BIRTHDAYS – Singers Doris Day, Wayne Newton, Billy Joe Royal, Tony Orlando

APRIL 3 – A busy day for birthdays of singers.  Actress-singer Doris Day is 90 OR 91 , depending on which source you follow – but it doesn’t matter..  Singer Wayne Newton is 71. Singer Billy Joe Royal is 71. Singer Tony Orlando is 69.  Let’s start out with this nice tribute to Doris from Sampodmike, noting her All Time #1 Box Office rank  as well as her activism for animals.  DORIS DAY personified the happy days wholesomeness of the 1950s era, to which this website is devoted. Yet, she suffered more tragedies in one life than anyone should have to deal with, including  the loss of her only son , songwriter and singer Terry Melcher and troubled marriages.  Not surprisingly, she has devoted much of her life now to her animals  and rarely makes public appearances. She continues to reside in beautiful Carmel-by the Sea, California and still owns the wonderful, pet-friendly Cypress Inn there.


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Next to Elvis,  WAYNE NEWTON, 71, was the biggest draw in Las Vegas for many years – still may be.  He even uses the Elvis Star Wars introduction and much of Elvis’s stick ‘The King of the Las Vegas strip’, as on this 70th birthday tribute from last year, so it is said by SJSharkWanabe. Newton’s had his own problems over the years. We wish him well on this special day. Enjoy this full 2 hour show

BILLY JOE ROYAL had a few excellent hits (‘I Knew You When, Down in the Boondocks,’ etc. in the mid 60s, very much in the tradition of Gene Pitney and Roy Orbison before being one of the first cross over artists (listen to ‘Boardwalk Angel ‘, reminiscent of ‘Under the Boardwalk’ and ‘Stand By Me.’ ) ‘  In fact, I just noticed he sounds and looks very much like Pitney, as you’ll see in this rare video from 1965. Royal appeared in recent years with top orbison tribute performer Larry Branson.



TONY ORLANDO, 69,  has had a long , fabled caree  , first catching a break at age 17 during the Brill Building late 50s era (‘Bless You,’ Halfway to Paradise) , only to see his career ressurected in the ’70s with Dawn and a string of fun, singalong hits (‘Tie A Yellow Ribbon, Knock Three Times, etc’) and continues to perform today in Branson and other places. Orlando has always been a real crowd favorite. Bless YOU , Tony. Note the song was ‘arranged and conducted’ by Carol King! (though written by Mann and Weil

The 50s for Sale – The Music, Films, Cars, Clothes, Culture


The 50s for Sale – The Music,

Films, Cars, Clothes, Culture – The

Fifties Live


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The 50s for Sale – The Music,

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PILLOW TALK (Day,Hudson , 1959) – Best Piano Bar – 1 Nostalgic Night

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1 Nostalgic Night

Kicking off my ‘Deal A Day’ in the new vernacular, that is …Doing /Experience Something of Note Each Day… and what a way to kick things off seeing one great, fun, nostalgic movie from the 50s , PILLOW TALK with Doris Day and Rock Hudson at the great deco movie palace in Oakland, the Paramount and then checking out my favorite and THE BEST Piano Bar, the Alley with Rod Dibble at the Keyboard Pillow Talk has everything going for it, in this writers opinion… a fun story line, as described below, great visuals form the Fabulous fifties – the 50s ‘Googie’ architecture, the cars, the fashions. Hudson is good and Tony Randall adds a colorful element as Day steals the

show, acting and singing at her best, or one of her best. Some suprisingly off-color material for its time (but nothing compared to today)


Just a fun, fun techincolor blockbuster from 1959 for which the mixed audience gave several ovations . And what a place to see it at… Oakland’s own restored Paramount theater, which shows retro movies once a month along with wurlitzer organ playing before and after show. If you live int he the Bay Area what a fun nostalgic night one can have for $5 – not much more than you would have paid back then – and see it on the same big screen you may have seen it on in 1959!!! What a difference from today’s movies, when , if the audience even applauds you can’t hear it with all the noice… Synopsis PILLOW TALK Jan Morrow (Doris Day) is a successful, content, self-reliant interior decorator who lives in New York City. She lives alone and claims to be quite happy, when More Pillow Talk and oldies


questioned on that subject by her drunken housekeeper, Alma (Thelma Ritter). Due to the state of the telephone company’s development, she has to use a party line, which she shares with Brad Allen (Rock Hudson), a talented, creative Broadway composer and playboy.   Continue reading “PILLOW TALK (Day,Hudson , 1959) – Best Piano Bar – 1 Nostalgic Night”

