Sara (no H) messaged me a few days ago and asked about the 1990's group, Blackhawk, what I thought about them, and what I remembered most. I played all of their songs of course during their run and when I think back on them, one thing sticks out to me - outside of the music.
They recorded some really good songs, and had success for a few years as a chart regular. But they never had the huge success that others did. But one thing about Blackhawk that is absolute. The fans that discovered them, and liked them, were HUGE fans and remain so. For what I would call a solid mid-level act in their prime, they had a fierce following. The three-member band broke through in 1993, and came out of the gate hot with their debut single, Goodbye Says It All. It stalled at #11 on the country chart, but it may be the biggest #11 hit ever. People LOVE that song, and how it wasn't a #1 is still a mystery to me. It's beloved.
Goodbye Says It All - Maybe the biggest non top ten hit in Country Music History. Play it, and watch people at the club.
Their debut album, Blackhawk had 5 singles off of it, all moderate hits, BUT is went multi-platinum, and that is not small feat in any era. Two million sold and not a major hit record on it. That in itself is unheard of, but a testament to the loyalty of their fans, and also sometimes the total inaccuracy of the charts. The next few albums had again, moderate success commercially and on the charts. They never had a #1 song, but were always right there. Most of their hits solid. Big Guitar #8 / I'm Not Strong Enough To Say No #2 / Like There Ain't No Yesterday #3 / There You Have It #4. And there were others!
Almost A Memory Now - A real GREAT Blackhawk treasure song. Top 10, but should have been a #1
They even survived a death of one of the founding members, Van Stephenson (formerly of Restless Heart) he died of cancer in 2001. There have been a few members come and go over the years, and they are still making music today, although not a charted act. Their run on the charts was short but sweet. They were slick, and new, and had a sound that was absolutely unique. They possessed a trait that is extremely difficult to acheive, that you KNEW it was them on the radio. Strong harmonies, and a great image for young fans in that era when we were getting younger all the time.
In another decade they may have been a bigger player. But the 1990's were simply packed with gigantic superstars and the new traditionalists were dominating, Think about it, Garth, Strait, Jackson, Black, Cyrus, McGraw, Chestnut, Lawrence, Diffie, Stone, Chesney, Toby, along with a huge group of highly successful women controlling the charts, like Twain, Clark, Tillis, Messina, Morgan, Loveless, and McEntire, It was a great time in country, but tough too. The competition was brutal, but Blackhawk held their own. The found a fan base and kept them, and keep them still.
Next week we will take a look back at Pam Tillis
Over the past few months things have been different. And none of us, have really been through anything like this before. But we are up to this.
There is no doubt that everyone's health is very important, and I think it goes without saying that in one way shape or form that is on everyone's mind during the day. But this has made us different in other ways too. There is the unknown, and that place, limbo, that is no one's favorite place. That is universal even in what could be called "normal" times.
I feel that in many ways until a few months ago, we have never been more organized in our world. Technology has a bunch to do with that. Smart phones especially have made it so. At the tip of your fingers it solves about every problem we have. Whether it's gathering info, buying something, learning something, directions, temp, rain or not, it keeps us on time, and reminds us of things we chose not to remember.
But with this C-19 situation we have temporarily lost that control, and we don't care for that much. Will there be baseball, can I plan anything, when will this happen, or that? When does that movie come out, or when can we fly for fun? When can I visit my family, or they me? Pretty much everything is up in the air, and we are making up our lives daily as we go along. Limbo. That can be fun for a week on vacation, but not a way of life for many.
But this is not forever and there will be a time, and in the grand scheme of things, soon, that we will return to ourselves. But that won't be until after we've learned a lot about ourselves. Until then enjoy the sunshine, and the summer rain, and the people around you, you find the most dear.
We have to be patient, and we don't like that much either. Limbo always leaves.
With all that's going on in the world today, it's good to see some success stories, and Dr. Kate Raymond is Norton is one of them. She has a great dental office in the heart of town, and is back open and ready for you.
NOTED - THE PICTURE ABOVE WAS TAKEN IN BETTER TIMES BEFORE C-19!
