Thursday, October 31, 2013

Review of The Ultimate Fighter 18 episode 9

This week we are back with a new episode of The Ultimate Fighter 18. There are supposed to be two fights on this episode. It will be Anthony Gutierrez of Team Rousey vs Cody Bollinger of Team Tate and Peggy Morgan of Team Rousey vs Sarah Moras of Team Tate. The first half of the episode is about Gutierrez and Bollinger trying to cut down to 135lb. That's probably lower than their usual fighting weight. Gutierrez seems to be handling the weight cut OK but Bollinger is having problems. This combined with his homesickness is causing Bollinger big problems. There are only a few hours left and he is still way over. Miesha Tate and Bryan Caraway try to help him but when he gains a pound after a trip to the sauna, Bollinger decides that he can't make weight. Raquel Pennington convinces him to try a salt bath. But Bollinger changes his mind and quits. It looks like that final trip to the sauna broke him. Miesha calls UFC president Dana White. He calls a meeting at the gym and Bollinger is sent home. To his credit, he doesn't make any excuses. In the business world, we would call that a career limiting move. He accepted the terms and failed. Gutierrez is given the choice of rehydrating and fighting Chris Beal or taking a bye to the semi-finals. He wisely took the bye. Why should he put himself through another weight cut? Now we go to Sarah Moras vs Peggy Morgan. Sarah has a good ground game so Ronda Rousey is concerned about Peggy's takedown defence. Peggy's strategy was to keep Sarah at a distance and pepper her with jabs. I didn't think that would work. Sarah is a lot quicker than Peggy. So not surprisingly, Sarah took Peggy down and won with an armbar. Then the semi-final matches were determined. Next week Michael Wooten will face Chris Holdsworth. That will be followed by Sarah Moras vs Julianna Pena, David Grant vs Anthony Gutierrez and Jessica Rakoczy vs Raquel Pennington. Check out the video of this week's episode.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Easy Star All-Stars

Artist:Easy Star All-Stars f/Gary "Nesta" Pine and Dollarman
Album:Dub Side Of The Moon

A reggae tribute band might seem like a dumb idea but I guess execution is everything. The Easy Star All-Stars created a big splash when this Pink Floyd tribute album was released in 2003. It's been one of the most popular reggae CDs in recent years and the band has done other tribute CDs. The band is from New York City. Guitarist Michael G. (Michael Goldwasser) and keyboard player Ticklah (Victor Axelrod) were in the R & B band Special Request. When that band split up, the two decided to turn their attention to reggae. They started their own record label in 1997. The original plan was to have a studio group and produce other artists. But after producing tribute concerts to Augustus Pablo and Sugar Minott, they decided Easy Star All-Stars could be turned into a real band. They also got the idea of doing a reggae version of the Pink Floyd classic album Dark Side Of The Moon. When the 2003 CD became a big hit, I'm sure no one was more surprised than Goldwasser and Axelrod. Now they're on a tenth anniversary tour. There are several guest vocalists on the album including Gary "Nesta" Pine and Dollarman on Money. The Easy Star All Stars have also recorded tribute CDs to Radiohead, The Beatles and most recently Michael Jackson's Thriller. But it all goes back to Dub Side Of The Moon catching on with reggae fans. Axelrod is also a founding member of Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings. Here's the Easy Star All-Stars performing Money from the 2006 DVD Dub Side Of The Moon Live.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

DEEP JEWELS sets Lightweight Championship tournament matches

Sugi Rock, Masako Yoshida
Today DEEP JEWELS announced the brackets for the Lightweight Championship tournament to be held Nov. 4 at Shinjuku FACE. They also added a match that could set up the next challenger for the Flyweight Championship. In the Lightweight Championship tournament, Mika Nagano will face Emi Tomimatsu and MIZUKI will face Emi Fujino. MIZUKI faced Fujino a couple of years ago in a J-Girls kickboxing match. I seem to recall that MIZUKI broke Fujino's nose. I don't think it makes any difference. MIZUKI is the favourite. She should be the favourite. And it would be a big upset if she lost to any of the other three. Fujino has the best chance to beat her but I don't expect it. The added match is Sugi rock vs Masako Yoshida at 48kg. Sugi Rock trains at the Akza branch of WK. Her record is 8-3 but she is on a three fight losing streak. She really needs a win. Yoshida has been fighting since 2003. She trains at FIGHT CHIX. Her record is 17-18-5 and she won over Satomi Takano on the Aug. 31 DEEP JEWELS show. That was considered an upset. That was after a four fight losing streak. Yoshida has the ability to pull an upset. But her rep is she cares more about her hair and ring attire than winning the fight. But if Sugi Rock doesn't snap out of it, Yoshida could upset her. The winner of this match could challenge the winner of the DEEP JEWELS Flyweight Championship match between Ham Seo Hee and Sadae Manhoef that will main event this show. DEEP JEWELS also announced there will be no pointless filler kickboxing matches on this show. That's probably the best news I've seen about this show.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Jean Carn

Artist:Jean Carn
Song:Don't Let It Go To Your Head
Album:Jean Carn/Happy To Be With You

Jean Carn started out singing with her jazz musician husband Doug Carn. But she turned to R & B in the late 70s with legendary producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff and had success with songs like Don't Let it Go To Your Head. And she had success in the 80s. She was born Sarah Jean Perkins Mar. 15, 1947 in Atlanta and grew up singing and playing piano in church. She planned to study at Juilliard School of Music in New York. But she met and married jazz pianist Doug Carn. They moved to Los Angeles and she recorded three albums with him. Jean's big break came when she appeared with Michael Henderson on the 1975 Norman Connors hit Valentine Love. This led to a contract with Philadelphia International Records and producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. She recorded four albums for PIR and her R & B hits included Free Love, Don't Let It Go Yo Your Head, My Love Don't Come Easy, I'm Back For More and Love Don't Love Nobody. Don't Let It Go To Your Head is from Jean's 1978 album Happy To Be With You. That and her first album Jean Carn are available on CD as a twofer from the British reissue label Diablo. She moved to Motown in 1982. She had a couple of hits. but then her second album was shelved and she moved to Omni Records. Her 1986 number one R & B hit Closer Than Close was produced by Grover Washington Jr. On the recommendation of a numerologist, her name is now Jean Carne. Jean last recorded in 1995 but she still tours. And she appeared on the 2008 PBS special Love Train, The Sound of Philadelphia. Here's Jean Carn performing Don't let It Go To Your Head on Soul Train 1978.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Is the WWE splitting up The Bella Twins?

Here's the match video of AJ Lee defending the WWE Divas Championship against Brie Bella from Sunday's PPV. The match itself is nothing special and fairly slow moving. I liked the false finishes near the end. But over the last couple of weeks, we saw the WWE tease a possible Bella Twins split. This is actually good news for Nikki Bella as it was starting to look like she might not come back from her leg injury. At the end of this match, Brie accidentally nails Nikki with a knee that leads to the loss. This tease continued last night on RAW. The WWE may just be teasing a split and might not do it. But I wouldn't mind a split to see how the girls handle the storyline split in their real lives. And we would see that on WWE Total Divas. I think it would be very interesting. Enjoy the video!
Hell In A Cell 2013 - Aj Lee (Tamina Snuka) vs... by MarcLovley

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Pearl Gonzalez vs Cortney Casey

This fight was on the Oct. 18 XFC show in Nashville. It was for XFC's 125lb title. I am posting the fight video because there has been a protest and a couple of fans asked me about it. I watched the fight and now you can watch it too. Both Pearl Gonzalez and Cortney Casey are inexperienced pros with extensive amateur experience. In round one, there was a low blow to Casey that was not called. Afterwards, the ref admitted he didn't see it. I thought Cortney got the better of the submission attempts so I score round one 10-9 for Cortney. Same thing with round two. I thought it was a very competitive fight. This continues in round three but Pearl hooks an armbar and that ends it. Cortney is protesting that Pearl's spray tan made her too slippery. She says she wants a rematch. I guess there's a first time for everything. My guess is her protest will be unsuccessful. If the Tennessee athletic commission didn't see anything to raise a red flag before the fight, it is unlikely they will admit they missed something. And of course they aren't looking for spray tan. They're looking for anything that would be problematic. I wouldn't be surprised if Cortney got a rematch anyway. Check out the video for yourself.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Giorgio Tozzi

Artist:Giorgio Tozzi
Song:This Nearly Was Mine
Album:South Pacific: An Original Soundtrack Recording

