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I was looking through the guest book on my old website and found this message from Van Dyke Parks, one of Brian’s best co-writers, dated December 7, 2005

Dear Artie,
You brought such joy and humanity to our times together, and it’s been
30 years and change since you answered my call and helped Brian Wilson find justice in his publishing at Irving/Almo music. For that, and for the definition you brought to Warner Brothers Records in their lettuce years, here is my total gratitude. Keep writing new music. We’re all ears.

Love, Van Dyke

When I was running Irving/Almo ( A+M records publishing arm) in 1974, Van Dyke Parks called me to congratulate me on my new position and to ask for a substantial songwriting advance on behalf of Brian. I put him on hold, and arranged for a check to be drawn up right away! Then he put me on the phone with Brian Wilson [who I had never met] who said he liked Olivia Newton Johns cover of “God Only Knows”, which I got her to record on my first day at the company!!

Needless to say I was thrilled to talk to one of my idols! I told him an idea I had to update one of his old songs “Good Vibrations”……that included changing one of the most recognizable lines in musical history!!! As I talk/sang my idea into the phone, I could hear Brian laughing on the other end that ended with an,”Okay, sure…try it!!

A few weeks later I got my friend Larry Page to record and release it with the Troggs. It started, “I love the summer clothes you almost wear……..and how the sunlight plays upon your hair……”

Although I wasn’t with the company very long, I’m proud of the fact I was able to get the ball rolling and subsequently help Brian get MILLIONS from all of his songs in the Sea Of Tunes catalog which his father, Murray nefariously sold to Irving/Almo Music.

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

To read the inspiring comments they all made a few months ago at the bottom of my interview with Hank Medress (The Lion Sleeps Tonight”, “He’s So Fine” The Chiffons ) http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006/10/31/hank-medress-the-unsung-hero-behind-the-lion-sleeps-tonight-hes-so-fine-and-tie-a-yellow-ribbon/

I really had a good time going through hundreds of YouTube videos, looking for the best versions of songs to go along with this article. “Good Vibrations” ( Wilson/ Asher/ Love) with Brian and the Beach Boys. “God Only Knows” ( Wilson/ Asher) , which Brian wrote in 7 minutes, features the Beach Boys without Brian, with Carl Wilson on lead.

Good Vibrations (1966 B+W)

God Only Knows ( French Concert- Live 1969 B+W) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mxI-P9CL9OQ

Heroes and Villains ( from Brian Wilson”Smile” tour 2006 ) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7z8NRUFyN0

GOOD VIBRATIONS WHICH I GOT THE TROGGS TO COVER! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=myN2mxuHddA

Brian Wilson’s website http://www.brianwilson.com/

Van Dyke Parks http://vandykeparks.com/

 

EXTRA! EXTRA! NOW YOU CAN BUY MY NEW BOOK ,“I DID IT FOR A SONG” AT AMAZON or Barnes & Noble or from Smashwords

 

TO READ A CHAPTER OR TWO FOR FREE CLICK  HERE

 

TO READ SOME OF THE COMMENTS  CLICK  HERE

 

BACK TO ARTIE WAYNE ON THE WEB! http://artiewayne.wordpress.com  
 

Warner-Cable has been sending many shows from ABC-TV to their cable subscribers  slightly out of sync for the past several weeks! The sound is slightly ahead of the picture which can drive you crazy after a while. The discrepancy doesn’t matter much when Rosie O’Donnell is ranting on “The View”, but it made a hell of a lot of difference last night when everyone on “Dancing With The Stars”, seemed to be off on their every move!

Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I like to have my sound and my picture at the same time. Ever since Time-Warner bought Adelphia, I’ve been having problems…and not just technical difficulties…which I refuse to stand by for! They dropped several of my favorite music channels, CMT and MTV2 from basic cable and made them available only in a premium package. Since the company hasn’t made a deal with the CW, I’m forced to miss “Smallville”, “Everybody Hates Chris” and “Veronica Mars”.

When I called Time-Warner customer service rep and got an unsympathetic response, I said, “Maybe it’s time to get a satellite dish.” He said arrogantly, “Maybe it is.”

Well, MAYBE IT IS!!! Am I the only one having problems like this?

