Friday, November 29, 2019

Trip to the New York Transit Museum to See the Exhibit on the Redbirds

A #2 Train as a Redbird

According to my records documented in this journal I last visited the New York Transit Museum was on November 11, 2018.  When Lee heard that there is a new exhibition about the Redbirds we had to visit it again.  In transit jargon, the R-26 cars that were first introduced in 1959 in different colors were later branded as Redbirds since they were all painted red.  They served the lines then known as the IRT which are now the numbered subway lines.  Below is a photo of the #7 line that went to the World's Fair in 1964/5 that was later painted red.

This train took me to Shea Stadium.  It was later painted red.

When the Redbirds were retired in 2004, they were dumped in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Delaware where they serve as reefs.

The rest of the museum was unchanged since our last visit.

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

One Thing I am Thankful

The photo above is of New York Penn Station today as people try to get trains out of the city.  Even on a normal day, it is very crowded.  It never had the capacity to handle the volume of commuters today.  I am thankful that I don't have to ride trains in and out of that miserable place.  Likewise I am thankful that I don't have to ride through Newark Penn Station.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Remembering WMCA Radio Home of the Good Guys in the 1960s

Today, I started a Facebook group for WMCA when it was a top 40 station in the 1960s  In the first 13 hours 56 people have already joined.  The station was at 570 on the AM dial with a signal of only 5,000 watts limiting its signal to New York City and its immediate suburbs.  Its major rival was WABC with its 50,000-watt signal.

I liked WMCA for its broader playlist while WABC's was much too restrictive for me.  When the Beatles released a record they would fight over which station played it first. Winning a WMCA Good Guy sweatshirt as seen above was a big prize for their listeners. Both stations had legendary personalities.  The major WMCA personalities included:

  • Joe O'Brien
  • Harry Harrison
  • Jack Spector
  • Dan Daniel
  • B. Mitchell Reed
  • Gary Stevens
  • Dean Anthony
  • Ed Baer
  • Frank Stickle
In September 1970 the station adopted a talk format and eventually became a religious broadcaster as it is today.  The following websites provide useful information about the station.

WMCA Page from the New York Radio Message Board authored by Allan Sniffen

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Bob Dylan's First Show at the Beacon Theater

As soon as the Beacon Theater shows were announced, I purchased tickets for the first of 10 shows.  If I remember correctly, this is the third November in a row that he was at the Beacon as the 2019 leg of the Never-Ending Tour comes to a close.  In Fall 2019 he has pretty much kept to the same setlist as seen below.  Those Bobcats are really fast as the setlist was on Bill Pagel's website less than 1/2 hour after the concert ended.  Lee was disappointed since Tangled Up in Blue was not played.  Bob played the guitar on Things Have Changed, but otherwise, he was on the piano or on center stage singing.  My favorite was the new version of Not Dark Yet .  Last night's show was sold out as seen above, but it is possible that there are tickets left for the 9 remaining shows.  Most of the concertgoers were middle-aged or elderly who have followed Dylan for years.

Father-Son Dylan Fans

Lee has gone to Dylan concerts since he was 9 years old.  His first one was at William Paterson University in 1997.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Listening to Archives of the 60s 70s Show While it is on Hiatus

Friday nights have not been the same over the past several weeks since The 60s 70s Show has been on hiatus.  There was an unfortunate disagreement between Bob Radil and the owner of the internet radio station that carried the show for 9 years.  It is my opinion that the owner was unnecessarily nasty and irresponsible in his actions.

In any event, Bob needed a little break as he had to attend to various personal and professional issues.  I know of at least one proprietor of another internet oldies station who is interested in carrying the show.  I am sure that the show will come back bigger and better in 2020 and all the loyal listeners will return.

I am actually listening to the archived shows on a Saturday morning as I usually do.  Friday nights are usually busy for me:

6 PM - 7 PM - Listening to the 60s 70s Show with the family on the Amazon Echo
7 PM - 8 PM - Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune
8 PM - 10 PM - Watching a sporting event.  If it is bad I'll go back to the  60s 70s Show

On Saturday mornings I check the archives and listen to the parts of the show that I missed.  Thus it is now Saturday morning as I am listening to the archives of a show from 2018.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Random Thoughts of the Day

Right now I am reading two Beatles books simultaneously:

Asher, P. (2019). The Beatles from A to Zed: An alphabetical mystery tour - this is by Peter Asher who discussed the book with Cousin Brucie and Dennis Mitchell host of the National Breakfast with the Beatles show.  I am still finding out more information about the Beatles after all these years.

