Monday, April 30, 2012

Toshie Uematsu retires

Toshie Uematsu's retirement show was held today at the Pro Wrestling WAVE show at Korakuen Hall in front of 1443 fans. A great turnout for Toshie's retirement. Toshie is 38 years old and trained at GAEA. She debuted in 1995. Fans may recall that she won the WCW Women's Cruiserweight tournament. She beat Malia Hosaka in the final. The problem was GAEA left WCW right after that match was taped. Toshie is probably best known for her long running tag team with Ran Yu Yu. Ran recently announced her retirement but the date has yet to be announced. They held several titles together. In recent years, Toshie has continued to wrestle a regular schedule while training new girls at WAVE. Unlike a lot of veteran wrestlers, Toshie remains in great shape so she could certainly continue to work a regular schedule. But after last year's earthquake, her family asked her to quit wrestling and come home and take care of her mom who is apparently very ill. Toshie says she will continue to train girls for WAVE. In her retirement match, she teamed with Ran Yu Yu vs WAVE wrestlers Shu Shibutani and Moeka Haruhi. Unfortunately, the match went badly when Haruhi suffered a dislocated elbow. Reportedly, Toshie was very upset about that. After the match, the usual ten bell salute and gifts from friends including KAORU formerly of GAEA and now with OZ Academy. On behalf of all joshi fans, best of luck to Toshie Uematsu in her retirement. She will be missed but I wouldn't be surprised to see her return someday.

WWE disappoints fans with returning Diva swerve

So here's the match video from the Divas Championship match from last night's WWE PPV. The storyline is so convoluted and what they did on last night's show was very deflating as you will be able to tell by the crowd's silence. So the first part of this is that The Bella Twins' contract expires today and they will leave the WWE. It's another example of why the WWE should stop hiring models to be wrestlers because they don't really want to be wrestlers and will leave at the first opportunity. The gimmick here is that they are twins. But neither of them can wrestle. Last week they had Nikki Bella win the WWE Divas Championship from Beth Phoenix when Beth suffered an ankle injury. Though Beth deserves a lot of credit for trying to sell the injury, it's not real. Obviously with the Bellas leaving, they have to get the belt off of Nikki. So originally the WWE scheduled a rematch for Beth Phoenix for last night's show. But obviously they wanted to sell the "injury" and canceled Beth's appearance and said Nikki would face a mystery opponent. The rumour was that the opponent would be Kharma and it was reported that she was at the show. Instead the opponent was former Miami Heat dancer Layla who has been out with a knee injury. Like Eve Torres, Layla has athletic ability but not wrestling ability. The funny part was that Kharma teased on Twitter that she was at the show and then said she was at home. That could be a swerve too. When Layla came out, the fans died and you could hear a pin drop during the match. Layla won the match but that was beside the point. I think fans really really really wanted to see Kharma destroy The Bella Twins. They don't care about Layla. So I think the WWE outsmarted themselves by not giving the fans what they want. Check out the match video for yourself.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Paris Sisters

Artist:The Paris Sisters
Song:I Love How You Love Me
Album:The Complete Phil Spector Sessions

The Paris Sisters had been around for almost a decade before they were paired with producer Phil spector for the 1961 top five hit I Love How You Love Me. They never had another big hit but of course Spector had a lot of success as a producer. Albeth, Sherrell and Priscilla Paris were from San Francisco and their mom, a former opera singer, started them performing at an early age. After meeting The Andrews Sisters backstage at a 1954 show, The Paris Sisters were signed to Decca. Of course that was The Andrews Sisters label and Decca made the mistake of having The Paris Sisters sound too much like their idols. And at the time music was changing anyway and traditional pop sounds weren't popular anymore. So The Paris Sisters recorded a few singles for Decca and Imperial and were dropped in 1957. They continued to perform until Lester Sill started Gregmark Records in 1961. He signed The Paris Sisters and assigned them to Phil Spector who had a hit with To Know Him Is To Love Him by The Teddy Bears. I Love How You Love Me was written by Barry Mann and Larry Kolber while both were working as staff songwriters for Don Kirshner. According to Mann, Kolber wrote the lyrics on a restaurant napkin. They wrote it for Tony Orlando but Spector convinced Kirshner that it would be a better song for a female group. He actually liked it because it was similar to To Know Him Is To Love Him. The song reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1961. Unfortunately, the recording session for the album disintegrated due to bickering between Sill and Spector. Supposedly the master tapes were accidently destroyed but as you can see by this CD, they survived after all. But The Paris Sisters never recovered. They recorded for MGM, Mercury and Reprise with no success. Priscilla recorded solo and moved to Europe. She continued to perform until her 2004 death. Sherrell had her own group for a while until she worked as Bob Barker's personal assistant for many years. Albeth went into TV production and public relations. They were planning a reunion concert when Priscilla died. Here's a video for I Love How You Love Me by The Paris Sisters.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Invicta FC show a mixed bag

Invicta FC launched their all women MMA promotion last night in Kansas City. It was streamed on their website and I'm sure they got a lot of hits. But that doesn't generate revenue and they don't have a TV deal. So they are depending on the live gate to generate revenue. Of course it's a recipe for failure unless they get a TV deal. It's very iffy. The show itself was OK. The biggest problem was the main event fell flat. Someone tried to say that this show proves that there is depth in women's MMA. But there were probably five fighters on this show who should not be fighters. And one of them even announced her retirement. Former Strikeforce champ Marloes Coenen faced French fighter Romy Ruyssen in the main event. Marloes beat her four years. So Invicta is trying to sell a main event with two European fighters to Kansas City. Uh huh. I've seen Romy before. She's pretty good on the ground. She didn't make weight and then she didn't show much energy in the cage. And then she had a point deducted in the first round for grabbing the cage. My guess is she has never fought in a cage before. Marloes broke her finger in round one and fought conservatively to a unanimous decision win. The co-main event was a lot better. I like that Invicta is starting a 105lb division with Lisa Ellis vs Jessica Penne. Both fighters have fought at 115 in the past. They are both good ground fighters and the first two rounds were close though I thought Jessica was winning. In the third round, Lisa was cut on her forehead. The blood was bothering her and Jessica mounted her and pounded her until the fight was stopped. Lisa's nose was messed up. I thought it was the best fight on the show. But a lot of people seemed to like another match a lot better. The other day Kaitlin Young told MMA Weekly that she was a one dimensional fighter. And she was working on her wrestling and planned to demonstrate it against Leslie Smith. But Leslie is also a one dimensional kickboxer. So except for a couple of takedowns, it was three rounds of kickboxing. Neither fighter did enough to win decisively so I was not surprised when it was ruled a split draw. I know it was named match of the night but it's not to my taste. Remember it's MIXED martial arts. I watched it again a few minutes ago and it wasn't as bad as I first thought. But I hated round two. In other fights, Liz Carmouch beat Asheigh Curry by TKO. Curry was terrible and should go back to boxing. Sarah D'Alelio beat Vanessa Mariscal by TKO. I think Vanessa was a late replacement but at 38 years old she's not very good. Sarah Schneider beat Sally Krumdiak by armbar. Sarah is better than her record because unlike some fighters, she likes to fight top fighters. Amy Davis beat Nicdali Rivera-Calanoc by kimura. Amy is mainly a kickboxer but she when she fights MMA, she is happy to take it to the ground. I guess I don't like kickboxers who walk away from ground work. A few years ago, Nicdali looked like she might be a good fighter. But I don't think she has been the same since she went to Japan in 2009 and got zonked by MIKU. And after seeing the look on her face after this loss, I was not surprised she announced her retirement though I understand she is reconsidering. Sarah Maloy won over Michele Gutierrez by unanimous decision in the worst fight of the night. For some reason, Michele decided to be a kickboxer for this match. And when her strategy was ineffective, she didn't change it. I hate that. 2008 Olympic Bronze medal wrestler Randi Miller won by TKO over Mollie Estes by TKO. Mollie won the first round. Randi seemed to be very nervous. Randi snapped out of it in the middle of round two and took control until the finish. She will be in big trouble if she does this against better competition. Mollie didn't seem to have a clue about how to finish her. Ashley Cummins beat Sofia Bagherdai by unanimous decision. Sofia missed weight and looked out of shape. This was her first fight since 2008. Maybe she should return to retirement. and Cassie Rodish beat Meghan Wright bu guillotine choke in 36 seconds. I don;t think Meghan wanted to be there. Get a real job. Mauro Ranallo and Julie Kedzie did a decent job announcing the broadcast. King Mo Lawal wasn't so good. Have I ever said that I don't like three man booths. Invicta announced the main event of their July 26 show will be 2004 Olympic Silver medalist in wrestling Sara McMann vs veteran Shayna Baszler. Though Shayna hasn't fought since 2010, she will be a tough test for Sara. If this fight doesn't get them a TV deal, Invicta should just throw in the towel. Here's the video for Jessica Penne vs Lisa Ellis. Enjoy!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Jason Aldean

