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In 1963, Ed Silvers, East Coast head of Liberty Records signs me to a singles deal. He had just produced a top 10 hit with Timi Yuro, “What’s The Matter Baby,” and I’m excited that he wants to work with me.

I’m starting to get a lot of action with releases by Wayne Newton, Gene Pitney, Bobby Darin, the Angels and Dorsey Burnette — and I know it’s just a matter of time before I hit!!

I beg him to let me do a song I just wrote with Ben Raleigh, “(Meet Me At) Midnight Mary” —Ed likes it — but he loves “Where Does a Rock and Roll Singer Go (When His Record’s Off The Charts?)”

I just sigh and produce “Midnight Mary” myself with my friend Joey Powers — which becomes Amy/Mala/Bell (now Arista) Records first Gold Record.

copyright 2012 by Artie  Wayne

WHILE FIGHTING LARGE CORPORATIONS WHO ARE TRYING TO KEEP ROYALTIES AWAY ME AND THOUSANDS OF OTHER ARTISTS, SONGWRITERS AND PUBLISHERSMY ONLY SOURCE OF INCOME IS FROM THE SALE OF MY BOOK. ” I DID IT FOR A SONG”, WITH OVER 100 STORIES FROM THE MUSIC BUSINESS OF THE ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. I HOPE YOU’LL CONSIDER BUYING ONE DIRECTLY FROM ME THROUGH PAYPAL FOR ONLY $9.99 AT  artiewayne@gmail.com OR BY CHECK TO…ARTIE WAYNE  P.O. BOX 1105, DESERT HOT SPRINGS, CALIFORNIA 92240

THANKS AND REGARDS, ARTIE WAYNE https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/celebrating-two-million-views-today-on-artie-wayne-on-the-web/

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It was November 22, 1963 and I had been preparing to record the entire “Midnight Mary” album during the four day weekend. I’d been flying to Columbus, Ohio every week to rehearse Joey Powers, who was going for his Masters Degree at Ohio State.

That night, as Al Gorgoni put some finishing touches on the arrangements, and Jeannie Thomas polished the background parts for her and Lettie Hamblet. Our usual crew of musicians, augmented with Paul Simon and Roger McGuinn on 12 string guitars, was going over the charts for the first session, due to start in a half-hour.

Joey Powers and I were riding into the city from the airport, listening to a new record by the Beatles, “I Want To Hold Your Hand!” on the radio. Suddenly, the announcer interrupts with a terrible unconfirmed report from Washington. By the time we walk into the studio and see the tears in everybody’s eyes, we know it was true, “President Kennedy had been shot!

Joey Powers recalls, “You met me at LaGuardia and had a cab waiting to go to the city. You are very nervous and keep looking away from me. The cabdriver is listening to the news on his radio, but I’m preoccupied with studying the music and not paying much attention.

Then you finally say the President has been shot. It happened during my flight so I was completely in the dark. I’m in such shock up that I don’t think I can do the album!”

The mood in the entire nation is somber, and the collective grief in the studio over the next few days is overwhelming, but we have a deadline to meet. Al Gorgoni keeps the session moving, while Jeannie Thomas comforts us all. “What a sad day is. It takes the wind out of all of us and takes us a while to get back to working. Even when we do, it’s with a very heavy heart. but we finish the tracks over the next three days.”

Gorgoni recalls, “I guess concentrating on meeting the deadline was a good way for me to avoid the emotion evoked by such a tragedy. After one of the sessions I recall a conversation with Roger McGuinn about where Folk music was heading. He predicted the whole Electric Folk Rock thing that blossomed a while later when he formed The Byrds.

Imagine being in the studio with Roger McGuinn and Paul Simon, who had started to record the “Wednesday Morning 3AM album”. They were about to help establish a whole new stream of Pop music. Artie certainly could recognize talent. Even through all the sadness I was happy to be there.”

Amy Records promotion man Freddie DeMann drops by, but even his usual “Shtick”, can’t lighten things up. Larry Uttal comes by as well, but he can’t even make it in to the studio and breaks down in the hall. He says just before he leaves, “I don’t know how you guys can do it.”


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In between the tracking and overdubbing sessions, Joey and I go down to WPIX TV, where Joey tapes the Clay Cole Dance show. Clay is old friend of Joeys’, who once worked with him as an NBC page. In between takes, the mood is dark and apprehensive, while we watch all the footage of the assassination as it comes into the newsroom unedited.

