Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Sunday Comments ( 06 - 22 - 14 )

>>>CKLW was a Canadian radio station ... which might explain why "Can't You See That She's Mine" was already a Top Ten Record there the same week it was premiering on our U.S. Billboard Chart!  (They did tend to get the British Invasion hits there first for some reason!)  kk
The main reason Canada was releasing the British hits before the U.S. was due to one man - Capitol Records Canada Vice President and A&R head, Paul White.
Paul, who was originally from Britain, released The Beatles singles nearly a year before they hit in America.  They didn't sell well at all.  In fact, Paul was admonished by his Capitol Canada bosses for putting out duds, but he continued to release their singles until they started to climb the charts and then exploded.  On the first few Beatles albums released in Canada, Paul selected the tracks and had a small credit on the back of each album cover "Canadian Production by Paul White".
EMI in Britain had many artists that Paul released early - Gerry & The Pacemakers, The Dave Clark Five (although released on Columbia in England which is why they were released on Epic in the U.S.), Billy J. Kramer, etc.  Paul's U.S. counterpart, Dave Dexter in the Capitol Tower in Hollywood kept turning down The Beatles in favor of lighter (some might say sappier) British pop fare such as Matt Monroe (produced, incidentally, by one George Martin) and Frank Ifield.
Paul was also instrumental (pun intended) in signing and releasing singles and albums from new, emerging Canadian acts.  He signed Anne Murray after her initial album release on the independent Canadian label Arc as well as groups such as Edward Bear ("Last Song" was their biggest U.S. hit, but they had several more here in Canada) and The Staccatos (from Ottawa), who would later become The Five Man Electrical Band.
Paul White later went to work for Anne Murray's production / management company Balmur, then after his time there, created a series of CD's called "Made In Canada" for RCA / BMG.  These were early Canadian hit compilations that featured many songs that had yet to be released on CD.  There were four CDs in the series, each one had Canadian hits from different eras.  Paul is retired, and still lives in Toronto.  
Paul White is someone who should absolutely be in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame (a part of the annual JUNO Awards), but isn't.  So there's injustice in the Halls of Fame on both sides of the 49th parallel. 
Back in 1984, the JUNOS tried to 'catch up' by inducting several 'early' performers at once (only one person is inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame every year).  In '84, they inducted The Crew Cuts, The Diamonds and The Four Lads.  They did it again in 1996, inducting David Clayton-Thomas (Blood, Sweat & Tears), Denny Doherty (The Mamas and The Papas), John Kay (Steppenwolf), Domenic Troiano (The James Gang & The Guess Who) and Zal Yanovsky (The Lovin' Spoonful).  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame could easily have something like a 'catch up' year every five years or so and induct a great many of those who well and truly deserve to be there.       
By the way, I agree 100% that Ed Sullivan should be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Chubby Checker, too.  Maybe even The Guess Who (oh oh, let's not get started on this discussion again).
Doug Thompson (Toronto)

Hi Kent -
Hey, The Fifth Estate is getting mentioned on a lot of the charts you are putting up lately. On the
latest one there the band is #8. Pretty cool to see after all these years - although at times it really just seems like yesterday from what I can remember of it - which may not really be all that much.
One of our first releases (we were still called the D-Men then) "Don't You Know" was released 50 years ago exactly ... NOW!  Hard to believe. And is one of the 14 tunes JUST RELEASED on our new, brand new, as in never before existing, but they are all saying should have existed, and was created to be just as if it was and did exist THEN, vinyl 12" black plastic record album called - "I Wanna Shout!" 
We, of course, were still The D-Men then in 64-65.  It will be out starting this Monday and can be found here then - Http://  or through the band website then as well -   So if you are interested, get your turn tables tunes up if anyone even has one left.
As I said it's an album of our 1964-65 stuff made just as should have been released then 50 years ago now but wasn't.   It has a lot of notes and pictures of the times, maybe not seen by most ever.  We plan and have deals on a lot of our music catalogue to be released soon just as it should have been through the 60s.  So anyone interested in following us with that - will be treated to reliving the 60s with us and with a few hits and a lot of material which will probably seem fresh and new and some maybe better than our known ones.
Pretty cool to see these charts you have from back then and to listen to these tunes you put up many of which, although we were right in the middle of all that then, I never heard before.  Don't think I ever heard that Chartbusters rather Beatlesque one.   Pretty good.
We, The Fifth Estate, always tried to be more ourselves and not so Beatlesque as that.  But I'm not sure we really had to worry about that all so much as The Beatles were about in their mid 20s by that time and we were only in our mid-teens and had a long way to go development wise.  But that development can be heard right on through the 60s with all the upcoming 5E releases to be out soon, three this Summer alone - June 15th, July15th, and August 15th.  So we're cookin'.
All the best,

