Way Back 2021

November 3, 2021 - '60s U.K. Faves Highlight Last Night in Soho, Sam and Dave, Ray Charles and Etta James Spread Some Jams on TV

Last Night in Soho, a time travel-horror-suspense film set mainly in Britain in the 1960s, stars Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy and '60s icon Diana Rigg in her final role (filmed before her passing in September 2020). Several select hits feature on the soundtrack, starting with Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich's half-century-later title tune "Last Night in Soho" (top ten in the U.K. in '68) and John Barry's cool instro theme from the 1960 teen romp "Beat Girl." Some of 1964's top hits are heard, including "A World Without Love" by Peter and Gordon, "Don't Throw Your Love Away" by The Searchers, "Wishin' and Hopin'" by Dusty Springfield and Cilla Black's two U.K. chart-toppers, "Anyone Who Had a Heart" and "You're My World." Add to this The Walker Brothers' '65 take on the often-recorded "Land of 1000 Dances," Sandie Shaw's number one U.K. hit "Puppet on a String" from '67 and the slightly later Kinks album cut "Starstruck."

Major League Baseball's World Series has wrapped with a six-game Atlanta Braves victory over the Houston Astros (accompanied by organ music during games at the Braves' Truist Park). The Fox-TV broadcast did work in a couple of killer R&B hits: "Hold On! I'm a Comin'" by Sam and Dave and "Hit the Road Jack" by Ray Charles. Meanwhile, a Walmart commercial makes good use of "I Got You Babe"...not the original smash by Sonny and Cher, though, but Etta James' much funkier 1968 remake. Finally, here's a great song to listen to over and over and over for days and days while you're in an underground shelter after a nuclear bomb has been detonated overhead: "California Dreamin'" by The Mamas and the Papas. At least that's what Jenna Elfman and Keith Carradine did last week on AMC's Fear the Walking Dead.

October 23, 2021 - Creedence, Eddy Arnold, the Troggs and Shirelles Are Enjoying Homescreen Airtime

Several cool oldies have popped up on current TV commercials including Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Down on the Corner" in a spot for H&M stores' autumn-winter attire. The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 arrives to the tune of Eddy Arnold's 1961 remake of The Ink Spots' timeless 1941 hit "I Don't Want to Set the World on Fire," while "Wild Thing" by The Troggs continues a popular run on various small screen ads, the latest for Airbnb Hosts. Also, keen-eared listeners picked up on the Goffin-King classic "Will You Love Me Tomorrow" by The Shirelles in the most recent episode of NBC's Big Sky.

October 3, 2021 - Many Saints of Newark Dominates Vintage Music This Week, With Add-Ons from Venom and TV's Big Sky

The Many Saints of Newark, a prequel to HBO's beloved series The Sopranos, premiered in theaters and on HBO over the weekend. Set during Tony Soprano's childhood, the film features a wildly diverse lineup of vintage recordings that run the gamut: for starters, there are the chart-toppers "Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu" by Domenico Modugno and "The Ballad of the Green Berets" by S/Sgt. Barry Sadler alongside the Broadway classic "Twin Soliloquies" by Mary Martin and Ezio Pinza from the 1952 production of South Pacific.

John Coltrane's jazz gem "Alabama" and Whipped Cream delight "Tangerine" by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass represent instrumental artistry in the new Newark mobster drama. James Brown ramps up the tempo with "There Was a Time" while Dionne Warwick chimes in twice with "Don't Make Me Over" and "Anyone Who Had a Heart." Off-center rock tracks include "Mother's Little Helper" by The Rolling Stones and "Living in the U.S.A." by The Steve Miller Band.

The hit 1958 teen ballad "You" by The Aquatones finally enters the new century via Saints and "When Will I Be Loved" stands as a testament to our dearly departed Everly Brothers. The Casinos' atmospheric ballad "Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye" and "San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers In Your Hair)" by Scott McKenzie are 1967's representative hits. Add to these a pair of magic Motown tunes like "Danger Heartbreak Dead Ahead" by The Marvelettes and Little Stevie Wonder's "Fingertips - Part 2" in addition to unexpected seasonal songs "Whatever Happened to Christmas?" by Frank Sinatra and "Marshmallow World" by Darlene Love, plus many more in the background and between the cracks. The music alone is reason enough to see The Many Saints of Newark!

Venom: Let There Be Carnage has topped the box office and features a couple of against-type selections, "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" by Louis Prima and Keely Smith and Harry Nilsson's original version of the Three Dog Night hit "One." Big Sky, NBC's popular TV series featuring cops 'n' crazy killers is running appropriately-themed promos with The Beau Brummels' under-appreciated 1965 hit "Don't Talk to Strangers"...good advice if you live in Montana as it's depicted in this show! Meanwhile, tiny toddlers are rockin' out, which probably isn't what Steppenwolf intended 53 years ago. For your "wild child," Pampers Cruisers 360 diapers has an ad featuring the ever-popular "Born to Be Wild," previously heard in the very un-childlike biker film Easy Rider.

You're My World Wild Thing Will You Love Me Tomorrow Nel Blu Dipito Di Blu The Ballad of the Green berets Don't Make Me Over Mother's Little Helper Then You Can Tell Me Goodbye Fingertips - Part 2