Red Robinson's Legends

Red Robinson's Legends

I've interviewed everybody from Buddy Holly to Michael Bublé over a 60 year radio/TV career. Thanks for visiting Red Robinson's Legends, and keep coming back for more!

Episodes

April 1, 2021 1 min
On this day in 1961, Del Shannon's first hit "Runaway" hit # 1 on Vancouver's C-FUNtastic 50. The song held the top spot for five weeks. In this interview, Del talks about the unique sound keyboard player Max Crook brought to "Runaway". Del had other hits with "Hats Off to Larry", "Little Town Flirt", "Handy Man", "Do You Wanna Dance?" and "Keep Searchin' (We'll F...
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In early 1962, I had returned to CKWX and I was trying to regain my following. It was a hopeless cause. The action was now with C-FUN and I knew it. I approached Program Manager John Ansell with the question, "Are you going to be carrying baseball live this Spring?" Ansell said he had been thinking about it but nothing definite had been decided. I went to the sales department of the station and they said that they had signe...
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March 16, 2021 10 min
When Gene Vincent performed in Vancouver in 1958, the opening act was Bonnie Guitar. Bonnie started her career in Seattle. She recorded "Dark Moon" on Dot Records in March of 1957, an instant hit even though initially she had strong competition from singer-actress Gale Storm. Her next smash was "Mister Fire Eyes" and her stage presentation was smooth as glass. Bonnie sat down with me at CKWX the day before the con...
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March 10, 2021 5 min
Dean Torrence and partner Jan Berry were a couple of California boys who produced many hits together. Dean credits Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys for arranging and writing many of their songs. They pioneered the surfing sound with the 1963 Wilson-penned hit Surf City. It went to the top of the charts that year, and paved the way for all that followed. They continued their association with Wilson until 1966 to great success. You can...
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March 10, 2021 6 min
Dean Torrence and partner Jan Berry were a couple of California boys who produced many hits together. Dean credits Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys for arranging and writing many of their songs. They pioneered the surfing sound with the 1963 Wilson-penned hit Surf City. It went to the top of the charts that year, and paved the way for all that followed. They continued their association with Wilson until 1966 to great success. You can...
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March 10, 2021 5 min
Dean Torrence and partner Jan Berry were a couple of California boys who produced many hits together. Dean credits Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys for arranging and writing many of their songs. They pioneered the surfing sound with the 1963 Wilson-penned hit Surf City. It went to the top of the charts that year, and paved the way for all that followed. They continued their association with Wilson until 1966 to great success. You can...
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February 24, 2021 31 min
Twenty years ago today (2/24) we lost a great friend and a cherished radio companion when Rick Honey lost his courageous battle with cancer. Rick left CKNW in 1997, but afternoon host Jon McComb asked a group of Rick's friends to join him in this tribute shortly after his passing. I was honoured to be there along with Wayne Cox, Neil Soper and Mel Zajac. Another Vancouver broadcast legend, Fred Latremouille, joined us by telep...
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February 23, 2021 12 min
Here’s a rare recording of the legendary Daryl B on CHUM/Toronto with good friend and fellow Winnipegger Burton Cummings in 1990, followed by a composite of Daryl's show. You'll love the ending, where Daryl honours a listener request for "Rainy Night In Georgia"! I brought Daryl to work at C-FUN in late 1965 from CKY/Winnipeg when Fred Latremouille left to move to CKLG. Daryl and his family lived at our house for a...
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February 22, 2021 4 min
Longtime CKNW afternoon host Rick Honey called it a day after 24 years on May 30, 1997. Rick came to Vancouver in late 1969 from Nova Scotia to work at Top 40 CKLG and quickly developed a following. Rick was also a top-notch MC and an accomplished magician! I loved Rick's sense of humour, and it was evident when I called him from my CISL morning show to check up on him. Rick was named Broadcast Performer of the Year by the B...
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February 18, 2021 11 min
Happy Birthday Smokey Robinson, 81 today (2/19)! I worked with Smokey many times over the years. The Miracles' "Shop Around" was Motown's first million seller in 1960. Over the next 10 years Smokey gave us some truly memorable music: "You've Really Got a Hold on Me" (1962), "Mickey's Monkey" (1963), "Ooo Baby Baby", "Going to a Go-Go", "The Tracks of My Tears" (1965),...
