Take Me Higher . . .

Posted: March 5, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s edition of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic:

On a Friday night, the weekend beckons and you can count on me to be on hand with just what you need to raise the spirits and excite the senses. I arrived with the perfect ‘pick me up’ . . . a big dose of my special formula, Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic. As ever, I came with a cheery smile and an armful of the ‘good stuff’ that you won’t hear on ‘ordinary radio. To get it all started, I kicked off in fine style with something guaranteed to get all the way through to your rhythm receptors . . .The Pasadenas and ‘Riding On A Train’. I followed up with a sprinkling of tasty ‘newies’ in the Sonic Tonic mix, including Curtis Salgado, Rod Stewart, Georgia Randall, Arne Skage, John Paul Keith, David Shaw and Robin Thicke

Now, this week’s Tell It Like It Is brought a song with a story that just might have tweaked a few emotions for some out there in listening land. It came from Chas Hodges, who will be remembered well as one half of rockney duo, Chas & Dave. Along the way, Chas recorded up quite a few songs that remained unreleased, until recently, when his family put them together for an album release. My choice was one of the songs he wrote for the West End musical ‘Only Fools And Horses’ . . . ‘What You Got You Gotta Show It’.

She Likes It
Riding On A Train – The Pasadenas
I Don’t Do That No More – Curtis Salgado
Run Back Into Your Arms – Rod Stewart
She Likes It – Georgia Randall
Famous – Skage

Tell It Like It Is
What You Got You Gotta Show It – Chas Hodges

All Right Now
How Can You Walk Away – John Paul Keith
Heavy Soul – David Shaw
Take Me Higher – Robin Thicke
All Right Now – Lea Roberts

Mellow Moment
Ooh Baby Baby – Seal

It Wasn’t Me
Jackie Wilson Said – Van Morrison
Higher & Higher – Jackie Wilson
New Coat Paint – Tom Waites
It Wasn’t Me – The Refreshments

Those with keen recall will remember, ‘All Right Now’, a song that did very well for UK band Free when it was first released and it was back in the charts this week in 1991. So, 21 years after its first release, it was re-issued to coincide with its use in a Wrigleys Chewing gum ad on TV and it inspired me to dig out another version by Lea Roberts, which I’m pretty sure you won’t have heard that one on ‘ordinary radio’.

There was a distinct change of mood for our Mellow Moment, when I delved into the music library to pull out a slinky little number, designed to encourage some out there in listening land to give their best smile to someone special nearby and give them an excuse for a smooch. This week, also happened to include a special day for the lovely Dee, who is a big fan of this week’s choice by Seal.

Every once in a while I come across a re-working of a familiar song that’s so much better than the original and this past week I was reminded of one of a Chuck Berry song that I found it remarkably under produced. The song is ‘It Wasn’t Me’ . . . which may have got Paul Armstrong waving and shouting the name, The Refreshments. If he did, he was right! Then, sadly, it was time to say a big thanks for your good company on this week’s show and hope that we meet again soon for another dose of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 5 March 2021

Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

As ever, the was a big bluesy welcome to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling, for which I arrived with a big smile and an armful of the best blues. It was a bumper week too, with a playlist bursting with great new releases and it all kicked off with Kenny Wayne Shepherd and a track from his new album ‘Live! In Chicago’. It’s been an eagerly awaited release here and I can tell you it doesn’t disappoint. . . which is why it was my album of the week.

Among the other new releases, I found those nice people at Alligator Records have just re-released the 1984 album ‘Guitar Slinger’ by Johnny Winter. It was Johnny’s first album for the label and heralded his return to the blues, which he delivered with some scorching guitar work and singing like a man possessed. Meanwhile, the countdown is on for the release of The Ju Jubes new album. It features Nikki on vocals, Sandy on guitar and Pete on harp and guitar and they sound like they had fun recording these tracks, especially my choice, their inspired version of ‘Chauffeur Blues’.

It’s My Life
Sell My Monkey – Kenny Wayne Shepherd (Live In Chicago – 2021)
It’s My Life Baby – Johnny Winter (Guitar Slinger -1989
IAKS Shuffle – Dustin Arbuckle & Matt Woods (Arbuckle & Woods – 2021)
Chauffeur Blues – The Jujubes (Where Are We Now – 2021)
Fever – Georgia Randall (Hound Dog – 2021)
Somehow, Somewhere, Someway – Kenny Wayne Shepherd (Live In Chicago – 2021)

Pinetop’s Pick
The Night Time Is The Right Time – The Animals (The Animals – 1964)