When my older school and long time dentist retired last year, I chose Dr. Kate my new go-to. I also made a promise to myself that I was going to take better care of my teeth with this change. And I have. As you move on, you need to do things a little differently, and this was a great place to start. They have me on a regular and more rigorous dental schedule, and I am doing my part too.
I love doing business with really good people, and they are. Since re-opening, they are taking extreme safety measures in every way possible, and I felt very comfortable with it. It was great to see the friendly staff and the good Dr. herself, albeit through masks, and other safety gear and protocols. But it was fine.
It also felt good to do something "normal". I know the dentist isn't everyone's cup of tea, but it felt good to do something I would be doing even if there was no C-19. My visit was on time, and the check-up was flawless too. Hey, I now things are screwy right now, but don't forget your teeth, you only get one set of them to go through life with. And I always feel good when I support local biz, as we are also a local biz here at WQMX!
Choose Dr. Kate and her crew in Norton. A very good choice. And WELCOME BACK!
By now you are getting ready for the MLB season to begin in late July. All the money issues are worked out so you can rest easy that all of the players and owners can go to the grocery store now and feed their families. Now they are working on the safety issues and that's no small task, or unimportant one, so let's applaud that. Imperative stuff for sure.
But with that said, let's look at what the season has in store for fans from a baseball only stance. There will be NO crowds at games, a 60-game schedule, most games in the division, the universal designated hitter, and a regular post season. All completely understandable. BUT in extra inning games, innings will begin with a runner on second base with no outs. What? To shorten games down and I guess be out there less actual time. OK, but doesn't that just sound silly at the Major League Level?
Sounds like my backyard, ALA 1973 in Berea. "Ghost man on second." Remember when you didn't have enough guys to play a real game? At my house, if the ball hit the barn roof it was a home run, and the pine tree was in foul territory. Break a window and it's an out! Ball under the bushes is a double, and if the ball hits the electric wires from the house to the barn, it's a single. Don't trip over the hose, look out for the wooden picnic table, and watch out for my moms car. My point is, at the big league level, this man on second thing, is just so diminishing.
I get it, but it's silly. The season is going to have enough changes, so why mess with the basics of the game? They figure if players are out there less than that is beneficial to them with no really long games. But this will look so...backyardy. Picture this. The Indians overcome a big deficit in the bottom of the ninth in a real important game with a Lindor grand slam with two outs. Baseball at it's BEST. Ten minutes later, extra innings, and the ghost man thing comes into play, and the Tribe loses on some kind of ground out to second base. Baseball at its worst. Because all extra-inning games will look the same. Ghost man, bunt, some kind of flyout, or ground out, wild pitch, passed ball, game over. No one will be happy.
Maybe since they are only playing 60 games, leaving the guts of game alone would be a good choice. But here we are. Oh, and if they like this, (and they will I feel), look for "man on second extra inning thing" to continue after C-19 is over. After all, the Designated Hitter was originally a "25 year experiment" that MLB adopted in 1973 in the American League when Ron Bloomberg stepped to the plate as its first one. (And the DH will more than likely be adopted by the National League too when this is over)
So we'll see how it goes. Who knows, maybe after the games are done, the MLB players can ride their bicycles to Spafford's Carryout and get a cola to celebrate a good game played with their gloves on their handlebars, because all the parents chipped in to buy. Or they can run under the sprinklers to cool off after an afternoon of playing ball.
The GARTH SHOW – This weekend at most area Drive-Ins! If you're going have a blast! (Drive-Ins)
The Auto-Rama – In North Ridgeville (The one you can see from the Turnpike) was one of the top grossing Drive-Ins in the entire country last weekend! #5 (Story)
Fun Fact – Jurassic Park was the #1 movie at the box office last week - 27 years after first being released (1993) , as Drive-Ins ran it and - Jaws (also had a big week 1974) a bunch! (Story)
Next Major Release – To Theaters is Unhinged with Russell Crowe, July 10 Looks Creepy!
