May 31, 2014

Ray Stevens: Rayality TV webisode 11...

I'm a little bit late but here it is...webisode 11 of Rayality TV!! In this installment you'll see a performance of "I Saw Elvis in a U.F.O." and then it's a return trip to The Encore retirement home...a new nurse is on the job and her first assignment happens to be enema duty. This installment ends in a you'll soon find out...

Today is the day that filming on Campin' Buddies is to wrap up. I assume that Ray is due to be back home in Nashville later today or perhaps sometime over the weekend.

On June 7th he's to participate in the CMA Music Fest and have a booth for autograph signing and merchandise purchasing. Here's a look at his June schedule: JUNE 2014.

As you can see he'll be at the CMA event on June 7th...later in the month, June 21st, he'll be at the Nashville Public Library signing copies of his Nashville memoir. Ralph Emery is to interview Ray at the book signing. Ray's site states June 22 (a Sunday) but it's actually June 21 (a Saturday). Once you click the link above you can hit "More Info" and it'll give a more detailed look at the event scheduled on that day. On June 24th Ray is to appear on the Tuesday Night Opry and sign copies of his book later the evening in the Opry Store.

May 29, 2014

Ray Stevens and the Kung Fu Chickens...

Hello all...I'm back and have the latest Throback Thursday clip from Ray Stevens! It's from a television special that aired on April 3, 1991 called An All-Star Salute to Our Troops. Then-President George H.W. Bush (referred to now as Bush 41) and the First Lady, Barbara Bush, are in attendance as are hundreds of Persian Gulf veterans. The 1991 special was conceived as a homecoming...a welcome home gala/concert for those returning home from the Gulf region. In the clip you'll see the servicemen and women in attendance. Ray's song of choice, after being brought out by Barbara Mandrell, is "Teenage Mutant Kung Fu Chickens". This particular song, a spoof of the cartoon series titled Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, appears on his 1991 album, #1 With a Bullet. The album wouldn't be released until June 1991 and so this performance took place several months before the public at large had the chance to purchase that hilarious CD. The song carries a sort of heroic, super-hero vibe and fits the military festivities of the evening...albeit on a much more lighter note, of course...

Have your volume up...

Ray Stevens: Campin' Buddies nearing Completion...

It's me again...the film that Ray Stevens and company have been filming since the early part of May is nearing completion. According to early reports the filming is to wrap up on May 31st (2 days from now). A news report about the film aired on KTBS, a Shreveport, Louisiana television station. The report features brief clips of the film's production/camera work and scenes featuring Ray and Tom Lester...even a clip of Victoria Jackson as a police officer.

You can see the KTBS video HERE.

Later today Ray should have a classic clip from his past available on You Tube (given that it's Throwback Thursday as they say).

May 23, 2014

Ray Stevens: Rayality TV webisode 10...

On today's webisode of Rayality TV there's some activity taking place at The Encore retirement addition to this we're entertained by "The Camping Trip", one of Ray's animated music video productions. The song's from the pen of Ray Stevens and Buddy Kalb.

Speaking of the great outdoors and camping...have you all visited the Campin' Buddies Facebook page? For those that haven't heard about it or hadn't read some of my recent blog posts, Ray Stevens is currently filming scenes for an upcoming outdoors film called Campin' Buddies. There's a Facebook page about the film and on it there are photo's and brief videos from the set. Earlier today a video clip (38 seconds) of Ray and Tom Lester filming a scene appeared on the film's Facebook page.

To see that clip, click the link and then go to the section marked 'Recent Posts by Others' and click 'See All'. At the moment they're nearing the end of the second week of filming. The third and final week of filming will get underway several days from now and the wrap up should be on May 31st. After filming is complete I assume Ray will take a couple days off to relax before gearing up for his appearance at the CMA Music Festival in early June.

Hot off the presses...some more solid information about the upcoming festival appearance...

***Ray is going to perform at the CMA Music Festival on June 7th at 2pm Central, 3pm Eastern***

June 7th is a Saturday.

