Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bears Hibernate at Night

Another NIGHT Game for my Chicago Bears and apparently another loss coming up. I don't think the Bears have won a single night game they have played this year, and there have been a lot of them.

Vikings lead 36-10 with six minutes left.

The one nice thing is that HOPEFULLY next year there won't be as many night games.

Are the Bears going to win any more games this year?

The $30 million quarterback still isn't earning his money.

About Ready to Stop Wasting My Time Watching the Sad Bears. --RoadDog

Thanksgiving in North Carolina-- Part 4

TUESDAY, November 24th

Afterwards, I went to Berkely Mall, which has met upon hard times in these Bog Box Days. It is still anchored by the Big Three: Penney's, Sears and Belk's, but unfortunately, there are lots of empty stores. This year, they moved Santa from the center of the mall to a vacant store and have a really neat Leonard Bearstein and Friends animated orchestra playing Christmas songs. There are probably 25 Bears playing instruments and singing. Who needs Glenn Miller?

Next stop was an old florist called Van Roeckel's. It's not Christmas in Goldsboro until you go here to look at the Christmas trees and stuff.


OLD WAYNESBOROUGH

My mom is a member of this commission which has collected buildings from throughout Wayne County and have assembled a turn of the century village on the site of Waynesborough which eventually moved to higher ground to avoid flooding from the Neuse River. My dad was also very involved in this organization when he was alive.

Not Finished with Tuesday Yet. --RoadDog

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving in North Carolina-- Part 3

SUNDAY, November 22nd Continued

Visited my dad and grandparents graves at Willowdale and Wayne Memorial cemeteries and drove to Warsaw to visit with cousin Graham and wife Vicki. He is recovering from surgery and was glad to see us.


MONDAY, November 23rd

Highlight of today was Wilber's Barbecue out on the US-70 bypass. Always something to watch the jets from Seymour Johnson Air Force Base flying overhead. Those F-14s are fast and LOUD!!! Then, every so often, you see those huge fuel tankers looking almost as if they are not moving.

Of course, there are those who maintain that Wilber's is the best Carolina bbq and I definitely know of none better. I regard the interior as the perfect place to eat Carolina bbq with cole slaw, hushpuppies and tea.


TUESDAY, November 24th

Went to the Wayne County Council for the Arts and bought tickets for tonight's Jazzy Christmas show to be performed at the 1920s Paramount Theater in downtown Goldsboro.

They have several galleries featuring paintings and photographs as well as one showing the work of children. One seven year old boy's painting was every bit as good as one you see hanging in one of those big city galleries.

Not Finished Yet. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving in North Carolina-- Part 2

I've been fighting off one wild kitten ever since arriving. He goes by the name of Sam I Am, and is about three months old and thinks he owns the place. Might feet are particular targets of feline fury. Quite a character.

Saturday, watched all sorts of college football games. East Carolina won, as did Tennessee, but Northern Illinois and Georgia lost.

Sunday, went to adult Sunday School at the First Baptist Church of Goldsboro. I sat in on Dad's old Sunday School class, something I always enjoy because those men sure remind me of him. Dad died 11 years ago this month.

After an excellent sermon about God's thorns by Dr. Phillips, it was a race to beat the Madison Street Baptists and Presbyterians to get a table at the Lantern Inn for lunch. It's not fair, because both of those churches are much closer. Talk about your religious strife?


FINE EATING AND A VISIT

Had some really fine meatloaf including two sides, roll, drink and dessert for $7.25. Even if they did put the dessert out first. Hard not to eat it.

We then drove to Warsaw, North Carolina, to visit with cousin Graham and Vickie. He has just come back from some serious operations in Little Rock, Arkansas, and is recovering. The last time I saw him was right after the Mediterranean cruise which promptly ended when the ship's engine room caught fire off the Suez Canal.

Three More Days to Catch Up With. --RoadDog

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thanksgiving in North Carolina

This past Friday, I cruised along the National Road in Ohio, crossing the famous Y-Bridge in Zanesville and viewing both S-Bridges between there and Cambridge.

Got gas in Cambridge and drove across gas rip-off state West Virginia, always twenty to thirty cents more expensive, and got gas at Wytheville, Virginia, always the cheapest, at $2.42.

I was too late for Snappy Lunch in Mt. Airy, Andy Griffith's hometown and inspiration for Mayberry. Had my heart set on one of their famous pork chop sandwiches. Had to "settle" on Golden Corral. Oh well!!


REST OF WAY

It was getting to be rush hour when I got to Winston-Salem, and I-40 is not much fun because of traffic at any time, but really bad at this time. Happily, it was easy going until I got to Raleigh, then, rush hour more than made up for the earlier part.

It took quite awhile to get through this stretch.

US-70 was an easy drive after that.

Home for the Holidays. --RoadDog

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Made It to North Carolina

Arrived in Goldsboro last night after two days on the road.

It rained most of the way on Wednesday through Illinois and Indiana. Finally stopped in Ohio. Great news, McRib sandwiches are back at McDonald's!! Saw them advertised at the place in Gibson City, Illinois and again at the one in Zanesville, Ohio. I love McRibs!!!

Gas prices were $2.60 most of the way except $2.42 in Wyhteville, Virginia.

Spent several hours at David Wickline's 66 Roadhouse Bar and Grille north of Columbus (off I-270). He signed his book "Images of 66" and showed me around his place with all its Mother Road stuff. I especially liked his Twin Arrows and Cadillac Ranch as well as the US flag made out of license plates.

Not only that, but he also has a very reasonably priced menu and lots of road food from both 66 and other routes he has drive. I had my first-ever onion burger and a great appetizer called CFB, Country-Fried Bacon. Highly suggest it.

More to Come. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Trip Back to the Sixties-- Part 2

While the next group was getting ready, Bob Stroud talked to the crowd. Last week, at the first CD release party in Oakbrook, Jim Peterik of the Ides of March and Survivor and the Buckinghams also performed. They couldn't be with us today because the Ides were opening for Foghat and the Buckinghams were playing in Las Vegas.

He explained how he went about putting together his Rock and Roll Roots albums. First he gets about 500 suggestions from listeners. Then they are voted on with the top 40 being sent out to have licensing researched. This year, the two biggest vote getters were the Flock and the Family, both from Chicago also.

