Saturday, January 28, 2006

Ron Dante Forgotten Hits interview Part 6

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part six of the series.

RON DANTE is still performing and recording today. In fact, we've included a couple of tracks from his latest CD, SATURDAY NIGHT BLAST, with today's mailing. (You can order the CD directly from his website ... if you tell him that FORGOTTEN HITS sent you, you'll get an autographed copy!!!)
FORGOTTEN HITS: Tell us about the fans who come to see your shows today ... are these people who were there when these songs first came out or is it more of a "mixed" audience? These songs have held up VERY well today and seem to be just as popular. Our kids LOVE "the oldies" and I don't think there's a person on the planet over five years old who's not familiar with SUGAR, SUGAR ... it was GIGANTIC and STILL gets tons of airplay today. Are you touring now? I will be happy to plug your website and any upcoming events that you're involved with. Also, tell us about your CD, FAVORITES ... is this the last thing that you've recorded (other than some of the jingles that you mentioned)? Any plans for any other recordings in the near future? Is there a particular track off of FAVORITES that you would like us to feature to give our audience a look at RON DANTE today? And, where can we go to see RON DANTE perform on stage today? What type of events do you have coming up over the next several months?

RON DANTE: The fans who come today are a mix of old and new ones. Many women take their daughters to see the show and tons of couples show up who loved The Archies growing up. "Favorites" was put together with songs that I've always wanted to sing from the 60's and 70's. It came out in 1999. My latest CD is called "Saturday Night Blast" and it also features songs from those decades. I have guests singing with me on it: Andy Kim, Peter Noone and the original female voice of The Archies, Toni Wine. I also just did a TV show at The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame with Andy Kim, Grand Funk, The Hollies and Badfinger. I'll also be playing a show in Jackson, TN for KOOL radio down there. You can always check the website for the latest concert and tour information.Ron Dante OnLine - The Official Website

FH: Ironically, I am ALSO interviewing PETER NOONE right now!

RD: Give Peter my best ... He's a great guy and star.

FH: How did you come to work with PETER NOONE on your new CD? Have you known him for a while? Ever worked with him before? Was he familiar with your MRS. JONES / DETERGENTS parody? (LOL)

RD: I met Peter while on the Dick Clark Caravan of Stars tour in the 60's and we became friends. We kept in touch all through the years and started doing some live dates together around 2000 again. I don't know if he ever heard Mrs. Jones. When I did my Saturday Night Blast CD I asked him to sing with me on one of cuts. He showed up the next night to sing.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: You'll find PETER NOONE's vocals on the ROCKIN' ROBIN / LITTLE BITTY PRETTY ONE medley that appears on RON DANTE's new SATURDAY NIGHT BLAST CD ... it'll go out in tomorrow's FH / RON DANTE finale. I should point out that when I found out that PETER NOONE had worked with RON DANTE on his latest CD, I thought that it would be interesting to get a comment or two from PETER regarding that experience ... not unlike the comments I got from BOBBY VEE regarding HIS collaboration with RON DANTE back in the late '60's, which ran earlier in this special series. On FIVE separate occasions during the interview process I asked PETER about this experience ... and, on all five occasions, he completely ignored my question. Hey, Mama didn't raise no fool ... I can put two and two together ... and most often come up with four! As a well-seasoned, experienced journalist, I can ONLY draw the conclusion that when it comes to discussing the subject of RON DANTE, as far as PETER NOONE is concerned, this topic is "A Must To Avoid!")

FH: Two of my favorite songs on the new CD are EVEN AFTER and ANGELS AMONG US ... unusual choices, perhaps, because the rest of the album pretty much concentrates on oldies remakes. What can you tell us about these songs? These are OUTSTANDING recordings, BOTH deserving of hit record status in the Adult Contemporary field ... truly EXCELLENT recordings of some very strong material. What drew you to these songs in the first place? Can you give us any behind-the-scenes insight into these recordings?

RD: I wrote Even After with Bob Merrill. He wrote all the songs from Barbara Steisand's hit musical Funny Girl. He also wrote How Much Is That Doggie in The Window and others. Angels Among Us was recorded by Alabama about 10 years ago and I always wanted to record it. I don't know who wrote it, but it meant a lot to sing it. (For the record, ANGELS AMONG US was written by BECKY HOBBS and DON GOODMAN. It first appeared on ALABAMA's CHEAP SEATS album back in 1993 and also was thrown on the B-Side of one of their Christmas singles, SANTA CLAUS, I STILL BELIEVE IN YOU. Actually, it makes for a GREAT seasonal song and RON DANTE does an EXCEPTIONAL job with it. This song deserves to be a hit!)

FH: We simply can't do this interview without covering your OWN, extensive career recording these little "jingles" snippets. Can you tell our list some of the ad campaigns that you were personally involved with ... I think the folks on our mailing list just might be surprised to find out just how many times they've heard RON DANTE singing on the radio or TV without even realizing it!!!

RD: My list of commercials could fill a book. Here are some I remember: Dr Pepper, Coke, Pepsi, McDonalds, Campbells Soup, Budweiser Beer, Cadillac, GM, Tang, General Tires and Toyota.

FH: What are some of the current ads you've been working on?

RD: This year I'm on the Yoplait commercial singing Itsy Bitsy Yellow Polka Dot Bikini and another one for White Castle Hamburgers.

FH: And, finally, is there anything that YOU would like to say to the many, many fans of your music out there? A personal message from the artist himself?

RD: My message to my fans is a huge thank you for supporting me and my dream over the years. I will be happy to autograph copies of my Saturday Night Blast when they are ordered ... no problem at all! All the best, Ron Dante

And there you have it ... I really enjoyed talking with RON DANTE for this special FORGOTTEN HITS interview ... and hope that you have enjoyed it as well. Check out these tracks from his latest CD release ... I really think you'll like them!

above photo courtesy of BROTHER MARK!!!

Even After and Angels Among Us by Ron Dante ... from his SATURDAY NIGHT BLAST CD ... available through his website at the link shown ab Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 27, 2006

Ron Dante Forgotten Hits interview Part 5

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part five of the series.

