Brief Enthusiasms

Nine years ago today, this blog was launched. In keeping with anniversary custom, here’s a rundown of some of my favorite posts that have appeared since last July 11th:

A rebooted post from about the Concert 10 Festival at Pocono Speedway in 1972  has attracted many fascinating comments from people who were there; so has a post about the 1970 Atlanta Pop Festival, inspired by some beautiful photos found online.

Some other notable concerts found their way into the blog this past year. The Rolling Stones headlined a 1965 show that was full of superstars-to-be, although no one could have known it then. A decade later, Bruce Springsteen played the famous “bomb scare” show in Milwaukee. And in the middle, Cream toured America  and we went along.

We listened to some radio, including the 1971 American Top 40 Christmas special and the WISM reunion, and we found some very cool vintage equipment to listen on. We watched a little TV: we saw the Rolling Stones appear on The Red Skelton Show and a late-night movie so bad it was actually kind of good.

Late last summer I had a brief enthusiasm for a series called Superstars of Easy Listening, which didn’t produce as many posts as I thought it might. Posts about the Beatles’ impact on the Easy Listening chart and after the death of Andy Williams are representative. And on the subject of death, we noted the passing of Sammy Johns by listening to his greatest hit.

A reader asked why “Monster Mash” became a hit again in the summer of 1973, so I decided to find out. I wondered why any radio station would play the relentlessly awful Michael Buble cover of “Santa Baby.” I also investigated the history of a little-known supergroup starring Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood, and the phenomenon of hating the Eagles.

We learned about the unlikely connections between legendary journalist Walter Cronkite and some notable figures from the world of music. On the subject of journalism, we remembered a time when a small-town paper got fooled by a bunch of college boys. On the subject of college, we went back to a party.

There’s an entirely plausible argument that in the end, almost every post on this blog is about the same thing. If that is indeed true, then the only post you really need to read out of the 1,600-and-some that have appeared in nine years is this one. Or maybe it’s the one I put up just this past Tuesday. (Reading them both and nothing else would certainly save time. )

As usual, I have continued to badly misuse the editorial “we.” As I/we begin my/our 10th year of this pondwater, I/we are unable to predict how it will go. Other responsibilities required me to give up writing “World’s Worst Songs” and “The #1 Albums” over at Popdose, but I occasionally consider bringing them back here. There’s quite a bit in the archives that you’ll be reading every so often over the next few months. I also hope to think up new stuff now and then. If there’s something you’d like to read about, let me know. And thanks again for your patronage lo these many years.

6 thoughts on “Brief Enthusiasms

  1. Thank you for inspiring me to take text to template, not that my pond could dare to compare. You are hereby warned, however, that I’ll pick up that Superstars of Easy Listening mantle if you just leave it lying around. Don’t make us settle for imitation.

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