Lets Talk About It
Handsome Man – Bruce Maxwell-Smith (Burning Down The Blues – 2021)
Hip To Your Trip – Damon Fowler (Alafia Moon – 2021)
Chasin’ The Devils Blues – Rosedale Junction (Stompin’ On The Front Porch – 2021)
Need Your Love So Bad – Indagroove (Need Your Love So Bad – 2021)
How Many More Years – – Kenny Wayne Shepherd (Live In Chicago – 2021)
Lets Talk About It – Luca Giordana (Lets Talk About It – 2021)

For this week’s Pinetop’s Pick, my regular guest Arfa Pinetop reminded us of a previous pick by Big Bill Broonzy which came from an album that included Big Bill’s version of ‘The Night Time Is The Right Time’, but this time around it was the 1964 version by The Animals that was the pick.

Now, an album titled ‘Stompin’ On The Front Porch’ is sure to attract attention and encourage a listen. So, if you catch up with the latest album from Rosedale Junction, you’ll find some great performances, featuring that Boston based multi-instrumentalist and songwriter, Toby Soriero, who turned up with my choice . . . ‘Chasin’ The Devils Blues’.

I saved a very fine track to play out with. So, before our blues time together ran out, I brought you the title track from Luca Giordana’s new album ‘Lets Talk About It’. But before that, there was a big thanks for your good company for this week’s show and the hope that we’ll meet again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 4 March 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 6 March 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 7 March 2021

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

Cruising #4119

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Well, the Cruise Mobile came rolling down the road with its windows down and its radio cranked up, ready to take you Cruising with The Commissioner. So, with a seat saved especially for you, there was no time to waste as we set of to ‘who knows where’ with ‘you know who’. We arrived in the company of Earl Palmer with a Whole Lotta Shakin Goin On’ and keeping that party spirit alive, we headed on down the road with Chuck Willis. One of the numbers that we don’t hear nearly enough of by Clarence Frogman Henry is his 1961 gem ‘Oh Mickey’ . . . so we played it, just before we headed off to Texas now to meet Austin’s own Crystal Thomas.

Now, we featured Ohio’s own, Tee Tucker, who recorded ‘Rock & Roll Machine’ for Atco records in 1961. Shortly after, he changed his stage name to Tommy Tucker just in time to record his R&B classic ‘Hi Heel Sneakers’. Then, the trusty Cruise Mobile took us across the Atlantic for something from Scottish bluesman, the excellent, Wily Bo Walker, with a song that loosely translates from the French as ‘the meeting place of the railwaymen’ . . . or as they say around the Gard Du Nord, ‘Rendez-vous Des Cheminots’.

Now, this week our Cruising Connections selection was inspired by our good pal Jamie Dell’Apa down in New Orleans and we started off with something from a West Coast vocal group, The Chavelles, who recorded ‘Red Tape’ for Pasadena’s Vita Label in May of 1956. We followed on with a frantic vocal on a 1957 song called ‘Frieda, Frieda’ from The Valiants and hoped to bring you a eureka moment with The Untouchables and their 1961 Liberty 45 ‘Lovely Dee’. After those three, if you were waving your hand in the air and shouting, ‘they were all the same group’, then Mr Merlot has a lollipop and a rosette for, because they were indeed.

Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On - Earl Palmer

Rock & Roll Machine
Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On – Earl Palmer
Let’s Jump Tonight – Chuck Willis
Oh Mickey – Clarence Frogman Henry
You Don’t Move Me No More – Crystal Thomas & Bloodest Saxophone
Rock & Roll Machine – Tee Tucker
Rendezvous Des Cheminots – Wily Bo Walker

Cruising Connections
Red Tape – The Chavelles (Vita) 1956
Frieda, Frieda – The Valiants (Keen) 1957
Lovely Dee – The Untouchables (Liberty) 1961

Rendezvous Des Cheminots - Wily Bo Walker

Girls & Guitars
Rock In My Shoe – Eve Monsees & The Exiles

Doo Wop Delights
Your Love – The Blues Busters
One More Time – The Mel-O-Dots

Let’s Party
Rock & Roll Movie Star – The Jive Aces
Everyday I Have To Cry Some – Lattimore Brown
Uggaboo – The Four Jokers
Ding Dong Baby – Marvin & Johnny
Crazy Man – Ben Hughes
Let’s Party – Jesse Allen
That’s All I Need – Mike Sanchez & His Band

Babes & Buicks

This week’s Girls & Guitars feature came with a prompt from Yvonne Erikkson in Sweden who suggested shining our spotlight on Texan Eve Monsees, who was born in Houston and became an Austin resident at the age of eight. She started learning to play the guitar when she was 12 and, with the help of Clifford Antone, she got to play with Hubert Sumlin, Lazy Lester and other greats at Antone’s namesake club. After graduating from high school, she formed her first band, Eve and the Exiles, and released her debut album, which is where we found, ‘Rock In My Shoe’.