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When animal activists said, ” Knut the abandoned baby polar bear, would be better dead than be raised by humans”…animal lovers came to his rescue! At the Berlin Zoo, fans line up by the thousands to see him give the now famous “Knut Salute” to all of those foolish animal activists!

Last night when people tuned in to “Dancing with the Stars” to see if “the leg would fall off”, they weren’t disappointed! They were surprised , however, that it was host’s Tom Bergeron’s leg that fell off, not Heather Mills’ as expected.

Yesterday, Al Gore’s “Endangered Species” Luncheon, raised one million dollars to fight global warming! It was also noted that the Whooping Crane soup and American Buffalo steak was especially delicious!

The government of Zimbabwe has warned foreign journalists, “If they continue to report on the alleged brutality in their country, they will have the shit beaten out of them and fed to the hyenas!”

Hugh Hefner’s, “Girls Next Door”, Holly, Bridget and Kendra were arrested at LAX for bringing pornography into the United States! They were released immediately when it was discovered it was only their passport photos.

Additional funding for the Iraq War has become such a battle, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi now shows up for work in camouflage designer suits by Valentino.

There was so much pork added to the bill Congress presented to President Bush, last week, just reading it could give you Trichinosis!

Octogenarian and senior correspondent for “60 Minutes”, Mike Wallace, finally retired after his face cracked and crumbled into dust on last weeks show!

CBS, disappointed with diminishing returns on its Katie Couric investment, is considering cutting its losses, canning her ass and replacing her on the Evening News with veteran newsman, Ryan Seacrest!

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If you’re wondering how “American Idol” contestant Sanjaya got his start click onto this exclusive video of him dancing as a child! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ew1q-qSMZ5A

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

Special thanks to Phil X. Milstein

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Dwayne Hickman as Dobie Gillis…Then and now.

“Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.”
- Charles Schultz, creator of “Peanuts”

“I wish I was the person my dog thinks I am!”
- A. Nonymous

“Art thrives on restrictions and on things left out. Paintings do not move, music has no image. It is in every case, the imaginative participation of the reader, the viewer, the auditor, that completes the circle and makes it art.”
-Nicholas Meyer, Director of Star Trek II and VI, Writer and Producer.

“You can polish shit…but you can’t make it shine”
George Tobin, producer of “Sad Eyes”, “I Think We’re Alone Now”

“I’d rather have a bottle in front of me, than a frontal lobotomy”
- Tom Waits

“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.”
- Albert Einstein

“You can’t push a bullet back into a gun, you say that you’re sorry but the damage is done. You may as well try to blow out the sun…you can’t push a bullet back into a gun!
- Art Wayne

“It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.”
—Voltaire

“It is better do something, than sit around, bitch and do nothing!”
- W.D. Kent

“Never doubt that a small group of committed people can change the world. Indeed, It’s the only thing that ever has.”
- Margaret Meade

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

Special Thanks to Laura Pinto for Charles Shultz, Caroline Prooth for A. Nonymous, Sebastian Prooth for Nicholas Meyer, Chet Allan for George Tobin, and Patti Dahlstrom for Voltaire.

To reach Laura Pinto http://lpintop.tripod.com/oldiesconnection/

Laura Pinto’s collection of quotes http://www.geocities.com/lpintop/sayings1.html

For Sebastian Prooth http://sebrt.com

George Tobin http://www.georgetobin.com/

Art Wayne http://artiewayne.com

Until the pet food recall crisis is over you can get daily updates here! Thank you for your e-mails asking about the health of Whoppy and Streaker. Fortunately my friend Sunny Smith talked me out of feeding them wet food many years ago and they aren’t at risk. Sadly, millions of pets are…but you’ll be able to know what’s going on and what’s being done to help our little pals.

Menu Foods Pet food recall http://www.howl911.com/

Pet Connection http://www.petconnection.com/

Itchmo http://www.itchmo.com/

Special thanks to Nikki for the above links

For my article on Animal Rights and Wrongs http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2007/03/22/examining-animal-rights-and-wrongs/

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It breaks my heart every time I hear of another pet dying from the 60 million tainted cans and pouches of wet dog and cat food that has been recalled. I get outraged when I realize that there is very little legal recourse that can be taken because animals are considered property rather than a member of the family. Shit! I’ve had some pets I’ve liked better than some members of my family!

