christmas and Holiday songs of all time, including many Lost Treasures.

This special will be yours to enjoy throughout the Holiday Season. After Christmas, be sure to come to the website and have a listen to some classic specials that I have gone back into the vaults to play for you.

Merry Christmas and Happy Chanukah!

Darlene Love - Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)

One of Phil Spector's grestest discoveries, in my opinion, was Darlene Love. One of her best performances was included on the album, A Christmas Gift For You, the fantastic Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).

For many years now, she has performed this song on the David Letterman Show. Here for your enjoyment is Darlene Love and her appearance on Letterman from 2005. You're gonna love this!

Christmas Song of the Week - Nat King Cole

Nat King Cole to me is so closely linked to Christmas and his interpretation of The Christmas Song,
written by Mel Torme is an all-time classic.

For our Song of the Week here he is in a clip performing The Christmas Song.

Cool Christmas Lights Song

I first saw this video last year and was knocked out by how they were able to synchronize the music and lights on the house. I enjoyed it and thought you would like it too.

Here you go.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Shawn Hlookoff - Live in the Studio

Shawn Hlookoff is a terrific and very talented new singer/songwriter. I first came across his music just prior to Remembrance Day in Canada and While his music has nothing to do with oldies music, I just want you to be able to hear him. He is a new recording artist with a bright future. As you know, I have a deep passion for all kinds of music and I am pleased to have Shawn as my special guest.

For some background information, please visit Shawn's website as well as at MySpace.

style="font-style:italic;">Veterans Day
in the United States on a newscast. He was being featured on the news because of his song, Soldier, which was getting a lot of attention in the media and online.

I was so taken with Soldier that I decided to close that week's show by playing Shawn's song. And I was very pleased with the feedback I received from listeners to my radio show as a result of playing Soldier.

I sent an email to Shawn and was very pleased to receive a reply from him. In that reply I discovered that I knew his manager, John Grhaham, very well. He was a booking agent at S.L. Feldman & Associates and I rented office space there. A few days later, the three of us got together and talked for quite some time and I offered some advice to Shawn for his career.

During our meeting, both Shawn and John expressed an interest in coming to the studio to see me doing the show, so I immediately extended an invitation. Not only did they accept, but Shawn also agreed to perform live in the studio. So I am very pleased to let you know that this week Shawn Hlookoff will be join me on Treasure Island Oldies, Sunday, December 10.

UPDATE: Shawn has come down with a cold and will be unable to perform on the show this Sunday. However, he will still join me in the studio and we will have a chance to chat on the air. We will re-schedule his live performance for early in the New Year.

The Crystals - Voice Your Choice

The Crystals were from Brooklyn, New York and one of the top Girl Groups of the 1960s. The core of the group consisted of Barbara Alston, Dee Dee Kennibrew, Mary Thomas, Patricia Wright and Myrna Gerrard.

In 1962 Myrna Gerrard left and was replaced by La La Brooks. Sadly, Barbara Alston died of a heart attack at age 48 on May 15, 1992.

Both The Crystals and The Ronettes were produced by Phil Spector and his famous Wall of Sound.

This week on Treasure Island Oldies, Voice Your Choice spotlights two of the biggest hits of The Crystals: Da Doo Ron Ron and He's A Rebel (written by Gene Pitney).

Come to the Voice Your Choice page and cast your vote for the song you prefer. We'll play the song with the most votes in Hour 3 of this week's show.

Shocking Blue - Shocking News

I have just found out that Mariska Veres, the lead singer of Shocking Blue has passed away. Reports are she died of cancer. She was around 56. From Holland, they made a major impact on the worldwide music scene with their smash hit, Venus.

In memory of Mariska Veres, here is a clip of Venus, the Song of the Week.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Treasure Island Oldies Back On The Air This Week

I am pleased to let you know that despite a major snowstorm, a deep freeze, yet another snowstorm, and now a thaw, we will be back LIVE this week with another edition of Treasure Island Oldies. And I have a couple of updates and reminders. Voice Your Choice for last week didn't happen, so it is still Paul Anka. Please scroll down a couple of postings to see the complete info on Voice Your Choice.

Also the Jerry Lee Lewis Contest is still underway, and we will continue to feature songs from the album, Last Man Standing. And don't forget to enter the contest for your chance to win a copy of the CD or the Grand Prize, an autographed copy of the album and poster, signed by Jerry Lee Lewis. To enter the contest, send an email with you full name and complete postal mailing address to contest@treasureislandoldies with Jerry Lee Lewis in the subject line. The deadline to enter is Saturday, December 9, 2006. Good Luck!

And be sure to be listening to the show this week for news of a special in-studio interview and performance with an exciting artist live next week, Sunday, December 10. Full details on the show plus read more in the Blog next Monday.

Join me this Sunday for another Treasure Island Oldies radio show.

Bye for now.