Thursday, August 29, 2013

8th Annual Meet and Greet of Oldies Radio Enthusiasts set for Saturday October 5 to Honor Alan Berman

Alan Berman with Cool Bobby B at Last Year's Gathering

You are invited to the 8th Annual Meet and Greet of Oldies Radio Enthusiasts to be held on Saturday October 5, 2013 from 2 PM to 4 PM at Ben’s Deli ( 209 West 38th Street in Manhattan.  This year we will also remember and honor our friend Alan Berman who tragically passed away in June. There be an opportunity to say a few words about Alan and his great devotion to oldies radio and the events we had in the past.   If you cannot come to this event, please feel free to e-mail some of your reminiscences.  For information please contact the organizers Bruce Slutsky ( or Jeff Scheckner ( .  You can RSVP on Facebook or an e-mail to one of the organizers.  We are hoping to attract some celebrities as in years past and will keep you posted.

I am pleased to report that Cool Bobby B seen above will come to the October 5 gathering.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Another Self Portrait - The Deluxe Edition

Obviously times have changed since there are so few music stores around.  Years ago there was the excitement of scraping up my allowance money and going to Alexanders record department to buy the new release.  Back in 1970 when I was a student at CCNY I actually worked at Alexanders and likely bought the original Self Portrait using my employee discount.

It was different from other Dylan albums since it had no songs written by Bob.  It was bashed by the critics including the esteemed Greil Marcus who commented "What is this shit."  Some months later Dylan released New Morning which was infinitely better.  IMHO New Morning was one of Dylan's most underrated album.

Let's turn the clock ahead to 2013 as Another Self Portrait was released yesterday.  I pre-ordered it from and it arrived yesterday while nobody was at home to accept it from the post man.  Not a major problem, since Karen picked it up at the Post office.  There was a regular version with just two CDs, but I had to get the deluxe version with 4 CDs and two books with photos of Bob c.1970.

Disk 1 - Another Self Portrait Part 1
Disk 2 - Another Self Portrait Part 2
Disk 3 - The 1969 Isle of Wight Concert with the Band
Disk 4 - The Original Self-Portrait

Since there is only so much time in a day I just heard disk 1 today.  I have to save time to listen to Cousin Brucie and watch the Mets and Yankees.  Another Self-Portrait is alternative versions from the 1970 release and outtakes.  On some of the cuts the overdubs were taken out.  So far, it was very folky.

The package included inset saying that Bob Dylan, The Complete Album collection will be coming in Fall 2013.  It will include all 41 official albums including 14 newly remastered titles.  It will also include Side Tracks, a 2 CD compilation of previously released songs not included on the original albums.  I assume that this includes George Jackson, Positively Fourth Street, and Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window.

I have many Dylan albums on vinyl and cassette tape.  It certainly doesn't make sense to pay big bucks to buy music I already own.  Hopefully, they will sell the Side Track separately.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Marlon, We Hardly Knew You

In this day and age you just can't get attached to any player on your favorite team.  They are here one day and gone tomorrow.  Marlon Byrd who is a candidate for Comeback Player of the Year had hit 21 Home Runs with 71 RBIs and a .285 batting average was traded today which was supposed to be his t-shirt night at Citifield.  They traded him with catcher John Buck for a minor league second baseman and a "player to be named later".  Hopefully that player will be major league ready.

John Buck was expendable with the promotion of Travis d'Arnaud as starting catcher.  But I really think the Mets should have made an effort to sign Byrd to a good contract for a couple of years in the off season.  I don't see any better right fielders on the horizon for the Mets.  Look for a 90 loss season.

Back in 2000 I bought a Met jersey with no name or number on the back.  I have seen so many jerseys in the stands with names and numbers of players who left the team years ago.

Monday, August 26, 2013

This Dentist Listens to the Wrong Radio Station

A few weeks ago I reported that I had to visit a periodontist (gum specialist) for treatment.  We all know that visiting any dentist is rarely a pleasant experience.  When I first sat in the chair the assistant turned the radio to WKTU.  Regular readers of my journal know that at times I report which radio stations I listen to that day.  I never listen to WKTU since their music is just not my "cup of tea."

Maybe I use a certain dentist in Tarrytown?  He would certainly entertain his patients with Rewound Radio which for me is a better alternative to WKTU.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Tigers 3 Mets 0

It was a match up of the All-Star game starters Matt Harvey against Max Scherzer.  Harvey just wasn't sharp as he gave up two runs in the second inning.  Even Scherzer who only bats in interleague games in National League hit a double in that inning.  The Mets could only get 3 hits as they lost 3-0.

