Monday, June 29, 2009

Singer Terry Black Has Died At Age 62

I am very surprised and saddened to hear of the passing of my friend Terry Black. Terry, a native of North Vancouver, British Columbia, was the first artist to be signed by Lou Adler to his brand new label in the early 1960s. His first hit single was Unless You Care, a top seller in both Canada and the United States.

I was very pleased to have Terry as a guest on my show in the studio several years back and we talked about his solo career, then his days in the fantastic group Dr. Music. That group had many talented members including Doug Riley, Brian Russell, Brenda Russell, Steve Kennedy, Terry Black and Laurel Ward. They scored a Top Ten hit in Canada with Sun Goes By. After Dr. Music, Terry Black and Laurel Ward teamed up to record several singles together including the popular Goin' Down (On The Road To L.A.) in 1972.

Thanks for the great interview and visit, Terry, and of course the music.


Here's the official news story:

1960's Canadian singing sensation, Terry Black, dies at age 62


KAMLOOPS, B.C. — A Canadian singing sensation who burst onto the scene in the 1960's at the age of 15 with the hit single "Unless You Care" has died.

Terry Black, originally from North Vancouver, was 62 when he passed away Saturday in Kamloops, B.C., a year after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

"Unless You Care" became a Canadian hit in late 1964 and went on to become a top seller in the United States, making Black one of the first Canadians to have a hit record in the U.S.

The record helped Black win the male vocalist of the year category at the Maple Music Awards, the forerunner of the Junos.

He had other hit records, but his solo career ended in 1970 when he married Laurel Ward and the two became a duo act, releasing several singles in the 1970's.

Veteran B.C. disc jockey Red Robinson says Black had a wonderful sense of humour and was shy but the shyness disappeared once he got on stage.

Copyright © 2009 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

Bachman Turner Overdrive - Voice Your Choice

Bachman Turner Overdrive, or BTO as they quickly became known, formed in Vancouver, British Columbia but were from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Randy Bachman had been a founding member of The Guess Who with Chad Allan. Between the time Randy quit the band and formed BTO, he had another group called Brave Belt.

When Randy Bachman and his brother Robbie Bachman teamed up with Fred Turner and Blair Thornton, a new page in Randy's illustrious history was about to begin. These hard rockers went on to chart 12 times between 1973 and 1979, including a Number One Gold Record.

This week on our Annual Salute to the Music of Canada on Treasure Island Oldies, Voice Your Choice spotlights BTO - Bachman Turner Overdrive with two of their hard rocking tunes: Takin' Care Of Business and You Ain't See Nothing Yet. Cast your vote for the song you'd like to hear. We'll play the winner in Hour 3 of next week's show.

Summer (The First Time) - Bobby Goldsboro - Song of the Week

"Was a hot afternoon, the last day of June, and the sun was a demon."

The opening lines of Summer (The First Time) by Bobby Goldsboro. This is one of those story songs that if you close your eyes, it plays out in your mind like a movie. I call it cinematic music; another example could be The Ode To Billy Joe by Bobbie Gentry.

As we are at the end of June and the beginning of July what a perfect song for summer. It`s our Song of the Week.


Sky Saxon of The Seeds Has Died

Sky Saxon (nee Richard Marsh), bassist and lead singer of the Seeds, died Thursday (June 25) in an Austin, Texas hospital, where he went for what is believed was an infection in his internal organs on Monday. Born sometime between 1937 and 1946, he originally sang doo-wop in the fifties as Little Richie Marsh but changed his name in 1962 when he formed the Elektra Fires group (later Sky Saxon & the Soul Rockers and finally the Seeds) in Los Angeles. While the group is remembered for "Pushin' Too Hard" (#36-1967), it's "Can't Seem To Make You Mine" (#41-1967) that has recently appeared in a television commercial. Sky (who later lengthened his alias to Sky Sunlight Saxon) broke up the group and joined a spiritual commune in 1970, but kept his hand in music-- even appearing in a Smashing Pumpkins video. He performed with his group, Shapes Have Fangs, just last Saturday.

