Much Much Before Thunderdome

Friday, June 29, 2007

:: It Ain't Right (Lovin' To Be Lovin') ::

:: Contact High ::

:: Keep On Walkin' (Don't Look Back) ::

:: Evil Man ::

There was once a time when you could not escape Tina Turner’s “What’s Love Got to Do With It.” It was everywhere, and I’d often think that if I heard it one more time I might just rip my hair out and run naked and screaming through the streets. And up until a short while ago it wasn’t safe to turn on the television without hearing her screeching that some car was SIMPLY THE BEST, BETTER THAN ALLLLL THE REST. But you could lock me up in a room with all the music that she and Ike and the Ikettes put out back in the day and I’d never go crazy. I’d revel and luxuriate in it because there’s just nothing better than the burst of soul-power rhythm and blues that they brought forth together. They were shit hot – and the selections off of this 1970 Liberty label record are just a few examples. Three are Ike penned originals, and “Evil Man” is a reworking of Crow’s “Evil Woman (Don’t Play Your Games with Me),” to which they go beyond doing justice.


Alley Cats Return

Thursday, June 28, 2007

:: 01 Nothing Means Nothing Anymore ::

:: 01 Give Me A Little Pain ::

:: 06 Nothing Means Nothing Anymore ::

:: 08 Give Me A Little Pain ::

One thing about alley cats; you can't get rid of them. You can throw old boots at them as they howl in the night perched on an old knot-holed fence, but you wind up hitting a metal trash can instead, causing even more racket. And still the alley cats howl.

Yes, I've seen too many old cartoons. Well anyway, I wrote this article nearly 2 years ago about a band called The Alley Cats, so for those of you who downloaded and love the 2 songs from that 7", or for those of you who were too young at the time, here's a repost of those two songs as well as the re-recorded versions from their 1981 album, Nightmare City.

At the time I was writing the original article, I was corresponding with a guy who is basically an archivist of the old Dangerhouse Records catalog, and he said that the Cats never did recreate the shear energy and raw power of that first session. I've since picked up copies of the Cats' two albums, and the two albums they made as The Zarkons and I can assure you that fellow is correct. I still have a thing for Randy Stodola's sandpaper vocals and Dianne Chai's hyper-jumpy bass lines though, and I miss those kids who burned out Hollywood style way too soon. Nothing truly means nothing anymore.



Wednesday, June 27, 2007

:: Caesar In Camerun ::

:: High Moon Enters Heaven ::

:: Metasamba ::

:: Chipmania ::

:: O Queen Of Saba ::

:: Memorymetropolis ::

The other month, in the flurry of a 30% off sale, I found myself with an armful of vinyl and a headful of worry about how much I was about to blow, even after discount. Then I had to just check out one last section before I forced myself out of there. Unfortunately it was the electronic music section, and it was rife with things I already wanted as well as things I didn't even know I wanted yet. Evidently I was in such a frenzy (kind of like those dreams where you keep finding money all over the place and can barely find room for all of it in your hands and pockets) that I don't even remember buying this. I only just rediscovered it a few days ago.

This, I suppose, sounded pretty weird, fringe, and experimental in 1983. At least to people who didn't spend part of the 70's listening to stuff like Eno/Moebius/Roedelius/Plank. There are a lot of familiar sounds, many of which make me think Clara used some of the same equipment that New Order used, but there are also some sounds that I've never heard. One of the songs, Chipmania, uses a trick that Boards of Canada use on songs like nlogax, where things aren't quite right, but the rival discordant notes somehow create something right.

The kicker? Clara Mondshine is not really a Clara. In fact, she's not even a she. Real name: Walter Bachauer. He put out a few albums under this moniker before evidently committing suicide in the late 80's. This one came out on famed German electronic legend Klaus Schulze's Innovate Communication label in 1983. The most accessible tracks here are probably the title track and Metasamba. The scariest is O Queen of Saba.


Simply Simon

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

:: I Can't Stop Loving You ::

:: Cowboy Sunset ::

Oh, Simon. I had such high hopes for you. With your slicked back hair and your stylish red polyester jacket, and the words “I Can’t Stop Loving You” emblazoned across your EP, I thought you’d surely be the Chinese Elvis. Alas, I’m a sucker. You knew that I, and many like me, would be quick to purchase based on that title, and you fooled us all. That ain’t no Elvis cover, and you ain’t no Elvis. But with “Cowboy Sunset,” you’re a pretty darned good Slim Whitman.