The performance is to take place on the Durango Music Spot stage inside the Music City Center. The appearance is affiliated with radio station 650 WSM in Nashville (the home of The Grand Ole Opry). The performances by all artists are to be streamed on the radio station's website for those (like myself) that can't attend in person. I assume it'll be an audio stream only...not a video stream.

Here's the official press release: Ray at the CMA Music Festival 2014 and here's the Durango Music Spot line-up during the festival... Durango Music Spot line-up. As you'll see, this area is populated by traditional country, alternative country, and classic country artists. The press release, as mentioned, gives the time of 2pm Central (that's 3pm Eastern for those that live in the Eastern time zone and plan on listening to the performances).

Ray Stevens is scheduled to be interviewed by the one and only Ralph Emery on June 21st at the Nashville Public Library's main branch on Church Street. I may have mentioned this vaguely at some point in one of my blog posts earlier in the month but I don't recall mentioning any kind of specifics. You can visit the main branch's site HERE.

The interview and book signing is to take place inside the Little Auditorium area during a 3 hour session, 2-5pm Central. On Ray's webpage it lists the date as June 22 but if you click the "More Info" banner you'll see the correct date listed as Saturday June 21st. In the article you'll see that June 21 is being referred to as the 'official' release date of Ray's book, Nashville. I've made several blog posts about the book and wrote an Amazon review already. However, it looks like beginning a little less than a month from today Ray and his associates are going to start publicizing the book much more vigorously. I had been wondering when the marketing would start and now we've got a specific time frame.

May 22, 2014

Ray Stevens: The Statler Brothers clip...

Hello one and's been a couple of days since I posted a blog. I decided to take a brief break so that some of my older blog posts could potentially become discovered in the archives. Today's Throwback Thursday installment from Ray Stevens is an early '90s appearance on The Statler Brothers Show. I believe this performance is from early 1992 or it could be from late 1991. The Statler's TNN program debuted in the fall of 1991 and Ray happened to be among the first series of guests.

The song, "Power Tools", is the lead-off track on Ray's 1991 project titled #1 with a Bullet. It became the album's second single release early in 1992 (the first single happened to be the album's closer, "Workin' for the Japanese" in the late summer of 1991). One of the surprise hit programs on TV at the time happened to be a sitcom called Home Improvement that had debuted in the fall of 1991. Also, do-it-yourself programs on public television such as This Old House and New Yankee Workshop had long received mainstream recognition. As a side note, after Bob Vila's departure from This Old House in 1989, he moved on to a similar series called Bob Vila's Home Again through the mid 2000s. Do-it-yourself, machismo-oriented men became something of a trend/fad in the early to mid '90s and Ray's song was definitely timely and topical. It's anyone's guess as to why the footage you'll see in the clip never made it into an official music video. "Power Tools" wouldn't become a music video until the mid 2000s and it was in animated form instead of live-action.

May 16, 2014

Ray Stevens: Rayality TV webisode 9...

It's Friday...that means another installment of Rayality TV. This time around the spotlight is on the craziness of life and the ordeals people go through. This concept is aided by 2 music videos...the first is one from not too long ago, 2011's "The Skies Just Ain't Friendly Anymore". This is the song/music video criticizing and mocking the TSA's airport security practices and procedures. It hit You Tube in February 2011 and it's gotten more than 480,000 unique views. "I Used To Be Crazy", the second music video in the webisode, comes from 1995 and had never been officially uploaded onto You Tube in any form by Ray before until today. The music video's origin is the 1995 direct-to-home video movie, Get Serious!. In the music video you'll see little snippets of scenes from the movie.

Ray should be busy filming scenes for Campin''s the day that they're suppose to film a scene that requires lots of extra's on the set. I mentioned this a couple of blog posts ago. Perhaps photo's from today's shooting will become available on-line.

For those curious...there wasn't a Throwback Thursday classic video uploaded yesterday on Ray's You Tube channel. It's become something of a habit for a lot of fans to see a vintage clip from Ray's past on Thursday and then on Friday see the latest Rayality TV installment...but for whatever reason there wasn't a clip uploaded yesterday.