Italian actor Rossano Brazzi had a long career at home. Here he is mainly known for co-starring with Mitzi Gaynor in the 1958 film of the Rogers & Hammerstein musical South Pacific. Brazzi didn't sing so he was dubbed by American opera singer Giorgio Tozzi. After the success of Oklahoma, Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein and Joshua Logan decided to turn South Pacific into a film. The original plan was to have the Broadway stars Ezio Pinza and Mary Martin do the film. But Pinza died and that changed things. Doris Day turned them down and they settled on Mitzi Gaynor. They offered the Role of Emile to several actors before casting Brazzi. Brazzi appeared in the 1954 film Three Coins In The Fountain and the 1955 film Summertime. But he didn't sing and he had to be dubbed. Giorgio Tozzi was an opera singer who had appeared on Broadway and TV. He was born Jan. 8, 1923 in Chicago. The interesting thing is Tozzi played Emile in South Pacific many times on stage after the film was made. Hollywood studios kept dubbing secret in those days but it was revealed eventually. Of course the film was a huge success and the soundtrack album was a hit too. You can get it as a budget CD. Rossano Brazzi made a few more Hollywood films like The Light In The Piazza in 1962. He returned to Italy and retired in the 70s. Brazzi died in 1994 at age 78. Giorgio Tozzi never did another film. But he had a long recording career and on stage. He died in 2011 at age 88. Here's Rossano Brazzi dubbed by Giorgio Tozzi performing This Nearly Was Mine in the 1958 film South Pacific.

Monday, October 28, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of the Day-Terri Lyne Carrington

Artist:Terri Lyne Carrington
Song:Unconditional Love
Album The Mosaic Project

Drummer Terri Lyne Carrington started out started out as a session musician. But recently she has gotten a lot of acclaim as a recording artist. The 2011 CD The Mosaic Project did very well on the jazz chart and won a Grammy. She was born Aug. 4, 1965 in Medford, MA. Her dad played sax and was president of the Boston Jazz Society. Her grandfather played drums with Fats Waller. Terri was given his drum set at age 7. At age 10, she played with Clark Terry at the Wichita Jazz Festival. And at age 11, she got a full scholarship at Berklee School of Music in Boston. She was featured on the PBS kids show Rebop. Terri moved to New York in 1983 and played sessions. She made her recording debut as a leader with the 1989 album Real Life Story. She moved to Los Angeles and was best known as the drummer in The Arsenio Hall Show band and drummer on the show VIBE hosted by Sinbad. Terri recorded as a leader again with the 2002 CD Jazz Is A Spirit for the European label ACT. She recorded 2CDs for them and one for Koch. Then she signed with Concord Jazz for the 2011 CD The Mosaic Project. This is an all star all female jazz album. Her basic band is Geri Allen on piano and Esperanza Spalding on bass. Guest musicians include pianists Patrice Rushen and Helen Sung, percussionist Sheila E., sax player Tineke Postma, flutist Hailey Niswanger and trumpeter Ingrid Jensen. Guest vocalists include Dianne Reeves, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Cassandra Wilson, Nona Hendryx and Gretchen Parlato. Unconditional Love is an instrumental song written by Geri Allen. The CD reached #4 on the Jazz Album chart and won a Best Jazz Vocal Album Grammy. Teri's latest CD Money Jungle: Provocative in Blue is a tribute to the 1961 classic album Money Jungle featuring Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus and Max Roach. She is currently on tour with Geri Allen and Esperanza Spalding opening the Wayne Shorter 80th Birthday Celebration. They are coming to Massey Hall in Toronto on Nov. 22 and I already have my tickets. Can't wait for that. Here's Terri Lyne Carrington with Geri Allen, Esperanza Spalding and Tineke Postma performing Unconditional Love at the 2011 Red Sea Jazz Festival in Israel.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

PANCRASE signs deal with World Series Of Fighting

Mazakazu Sakai, Ray Sefo
On their show last night, World Series of Fighting announced they signed a deal with PANCRASE but they gave no details. PANCRASE held a press conference today and gave some details. This agreement begins in April 2014. WSOF will run at least one show in Japan as WSOF Japan. All of the PANCRASE champions will immediately be available for WSOF shows in the US. That will include all Kings of PANCRASE in all weight classes and Queen of PANCRASE Rin Nakai. That means we could see Rin fight in the US. I'm sure we will see several PANCRASE fighters on WSOF shows. As of April, PANCRASE will no longer stage fights in a ring. All shows will be in a cage. And PANCRASE will conform to unified MMA rules. One of the problems with Japanese MMA companies is the goofy rules that don't exist outside Japan. This is a big deal for any Japanese company because they love goofy rules. PANCRASE owner Masakazu Sakai says he wants make PANCRASE a global company. His main goal at this point is to run a PANCRASE show in Las Vegas. That figures. In a related move, yesterday PANCRASE signed a TV deal with The Fight Network in Canada. Mostly they will run Best Of PANCRASE shows but I understand the New Year's Eve Bayside FIGHT show will be broadcast live. The one thing fans should understand is unlike other Japanese MMA company owners, Sakai has money. He is the former owner of the Hustle wrestling company and the SMASH wrestling company. He still owns the pro wrestling company The Tenyru Project. He has the money to do what he wants. I think this is a good deal for both companies.

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Jessica Andrade vs Rosi Sexton

Here's the fight video of Jessica Andrade vs Rosi Sexton from yesterday's UFC show in Manchester, England. Manchester is Rosi's home town so I expected her to be up for this fight. She said that her experience would trump Jessica's youthful exuberance. I'm sure UFC matchmaker Sean Shelby was wondering if we would see the Jessica Andrade that we both saw fight in Russia earlier this year. That fight got her in the UFC. Keep in mind that both fighters are undersized for 135lb. As I'm sure you have heard by now, Jessica delivered a one sided beatdown. I scored it 30-26. I guess the hope was Rosi could wear Jessica out but instead Jessica wore her out. At the end of round one, Jessica dropped Rosi and then hit an illegal knee while Rosi was down. The ref called it but didn't penalize Jessica. You can't see it live but on the replay, the knee looked inadvertent and it hit Rosi in the shoulder. That's why there was no penalty. A lot of folks including UFC president Dana White thought the fight should have been stopped at the end of round two. The discussion is a continuation of last week's uproar over Junior Dos Santos. In both cases, it's an emotional reaction. So knowing that, I try to look at these kind of things objectively. Rosi was certainly taking a beating but should the fight have been stopped? Well, even with that, she still has her arms up so she's still defending. And she's still firing back though neither her defense or offense are effective. If she is not defending and she slumps down to the canvas, that's when you stop it. Rosi even got a takedown at the end of the round. The doctor looked at her between rounds and OKd her for round three. Rosi was beat up and had nothing for Jessica in round three but I would have been very surprised if she quit or her corner throws in the towel. And this can't be legislated because reffing is subjective. Each ref is different. Some refs...cough, cough...Kim Winslow...cough, cough...would have stopped the fight. Most would not have stopped the fight. Much respect to Rosi for hanging in there though she was getting clobbered. I guess the "R" word will come up again. Remember Rosi retired and only returned to fight in the UFC. The big question about Jessica is can she compete with the larger fighters in the division. She did great in this fight. Enjoy the video!
SextonA by dm_525dfffe7f747
SextonB by dm_525dfffe7f747
SextonC by dm_525dfffe7f747

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Buddy Jones

Artist:Buddy Jones
Song:The Women ('Bout To Make A Wreck Of Me)
Album:Sounds Like Jimmie Rodgers: Stars That Followed The Master

Buddy Jones had a brief country music career in the 30s and then he retired to become a police officer in Shreveport, LA. I don't think he was ever a full time musician. He was born in 1906 in Ashville, NC. At some point, he moved to Shreveport to become a police officer. Jones befriended Jimmie Davis, a country music singer who would later be the Governor of Louisiana. Jones joined Davis' band in 1931 and recorded and toured with him for several years. Jones wrote songs but they were too risque for Davis. So he got Jones a contract with Decca Records. The Women ('Bout To Make A Wreck Of Me) is one of Jones' early recordings in 1935. He also recorded duets with Davis and then Jones went solo in 1937. His brother Buster Jones played steel guitar. Though Jones' music is sometimes classified as Country Swing, he seems more like a Jimmie Rodgers influenced honky tonk singer to me. So it's appropriate that The Women and a couple of other songs are on this 4CD box set of artists influenced by Jimmie Rodgers from the European label JSP. And as I said, some of his songs were risque for the 30s. So though he is fun to listen to, he was never a mainstream success. Jones continued to record for Decca with a band of Moon Mullican on piano, Cliff Bruner on fiddle and Bob Dunn on steel guitar. Buddy Jones retired from music in 1945 and continued is career as a police officer until his death on Oct. 20, 1956 at age 50. Here's a video for The Women ('Bout To Make A Wreck Of Me) by Buddy Jones.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Patricia Vidonic vs VV Mei