Gale Storm Has Died At Age 87

Gale Storm, actress on "My Little Margie" and "The Gale Storm Show" (AKA "Oh, Susanna") and singer with six top ten cover records in the '50s, died Saturday (June 27) at a convalescence center in Danville, California at the age of 87. Born Josephine Owaissa Cottle in Bloomington, Texas in 1922, she won a radio contest that brought her to Hollywood, where she appeared in movies for RKO, Monogram and Universal, including three pictures with Roy Rogers. In 1952, she starred in "My Little Margie," a summer replacement for "I Love Lucy"on CBS-TV. It was so popular that NBC-TV picked it up for airing that fall and Dot Records offered Gale a recording contract. All told, 126 episodes of the sitcom aired until 1955. The following year, Gale moved on to her eponymous series, which ran until 1960, with 143 episodes. Like many singers in the mid-'50s, Gale covered the hits of the day, striking gold with "I Hear You Knockin'" (#2-1955), "Memories Are Made Of This" (#5-1956"), "Teen Age Prayer" (#6-1956), "Why Do Fools Fall In Love" (#9-1956), "Ivory Tower" (#6-1956) and "Dark Moon" (#4-1057). All told, she charted twelve times between 1955 and 1957. She has four stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame-- one each for radio, TV, music and movies.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Tribute To Michael Jackson

As a tribute to the King of Pop, here is Michael Jackson and Billie Jean.

Long live the King of Pop.

Michael Jackson - The King of Pop Has Died

(CNN) -- Entertainer Michael Jackson has died after being taken to a hospital on Thursday after suffering cardiac arrest, according to multiple reports including the Los Angeles Times and the Associated Press. CNN has not confirmed his death.
A Los Angeles fire official told CNN that paramedics arrived at Michael Jackson's home after a 911 call.

A Los Angeles fire official told CNN that paramedics arrived at Michael Jackson's home after a 911 call.

Jackson, 50, had been in a coma at the hospital, sources told CNN.

Brian Oxman, a Jackson family attorney, said he was told by brother Randy Jackson that Michael Jackson collapsed at his home in west Los Angeles Thursday morning.

Family members were told of the situation and were either at the hospital or en route, Oxman said.

Fire Capt. Steve Ruda told CNN a 911 call came in from a west Los Angeles residence at 12:21 p.m.

Ruda said Jackson was treated and transferred to the UCLA Medical Center.

Asked specifics of the patient's condition, he said he could not discuss them because of federal privacy laws.

The music icon from Gary, Indiana, is known as the "King of Pop." Jackson had many No. 1 hits and his "Thriller" is one of the best-selling albums of all time. Video Jackson "as big as it gets" »

Jackson is the seventh of nine children in a well-known musical family. He has three children, Prince Michael I, Paris and Prince Michael II.

At the medical center, every entrance to the emergency room was blocked by security guards. Even hospital staffers were not permitted to enter. A few people stood inside the waiting area, some of them crying.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Ed McMahon Dead At Age 86

by Mike Bendixen

Ed McMahon
, the loyal "Tonight Show" sidekick who bolstered boss Johnny Carson with guffaws and a resounding "H-e-e-e-e-e-ere's Johnny!" for 30 years, died early Tuesday. He was 86.

McMahon died shortly after midnight at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center surrounded by his wife, Pam, and other family members, said his publicist, Howard Bragman.

Bragman didn't give a cause of death, saying only that McMahon had a "multitude of health problems the last few months."

McMahon had bone cancer, among other illnesses, according to a person close to the entertainer, and had been hospitalized for several weeks. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to release the information.

McMahon broke his neck in a fall in March 2007, and battled a series of financial problems as his injuries prevented him from working.

McMahon and Carson had worked together for nearly five years on the game show "Who Do You Trust?" when Carson took over NBC's late-night show from Jack Paar in October 1962. McMahon played second banana on "Tonight" until Carson retired in 1992.

"You can't imagine hooking up with a guy like Carson," McMahon said an interview with The Associated Press in 1993. "There's the old phrase, hook your wagon to a star. I hitched my wagon to a great star."

McMahon kept his supporting role in perspective.

"It's like a pitcher who has a favourite catcher," he said. "The pitcher gets a little help from the catcher, but the pitcher's got to throw the ball. Well, Johnny Carson had to throw the ball, but I could give him a little help."

Monday, June 22, 2009

Herman's Hermits - Voice Your Choice

Herman's Hermits became of of the most successful of the British Invasion groups of the early-to-mid-1960s. While practically everyone knows Peter Noone, the lead singer and head of the band, not that many know who the rest of the members were. Time to rectify that situation. They were Derek Leckenby and Keith Hopwood on guitars, Karl Green on bass, and Barry Whitwam on drums. The name Herman's Hermits was derived from the cartoon character Sherman on the TV show The Bullwinkle Show.

Before Peter Noone left the group in 1972 for a solo career, Herman's Hermits racked up an impressive 19 charted hits, with 11 in the Top Ten plus 3 Gold Records.

