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"Chicago Streetwise Editorial "



DID YOU DO YOUR HOMEWORK?  I assigned Gospel Fest and Blues Fest for your musical homework and if you did your job you really enjoyed live Chicago music at it’s very best.  My praise goes out to Dave Hoekstra for his June 3rd Sun-Times Blues Fest feature on Chicago’s BOB JONES.  The talented Mr. Jones is one of our city’s hidden treasures and prolific blues songwriters.  Also in the blues booking business, Bob has touched all the greats and continues to help shape the not so famous yet from his home on the southside.  I noticed that Bob Jones frequents one of my favorite places for meetings and food…HELENS diner on 79th and Ridgeland, just east of the shuttered Regal Theatre.   I don’t have Bob’s number anymore, so if you see him tell him I’m trying to get in touch.   Who has the blues on the air?  By the way, I’m in the process of compiling a list of blues based DJ’s who do their thing on the air in Chicago.  IF you know someone who’s on the air somewhere in Chicago playing the blues,  send their name and contact information  to BESTDUSTY@AOL.COM.

MORE MUSIC MORE OFTEN – If you missed “ WE LOVE ELLA,  A TRIBUTE TO THE FIRST LADY OF SONG “ that aired last Wednesday on channel 11 you missed a goodie.   Natalie Cole, Nancy Wilson,  Take 6, Wynonna, Monica Mancini, Stevie Wonder, Lizz Wright,  Ruben Studdard, Quincy Jones and his goddaughter,  the wonderfully talented PATTI AUSTIN  contributed to this should be on DVD soon show.

Think about it…Ella and Louie  and Louis were the first  rappers!!! …Explanation in the next edition of this column.  P.S. Patti I’ve always been a big fan of your work.  The rest of you readers take time to discover Patti Austin.   I’m going to play her “Most Unusual Boy” 45 on WKKC this Sunday 6/17 …most unusual record/song.  Pretty like Patti.

MS. ELANIE E. US  RANDOM IZ UMS  ç A paragraph of quick related unconnected stuff that you could say to yourself.  So here it goes è I SPELL OKAY ! OK? And I spell- check real good.   But EYE like to play with words and the sound they make in your head when you read them. (see?)  Or have your really RED them …because I like them reel good.  See what I mean?  This Anglish Lingwich is a reel challenge.  Fun.

WAY DEE OH   I love radio for a lot of reasons, always have, because radio is magic.  Mr. Marconi and Mr. Bell and the rest of those gadget guys really did a good thing with the wires and wireless transceivers and receivers.  I discovered radio in 1948 in our kitchen and a job on it in 1968.  So now you know part of the story.  BUY DA WEIGH è The song most people ask me about is “ Stay Awhile With Me “ by Sharon Ridley / my theme since 1974.  The original was on the Sussex  label  ( Bill Withers recorded for the same company ).  NEXT è  The name of the show is THE BEST MUSIC OF YOUR LIFE and the web site is on line, just add . COM.  The station is WKKC 89.3  and you get it on the air only if you are south of 51st street, north of 115th, and east of Kedzie.  Our program airs on Sunday morning from 10 until 4 Sunday afternoon.  Point of clarification, DUSTIES  are Oldies for the African American community.  OLD SCHOOL is DUSTIES for our children.   Don’t mix these things up.  NEXT è Law and Orders’s Jesse L. Martin is slated to be Marvin Gaye in the film  “Sexual Healing”.  Can’t wait to add it to the entire Detroit movie collection – Standing In The Shadows Of Motown,  Dream Girls, The Temptations etc.  NEXT è Lena Horne’s  happy birthday is June 30th 1917 = 90 years young and beautiful.    Florence Ballard’s the same day 1943.  We like the music from Motown but this is Chicago so we’re proud of the music from YO town!!!

RICHARD PEGUE plays “dusties” on Sunday at WKKC 89.3 and is a friend of StreetWise .   E mail  BESTDUSTY@AOL.COM

ONE 6/5/07   



DID SOMEBODY STEAL IT ??? I think so because it’s gone.  You just don’t hear about it anymore, and no one is offering a reward for the return of BLACK MUSIC MONTH !!

Where did it go?  I think it first arrived in the mid-70s, and then each year little by little it disappeared, just evaporated… just like tap dancing.   And it’s really a big thing since black music has such a universal influence on ALL music worldwide, where did it go?  No Chicago radio station is promoting  Black Music Month, at least I haven’t heard anything and I try to listen to everybody on the air at sometime.  Nothing at GCI, V-103, 106, NUA  92.3, 95.5, 1390, 1570, 1690...but wait I think I heard Pervis Spann on 1450 the other night.  That truly would be a salute to Black Music month eh ?

Remember when radio stopped being BLACK and became URBAN?  The dictionary defines “urban” with  “Of or belonging to a city or town”, but I see / saw it as a way to NOT say the word “BLACK” on the air for fear of offending whites who might be listening to OUR stations.  I am of the opinion that we actually go through times when it’s OK for whites to be enjoy the benefits of being or acting black.  Looking backwards, 1983-84  was a goodtime to be into the group CAMEO / “Word Up”.  Respect from Aretha made it cool to be Black in ’67 – 68.  Later Michael Jackson took it to the next level.   So who stole BLACK MUSIC MONTH,  not urban music month !!!
I think the theft was by profit, or the lack of it.  THERE IS NO HEAVY MONEY IN “BLACK MUSIC MONTH” because no major company or goup of companies in the industry could couple and corner the market with the month long celebration of black creativity.
So it’s like your teeth, ignore them and they’ll go away.

NEXT è About 1977-78 things started to change with the beginnings of rap and hip hop in Chicago with Kurtis Blow and the Sugar Hill Gang  ( You still remember most of the words don’t you? ) Although it was definitely black created music with some Latin mixed in, the shear power of the words RAP and HIP HOP totally erased the essence of the phrase “black music” and so be it.  Now its 30 years later and those tricky little strings of alphabet letters chained together are still making some people uncomfortable in the current music of the moment played on WGCI 107.5 WPWX 92.3 WBBM 96.3 and WKKC 89.3,  played until private, public and media pressure made several stations back off the borderline semi-blue hardcore lyrics material. 

32 years ago I remember WVON’s General Manager Lucky Cordell telling the “goodguys” his reasons for ordering us not to say the real name of that Wilson Pickett hit  “ FUNKY BROADWAY".  Tough word FUNKY, GET THE FUNK OUT MY FACE !!!….Those tricky little things, WORDS.  BLACK WORDS.  Now  watch what happens with the changes brought by the court on the FCC changing the rules for what you CAN say on radio and TV.  Get the troops ready. RP

Richard Pegue is on WKKC 89.3 fm Sunday morning 10am until 4pm  and now writes for the South Street Journal.  E mail  BESTDUSTY@AOL.COM.

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