Here is the fight video of Patricia Vidonic vs VV Mei from yesterday's PXC show in Guam. Mei looked at this fight as a ticket to fights abroad...if she wins. Patricia's rep is she is a good opponent but she loses as much as she wins. I didn't think it would be an easy fight for Mei. And unless she wins convincingly, I don't think it helps her much. In round one, Mei got a couple of takedowns but Patricia defended well and Mei can't advance her position. She also was exerting a lot of energy with little success. So Mei wins round one 10-9. But in round two, she looked tired. Patricia got a takedown and an attempted rear naked choke. Mei slickly reversed it but again Patricia defended well. I thought Patricia was more effective so I score the round 10-9 for her. In round three, Mei was clearly used up and Patricia took advantage with some good strikes in the clinch. One of the announcers said that Japanese female fighters always seem to be tired in round three. That's because they only fight two rounds in DEEP JEWELS. So I scored round three 10-9 for Patricia and she won the fight on my scorecard 29-28. The judges gave Patricia the win by split decision. The individual scores were not given. Where does VV Mei go from here? As has been discussed in the past, maybe it's time she dropped to 105. I think she should have done that already. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Bing Crosby

Artist:Bing Crosby
Song:Swinging On A Star
Album:Bing's Gold Records

For the first part of the 20th century, Harry Lillis "Bing" Crosby Jr. was the first multimedia star. He started out as a band singer and parlayed his popular radio show into film stardom. Most of his big hits were from his films. Swinging On A Star was from the 1944 film Going My Way and was a number one hit and an Oscar winner. Crosby also won a Best Actor Oscar. He was born May 3, 1903 in Tacoma, WA. Bing was a childhood nickname. Al Jolson was his favourite singer. His big break came in 1925. He had a vocal duo with Al Rinker. Rinker's sister was famed singer Mildred Bailey. She introduced them to bandleader Paul Whiteman and along with Harry Barris, they became The Rhythm Boys. Crosby sang lead on Whiteman's 1928 hit Ol' Man River. They left Whiteman for Gus Anheim's orchestra. But by 1931, Crosby went solo and signed a record deal with Brunswick Records and started his radio show on CBS. Crosby soon became the leading singer in America and he moved to Decca Records in 1934. In 1936, he became host of NBC's Kraft Music Hall for the next ten years. Crosby's vocal style was different from most singers of the era. Rather then belting songs at the top of his lungs, Crosby's understated style was described as "crooning". It was a singing style well suited for radio as opposed to the Broadway stage. By the 40s, Crosby had become a big Hollywood star with ticket sales rivaling John Wayne and Clark Gable. The Irving Berlin song White Christmas was the biggest hit of his career. Crosby sang it in the 1942 film Holiday Inn. He also starred with Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour in the long running Road series of films. Swinging On A Star is from the 1944 film Going My Way. The film won seven Oscars including Best Picture, Best Actor for Crosby and Best Song for Swinging On A Star. And it was a number one hit and a gold record. The song was written by the veteran team of Jimmy Van Heusen and Johnny Burke. Van Heusen was at Crosby's house for dinner. One of Crosby's children said he didn't want to go to school the next day. Crosby's response was "If you don't go to school, you might grow up to be a mule". Van Heusen took that to Burke and I guess the song wrote itself. The Williams Brothers including Andy Williams sang backup vocals on the record. You can get it on this budget comp. When Crosby's career faded a bit in the 50s, he turned to TV and I don't think anyone noticed that he faded. Crosby was also a pioneer of recording technology. All his radio shows were live. Some radio shows were recorded to disc. Crosby started the company Ampex and with 3M, audio tape recording technology was developed. In the 60s, Crosby got into TV production and produced series like Ben Casey and Hogan's Heroes. Crosby continued to perform in the 70s despite health problems. He broke his back while taping a 1977 TV special. He went on a European tour after he recovered and was in Spain when he died of a heart attack after playing golf on Oct. 14, 1977 at age 74. Crosby was a lifelong golf and horse racing fanatic. At least he was doing what he loved. Here's Bing Crosby with the Robert Mitchell Boys Choir performing Swinging On A Star from the 1944 film Going My Way.

Friday, October 25, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Betty Hutton and Howard Keel

Artist:Betty Hutton and Howard Keel
Song:Anything You Can Do
Album:Hollywood Hits: 70 Years of Memorable Movie Music

Betty Hutton was a very popular film musical performer in the late 40s. Her biggest success was probably as Annie Oakley in the 1950 film adaptation of the Irving Berlin Broadway musical Annie Get Your Gun. Her career screeched to a halt a couple of years later over a contract dispute. Howard Keel was her co-star and he was just getting established as a star at MGM. Betty was born Elizabeth June Thornburg Feb. 26, 1921 in Battle Creek, MI. Her father abandoned the family when she was a child and mom moved Betty and her sister to Detroit where they sang as a group in illegal nightclubs. Mom had to keep them one step ahead of the law. Betty moved to New York and appeared in a couple of shows. But she was discovered by orchestra leader Vincent Lopez and he brought her to Hollywood and a 1942 contract with Paramount Pictures. She made her feature debut in the 1942 Dorothy Lamour film The Fleet's In. She also recorded for Capitol Records with some success. The film that really made Betty a star was The Perils Of Pauline in 1947. She also starred with Fred Astaire in the 1950 film Let's Dance. Ethel Merman starred in the Broadway production of Annie Get Your Gun. MGM bought the film rights as a vehicle for Judy Garland. Howard Keel had just signed with MGM after Broadway success. This was his first film at MGM. Veteran MGM musical director George Sidney directed the film and Busby Berkeley directed the musical numbers. Judy had worked with Berkeley before and didn't want to work with him again. She worked on the film for two months but it wasn't going well. She complained to MGM boss Louis B. Mayer trying to get Berkeley fired. Then she stopped showing up for work was ultimately suspended. Though MGM considered contract player Betty Garrett for the role (she would have been great), they decided they needed a star and borrowed Betty Hutton from Paramount. Though the cast and crew were cold to Betty, the film was very successful and Betty's performance was praised. The soundtrack CD of Annie Get Your Gun is out of print. But you can get Anything You Can Do on this 3CD box set released by Shout! Factory as a companion to the 2007 PBS special Movie Songs Live. All the recordings in this box set are original versions. Betty Hutton's film career ended in 1952 when she insisted to Paramount that her current husband Charles O'Curran direct her next film. They declined and she left. Betty appeared on TV in the 50s and on stage in the 60s. After some personal problems including alcoholism, she moved to Rhode Island to work as a cook in a church rectory. She became a teacher at Emerson College in Boston in the 80s and performed occasionally. She moved back to Los Angeles in 1999 and her last interview was with TCM's Robert Osborne in 2000. Betty Hutton died on Mar. 11, 2007 at age 86. Here's Betty Hutton and Howard Keel performing Anything You Can Do from the 1950 film Annie Get Your Gun.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Ne-Yo

