High School Yearbook Photo

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

Friday, January 31, 2014

Liebster Fest! Hungry For New Friends? Then Come to My Awards Banquet!

 Well I never been to Spain 

 But I kinda like the music 

 (and the bloggers... one 

 sweet lady in particular). 

Dear friends, I am proud to announce
that Shady Dell Music & Memories has
received the Liebster Blog Award!

Paula aka Mademoiselle Rock 'n' Roll

The Liebster was given to me by
my dear Spanish friend Paula
aka Mademoiselle Rock 'n' Roll.

What is a Liebster Award?

The German word "Liebster" roughly translates
to "Dearest." The Liebster Award is given to
bloggers with fewer than 200 followers
whose blogs are deemed worthy of
more recognition. The guidelines
for the award are as follows:

            * Link back to the blog that nominated you.

            * Answer the 11 questions posed by the
                blogger who nominated you.

            * Reveal 11 facts about yourself.

            * Pick 11 other deserving blogs that have fewer
               than 200 followers and notify the authors that
               they have been nominated for the award.

            * Submit a list of 11 questions to the bloggers
               you have chosen.

My goodness, every step of the Liebster
process requires a set of 11. It made me think
of Lucky Eleven, one of my favorite record labels.

Now, I'll answer the questions
my dear friend Paula asked.

1. What's your favourite music group and song?

There are, of course, many, but my sentimental
favorites are the Magnificent Men, the homegrown
Central Pennsylvania blue-eyed soul band and
their inspiring ballad "Peace of Mind," a
tremendous hit at the Shady Dell.

2. How long you been with your blog?

It will be six years in July.

3. Hot or cold?

Back home in Pennsylvania I was always cold.
Here in Florida I am always hot.

4. If you had to live in any other time period
besides now, which one would you pick?

I would go back to the 1950s, 1963 at the latest.
As I remember them, the baby boom years were
a time of innocence, simplicity, security, hope
and progress.  There was tacit agreement in
our society about the importance of things
like manners and etiquette, respect for
 parents and other authority figures,
clean, healthy living, goodness and
decency and obeying the rules.
In 1963 the world changed.
For me, at least, there was
very little peace of mind
in the years that followed.

5. How you define your style?

I realize this question is aimed primarily at women
and their fashion sense, but I will use it to define
my writing/blogging style: humor, heart and soul.

6. What do you wanna do in a nearby future?

I want to continue to improve my communication
skills and expand my circle of friends.

7. Your favourite book?

There are two.

The Films Of
by Paul Gagne

and Incredibly Strange Films
by Vivian Vale
& Andrea Juno

8. What do you do in your free time?

I connect with friends, listen to music, exercise
and watch reruns of My Mother The Car.

9. Do you have any fear?

I have fears but I've learned it's okay to be
afraid and I don't let them stand in the way
of accomplishing my goals. The things I fear
most are those over which I have no control.
I suppose my greatest fear is that the world
I once knew is vanishing around me and
is being replaced by something I hardly
recognize. I fear that the values and
lessons of the past along with the
people, places and things that
were part of it will be forgotten
or, even worse, dismissed
by future generations
as irrelevant.

10. If you could now go to some other place,
where would you go?

I'd like to experience the peace and tranquility
of life in an unspoiled rural community in
Maine, New Hampshire or Vermont.

11. Which is the craziest thing you've done?

On five different occasions I walked barefoot
 across a 20 foot pit of fire. Crazy? Perhaps.
However, it was also empowering.


1. At age five I got stung by
a dozen bees while exploring
the wreckage of an old boat.
I didn't cry. As a child I never
cried when in physical pain, only
when I was in emotional distress.

2. I am left handed. My first grade teacher
tried unsuccessfully to make me right handed.
In 5th grade, as a lefty, I won a penmanship
 contest for the best handwriting in my class.

3. I produced and directed a television commercial
for an auto parts dealer in which a monster truck
converged on a large group of young people having
a picnic. The crowd parted like the Red Sea and
scattered in all directions as Big Foot plowed
through, crushing tables loaded with food.

4. I had lunch with Jay Black of Jay and the
Americans, dinner with Freddy Cannon and
rode in a limousine with Senor Wences, the
Spanish ventriloquist who made numerous
appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show.
"S'awright?" "S'awriiight!"

5. This June it will be 22 years since I had a
drink of alcohol, a cigarette or a drug.
Shady Del Knight smokes a pipe.
I never did.  