He also said that they were looking for the Troggs' "Every Day and Every Night" but can't find a licensing contact. Left Banke will not allow "Pretty Ballerina" to be licensed for some reason.

Of interest, he received an e-mail from a former member of the Exports, whose "Car Hop" instrumental was also included on the CD. They were out of Lynnwood, Illinois and two of the members still live in the area.

A Little Background Music, Please. --RoadDog

A Trip Back to the Sixties-- Part 1

As in Chicagoland Sixties Rock and Roll.

This past Saturday, Nov. 14th, Liz and I went to the Mt. Prospect Borders Store for Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 CD release party and were transported back in time to when the Chicago music scene was really hot.

We had plenty of great groups, and four of them played a concert for an appreciative overflowing crowd. That would be the New Colony Six, Cryan' Shames, Mauds and Jim Sahms of the Shadows of Knight.

My favorite 60s Chicago band, the New Colony Six opened the show with Bob Stroud singing "My Pledge of Love" by the Joe Jeffrey Group, one of the songs on the CD (I listed the songs and Bob's comments last week).

They then played:

I Confess
Can't You See Me Cry (a song on the new CD)
Things I'd Like to Say (where they were joined by Ronnie Rice)
I Lie Awake
Little Girls (a song by the Revelles)
I Will Always Think About You (Liz and my song from when we first started dating back in high school in 1967)
I'll Always Love You

It's Them, Not Me: "Chicago, As Gouge City"

Thus read the headline in today's Chicago Tribune. Looks like they finally figured out something I've known for a long time. And, that is that Chicago is a MIGHTY GOUGING CITY.

This comes to light after two major trade shows have recently pulled out of Chicago's McCormick Place. And the reason? Chicago has just become way too expensive.

We were told of the $345.39 charge for four cases of Pepsi.

And, then there is the ripoff parking charges and the new astronomical charges for street parking. This is the big reason I rarely ever go to the city any more.

Then, there are the red light cameras, parking sticker only street parking, and, oh yes, the 10%+ sales tax.

And, I used to visit and spend lots of money in Chicago, but no more.

I Really Choose Not to Be Ripped Off. --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

JSS: NTN'n-- Mall Rats-- Sliding Home-- Part 2

4. NTN'N-- After the concert, we went to three new to us NTN sites. We had a meal at Duffy's on US-12 in Palatine and watched college football while playing the game.

Next, we looked all over for Fox and Hounds in Arlington Heights because NTN Sitefinder had it in the wrong place. Looks like a nice place, but they refused to put the game on so we took our business elsewhere.

Last stop was at Flatlanders Brew Pub in Lincolnshire. We also had a hard time finding it because the Sitefinder again didn't have it in the right place.


5. MALL RATS-- As long as we were in the area, we stopped in Hawthorne Mall and walked it. We haven't been here in years, but used to go there often. Quite a few different stores,but no FYE as I was looking for a copy of Little Steven's Underground Garage's Halloween A-Go-Go. They did have a place called Woody's that had more neat Christmas stuff than I've ever seen. Proud to report that I got out of there WITHOUT BUYING anything.


6. SLIDING HOME-- Felt obligated to stop at the White Castle on Il-60 and get our Slider Fix even though we weren't super hungry. we also stopped at two Walgreens where I bought five ten pack bricks of cassette tapes. Got to stock up as they are getting hard to find.

A Pretty Good Day. --RoadDog

JSS: Tunes and Reads-- Gone-- 60s Trippin'-- Part 1

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.

Saturday, the 14th, Liz and I took a ride to the our high school stomping grounds in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago.


1. TUNES AND READS-- Went to Half Price Books in Palatine and bought the book "Sea Wold of the Confederacy" and two CD collections: "Jazz Joint Stomp: 44 Big Band Classics" and "Born to Hustle: 49 Top Ten Rhythm & Blues Chart Toppers" from 1950-1955. All for $16 and $1.60 since we were in the Land of the 10% Sales Tax.


2. GONE-- Then paid our respects to Liz's parents at Memory Gardens. Sadly, Randhurst mall, where we spent so much time in high school, is no more. The whole middle has been torn down, but the anchor stores are still there.


3. 60S TRIPPIN'-- We went to Borders Books by Randhurst and saw Bob Stroud's Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 CD release party. He had four big-time Chicagoland 60s bands: New Colony Sox, Mauds, Shadows of Knight and Cryan' Shames. Also bought the CD while there. We really went back to those days we were hanging around Randhurst. I'll have a separate entry on the bands.

How to Spend a saturday Afternoon. --RoadDog

CMA Award Show

Finally got around to watching the Country Music Award show from last Wednesday. As usual, great show.

For some reason, Kanye West was a target. Liked Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley singing that great old song that went:

"Mamas don't let your babies grow up to be Kanye.
Let them pick guitars and drive them old trucks,
'Cause Cowboys have manners and they don't interrupt."

Then, after awhile, Little Jimmy Dickens came out on stage and interrupted Brad paisley saying that Taylor Swift had the best video.

I wonder what brought all that out?


That Zak Brown Band out Charlied the Daniel on that rendition of "The Devil Went Down to Georgia." That was some pickin' and fiddlin'.

And, i saw the new face of Outlaw Country with Jamey Johnson who thought they'd never let a guy like him up on stage. He then did that great duet "Somewhere Between Jennings and Jones" with Kid Rock.

Brooks and Dunn did their final CMA performance as they call it quits.

About the only drawback was that there were too many slow song performances.

HALL OF FAME: Roy Clark, Charlie McCoy and Barbara Mandrell.

NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR: Darius Rucker

Musician of the Year: Mac McAnally

Male Vocalist: Brad Paisley

Then, Taylor Swift pretty well swept with album, music video, female vocalist and Entertainer of the Year.

And Kanye Was Nowhere to be Found. --RoadDog

2009 Trop Rock Music Awards

I was wondering what you call Jimmy Buffett-type music. I guess that has been answered, it is called Trop Rock. A whole lot of country music can now be classified Trop Rock.

Anyway, the 2009 Trop Rock Music Award Winners have been announced.