This week on Treasure Island Oldies, Voice Your Choice spotlights Herman's Hermits with two of their hits: Sunshine Girl and Don't Go Out Into The Rain.

Which song would you like me to play? Cast your vote by going to the Voice Your Choice page and making your selection. We'll play the winning song in Hour 3 of next week's show.

Paul Peterson - My Dad - Song of the Week

Paul Peterson was a child actor who was part of the cast of the Donna Reed Show, a well loved TV sitcom in the early '60s. It starred Donna Reed and Carl Betz, as Mr. and Mrs. Stone, and Shelley Fabares and Paul Peterson as the children. On one of the episodes, Paul sings a song about his dad. In recognition of Father's Day, here is Paul Peterson singing My Dad, our Song of the Week.



Thursday, June 18, 2009

Bob Bogle - Co-Founder of The Ventures Dies At Age 75

(CNN) -- Ventures lead guitarist Bob Bogle, whose fretwork on such instrumental hits such as "Walk -- Don't Run" and "Hawaii Five-O" influenced countless bands, died Sunday in Vancouver, Washington.
Bob Bogle co-founded the Ventures, the highly influential instrumental band. He was 75.

The cause was non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, according to Don Wilson, who co-founded the Ventures with Bogle in the 1950s.

"He had a special sound that nobody could ever re-create. He was totally unique as a guitar player," Wilson told CNNRadio.

Wilson and Bogle learned how to play guitar while working as construction workers in the 1950s in their native Tacoma, Washington. The pair formed the Ventures in 1958.

"We had a lot of time on our hands after work, so we'd get together and play," Wilson recalled. "A year and a half later, we had a number two hit called 'Walk -- Don't Run.' " The group first heard the song on a Chet Atkins record.

Several other hits followed, including "Perfidia," "Walk Don't Run '64" and "Diamond Head." The group took the theme of the TV show "Hawaii Five-O" into the Top Ten in 1969 and later supplied background music for the series.

But the band, which played almost solely instrumentals, was perhaps more influential for its albums. Thirty-eight of the band's long-players hit Billboard's Top 200 chart, including albums that covered country songs, dance tunes and Christmas melodies. One of the band's albums was titled "Play Guitar with the Ventures," and countless did.

"I can't think of a better contribution for instrumental music on his style than 'Walk -- Don't Run,' " Wilson said. "A lot of good would-be guitar players and garage bands would go out and buy guitars just to learn that song."

The Ventures were voted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008. At the induction ceremony, Creedence Clearwater Revival's John Fogerty praised the group: "It's enough to say, the Ventures are the most popular instrumental band of all time," he said.

Bogle fought his illness with dignity, Wilson said.

"His doctors gave him 10 years to live, and he lived 12. The last two years were really tough. At least he lived to know the Ventures had been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame."

Bogle is survived by his wife, Yumi.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Early Roots - Chad Allan And the Reflections Released on Vinyl!

As you heard on this week's show, Chad Allan, the original lead singer of The Guess Who was live in the studio for the entire first hour. It was a great visit and so wonderful to have him tell so many great stories and provide his first hand memories of those times. Be sure to come back and check the Blog for an update as to when the special Podcast of the entire interview with Chad will be available for download to your iPod or media player.

Throughout the hour we played songs from Chad Allan And the Reflections - Early Roots, now released in a limited edition of 1000 copies as a double album on vinyl. You can get your own copy of the album by contacting Regenerator Records. I know Jamie Anstey will help you complete your order of the album and arrange for payment. And when ordering, if you mention Treasure Island Oldies, Chad Allen will personally autograph the album for you.

It is a real pleasure to let you know that this historic album is now available on vinyl in a limited edition 2 record set. I'm glad I've got a copy of the album for myself.

Chad Allan - Shakin' All Over - Song of the Week

In celebration of having Chad Allan live in the studio this week on Treasure Island Oldies, I am pleased to bring you a very cool video of a recent performance of Chad Allan singing Shakin' All Over, along with the Northwest Company.

Enjoy this special performance.


Shakin' All Over - Chad Allan from Don Xaliman on Vimeo.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Famous Keyboardist & Producer Barry Beckett Dead At Age 66

I had the very good fortune to get to know and work with Barry Beckett at Muscle Shoals Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, on a project for A&M Records artist Peter Pringle, when I was Vice-President of A&R for A&M. Being in the same studio with Barry and other legendary session musicians was something I'll never forget. I recall going out to dinner in Muscle Shoals or Florence and everywhere it was 'dry' - no alcohol. So we'd drink back Coca Cola and have some very interesting conversations. Barry loved the south and his pride showed. I am very glad I got to know him for a short time. Now here is the official story on his passing.