Artist:Jason Aldean f/Kelly Clarkson
Song:Don't You Wanna Stay
Album:My Kinda Party

Country singer Jason Aldean crossed over to pop in a big way with this 2010 hit Don't You Wanna Stay. Of course Kelly Clarkson has become a pop star since winning the first season of American Idol. No doubt her fanbase had a lot to do with this song's success. But Aldean was doing well already. He was born Jason Aldine Williams Feb. 28, 1977 in Macon, GA. His parents divorced and he learned to play guitar while spending summers with his dad in Homestead, FL. He started performing in Atlanta clubs after graduating high school. Warner-Chappel exec Michael Knox signed Aldean to a publishing deal in 1998 and Aldean moved to Nashville. Knox would later become his producer. He had two record deals that didn't work out until he signed with Benny Brown's Broken Bow Records in 2004. Why was his first number one country hit in 2006 and that launched a string of hits. Don't You Wanna Stay is from Aldean's 2010 album My Kinda Party. It topped the Country Singles chart and reached #31 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was written by Jason Sellers, Andy Gibson and Paul Jenkins. Sellers started out as the bassist for Vince Gill and recorded a couple of solo albums in the 90s. Since then he has been a session bassist and has written songs for others. Gibson is a singer songwriter who just signed with Curb Records. Sellers says the song was written for Gibson but he played it for Aldean who wanted to record it. Aldean and Knox decided to record it as a duet and Kelly Clarkson was their first choice. They didn't try to change her singing style which is why the record is more power ballad than country song. Aldean has rock elements in his music anyway. Aldean and Clarkson performed it on the CMA Awards show and Aldean crossed over to pop. My Kinda Party was certified 2XPlatinum and the single Dirt Road Anthem was Aldean's first top ten pop hit. Jason Aldean is married with two daughters and is currently on tour. I expect he will record new music when the tour finishes. Here is Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson performing Don't You Wanna Stay on the CMA Awards show Nov. 10, 2010.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Pebbles

Song:Mercedes Boy
Album:Greatest Hits

Perri "Pebbles" McKissack had some success in the late 80s with songs like Mercedes Boy and Girlfriend. She married LaFace Records co-owner LA Reid and went on to discover the popular female hip hop group TLC. Today she is an ordained minister. She was born Aug. 29, 1964 in Oakland, CA. Pebbles is a childhood nickname. She started out in the 80s as a backup singer for Bill Summers and then the funk group Con Funk Shun. She signed with MCA Records and producers Antonio "LA" Reid and Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds right after the duo had success with Bobby Brown. So they had become golden boys at MCA. Pebbles debut single Girlfriend topped the R & B Singles chart and reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. Her second single Mercedes Boy did even better. It also topped the R & B Singles chart and reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Pebbles wrote Mercedes Boy and it was produced by Gap Band lead singer Charlie Wilson. The 1988 album Pebbles was certified Platinum. By 1989, Pebbles married Reid and Reid and Babyface founded LaFace. Pebbles 1990 album Always was certified Gold and the single Giving You The Benefit reached #4 on the Billboard Hot 100. Then she discovered TLC and they became the biggest act on LaFace. Later on TLC declared bankruptcy and accused Pebbles of mismanaging their money. She denied the charge. She divorced Reid in 1996. Pebbles recorded her third album Straight From My Heart in 1995 with producer Sean "Puffy" Combs. It didn't sell. I just think five years was too long a gap to expect fans to remember her. This budget comp has all her hits. Then she quit secular music and founded WOGCL Ministries: Women Of God Changing Lives Through Christ. She is still doing that in Atlanta and recorded a gospel album in 2008 as Sister Perri called Prophetic Flows Vol. I & II. Her daughter Ashley Reid is a photographer. Her son Aaron Alexander is a musician and her other son Tian Reid is an aspiring actor. Here's the video for Mercedes Boy by Pebbles.

Friday, April 27, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Folksmen

Artist:The Folksmen
Song:Old Joe's Place
Album:A Mighty Wind: The Album

Christopher Guest is a humourist best known for creating mockumentaries about various subjects. The Folksmen is a folk trio featuring Guest, Michael McKean and Harry Shearer. They appeared in Guest's 2003 film A Mighty Wind but have been around since the 80s. Guest was born Feb. 5, 1948 in New York City. His father was a British diplomat who was appointed to the House Of Lords. When he died, Guest inherited that and has campaigned for abolishing the House Of Lords. Guest was part of The National Lampoon Radio Hour in 1974 and also appeared in the off-Broadway show National Lampoon's Lemmings. He co-starred in the 1984 film This Is Spinal Tap with McKean and Shearer. He also created The Folksmen for a 1984 appearance on Saturday Night Live. He has appeared in some films. But since the 1996 film Waiting For Guffman, he is mainly known for creating mockumentaries. The 2003 film A Mighty Wind is about a folk music reunion concert featuring groups who haven't played together in years and probably hate each other. Like all of his films, Guest wrote the script with Eugene Levy. But a lot of the scenes are improvised because the actors are used to doing that. The Folksmen is one of those three groups and they perform Old Joe's Place in the film. They are a parody of The Kingston Trio. The New Main Street Singers are a parody of The New Christy Minstrels and Mitch and Mickey are like Ian and Sylvia. They should have done a Phil Ochs parody but that's a minor quibble. The film is very funny and The Folksmen are very authentic. The soundtrack is available on CD. The Folksmen make appearances occasionally most recently in 2009. Christopher Guest's most recent mockumentary was the 2006 film For Your Consideration but he has appeared in other films and is a member of the music group The Beyman Bros. Here are The Folksmen performing Old Joe's Place at a phony tribute concert.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of the Day-Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose

Artist:Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose
Song:Too Late To Turn Back Now
Album:Classic Masters

The family soul group Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose had two top five hits in the early 70s and then faded because their other songs weren't as good as those two songs. They were also perceived as pop soul as opposed to soul. Obviously they were influenced by the success of The Fifth Dimension. They are from Dania Beach, FL. Rose Cornelius was touring with The Gospel Jazz Singers and appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1967. When brothers Eddie and Carter Cornelius wanted to form a group, their mom asked Rose to be part of it. Later they added another sister Billie Jo. They signed with United Artists Records and worked with producer and recording engineer Bob Archibald in Miami. Their debut single Treat Her Like A Lady reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1971. Too Late To Turn Back Now was the second single and reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1972. And though the perception is they weren't popular with black audiences, Too Late To Turn Back Now reached #5 on the R & B Singles chart. Eddie Cornelius wrote all the songs and usually sang lead. So when subsequent singles didn't catch on, one would think they would look for material outside the group. But they didn't and their second album Big Time Lover did not sell. They only recorded two albums and this Capitol Records budget comp covers them. Beware of re-recorded versions of Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose songs. The group split up in 1976 when Carter Cornelius joined the religious sect Nation Of Yahweh and renamed himself Prince Gideon. He produced music for the sect until he died of a heart attack on Nov. 7, 1991 at age 43. Eddie Cornelius is a pastor and occasionally he and Rose will perform together. Here's a video for Too Late To Turn Back Now by Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Rick Trevino

Artist:Rick Trevino
Song:Learning As You Go
Album:Super Hits

With the success of guys like Freddie Fender and Johnny Rodriguez in the 70s, there has always been a market for Spanish speaking singers in the country music market. Rick Trevino had some success in that market in the 90s. It appears that butting heads with his record company may have limited his career. He was born May 16, 1971 in Austin, TX. His father was a local tejano musician. Trevino turned down a baseball scholarship at Memphis State to study music at Texas A&M. While performing in a local club, he was spotted by a Sony Music talent scout. After listening to his demo, Columbia Records producer Steve Buckingham went to Austin and signed Trevino to a record deal. Buckingham was Dolly Parton's producer when she recorded for Columbia. They had him record his 1993 debut CD Dos Mundos in Spanish. Though Trevino is of Mexican descent, he doesn't speak Spanish. So he had to take Spanish lessons. And he wanted to be a mainstream country singer. He didn't want to be perceived as a tejano singer crossing over to country. His 1994 CD Rick Trevino was certified Gold and and had two top five country singles She Can't Say I Didn't Cry and Doctor Time. He recorded his next album Looking For the Light in English and Spanish versions. Learning As You Go was released in 1996. The single reached #2 on the Country Singles chart. Learning As You Go was written by Larry Boone and Billy Lawson. Boone recorded in the 80s and had a top ten country hit in 1989 with Don't Give Candy To A Stranger. Trevino also had his only number one country hit with Running Out Of Reasons To Run. So he was doing OK but still butting heads with Columbia. He wanted to leave but they wouldn't let him out of his contract. He recorded a new album but it was never released and Columbia fired him in 1998. You can get all his hits on this budget comp. Trevino joined the Tex-Mex group Los Super Seven and has had a lot of success with them. His most recent albums were on Warner Bros. and haven't sold as well as his Columbia albums. He has been working a lot with former Mavericks lead singer Raul Malo. He lives in Austin with his wife and children. I don't know if he is still with Warner Bros. Here's the video for Learning As You Go by Rick Trevino.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Erika Kamimura vs Ham Seo Hee set for June 2 RISE show