Most of the bands I was not familiar with. However, I do know Howard Livingston and Mile Marker 24 out of the Florida Keys and they did VERY WELL, taking four honors: Band of the Year, Entertainer of the Year, CD of the Year for "I'm Living On an Island" and Song of the Year, same title.

I've seen them several times at Blarney Island and Captain's Quarters here on the Chain of Lakes in northeast Illinois.

Internet Radio station winner was Sandbar Radio.

Came across a great name for a band called Boat Drunks. Good One!!

Time to Fire Up That 'Ol Johnson There, Guys. Margaritas All Around!! Congrats!! --RoadDog

Congratulations to the Cammy Award Winners

This past weekend, the Carolina Beach Music Association had their annual awards show. Some of the Winners for 2009:

FEMALE VOCALIST-- Rhonda McDaniel
MALE VOCALIST SONG OF THE YEAR-- Jerry Wood
ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR-- "Build Me Up" by the Band of Oz
INTERNET RADIO STATION-- Endless Summer (unfortunately no longer broadcasts)
GROUP OF THE YEAR-- Tie: Band of Oz and Holiday Band
FM RADIO STATION-- 94.9 WVCO, the Surf

HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES: Chuck Jackson and John Pope

I am thinking about going next year.

Give Me That Good Old Beach Music. --RoadDog

Monday, November 16, 2009

Just Some Stuff: Christmas Lights-- Burn Pile-- Good Old Friends-- Key Lime Cove

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. CHRISTMAS LIGHTS-- Finally finished putting up Christmas lights and decorations outside. I will be gone the next two weeks to NC and wanted to get them up while we still had some decent weather. Not much fun in freezing temperatures or rain.

I have lights and decorations on the deck, gazebo and all across the front of the house. I probably have around 45 strands of lights, green garland, and two large wreaths.


2. BURN PILE-- We had another dry week so I was able to finish the burn pile. I actually had that good old burning leaf smell this time. That IS THE SMELL OF AUTUMN, but I doubt that we'll be able to do it for much longer.


3. GOOD OLD FRIENDS-- Liz and I got together with some long-time friends of ours, Kip and Susie and Paul at the Gurnee Golden Corral which was having a military appreciation night where they were letting past and present military personel eat for free. That is a nice way to thank them for our freedoms.

I worked for twenty years with Kip and Paul at Magee Middle School in Round Lake.


4. KEY LIME COVE-- Afterwards, we went over to this new indoor water park in Gurnee. A real taste of the Keys all the way up here. Played NTN in the lounge and decided that if we were ever to spend a night or two here, during the school week would be the time. No screaming kids. The poor life guards had to be bored and outnumbered the swimmers by a considerable amount.

Just Some Stuff. --RoadDog

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Interesting Stuff: Kurtis and Jackson-- Largest Cruise Ship-- Packer Fans Greet Favre-- Almost Got Away With It-- Funny, Funny Political Cartoon

Interesting Stuff. Some interesting stiff on the news.


1. KURTIS AND JACOBSON-- Sure enjoyed watching WBBM-Channel 2, Chicago's CBS TV, news last night when they had the return of the two anchors from 1973 to 1989. Walter Jacobson and Bill Kurtis were brought back on a one-night news show at 10 PM in an effort to shore up the stations beleaguered ratings.

I say, bring them back full-time. They haven't missed a beat. Brought back memories.


2. LARGEST CRUISE SHIP-- Yesterday, I saw pictures of the world's largest cruise ship, the Oasis of the Seas. That is ONE BIG BOAT!!! It cost $1.5 billion, has 16 decks and is 40% bigger than the next largest cruise ship.

Also, it is five times larger than the Titanic, has 2,700 cabins, can carry 6,300 passengers and has a crew of 2,100. First cruise is December 5th.

Attsa Some Bigga Boata, But Too Big for Me.


3. PACKER FANS GREET FAVRE-- Brett Favre wasn't exactly welcomed a month ago when he was so brash as to show up in Lambeau wearing Viking colors. Some of the better signs:

"Favre, You Broke My Heart" with a picture of Favre in the Godfather movie. Fedro Favre.

"True Legends Don't Wear Purple."

"We'll Never Forget You, Brent."

A plane flew over the stadium pulling a sign, "Retire for Good, Judas."


4. ALMOST GOT AWAY WITH IT-- On Nov. 5th, US Customs and Border Patrol agents opened a shipping container and discovered a 1965 VW bus inside. Old car, but, it was stolen 35 years ago in Washington state. It was headed for the Netherlands.

5. FUNNY, FUNNY POLITICAL CARTOON-- In the Nov. 13th Chicago Tribune. It shows a Michael Jackson-looking character complete with glove and white face wearing a Cubs jersey with Sammy Sosa's number being taken aback when a little kid looks at him and says "Say It Ain't So, Sammy!..."

That's a Good One!! --RoadDog

Friday, November 13, 2009

Some Really Good Tunes in the Rock and Roll Roots Series

Bob Stroud featured his whole show last Sunday on the new tracks on Vol. 11 as well as ones from previous albums, excuse me, CDs.

Right now, he has had 133 cuts.

Here are the other tracks he played and you will see what a remarkable and eclectic group of songs they are:

L.A. Goodbye-- Ides of March
What a Wonderful Thing We Have-- Fabulous Rhinestones
Pushin' Too Hard-- Seeds
Shakin' All Over-- Guess Who

Little Green Bag-- George Baker Selection
I Love You-- People
Spooky-- Classics IV
Crimson & Clover-- Tommy James & the Shondells

Two Hangmen-- Mason Proffit
Five O'Clock World-- Vogues
Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne-- Looking Glass
Expressway to Your Heart-- Soul Survivors

Race With the Wind-- Robbs
Kind of a Drag-- Buckinghams
Time Has Come Today-- Chambers Brothers
Sauvecito-- Malo

Best Thing-- Styx
Happy Together-- Turtles
It Could Be We're in Love-- Cryan' Shames
Itchycoo Park-- Small Faces

Go All the Way-- Raspberries
Soul Drippin'-- Mauds

Mighty Good Stuff, Maynrad. --RoadDog

Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 is Out!!-- Part 4

Tomorrow is the final Record Release party at the Mount Prospect, Illinois, Borders store by the late-great Randhurst Shopping Mall. We'll be there. This will be a real trip back to those days of yore when, as students at Palatine High School, we used to hang out at Randhurst.