6. Like Shady Dell owners Helen and John Ettline
I never had any children of my own.
It was by choice.

7. I once rolled my dad's Volkswagen
Beetle on a rain slick curve while
performing racing maneuvers on my
way to the Dell. Battery acid sprayed
throughout the car interior eating holes
in the upholstery and in my brand new
safari jacket which I was hoping to show
off that evening on the Dell dance floor.
What's another name for VW battery acid?
Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice!

8. In college I was involved in theater and
acted in a production of Tennessee Williams'
Suddenly Last Summer playing Dr. Cukrowicz,
the role popularized by Montgomery Clift in
the 1959 movie. My only regret is that
I never got the chance to kiss Liz Taylor.

9. At two separate concert venues within
a 24-hour period, my production team
interviewed British New Wave vocal trio
The Thompson Twins and glam/heavy metal
rockers Kiss. I also met and had drinks with
Canadian singer David Clayton-Thomas,
lead vocalist of Blood Sweat & Tears.

10. I played the role of a surgeon in a TV
commercial for an electronics repair shop
and "operated" on "The Old Admiral"
...a "sick" television set.

11. Mrs. Shady and I worked for the same
television station. That's how we met.
We fell for each other at our company
Christmas party which took place on
a romantic moonlight yacht cruise.

(No, the yacht did not belong
to Osgood Fielding III.)


Now here are 11 questions for the fine
bloggers I have selected for this award:

1. If you have a pet or pets, do you see them as
    merely animals, or are they members of your family?

2. Would you rather read a good
    book or watch a good movie?

3. If you could have a dream come true,
    what would it be?

4. What would you do with a billion dollars?

5. If you could watch a creative person in the act
    of the creative process, who and what would it be?

6. What helps to pull you out of a bad mood?

7. What were you doing when you experienced the
    happiest moment of your life or felt most alive?

8. Would you rather be single and rich
    or married and poor?

9. If you are currently in a relationship,
    how did you meet your partner?

10. Which is more blessed, loving someone
      or being loved by someone?

11. If you could time travel, which decade or century
      would you most like to visit? Where in the world
      would you go? Would you want to stay in that
       place and time or return to the present?

Now I would like to pass the Liebster Award
along to some other worthy bloggers.  If your
name is on the list and you already received this
award in the past and do not wish to participate
then simply accept this honor as a token of my
 esteem and know that I think highly of you,
value your friendship and enjoy your blog.

Unfortunately, I cannot nominate some of my friends
for this award because of a technicality - their blogs
already have more than 200 members. They include:

* Thisisme at Southhamsdarling
* Emma at Ol' Green Eyes 
* Bouncin' Barb at This and That (As I Bounce Thru' Life)
* Katie at Katherine's Corner

However, I urge you to give their blogs
a try if you haven't already done so.

Here are the 11 bloggers that I
nominate for the Liebster Award:

Sarah at Style Sixties

Shelly at La Tejana

 Congratulations to all of you 

 and thank you again, Paula,  

  Mademoiselle Rock 'N' Roll, 

 for this special award. 

 You are a great friend! 

Have a Shady day!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Echoes of the Spectorian Era, Vol. 1: Wrecking Crew Builds a Wall of Sound!












Phil Spector was the architect of the Wall of Sound,
a recording studio methodology that typically buried
the lead vocals deep in the mix beneath dense layers
of orchestration. Spectorian touches included double
tracked vocals, groups of musicians playing identical
instruments in unison, girl group backing singers,
clacking castanets and use of an echo chamber
 at Hollywood's Gold Star Studios.

Spector turned his Philles record label into a
hit making assembly line, using his ground-
breaking Wall of Sound studio techniques
to produce records for his roster of artists
which included the Righteous Brothers,
the Crystals, Darlene Love, Bob B. Soxx
 and the Blue Jeans and the Ronettes.


Please take a couple minutes and watch
this magnificent video which uses rare footage
from ten Ronettes performances of the mid 60s
as they sing "You, Baby," a song from their first
and only studio album released late in 1964.
If your grandchildren ever ask you what was
so great about the 60s, play this clip for them.
Maybe then they'll understand what we had.





 "You, Baby" - The Ronettes 
 (from November 1964 album Presenting 
 the Fabulous Ronettes Featuring Veronica



If I had to pick the grooviest record of the year,
this would be it. "Gonna Make Him My Baby"
 is a smashing girl group sound by April Young,
a little known singer who shoulda been a star.
The 45, produced by Jerry Ross, is a prime
example of the East Coast Wall-of-Sound
that imitated what Phil Spector was
doing in his studio on the West Coast.