Barry Beckett, who produced and accompanied singers Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson and Paul Simon, has died at his home in Hendersonville, Tenn., at the age of 66.

He had been diagnosed with prostate cancer and later with thyroid cancer. He also suffered several strokes, including one in February from which he never recovered, according to the Alabama Times Daily.

In the 1970s in Muscle Shoals, Ala., Beckett played keyboard on albums by Simon, Bob Seger and the Staple Singers as part of the famed Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section. He appeared on Simon's Kodachrome, Seger's Mainstreet, the Staple Singers' Respect Yourself and Nelson's Bloody Mary Morning.
Production credits

As a producer, Beckett collaborated with the late Jerry Wexler on Dylan's first platinum album, Slow Train Coming, and Dire Straits' album Communique.

Etta James, Tammy Wynette and rockers Elton John and Sting are among the artists he produced.

In 1985, he moved to Nashville where he was in demand among country stars. One of his first projects was co-producing Hank Williams Jr.'s Mind Your Own Business and Born to Boogie.

He won an American Country Music Association award for Williams's There's a Tear in My Beer.

Beckett's other production credits include Kenny Chesney's When I Close My Eyes, Delbert McClinton's Giving It Up for Your Love and Neal McCoy's No Doubt About It.

Dick Cooper, Beckett's friend and assistant, said Beckett was a perfectionist who sometimes came across as a hard-driving musician but who had a heart of gold.

"We called him The Bear," he said. "He was just a great, big teddy bear."

Monday, June 08, 2009

1965 Del Shannon - Song of the Week

This week we're trying something a little different. We spotlight the year 1965 with two items: first a vintage black & white TV ad for Coca Cola and second, the late great Del Shannon with his Top ten smash, Keep Searchin' (We'll Follow The Sun). It's our Song of the Week.

Enjoy both!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

It's The 3rd Of June - Another Sleepy Dusty Delta Day

It IS the 3rd of June. So it's very fitting to bring you The Ode To Billy Joe.


It was the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta day
I was out choppin' cotton and my brother was balin' hay
And at dinner time we stopped and walked back to the house to eat
And Mama hollered out the back door "y'all remember to wipe your feet"
And then she said "I got some news this mornin' from Choctaw Ridge"
"Today Billy Joe MacAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge"

And Papa said to Mama as he passed around the blackeyed peas
"Well, Billy Joe never had a lick of sense, pass the biscuits, please"
"There's five more acres in the lower forty I've got to plow"
And Mama said it was shame about Billy Joe, anyhow
Seems like nothin' ever comes to no good up on Choctaw Ridge
And now Billy Joe MacAllister's jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge

And Brother said he recollected when he and Tom and Billie Joe
Put a frog down my back at the Carroll County picture show
And wasn't I talkin' to him after church last Sunday night?
"I'll have another piece of apple pie, you know it don't seem right"
"I saw him at the sawmill yesterday on Choctaw Ridge"
"And now you tell me Billie Joe's jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge"

And Mama said to me "Child, what's happened to your appetite?"
"I've been cookin' all morning and you haven't touched a single bite"
"That nice young preacher, Brother Taylor, dropped by today"
"Said he'd be pleased to have dinner on Sunday, oh, by the way"
"He said he saw a girl that looked a lot like you up on Choctaw Ridge"
"And she and Billy Joe was throwing somethin' off the Tallahatchie Bridge"

A year has come 'n' gone since we heard the news 'bout Billy Joe
And Brother married Becky Thompson, they bought a store in Tupelo
There was a virus going 'round, Papa caught it and he died last Spring
And now Mama doesn't seem to wanna do much of anything
And me, I spend a lot of time pickin' flowers up on Choctaw Ridge

And drop them into the muddy water off the Tallahatchie Bridge

Monday, June 01, 2009

This Week On Treasure Island Oldies

May 31st to June 6th, 2009

Wow - another great week of your requests and all great songs too; thank you very much. It is always a great pleasure to hear from you. The Chat Room was also jumping with the regulars, the Nuts In The Hut, but also some new visitors as well. Please consider dropping by when we are doing the live show Sunday nights from 6 to 10 p.m. Pacific time. Click Chat on the Menu for full directions. See you soon!

Happy Birthday wishes this week to our long time friend and contributor to the show, Britt Brittingham in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Happy Birthday from yours truly and all your friends at Treasure Island Oldies. Do you have a birthday coming up soon? Send your name, birthday date, city and country to We'll play Birthday by The Beatles, our Official Birthday Song, for you.