Scoob! - Skipping Theaters - On HBO Max on today! (Story)
More Twister - A reboot of the mid 1990's Twister flick coming soon! (Story)
The Golden Globes - Have been delayed to February 28th. (Story)
A Mamma Mia 3 - Could be happening. (Story)
Law and Order – Organized Crime is the name of Elliott Stabler's new series. (Story)
This week I got a message from a great listener named, Joy who asked if I remembered a country group named Restless Heart from many years ago. She loved them when she was 8, and wondered what happened to them. I do remember them of course, and played all their songs. But their music wasn't the best thing they brought to the table.
They will always be remembered for their gigantic hit, I'll Still Be Loving You. A song virtually everyone on the planet knows. They had a real nice run of good songs for a few years and were consistently on the charts. We will talk about the music in a minute, but to me, the gift they brought to Country Music was universal appeal. The way they dressed, and looked, presented themselves, their slick logo, and their sound.
They brought a lot of people into country, who found them on the crossover charts as ISBLY was a big pop hit too. They came along when there was still a huge stigma that Country was twangy, stiff, and old, Restless Heart helped make us mainstream as much as any act of the era. You have to remember how radically different they were, and radical is not too strong of a word. They were on the charts with Dolly, Conway Twitty, Barbara Mandrell, Glen Campbell, Willie and Waylon an aging George Jones, and many others that had a real appeal to an older generation. Older was our core then, Restless Heart was here to challenge that.
They were formed as a "demo band." Recording versions of songs written that would be pitched to "big stars" to see if they were interested in recording. Then in 1984 they hit the charts with their own first album, and it was on. It was different, unique, and it was destined to be mass appeal. The album was self-titled and was a big success. Let The Heartache Ride was their first hit. They had the feel of the rock group, The Little River Band, or Toto at times and other similar bands - BUT they were OURS! The song below, was a great song, as it was newer sounding, but in its written form was very country!. Great introduction.
Album One - I Want Everyone To Cry - An Underrated Gem Of A Song -
But then came the album, Wheels. It was a monster hit, with 4 number one songs on it. That Rock Won't Roll, I'll Still Be Loving You, Why Does It Have To Be Wrong Or Right, and Wheels. All big songs, all loved, and two of them major pop hits as well. They were on top, and they were having a big influence on what was coming next, it was the zenith of their run!
This Song Is A Classic
There was good success after that, but Wheels was the album that every act hopes for. The classic album that they will always be remembered for. Restless Heart had its core members, but there were many that came and went too. One of the original members, Van Stephenson formed Blackhawk a few years later, and lead singer Larry Stewart was a star in his own right with his fantastic and distinct voice that gave Restless Heart its haunting identity. They disbanded in the mid 1990's.
But we all owe them a debt. Restless Heart really helped make Country "cool" when it needed it. They dared to be the next big thing, as Country Bands were rare in those days. Alabama was the only one really having success, and Restless Heart came in and had a great run. They had a few great albums, a bunch of big hits, and left behind a legacy that was important, that helped pave the way for those who were up next by smoothing out the road ahead.
Clint Black, Garth, Alan Jackson, Joe Diffie, Tracy Lawrence, Randy Travis, Dwight Yoakum all kicked down the door that Restless Heart had unlocked and opened with a younger audience waiting on the other side. Well done.
Restless Heart. Very important in their time, thank you for bringing so many new fans to us.
Next week, we will take a look at Blackhawk!
I am very proud to be the voice of Habitat For Humanity of Summit County on WQMX. I am also very proud to be the Honorary Co-Chair for their annual Home-In-One Golf Outing. In fact, I have been so for the past 11 years, since its inception. Good people to support.
PICTURED ABOVE- The WQMX Habitat Golf Team of many years, (highly esteemed) Nick Anthony, Me, Lynn Kelly, and my great friend Don!
This years outing is going to be at Gleneagles in Twinsburg, after a nice run at Hudson CC, and Portage CC before that. A great guy named Jim Sukys invited me to Co-Chair the outing its first year, and it's been an honor ever since. Jim has moved on, but still plays in the outing every year. Rochelle Sibbio has been great to me ever since taking over the outing and making sure that everything runs smoothly. Big kudos too to Annie Boyer, who is a great friend made through this outing, and she has moved on too, but she still believes in Habitat!