It’s been a week since Menu Foods of Canada, told the public of the danger that face their pets if they eat their food sold in the the U.S. under almost 100 different names and they aren’t any closer to finding out what is causing animals to die from kidney failure! What amazes me are the stats released yesterday, which show the company tested the food months ago and one out of six animals died from eating the food! ONE OUT OF SIX! Wasn’t that enough reason to keep the product off the market?

Isn’t anyone out there looking out for our little pals? Where is PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals? Isn’t this a cause they should champion, instead of the self-promoting stunts they pull to draw media attention? Who do you turn to even get information about this crisis? Here’s a place to get daily updates on Menu Foods Pet food recall  http://www.howl911.com/  but what do we do now?

As I was writing this article, a new exterminator sent by the landlord, came to my door. I told him I had 2 cats and asked him if the chemicals he used would be safe. I also threw in that I was once hospitalized by noxious pesticide fumes and suffered from severe allergies and respritory problems. He smiled and assured me that what he was using was absolutely safe and everything would be ok in 15 minutes.

I quickly drew up a paper I wanted him to sign that said;

I understand that you are highly allergic to pesticide and you and your pets might be at risk. I guarantee that you or your pets will not be harmed from the chemicals I use (please list). Along with his signature I asked for his name, company, drivers license and exterminators license number. At this point he had me speak to his boss. Who said there was no problem and I could come back safely to my house after eight hours. EIGHT HOURS is not 15 minutes! Obviously the exterminator who told me 15 minutes was lying. He wanted to come in, spray, collect his money and leave.

My white tomcat Whoppy is currently under doctors care for an eye infection and I will not put him, his girlfriend Streaker or myself at risk. I asked the landlord to give me at least a weeks notice so I can find a place for us to stay until it’s safe to return to my apartment…fortunately he’s a cat owner, so I don’t anticipate a problem.

I’ve always tried to help animals but now I realize it’s going to take millions of us pet lovers to really make a difference in how pets are perceived and subsequently treated. Does anyone out there have any ideas?

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

 

For a story about my little Cairn Terrier, Nookie, that I brought over from London 30 years ago and our meeting Bette Davis! http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006/07/08/nookie-with-bette-davis/

For stories of my little Kitty pals Whoppy and Streaker.. including how we faced a California wildfire! http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006/10/22/looking-back-with-whoppy-and-streaker/

Here’s an article for people who consider their animals to be friends not property. http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006/08/07/for-cats-and-dogs-who-keep-us-hummin/

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DNA tests prove that KISS front man, Gene Simmons is the father of quadruplets!

Speaking of paternity battles, when Anna Nicole Smith’s boy friend, Larry Birkhead told Anna’s lawyer Howard K. Stern to put his DNA where his mouth is, Birkhead was promptly arrested and charged with making an indecent proposal!

In a recent survey, it was revealed that 4 out of 5 Americans are either taking prescription or illegal drugs. It is also noted, that the opening line of a conversation at a bar is no longer “Hey baby, what’s your sign?, but “Hey baby, what are you on?”

When Vice President Dick Cheney, was asked by a reporter if the US obtained the remarkable confessions from Kahlid Sheikh Mohammed by using torture? Cheney turned red and snarled, “If we had him for another day he also would’ve confessed to the Kennedy assassination!”

When Angelina Jolie, clutching her newly adopted 3 year old Vietnamese little boy, was asked by a reporter, “Isn’t he a little old to be breast feeding?”, the little boy turned around and winked!

Diana Ross is still embarrassed about the poor, out of tune performance she gave on “American Idol” last week. A conversation was posted on the internet by a fan who was there with a cell phone, and picked up Simon Cowell, whispering to Paula Abdul that “Diana’s performance was dreadful…sang the wrong song in the wrong key…was pitchey…and lacked originality” A miffed Paula replies, “Don’t you ever have anything positive to say?” at which point Simon says, “OK…her shoes were nice!”

On “Dancing With The Stars”, Heather Mills did a lively foxtrot and was given a score of 6 from each of the judges. When the the audience saw 666, the mark of the beast, half of them crossed themselves and ran out of the studio!