I kept checking his channel at various times throughout the late afternoon and early evening but by the time 6pm rolled around I figured that if an upload hadn't become available by that time then none would. I checked his channel early this morning just to see if a Throwback Thursday clip had been added to his channel in the hours after I left the computer but none had been. Hopefully a classic clip becomes available this coming Thursday. In the meantime enjoy Rayality TV!!

May 15, 2014

Ray Stevens: 2014 CMA Music Festival...

Hello Ray Stevens fans...information became available the other day about Ray participating in next month's CMA Music Festival in Nashville. This event, once called Fan Fair, takes place during the first weekend in June. The venue is the Music City Center.

Ray and associates are going to have a booth and offer a lot of items for sale and during a 2 hour time frame (11am-1pm Central) Ray will be signing autographs. I don't know if photographs will be part of the event or not. The booth itself ill be 'open' from 9am-5pm Central time for fans to purchase things or find out information about upcoming happenings in Ray's career but Ray himself is only going to be at the booth during a 2 hour period each day.

The CMA Music Festival kicks off June 5th and it ends on June 8th.

In the article at Ray's webpage there's no mention that people have to purchase any kind of autograph ticket or participate in a contest and so I'm assuming the daily 2 hour autograph session is free and doesn't require a ticket. Here's the autograph policies at the HERE.

Once you visit Ray's SITE, look for the Contact Us link at the bottom of the page, and contact them if you're planning on attending so you can get more detailed information about what to expect and if picture taking is going to be allowed, etc.

In the meantime, it's Day 4 on the set of Campin' Buddies. The film's producers have a Facebook page available and they've been adding photos from the set. A couple more pictures surfaced of Ray and co-star, Tom Lester, in character. The photos were uploaded in the 'Recent Posts from Others' section. Once you visit the film's Facebook PAGE you'll be able to see them yourselves.

There is to be a vintage clip of Ray Stevens surface on You Tube at some point today. Once I see it, I'll make a post about it. In the meantime, here's the 8th webisode of Rayality TV from last Friday. A new one is to be uploaded tomorrow...but here's the one from May 9th...

May 13, 2014

Ray Stevens: Campin' Buddies, Day 2...

Hello to all the Ray Stevens fans!! Filming began on the Campin' Buddies film yesterday (May 12). The Campin' Buddies film?? You may ask yourselves: "am I reading that correctly??". The answer would be yes! In case you missed one of my earlier blog posts and if you haven't visited Ray's Facebook page in a couple of days then you'll be in for a big surprise.

Ray Stevens is to star in a film titled Campin' Buddies. It's currently in production in locales all around Shreveport, Louisiana. His co-stars are Tom Lester, Don Most, and Victoria Jackson and there's a lot of supporting players and extra's that appear in various scenes. In fact, news released earlier today is calling on people between the ages of 18 to 99 (!) to take part in the filming (as extras). It is a non-paying event but the scene calling out for extras will be filmed this coming Friday May 16th. You can read about it HERE.

I doubt that people who live outside of a 30-40 mile radius will show up considering there's no compensation involved. The press release is calling for people in the southern regions of several states to make the trek to Louisiana. If you're interested in being part of a film and maybe catch a glimpse of Ray Stevens and company then go ahead and participate but remember it's for won't be paid.

A couple of pictures from Day 1 of filming appeared on Ray's Facebook page yesterday. You can see those pictures HERE. There hasn't been any solid information given on the movie's length or if it'll be theatrically released or direct-to-DVD or released on-line or if it'll be a combination of all three. Also, there hasn't been any information released about it's premiere. I've read things that state an early June release and other sites that say late June but so far I hadn't seen any sites that indicate a release in July or August or later...and so June must be the month it becomes commercially accessible. I can't imagine it being released in early June, though...filming wraps up on May 31st...and I assume the post-production period lasts several weeks (assuming there IS a post-production phase??).

I made a couple of collages the other day. They're gigantic but I'll post smaller duplicates...