Of course, about a year ago it was closed and much of it torn down.

The groups appearing:

New Colony Six
Cryan' Shames
Shadows of Knight
Mauds

THE LAST THREE SONGS:

CAN'T YOU SEE ME CRY (NEW ACOUSTIC VERSION)-- NEW COLONY SIX-- We usually have 12 tracks, but this year there is a hidden bonus track courtesy of our good friends at the New Colony Six and particularly Ray Graffia who wrote the song back in 1964 and its original version is on this album (track 3). here is an acoustic version all these years later to show how timeless it is.

WILDFLOWER-- SKYLARK-- A Canadian group that featured a keyboardist by the name of David Foster who would go on to become one of the biggest producers in the music business, working with everybody. Closer to home, he did a couple albums with Chicago in the 1980s and even co-wrote one of their biggest hits (and perennial wedding song) "You're My Inspiration."

But, this is a young David Foster in 1973 with a Top Ten hit. (Who voted for this clunker? I rank it right up there with "Feelings." Gag Me!)

FACE THE AUTUMN-- THE FAMILY-- The most requested song we got this year, making its CD debut, yet another area band and another local hit from 1967.

Good Times in Mt. Prospect Tomorrow. --RoadDog

Movie Scratches:

A quick look at some new movies done RoadDog-style. The numbers are date seen and price paid.

I have now seen 49 movies at the theater this year.

JENNIFER'S BODY-- (9-23) Fox Lake, $4-- Talk about your sloppy eaters, BFFs and what a rock band will do to get ahead!!

LOVE HAPPENS-- (9-23) Fox Lake-- $4-- Healer, heal thyself.

PANDORUM-- (9-28) Fox Lake-- $5.50-- Dark and Hard to hear. A real "Alien II."

SURROGATES-- (10-2) McHenry-- $4-- Sign me up with the Dreads!! Technology addiction gone too far or is that amuck?.

THE INVENTION OF LYING-- (10-6) Fox Lake-- $5.50-- Funny, Funny, Funny! Laughing out loud and smiling. A take on religion. Don't want no fat kids with pug noses.

See You at the Movies. --RoadDog

JSS: Most-Expensive Coffee-- Most-Expensive Keg-- Another Waste of Time

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. MOST-EXPENSIVE COFFEE--EVER!! Wednesday, after the Veterans Day Ceremony by the Fox Lake, Illinois, train station, I went to a new local business, Koffee Kafe, and ordered a medium (16 0z.) cup of something beginning with the letter "M" for $1.95. I didn't know that extras cost more, and by the time I got it, the price was $3,95!! I've never spent that much for a cup of coffee in my life.

I have never been to a Starbucks, or is that FiveBucks? So prices like that are shocking. I must admit it was probably the best coffee I've ever had, though. And that includes McCafe which are great too.

However, yesterday, I got a 20-oz. cappachino from the local Mobil station for $1.38 and that was very good as well.


2. MOST-EXPENSIVE KEG--EVER!! Also, after the ceremony, I went to the Legion and paid John for the keg we drank Sunday. It cost $85!!! I haven't bought one for a long time, but seem to remember that last time it was around $65. Our governor's new "sin taxes" are a real pleasure. Thanks, gov!!


3. ANOTHER WASTE OF TIME-- Da Bears lose again, with their fourth straight sorry effort. $30-Million Dollar Boy Jay had four interceptions before I fell asleep in the fourth quarter. I think he must be going for the NFL record for interceptions. For this output, we could have just as well had Gross Rex.

Who's idea is it to have football on Thursday night anyway? Well, at least we now know another NIGHT that the Bears don't play on.

Just Some Stuff. --RoadDog

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 is Out!-- Part 3

Continuing with the tracks on Bob Stroud's new CD. All these songs were suggested and voted on by his listeners.

JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE MIND-- AMBOY DUKES-- Band out of Detroit, Michigan, around for just a couple years and there one big hit. (Was that Ted Nugent singing and playing guitar on the track?)

MY PLEDGE OF LOVE-- JOE JEFFREY GROUP-- One hit wonder out of Cleveland, Ohio. Is it just me, or is this not one of the feel-good songs of 1969?

RUBY TUESDAY-- ROTARY CONNECTION-- Another local band. The "B" side was their version of Sam and Dave's "Soul Man." (A great song that should be included on the next volume.) Their awesome psychedelic version of this Stones song.

CAR HOP-- THE EXPORTS-- The tune I consider to be the oldest song in the Rock and Roll Roots series. This one dates back to late 1964. Surprisingly enough, it didn't chart on Billboard's Top 100 charts nationally, but here in Chicago it was top ten. An instrumental. Criminally enough, it is the first instrumental ever on the series. (Never heard this song, but it is good with some car hop sounds at the beginning.)

Taking You Back, Way Back. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

JSS: Big Game-- OD Time-- No Springfield Trip-- Veterans Day

JSS-- Just Some Stuff.


1. BIG GAME-- Everyone's getting up for the "Big Game" this Saturday between the Johnsburg Sea Hawks and Richmond-Burton Rockets. This is Round Three of the state football playoffs and both schools are natural rivals because of their close proximity.

Kids in our subdivision and Spring Grove go to Richmond-Burton and our house is just two miles directly north of Johnsburg High. When it is not windy we can hear the game clearly.

However, we won't be able to go because Saturday we're going to Mt. Prospect for the Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 CD Release Party.


2. OD TIME-- Sun and unseasonable warmth since Saturday so have been catching some rays out OD (On Deck). Not too many more chances to get this.


3. NO SPRINGFIELD TRIP-- Due to next week's trip to North Carolina, we had to cancel plans to meet up with Lulu and Ken and other Route 66ers in Springfield to pay our last respects to noted Route 66 artist Bob Waldemire, who is dying from colon cancer.


4. VETERANS DAY-- A big salute to all those who have served in the military to keep our freedoms and way of life. In about thirty minutes, at 10:30, I'll be off to Fox Lake for the American Legion ceremony by the train station.

Just Some Stuff. --RoadDog

The Drive's A to Z: the Beginning and End

It all ended yesterday between 9 and 10.

