BLSays: O’ to be A Righteous Brother and…

    Righteous Brothers
    BobLee
    September30/ 2018

    BLS Header

    …O’ to be A Righteous Brother
    and a call from “Handsome Bobby”

    .

    As one walks off Life’s 17th green approaching Life’s ominous 18th tee… it is customary to reflect upon all those “roads not taken” along the way. Ever mindful that even one detour would have jeopardized much Joy & Happiness accumulated in the path one did indeed trod. That understood…

    Roads diverged

    I would like to have been A Righteous Brother. I don’t mean “be” either Bill Medley or Bobby Hatfield as I have no clue what their personal lives were like.  Bucky Heard replaced Bobby in later years.   Imagine the timeless joy and happiness they brought to so many in their concerts and in their music in all its forms… in the late 60s thru the 70s and beyond forever via recordings.

    Ebb Tide … Soul & Inspiration … White Cliffs of Dover … Lost That Lovin’ Feeling… plus plus plus… and OF COURSE – “Unchained Melody”… OH MY!

    It was labeled “blue-eyed soul”. There are many who say Unchained Melody is The Greatest Love Song EVER; an arbitrary title bestowed on many songs… but to even be on such a list is pretty freakin’ cool.

    Unchained Melody… LINK

    Righteous Brothers

    Imagine… in countless auditoriums and night clubs across America… just you and your partner accompanied by a band in the shadows off-stage… An audience of “Frankies & Annettes” and “Archie & Betty & Veronica” and Richie Cunningham and friends all staring out at you smiling and swaying to the music and lyrics YOU are giving them.

    You hit the first note and they respond pavlovianly anticipating what’s coming… they have memorized them all.  I assume Unchained Melody was the show-stopper… and no doubt one of their many Encores.

    Bobby died in 2003.  Whatever Bill & Bucky’s state of health might be, I hope they find joy and satisfaction in the pleasure their fans still get whenever / wherever they hear their music.

    So imagine being introduced to someone… “I’d like you to meet a friend of mine – BobLee – he’s “a Righteous Brother”.  WHOA … It would depend upon the age of the person but their jaw drops … and they recite some long ago teen age memory that, albeit mellowed by time, will never be forgotten…

    Having to hear all those “where I was when” stories probably gets really old… but maybe not.

    NOTE:  I can’t “carry a tune in a bucket”.  When I sing in the shower, the water turns itself off.  I knew better than to tell my high school guidance counselor, Mrs Agnes Freeman, that “I wanna be a Righteous Brother”.  Saying “I wanna be an Internet Legend” in the mid 60s got a few curious looks as I recall.

    .

    If I couldn’t be “a Righteous Brother” my back-up short list would be – in order – an Everly Brother – a Statler Brother – an Oak Ridge Boy – or a Beach Boy. Again, just based on the timelessness of their music, not the possible consequences of their celebrity. … Sure, I still think being a Major League umpire would be cool too.

    Somewhere out there… is someone musing “I wish I coulda been “an Internet Legend” instead of a podiatrist.”?

    More.

    Saturday morning I had a WONDERFUL three hour “catch-up conversation” with Handsome Bobby.Bob Cohen

    Allowing that maybe I haven’t yet met everyone I’m destined to meet on this mortal coil, my short list of Most Special has a few names permanently engraved on it. “Handsome Bobby” was a First Ballot enshrinee.

    Bobby and I first met in Kansas City in 1976. We were both judges for the NBA’s Kansas City Kings “Glitter Girl” auditions.  Yeah, I know.  Who doesn’t have “a Glitter Girls story”.

    Among the uniqueness of our friendship is that we never have to give one another subtitles about our shared experiences… over almost 40 years.

    Either of us can simply say “Born To Glitter… Cleopatra & Thunder Thighs”. That recounts that first meet… then there’s…

    “Clyde King at The Royals Game” … “The Pretty Mamma Rule” … “Trader Vic’s” … “The Pony Express vs The Longhorns” … “Phil Ford’s first NBA Shower” … “Whatever “you people” do…” … “Sully… and a certain special occasion I subbed for Sully” … “Harriet & Elliott” … etc etc …

    Do you have a friend who has… managed radio stations from Budapest to Mexico City… was an executive for two NBA teams… and started his own very successful cable/internet provider company. I do.

    Oh, and, together with Pam The Lovely Liberal, raised three fine children into three fine young adults one of whom is becoming a real-life “Jack Ryan Jr.” WOW!

    Consequences & Circumstances physically separated us in the mid 80s… save for the irregularly random “catch-up calls”. We don’t schedule our “catch-ups”. They just happen which makes them that much more special.

