Tilt-A-Whirl History

You know that tilt-a-whirl down on the south beach drag
I got on it last night and my shirt got caught
And they kept me spinnin’
Didn’t think I’d ever get off

Bruce Springsteen – 4th Of July, Asbury Park (Sandy) 1973

My favorite carnival ride ever is the Tilt-A-Whirl. When the carnival came to town I would use all of my tickets to ride on the Tilt-A-Whirl.

After a few years, you would pay one price and get stamped. I would get off the Tilt a Whirl and get right back on again. If I were rich I would get one for the back yard. I am terrified of heights but I love spinning.

Herbert W. Sellner, a woodworker, and maker of water slides invented the Tilt-A-Whirl in 1926 at his Faribault, Minnesota, home.

Sellner got his inspiration in his kitchen. He would put his young son, Art, on a chair on the table and move the table around. If he could make his son giggle with glee, Herb wondered, why not spread the joy?

The spinning ride debuted the next year at the 1927 Minnesota state fair, the same year Sellner Manufacturing opened a factory in Faribault and began a production run that would eventually churn out more than 1,000 Tilt-a-Whirls.

Nearly 700 of the rides are still in use. The oldest known working example is a 1927 model. In 2011, Sellner Manufacturing was sold to a company in Texas, where Tilt-a-Whirls are still being made.

Beatles – Don’t Bother Me

In 1975 my friends and cousin had a clubhouse that was an old horse barn. We had a record player, a lantern, and a one-armed bandit. My cousin played the Meet The Beatles album and me… being a Monkee fan soaked it up and it started a lifelong love for The Beatles.

My first favorite Beatle song was It Won’t Be Long…then this one came in second at the time. George wrote this when he was down with the flu in a hotel room in the Northeast of England. It was the first song he wrote……technically he did have partial credit on the instrumental Cry For A Shadow.

Is it George’s best song? Of course not but it fits in well with the early Beatles and it gets overlooked. If you think about it…”Don’t Bother me” is so George and his attitude at times. I always really liked it…the overall feel of it is cool. It was a very good attempt at his first song.

George Harrison: “I don’t think it’s a particularly good song… It mightn’t even be a song at all, but at least it showed me that all I needed to do was keep on writing, and then maybe eventually I would write something good.”

Tom Petty: “I thought it was just the coolest song, like nothing I’d heard in rock,” Petty said in 2014 “I’d say, ‘Well, I like it. A lot. If you did that today, I’d say it was really good.’ And he’d go, ‘Well, you’d be wrong.'”

The Smithereens did a great job covering this song.

From Songfacts

This was George Harrison’s first recorded song. It was his response to critics who claimed he was not an important member of the group because he did not write songs.

A Harrison-penned song would not appear again until the 1965 album Help!. That would be “You Know What To Do.”

This song has a darker, more pessimistic mood that was uncommon of The Beatles main sound, but would come to be Harrison’s trademark stamp. This is actually part of what made the Beatles’ formula work: McCartney was the chirpy, positive one, and Harrison was the melancholic counterpart.

Years later these were sold off at one of the London auction houses. This song in it’s very earliest stages is available on bootleg and features George working the music and lyrics out as he goes along. George stated, “I wrote the song as an exercise to see if I could write a song. I was sick in bed. Maybe that’s why it turned out to be ‘Don’t Bother Me.'” 

For your information, the photography technique for the cover of With The Beatles, in which the Fab Four’s headshots hover in a half-moon, light-and-shadow effect, is called “chiaroscuro.” It’s an Italian word to describe the Renaissance technique of dramatically contrasted lighting effects in oil paintings.

This was the first song on Side 2 of Meet The Beatles, their first album released in the US. With The Beatles was their second UK release.

Don’t Bother Me

Since she’s been gone I want no one to talk to me
It’s not the same but I’m to blame, it’s plain to see

So go away, leave me alone, don’t bother me
I can’t believe that she would leave me on my own
It’s just not right when every night I’m all alone

I’ve got no time for you right now, don’t bother me
I know I’ll never be the same if I don’t get her back again
Because I know she’ll always be the only girl for me

But ’til she’s here please don’t come near, just stay away
I’ll let you know when she’s come home
Until that day
Don’t come around, leave me alone, don’t bother me

I’ve got no time for you right now, don’t bother me
I know I’ll never be the same if I don’t get her back again
Because I know she’ll always be the only girl for me

But ’til she’s here please don’t come near, just stay away
I’ll let you know when she’s come home
Until that day

Don’t come around, leave me alone, don’t bother me
Don’t bother me
Don’t bother me
Don’t bother me
Don’t bother me

Beach Boys – In My Room

As a teenager, I could relate to this song. Now in this world, we live in now… I can relate to this song even more. I love the harmonies in this song.

