Thursday, May 28, 2009

#1 song of the Week

Today in honor of Gladys Knight's 65th birthday we get a look at her #1 hit from October 1973, "Midnight Train to Georgia", that spent 2 weeks in the top spot. This was the second #1 hit of 1973 to have Georgia in the title, earlier in the year Vicki Lawrence hit the top with "The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia"
"Midnight Train..." went on to win the Grammy for best R&B performance for a Group.
I'm Casey Kasem and the countdown continues....

Saturday, May 23, 2009

10 years ago today

It was ten years ago today that the WWF ppv Over the Edge took place in Kansas City at the Kemper Arena. I was, as usual, watching with my buddy Chad. I had also invited my friend and neighbor to watch and for the first time (and last) they came down to watch. Well we all sat stunned as Jim Ross announced the tragic death of Owen Hart. Owen fell nearly 71 feet to the ring after his safety harness malfunctioned and opened early. Now the part that is really weird is that Chad and myself at first thought it was part of the show because they had done some things in poor taste in the past and we wondered about this one. After seeing Jim Ross and the look on Jerry Lawler's face we knew it was a tragically real happening. The WWF gave only shots of the crowd and JR was trying to drive home the point that this was very real and if you notice Jerry Lawler is missing because ran to the ring the moment Owen hit. He tried to help but all he was able to do was hear Owen's last words which he has never shared with anyone but the Hart family. We switched to ESPN seconds after the ppv and they had it as their lead story and it was soon all over the news and was THE story for the next week.
Hard to believe its been 10 years already and yet it seems so long ago. I did read recently the WWE has made it known that this PPV will not be released on DVD and since it never got released on VHS the only copies are those people recorded themselves at home, which I did. I also have the Monday Night Raw tribute they did the next night. Before this the most surreal moment on WWE was the rainy, strange night of the PPV in 1997 where Vince McMahon announced the death of Brian Pillman. I was on the road heading to Rockford IL for work when the newscast that night on WBBM radio mentioned his death in almost a passing "oh by the way" manner.

The WWE has, thankfully, never used the "Over the Edge" name since. This was probably one of the very first times the Jim Ross broke "kayfabe" and to express that this was not part of the show and sadly very very real.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Sherlock Holmes

I just saw the trailer for the new Robert Downey movie "Sherlock Holmes". It does look exciting and action packed, not exactly the Sherlock Holmes I grew to love thru the movies of Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce. It may be better than hoped and RD jr is in the midst of another comeback so Iwill reserve full judgement until I see it.
In this new version one of the villians is played by Robert Maillet who is better know to most people as Kurgan from his days in the WWF. He was in the Truth Commission and then a fan favorite as a member of the Oddities. You will briefly see him twice in this trailer.

I first discovered the Rathbone/Bruce movies on WISH TV 8 when I was about 12 or 13 on a Sunday night in the summer. I could stay up late (which I loved to do) and watch tv, I happened to be watching Channel 8 news and after it was over I watched a show called "When Movies Were Movies" hosted by Dave Smith. Well the movie that night was "Sherlock Holmes and The Woman in Green" and I was hooked. I watched every chance I could and they were showing them all that month. Here are the opening minutes of that movie.
Its amazing with all the channels out there that no one shows these much anymore and introduce the kids of today to such great movies.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Obit page always yields something interesting

As I was reading the New York Times obit page on Thursday I found this little gem, you have to read the entire obit for the last line, a quote from author Joseph Wambaugh, is GREAT
go here to see a little about the book
and then it gives a link to a copy of the movie based on the book. This was good stuff.
TruTV has a true crime "library" with more on this story
This is the kind of stuff I love to read about and talk about. I am going to get the book and read it, you can preview it at Amazon with the "look inside" feature and I started it and now I need to finish the book!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

9 yr old Japanese Guitar Wizard

here is a video of Yuto Miyazawa playing "Crazy Train". Randy Rhoades would be proud and this kid has the Randy flying V guitar to make it even better. You have to put up with Ellen to get to the guitar work and then when she brings out Ozzy, the look on his face is priceless.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