Carmel Lucky to Have DORIS DAY – Pet Projects, Cypress Inn, Music, Films

In her quiet way, Doris Day continues to spread  joy  and not only with her music and films.  Residents and visitors  – two legged and four-legged – of  Carmel-By-The -Sea,  California are in for a treat as they reside or  visit in this beautiful beach  town near Monterey.   We were   unexpected recipients of  Day’s Happy Day Vibes  late January.

After dining at the excellent Grill on Ocean Avenue, we asked our waiter about any local spots where we could hear some music.  He said we were in luck, to walk down a couple blocks to the Cypress Inn.   Surprisingly  unfamiliar  with this place,  we came upon a beautiful 30s-era smalllish  Mediterranean   white stucco hotel.  Once inside the front door we were greeted by a small group of people and dogs(!) in a living-room setting with a pianist and flugelhornist playing jazz .   It was something rather unimaginable in this day an age.  The pianist, who turned out to be the well-known Dick Whittington and fellow musician , whose name we failed to write down, were  putting on what amounted to a private concert of world-class vintage  jazz as we reclined on couches, sipping drinks.  Everyone , both two legged and four legged , in the room couldn’t have been more friendly, including the artists themselves. The unplanned experience was like something from another time and place.  I can’t wait to go back to see what next time will have in store.  Whittington, a transplant from Berkeley, CA , plays every  Friday and Saturday with various renown guest artists.

Just experiencing the charming Cypress Inn was an experience in itself  but learning that Doris Day was part owner,  as was her late musical son, Terry Melcher, made it even more special. The retiscent Day was no doubt talked into allowing old movie posters (Pajama Game, etc.) and record  album covers to adorn the walls near ‘Terry’s Lounge,  an elegant classy but non-ostentatious bar which now serves tribute to Melcher, who had quite a remarkable, if under-appreciated career of his own as producer, musician and entrepeneur.   It’s obvious that   Day does not run the Cypress solely for profit , judging by the quality of music and charm we witnessed and not the number of  people who could squeeze into the place –  a gift for humans to enjoy with their  four-legged friends.  Their may not be another venue like it anywhere. Cats as well as dogs are welcome to stay overnight in the Inn along with their folks.

Usually one thinks of  Clint Eastwood as the person most synonymous with Carmel but that seems to have changed – at least for us…  Day is probably singly responsible  for making Carmel one of the most dog and pet-friendly towns anywhere.  Of course,  Doris Day is probably more famous today, especially among younger people, for her Doris Day Animal Federation, which helps rehabiliate and find homes for dogs and cats, most recently having sent relief help to Haiti for all the abandoned and injured pets in the earthquake.

Going from her  prototypical 50s image as the wholesome girl   next store to a later life filled with much sadness –  a number of failed marriages including brutality and the loss and associated tragedies involving   her devoted son Terry,  who, by the way , helped run DDAF,  Day no doubt takes solace in the animals and  in the contributions she has made.

Doris Day may be in her late 80s but, in our book its only a number and as one will witness at ( to come) with  Jack LaLanne, Art Linkletter and others, people can be vibrant at any age while  others’ lives  are basically over at much younger ages.

Doris Day, we are told, rarely has made public appearances in many years.  Though we wish she did ,  for our own selfish reasons,  we can understand why this kind sole, who has helped so many others and not gotten back nearly what she deserves, must take life like the words of her signature song, ‘Que Sera Sera’.  We can only wish her the very best  for many more years doing what she does so well , while we continue listening  to her  beautiful music and watching those fun, uplifting movies. Perhaps this little mention will alert others to what Doris Day is about today, and perhaps bring some joy into their lives too, whether it be at the Cypress or somewhere in Carmel, or just enjoying the music and movies. Doris Day, one of a kind. Great to have her with us!