WPON-AM 1460 - Insane World Of Mike Sain - In Honor Of July 4th - July 5, 2006

The "Insane World Of Mike Sain" airs every Wednesday at 9:00 AM Eastern Time on WPON-AM 1460 Detroit. This morning, Mike played songs that include either "America" or "American(s)" in the title in honor of the Fourth of July which was yesterday.


  • The smash hit, "The All American Boy," was Bobby Bare's chart debut song which was released erroneously under the name Bill Parsons. Bobby Bare had many hits on both the Country (1962-1986) and Pop/Rock charts (1959-1974) that also included "Detroit City" (1963), "500 Miles Away From Home" (1963), "Marie Laveau" (1974), and "Dropkick Me Jesus" (1976).

  • Simon and Garfunkel's haunting "America," which was first recorded on their 1968 album, "Bookends," charted in 1972 and was also a hit that same year for Yes. Simon and Garfunkel first started recording in the 1950s as Tom and Jerry. They are famous for "The Sounds Of Silence," "Mrs. Robinson," and other hits that were part of the soundtrack for "The Graduate." They were induced into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

  • "America The Beautiful" has a long history which started in 1893 when Katharine Lee Bates first wrote the words as a poem. The first incarnation of "America The Beautiful" was Bates' poem set to the music of Samual A. Ward's hymn, "Materna." Since then, the words to "America The Beautiful" have been revised several times and sung to other music, but the tune that seems to have stuck over the years, which is the one most people sing today, is the original Ward hymn. The best known modern-day version of "America The Beautiful" is Ray Charles' soulful rendition which was first recorded as the B-side song of his 1972 chart hit, "Look What They've Done To My Song, Ma." He also had an R&B chart hit with "America The Beautiful" in 1976. Ray Charles (d. June 10, 2004) received numerous awards and accolades throughout his long career and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. The 2004 movie, "Ray," starring Jamie Foxx, chronicals Rays Charles' remarkable life. His version of "America The Beautiful" as heard this morning is on his CD, Ultimate Hits Collection (Disc 2).

  • The Guess Who was formed in Winnipeg, Canada in 1963 and originally known as Chad Allan and the Expressions. The Guess Who's "American Woman" and B-side, "No Sugar Tonight," both topped the charts in 1970. "American Woman" later also became a hit for Lenny Kravitz in 1999.

  • Canadian-born Byron MacGregor had a smash hit in 1974 with "Americans," a spoken tribute to America and Americans in which "America The Beautiful" can be heard playing in the background. At that time, MacGregor was the news director at CKLW Windsor/Detroit which was back then one of this nation's top radio stations and known as "The Big 8." "Americans" (a.k.a. "The Americans (A Canadian's Opinion)") was written by Canadian radio commentator Gordon Sinclair, and both he and Tex Ritter also had a hit with this song in 1974. "Americans" was first broadcast as an editorial in 1973 by Gordon Sinclair on CFRB Toronto.

  • Petula Clark's "American Boys" was one of many hits from 1965-1972 for this British pop singer and actress. Her best known songs include the chart topping hits, "Downtown" (1965) and "My Love" (1966), and smash hit, "Don't Sleep In The Subway" (1967). She had her own TV and radio shows in England and starred in several movies, including "Goodbye Mr. Chips" (1969). She had one last chart hit in 1982, "Natural Love."

  • Elvis Presley's 1972 hit, "An America Trilogy" is a medley of "Dixie," "Battle Hymn Of The Republic," and "All My Trials" which was recorded live in Las Vegas. This song was also a Top 40 pop hit for Mickey Newbury that same year, and he later recharted with a new version in 1988 on the Country charts.

  • Irving Berlin first wrote "God Bless America" in 1918 while serving in the army at Camp Upton in Yaphank, NY. He had originally written it for the show, "Yip, Yip, Yaphank," but decided that it did not fit and shelved it. In 1938, Berlin revised "God Bless America" and it was performed by Kate Smith on an Armistice Day broadcast in 1938. The song became a chart hit in 1939 and Kate Smith's signature song. Smith recharted with "God Bless America" in 1940 and 1940, and it also charted for Bing Crosby (1939), Connie Francis (1959), and LeAnn Rimes (2001, Country charts). Numerous other artists have also covered this song over the years, including Anita Bryant who recorded it several times from ca. 1966-1973. The Anita Bryant version played this morning is on her CD, A Golden Classics Edition. Anita Bryant had a string of hits from 1959-1964, was second runner-up to Miss America in 1958, and was also the longtime spokeperson for Florida orange juice.

  • Dante and His Friends was led by Donald "Dante" Drowty who also headed Dante and the Evergreens (of "Alley Oop" fame). Dante and His Friends also included members of the Rivingtons. The rare and noncharting "Little Miss America" (a.k.a. "Miss America" and "Little Girl (You're My Miss America)") was released as a single in 1962 (Imperial 5827 b/w "Now I've Got You"). This song was also covered by the Beach Boys (as "Little Girl (You're My Miss America)") on their 1962 album, "Surfin' Safari." "Little Miss America" by Dante and His Friends is included on the hard-to-find CD, "Dante: Evergreens & Friends."

  • Jay and the Americans was formed in 1959 and originally led by John "Jay" Traynor who left shortly after the 1962 smash hit, "She Cried." Jay Black (real name: David Blatt) then became the lead singer. This group is best remembered for "This Magic Moment" (1969), "Cara, Mia" (1965), and "Only In America" (1963) which was their first hit with Jay Black.

  • "We're An American Band" topped the charts for Grand Funk in 1973. Grand Funk was formed in Flint, MI, in 1968 and included members of Terry Knight and the Pack. Originally known as Grand Funk Railroad, this band had several personnel changes over the years and in 1973 they shortened their name to Grand Funk.

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