THE OLD ROCKER: Bird names plentiful in music history
The most successful of the bird groups was the Eagles, who formed in 1971 in Los Angeles.
THE OLD ROCKER: Acker Bilk had the nation's top hit in May 1962
“Stranger in the Night” was one of a plethora of instrumental songs to reach No. 1 from the start of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Era from the summer of 1955 through 1962.
THE OLD ROCKER: Nine bands with weird names still did well on the charts
Check nine band names we uncovered that are appreciably stranger then Foo Fighters. They all have one thing in common – they all had at least one Top 40 hit.
THE OLD ROCKER: Group members unchanged from 1953 until 1997
The four original members were Levi Stubbs, Lawrence Payton, Duke Fakir and Renaldo Benson.
THE OLD ROCKER: Bobby Boris Pickett co-wrote the song in two hours
The song was a spoof on several of the era’s dance crazes including “The Twist” by Chubby Checker and “Mashed Potato Time” by Dee Dee Sharp. “Monster Mash” featured several of Pickett’s impersonations of renowned Hollywood horror stars including Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff, who he also had used in his nightclub act.
THE OLD ROCKER: The changing morals of the nation reflected in changes to its music
Two of Bob Dylan’s early songs — “Blowin’ in the Wind” and “The Times They Are a-Changin’” — became anthems for the American civil rights and anti-Vietnam War movements.Dylan’s “The Times They Are a-Changin’” further expounded on this nation’s changing morals, especially as it pertained to early rock ‘n’ roll.
THE OLD ROCKER: The Mills Brothers made more than 2,000 recordings
It started more than seven decades ago when the Mills Brothers, four siblings born near Dayton, Ohio, began to make their mark on the music world.
THE OLD ROCKER: Beach Boys named without any input in selection process
The Platters tooks their name after the nickname used at that juncture for vinyl 45 records.
THE OLD ROCKER: Singer suffered financially because of manager's misdeeds
After a funeral attended by more than 1,000 in his native Detroit, Jackie Wilson was buried in an unmarked grave in the Motor City. He was an estimated $300,000 in debt.
THE OLD ROCKER: Top picks range from the Stones to Tony Orlando
There’s one thing for certain about those of us who love rock ‘n’ roll. Our tastes vary as much in music as they do in food, clothes and TV programs. Preferences vary from Doo-Wop to Rockabilly to British Invasion to Motown.
THE OLD ROCKER: Ricky Nelson had biggest advantage of any teen TV actor turned singer
Nelson, 16, introduced his first record, a cover of the Fats Domino hit “I’m Walkin’,“ on the TV show on April 10, 1957. The song quickly climbed to No. 4 on the charts. The flip side, “A Teenager’s Romance,” reached No. 2.
THE OLD ROCKER: Elite British musicians had staying power
When The Beatles came to America 50 years ago in 1964, there were 22 No. 1 hits during that year, nine of which were done by British Invaders. Six were by The Beatles and one each by Peter & Gordon, The Animals and Manfred Mann. They controlled the No. 1 slot for 25 weeks.
THE OLD ROCKER: Paul Anka is still performing at age 73
Paul Anka penned such well-known music as the theme for “The Tonight Show” starring Johnny Carson, one of Tom Jones’ biggest hits, “She’s a Lady” and the English lyrics for Frank Sinatra’s signature song, “My Way.”
THE OLD ROCKER: The Beatles made its 'A Hard Day's Night' film 50 years ago
Called by Time magazine one of the best 100 films of the past 80 years, “A Hard Day’s Night” was nominated for two Academy Awards — Best Screenplay (Alun Owen) and Best Score Adaptation (George Martin).
THE OLD ROCKER: Retired federal employee generates site with more than 3,500 songs
Christmas came five months early this year for the Old Rocker, thanks to an email from Don Picciotto, of Lee County, a lunch-buddy who forwarded absolutely the best site for music that I have ever used.
Elvis Presley unofficially sold more than a billion records
“The King” impacted the American music scene until his untimely death at age 42.
MOVIE REVIEW: Film jumps between significant incidents in James Brown's life
Dan Aykroyd gave a strong performance portraying Brown’s manager/adviser Ben Bart. Aykroyd and the real-life Brown appeared in two films together.
OLD ROCKER: Shirley Ellis has a hit with name game song
Rock stars played games with their names long before “The Name Game” reached the charts. It was not uncommon for performers to change their names for a variety of reasons.