As we watch the surreal events unfold, I have images forever etched in my memory, including the entire 8mm Abraham Zapruder home movie clip of the Presidential Procession, in which the President is getting his head shot off! The entire staff keeps watching the tape over and over again, getting more and more depressed. I don’t know how they’re ever going to be able to show this to the public. Finally, we decide to call it a night, and arrange for Joey to come in the next day to finish up his segment with Clay.

It’s hard not to think about this history changing event, and stay positive the next day. As soon as Joey is finished lip synching “Midnight Mary”, and doing an interview with Clay, we all go into the control room. Everyone is crowded around a monitor and watch the assassination of alleged JFK killer, Lee Harvey Oswald, by Texas night club owner, Jack Ruby!

Stunned by another history altering day, everyone wondered what could happen next? Joey and I rush back to the studio to finish up his vocals before he has to catch a plane back to Ohio. Exhausted, I fall asleep in the cab on the way back home to the Bronx, while on the radio, Murray the K plays “This Boy” by The Beatles.”

Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne  from his  forthcoming book, “I Did It For A Song” https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/

After sending my friend Clay Cole my account of the events of 45 years ago, he e-mailed me back, “Damn, Artie! Thanks for the refresher. I blanked out on that memory….. that JFK nightmare dooms any good memories of that day”

FOR CLAY COLE http://www.claycoleshow.com/

FOR EVERY BEATLE MUSIC VIDEO AVAILABLE ON LINE FOR FREE! http://over50music.com/music-sale/top-michael-jackson-beatle-videos/

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Who knew that one day you’d be able to see Britney Spears naked and Justin Timberlake’s “Dick In A Box” just by turning on your TV! In this anything goes kind of world, it’s hard to believe there was a time when Censorship Ruled The Earth!

 

“In the early 60’s, I went out with a few Iranian girls who actually told me that they were brought up to tell people what they wanted to hear, then go out and do the exact opposite. One of these girls, Jamela, was the beautiful daughter of a deposed general, who was exiled to the United States along with the Shah of Iran. I admit it was exciting to wonder who was following us on our dates, her father’s bodyguards…or the Secret Service! All of this danger, brought us closer together, and she revealed many aspects of her culture I never knew about. She told me that Iranian men showed no quarter to their enemy and were fierce warriors because they weren’t afraid of dying!

 

It was only when she told me that she feared for my safety, did I take our cultural differences seriously! We continued to see each other secretly, however, which led me to co-write my first hit song with Ben Raleigh, “(Meet Me At) Midnight Mary” (Raleigh/ Wayne). When I produced the record with Joey Powers, we tried to get away with saying she was having a baby a baby out of wedlock, but were warned that radio would never play it!”

 

 

 

 

 We’ve all seen the clips of Mick Jagger on the Ed Sullivan Show singing “Let’s Spend The Night Together”, forced by the the producers to change the lyric to, “Let’s Spend Some Time Together” in order to get by the network censors. I didn’t realize that this was a common practice, and then my friend producer Jerry Ross (“Sunny”, “98.6”, Keep The Ball Rolling”), told me this story…

 

“With Two super hits under their belt, “Apple, Peaches, Pumpkin Pie”, and “Keep The Ball Rolling”, Jay and The Techniques were invited to appear on the Ed Sullivan Show. This was a dream come true…hit records…concert tours…and now the Ed Sullivan Show! During rehearsal….sound check/ lighting etc, the band really was in a great frame of mind…..This was a dream come….HIT Records… Concert and tours…and now The Ed Sullivan show,,, spirits were high until the executive producer of the TV Show ( Ed Sullivan’s’  son-in law) Bob Precht pulls us aside and gives us the good news and the bad news…The good news….we are happy to have you on tonight’s show…the bad news….you can’t sing “Keep the Ball Rolling” because the lyrics in the  2nd verse (‘all or nothin’ at all”) are too suggestive)……….So….we put our creative heads together and decided to repeat  the 1st verse twice….problem solved !!!!!!! As Ed Sullivan might put it, “It was a REALLY BIG SHOW!! (Ross laughs and corrects himself) I mean, It was a REALLY BIG SHOE!  

COMING NEXT WEEK…TOMMY JAMES AND THE STORY BEHIND, “I THINK WE’RE ALONE NOW”

For Part One of the series, “F#@K MUSIC CENSORSHIP! https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2009/03/14/fk-music-censorship/                           

For Jerry Ross http://phillyoldies.com

 

For “The Best of Jay and the Techniques Newest CD with 28 original tracks just released by RPM UK http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Dpopular&field-keywords=%22the+best+of+jay+%26+the+techniques%22&x=15&y=17

 

 

Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne https://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/

 

  

 

 

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