Mansfield, K. (2018). The roof: The Beatles' final concert.  - Since I started reading this book I have listened to Let it Be Naked (without Phil Spector's overdub).  I am hoping that there will a DVD release of the film Let it Be in 2020, the 50th anniversary,

Only two days to go for the Bob Dylan concert at the Beacon Theater.  My show will be the first of 10 that he will be performing there.  The concerts on this leg of the Neverending Tour have been given favorable reviews.  More on this will be coming later.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Moe Resner Speaks to the New York Giants Preservation Society About the last Giant Home Game at the Polo Grounds

Moe Resner 

Moe is a baseball historian familiar with the New York Giants and Chicago Cubs.  He was at the Polo Grounds on September 29, 1957, to see the Giants' last home game there before moving to San Francisco. He discussed a new film produced and directed by Janko Radosavljevic, entitled: Moe Resner 1957 Baseball. The video will show Resner’s passion for the fabled Polo Grounds. This video will be available shortly on Amazon Prime.

A one minute clip of the video

Moe Resner Throws Out The First Pitch at Wrigley Field

Monday, November 18, 2019

Another Professional Disappointment in Retirement - My METRO Science Librarians Group Folded

In 2000 I organized a Special Interest Group (SIG) of Science and Medical Librarians through the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO).  I conducted about 50 professional meetings over 17 years at their headquarters on East 11th Street in Manhattan.  A few years ago that organization moved to 11th Avenue and 45th Street.  Over the years there have been several SIGs covering different areas of librarianship.  A few years ago the SIGs were rebranded as "Meetups".  I didn't care for the rebranding, but there was nothing that I could do.  It was a great source of professional satisfaction for me as I learned much from the speakers and met many fine colleagues from other universities.

In anticipation of my retirement, I found a science librarian from CUNY who was interested in becoming the new convener of this group.  He ran a few meetings and held an organizational meeting in October 2018.  I wanted to be on the mailing list to keep in the loop to be aware of what was happening.  I had heard anything for a while and then checked the METRO web site and noticed that the Science/Medical Librarians Meetup was no longer listed.

It is a disappointment to me that it didn't continue after my retirement.  On the other hand, maybe I accomplished something that nobody else could do.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Our First Visit to the Expanded Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)

A Picasso at MOMA

The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) was closed for several months for expansion and renovation.  It re-opened a few weeks ago, so we thought this was a good time to revisit it.  I must say that it was very crowded with mostly younger people as visitors.  We started out on the 6th floor and worked out way down.  There was so much to see with artists from A to Z.  We were there for about 3 1/2 hours, but it would take a full day to thoroughly examine the exhibits.

If my readers are interested in going, I suggest perusing their web site and leave at least a full day to see the thousands of artworks.

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.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Travelin' Thru - The Bootleg Series Volume 15 by Bob Dylan is Released Today

I didn't have to run to Alexanders' record department today to get this new release.  I just had to wait for the UPS delivery of the last volume of Dylan's Bootleg Series.  There hasn't been a release of new Dylan compositions since 2012.  This 3-CD set provides alternate takes and previously unreleased recordings of Bob Dylan's journeys to Nashville between 1967 and 1970.  I am especially thrilled by the official release of the Dylan-Cash sessions.  Those two are perfect together.  I especially enjoyed this duo of Wanted Man (Duluth and Hibbing)

Congratulations to Carlos Beltran on Becoming the New Manager of the Mets

When the Mets hired Mickey Callaway two years ago there was a concern that he had no managerial experience.  Even though the team improved to a record of 86-76 is the second season he was fired.  I think new GM Brodie Van Wagenen just wanted his own man as manager.  Callaway's hiring was done quickly, while several candidates while many candidates were evaluated during this search.

Beltran certainly excelled as a player and may even make the Hall of Fame.  However, like Callaway, he comes back to the Mets with no managerial experience.  Beltran seems to have good "people skills" and can relate well to the Latino players on the Mets.  With any new hire, management never knows how well he'll work out and how long he'll stay at the position.

I certainly wish Carlos all the best as he assumes the position of Manager of the Mets.  Hopefully, he will bring the World Series to Flushing.

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