Oh! Dr. Joe

Monday, June 25, 2007

:: The Whole Shebang ::

Bobby Troup wrote Route 66 and starred with his incredible wife, Julie
London on Emergency. I need say no more. I will add that he was a heck
of a good piano player, and he could sing. He had a distinctive
singing style, and that may be why he never became known as a singer,

Let's put it this way, his delivery was a bit odd. You can
hear what I mean. A bit too much of a hipster for his own good? I
don't think so. It would be hard to have lived any larger than Bobby
Troup whether your singing career panned out or not. If you want to
live life like Bobby Troup, you gotta sing like Bobby Troup. It's that


Hungry Like The...Wolfson?

Friday, June 22, 2007

:: Coat & Tie ::

:: Just For The Moment ::

WHO is Alan Wolfson? Well, I don't know. There's an artist who does kickass mini-sculptures named Alan Wolfson, and there's also a dude with a CD on with a CD out, of all things. He could be one of, both of, or neither of those Alan Wolfsons.

But let me tell you about my Alan Wolfson. Well, my Alan Wolfson 45. This has long been in my pile of random singles, a pile that I always approach with some apprehension. It's filled with things I can't remember if I've listened to. Hearing this tonight, I don't think I paid this one much attention, because it surely would have gone onto one of my compilations of odd and funny records. It fits right in. I know, I am not telling you much about Alan Wolfson. I'll tell you this -- the a-side's a slightly caffeinated, new wavy popper with a fairly ambitious arrangement. The b-side bores me, and perhaps when I first spun this 7 years ago, that's what I heard and off to The Pile it went. But never again, Alan Wolfson, never again. You're going to be filed in the Already Did These pile, and you, or at least your a-side, have earned a place in my iTunes.


A Handful Of Dick

Thursday, June 21, 2007

:: Lady of Spain ::

:: Ebb Tide ::

:: Swinging on a Star ::

:: Come Back to Sorrento ::

:: Flying Home ::

:: Peg O' My Heart ::

:: Ciribiribin ::

:: Begin the Beguine ::

:: Baby, Baby, All the Time ::

:: Nature Boy ::

:: Arrivederci Roma ::

Dick Contino is one cool accordion player. He has the distinction of being the only real-life person to be exploited by novelist James Ellroy in a story while still alive, for one thing. He became somewhat of a star after squeezing and gyrating his way through “Lady of Spain” to win Horace Heidt’s “Youth Opportunity Talent Show” in 1946. Soon afterwards, he was playing big halls across America and hundreds of fan clubs were springing up in his wake. Pussy threw itself at him in an era when only Sinatra got groupies. Dick was on the rise.

Alas, what goes up must eventually come down. In 1951, Dick was drafted. After being sent to basic training, he freaked out and disappeared for 24 hours before turning himself in. He was labeled a draft-dodger and locked up in a federal penitentiary for six months. Upon his release, he was drafted again and sent to war in Korea. Though he served with distinction and was honorably discharged, he could never shake the draft-dodger tag, which was a big no-no in Red Scare America. That label, along with the accordion’s unfashionable status when he returned home, had him become more of a small lounge act rather than playing the big halls he enjoyed before the war. Still, he managed to put out a string of records for Mercury and starred in a low-grade B-flick called Daddy-O.

Enter James Ellroy, 1994. The crime writer remembered seeing Contino humping an accordion on TV as a child while his father pointed at the screen, saying “That guy’s no good. He’s a draft dodger.” Ellroy decided to seek Contino out and find out what happened to him. He met up with him in Las Vegas, where he was still performing his lounge act, and Contino began to take form as a literary hero in Ellroy’s mind. He thus became mythologized by Ellroy in the novella, Dick Contino’s Blues, the sordid tale of an accordion-king pussy-hound who saves a girl from commie-pinko influences and a fake kidnapping that coincides with a serial killer’s gory rampage. Spade Cooley even makes an appearance as a drunken madman slumped on his couch in a cowboy hat and sequin-studded chaps. The story, contained in the book Hollywood Nocturnes kicked my ass when I read it ten years ago. Because of it, I sought and found a VHS copy of Daddy-O, in which Contino performs his own stunt by cruising a super-charged ’51 Ford into the air to get past a roadblock. And while this 1958 live album might not seem the coolest thing ever, it has a lot of cool moments - and that’s saying a lot for an accordion record.


