Tag: Elvis Presley

Top 40 Radio Killed the Radio Star?

Top 40 Radio Killed the Radio Star?

TV & Radio
It's a well-worn cliche by this point, but "the more things change, the more they stay the same" is just so appropriate for what I'm sharing with you today. It's an article called "Program Monotony -- Top 40 Menace to Industry, Says D.J.," and it's from the October 27, 1958 issue of Billboard magazine (known then as The Billboard). Click on the article for a larger version if you want to read the whole thing. In the piece, a popular DJ based out of Hartford, CT named George "Hound Dog" Lorenz laments the rise of the Top 40 radio format, with its lack of variety and its potential to harm record sales and squash new artists. One of his first complaints was probably valid then -- I wouldn't know -- and is certainly valid now. "A lot of the stations are programming 24 hours a day wit...
Back to the Future: What Else Happened on November 5, 1955?

Back to the Future: What Else Happened on November 5, 1955?

History
The date is burned in the brain of legions of Back to the Future fans -- November 5, 1955. It's the day Marty McFly arrived in Hill Valley of the past in Doc Brown's DeLorean from October 26, 1985. But aside from the events shown in the film, what actually happened on that autumn day when Michael J. Fox went back to the future? Let's look at the day that was Saturday, November 5, 1955. Entertainment The #1-selling song in the U.S. was "Autumn Leaves" by Roger Williams. The #1 album in the U.S. was Love Me Or Leave Me (soundtrack) by Doris Day. The #1 best-selling books in the U.S. were Marjorie Morningstar by Herman Wouk (fiction) and Gift From the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh (non-fiction). #3 on the fiction list? The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, baby! The Honeymooners e
“Hope I die before I get old” — Do famous musicians really die young?

“Hope I die before I get old” — Do famous musicians really die young?

Featured Posts, Music, People
With her tragic and untimely death, Amy Winehouse became the latest member of a grim group -- the so-called Club 27, whose only entrance requirement is to be a famous musician and to die at age 27. The club also includes legends such as Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, and Kurt Cobain. This got me to thinking -- is it really true that the brightest stars burn out the earliest? Or does it just seem that way because of our fascination with stars who die young? Curious, I decided to conduct a little research so I compiled a list of famous and influential dead musicians. Of course that list could be limitless, depending on your standards for fame and influence. I ultimately opted to use Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, first published in 2004/05 and...
Listening booth — Kiss at the Cow Palace, 1977

Listening booth — Kiss at the Cow Palace, 1977

Listening Booth, Music
As the Fourth of July approaches, I felt it only right to dedicate an edition of the Booth to one of my favorite all-American bands -- Kiss. This show captures the original foursome during a stop on their Love Gun tour, August 16 at the Cow Palace in San Francisco. Fans will note that this setlist is nearly identical to that found on Alive II. A few noticeable differences are the order of the songs and the fact that Peter Criss's "Hooligan" is in this set. Oh yeah, and this recording wasn't completely doctored and fabricated. I'd say that Kiss was still firing on all cylinders at this point, although history tells us that the end wasn't too far away. Although Alive II continued the band's hot streak later in 1977, they were just a year away from the commercial fiasco of the four solo al...
The Kasem Syndrome – 7 Classic Celebrity Meltdowns

The Kasem Syndrome – 7 Classic Celebrity Meltdowns

Listcruft
In light of Charlie Sheen (he of the fiery fists, tiger blood, and Adonis DNA) being in the midst of a full-blown public meltdown, I thought I'd recycle this post from March 24, 2008. If nothing else, it proves that Sheen is just the latest in a long line of celebrities acting with less than proper decorum. Now that Easter's over (well, one of them anyway), I thought I'd take a few minutes to celebrate anger. Not the kind of anger that starts wars or incites mindless violence, but rather the kind of anger that causes people in the public eye to make complete asses of themselves. In other words, the kind of anger we can all enjoy. So I've spent at least 20 minutes scouring YouTube for some prime examples of celebrity rage. Mind you, I'm not attempting to judge anyone here. I doubt the...
8 Christmas albums you need to own

8 Christmas albums you need to own

Listcruft, Music
Radio stations across America started playing Christmas (sorry, holiday) music at least a few weeks ago, but I refuse to acknowledge any of it until Thanksgiving dessert is done.  So now that it's officially safe to enjoy some holiday tuneage, I thought I'd pass along some of my personal favorites to you.  Because not all Christmas music is crap. #1 A Charlie Brown Christmas Vince Guaraldi Trio Let's just get this one out of the way now.  I defy anyone to hear any part of "Skating" or "My Little Drum" and not be instantly transported back to their childhood.  I can't say anything that hasn't been said a million times about A Charlie Brown Christmas, so I'll just implore you to add this to your collection even if you hate Christmas music.  Just be careful what version you purcha
August 16 in pop culture history

August 16 in pop culture history

History
1977 - Elvis dies on the crapper. The sight of his bloated carcass on the toilet is only slightly more scarring than his Vegas stage show. "C'mon, just one more ham and peanut butter sandwich! What's the worst that could happen?" 1962 - Pete Best gets canned from the Beatles. Forty-three year nightmare has yet to end. "Bitter? Oh, a tad." 1975 - Peter Gabriel leaves Genesis, band's costume budget decreases 93%. "Does this make me look fat?" 1983 - Paul Simon and Carrie Fisher married. Simon files for divorce in 1985 after Fisher refuses for the 1,257th time to wear the gold bikini from Return of the Jedi. "I hope to God that's your lightsaber poking me."