Brian Wilson suffered from severe agoraphobia and refused to leave his bedroom for a significant amount of time. He wrote this song to give people an idea of how he felt. The song, like many Beach Boys songs, has beautiful harmonizing. The song was written by Brian Wilson and Gary Usher.

This song was the B side to Be True To Your School released in 1963. The song peaked at #23 in the Billboard 100 in 1963.

Brian Wilson: “When Dennis, Carl and I lived in Hawthorne as kids, we all slept in the same room. One night I sang the song ‘Ivory Tower’ to them and they liked it. Then a couple of weeks later, I proceeded to teach them both how to sing the harmony parts to it. It took them a little while, but they finally learned it. We then sang this song night after night. It brought peace to us. When we recorded ‘In My Room,’ there was just Dennis, Carl and me on the first verse… and we sounded just like we did in our bedroom all those nights. This story has more meaning than ever since Dennis’ death.”

From Songfacts

In the 1998 documentary Endless Harmony, Brian Wilson described this song as about being “somewhere where you could lock out the world, go to a secret little place, think, be, do whatever you have to do.”

Charles Manson, who was convicted of orchestrating the murders of six people in 1969, made repeated claims that The Beach Boys stole this song from him. In Manson’s view, he wrote a song called “In My Cell” which was about how he feels peace with himself in his jail cell. Manson did have a connection to The Beach Boys – he knew their drummer Dennis Wilson – and did write and record some songs. His claims have little basis in fact – something that is true of most of his proclamations.

Bill Medley from The Righteous Brothers recorded this with Phil Everly and Brian Wilson for his album Damn Near Righteous, his first new album since the untimely 2003 death of his partner Bobby Hatfield. 

Interesting food for thought: Brian Wilson just might have inadvertently inspired one of the greatest jazz fusion bands, Blood Sweat & Tears, albeit indirectly. Al Kooper relates in Backstage Passes and Backstabbing Bastards that he was sitting in Brian Wilson’s living room while he showed off the Pet Sounds album. He was just leaving The Blues Project and wandering around California in an existential haze wondering what to do next, when while visiting with Brian Wilson, “Deep in the back of my mind was a band that could put dents in your shirt if you got within fifteen rows of the stage…” He explains his idea of having a band with a horn section in it, more than R&B bands but less than Count Basie’s or Buddy Rich’s. “Somewhere in the middle was a mixture of soul, jazz, and rock that was my little fantasy.”

This was released as the B-side of “Be True To Your School.”

Linda Ronstadt and Tammy Wynette both covered this song.

One of the many who found solace in this song is Steve Perry of Journey fame, who told Rolling Stone: “This was an anthem to my teenage isolation. I just wanted to be left alone in my room, where I could find peace of mind and play music.”

In My Room

There’s a world where I can go and tell my secrets to
In my room, in my room
In this world I lock out all my worries and my fears
In my room, in my room

Do my dreaming and my scheming
Lie awake and pray
Do my crying and my sighing
Laugh at yesterday

Now it’s dark and I’m alone
I won’t be afraid
In my room, in my room
In my room, in my room
In my room, in my room

J.D. Souther – You’re Only Lonely

This song has always stuck with me. I have a special place for it. J.D. Souther was influenced by the Roy Orbinson song Only The Lonely. This title fits some today in what all of us are going through. You know sometimes when you say “all of us” you mean maybe your state, district, or country…but now it truly means all of us.

J.D. Souther collaborated on many of The Eagles’ hits, including New Kid in Town. J.D. Souther had some talented friends. In the early days of his career, Souther shared an apartment with future Eagles member Glenn Frey in Los Angeles. Downstairs was Jackson Browne. Don Henley, Bonnie Raitt and many others from that scene hung around, too.

“You’re Only Lonely” was originally released in 1979, and was No. 1 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart. It peaked at #7 in the Billboard 100.

J.D. Souther talks about how Linda Ronstadt gave him good advice: “Very pointedly, she said, ‘Don’t try to rewrite the songs.’ I mean, she encouraged me to do the record because I defer to her advice quite often,” Souther says. “She really has just practically infallible taste in songs. She’s got what jazz players call ‘big ears.’ So I just kind of sat back and approached it as though the songs had been chosen for me by someone else.

