Saturday, January 21, 2017
Hank Ballard & The Midnighters - "The Twist" ORIGINAL VERSION (1959)
I love Hank Ballard, and all of that Twist money was his to lose. I don't know how it all went down, but the money flowed in another direction, not exactly an unusual result in the music business.
Maybe it was partly because Hank was, let's say, an abrasive personality. I mean, I love him, I don't give a shit if he leaned a little to the tough side. I had plenty of friends over there. But maybe some folks just didn't take to him.
He did a promo for a radio show that I loved one time. It was a show called "the Cool and the Crazy," on KCRW, "Corsair Radio West" from Santa Monica Community College in California. What a great show. Hank's promo went like this, "Listen to the Cool and the Crazy on KCRW, on Saturday night, or Hank Ballard will break your fingers." He sounded like he meant it, too.
Hank was a friend of James Brown's; James was a tough man, too. I'm pretty sure that Hank wrote the copy himself.
Now we live in a gentler age, for a few more years anyway. I'm wondering if by 2025 or so it won't be more like "The Book of Eli" out there in Bum-Fuck, America. You know, Old Rag, Kentucky; Kick-Stump, Missouri. And that's the optimist's version, I hate to tell you. In the pessimist's view, by 2035 it'll be like "The Road."