I only made a couple. The imagery should be familiar to anyone that's read this blog or is familiar with it. I've posted these images many times over the last several years. The older the picture, obviously, the more it's been posted. The first image comes from the 1984 promo for "It's Me Again, Margaret". Later, it appeared on the cover of the 1990 Gold album, His All-Time Greatest Comic Hits. Yeah, I know it's a cassette but I still use the term 'album' if I'm mentioning a sales certification. Gold album or Gold record sounds a lot more proper than "Gold cassette" or "Gold CD". Those latter two phrases just don't have the same ring to them as "Gold album" or "Gold record". The third image is of me and some of the VHS home video projects Ray issued during the 1990's. Then there's the picture of me and Ray's Spirit of '76 CD. You're seeing the back of the CD in that picture. The fifth image is of Ray's 9-CD box set, The Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music. Lastly it's me and a We the People T-shirt. That blue space is intentionally blank because I chose a collage grid that had 7 available spaces but I had uploaded only 6 pictures for that collage. The other collage's that I made are here...

This is an experimental collage that I did for a fellow fan of Ray Stevens. No, I don't take requests. I only did these on the spur of the moment because I had come across a free collage making site. He mentioned one of his favorite albums from Ray is 1982's Don't Laugh Now. It's one of my favorites, too...and so I used some images stored on the computer from my digital camera and from my web-camera and put this one together. It's an early '80s feeling...the first 2 images are the front and back of Don't Laugh Now. The third image is of me and the 1985 cassette copy of Collector's Series. Under my image is a close-up of Ray's face (from the 1985 cassette). Underneath the top 2 images is the 1987 cassette copy of Collector's Series and next to that is another close-up but this time I kept the surrounding colors instead of cropping that part out.

Lastly...this is the collage that I sent to the Ray Stevens fan...note that it looks kind of similar but I chose a different lay-out and I did an even larger close-up of the Collector's Series photo of Ray and I removed my image altogether. The image of Ray in the flower shirt comes from my cassette copy of 1983's Greatest Hits. Those close-up pics from Collector's Series and the 1983 Greatest Hits project originated from my scanner. The other images either originated on my web-camera or my digital camera...

May 10, 2014

Ray Stevens: Standing Beside a Silver Anniversary...

Yes, a rather odd title for this blog entry but it fits once you read on. 2014 marks the Silver Anniversary of the Ray Stevens album, Beside Myself. Originating in 1989 this studio album became Ray's final project, at the time, on MCA.

I've posted about a novelty single from the Beside Myself album, "I Saw Elvis in a U.F.O.", several times in the past but on today's blog post I'm putting the spotlight on "Marion Michael Morrison". Ray's 1989 album was written almost entirely by Ray and Buddy Kalb (along with a couple of other associate writers) except for this one individual salute, "Marion Michael Morrison". The song is a tribute to movie actor John Wayne and it's a very good one and Buddy is it's sole writer. The song honors the movie legend and name drops numerous movies and characters associated with the actor throughout. Near the end of the song Ray does his impression of John Wayne.

There have been back-to-back monthly tributes given annually to the actor in both May and June on various movie channels for the last 10-15 years (maybe longer than that). His birth happened on May 26, 1907 and his death happened on June 11, 1979. This year, actually, marks the 35th anniversary of his death and I expect several cable movie channels to spotlight his films even more so in June to mark the occasion.

In the song Ray mentions several of the Duke's movies: Rio Bravo, Stagecoach, Rio Grande, The Quiet Man, Back to Bataan, Green Berets, and others, in addition to several characters: McClintock, McQ, Rooster, Big Jake, and Hondo among others.

Oh yes, I already realize that 'Michael' isn't the actual middle name of the actor. His true birth name happened to be Marion Mitchell Morrison. If people want to dig even more deeper, his original middle name happened to be 'Robert'...legally changed to 'Mitchell' several years after his birth. The 'Michael' middle name originates from the actor himself. He stated that 'Michael' happened to be his middle name in various interviews and that he preferred to be called 'Duke' or 'John', rather than 'Marion'. I pass off all of this information as legitimate...I came across it on several fan sites of the actor and so I assume their information is accurate.