Jury selection has started in the Phil Spector trial and the prosecution has already rejected members of the Crystals and the Ronnettes.

After spending 2 years in prison, Lindsay Lohan’s father Michael, begged for his daughter’s forgiveness…and to be hooked up with her friend, Paris Hilton!

When his application for a visa was denied 3 times for advocating the violent overthrow of the US Government, the President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, simply sneaked over the Mexican border and made his scheduled appearance at the UN!

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

Special thanks to Richard Yannotti and Chet Allan for their submissions.

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Trade Martin and Al Gorgoni listen to a playback.

After the impromptu interview I had with Songwriter/ Producer/ Artist Trade Martin who was a guitarist on many of Phil Spector’s legendary sessions, I realized there was much more to the story…

Although I’ve known Trade since he was one of most in demand session guitarists in New York, I didn’t work with him very often because he was always booked up! In addition to being an excellent musician, part of why he became so popular among producers in the 60’s and 70’s was the fact that he was constantly singing and playing in Rock and Roll Bands in the tri-state area and he not only knew how the ever changing hits on top 40 radio sounded…he knew how they were constructed.

The first time I worked with Trade, was in 1964, just before I took my first trip to London. I had become bored with the American Music scene and became enamored of what I heard coming out of the UK. I had written a song with Ben Raleigh (”Tell Laura I Love Her”, “Wonderful, Wonderful”) and Danny Jordan (The Detergents) called, “When She Was What She Was”, which was more of a Gerry and the Pacemakers song than a song for Dion.

When I heard Chip Taylor and Al Gorgoni’s production of a song Trade wrote for Evie Sands, “Take Me For A Little While”, I was overwhelmed by his songwriting abilities which equaled his musical skills!. When we sat down to plan out my session and I played him my song and he added chords and changes I was only hearing on English hits. The tracks turned out great but I was disappointed in my own vocal. When I came back from England I put my vocal on again, this time with a pronounced English accent and sold the master to Coed records where it was released under the pseudonym Terry Boyd. This was the same label where Trade was signed, that released his classic “That Stranger Used To Be My Girl”.

Although he’s written and scored films, has been nominated for “Clios” for his work in commercials, and received praise for his productions of B.B.King, including the Grammy winning, “Live at San Quentin Album”, his passion for self-expression remains at an all time high as he continues to perform regularly and write and record on a daily basis.

When we reconnected a couple of weeks ago, I became more accutely aware of the part he and his guitar played in the hit making process of some of greatest record producers of our time including Phil Spector, Leiber and Stoller, Bert Berns, Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich, Carole King and Gerry Goffin, Jerry Ross, Jerry Wexler and Burt Bacharach. I didn’t know Trade played on, “Cherry, Cherry”, By Neil Diamond, “Chapel Of Love” by the Dixie Cups, “Twist and Shout” by the Isley Brothers, as well dozens of others he casually rattled off.

As I scrambled to turn my tape recorder on, I started to ask him questions about what I thought every member of Spectropop might want to know.

AW- The stories about Phil Spector working at Gold Star on Hollywood are legendary, but very little is known about his sessions in New York. How did you first get together with Phil?

TM- I was working at the time with Jeff and Ellie, Carole King and Gerry Goffin, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil and Phil Spector’s contractor heard about me and called me up. He said Phil wanted to meet me, so I made an appointment to see him up at Liberty records. You recorded for Liberty didn’t you?

AW- (Laughs) Yeah, briefly. That’s where I met Phil too…he was on the A+R staff.

TM- The contractor told me to bring my guitar to the meeting, so I brought my white fender guitar.

AW- Did you bring an amplifier…or did he have one?

TM- No…no ( laughs) You could hardly hear the sound, but if you listened close enough you could hear it. I didn’t know it at the time, but Phil was a guitar player himself and he studied with Barney Kessel.

AW- Phil played the guitar solo on the Drifters record, “On Broadway”

TM- Right! I caught him playin’ in the studio one day…you know a lot of jazzy stuff. I was a Jazz oriented guitar player myself.

AW- Tell me more about your meeting.