Happy Summer!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

:: Your Good Time Party Awaits ::

Being a child of the 60s, my fondest summer memories are from those years. Summer meant sunshine, warmth, and the backyard pool. If I had been an adult during those years, I would have liked to have been Bob Moore. By the looks of this cover shot, he dug summer for many of the same reasons, but from an adult perspective. In other words, life was a "Good Time Party" with a bevy of babes by the pool.

It wasn't all a party for Bob Moore, but the good times were many. One might assume he was a but a cheesy orchestra leader, but you'd be wrong. Dead wrong. Bob Moore is one of the most legendary studio cats in Nashville history. A bassist as well as an arranger and big band leader, it's been said that he played on more sessions than any other studio musician who has ever lived. Period.

A few records to his credit: Crazy by Patsy Cline, El Paso by Marty Robbins, Only The Lonely by Roy Orbison, The Boxer by Simon & Garfunkle, Return to Sender by Elvis Presley, Stand By Your Man by Tammy Wynette and White Lightning by George Jones. In all, there are over 17,000 session logs with his name etched in.

Bob Moore also happened to father a child named R. Stevie Moore who was at one time a DJ on beloved New Jersey radio station WFMU and has since made a name for himself by issuing numerous Compact Cassettes of his home recordings every year for the last 30 years or so. Considered by some the father of DIY and Lo-Fi, R. Stevie took a decidedly different path than his father, but he is certainly no less obsessed with the making of music.

In the late '50s, Bob Moore co-founded Monument Records (which had huge success with Roy Orbison), issuing "Mexico" by Bob Moore and his Orchestra in 1961. The song was a big hit in Germany (ironically?). Moore sold his interest in Monument in the mid-'60s and issued this album on Acuff-Rose's Hickory Records in 1967. I wish I had owned this record when it first came out because it would have made a great soundtrack to my backyard pool activities during that summer. Not exactly a country record, I hear elements of the Tijuana Brass and goofy sitcom and game show themes of the day. It all adds up to a good time, alrighty.

Screw the bummer that was the Summer of Love. Put this record on and remember 1967 as the year of the Good Time Party!


Goin' Places

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

:: Aquarius ::

:: Something ::

:: Everybody's Talkin' ::

:: MacArthur Park ::

:: Shook My World ::

:: Theme From Love Story ::

:: Little Green Apples ::

:: Please Don't Give My Daddy No More Wine ::

:: Just A Closer Walk With Thee ::

Sure, there's been lots of bands called The Executives over the years. All genres, all eras -- there's always been a band called The Executives. But I doubt many bands went this far for their executive image. Maybe they knew a guy at the airport, maybe they didn't. Maybe those two babes with the bubbly are wives, sisters, or maybe just adoring and exhibitionist fans. Or maybe they were friends of the photographer. In any event, these guys had style; at least when it counted. And sure, they look like they lifted those tuxedos from Isaac The Bartender's love closet, but it was the early 1970's. That's the way you dressed if you wanted panties thrown at you. They even have their own logo, which just screams "INSURANCE" to me.

So of course I have no solid information on these guys, though if you scroll to the bottom of this page, this is definitely one of them, with perhaps a whole new batch of Executives. Or the same old ones, I can't really tell. They appear to be an ambitious regional cover band, who probably played dimly lit dinner clubs and other places where people over thirty gathered to drink and wink at each other. There's a note on the back from a guy named Don Reo (who was once Slappy White's comedy partner and wrote for Laugh-In, so he knows music,) in which he mentions that they had an impressive amount of instruments with them up on stage. The credits confirm this, showing they played everything from a banjo to the mellowphone. Of course they had a mellowphone.

So while these standards aren't anything really to get excited about, they do at least try to infuse some different twists here and there. As an added bonus to Record Robot readers, here are their autographs.


Addendum: I should have mentioned that this was a birthday gift from occasional Robot contributor Mark, a man who obviously knows what I like. To laugh at.

Stylers Party Hey!

Monday, June 18, 2007

:: Side 1 (4 Hits For Your Party!) ::

:: Side 2 (4 More Hits For Your Party!) ::

Nothing rejuvenates my soul quite like the sounds of those Singaporean songsmiths, The Stylers. They released a massive amount of these instrumental dance records, drenched in heavenly farfisa sounds, throughout the sixties and seventies - and it is my goal in life to have them all. I’d love to travel to Singapore someday to scour record shops for more music like this to shake my ass to, but my kind of luck tells me that there’s a high probability of that ass coming back with caning stripes on it.


