On a mission from God: Solomon Burke, “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love” (1964)

Forty years ago today - June 16, 1980 - The Blues Brothers made its film premiere. It was the first R-rated film I ever saw. In an age just in line with the advent of home video recorders and the infiltration of cable TV, it just wasn't as easy to see an "under 17 not … Continue reading On a mission from God: Solomon Burke, “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love” (1964)

A letter from camp: WLS Top Forty-Fives, June 27, 1981

(Above: The author at Student Council camp, June 1981. This does not look like camping.) "Is the baseball strike over?" That was the first question I had for my parents when I saw them on June 27, 1981.  They had come to pick me up from a week away at camp - the only such … Continue reading A letter from camp: WLS Top Forty-Fives, June 27, 1981

Rockin’ the suburbs: The Billboard Top Rock Tracks, February 12, 1983

Yesterday's post about the songs likely played at the school dances right around this time was a bit of a bummer. It's not because school dances themselves are sad - certainly not so many years later - but because the songs on the list were, frankly, a downer. They're also not the things I would … Continue reading Rockin’ the suburbs: The Billboard Top Rock Tracks, February 12, 1983

How terribly strange to be seventy: Simon & Garfunkel, “Old Friends” (1968)

(Above: Mom showing me how the phonograph works, circa 1971.) My parents turn seventy this week.  To be precise, my father does: my mother passed away before turning 59. In my family, you either live a very full life or a very short one. My grandmother (Dad's mom) also has a birthday today, and is … Continue reading How terribly strange to be seventy: Simon & Garfunkel, “Old Friends” (1968)