We started this week’s Doo Wop Delights with a vocal duo from Jamaica, The Blues Busters. They began performing and recording reggae and ska music, but after supporting Sam Cooke on his Jamaican tour, they were soon recording and performing some soulful doo wop, including our choice, their 1962 they Starlight 45, ‘Your Love’. Then, we heard from New York vocal group, The Mel-O-Dots, there, who recorded four sides for the Apollo label on March 17, 1952, only of which got released at the time. One of those was our choice, ‘One More Time’.

Now we know Marvin & Johnny for their hits on Modern records like ‘Cherry Pie’ and ‘Tick Tock’. In 1955, the success of these inspired Specialty records to re-issue an earlier recording by the duo, ‘Ding Dong Baby’, and it appeared this week in our playlist, along with Ben Hughes and his release on True records, ‘Crazy Man’. Then, we raided the in tray for a little 1952 Coral records release from Jesse Allen with an invitation that The Cruisettes could not ignore . . . ‘Let’s Party’ and they did! Indeed, with great predictability they didn’t stop as the Cruise Mobile turned for home in the company of Mike Sanchez and his band. Then, there just enough time to park up the Cruise Mobile, give a quick polish and make sure it’s all ready for next week’s musical adventure. So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio
on 2 March 2021

Listen here to this week’s edition of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic:

Well, there was a big cheery welcome for one and all and I arrived all fired up, ready to bring you plenty of the ‘good stuff’ to raise the spirits and excite the senses. Indeed, if you needed any proof of my good intentions, I kicked off this week with The Stone Foundation and something to send a tremor or two to your rhythm receptors. As ever, there were plenty more of the finest ingredients in this week’s recipe for Dr Roberts Sonic Tonic and the keenly attentive listeners will remember that last week I played something from the wonderful Linda Ronstadt and it inspired my long-time pal Mike Banks, to get in touch to recommended another from Linda’s catalogue . . . ‘Tumbling Dice’.

Now, for this week’s Tell It Like It Is, I brought a song with a story, inspired by my recent binge watch of the TV series ‘The West Wing’. Apparently, at one point during the filming, the writer of the series, Aaron Sorkin, happened to find actress Allison Janney in her trailer singing a particular song. He was so impressed with her slinky moves and lip syncing that he wrote a scene for an episode of the show, just so she could reprise her performance on film. The song was ‘The Jackal’, which became the title of that particular episode . . . and I play the original of that song by Ronnie Jordan and Dana Bryant.

Can’t Explain
The Light In Us – The Stone Foundation
Tumbling Dice – Linda Ronstadt
I Can’t Explain – Yvonne Elliman
I Like What You Give – Nolan Porter
Don’t Take Your Love Away – The Soulkitchen Band
The Sun’s Gonna Shine Again – John Paul Keith

Tell It Like It Is
The Jackal – Ronnie Jordan & Dana Bryant

Smooth
Woody & Dutch On The Slow Train To Peking – Rickie Lee Jones
For What It’s Worth – Georgia Randall
Smooth – Rob Thomas

Mellow Moment
Dreams – Eve St Jones

Dancin’ Shoes
Small Town Talk – Bobby Charles
Dancin’ Shoes – Gumbo
Pretty Legs – Mike Sanchez & His Band
Somebody’s Been Sleeping In My Bed – 100 Per Cent Proof Aged In Soul

There were plenty of tracks in this week’s Sonic Tonic that you won’t hear on ‘ordinary radio’, including Rob Thomas’ acoustic version of his song ‘Smooth’ and giving it a whole different feel from the hit version with Carlos Santana. Then, having enjoyed that gentle delight, it was time for this week’s Mellow Moment, This time around, I was encouraging you to imagine yourself relaxing in some late night jazz club with that someone special and you cast a smile in their direction as Eve St Jones starts her very subtle version of that Fleetwood Mac favourite . . . ‘Dreams’.

Now, this past week included the birthday of singer songwriter Bobby Charles who wrote a string of 50s hit songs like “(See You) Later Alligator”, “Walking To New Orleans” and “But I Do”. It turns out he was still writing and recording into the 70s and his output included a song for which I have a particular love . . . ‘Small Town Talk’. It has had many celebrated covers . . . , and as David Isaacs reminded me this week, including one by Rick Danko, but I played Bobby Charles’ original.