Erika Kamimura, Ham Seo Hee
Last week the RISE kickboxing company announced a big show at Tokyo Dome City Hall on June 2. And they announced that 19 year old kickboxing phenom Erika Kamimura will appear on the show. Today RISE announced that the veteran Korean Ham Seo Hee will be Erika's opponent. They are billing this as a RISE QUEEN Championship contender's match contracted for 48kg and scheduled for three three minute rounds with extensions if there is a tie. RENA is the current RISE QUEEN Champion and obviously the rematch against Erika was scheduled for this show. But RENA has had surgery for a broken foot and is not likely to return until 2013. RISE could have stripped her of the title. But instead they give us a match with two of the top female kickboxers in the world. Though Ham has done MMA in Japan, at home in Korea she only does kickboxing and is currently the CMA Lightweight Champion. In fact, she has never worked for a Japanese kickboxing company. Her kickboxing matches in Japan have been for Gladiator which is co-owned by CMA Korea and is not a kickboxing company. Erika is the WBC and WPMF World Women's Flyweight Champion. She lost the RISE QUEEN Championship match to RENA in November. The match should have been a draw and then gone to an extension round. But an overly intrusive ref gave unnecessary penalties that affected the result. Recently Erika won over a Chinese kickboxer in 30 seconds. Erika beat Ham in the SHOOT BOXING S-Girls Cup final last August. When I was watching that match, I was thinking that I would prefer to see them fight straight kickboxing. Well, now we get to see that. Both have knockout power so I don't expect it to go the distance. Expect fireworks.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Fleetwoods

Artist:The Fleetwoods
Song:Come Softly To Me
Album:Come Softly To Me: The Very Best Of The Fleetwoods

The Fleetwoods' smoothed out version of doo wop topped the charts in 1959 with Come Softly To Me. They had a few other hits but their run was cut short due to circumstances beyond their control. The Fleetwoods were from Olympia, WA. Gretchen Christopher and Barbara Ellis formed the group while in high school. Fleetwood was a popular phone exchange in Olympia. They brought in Gary Troxel to play trumpet but when he started humming Come Softly To Me, they turned the group into a vocal trio. They started performing the song locally and got the attention of Seattle record promoter Bob Reinsdorff. He started Dolphin Records with country music star Bonnie Guitar to promote this record. And Bonnie plays acoustic guitar on the record. There was already a Dolphin Records so Reinsdorff changed it to Dolton. The Ventures were also on Dolton. The Fleetwoods recorded the song a cappella and the backing musicians were added in Los Angeles. Come Softly To Me topped the Billboard Hot 100 and reached #5 on the R & B Singles chart. They had some more hits but then Troxel was drafted into the Navy. He was replaced by Vic Dana but it wasn't the same and The Fleetwoods split up in 1963. Also, Reinsdorff sold Dolton to Liberty Records. You can get The Fleetwods' hits on this comp. Barbara Ellis retired from music. But Gary Troxel and Gretchen Christopher lead different versions of The Fleetwoods on the oldies circuit today. Here are The Fleetwoods performing Come Softly To Me on American Bandstand 1959.

Monday, April 23, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Pat Benatar

Artist:Pat Benatar
Song:We Belong
Album:Greatest Hits

In the early 80s, Pat Benatar had two Multi Platinum albums, five Platinum albums and three Gold albums. So it surprises me that she never had a number one single. We Belong is one of her three top ten singles. Maybe all that MTV airplay doesn't result in radio play. Pat's career faded by the late 80s but she is considered a major influence on other female rock singers. She was born Patricia Mae Andrzejewski Jan. 10, 1953 in Brooklyn, NY and grew up in the Long Island town of Babylon. She performed in plays locally and took classical singing lessons. After dropping out of college, she married her high school sweetheart Dennis Benatar and went with him to Virginia where he was stationed in the Army. In 1973, she quit her job as a bank teller and started performing locally in Richmond. She recorded one single and then moved back to New York when her husband was discharged. Eventually she was spotted by Chrysalis Records owner Terry Ellis and she released her debut album in 1979. She also divorced Dennis Benatar and would marry her musical partner Neil Giraldo. Pat didn't really hit it big until Hit Me With Your Best Shot reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 100. That was from her second album Crimes Of Passion in 1980. She was more of an album artist that a singles artist and her videos were played a lot on MTV. She was thought of as hard rock in those days. But then she softened her sound for the 1984 album Tropico. We Belong reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1984. The song was written by the team of Dave Lowen and Dan Navarro who recorded together for years. Lowen died last month. We Belong is their most successful song. At this point, Pat Benatar faded. And by the time Chrysalis was sold to EMI in 1993, they were going to cut her anyway. This budget comp is a good intro to her music. Pat Benatar and Neil Geraldo still tour but last recorded in 2003. Now Pat is a nostalgia act but she was on top of the music world in the 80s. Here's the video for We Belong by Pat Benatar.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Garth Brooks

Artist:Garth Brooks
Song:If Tomorrow Never Comes
Album:The Ultimate Hits

Garth Brooks was the biggest country music star of the 90s and one of the biggest stars in all of music. If Tomorrow Never Comes was his first number one country hit in 1989. He retired in 2001 but returned to performing in 2009. He was born Feb. 7, 1962 in Tulsa. His mom Colleen Carroll recorded country music for Capitol in the 50s. Brooks played guitar but was an athlete in high school and won a track scholarship to Oklahoma State University. He graduated with a degree in advertising in 1984. That marketing savvy would come in handy later. Brooks was a fan of singer songwriters like James Taylor but he was also a big George Jones fan and started performing in Oklahoma clubs. He married his college sweetheart Sandy Mahl and they moved to Nashville in 1987. Brooks signed with Capitol Records and producer Allen Reynolds in 1989. Reynolds started out in the 70s as a producer for legendary Sun Records recording engineer Jack Clement. Though Reynolds is mainly known for producing all of Brooks' albums, he has also worked with Don Williams, Crystal Gayle, Kathy Mattea and Emmylou Harris. Brooks' debut album Garth Brooks was released in 1989. If Tomorrow Never Comes was the second single but his first number one country hit. Even with all his other hits, Brooks considers it his signature song. Brooks was having trouble finding a songwriting partner when his manager introduced him to Kent Blazy. According to Brooks, Blazy wrote the If Tomorrow Never Comes in minutes. The two went on to write several songs together including Ain't Goin' Down ('Til The Sun Comes Up), She's Gonna Make It and Somewhere Other Than The Night. Of course Brooks went on to huge success in the 90s. According to the RIAA, he is the third best selling recording artist of all time following Elvis Presley and The Beatles. And he was a big concert draw too. By the late 90s he divorced his wife and attempted to turn himself into a movie star with the fictional enigmatic rocker Chris Gaines. Though the film was never produced, there was a Chris Gaines CD and Brooks made several TV appearances as Gaines. The CD sold OK but was not accepted by his fans or by critics. It turned out to be a big waste of time. After his divorce, Brooks started dating country singer Trisha Yearwood and they married in 2005. Meanwhile, he decided to retire and released his final CD Scarecrow in 2001. In 2005, Brooks signed to have his back catalog distributed by WalMart. This 2007 2CD/1DVD comp is available at a budget price. He said at the time he wasn't planning to record new material until 2015. He changed his tune a bit when he returned to regular performing at Encore Las Vegas in 2009. Last year he said he plans to tour again but nothing has been said about recording. This year Brooks will be inducted into the Country Music Hall Of Fame. It remains to be seen if Garth Brooks can return to his heights of the 90s. Here's the video for If Tomorrow Never Comes by Garth Brooks. This video is not on Youtube.
Garth Brooks, If Tomorrow Never Comes

| Myspace Video

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Jessica Eye vs Anita Rodriguez

Here's the match video of Jessica "Evil" Eye vs Anita Rodriguez from last night's Bellator show in Cleveland. This match was streamed on the Spike TV website but I understand it was geo blocked outside North America. So I am posting this for them. There was quite a bit of behind the scenes wrangling surrounding this match. Originally, Jessica was supposed to face Aisling Daly who is the only fighter to beat her to date. But Aisling has a fight scheduled in early June against Rosi Sexton as part of Cage Warriors' 125lb tournament. So though the reason given for Aisling's departure was an ear infection, it probably wasn't a good idea to schedule two matches so closely together. And the match against Rosi is a much bigger match for her. So that didn't surprise me but I don't buy the ear infection reason given. Meanwhile, Anita Rodriguez was scheduled to face Cat Zangano on the Apr. 28 Invicta show. Anita is 38 years old with a 5-2 record. But last September she lost to Tonya Evinger. So after I stopped laughing about that fight and others were finished accusing Cat of cherry picking opponents, that fight was scrapped. So Anita was available for this fight. Obviously she's not a top fighter. But what do you expect for a last minute replacement? I like Jessica's fight technique and she has potential. But she needed to finish this fight and make a statement. And she didn't do that. Jessica likes to fight standing up. And though she has good technique, she doesn't have knockout power. The best way to finish an opponent like this is to take her down and pound her for a TKO. Jessica took Anita down in round one but Anita was able to neutralize her. Jessica was able to get side control. But the ref stood them up prematurely. In the second and third rounds, Anita showed very little offense. So Jessica outpointed her for the unanimous decision. But as Jessica said on Twitter this morning, not finishing is a disappointment. Sometimes how a fighter wins is more important than the win itself. And if Jessica can't finish a lower midcard fighter like this, what will she be like against the top fighters in this division? That's the question she needs to ask herself. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Barbara Harris

