Tuesday, March 20, 2012

It's Not A Secret ...

There are some stories that ... well, they're just to doggone interesting to just leave in the archives, even if they're not about rock and roll!  This is one of them:

Back in the 50's there was a well known radio host/comedian/song writer in Hollywood named Stuart Hamblen who was noted for his drinking, womanizing, partying, etc. One of his bigger hits at the time was "I won't Go Hunting With You, Jake, But I'll Go Chasing Women."

And along came a young preacher holding a tent revival. Hamblin had him on his radio show, presumably to poke fun at him. And to gather more material, Hamblen showed up at one of the revival meetings. Early in the service the preacher announced, "There is one man in this audience who is a big fake."

There were probably others who thought the same thing, but Hamblen was convinced that he was the one the preacher was talking about (it's called conviction), but he fought it. Still the words continued to haunt him until a couple of nights later he showed up drunk at the preacher's hotel door around two in the morning, demanding that the preacher pray for him.
But the preacher refused, saying, "This is between you and God and I'm not going to get in the middle of it." However, he did invite Hamblen in ... and they talked about five in the morning, at which point Stuart dropped to his knees and with tears, cried out to God.

But that's not the end of the story! Russ quit drinking, quit chasing, quit everything that he considered "fun". Soon, he began to lose favor with the Hollywood crowd. He was fired by the radio station when he refused to accept a beer company as a sponsor. Hard times were upon him. He tried writing a couple of Christian songs but the only one that had much success was "This Old House", written for his friend Rosemary Clooney.

As he continued to struggle, an old friend named John took him aside and told him all your troubles started when you "got religion" and asked if it was worth it all. Stuart answered simply, "Yes". Then his friend said, "You liked your booze so much. Don't you ever miss it?" And the answer was, "No". John then said, "I don't understand how you could give it up so easily." And Hamblen's response was, "It's no big secret. All things are possible with God." To this John said, "That's a catchy phrase. You should write a song about it."

As they say, the rest is history. The song Stuart wrote was "It Is No Secret" - "It is no secret, what God can do. What He's done for others, He'll do for you. With arms wide open, He'll welcome you. It is no secret, what God can do." etc...

By the way, the friend was John Wayne, and the young preacher who refused to pray for Stuart was Billy Graham.

No, it's not about rock and roll ... but it's one of life's "PDF" files: Pretty Darned Interesting ... right??

Stay tuned ...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

It's A Small World After All ...


As most of you know, we've been hit with some heavy-duty grief in the rock world over the past month-and-some: Whitney Houston, Davy Jones (of Monkee fame) and Ronnie Montrose (famed guitarist who worked with Van Morrison, Boz Scaggs and others) to name but a few.

Now, the guy up there in the photo may not be as familiar, but he was just as important. Though he wrote the hit You're Sixteen for Johnny Burnette (later covered by Ringo Starr), did work on Mary Poppins, The Parent Trap and Chitty, Chitty Bang Bang, he's probably best-known for one specific song that has been on kids' lips for years.
And why kids?? Why, didn't you know??

It's A Small World (After All)

But Bob's death came only days after the loss of a highly-popular and intensely funny comedian -- one who became known as Mr. President because he was a double, both in face, expression and looks, of George W. Bush!
We'd seen Steve Bridges more often on late-night talk shows like The Tonight Show and The Late Show with Craig Ferguson , and were blown away by his accuracy in portraying the former Commander-In-Chief (especially that Bush "laugh", when he'd hunch his shoulders ...).
Once, he was able to address then-President Bush himself ... and -- well, here's what happened!



Stay tuned ...

Saturday, March 10, 2012

But ... Where Are They NOW??

A reader from Schenet ... Scenectod ... Schenectad ... Long Island, NY, remarked that he and his friends dug the following post. Thought some of our newer readers would get a kick out of it. Soooooo ... here ya go:

Let's face it, Mousers: some bands make it, some don't ...

and, while Uncle Lloyd gave plenty of exposure to some of the day's top bands, it was no guarantee they'd make as big a splash as The Beatles, beards and boppers of that "British Invasion." In fact (and although they never made it to the guestlist of Thaxton's show), there's only one member of that band up there (known as Chameleon Church) who actually broke through the ranks and hit the proverbial jackpot! And it wasn't as a musician ...

It was the drummer -- a chap named Chevy Chase.

The point is (as the point was, as the point will be. Wait -- what was the point again?? Oh ... I remember now ...) that our generation influenced everything from great comedy (Chase) to great politics (okay, it's a stretch, but let's go with it for now ...) like Reps. John Hall [guitarist, Orleans . Remember [You're] Still the One?) and the late Sonny Bono, to movie dudes like Billy Bob Thornton and Tommy Chong (of Cheech and ...). They all cut their public teeth on the music!! Remember when I mentioned how baby-boomers seem to be "snubbed" these days (readallabouddit here)?
Well, courtesy our gee-tar slingin', longhair generation, seems we're still making a noticeable impact on society! Whether it's in the music or in the Capitol rotunda, you just can't get away from us!
And you never will ... (maniacal laughter follows while, in background of our dark cave-of-a-laboratory, volatile chemicals bubble and steam in vials ... who knows what we have planned next??)

