Many stations that had carried Dr. Demento in the late 90's flipped to Spanish formats, or dropped it and then went belly-up as corporate radio began to take a stranglehold on musical creativity. From three to 14 stations carried the stream of the Dr. Demento show since 1996, and since the signals went global, some rise-and-shine 6am Eastern shows translated to bleary-eyed 3am Western listening online and other quirks of global time zone negotiating.
Many notable novelty songs and stuff were heard on the Dr. Demneto show in the late 90's, but back then, Internet streaming was in its infancy, with some modems unable to handle streams faster than 8kbps even on a 33.6 modem and other problems. Today, broadband has taken care of the congestion problem, but unless you can find a place to download the Dr. Demento Show, you can listen to it only at the specified times, most of which are at your inconvieience such as during a TV show or when you have to work or sleep.
That's where 24 hour radio stations such as DFSX come into play. DFSX plays the current novelty and odd songs that most corporate radio stations are just plain ignoring, and is also bringing back dozens of notable novelty sovineirs and hits that you may have missed or want to hear again.
Some of the songs from 1997 that DFSX features from time to time, and is subject to change without notice, are listed under the heading of "Hits of 1997". During the DFSX Time Warp series, we take you back in time, one song at a time, while noting what year the song was popular in.
And as a bonus, we also throw in some of the notable hip pop songs from that year! You never know what the Time Warp series will take you back to, keeping DFSX from being a cookie-cutter novelty song station in itself; regular hit stations used to play novelty songs back then, why not turn the tables and have a novelty station play some hit songs? Dr. Demento does play some non-novelty songs on occasion.
One more thing: be sure to let us know what novelty songs from the past of any year you want to be streamed so we can keep these in mind for future years.
Some highlights of the year 1997 include the 20th anniversary rerelease of the remastered
Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope (originally titled just Star Wars in 1977), along with its two sequels
from 1980 and 1983, "South Park" debut and became the most popular cable TV series ever, so popular that
it beat ABC's low-rated news programming oppositie it, and "Weird Al" got his own Saturday morning kids
Requests for 1997 songs
B.L. wants to hear "Rabbit Valley" - Four Postmen Rob Tillman wants to hear "Don't Cry For Me Argentina" - Madonna (I'm not sure about that one folks. Any seconds?) Kenneth Jackson likes hearing "Rusty Cage" - Johnny Cash (we'll keep this one on longer)
Other notable hip hits: Foolish Games / You Were Meant For Me (dance mix?) - Jewel Return Of The Mack - Mark Morrison How Do I Live (disco mix) - LeAnn Rimes Do You Know (What It Takes) - Robyn 2 Become 1 - Spice Girls Where Have All The Cowboys Gone? - Paula Cole Ooh Aah... Just A Little Bit - Gina G It's All Coming Back To Me Now (dance mix) - Celine Dion Where Do You Go - No Mercy I Love You Always Forever (dance mix) - Donna Lewis Macarena (Bayside Boys Mix) (this was 1996!) - Los Del Rio Don't Cry For Me Argentina (dance mix) - Madonna One More Time - Real McCoy
01/09, a flash of brilliance on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" as musical guest Ashley MacIsaac kicks up his heels, and shows what a Scotsman wears beneath his kilt, or in this case... doesn't. "Late Night" offers to re-record his segment, but MacIsaac turns them down, and the segment airs with a strategically placed electronic blur.
01/10, "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer" album by Elmo And Patsy was certified Platinum by the RIAA
01/12, the animated sitcom "King of the Hill" debut on Fox. The uncoordinated Bobby gets hit in the face with a ball during a baseball game, leading a meddling Child Protective Services social worker to think his father is abusing him on the pilot of "King of the Hill." Mmmm-hmm. Yep. Dang-olcartoonsitcom-launch.
01/12, HAL became operational (2001: A Space Odyssey).