Artist:Barbara Harris
Song:Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous
Album:The Apple Tree: Original Broadway Cast

Actress Barbara Harris has had a long career in film but started out on Broadway and won a Tony Award for her performance in the 1966 musical The Apple Tree. Though the show only ran for a year, it would have run longer if Barbara hadn't quit to go to Hollywood. She was born July 25, 1935 in Evanston, IL. She started out in Chicago with The Compass Players and then Second City. She moved to New York to appear in the 1961 play From The Second City and was nominated for a Tony. Barbara wanted to move back to Chicago but Richard Rodgers and Alan Jay Lerner wanted to write a show for her so she stayed in New York. That show was On A Clear Day You Can See Forever which was written by Lerner and Burton Lane. She was again nominated for a Tony. She was also doing guest shots on TV and made her film debut in the 1965 film A Thousand Clowns. She was nominated for a Golden Globe. The Apple Tree was written by Fiddler On The Roof composers Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick. Mike Nichols directed the 1966 Broadway production. Of course Barbara knew him from Second City. Barbara's co-stars were Alan Alda and Larry Blyden. But the show was written for Barbara. It's a trilogy based on stories by Mark Twain, Frank R. Stockton and Jules Feiffer. Barbara plays multiple roles. Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous is from the final part of the show based on Feiffer's Passionella. Barbara won the Tony this time. Then she quit the stage because she didn't enjoy the daily grind. The Original Broadway Cast of The Apple Tree is available as a budget CD from Sony Classical. Barbara appeared in films in the 70s and 80s and was nominated for an Oscar for the 1971 film Who Is Harry Kellerman And Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me?. She also had significant roles in Robert Altman's 1975 film Nashville, Alfred Hitchcock's 1976 film Family Plot and the 1976 Disney film Freaky Friday. Barbara Harris retired from acting in 1988 and now teaches acting in Los Angeles. Her only appearance since then was in the 1997 film Grosse Point Blank. She says she would return if she was offered an obscene amount of money to do something. She says the best days in her life were back in Second City in Chicago and she wasn't crazy about the other work. Well, at least she has that statue. Here's Barbara Harris with Larry Blyden performing Oh, To Be A Movie Star/Gorgeous on the 1967 Tony Award broadcast.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu giantess Gabi Garcia considering move to MMA

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and grappling specialist Gabi Garcia today told Erik Englehart of the Brazilian magazine Tatame that after this summer's World Cup, she is considering making the move to MMA. She has been in talks with Pink Fights owner Wallid Ismail. I've known about Gabi for several years but she's a big girl. When she fights in tournaments, it's usually in 69kg or over open weight. Gabi is 6'2" and weighs 236lbs. They do have Open Weight divisions in Japan and I guess they could do that in Brazil. But I don't know where Ismail could possibly find an opponent. Even Cris Cyborg or Amanda Lucas don't measure up to Gabi's size. The only fighter I know of who is a good size matchup is Lana Stefanac and she retired several years ago because there were no opponents for her. I remember back in 2006, pro wrestler Kia Stevens, now known as Kharma in the WWE, wanted to try MMA while she was living in Japan. Kia weighs about 270lbs. They couldn't find anyone and they wound up getting a female sumo wrestler who had zero MMA experience. Kia won in the first round. So for Gabi Garcia to say she wants to do MMA is one thing. The big problem will be finding opponents for her. That's why I have never thought she would be able to compete in MMA. So unless Ismail has something up his sleeve, I don't see this happening.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Terry Pollard & Clark Terry

Artist:Terry Pollard & Clark Terry
Song:Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)
Album:Hot vs Cool/Cats vs Chicks

Today we take the idea of women as jazz musicians for granted. Right now Esperanza Spalding is probably the most popular jazz musician in the world. But back in the 40s and 50s, there were very few opportunities for women. Singers yes, musicians no. So here's an interesting recording from a 1954 battle of the sexes called Cats vs Chicks. It features the bands of legendary trumpeter Clark Terry and female pianist and vibraphonist Terry Pollard trading licks with each other. And as you will be able to tell, the chicks are as good as the cats. Terry Pollard was born Aug. 15, 1931 in Detroit. She started out playing with local musicians like Billy Mitchell and Emmitt Slay. She was discovered by vibraphonist Terry Gibbs and toured with him from 1953-57. She recorded one solo album for Bethlehem Records in 1955. Cats vs Chicks was a ten inch EP. It only had three songs on it. Down Beat Magazine's Leonard Feather produced it and it was released by MGM. Featured players include Clark Terry on trumpet, Tal Farlow on guitar, Horace Silver on piano, Terry Pollard on piano, Mary Osborne on guitar and Norma Carson on trumpet. The three songs were tacked on to a Clark Terry comp that is out of print. But you can also get them on this various artists CD that is sort of a battle of the sexes. Terry Pollard quit touring in the late 50s to raise a family. She continued to play gigs in Detroit. She died Dec. 16, 2009 at age 68. Mary Osborne was born July 17, 1921 in Minot, ND and was heavily influenced by Charlie Christian. She was a regular on Jack Sterling's CBS radio show in the 50s. She quit the music business and moved to Bakersfield, CA. She died Mar. 4, 1992 at age 70. Norma Carson was a member of the very first all female band The International Sweethearts Of Rhythm. She married sax player Bob Newman in the 50s and retired to Philadelphia. She quit music because of gender bias. To quote Norma "I don't want to be a girl musician. I just want to be a musician". That says it all. Here's a video for Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better) by Terry Pollard and Clark Terry.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Polar Bear

Artist:Polar Bear

When I first heard this song, I thought it was very intriguing music from the Los Angeles based band Polar Bear led by former Jane's Addiction bassist Eric Avery. It turns out that this Polar Bear is a British jazz group led by former Babyshambles drummer Seb Rochford. He formed Polar Bear in 2004 with sax players Pete Wareham and Mark Lockheart, bassist Tom Herbert and mandolin player Leafcutter John (real name-John Burton). All were part of F-IRE Collective creative music community. Rochford was best known for his work with Babyshamles. Lockheart was a member of the 80s band Loose Tubes and also plays sessions and teaches music. Leafcutter John not only plays mandolin but likes to experiment with electronics and remixes. Polar Bear released their debut CD Dim Lit in 2004. They were nominated Best Band at the 2004 BBC Jazz Awards and Rochford was nominated for the Rising Star award. Their second album Held On The Tips Of Fingers was nominated for the 2005 Mercury Music Prize and a 2006 BBC Jazz Award. It seems the group isn't known outside England but their mix of jazz, funk and electronic music will be of interest to jazz fans in North America. Peepers is Polar Bear's latest CD. The members of the group do other things. Seb Rochford has been working with Corinne Bailey Rae and Herbie Hancock and also plays in Acoustic Ladyland with Wareham and Herbert. That band is now called Silver Birch. Mark Lockheart teaches at Trinity College Of Music and plays sessions. Leafcutter John does a lot of remix work. Here's Polar Bear performing Peepers in studio for The Guardian 2010.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Ray Price

Artist:Ray Price
Song:For The Good Times
Album:16 Biggest Hits

Ray Price started out in the 50s as a standard honky tonk singer. In the 60s he moved to what was known as Countrypolitan. Today we would call it country pop. He had his biggest success and his only pop crossover hit with this 1970 cover of Kris Kristofferson's For The Good Times. He was born Jan. 12, 1926 in Perryville, TX and grew up in Dallas. After serving in the Marines during WWII, Price studied veterinary medicine at North Texas Agricultural College and performed in clubs at night. This led to a job on the Dallas radio show The Big D Jamboree. He moved to Nashville in 1951 and signed with Columbia where he would remain for over two decades. He also became friends with Hank Williams and filled in for him when Williams missed shows. After Williams died, Price took over his band The Drifting Cowboys. He had a couple of country hits but found that he sounded too much like Williams. So he formed his own band The Cherokee Cowboys. Among those who went through the band were Roger Miller, Johnny Paycheck and Willie Nelson. Price had his first number one country music hit with Crazy Arms in 1956. This established him as a star. He had several more number one hits and had a total of 23 top ten hits from 1956-66. When Price started fading, he decided to move in a more pop direction that at the time was called Countrypolitan. Strings were added to the arrangements and Price sang more like a crooner than that 50s honky tonk singer. At first country fans didn't like it. But they came around and For The Good Times topped the Country Singles chart in 1970. It also reached #11 on the Billboard Hot 100. It also won a Grammy and two ACM Awards. Price had three more number one country hits but faded by the mid-70s and left Columbia in 1974. This budget comp is a good intro to his Columbia years. Price signed with the Christian label Myrrh but left despite having two top ten country hits. He went to ABC/Dot but the MCA's 1978 purchase of ABC forced a move to Monument and then the fledgling label Dimension. He had some success with the 1981 album San Antonio Rose recorded with Willie Nelson. He also recorded briefly for Warner Bros. and Clint Eastwood's label Viva. In the 90s, Price turned to performing at his theater in Branson, MO. Ray Price's most recent CD was Last Of The Breed for Lost Highway Records in 2007. He was named to the Country Music Hall Of Fame in 1996 and I assume he still performs. I don't see any evidence of retirement. Here's Ray Price performing For The Good Times on Hee Haw 1972.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-XTC