Water Drippin' Up The Spout

Thursday, June 14, 2007

:: Let It Out::

:: Go Girl, Go ::

Ah gosh, I remember this song from when it used to get played on "Boss Radio" 93 KHJ, and KFWB "Channel 98" and of course KRLA which no doubt had some kind of catchy slogan too, but I can't remember it now. It's a heck of a dumb-ass song anyway, and that's its charm.

It sounds kind of Tex-Mexish, but these guys were from Memphis, and as with all one-hit-wonder bands, there's more to their back story than you might think.

About 4 or 5 years before this record appeared, a bunch of Nashville session cats cashed in on the hot rod craze with a song called "G.T.O.", credited to Ronny and The Daytonas. Since they weren't really a band, they needed some dudes to go out on the road and play G.T.O. and probably Little Deuce Coup and all that other crap for gaggles of clueless teens at county fairs and such. So you guessed it, these Hombres guys got the call. They did this Daytonas act for years until they finally got a record deal on their own on the strength of this original composition. They made 2 or 3 singles and an album (which I'd love to find) before disappearing. Funny thing is they're probably still out there playing G.T.O. on the oldies circuit, and maybe they're sneaking a rendition of Let It Out in occasionally too.


The Magic Of Don Lee Ellis

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

:: Cabaret ::

:: Yellow Days ::

:: Long Ago And Far Away ::

:: Satin Doll ::

:: Stella By Starlight ::

:: Misty ::

:: El Cumbanchero ::

:: Poinciana ::

:: Edelweiss ::

:: Willow Weep For Me ::

Do you believe in magic? The other day on my lunch break, I decided to take a little walk, and something inside my head said, "Hey, Tony, now that you've firmed up your thighs a little, why not take 11th Street back and hit the Salvation Army? I bet there's something nice there for ya." Now, believe me, I don't always listen to the voices in my head, but this seemed a reasonable detour. And of course it was. Two typically musty boxes of albums, no doubt rescued from the basement of a dead person, awaited me. One was full of mostly budget label Classical stuff, so that didn't even require a look-through. The other contained some interesting nuggets; a few regional or self-released albums by artists I'd never heard of, but exactly the kind of albums I love to run across.

Two of these records were by a man named Don Lee Ellis, autographed for someone named Betty. I was expecting to find nothing on the Internet about him, but instead I found a short film about him. I encourage you to watch the film (conveniently digested in three small portions on YouTube,) but the short story is that Don Lee Ellis is a magnificently busy organ player with as much flair as talent. He toured Europe, sponsored by the Hammond organ company, in the late 50's and early 60's before settling down in Southern Califonia and starting a family. He put out 7 albums between 1969 and...well, it would appear that the last one came out some time in the 70's.

There's something otherwordly about his instrumental organ playing, madly happy while at the same time sounding sort of like it could be used for a nightmare sequence in a movie. Maybe because it stirs the same kind of mood that Nino Rota's soundtrack for Fellini's Juliet Of The Spirits does in me? Maybe because I am afraid of Hammond organs? Could be. The combination of sounds the Concorde and the X-66 make under the frenetic influence of Mr. Ellis' frantic hands really are sort of hypnotizing.

I searched Ebay today, on the off chance someone might be selling another of his albums, and as luck would have it, there was one. And yes, I won that shit. So here's some selections from the two albums I already have. All are instrumental, save for Misty. Dig it.


Grannys Panties Fly Off In Church On Sunday Morning

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

:: All Of It And Prissy Poo, Too ::

Troy Cory is one of those guys who survived and thrived on the fringes
of show business. As David Hasselhoff is to Germany, Troy Cory is to
China. An American entertainer who took full advantage of greater fame
overseas, Cory took a career that began and ended as a teen heartthrob
in the early 60s and stretched it for all it was worth for over 40

It's not real easy to find information (in English) about Troy Cory.
He hosted his own TV show, taped in Hollywood, but did it air here? I
don't think so. The show probably went straight to Europe and later,
to China where Cory would find much adulation for years to come. One
of the secrets of his success is the inclusion of his daughter,
Priscilla in his act.