>>>I think I found a goof on the WJJD Survey ... It Only Hurts For a Little While was actually by the Ames Brothers and it was RCA 47-6481. (Not Decca 47-6481.)  I was trying to find that song by the 4 Aces and it doesn't exist!  (Charlie)
>>>I checked the chart from the following week and the error had been corrected ... and it was listed properly for the rest of the record's chart run. (kk)
Are you saying that you have the elusive June 18, 1956 WJJD survey #2?  Can you send a copy my way? 
One vexing thing about missing that particular chart is that somewhere between charts #1 & #3 they changed the artist listed on at least three entries, but the total weeks are shown as if it is the same record.  I'm In Love Again goes from the Fontane Sisters to Fats Domino, Transfusion from the Four Jokers to Nervous Norvus and Long Tall Sally from Pat Boone to Little Richard.
Despite the listing, the George Cates record is a medley of Moonglow & Theme From Picnic just like the uncharted Morris Stoloff record.
In later years, this chart would usually contain intentional errors, some of which were quite funny.  My favorite was "Monkey Time" by "Hairy Simian".
NOBODY has Chart #2 ... not that I'm aware of anyway ... I've been looking for it for 35 years and every other collector I know has the same gap in their collection ... there's some speculation that it doesn't exist!  (Although I have to believe they didn't just skip a week ... and then call their next chart #3!!!)  It was easy enough to figure out what Chart #2 should look like ... I just put together a chart based on the "last week" positions shown on Chart #3 and the most likely "hold-overs" from Chart #1.
Good point 'tho about the title and artist changes ... quite often they ran humorous titles just for the fun of it. (Normally the kind of thing you'd see on an April Fool's Chart!)  kk  

Kent -
On your WNWC chart from June 22, 1966, one of the three Up and Coming singles is a great, lost single called "Stop! Get a Ticket"  by the Clefs of Lavender Hill.  This is one of the first records released on the Columbia Records new subsidiary label at that time, Date Records, later the home of Peaches and Herb, the Arbors, and others.  The label was run by Tommy Noonan, one of the key people in the chart department at Billboard for many years. This record was played in many markets, including both WKBW and WYSL in Buffalo, but never had simultaneous radio action to get it to move up the chart.  An excellent example of a "lost" great record from this period of time.  It just validates what you do with the Saturday Surveys and how much many of us, especially me, appreciate it!
I'm not familiar with this one ... but it looks like it went to #80 on The Billboard Hot 100 Pop Singles Chart in 1966.  (Prior to being released on Date, it was pressed on the Thames record label.)  Incredibly, I was able to find a copy ... on iTunes no less!  So now we can all enjoy it together!  (kk)

Greetings from Nashville, kk!! 
I know you haven't heard from me in a while, but like most people, I work 40 hours a week, read the Forgotten Hits newsletter, and then find some energy to put together a good show for my weekly FLip Side Radio Show!  (6 1/2 years and counting ... ).   
My most recent show was Beatles Night.  Then this weekend around Nashville, I heard two different Beatles cover bands.  I've noticed the more the band plays exactly like the Beatles' records, the better the response is from the audience. '
As you know, I play 45's on my show, and I play the A & B sides.  When it comes to the Beatles, there were lots of "double - A" records.  Anyway, back to the show -- without realizing it, I lined up several records just from 1964.  That's not too difficult, considering how many singles the Beatles released in '64!  I played records from other years as well. 
Anyone can hear the show every Tuesday night at 7 pm (Central time) or Friday night at 11 pm.  Just go to, and scroll down to "Listen Now!"  It works great on smart phones, too. 
Here is last week's playlist (sometimes I play the B side first): 
Revolution / Hey Jude (Apple Records)
I'll Get You / She Loves You (Swan Records)
Love Me Do / I Feel Fine / Rock & Roll Music (EP 45 on Parlophone Records)
I Want To Hold Your Hand / I Saw Her Standing There (Capitol)
Twist and Shout / There's A Place (Capitol re-pressing)
Let it Be / You Know My Name (Look Up My Number)  (Apple)
I Should Have Known Better / A Hard Day's Night (Starline / Capitol re-pressing)
Day Tripper /  (Capitol re-pressing)  (Ran out of time - playing We Can Work It Out on next show)
The Inner Light / (Capitol re-pressing)  (Ran out of time - playing Lady Madonna on next show)
Keep up the good work KK.  See you on the FLip Side.
Mr. C.  

