The Friday 5×2: KFWB (Los Angeles AM 980), 6/28/58

KFWB in Los Angeles was owned at one time by Warner Brothers, although its call letters happened completely by chance (they were issued after KFWA and before KFWC). They started playing Rock & Roll in 1958, then went to an all-news format in 1968. Currently, they’re broadcasting regional Mexican music as “La Mera Mera 980.” Anyway, today’s survey is from today in 1958, shortly after starting with the rock format.

  1. Renato Carosone, “Torero” Obviously a song with a Spanish theme, but that’s Italian being spoken. Carosone was from Naples, Italy and was a modern performer of canzone napoletana, music from around Naples. The song was composed for a tour of Spain, and reached #1 for 14 weeks in 1958.
  2. Ed Townsend, “For Your Love” Ed was a singer, songwriter, producer, and attorney (!) who wrote “For Your Love,” later writing “Let’s Get It On” with Marvin Gaye. This reached #13 on the Pop chart and #7 on the R&B chart.
  3. Bobby Freeman, “Do You Want To Dance” This was one of two songs that Bobby wrote and sang that peaked at #5 on the Pop chart, the other being being 1964’s “C’mon and Swim.”
  4. Link Wray & The Wray-Men, “Rumble” A classic instrumental by a man who inspired the punk-rock movement. This peaked at #16.
  5. Duane Eddy, “Rebel Rouser” Duane had a distinctive sound that he created by playing on the lower strings to make the notes “twang.” “Rebel Rouser” was his fiirst hit, reaching #6.
  6. The Everly Brothers, “All I Have To Do Is Dream” The Everlys’ first #1 hit, it reached #1 on the Pop, Country, and R&B charts.
  7. Jimmie Rodgers, “Secretly” Country and Rock & Roll singer Rodgers had significant crossover success in the ’50’s and early ’60’s with records like this one, which reached #3 on the Pop chart, #5 on the Country chart, and #7 on the R&B chart.
  8. Dean Martin, “Return To Me” My favorite by Dean Martin, this reached #4 on the Pop chart. It was used as the theme for the 2000 movie of the same name, which starred Minnie Driver, David Duchovny and Carroll O’Connor in his last role.
  9. The Coasters, “Yakety Yak” A Lieber and Stoller “playlet,” a term Stoller used for musical glimpses into teenage life in the ’50’s. King Curtis plays the saxophone solo in the middle of this. This spent 7 weeks at #1 on the R&B chart and a week at #1 on the Pop chart.
  10. Sheb Wooley, “The Flying Purple Eater” Sheb was an actor who regularly appeared in the many TV westerns of the day, but he took some time out to make a record, which proceeded to spend six weeks at #1.

And that’s The Friday 5×2 for June 28, 2019.

7 thoughts on “The Friday 5×2: KFWB (Los Angeles AM 980), 6/28/58

  1. A fabulous lineup, John! I loved Duane Eddy’s sound. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 and he still rocks at 81 years old.

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  2. Another great playlist. There were a couple I was not familiar with. The Flying Purple People Eater is, of course, burned into my memory bank.

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    1. I wasn’t at all familiar with the Italian one, and I probably should have known the ones by Ed Townsend and Jimmie Rodgers, but I never heard them played when I was in Chicago, and you know oldies stations, which have incredibly short playlists. You think of all the songs that were Top 40 hits between 1955 and 1975 and compare that number to the 100 or so songs on oldies stations and you can tell you miss a lot of great ones. It’s why I do this.

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  3. Love Dean Martin! Haven’t heard For Your Love in a long time. Another great one. I think All I Have To Do Is Dream might be my theme song – LOL. Happy Friday!

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    1. I used to watch The Dean Martin Show every week. Now, THAT was a variety show. It must have cost a fortune to produce every week, and it was worth every penny.

      I don’t think I ever heard “For Your Love” before I added it to the list. Great song. And anytime you put the Everly Brothers with Felice and Boudleaux Bryant, it’s magic. The Bryants knew the Everlys really well.

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