Friday, November 15, 2019

My Son the Andy Rooney Fan


Here is a photo of Lee wearing the t-shirt he got during our vacation to Seattle this past summer.  For some strange reason, he really likes Andy Rooney since we watched him for many years we watched his segments on 60 Minutes on CBS.  Sadly, Andy passed away in 2011, but now Lee likes to watch him on Youtube.


Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Researching Two Different Topics at the Performing Arts Library of NYPL


It was an unusually cold day for November and the last thing I wanted to do is sit home.  I am indexing articles for the SABR Biography Project and found a biography of Harry Coyle, the director of many baseball telecasts.  I looked in the bibliography and found:

Walker, J. R., & Bellamy, R. V. (2008). Centerfield shot: A history of baseball on television. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.

So I went to the Performing Arts Library to read the book.  Here are some of the notes that I took:


  • Breaks in the action of a game made baseball a difficult sport for TV.  I just hate it when they bring in a pitcher for one batter, but that will end next season.
  • Even with declining ratings, the World Series is the "Crown Jewel" of the TV Game
  • TV led to the contraction of the minor leagues
  • The availability of baseball games on TV created more fans
I found this book by accident in the library's catalog:

Etling, L. (2011). Radio in the movies: A history and filmography, 1926-2010. Jefferson, N.C: McFarland.

I concentrated on a chapter that considered disk jockeys in movies.  There are several films that considered Alan Fried:
  • Mister Rock n Roll: The Alan Fried Story
  • American Hot Wax
  • Rock Around the Clock
  • Rock Rock Rock

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Congratulations to Pete Alonso 2019 National League Rookie of the Year


Pete Alonso easily won the 2019 National League Rookie of the Year Award after setting the rookie record for hitting 53 home runs.  He is now the 6th Met to win this award:

  • Tom Seaver (1967)
  • Jon Matlack (1972)
  • Darrell Strawberry (1983)
  • Dwight Gooden (1984)
  • Jacob deGrom (2014)
Tom Seaver eventually made to the Baseball Hall of Fame, while personal problems prevented Strawberry and Gooden from reaching their potential.  Will Pete be able to maintain his statistics in the years to come?  Baseball is a team sport, so no matter how well he performs, the other players on the Mets must perform for the team to make the playoffs in 2020.

Hearty congratulations to Pete.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

The 2019 Oldies Meet and Greet was a Big Success with Some Surprises

Big Jay Sorensen spoke to the gathering today

Today's oldies meet and greet brought some surprises.  Jeff Scheckner and I announced the event on Facebook and Oldies Message Board.  Of course, many people say they are going to be coming but something comes up and they must back out.  There is certainly nothing wrong with that as emergencies always come up.  Today's event was unique for people who unexpectedly came.

Jim Kerr came by toward the end of the event

Jim had attended a few of the earlier events, but this time he came unexpectedly and spoke to the group about Harry Harrison's induction last night into the Radio Hall of Fame.  Getting back to Jay Sorensen; he spoke about his days at WNBC, NJ101.5, and WCBS-FM.  Anita Bonita, formerly of Z100 and now with WCBS 880 came with Russ DiBello whose radio name is Famous Amos.


Bill Dillane with Louise Murray in the background

Today's event drew about 50 people which is more than have come in recent years.  Many of the people from the early days (c.2006) have "moved on" but new people are coming.  For the second year in a row, must of the "Survey Guys" have attended. Milton Love of the doo-wop group The Solitaires also came. 

We will have it again next November.


Friday, November 8, 2019

6 Dylan Enthusiasts Talk it Up at NYU


First of all, I thank Sal Fallica for arranging a conference room at NYU for this meeting.

Whenever I have announced a meeting on Facebook it is inevitable that people just don't show up.  There is certainly no malicious intent.  3 people contacted me on the day of the event with regrets.  6 people were enough to initiate many stimulating mini-discussions about Bob. The following Dylan fans came:


  • Bruce Slutsky
  • Lawrence Kaplan
  • Steve Joyce
  • Sal Fallica
  • Matt Waters
  • Philip Hale
The meeting was very unstructured with discussions from A to Z and topics that occurred from 1962-2019.  The average topic was discussed for about 30 seconds.  Off the top of my head we discussed:

  • Dylan at the Beacon Theater
  • The relationship between the Beatles and Dylan
  • Gene Clark
  • Laura Tenschert's radio show Definitely Dylan
  • Ringo Starr requesting that Murray the K play Corrina Corrina from the Freewheelin' album
  • Stephen Scobie's book Alias Bob Dylan
  • Lawrence Ferlinghetti 
  • Planet Waves
  • The Tempest
  • Dylan singing adult standards
  • Blonde on Blonde as some people's favorite Dylan album
I didn't take notes, but there were many other topics considered.

We felt that a restaurant or bar would be too noisy for future meetings with similar discussions.  I feel that future meetings should be more focused.

Lawrence Kaplan had some rare videos in his personal collection and felt we can show them at a future meeting.





Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Random Thoughts of the Day


Since my building is having a new elevator installed, it has been a real pain to do food shopping and laundry.  I've had to help Karen schlep the groceries and laundry up and down the stairs.  I am estimating that the job won't be completed until December 15.  It bothers me that the contractors did not work on minor holidays like Columbus Day and Election Day.  That means more days of inconvenience.

I heard this funny remark on WFAN today.  The Giants and Jets are playing this Sunday in the "Toilet Bowl."  Both teams stink.

Here is a Jewish joke that was on Alan Reiman's Facebook page.

A young Jewish man walks into the lingerie department of Macy’s in New York. He tells the saleslady, "I would like a Jewish bra for my wife - size 34B."

With a quizzical look the saleslady asked, "What kind of bra?"
He repeated, "A Jewish bra. She said to tell you that she wanted a Jewish bra and that you would know what she wanted."

"Ah, now I remember," said the saleslady. "We don't get as many requests for them as we used to. Most of our customers lately want the Catholic bra, the Salvation Army bra, or the Presbyterian bra."
Confused and a little flustered the man asked, “So, what are the differences?"

The saleslady responded, "It is all really quite simple. The Catholic bra supports the masses, the Salvation Army lifts up the fallen, and the Presbyterian bra keeps them staunch and upright."
He mused on that information for a minute and said, "Hmm … I just know I’ll probably regret asking, but what does the Jewish bra do then?"

“Ah, the Jewish bra," she replied. “The Jewish bra makes mountains out of molehills.”

Monday, November 4, 2019

Visit to the National Jazz Museum in Harlem

Duke Ellington's piano on display at the Museum

I have listened to jazz radio station WBGO for years.  Recently I heard a mention of the National Jazz Museum of Harlem so I thought I would go over there to see what it had to offer.  I had never been in that part of Manhattan and observed that it was very much gentrified.  The museum, affiliated with the Smithsonian, was established in 1997 and moved to its current location on 129th street in 2015.

There were displays of well-known and obscure musicians including Duke Ellington's piano seen above.  Visitors were able to sample recordings of many traditional jazz artists.  The museum emphasized jazz music from the early to the mid-20th century. There was also a library of jazz-related books. There wasn't much about contemporary jazz.

The exhibit was small so it only took about an hour to see what was there.  Hopefully, the collection will grow in the future.
 
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