Song:Because Of You
Album:Because Of You

Ne-Yo has been one of the most successful R & B artists over the last decade. Because Of You was a top five hit in 2007. He is also a very successful songwriter and producer. And he has done acting and is now an executive at Motown. He tries to do so much it makes me wonder if he's spreading himself too thin. There is no question he is very talented. He was born Shaffer Chimere Smith Oct. 18, 1982 in Camden, AR and he grew up in Las Vegas. His stage name was GoGo when he was a member of the group Envy. When they split up in 2000, Ne-Yo signed with Columbia Records. The name Ne-Yo was given to him by a producer who thought Ne-Yo sees music as Neo sees The Matrix. He recorded an album at Columbia but it was never released. Then they dropped him. But Marques Houston heard his song That Girl and released it as a single in 2003. So Ne-Yo continued writing and producing for others including Teedra Moses, Cristina Milian and Youngstown. When his song Let Me Love You was a number one hit for Mario, Ne-Yo was approached by Def Jam and signed in 2005. His 2006 debut CD In My Own Words was released in 2006. It topped the Billboard 200 and the single So Sick topped the Billboard Hot 100. His second album Because Of You did just as well and the single Because Of You reached #2 on the Billbhoard Hot 100 in 2007. Ne-Yo works a lot with the Norwegian duo Stargate. They are Tor Erik Hermansen and Mikkel Storleer Eriksen. They had success in England producing S Club and Hear'Say before they moved to New York and met Ne-Yo. These three guys wrote and produced So Sick and Because Of You. Ne-Yo continued to have success not only with his own music but as a writer and producer for other artists. And he has acted in movies and TV. When his 2010 CD Libra Scale sagged a bit in sales, Ne-Yo left Def Jam for Motown where he is Senior Vice President of A & R. He released his first Motown CD R.E.D. Sept. 2012. It did OK but but as well as his earlier albums. So he still has work to do to get back to where he was. He'll be fine. Here's the video for Because Of You by Ne-Yo. The actress in the video is La'Shontae Heckard.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Tracie Thoms, Jesse L. Martin and company

Artist:Tracie Thoms, Jesse L. Martin and company
Song:Seasons Of Love
Album:Rent: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Rent was a hit Broadway musical in the 90s and it was turned into a film in 2005. The signature song that opened the film Seasons Of Love was a top 40 pop hit. The music for Rent was written by Jonathan Larson based on the opera La Boheme. He had written other shows but Rent made him famous. Then he died in 1996. Rent opened on Broadway in 1996. It was a huge hit and won several Tonys. Then there was talk about turning it into a film. Robert DeNiro's company Tribeca produced the film. The director was Chris Columbus who did some Harry Potter films among other things. Columbus wanted to use as many of the original cast as possible. Jesse L. Martin, Anthony Rapp, Adam Pascal and Idina Menzel all reprised their roles from the original cast. Fredi Walker played Joanne in the original show. She turned down the movie because she thought she looked too old. Tracie Thoms played Joanne in the film. Seasons Of Love leads off the film and the single reached #33 on the Billboard Hot 100. Tracie Thoms and Jesse L. Martin are the soloists. Martin is best known for his work on TV especially his long run on the TV series Law & Order. He is currently set to play Marvin Gaye in a biopic to be directed by Julien Temple. Tracie Thoms is best known for her run on the TV cop drama Cold Case. She has appeared in films like The Devil Wears Prada and Death Proof and is currently working on a remake of the musical Annie starring Jamie Foxx set for 2014 release. The film Rent got mixed reviews and did OK at the box office. The soundtrack is available in a 2CD package. Here's Tracie Thoms, Jessie L. Martin and company performing Seasons Of Love on Ellen Nov. 2005.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Gail Kim is the new TNA Knockouts Champion

Here is the match video of the three way match for the TNA Knockouts Championship from Sunday's TNA PPV. ODB won the title recently when Mickie James' contract ran out. Gail Kim and Brooke challenge for the title. The Knockouts division has been terrible lately. Recently TNA hired former WWE producer John Gaburick as Vice President of TV Production. Gaburick has said that TNA management has allowed the Knockouts division to deteriorate and he plans to beef it up. Allowing Mickie to leave is one thing. But the other thing was they were planning a big push for Taryn Terrell and then she got pregnant. And not hiring Ivelisse Velez was a huge mistake and she may not want to work there now. As long time readers will know, I hate three way matches especially when they are booked for no reason like this one. But that is typical of TNA. When in doubt, overbook. The one thing I will say is Gail Kim takes some heavy bumps compared to the other two. This is mainly to get her out of the way so ODB and Brooke can work. But neither of are very good. We have a ref bump at the end. And then Lei'D Tapa comes out and helps Gail win. So I guess she will be Gail's bodyguard, huh? Haven't I seen that somewhere else recently? Morons! Enjoy the video!
Bound For Glory 2013 - Brooke vs Gail Kim vs ODB by MarcLovley

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Kajagoogoo

Song:Too Shy
Album:The Very Best of Kajagoogoo and Limahl

The British group Kajagoogoo scored a top five hit in 1983 with Too Shy. In North America they are perceived as a one hit wonder. They were a bigger deal in England and lead singer Limahl went on to solo success after he left in 1983. The band was formed in 1979 as Art Nouveau in Leighton Buzzard, England. They were an instrumental group with Steve Askew on guitar, Stuart Croxford Neale on keyboards, Nick Beggs on bass and Jeremy "Jez" Strode on drums. They released a single but they realized they needed a singer and they held auditions in 1982. They chose Christopher Hamill who went by the stage name Limahl. The name Kajagoogoo is based on baby talk. While working as a waiter at London's Embassy Club, Limahl met Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran. He got them a deal with EMI Records and Rhodes produced Too Shy. It topped the British Singles chart and then reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. Follow up singles and the album White Feathers did well in England. While on tour in England, tension rose between Limahl and the rest of the band. He was fired and Nick Beggs took over as lead singer. It was a clash of egos. Limahl was becoming difficult to work with and he had to go. Limahl signed a solo deal and had success with the theme from the 1984 film The NeverEnding Story. Kajagoogoo continued and with their third album Extra Play, they renamed themselves Kaja. But it didn't help and they split up in Dec. 1985. This EMI Europe comp has Kajagoogoo and Limahl hits. Kajagoogoo reunited for VH1's Bands Reunited in 2003. The original five members released an album in 2008. They have individual projects but we could see new music from Kajagoogoo in the future. Here's the video for Too Shy by Kajagoogoo. The girl in the video is played by model Carolyn Espley. She went on to marry comedian Dennis Miller.

Monday, October 21, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Tavares

Song:Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel
Album:The Greatest Hits

Tavares were regularly at the top of the R & B and dance charts in the 70s. A couple of songs crossed over to pop including Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel in 1976. Tavares is a family group. The parents immigrated from the island of Cape Verde off of Africa to New Bedford, MA. The five brothers are Ralph Tavares (born Dec. 10, 1941), Arthur "Pooch" Tavares (born Nov. 12, 1943), Antone "Chubby" Tavares (born June 2, 1945), Feliciano "Butch" Tavares Jr. (born May 18, 1948) and Perry "Tiny" Tavares (born Oct. 24, 1949). They started out as Chubby and the Turnpikes in 1959. They recorded a couple of singles but then they changed their name to Tavares and started their successful run with the 1973 top five R & B hit Check It Out produced by Johnny Bristol. Their next two albums were produced by the songwriting and production team of Dennis Lambert & Brian Potter who had produced The Temptations. Their first number one R & B hit was the Hall & Oates song She's gone in 1974. Their next number one R & B hit was It Only Takes A Minute. It also cracked the pop top ten. With the 1976 album Sky High, Capitol Records house producer Freddie Perren took over and got Tavares more into the disco music that was popular at the time. Perren had been part of The Corporation that produced The Jackson 5 and he also produced Boogie Fever by The Sylvers. He wrote Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel with partner Keni St. Louis. The song reached #3 on the R & B Singles chart and #15 on the Billboard Hot 100. Tavares won a Grammy for recording More Than A Woman on the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. Then they started to fade and they left Capitol in 1980. You can get all their hits on this budget comp. After recording two albums for RCA, Ralph Tavares left the group in 1984. I'm not sure if Tavares is still touring but Chubby Tavares released a solo CD last year. Here's the video for Heaven Must Be Missing an Angel by Tavares.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Jessica Eye vs Sarah Kaufman

Here's the match video of Jessica Eye vs Sarah Kaufman from last night's UFC show in Houston. Sarah was the betting favourite because the perception is that Jessica is a 125lb fighter moving up up to 135. I think that may have been blown out of proportion. Jessica said in a recent interview that she only fought at 125 because the opportunity to fight in Bellator was what was presented to her at the time. She says Sean Shelby contacted her a couple of years ago when he was booking Strikeforce. She also prefers the weight cut to 135. Both Jessica and Sarah like to stand and bang so I didn't expect any takedowns and I think both are good strikers so I expected a close fight. I was not surprised by a split decision. I scored round one 10-9 for Jessica and round three 10-9 for Sarah. Round two was very close. I thought it was close enough that in Japan, the round would have been scored a tie and the fight would have been a draw. But here in North America, judges don't like to score tie rounds. But I scored round two a tie so for me, the fight is a draw. Yeah, I know, it's like kissing your sister. But sometimes the reluctance to score tie rounds results in odd judging decisions. I don't think that was the case here. One of the judges scored round two for Sarah and round three for Jessica. I don't see how anyone can score round three for Jessica. It was a close competitive fight and it could have gone either way. So I have no problem with Jessica getting the win. And I don't think a split decision one way or another does anything for Sarah Kaufman. With her loss to Ronda Rousey still fresh in people's minds, she needed to win in a more decisive way. If she had done in round one what she did in round three, she would have won. But she didn't. And of course she won a split decision over Leslie Smith in April that a lot of fans thought she lost. But if she thinks fights like that are going to get her back in the title hunt, she is sadly mistaken. Maybe she needs a new strategy. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Ratko Zjaca

