Let’s do the “tell it like it was” all night long!

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MY ATTENTION re­mains fo­cused on Tell It Like It Was, my new pub­li­ca­tion on Medium. And Tell It Like It Was re­mains fo­cused on music—mostly music of the ’60s but we will get into the rock & roll and rhythm & blues be­fore and after that decade even­tu­ally.

In the past week, Lew Shiner and John Ross pub­lished pieces on drum­mers: Lew with “Jack Sper­ling, King of the Big-Band Drum­mers” and John with “Give the Drum­mers Some!” READ MORE

announcing a new publication on medium, “tell it like it was”

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MY APOLOGIES for ne­glecting reg­ular readers of my blogs for the past few months. For­tu­nately, there is a good reason for this that has nothing to do with those silly ru­mors cir­cu­lated by the VRC that I had run off and joined a pro­gres­sive com­mune in Ver­mont left over from those hippie-wannabe days of yore. Sigh, as en­ticing as that sounds, there’s work yet to be done. READ MORE

another errant umphred post bites the dust

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ONCE AGAIN it’s hap­pened: I ac­ci­den­tally pushed the Pub­lish button on Word­Press in­stead of the Save Draft button. Of course, the two but­tons shouldn’t be near one an­other so ac­ci­dents like these should never occur.

But the two but­tons are a couple of inches apart and when I’m fo­cused on com­posing some­times I just press the wrong damn button. READ MORE

are today’s pop song lyrics getting more redundantly repetitive?

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DOES YOUR BABY DO THE HANKY PANKY? The ques­tion asked on Quora was “Are Pop lyrics getting more and more repet­i­tive?” In­stead of a well-reasoned, thoughtful an­swer, I posted this in­stead (and my com­plete an­swer is be­tween the two lines):


TommyJames HankyPanky Roulette 45 600

This is the Roulette Records ver­sion of Hanky Panky that was the #1 hit on Bill­board and Cash Box and sold mil­lions of copies in 1966. READ MORE

on musicians who ruined their careers (and lives) with “reckless behavior”

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A YOUNGER MEMBER of Quora—meaning sig­nif­i­cantly younger than me—asked me to an­swer the ques­tion, “Which mu­si­cians ru­ined their ca­reers with their reck­less be­havior?” Quora is the place I seem to get rather easily dragged into on an al­most daily basis, gen­er­ally an­swering ques­tions about Elvis. This ques­tion was more gen­eral but ac­tu­ally en­com­passed Presley.

The ques­tion is a little vague, so I re­sponded by taking a bit of li­cense in how in­ter­preted it. READ MORE

about collectables and their alleged collectability and value

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BUYERS AND SELLERS of collectables—whether records or mem­o­ra­bilia or Beanie Babies—often fail to achieve their goals of fi­nan­cial suc­cess be­cause they do not un­der­stand a few basic concepts on determining col­lec­tability and value of the “seldom found.” Be­cause this a record col­lec­tors web­site, I will gen­er­ally refer to records below, but you can sub­sti­tute al­most any other col­lec­table and the com­ments re­main vir­tu­ally un­changed. READ MORE

the dillydallying is over and “the endless sixties” is alive and well!

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AFTER TWO BLASTED YEARS of dil­ly­dal­lying, pussy­footing, farting around, and lol­ly­gag­ging I fi­nally (FINALLY!) got my new blog off the ground: The End­less Six­ties is up and run­ning and waiting for readers. There are half a dozen ar­ti­cles al­ready posted plus the home­page, and everyone should read the in­tro­duc­tory home­page first, of course. 

The con­cept be­hind the site is to pro­duce and pub­lish a slew of ar­ti­cles, es­says, and pic­to­rials about the pos­i­tive as­pects of “the sixties”—positive, at least, in my opinion. READ MORE

my first record show as a dealer (rock of ages part 1)

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WE HAD BEEN TOGETHER for a year when we fi­nally de­cided to make the move from the sultry sum­mers of the East Coast to the more mod­erate West Coast. It was 1978 and the dreams of ‘the six­ties’ didn’t seem so far off. Working two jobs each, we had saved the equiv­a­lent of $10,000 in to­day’s dol­lars. Our goal was to move from Penn­syl­vania to Cal­i­fornia and never look back. READ MORE

a brief look at the first fifty years of recorded music

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THE TECHNOLOGY TO RECORD SOUND is more than a 160 years old! It has been avail­able since 1857, years be­fore the tech­nology to re­pro­duce that sound was re­al­ized. The first recording ma­chines were used for sci­en­tific re­search, pri­marily to study sound waves. The first vi­able tech­nology for recording and playing recorded music for home en­ter­tain­ment was Thomas Edison’s Phono­graph in 1877. READ MORE