In the early '70's, RON DANTE continued to make a living singing and arranging jingles. He happened across another young artist making a living the same way by the name of BARRY MANILOW. (Actually, MANILOW was ALSO working as the Musical Director for BETTE MIDLER, "The Divine Ms. M.," but was quite involved writing and recording radio and television commercials at the time, too. You may recall the BARRY MANILOW Spotlight Feature we did in FORGOTTEN HITS a couple of years ago where we included his V.S.M. ... the Very Strange Medley of what BARRY described as "truly my greatest hits" ... popular commercial spots for McDONALD's, KENTUCKY FRIED CHICKEN, BAND AID, COCA COLA and many, many others.)
The two jingles artists teamed up in the hopes of launching BARRY's solo career. MANILOW's first album pretty much stiffed when it was originally released ... but after MANDY (a track from his second LP) hit the charts (eventually going all the way to #1), BARRY's first two albums began to climb the charts together. In fact, COULD IT BE MAGIC (originally included in his debut LP) was re-cut and re-released as MANILOW's third single after the proven chart success of both MANDY (#1) and IT'S A MIRACLE (#10 nationally, but also #1 here in Chicago, where BARRY MANILOW was one of the most popular entertainers to ever play this town!) The BARRY MANILOW / RON DANTE working partnership continued through MANILOW's first ten albums ... and RON DANTE and BARRY MANILOW (along with the female back-up trio LADY FLASH) handled all of the background vocals on all of MANILOW's recorded material during that timeframe. Collectively, those first ten LPs sold close to 35 million copies and spawned a string of Top 40 Hit Singles that included the #1 Hits I WRITE THE SONGS, LOOKS LIKE WE MADE IT and (my personal favorite) WEEKEND IN NEW ENGLAND, as well as Top Ten smashes like TRYING TO GET THE FEELING AGAIN, CAN'T SMILE WITHOUT YOU, COPACABANA, READY TO TAKE A CHANCE AGAIN, SOMEWHERE IN THE NIGHT, SHIPS and I MADE IT THROUGH THE RAIN.
In the late '70's, MANILOW repaid the favor by producing a RON DANTE "solo" version of his earlier mega-hit SUGAR, SUGAR ... done up in a full-blown, heavily orchestrated "MANILOW-style" disco arrangement ... unfortunately, except for a couple of novelty spins on the radio, it never became a hit. (I've always wondered ... if RON DANTE was producing all of BARRY MANILOW's hit records, wouldn't what has always been described as "The MANILOW Sound" really be the RON DANTE Sound?!?!?) I even asked RON about my very favorite BARRY MANILOW parody song, I NEED YOUR HELP, BARRY MANILOW by RAY STEVENS, a FORGOTTEN HITS favorite that we sent out a while ago. It's a dead-on arrangement, paying tribute to all of BARRY's heart-wrenching ballads ... and funny as hell!!!
FORGOTTEN HITS: After THE ARCHIES ended, you went back to recording "jingles." I guess that this would be the PERFECT time to ask about how it is that you came to work with BARRY MANILOW ... here's a guy who was TRULY in the zone there for several years. Tell us about what it was like helping to launch his career.

RON DANTE: I met Barry doing a commercial. Barry wrote and arranged it. I was very impressed with his writing, singing and arranging so we decided to meet and see what we could do. I knew right away he was a star and that I could help him get to the right record company and give him a direction he hadn't had before he met me. He had never recorded under his own name, having done one single as a group called FeatherBed. (NOTE: We featured this track during our BARRY MANILOW Series as well ... an uptempo version of his later hit, COULD IT BE MAGIC.)FH: With BARRY MANILOW being such a new recording artist at the time you took him under your wing, was there ever a song that he REALLY didn't want to record but that you felt (or insisted) was right for him? How was the music selected ... and how was it presented to you in the first place? I mean, you guys must have sorted through HUNDREDS (if not THOUSANDS) of songs ... was there ever any particular song that stands out that you felt very strongly about but BARRY maybe didn't want to record ... or vice versa ... a tune that just didn't have the full support of both of you ... that then went on to become a big hit record?

RD: Barry and I never passed on any hit songs. Barry and I would listen to hundreds of outside songs and decide together which ones we would record. The songs came from all the major music publishers and directly from Arista President Clive Davis, who had a great ear for hit songs. Mainly, Barry's own songs were the most important. Barry wrote Could It Be Magic and Even Now and Copacabana. He's an incredible craftsman at the finest melodies. We first went through all the songs he had written for a new album and then looked for a few outside songs.

FH: Obviously, the selection process worked ... he simply could do no wrong once MANDY became a hit ... again, he was TRULY in the zone those first few years!!! I was fortunate enough to see him in concert here in Chicago a few times in the mid-to-late '70's ... and was even there when the live album (and television special) were recorded and filmed at RAVINIA!


FH: Another piece that we did a couple of years ago spotlighted the BARRY MANILOW-produced, RON DANTE disco remake version of SUGAR, SUGAR ... tell us about that project. Whose idea was that in the first place? (It certainly has what has become known as "the MANILOW sound" ... but isn't the MANILOW sound really the RON DANTE sound if you were the one producing all those lush recordings???)

RD: A remake of Sugar, Sugar was Barry's idea. His arrangement turned the song around and gave it a new spin. That's Barry and me singing all the backgound voices on it ... something that we did on almost every record he ever recorded. I had more experience in the studio and used every bit of it to create a sound that would be Barry's. I brought him to the best studio in town and hired all the best musicians in New York City. Obviously, it worked!

FH: And, I just gotta ask you, what did you think of the dead-on RAY STEVENS novelty hit I NEED YOUR HELP, BARRY MANILOW ... especially after recording a few GREAT parodies of your own earlier in your career. (I would think that this would have been a GREAT honor at the time.)

RD: As for "I Need Your Help, Barry Manilow," I had always been a big fan of Ray Stevens, so his doing that was a highlight of the year. Barry loved it also.

photo courtesy of BROTHER MARK!!

Weekend In New England by Barry Manilow (produced by Ron Dante and Barry Manilow)Sugar, Sugar (Disco Remake) by Ron Dante (produced by Barry Manilow)
I Need Your Help, Barry Manilow by Ray Stevens Posted by Picasa

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Isis on DVD

The website TV shows on DVD reports that Isis may be comming to DVD. click here to read their post. The above photo is from this auction on E-Bay. You can see it if you click here for the auction. Posted by Picasa

Ron Dante Forgotten Hits Interview Part 4

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part four of the series.