Artist:Ratko Zjaca
Song:Kandinsky Night
Album:Now & Then: A Portrait

If you're a jazz guitar fan, you may not have heard of Ratko Zjaca but you should probably check him out. This CD is a comp of his recordings to date. Zjaca was born in Croatia and studied at Zagreb University and then The Rotterdam Conservatory in The Netherlands. Then he moved to New York and led his own band and was a member of trumpeter Benny Bailey's band. He moved back to Europe and signed with the German jazz label In & Out Records and recorded his first CD A Day in Manhattan in 2000 with veteran musicians Reggie Workman and Al Foster. Kandinsky Night is from the 2011 CD The Way We Talk. This is Zjaca's main band known as ZZ Quartet with Italian accordionist Simone Zanchini, bassist Martin Gjakonovski and drummer Adam Nussbaum. The song is a tribute to legendary bassist and Weather Report co-founder Miroslav Vitous. Now & Then was released in 2012 and it is a comp of Zjaca's solo recordings. it's a good intro to his music. Miroslav Vitous, Steve Gadd and Randy Brecker are among the musicians who appear on this CD. Zjaca's latest CD Beyond The Lines was released a few months ago under the name ZZ Quartet. Here's Ratko Zjaca with the ZZ Quartet performing Kandinsky Night at Spring Jazz in Italy 2011.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Kurt Elling

Artist:Kurt Elling
Song:And We Will Fly

Jazz singer Kurt Elling was headed to divinity school and a career in religion. But then he got into jazz and started singing in Chicago clubs. Now he's a popular jazz singer. He was born Nov. 2, 1967 in Chicago. His father was music director at a Lutheran church and Elling sang in the choir. He does recall seeing Tony Bennett on TV but Elling was not exposed to jazz as a child. He first listened to jazz while at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, MN. Then he studied at the University of Chicago Divinity School with the likely goal of teaching religion. But then he started singing jazz in Chicago clubs and he left school in 1992. Elling started working with pianist Laurence Hobgood and they recorded a demo which got the attention of Bruce Lundvall and a contract with Blue Note Records. Elling and Hobgood still work together today. Elling's 1995 debut CD Close Your Eyes was nominated for a Grammy. He recorded six albums for Blue Note and then moved to Concord Jazz in 2007. Nightmoves was his first CD for Concord. Elling wrote And We Will Fly with Phil Galdston and Alan Pasqua. Galdston is a veteran songwriter who co-wrote the 1992 Vanessa Williams hit Save The Best For Last. Pianist Pasqua was a founding member of Giant. In recent years he has turned to jazz and works a lot with drummer Peter Erskine. Musicians are Laurence Hobgood on piano, Willie Jones III on drums, Christian McBride on bass, Rob Mounsey on electric piano and Guilherme Monteiro on guitar. The harmonica solo is by Gregoire Maret from Switzerland. Nightmoves is available as a budget CD. After several nominations, Elling finally won a Best Jazz Vocal Grammy for the 2009 CD Dedicated To You. His latest CD 1619 Broadway-The Brill Building Project was released last year. Kurt Elling is currently on tour. He is married with one daughter. Here is Kurt Elling performing and We Will Fly at the 2007 Montreal Jazz Festival. The harmonica solo is by Howard Levy of Bela Fleck & The Flecktones.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Review of The Ultimate Fighter 18 episode 7

Here's the video for episode 7 of The Ultimate Fighter 18. Unfortuntely, the guy who posting episodes to Daily Motion disappeared. So I have to find it someplace else. And this guy likes to upload videos like there is still a ten minute time limit. There isn't. The fight on this show is Josh Hill of Team Tate vs Michael Wooten of Team Rousey. UFC president Dana White was hoping to end the blowups between the two teams. He comes into the gym and finds pictures that he knows will antagonize Ronda Rousey and especially trainer Edmond Tarverdyan. It's a picture of a character from the film Dodgeball and they are using it to irritate Edmond. White is not happy and takes most of the pictures down. But he misses a couple and Anthony Gutierrez finds one and shows it to Ronda and Edmond. Ronda interprets this as racist to Armenians. It's not but it is childish especially when Miesha Tate knew that White didn't want any of this stuff going on. And then Miesha wonders why Ronda gives her the finger instead of shaking her hand after a fight. Well, DUH! We also get to see a couple of Ronda's unorthodox training methods. On to the fight. Josh Hill is a good grappler but he's not a finisher. Michael Wooten prefers standing. Hill takes Wooten down and controls him but doesn't do much. Wooten comes back but Hill wins round one. Wooten nails Hill with a knee at the start of round two and Hill never recovers from that. So we have a tie and a third round. Wooten wins and shows he is a more complete fighter. When Miesha attempts to shake Ronda's hand, she gets the finger again. Ronda explains that she believes Miesha is fake and is just putting on a show for the camera. She won't go along with it. And I don't know why some think she should go along with it. Next week will be a recap show. And in two weeks it will be Peggy Morgan of Team Rousey vs Sarah Moras of Team Tate and Anthony Gutierrez of Team Rousey vs Cody Bollinger of Team Tate.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-W. Lee O'Daniel & His Hillbilly Boys

Artist:W. Lee O'Daniel & His Hillbilly Boys
Song:There'll Be Some Changes Made
Album:Southern Style Western Swing

W. Lee "Pappy" O'Daniel was a very important figure in the early days of Western Swing. He went on to be Governor of Texas and a US Senator. He was born Mar. 11, 1890 in Malta, OH and grew up on a cattle ranch in Kansas. He worked in flour milling and in 1925 he went to work for Burris Mills in Fort Worth, TX. O'Daniel was put in charge of the company's radio advertising and he thought music was a good way to promote the company's products. The band was called The Light Crust Doughboys after the company's Light Crust Flour. Milton Brown and Bob Wills were among the original members of the band in 1931. a lot of great Western Swing musicians went through that band but O'Daniel is the guy who started it. In 1935, O'Daniel left Burris and started his own company W. Lee O'Daniel Flour Co. The brand was Hillbilly Flour. And he started the band W. Lee O'Daniel & His Hillbilly Boys. The band was led by his son Pat O'Daniel and his other son Mike was in it too. Leon McAuliffe was among the musicians who went through the band. They had a very popular 15 minute radio show which included Pappy O'Daniel's preaching the Bible. They recorded for Okeh and There'll Be Some Changes Made is on this various artists CD from the Dutch label Southern Style. The singer is one time Bob Wills vocalist Leon Huff. Other members when this was recorded in June 1937 were Pat O'Daniel on banjo, Mike O'Daniel and Caroll Hubbard on fiddle, Curly Perrin on guitar and Wallace Griffin on bass. W. Lee O'Daniel is credited as leader but he wasn't a musician so he never played on any of the records. In 1938, O'Daniel used his radio fame to become Governor of Texas. In 1941, he beat Lyndon Johnson to become a US Senator. Apparently he wasn't all that effective and he quit in 1948. Attempts to run for Governor of Texas in the 50s were unsuccessful. W. Lee O'Daniel died on May 11, 1969 at age 79. Fans of the 2000 Coen Brothers film O Brother, Where Art Thou will know that Charles Durning played a character based on O'Daniel. Here's a video for There'll Be Some Changes Made by W. Lee O'Daniel & His Hillbilly Boys.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Champs