    Blondie and I each brought our sets of “my friends” into our marriage 34 years ago. As you folks surely did. Some have remained and others have drifted away. Some have gained the lofty status of “Our Friends”.

    “Handsome Bobby” definitely has Our Friend status along with “Leo”, “TheWillAllen”, “Coby” and a handful of others. … and, of course, “WhatsHisName”.

    Blondie called while Handsome Bobby and I were catching-up.  As soon as I said I was talking with Handsome Bobby; she got excited… “Oh WOW!… give him my love. Can’t wait to hear what’s going on.”

    I hope each of you have “a Handsome Bobby” on your short list.  

    When we do “putt out on Life’s 18th hole” … accumulation of Special Friends and Special Memories should be among our most enduring and endearing possessions.
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    Yes, Humanity’s Handbasket’s Descent Into Hell made a significant drop this past week.  Be honest… would you rather I’d recounted all that crap… or the above?

    A simple Thank You BobLee will suffice.

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    Next Time

    IF You “Do Twitter”… Follow BobLee at @BobLeeSays

    2,000 more BobLeeSays commentaries – LINK

    BobLee
    • 70sTarheel Reply
      2 weeks ago

      When I read the headline, I thought you wanted to be a “righteous brother.” My mind went straight to Rev. Barber. I almost croaked.

      • BobLee Reply
        2 weeks ago

        Coincidentally… The RBs got their name when a Black Marine – following a show in San Diego – approached the singers to say “Man, that was righteous, brothers.” … According to Medley, they then adopted the name “The Righteous Brothers” for the duo because black Marines from the El Toro Marine base started calling them “righteous brothers”.[8] At the end of a performance, a black U.S. Marine in the audience would shout, “That was righteous, brothers!”, and would greet them with “Hey righteous brothers, how you doin’?” on meeting them.

    • William.72 Reply
      3 weeks ago

      I appreciate you HAVE to comment on the never-ending ridiculum at UNC and throughout the not-so-civilized world of sports and politics. You always provide insights, angles and remind us that it is ridiculum to be laughed at.
      .
      That said I really enjoy this type of column. Provide us a few minutes reprieve from the chaos to recall The Righteous Brothers or Old Friends. Thank you.

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        Thank you. I write these for the same reason you enjoy them. For the 30 minutes it takes me to conjure them up, I CAN FORGET the chaos and mayhem that surrounds us these days. I keep reminding myself to do these more often for exactly that reason.

    • Eddie.K Reply
      3 weeks ago

      BL. what was Alternative Viewpoint talking about? I have enough trouble decoding NCSU68.

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        I wasn’t real sure. I hope I answered his questions OK. One of the reasons Handsome Bobby and I are so simpatico is he DOES understand me. I’m never surprised when many people don’t. If doing this column for 20 years has taught me anything it is that.

    • Alternate Viewpoint Reply
      3 weeks ago

      Another fine read, BobLee. With your natural bent towards the social side of life, I would like to highlight a different viewpoint. You seem to have this somewhat obsession with how many people become your friend in life and how many attend your funeral. Those are certainly worthwhile yardsticks of success if your field of view is restricted to interpersonal relationships.
      .
      But as many people exist, so as do that many definitions of “success”. I am a creative Engineer who has been blessed with a strong mechanical aptitude, average social skills (well above average compared to most Engineers – Ha!), and no ability to sing or dance. I will never have a long, credentialed list of “friends”, but among my patents, a couple of them meaningfully improved the life of pharma patients. Probably saved a couple along the way. But those people will never be at my funeral; they have no idea who I am or what I did for them. And I am certainly okay with that. Because one measure of my personal success is what I contributed to mankind; how much better did I leave the place from the way I found it.

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        YIKES! I might be THE most anti-social Internet Legend you know. Lucky for me, in many ways, Blondie shares my lack of need to “socialize”. We bought a box of two dozen Christmas cards two years ago and haven’t used’em all up yet.
        .
        I have met a few folks along Life’s Way and those associations have generated special memories. But its a short list. I’m sure yours is much longer. I just have a good memory of the memories I do have. … As for my funeral… I’ve planned a Viking Funeral on Raleigh’s Lake Lynn. Still interviewing archers to fire up the dragon ship. Attendance will, alas, be solely determined by The Weather. Unlike John McCain I am not officially excluding anyone.
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        “Being a Righteous Brother” would simply be a way to bring lasting pleasure to many… as no doubt your pharma patents are doing. Are we really that different?