01/28, "Odelay" album by Beck was certified Platinum by the RIAA
01/28, Pat Boone released an album of heavy metal tunes
01/28, After a speech in Champaign, Illinois, President Bill Clinton's plane, Air Force One, was taxiing toward a runway when the wheels on the right side of the plane rolled off the concrete into soft soil and got stuck. Air Force 2, with Al Gore on-board, had already taken off for their next stop in La Crosse, Wisconsin, so a third plane was flown in to pick up the president. Before the prez switched planes, dozens of crewmembers and secret service agents had to move supplies from plane to plane, including three coolers and six 24-pack cases of soda (true).
01/31, the 1977 movie "Star Wars" was rereleased as "Star Wars Special Edition" in theaters in the USA and grossed a record January opening weekend take of $35.9 million.
02/02, KSCA 101.9 in Los Angeles would air the station's final live "Dr. Demento" radio show before the station, which was purchased by the owners of two Spanish language stations, would too change to a Spanish format due to poor ratings of the album adult alternative format, though highly acclaimed. No station at press time has picked up either Demento or the AAA format.
02/02, D.T. was seen live on TV on KCAL channel 9 as part of the KSCA candlelight vigil while helping the many AAA fans bring attention to the adult rock music format, just seven days after he appearred on a San Diego TV station on a news program.
02/08, D.T. had his 16th or 17th (I lost count) and final letter read on the fX cable series "Backchat" hosted by Jeff Probst. The letter read "I think she's cute". You figure it out.
02/09, the Fox cartoon series "The Simpsons" aired its 167th episode of the series in its eighth season, becoming the longest-running animated series in cartoon history as "The Flintstones" ended a 166-episode run after six seasons in 1966.
02/15, on the cover of TV Guide: David Letterman, and "Why It's Still Cool to Love Dave...hotter guests, hipper music, rocking road trips...David Letterman is on a roll!"
02/20, D.T. buys a new computer to replace his old outdated 486-SX computer. Unfortunately today, his Pentium 200MMX is itself outdated just two years after it was introduced, but at least it compiled his QBASIC programs in 1/10th of the time!
02/20, Ben and Jerry's introduced a new flavor -- Phish food, named after the rock group Phish. It contains chocolate ice cream, marshmallows, caramel and fish-shaped fudge. Eat it up. Yum.
02/21, the movie "The Empire Strikes Back: Special Edition" was re-released in movie theaters in the USA.
02/23, scientists in Scotland announced they had succeeded in cloning an adult mammal, producing a lamb named Dolly. (Dolly, however, was later put down after a short life marred by premature aging and disease.)
02/29, (Feb 30), "Weird Al" Yankovic released "Macarena" in record stores, but pulled it at the last second.
03/01, on the cover of TV Guide: "cast of 3rd Rock From The Sun". Other Articles: Mike Judge, EZ Streets, Alison Sweeney
03/07, Howard Stern's movie "Private Parts" opened in movie theaters in the USA. It was also reported the day before that the soundtrack of his movie debut at #1 on the Billboard 200 album chart, making him literally the king of ALL media in music and the movies where his movie was #1 that weekend.
03/07, "Weird Al" Yankovic recorded "The Ballad of Kent Marlowe" for the Disney TV movie "Safety Patrol"
03/10, "Buffy, the Vampire Slayer" TV Drama starring Sarah Michelle Gellar premiered on the WB netlet.
03/11, former Beatle Paul McCartney went back to see Queen Elizabeth to collect a knighthood for helping to revolutionize pop music. The impish lad from Liverpool, one of the most successful songwriters in history, became Sir Paul in a centuries-old ceremony of pomp and solemnity.
03/14, the movie "Return Of The Jedi: Special Edition" was re-released in movie theaters in the USA.
03/18, Singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett sued a restaurant in Maui, Hawaii, for naming their place "Cheeseburger in Paradise" -- the title of one of his songs -- and for the many other Buffet-esque touches in the restaurant's decor and on the menu.
03/23, Demi Moore and her "Striptease" led the annual Oscar eve dishonors, capturing six Razzie Awards for the worst in Hollywood movies in 1996 including Worst Picture, Actress (Demi Moore), Director, and Song ("Pussy, Pussy, Pussy, Whose Kitty Cat Are You?"); Worst New Star went to Pamela Anderson Lee for "Barb Wire" which was a huge bomb.