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February 9, 2021 7 min
Little Anthony and the Imperials were named for lead singer Jerome Anthony "Little Anthony" Gourdine, who was noted for his high-pitched voice. The group signed with End Records in 1958 and their first single, "Tears on My Pillow", was an instant hit. The group followed up with "Shimmy, Shimmy, Ko Ko Bop" in 1960. One of the highlights of my brief Portland Bandstand TV hosting appearances in 1960 was offerin...
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February 3, 2021 1 min
Roy Orbison and Buddy Holly were both born in West Texas: Buddy in Lubbock, and Roy in Vernon, 180 miles east. They never toured together *except as holograms in 2019's "Rock'n'Roll Dream Tour"), but Buddy recorded two Orbison songs on his debut album with the Crickets. Here, Roy tells me about meeting Buddy and hearing his first record on the radio.
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January 18, 2021 13 min
30 years ago today, on January 18, 1991, Brian Beirne was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Brian was a DJ for K-EARTH 101 in Los Angeles. "Mr. Rock'n'Roll" is considered one of the foremost historians on rock music. His 40 year radio career included stints in San Francisco, Chicago, Cleveland, and Sacramento. Brian retired from KRTH in 2004 but he continues to host and produce rock and roll shows a...
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November 30, 2020 6 min
Chubby Checker's “The Twist” was a #1 song not once but twice — in 1960 and again in 1961. The song that started a worldwide dance phenomenon was a cover of an old Hank Ballard B-side. Chubby had more big hits with “Let’s Twist Again” in 1961, “Slow Twistin’” (with Dee Dee Sharp) in 1962, and “Twist It Up” in 1963. Checker followed his success with with popular songs about other dances, including “The Hucklebuck,” “Pony Time,...
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September 24, 2020 11 min
When Pat O'Day died August 4, I lost a great friend and the Pacific Northwest said goodbye to a genuine legend. Son Jeff O'Day wrote a fitting tribute to his father in a Facebook post: “The Pacific Northwest will always seem a little empty without the legendary Pat O’Day. All we can do is focus on the incredible role he had in making the Emerald City a better place to live, and the difference he made in people’s lives.“...
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August 31, 2020 5 min
The highlight of 1957 had a date: August 31. The place: Empire Stadium, Vancouver. The occasion: The live appearance of Elvis Presley. More than 26,000 tickets were sold for the event. Presley arrived in Vancouver by train as his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, did not want Elvis to fly. The train arrived in the morning at the Great Northern Railway station, catching the media off guard as they had anticipated he would be arriving b...
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August 27, 2020 9 min
We dedicate the final episode of The Last Broadcast to the memory of a true radio legend: our friend Pat O'Day, who passed away August 4. Pat was an inspiration to everyone he met, and his passion for entertainment burned brightly right to the end. Here's another excerpt from the book: "Bruce Allen glances at the faces peering at them from the adjacent studio and through the small square window of the closed door, an...
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August 16, 2020 3 min
"The Last Broadcast" with Red's special guests Pat O'Day and Bruce Allen, aired on CISL650/Vancouver on August 27, 2017. In this excerpt, the guys reflect on Elvis' untimely death on August 16, 1977. "Pat O’Day chimes in. 'It’s as good a time as any, Red, to spell one thing out. Why did Elvis pass away? It was really simple when you get down to it: he suffered from an inflammation in the lining of his h...
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July 24, 2020 5 min
Red Robinson: The Last Broadcast, out now at friesenpress.com, chaptersindigo.ca, amazon.com, amazon.ca, barnesandnoble.com, play.google.com and books.apple.com In this episode, Pat salutes Ray Charles, Bruce plays a favourite by Dean and Jean, the guys pay tribute to Roy Orbison. The Last Broadcast podcast is taking a summer vacation! We'll return August 27, on the third anniversary of the Last Broadcast, with our thrilli...
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July 18, 2020 7 min
Here's another excerpt from Red Robinson: The Last Broadcast, out now at friesenpress.com, chaptersindigo.ca, amazon.com, amazon.ca, barnesandnoble.com, play.google.com and books.apple.com In this episode, the guys pay tribute to John Fogerty; Pat and Bruce recall a scary incident from their past. "O’Day suspects Robinson may forget to ask him to recount how Allen almost killed him, an incident that stemmed from Allen in ...
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