    • Bob.In.H-ville Reply
      3 weeks ago

      Enjoyed the walk down memory lane although I confess, I never was a huge Righteous Brothers fan – really good stuff but somehow, being all of one year ahead of you in college, I was more into the Tams, Otis Redding, the Temptations….you get the drift. But man, we ain’t coming off the 17th green and headed for the 18th tee! Ok, I’m turning 72 but…knock on wood and keep me in your prayers…I think I’m strolling along Amen Corner with holes left to play.
      .
      And I never liked Larry but maybe we could trade the $14M buyout for naming rights to the now unacceptable “Kenan Stadium”. How about “The Fed Spread Stadium”? Bring back Butch!!!!

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        Jeeezzz. You don’t like The Righteous Brothers or Larry !! What’s next… ya didn’t like Gamblers Specials at The Rat or rolls at The Porthole?
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        As for the Kenan Name Tsunami barreling towards South Building… you just know Chanc Chihuahua is going to reveal her George Patton / Jack Welch Leadership Skills and guide Dear Ol’ UNC thru this one … LOLOLOLOLOL!
        .
        Too early to predict future of UNC FB or Larry. But… Don’t bet the 401K on Christmas In Shreveport. That $14M buy-out is pretty steep even for you Fat Cats… or is it?

    • Former96heel Reply
      3 weeks ago

      Hruby is a double-digit Rams Cluber?

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        If so its news to me. I started following him on Twitter after I read his Plan. Discovered REALLY QUICK that we are two birds that share no feathers whatsoever.

    • BobLee Reply
      3 weeks ago

      FWIW… That recent column about TheHrubyPlan. I have since learned that Mr Hruby is a goggle-eyed spittle-spewing disciple of a socio-political sect with which I have strong difference. Neither he nor his opinions shall ever appear here again. SO THERE! – 🙂

    • FJB Reply
      3 weeks ago

      You have done good here.

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        Thanks. As I noted, I enjoyed writing this one. I don’t always… 🙂

    • NCSU68Grad Reply
      3 weeks ago

      We all have those friends who’s lives seem to be one adventure or endeavor after another. I have a few. One was a high ranking XOM research executive. He sat to a guy named Rex (Tillerson) since Rex was the head honcho and my friend would “Translate and Explain” to him what the project that a research scientist MIGHT accomplish. He also was the “Mr. Wizard” that sort of “Guided” XOM’s capital expenditure and research budgets….not some small amount.
      .
      Bill Medley was packing them in in Vegas in April of 2017. Went out for a Vette Driving School and was based out of Vegas. Took in the “NEW” Righteous Brothers show. The new “Bobby” does well. Medley has a great book (bought it on Amazon in the lobby for half the table price). “I Had the Time of my Life”. Really good reading and well edited. It is NOT self serving. Could not put it down as I am NOT an avid reader.
      .
      I also am fortunate to have several other friends that have done things that Han Solo and Indiana Jones would envy….and there are folks that think that I also had an interesting life. NOT in the spotlight….but I did make a difference to the environment (I often kid my liberal son that I did more for the US environment that Al Gore ever jawboned) as well as to improve the workplace safety of over 4000 folks and reduced our lost time accident rate by 80% and the number of “light duty days” (when you could not do your job) by 90%….so the reduction in accidents was commensurate with the severity. That is one of my contributions.
      .
      As to the Beach Boys…..NOPE. Too Much Drama. Seen them in concert a few times. Mike Love sarcastically said that he had performed California Girls 5, 679 times….and it was hard to sing it again, but he would do it for us….if we applauded. Last time for the Beach Boys….
      .
      I personally would have liked to travel with Bob Seger….he would have been a hoot….or maybe Huey Lewis…..

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        My obit may simply read “He came up with ‘Chancellor Chihuahua’… and some other good ones we’ve forgotten”.

    • Doug Reply
      3 weeks ago

      Speaking of Jack Ryan. Have you checked out Season 1 of Jack Ryan on Amazon Prime? Recommended. It’s been renewed for Season 2.

      Almost famous. A friend of mine from King, NC was once the road manager for the Righteous Brothers for awhile. Also, among others, Conway Twitty, and finally Alabama in their Grammy winning prime. Keith was wheeler dealer, a sho nuff PIECE OF WORK, and also a tobacco warehouseman in Douglas, Ga. I was on that market when he offered all the buyers from NC a ride home and back one weekend on the Alabama tour bus. Cruising down I-95 and through one horse South Ga towns drew some interesting reactions, laundry littering, and some other unrighteous behaviors from the gals. 😎

      • BobLee Reply
        3 weeks ago

        Have not… but intend to. I’m getting ready to re-read (audible) several of the original Tom Clancy’s.
        .
        Show-biz does have its murky backstage of Runyonesque characters for sure.

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