Artist:The Champs
Album:Oldies But Goodies Vol. 7

I think most music fans are familiar with the instrumental classic Tequila but probably don't know much about The Champs. Tequila topped the charts in 1958. But The Champs weren't even a band until the song was a hit. The guy behind The Champs was guitarist Dave Burgess. Burgess was on the fringe of the Los Angeles music scene. Singles he recorded for Okeh and Tampa went nowhere. In 1956, he was working as a DJ in Lancaster, CA and writing songs in search of a publishing deal. His songs got him a house session guitarist job with Challenge Records, a new label owned by legendary singing cowboy Gene Autry. After finishing a session, he had studio time remaining and asked the musicians to help him with a B-side for single he planned to release. The key figure was sax player Danny Flores. He came up with the main riff for Tequila and he played sax on the record. He used the name Chuck Rio because he was under contract to a different record company. Tequila was recorded in ten minutes. It was released as a B-side to Train to Nowhere but DJs flipped it over. And before long Tequila topped the Billboard Hot 100 and sold a million copies. It even won a 1959 Grammy for Best Rhythm & Blues Recording. But there still wasn't a band. The name The Champs was after Gene Autry's horse Champion. Burgess formed a touring band with Rio and drummer Gene Alden who both played on the record. And they added guitarist Dale Norris and bassist Joe Burnass. They continued to record but never could repeat the success of Tequila. There are Champs comp CDs available. But I think most fans will only want Tequila and you can get it on this edition of the long running Oldies But Goodies series. Among those who were members of later versions of The Champs were Glen Campbell, Delaney Bramlett and Seals & Crofts. Tequila is considered to be an influential song. And Danny Flores is hailed as The Godfather of Latino Rock. Unfortunately, he sold Tequila many years ago and never got the windfall he deserved. Danny Flores died in 2007. Here are The Champs performing Tequila on the Dick Clark Beech-Nut Show May 1959.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Del Reeves

Artist:Del Reeves
Song:Girl On The Billboard
Album:Road Music: 23 Truckin' Hits

Girl On The Billboard was the only number one country hit for Del Reeves in 1965. He is not related to Jim Reeves. These kind of truck driving songs were very popular in the 60s. He was born Franklin Delano Reeves July 14, 1932 in Sparta, NC and yes, he was named after Franklin Delano Roosevelt who had just been nominated for president. Reeves performed locally as a teen and attended Appalachian State College. After a stint in the US Air Force, Reeves moved to Sacramento, CA. He was a regular on The Chester Smith Show and then moved to Nashville in 1961. Reeves recorded for Decca, Reprise and Columbia before signing with United Artists in 1965. Girl On The Billboard was his first single for United Artists and it topped the Country Singles chart in 1965. The song was written by Hank Mills and Walter Haynes. Haynes was a steel guitarist who probably played on this recording session. Mills was a lyricist who worked with a lot of songwriting partners. Reeves never topped the charts again but he had several top ten hits. There are no decent Del Reeves comps available. His UA recordings are owned by Capitol. Beware of comps with re-recordings. This various artists CD of truck songs was released by TeeVee Records in 1978 and released on CD in 1994. Reeves also appeared in several films including the 1969 western Sam Whiskey starring Burt Reynolds. He also hosted the TV show Del Reeves Country Carnival. In 1979, Reeves semi-retired from recording and touring and became a record executive. He apparently introduced Billy Ray Cyrus to Mercury Records exec Harold Shedd and then sued Cyrus for a percentage. Del Reeves performed occasionally usually on the Grand Ole Opry until his death Jan. 1, 2007 at age 74. Here's Del Reeves performing Girl On The Billboard on The Jimmy Dean Show 1965.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Anna Karina

Artist:Anna Karina
Song:Roller Girl
Album:Best of Pop a Paris: Psyche-Rock et Minijupes

Danish born actress Anna Karina moved to France in the late 50s and became famous for her marriage to legendary film director Jean-Luc Godard and appearing in his films. But she also had success singing with legendary French badboy Serge Gainsbourg in the late 60s. Roller Girl is one of the songs she recorded in 1967. She was born Hanne Karin Bayer Sept. 22, 1940 in Solbjerg, Denmark. She bounced between her parents, grandparents and foster care and started singing in clubs as a teen. After an argument with her mother, she hitchhiked to Paris in 1958. She lived on the streets for a while. But a photographer spotted her and brought her to Pierre Cardin and Coco Chanel. Chanel hired her to model and gave her the name Anna Karina. Jean-Luc Godard saw her in a Palmolive ad. She was in a bathtub covered in suds. He offered her a role in his debut film Breathless but Anna refused to appear nude. He didn't realize she was wearing a bathing suit under the suds. Anna did appear in Godard's 1960 film Le Petit Soldat and they married while shooting the 1961 film A Woman Is A Woman. Their relationship was rocky and they divorced in 1965 though she continued to appear in his films. Anna also appeared in Jacques Rivette's 1966 film The Nun and Luchino Visconti's 1967 film The Stranger. It was around this time she met Serge Gainsbourg and he wrote the 1967 film Anna for her. The film was directed by Pierre Koralnik and also starred Gainsbourg, Jean-Claude Brialy and Marianne Faithful. Anna performed Roller Girl in the film. The film aired on French TV and Roller Girl was a big hit. You can get it on this 2CD budget CD Best of Pop a Paris from the series released by Universal France. After that, Anna returned to films. She didn't record again until 2005. Anna Karina has had a long film career in France. It looks like she could have done more with music if she chose to do so. Here's Anna Karina performing Roller Girl in the 1967 film Anna.
Anna Karina - Rollergirl from Georg Best on Myspace.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Big Bad Blog Video Theater-Ashlee Evans-Smith vs Fallon Fox

Here is the fight video of Ashlee Evans-Smith vs Fallon Fox from Saturday's CFA show. Of course the controversy about Fallon Fox is she is transgender and should she be allowed to fight women. I agree with medical experts who know the fight business that she should have been tested before being approved to fight women. The transgender advocates who don't like that position don't know the fight business. The problem was Fallon's transgender status was discovered by accident and she had no intention of revealing that to potential opponents. Not even the promoter knew. No matter what she and her scumbag manager say, that kind of deception is not acceptable. She became a cause celebre for politically correct dopes. And she was the odds on favourite going into this fight. But I saw in her last fight that Fallon had trouble with a fighter who she should have beaten easily. She was having trouble with her gas tank. So I thought a more accomplished fighter would have a good chance of beating her. And Ashlee is a four time All American wrestler. In the first round, Fallon makes the mistake of not respecting that and she ends up on the bottom. She does come back and scores with knees. But Ashlee takes her down again. I scored round one 10-9 Ashlee. Ashlee did the same thing in round two and Fallon was saved by the bell. The ref messed up. He didn't hear the bell. I scored round two 10-9 Ashlee. Fallon tried to take Ashlee down in round three but the main reason Ashlee was winning this fight was her superior wrestling skills. And this time Ashlee got in a good ground and pound position and the ref stopped the fight. Ashlee Evans-Smith wins by TKO. You will notice the idiot in Fallon's corner was whining about the stoppage. The stoppage was fine. She wasn't getting out of that and she was losing anyway. Maybe the lack of respect for Ashlee and stupid arrogance led to Fallon's loss. Instead of whining about nothing, eat some humble pie and show some sportsmanship. Fallon Fox is someone who thought she could use deception to sneak into women's MMA. But it turns out she's not as good as she thinks she is. The first time she faces an accomplished fighter, she loses. I guess it surprised a lot of people. But not me. Enjoy the video!

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Brian Hyland

Artist:Brian Hyland
Song:Sealed With A Kiss
Album:Greatest Hits

Brian Hyland was still a teenager when he had two really big hits in the early 60s. Like a lot of artists of that era, his career was killed by The Beatles and he turned to country music. Today he tours the oldies circuit. He was born Nov. 12, 1943 in Woodhaven, Queens, NY and he grew up singing in church. As a teen, Hyland and his doo wop group The Delfis couldn't get a record deal. But in 1959, Hyland signed with Sammy Kaye's label Kapp Records. When his first single Rosemary went nowhere, Kapp hired Brill Building songwriters Lee Pockriss and Paul Vance to write a song for Hyland. They came up with the novelty song Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini. It topped the charts in 1960. So Brian Hyland was a pop star at age 16. The song was used in the 1961 James Cagney film One Two Three. When his second single Clickety Clack Song didn't do as well, Hyland left Kapp for ABC Records to work with the songwriting and production team of Gary Geld and Peter Udell. After Hyland's first few ABC singles didn't catch on, he finally struck gold again when Sealed With A Kiss reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1962. The song was recorded by The Four Voices in 1960 and it was also a hit for Bobby Vinton in 1972 and for Jason Donovan in 1989. But I think most would agree that Hyland's recording is the most memorable version of the song. With the British Invasion taking over the music scene in the mid-60s, Hyland turned to country music and producer Snuff Garrett. The Joker Went Wild was a top 20 hit in 1966. Then he recorded for UNI Records and had a top five hit in 1970 with his cover of the Curtis Mayfield classic Gypsy Woman produced by Del Shannon. You can get all his hits on this budget comp. Hyland moved to New Orleans in the late 70s and continues to tour the oldies circuit today. Here's Brian Hyland performing Sealed With A Kiss on Hollywood A Go Go 1965.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Barbara Stephens

