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Ray Charles part 2
Today's performance is once again brought to you by Hee Haw. This time the great Ray Charles and Buck Owens get together for Buck's Crying Time.

I love Buck Owens. Not only is he a great songwriter, he's a pioneer and a member of Country Music Hall of Fame. His contributions to not just country music but music in general are numerous and significant. Artists as diverse as The Beatles, Johnny Rivers, Dwight Yoakam, Cake, and Creedence Clearwater Revival have covered Buck's songs. I'll bet Buck's catalog is as well known if not as vast as almost any artist in history.

In case you missed it, you can catch Ray Charles Part One here. And both videos are on the big player on my Music Video page. Enjoy!
Johnny Carson Sings
I found an absolute gem in my Google Reader today. Frank, Dean-o, and Sammy are joined on stage by none other than Johnny Carson - who sings! And does a darn fine job, too.

Regular visitors will recognize my affinity for Johnny Carson. The man epitomizes everything about the "good ol' days" of popular entertainment in my book. Style, substance, and class abound with endless talent and showmanship. Johnny was a comedian, actor, musician, magician, and now a singer! I've seen him sing a line or two on occasion, and of course there's the tear inducing duet with Better Midler from his second-to-last show. But this clip is something different.

Anything Goes
Herb Alpert is one of a group of musicians that straddles the line between awesomely cool and unapologetically cheesy. Other members of this group include Chuck Mangione and Spyro Gyra. What separates these "smooth jazz" musicians from the Kenny Gs of the world is that not only do these guys have chops, but they have some serious groove going on.

Take for example this clip of Herb and Lani Hall from the Craig Ferguson show. Just check out those cheesy grins on Herb and Lani as the piece starts. You can feel the smarm in the air. But woven within all that warm smoothness is some serious funk. Check out bassist Hussain Jiffry. Herb Alpert is a monster in the music world. He can command any musician he chooses. That he chooses a musician like Hussain says worlds about his coolness factor. The man is hip. The man is so cool you could keep a side of beef in him for a month.

Fukano Furor Flourishes
My new friend "D" emailed me a few days ago with yet another Eddy Fukano sighting. Below is an edited version of D's email.
A few minutes ago, I googled "Eddie Fukano". I enjoyed your article on Eddy Fukano, which was the first "hit" I clicked on.  Very good video clip, which brought back memories from mid-1970s Sacramento, CA TV.

Back then there was a weekly local country music TV program.  I think it was called The Lloyd Hickey Show.  If not, then, for certain, (the late) Lloyd Hickey was the emcee.  His show was on every Saturday afternoon. Back then, I think Eddy Fukano was a touring musician who went up and down the west coast. The video clip of Eddy Fukano that you showed represents pretty much what I recall of his singing prowess.  When I saw him on local TV, his yodeling was often featured.  He also performed songs that didn't involve yodeling.

Eddy Fukano was part of the Buck Owens stable of stars.  Some of the others under his wing were Susan Raye, Lawanda Lindsey, David Frizzell, Buddy Alan (Buck's son), Buck's band...
Get Your Freek On
Freek Johnson is a bunch of really cool guys who just happen to be among the very best musicians I've ever had the privelege to associate with in my life. Guitarist Marco Villarreal and bassist Denis (Buddy) Pearson were two of my good friends when we were all teenagers just starting out in the music scene. I took lessons from pianist Waz for awhile and he still tunes and maintains our piano. And drummer Bill Romer used to live just down the street from me, in my brother's God parents' old house. Buddy even wrote an article for their old web page titled The Gravity of Aaron Yakovetz explaining the origins of the band and my very tangential involvement. I can't find that page now, I wish I had saved a copy.
Eddy Fukano Update 2
Eddy Fukano
Eddy Fukano has generated more page views, email, and general interest than anything else I have posted on my site. Just under half of the hits I get from search engines are looking for Eddy Fukano. My original article Yodeling Japanese has topped my "most read" list for months. I can't remember any email from visitors that wasn't about Eddy Fukano. (I'm thinking of changing over to an Eddy Fukano fansite!)

The most recent Fukano sighting comes from Dear Visitor Dawn, who considerately sent me this signed promo shot of Eddy and a fascinating story behind the photo's origin:

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