There were a couple of rocking little ‘toons’ from Mike Sanchez and his Band and Gumbo. Both were teasing us with thoughts of the return of live gigs and some much missed ‘bopping’. That, sadly, brought us to the last choice for this week’s Sonic Tonic . . . and I got into trouble with the ‘soulies’ last week for playing a rockabilly version of an old soul favourite . . . so I was playing safe this week with a genuine soul classic from 100 Per Cent Proof Aged In Soul. But, before that, there was a big thanks for your good company on this week’s show and the hope that we’ll meet again soon for another dose of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 26 February 2021

Lets Do It Again . . . .

Posted: February 25, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, a big bluesy welcome from yours truly and I greeted you this week with a mighty cheery smile and an armful of great blues to share. To show that I meant business, I kicked off this week with ‘What A Night’ from the new album by The Boogie Bombers which was sure to raise the spirits.

The new releases keep coming and I was pleased to bring you ‘newies; from The Boogie Bombers, Dustin Arbuckle & Matt Woods, Cutis Salgado, The Joe Lewis Band, Blue Touch, Will Johns, Otilia Donaire , K.K. Hammond and The Soul Garage Experience. There was a big cheer too this week for Blue Heart Records, especially for putting together their upcoming compilation album ‘Backyard Blues’. It’s a collection of sixteen original bluesy numbers, written and performed by artist regularly performing around Central Pennsylvania. . . . and it was my album of the week and featuring selections from Blues On The Loose, Rocky & The House Band, Miss Bix and Keeshea Pratt.

What A Night
What A Night – The Boogie Bombers (Boogie Bonanza – 2021)
Memphis Hotline – Brigitte Purdy (Blind Raccoon Nola Blue Collection Vol.3 – 2021)
You Got To Know – Dustin Arbuckle & Matt Woods (Arbuckle & Woods – 2020)
A Bad Influence – Blues On The Loose (Backyard Blues- 2021)
Precious Time – Curtis Salgado (Damage Control – 2021)
Baby Rocks The Boat – Joe Lewis Band (Up Next- 2021)
Walkin’ Blues – Blue Touch (The Music of Robert Johnson – 2021)

Pinetop’s Pick
Stormy Monday – Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds (Stormy Monday – 1965)

Lets Do It Again
Rockin’ Little Honey – Gene Taylor (Let Me Ride In Your Automobile – 2010)
Since We’ve Been Apart – Rocky & The House Band (Backyard Blues – 2021)
Lets Do It Again – Will Johns (BluesDaddy – 2021)
Queen Bee – Otilia Donaire (The Queen Bee – 2021)
In The Pines – K.K. Hammond (In The Pines – 2021)
Red Walls – Miss Bix (featuring Keeshea Pratt (Backyard Blues – 2021)
Judgement Day – Soul Garage Experience (Judgement Day – 2021)

We welcomed back our regular guest, Arfa Pinetop, who turned up for this week’s Pinetop’s Pick with a special memory of Chris Farlowe & The Thunderbirds. They were masquerading as Little Joe Cook on the classic ‘Stormy Monday’, which they recorded just as a studio warm up. Fortunately the microphones were on and they captured it all.

This past week brought news of the sad passing of the much admired piano man and singer Gene Taylor. He’s popped up on the playlists here previously and the excellent Tim Penn and Diz Watson were among those who recalled their own good times with Gene. So, we gave a salute to Gene with one of his numbers . . . ‘ Rockin’ Little Honey’.

All too soon, the clock on the wall was telling me our blues time together was running out fast and I was keen to play out this week with something from the documentary “Life and Larry Brown”. This was the song, attributed to The Soul Garage Experience, and titled ‘Judgement Day’. But, before that there was a big thanks for your good company for this week’s show and the hope that we’ll meet again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 25 February 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 27 February 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 28 February 2021

Let’s Be Friends . . . .

Posted: February 23, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

For those who arrived with a furrowed brow, we suggested casting your cares to the four winds and jumping aboard the Cruise Mobile to go Cruising with The Commissioner and to get us in the mood, we arrived with long lost favourite from Billy Bizarre and his take on ‘The House Of the Rising Sun’. Then with some squeals from the wheels, we were heading on down the road with Swedish band Gumbo on the radio and a little taste of New Orleans. Mr Merlot raised a quizzical eyebrow when he heard the title of Varetta Dillard’s number ‘Leave A Happy Fool Alone’, so we thought it best to be careful where we were looking while she’s was singing that one!