That's her on the album cover. Not the older one holding some kind of
olde fashioned bra, but the 9 or 10 year old holding what appears to
be her granny's panties. It's ok if you don't quite understand what's
going on in that cover shot. I don't either, and who cares? Now, I'm
not sure what year this album was made, but my guess would be 1966, or
'67. Funny thing is, Priscilla's IMDB bio says she was born in 1965. It
also says a lot of other things that don't make much sense, so
whatever. Anyway, she wound up on his variety show in the mid to late
70s as co-hostess, and by then she was a total knockout.

Another interesting tid-bit of info I could glean is that Troy's
grandfather was a dude named Nathan Stubblefield who, get this,
claimed to have invented radio before Marconi or Tesla. Without
getting technical, let's just say his version of wireless sound
transmission didn't work all that well, and after years of
figuratively getting stabbed in the back, he wound up literally
starving himself to death at age 67. Still to this day he has his
defenders, including his grandson Troy who recently put together a
series of indecipherable videos commemorating the 100th anniversary of his grandfather's patent.

How does all this relate to Something Borrowed... Something New!? All
I can say is that the backing tracks sound as though they were
transmitted by Nathan Stubblefield's earth conducting wireless
thingamabob, with Troy Cory slathering a thick layer of vocals over it
all later. I do not think I could find a creepier, more bizarre record
by a creepier, more bizarre family if I had to. So far I have
thankfully not been given that assignment.


Put Some Tam On And Dance Like A Young Lover

Friday, June 08, 2007

:: The Young Lovers (Theme Song) ::

:: Cupid ::

:: For Both Of Us ::

:: The Ambition Of A Youth ::

:: The Silvery World ::

:: Lover In My Dream ::

While I sure love these Hong Kong Pop EP's, I'm getting kind of tired of my ignorance about them. This might not even be Hong Kong Pop! There are different vocalists on this EP, and it sounds like they all sing on the theme song, so my guess is that this might be from a movie. But what is important is the music, so I'll spare you some blather and tell you what I do know. The guy on the right might be the Charles Nelson Reilly (RIP) of China.


The Ace Of Blow

Thursday, June 07, 2007

:: Big Shot ::

:: Tie Me To Your Apron Strings Again ::

Ace Cannon is one of the most recognizable sax stylists of the early rock & roll era, and is a Memphis studio legend. Born in Grenada, MS in 1934, he was hanging in Memphis during the early Sun Records days, cutting many a side there with all the early icons of rockabilly. In 1958, bassist Bill Black left Elvis' band over a pay dispute and formed the Bill Black Combo the following year with Cannon on lead sax.

Cannon started his solo career in '61 with the hit single, "Tuff". Mostly he recorded for the Hi label (same as Bill Black), but he cut a few singles for the Fernwood label, such as this one from 1964. Fernwood was founded by Johnny Cash's soon to be producer at Sun, Jack Clement, and truck driver/western swing band leader Slim Wallace, and was run out of a shack behind Wallace's suburban Memphis house. The label went belly up the year after this gem was issued.

Bill Black died of a brain tumor in 1965, at which point Ace returned to lead the band from that point forward. To this day, Cannon is blowing around the oldies circuit. You can catch him at the Pine Hills Country Club in Calhoun City, MS on June 16, or watch out for him when he hits your town!


P-Nut Envy

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

:: Do You Know What Time It Is ::

I’ve seen different releases of this song on the Buddah label, with assorted variations of the band name credit – “Circa ’58 and the Peanut Gallery” and just “P-Nut Gallery.” For this version of the single, on Buddah’s reissue label, Radio Active Gold, it’s credited to “Circa ’58 and the P-Nut Gold.” What it is is a bubblegum novelty pop tribute to that ancient kid’s show, Howdy Doody. It’s amazing that a children’s show was allowed to air in the ‘50s with a title that was basically a euphemism for poop. And didn’t all the characters in the show reside in “Doodyville?” How crude, how disgusting!

Howdy Doody always had a peanut gallery of kids in the show, and so does this single - their voices shouting out alongside the vocalist, who may or may not be Lanny Lambert, the co-writer/co-producer of the single. He may or may not also be the same Lanny Lambert who littered all my Google searches as the musician/record producer who impregnated Dana Plato while she was on Diff’rent Strokes, an act for which NBC fired her. This left a need for more characters on the show, so they married Phillip Drummond off to Dixie Carter and brought in her extremely annoying son, Sam. Along with causing me much irritation as a child, this contributed to the show becoming its own version of Doodyville. Thanks a lot, Lanny.