THE FIRST FOUR SONGS PLAYED NOVEMBER 2ND:

ABC-- Jackson 5
Abacab-- Genesis
Abracadabra-- Steve Miller Band
Absolutely Right-- Five Man Electric Band


THE LAST FOUR SONGS PLAYED NOVEMBER 10TH:

You've Got Another Thing Coming-- Judas Priest
You've Got to Hide Your Love Away-- Beatles
Yours is No Disgrace-- Yes
Ziggy Stardust-- David Bowie

You can still see the entire list at the radio web site www.wdrv.com

Hopefully I Won't Miss Most of It the Next Time. --RoadDog

Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 is Out!!-- Part 2

Looking forward to the record release party this Saturday at the Mt. Prospect Borders store. The new album features four songs by local Chicago acts: the Flock, New Colony Six, the Family and Rotary Connection.

3. CAN'T YOU SEE ME SMILE-- NEW COLONY SIX-- They'll be out at Oakbrook with us today (for the first record release party). A Top Ten Hit (Chicago), summer 1968. Written by Ray Graffia. (My favorite Chicago 60s band followed closely by the Cryan' Shames.)

4. SUMMERTIME BLUES-- BLUE CHEER-- originally hit the radio back in 1958 by the late great Eddie Cochran. Ten years later it was back in your radio by this trio out of San Francisco. (How to do a Heavy Metal song.)

5. GIMME, GIMME GOOD LOVIN'-- CRAZY ELEPHANT-- Back in the late '60s, Jerry Kastenetz and Jeff Katz who were movers and shakers behind a genre of music known as Bubblegum. They produced hits for the 1910 Fruitgum Company and the Ohio Express amongst many others, including this band who really wasn't. They were really studio musicians. Their one and only hit from 1968. (One of my favorites, but, hey, I really liked that good 'ol Bubblegum Music.)

6. CAN'T YOU SEE (THAT I REALLY LOVE HER-- FLOCK-- Another local band from the '60s that called themselves the Flock. This is one of their most-requested songs on this album and never been on compact disc before, but now it is. The Flock's first local hit from the late '66 early '67 making its CD premier. (I have to admit that I had never heard it.)

Three Days to Mt. Prospect.

Not Finished Yet. --RoadDog

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

An Anniversary of Importance to Me: USMC 234th

Today marks the 234th anniversary of the United States Marine Corps, which almost became my profession because of the Vietnam and Cold War.

I had a draft lottery number of 22 which meant Vietnam had I not gone to college, which I was always planning to do since I wanted to be a teacher. That war in Vietnam didn't seem like it was ever going to end. It started while I was in junior high and lasted all through high school and college.

I knew that after I got out of college I was going so figured I would go as an officer. I signed up for the Marine OCS, Officer Candidate School, where I would go to training for six weeks between sophomore and junior years and another six weeks the following summer.


THE VERY UN-MILITARY ME

The summer of 1971, I went to Quantico, Virginia, for the six weeks and have to admit that I didn't do anything right for the first three weeks, but then began to figure the military stuff out.

I went my first two years to Northern Illinois and junior year transferred to the University of Georgia. I decided to move back to Northern for senior year, but had to go to summer school at UGA in order to graduate on time. I called the Marines and thought I had it worked out, but, a few months later got a paper saying I had been honorably discharged. At the time, fall 1972, we were winding down the War in Vietnam, so I guess they didn't need me.

So, for six weeks, I was a Marine. I am still most fond of that branch of the military, America's Best Fighting Machine.


IWO JIMA MEMORIAL ANNIVERSARY

And, speaking of the Corps, it was also this date 55 years ago, November 10, 1954, that the Iwo Jima Memorial, inspired by the famous Associated Press photograph of the raising of the American flag on Mt. Suribachi during World War II, was dedicated by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in Arlington, Va..

Ooo-Rah!! --RoadDog

Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11 is Out!!-- Part 1

This past Sunday, Bob Stroud released his eleventh effort in the Rock and Roll Roots Series. Each year, he has listeners suggest songs they'd like to have on the new CD, then they vote. He then takes the top vote-getters and gets licensing for it, then in November, releases it with two record parties at Borders stores in the Chicago area. One is right after the his Rock and Roll Roots Show on WDRV and the other is the following Saturday.

These songs are often more obscure, some never released on CD, and always there are a few groups from Chicago's Golden Age of Rock and Roll in the 1960s. Along with giving listeners a preview of the new songs, the rest of his show is rounded out by previous songs on the CDs. With 12 songs on a CD, this total is now 132 with a bonus 13th song on this year's effort.

As usual, Bob also gives you a little history of each group. His words follow with mine in parentheses.

ROCK AND ROLL ROOTS Vol. 11


1. LITTLE GIRL-- SYNDICATE OF SOUND-- Out of San Jose, California just like the Count Five featured on Roots Vol. 5, and, like the Count Five, a one hit wonder, but this was a stone cold garage classic. (Frat Rock if I ever heard Frat Rock!!)

2. LAY DOWN (CANDLES IN THE WIND)-- MELANIE-- At Woodstock in '69 and while performing on stage wrote what she saw and what would become a hit for her the following year in 1970. This is the rare, seldom-heard long version. (This song was playing on the campus radio station during Northern Illinois' Kent State Riots in 1970, right when the police crashed through the student lines by the Field House. I was watching from my room in Lincoln Hall. Always brings me back to that event.)

More to Come. --RoadDog

The Drive's A to Z-- The Letter "Y"

Woke up this morning and found that the Drive was still playing their famous A to Z where they take 2000 of their tracks and put them in alphabetical order. This is expected to be the last day, ending some time this morning. They started a week ago Monday. I'm even listening to this instead of my usual Beach Music.

The variety and years you get when you put them in alphabetical order is amazing.

Songs Played in the Last Hour:

You Really Got Me-- Kinks
You Really Got Me-- Van Halen-- these last two songs were the first hits for both groups.