"Gonna Make Him My Baby"

Released in the spring of 1965, April's super cool
record somehow missed the the national chart, but
it spread like wildfire up and down the East Coast.

#27 on WARM

#36 on WSBA

#53 on WMCA
New York City

#3 on Portugal's list of the
Top 10 Girlpop/Girlgroup
Songs of the 60's


"Gonna Make Him My Baby," went top 20 in
Philadelphia. In the words of Jerry Ross who,
incidentally, fell in love with and married the
lovely April Young, the record made April
the "Daughter of Wibbage-land"
on the AM radio giant WIBG.

Listen to one of the most exciting records ever -
girl pop, girl group or any other category -
the big, bold, husky voice of April Young
sounding a lot like Cher Bono at her soulful
best engulfed in a towering wave of sound!

 "Gonna Make Him My Baby" - April Young 
 (June 1965, uncharted nationally, 
 #36 on WSBA Lancaster/York/Harrisburg) 



I'd like you to hear a rare clip of the
Wall-of Sound being built (ironically) by
The Wrecking Crew, one of the most
successful groups of studio session
musicians in popular music history.
The following video takes you inside
Hollywood's Gold Star Studio as
Phil Spector and The Wrecking Crew
produce one of Spector's greatest hits.
The song was written by Barry Mann and
Cynthia Weil along with Spector and the
recording is listed by BMI as the most
played record on radio and television
during the 20th century!

Listen to the sound of history in the making
at a pivotal point in time, the birth of a new
type of soul music called "Spector Soul," a
term coined by music scholar Dan Hodges.
It's November 1964 and Phil Spector and
The Wrecking Crew are laying down the
rhythm track for the Righteous Brothers'
epic hit "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'."

Start at the 45 second mark of the video. 
If this doesn't give you chills and fever,
you weren't around in the Sixties.

So ubiquitous was Phil Spector's Wall of Sound
that other producers flocked to the studios,
cranked up the reverb and tried to imitate
the popular Spectorian style.  Like that
April Young platter, many of these
so-called Spector Soundalikes or
Wall of Soundalikes were great
records and I have collected
them for you in this series.


Two pairs of brothers met at the University of
Michigan-Ann Arbor and formed a pop vocal
group called The Arbors. The group is best
known for the minor hit "A Symphony For
Susan" and their biggest hit, a soft pop 
interpretation of the Box Tops #1 hit
"The Letter" which reached the top 20.

In early 1967 the Arbors Spectorized their sound 
and Bubbled Under the Hot 100 with the release
of the Chip Taylor - Trade Martin composition 
"Just Let It Happen."

 "Just Let It Happen" - The Arbors 
 (February 1967, highest chart position #113) 


Rockabilly, country and pop singing star Brenda Lee
waxed a Spectorian ballad in Nashville in 1965.
"If You Don't (Not Like You)" is the obscure
B side of her top 40 hit "Rusty Bells."

 "If You Don't (Not Like You)" - Brenda Lee 
 (October 1965, B Side of "Rusty Bells") 


Like Brenda Lee, pretty Jody Miller was a successful crossover recording artist. Phoenix born and Oklahoma raised, Jody recorded in a heavily country influenced pop style. Jody is best known for her signature hit "Queen of the House," an answer to Roger Miller's "King of the Road." Listen
to the sheer power of Jody's performance as she performs "Magic Town," a Barry Mann - Cynthia Weil song that Bubbled Under for Jody at Christmas 1965 and brushed the top 20 for the Vogues three months later.

 "Magic Town" - Jody Miller 
 (Dec. 1965, highest chart position #125) 

 I'll have more Spectorian splendor 

 coming up in Part 2 so stick around! 

Have a Shady day!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

I'm A Little Bit Country.....

 In a recent post, our good friend Shelly 

at La Tejana asked readers to fill in the blank:
"I am not __________." Shelly's unusual request
got me thinking about all the times over the years
that I said to myself, "I am not a person who likes
country music." My research here at SDM&M has
allowed me to stop saying "I am not" and live
by three other words, "Never say never."

Today I proudly present a few of my
new favorite records which prove
that I'm a little bit country.


A while back I devoted an entire post to
Wanda Jackson. The hot blooded Okie
spitfire was one of the first rockabilly
performers and a rock 'n' roll pioneer.

Wanda made so many great records that
I decided to introduce another in this post.
Along with her gifts as a singer and guitarist,
Wanda was a prolific songwriter. Here's one
she wrote and recorded in 1957, the rockin',
rollin', badass B side "Baby Loves Him."

