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Growing up in the turbulent 60’s in the Shadow of the Cold War, wasn’t easy! Growing up in New York of the 60’s, with all the drugs and violence, had an even harder edge. I was tired of writing formula pop songs about made-up experiences in a location that no longer held any fascination for me. My recording career had fizzled out and my marriage was winding down. Although my partner, Kelli Ross and I were running the publishing companies of Quincy Jones, Leslie Gore, Bobby Scott, Janis Ian, Joey Levine and Artie Resnick, my own creativity was suffering from a lack of positive stimulation.

I knew the next musical trend would be coming from the west coast, when I first heard, “Cherish” by the Association” and “California Dreaming”, by the Mamas and Papas…but when I heard “Macarthur Park” by Richard Harris I knew it had arrived!

Before I go on with my story, I’d like you listen to hear the song that kicked me into high gear. It’s Richard Harris singing his classic record, which Jimmy Webb, wrote and produced…”Macarthur Park”. This video is distracting, so personally I prefer to listen to the music and let my imagination create my own pictures. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N0D-boeOCG0

Although “Macarthur Park” was seven minutes long, twice the length of any song on the radio at the time, it quickly became number one! The poetry of the lyric and beautiful, psychedelic labyrinth of music gave a shot in the arm to Pop music in general, and to me particular. I took my first trip to Hollywood in the summer of 1968 to get a better understanding of the new emerging music scene …and to get a quickie Mexican divorce.

Jackie DeShannon, took me on a tour of Hollywood and introduced me to the wonders of Malibu Beach. I hung out at the Troubadour and the Whiskey with Bruce Johnston of the Beach Boys and Terry Kirkman of the Association. I went to parties up at Mike Love’s, down at Richard Baskin’s and over at Football Hall Of Famer, Jim Brown’s house. I reunited with my long time songwriting partner, Ben Raleigh ( “Love Is A Hurting Thing”, “Tell Laura I Love Her”) who had recently relocated to California. I also hooked up with my friend Bob Stone, who was once signed to me, as he celebrated his number one record with Cher, “Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves ” I also started writing with Gary Zekely and Mitch Bottler ( “Wait A Million Years”, “Sooner Or Later”), found time to go to a Phil Spector recording session…as well as fall in-and-out of love a couple of times!

It was quite an eventful two weeks, but I still hadn’t met Jimmy Webb, whose music brought me out here in the first place. As my plane took off for New York, “Up, Up and Away” kept running through my mind…I was disappointed, but I knew I’d be coming back.

Jimmy’s songs like, “Didn’t We?”,”The Worst That Can Happen”, “Wichita Lineman”, and “Galveston”, continued to inspire me as I spent my last dreary year in New York. It was two years after moving to the West Coast, however, before I finally met my inspiration!

I was working as General Professional Manager for Warner Brothers Music, when CEO, Ed Silvers, informed me that we now represented Jimmy Webb. I can’t tell you how excited I was to go out to his house in Encino with Warner Brothers Records President, Mo Ostin to hear the final mixes of his latest WB album, and finally meet my hero!

As we waited for Jimmy in his game room, I saw a Las Vegas slot machine in the corner. I put a quarter in and hit the jackpot. Mo smiled…as I hit the jackpot again…again and again! Mo, started glaring at me as I tried to push my winnings back into the machine. Now fully embarrassed, I started kicking hundreds of quarters underneath the living room rug, just as Jimmy walked in laughing…that’s when I realized I was the victim of a practical joke!

I knew I was gonna’ like working with this guy!

( To Be Continued )

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

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When I was growing up most disc jockeys on the radio would have a segment of their show for making dedications from one listener to another. Most of the songs requested were romantic and struck a positive emotional chord. Many people who didn’t have the ability to express themselves would say,”Listen to the words of this song…this how I feel!”

Pop music has always been a reflection of our culture, and sadly our society is currently awash in a sea of negativity and songs about love are outnumbered by raps about lust! I pulled 3 songs from my catalog that express a feeling you might want to share with someone special…You have three cards to choose from.

1. “Someone In This Crazy World Loves You” By Patti Dahlstrom and Artie Wayne https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2007/02/12/someone-in-this-crazy-world-loves-you/

2. “Somewhere Between The Earth And The Stars” by John Crowley and Artie Wayne
https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2007/02/11/somewhere-between-the-earth-and-the-starsim-coming-to-you-my-love/

3. “Love Is More Than The Color Of Your Eyes” by Richard Baskin and Artie Wayne
https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2007/02/11/love-is-more-than-the-color-of-your-eyes/

I started a list of dedications at the end of each song, if you want to add a special name or two to that list e-mail me at artie_wayne@yahoo.com and I’ll add up to 3 couples names on your behalf on whichever title you want.

If you want to leave your own message, however, you may do so at the bottom of each card which will remain on display forvever!