You Shook Me-- Led Zeppelin
You Shook Me All Night Long-- ACDC
You Wear It Well-- Rod Stewart
You Won't See Me- Beatles
You Wreck Me-- Tom Petty
You'll Accompany Me-- Bob Seger
Young Americans-- David Bowie
Young Lust-- Pink Floyd

As they say, it's like a Drive Dictionary of Music. I'll Be listening to the end.

www.wdrv.com

Sure Wish I'd Been Listening to It During the Whole Week. --RoadDog

An Anniversary of Importance to Me: Berlin Wall 20th

Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of the opening, and thus end, of the Berlin Wall. I never thought I'd see that. There was always going to be a wall and an East and West Germany. There was always going to be a cold war. I was amazed at how fast events led up to the opening of it and then the collapse of the Soviet Union after that.

I will always remember the people standing on top of the wall and thinking they would have been shot for doing that just 24 hours earlier. Then, there were the guys with sledgehammers wailing away on it and the big celebration when one section fell.

A year later, I found out the owners of the Black Bear Lodge, a German restaurant in Ingleside, Illinois, were going back home for a visit. I asked them if they could bring me back a piece and they said they would. I was teaching in nearby Round Lake and thought my 7th graders would appreciate actually touching something that was that important in history.

They brought it back and what I got was about a one inch square piece of concrete in a a leather bag for $10, a bit steep I thought for something so small. The next 16 years I taught, the kids got to actually hold it and I think get an appreciation of the significance of something so small.

This Cold War that it represented also had a big part in the next anniversary I'm going to write about.

A Real Piece of History. --RoadDog

Monday, November 9, 2009

Great Party, Lousy Game

Yesterday, we had the first of our two football games with 26 attending, including several who had never been here before.

We had a keg of Miller Lite, complete with a new tapper as we wore the other one out. The main food was a couple Aldi spiral-cut, pre-cooked hams and fixins', plus almost everyone brought something to pass around.

Margaritaville, our basement bar was full of the bar lights, mirrors and stuff I've gotten over the years, mostly from the '80s.

And, we couldn't have asked for a nicer day. That fall we didn't have in October was here, finally, in November.

Unfortunately, our team, Da Bears, were in hibernation. There was not a team on the field. Multi-million dollar Jay, heir to the Rex, was ineffective for a third week in a row. And Lovie was on the sideline showing no emotion as usual. At least with Ditka, Da Coach, you always knew if it was a good or bad play, even if you didn't see what was going on on the field.

People were losing interest. I, myself, missed almost the whole third quarter. If the Bears weren't going to play, why should I waste such a perfect day. A lot of people out on the deck, gazebo and walking around the yard.

After the game, we had Name That Tune until 8 PM and finished off the keg.

Good Times at Margaritaville (the basement) at Key North (our house).

Like I Said, Great Party-Lousy Game. --RoadDog

Missed the First Part of A to Z

Actually, I must admit that I didn't know about the A to Z until Friday, when pal Coz told me about it while at Donovan's in Twin Lakes. Then, I was too busy with preparing for yesterday's party to listen much. Si, I semi-made up for it today while actually catching some rays out OD. Wow, catching rays in early November, something that doesn't often happen.

List of "Turn" Songs:

Turn it On Again-- Genesis
Turn Me Loose-- Loverboy
Turn the Page-- Bob Seger
Turn to Stone-- ELO
Turn to Stone-- Joe Walsh (not familiar with this one, but didn't hear it.
Turn, Turn, Turn-- Byrds
Turning Japanese-- Vapors

Now, This Is Some GOOD Stuff. --RoadDog

The Drive A to Z

All day, I have been listening to Chicago's WDRV, 96.9 FM, who are doing their A to Z, always a great listen. They are playing 2000 songs alphabetically and started at 6 AM last Monday with the Jackson 5's "ABC" and expect to finish today.

Right now, Booby Skafish is playing the Rolling Stones' "Under My Thumb," which means they've reached the "Us." They just got into it. All day it was the letter "T." Just went to Queen and David Bowie's "Under Pressure."

The "Time" Songs:

Time-- Pink Floyd
Time for Me to Fly-- REO Speedwagon
Time in a Bottle-- Jim Croce
Time is On My Side-- Rolling Stones
Time of the Season-- Zombies
Time Out of Mind-- Steely Dan
Time Passages-- Al Stewart
Time Waits for No One-- Rolling Stones
Time Won't Let Me-- Outsiders

Go to the website and see the complete massive list. www.wdrv.com
You can listen to it as well.

Now, That's Some Variety. --RoadDog

Saturday, November 7, 2009

JF on PBS

Watching John Fogerty playing all those great songs on Live, By Request on PBS. How do you beat John Fogerty playing both those new songs and the classics when he was with CCR?

I'm very glad he no longer refuses to play the old stuff. For an older guy, he doesn't miss a step rocking and rolling. The fan favorite by vote was "Have You Ever Seen the Rain." Well, he never got to play "In-a-Gadda-da-Vida"ike he promised. Last song "Down On the Corner,"

To my knowledge, I have all of his albums.

I already belong to WTTW so all the pleading gets a bit old.

CCR Fan Forever. --RoadDog

Stax Records, Those Good Old Soul Records-- Part 2

Booker T' and the MGs were like a four piece orchestra said Donald "Duck" Dunn, "Booker played so full, Steve was so precise and Al was the heartbeat of Stax. I just tried to complement the lyrics or stay out of the way of the lyrics. It worked."

Also, odd for the times, Booker T and the MGs were a racially-mixed group. Jones and Jackson were black and Cropper and Dunn white. According to Mavis Staples, "That was because was just so open, no boundaries, no rules at anytime."

Rob Bowman, who wrote the story of Stax in his book "Soulsville, USA" added The day-to-day workings at Stax were a manifestation of Dr. Martin Luther King's dream where white and black came together organically to make music.

However, Otis Redding's tragic death in a plane crash in 1967 and then King's assassination a few months later shattered the dream, causing office problems and local youths threatened musicians.


A NEW DIRECTION

Booker T & the MGs split in 1971 and Stax changed direction toward Isaac Hayes, who had been a songwriter for the label. He became a superstar after "Shaft." Then, the Staple Singers came along with their gospel-tinged music.

Otis, My Man!!! --RoadDog

Cleaning and Burning

Listening to John FM right now, out of the Georgia-SC Low Country, playing that good old Beach and Boogie and getting me going for a long day of cleaning and burning and running around for tomorrow's Bear-Cardinal Party for which we expect about 30 fans.