Game Recap

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sid Bernstein Dies at Age 95

Sid Bernstein who brought the Beatles to the USA in 1964 died at age 95.  He arranged the Beatles in concert at Carnegie Hall and later at Shea Stadium.  In November 2009 I met Sid Bernstein at the Beat Expo in Stamford, Ct.  At age 91 he spoke to the audience about his experiences with the Beatles.

Obituary from USA Today

Sid Bernstein with Alan Berman in November 2009

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Today is National Radio Day

The news media did not toot their horns about National Radio Day.  Please check out this story from 1010 WINS. 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Highlights from Bob Dylan Another Self Portrait

This preview is provided by NPR.  Enjoy!

Beatles Let it Be Musical to Close on September 1

Beatles music transcends the generation.  People who were  born after the Beatles Years (1962-1970) love the music of the Fab Four.  Over the years there have been several tribute groups that play their music and emulate their style.  On Lee's birthday in 2009 we saw Strawberry Fields at BB Kings.  Back in the late 1970s I saw the show Beatlemania on Broadway.  This Yahoo Directory lists several Beatles tribute bands.

The Broadway show Let it Be was scheduled to run until December 29, but will close on September 1.  Perhaps it came to Broadway too soon after the Beatles tribute show rain closed in July 2011.  I guess since two of the Beatles have passed away seeing a tribute band is the next best thing.  Maybe the problem is that there are just too many such groups imitating the Beatles.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Just Like a Woman - Bob Dylan Song of the Day

Brian Matthew just played the original studio version from Blonde on Blonde.  Above is the version played at the Concert for Bangla Desh in August 1971.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Remembering Elvis Presley

It is hard to believe that it is 36 years since Elvis Presley died in Memphis.  I was on vacation in Cape Cod when I heard the news.  I always remember in 2003 when I visited Graceland as most of the visitors where not yet born when the King died in 1977.  Below is a performance of Heartbreak Hotel on the Ed Sullivan Show in January 1957.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Remembering the August 14, 2003 Blackout

It was 10 years ago today as I left NJIT at 4 PM as usual.  I found out that the Newark Light Rail was not running, but thought it was just a local power outage.  I walked toward Newark Penn Station and  observed that the traffic lights were out.  When I arrived at the train station we were informed that it was a blckout covering most of the eastern U.S.

I walked back to NJIT and went to the Public Safety office where they let me stay in a dormitory room.  The power was restored in Newark at about 9 PM, but NYC was still out.  I slept in the dorm until about 6 AM.  I was able to find an open restaurant nearby to eat breakfast.  I then walked back to the train station and was able to board the PATH train to NYC.

The NYC Subways were not running, but I was able to ride an express bus back home where I arrived at 10:30 AM.  I was lucky to be able sleep in an NJIT dorm room since so many stranded commuters had to sleep on the sidewalks.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Bob Dylan and Friends play The Weight at Hoboken

On this leg of the Never Ending Tour, the set list didn't vary much.  However The Weight, originally done by The Band, was not played at Jones Beach but was done at Hoboken the night before.  The performance above features Bob Dylan with Jeff Tweedy, Jim James and Peter Wolf.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Random Thoughts of the Day

I returned to work at NJIT after my yearly August staycation.  This is the slowest period of the year since there are no classes until after Labor Day.  It took me about 3 hours to go through my work related e-mail.  Of course 90% of it is irrelevant.  After that I was able to spend some time working on my research project that I am doing in conjunction with a librarian at LIU Post.  I must always be grateful that there is a job to go to each morning.  Two of my librarian friends have been unemployed for sometime now.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

My Vague Memories of Camp Wel-Met's Western Trip #3 in 1965

A journal entry I wrote in February 2009 recalling my days in Camp Wel-Met has generated numerous hits. I just received a response from Mitchell W who was on the Western Trip #3 in 1965 with me.  It encourage me to scratch my head for memories of that trip.  Since it is almost 50 years ago, my memories of the details are fading.  I will do my best, so here goes.

Camp Wel-Met had 4 yearly bus tours of the Western United States in the 1960s and 70s.  Back in 1965 I was on Western Trip #3 that left NYC about July 16 and returned August 25.  

The tour started at the Narrowsburg site for a few days of training before we hit the road.  The first day was an overnight drive to St. Louis.  We actually changed drivers in Columbus, Ohio.  We stayed at the Jewish Community Center in St. Louis for a few days.  The next stop that I can remember  was the Jensby Farm in Kansas near the Nebraska border.  