Artist:Barbara Stephens
Song:Wait A Minute
Album:Wait A Minute: The Stax & Satellite Story

Barbara Stephens recorded a few singles in the early days of Stax Records. None of them were hits so she went on to be a backup singer until she retired in the early 70s. She was born Boysa Stephens Nov. 1, 1939 in Atlanta. She grew up singing in church. As a teen, she was in The Gardenias. Then she was the featured singer at The Royal Peacock, the largest black nightclub in Atlanta. Then she joined The Deltones not to be confused with a different 50s girl group also called The Deltones. It appears that this group called The Deltones were touring backup singers for big name acts and I don't think they ever recorded. In 1961, Barbara was spotted by producer Chips Moman and he brought her to Memphis to record for Satellite Records. Satellite would soon change their name to Stax because there was already a Satellite Records in California. Moman worked for Stax in their early days and produced the Carla Thomas hit Gee Whiz. He left Stax in 1964 and has had a long career in Memphis and Nashville. Barbara's first single The Life I Live was notable for two reasons. It was the first songwriting credit for Stax singer songwriter producer David Porter. And the single was first released on Satellite and when the name was changed to Stax, it was the first single released on Stax Records. Wait A Minute was Barbara's second single. She wrote that song. She recorded three singles and none of them went anywhere. You can get it on this 2CD budget CD. I'm sure Stax used Barbara as a studio singer for a while but she left and went back to being a touring backup singer. After touring with Joe Tex in the early 70s, Barbara Stephens retired from music to start a family. Now she only sings in the church choir. Here's a video for Wait A Minute by Barbara Stephens.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Two fights added to Nov. 4 DEEP JEWELS show

Megumi Sugimoto, Sachiko Fujimori
DEEP JEWELS announced two more matches have been added to the Nov. 4 Shinjuku FACE show. Of course this show is headlined by a Lightweight Championship tournament and Ham Seo Hee defending her DEEP JEWELS Flyweight Championship against Sadae Manhoef. The most interesting of the two matches will have two relative newcomers facing off. It will be Megumi Sugimoto vs Sachiko Fujimori. Both won their debuts at the Aug. 31 DEEP JEWELS show. Sugimoto is very interesting because she trains with Megumi Fujii at AACC. She won the 2011 and 2012 All Japan Student Wrestling Championship at 51kg. So that means she can wrestle and she has the best trainer. That's gotta be good. Fujimori trains at Brightness Monma. She won her debut in 49 seconds with a rear naked choke. DEEP JEWELS is selling this as a showdown between promising rookies. But they seem to be more excited about the much younger Sugimoto. The other fight has grizzled veteran Yukiko Seki facing the returning Madoka Ebihara. Seki trains at Fightchix. Her record is 11-23 and she lost to Yasuko Tamada at the last DEEP JEWELS show. At age 42, she is obviously not a prospect. Ebihara trains at Paraestra Kashiwa. Her record is 4-3. She is returning to MMA after a four year break. Her last fight was a loss to Sugi Rock on the Oct. 24, 2009 Valkyrie show. So obviously DEEP JEWELS matchmaker Yasuko Mogi knows Ebihara. Seki is a good test for Ebihara's return. If she is halfway decent she could add some much needed depth to the Flyweight division. Stay tuned for more additions to this show.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Willie Nelson

Artist:Willie Nelson f/Merle Haggard
Song:Pancho & Lefty
Album:The Essential Willie Nelson

Willie Nelson didn't become a big star until Waylon Jennings made him a country music outlaw in the mid-70s. After that success, he finally had some solo hits like Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain, Georgia on My Mind and others. In the 80s, Nelson became the king of duets. His 1983 album with Merle Haggard and single Pancho & Lefty dominated country music for a year. It's funny because if you listen to the album, it doesn't seem like Haggard is participating very much. Nelson did very well with albums he recorded with Leon Russell and then Ray Price. Though Haggard was a country music legend, he wasn't as successful in the late 70s as he was in the 60s. This was partly because Haggard moved from Capitol Records to MCA and his MCA albums did OK but not as good as his Capitol albums. So Haggard signed with Epic in 1981 and his first Epic album Big City was certified Gold. Nelson was already on Epic and decided he wanted to record with Haggard. So in 1982 Nelson brought Haggard to his recording studio in Texas. The album Pancho & Lefty was recorded in five days. Both guys were night owls and liked working into the wee hours of the morning. Apparently Nelson wanted to record Always On My Mind with Haggard but Haggard didn't like the song. Of course later that would become Nelson's signature song. Pancho & Lefty was written by legendary Texas songwriter Townes Van Zandt and recorded by Emmylou Harris on her 1977 album Luxury Liner. Nelson's daughter Lana suggested Pancho & Lefty and brought the Luxury Liner album so the guys could listen to it. They liked it. Nelson recorded most of the song solo at 3AM in the morning. He woke Haggard up to have him sing his verse. That's why Haggard sounds a little sleepy. He thought they were going to re-record his part in the morning but they didn't. Both the single and the album topped the charts in 1983 and the album was certified Platinum. You can get it on this 2CD Willie Nelson comp. It revived Haggard's career and he had a string of country chart toppers in the mid-80s. Of course Nelson was also very successful. They recorded a second album together Seashores Of Old Mexico in 1987 and the two also recorded Last Of The Breed with Ray Price in 2007. Here's the video for Pancho & Lefty by Willie Nelson featuring Merle Haggard.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Invicta announces main card for Dec. 7

Invicta announced the main card for Dec. 7 at the Ameristar Casino in Kansas City. This will be available on PPV. The interesting thing is there are three title matches on this show and they haven't announced prelims yet. So the likelihood that this show will run longer than previous shows is pretty good. The problem with that is when a show runs too long, you run the risk of tiring out the live crowd and they have nothing left for the end of the show. Supposedly they are going to run 8-10 shows in 2014. Whether they can afford to do that without a TV deal is another story. A broadcaster wouldn't let them run shows this long. They only want two hours of airtime. So with three matches possibly going five rounds each, that's an hour and a half. This show could run to 3AM. And there are a couple of announced matches that maybe should be prelims. I see a couple of attempts at women's MMA nostalgia that I could live without. The main event will have Barb Honchak defending her Invicta Flyweight Championship against Leslie Smith. Barb wasn't all that impressive in her first title defence and Leslie just dropped from 135 to 125. Leslie prefers standing but she can handle herself on the ground. Carla Esparza will defend her Invicta Strawweight Championship against Claudia Gadelha. Because Claudia is dropping from 125 to 115, she should have a strength advantage. The other title match will be in Bantamweight between Lauren Taylor and Miriam Nakamoto. Invicta keeps losing 135lb fighters to the UFC. In fact Miriam was offered a UFC contract but that would prevent her from continuing in kickboxing. I understand that she wants to do both but I think most would agree that is a poor career decision. I expect this fight to be a kickboxing match. Neither of these fighters has much of a ground game and Miriam is a really good kickboxer. Invicta's 135lb roster is always going to be thin. So then we have a couple of Strawweight fights, Felice Herrig vs Tecia Torres and Joanne Calderwood vs Katja Kankaanpaa. Last time out, Tecia got a big win over Rose Namajunas and I think she's a better fighter than Felice though Felice is better known because she's a really good self promoter. Joanne is primarily known as a striker. Katja is an interesting opponent because she has a pretty good jiu jitsu game. It could be interesting if she takes Joanne down. The first few matches on the main card aren't as interesting. Julia Budd will face Charmaine Tweet to determine Cris Cyborg's next victim. The 145lb weight class is very thin. Zoila Gurgel will face Vanessa Porto. The loser gets a one way trip to Palookaville. In a women's MMA nostalgia match, Kelly Kobold will face Tonya Evinger. I would have been interested in seeing this in 2007. But not today. Kelly hasn't fought since Apr. 2011 and her last significant fight was a loss to Gina Carano on a 2008 EliteXC show. I know she was doing lingerie football for a while. We saw Tonya recently in the TUF tryouts. At least she has been  more active than Kelly. The other match has Munah Holland vs Nina Ansaroff. Munah is a championship boxer but is a work in progress in MMA because she has no ground game. Nina is 5-3 but has never fought on a national show. She won her last fight in Brazil in June. The one name not on this show is Cris Cyborg. Supposedly Invicta was trying to find her an opponent at 155lb. I guess they couldn't find an opponent but it was a dumb idea anyway. Remember they haven't announced any prelims yet so if you're going to the show, take a pillow so you can be comfortable for hours.