Always a good way to get me to cleaning and straightening up the basement which tends to get a bit cluttered when I'm left to my own devices. Just ask my wife.

Beside cleaning the basement and bar area, I also have to do the same in the sun room and my study. My excuse is that I spend too much time researching and writing the four blogs even though I really enjoy them.

Since we haven't had rain for a week (after the rainiest October in history), I hope to get out today and get after the rather large burn pile.


AND, SHOPPING TOO

Then, I have to go shopping for the hams at Aldi ($1.49 lb. pre-cooked, honey-glazed and spiral-cut), chips, dip, buns, sandwich fixings and cups. Also have to get some Sunny D for the world famous "Shotters" which we drink after every Bear TD and qb sack and anytime we want a rally or get bored. I'm hoping to hear many cheers for "Juice! Juice! Juice!"

I also have to get a new tapper from Bob for the half barrel we'll attack tomorrow.

Let's See, Beer, "Shotters," and Food, Did I Forget Anything? --RoadDog

Friday, November 6, 2009

Stax Records, Those Good Old Soul Records-- Part 1

This could actually go with my history blog, but since I do music in this one, here it shall be.

And, it's old news as I just found the article from the October 31, 2008, Chicago Tribune by Aaron Cohen "All-star reunion of Stax 'family'"

It was about an upcoming concert for an Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago. I would have liked to have been there. It will feature the backbone of the Stax sound, session band (and performers in their own right) Booker T. and the MGs and Mavis Staples of The Staple Singers.

In case you're wondering what MGs stands for, it's Memphis Group. Plus, bassist Donald "Duck" Dunn and guitarist Steve Cropper were in the famed Blues Brothers band. The group was rounded out by leader Booket T. Jones on keyboards and drummer Al Jackson, Jr who was murdered by intruders in his house in 1975. Not only did they have their own hits like "Time is Tight" and "Green Onions," but that's them you hear backing the singers on most Stax recordings and that music is tight.

Stax only lasted 20 years and never was a large company, but BOY, that music they put out sure gave me lots of enjoyment while growing up. They started in Memphis in the late 50s (along with Sun Records).

According to Cohen "the company's name still conveys different meanings. Fans of '60s R&B hits identify Stax with relentlessly upbeat singers Otis Redding (my favorite all-time soul singer) and Sam and Dave. To a '70s urban audience, the company signifies the sophisticated soul of the late Isaac Hayes (you know, the "Shaft" man)."

Man, That's Some Great Music. --RoadDog

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Sherman's Lagoon Tells It Like It Is

This past Sunday's comic strip of Sherman's Lagoon pretty-well summed up a big problem in today's world, especially of us scared-of-new technology folk.

FRAME 1-- Turtle, "I'm pretty proud og myself. I finally bought one of those fancy phones last week."

FRAME 2-- Sherman, "Should've waited. Their new model came out yesterday. Twice the megapixels for half the price."

FRAME 3-- Crab, "That phone is so yesterday. The one I got this morning blows it away. Ten times the megapixels."

FRAME 4-- Fish, "You all missed the boat. They came out with completely new technology five minutes ago."

FRAME 5-- Fish, "Megapixels are out. Gigapixels are in."

FRAME 6-- Sherman, "This is all leaving me feeling very inadequate. I need a new phone." Crab, "Me too."

Frame 7-- Everyone but fish and turtle leave.

Frame 8-- Turtle, "I just wish somebody would call me."
Fish, "P can't help you there."

It would be nice if we could put a moratorium on technology for awhile so us old behind-the-times folks can get caught up.

What's a Megapixel? --RoadDog

JSS: CD Release Party-- Bob Waldemire-- The Problem with "Seen ITs"

JSS-- Just Some Stuff


1. CD RELEASE PARTY-- This Sunday, Bob Stroud release his Rock and Roll Roots Vol. 11. His show from 7 to 10 AM on WDRV will feature the 13 cuts and then he has a release party at the Oakbrook, Illinois, Borders store. It will feature lots of Chicago 1960s rock bands. Then, next Saturday, he has another one at the Mt. Prospect Borders which we are planning to attend.


2. BOB WALDEMIRE-- So sad to find out that Route 66 icon Bob Waldemire will be going to that great highway in the sky soon. He is in his converted school bus in Springfield, Illinois, and greeting his fans in these last days.

There was a very nice article and video in today's Chicago Tribune at
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-dying-route-66-icon-05-nov05,0,72200519.story

He is the artist of Route 66 and, as far as I'm concerned, the "Spirit" of the Road. He was the inspiration for Fillmore the hippie van in the movie "Cars."

We're considering going there next week for a final visit.

I've been writing about him in http://roaddogsroadlog.blogspot.com.


3. THE PROBLEM WITH "SEEN ITS"-- We normally play NTN/Buzztime in the afternoon. Then, around 3:30 to 4, the "smart" people start playing of whom I will refer to as "Seen Its." All of a sudden, we start seeing perfect and near perfect scores all over the top twenty and even on games with really hard questions. They have be seeing the games somewhere, somehow.

It's sure hard to beat someone who has seen the questions and answers already.

Every Bloomin' Thing-- Early November

Sadly, the outside is about done for this season.

All tress except the Bradford pears have lost leaves. The Bradfords are just now changing into some pretty yellows (one of them) and the other two into reds.

I've been raking the 14 pine trees (12 white pine) and getting a nice straw mulch in the pine islands.

The burn pile has been a problem. We can only burn on the weekends in October and November. I've burned some twice, but having big problems with all the rain we've been getting.

I still have some color in the mums, but that's about it for the flowers as well.

I actually had to rake leaves for the first time ever (not bad after 17 years). It seemed that all the trees dropped all at once. No more going out and importing the leaves for that great smokey fall smell. Nothing like the smell of burning leaves.

The "Woist" Halloween Candy

The List Universe site had a list of the Ten Worst Halloween Treats Ever" in their Nov. 4th list. ww.listserve.com

Boy, did they ever have some of them right!! I imagine by now, some of you are through eating your kid's candy or whatever wasn't claimed by Trickers on Saturday. Personally, we always keep our VERY VERY favorites until the end, hoping we won't have to give them away. Then, bright and early the next day, it's off to the stores for the half-price faves.

