Category Archive: Uncategorized

Jan 15

Grey Boy on Miami Soul Music & the Human Race




I’m basically happy with the way Savage Lost turned out, but it’s far from a perfect work.  It could desperately use an index.   It could use more pictures.  (My publisher said we had to keep it under 25 to avoid a higher cost.)   I would love to expand the Central Florida coverage, and include Pensacola …

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Nov 13

Leon Russell Meets the Allman Brothers In 1966

The Spotlights from Daytona Beach, aka the Allman Joys




Leon Russell came from Tulsa, Oklahoma, but one of his early endeavors featured two Florida legends — in their first-ever record release.  I remember, as a 9-year-old, hearing “Batman And Robin” by the Spotlights on the radio.   It reached #12 on WQAM and #13 on WFUN in my hometown of Miami, during the third week …

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Jul 07

WLOF & Bill Vermillion: Florida Top 40 Legends




Most people are content to follow.   It’s lonely out there leading the way, especially when you hear something, or just know something that others simply don’t understand.  It was that way for Bill Vermillion, the visionary music director of WLOF in Orlando, a guy who wasn’t content with playing or programming just the proven hits …

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Jul 07

600 WLOF Chart Hits That Missed the Hot 100




  Anyone who sees Bill Vermillion as just another music director, or WLOF as just another Top 40 station, probably sees the Beatles as just another pop group, or Muhammad Ali as just another boxer.  WLOF played the hits, but constantly kept things moving so that local records and anything else that sounded great could …

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Jun 11

WLOF #1 Hits That Missed The Billboard Hot 100




  Here are more than a dozen records that not only were played on WLOF, and not only were hits on the station, but made it all the way to NUMBER ONE… despite completely missing the Billboard Magazine Hot 100.   I’ve listed them in chronological order.   An asterisk denotes a Florida-based artist (though not necessarily …

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May 26

Where Did WLOF Get Its Records?

Bill Vermillion's desk in 1969. There's a reason it was so messy...




  In order for Bill Vermillion to use his magic music director ears, somebody had to provide a steady stream of records to the station.  In a perfect world, each record company would have the means to provide every radio station with product — but in the ’60s, just like today, it was not a …

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Sep 26

The Real Teen Tragedies Behind Two Moody Garage 45s




  WHY MUST IT BE? Tragedy brings people together.    The worst of times can bring out the best in us, and nowhere is that more evident than in a local music scene, or among amateur athletes.  Twice, in the years 1967 and 1968, the deaths of Tampa-area high school athletes brought not only their …

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Sep 05

The First Deep City Related 45, and Miami Girl Group Confusion!

The first Rollers 45. Or was it?





DIAMONETTES and OTHER DILEMMAS
It’s not always easy to tell the story of an artist, or the records they created.   Sometimes every answer just brings another question, with clarity never really showing up for the ride.   It reminds me of George Harrison’s insightful line, borrowed from the Tao Te Ching:  “The farther one …

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Oct 07

Paul Revere and the Raiders: The Miami Connection




  Paul Revere and the Raiders paid their dues around the Pacific Northwest for many years, before landing a starring role on TV’s “Where The Action Is”.   That exposure helped make them one of the most successful bands in the United States.   It also meant the start of a South Florida connection that would last …

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Aug 08

Remembering HENRY STONE, 1921-2014

Miami music legend Henry Stone




  He taught us the value of perseverance… the importance of distribution… and the results that come from greasing the right palms at the right time. In his 93 years, Henry Stone rewrote the rule book on how to get a hit record.   Sometimes he threw out the rule book entirely.   He showed the world …

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