Speaking of The Beatles, we got this bit of outrageous news from FH Reader Ian Berger:    

From :  A Billboard Beatle Chart Feat Has Been Matched 50 Years Later 
(Iggy Azalea is an Australian female hip-hop artist)   
Iggy Azalea tallies a third week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Fancy," featuring Charli XCX, and holds at No. 2 as featured on Ariana Grande's "Problem." Azalea continues her record-tying run at the chart's top two spots, as, for a third week, "Fancy" and "Problem" rank at Nos. 1 and 2, respectively. Previously, only the Beatles held the Hot 100's top two rungs simultaneously with their first two Hot 100 entries: On the Feb. 22, 1964, chart, the Fab Four's "I Want to Hold Your Hand" stayed at No. 1 while "She Loves You" pushed 3-2. Azalea has a ways to go before matching how long the Beatles controlled the top two; they logged 10 straight weeks occupying (at least) both Nos. 1 and 2 at the same time, through April 25, 1964, as "Hand" and "She" placed at Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, for four weeks; they then reversed ranks for two weeks; for the next four frames, "Can't Buy Me Love" ruled, while "Twist and Shout" was No. 2.  
Ian N. Berger  / Baltimore, Maryland  
I'm sure 50 years from now a publication similar to Forgotten Hits (assuming I've stopped producing it myself by this point ... I've always vowed to stick around until the year 2525 just to see if Zager and Evans were right!) will be sharing memories of this momentous occasion with the legions of Iggy Azalea fans who still hold her in the highest regard for her record-tying accomplishment.  History will never forget her incredible musical accomplishment of 2014. (Yeah, right!) 
The very idea is simply ludicrous!!!  Her #2 Hit isn't even by HER ... she's just a featured artist on somebody else's record!  One cannot help but question the credibility of Billboard Magazine for running such a ridiculous piece of crap.  On the other hand, Iggy and her publicist must be LOVIN' this!!!  (kk)  

And more Beatles news ... NBC announced last week that they will be making an 8-part mini-series on The Beatles.  No official schedule has been announced ... just the fact that they've green-lit the series.  

And, speaking of The Beatles, the complete Mono Album Collection is being released (again!) in September ... on vinyl this time.  (Seriously, how many more times are they going to ask us to buy this stuff?!?!?) 
Anyway, for the absolute completist, these hit the street September 9th (an important release date in Beatles history of late!)  You can buy the complete 14-LP box set (with a deluxe photo booklet) or as individual LPs.

One last thing (and a final reminder) ... all this week Ringo Starr's Art Exhibit will be running at The Hard Rock Cafe in Downtown Chicago ... free to the public.
Monday Night, WLS Disc Jockey Dick Biondi will be there ... and on Tuesday Night it'll be Clark Weber.
On Thursday Night, Ringo Starr himself will be there, autographing your purchases and posing for pictures ... all leading up to his big show at The Chicago Theater Saturday Night with his All-Starr Band!  Should be a GREAT time for fans of this era (and a chance to pick up a one-of-a-kind signed Ringo item, too!)  
We'll be heading down on Tuesday Night ... so we hope to see some Forgotten Hits Readers there!  (kk) 

Thanks for giving FH followers the chance to hear Ray Stevens' "My Dad," which he recorded in 1983 during a brief return to Mercury Records (the track charted early in 1984). Gary Theroux   
It's always been one of my favorites ... kind of a seriocomic track that works extremely well.  By the way, speaking of Ray Stevens, his brand new biography (titled simply "Nashville") comes out this weekend.  Now THAT might be an interesting one to read!  (kk)

Tom Cuddy sent us this link showing Little Anthony performing his first solo show in New York City since the '70's.  (We just saw Anthony a couple of months ago at The Arcada Theatre here in St. Charles, IL ... and it was a GREAT show!)  kk 

kk with Little Anthony and the Imperials

Kent ... 
Scott Shannon is talking to Mark Farner of Grand Funk Railroad right now.  The Happy Together Tour is coming to New York. Scott said the first live act he ever introduced was Grand Funk Railroad at some park in Tennessee.
Frank B.

