Monday, October 31, 2016

A Little Quirk on Tonight's Jeopardy

On tonights Jeopardy there were answers alluding to Bob Dylan, Donovan, and Simon and Garfunkel.  Since the answers are revealed so quickly, I can not remember the exact phrasing of each answer.  In a few days I can check one of the fan sites for the exact wording.

What is Hibbing? - This is Bob Dylan's home town.  Lee got it while all 3 contestants passed on it.

What is Season of the Witch?  The answer referred to Halloween III.  That is a Donovan song that is on his Sunshine Superman album.

What is the 59th Bridge - This alludes to Simon & Garfunkel's 59th Street Bridge Song

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Forest Hills Should Also Honor Simon and Garfunkel with a Street named for Them

Today the intersection of 67th Avenue and 110th Street in Forest Hills was named for the punk rock group the Ramones as reported on NY1 News.  This is right in front of Forest Hills High School  where yours truly was in the class of 1967.  Actually Tommy Ramone (birth name Thomas Edelyi) was in my class.  I was not acquainted with him back then.

Certainly the Ramones were quite influential in the genre of punk rock and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

It is in my humble opinion that Simon & Garfunkel (Forest Hills HS class of 1958) be simliarly honored by the Forest Hills community.  Simon & Garfunkel have won 9 total competitive awards, 4 Hall of Fame awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award.  They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

Season of the Witch by Donovan - My Favorite Halloween Song

I requested this on Bob Radil's 60s 70s show on Friday, but he didn't have it in his collection.  He played the Vanilla Fudge version instead.  I appreciate all of Bob's efforts in trying to please his listeners.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Bob Dylan Finally Acknowledges Nobel Prize

Bob Dylan in an interview with the British magazine The Telegraph states that he was thrilled about winning the Nobel Prize for literature and that he plans to be in Stockholm to accept the award on December 10.  The 2016 leg of The Neverending Tour will be over by then so I think he will be there.

Friday, October 28, 2016

NYC Radio Personality Zacherle Passes Away at Age 98

I best remember Zacherle as a radio personality who appeared on WPLJ and WNEW-FM.  In his later years he did a Halloween special on WCBS-FM.  He hosted many TV shows over the years as well.  It seems ironic that he passed away a few days before Halloween,

There is a fairly good biography of him on the Wkipedia.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Interview with Johnny Gilbert the Announcer on Jeopardy

I have heard Johnny Gilbert every day that I watch Jeopardy, but I don't know much about him.  I found this interview on the Jeopardy web site.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Bobby Vee Passes Away at 73 - Yes There is a Connection to Bob Dylan

Today we found out that Bobby Vee passed away at age 73 from complications of Alzheimer's Disease.  There have just been too many entertainers who have left us in 2016 .  Bobby who was born Robert Velline recorded 38 Top 100 hits from 1959 to 1970.  I thank Don Tandler the owner of Pop Gold Radio  for playing his major hits at 3 PM today shortly after the death was announced.  There is an exellent biography of Bobby published today in The Guardian.

It turns out that c.1960 Bob Dylan using the name Elston Gunn toward with Bobby Vee. In 2013 Dylan played a cover of Vee's Suzie Baby at a concert in St. Paul, Minnesta.  As you can see from the Youtube video below he acknowledged that his old friend was in the audience,

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Bob Dylan Ain't Talking - He Should be Ashamed of Himself

I was listening to Don McGee's Mixed Bag show on WFUV this afternoon when he played Dylan's Ain't Talking from the Modern Times album.  He played it since Dylan ain't talking publically about his winning the Nobel Prize.  Over the last few years he doesn't talk to the audience during his concerts.  He just won a very presigious award and is the envy of millions throughout the world.  C'mon Zimmy, talk to us and show some gratitude to the people who have supported you for over 50 years.

The video above is from a 2006 concert at New York City Center.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Will Bob Dylan Accept the Nobel Prize For Literature?

It is certainly a rare honor and privilege to win any Nobel Prize.  I think that anyone who won it would be ecstatic and jump at the opportunity to publically acknowledge it and go to Stockholm to accept it.  We all know that Bob Dylan has been uncommunicative and reclusive for many years.  I read that the Nobel Prize committee tried unsuccessfully to contact him.  There was a brief mention on Dylan's web site, but it was taken down.

The question is will he accept the award?  The ceremony is scheduled for December 10 in Stockholm.  The last concert on the 2016 leg of the Never Ending tour is November 23 in Fort Lauderdale, so there is absolutely no excuse for a no show on his part.

Stay tuned.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Donald Trump Praises Bill and Hillary Clinton in a 2008 Interview on NY1

I usually don't comment on political issues, but I got a good laugh on the way home when I viewed this interview with former NY1 political reporter Dominic Carter speaking to Donald Trump in 2008.

