Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Cardboard Box Ministry & Bobby Hayden Jr.

Fame sometimes leads stars down a dirty path of destruction. Decades ago, 8 year-old Bobby Hayden, Jr., a native of Evansville, Indiana, was on the Milton Berle Show, the Grand Ole' Opry & the Ted Mack Amateur Hour, where he was dubbed a child prodigy. Bobby became addicted to the applause and adoration at that young age and years later he was in the spotlight with the likes of Paul Revere & The Raiders, Mitch Ryder and others. Bobby's addiction to what he says "everything" cost him almost "everything."
After spiraling to the bottom of existence, Bobby found himself completely addicted to heroin and living out of a cardboard box.

One day a fellow knocked on his cardboard box door & mentioned something that Bobby knew about, but perhaps was too afraid to admit.

Bobby has reformed and his mission is to share his moving story & help others get their lives back on track. You can hear Bobby's story tomorrow, Aug. 29, on my radio show at 2:00 p.m. cst- here's the link:


Can't listen live? Never fear...this link will play the archived episode anytime after 2:30 tomorrow.

Hayden will be speaking in Nashville this weekend for an event to benefit the homeless (note: The Cold Stares are performing at this event also) ...

Check out his numerous speaking engagements at the event calendar, along with information about booking for events at:
He will be speaking at the Race for Recovery in Evansville on Sept. 14th & a lot of additional venues during the month.

Peace, Love & Life .....
Lanea Stagg
Recipe Records Cookbooks

Don't miss my radio show Tuesday, Sept. 3 at 2:00 p.m. CST - GREG KIHN IS MY GUEST--!!! Tuesday is the release day for his new book!!!!!

*Recipe Records Radio Show was chosen as one of the top 300 radio shows (out of 15,000!) by Blog Talk Radio. They awarded me with this cool new graphic  -- Thank YOU for tuning in & making this honor possible!

Upcoming Gigs:

This Friday --- don't miss The Cold Stares & Rival Sons in Nashville, TN - at 3rd & Lindsley - 8:00 p.m. Go to 3rd & Lindsley's website for tix.
The Cold Stares were on my radio show last winter - here's the blog & show link:

Rival Sons were on my radio show a year ago - here's the blog with show link:

Both bands have become wildly popular - Rival Sons have been touring with Sammy Hagar this summer and The Cold Stares just returned from recording a CD in Los Angeles. It's totally incredible to see both bands at the same venue.

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September 20-21 - Beatles at The Ridge in Walnut Ridge, Arkansas  -  I will be signing books at this most awesome Beatle Festival -- check out their cool Beatles Park & Guitar Walk!

October 12 - Book Signing at Blue Heron Vineyard & Winery, Cannelton, Indiana

Monday, August 26, 2013

Review - The Doors: Unhinged by John Densmore (Part I)

John Densmore, the drummer for one of America’s greatest rock bands, The Doors, describes the spiritual, political and economic trips he experienced during a legal battle with former Doors band mates, Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger. One part social commentary, one part political science lesson and one part trial narrative, Densmore penned a terrific book complete with philosophy, wit and wisdom.  The Doors:  Unhinged – Jim Morrison’s Legacy Goes On Trial is an important book for not only the diehard Doors fan, but for those in pursuit of contentment, who question authority and believe in performing honorable acts.