 "Baby Loves Him" - Wanda Jackson 
 (February 1957, B side of "Cryin' Thru the Night") 


Some folks don't know that country music superstar
Dolly Parton began her singing career as a child
and was already releasing records in the late 50s.

Let's turn back the clock to a time when Dolly was recording some excellent sides in a country tinged teen pop style. Here's Dolly in 1962 at age 16 performing "The Love You Gave," with back-
ground vocals by the Merry Melody Singers.

 "The Love You Gave" - Dolly Parton 
 (June 1962, uncharted) 

Now, here's teenage Dolly once again with
"Nobody But You," a previously unreleased
rock 'n' roll gem recorded that same year
with the Merry Melody Singers.

 "Nobody But You" - Dolly Parton 
 (1962, previously unreleased) 




In the summer of 1968, Nashvile recording artist
Ricky Page waxed a version of the Tom T. Hall song
"Harper Valley P.T.A. and gave Jeannie C. Riley
a run for her money in Seattle and Vancouver,
topping radio station charts in those cities.

I'm liking the smooth country ballad on the B side
of Ricky's Spar single, "Making a Fool of Myself."

 "Making a Fool of Myself" - Ricky Page 
 (August 1968, B side of Harper Valley P.T.A.") 


I couldn't find much info about country singer
Joyce Paul. This much I know. I love her voice!
In 1957, Joyce appeared on a televised episode
of Country Style U.S.A., a series of short films
for U.S. Army promotion and recruitment that 
featured performances by country music stars.

It was pop goes the country in the mid 60s when
Joyce recorded the single "Lasting Love" in Nashville.
The record was arranged by Ray Stevens and backing
vocals were supplied by the Anita Kerr Singers.

 "Lasting Love" - Joyce Paul 
 (April 1964, uncharted) 

In 1965, Joyce Paul switched to the United Artists
label and released a cover/answer to Del Reeves'
hit novelty record, "Girl on the Billboard."

 "I'm The Girl On The Billboard" - Joyce Paul 
 (July 1965, uncharted) 

 I hope you enjoyed our stroll 

 down this Shady country road. 

 See you next time! 

Have a Shady day!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Remembering John

21 years ago today

on January 16, 1993

John Ettline passed away.

John spent the last nine years of his life
without his wife Helen. Imagine the strength
and courage it took for John, a man in his 80s,
to go it alone, enduring the hardships of winter
and keeping the Shady Dell in operation even
as the clientele became increasingly rough,
rowdy and disrespectful. How many of us
could have stood up to that challenge?

 Please take a moment and 

 watch this video as we honor 

 the memory of Mr. John Ettline. 

 John, you were the King of all Dell Rats

 If we have anything to say about it 

 you and Helen will always be remembered. 

 We love you and miss you, John! 

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Canadian Club: Listen to the Sweet Songs of These Sixties Snowbirds!

In the early 60s, at the height of the American teen pop and
girl group craze, two talented young Canadian singers went unnoticed.

When you listen to the wonderful recordings made
by Sandy Selsie and Pat Hervey you'll wonder
how they managed to slip through the cracks.

The girls had a lot in common. They both grew up
in the Toronto area. Both made the rounds of
 amateur talent contests and performed
on Canadian radio and television.

Both young women appeared on the Canadian
country music television program Country Hoedown
which regularly featured budding star Gordon Lightfoot.
Both performed on Hi Time, an all Canadian talent show,
an early 60s Canadian Idol, if you will. Both girls landed
contracts with major record labels, Sandy with Columbia
and Pat with RCA Victor. Both made great recordings
but few Americans knew about them.

Enough small talk! It's time to sit back 
and enjoy the exciting performances 
of these Canadian thrushes!


While on a family vacation in Nashville,
Sandy Selsie auditioned for Columbia
Records. Her gorgeous voice got her
signed on the spot to a five year
recording contract.

Sandy's first single was released in the spring
of 1962.  "A Date With Loneliness" penetrated
the top 20 on the Canadian chart and earned the
15 year old the nickname of Canada's Brenda Lee.
Listen to Sandy sing and you'll know why.

 "A Date With Loneliness" - Sandy Selsie 
 (May 1962, uncharted) 

Written in August 1962 by R&B veteran
Don Covay, "Don't Destroy Me" is a country
style ballad that instantly brings to mind
Brenda Lee's top 5 hit from earlier
that year, "Break It to Me Gently."