We had a bit of a mix-up on the last day of voting for Voice Your Choice this week and O.C. Smith got replaced by next week's artist, Gogi Grant. However, there had already been plenty of votes cast so we had a fair election and honest results, with the winning song being The Son Of Hickory Holler's Tramp.

Over at the Treasure Island Oldies Blog, we present The Grass Roots with a great Top Ten hit, Let's Live For Today. It's our Song of the Week. Enjoy!

Voice Your Choice spotlights the delightful Gogi Grant with her two Top Ten Gold records for your votes: Suddenly There's A Valley and The Wayward Wind. Cast your vote; just click the Voice Your Choice button on any page of the website and make your selection. We'll play the winner in Hour 3 of next week's show.

This week we received two more pictures for the Listener Gallery. Thanks to Becky in Westbank, British Columbia, who is also known as ogopogo in the Chat Room. Nice picture of her and her daughter Becky. And it was very nice to hear from California Barb, in California, and her photo is now in the Gallery as well. It would be wonderful to add your picture too. Just send your photo, name, city and country to and we'll be sure to include you in the Listener Gallery.

I wanted to take a moment to recognize and thank our regular weekly contributors to the show with their always interesting and enjoyable features. Tom Locke has been writing the Moment In Time feature every week for over 10 years now, even when it was called the Sorrells Pickard Pick Of The Week, which many of you will recall. This is a big task for Tom to both research and prepare. EJ Phillips in Troy, North Carolina has been making the Oldie of the Week suggestion almost since the show began back in 1997 and Britt Brittingham in Cherry Hill, New Jersey always has a great Britt Beatles Classic for us to enjoy. Tim & Jill in Cambridge, Ontario are huge Motown fans and every week they suggest another classic song from the vault of Hittsville, USA at Motown Records. Rick Canode in Madison, Wisconsin has Rick's Rare Rock & Roll Relic, always a fascinating and very rare song featured. And most recently, there's Hits From Across The Pond with Fay Greenwood from Langley, British Columbia, an educational and very entertaining piece with a song and artist from England. I really appreciate the amount of work and time go into their preparations every week. I just wanted to say a big thank you, your features add to the show with songs you will not likely hear anywhere else but on Treasure Island Oldies. And of course, big thanks go to our Webmaster, Eddy Fisher, who keeps everything working smoothly at the website with the updates almost on a daily basis, ensuring you can hear the Archives in a timely manner after the show airs live, as well as the Podcast of the Rock & Roll News, and so much more.

We are just a couple of week away from our Annual Father's Day Special on Sunday, June 14. If you'd like to hear a song on the show, be sure to get your requests in to me ASAP. Click the Requests button on any page of the website or call and leave a message on our 24/7 Listener Request Line at 206-203-4678. I look forward to hearing from you and playing your requests.

If you missed the live show this week, click Listen on the Menu then click Archive. And check out the Playlist to see all the songs we played on the show.

Have a great week.

Bye for now.


Gogi Grant - Voice Your Choice

Gogi Grant was born Myrtle Audrey Arinsberg on September 20, 1924 in Phaildelphia, Pennsylvania. She was known as one of the premiere female vocalists of the 1950s and had a clear voice with a strong vocal range and perfect pitch. She was raised in California, singing in local restaurants and bars. She signed with RCA Victor Records but failed to have any chart and sales success. Then in 1955 she signed with Era Records, owned by Herb Newman and recorded her first song, Suddenly There's A Valley, which became a Top Ten hit and her first of two Gold Records. Her second big hit, The Wayward Wind, co-written by Herb Newman, also became a Gold Record and knocked Elvis Presley's Don't Be Cruel out of the Number One spot to take its place.

This week on Treasure Island Oldies, Voice Your Choice features Gogi Grant with her two Top Ten Gold Records for your votes: Suddely There's A Valley and The Wayward Wind. Cast your vote at the Voice Your Choice page and make your selection. The winning song will be played in Hour 3 of next week's show.

The Grass Roots - Song of the Week

The Grass Roots from San Francisco, California, are one of the most under-rated groups in my opinion. Despite have many charted hits, including three Top Ten songs and one Gold record, they never seemed to be on the tip of people's tongues when talking about their favourite groups. I am only aware of one person's name in the band, Rob Grill, and I'm in the business. I wonder if perhaps they did not have a good publicist. I don't even recall ever hearing about them performing live in concert. It's too bad, because they were very consistent with their recordings.

A great example of one of their big hit songs is the Top Ten Let's Live For Today. It's our Song of the Week.