04/07, the University of Amsterdam began offering a course titled "Madonna 101"...a pop culture class studying the singer's lyrics, song stylings and films.
04/21, the ashes of Timothy Leary, the 1960s guru of LSD, and of "Star Trek" creator Gene Roddenberry were blasted into outer space orbit aboard a Spanish satellite. Leary's final request was for "one last far-out trip." It was the world's first space funeral.
05/02, Mike Myers' "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" opens in theaters. It's Myers' first successful film whose title contains neither "Wayne" or "World." Myers created the character while listening to Burt Bacharach's "The Look of Love" on the radio.
05/14, who needs "Celebrity Deathmatch" when you can watch Frank-N-Furter battle Peaches and Herb? "The Drew Carey Show's" second season ends with not one, but two, battling musical numbers in a dance-off to determine whose midnight movie will be shown at the local theater -- "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" or "The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert." Drew and his curiously-costumed cronies are "doing the Time Warp," while Mimi and her birds of a feather opt to "Shake Your Groove Thing."
05/17, in Plainville, CT, Tony Quirion saw a dealership flier for a 1983 Cadillac that said the "First 10,000 Bananas Takes It." So, he called up a fruit wholesaler and priced out 10,000 bananas for about $1,100 -- less than half the cash price of the Caddy. Quirion then showed up at Chris' Auto Wholesalers along with the mountain of bananas and got the car. "I opened my mouth and someone brings in bananas," Pio said. "I had to hold myself to my word."
05/22, "Hot" album by Squirrel Nut Zippers was certified Gold by the RIAA
05/23, the movie "The Lost World - Jurassic Park" was released in the movie theaters nationwide in the USA. It took in a record-setting $22 million during its opening day. Over the four-day weekend, it ate up a record $90,161,880 dollars and hit the $100 million mark on May 27, the fastest time any movie ever grossed that much (six days counting the sneak preview May 22).
06/20, the movie "Batman and Robin" starring George Clooney as Batman, Chris O'Donnell as Robin, Alicia Silverstone as Batgirl, Arnold Schwarzeneggar as Mr. Freeze, Uma Thurman as Poison Ivy, and the Hockey Team From Hell debut in movie theaters in the USA. It opened with $42.9 million.
06/28, Bite of the Centry: in the Bite of the Century, Mike Tyson bit off parts of Evander Holyfield's ears in a Pay-Per-Chew bout in a DQ of Tyson in the third round from Las Vegas. It generated a record 1.9 million PPV viewers. Evander Holyfield retains his WBA title when Mike Tyson was disqualified for biting at the end of round three by referee Mills Lane. Tyson, who had been upset at what he believed to be multiple head butts to the face, one of which opened a gash above his right eye, took matters into his own hands when he took a bite of Holyfield's ear with 30 seconds remaining in the third round. After consulting with ringside physicians, Lane let the fight go on with a warning to Tyson. However, the defending champ took another bite when action resumed and Lane halted the fight at the conclusion of the round. Database entry joke: This was unintended, I swear, but in my events database where all the reports are generated from, each column range has a function or a value identified by letters and numbers; the columns I use to identify this record are "Y" for use this record, "u" for a boxing match, and "m" for ok to publish it; the codes spell out "Yum" in an unintentional code-sequence tie-in with this event!
06/29, Weird Al Yankovic recorded "The Weird Al Show Theme" for his CD "Running With Scissors" in 1999 as well as for his 1997 CBS children's series "The Weird Al Show."
07/01, "Zoot Suit Riot" album by Cherry Poppin' Daddies was released
07/07, the sitcom "Married, With Children" last aired on Fox after 10 years and three months. It was the first program to debut on the night Fox launched its Sunday night broadcasting programming slate on April 5, 1987.
07/12, on the cover of TV Guide: "Hank Hill, Daria, Dr. Katz". Other Articles: Animation's New Wave, Moose & Squrrel
07/15, in New York, David Letterman proudly proclaimed his show is #3 in a billboard publicizing his CBS Late Show in the same Broadway block where NBC put up a billboard of a smiling Jay Leno proclaiming that he's No. 1 in the late-night television ratings. Both billboards are in full view of the Ed Sullivan Theater, where Letterman's show is taped. Meanwhile, pop parodist "Weird Al" Yankovic proudly proclaimed that he was #27 for some reason I can't think of.