TM- I remember him sitting behind a big desk, and I was on a couch across from him. Our whole meeting wasn’t longer than 6 or 7 minutes. As I pulled out my guitar, he asked what kind of stuff I liked to play? I told him that I played in a night club, and I knew all the solos by Scotty Moore, Carl Perkins…guys like that. At that point he asked, If I knew the intro to “Maybelline” by Chuck Berry? I smiled, and started playing it. He said I’d be hearing from his contractor.

AW- Which you obviously did.

TM- I played on almost every session he did in New York. He found out that I had this D28 Martin Herringbone Dreadnaught acoustic guitar and after he heard it, he always wanted me to play it on his sessions. I specifically remember one session I played it on it, it was at Mirasound with Brooks Arthur engineering. Phil usually used 2 or 3 pianos on his dates. on this one, Carole King was on an upright piano, as I remember, Paul Griffin was on a grand piano and Jerry, Phil’s contractor, was on another.

AW- And what song was this?

TM- “He Hit Me And It Felt Like A Kiss” by the Crystals

AW-Wow!

TM- Phil wanted me to play 16th notes all the way through the track, fortunately I play the drums, so I was able keep that rhythm up! I used to sit right in front of Gary Chester who played drums on most of Phil’s dates.

AW- Gary’s one of the most innovative drummers I ever worked with…you could recognize him on every record he played on!

TM- He’s the best…and what a nice guy!

AW- I’ve been to a couple of overdubbing sessions of Phils but never a tracking session. Tell me more…who were the other musicians?

TM- There was Carl Lynch on Electric Guitar, Billy Butler on another electric and percussionist, George Devins.

AW- And on bass?

TM- Bob Bushnell was on electric and Russ Savakus or Dick Romoff was on stand up. Phil always liked to use two basses on his tracks.

AW- I worked with all those guys, but I never knew that they were the foundation of the “Wall of Sound”…Great musicians and incredible positive vibes! I heard that once a track was done, Phil would have the musicians double it…to give it his signature sound.

TM- I’ve heard he did things like that…but never on any session I’ve been on.

AW – Did you notice any unusual recording techniques?

TM- One day I walked into the studio and Phil, who could be a little off the wall, as you know (laughs), was listening to a playback the control room at full volume. Outside of the glass, Brooks had placed two Neuman mikes which he was recording on two of the master tracks, as it was playing back. They were trying to get as much sound through the glass as they could…which would later be mixed in with the basic tracks! It sounded like a “Live” digital delay. He was a very innovative guy! Sometimes he’d try something that didn’t work…but that would never stop him from always trying something new!

AW- And Brooks was there to capture it…encouraging Phil to go farther.

TM- Exactly!

AW- After the basic tracks were done were you called back to do any overdubbing?

TM- No, Phil got everything he wanted from the musicians on the basics and probably only overdubbed strings and horns…maybe some little percussion things like maracas or castanets, at a later time.

AW- Yeah…They all sound so isolated…adding another dimension to his records! Another brick in the “Wall Of Sound” Did you ever do any work with him at Olmstead studios?

TM- The only place I ever worked in with Phil was Mirasound.

AW- And the engineer was always Brooks?

TM- Yes.

AW- What other of Phil’s hits did you play on?

TM- I remember playing on a lot of Crystals records…but I didn’t play on “Uptown”. Whenever he’d do a session in New York, I was on the date. Most of his biggest hits, like “Be My Baby” with the Ronnettes, were cut in California.

AW- Yes, at Gold Star. Since he was recording on both coasts at the same time, my guess is he chose the place that could best capture the mood of the songs. “He Hit Me And It Felt Like a Kiss” sounds like it needed the edginess of New York musicians.

TM- Not to mention that he could get one of the composers (Carole King) to play piano on the date! I remember there was a lot of controversy when that song came out. Most of the time I didn’t even know what song we were doing…we were handed chord sheets and just concentrated on making the tracks.

AW- That’s wild!

TM – I never even heard the finished record until it had become a hit!

AW- Trade…Thanks for this impromptu interview. I know you’ve got to run off to a session.

TM- My pleasure…anytime!

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne http://artiewayne.com

Although I had some more questions I gathered from Spectropop to ask him on various aspects of his career I decided to wait for another time. I just wanted Trade to finish up the story he started telling me about Phil Spector.