Cruising #4117

If you ever came across a 1957 Cameo 45 called ‘Do The Dickey Doo’ by The Mike Pedicin Quintet then you’re sure to have discovered their fine take on ‘Shake A Hand’ on the flip side. In hot pursuit came Connecticut vocal group The Nutmegs with their 1957 Herald single ‘Betty Lou’, which barely troubled the charts back then, which was another stroke of bad luck for the group, because although their earlier release in 1955 ‘Story Untold’ started doing well for them in the charts, they lost out to all white group, The Crew Cuts, with their cover version of the song. There was another group that had a long run of success in the charts . . . The Coasters . . . with the distinctive voices of Bobby Nunn and Carl Gardner can be heard on one of their lesser known numbers ‘(When She Wants Good Lovin’) My Baby Comes To Me’.

We gave a warning that this week’s Cruising Connections, would be a big test for your little grey cells, but we know you like a challenge. So, kicked off with a Memphis Curtis penned song recorded by a 10 year old George Benson back in June of 1954 and followed that with a song we know well by the McCoys, but this time from Motown’s Supremes. Our final clue came from The Crickets, with a famous Sonny Curtis song that was first recorded by the Crickets in 1959. Then we revealed that the thing they share in common is that they all recorded versions of an even more famous song, which we played by the Reverend Al Green.

Shake A Hand
The House Of the Rising Sun – Billy Bizarre
Play This Song Mr DJ – Gumbo
Leave A Happy Fool Alone – Varetta Dillard
Shake A Hand – The Mike Pedicin Quintet
Betty Lou – The Nutmegs
(When She Wants Good Lovin’) My Baby Comes To Me – The Coasters

Cruising Connections
It Should’ve Been Me – George Benson
Hang On Sloopy – The Supremes
I Fought The Law – The Crickets
I Want To Hold Your Hand – Al Green

Girls & Guitars
Heavy Heart – Joanne Shaw Taylor

Doo Wop Delights
Morse Code Of Love – The Capris
She Said (Oom Dooby Doom) – The Diamonds

Let’s Be Friends
Caribbean Moon – Kevin Ayers
She Got Low Down – Huey Piano Smith & The Clowns
Let’s Be Friends – Ray Scott
Shirley Jean – Gene Burks
Leave My Woman Alone – The Beatles

For our Girls & Guitars feature this, we travelled to the town of Wednesbury, which may not have been indelibly marked on the map of great UK musical talents, until it became the home of guitarist and singer Joanne Shaw Taylor. She’s a quite remarkable talent both on record and on stage, with 6 albums to her credit, to date, and another due soon. But, to show off her talents, we went back to a track from her 2009 album ‘White Sugar’ . . . ‘Heavy Heart’.

Now, this week’s Doo Wop Delights caught up with 50s vocal group The Capris. They were Italian Americans from Queens in New York, who cut their first record for Planet Records in 1958. It didn’t do much chart-wise, but went on to become a national hit, when it was re-issued in 1961. They carried on recording and performing through the 60s and eventually got into the Billboard Hot 100 with our choice, ‘The Morse Code of Love’. The, with a wry smile, we heard from Canadian vocal group The Diamonds, with a 1959 Mercury 45 of theirs that was the first successful song written by singer/songwriter Barry Mann . . . . and if you take a look on youtube, you’ll find a couple of videos of The Diamonds singing that on TV . . . and it certainly made Jamie Dell’Apa smile!

Then, we conjured up lazy days in the sun and warm evening breezes on a Caribbean shore with Kevin Ayers and it goes out to Cruising crew member, Dean, ever hopeful that it will make him smile too.

With a nod of thanks to the much esteemed Neil Pellegrin we dug out one of those lesser well known tracks from Huey Piano Smith & The Clowns and, there was an equally vigorous nod to our good pal Brother Jono for turning us onto the excellent Ray Scott, who turned up with an invitation that’s since been much devalued by social media . . . ‘Let’s Be Friends’. New Yorker Gene Burks was following fast with his 1967 little dancer ‘Shirley Jean’. Then, much to the disappointment of The Cruisettes, we had to turn the Cruise Mobile for home, and taking us all the way back to Cruise Control was something from ‘the fabs’ to help restore diplomatic relations with our Ambassador to The Islands! So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner. . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio
on 23 February 2021

Going To A Go Go . . .