I promise you that each e-mailed dedication will be entered by Valentines Day 6:00 AM Pacific time, and can be accessed by anyone you wish by sending the url in the address bar at the top of each card.

Remember “Romance isn’t dead…it’s only sleeping!”

Copyright 2007 by Artie Wayne

Sebastian Prooth’s brilliant video of Alan O’Day and the late Johnny Stevenson classic, “Rock and Roll Heaven”, featuring Ronny Kimball, has been played thousands of times on eleven internet sites in the past 24 hours! If you haven’t seen it scroll down to my previous post and click onto Elvis’ triangular eye!

If you like to read about some of my “Brief Encounters”with some of our late rock heroes including Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Croce just click onto http://artiewayne.com/pg9.html

nice-phil.gif I first visited Hollywood in 1968 for a combo business trip and quicky divorce. Having lived all my life in New York, I never learned how to drive, so my friend Richard Baskin, graciously took me to my appointments. Richard (who a few years later went on to produce the music for Robert Altmans, “Nashville”, Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again”, and several outstanding cuts with Barbra Streisand) was still in college and also one of the heirs to Baskin/Robbins ice cream empire. At his friends and family’s request I tried to talk him into staying in school…putting his music aspirations on hold and consider going into the family business. But after one particular day there was no going back!

After a morning of writing songs with Gary Zekely, and Mitch Bottler , the team who wrote “Sooner Or Later” and “Wait A Million Years”, we went over to the A&M lot to meet with Lou Adler, (who would produce Carole King’s “Tapestry”.)

After my appointment, I took Richard on an impromptu tour of the facility (which I had never seen). I introduced him to Herb Alpert ( who I didn’t know), who introduced both of us to Joan Baez. Then we checked out A&M recording studios to see who was there. That’s when I ran into Phil Spector, (who I did know from my days as an artist at Liberty Records ). I introduced him to Richard, who I knew idolized him. Phil invited us into the studio to listen to a track he was doing with the Checkmates, “Proud Mary”.

When Phil signaled to the engineer to start the tape…I was standing in front of the speaker and was literally blown away…not just by the recording itself…but by the incredible volume!!! Phil smiled enigmatically as Richard helped me maintain my balance.

As Richard was driving me back to my hotel I asked him if he had a chance to think about what we discussed earlier in the day? He looked at me, with stars in his eyes and said, “Yeah…Fuck Ice cream, I’m going into the music business!”

Pictured at top- Phil Spector

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Okay, I admit it I was/am a ruthless self promoter. When I moved to California in 1971 and became general professional manager of Warner Brothers music, I did everything I could to get noticed by the show business community. I would sit by the pool of the Beverly hills hotel and have my secretary page me every few minutes, so the luminaries would know who I was. I also became friendly with members of the Paparazzi, who would take my picture chatting and mingling with the stars.

I remember being at a party with Barbra Streisand and Ryan O’Neil, who hadn’t made their affair public yet. My photographer friend, Andy Kent, snapped a picture of the three of us, which prompted Ryan to beat the shit out of him. I don’t know how Andy did it, but the film was saved and made it to the cover of the National Enquire the following week! ( Andy sued a got a handsome settlement. )

Later that week, I wasn’t able to attend Barbra’s session for “Since I Fell For You” which was in Warner Brothers,”What’s up Doc?”, for fear she would recognize me.

I didn’t see her again until the late 80’s when she came into Allan Rinde’s, Genghis Cohen, a chinese restaurant, which I named and hosted. My longtime friend and sometime song writing partner, Richard Baskin came in with Barbra, who was his girlfriend at the time. As Richard and I caught up on old times, she checked out the menu, nervously reminding Richard that their recording session, which he was producing at Cherokee studios across the street, started in 10 minutes.

He told her not to worry because the restaurant would deliver it. I explained to Richard that we didn’t have delivery service. He looked disappointed, but said, “We’re right across the street…Artie, if you bring it over yourself then you can hear what I’ve been cutting with Barbra.” How could I refuse an offer like that, besides my friend Dee Robb, who also owns the studio was engineering the date.

Twenty minutes later, I took a couple of our dinner specials and six egg rolls across the street to the studio. they seemed happy to see me and Barbara stopped the playback to check out the order. Suddenly, the mood changed as she looked over the bill. She was outraged at the price of egg rolls at $1.75 each! She went on and on how the price of our egg rolls were a rip-off, while Richard, Dee and I just looked at each other…then broke out laughing! I reminded her that since the studio was costing $300.00 an hour and she had spent 10 minutes ranting, these were going to be the most expensive eggrolls in history!

After she calmed down and paid the bill, Richard told her about my background in publishing. She asked for a playback of a song she had co-written and asked me for my opinion. I was really impressed and told her how much I admired the song and her underated talent as a writer. Her eyes lit up and for the moment the price of egg rolls was almost forgotten…almost.

Copyright 2006 by Artie Wayne

For more Artie Wayne On The Web  https://artiewayne.wordpress.com