The Doors thrived on substance and creativity; the transcendent poet and prophet (Morrison,) backed with superb musicianship (Densmore, Krieger and Manzarek.) They were classic 60’s hippies who wanted to change the world with their music and ideals. Back in 1968, Jim Morrison proposed a business deal which was unheard of in the music business and it seemed almost idealistic and somewhat simplistic. Morrison wanted each member of The Doors to receive 25% of the song writing credit, as opposed to crediting the lyricist or perhaps one of the major instrumentalists in the song. Jim felt that the sum of all band member parts made up The Doors and each should hold a one-fourth share of the entity. The very wise Jim Morrison created a unique contract for the soon to be monumental band, which hadn’t been demonstrated in rock bands thus far. Along with one quarter publishing rights, he proposed equal veto power, which required unanimous decision making. Quite an unselfish move for a kid who wrote legendary poetry and song lyrics which could’ve easily elevated him beyond the band. 
Furthermore, Morrison was vehemently opposed to selling The Doors’ music for corporate advertising.  Densmore describes with great clarity, Jim’s tirade when he found that John, Ray & Robby had agreed to sell a song to Buick in 1968.
Nearly 40 years later, the issue of equal veto power and “selling out” to corporate interests became the nucleus of a lawsuit which John Densmore commenced against Manzarek and Krieger. The book keenly documents the days and nights during the three month trial.  A trial which drove Densmore to the outer limits of his level of comfort, dealing with lawyers – which any true 60’s rebel knows, are not to be trusted. Interestingly, he found comfort and peace with the counsel who became his protector and Densmore describes attorney Jerry Mandel as noble and a friend.  The Court system is very much like war in that everyone involved pays a price, even if the litigation sways in your favor.  This 60’s hippie who opposed the Vietnam War became entrenched in his own five year war, which left him altered physically, emotionally and spiritually.
The problem began when former band mates, Manzarek and Krieger, committed to and began performing arena shows with the band name:   The Doors – of the 21st Century (“of the 21st Century” was added in fine print.) The advertisements implied that The Doors were reuniting and performing as the original band. After his requests to perform less directly as The Doors were ignored, he could only find remedy via legal action.  Surprisingly, it was difficult to obtain remedy even after Densmore won the lawsuit. Densmore never objected to Manzarek and Krieger playing the music of The Doors or advertising themselves as “Manzarek and Krieger of The Doors.” Inarguably, Densmore eloquently points out, that The Doors ceased to exist as a live band upon the death of Jim Morrison.  Therefore, you can not advertise the band as “The Doors” without Morrison or, in my opinion, without Densmore, however, John never made that an issue.
Selling out to corporate interests was also argued during the trial, as a result of Manzarek and Kreiger countersuing Densmore for the tidy sum of $40 million. The basis for that counterclaim was Densmore’s rejection of an advertisement offer from Cadillac in 2000 for the amount offer of $15 million, and other lucrative offers. The counterclaim was dismissed, however, the uncertainty of the outcome throughout the course of the suit weighed heavy on the nerves of the drummer.
While expressing care for his brothers in rock, he felt compelled to “do the right thing” to protect the memory and legacy of Jim Morrison, the dreamer who wanted The Doors to be all for one and one for all. A solidifying piece to the case was the support of Jim’s parents, siblings and in-laws, who joined and upheld Densmore’s interest in the action.  Densmore connected with Morrison’s family who were supportive of the case and collectively they respected the memory of their loved one, who was a poetic genius.
Rock and roll has grown up and to great extent counters the misconception that rock musicians have no principles, values, morals or rules. Densmore’s nuggets of wisdom and stories of life are sprinkled throughout the book and support my personal title for him of “Father Timekeeper.”  Writing Unhinged seems to have brought significant healing to Densmore as he tenderly shares his many projects and accomplishments with the reader, fully acknowledging that his position in rock history led him to forge great bonds and friendships. His experiences and opinions, whether arguable or permissible, create food for thought and isn’t that what the innovative thinkers of the 60’s wanted?  Sadly, the death of Ray Manzarek shortly after the book’s release was an emotional punch.  John respectfully acknowledges that he was able to connect with Ray and exchange endearments before his passing.

My interest in Densmore’s book is underscored by the fact that I had the honor of meeting him and we chatted about his book. I was struck by this slight of frame fellow, sporting a bit of a rebel pony tail who emitted charismatic confidence, but not in a brassy manner. Without having read a word of his book, I sensed a tone of sincerity in his words and manner. The book merely confirmed Densmore to be a sensible human being with extraordinary life experiences, who has appreciated all of the paths he’s ventured down and they’ve led him to a road of greater peace.

You can purchase Densmore’s book  The Doors:  Unhinged – Jim Morrison’s Legacy Goes On Trial at www.johndensmore.com or www.amazon.com

Lanea Stagg is a freelance writer residing in Southern Indiana and also author of Recipe Records Cookbook Series.

Monday, August 19, 2013

School is fit for Queen

Once I survive the back-to-school tornado, I always reflect on school years of the past.  The first day of school conjures up a new smell of the grade school hallway & echoes of anxiousness, which are always distinctly different on the first day than each day that subsequently follows.
Having witnessed my three children through years of education, I've noticed that it goes by in a blink & I was reflecting on funny memories I have of those days.
One memory I recalled was of my middle son, Ethan, when he was in second grade (all those years ago.) His class always had a unique way of causing trouble; he learned how to play Texas Hold 'Em (3rd grade) and he was privvy to learning many other ways of expressing himself verbally.
We were heading home during that first week of school & I asked the usual "what did you do today" and he told me at recess they played a new game - spin the bottle. 
Hmmmmm.  Rather than expose my shock, I calmly replied "Oh...well.... how do you play spin the bottle, Ethan?"  To which he answered something to the effect of "duh Mom, don't you know? You get in a circle, spin the bottle & when it lands on 2 people, they go in the closet and dance."  
Sigh of relief.  For THAT year.

Make a family memory with one of my favorite recipes.  Bohemian Rhapsody, by the British band, Queen, is a classic rock song, of which we paid tribute in Recipe Records with the recipe for Bohemian Rhapsodini...you can click on the graphic below, which is a page out of the book (thank you Julie!) I highly suggest making a family memory along with this scrumptious chicken. Don't forget to watch The Muppets version of Bohemian Rhapsody......


