September 19, 1999
Someone should tell Billy Blanks' kid that her father is simply a charismatic man with business savvy who just happened to develop a kick-ass way to work out ("Elvis Has Just Entered the Building," by Dave Gardetta, Aug. 15). I was floored to read 25-year-old Shellie's comment: "I truly believe in my heart that God has a path for him, and that path is on the level of Arnold Schwarzenegger's." Is she just incredibly arrogant, or is her God really that petty? One has to wonder where she gets her spiritual inspiration from, a Bible or the Calendar section.
June 19, 2013 |
Slim Whitman, a country pop singer whose forlorn wail influenced a generation of vocalists in the early 1950s, has died at age 90. Whitman, born in Tampa, Fla., was a regular on the influential country radio program "The Louisiana Hayride" starting in 1950, and first hit with an eerie country pop version of the song “Indian Love Call” in 1951. His death Wednesday at a Florida hospital was due to heart failure, said his son-in-law, Roy Beagle. Discovered by future Elvis Presley manager Col. Tom Parker while Whitman was touring the South, Whitman -- with Parker's guidance -- landed a record deal with RCA (the same label Presley would record for after leaving Sun Records)
June 9, 1987 |
Moving from New York to Los Angeles can have certain advantages when you're a musician. You can turn the trip into a tour, as Peter Holsapple--the lead singer of the dB's--did in recent weeks, turning his coast-to-coast sojourn into a solo club jaunt across America.
August 10, 1997
Even as a dyed-in-the-wool true-blue Nixon hater, I found Bob Gunton's description of how he prepared to audition for the role of Richard M. Nixon in "Elvis Meets Nixon"--a film I have no present intention of viewing--a fascinating account of how a real pro goes about his/her business ("Nixon? Moi?" Aug. 3). Yet, despite my personal revulsion at the Nixon persona, I would, in retrospect, have gladly traded in the widely beloved Ronnie Reagan for Tricky Dick during the disastrous '80s, Watergate notwithstanding.
April 5, 2008
Here's what readers had to say about Mariah's milestone: Quite funny. The Beatles did it in 7 years. No one will ever top that! -- Ed C. -- Mariah and Madonna could never surpass the King if Billboard would give credit to him for his real chart toppers. They did not begin listing all his No. 1s until later and not from the beginning of his career. -- Mozart -- Wow, what [an] utter waste of creative potential. A truly gifted vocalist, who relegated her talent to pure commercialism.
September 3, 1995
You don't kick Ernie Banks out of the Baseball Hall of Fame because he wasn't Stan Musial ("Why It's a Rock(y) Hall of Fame," by Robert Hilburn, Aug. 27). Why kick Bill Haley out of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame because he wasn't Little Richard? Cooperstown isn't Babe Ruth and 10 other guys. Cleveland shouldn't be Elvis and 10 other guys. MICHAEL HELWIG Canoga Park Hilburn questions if Duane Eddy should be treated as an equal of the Beatles. At least two of the Beatles seem to think so: Both George Harrison and Paul McCartney joined Eddy on his 1987 Capitol album.
October 11, 2009 |
Robert Hilburn was pop music critic for the Los Angeles Times for 35 years, from the psychedelic era to the emergence of the iPod. He witnessed many of rock 'n' roll's seminal moments and interviewed virtually every major pop figure of the period. All of this is chronicled in his memoir, "Corn Flakes with John Lennon (and Other Tales From a Rock 'n' Roll Life)," to be published this month. In this abridged excerpt, Hilburn (below left with Lennon in 1980) explores his relationship with Lennon after the Beatles' breakup and explains the book's title.
August 3, 1992 |
This just in: Dorothy Benally of Beclabito needs a reliable sheepherder. He must be willing to take the flock up into the mountains for at least two months. Call collect . . . . The squaw dance for Frank Woody at Ojo Encino has been postponed . . . . And to anyone who's listening, Elmer Bigben would like the people of Red Mesa to leave messages at the chapter house. Rise and shine.
May 22, 1999 |
The call came on the eve of his Los Angeles concert, just as he was leaving his home in Mexico. We have your son. Follow our instructions. Don't make trouble. It was a year ago, and Vicente Fernandez was about to headline four sold-out shows at the Pico Rivera Sports Arena, his annual Memorial Day pilgrimage to the Eastside suburbs of L.A. Now this voice, saying his 33-year-old son, his namesake, was being held for a ransom of millions.