The single with Sandy Selsie's dramatic
version of "Don't Destroy Me" was
released in May 1963.

 "Don't Destroy Me" - Sandy Selsie 
 (May 1963, uncharted) 

Sandy's next single, "When Jimmy Comes Home,"
was released in November 1963 a couple of weeks
before the assassination of President Kennedy.

On this one, Sandy's vocal style reminds me of
Connie Francis. Listen and you might agree that
this was the best "Jimmy" record to come out of
the teen pop years.

 "When Jimmy Comes Home" - Sandy Selsie 
 (November 1963, uncharted) 


They called her "the girl next door."

Pat Hervey was another young and gifted
but little known Canadian songstress.

In the summer of 1962 Pat's single,
"Mister Heartache," a catchy record
with a rock 'n' roll beat, remained
uncharted in America but hit #14
on the Canadian chart.

 "Mister Heartache" - Pat Hervey 
 (July 1962, uncharted) 

Pat Hervey was as versatile as she was talented.

Listen to her dynamic vocals on this 1963 release,
a country style record entitled "Tears of Misery."

 "Tears of Misery" - Pat Hervey 
 (1963, uncharted) 

Pat shifts gears again in a song from her self titled
album.  Her voice packs a punch and bursts
with Go-Go Power as she sings "Pain,"
a Northern Soul song better known
in America as performed by
R&B great Mitty Collier.

 "Pain" - Pat Hervey 
 (Recorded in April 1964, 
 track from 1965 self titled album) 

I love how Pat belts out this next song with a growl
in her voice. If you're fast becoming a fan of Pat
"I Wouldn't Blame You." Join the Canadian club!

 "I Wouldn't Blame You" - Pat Hervey 
 (July 1963, uncharted) 

In case you haven't noticed, there are two more
things Sandy Selsie and Pat Hervey have in common.

Both young women produced records far superior
to the weak, bland, pop pabulum churned out
by some of the American girl pop
singers of the period.

Yet, for some reason, the recordings made by
Sandy and Pat, many of which are now available
on the compilations displayed in this post,
did not catch on in the United States.
 In fact, not a single one even got as far
as the Billboard Bubbling Under chart!

Shady's Law, which states that a record's
chart performance has absolutely nothing
to do with quality, was drafted with artists
like Sandy Selsie and Pat Hervey in mind.

Have a Shady day!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Happy Birthday, Helen!






In keeping with tradition, let's celebrate
Helen's birthday by listening to "Helen's Song,"
Little Anthony & the Imperials performing a
Shady Dell classic, their dreamy ballad
"Two People in the World."



Sunday, January 5, 2014

Counting Down the 200 Greatest Hits of the Shady Dell (#155 to #151)

 It's time once again to put your 

 musical knowledge to the test 

 as we continue our countdown of 

 The 200 Greatest Hits of the Shady Dell! 

 You know the drill. 

I'll give you a line or two of lyrics taken from five
of the most popular Dell songs of the mid 60s.
Your mission, Jim, if you decide to accept it, is to

 Name That Tune. 

Put on your thinking cap. Here are the lyric
samples for the next five Dell songs:

No more black or white.
No more left or right.

And will they struggle much when told
that such a tender touch as hers 
Will make them not the same

I can make like a turtle and
dive for your pearls in the sea

Your eyes no longer 
have that glow.
Your smile no longer 
shows that warm hello

I gotta have ya, honey
Please say that you’ll be mine
‘cause I’ll love you forever, girl
Till the end of time.


Okay, let's find out how well you did.
Here are the Dell songs in today's countdown:

155. "I’m Going to Change The World" – The Animals
(December 1965, B side of "It's My Life")

154. "Along Comes Mary" - The Association
(June 1966, highest chart position #7)

153. "Sunshine Superman" - Donovan
(August/Sept. 1966, highest chart position #1)

152. "If You Don't Want My Love" - Four Tops 
(Sept. 1967, B side of "You Keep Running Away")

151. "Dark Side" - Shadows Of Knight
(March 1966, B side of "Gloria")

How many songs did you correctly guess from the lyric clues? Refer to the grading scale below to determine your musical I.Q.

 All 5 right – 

 Congratulations! You’ve been appointed 

 dean of the College of Musical Knowledge. 

 3 or 4 right – 

 Licensed lyric lover. 

 2 right - 

 Lyrically challenged. 

 1 right – 

 Sign up for remedial classes 

 at the School of Rock. 

 0 right – 

 You just dance and hum along! 

Have a Shady day!