Posted: February 19, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s edition of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic:

Well, the news, the weather and the lottery results were anything but cheery this week, so I arrived all fired up and ready to bring you plenty of the ‘good stuff’ to raise the spirits and excite the senses. To prove my good intentions, I kicked off with The Soul Kitchen Band and something to send a tremor or two to your rhythm receptors with their take on Stevie’s ‘Superstition’. Then, for the devotees of a good time, there was a selection that, hopefully, helped to celebrate Mardi Gras this week. It came with plenty of festive flavours which all found their way into the ingredients for this week’s dose of Dr Roberts Sonic Tonic. So, I invited you to forget the bland and predictable sounds of ‘ordinary radio’ . . . just grab a handful of colourful beads, find your most exotic mask and let’s check out some of the good times with Ericson Holt, Dom Pipkin and Diz Watson.

This week’s ‘Tell It Like It Is brought us a song with a story which focused on Linda Ronstadt and her 1975 album ‘Heart Like A Wheel’. The album had a late addition to the tracklist with a song that Linda had been doing in her stage act . . . her cover of Betty Everett’s hit ‘You’re No Good’. When the album was complete, her record label, Capitol Records were unsure which track to release as the lead single off the album, but eventually chose “You’re No Good”. In the event, the album went to No.1 on the US album chart this week in 1975 while the single was also at No.1 on the US singles charts.

Shop Around
Superstition – Soul Kitchen Band
Walkin’ On Bourbon Street – Ericson Holt
Smile & Get Down – Dom & The Ikos
Happy Man – Diz & the Doormen
Shop Around – The Miracles
Going To A Go Go – The Rolling Stones

Tell It Like It Is
You’re No Good – Linda Ronstadt

Say It Louder
Say It Louder – Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats
Careless With Our Love – Rod Stewart
I’d Like To Be – Georgia Van Etten

Mellow Moment
Heart & Soul – The Incredibles

Heatwave
Lay Your Lovin On Me – Bobby Womack
Dixie Chicken – Phil Bee (Against The Wind – 2020)
Little White Lies – Leeanne Atherton
Heatwave – Hot Rod Gang

As ever, our Mellow Moment brought us something smooth and seductive, designed to encourage you to cast your most alluring smile to that someone special nearby and if you’re lucky, get ready for a smooch. This week, the smoochers delight was ‘Heart & Soul’ by The Incredibles . . . and you can thank me later.

Way too soon, our time together was running out and a glance at the clock signalled time for my last choice for this week’s Sonic Tonic. It came with a warning, especially for the lovers of Motown soul, who I suspected would not approve of The Hot Rod Gang’s rockabilly version of that Motown favourite, ‘Heatwave’. But, before that, there was a big thanks for your good company on this week’s show and the hope that we’ll meet again soon for another dose of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 19 February 2021

Lost In The Blues . . .

Posted: February 18, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s edition of The Blues Come Calling:

Well, when The Blues Come Calling, they come calling with plenty of pzazz and to demonstrate the point, we opened up this week with a great show opener from Mark May & The Agitators . . . ‘She Ain’t Coming Home’. Then, we were off with all shades of blues and giving plenty of room for this week’s ‘album of the week’ from Curtis Salgado . . . ‘Damage Control’. There were sultry, soulful and gritty vocals from Otilia Donaire with her latest album release, The Queen Bee and and her take on a Lazy Lester classic.

As well as Otilia, there were ‘newies’ from Will Johns, Ronnie Teape, Mr C & The C Notes (ft Chuck Jackson), Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band, Tim Jones and Brad Palmer. Plus, we heard again from Howlin’ Wolf, Lyle Lovett, Magic Dick and The J Geils Band. The Howlin’ Wolf track sent us jumping in the Blues Time Machine to go 1952 for a song that Wolf cut for Sun Records. Like many others, it got national distribution through Chess Records and it’s one of those that turns up as a track on a new compilation of Wolf’s early work, titled ‘The Sun Records Sound Of Howlin’ Wolf’ . . . which says it all really.

I Dont Do That No More
She Ain’t Coming Home – Mark May & The Agitators (Call On The Blues – 1999)
Sugar Coated Love – Otilia Donaire (The Queen Bee – 2021)
Sweet Little Angel – Will Johns (BluesDaddy – 2021)
I Dont Do That No More – Curtis Salgado (Damage Control – 2021)
Blues In Lockdown – Ronnie Teape (Blues In Lockdown – 2021)
Mr Highway Man – Howlin’ Wolf (The Sun Records Sound Of Howlin’ Wolf – 2021)
White Boy Lost In the Blues – Lyle Lovett (Release Me – 2012)

Pinetop’s Pick
Pack Fair & Square – Magic Dick with The J Geils Band (Blue Eyed Blues – 2018)

The Fix Is In
The Fix Is In – Curtis Salgado (Damage Control – 2021)
Kansas City – Mr C & The C Notes (ft Chuck Jackson) (Mr C & The C Notes – 2021)
Ways & Means – Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band (Dance Songs For Hard Times – 2021)
The Longer That I Live – Curtis Salgado (Damage Control – 2021)
Ain’t Nobody Listening – Tim Jones (My Life – 2021)
Risin’ Moon – Brad Palmer (Street Sessions Vol.3 – 2021)

For those who like their blues rough and gritty, I found a spot on the playlist for the Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band. They got a a big welcome back with a taster from their upcoming new album ‘Dance Songs For Hard Times’ . . . my choice was ‘Ways & Means’.

