Thursday, April 30, 2009

Bob Ralston....International Man of Mystery

He's more than just your average next door piano and organ player from the Lawrence Welk Show.

He's a radio personality....

A Junior High School student.....

A California Highway Patrol officer.....

A door to door salesman.....

....and a featured dancer from "Dance Fever"


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Separated at Birth?

Sally Flynn....

....and actress Patrica Richardson


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Warren Luening

Played trumpet with the Welk Orchestra for a few years (1958 to 1960) during the Silver Champagne Era.

I found this nice tribute site to Warren, he has been pretty busy since those days!


Monday, April 27, 2009

They're the Cat's Pajamas

Take your flapper girlie out to paint the town red.....

How about we go to that new speakeasy downtown? Just don't tip off to the G-Men.

Time to boogie on down to the latest dance craze....the Black Bottom!

What a night, or is it morning already?


Sunday, April 26, 2009

Music For All America

From my good friend Gilligan of Retrospace, it's what everyone from the 1970s wanted....

A Lawrence Welk Sing-A-Long notebook, 36 Country Music Stars and Tennessee Ernie Ford, you can't beat it!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Six Degrees of Gail Farrell #3

Just saw Gail this morning on a episode of Match Game.

That's an excuse to do another six degrees with her, and today we'll try to link the lovely Miss Farrell......

.....with former NFL quarterback Neil Lomax

1. Lomax's head coach for three years with the Cardinals was Gene Stallings

2. Stallings spent fourteen years with the Dallas Cowboys as an assistant coach to Tom Landry

3. Landry was good friends with and spoke at the many crusades of the Reverend Billy Graham

4. Rev. Graham also had Norma Zimmer appear and sing at one of his crusades

5. And of course, Norma is the Maestro's Champagne Lady....alongside fellow music maker Gail Farrell!

Only five degrees this time....I'm getting good at this


Friday, April 24, 2009

An April Showers haiku

Springtime has finally arrived....let's celebrate with a 5-7-5

Raindrops keep fallin'
But it results in flowers
And allergies too


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Jack Imel goes to the record store

"Pardon me, do have "Winchester Cathedral" in a 45?

"Why yes sir, we do....and as a added bonus, free dancing lessons!"

"I like this place!"


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Champagne Music under Martial Law

Must be the episode where the Army was sent in.....

Actually, this is the Salute to Vienna episode from 1966 where the Music Makers sing and dance Austrian music

You can't beat entertainment like this!


Monday, April 20, 2009

For those Manic Mondays, relax with the sounds of Jerry Burke he works his magic fingers on the Novachord.

And here's Jerry joined at the piano by Larry Hooper

Let's give that young man a round of applause!


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Listen To My Smile.....what the $#&@!

That of course was one of the songs featured on this week's Welk episode. Guy & Ralna sang it.

By the way, how is it possible to actually LISTEN to someone's smile, and if so....what are they saying?

Ralna's might be saying, "Yes, I do get mistaken for Lynda Carter"

Anyway, it's a nice love song, our happily married singing couple did a terrific job....and this week's show "Springtime" was excellent.

And by the way, the fella Ralna's dancing with is not Lou Ferrigno.


Saturday, April 18, 2009

Cissy teaches the Cha Cha

From the Albuquerque chapter of Beta Sigma Phi written back on February 22nd of this year....

The article reads that Cissy gave Cha Cha dancing lessons at the sorority's Membership Workshop on January 24th.

Nice bio of Cissy, rundown of the story and two great pictures of her....check it out by clicking ABQ Beta Sigma Phi's webpage


Friday, April 17, 2009

Caption This! Springtime edition

Ahhhhh Spring, when a young fan's fancy turns to baseball.....

Add your own caption! Just click on the comments link


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Six Degrees of Gail Farrell #2

This six degrees thing has gone over very well....I thought the time is right to do another one!

Today, we'll link Gail.....

....with legendary singer, activist and fellow piano player Elton John!

And away we go!

1. Gail Farrell attended the University of Tulsa as did fellow singer, actress and writer Mary Kay Place 

2. Mary Kay hosted the December 10, 1977 episode of Saturday Night Live alongside regular cast member Jane Curtin

3. Curtin's fellow SNL castmate was Chevy Chase 

4. Chase appeared in the 1983 movie National Lampoon's Vacation with model Christine Brinkley 

5. Brinkley was married to singer Billy Joel 

6. And Joel has appeared and performed onstage with Elton John!

Small world, ain't it?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Death, Taxes, Michael Redman

Today is music maker (and my good friend) Michael Redman's birthday!

Happy Birthday Mike!

And don't forget to file your tax returns everyone....


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Ballad of the Aldridge Sisters

Doing my best (or some say worst) Flatt and Scruggs....lemme tell 'ya a story about two girls named Sheila and Sherry.

This is how the Aldridge Sisters got on the Lawrence Welk Show.

Back in the spring of 1977, sisters Sheila and Sherry sang locally around their home in Knoxville, Tennessee. They got wind that Lawrence Welk and his Music Makers were going to perform in concert in Nashville.

They bought their tickets, and convinced their boyfriends to drive them to the show with hopes of meeting Mr. Welk. One problem was their seats were way up in the balcony....up in the nosebleed section.

Undeterred, they were able to meet the Maestro during which they were able to audition for him after the show. He liked them and their sound but told them there weren't any openings on the show, but did tell them call him if they were ever in Los Angeles.

Encouraged, they flew out there a week later, and sung for the Maestro again. This time they used the popular ABBA hit "Fernando". Lawrence told them they were terrfic, but there were still no openings on the show.

Undaunted, they tried three more times....earning enough money from their singing gigs for airfare and to audition. It was the same old story, he liked their act but there was just no openings.

Finally, on their third visit....the were surprised that Lawrence and the staff were expecting them. He told them that Tanya had left the show to pursue a solo career so there was a opening for a guest spot. The girls sung "All I Have To Do is Dream" which in the Maestro's own words from his 1979 book "This I Believe" was beautiful, every note refined and pure with perfect harmony and rendition truly fine.

Lawrence and the production staff agreed, Sheila and Sherry should appear on the opening show of the 1977-78 season. He asked them and as one would say, the rest is history!


Monday, April 13, 2009

Mondays with Orie Amodeo

One of the many fine musicans from the Silver Champagne era....

Here's Orie playing the clarinet

.....and the saxophone with the boys

Playing the flute with Bill Page....

The pride and joy of Mechanicville, New York!