Today, (with RON DANTE's help), we'll take a closer look at the career of THE ARCHIES ... as well as perhaps a surprising inside look at THE MONKEES!!!
FORGOTTEN HITS: I just sent you a copy of a piece I did on THE ARCHIES a couple of years ago. (It also ran as a '60's FLASHBACK in yesterday's edition of FORGOTTEN HITS.) As an "insider," can you tell me ... is this historically accurate? Are there any corrections or additions that you'd like to make? What can you tell us about the fall-out between TONI WINE and DON KIRSHNER (now that the statutes of limitations has passed LOL!!!) Was RAY STEVENS really involved in these recordings???

RON DANTE: I never saw Ellie Greenwich in the studio and I don't think she was on any of the Archies records. Tony Passalacqua is another name that does not ring a bell. I never sang backgrounds with him either. Robin was not in the studio with us either. Ray Stevens played Tamborine on Sugar, Sugar and did hand claps with Jeff Barry, Toni Wine and myself. Toni stopped recording with The Archies (rightfully so) when no attempt was made to compensate her for all her for all her talented singing. Today she is good friends with Don Kirshner and he's made amends.

FH: Your biggest break, of course, came by way of THE ARCHIES. This, of course, put you working pretty much hand-in-hand with the legendary DON KIRSHNER. Now you had known and worked with KIRSHNER prior to this experience ... what was his actual involvement with THE ARCHIES? Selecting Material? Marketing? Strategy? What were the original goals set for developing this "band" ... do you feel that you achieved these goals? And how did those goals change as time went on (especially after SUGAR, SUGAR was SO big out of the box)?

RD: I knew Don Kirshner from my early days at his publishing company, Aldon Music and from Screen Gems where he was President of the Music Division. Don picked the producer, Jeff Barry, to write and produce The Archies' material. I had worked with Jeff before, also doing background singing for him around that time. Don helped pick the songs but left the arrangements to Jeff totally. The original goal of The Archies was to keep it a cartoon and the keep the voices behind it a mystery. That game plan never changed all through the four years the show was on the air.

FH: KIRSHNER had been around the music business for QUITE some time by 1969. (We also did a month-long feature on BOBBY DARIN a while back, one of KIRSHNER's old Brooklyn buddies ... DARIN used to write jingles with KIRSHNER prior to assembling his ULTRA successful stable of songwriters.) This had to be a VERY frustrating time for DONNIE, coming off having just being fired from THE MONKEES ... especially after making them the BIGGEST group on the planet at the time! (Also, it's been reported for decades now that THE MONKEES turned down SUGAR, SUGAR as being "too bubblegum" for the image they were trying to portray at the time ... I even included this information in my original ARCHIES piece from three years ago ... but I've since heard that this is absolutely not true ... they were never even offered the song. Can you confirm or deny???)

RD: All I know is that Sugar, Sugar was written directly for The Archies. Andy Kim told me of a conversation with Jeff Barry where he asked Andy to write some songs for our group. Kirshner may have played the song for the Monkees, but I doubt it.

FH: Speaking of THE MONKEES ... in 1970 (when the band was down to just a duo of MICKY DOLENZ and DAVY JONES), both ANDY KIM and JEFF BARRY got together to write and produce their (at the time) final album. This had to be right in the thick of all THE ARCHIES stuff that they were involved with. Do you have any memories regarding this period? Were you in any way involved in THE MONKEES' CHANGES album?

RD: I auditioned for the Monkees but was beat out by Davy Jones getting the part. I had produced a few singles on Davy with my Detergent friends Danny Jordan and Tommy Wynn for Colgems Records and knew and liked him. After they became the biggest group in the world, I didn't have any contact with them for many years. I'm friends with Davy and Micky today and perform some Monkees songs as part of my stage act.

FH: Tell us a little bit more about your audition for THE MONKEES ... what was that whole experience like? And then, watching them explode around the world as the biggest thing happening musically on the planet! What early DAVY JONES tracks were you involved with? Were any of your compositions submitted to THE MONKEES for consideration?

RD: I auditioned with hundreds of others in New York. It was a cattle call and I even backed some friends up playing guitar. We all knew this was going to be a hit show since Don Kirshner was doing the music supervision.

FH: When did it first become public knowledge that you were the lead singer for THE ARCHIES?

RD: Two years after the Archies came out, I did a solo album and Kirshner took out tons of ads announcing I was the voice of The Archies.

TODAY'S MUSIC:Bang-Shang-A-Lang by The Archies (#9 in Cash Box Magazine, 1968)...and, I just HAD to ask:
FORGOTTEN HITS: OK ... This one's just for fun but, at SOME point, SOME of these thoughts just HAD to be going through your head!!! You stress the fact that you and DON KIRSHNER had been friends for a long, long time ... and, obviously, your work with THE ARCHIES made TONS of money for DON KIRSHNER and his record label and publishing company. Yet again, you remained (for the most part, at the time) anonymous. Even though this was always "the deal" ... and you all knew up-front that this was the deal ... did it ever bother you that you were the one doing all the work and HE was the one receiving all the credit for being a musical genius?!?!? Did anybody EVER have ANY idea, in their WILDEST imaginations, that THE ARCHIES could explode the way that they did? Six straight Top 40 Hits ... and The Record Of The Year for SUGAR, SUGAR!!! And what about credibility issues ... I mean your records were being printed on the back of cereal boxes for God's sake!!! Come on ... dish ... didn't any of that start to drive you crazy at the time?!?!?

RON DANTE: Yes to ALL of what you've said. Don make a ton of money while the studio singers and players did not. I certainly wanted the credit for singing the record of the year but it was not to be. Both Don Kirshner and Jeff Barry were hit makers so it did not come as a surprise to me when The Archies became a phenom.