Anyway, here goes:

10. Good 'n Plentys (YUCK!! licorice)
9. Homemade candy and baked goods (you know why)
8. Goodbars
7. Apples (nothing healthy need apply)
6. Money (I definitely differ here. Money's always good.)
5. Jolly Ranchers (Don't agree here either.)
4. Necco Wafers (Horrible stuff. Just as soon eat paper.)
3. Any generic and cheap lollipop
2. Wrong Candy-- Candy that is in the wrong season such as jelly beans or even worse, candy canes (sure to get a trick when I was younger. How dare they!!)
1. Mary Janes

BONUS: McDonald's and Burger King gift certificates. You have to do something before eating them.

Of course, they had their reasons as well.

Kids, Watch Out If Dad is Hanging Around Your Candy Stash Too Much. --RoadDog

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

100 Year Rededication-- NTN

Yesterday, we drove to Woodstock, Illinois for the rededication of a 100-year-old Union Civil War monument in the historical town square. About 25 people attended the ceremony which was led by the town's mayor.

There is a goal to raise $10,000 for repairs after the monument has been out in the elements for all those years. It was built with funds raised by the Women's Relief Organization, an auxiliary of the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization made up of veterans of the Union Army in the Civil War.

Enjoyed a walk around the square and the great nostagia store with more neat stuff than I've ever seen assembled in one place.

Today, we went to Antioch and visited with a friend who we haven't seen for a long time. Then, we had the biggest basket of fries I've ever seen at the Sequoit Lodge on Main Street. Played NTN as well.

Nice Coupla Days. --RoadDog

Then drove to Hello Folks in Fox Lake and played NTN with three top twenties and finished up at the American Legion.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Top of the Charts This Date-- Part 2

Continuing with the Number One Songs November 2nd.

1969 WEDDING BELL BLUES-- FIFTH DIMENSION
1968 HEY JUDE-- BEATLES
1967 TO SIR WITH LOVE-- LULU

1966 LAST TRAIN TO CLARKSVILLE-- MONKEES
1965 GET OFF MY CLOUD-- ROLLING STONES
1964 BABY LOVE-- SUPREMES

1963 SUGAR SHACK-- JIMMY GILMER & THE FIREBALLS
1962 HE'S A REBEL-- CRYSTALS
1961 BIG BAD JOHN-- JIMMY DEAN
1960 SAVE THE LAST DANCE FOR ME-- DRIFTERS

1959 MACK THE KNIFE-- BOBBY DARIN
1949 THAT LUCKY OLD SUN-- FRANKIE LAINE
1939 SOUTH OF THE BORDER (DOWN MEXICO WAY)-- SHEP FIELDS

1929 TIP TOE THROUGH THE TULIPS-- NICK LUCAS
1919 A PRETTY GIRL IS LIKE A MELODY-- JOHN STEELE
1909 I'VE GOT RINGS ON MY FINGERS-- BLANCHE RING

I've actually heard of all of the pre-59s except for perhaps the last two.

What Was Number One. --RoadDog

Monday, November 2, 2009

Top of the Charts This Date

2009 FIREFLIES-- OWL CITY-- What?
1999 SMOOTH-- SANTANA/ROB THOMAS

1989 LISTEN TO YOUR HEAR-- ROXETTE
1988 KOKOMO-- BEACH BOYS-- LAST HIT FOR THEM, BUT WHAT A SING!!
1987 I THINK WE'RE ALONE NOW-- TIFFANY-- Mall rats Unite.

1986 AMANDA-- BOSTON
1985 PART TIME LOVER-- STEVIE WONDER
1984 CARIBBEAN QUEEN-- BILLY OCEAN

1983 ISLANDS IN THE STREAM-- KENNY ROGERS AND DOLLY PARTON
1982 UP WHERE WE BELONG-- JOE COCKER AND JENNIFER WARNES-- From "Officer and a Gentleman."
1981 PRIVATE EYES-- HALL & OATES
1980 WOMAN IN LOVE-- Barbra Streisand-- Oh well.

1979 POP MUZIK-- M

Mote Tomorrow. --RoadDogs

Da Bears and Da Bars-- Part 2

November 1st, we went to Baja Benny's to join our usual crew of Bear fans. We've been watching games there since about 1990. mostly with the same group. Back then, it was called Costello's and owned by our friends Frank and Sharon. Great view of Fox Lake and we had kept our boat there back when it was another bar.

During warmer weather we watch games out on the deck.

They have free popcorn, free salsa and chips, and free hot dogs with the trimmings at half time. Every Bear YD or sack gets a shot of "juice," an alcoholic concoction, always accompanied by shouts of "Juice! Juice! Juice!!" Also, $5 pitchers and $12 buckets of 5 bottles.

Much better game despite a slow start when $30 million man Jay was doing his three and out thing. Everyone agreed this was the most boring game ever. However, it was "Sweetness Day" at Soldiers Field so lots and lots of Number 34 jerseys.

Great victory though and Lovie finally used Garrett Wolfe at running back, on my opinion the superior of Forte (and NIU grad).

Went to Cross Inn afterwards and bought a couple of the Miller Lite Bears souvenir pints featuring Dick Butkus and Gayle Sayers. The next two monthly editions will be Richard Dent and the Sweetness. They have buckets of six bottles for $10.

Hard to Beat Fun at the Old Bar Watching Da Bears. --RoadDog

Da Bears and Da Bars

These past two weeks we've seen the Bears not play a game (Cincinnati) and beat up a much worse team (Cleveland) with difficulty at first.

Either way, we hit plenty of bars both Sundays.

On the 25th, after going to Stade's Shades of Autumn and watching them fire the pumpkin gun, we went to the Rusty Nail in Ringwood for a drink. This was before the disaster, but enjoyed their 75 cent 14 oz beer. They also have half price appetizers and $2.50 frozen pizzas.

Then, around the corner we went to O'Leary's and watched the Bears not play in the first quarter. No real good specials here.

Watched most of the debacle at Chopper's up on Il-173 in Antioch. Horrible game, but good deals with 25 cent wings and $4 pitchers. At least there was something good about that long, long game.

Da Browns Next. Just an "e" Difference --RoadDog