December 27, 2008
Ray in the new year
Well, with the Christmas season officially over and 2008 coming to a close, this will more than likely be my final blog of 2008. As of now, Ray has several concert dates scheduled for 2009. One of the dates, in Indiana, I plan on attending. He is appearing in Ohio, too, but that concert wasn't announced until weeks after the Indiana show...I don't see myself attending two Ray concerts...plus, the Ohio concert is up in the northern part of the state...it's a big state to begin with...too much travel.
2009 will mark a series of anniversaries for his songs, too. First of all, it will mark the 40th anniversary of a couple of his novelty hit songs: "Gitarzan" and "Along Came Jones"...both being hits in 1969. At the same time, in 2009, his biggest hit single "The Streak", will turn 35...thirty-five years ago in 1974 emerged the single that most associate with Ray. In a previous blog I touched upon another single that turns 35 in 2009, "The Moonlight Special". Ray's 1979 hit "I Need Your Help, Barry Manilow" reaches 30 next year and then going further along both "The Mississippi Squirrel Revival" and "It's Me Again, Margaret" hit 25 in 2009. It will be 20 years since Ray debuted "I Saw Elvis In a UFO", a novelty song from 1989 that became a fan-favorite in concert and it will be 10 years since Ray was diagnosed with and over-come Prostate cancer, which was caught early, in 1999. The biggest "anniversary" you could say in 2009 will arrive at the end of January...when Ray celebrates a birthday...the big 7-0...yes, Ray will reach 70 on January 24th.
On to the New Year...