Spoken like a REAL good sport!!! (LOL) Thanks, RON, for putting up with some of our nonsense here today ... and giving us some GREAT insight into the making of THE ARCHIES. Posted by Picasa

Son of Origins of Marvel Comics by Stan Lee

My how time flies. I just realized that we just passed the 30th anniversary of the publication of this book. It was first printed in 1975. It gave us Stan's version on how the X-Men, Iron Man Daredevil, The Avengers, Sliver Surfer, Nick Fury Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Watcher were created. To show how things have changed in the past 30 years, Iron Man has the point on the cover because, at that time, he was the most popular character in that book. I don't remember if the X-Men were being published at that point. I think they were briefly canceled for a few months. Daredevil was only bi-monthly. Silver Surfer didn't have his own book at that time. Neither did Nick Fury. At least not as a SHIELD agent. In another book he was still fighting WWII. The Watcher did have a popular series around that time with "What If...?" Not too long after that things changed. The New X-Men came out and their popularity soared. As well as Daredevil did a few years later when Frank Miller took over his book. To see how things have changed click on Son of Origins of Marvel Comics or on the title above to go to There you can see the cover of the newer reprinted version. The cover is darker. Daredevil, Cylops and Marvel Girl of the X-Men are more up front. Cyclops is the one who says "by Stan Lee". Iron Man is there in his grey suit of armor just standing there. My how the Invincible has fallen. Someone has to get the rust off of Tony Stark and bring his character back up in popularity. But happy belated anniversary Son of Origins. I love you back then and I still love the book now. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Ron Dante Forgotten Hits Interview The Archies tie in

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part two of the series.

Several years ago, I did an in-depth piece on THE ARCHIES for FORGOTTEN HITS. We're running it again today as one of our '60's FLASHBACKS to tie into this special RON DANTE Series. I forwarded the original copy as written to RON and asked him to make any comments, adjustments or corrections that he felt necessary ... you'll find THAT information in tomorrow's FORGOTTEN HITS mailing.

***'60's FLASHBACK

SUGAR, SUGAR by THE ARCHIES is a regular part of oldies radio programming ... and deservedly so ... it was the biggest hit record of 1969 ... but you NEVER hear their follow-up Top Ten Hit JINGLE JANGLE ... not that there's necessarily anything wrong with that!
THE ARCHIES were the brain-child of DON KIRSHNER and SUGAR, SUGAR was originally offered to THE MONKEES, Kirshner's previous hit teeny-bopper protege band. Seems that THE MONKEES by 1968 felt a need to change their image and SUGAR, SUGAR would have put them right back in the teeny-bop, bubblegum bag. By the same token, after Kirshner was fired by THE MONKEES, he probably felt a lot safer working with a make-believe, comic-book band that couldn't talk back!
Whereas SUGAR, SUGAR was voiced by RON DANTE, I guess "BETTY AND VERONICA" took over the lead vocals for the follow-up hit. JINGLE JANGLE went all the way to #8 in Cash Box Magazine in early 1970 and, in fact, THE ARCHIES had four other National Top 40 Hits: BANG-SHANG-A-LANG went to #9 and FEELIN' SO GOOD to #30 before the SUGAR, SUGAR explosion of '69 ... and WHO'S YOUR BABY and SUNSHINE both followed JINGLE JANGLE into The Top 40, peaking at #29 and #30 respectively, in 1970, giving them six Top 40 Hits in all ... not a bad track record for a group that never really existed! (We recently featured a WILSON PICKETT version of SUGAR, SUGAR in our ATLANTIC RECORDS profile, which prompted this follow-up look back at THE ARCHIES in the first place.)
We also covered RON DANTE some time ago in FORGOTTEN HITS, featuring a couple of his other uncredited lead vocals: TRACY by THE CUFF LINKS was a #5 hit in 1969 (ironically at the same time SUGAR, SUGAR was on top of the charts) and he also hit The Top 20 as the lead singer of THE DETERGENTS with their novelty hit LEADER OF THE LAUNDROMAT. In the early '70's, he produced several of BARRY MANILOW's hit albums and MANILOW repaid the favor along the way, producing a heavily-orchestrated, disco version of SUGAR, SUGAR, a rare RON DANTE-issued single that failed to chart in 1975.WHO WERE THE ARCHIES?: In addition to RON DANTE, who is most-often singled out as the voice of THE ARCHIES, several other key players were also involved. Hit songwriter JEFF BARRY and his wife and songwriting partner ELLIE GREENWICH were both key components, along with ANDY KIM, who, in addition to his own solo success in the late '60's, also helped co-write several of THE ARCHIES' hits with BARRY. TONI WINE handled most of the female vocal parts (along with some help from GREENWICH) and One-Hit Wonder ROBIN McNAMARA (LAY A LITTLE LOVIN' ON ME) played in the back-up band. Session whiz HUGH McCRACKEN (along with GARY CHESTER, ARTIE BUTLER and TONY PASSALACQUA) also participated in the recording sessions. BOBBY BLOOM (MONTEGO BAY), DONNA MARIE (who replaced WINE after a royalties dispute with KIRSHNER) and even novelty king RAY STEVENS (who supposedly supplied hand-claps on SUGAR, SUGAR) filled out the roster. The original ARCHIE Comic Books date back to 1942 and their musical incarnation started as a Saturday morning cartoon show on CBS in 1967. Ironically, although the program didn't air in the U.K., SUGAR, SUGAR still went to the top of the charts there, where it stayed for eight weeks! Kids across America were also able to collect ARCHIES records simply by cutting out the cardboard disk on the back of Post Cereal Boxes!!!

DIDJAKNOW?: THE ARCHIES knocked the ROLLING STONES out of the #1 spot on the U.S. chart when SUGAR, SUGAR displaced HONKY TONK WOMEN at the top!!!OHMYGOD!!!: He's not REALLY gonna do a whole week of ARCHIES, is he?!?!?! No .... just havin' some fun today. Or so we said, back in 2003 ... but THIS time around, we've got a whole week planned around the career of RON DANTE ... including an EXCLUSIVE FORGOTTEN HITS Interview and Concert Review ... so stick around!!!

Jeff Smith Bone Interview

Just wanted to let you know that Four Color Commentary has a good interview with Bone's creator Jeff Smith. You can go to it by clicking here. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Ran Dante Interview Part 2

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part two of the series.

