Blast from past – 1987

Some of the best intended plans… take longer than expected. I’m working on a project in conjunction with the folks at LouieFest that’s taking longer than I imagined. As I hate to ignore the blog for over seven days, I’ll share a photo from my archives.

Here’s a photo of KFJC DJs Phil Dirt, Jeff “Stretch” Riedle and songwriter Richard Berry in 1987, four years after the infamous “Maximum LOUIE LOUIE” marathon. Richard just received partial ownership of his song publishing, and is in really good spirits. Stretch bleached his hair, because he figured he wanted be a blond surfer for a change. I have no idea who or what Phil is looking at.

I took this photo at Sweetwater Saloon in Mill Valley after a fun party for Village Music, which is the subject of another blog entry I haven’t written yet…

Phil Dirt, Stretch Riedle & Richard Berry - photo by Eric Predoehl

Quiet before the storm

It’s late on Thursday night, or Friday morning, and I’m typing away on my Powerbook, responding to emails with the teevee playing in the background. As usual, I’m multi-tasking, doing a gazillion things at once.

I think to myself…. every time LOUIE LOUIE is played… an angel gets their wings….

No, hold it…. that’s “It’s A Wonderful Life.” Wrong movie.

Every time LOUIE LOUIE is played… Richard Berry smiles from the great beyond, and the accountants at EMI Music make another “ca-ching” sound with the cash register. It’s all good…

It’s Conan O’Brien’s late night show, sometime around 1:20 before the commercial break right before the musical guest. Max Weinberg and the band break into a familiar melody, and I think angels….

But it’s just another example of the semi-random synchroncity in the LOUIE LOUIE universe. Counting all the versions of LOUIE LOUIE feels like counting raindrops. It’s absolutely impossible to count them all….

Within the next few days, I’ll be making a special announcement about a project I’ll be launching in conjunction with my friends over at LouieFest of Tacoma. It’s going to be very exciting…

Patti Smith does “Smells Like Teen Spirit”

Some folks have mentioned to me that they thought “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana was an updated sequel to LOUIE LOUIE. In fact, I’ve been told that the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland has a video kiosk where one of the two guys left from the band actually acknowledges this connection. Then again, maybe he was talking about “More Than A Feeling” by Boston, which also uses that catchy 3-chord riff common to LOUIE LOUIE. I haven’t been to the museum yet, so I can’t tell you…

Either way, Patti Smith, one of our favorite musicians at LOUIE Central, just did a music video for this song, which she covered for her new “Twelve” album. You can read all about this video by going to the article, or you can just watch this embedded video….

The Future LOUIE Database

Right now as you’re reading this, I’ve got someone working on the creation of an online LOUIE LOUIE database. If this works out the way I have it intended, folks will be able to register at the new website to share information about all known versions of the song LOUIE LOUIE, and be able to upload both audio and video clips. It’ll be a completely interactive website where registered members will be able to review the various versions, and add comments to the description. There will be some Wiki-type aspects to this project that will allow a wide variety of different members to participate.

Of course, as this project comes to fruition, it will provide indisputable evidence that LOUIE LOUIE is indeed the most recorded song in the history of mankind. We currently have the evidence to prove this hypothesis, but the new database project will settle the matter once and for all.

More details as the project develops…

More paper , more shiny discs..

There’s a few new things a LOUIE collector will want to pick up as they can…

Ugly Things Magazine #25

The first item is the latest UGLY THINGS magazine. Don Gallucci, the original keyboardist for the Kingsmen is interviewed in this magazine. In addition to playing piano for this iconic recording, Don was also the leader of Don & the Goodtimes, a progressive rock band known as Touch, and produced the second (Iggy Pop and the) Stooges album “Fun House.” He’s also been an A&R guy for Elektra Records, and did a lot of interesting things in his career. I interviewed him quite a few years ago in the early part of my documentary production, and found him to be a fascinating character.

Long may you run, Don. I hope this article brings more attention to your musical talents!

