Dick Summer

markwa1ion@aol.com markwa1ion@aol.com
Fri May 9 12:44:15 EDT 2008

Dick, glad to see you on the list.  In my high school years in 
Arlington, MA (mid-'60s) I was a regular listener to your WBZ show and 
got a kick out of "sandwiches-versus-shrewsburies", Theophilus Q. 
Waterhouse, elephant jokes / grape jokes, funny collages with song 
clips (a la Dickie Goodman), live shows from Harvard dorms, and many of 
the other "shticks".

The way you got into certain songs very seriously contrasted with all 
the humor.  That made things even more interesting.  In '63 you and 
Jefferson Kaye fed off each other as folk music hit its peak with 
better-known artists like Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Judy Collins, and 
Peter, Paul, & Mary and popular (but less "household name") artists 
such as Richard & Mimi Farina, Dave Van Ronk, Tom Rush, and so forth.

When a woman was killed in the courtyard at the Kew Gardens apartments 
in NYC as many watched and did nothing, I recall the launch of the 
"NAG" (Nightlighters Against Gutlessness) campaign.

I remember you reading the "Highwayman" poem with gusto.  High culture 
on top 40 AM radio, who'd have "thunk" it?  Much different from what 
WMEX was up to (though they were fun in their way too).

We got culture as well with Carl DeSuze and his rambling discourses on 
world travel, fine wines, and gardening.  WBZ was quite the package 
back then.

When the Beatles hit big at the tail end of '63 and into early '64, you 
and Bruce Bradley and the rest of the crew did much not only to present 
Beatles music and interviews but also to research much of the other 
music from Britain.  Were it not for you guys I'm not sure that the 
Swingin' Blue Jeans "Hippy Hippy Shake" and Manfred Mann's "5-4-3-2-1" 
would have made as big a splash.  I think at one point around Feb. 
1964, British songs had 8 of the Top 10 slots on 'BZ with "Dawn Go 
Away" by the Four Seasons and "Suspicion" by Terry Stafford as the only 
American hold-outs.

Folk music made a bit of a rebound in '65 with Simon & Garfunkel, the 
Byrds, and two huge albums from Bob Dylan.  The Nightlight show did not 
miss a beat covering it all.

I occasionally caught your shows on other stations since then, 
including WCAP now.

Thanks for many years of great listening.  You do belong in a DJ's hall 
of fame along with names like Arnie Ginsberg and Murray-the-K.

Mark Connelly - Billerica, MA

I spent a lot of years on the air in Boston.  Great memories. Just 
found out
about this web site. Fascinating. Will be reading it regularly. Anybody 
wants to get in touch, my email is Dick@DickSummer.com  The website is
www.dicksummer.com  would love to hear from you. Dick Summer

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