To purchase your copy of the Ray Stevens song, "Marion Michael Morrison", from the pen of Buddy Kalb, click HERE. Some of my on-line friends (fans of Ray Stevens, too) commented to me several years ago that Ray performed this song on an episode of Hee Haw. I never seen the episode but wish I had. That episode more than likely aired on an alternate weekend that I wasn't spending with my grandparent's. On the weekends that I spent with them, Hee Haw was must-see TV on Saturday nights and if I had seen that episode I most certainly would remember it.

May 9, 2014

Ray Stevens: Rayality TV webisode 8...

It's Friday...and that means another installment of Rayality TV!!! This one is more of a hodgepodge of sketches and video clips rather than a look-in at The Encore retirement home. In the clip below you'll see Ray in a psychiatric theme as Sickmind Fraud, then Ray tells us about a certain phone call to a lady named Margaret, and then Ray and company tackle the tabloid gossip papers. Sprinkled throughout is a video clip of Ray and Sylvia performing "Makin' Cookies", a parody of an early pop song titled "Makin' Whoopee". Sylvia had a string of country music hits in the early to mid '80s.

The sketch about The National Supermarket Checkout Examiner is based on a very funny song Ray recorded in 1991 called "Tabloid News". The video footage had been taped during that point in time, too. The song can be found on Ray's 1991 comedy album on Curb Records, #1 with a Bullet. You can buy the digital download of "Tabloid News" HERE. Once there you can click the audio sample and here a 30 second clip. If you prefer to purchase the entire Mp3 album, rather than just the individual song, you can click HERE. The project originally became available on cassette and CD in 1991. Later, both were unavailable (out of print). In 2005 Curb Records re-released Ray's 1990 and 1991 studio albums on CD format. Several years later the material became available in Mp3 on-line format.

May 8, 2014

Ray Stevens and the local TV commercials...

Hello once's a brief blog post this time around. About an hour ago a vintage clip of Ray Stevens became available on-line. This time around the vintage clip spotlights a couple of local Nashville television commercials that Ray took part in for a Toyota dealership. I had no idea he had appeared in auto commercials but you learn something practically each week as a different vintage clip from his past becomes available for on-line viewing.

These commercials are great...yes, it's because Ray Stevens appears in them...there are 2 commercials back to back in the embed below...

The commercials incorporate humor, presumably due to Ray's involvement.

Be on the lookout for Rayality TV, webisode number 8, on Friday!! Ray should be in Shreveport, LA by now (if he took a plane). According to the information I found a couple of days ago about the Campin' Buddies project, filming takes place starting Monday, May 12th.

May 6, 2014

Ray Stevens: Tuesday Night Opry...June 24, 2014...

A couple of days ago I came across an upcoming appearance at the Opry by Ray Stevens. The Opry calendar has Ray Stevens appearing on June 24th, a little more than a month from today. Also appearing that particular evening are Montgomery-Gentry, Charlie Daniels, and Terri Clark in addition to the Opry regulars.

June 24th is on a Tuesday.

For those not familiar, the Opry puts on various presentations and it's not confined to just a Friday and Saturday night anymore. Throughout much of the year a Tuesday Night Opry presentation is broadcast (March to December) as is a Wednesday night presentation (during summer months) in addition to all of the other activities surrounding the Opry House area.

The Tuesday night version of the Opry begins at 7pm Central time, 8pm Eastern. There's no information posted as to when Ray's part of the program is scheduled to start but you can see the promo HERE. Typically, a detailed list of the Opry's segment by segment contents is supplied a couple of days prior to the show. As usual, appearances are subject to cancellation without notice and I originally had the idea to make mention of this appearance the closer we get to June 24th...but I decided to make mention of this upcoming appearance sooner rather than later just in case the venue is sold-out by mid June.

Ray, according to the Opry's calendar, is also going to be appearing at the Opry gift shop around 9:15pm Central time on June 24th. The reason? Click HERE to find out. As it states on the webpage...make sure you keep your Opry ticket stub on hand as you visit the gift shop. The event isn't open to the general's exclusive to those that bought tickets to that night's Opry show.

