Rick Nelson Part 1

Rock’n’roll pioneer Rick Nelson would have celebrated his 82nd birthday today – May 8. This photo of Rick and me was taken in his car when I worked at KGW in Portland, OR in 1959. Notice the tape recorder. It was called a Mohawk, and like the haircut of the same name, it cut out…

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Herb Alpert and “The French Song”

Happy birthday to trumpet player, music executive and philanthropist Herb Alpert! It’s appropriate on this day to tell the true story of Herb’s connection to Canada and the Vancouver area. Almost a decade before Joni Mitchell and Anne Murray, Canada had its own international million-selling recording artist: Lucille Starr. She was born Lucille Marie Raymonde…

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“Elvis” In Theatres June 24!

I guess you could say “I’m all shook up” about Baz Luhrmann‘s Elvis biopic with Austin Butler as The King and Tom Hanks as The Colonel! “Elvis” from Warner Bros. Pictures in theatres June 24. Playing Elvis’ music and watching his incredible success was no match for meeting him and introducing him onstage in Vancouver…

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Happy 80th Birthday, Carole King!

We’re celebrating Carole King‘s 80th birthday today with some of her biggest hits from Red Robinson’s Legends and our friends at Spotify! Carole’s 1971 album Tapestry topped the Billboard chart for 15 weeks, won four Grammy Awards, and has sold more than 25 million copies. It’s one of the best-selling albums of all time! Carole…

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Guy Mitchell, “Singing The Blues”

On this day in 1957, Columbia Records recording star Guy Mitchell‘s single “Singing the Blues” is number 1 on the CKWX Top Fifty! I was still at competitor CJOR and I wouldn’t move to ‘WX for a couple of months, but I managed to spend some time with Guy. He was in Vancouver for a…

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Johnny Cash, “Ballad of a Teenage Queen”

The first big single record for 1958 is here. It’s Johnny Cash‘s “Ballad of a Teenage Queen.” This song has broken loose on the music scene so fast that it’s almost unbelievable. In one day it was No. 1 in Memphis, in one week it was No. 1 in Detroit and in two days it…

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RIP Don Wilson, The Ventures

Sad news: rhythm guitarist Don Wilson of The Ventures passed away this morning at 88. Don co-founded the group in Seattle in 1958 with his friend, the late Bob Bogle. They were two construction guys who bought $15 guitars at a pawnshop, taught themselves to play and evolved into a four-man band. My friend Pat…

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Happy Birthday, Wolfman Jack!

“It’s a great big beautiful world out there!” Remembering the late Wolfman Jack on his birthday with this classic scene from “American Graffiti”. For deejays everywhere…

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National DJ Day, 2022

Today is #NationalDJDay, the day we celebrate the men and women who entertain us every day. I couldn’t say it better than the late Bill Gavin, who published the Gavin Report, a guide for radio stations and record companies. This comment from Bill years ago stuck with me: “The pin-pointing of an idea into a…

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Clyde McPhatter, “A Lover’s Question”

Here’s our final “pick” from this week in 1959, Clyde McPhatter‘s “A Lover’s Question”. Co-writer Brook Benton sang the demo version and presented it to Jerry Wexler and Ahmet Ertegun of Atlantic Records. That’s Brook Benton doing the finger snaps. When the first of two “Show of Stars” presentations came to Vancouver in 1956, the…

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