Vendors, Swatting, One-Hit Wonders

vic fortezza
3 min readSep 24, 2023

I love the underground economy outside of drug dealing and such. Headline from “Bridge too far: Dozens of vendors still swarm Brooklyn Bridge in free-for-all — selling illegal cocktails, pics with live snake.” Some dub it “disgusting.” I’d object only if the vendors did not clean up after themselves. Photo from NYP:

Another new term: “Swatting” — when someone makes a false 911 report to elicit a large and aggressive police response. According to an article at by Megan Myers, it is on the increase and very difficult to track the source. Lotta idiots out there.

Here are one-hit wonders culled from Wiki. I choose the one I like best from each year beginning from the rock n roll era until 1975:
Julie London — Cry Me A River (1955), three million copies sold. She recorded 29 studio albums. The first four cracked the Top 20, so it’s misleading to lump her with the OHW’s.
Carl Perkins — Blue-Suede Shoes (1956). A legend despite the tag.
Mickey & Sylvia — Love Is Strange (1957). Still a great listen. “Oh, lover boy…” (Sylvia Robinson, co-lead vocal)
The Big Bopper — Chantilly Lace (1958). Hilarious track, a great voice stilled the day the music died. “Oh, baby, you know what I like…” (J Richardson, TBB himself)
The Skyliners — Since I Don’t Have You (1959). A recording likely to last as long as mankind does.
Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs — Stay (1960). Less than two minutes, pure joy.
Ernie K-Doe — Mother-In-Law (1961). Probably wouldn’t be allowed in today’s PC world. “The worst person I know…” (Allen Toussaint)
Don & Juan — What’s Your Name (1962). Because I play it on guitar.
Little Peggy March — I Will Follow Him (1963). I was privileged to see her do it live at a Murray the K show at the Brooklyn Fox theater.
The Reflections — (Just Like) Romeo and Juliet (1964). Love it. “… if I don’t find work tomorrow/It’s gonna be (gonna be) heartaches ’n’ sorrow…” (Bob Hamilton/Freddie Gorman)
The Ad Libs — The Boy From New York City (1965). Same as above. “… And he’s cute/In his mohair suit/And he keeps his pockets full of spending loot…” (George Davis/John Taylor)
Bobby Hebb — Sunny (1966). I believe it was the first record I bought.
The Easybeats — Friday On My Mind (1967) Darn near hard rock.
Human Beinz — Nobody But Me (1968). Heard from the street on my way to a college party. “…Nobody can do (Boogaloo) like I do…” (O’Kelly Isley/ Ronald Isley/Rudolph Isley)
Smith — Baby It’s You (1969). Rowdy vocal by the beautiful Gayle McCormick.
The Ides of March — Vehicle (1970). Great singalong vocal by Jim Peterik, the songwriter. “…Great God in Heaven, you know I love you…”
The Beginning of The End — Funky Nassau (1971). Funk indeed!
Looking Glass — Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl) (1972). Fine indeed! “At night when the bars close down/Brandy walks through a silent town/And loves a man who’s not around…” (Elliot Lurie, the lead vocalist.)
Lou Reed — Walk on the Wild Side/Perfect Day (1973). Radical, man. “…Doo do doo do doo do do doo…”
Carl Douglas — Kung Fu Fighting (1974). For the silly person in all of us.
Ace — How Long (1975). Betrayal made beautiful. “…But I can’t help but have my suspicions/’Cause I ain’t quite as dumb as I seem…” (Paul Melvyn Carrack, lead singer)
Here’s Gayle McCormick back in the day. She was taken by cancer at 67 in 2015. She took our breath away. Photo from Google Images:

The floating book shop was rained out for the second straight day and two more washouts are possible. Unlike yesterday, I didn’t have as much to do at the old house, so much more reading than usual was the order of the day. Help!

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vic fortezza

I was born in Brooklyn in 1950 to Sicilian immigrants. I’ve had more than 50 short stories published world wide. I have 13 books in print.