May 5, 2014

Ray Stevens participates in an Upcoming Outdoors Film...

Hello all the Ray Stevens fans...I came across a post on one of Ray's social media sites informing us that Ray is going to be filming scenes for an upcoming independent movie called Campin' Buddies. I couldn't find a lot of information about the specifics of the film but over on the Internet Movie Data Base site it states that the film is going to be an hour in length and begin a run in movie theaters starting in late July of this year and that it's a production of Campfire Productions, which is also the name of the film's distributor. It should be a funny, comical-misadventure kind of film...but I don't look for it to become a darling of film critics...but that's just an instinct of mine. Some of the people mentioned in the cast are Don Most, Tom Lester, and Victoria Jackson. The scenes are going to be filmed in and around Shreveport, Louisiana.

In case you missed my Friday blog post, here's webisode 7 of Rayality TV. It's titled "The Health Inspector"...

May 4, 2014

Ray Stevens...January 1980...

Hello to all the fans of Ray Stevens!! Has anyone been checking the items on eBay lately? I often come across a lot of CD's and vinyl LP's and singles from all over the world during a Ray Stevens eBay search and this morning happened to be no different. There happens to be for sale 2 LP's of a radio program that Ray appeared on during the final week of January 1980. The Ralph Emery Show, syndicated on radio stations all over the United States, aired daily for more than 10 years beginning in the early '70s. The program ran 1 hour.

Each episode also featured a special guest/spotlight artist for the week whose songs happened to be aired more than others during a given week. Also, interview footage by Ralph and the guest that week aired periodically throughout an episode.

Ray Stevens appeared on Ralph's syndicated radio program during the last week of January 1980. The first episode, airing on January 21, 1980 (Monday) and the third episode from January 24, 1980 (Thursday) are available on vinyl on eBay. Each vinyl disc has 1 program split into two segments. The A-side has part 1 of the hour program and the B-side has part 2. Along with the vinyl you'll also get the program sheet that lists all the songs played and the length of each segment and the time length of each commercial. According to the sheet for each hour long program there are 10 segments in total. The total running time for both the show and their commercial breaks add up to 47 minutes. My guess is the local stations had to come up with the remaining 13 minutes of commercial time.

Take note: The item is only available until May 7th but here is a link to the eBay page as it exists on May 4th... Ray Stevens January 1980

Ray's involvement in that week's programs coincided with his birthday that year...he turned 41 on January 24, 1980 and had a soon to become gigantic novelty song just starting to make a lot of noise: "Shriner's Convention". That particular song is played on the January 21st episode of Ralph's radio program.

The song, ironically, had been a part of Ray's career since late in 1979...footage of Ray performing the song on a made-for-TV movie from 1979, Concrete Cowboys, reveals this. That film (starring Jerry Reed and Tom Selleck) aired on TV on October 17, 1979. I don't know the production dates of the movie...but given that the film aired in October 1979 has me assuming that Ray's scene had to have been shot at some point in the fall of 1979 (August...September at the latest). If anyone has any details about that film's production dates it would certainly clear up this mini-mystery. Ray performs "Shriner's Convention" in the movie beginning at the 34 minute, 10 second mark.

A TV series in 1981, based on the movie, aired for an incredibly brief run in the spring of 1981. Ray Stevens guest starred on what turned out to be the final episode of the TV series.

As far as the 1981 TV series goes, Jerry Reed reprises his role from the movie but Tom Selleck's role was recast with Geoffrey Scott. Selleck had gone on to star on Magnum, P.I. beginning in 1980 and obviously wasn't available to reprise his role from the 1979 movie.

May 3, 2014

Ray Stevens: One Mint Julep on Derby Day...

Good late afternoon Ray Stevens fans...on Derby Day...

Yes, today marks the annual running of The Kentucky Derby (also known as the Run for the Roses). The event has taken place since the 1870s and it's part of horse racing's Triple Crown. The other races in the crown are The Belmont Stakes and The Preakness Stakes. The Kentucky Derby takes place at Churchill Downs in Northern Kentucky.

