Rest in peace, Rick Hall: Arthur Alexander, “You Better Move On” (1961)

(Above: You may not know this man, but you know his work.) We might chalk this up as our first major musical loss of 2018: Rick Hall, who engineered the Muscle Shoals sound and, in the process, created dozens of classic R&B records, passed away today at the age of 85. The list of names … Continue reading Rest in peace, Rick Hall: Arthur Alexander, “You Better Move On” (1961)

The politically incorrect jukebox: Bill Dana, “The Astronaut” (1961)

(Above: the cover of Bill Dana's breakthrough LP.) Comedian Bill Dana passed away last week at the age of 92. Dana wrote one of the most powerful television episodes dealing with race in the history of the medium - the episode of All in the Family where Sammy Davis, Jr. pays a visit to the … Continue reading The politically incorrect jukebox: Bill Dana, “The Astronaut” (1961)

RIP Chuck Berry: “Come On” (1961)

(Above: The 45 copy of Chuck Berry's "Come On," which is missing from my collection.) Within the last six months I wrote about Chuck Berry turning 90 and about Leonard Chess turning 100 (were he still with us). Both of those posts come together today in this obit. Chuck Berry died today at his home … Continue reading RIP Chuck Berry: “Come On” (1961)

Rest in peace, Bobby Vee: “Walkin’ With My Angel” (1961)

2016 has struck again, it appears. Singer Bobby Vee, who had battled Alzheimer's disease, passed away today at the age of 73. His son confirmed Bobby's death in a statement today. Bobby was just starting his recording career in Minnesota in 1959 when fate worked in his favor.  The ill-fated Winter Dance Party had just … Continue reading Rest in peace, Bobby Vee: “Walkin’ With My Angel” (1961)

Rainy day music: Dee Clark, “Raindrops” (1961)

The image that I use for the blog is a Panasonic phonograph model SG-336.  It is identical to the one that was probably the most important birthday present I ever received.  When I turned 4, my parents decided that I could probably handle my own phonograph.  This may have been partly motivated that I was … Continue reading Rainy day music: Dee Clark, “Raindrops” (1961)