Join Our Club

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

:: Edge Of The Envelope ::

:: Vapor Rub Out ::

:: Child Custody Commandos ::

:: Grape Juice Plus ::

Yes, some more 90's nostalgia from your pal Tony. Has there really been much 90's nostalgia? I remember the 70's being celebrated and revisited a lot towards the last half of the 80's, and the loving lookback to 80's music seemed to begin before the 80's were even finished. I blame the death of Top 40 radio as a medium that the masses listened to, and the compartmentalization of popular music into format-based radio stations. Most of the really cool music from the 90's never got a sniff of radio play (though Nirvana is one obvious exception,) and many people didn't have to hear the types of "hit" music that wasn't played on their niche stations. I believe this began the trend towards further personalization of people's tastes and listening habits, and certainly had to have something to do with there not being an easy way to even divide up 90's music for compilations. Hell, nowadays it seems people barely listen to albums as a whole anymore, with the tendency to hit shuffle on their media player and let your own personal Jack run rampant.

Oh yeah, this 7"! I first heard these guys when a friend of mine put Grape Juice Plus on a mixtape. First off, that's a great fucking song title. A reference from the third Planet of the Apes film? SOLD. And it turned out to be one of my favorite songs ever. So of course this single was immediately hunted down and ensnared like a human.

The basic evolution for the very short lived Cupid Car Club is that they were the band after Nation of Ulysses and before The Make-Up. Although this came out on Kill Rock Stars, this single has the Dischord stamp all over it, as Nation of Ulysses was a Dischord band, and these 4 songs were recorded by Fugazi's Brendan Canty and Guy Picciotto. Now that that that's what I've been waiting for.


Boss Ross

Monday, June 04, 2007

:: The Zipped Up Mixed Up ::

Despite dying suddenly at age 52 of a heart attack, Ross Bagdasarian is immortal. About as immortal as anyone can be, except maybe Jesus or L Ron Hubbard. After speeding up his voice while experimenting in the studio one day, he gave the world the Chipmunks, and at that point it didn't matter that he'd already written hit songs or that he had appeared in films like Hitchcock's Rear Window. From that moment on he was David Seville and he accepted the role wholeheartedly.

The Robot has covered Bagdasarian before, so it's not worth writing extensively about him again, but I will say that I'm really glad I own this, his only full length non-Chipmunk album. Recorded in 1966, at a time when the cartoon rodents were highly successful on TV, but had already played out on record, Bagdasarian needed an outlet for his song writing and recording studio skills, and thankfully his longstanding relationship with Liberty Records payed off. The Mixed-Up World Of... gives us more of the kind of stuff Ross had been slipping on B sides of Chipmunk singles over the years, as well as new renderings of some of his pre-Chipmunk hits (Armen's Theme and Come On-A My House).

I didn't know the record existed until I saw it at the Pasadena Record Swap Meet about a year ago. The seller wanted some astronomical price for it, so I passed but started to keep an eye out for it. Finally I found this copy, still sealed at the Record Surplus blowout sale a couple of weeks ago for about $12.00. It's not stereo, but that's ok. It was well worth the money just to hear "Yeah, Yeah", his not so subtle swipe at the British Invasion. Considering Ross only had a few years left, I'm glad he made this album while he could, and although his son, Ross Jr. continues to keep the Chipmunks alive to this day, only the old man had the ability to make them an interesting musical act first and foremost.


The Rickles Factor

Friday, June 01, 2007

:: Hello Dummy! Excerpt ::

I just got back from a Don Rickles bookstore appearance for his new book, Rickles’ Book. I was hoping to get him to personally inscribe my copy with a “Hello Dummy!” but we were all sort of herded past him like cattle as he handed us pre-signed copies. It was still cool to see him, and I was happy to hear him hurl insults at some of the wackos that showed up – like one guy with a video camera who asked Rickles to talk to a photo he brought of his grandfather while he filmed it. Rickles looked at the picture and cracked, “Your grandson is really starting to annoy me,” and tossed the photo back to the guy. Good stuff.

Here’s a clip off of his 1968 LP Hello Dummy!, recorded at the Sahara Hotel in Las Vegas. The entire 35-minute routine consists of Mr. Warmth verbally abusing his audience, and you’ve got to admire the guy for continuing to be so hilariously obnoxious for half a century.