THE OLD ROCKER: Sam Cooke among the greatest of all time
Of all the great rock ‘n’ rollers whose career began during the 1950s, one who has slipped under the radar is Sam Cooke.
OPINION: How well do you know your rock ‘n’ roll?
If you get all 10 of these multiple-choice questions correct, ask your guidance counsellor to place you in a rock ‘n’ roll honors class.
Here’s a list of our favorite 12 police dramas in the order in which they first appeared.
OLD ROCKER: What songs do you remember from rock and roll days?
Methinks you’re getting older if you can remember Elvis Presley singing “Heartbreak Hotel.”
THE OLD ROCKER: Musical tastes affect not just radio waves, but television as well.
One of the effects of nation’s change in musical tastes from the Big Band Era to rock ‘n’ roll and folk music were short-lived TV variety shows.
Oscar-winning actor Clint Eastwood makes a hit with “Jersey Boys.”
OLD ROCKER: Chubby Checker takes a shot at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Now that summer officially has arrived — if you don’t believe the calendar, then check the humidity index — it marks the time when so many songs had the word “summer” or a derivative in the title.
States where music stars were born
Harry James and Ray Charles, both natives of Albany, help Georgia make the top states' list
Pennsylvania leads the pack for having the most Top 40 hits in the nation.
Harry James is not the only musician or singer from Southwest Georgia who has not received his just due.
OLD ROCKER: Oldies but goodies always stay with you
You might not have heard a song for 30 or 40 years or more, but when you do, you immediately remember the lyrics and melody, the performer or performers who made the record and the approximate year it hit the charts.
OLD ROCKER: What would lyrics of rock songs be like today?
Some of the renowned rock ‘n’ roll performers are “revising” their smash hits with new lyrics or titles in appreciation for us aging baby boomers.
OLD ROCKER: Harry James was born in Albany in 1916.
Long before the start of the rock ‘n’ roll era in 1955 and long before rhythm and blues and country and western music rose in popularity, Americans were listening to Big Band and Swing Era.
THE OLD ROCKER: Pro wrestling renews its association with rock 'n' roll
Who would have thought 56 years ago that the nation’s No. 1 hit would be remembered in association with World Wrestling Entertainment?
What do Peter Yarrow of folk group Peter, Paul & Mary fame and renowned rockers Chuck Berry, Jackie Wilson Jerry Lee Lewis, Ray Charles and the Platters have in common?
THE OLD ROCKER: Just the right combination was chart-busting gold
The most unusual combination of early rock ‘n’ roll groups was mix-genders of three or more members.
While most of the memorable television characters have been male and female actors, dogs have had important roles for the past six decades.
No other group or solo act either before or since has had all five songs at the same time in the Top 5.
If Feb. 3, 1959, is the most memorable date in rock history, then challenging for the runner-up spot is April 10, 1970, when Paul McCartney of the Beatles announced that he was leaving the most successful group in rock ‘n’ roll history.
Besides being a highly successful singer, songwriter and record producer, Bob Gaudio and his pal Frankie Valli formed the Four Seasons Partnership, which gave them ownership of all of the group’s materials. The partnership helped Gaudio amass a net worth of a reported $15 million.
Here are some of the rockers who played musical chairs primarily during the 1950s.
Remember when we were growing up and our parents emphatically said to us, “Why are you listening to THAT music?
Funny thing about the early, early days of rock ‘n’ roll. Some of the biggest hits had highly unusual histories.
The Old Rocker takes a look back at Oscar-winning songs.
Who was the greatest entertainer of the past 100 years?
“The Beatles: The Night That Changed America,” celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Fab Four’s first live appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show.”
With Valentine’s Day a scant two days away, here’s the alphabetical list of our favorite vocal love songs since 1965.
THE OLD ROCKER: Songs send loving words to valentines
Valentine’s Day is a time when love songs leap to the forefront.
This week marks 55 years since Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and The Big Bopper were killed in a tragic plane crash.
The music industry — and the human race, as well — lost a genuine treasure when 94-year-old Pete Seeger died.
One name virtually always missing from lists of musical stars is Duane Eddy.
THE OLD ROCKER: Neil Diamond a classy example for others to follow
Neil Diamond, one of the most versatile and dynamic entertainers of the past 50 years, will celebrate his 73rd birthday on Friday. The classy crooner has sold more than 125 million records and he is the third most successful adult contemporary singer, trailing only Barbra Streisand and Sir Elton John.