Song:Senses Working Overtime
Album:The Compact XTC: The Singles 1978-1985

XTC had some commercial success with songs like Senses Working Overtime. But they were more of a cult band than anything else. Fortunately, their music holds up very well. Their success was short lived due to personal and legal problems. XTC was from Wiltshire, England. Lead singer and guitarist Andy Partridge, bassist Colin Moulding and drummer Terry Chambers first called themselves Star Park in 1976. Then they changed the name to Helium Kidz and added Barry Andrews on keyboards. At this point, they were heavily influenced by the current punk scene. After failing to get a record deal at CBS, the group name was changed to XTC and they signed with Virgin Records. They released an EP and then their first album White Music. It did OK but there were no hits. Andrews left to form League Of Gentlemen with Robert Fripp. Guitarist David Gregory replaced him. They finally charted with Life Begins At The Hop and Making Plans For Nigel. XTC started gaining momentum and this continued with the album English Settlement. Senses Working Overtime was their biggest hit to date. But then Partridge collapsed on stage while on tour. He was diagnosed with an ulcer caused by stage fright. XTC announced they would stop touring but would continue to record in the studio. Chambers quit over this. Though XTC continued to have modest success, they were never the same after that. They also had legal problems with a former manager and with Virgin. This CD of singles is a good intro to their music. XTC left Virgin and started their own label in 1998. They split up in 2005. Here's the video for Senses Working Overtime by XTC.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Gail Kim retains TNA Knockouts Championship with another lame finish

Here's the match video from last night's TNA PPV of Gail Kim defending her TNA Knockouts Championship against Velvet Sky. The match begins about seven minutes into the video clip. The story given is Velvet Sky never got a rematch when Gail won the title from her. Velvet won the title shot on a recent episode of Impact. Of course the problem with Velvet is she is a ten year veteran of pro wrestling who still wrestles like an untrained model. She shouldn't be on a PPV and TNA is aware of this. But she's been loyal to the company so they want to reward her with a PPV payoff. Typical of Knockout matches on TNA PPVs, the match is OK but nothing special. And then the ending is a lame pull the tights rollup finish that cheats paying customers. Remember the excitement when Mickie James faced Tara in a cage on a 2010 episode of Impact? you don't get any of that in this match. If you saw the results of last night's PPV, lame finishes dominated the show including the main event. And this is why TNA has PPV buyrate problems. They need to stop cheating fans with bad finishes on PPVs and then do the blowoff on the next episode of Impact. Fans who feel cheated won't buy PPVs again. But TNA has been doing this kind of crap for years. So obviously they don't get why they shouldn't do that. It would not surprise me if there were title changes on this week's Impact. You should also take note of Velvet's behaviour after the match. First she sits in the middle of the ring with a "Wha' happened" look on her face. Then she leaves the ring with an "Oh well" shrug of her shoulders and a goofy grin on her face. I don't know why they would have her do that. Enjoy the video! - TNA Lockdown 2012 - 1080p -3 by 16-tellytv

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Jewel Akens

Artist:Jewel Akens
Song:The Birds and The bees
Album:Oldies But Goodies Vol. 9: Golden Anniversary Edition

Jewel Akens had his biggest success with the 1965 top five hit The Birds and The Bees. He was born Sept. 12, 1940 in Houston. His mom wanted a girl and was going to name the child Jewel. When it was a boy instead, she kept the name. The family moved to Los Angeles in 1949 and Akens grew up singing in church. He first recorded in 1958 as a member of The Four Dots led by Jerry Stone of The Fascinators. They recorded for the Liberty Records label Freedom and shared a manager with Eddie Cochran. He played guitar on those records. Then Akens teamed up with his buddy Eddie Daniels and they recorded as Jewel and Eddie for the same manager Jerry Capehart. They also recorded on Imperial as The Astro-Jets. Akens joined The Turnarounds and they signed with Atlantic Records co-founder Herb Newman's Era label. The group recorded one single. Then Newman offered them The Birds and The Bees. The song was written by Newman's teenage son. The Turnarounds split up because none of them wanted to record the song...except lead singer Jewel Akens. Akens recorded it as a solo artist and it reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1965. You can get The Birds and The Bees on this various artists comp. Akens left Era in 1966 after subsequent singles did poorly. He recorded for Colgems and toured with The Monkees. And he produced the 1973 album Super Taylors featuring Little Johnny Taylor for Paula Records in 1973. Jewel Akens still tours the oldies circuit and does a Sam Cooke tribute as part of his show. But he will always be remembered for his one big hit The Birds and The Bees. Here's Jewel Akens performing The Birds and The Bees on Shindig 1965.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-John Patitucci

Artist:John Patitucci
Song:Labor Day
DVD:Live In New York City: The Abercrombie/Erskine/Mintzer.Patitucci Band: A Concert/Clinic

John Patitucci is one of today's top jazz bassists. He is equally comfortable as a leader, sideman or session musician and he can play any kind of music. He was born Dec. 22, 1959 in Brooklyn, NY. By age 15, he was playing electric and acoustic bass and composing. He moved to California and attended San Francisco State and Long Beach State. He played with Gap Mangione while attending college. He started working as a studio musician in 1982 with guys like Tom Scott, Robben Ford, Stan Getz, Larry Carlton, Dave Grusin, Ernie Watts and Freddie Hubbard among others. Most jazz fans would have first heard of Patitucci when he joined the Chick Corea Elektric and Akoustic bands in 1985. He was a member until 1989. And he also began recording as a leader for GRP Records in 1987. In the 90s, he continued to tour and record as a leader and sideman. In 1997, he moved to Concord Jazz Records. Labor Day is from the 1998 CD Now with either Michael Brecker or Chris Potter on tenor sax, John Scofield on guitar and Bill Stewart on drums. That is available as a budget CD. He also contributed Labor Day to the 2000 one off CD/DVD The Hudson Project recorded live in New York with Bob Mintzer on tenor sax, John Abercrombie on guitar and Peter Erskine on drums. The CD is out of print but the DVD is available and is worth checking out. John Patitucci's latest CD as a leader was Remembrance in 2009. But he continues to tour and record as a sideman and as session musician. Here's John Patitucci with Bob Mintzer, John Abercrombie and Peter Erskine performing Labor Day on The Hudson Project DVD New York City 2000.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Felice Herrig vs Patricia Vidonic

Today's edition of Big Bad Blog Video Theater is the match video of Felice Herrig vs Patricia Vidonic from last night's XFC show. Felice is best known for her appearance in the reality show Fight Girls. She is mainly a kickboxer trying to improve in other areas of MMA. Her loss to All American wrestler Carla Esparza was a setback. But I think Carla was a good barometer for Felice to realize how far she has to go with her ground game. There are some fans who don't like Felice's flamboyance and want to see her fail because of her personality. I don't care about that stuff when I analyze a fighter. So I don't think either of these girls are top fighters yet. I thought they were closely matched. For the most part, round one was a struggle in the clinch. Neither of them did much of anything until Felice got a takedown at the end of the round. That wasn't enough for me so I score that round 9-9. Felice did a lot better in round two. She got a takedown early in the round and did enough to get the edge over Patricia. I would have liked to see Felice go for submissions but she won the round 10-9. Patricia needed some urgency in round three because she was losing. She didn't really demonstrate that and Felice won by unanimous decision. I can't comment on why Patricia wasn't more aggressive in round three. Maybe her corner told her she was winning. Fighters are lied to sometimes about that sort of thing. Regardless, I didn't care for her strategy. Until she shows more consistency against a higher caliber of fighter, I'm not convinced Felice Herrig is a top fighter. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Eugene Wilde

Artist:Eugene Wilde
Song:Gotta Get You Home Tonight
Album:The Best Of Eugene Wilde

Smooth voiced R & B singer songwriter Eugene Wilde topped the R & B charts with the 1984 bedroom classic Gotta Get You Home Tonight. Unfortunately, his record label went out of business and he had little success recording elsewhere. But he continued to have success as a songwriter. He was born Ronald Eugene Broomfield Dec. 6, 1960 in West Palm Beach, FL and grew up in Miami. He was part of the family group La Voyage with older brother Al Broomfield and sister Dee Dee Wilde. They were also known as Tight Connection and Simplicious. He also recorded with Today, Tomorrow, Forever on Curtom Records in 1979. His manager got him to change his name to Eugene Wilde. Wilde joined Philly World Records in 1984 and topped the R & B charts with Gotta Get You Home Tonight after friends in the music business convinced him it was as good as Marvin Gaye's Sexual Healing. Wilde wrote the song with McKinley Horton who was a member of the Philly World group Cashmere. Wilde had some other R & B hits and you can get them all on this comp. He also appeared in the 1985 film Rappin' singing First Love Never Dies with Joanne Gardner. By 1986, Philly World closed and Wilde signed with MCA Records. He recorded two unsuccessful albums there. In the 90s, Wilde wrote songs for The Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears and Victoria Beckham. Lately Wilde has been recording with the Danish production team Cool Million and he released the CD Get Comfortable last year. Here's the video for Gotta Get You Home Tonight by Eugene Wilde.