From Songfacts

A #1 Adult Contemporary hit for 5 weeks, Souther told us that Roy Orbison, who had a hit with “Only The Lonely,” was a big influence on this song. Said Souther: “I was a little kid when I first heard Roy Orbison, but he was magic. He’s the guy that you turned out the lights and listened to his records by yourself – or with a girl – because he was just completely other-worldly. He had sarcastic and adventurous songs and great arrangements, and then that beautiful, almost operatic voice. Beautiful, natural deep echo on it. He is one of half a dozen or so rockabilly musicians that I really loved. When I was in junior high school was the first time I really started listening to that.

But then I started playing drums all the time, and I got so fascinated with jazz, I didn’t really think much about singing or making rock and roll records for quite a few years. The first song I ever heard called ‘Only the Lonely’ was this song that Frank Sinatra sang. It’s a Johnny Mercer song; it’s on a Sinatra album called Songs for Only the Lonely. There are a lot of songs with that name. But the beat that I used for ‘You’re Only Lonely’ is that rockabilly beat. That sort of break in it was taken from another Roy Orbison record called ‘I’m Hurtin” that I really love.”

When You’re Only Lonely

When the world is ready to fall on your little shoulders
And, when you’re feeling lonely and small,
You need somebody there to hold you;
You can call out my name

When you’re only lonely;
Now, don’t you ever be ashamed;
You’re only lonely.

When you need somebody around on the nights that try you
I was there when you were a queen
And I’ll be the last one there beside you;
So you can call out my name

When you’re only lonely;
Now, don’t you ever be ashamed;
You’re only lonely. (You’re only lonely)
(You’re only lonely) (You’re only lonely)

Ooh, When the world is ready to fall on your little shoulders
And, when you’re feeling lonely and small,
You need somebody there to hold you;
So don’t you ever be ashamed
When you’re only lonely;
You can call out my name

When you’re only lonely; (You’re only lonely)
When you’re only lonely; (You’re only lonely)
Ooh, it’s no crime,
Darlin’, we got lots of time,
Woh, woh, (You’re only lonely)
Woh, woh, woh, (You’re only lonely)
No there’s nothing wrong with you,
Darlin, I get lonely too.
(You’re only lonely)(You’re only lonely)
So, if you need me, (You’re only lonely)
All you’ve gotta do is call me
Well, you’re only lonely
(You’re only lonely)(You’re only lonely)
Ooh, ooh, (You’re only lonely)

White Trash – Golden Slumber/Carry That Weight

White Trash or Trash as they were later called signed with Apple Records and released these Beatles songs from the Beatles then-upcoming Abbey Road album. John Lennon loved it but Paul was upset about the recording…the reason why is below.

I’m critical on Beatle covers because I’m such a fan…but this is pretty good.

This was supposed to be just a demo but it was a finished product. Paul was not happy about the money spent producing it…

When they recorded what was supposed to be a demo of it, Paul was furious: “I
asked for a demo and I’m handed a finished master of a full production
with strings on it and the lot!” Everyone thought the record was dead,
but press officer Derek Taylor grabbed the record and took it to John Lennon.
When it was over, Lennon pointed to one of the speakers and declared,
“That’s a good imitation of us! It’s going out!”

They started out as the Pathfinders, a Scottish group from Glasgow, doing a Goffin-King song called “Road To Nowhere”, which Tony Meehan brought to George Harrison and Paul McCartney who liked it and said “Let’s put it out.” DiLello worked in the Apple Press Office, interviewed the band, and came up with a better name — White Trash. Unfortunately, the record distributors didn’t go for that, so they censored the offensive word “White” and just called the band “Trash”. The band consisted of: Ian Crawford Clews, vocalist, Fraser Watson, lead guitar Colin Hunter-Morrison, Bass, Ronald Leahy, organ, and Timi Donald, percussion

Richard DiLello was the “House Hippie” of Apple Records in the press department and was writing the press biography for the band and was trying to come up with a tag line for them. His choice? “They begin where The Cream leave off!” Apple’s press officer  Derek Taylor said a big fat NO. A bit later, Richard came up with an alternate: “They Leave Off where the Cream BEGAN?”

In 1969, White Trash hooked up with singer Marsha Hunt and went on
tour. When she ripped her vocal cords one night, a long rest was recommended for her, and by mid-September The White Trash found themselves rehearsing to perfection their version of Golden Slumbers from the Beatles’ “Abbey Road”.

To any Beatle fan, I would recommend the Richard DiLello book The Longest Cocktail Party. It’s informative and hilarious.