For three consecutive weeks in October / November of 1969, RON DANTE had TWO songs in Billboard's Top Ten ... yet virtually NOBODY knew who he was!!!
That's because (despite the fact that he was the lead singer of both THE ARCHIES ... who's latest single, SUGAR, SUGAR had just topped the charts for four straight weeks ... and THE CUFF LINKS ... who's debut single TRACY was quickly rising into The National Top Ten), RON DANTE filled those roles in an anonymous position ... NOBODY was supposed to know that he was heading up these two fictitious bands!!!
Both THE ARCHIES and THE CUFF LINKS were studio creations ... THE ARCHIES were the brainchild of mega pop music producer DON KIRSHNER (who, after being fired by THE MONKEES, probably figured he'd have less of a power struggle dealing with fictional cartoon characters) and THE CUFF LINKS, thrown together in the studio simply because the record label (and DANTE's old DETERGENTS pals PAUL VANCE and LEE POCKRISS) believed that the new song they had just written, TRACY, could be a big pop hit.
Both gambles paid off ... THE ARCHIES would have a total of six Top 40 Pop Hits between 1968 and 1970 ... and THE CUFF LINKS hit The Top 40 twice ... first with the aforementioned Top Ten Hit TRACY ... and then again with their follow-up release, WHEN JULIE COMES AROUND.
After his initial success with THE DETERGENTS, DANTE continued to work around the studio recording demos, handling background vocals, writing songs and even producing a few records for other artists (such as BOBBY VEE). He also began his very lucrative career recording jingles ... commercial advertisements for a HUGE variety of products and companies ... that continues to this day.
FORGOTTEN HITS: I have covered pieces of your career before in FORGOTTEN HITS. One of my FAVORITE stories to tell is how you had TWO songs in the Top Ten at the same time ... yet NOBODY really knew who RON DANTE was!!! Meanwhile, TRACY (by THE CUFF LINKS) and SUGAR, SUGAR (by THE ARCHIES) fought each other for chart position back in 1969!!! What was that like ... having TWO Top Ten Records ... and receiving virtually NO recognition for it?!?!?
RON DANTE: Having both Sugar, Sugar and Tracy as hits at the same time was a dream come true. I always wanted to be on the radio and this was twice the airplay all over the world. Tracy was also a hit in the UK, too. The fact that my name was not on those records did not bother me too much. I knew the word would get out as to who was the lead singer and good things would follow. They did. I ended up being one of the top jingle singers in the business during those years and had my own solo album coming out. Those were wonderful days.
FH: To a degree, the success of your whole career has been almost as an anonymous, faceless presence ... we all know the voice, but (at the time anyway) the name of RON DANTE never really came into play. Was this a conscious move on your part? Was there a specific reason for staying behind the scenes ... something as simple as stagefright perhaps ... or were you simply a victim of circumstances? (Obviously, behind the scenes you could be on as many different recordings as you wanted ... but did you ever miss the spotlight? The touring and reaction from the fans? The simple acknowledgment of your talent?) Now that you're making live appearances (we JUST missed an opportunity to see you in Las Vegas with ANDY KIM a couple of years ago because we had a wedding rehearsal that same night!), what is it like performing for a live audience? For the most part, are the people who come out to see these shows already familiar with your work ... or are they somewhat surprised by some of the material you've been involved with? And, what does a RON DANTE concert generally cover?
RD: Not using my name was not my idea and it just happened that way. As a singer by trade, I just sang as much as possible and in almost any circumstances. My concerts usually consist of my Archie hits: Sugar, Sugar, Jingle Jangle and Bang Shang A Lang, along with a couple of my Cuff Link hits, Tracy and When Julie Comes Around. I also include songs by The Monkees, The Ohio Express, The Turtles and The Dave Clark Five. I have to do at least one song from my Manilow days and a bunch of commercials.
Wanna see RON DANTE in concert? Check out his awesome website for any appearances that may be coming up near you. There are also lots of great products for sale and RON DANTE information to be found. Check it out at:

TODAY'S MUSIC:Tracy and When Julie Comes Around by The Cuff LinksSugar, Sugar by The Archies
DIDJAKNOW?-1: RON DANTE handled ALL of the vocals on THE CUFF LINKS' debut album ... the idea was to make the music sound like it was being performed by a real band. He overdubbed his voice time and time again to achieve this effect.
DIDJAKNOW?-2: Once the fictitious CUFF LINKS had a couple of Top 40 Hits under their belts, there was a demand for them to tour. DANTE refused to go (preferring to continue to work in the studio, cutting his first solo album and pursuing his very lucrative jingles work ... thus earning a FAR greater return on his time-investment!) and was replaced by RUPERT HOLMES, who had ALSO kicked around the studio for quite a while in the '60's and '70's as the voice of both STREET PEOPLE and THE BUOYS (whose cannibalism track, TIMOTHY, is one of our most often requested tunes.) In the 1980's he would achieve mega-fame on his own with the #1 Hit Single ESCAPE (THE PINA COLADA SONG). HOLMES also handled the vocals on the SECOND CUFF LINKS album. Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 23, 2006

Forgotten Hits Ron Dante interview Part 1

By permission of KENT KOTAL / THE60sSHOP / FORGOTTEN HITS I am posting this interview with Ron Dante this week. To subscribe to FORGOTTEN HITS, which is a great newsletter if you are like me and into music of the 60's, you can e-mail them at . Here is part one of the series.

Most people first became familiar with RON DANTE because of his involvement with THE ARCHIES ... their 1969 Hit SUGAR, SUGAR was not only one of the biggest records of the year, but became one of the biggest hits of the '60's.
RON's career dates back quite a bit further than that, however. His first chart record was the novelty / parody hit LEADER OF THE LAUNDROMAT, released by THE DETERGENTS back in late 1964. A take-off on the recent SHANGRI-LAS' #1 Hit LEADER OF THE PACK, LEADER OF THE LAUNDROMAT was popular enough on its own to go all the way to #11 on the Cash Box Chart. (It peaked at #7 here in Chicago, where novelty hits ALWAYS seemed to do well.)

DANTE had been working for DON KIRSHNER's ALDON MUSIC, cutting demo recordings of songs written by KIRSHNER's vast empire of songwriting geniuses like GERRY GOFFIN and CAROLE KING and NEIL SEDAKA and HOWARD GREENFIELD. In fact, LEADER OF THE PACK was written by noted songwriters JEFF BARRY and ELLIE GREENWICH. (The parody was composed by PAUL VANCE and LEE POCKRISS, who had already written a few hit songs of their own together, placing earlier efforts with material and artists as diverse as CATCH A FALLING STAR by PERRY COMO and ITSY BITSY TEENIE WEENIE YELLOW POLKA-DOT BIKINI by BRIAN HYLAND! Ironically, 45 years later, the version of ITSY BITSY TEENIE WEENIE YELLOW POLKA-DOT BIKINI that you currently hear all the time on TV advertising YOPLAIT YOGURT is sung by none other than RON DANTE!!!)