Friday, April 13, 2012

MIZUKI, MIO, Otsuka win at SHOOT BOXING show

MIZUKI returns to her corner after the fight was stopped
At today's Korakuen Hall show, SHOOT BOXING had three women's matches. All were first round matches in a couple of tournaments. Things did not go well for Mina in her first round S-Girls 53.5 tournament match against J-Girls kickboxer MIZUKI. First, Mina missed weight and was given two red cards as a penalty. It didn't matter much. MIZUKI showed her punching power and Mina was bleeding from the nose by the end of round one. In round two, MIZUKI used her jab and Mina was bleeding again. It got worse in round three and the ringside doctor stopped the fight at 1:01 of round three. Ai Takahashi will face a fighter to be named in June and MIZUKI will face the winner in the tournament final in August. The other two fights were first round matches in the JKS48 tournament for schoolgirls. RENA's little sister MIO faced Yuki Kira. MIO dominated with punches and she even threw Kira in round two. MIO wins by unanimous decision. In the other match Naoko Otsuka faced RANNA. Otsuka dominated with punches. She continued the onslaught in round two and the fight was stopped at 1:33 of round two. At the press conference the other day, SHOOT BOXING owner Takeshi Caesar introduced six girls for this tournament. His plan is to have eight girls and run two more first round matches in June. But if he doesn't get two more girls, he will simply skip that and do the semi finals and final in August. He obviously doesn't have them or he would have introduced them last week. And he may not get them. So we'll have to wait on that.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Toni Basil

Artist:Toni Basil
Album:Big Hits Of The 80s

Toni Basil is a choreographer and dancer who had one of the biggest hits of the 80s with Mickey. Of course she wasn't much of a singer so she only recorded two albums. She was born Antonia Basilotta Sept. 22, 1943 in Philadelphia. Her mom was an acrobatic comedian in her family's vaudeville act. Her dad was orchestra leader Louis Basil. The family moved to Las Vegas when dad took a job at The Sahara Hotel. Toni went to high school in Las Vegas. She moved to Los Angeles and started out as a go-go dancer. Toni was a dancer and choreographer on the TV series Shindig and the 1964 films The T.A.M.I. Show and Pajama Party. She appeared as a hooker in the landmark 1969 film Easy Rider along with appearances in Five Easy Pieces and The Last Movie. Toni worked consistently as a choreographer in the 70s. She was the leader of the pioneering street dance group The Lockers. In the late 70s, she got into directing and staging music videos. Her work on the Talking Heads video Once In A Lifetime attracted the British songwriting and production team of Mike Chapman and Nicky Chinn. They produced Sweet and Suzi Quatro among others. Toni's debut album Word Of Mouth was recorded and released in England in 1980. Chrysalis Records picked up the album and released it in 1982 after some changes. Mickey topped the charts in 1982. Chapman and Chinn wrote the song as Kitty and it was recorded by the British pop group Racey  in 1979 but not released as a single. Toni changed the title to Mickey as a tribute to Mickey Dolenz of The Monkees. Toni also directed and choreographed the music video. The backup band on the song is Devo who would soon have a big hit with Whip It. Toni recorded a second album but her music needed to change for her to have any kind of longevity and she was a very limited singer. You can get Mickey on this Capitol Records various artists budget comp. Toni Basil continues to work as a choreographer for artists like David Bowie and Tina Turner. She has been a guest judge on the FOX competition series So You Think You Can Dance. Here's the director's cut of the video for Mickey by Toni Basil. The opening segment was cut from the version you saw in the 80s.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Two matches added to May 26 JEWELS show in Osaka

JEWELS announced two matches have been added to their first appearance in Osaka May 26 at Taisho Azeria. They have also released the poster featuring the main event of Ayaka Hamasaki defending her JEWELS Lightweight Championship against Yuka Tsuji, probably the biggest match ever in JEWELS. In a match contracted for 53kg, Mika Nagano will face anna. Nagano trains at Core. Her record is 8-7 and her last fight was a unanimous decision loss to Emi Fujino at the Mar. 3 JEWELS show. anna trains at FIGHT CHIX. Her record is 1-9 and her last fight was a submission loss to Yuka Okumura on the Dec. 17 JEWELS show. She has had six straight losses since returning from a three year break in 2010. She may be one of the worst fighters in Japan. Nagano needs a win and if she doesn't win, maybe she should quit MMA and turn to pro wrestling full time. In a Featherweight match, SACHI will face Sadae Manhoef. SACHI trains with Yuka Tsuji at Angura. Her record is 9-6 and her last fight was an upset split decision win over former VALKYRIE champ Yasuko Tamada. Sadae "Manhoef" Suzumura trains at Cobra Kai in Osaka. Her record is 2-1-1 and her last fight was a TKO win over Bataco at the Sept. 4 DEEP show in Osaka. So she's on this show because she lives in Osaka. Sadae's training is kickboxing and she has named herself after her favourite kickboxer Melvin Manhoef. Both fights are scheduled for two five minute rounds with official JEWELS rules.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Montana Taylor

Artist:Montana Taylor
Song:Indiana Avenue Stomp
Album:Montana Taylor

Boogie woogie pianist Montana Taylor had the talent to be a star like James P. Johnson. But he didn't make enough money for his liking. So he quit after recording in 1929 until he was rediscovered in 1946. Then he quit again. He was born Arthur Taylor 1903 in Butte, MT. where his father owned a club. The family moved to Chicago and then Indianapolis. By his late teens, Taylor played piano well enough to play at rent parties and in clubs. His playing style has been described as "barrelhouse" or "low down". When a blues musician is described as dirty, nasty or low down, that's a good thing. He recorded four songs for Vocalion Records in 1929. Two of them were instrumental, including Indiana Avenue Stomp, and the other two backed a vocal group called Jazoo Boys who were apparently pretty terrible. When Taylor wasn't happy with the money he wasn't going to make, he quit recording. He wanted royalties and contracts in those days were not lucrative. He moved to Cleveland where he continued to play part time while working full time. In 1946, jazz critic Rudi Blesh convinced Taylor to record for his label Circle Recordings as a solo artist and backing up singer Chippie Hill. Those are the recordings on this CD. It appears Taylor still wasn't impressed by the music business. He quit in 1948 and died in 1954. Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman created new interest in Taylor when he credited him as an influence and included Taylor on his 2001 CD, DVD and book Bill Wyman's Blues Odyssey. Montana Taylor is recommended to boogie woogie fans. Here's a video for Indiana Avenue Stomp by Montana Taylor.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Diamond Rio

Artist:Diamond Rio
Song:Meet In The Middle
Album:16 Biggest Hits

Diamond Rio started out in bluegrass in the 80s and had mainstream country music success in the 90s. Meet In The Middle was their first number one country hit in 1991. Lead singer Marty Roe was a member of Windsong which toured nationally in the early 80s. In 1984, he met keyboard player Dan Truman at Nashville's Opryland USA theme park and they decided to form a bluegrass band. At first they were called the Grizzly River Boys and then the Tennessee River Boys. Lead guitarist Jimmy Olander and mandolin player Gene Johnson joined and then bassist Dana Williams and drummer Brian Prout. They decided to change the group name to something more mainstream. The name Diamond Rio came from truck manufacturers Diamond T and REO. They signed with Arista in 1989 but things were put on hold when Olander, Williams and Johnson all had health issues. Meet In The Middle was their first single in 1991 and it topped the Country Singles chart. The song was written by Nashville songwriters Jim Foster, Chapin Hartford and Don Pfrimmer. All three have written plenty of hits. Diamond Rio was the first country group in history whose debut single reached number one. Their debut album was certified Platinum. Diamond Rio had great success in the 90s with a total four number one country hits. You can get all those hits on this budget comp. When the 2003 album Can't You Tell was cancelled when the first two singles didn't chart, Diamond Rio left Arista after the 2006 release of Greatest Hits Vol. 2. They signed with Word Records and have gone in a country gospel direction. They last recorded in 2009. Diamond Rio were notable for taking bluegrass harmonies to mainstream country music. Here's the video for Meet In The Middle by Diamond Rio.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band