I always love supporting people that are worth supporting and they are one of them. They do so much good for our area, and many areas. Good people, good cause.
I would like to invite you to play in this years outing. Click here for all the information. It's July 27, tee time is 9AM, it's a Monday so it's a great three day weekend! This outing is really fun, laid back and all for a GREAT cause. I would love to see you there. Get all the info you need Click Here!
During this very different time we are all living through, we are all looking for a bit of normal. All of us. And I am glad that we have each other.
The news is what the news is, and it's out there to find, but there are times it's really nice to find an oasis where smiles and laughter is still king. Where friends can talk about everyday life, such as it is and still find the humor, the fun and yes, even the heartfelt moments we are all going through. People still have birthdays, and anniversaries and good things still happen. And as the world rises up again, more good times are on the way.
We love being with you every single morning on WQMX. Sarah and I love hearing from you and being a part of your life. It means so much for me and Sarah to be here every morning, for you, when you need us. Over the years I have been on morning shows after Reagan's Assassination attempt, Challenger, the first Gulf War, 911, the economic disaster, the power outage, the second Gulf War starting, Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Andrew, countless blizzards, deep freezes, earthquakes, and tornadoes, and now Covid-19. I love this job and this business, the tougher times seem to be the ones that are most memorable.
Being here and doing the show with you is therapeutic to us as it may be to you. Thank you for being here with us every morning, and giving us a sense of normal too. Raising money for local charity, supporting local businesses and being here for you in tougher times, is one of the best parts of the job.
Glad you choose us every morning! See you this morning, and every morning after that. We appreciate you!
One more quick note for Father's Day, with a story where dad ends up being right. But no one would know it for almost a half of century. That's about right for dad. It's a quick family story that I learned only after the fact.
My mom and dad (Bob and Barb) were married in 1952 in Marietta, Ohio. My mom designed a small house that they built, and the cost was $10,000. They had to have a $1,000 down payment, so they saved and got it. After the house was built, the were buying appliances. My dad (who was by no means a big spender) wanted this General Electric refrigerator with freezer on top and the huge GE logo on the freezer door. It was top of the line, $600! My mom was like, "What?" The down payment was $1,000 on the entire house. Somehow, they bought it. (1952) My dad then passed away in 1978.
This Is Not The ACTUAL One, But It Is The SAME One!
About 1999 or so, I was living in Florida, and I came home to visit my mom for Christmas. I noticed that there was a brand new fridge in the kitchen in her house in Berea. They moved there in 1959 - with that fridge, and this was still before I was born. Not knowing anything about the original fridge story, I asked my mom what happened to that old fridge? She said, "Oh nothing, it wasn't making ice as fast as it used to, so I donated it to the theater department at Baldwin-Wallace College for keeping drinks cold" So I asked her when she got that fridge, she said 1952 for $600. "Your father just HAD to have it." She laughed.
So I asked, "So you had that fridge for 47 years???" She nodded. I asked, "What?? So how many times did you have it serviced?" And she said, "Ummm, Oh, I never had it serviced." I was like, are you kidding me? 47 years from an appliance that runs 24 hours a day, every day? She smiled and laughed and said, "Yes, I guess your father was right..." Should be pointed out, it was still working when she donated it. Nice job dad!
I guess sometimes dad really does get it right. I think they got their $600 out of it. (BTW, these are now worth about $4,800 restored)
Movie Release to Theaters Update! (New)
Wonder Woman 1984 – October 2
Mulan - July 24
James Bond - No Time to Die - November 20
Godzilla VS. Kong - From November 20 to May 21, 2021
The Oscars – Delayed till April
The Emmys - The show is set to take place on September 20 and air on ABC.
Drive Ins – Locally they are open! And Booming! (Drive-Ins)
Tom Hanks – His war drama Greyhound will make its global debut on July 10, exclusively on the seven-month-old platform Apple TV+.
Indiana Jones! - A new survey found that he is one of our favorite movie heroes! (Story)
30 Rock – There will be a reunion. One hour special July 16 (Story)