We'll probably go see The Happy Together Show in August again this year ... first time for me to see Farner and Mitch Ryder.  (I think it'd be pretty cool to interview Mark Farner!)  kk

The memorabilia that Ray Graffia provided on "The Shot Heard Round The World" was great to see. I interviewed Pete Shelton of The Robin Hoods and they made some great recordings and were very popular during their Chicago stint (they hailed from Blackpool, UK). Unfortunately, they're largely forgotten today, even in the Chicago area. Fred Glickenstein also added some cool trivia after he read the interview. 


I have remembered the John Loudermilk / Indian Reservation story since hearing Casey tell it in '71 -- and it was several years before I learned it was a fabrication. One of the best fake stories of all time! I'm glad Scott aired it.  
David Lewis

Vintage Vinyl News ran some very nice, high-profile memories regarding the passing of songwriter Gerry Goffin.  You can check them out here:  Click here: Neil Sedaka Leads Tributes to Gerry Goffin ~ VVN Music

Despite some reports to the contrary, I am not touring with Mike Love and the Beach Boys this summer. I will, however, be joining Brian Wilson on July 4th in Cork, Ireland, and on July 5th at the Hop Farm Music Festival in Kent, England. I'm also planning to go out with my own band later this year.    
Thanks for all your support, 
Al Jardine  

We also hear that Al and David Marks have lent their talents to the new Brian Wilson CD ...  

Speaking of which ... 

Last week we were talking about the new Brian Wilson album ... and some of the flack he's been getting from some long-time fans who think it's wrong for Brian to be duetting with current artists on this new LP.  (I've already voiced my opinion on this ... I think it's a GREAT idea ... and should give the album a very contemporary sound ... who knows, radio might even play a track or two!!!) 

Endless Summer Quarterly Publisher David Beard caught up with Joe Thomas recently and they sat down to talk about the new album.  (Joe, Brian's long-time associate from his days here in St. Charles, IL, is at the helm of this new LP.)  You can read all about it here: Click here: Brian Wilson takes new journey on upcoming solo album - National Beach Boys |

Before I left my home just now, I had the television turned on briefly to see what was happening.  There was a commercial that came on (and again I wasn't paying attention to the  product being endorsed), but what did catch my attention was the song being played in the background. 
I simply could not believe it. Kent, are you familiar with record that came out in 1960 on Dot Record label with a song called LOVE ME. The singer on the label was simply known as The Phantom. I don't know or can't remember his real name. I have the record, it made our local survey. Anyway, the song or portions thereof, were playing in the background. It somewhat boggles my mind just what person or persons came up with this song of some 54 years ago to use in the background of this commercial. 
Larry Neal  
I'm not familiar with this one at all ... but I see that Joel Whitburn's new book refers to it as a "Classic Non-Hit 100 Song".  He says The Phantom was actually Jerry Loft, a rock-a-billy singer who wore a mask and whose vocals were similar to those of Elvis Presley.  (Now Orion ... who pretty much did the exact same thing many years later ... I've heard of!!! But not this guy!)  NO idea what would inspire an ad agency to pick up on this one ... unless they, too, grew up loving this track and finally found a place to feature it!)  kk

Hey, I think I just found it ... is this the one???

I saw the Bronx Wanderers at the Italian Fest over on Oakley Boulevard last Saturday. Jeez, they were effin great, I mean outta sight. Kudos to Ron Onesti, who went a long way to help the "Wanderers" get on the board.
Can't wait to see the group again at the Arcada.
Chet Coppock

Another music headline from the past week that caught my eye was the fact that Jeff Lynne will be doing a rare, solo concert at London's Hyde Park on September 14th, performing the music of Electric Light Orchestra.  It's all in conjuction with BBC2 Radio's "Festival in the Park" ... hopefully the event will be filmed and recorded so that fans on THIS side of the pond can enjoy it, too!!!  (kk)