Artist:John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band
Song:On The Dark Side
Album:Eddie And The Cruisers: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band were hired to provide the music for the 1983 film Eddie and the Cruisers. The film flopped but gained a cult following when it aired on HBO in 1984. That fueled sales of the soundtrack album and On The Dark Side was a top ten hit. John Cafferty is from Narragansett, RI and has been playing bars in the Northeast US for years. Other band members were Gary Gramolini on lead guitar, Patrick Lupo on bass, Kenny Jo Silva on drums, Bobby Cotoia on piano and Michael "Tunes" Antunes on sax. Eddie and the Cruisers is about a 60s band that becomes popular many years later and the story of the film is about the whereabouts of the mysterious leader of the band Eddie Wilson (Michael Pare). Other stars of the film were Tom Berenger and Joe Pantoliano. Director Martin Davidson wanted the band in the film to have an authentic feel. So he hired Kenny Vance of Jay & The Americans to help him with that. They decided to base the band on Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band. And then Vance saw Cafferty in a bar and thought they would be perfect to do the music. They even hired sax player Antunes to play the sax player in the film. They liked Cafferty's music and he scored the film. Unfortunately, the film's distributor Embassy Pictures botched the film's release and it only grossed $4.7M. But the film gained a following when it began airing on HBO in 1984. There was even a 1989 sequel. The soundtrack reached #9 on the Billboard Hot 200 and On The Dark Side reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. Attempts to sell Cafferty afterwards were limited by his band seeming like a Springsteen knockoff. You can get the Eddie and the Cruisers as a budget CD. Bobby Cotoia died in 2004 but John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band still play bars today. Here's the video for On The Dark Side by John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Cris Cyborg's appeal is denied

Cris Cyborg had her appeal heard today by the California State Athletic Commission. The appeal was denied and her suspension remains at one year. Cris tested positive for stanozolol after her fight against HIROKO. She basically threw herself on the mercy of the CSAC in an attempt to get the suspension reduced to six months. She claimed she didn't knowingly take a banned substance but it was given to her by her cardio coach to help with cutting weight. I'm sure I am one of many who doesn't believe her. CSAC Chairman John Frierson bought this baloney and moved that the suspension should be reduced to six months. Fortunately the other two commissioners at the hearing saw through it and Dr. VanBuren Ross Lemons moved that the suspension be upheld and that's how the vote went. Cris Cyborg will be allowed to re-apply for a license on Dec. 17, 2012. Her fight against HIROKO was ruled a no contest. Apparently she is being tested monthly to be sure she is clean. Since there are those, including myself, who believe she was juicing for years, it should be interesting to see what she is like without that stuff. I would not be surprised to see her fight in Brazil this year. She is only suspended in California and the Brazilian attitude towards steroids is more lenient than here. I guess the question is whether Zuffa would allow her to fight there. Remember she's still under contract.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Robert Preston

Artist:Robert Preston
Song:Seventy Six Trombones
Album:The Music Man: Original Soundtrack

Robert Preston was a versatile character actor best known for starring in the Broadway and film productions of The Music Man. He was born Robert Preston Meservey June 8, 1918 in Newton, MA. His family moved to Los Angeles and he studied acting at the Pasadena Community Playhouse. He also served as an intelligence officer for the Air Force during WWII. For most of the 40s, Preston appeared as a supporting actor in Westerns. In the 50s, he moved to New York and appeared in several Broadway productions. Most were unsuccessful except The Music Man in 1957. Meredith Willson based The Music Man on his Iowa upbringing. The show was a huge success and Preston won a Tony for his performance as conman Harold Hill. Warner Bros. acquired the rights to produce the 1962 film version. For the most part, the film is faithful to the original Broadway production. Of course there were changes like Shirley Jones replacing Barbara Cook as Marian The Librarian. Jack Warner wanted Frank Sinatra to play Harold Hill but Willson stuck with Preston. When Warner approached Cary Grant about the role, Grant told him to stick with Preston. The film was a huge success and so was the soundtrack album which is available as a budget CD. Preston won another Tony for his role in the 1966 musical I Do! I Do! and he appeared in the film musicals Mame and Victor Victoria. Younger fans probably remember him from the 1985 film The Last Starfighter and the 1985 HBO film Finnegan Begin Again. But he'll forever be best known as Harold Hill in The music Man. Robert Preston died on Mar. 21, 1987 at age 68. Here's Robert Preston performing Seventy Six Trombones in the 1962 film The Music Man. This clip is not on Youtube.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Gale Storm

Artist:Gale Storm
Song:Dark Moon
Album:Gale Storm Sings The Hits and More

Gale Storm was a star of the 50s sitcoms My Little Margie and The Gale Storm Show. But she also had several hit singles including this cover of the country music hit Dark Moon. She's somewhat forgotten today but she was big back then. She was born Jacqueline Cottle Apr. 5, 1922 in Bloomington, TX which is in Victoria Country. She was the youngest of five children. Her father died when she was very young and her mom took in sewing to support the family. They moved to Houston and Jacqueline became an accomplished dancer and joined the high school drama club. A couple of her teachers suggested she enter the CBS Radio contest Gateway To Hollywood. First prize was a one year movie contract. She won and was immediately renamed Gale Storm and went to work for RKO Pictures. Her first film was Tom Brown's School Days in 1941. By the mid-40s, Gale was starring in films for the poverty row studio Monogram Pictures. Probably her best known film at the time was Swing Parade Of 1946 with The Three Stooges. In 1952, Gale was cast in the sitcom My Little Margie on CBS. It was originally a summer replacement for I Love Lucy. But My Little Margie became very popular and ran for four seasons. Then Dot Records president Randy Wood saw Gale sing on The Colgate Comedy Hour in 1954. His ten year old daughter told him Gale was My Little Margie. He immediately signed her and her first single, a cover of the Smiley Lewis hit I Hear You Knockin', sold a million copies. In 1956, Gale started her new sitcom The Gale Storm Show which in the 70s was ripped off by The Love Boat. It also ran for four seasons. Dark Moon reached #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1958. It was her final top ten hit. Dark Moon was written by Ned Miller, best known for his 1962 hit From A Jack To A King. Bonnie Guitar had a hit with it in 1956. You can get all of Gale's hits on this comp from the British label Jasmine. By 1961, Gale's husband Lee Bonnell wanted her to concentrate on raising their four kids. She went into semi-retirement. She never recorded again but did guest shots on TV. Gale Storm suffered from alcoholism in the 70s and wrote about that in her 1981 autobiography. She died on June 27, 2009 at age 87. Here's Gale Storm performing Dark Moon on The Gale Storm Show 1958. The actor in the clip is Peter Gunn star Craig Stevens.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

SHOOT BOXING announces new tournaments

unknown, RANNA, Yuki Kira, Takeshi Caesar, MIO, Naoko Otsuka, MARI
SHOOT BOXING owner Tekeshi Caesar sure does like tournaments. He held a press conference today to announce the lineup for the previously announced JKS48 tournament for teen girls. He has a total of six girls in this tournament. Two matches will be on the Apr. 13 Korakuen Hall show and then the semi finals and final will be on August's S-Girls Cup 2012 show. Other than RENA's little sister MIO, all of these girls are newcomers to SHOOT BOXING. Next week, MIO will face Yuki Kira and Naoko Otsuka will face RANNA. A girl who calls herself "unknown" and MARI get byes to the semi finals. Obviously MIO is the favourite because of her previous experience and Caesar wants to turn her into a star as big as her sister. But you never know. That's why they have the fights. You'll notice in the pic they are all wearing schoolgirl outfits. He also announced plans to so an S-Girls Cup 53.5 tournament so I guess this means the original S-Girls Cup tournament will be at 48kg. The Apr. 13 match between MIZUKI and Mina will be part of this tournament. Ai Takahashi will have her semi final match in June against an opponent to be named. And the final will be on the S-Girls Cup show in August. I guess this is a backup plan in case Caesar is unable to get the star power he wants for the 48kg tournament. Obviously RENA's injury influenced this decision.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Chase