They had heard DANTE's voice on some of KIRSHNER's demos and enlisted him to sing the lead on LEADER OF THE LAUNDROMAT. VANCE's nephew DANNY JORDAN and vocalist TOMMY WYNN were also recruited to round-out the trio. Soon THE DETERGENTS were back in the recording studio, putting together an album called THE MANY FACES OF THE DETERGENTS. It included a couple of other parodies like MRS. JONES, 'OW ABOUT IT, a take-off on HERMAN'S HERMITS' big hit MRS. BROWN, YOU'VE GOT A LOVELY DAUGHTER and THE LITTLE OLD DOCTOR FROM IMPANEMA, poking fun at both the JAN AND DEAN hit THE LITTLE OLD LADY FROM PASADENA and the recent STAN GETZ / ASTRUD GILBERTO surprise pop hit, THE GIRL FROM IMPANEMA.

THE DETERGENTS even toured as part of DICK CLARK's CARAVAN OF STARS. A follow-up single, DOUBLE-O-SEVEN (which we featured a while back in FH as part of our JAMES BOND FOLLOW-UP SERIES) went to #74 on the Cash Box Chart ... and once again asked my lead question, "Who's That Bangin' On The Piano?" !!! (I always kinda liked this one ... thought it was pretty clever.) The B-SIDE to this single was an instrumental track called THE BLUE KANGAROO, a VERY cool little jazzy track that we will be featuring in our upcoming B-SIDES Series ... most likely along with a few ARCHIES' B-SIDES as well! (Keep those votes coming, folks!)
FORGOTTEN HITS: RON DANTE is probably MOST famous as the voice of THE ARCHIES. However, your career dates back further than this. (You may recall that my very first question to you a few months back was: "Who's That Bangin' On The Piano?" LOL.) How did you FIRST get involved in the record business? Who were some of YOUR early influences and inspirations and how did you first get your foot in the door in order to follow in their footsteps?

RON DANTE: My first real job in the music business was signing a songwriting deal with the legendary music man Don Kirshner's publishing firm Aldon Music. A few of his staff songwriters heard me audition and brought me in to meet "Donnie," as he was called. Don signed me that day and became a friend for life. I also was the staff demo singer doing demos for all his writers like Neil Sedaka, Carole King, Barry Mann & Cynthia Weil and tons of others. My early influences were Elvis, The Everly Brothers, The New York doo wop groups and Chuck Berry and, of course, Little Richard and Fats Domino.

FH: The first time most of us heard RON DANTE on the radio was in the novelty hit, LEADER OF THE LAUNDROMAT by THE DETERGENTS. Was that pretty much a studio band created solely for the purposes of making that record or had you guys worked together before?

RD: The other Detergents were Danny Jordan and Tommy Wynn. They were staff writers at Don Kirshner's Aldon Music and we wrote many songs together. Danny's Uncle was a hit song writer by the name of Paul Vance. He asked the us to come in one night and put our voices on Leader of the Laundromat. The next thing we knew it was out as a single and a hit. We did an album in a week to catch up with the single while is was on the charts.

FH: THE BLUE KANGAROO by THE DETERGENTS has been nominated as a FAVORITE B-SIDE for another series that I'm currently working on. This is an AWESOME track ... I love it!!! Can you tell us who performed on this piece? It seems totally out of place with all the novelty / parody stuff that you guys were doing at the time ... almost a "throw-away / filler" B-SIDE to make a single ... but it's a FANTASTIC track! Can you shed any insight on this one? Were you involved at all?

RD: That B-Side was done by the producers alone. We never heard it until the single was released.

FH: I read in your online bio that in the early '60's, while working at the Brill Building, you first did some background vocal work for NEIL SEDAKA. Can you tell us a couple of tracks that you performed on? (We recently covered some of SEDAKA's overlooked early '60's material in our LOCAL HITS Series ... some of which, I feel, is some of his best stuff!)

RD: I sang background on a single by Neil called Sunny and was on his I'm A Song album produced by George Martin.FH: I also read that you produced a couple of tracks for BOBBY VEE back in the late '60's ... coincidentally, BOBBY is ALSO in the process of doing a FORGOTTEN HITS interview with us. What was it like working with BOBBY back then? (By 1967, his career was pretty much winding down ... yet he is still a BIG touring attraction, especially in Great Britain ... where he's on tour right now with his sons!) How did you two happen to hook up?

RD: I wrote a few songs that Bobby's producer Snuff Garret loved and I made a trip to Los Angeles. Met with Snuff and Bobby at the session and got to play guitar in the band with then studio musician Glen Campbell sitting along side. I also did backgrounds on Bobby's records. Always was a huge Bobby Vee fan and was pretty well star struck when I met him in the studio. He was the nicest and warmest guy. Very friendly and made me feel like I had been his friend for a long time.
I asked BOBBY VEE what he remembered about working with RON DANTE back in the '60's and this is what he had to say:

I have some great memories of doing the Dick Clark tour with Ronnie Dante when he was with The Detergents and have followed his career over the years. Great talent, great guy!!! My producer (Dallas Smith) and I were looking for songs for the 'Come Back When You Grow Up' album. The production on (OBJECTS OF GOLD and A ROSE GREW IN THE ASHES) was a collaborative effort between Dallas, Bob Feldman (Strangeloves) and Ron. They turned out to be two of my favorite tunes on the album. As far as the connection ... I had recorded previous Feldman songs with Snuff Garrett producing including 'Bobby Tomorrow' which became a top ten record for me in the UK. I met Ron around the same time. We became friends on a Dick Clark Caravan of Stars Tour...'64 or '65. He was performing with a group called The Detergents. You only have to hear one song sung by Ron to know that he's among the best of the best 'pop' singers ever. I believed it then and I believe it now. He's a natural ... smart, easy to work with, terrific production qualities and a good guy. I was not surprised to see the incredible success that followed with Barry Manilow.
Best to you,

DIDJAKNOW?-1: When RON DANTE was eleven years old, he fell out of a tree and broke his arm. It literally became his "lucky break" ... amongst the different forms of physical therapy suggested by his doctor was taking up the guitar ... and RON DANTE has been playing music ever since!
DIDJAKNOW?-2: After THE DETERGENTS left ROULETTE RECORDS, they recorded another novelty single for KAPP. Once again, they mined THE SHANGRI-LAS' songbook, cutting a tune called I CAN NEVER EAT AT HOME ANYMORE. It never charted and now is a VERY rare, collectible single (worth about $60 if you can find a copy!!!)