Mojo Magazine #163

The second item is the June 2007 issue of Mojo Magazine, which has the cover story of “100 Records That Changed the World.” LOUIE LOUIE is rated as track #70, with an introductory phrase “Then: a slurred lurch of white teen R&B, deemed obscene by the FBI. Now: the lingua franca of rock.Spider Webb of the band The Horrors, contributes a paragraph about this iconic song.

And what song would be considered the #1 most influential record according to MOJO? “Tutti Frutti” by Little Richard, followed by “I Want To Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles. Strangely, I saw no mention of “Rock Around the Clock” by Bill Haley and the Comets. Of course, all of this stuff is completely subjective, and absolutely open for debate. I’m sure if MOJO does another article like this next year, it’ll be an entirely different list.

As usual, MOJO assembled another exclusive CD compilation of rare recordings for this magazine, featuring some tasty recordings. There’s no LOUIE on this CD, but Al Green does a killer job of covering “I Want To Hold Your Hand.”

Dave Matthews 2007 album

Lastly, the third item is the latest album by the Dave Matthews Band. Thanks to Chuck Rubin of Artists Rights Enforcement (the company that helped Richard Berry recover partial ownership of LOUIE LOUIE), I found out that the latest Dave Matthews release, “The Best of Whats Around Vol.1” a best-of 2-CD collection includes a song entitled “Warehouse” that has a few phrases of LOUIE LOUIE, as noted in the official liner notes. This live recording was a from a show at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre, East Troy, WI on June 2, 2006. While this particular collection is available on iTunes, you can’t buy this individual track, unfortunately.

Right now, I’ve only got one of these three items, so I’ll have to pick up the other two as I get around to it….

ADDENDUM: As it turns out, the Don Gallucci-produced Stooges LP “Fun House” is listed as Mojo’s #36 most influential record, beating out the Kingsmen‘s LOUIE LOUIE! Imagine that!

If you liked the BBC radio show…

I’ve had a handful of emails regarding the BBC radio documentary on the song LOUIE LOUIE. They did a pretty good job of summarizing the LOUIE LOUIE story.

If you enjoyed listening to this show, I’d like to encourage you to support my upcoming film-video documentary, which takes this story to a whole new level with visuals, performances, and a lot of other people you’ve never heard of, talking about this iconic song. I’m a point where I need completion funding to wrap this project up, so if anyone with venture capital funding, or motion picture / television studio connections would like to underwrite this project, I’m all ears.

For a quick summary of how I got into this project, and what I need, check out my comic strip blog summary.

Hawaiian Kingsmen

Things have been super-busy at the headquarters. I’ve barely been able to do much editing on the documentary this past month, much less add anything new to the LOUIE REPORT blog. I know a lot of people have written to me with good words about my comic strip blog posts, which are really fun to do, but they take a lot of work. I’ve got a couple of new comic strip blog ideas I’m working on, but like everything else in life, it all takes time….

Right now, it’s all about making a living, paying bills, and trying to get ahead in this crazy life of mine.

In the meantime, I am still continuing some research and archival collecting. In fact, here’s the cover of a new LP I just purchased on eBay. Anyone out there in cyber-space familiar with The Hawaiian Kingsmen? As far as I know, they don’t perform LOUIE LOUIE (at least not on this record), but they are yet another musical group named “the Kingsmen.”

The Hawaiian Kingsmen

Winner of the “That’s Cool- That’s Trash” fashion category

Russell Quan demonstrates rockin' fashion

San Francisco rock legend Russell Quan (the Mummies, Phantom Surfers, BobbyTeens, and way too many other bands) demonstrates a great sense of rockin’ fashion at a recent Roy Loney (ex- Flamin’ Groovies) show where his new band, the Flakes, was part of the line-up!

Buttons for Flip, Etiquette, and Jerden Records? Talk about three biggies in the LOUIE Universe!

Of course, The Rutles are also pretty darned fab! Cheese and onions, baby!