Words of wisdom from The Donald.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Happy 90th Birthday to Chuck Berry

At least one recording artist from the 1950s is still active today.  Happy Birthday to Chuck Berry.  One of my favorites of his is No Particular Place to Go from 1964.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Happy 33rd Anniversary to Us

October 16, 1983 was also a Sunday and the weather was the same as it is today.  We walked down the aisle at the Old Westbury Hebrew Congregation.  Rabbi Barry Dov Lerner performed the ceremony.  We featured Beatle songs at the wedding but Endless Love by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie was our wedding song which was picked by Karen.  I didn't hook her on Bob Dylan until after we were married.

Friday, October 14, 2016

A Nobel Laureate Can Write A Silly Song

Wiggle Wiggle


 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a gypsy queen
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle all dressed in green
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle ’til the moon is blue
 Wiggle ’til the moon sees you

 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle in your boots and shoes
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, you got nothing to lose
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a swarm of bees
 Wiggle on your hands and knees

 Wiggle to the front, wiggle to the rear
 Wiggle ’til you wiggle right out of here
 Wiggle ’til it opens, wiggle ’til it shuts
 Wiggle ’til it bites, wiggle ’til it cuts

 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a bowl of soup
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a rolling hoop
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a ton of lead
 Wiggle—you can raise the dead

 Wiggle ’til you’re high, wiggle ’til you’re higher
 Wiggle ’til you vomit fire
 Wiggle ’til it whispers, wiggle ’til it hums
 Wiggle ’til it answers, wiggle ’til it comes

 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like satin and silk
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle like a pail of milk
 Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, rattle and shake
 Wiggle like a big fat snake

Copyright © 1990 by Special Rider Music

Thursday, October 13, 2016

My Thoughts on Bob Dylan's Winning the Nobel Prize For Literature

It was pretty much a normal commute this morning as I approached my NJ Transit train in Penn Station at about 7:40.  Out of habit I looked at my iPhone and saw that Bob Dylan won the 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature.  I knew that he had been nominated a few times, but had doubts if he would ever win the award.  Can song lyrics be considered literature?  According to the article in the New York Times some people questioned his choice for the award while others praised it.  He is the first musician to win this prestigious award and is in some pretty good company.  Toni Morrison in 1993 was the latest American to win it.

Needless to say I was elated upon hearing the news.  I am thinking are other singer/songwriters or other composers of popular music worthy of the award?  Off the top of my head there is Lennon/McCartney, Paul Simon, Carole King, Leonard Cohen and many others.  I think the Dylan song that demonstrates his ability as a poet is Visions of Johanna recorded in 1966 on Blonde on Blonde.

Ain’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re tryin' to be so quiet?
 We sit here stranded, though we’re all doin’ our best to deny it
 And Louise holds a handful of rain, temptin’ you to defy it
 Lights flicker from the opposite loft
 In this room the heat pipes just cough
 The country music station plays soft
 But there’s nothing, really nothing to turn off
 Just Louise and her lover so entwined
 And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind

 In the empty lot where the ladies play blindman’s bluff with the key chain
 And the all-night girls they whisper of escapades out on the “D” train
 We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight
 Ask himself if it’s him or them that’s really insane
 Louise, she’s all right, she’s just near
 She’s delicate and seems like the mirror
 But she just makes it all too concise and too clear
 That Johanna’s not here
 The ghost of ’lectricity howls in the bones of her face
 Where these visions of Johanna have now taken my place

 Now, little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously
 He brags of his misery, he likes to live dangerously
 And when bringing her name up
 He speaks of a farewell kiss to me
 He’s sure got a lotta gall to be so useless and all
 Muttering small talk at the wall while I’m in the hall
 How can I explain?
 Oh, it’s so hard to get on
 And these visions of Johanna, they kept me up past the dawn

 Inside the museums, Infinity goes up on trial
 Voices echo this is what salvation must be like after a while
 But Mona Lisa musta had the highway blues
 You can tell by the way she smiles
 See the primitive wallflower freeze
 When the jelly-faced women all sneeze
 Hear the one with the mustache say, “Jeeze
 I can’t find my knees”
 Oh, jewels and binoculars hang from the head of the mule
 But these visions of Johanna, they make it all seem so cruel

 The peddler now speaks to the countess who’s pretending to care for him
 Sayin’, “Name me someone that’s not a parasite and I’ll go out and say a prayer for him”
 But like Louise always says
 “Ya can’t look at much, can ya man?”
 As she, herself, prepares for him
 And Madonna, she still has not showed
 We see this empty cage now corrode
 Where her cape of the stage once had flowed
 The fiddler, he now steps to the road
 He writes ev’rything’s been returned which was owed
 On the back of the fish truck that loads
 While my conscience explodes
 The harmonicas play the skeleton keys and the rain
 And these visions of Johanna are now all that remain
Copyright © 1966 by Dwarf Music; renewed 1994 by Dwarf Music

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Random Comments of the Day

I survived another Yom Kippur.  We went to services at the Free Synagogue of Flushing this morning.  Karen felt a little dizzy at the end of fast, but she felt better later.