Trade is currently putting the finishing touches on a four disc CD that features new material, as well as compilation of his early American Hits and Northern Soul Favorites! As soon as it becomes available, I’ll announce it on Spectropop.

To reach Trade Martin http://trademartinmusic.co

Thanks to Dave Monroe for Evie Sands performing ,”Take Me For A Little While” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZTG-5brNII

For More On Phil Spector http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2006/08/16/the-scoop-on-richard-baskin-and-phil-spector-with-a-cherry-on-top/

Spectropop http://spectropop.com

Special thanks to Jeff Rubin for reconnecting me with Trade.

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A secret photo taken at Academy Award winning, energy conservationist Al Gore’s ranch in Nashville, shows the gift the local electric company gave him for being the largest private consumer of electricity in Tennessee.

Oprah Winfrey bought the rights to and will star in “The Anna Nicole Smith Story”. When her producers said, “That’s ridiculous!” Oprah told them not to worry, she was willing to gain a few pounds for the part!

Sylvester Stallone was detained at Austrailian airport after trying to smuggle body building hormones into the country. The highly anticipated exhibition match between Stallone and 10 top kangaroo contenders, to promote his latest “Rocky” movie, was abruptly canceled!

The new President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon has announced that his country will not participate in the next Summer Olympics. He said, “Anyone who can run, jump, or swim has already left the country!”

The “Paintball Recruits”, the Army’s latest weapon against terrorism have done it again! After an surprise engagement with the Taliban, the Paintballers waited until their paint had dried and hardened on their adversaries, then captured them easily without incident.

A fire this morning at Paris Hilton’s Apartment, was quickly contained, but not before it destroyed her entire library! Unfortunately, both of her books were lost, her autobiography and one more…which she hadn’t finished coloring.

First Lady , Laura Bush is still trying to explain the ounce of Columbian grass, customs officials found in her bra, when she returned to the U.S. today!

Although citizens of Washington, D.C. are now legally allowed to carry concealed weapons, night clubs are still frisking their patrons. If they don’t have a gun, the management issues them one…just to keep the odds even!

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Scientists have found the 1000 year old remains of the first politician to die of Pinocchiosis, the rare disease that makes your nose grow with every lie you tell.

Al Gore reveals his new invention to wipe out smog…called the Skyscraper!

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

Special thanks to Richard Yannotti, Sharon Link, and Phil X. Milstein for their submissions and to Bizar for creating the Skyscraper.

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In the past few months we’ve heard about millions of dollars being paid out by the giant music conglomerates, as a settlement for using payola to get their product played. The first time the public became aware of the practice was forty years ago, during the cold war, when endless repetition of popular music on the radio was the ONLY way to sell records!

Critics of Rock and Roll, equated the saturation of the public consciousness with this subversive music to “brainwashing” and many politicians saw this “pay for play” scandal as a way to stop the music in it’s tracks. What better way to accomplish this, than to crucify the man who was responsible for many of the hit artists of the day and the record companies who spawned them…The man who named Rock and Roll, Alan Freed.

The following is from the history of rock…

“Payola” is a contraction of the words “pay” and”Victrola” (LP record player), and entered the English language via the record business. The first court case involving payola was in 1960. On May 9, Alan Freed was indicted for accepting $2,500 which he claimed was a token of gratitude and did not affect airplay. e passed away in Palm Springs

Before Alan Freed’s indictment, payola was not illegal, however, but commercial bribery was. After the trial, the anti-payola statute was passed under which payola became a misdemeanor, penalty by up to $10,000 in fines and one year in prison.

By the mid- fifties the independent record companies had broken the majors stranglehold on airplay and BMI licensed songs dominated the charts. In the wake of the quiz show scandals ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers) urged House Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Oren Harris to look into the recording industry’s practice of payola.

ASCAP, with its head in the sand, believed BMI licensed songs were hits only because of payola. With the breakdown in morals, ASCAP believed these records were played so often by greedy deejays causing them to become imprinted on unsuspecting teenagers. ASCAP who had always looked at rock and roll as a passing fad. With these hearings they were trying to ensure that would be the case.

