November 28, 2014

John Lennon on Charlie Finley: “I Just Didn’t Particularly Like Him”

November 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Well, He Hands You A Nickel, He Hands You A Dime . . . Such was the way Maggie’s brother treated workers in Bob Dylan’s “Maggie’s Farm,” but Charles Oscar Finley doled out considerably more to the Beatles in 1964: $150,000. Charles Oscar Finley longed to be adored, if not loved, though he acted despicably at […]

Oh Atlanta: The Sounds of Little Feat, Hank Aaron and Ted Turner

October 4, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

Nineteen Seventy-Four.  It was a rich year for Atlanta’s cultural scene and its place in the national spotlight. In January, the same month Bob Dylan played two nights at the Omni, Maynard Jackson was sworn in as the city’s mayor. Jackson, a singular and formidable politician, was the first black man elected to the top […]

Bob Dylan, Henry Aaron: Searching For Dignity

August 19, 2014 by · 1 Comment 

Someone showed me a picture and I just laughed Dignity never been photographed Or so Bob Dylan says in “Dignity,” a song he wrote in 1988 after learning of the death of basketball great Pete Maravich. Dylan has a point. Dignity isn’t an item or commodity that can be replicated and mass-produced. It’s a quality […]

“He’s A Great Humanitarian, He’s A Great Philanthropist”

December 27, 2013 by · 2 Comments 

It was early. I was at the House of Blues on a morning in late July ’96 representing my employer, the advertising department of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. House of Blues was to provide the AJC with a check for the ads they’d run with us that week. I was there for the check and to […]

Come On Baby, Let’s Go Downtown

December 16, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

“Oh, to be back in the land of Coca-Cola!” And there Bob Dylan was: in the soft drink’s birthplace, Atlanta, Georgia. It was August 3, 1996. 110 years before, Coca-Cola was first served at the soda fountain of Jacobs Pharmacy at Five Points, in the heart of Atlanta’s downtown. But that was old history; Atlanta was intent on making new […]

Oh Atlanta: Little Feat’s Celebration And The Baseball Beat

December 10, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

1974. It was a rich year for Atlanta’s cultural scene and its place in the national spotlight. In January, the same month Bob Dylan played two nights at the Omni, Maynard Jackson, was sworn in as the city’s Mayor. Jackson, a singular and formidable politician, was the first black man elected to the top office […]

A Hard Day’s Night And The Crack Of The Bat

October 26, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

The Beatles’ film, A Hard Day’s Night, brings the late Furman Bisher to mind. Furman Bisher?  The legendary Atlanta Journal-Constitution sports columnist? The one on the scene at the first modern Olympics in Athens, Greece? In 1896? How can that be? Furman Bisher and The Beatles commingle in my dexterous (some would say convoluted) mind due to a […]

John Fogerty: Rockin’ In Cooperstown

July 22, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

John Fogerty has taken his turn at bat in some of the world’s best-known concert venues. Fillmore West. The Fox Theatre. Madison Square Garden. The Royal Albert Hall. But it’s likely the performance that meant the most to him was the one he gave on July 25, 2010 in Cooperstown, New York, at the National […]

James Brown and Phil Niekro: Not Knuckling Under

July 8, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

On The Good Foot …  Phil Niekro was feeling good. It was Sunday, July 9, 1978 and in two days he’d be in San Diego, pitching for the National League All-Stars. Three days earlier he had pitched a strong eight and a third innings against the defending National League Champions, the Los Angeles Dodgers. Niekro […]

Songs of Change and Joltin’ Joe

July 3, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Columbus Avenue in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood. Up and down the avenue and along the side streets. A multitude of fine Italian restaurants: some better than others with the pasta and sauces, while some exceed with atmosphere and comfort. Capp’s Corner, sitting at Powell and Green, serves wonderful plates but the restaurant is best at making a diner […]

Tracking the Big Cat’s Trail to the Hall of Fame

June 28, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Johnny Mize set the record. He set it fair and square. In 1940 he hit 43 home runs, a St. Louis Cardinals record that would stand until 1998. Mark McGwire moved past Mize and others that year as he set a major league season record of 70 home runs. The powerful bat of McGwire brought great excitement to the game. Baseball was again taking center stage […]

From Dylan to Steinbrenner: The ‘Catfish’ Chronicles

June 17, 2013 by · 1 Comment 

Ashes and Diamonds …In the early ’60s Bob Dylan wrote “Poor Boy Blues,” a song about the travails of a young man down on his luck. It’s a life of struggle for Dylan’s protagonist as he seeks to hop a train, convince a bartender he’s of legal age and assure a long-distance operator “this phone call is on […]

Catfish, The “Million Dollar Man”

June 12, 2013 by · 3 Comments 

  Catfish Hunter had his mind made up.  He wasn’t gonna work on Finley’s farm no more. The son of a Hertford, North Carolina sharecropper, James Augustus Hunter, knew all about farms. He also knew when he was getting a raw deal, whether working the land or working the mound.  Hunter claimed Charles O. Finley, […]