I just can't wait until this presidential election is over.  In all the years that I have followed politics, this has been the most bitter campaign.  Sadly, we have to vote between the lesser of the two evils.

Sometimes I wonder if the media creates the news about a trivial situation.  I was watching the ABC Evening News where the final story concerned a high school volleyball game.  The CD player was not working so one of the student athletes volunteered to sing the national anthem.  I think most high school students know how to sing it.  I guess the young lady involved got a thrill seeing herself on national TV.  At least this story was not about the presidential election.

Monday, October 10, 2016

WOR-FM Revisted on WFUV

Back in September 2008 I wrote a journal entry about WOR-FM.  Right now I am listening to a tribute to that station that was originally heard on WFUV Saturday night October 8 at 8 PM.  At that time I was listening to Cousin Brucie on SiriusXM 60s on 6, but was not aware of that show.  After Vin Scelsa retired, Paul Cavalconte, another New York radio icon started a show in that time slot called the Cavalcade.  Luckily I found out on Facebook that the show was being archived.  I highly suggest to my radio enthuisast friends listen to it at at  I don't know how long it will be on this site, so please check it out soon.

I must give special thanks to radio historian Rob Frankel who restored many WOR-FM airchecks that were heard on this show.  It is great hearing Scott Muni,  Rosko, Murray the K, and Johnny Michaels who were the first DJs on the station in October 1966.  I had the pleasure of meeting Rob Frankel on the WABC Rewound Cruise in June 2007.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Paul McCartney Teams Up With Neil Young at Desert Trip but not with Dylan

Below is a Youtube video of Paul McCartney teaming up with Neil Young at Desert Trip to sing Why Don't We Do it in the Road which was originally done on the White Album in 1968.  I'm disappointed that Paul did not team up with Bob Dylan at all.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Bob Dylan's Never Ending Tour Resumes at the Desert Trip Festival in Southern California

Dylan decided to take a few months off from touring during the summer.  Since he is 74 years old, he has a right to take it easy.  The tour resumed last night at the Desert Trip Festival which also features performances by Paul McCartney and the Rolling Stones.  Boy would I love to hear Sir Paul sing a Dylan song.  Anyway below is Dylan singing Desolation Row.

The set list from Bill Pagel's Boblinks page is different than the one we heard a few months ago at Forest Hills as the performance last night did not include any adult standards from his last two albums.

May the Never Ending Tour never end.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Mets Lose to Giants 3-0 in Wild Card Game to End Season

Noah Syndergaard was outstanding last night for 7 innings, but Jeurys Familia gave up a 3 run home run to Conor Gillaspie in the 9th inning as the Mets lost the wild card game to the San Francisco Giants.  Madison Bumgarner came through in the clutch as he usually does in post-season and shut out the Mets.

Game recap

With injuries to 3 of the starting 5 pitchers and to several position players, I didn't think the Mets would get to the post-season for the second season in a row.  They were able to win 27 of their last 40 games to get the first wild card slot.

Already we must speculate on next season.  Some questions are:

  • Will David Wright be able to come back from a major injury?
  • Will Yoenis Cespedes opt out of his contract and sign with another team?
  • Will Bartolo Colon return?  He was certainly the "ageless wonder" this season.
  • Will the Mets re-sgn Neil Walker or will T. J. Rivera become the regular second baseman?
We shall see what we shall see.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Free Synagogue of Flushing will Celebrate its 100th Anniversary in 2017

For the second year in a row the Free Synagogue of Flushing is opening its doors to everyone for high holy day services.  It is sad that so many synagogues in Queens have closed over the years as the Jewish population has declined.  Karen, Lee and I attended services there yesterday.  They announced that they will be observing their 100th anniversary next year.  I would think that back then Flushing was rural.

From 1978-81 Queens B'nai B'rith singles held its monthly meetings at the Free Synagogue.  I described my days in that group in this journal entry written in 2008.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Shana Tova to All

My best wishes for a happy and healthy new year for readers of Bruce's Journal who observe the holiday.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

The Mets Clinched Home Field in The Wild Card Game

On August 8th I wrote a pessimistic journal entry about the Mets.  At that point they were losing and were several games behind in the race for a wild card spot in the postseason.  It was a tough situation as they lost 3 of the 5 strating pitchers to injuries.  There were also long term injuries to Lucas Duda, Neil Walker, and David Wright.  The team came back to life as Asrubal Cabrera and Yoenis Cespedes returned from short term injuries.  Minor league reinforcements including Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo, and T. J. Rivera also helped.

Their victory against the Phillies today clinched the home field advantage in the wild card game on Wednesday against the Cardinals or Giants.  In one game or a short series anything can happen.
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