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Sad news… Lesley Gore passed away earlier this week and if you’re of a certain age, i.e., still read newspapers and yell at speeders zooming through your neighborhood then maybe you remember her, her songs and growing up in the 1960’s.

The new about Lesley Gore jogged my memory to my wonder years and when I got my first transistor radio somewhere between the ages of 12 and 14.  It was a birthday present from my parents and it was a key, like so many other keys I would later receive to growing up.

Having an honest to goodness transistor radio was a sure sign that one had arrived.imgres-1

This was way before cars were on my radar screen and my bicycle was my main and only mode of Locomotion (song hint here from the same time period).

I distinctly recall rigging that radio to the handlebars and instantly my portable music became even more portable.

And transistors.  Are they made anymore?  Didn’t the fellow who invent the transistor win the Nobel prize in teenage music?

My memory may be hazy on this but as a New York City teenager I recall that we were divided into radio listening camps – WABC, WMCA and a few others I can’t quite remember.  Those were the glory days of AM radio before it became the pile of whatever it is today.

And in way I guess they were my glory days too before high school, college and real life set in.  And then other music started to creep on to the FM dial and those were the glory days of FM radio.

Transistor radios on the AM and FM dial.  I wouldn’t trade those days for all the ipods in the world.

Johnny was pretty much a real schmuck.