Peace, Love & Food.....

Lanea Stagg
Recipe Records Cookbooks
radio:  www.blogtalkradio.com/reciperecords

Ask the Intern with Claire Edwards:

Claire, what time period of Beatles music seems to be the most influential on music today? Good luck at College this fall!           
 --Sadie, Liverpool

In my opinion, the music released by The Beatles in 1966 and 1967 was their most influential work. During this time period the group put out Revolver and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Both of these works showcase the social commentary traditional for the pieces the band created in the late 60’s. Although these albums do not have the strong activist themes that trademark the Beatles’ later years they fall far away from the simple pop of their early releases. Additionally, both these albums have incredibly unique sounds due to the degree of experimentation both with instruments and with ideals that The Beatles sampled during this time. This time period captures The Beatles’ transition as a band and demonstrates the diversity of music that  they were capable of creating which is why I find it to be the most influential.

*I want to thank Claire for contributing to the blog this summer & we look forward to many more as her busy college schedule will allow.....You have a great future ahead Claire!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Beatle Fest - Chicago

Excitement is definitely in the air for this weekend's Fest for Beatles Fans in Chicago, which, for me, is beginning to feel like going to a reunion. Organizers, Mark & Carol Lapidos, along with their lovely daughters, have been creating a fan-friendly atmosphere at The Fest since 1974. It's perfect for die-hard & fair-weather fans who want to browse, schmooze & enjoy the wonderful world of The Beatles. 
I want to share a scrapbook of guests that I've had on my radio show this past year & also other talents who will be in Chicago this weekend. I seriously encourage you to attend. I will be there as well....my programs are on Friday & Sunday....& I'll have samples of my Ringo Savoy Truffles, while supplies last ....

Jude Southerland Kessler, the author of The John Lennon Series, has spent 28+ years researching & writing her incredible books about John. Her 3rd book She Loves You is due out later this year. Preorder your copy while you can at:


Don't miss this great radio show episode with Jude, which was joined by May Pang!   

Judith Kristen's infectious true tale of her Beatle-crazed teenaged girl antics is classic. Her follow-up - a children's book, Once Upon A Time In Liverpool, contains the gorgeous art of Eric Cash.

Check out Judith on my radio show:


Rock & Roll Detective, Jim Berkenstadt, shares the fascinating story of Jimmie Nicol, the substitute drummer who saved The Beatles when they were in a pinch.....


Jim's appearance on my radio show can be found here:

Al Sussmann & Tom Frangione will be present for discussions. Al was on my show this year & we are looking forward to his upcoming book release:  Changin' Times 101: Nov. 22, 1963-March 1, 1964 101 Days that Shaped a Generation.
You can hear Al's episode here:

I'm very excited to see art by Eric Cash - his Beatle art (& Sport art) is amazing. Please check it out at www.ericcashillustration.com

This piece is titled Sea of Green:


And a surprising musician/author to join in the Fest is 80's rocker Greg Kihn (Jeopardy & The Breakup Song) - Greg has a new mystery novel, Rubber Soul which will be released next month & I have been very honored to preview the story & it's TERRIFIC -- you better preorder your copy asap:  www.gregkihn.com

 How about this nugget from the 80's:  Jeopardy Video - from The Greg Kihn Band:

So many more guests will be at the Fest this weekend:  Authors: Gillian Gaar, Robert Rodriguez, Larry Kane, Susan Ryan, Bruce Spizer, musicians:  Chad & Jeremy, Billy J. Kramer, Joey Molland, along with Freda Kelly, Mark Hudson, Rob Shanahan, Georgina Flood, Jorie Gracen, Wally Podrazik, Martin Lewis and Terri Hemmert - and much more.

Be sure you check out the website & organize your schedule for the weekend; there are more activities to attend than you can possibly imagine. You can order tickets for the event at this site also (Highly Suggest)

For a more detailed list of Guests & Schedule, go to:


Note:  Jude Southerland Kessler has been contributing her John Lennon pieces to my blogpost for the past several months & I've been very honored to have her contributions. She has now graduated to writing her VERY OWN BLOG  & it's FAB! THANK YOU JUDE FOR YOUR WORDS OF WISDOM -- please sign up to follow her blog at this link:


Peace, Love & The Beatles,
Lanea Stagg
blog:  www.rockblocks3.blogspot.com
radio:  .blogtalkradio.com/reciperecords

Recipe Records-A Culinary Tribute to The Beatles  -  $18
get your copy now at ww.reciperecordscookbook.com


WHILE YOU ARE IN CHICAGO..... I might suggest that you make your tummy happy also ..... Try 2 of MY FAVES:  Superdawg & Garrett Popcorn!