Here are some shots of bands that didn't quite make the national cut back in the day ... but ... there's ... someone ... we ... know ... in these groups. Can you figure it out??
First, there's Tico and The Triumphs. Together, these kids had a great act -- but Tico, himself, had a very unique style about him (he's the dude at the top).

Why, you could almost call it ... the sounds of silence! (awww, do I haveta spell out his real name for ya??)

The country-rock of a little band called CARP admittedly didn't thrill a lot of fans.

But their drummer (left rear in pic. I mean, he's on the left, in the back row. When finished, his rear left with him ...) did okay for himself. Though a little gonzo now, he would've gotten Buddy Holly's respect a few years ago (c'mon ... guess the acto ... er, guy ...)

Now, Mouskiteers if ya don't get this one right, ya get the required 40 with a wet noodle!
Though both Bobby Taylor and his Vancouvers enjoyed limited success, can you imagine what coulda happened to the band if they'd gotten a gig on Uncle Lloyd's show?
Especially that ... that guitarist on the left (in the pic). I ... I can't ... quite make out the features, man! It's like my vision's kinda covered with a purple haze or something ...

Was that too subtle??

WEIGHT A MINUTE!!!

There are so many people now looking for dietary aids, especially in view of recent reports that state we've become a very heavy nation!! Of course, the fact that Spring is just around the corner and shorts, bathing suits, etc. will be coming out makes them even more necessary!
Now, one of the most successful weight-loss products still causes people to ask is apidextra safe?
Well, let's just say that it's the top dietary product of 2012, has clinically-proven ingredients and also has many testimonials about its effectiveness and safety. You'll also have a chance to choose which form of apidextra you'll feel most convenient for you!
And by clicking the link I just gave you, you'll also find where to get them online and at the best prices!!
So get your body ready for the great season to come ... and, all you have to do to make that happen is click the link you just passed!
Believe me, when you see the results, you'll be completely

Hot-Rod "Buzz" Thaxton

One thing that Uncle Lloyd shared with me was the thrill he felt when he was presented an old "kandy-apple red Hot Rod". That was pretty evident when he emailed me the story and signed it "Buzz" Thaxton. Now, somebody's got his pride-and-joy sittin' in his garage (or hung up on a wall) somewhere! Maybe YOU know whodunnit ...
Here's the story:


CLIQUERS!! HAVE YOU SEEN Lloyd's candy-apple red Hot Rod??

Let me quote the Chief from his April 15, 2006 post:

"Now this wasn’t just any old HOT ROD. This was a hot rod built and designed by famed custom car designer and builder George Barris. Barris designed the 'Batmobile' for the Batman TV series, 'The Munster’s Koach,' and hundreds of other fantastic custom cars for movies. He is 'The King of Kustom.'

The George Barris designed Lloyd Thaxton Hot Rod was a 1930 Model A, using a big Buick engine with MT manifold and carbs. The Body was channeled 10" over the frame for lower effect. It was painted with a kandy apple red paint job with black leather interior. It was really 'boss.'"


During one of his early shows ('62 or '63, pre-LTS. It was a 90-minute show he did for KCOP in L.A.), he awarded the car to some lucky winner (LL didn't know who it was, but, man, was he [or she] luck-EEEEE!!)

So, Cliquers, if you know or can find out who won the Lloyd Thaxton Hot Rod, let me know. He'd been searching for that HOT (forgive me, Paris Hilton, but I hadta use that word!), Kandy-Apple Red number for years. As he said, "I just hope the guy who won it is still driving it or, at the least, has it mounted on his bedroom wall (I wanted to do that with my bike but I didn’t have the nerve)."

BALLARD STREET BLUES

When Lloyd sent me a couple of 'toons by Jerry Van Amerongen (Ballard Street was his favorite), I couldn't help laughing. Not just because they were funny (which they were) or that the dude actually had me pegged (except for the wisp of hair, the weight and the age), but because, at the time he sent them, I was actually living on Ballard Street in Ashland, Kentucky!!

Someday, I hope to live up to the character shown in the pic on the right ...

STEEL A GOOD IDEA!

For any of us who have a lot of "stuff" to save, a garage is a "must-have". Not only does it protect our belongings but also our old Bolt-Bucket Deluxe (ie, "car") from the elements.
And the best type to buy are metal buildings that can withstand the wind, rain and harsh weather.
Of course, if you find them in a store, you know you're going to pay a pretty penny for them ... providing they carry the type that you want!
But did you know you can get just the type you want, from a certified factory -- and save big money in the process? It's true, and all you need to do to get things rolling is click the link I gave you a moment ago!
Not only are these the most reliable of metal buildings, but they tell you that all you need is a few weekends with your buddies (hey ... that sounds good!) and you can have it together before you know it! Sturdy, great-looking, roomy and accommodating -- and at a great price!
Who could ask for more??
So click on that link today ... and have a building you can be proud of in just a couple of weeks!