Leader Of The Laundromat by The Detergents
Double-O-Seven by The Detergents
I Can Never Eat At Home Anymore by The Detergents

MORE RON DANTE:It looks like you can ALSO read my exclusive interview with RON DANTE on a website called On My Mind
and, you can get all the latest concert news, CD news and bio information on the awesome, OFFICIAL RON DANTE website here: Ron Dante OnLine - The Official Website Posted by Picasa

Happy Birthday John Romita Sr.

Ok so I am a day early with this one too. As I write this in my time zone it is Jan. 23rd and his birthday is Jan. 24th. I just wanted to make sure I didn't forget to shout out Happy Birthday for John Romita Sr. He had the one task that no artist would want. He had to follow up Steve Ditko on the Amazing Spider-Man. To make his debut on Spider-Man even harder he took over with issue #39. The unmasking of his arch enemy the Green Goblin. It is reported that is one reason why Steve Ditko left the book. Steve and Stan didn't agree with who the Green Goblin should be. With issue #41 Mr. Romita created his first super villan. The Rhino. Later he was the first artist to show us what Mary Jane Watson looked like. Face it tiger Spider-Man fans had hit the jackpot with John Romita Sr.
As much as I like Steve Ditko's art, I like Mr. Romita's more. One reason is that he was the first artist I every saw on Spider-man. I was too young to read when the book first came out. It was years later when I saw reprints of the first 38 issues when I started to like Mr. Ditko. Another reason is that Mr. Romita had just come over to Marvel from another company where he did romance comics. His fresh, clean style from those comics carried over into Spider-Man. It's is a good thing that it did too. At it's heart Spider-Man is a romantic soap opera. The main character just happens to have super powers. Saddly his art has rarely been seen as he went to
work behind the scenes as Marvel's art director. Here he has been able to influence upcomming artist. While his influence is still felt I would still love to see him back on a regular basis on a book. For now this is a Happy Birthday to my favorite artist John Romita Sr. Thanks for making the world a more fun place to be. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 22, 2006

The Incredible Kolchak (fan fiction)

The Incredible Kolchak

By Ricky L. Phillips

It had been a slow news week at the Hollywood Dispatch. No Hollywood marriages breaking up. No backstage rivals stopping filming. So instead of keeping me hanging around the office my editor decided to send me out on a story that was newsworthy. It was September 29th at 10:30am and I was on my way to Palmdale, CA to research background on a local man nominated for the Nobel Prize. It was a local boy makes good story. His name was Dr. Hanson Koo. My research revealed that he was first generation American. His parents came to the States over 50 years ago and settled in Palmdale. Shortly after the move the good Dr. was born. He did quite well in school. His best subject was science. Graduated at the top of the class and went to UCLA. He went to work for the government after college. Then took early retirement and went to teach at his alma mater. Recently he had invented a dust that, when inhaled, could stop people with aggressive tendencies. It got him the Nobel Prize nomination. That is what brought me to Palmdale. The story I found was completely different.

It was 12:35pm when I arrived in Palmdale I headed to the local newspaper. I was there to ask directions and to see what more I could find out about the Koo family. What I did find was the beginning of the real story. Two Police officers were listed in critical condition at the hospital. It seems that a couple of days ago the two officers noticed a drifter sleeping on a park bench. The officers woke him and started giving him a rough time before asking him to move on. No one knows where he came from but suddenly there appeared a giant green colored monster. He tossed the two officers around as if they were toys. They fired their weapons but the bullets had no effect on the monster. All it did was make him angrier. He grabbed both men and threw them into the woods. Then the monster walked away. The drifter was no where to be found. People thought he may have left during all the commotion. The eyewitnesses all had the same story. The police combed the woods the next morning. They were about to abandon the search for the two men in blue when they heard a moan…and looked up. There at the top of a tree laid the two officers. Rescue Squads got them down and rushed them to the hospital. I tried to see the two officers but both drifted into comas shortly after arriving at the hospital.

The rest of the time I spent doing what I came there for. Interviewing Dr. Koo’s old teachers, family and friends. Basically they all said the same thing. That he was a nice, smart man and he deserved the award.

On the way out of town I noticed some foot prints in the desert. I stopped and examined them. They were roughly five times my size. Along the way I noticed that the footprints were getting smaller. They stopped once they reached the size of a normal man. I walked back to my car and drove on. I kept an eye on the foot prints out of the corner of my eye. Their size and direction never changed. Whoever or whatever it was had a single destination in mind. It was headed for Los Angeles.

On the way back I seemed to remember reading stories in another paper about a big green monster. When I got back to the office I typed up the local boy makes good story as well as the one about the attack on the two officers. Then I looked up the other stories about our jolly green giant. The stories were in various tabloids that were all just a step below the Hollywood Dispatch. However, the first was in a top notch paper. It appeared that the monster’s first known attack was on a laboratory and killed a man and woman scientists who were working inside. That story and the others were all written by the same reporter named Jack…


My reading was interrupted by the bellowing of my editor Tony Vincenzo. Instead of ignoring him as I usually do I decided to save us both time and actually answer him.

“Yes Tony! What is it?”

“Carl you turned in two stories. From a normal reporter that would make me happy but one of them was your typical monster story. Why couldn’t you just say the drifter did it?”

“Because Tony being a reporter means I have to print the truth and eyewitnesses said it was a green monster that attacked the officers and the drifter was gone.”

“Ok but what is this nonsense about his footprints shrinking and you think he was headed toward LA?”

“That’s what I saw!”

“I can’t print that. It would cause a panic!”

“That’s what I saw. This thing seemed to be getting smaller with every step it took.”

“Well if that is true then LA has nothing to worry about.”

“Then you can print the story.”

“I’ll do my best but no promises Carl.”

While Tony was doing his best I decided to work on a hunch. The monster’s first attack, if it was the same monster, was on a laboratory. Suddenly it appears in the hometown of a possible Nobel Prize winner. Then it seemed to be heading toward Los Angeles. The city where that same scientist worked. I drove toward UCLA to see if I could talk to Dr. Hanson Koo.