Thanks for all you do. Yours is my favorite web site.
I would love to see a Lou Christie / Lesley Gore pairing at the Arcada.
I was never a big fan of Peter Noone but his show is very entertaining. Plus I will NEVER forgot his help in trying to get a van for MIKE SMITH when he was coming home. Thanks Peter ... you are a great human being!
Mike De Martino

Eagle Rock Entertainment will release "Live at Montreux, 2013" by ZZ Top on July 21 on DVD, Blu-ray and digital formats.  The show is packed with classic ZZ Top hits including "La Grange", "Gimme All Your Lovin'", "Pincushin", "Sharp Dressed Man", "Waitin' For The Bus", "Legs", "Tube Snake Boogie", "Tush" and many more. 
With an unchanged line-up stretching back to 1969 and global album sales in excess of 50 million, ZZ Top continue to delight fans around the world with brilliant live concerts and great music. The band has made a number of visits to Montreux over the years and this concert from the 2013 Festival is undoubtedly one of their finest live performances.
The set list blends tracks from early seventies albums such as Tres Hombres and Fandango through their eighties blockbuster period with Eliminator and Afterburner and up to their most recent release and return to their blues roots with La Futura. The middle section of the concert features a jazz-blues tribute to the late Montreux Festival founder Claude Nobs with guest appearances by Mike Flanigin on Hammond B-3 and Van Wilks on guitar. 
1) Got Me Under Pressure
2) Waitin’ For The Bus
3) Jesus Just Left Chicago
4) Gimme All Your Lovin’
5) Pincushion
6) I Gotsta Get Paid
7) Flyin’ High
8) Kiko
9) I Loved The Woman
10) Foxey Lady
11) My Head’s In Mississippi
12) Chartreuse
13) Sharp Dressed Man
14) Legs
15) Tube Snake Boogie
6) La Grange
17) Tush
On the fantastic Live At Montreux 2013 ZZ Top, the “lil’ ol’ band from Texas”, are rocking the blues as strongly as ever!

And, speaking of ZZ Top, we're still taking entries for your chance to win a deluxe copy of their brand new double cd greatest hits collection.  (Because these disks won't be released until late July, we're unable to draw our winners now as there is no product to ship ... so take advantage of this delay and get your entry in NOW!!!)  Just send an email to and show "ZZ TOP" in the subject line ... and we'll enter your name in our special drawing (courtesy of Bob Merlis).  In all, THREE copies of the double cd set will be given away!  (kk)    

Soul Train Cruise 2015 is back in the Caribbean bigger and better than ever. You'll sail with the superstars of classic R&B and experience 7 days of nonstop Love, Peace and Soul onboard the Hippest Trip at Sea sailing Feb. 22 – Mar 1, 2015 from Ft. Lauderdale.
Imagine sailing with Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Gladys Knight, KC & The Sunshine Band, The Spinners, Russell Thompkins Jr. and the New Stylistics, Harold Melvin's Blue Notes, Regina Belle, and many more. You'll enjoy an incredible sun-soaked Caribbean itinerary on this musical family reunion while reconnecting with old friends and the music you love.  
Experience seven days aboard the Soul Train Cruise 2015, The Hippest Trip at Sea:
Click any of the links above for more details.  (kk)

Chicagoland Radio and Media reports: 
The "Vinyl Schminyl Radio" podcast, hosted by former Chicago area radio DJ / engineer Bob Stern, had a special one-hour show recently. Stern interviewed Denny Tedesco, the producer/director of "The Wrecking Crew" documentary. The Wrecking Crew was the name of a group of Los Angeles-based studio musicians who backed some of the most famous rock and pop recordings (and TV theme songs) of all time, including a huge portion of the radio hits of the 1960s. The podcast can be heard HERE.