It's only fitting that on Derby Day I make mention of a song recorded by Ray, it isn't about horse racing or specifically about Kentucky...but it captures, in song, the beverage synonymous with The Kentucky Derby: the Mint Julep.

"One Mint Julep" tells the story of a man that meets a woman and then proceeds to get drunk on mint juleps. One thing leads to another and he finds himself in a kind of shotgun wedding...forced to marry someone he really doesn't love or even the insistence of the woman's outraged father. In the story, the father walked in on his daughter and the man (Ray) in an apparent romantic embrace...causing the father to go on a rampage...and threaten murder unless a marriage took place sooner rather than later.

So, are you looking to add the song to your on-line collection?? Unfortunately the Ray Stevens recording of "One Mint Julep" isn't available for Mp3 purchase. It can only be found on his 1978 LP, There Is Something On Your Mind, and on the 1995 CD/cassette, Cornball. You may be able to find that 1995 compilation CD for sale in a number of on-line stores...but, as mentioned, there is no digital download/Mp3 available. I have no idea if it once was available. I say that because there are 2 other 1995 collections from Warner Brothers on Ray Stevens that are available on Mp3 but Cornball isn't one of them...and those 2 collections had been released the same day as Cornball in it's odd that just 2 of the 3 compilations by Warner Brothers on Ray Stevens are available on Mp3.

May 2, 2014

Ray Stevens: Rayality TV webisode 7...

Friday means Rayality TV and webisode 7 is up for viewing. This time around a health inspector drops by to inspect The Encore (the retirement home introduced in webisode 1 and seen periodically since). There's a comical scene of 2 hippies (Buddy Kalb and Ray) and the reactions from the other side of the door from the health inspector. Norro Wilson (music producer/songwriter) has a closing scene in a comical exchange with the inspector. In between the hippie sketch and Norro's scene, you'll see the sped up, frenzied performance of "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" by The Itty Bitty Squirt Band. Keep your eyes open for Norro's participation in that sketch, too. The man playing the health inspector looks similar to the man that played Harv Newland in Ray's 1995 Get Serious! movie. Louise Mandrell appears as the judge near the beginning of the clip.

May 1, 2014

Ray Stevens 1987 TV commercial...

As April turns to May, Ray Stevens has uploaded a clip of his 1987 television commercial for the double LP project, Get The Best of Ray Stevens. The commercial I remember seeing happened to be much wasn't until today that I found out that there are 3 separate TV commercials that aired at various times throughout the late '80s. The least aired ran 2 minutes...least aired because it's the longest...and TV commercials, by 1987, weren't necessarily as long as the commercials had been earlier in the decade. From the full length 2 minute commercial Ray and company would later edit 2 additional commercials from it: one commercial had a running time of 1 minute and another had a super brief running time of 30 seconds. I don't know if the edited versions of the 2 minute commercial are going to find their way onto You Tube but for now, the 2 minute commercial is there...

Isn't that just the greatest??? You bet it is!!!

The voice-over states that "Can He Love You Half as Much as I?" is his latest single...this means that it had been taped several months before the explosive, topical success of 1987's "Would Jesus Wear a Rolex?". Obviously...considering that the song doesn't appear on this double LP.

The 20 song collection consists of the 10 songs found on 1987's Greatest Hits (released on MCA) and ten more songs. Later on in 1987 when "Would Jesus Wear a Rolex?" became a hit, MCA issued Greatest Hits, Volume Two and filled it out with most of the remaining songs from Get The Best of Ray Stevens and included 2 exclusive recordings: the previously mentioned "Would Jesus Wear a Rolex?" and "Mama's in the Sky with Elvis". Then, MCA released a brand new studio album from Ray in 1987 titled Crackin' Up, featuring the lead-off hit single, "Would Jesus Wear a Rolex?". I've got the 2-LP Get The Best of Ray Stevens in my collection. I purchased my copy on eBay in the early 2000s.