2 fascinating stories

I read these "people of interest" stories and found them really interesting so I thought I would share.
the first I saw in the Saturday obits in the NY Times, its a lady who was one of the last people to live in an iron lung.

and this story was in Monday's New York Newsday and was on the front page. Its the about the passing of a forgotten war hero and family man, see above picture.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

#1 Song of the Week

This week lets see The Guess Who with their #1 song from this week in 1970 "American Woman". Randy Bachman on lead guitar, Burton Cummings on vocals this band hailed from the Great White North and were the first Canadian rockers to reach #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles chart. This was a "2 sided" hit because the "B" side of "No Sugar Tonight" got just as much airplay as "American Woman"

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

This day in History

As I always do I read several "Today in History" columns looking for interesting things to blog about or post on my facebook. This morning I found this very unique item about WWII.
During the the last 2 years of WWII the japanese undertook a project called "Japanese Fire Balloons". They would launch large hydrogen filled balloons that had various incendiary or antipersonnel bombs attached to them, with the intention of them reaching the jet stream and then land in the US and start fires, destroy buildings, kill civilians and basically cause a widespread panic. Well these were relatively ineffective weapons and for various reasons the Japanese abanonded the project in April of 1945. However, several hundred if not thousands made it to the mainland of the US and Canada as far east as Iowa. Now the US military found several hundred and destroyed them but there is speculation that several hundred unexploded munitions from these ballons are still in the wilds of the US and Canada.
Now to the "This Day in History", on May 5 1945 in Oregon a young pastor and his wife took several children on a sunday picnic, as they were walking in the forest one of the children yelled that she had found something in a tree. As they to her to see she was pulling on a large ballon, the pastor was lagging behind but his wife and the kids were the first ones there and he watched as the balloon exploded killing his wife and all of the children. Due to a press coverup, the danger of these balloons had not been brought to the attention of the public for fear of a "panic". After this incident the military and the press went on the offensive to warn everyone not to go near any large balloons in the trees or on the ground.
The incident is remembered with a small monument near Bly Oregon
and here is a close up of the plaque

Read more about the japanese fire balloons here


I am a big wrestling fan and love to collect all the new dvds coming out and I just saw an article on the new dvd about tag teams "Allied Powers: The World's Greatest Tag Teams". Well almost the Greatest Tag Teams, they give little time to the Road Warriors, probably the best Tag Team of the last 30 years and when they discuss the "classic tag teams" they completely left off Dick the Bruiser and the Crusher the best tag team of the late 60s and 70s. The dvd does cover at least mention the old school AWA with Nick Bockwinkel/Ray Stevens team. Outside of this little omission it looks like a great dvd.
here is a link to match list courtesy of

Monday, May 4, 2009

Kentucky Derby Part 2

Well it was an incredible race. Mine That Bird with the enormous upset to win the 2009 Kentucky Derby. It was so improbable a win that the usually on the spot announcer didnt even realize he was in the lead until he had pulled away from the pack and crossed the finish line! Thus the familiar "AND DOWN THE STRETCH THEY COME!' wasnt even used because he became flustered at this out of nowhere horse charging down the rail past all the favorites he even let out an incredulous chuckle because he was speechless.
I have watched the race maybe 5 or 6 times because its still amazing to watch.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Kentucky Derby

Well its another Derby day and I am just as excited about this one as anyone in the past. I fell in love with the Derby as a youngster in the early 70s because my grandmother would call every derby day and ask my great grandfather who he would pick. Well because of his bad eyesight my mother would write all the horses names down in large letters for him to see and he would make his pick. I was fascinated by this and the race every year. I remember Secretariat and all the hoopla about how good he was and to this day I dont think there has been a horse that big or that strong. So every year I make a pick and I am 3 for 3 in the last 3 races but of course my pick this year, I Want Revenge, was scratched this morning leaving me to take Dunkirk, the only grey in the race.
Now I have here the stretch runs from all the races from 1968-1986...I dont remember them all and some I vividly recall. Great stuff for horse racing fans.

now here is the same thing for for 1987-2006