Song:Get It On
Album:Rockin' 70s

Chase rode the popularity of jazz rock to the 1971 top 30 hit Get It On. They were led by former Woody Herman lead trumpeter Bill Chase. The unique thing about Chase is they had four trumpeters but no other horns. They started having personnel problems with their second album. And Bill Chase and other members died in a tragic plane crash in 1974. Bill Chase was born William Chiaiese Oct. 20, 1934 in the Boston suburb of Squantum, MA. His dad changed the family name to Chase just so no one would have to struggle with spelling the name. Dad played trumpet in a marching band so not surprisingly Bill took up the trumpet as a teen. After seeing Maynard Ferguson hit those high notes at a Stan Kenton concert, Chase knew what he wanted to do. So after studying at Berklee, Chase played with Ferguson in 1958 and with Kenton in 1959. But he spent most of the 60s as lead trumpeter and arranger in Woody Herman's Thundering Herd. He also established himself in Las Vegas as an in demand horn player for TV variety shows. By 1970, Chase was getting bored with this and saw the success of Blood Sweat & Tears. So he formed his own band with trumpeters Alan Ware, Jerry Van Blair and Ted Piercefield, Jay Burrid on drums, Phil Porter on keyboards, Dennis Johnson on bass, John Palmer on guitar and lead singer Terry Richards. Their debut album Chase was critically acclaimed and Get It On reached #24 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was nominated for a Grammy. Alas, the success didn't last. Chase's second album Ennea had a pretentious suite that no one liked. And Terry Richards was replaced by GG Shinn. Chase had financial problems and split up the band. He formed a new version of Chase featuring former Ides Of March lead singer Jim Peterik for the 1974 album Pure Music. The band was on tour in Minnesota when the plane crashed and Bill Chase and three other band members died on Aug. 9, 1974. Jim Peterik wasn't on the plane and he went on to be lead singer of Survivor. You can get Get It On on this budget priced 3CD various artists comp from Sony. The album Chase is barely a half hour long but you can get all three Chase albums on 2CDs from Wounded Bird Records. I don't think most fans would want all three albums. I'm not sure about Chase the band but certainly Bill Chase would have contributed a lot to music if he had lived. Here's Chase performing Get It On in 1971.

Friday, April 06, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Young-Holt Unlimited

Artist:Young-Holt Unlimited
Song:Soulful Strut
Album:Rock Instrumental Classics Vol. 4: Soul

Bassist Eldee Young and drummer Isaac "Redd" Holt were veterans of the Chicago jazz scene when they struck gold with the 1968 top five instrumental hit Soulful Strut. The funny part is they didn't even play on the record. It was a backing track of a song recorded as a vocal by someone else. Eldee Young was born Jan. 7,1936 in Chicago. Redd Holt was born May 16, 1932 in Rosedale, MS. They met while attending the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago and played together in the dance band The Cleffs. It was here that they met pianist Ramsey Lewis and were part of his trio from 1956-66. After Lewis scored with the 1965 hit The In Crowd, Young and Holt left and formed Young-Holt with pianist Hysear Don Walker. They had a top 40 hit with Wack Wack in 1966. Walker was replaced by Ken Cheney in 1968. Am I The Same Girl was written by Chi-Lites lead singer Eugene Record and Brunswick Records producer Sonny Sanders and recorded by Record's wife Barbara Acklin in 1968. While messing around in the recording studio with Brunswick A & R Director Carl Davis, Sanders removed the vocal track and added a piano track by Floyd Morris. They liked it so much they released it as a single credited to Young-Holt Unlimited despite the fact that neither of them played on the record. I assume this was because Young-Holt were the only instrumental act on Brunswick and they had a chart hit with Wack Wack. Soulful Strut reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1968. Barbara Acklin's recording of Am I The Same Girl charted afterwards but it certainly wasn't as big as Soulful Strut. It sold a million copies. After recording one more album for Brunswick, Young-Holt Unlimited recorded four albums for Atlantic and split up in 1974. You can get Soulful Strut and Wack Wack on this Rhino various artists comp of soul instrumentals. Eldee Young eventually moved to Singapore and worked for many years for pianist Jeremy Monteiro. He died on Feb. 12, 2007 at age 71 while on tour in Thailand. Redd Holt led his own band for a while and then returned to Ramsey Lewis in the 80s and played with various bands. He seems to be retired. Soulful Strut got a big boost when it was used in the 1998 film The Parent Trap. Here's a video for Soulful Strut by Young-Holt Unlimited.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

TAJIRI launches Wrestling New Classic

When SMASH closed last month, it was well known that TAJIRI would launch a new company very quickly. And it appears the plan is to pick up where SMASH left off. The conflict between TAJIRI and SMASH president Sakai is Sakai wanted to form an alliance with the legendary Genchiro Tenyru and his Tenyru Project and TAJIRI didn't want to do that. Because Sakai owned the name SMASH, the company needed to close. And today TAJIRI announced the new company is called Wrestling New Classic. TAJIRI says he wants to do old fashioned professional wrestling of high quality which he calls New Classic. The picture I have posted is from the WNC website. I wanted to see if a roster was posted but the website is just a shell right now. From what I can tell, it looks like most of the SMASH roster has joined WNC. Two shows were announced. A pre-debut show will be Apr. 26 at Shinjuku FACE followed by the official debut show May 24 at Korakuen Hall. The main event of the Apr. 26 show will be TAJIRI vs AKIRA. The winner of that match will face Dave Finley in the main event of the May 24 show. The other match announced for Apr. 26 is joshi tag team match with Kana & Io Shirai vs Syuri & Makoto. He also said Lin Bairon will participate. It was reported by Nikkan Sports that New Japan wrestler and current IWGP Champion Kazuchika Okada is interested in working for WNC. Don't know how that will work.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Hank Jones

Artist:Hank Jones
Song:The Very Thought Of You
Album:Live At Maybeck Recital Hall Vol. 16

Jazz pianist Hank Jones was the oldest and least famous of the three Jones brothers who were all prominent jazz musicians. For most of his career, Jones was a very busy and reliable sideman. Later in life, he became more active as a recording artist and toured regularly until his 2010 death. He was born July 31, 1918 in Vicksburg, MS and grew up in Pontiac, MI. His father was a Baptist deacon and lumber inspector. Jones was the oldest of seven children. His mom sang so all seven kids took piano lessons. His brothers were trumpeter Thad Jones, best known as leader of The Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Big Band. And drummer Elvin Jones, best known as part of the John Coltrane Quartet from 1960-66. He is considered to be one of the all time jazz greats. Hank Jones studied piano and listened to Earl Hines, Fats Waller, Teddy Wilson and Art Tatum. By age 13, he was playing gigs locally. His big break came when he met Lucky Thompson in 1944 and he moved to New York to join his band. He toured with Jazz At The Philharmonic and accompanied Ella Fitzgerald from 1948-53. He also recorded with Charlie Parker. He recorded several albums for Savoy Records and was the house pianist there for several years. From 1959 to 1975, Jones was house pianist at CBS Studios accompanying anyone who recorded there including backing performers on The Ed Sullivan Show. Hank Jones played piano when Marilyn Monroe sang Happy Birthday to President John F. Kennedy on May 19, 1962. Jones continued to record as a sideman and leader through the 70s. He was also musical director of the Broadway musical Ain't Misbehavin'. The Very Thought Of You was first written and recorded by Ray Noble in 1934 and was a hit for Bing Crosby and later Vaughn Monroe. Jones first recorded it in 1976 on a solo piano album he recorded for Arista. That album is only available in Japan. This version was recorded in 1992 as part of a series of solo piano albums recorded by Concord Jazz at Maybeck Recital Hall in Berkeley, CA. Hank Jones has received many awards including the NEA Jazz Masters in 1989, the ASCAP Jazz Living Legend in 2003, the National Medal Of Arts in 2008 and a Lifetime Achievement Grammy in 2009. Hank Jones remained in demand as a senior and had just returned from a tour of Japan when he died on May 16, 2010 at age 91. Hank Jones was never flashy but he was very reliable and jazz fans should check him out. Here's Hank Jones performing The Very Thought Of You Berne, Switzerland probably in the 80s.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Juicy

Song:Sugar Free
Album:The Masters: Mellow Groove

Jerry Barnes is a bassist, producer, arranger and recording engineer who had brief success with the duo Juicy with his sister Katreese Barnes. Sugar Free was a top 20 R & B hit in 1986. Barnes is from New York and he is primarily a recording engineer and a go to guy for remixes. He was a one time member of Chic and worked with Chuck Mangione and Brazilian jazz musician and arranger Eumir Deodato. He formed Juicy with Katreese in 1982 and the duo was named after James Mtume's 1982 hit Juicy Fruit. They recorded their debut album for Arista in 1982. It went nowhere. But Juicy got some traction when Beat Street Strut appeared on the soundtrack of the 1984 film Beat Street and it made the dance charts. This led to a deal with the Columbia owned Private I Records. The 1986 album It Takes Two was produced by Eumir Deodato and the single Sugar Free reached #13 on the R & B Singles chart. Sugar Free is an answer song to Juicy Fruit. The song was certified Gold. It's probably one of those songs that you will remember when you hear it. Follow up singles and the 1987 album Spread The Love did not sell so Jerry Barnes ended Juicy. You can get Sugar Free on this Sony various artists comp that is part of a series of R & B masters CDs. Though they ended the group, Jerry & Katreese Barnes still work together in the recording studio. He has produced Chaka Khan, Roberta Flack and Phyllis Hyman among others. He does a lot of remixes which tells me he has a great ear and real talent at the studio control board. And Katreese does backup vocals and plays sax and keyboards. And Jerry Barnes produced a bass instructional DVD in 2009. So Juicy had their brief fling with success but are still making music today. Here's a video for Sugar Free by Juicy.