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Christopher Cross

Artist:Christopher Cross
Album:The Very Best Of Christopher Cross

In the early 80s, singer songwriter Christopher Cross had a ridiculous amount of success with his 1979 debut album. Sailing was the biggest of those hits. But by the mid-80s he seemed to fall off the face of the earth and is a regular topic on Whatever Happened To. He was born Christopher Geppert May 3, 1951 in San Antonio, TX. His father was a pediatrician in the US Army and Cross grew up in Washington, DC. His dad was pediatrician for President Eisenhower's grandchildren. Cross moved back to San Antonio and led a local cover band before signing with Warner Bros. in 1979. He wrote all the songs on his debut album. It was produced by Michael Omartian. Omartian was a Los Angeles session musician who was just becoming an in demand producer. The success of Chtistopher Cross really took him to a new level. The first single Ride Like The Wind reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Sailing topped the chart. The album Christopher Cross was certified 5XPlatinum and was the biggest selling album of 1980. It won the Album Of The Year Grammy. Cross also won Best New Artist and Sailing won Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Best Arrangement. he was the first artist to win all four major Grammys and no one has done it since. It was all downhill from there. Cross' other number one hit was the theme from the 1981 film Arthur but that was a very successful film. He also had a top ten hit in 1984 with Think Of Laura which was played a lot on the daytime soap General Hospital. By his 1985 album Every Turn of the World, Cross had dropped off the charts and he left Warner Bros. in 1988. You can get all his hits on this budget comp. So what happened? Why did he fade that quickly? I dunno. I didn't like him much. I didn't like his voice or his songs. So I'm not sure why he was popular in the first place. His music seemed to appeal to the Easy Listening market and that is a significant audience. But why didn't they keep buying his records? Maybe Christopher Cross' early 80s run was one big fluke. He's still around. Cross' latest release was a 2CD live set A Night In Paris earlier this year on his own label. I guess he's a nostalgia act now. But he was big for a couple of years. Here's Christopher Cross performing Sailing 1980.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Review of The Ultimate Fighter 18 episode 6

Here's the video for episode 6 of The Ultimate Fighter 18. The match on this show has Jessamyn Duke of Team Rousey vs Raquel Pennington of Team Tate. The UFC liked the fight so much they wanted to concentrate on the fight so there is very little drama on this episode. The boredom level in the house is so high that Julianne Pena talks Raquel and Sarah Moras into letting her dress them up to look like hookers. Of course they look ridiculous but I guess that's the point. Everyone watches the fights at a pool party. There was no drama but Jessamyn stays behind. She says she wouldn't normally go out the night before a fight so she wasn't going to do it now. She also said she could have been a model but didn't like it much. She could do both things. Money is money. When everyone gets home, Anthony Gutierrez acts like a drunken idiot while the girls are trying to sleep. They turn the tables on him the next morning. Neither of these fighters has much of a ground game. Both prefer to stand. So the fight was a stand up war as expected. And it was very close. In the past, I have noticed that Raquel is a counterpuncher and that's what she does in round one. Jessamyn initiates more of the action. She is particularly effective with a front kick to get distance followed by a clinch. She also had a standing guillotine for a while. So I gave round one to Jessamyn. Between rounds, Miesha Tate tells Raquel to be more aggressive and do more than counterpunching. That was very good advice and Raquel actually did that and won round two. But where were Jessamyn's front kicks to set up the clinch? She stopped doing that. I thought the tide had turned and Raquel carried that momentum into the third round and I thought she won decisively. I think both will get UFC contracts. I enjoyed the fight but I'm going to be a little contrary. It was a glorified kickboxing match and it's funny how fans always seem to enjoy that more than grappling or jiu jitsu. Throw in the standing guillotine and I guess we could call it Shoot Boxing. But don't you think one successful takedown with a submission attempt or ground and pound would have tipped the scales in favour of one of them? But neither of them is any good at that. They will have to work on that stuff because other fighters are good at that. So afterwards, Miesha attempts to shake hands with Team Rousey and Ronda tells her to take a hike. So the usual idiots are whining that Ronda is a poor loser. Well, DUH! Why is anyone surprised? She also thinks that Miesha is full of crap. Next week's episode will have Josh Hill of Team Tate vs Michael Wooten of Team Rousey. And it looks like Dana White tires of Team Tate's baiting. Enjoy the video!
UFC The Ultimate Fighter S18E06 - Full Show (HQ) by WrestlingVidsUploaderHQv2

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-The Dream Academy

Artist:The Dream Academy
Song:Life in A Northern Town
Album:The Dream Academy

The 1985 top ten hit Life In A Northern Town was the only big hit for the British group The Dream Academy. A couple of their other songs charted but they recorded three albums and only the first one did much business. Lead singer and guitarist Nick Laird-Clowes and keyboard player Gilbert Gabriel met in the late 70s when Laird-Clowes was in the group The Act. They wanted do do pop music using strings and woodwinds and other things that aren't normally used in pop music. They were called The Politics Of Pop. Laird-Clowes met oboist Kate St. John at a party and she joined the band. She had been a member of The Ravishing Beauties. They changed the band name to The Dream Academy. They were rejected by every record company in London before they signed with Warner Bros. in 1985. Laird-Clowes was friends with Pink Floyd's David Gilmour and he agreed to produce their album. Life In A Northern Town was a bigger hit in the US than in England. It reached #7 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album The Dream Academy reached #20 on the Billboard Hot 200. So it did pretty well and it's available on CD. Laird-Clowes says he wrote Life In A Northern Town as a tribute to legendary ill fated British singer songwriter Nick Drake. The other Dream Academy song that charted was The Love Parade. The Dream Academy's 1987 album Remembrance Days did not do as well despite high profile producers Lindsey Buckingham, Patrick Leonard and Hugh Padgham. They took a break and returned with the 1990 album A Different Kind Of Weather. Gilmour even returned to produce. It didn't help. The album tanked and The Dream Academy split up in 1991. Nick Laird-Clowes released a solo CD in 1999 and continued to work with Gilmour. He has turned to film composing and wrote the score for the upcoming film About Time. Kate St. John has released two solo CDs and is a member of Channel Light Vessel who have also released 2CDs. Gilbert Gabriel is a member of the band The Believers. I'm sure Life In A Northern Town will bring back 80s memories for many music fans. Here's the video for Life In A Northern Town by The Dream Academy. There were two videos for this song. But I think this one was played on MTV in the 80s.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Julie Kedzie vs Aleksandra Albu added to Dec. 7 UFC show

It was announced yesterday that a women's match has been added to the Dec. 7 UFC show in Brisbane, Australia. This show will air in North America on Dec. 6. Veteran Julie Kedzie will face Russian newcomer Aleksandra Albu. When news of Aleksandra's UFC signing surfaced a couple of weeks ago, there was an awful lot of Chicken Littles predicting impending doom for the UFC women's division. These idiots have been predicting doom from the moment the UFC announced the start of a women's division. Anyone who believes that one fighter will make a difference one way or another is out to lunch. The UFC has plans to go to Russia in 2014 and though the experience level of young Russian fighters is not high, they need to sign some Russians for the local market. Aleksandra is 23 years old. She is a former bodybuilder and powerlifter and karate is her basic training. Supposedly she is 5-0 but her management claims that four of those fights were in Thailand and are undocumented. I'm not really buying that nonsense. Her one Russian fight is on Youtube. She won easily but I wasn't impressed with her. The book on her is she is a good striker but not so good on the ground. Just remember that unknown doesn't mean not good. But she has to prove herself and that's tough to do in the UFC without seasoning. I'm not crazy about the UFC signing a female fighter who has no track record but it's not the end of the world. In this case, Julie Kedzie makes for a good gatekeeper. Julie did not look good in her first UFC fight against Germaine De Randamie. She needs to win this fight or she could get cut. She knows as much about her opponent as the rest of us. I hope the fight is decent.