The highlight of the trip was the Grand Canyon.  We actually hiked down the trail and slept near the bottom before we made the trek back up.  I was only 16 years old at the time and had a lot more energy that I had now.

I also remember stopping at the Navajo Indian reservation in Window Rock Arizona where we had to sleep in the bus one night since our sleeping bags were caught in a torrential rain.

There was also the stop at Pikes Peak where we took a railroad to the top

I can remember only some of the people I met on the trip:

Gerhard - group leader
Bernie, Louise, Mike and Marge were the counselors.
Phyllis Silverman
Nancy Yellen
Dick Seltzer
Mitchell W  who responded to my original post about Wel-Met (1961-65)
Mark Soloway

Friday, August 9, 2013

Three Stooges Fan in the Neighborhood

Very often I drive down 32nd Avenue in Flushing on the way to Bayside.  A few months ago I observed these statues of the Three Stooges at the corner of 32nd Ave and 154th Street which is about 1 1/2 miles from my home.  Today I took a walk over there and took a few photos.  I wonder if the owners have visited the Stoogeum near Philadelphia.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Battle of Time Warner Cable vs CBS-TV

Back in the old days you had a television set with "rabbit ears" or an outside antenna and could just pick up the broadcast channels. Back then it was simple, but the choices were limited.  When I was growing up I received the major networks (CBS, NBC, ABC) plus locals at Channels 5, 9, 11 and 13.

I remember in Fall 1986 I first subscribed to Time Warner Cable in Flushing.  Back then it provided service to the traditional broadcast stations and to about 40 cable stations including those that provided coverage to the local teams.  Since then the landscape has become more complicated with more stations and service providers.

Time Warner has now dropped WCBS-TV-2 from its line-up over a dispute on fees to carry it to its subscribers:

Time Warner Cable's "side of the story"

CBS TV's "side of the story"

I am trying to be objective so, please read each web site.

As of now there has not be a major problem since TV viewership is lower over the summer months, but the dispute should be heating up soon.  Tomorrow night's Jet football game is on Channel 2, so the diehards may be annoyed.  Also there is a PGA Golf Tournament on CBS this weekend.

I have one television not connected to cable for situations like this or if the cable TV system goes down temporarily,

Within a few weeks the NFL season will begin as well at the 2013-14 TV season.  If this dispute is not resolved by then, there will be massive complaints.  It is a shame that the "little guy" is caught in the middle of a dispute between two major corporations.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

One Song from Dylan's Another Self Portrait

Dylan sings the English folk song Pretty Saro. There were six versions recorded for the original Self Portrait in 1970, but none made the cut. The boxed set will be released on August 27.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Writer's Cramp Again

I guess we are in the summer doldrums as nothing much seems to be happening.  I just can't think of anything to write.  Don't worry, something will come up shortly. I am sure that nobody expects me to write about the A-Rod situation.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Royals 4 Mets 3 in 12 Innings

There was a drizzly rain for most of the morning, so we were not sure if we should go over the Citifield to see the We decided to go at about 12 noon after the weather forecast stated the light rain would end early in the afternoon.  We bought our tickets and headed to section 515 in the Promenade section behind home plate.

It was the same old story; good pitching, but little hitting as the Mets trailed 3-1 in the 8th inning.  I knew it would be difficult since David Wright was placed on the disabled list.  In the bottom of the 8th Josh Satin drove in 2 runs to tie the score.  Extra innings again.  Would this be another marathon game?

Justin Maxwell hit a home run in the top of the 12th to give the Royals a 4-3 victory over the Amazins.

Game rccap

Friday, August 2, 2013

Random Comments of the Day

It is August already so there are only two more Fridays that I have off before the 5 day schedule resumes on August 19th.  Karen and I went to see Two Guns featuring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg.  There was too much violence.  I should have known from the movie's title.  As I have said before, I have outgrown the mainstream movies, but the multiplex is within walking distance.

I am on staycation next week.  Since I have the time, I may as well take it when things are slow in the library.  Maybe I'll take in some museums this week

Time Warner finally took Channel 2 off their system as an agreement could not be reached between the two parties.  I have one TV not connected to cable for situations like this.  Believe me they will settle before the regular NFL season begins in September.  There would be too much money lost.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Slutskys Meet Mr. Met Again

About a year ago we met Mr. Met at the Sly Fox Inn in Fresh Meadows near St. Johns University.  A few weeks ago while reading their Facebook page  I found out that our favorite mascot was returning on July 31.  When we got to the restaurant the manager said that this was the 7th year in a row that he appeared.  Here are some photos:

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