RIP John Mahoney

Mary and I were watching Frasier last night, and during a commercial break I opened Instagram to this.

What timing, huh?

It kind of hit us both, because he’s a favorite of ours, and a Chicago guy who was happiest when working onstage at the Steppenwolf Theater, which was started by a couple of other Chicago guys, one of them being Gary Sinise.

Here’s a news story that ran on WBBM-TV in Chicago last night.

Rest in peace, John Mahoney, and thanks for all the laughs.

Two for Tuesday: RIP Bobby Vee

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We need to take a break today from our survey of Chanteuses to note the passing of Robert Thomas Velline, a/k/a Bobby Vee, who died yesterday from complications of Alzheimer’s disease at the age of 73. Bobby’s big break came as the result of a tragedy, the death of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. Richardson (The Big Bopper) in 1959. At the age of fifteen, he and a group of high school kids calling themselve The Shadows volunteered to play at the concert scheduled for the next night in Moorhead, Minnesota. The show was a success and led to Bobby’s career as a solo singer.

Bobby charted 38 times on the Hot 100, with ten of those reaching the Top Ten. His lone #1 was “Take Good Care Of My Baby,” which reached that position in 1961.

Bobby’s last Top Ten single was “Come Back When You Grow Up,” which reached #3 on the Hot 100 in 1967.

And, since it’s my blog, one more: my favorite Bobby Vee song, “The Night Has A Thousand Eyes,” which reached #3 on the Hot 100, #2 on the Adult Contemporary chart, and #8 on the R&B chart in 1962.

Farewell, Bobby Vee, and thanks for all the music.

That’s your two for Tuesday, October 25, 2016.

RIP Dan Hicks (#1LinerWeds)

So, Duke, Benny, Django and Stephane — he’s on his way — you’ll be laughing soon!

– CT Hicks, wife of Dan

The wife of Dan Hicks, best known for his work with Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks, posted this to let the world know that he died early this morning at home.

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Dan Hicks (Photo: CT Hicks)

Dan described his music this way:

My music is kind of a blending. We have acoustic instruments. It starts out with kind of a folk music sound, and we add a jazz beat and solos and singing. We have the two girls that sing, and jazz violin, and all that, so it’s kind of light in nature, it’s not loud. And, it’s sort of, in a way, kinda carefree. Most of the songs are, I wouldn’t say funny, but kinda maybe a little humorous. We all like jazz, so we like to play in a jazzy way, with a swing sound you know, so I call it “folk swing”. There are a lot of original tunes that I’ve been writing through the years, so that has its personal touch on it. (Source: Wikipedia)

When my friend Mark tapped me on Facebook to let me know Dan had died (we first heard them when we were in high school), he mentioned the song “I Scare Myself,” from Dan’s 1972 album Striking It Rich with his Hot Licks (Sid Page, violin; John L. Girton, guitar; Jaime Leopold, bass; Maryann Price and Naomi Ruth Eisenberg, vocals). This video is from their 1989 appearance on PBS’s Austin City Limits (the guitarists in the back are members of another Dan Hicks group, the Acoustic Warriors).

Farewell, Dan, and say hello to Duke, Benny, Django, and Stephane from me.


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One-Liner Wednesday (all right, I overshot it by a few) is sponsored by Linda Hill at her blog. The graphic above is my rather pathetic attempt at designing a badge for it…