Then, all too soon, our blues-time together was running out and I was keen to squeeze in a favourite track from Australian bluesman Brad Palmer. It was something from his latest album under the title ‘Street Sessions #3’. Now, if you’ve not heard him before I recommend making some time to check out this album and his back catalogue, especially this early favourite of mine . . . ‘Risin’ Moon’. But, before that there was just time to say a big thanks for your good company for this week’s show and hope that we’ll meet again the next time The Blues Come Calling. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio on 18 February 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 20 February 2021
Broadcast by Blues at Rock Radio on 21 February 2021

Doctor Rhythm . . .

Posted: February 16, 2021 in Hear This . . . . !

Listen here to this week’s Cruising with The Commissioner:

Well, if you’ve been crying out for something different on your radio, then, you were definitely in the right place when the Cruise Mobile came rolling by this week. By good fortune we saved a seat especially for you, just so we could all go Cruising with The Commissioner. We arrived with a whole show dedicated to some of the great UK R&B artists, like our opener, The Big Town Playboys with their take on ‘The Wobble’. Then, we were heading off down the road with South London band, Dick Lovejoy’s Original Southside United, who all live on the Southside of Clapham Common and at various times included names like Geraint Watkins and Diz Watson . . . . and a great band they were too! The sounds of New Orleans rhythm and blues came back to the originators, all the way from the UK, courtesy of piano player Dom Pipkin who, as Dom & The Ikos, captures that spirit so perfectly.

Our good pal Arfa Pinetop inspired a choice from the much admired UK R&B band, Juice on The Loose, turning up with a big favourite from theirs called ‘Goin’ Home’. Another well known name from the early UK R&B scene was Long John Baldry, who came demonstrating his excellent R&B credentials with his take on a Bobby Bland number. Then we turned our attentions to a band that had Long John Baldry as a member. This was early ‘super group’, The Steam Packet, which also included Jule Driscoll, Rod Stewart and Brian Auger’s Trinity, and who were much in demand around the UK club scene.

In keeping with our theme for this week, our Cruising Connections all came from UK artists, starting with Cliff Richard & The Shadows with their 1961 take on ‘Mumblin’ Mosie’. Then came Fleetwood Mac’s Christine McVie & Friends with their take on a song we know well by Etta James. Finally, there was UK group The Tremeloes, with a rocking version of ‘Willie & The Hand Jive’. If you spotted the link between those three choices, then Mr Merlot was ready and eager to award a lollipop and rosette.
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Turn On Your Lovelight
The Wobble – Big Town Playboys
Heart To Heart – Dick Lovejoy’s Original Southside United
Smile & Get Down – Dom & The Ikos
Going Home – Juice On The Loose
Turn On Your Lovelight – Long John Baldry
Baby Baby – The Steampacket

Cruising Connections
Mumblin’ Mosie – Cliff Richard & The Shadows
Roll With Me Henry – Christine McVie & Friends
Willie & the Hand Jive – The Tremeloes

Girls & Guitars
Freight Train – Chas McDevitt & Nancy Whiskey

Doo Wop Delights
Sh-Boom – The Overtones
Sorry (I Ran All The Way) – Showaddywaddy
Hurry On Back To Love – Johnny Kidd
Just A Little Bit – The Undertakers
Doctor Rhythm – The Dave Clark Five
Slow Down – Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers
Further On Up The Road – Joe Cocker

This week’s Girls & Guitars feature, focused on Scottish singer and guitarist Nancy Whiskey. She learned to play the guitar as a child and while at art school in Glasgow, she started performing on the local folk club circuit. She moved to London, where she joined Chas McDevitt’s Skiffle Group and sang the lead on our choice, the group’s million selling skiffle version of Elizabeth Cotten’s song ‘Freight Train’, which went on to top the UK charts in 1957 .

Compiling this week’s Doo Wop Delights was a bit of a challenge, because the UK music scene seemed to skip doo wop. But, Mr Merlot did find a little gem by UK vocal group The Overtones . . . their version of ‘Sh-Boom’, followed by UK band Showaddywaddy, who’ve had a long career re-creating the sounds of the 50s and 60s, as they did with their version of The Impalas original ‘Sorry (I Ran All The Way)’.