We've talked a lot about "The Chicago Sound" this past week ... but FH Reader Dave Barry just sent us THIS article asking the musical question "Why Have More Songs Been Written About Los Angeles Than San Francisco?"  (Gee ... I guess I never really thought about it!  lol)
Why so many more songs about L.A. than S.F.?  
Regarding all the recent letters about San Francisco songs: While there are a number of good songs written about the city - one of my favorites being Scott McKenzie's "San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)" - I've often wondered why Los Angeles had more songs and more hits written about it during the past 50 years.
I have a whole book dedicated to San Francisco rock 1965 - 1985 (by Jack McDonough) noting such local artists as Creedence Clearwater Revival, the Doobie Brothers, the Grateful Dead, Sammy Hagar, Jefferson Airplane / Starship, Janis Joplin, Journey, Huey Lewis, Steve Miller, Eddie Money, Night Ranger, the Pointer Sisters, Santana, Boz Scaggs, Sly & the Family Stone, Tower of Power, the Tubes and Jesse Colin Young.
So why is it that the well-known rock and pop hits during this time period seem to always be about Los Angeles? ("L.A. Woman," "I Love L.A.," "Walking in L.A.," "So L.A.," "To Live and Die in L.A.," "California Dreaming," "Celluloid Heroes," "It Never Rains in Southern California," "Free Falling," "Hotel California," "Tiny Dancer," "Life in the Fast Lane," "Piano Man," "Little Ol' Lady From Pasadena," "MacArthur Park," "Moonlight Drive," "I Am I Said," "Surf City" (and almost every other surf song), "Ventura Highway" and "Love Potion Number Nine" to name a few.
There are even a whole lot of later songs, such as Cranberries' "Hollywood," Everclear's "Santa Monica," Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Under the Bridge" and "Californication," Guns N' Roses' "Welcome to the Jungle," Weezer's "Beverly Hills" and the more obscure Bad Religion's "Los Angeles Is Burning."
Randy Roberts,
Okay, right off the bat, local artists Mr. Roberts has forgotten include the Charlatans, the Vejetables, the Beau Brummels, Moby Grape, Country Joe & the Fish and the Mojo Men, not to mention Joe Banana & his Bunch. Sheez!!!!! 
The book he's referring to is "San Francisco Rock," published by Rolling Stone magazine, which originally was HQ'd in San Francisco.
-- dB    

For a great read, check out this link to "Rockin' In Chicago Before 1965", a column written by Art Fein, who grew up here in Chi-Town and experienced many of the same things some of us did growing up in The Windy City.  All kinds of great memories (many of which triggered more of my own!) Click here: Perfect Sound Forever: Rockin' In Chicago Before 1965

Hats off, Kent, on The Chicago Sound discussion!
Great research and insightful comments from everyone.

THE CHICAGO SOUND was a culmination of soul and great pop music. You had the Mauds, early Bucks and later Ides with soulful sounds and great brass ... the mighty, mighty Dells, Impressions and later the Chi Lites singing their music ... and great pop from just about everyone in Chi Town (Spanky, American Breed, the Shames, NC 6, etc.). The Chicago Sound is just great music!
Mike De Martino  

Love all this about the Chicago Sound, love all that brass and horns … great music.  
Kent, keep up to great work because this way I can keep in touch with the oldies through you.  

Hi Kent,
The CHICAGO SOUND:  Blues, Garage Bands, Horns and MOST of all "THE CHUCK BERRY SOUND", who influenced ALL of Rock and Roll!!

Hi Kent, 
As a kid growing up in North Dakota listening to what went on locally, as well is in Chicago, Oklahoma, etc., via the radio, I don't really think that Chicago had its own sound anymore than any other part of the country. Once something was played on the radio, it became an influence for all of us. 
The Fabulous Flippers out of Lawrence, Kansas, had horns probably at the same time and maybe before the Buckinghams. All parts of the country seemed to have garage rock as well. That being said, Chicago certainly had a lot of great stuff that I loved and still do. 

Hello Kent,
You're chasing a moving target. Music is so constantly evolving and being reshaped that to try to pin down a distinct 'sound' to apply to a single city can't be done. I don't even think you can definitively pin down a unique sound to a certain area unless you limit it to a particular time frame. Even The British Sound has its roots in early American Rock N Roll, and unless you investigate deeper into the music you like, you merely listen to what you enjoy irrespective of its origination.  
It wasn't till I got older and took the time to read liner notes and "Informative Blogs" (I.E. FH!) that I even realized how many of the artists I liked came from Canada. Unless there is a heavy concentration of a singular ethnic group such as New Orleans and the 'Creole' sound, it is very difficult to assign a category to a singular city or area. The "Surf Sound" is assumed to be Southern California based, yet an early adopter Dick Dale is from Boston, Massachusetts!  The Standells with their Ode to Frustrated college students in Boston were from California and had never been to Boston.  
Certainly many would agree that big brass is associated with Chicago but that doesn't define Chicago any more than "Folk" which had a major genesis in Club 47 in Harvard Square can be aligned or designated a 'Boston Sound' it shared across the entire country.  
So this was a fun attempt to try and pin down the 'Chicago Sound' and resurrected many fine examples of the diversity of the actual music to show how ephemeral the target was. What it does target is the great love we all share for the wonderful legacy the Golden Age of American popular music.
My oh my, what a group of 'Fortunate Sons & Daughters' we are. 
Have a Great Weekend, the Summah ! of '14 beckons,