“The cancer of payola cannot be pinned on rock and roll.” ….Billboard Magazine. Billboard stated payola was rampant during vaudeville of the 20s, and the big band era of the 1930s and 1940s

The committee decided to look into deejays who took gifts from record companies in return for playing their records on their shows. Fearing the worse the record companies began stepping forward and announcing that they had given money to specific deejays. Soon twenty five deejays and program directors were caught in the scandal. Among the more popular ones were Joe Niagara (WIBG, Philadelphia), Tom Clay (WJBK, Detroit), Murray “The K” Kaufman (WINS, New York) and Stan Richards (WILD, Boston) The probe quickly focused in on the two top deejays in the country Dick Clark and Alan Freed’s broadcast alliances quickly deserted him. In late November, Freed was fired from both ABC-radio and WNEW-TV.

Clark, with more to lose, quickly gave up all his musical interests when ordered to do so by ABC-TV. When asked to sign a statement denying involvement Freed refuse and was promptly fired from his job with WINS.

When Clark appeared to testify he brought Bernard Goldsmith a statistician. Goldsmith told the committee that Clark had a 27% interest in records played in the past 28 months and those records had a 23% popularity rating. The committee was stunned as they wondered what came first the chicken or the egg.

Clark’s testimony began with telling the committee he had given up all outside interests connected with the recording industry. He also said the only reason he had gotten involved with those businesses were for the tax advantages. Clark admitted a $125 investment in Jaime records returned a profit of $11,900 and of the 163 songs he had rights to, 143 were given to him.

When questioned about Jamie records it was discovered that Jamie paid out $15,000 in payola, but Clark denied ever accepting any. The committee clearly didn’t believe Clark, but he received just a slap on the wrist. In fact, committee chairman Oren Harris called Clark “a fine young man.”

Freed who refused to deny involvement wasn’t so lucky. Though he would only receive a small fine and six months suspended sentence his career was in tatters. Freed would die penniless, a bitter broken man, Jan 20, 1965 in Palm Springs, California.. He was forty three.

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Alan Freed, Larry Williams, some guy in a hat and Buddy Holly

I first met Alan Freed in 1959, at one his legendary Rock and Roll Shows at the Brooklyn Paramount. I wanted to become a rock star…and Alan wanted to manage me. I spent a lot of time backstage with he and his”family”, which included Jackie Wilson, Jimmy Clanton, The Isley Brothers, Fats Domino, Bobby Darin, the Skyliners, Little Anthony and the Imperials.

While basking in their reflected glory, I thought back to when I started High School, and really had to search the radio for my kind of music. Alan Freed, was always the first one I’d turn to when I wanted to hear Bill Haley and the Comets, The Platters, Frankie Lyman and the Teenagers, Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, or Elvis Presley!

As Rock and Roll became more and more popular, so did Alan Freed. He gave us all a steady diet of what we wanted to hear. I heard the word “Payola” from time to time, but it never meant much to me. Growing up in the Bronx, I accepted the fact that you did whatever you had to do to gain the edge! I thought, ” What’s the big deal about paying to have a record played anyway?”

In the early 60′s, when I was primarily a songwriter and producer, I was concerned with making quality commercial records and would only lease my product to companies who could give me the kind of radio exposure needed to make a hit! I never asked them how they did it …and they never told me! I always believed what you don’t know, won’t get you indicted!

Whatever Alan Freed did or didn’t do, he should be primarily remembered as one of the first Champions of Rock and Roll, a man who for the love of the music, was responsible for dozens of sucessful careers in the spotlight as well as dozens of those behind the scenes of the music business.

Thank you for befriending me and validating me in a way that nobody else could!

Alan Freed, R.I.P. Rock In Perpetuity!

Respectfully, Artie Wayne

 

THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO IS BUYING MY BOOK…I PROMISE TO USE EVERY PENNY I MAKE ON IT TO STAY ALIVE AND WELL!

NOW YOU CAN BUY THE ARTIE WAYNE BOOK ,“I DID IT FOR A SONG” AT AMAZON or Barnes & Noble or from Smashwords

 

TO READ A CHAPTER  FOR FREE CLICK  HERE

 

TO READ SOME OF THE AMAZING AND INSPIRING COMMENTS  CLICK  HERE

 

BACK TO ARTIE WAYNE ON THE WEB http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/

 

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