6:05pm my scanner goes off. Police respond to a call. There was a disturbance at the Kirby diner on Lee Street. I drove there as fast as I could. When I arrived the dinner looked like it had been in a war zone. Windows broken out. Seats and tables that were bolted down had been ripped out of the floor. I found the officer in charged and asked him a few questions.

“Kolchak! Hollywood Dispatch! What happened here officer?”

“Some guys came in here and started giving everyone a hard time. Then a fight broke out and that’s that.”

“A fight did all of this!!”

“Well you won’t believe the stories I’m really hearing.”

“Try me.”

“Off the record?”

I hate it when they ask me that. But I wanted to hear the truth.

“I’ll keep it off the record.” But for my own personal record I kept my tape recorder running.

“The guys started in on a guy at the counter. They grabbed him and started shoving him around. One of them even started coming at him with a knife. The guy dodged the knife but the second guy pushed him over the counter. From there it gets strange.”

“How strange?”

“Well some people say that some giant showed up and did all this damage. The guy with the knife is in shock. All he can say is the little guy did it. He keeps repeating it over and over.”

I thanked the officer. He was so nice to me I figured he must be new to the department. I interviewed others but got the same story that the Officer gave me. I decided to head back to the Dispatch. I typed up my story. I decided to keep my promise to the officer and keep the monster angle out of the story. At least till I had more dots to connect it to. Then I decided to see if I can still catch up to Dr. Hanson Koo.

When I get to UCLA it’s late. Some people are still there but most have gone home. I pass a janitor in the hallway as he is mopping the floor. I almost knock over his bucket.

“Hey be careful fella!”

“Oh sorry!”

I look him square in the eye and he quickly turns away. I don’t know why but I feel like I know him from somewhere.

I continue down the hall and I find that dedicated man of science that he is Dr. Koo is still hard at work. There are two soldiers outside his office door. I notice their both ranked Private. One is named Colvin the other Bixby. Without a word to them I start toward the door but they both stop me.

“Private Colvin my name is Kolchak. I’m from the Hollywood Dispatch. The Dr. is expecting me.”

At that moment Dr. Koo opens the door.

“What’s going on out here?”

“Mr. Kolchak here is with the press. He says you’re expecting him.”

“I don’t recall any appointment but I am always willing to talk to the press.”

The guards part and allow me into see the Dr.

“So Mr. Kolchak what can I do for you?”

“Well Dr. with your Nobel Prize nomination we are doing a story on you and I was hoping you could tell us more about your invention.”

“Well as you can see the government is interested in it.”

“Has it been classified as top secret?”

“Not yet. But if you know about my nomination then you should already know what my invention can do.”

“I know it does suppress any aggressive tendencies a person has.”

“That’s right.”

At that moment the door opened. The janitor came in.

“Just need to get the trash Dr. I hope I didn’t interrupt anything”

“That’s alright Dave we’re just talking. Now Mr. Kolchak look at this.”

He showed me a mouse in a clear plastic cage. The mouse was running around like crazy trying to find a way out. The Dr. pressed a button and the dust was released from a compartment into the cage. In seconds the mouse calmed down and started eating a piece of cheese in the corner.

“Very impressive Dr.”

“The only thing left is to find out how to release it if a war broke out.”

A voice came from behind me.

“Perhaps you could put it inside a bomb and have it explode overhead. Then the dust would filter down.”

I turned to see that the janitor had been standing behind me during the demonstration. I noticed that the trash can had not been touched. I don’t think he was here to clean the room.

“Yes that is possible.”

“I wouldn’t say anymore to him Dr. He may be a spy.”

“Oh I trust Dave. He’s been helping me. He wouldn’t steal my invention.”

Just then the door flew open and in walked Private’s Colvin and Bixby. Both had their guns drawn.

“But we would Dr. Now hand it over.”

“You two are spies?”

“That’s right. We wouldn’t be blowing our cover like this to you but we just found out that the bodies of the real Colvin and Bixby were found. Now give us the invention so no one gets hurt.”

Bixby, or whatever his real name is, grabs the Dr. Dave tries to stop him. I try to distract Colvin so he doesn’t shoot anyone. I was not successful. The gun went off. The Dr. fell to the ground. His head was bleeding. Colvin slammed me into the wall.
As I look up I see Dave standing over the body of the Dr. He looks like he is in pain and he seems to be getting bigger. Bixby pushes Dave out the window. In a few seconds the wall comes crashing in on us. Standing there in the opening is the biggest and greenest monster I have ever seen. The clothes he has are ragged and torn but they are the same ones that Dave had on a moment ago.

Colvin and Bixby fire at the monster but the bullets bounce off him. The monster grabs them both and throws then into the wall. They both land next to me on the floor. The monster looks at me. He seems to smile when he sees I am still alive. Then he turns his attention to Dr. Koo. He bends over and caresses the Dr. Then he stands up and runs away. After all that excitement I passed out.

When I woke up government officials were on the scene. Colvin and Bixby were still out cold but now under arrest. Dr. Koo was still alive. The bullet just barely hit him. All it did was knock him out. I told them my story but they didn’t believe me. They said I dreamed it while I was knocked out. But they came up with their own story how the wall caved in. The only ones who could back up my story were Colvin and Bixby and they weren’t talking. The other would be Dave. They said they would find him and get his side of the story. I knew they never would. I remembered where I saw Dave. In that first article on the monsters attack that killed two scientist. Dave was one of the scientists. I guess an experiment went wrong and made him this monster. No body was found so they thought he was dead. Hearing of Dr. Koo Dave came here to find a cure.

The next day when I got back to the office I called Palmdale to check on the two officers. Both were out of their comas and doing fine. Except neither one of them remembers what it was that put them in the hospital. The trauma of it all caused them to block it from their memory. So the monster doesn’t seem to have killed anyone. Too bad Dave doesn’t know that.

My story about the two officers did get printed. However, Tony saw to it that the monster was changed to a stranger who helped the drifter. Once I saw that I knew there was no sense in trying to sell Tony this new monster story. Let that be a lesson. Don’t believe everything you read in the papers. So if you read a story that says a green monster caused some trouble, don’t believe it. It’s just Dave searching for help and I hope he finds the help he needs. Posted by Picasa