Hi Kent --
I'm late joining in on the "Chicago Sound" topic as I've been on the road. My immediate thought on the topic was that my opinion would differentiate from those of most of your readers as I'm older. 
The Chicago sound to me has always been the music of the Flamingos, Moonglows, Dells, Impressions and Spaniels first, then the blues of artists who migrated to Chicago such as Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, Etta James, Little Walter and Howlin' Wolf, among many others.
Chicago had three labels whose catalogs I collected avidly as a kid in the 1950s -- Vee-Jay and Chess, and the Chess subsidiary Argo. Parrot was a fourth if I was lucky enough to get my hands on one of their artists.  These labels represented the sounds of group harmony, blues, gospel and jazz -- all with a certain sound.
I always associated Vee-Jay Records, although not exactly in Chicago, as a Chicago label. This label is another that could have a wonderful story and play written about them, much like the recent successful one about Chess, "Cadillac Records". Back in the early 80s I would speak on the phone with Calvin Carter, A&R man and VP of Vee-Jay, and his stories about the artists were fascinating. He passed away far too early.
Just another opinion, a generational one for sure.
Danny Guilfoyle
PS -- On the subject of "Group Harmony" and "Doo-Wop" which, by the way, are two totally separate categories -- many cities had their own signature sound and it wasn't just an East coast thing. It went from New York to L.A. with numerous stops in between.
Actually I think the story of Vee Jay Records would make a GREAT movie ... especially once you get near the end there when the label was ready to go belly-up and then fell into Beatlemania with tracks they had in their vaults for close to a year!  Fascinating!  (kk)

>>>Just what the heck is the Chicago sound, if there is indeed a definitive trademark sound? (Jack)
THE OFFICE OF PATENTS AND TRADEMARKS just revoked the Chicago Sound Trademark!  
-- Renfield

This is just too easy.
Let's just declare that Jerry Butler singing his majestic tune, "Your Precious Love" is the Chicago Sound and head to the next joint. Now, what is the Philly sound?
The Orlons, The O'Jays, Hall and Oates? I'll hang up and wait for the answer.

The New York sound? Easy, Dion!! No runs, no hits, no doubt. Or is it Old Blue Eyes doing "One for my baby" (And one more for the road?)
I love these kind of topics ... we could discuss them for the next six years.
Chet Coppock

And this from Shelley Sweet-Tufano who inspired this whole discussion in the first place ...   

fyi ... I am loving this!  Thanks (of course now I have to print out and add notes to curriculum) 
Thank you for every single word written about the Chicago sound.  When asked what I teach, I very often reply, "I teach kids how to think."  That may have happened here with us, too.  This was invaluable to me (and now to them) ... and not surprising at all.  We study cultural instruments (drums originally used as signals, bagpipes, didgeridoo, sitar, alphorn, etc., etc.) that are now ALL used in rock / pop songs (believe me ... I have found them all) to show how they are intertwined into use for each decade.  Starting with 1900's, we have Gracie Fields, Leadbelly, Harry Champion.  Can you link that group together?  How about the fact that they all sang songs that stemmed from Sousa marches, cotton field slave songs, spirituals and call / response songs.  The British Invasion?  Peter Noone points out they were not in competition because they were each different ... AND brought out parts of American music that we were not cultivating fast enough.  Louis Armstrong is such a big part of our 1920's jazz era, and yet remains a focus to the end of the century with "Wonderful World".  Each musical decade feeds from what came before and so must, by necessity, be composed of many parts.  Music is the only thing that uses the entire brain.  I will INDEED use musical pieces to explain.  THAT is the very fun part of putting music in reading and history.   And now ... it is summer vacation.  CONCERT SEASON!!