We met up next with one of the famous sons of Willesden . . . Johnny Kidd, who along with the Pirates is probably known for three or four chart singles, but our choice wasn’t one of them . . . ‘Hurry On Back To Love’. Then, we heard from a Liverpudlian band who were around long before Merseybeat became a national and international phenomenon . . . The Undertakers, with their distinctive sax driven sound and vocals by Jackie Lomax, who went on to record as a solo artist for Apple records.

There was a particular vote of thanks to our good pal Johnny Alpha, for pointing us to one of his favoured numbers from The Dave Clark Five. It wasn’t one of the band’s international hits, but it does stand up well as a fine piece of rhythm and blues . . . ‘Doctor Rhythm’. Another tip of the hat, came in the direction of our good pal Jamie Dell’Apa, who reminded us of one by Cliff Bennett & The Rebel Rousers, who were one of the great R&B bands on the UK club circuit in the 60s and went on to have a few pop hits. That was equally true of Sheffield’s most famous gas-fitter, the much missed Joe Cocker and Joe brought us all the home with his take on ‘Further On Up The Road’ recorded live at The Fillmore East during his 1970 Mad Dogs & Englishmen tour. We barely had time to park up the Cruise Mobile before we were waving our goodbyes. So, until the next time we go Cruising with The Commissioner . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio
on 16 February, 2021

Listen here to this week’s edition of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic:

Well, I was back and all fired up to bring you plenty of the ‘good stuff’ and all designed to raise the spirits and excite the senses. To prove my good intentions, I came with an armful of the ‘good stuff’, carefully selected from the new releases and the odd rummage in the music library. It brought plenty of musical flavours, all adding vital ingredients to this week’s dose of Dr Roberts Sonic Tonic. Kicking us off was the wonderful Beverly Knight, with Gary Barlow providing an irresistible workout for your hips.

This week we said a sad farewell to one time Supreme, Mary Wilson, who left us plenty to remember her by, including my choice, one of her great solo numbers . . . . ‘Don’t Get Mad, Get Even’. Meanwhile, among the new releases, we heard from Donna Hourigan, with her band, The Turnaround, and their latest single ‘Something In You’.

This week’s Tell It Like It Is feature, brought a song with a story that was a bit unusual for our typical playlist. But, it was something that caught the interest of several friendly faces during the past week. The song was ‘Mrs Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter’, which most people will know as a 1965 hit in America for Herman’s Hermits. It was never released as a single in the UK by the band, but the song did get released here two years earlier, as a single by the song’s writer, actor Tom Courtney. He sang it in the UK TV play ‘The Lads’ . . . and it was his rarely heard version that got a play here.

Enough Is Enough
Enough Is Enough – Beverly Knight & Gary Barlow
Ain’t No Doubt About That – Pat Smillie
Don’t Get Mad, Get Even – Mary Wilson
Something In You – Donna Hourigan & The Turnaround
If I Ever Break Free – Chris Rea

Tell It Like It Is
Mrs Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter – Tom Courtenay

Shaken
Shaken – David Shaw
On Broadway – Barry Mann
Honky Tonk Woman – The Meters
Careless Whisper – Empress Latoyah

Mellow Moment
Take Good Care Of My Baby – Frankie Valli

Everyday People
Everyday People – The Kentucky Headhunters
Melrose – Kevin Montgomery
It’s Not The First Boat I’ve Missed – The Mystic Knights
Tear Stained Letter – Jerry Williams

I had a little domestic revelation for this week’s Mellow Moment. I revealed that every once in a while I catch the lovely Dee with a frown on her face, when she learns of yet another delay in the long awaited London concert by Frankie Valli. So, as a small attempt to soothe her anxieties, I pulled out a song by the afore-mentioned Mr Valli and one you may know better my someone else. As ever, this was your moment, to cast your most alluring smile to that someone special nearby and if you were lucky, you got to smooch.

All too soon, I came to my last choice for this week’s Sonic Tonic. But, it came with the hope of bringing a smile to all those out there in listening land who like a little Tex Mex music, especially Pete and Diane. Like us, they’ve been missing all those live gigs, so I played out with a lovely Tex Mex piece from Jerry Williams . . . and gave a warning that, if you were quick you just had time to find those western boots and Stetson. Meanwhile, was saying a big thanks for your good company on this week’s show and hoping we’ll meet again soon for another dose of Doctor Roberts Sonic Tonic. Until then . . . remember . . . have fun!

Broadcast by Miskin Radio
on 12 February 2021