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Resource Directory for Pennsylvania
When we hear certain songs, we may wonder what the event was that inspired a songsmith to put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. Sometimes, though, what we learn about that inspiration is so painful that we may find ourselves reaching for the Kleenex.
The once-ubiquitous Andrews sisters — Patty, Maxine, and Laverne — premiered “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy” in the 1941 Abbott and Costello comedy film Buck Privates. For the beloved Minnesota trio, that perky ditty became their 24th consecutive Decca Records winner.
Even before he became a successful and respected musician, Gerry Rafferty had developed a loathing for the often-underhanded machinations of the pop-music industry.
John Denver and his wife, Annie, moved to Aspen, Colorado, in December 1970, hoping to purchase a home in the couple’s favorite part of their favorite state. What they discovered was that everything cost much more than they could afford.
You walked into the party like you were walking onto a yacht
I went to a garden party
To reminisce with my old friends
In Jim Croce’s brief career — he died at age 30 in a 1973 Louisiana plane crash — Croce released five Top 10 singles, the first of which was one of the best story songs of modern times.
“It’s horrible. It’s white bread, it’s ‘cute-ums.’”
We’ve all been through this before. You hear a new tune on the radio, and it grabs you by the collar, demanding your attention. Soon it’s burrowing deeply inside your brain, to reside there forever. It’s a song you never forget.
The first time the world heard of Brooklyn-born Robert John was in 1958, when he was 12 years old. Back then, the singing youngster was going by his real name: Bobby Pedrick Jr.
At a London party in 1760, a Belgian violinist made a surprise entrance on a new invention called “roller skates” as he played his music. In doing so, he smashed into a mirror worth a thousand dollars and damaged it beyond repair.
Thomas “Snuff” Garrett was a Dallas high school dropout who became a Lubbock, Texas, disc jockey at age 17 and befriended local music star Buddy Holly. Two years later, Garrett became a staff producer at Liberty Records in Los Angeles.
Well-respected rock-music critic and historian Dave Marsh is normally quite sparing in his praise, but Marsh once could barely contain his enthusiasm when he reviewed a Marvin Gaye single and proclaimed it to be “the greatest piece of music ever written in favor of the survival of the environment on the greatest Black pop album ever made.”
It was in 1958 when 20-year-old Paul Revere (born Paul Revere Dick) met fellow Idahoan Mark Lindsay, age 16.
Humor writer Dave Barry once invited the readers of his weekly syndicated newspaper column to vote for the worst pop song of all time. When over 10,000 letters piled up on his Miami office desk, he assembled them into Dave Barry’s Book of Bad Songs.
It was a magical moment for Elton John and Bernie Taupin when they fully realized the potential that had blossomed in their professional partnership.
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