The Longest Cocktail Party.jpg

Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight

Once there was a way
To get back homeward

Once there was a way
To get back home

Sleep, pretty darling
Do not cry
And I will sing a lullaby

Golden slumbers
Fill your eyes
Smiles await you when you rise
Sleep pretty darling
Do not cry
And I will sing a lullaby

Once there was a way
To get back homeward

Once there was a way
To get back home

Sleep, pretty darling
Do not cry
And I will sing a lullaby

Carry That Weight

Boy, you gotta carry that weight
Carry that weight a long time
Boy, you gonna carry that weight
Carry that weight a long time

I never give you my pillow
I only send you my invitation
And in the middle of the celebrations
I break down

Boy, you gotta carry that weight
Carry that weight a long time
Boy, you gotta carry that weight
You’re gonna carry that weight along time

 

Paul McCartney in Nashville 1974

Back in the early seventies, there was a line between rock and country. Now that line is blurred quite a bit but when Paul came to Nashville…it was a huge deal here. Some country artists wondered why a Beatle was coming here.

I’ve written some here but I don’t do it justice… His month stay involved an emergency room visit, a visit to Johnny Cash, Loveless Motel (great place to eat), and many other places. Please read this.. https://www.nashvillescene.com/news/article/13007056/when-we-was-fab

People here still talk about this visit to the city. I was only 7 and it was one year before I got into the Beatles. I faintly remember the newscasts. On June 6, 1974, Paul arrived and said he chose Nashville for his month’s stay as a rehearsal base for an upcoming tour. He also planned to enjoy himself while here, socializing with the community and horseback riding.

Paul said: “I rather fancy the place,”  “It’s a musical center. I’ve just heard so much about it that I wanted to see for myself.”

He recorded songs, went to the Grand Ole Opry, met Porter Waggner and Dolly Parton, ate some Kentucky Fried Chicken, and visited Printers Alley. Paul and Linda lived on a farm in Lebanon that  Curly Putman Jr rented…that is where the title Juniors Farm came from. Putman was a songwriter who wrote some huge songs like The Green Green Grass of Home, He Stopped Loving Her Today, D-I-V-O-R-C-E, and many more.

I have a cousin that lives down the road from the farm Paul and Linda stayed at…he got this shot but it’s a little dark. They added some columns since 1974.IMG_2102.PNG

Former Beatle Paul McCartney takes his wife, Linda, for a spin around the lawn of the home of songwriter Curly Putman July 17, 1974, where the McCartneys have been living during their visit to Nashville.

As his time in Tennessee came to a close, McCartney told a group of local reporters that he hoped to mount a U.S. tour the following year and that if it happened, Music City would definitely be on the itinerary.

McCartney didn’t come back until 36 years later in 2010 and I finally got to see him.

Paul McCartney's Nashville past

 

 

 

 

 

Where is…Steve McQueen’s Mustang from Bullitt?

After Bullitt finished filming, the car was sold to a studio executive in Los Angeles, who kept it briefly before selling it, coincidentally, to a police detective. The officer shipped the car to New York and kept it for about three and a half years before placing a for-sale ad in the back of Road & Track magazine in 1974. His $6,000 asking price was somewhat steep, but Robert Kiernan, a New Jersey insurance executive, and Mustang fan went out to look at it. He bought it for his wife, Robbie to use as a daily driver.

The Kiernans kept the car a secret, mainly to ward off thieves and gawkers. Steve McQueen found out that the Kiernans owned the car and he tried to buy it but insisted that the price had to be right. Apparently, it never was right. McQueen never did buy the car.

Robert and Robbie’s son, Sean Kiernan decided to sell the car in 2020.

It stayed in the garage for decades after it was driven by his mother, Robbie, back in the day to St. Vincent’s parish, where she taught third grade. Her husband took a train to work in New York City. This month, Robbie Kiernan went to the auction with her 7-week-old grandchild.

The car will be inducted into the Historic Vehicle Association roster this year—kind of like the National Register of Historic Places, but for cars. It’s only the 21st car to be so honored.

“I am OK with any price. But I would like it to be the most valuable Mustang ever,” he said… he succeeded.

Before he sold the Mustang, he brought it home in October for his mother’s birthday and put it in the garage where the car had been hidden for four decades.

“I had never prepped the car to sell, so I changed all the fluids and did all the car stuff to it,” Kiernan said. “My sister, my mom, my wife, Sam’s dad came down from Dearborn and sat in the car. That car had been in the garage forever. It was her spot. I think everybody cried at some point or another.”

They all said goodbye to the car….But… hello to 3.74 million dollars to an unknown buyer on January 10, 2020.

Thanks to everyone who has read my “Where Is” posts…here are the rest: