Goodnight everyone, and have a wonderfully wintry weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

“Winter. It’s the darkest and often the coldest of the seasons, but … Who doesn’t love curling up with a winter cocktail by the fireplace, snuggling up with a blanket and indulging a bit.”
Town and Country magazine

That’s one outlook. Here’s another.

May be an image of text that says 'A WISCONSIN POEM It's winter in Wisconsin, And the gentle breezes blow. Seventy miles an hour At thirty-five below. Oh how love Wisconsin, When snow's up to your butt. You take a breath of winter air And your nose gets frozen shut. Yes, the weather here is wonderful, So guess I'll hang around. could never leave Wisconsin 'Cause I'm frozen to the ground. Whconstnb -Anonymous Poet'

It’s been cold. Real cold.

Can music work to make us feel a little better during such brutal times?

Let’s find out. That’s our focus this week.

We start with one of the best popular music instrumentals of all-time. Big majestic opening and the paino work of Eddie Heywood.

A lone hiker is dwarfed by the snow-covered mountains of Lake McArthur at Yoho National Park in Alberta, Canada. Photo: Michael Zheng

“To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold.”
Aristotle

“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, ‘Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.'”
Lewis Carroll

Piano duo Arthur Ferrante and Louis Teicher commanded the Easy Listening charts of the 1960’s. About thirty of their albums offering light arrangements of easily recognizable classical pieces, movie soundtrack themes, and show tunes were successful over the course of the ’60s up through 1972. 

Think warm.

Skilled climbers scale the frozen Upper Falls of Johnston Canyon in Banff. Photo: Leah Horstman

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”
John Steinbeck

“They who sing through the summer must dance in the winter.”
Italian Proverb

https://i0.wp.com/ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2015/02/01/12486563/David.Charlee1.jpg

A few years ago keyboardist/arranger David Arkenstone teamed up with vocalist Charlee Brooks, though our next track is an instrumental that will remind you of Mannheim Steamroller.

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A fresh snowfall on Peyto Lake in Alberta, Canada. Photo: Matt Meisenheimer

“‘Hear! hear!’ screamed the jay from a neighboring tree, where I had heard a tittering for some time, ‘winter has a concentrated and nutty kernel, if you know where to look for it.'”
Henry David Thoreau

“I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape — the loneliness of it; the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.”
Andrew Wyeth

Speaking of Mannheim Steamroller, from 1999…

In -10 degree temperatures, the waters of Iceland’s Aldeyjarfoss waterfall splash their icy spray over a frozen ledge. Photo: Amanda Luker

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is time for home.”
Edith Sitwell

And remember,

“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.”
Hal Borland

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Cover up.

Have a great weekend.


Nature puts on a spectacular light show when charged particles from the sun get trapped in Earth’s magnetic field. Photo: Nelson Lutz

Goodnight everyone, and have a long-lasting weekend!

Saturday is Elvis’ birthday. The King would have been 87.

Let’s jump right into this weeks’ feature with a twin spin and more to come!

 Elvis in Vegas, 1969. Images by Bob Klein/©Elvis Presley Enterprises.

In August of 2019, a full 42 years after Elvis was found dead at his Graceland mansion, Sony released an amazing 11-CD boxed set from his run at the International Hotel in Las Vegas in 1969 including the two tracks you just heard. The 1969 Vegas engagements, 57 sold-out shows, marked Elvis’ first return to the live stage in eight years.

“Thanks to an insatiable demand for proven hitmakers, there is a bonanza in the boneyard.”
Forbes.com

The 2021 Forbes list of Highest-Paid Dead Celebrities ranks Elvis at #7. The legend amassed $30 million in total earnings last year.

Elvis is the Energizer Bunny of popular music, still generating recordings year after year. That’s our theme this week.

Several recent recordings have featured Elvis’ original vocals with backing from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. 

“The label would have never allowed him to have an orchestra,” said Priscilla Presley “And if it was up to [manager] Colonel Parker, he would have had Elvis just singing — no background, no nothing. I think we have given him the freedom here to experiment with all the orchestras he would have loved in the pieces.

Priscilla said these new remixed albums are Elvis a deliberate effort to keep Elvis relevant.

“I’m confused about where the music industry is,” she said. “We are losing our labels. Social media has come in, YouTube, iTunes; it’s all very confusing. Years ago, you didn’t mess with an artist’s music. You didn’t touch it. You left it alone. But now DJs are blending music, blending artists, blending songs. We have to keep Elvis current.”

The Christmas season might have just ended but the frosty season remains, and will be for much too long in my view.

From 2017, the 3rd collaboration between Elvis and the Orchestra…

Graceland Christmas – Limited Edition Canvas | Thomas Kinkade Studios

This album reached #1 in the US…on Billboard’s Top Classical Albums.

In 2003, RCA released ELVIIS: 2nd to None, a collection of Elvis songs as the sequel to the previous year’s highly successful ELVIS: 30#1 Hits.

The album included Elvis’s #1 singles that did not appear on the previous release, including this Paul Oakenfold remix of a single from Elvis’ 1969 film “A Change of Habit.”

Elvis was still cool. Still hip, 26 years after dying.

Elvis 2nd To None Music CD Album

The album went to #3 on the Billboard chart. That’s the whole shootin’ match. Not the Classical chart.

Big boxed CD sets chronicling Elvis’ work in an entire decade were produced, the first about the 50’s in 1992. Then the 60’s in 1993. And “Walk A Mile In My Shoes – The Essential 70’s Masters” in 1995.

In concert Elvis put his stamp on Hank Williams and then Joe South.


These are just some examples of Elvis’ continuing recording success. There have been compilations, collections, remixes, soundtracks, live shows. Interest in Elvis keeps growing with no end in sight.

Cinedigm’s The Elvis Presley Channel debuts on Saturday, his birthday, with archival content, concerts and more. In the fall, Netflix will premiere an animated adult series called ‘Agent King,’ in which Elvis will explore an alternate history where he faked his own death to fight crime with a secret government spy program.

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

From 2016…

Priscilla Presley will be among those cutting a ceremonial cake during the Elvis Birthday Proclamation Ceremony on Saturday.

Goodnight everyone, and have a Christmas love weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

You hear it a lot these days. We are smack dab in the midst of the most wonderful time of the year. 

Romance? It fills the air.

As Johnny Mathis sings in “Winter Wonderland”:

Over the ground lies a mantle of white
A heaven of diamonds shine down through the night
Two hearts are thrillin’
In spite of the chill in the weather
Love knows no season, love knows no clime
Romance can blossom any old time
Here in the open
We’re walkin’ and hopin’ together


We continue our series of musical Christmas cards with this week’s feature and it’s all about love.

Let’s get started.

The genuine loving bond between married singers Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme was undeniable. They originally began working together on Tonight Starring Steve Allen in 1954 and performed together until Gormé retired in 2009. 

Before our first musical selection a brief TV sitcom clip…

Eydie Gorme died in 2013 at the age of 84.

In June of 2019 Steve Lawrence revealed that he had been diagnosed with the early stages of Alzheimer’s Disease. Lawrence said he was being treated with medications by “some of the finest doctors in the field,” who have helped to slow down the process of the disease.

“I want my beloved fans to know that in spite of this bittersweet moment, what I don’t want is pity or sympathy. I have lived and am living a wonderful, joyous life filled with love, support and amazing moments,” he said in a statement. “With my beloved Eydie, I had one of the great loves of all time; my career has always been there for me as a source of joy and fulfillment; and you, my fans, have shown immeasurable love and support in ways I only could have imagined.” 

Will you marry me? According to the 2018 Brides American Wedding Study December is the most popular time to pop the question. Of those surveyed 14 percent got engaged at the end of the year, and July and August were tied for second, with just over 10 percent each.

Why frosty December?

Was it the snow?

Bright lights?

Decorated trees?

Egg nog?

Carols?

Country star Barbara Mandrell has the answer.

Mandrell was one of the most successful country artists in the ’70s and ’80s. A two-time CMA Entertainer of the Year, Mandrell was involved in a serious car crash on September 11, 1984, in which the driver of the other car died. Mandrell herself had a leg fracture, a concussion, and other injuries, while two of her children were also in the car with her and were injured. According to the police report from the incident, the other driver — 19-year-old Mark White — had crossed the centerline of the road, therefore causing the collision.

Mandrell spent a year and a half recovering. She retired completely from music in 1997.

One of my many jobs during my college years was working as an usher at was then called The Performing Arts Center. The list of entertainers I saw is too long to mention, including a well-known trio of female vocalists.

The ushers had a huge locker/dressing room and we actually shared it with the singers that night. I’ll never forget the white boots sitting on the floor. At least one pair had sizable lifts in them.

From a 1966 album…

The Lettermen had their first recoding hit in 1961, and despite numerous personnel changes the group still performs today.

One of the best songs fitting this week’s theme is relatively new. Sadly, it gets zero radio play, possibly because only a handful of artists have recorded the song written by Alan and Marilyn Bergman and composed by Johnny Mandel in 1991.

Author Tom Santopietro described the song as “an embrace of the holidays filled with honest sentiment.” It deserves a lot of exposure.

The Manhattan Transfer is a great success story. Tim Hauser, a former Madison Avenue marketing executive, paid his bills by driving a New York City cab with dreams of forming a harmony vocal quartet.

In the Fall of 1972, Hauser’s taxi fare was a young singer-wannabe named Laurel Massé. A few weeks later, another of Hauser’s fares invited him to a party where he met Brooklyn native Janis Siegel. Massé’s then-boyfriend, who was drumming in a Broadway pit band, introduced Hauser and Siegel to Alan Paul, who was co-starring in the original production of “Grease.” The Manhattan Transfer was born.

Hauser, the group’s founder, died in 2014, but the quartet keeps touring. Last night (Thursday) they performed in Helsinki, Finland.

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a LOVEly weekend.

For my money this is the best version of this once controversial Christmas classic. Again, forget about hearing it on the radio.

Vanessa Williams is joined by Bobby Caldwell.

PREVIOUS 2021 CHRISTMAS GOODNIGHT BLOGS:

Goodnight everyone, and have a terrific Christmas kickoff weekend!

Goodnight everyone, and have a Happy St. Nick’s weekend!

Goodnight everyone, and have the classiest of Christmas weekends!

Goodnight everyone, and have the classiest of Christmas weekends!

“I always find it funny when people say, ‘I don’t really like classical music’ or ‘it doesn’t do anything for me.’ I tell them, ‘Well, you know, it does. You go to films and you’re responding to it, and you’ve heard it…’ It’s controlling you! So don’t think you’re not being affected. It’s a great medium for music.”
Violinist, soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and conductor Joshua Bell

One of the beauties of Christmas music is that it can easily fit into any style: Rock, Easy Listening, Country, Jazz, and, of course, Classical.

DON’T RUN AWAY!

This will not be a bore. Au contraire. A fun time is guaranteed.

You see our Christmas music feature this week won’t be classical in the strictest sense. You’ll just have to tag along to see and hear for yourself.

Let’s get started.

Traditionally here, a rousing opening.

From the Christmas season of 2014, in concert, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra is the largest performing arts organization in the Southwest United States.

Our next selection is a song from Jerry Herman’s 1966 Broadway musical “Mame,” originally performed by Angela Lansbury. Yes, you’ll hear it on FM radio, but not like this.

Time now to pose a fascinating musical question…

Told you this would be fun!

Did the famous composer celebrate Christmas?

From Mozart.com:

The custom to have a fir tree decorated with tinsel, colourful glass balls and candles spread all over the world from Germany in the 19th century. However, there are a few surviving reports of decorated Christmas trees from the 18th century. It is perfectly possible that a cultivated, well-travelled family such as the Mozarts would have had one in their parlour. The same is true of nativity scenes. The display of the holy family with ox and ass grew in popularity in the 18th century.

We know for a fact that Mozart was very fond of the typical Christmas beverage – punch. He got to know and appreciate punch in England in 1764, at a time when punch was unheard of in Salzburg. In a letter to his Salzburgian friend Hagenauer, Leopold Mozart enthusiastically wrote about the future favourite drink of his son – and provided a recipe!

A family Christmas was most certainly an uncommon occurrence for the Mozart family. Father and son constantly travelled – even in winter.

The whole “What If?” concept is intriguing, but there’s really no mystery. Mozart did indeed compose Christmas music.

OK, one more because, we just have to.

From our next group’s website:

It all started in a piano store in a little Southern Utah town called Saint George. Paul Anderson, the store’s owner, was looking for a new, unconventional way to market pianos. The name of the piano store? The Piano Guys. Paul embarked upon a self-guided study of social marketing and started a YouTube channel and a Facebook page. He had seen videos “go viral” and was fascinated by this exponential phenomenon. He set out to engage potential customers with music videos that were entertaining and that showcased the pianos he had in his store – envisioning “viral videos” doing his marketing for him. Paul was an ambitious, talented risk taker and felt inspired that if he could find the right people to work with he could create the number one music video channel in the world.

In walked Jon Schmidt. Literally. Jon had built a career in solo piano performance and had a concert in the St. George area. He asked Paul if he could practice on one of the store’s pianos in preparation for his gig that night. Paul explained his idea to Jon and asked if he would be willing to be in a video promoting both the store and Jon’s music. It was a win-win. Jon brought so much to the table. He had experienced the “music business” first hand. He had a gift for combining multiple genres of music in such an entertaining way that he had captivated and captured a broad, substantial fan base.

A few others followed and “The Piano Guys” were born.

Entreprenuer.com described the group in 2015 as “four Mormon dads from Utah who quit their day jobs in pursuit of an online career that has already netted them millions.”

That’s it for this week.

More Christmas music next Friday.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a classic weekend!

How about some music magic all the way from London!

PREVIOUS 2021 CHRISTMAS GOODNIGHT BLOGS:

Goodnight everyone, and have a terrific Christmas kickoff weekend!

Goodnight everyone, and have a Happy St. Nick’s weekend!

Goodnight everyone, and have a Happy St. Nick’s weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

To celebrate the patron saint of children, it is the custom in many countries to give a small gift to children on December 6, St. Nicholas’ Day.

This week, music of the Fat Man, Jolly Old St. Nick. Let’s get started. First, some history.

And could it be true? The patron saint of children, who attended the Council of Nicaea where he slapped Arius across the face when the arch-heretic was bold enough to assert that Jesus Christ is not the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, but a kind of supernatural superman created by God the Father, actually had a connection to ladies of the evening?

Read more.

St. Nicholas. A racy character? Well, we know Santa can boogie. We like to open with a rousing number whenever possible.

Found one.

In November 2019, under doctor’s orders, Setzer was forced to cancel his 16th annual “Christmas Rocks! Tour” by THE BRIAN SETZER ORCHESTRA due to a severe case of tinnitus. That’s when you experience ringing or other noises in one or both of your ears.

This August Setzer released his first solo album in 7 years, “Gotta Have the Rumble.”

Other than The Beach Boys the American rock band that has sold the most records is Chicago. Those recordings include some Christmas albums. Here they pose a musical question.

Chicago and Brian Wilson, co-founder of the Beach Boys, have announced they will embark on a 25-date tour across the U.S. in 2022, including stops in Los Angeles, Chicago, Tampa, Dallas and more. Tickets went on sale today.

ST. NICK NOTE:

When Nicholas was born, his parents were serving the needs of the sick. They contracted the same disease as the sick and died. Being the only child, he inherited everything. St. Nicholas’s anonymous gift-giving originated in his hometown of Patara in Turkey.  According to ancient tradition, to deliver a destitute family of a widower father and his three daughters, who their father was considering to sell into slavery, out of dire poverty, the young Nicholas secretly threw three bags of gold coins through their window on three consecutive nights.

According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), Elvis’ Christmas Album along with its reissues has shipped at least 17 million copies in the United States making it the best-selling Christmas album of them all.

Perfect lead-in to our next selection.

Garth Brooks does the intro on his Christmas TV special.

Brooks and Yearwood married in 2005. They will celebrate their 16-year anniversary next week.

ST. NICK NOTE:

There were times when Nicholas was not hidden or anonymous in helping the afflicted and those suffering unjustly. There are records of him intervening to save three men falsely condemned to be executed by a corrupt magistrate who accepted a bribe. Fearlessly, Nicholas walked up to the executioner and grabbed the sword from his hand. Hence, he was a protector of the innocent.

For my money the best Christmas albums are those by The Carpenters. Lush orchestral arrangements by Richard. Angelic vocals by Karen.

We have a twin spin. First, this brief clip…

And a more extended mellow version.

The Carpenters appeared on a Perry Como TV special where comedian Rich Little played Santa impersonating legendary entertainer and cheapskate Jack Benny.

Listen for an awesome sax solo.

ST. NICK NOTE:

St. Nicholas spent seven long, hard years, tortured and imprisoned for his faith in Christ under the Diocletian Persecution, until the first Christian emperor, Constantine issued the Edict of Milan in A.D. 313 that gave religious liberty to all Christians.


He died in 345. Venetian sailors stole the bones of Nicholas from his tomb in Myra then left behind some fragments, and in 1100 went back to Myra to collect the remaining fragments. Those fragments are enshrined in the church of St. Nicholas on the Lido, Venice, Italy.  A pure liquid known as the Manna of St. Nicholas (or St. Nicholas Manna) has flowed from his bones for 17 centuries. Each May 9th on the Feast of the Translation of the Relics of St. Nicholas, a Dominican priest siphons the manna of St. Nicholas into a glass vial. The manna is traditionally used to bless the Christian faithful.

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

OK. If The Carpenters have the best Christmas albums, then just a notch below in my book are The Boston Pops. Wonderful stuff.

From the 2013 live album “A Boston Pops Christmas: Live from Symphony Hall”. The album also features the Tanglewood Festival Chorus and is conducted by Keith Lockhart. Originally recorded December 15-16, 2011, and December 13-14, 2012 from Symphony Hall in Boston, Massachusetts.

Goodnight everyone, and have a terrific Christmas kickoff weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

It’s tradition on this blog feature that at Thanksgiving we highlight new Christmas releases. And we have some beauties again this year.

Let’s get started.

I love the original of “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.” That booming, deep in a canyon voice of Thurl Ravenscroft. The witty, humorous lyrics.

But like so many Christmas songs for me…gotta be in the mood.

Our first selection is a terrific rendition, like you’ve never heard before. From bassist extraordinaire Brian Bromberg and his first Christmas album. Here Bromberg plays the acoustic bass and the drums.

I’ve heard the entire album and highly recommend.

Pentatonix is the best and most popular a capella group performing today.

Their new album “Evergreen” opens with a short track of a song done originally back in 1945 by trumpeter and big band leader Harry James and Kitty Kallen to mark the end of WWII (and one of my mother’s personal favorites).


Pentatonix has won three Grammy Awards and has sold more than 10 million albums worldwide. Their Christmas tour will arrive on December 15 at Rosemont, IL in the Allstate Arena, the closest stop near us.

Actress, singer, and Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth is so sweet. But she has an issue with…Santa?

One Broadway writer called this new song “annoyingly cheesy.” I didn’t think so. Bah humbug!

Do you who the Pistol Annies are?

They’re a country trio of Miranda Lambert, Angaleena Presley, and Ashley Monroe.

This tune is also brand new. The title track encompasses the hectic holiday energy.

Pistol Annies Announce Christmas Album: Hear New Song "Snow Globe"

Next, Christian pop duo for KING & COUNTRY has announced the for KING & COUNTRY | A Drummer Boy Christmas Tour. Joel and Luke Smallbone will be bringing their annual Christmas spectacle to arenas over 14 dates, performing their Top 10 album A Drummer Boy Christmas live in concert for the first time.

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

One of the largest independent Christian music companies in the world and a household name for millions of fans, Gaither Music Group is known worldwide for its award-winning and top-selling  recordings.

Goodnight everyone, and dance, dance, dance this weekend!

Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.

Dance Vector Png For Kids - Ballroom Dancing Silhouette Swing PNG Image |  Transparent PNG Free Download on SeekPNG

A poll taken late in the summer of 2020 showed that three in five Americans were boosting their moods after spending so much time at home due to lockdowns by hosting indoor dance parties. The study of 2,000 Americans examined the important role music plays and found that 38% threw a dance party with friends via video chat.

Given that a fair amount of folks are still living in COVID fear who knows if these dance parties are still being held and to what extent.

This week some interesting views expressed in that poll with noteworthy dance music popular from the past several decades.

Let’s get started by traveling way back to 1914 and a dance craze that reached its popularity in the 1930s.

The Foxtrot is a smooth dance where the dancers travel across the dance floor using long walking movements. There’s actually a combination of slow and quick steps. The slow steps take up two beats of the music, and the quick steps take up one beat.

In the 1970s record producers all over the world began remaking classic music into a contemporary style. Session ensemble “Tuxedo Junction” capitalized on the style, a trio of female vocalists harmonizing a la the Andrew Sisters over horn-laden big band arrangements boosted by strong rhythms.

Here’s the group’s rendition of the theme song from the 1976 film “Foxtrot” that starred Peter O’Toole and Max Von Sydow.

How did the Foxtrot get its name? No one knows for sure.

One explanation gives credit to comedian Harry Fox who appeared onstage with scantily clad women. During his act Fox performed a fast, comical dance to 4/4 ragtime music from one woman to the next where he would deliver his jokes.

Back to the poll: The survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Ultimate Ears found that when it comes to their taste in music, many think of themselves as tastemakers. Three in five Americans think “good taste” in music is a talent they’re born with. Music preferences can even have an impact on the dating game with two-thirds saying bad taste in music is a romantic buzzkill.

NEXT, the boogie-woogie, a blues piano style where the right hand plays riffs against a driving pattern of repetitive bass notes. Boogie-woogie was played in honky-tonks and rent parties on the South Side of Chicago before becoming a national sensation the 30s and 40s.

Turns out Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts was a boogie-woogie aficionado. Watts called boogie-woogie the root of popular music. Here Watts appears with three piano players on “Later,” a contemporary British music television show hosted by Jools Holland in December 2009.

Watts died in August of this year. He was 80.

More from the poll: One in two were embarrassed by their own music taste with some respondents even hiding their guilty pleasure preferences from a date: Three in ten confessed to lying to a partner about their love for a song or artist.

Now we move to the 1950s.

This dance craze has been referred to as “an elaborate version of patty cake.” Quite simple. Anyone can do it.

Freelance photographer Ken Russel stumbled upon the dance in 1957 when he recorded a group of teenagers in the basement of The Cat’s Whisker coffee bar in London. Because the small basement was too crowded the teens were unable to get up and dance. So they improvised with hand moves and claps.

A popular 1978 movie immortalized the routine.

Film critic and entertainment journalist Todd Gilchrist called the “Born to Hand Jive” segment the “most exhilarating sequence” in the film.

“’Hand Jive’ has a vitality, an anarchic energy that for me transcends the rest of the movie; it makes me want to be there, in the crowd, trying to watch, or maybe keep up, with these astounding, fearless ‘teenage’ dancers,” wrote Gilchrist.

Again from the poll: Half of the respondents like “everything” when it comes to music while 15% classify their tastes as “eclectic.”

On to the 1960s. All kinds of dances.

The Freddie.

The Frug.

The Hitch-Hike.

The Loco-motion.

The Mashed Potato.

The Shimmy.

The Swim.

The Twist.

The Watusi.

The Batusi.

Our next dance never really caught on, but it’s so 60s in its sound and perfect for this Elvis beach party movie from 1965.

The King and his bandmates are hired by a Chicago nightclub owner to go down to Fort Lauderdale on spring break to keep an eye on his daughter so she stays out of trouble. Problems arise when Italian exchange student Romano makes a play for Valerie (Shelley Fabares). To the rescue.

“Do The Clam” did fine on the Billboard chart, peaking at #21.

Right after the above scene Elvis walks Fabares back to her motel room and serenades her with “Puppet on a String” which made it to #14.

Finally from the poll: Music came only second to drinks on a list of elements for a successful event, with food rounding out the top three. 78% of respondents said there are certain songs guaranteed to make people move and groove during a party—and here are their top 40 favorites:

  1. I Wanna Dance with Somebody – Whitney Houston
  2. Bille Jean – Michael Jackson
  3. Stayin’ Alive – The Bee Gees
  4. Uptown Funk – Bruno Mars
  5. Dancing Queen – ABBA
  6. Just Dance – Lady Gaga
  7. Hey Ya! – Outkast
  8. Get Lucky – Daft Punk
  9. Work – Rihanna ft. Drake
  10. Shake it Off – Taylor Swift
  11. Yeah! – Usher
  12. Crazy in Love – Beyonce
  13. I Gotta Feeling – The Black Eyed Peas
  14. SexyBack – Justin Timberlake
  15. One Dance – Drake
  16. Girls Just Want to Have Fun – Cyndi Lauper
  17. Jump Around – House of Pain
  18. Everybody – Backstreet Boys
  19. Old Town Road – Lil Nas ft. Billy Ray Cyrus
  20. Wannabe – Spice Girls
  21. Sorry – Justin Bieber
  22. TiK ToK – Ke$ha
  23. Bad guy – Billie Eilish
  24. Twist & Shout – The Beatles
  25. Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO
  26. Toxic – Britney Spears
  27. Get Busy – Sean Paul
  28. Pump up the Jam – Technotronic
  29. Thank you, next – Ariana Grande
  30. I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor
  31. September – Earth, Wind, & Fire
  32. Senorita – Shawn Mendes and Camilla Cabello
  33. Footloose – Kenny Loggins
  34. Sweet Caroline – Neil Diamond
  35. I Love It – Icona Pop ft. Charlie XCX
  36. Dance Monkey – Tones and I
  37. Truth Hurts – Lizzo
  38. The Twist – Chubby Checker
  39. Vogue – Madonna
  40. Don’t Start Now – Dua Lipa

That’s it for this week.

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

There’s absolutely no way of knowing how big Van McCoy would have been had he not died so young. For the short time McCoy did entertain us he was a giant in the music industry.

McCoy gave the world “The Hustle” in 1975, a Grammy award winner. The record, which sold over 1 million copies is regarded as a landmark in the disco movement.

One year later McCoy told the Washington Post “I don’t think any of us were aware at the time we went in to cut ‘The Hustle’ that it was going to be as big as it was. I suppose I thought it would be a good album to cut because the dance was just beginning in the discotheques just starting to catch on. It wasn’t as big as The Bump, but it was something people were starting to get into to get involved in.”

“The Hustle” was so huge McCoy could never match the magnitude of its popularity.