07/15, stretching his website franchise further, David Tanny launches a new section, "Eight is Enough", on Geocities.
07/16, "George of the Jungle," the TV cartoon about an inept Tarzan gets a movie treatment, opened in movie theaters in the USA.
07/16, "Here's Your Sign" single by Bill Engvall was certified Gold by the RIAA
07/28, Comedy Central first invites you to call, write, email to futility.com in the hopes, infinitesimal as they might be, that one day soon... you might "Win Ben Stein's Money!" hosted by former Richard Nixon speechwriter Stein.
07/30, '80s group Boys Don't Cry sues Paula Cole, Warner Bros. Records and Imago Records over Cole's pop song "Where Have All The Cowboys Gone." The $7 million suit claims that Cole's song sounds too much like the 1986 Boys Don't Cry hit, "I Wanna Be A Cowboy."
08/12, Whimsical Will launched his own website.
08/13, the cartoon series "South Park", rated TV-M, debut on Comedy Central. First up: aliens give one of the boys an "anal probe", then abduct another baby's brother, Kenny gets killed, Cartman sets his cat on fire, and the baby does a David Caruso impression. Lesson: kicking real-life babies can result in permanent injuries, but cartoon babies are virtually indestructable.
08/31, The Hosaphone(tm), is heard for the first time on the Dr. Demento Radio Show as an extra on the Funny Five. The jazz tune is, Codetta in C for Hosaphone(tm), Piano and Bass by David A. Roth.
09/09, "Aquarium" album by Aqua was released. It includes the novelty song "Barbie Girl."
09/09, U.S. character actor Burgess Meredith died. A veteran of stage and screen, he was nominated for an Oscar for his supporting role in "Rocky" but was probably best remembered for his portrayal of The Penguin in the Batman TV series.
09/13, CBS enlists song parodist "Weird Al" Yankovic to create an educational Saturday-morning show for teens. As Yankovic explains in the show's theme song, "One day Al was in the forest, trying to get a tan/When he heard the tortured screaming of a funny little man/He was caught in a bear trap, and Al set him free/And the guy that he rescued was grateful as could be!/And it turns out that he's a big shot producer on TV/So he gives Al a contract, and what do you know/Now he's got his very own 'Weird Al' Show!" It lasts one season.
09/16, "What's Your Name" album by Adam Sandler was released
09/17, comedian Red Skelton died at a hospital near his home in Palm Springs, Calif., after a long illness. He was 84.
09/19, U.S. media mogul Ted Turner said he would give the United Nations a gift of $1 billion. He should have given about 10 percent of that to David Tanny so he could quit doing these stupid Datebook reports on the Internet!
10/15, "Greatest Hits Volume II" album by Ray Stevens was certified Gold by the RIAA
10/16, the launch date on the TV-show "Lost in Space". That is to say, the fictionalized premiere date was supposed to have taken place as the Robinsons left Earth for a five-year voyager of exploration of a planet in the Alpha Centuri star system via the "Jupiter II" spaceship. But thanks to the sabotage efforts of Dr. Zachary Smith, the whole ship ended up lost in space as the Robinsons bounced from planet to planet as they tried to find their way home. Since the show started on Sep 15, 1965, if it continued to this date in real time, the fictional date would be November 16, 2029. By then, Will would be at the helm, but his father would've been dead for five years and his mother would be never the same, so it was up to him, according to the song Bill Mumy wrote in 1996, "Lost in Space" for his CD "Dying to Be Heard."
10/18, on the cover of TV Guide: "Sabrina, The Teenage Witch (Melissa Joan Hart)". Other Articles: South Park, LL Cool J, Goldie Hawn
10/21, Conan O'Brien wonders aloud what he's doing at a Letterman rip-off on "Die Harald Schmidt Show."
10/23, on "Weird Al" Yankovic's 37th birthday, the Bermuda Files moved to www.weirdal.com
11/12, on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," the host files a report on his trip to Cologne, Germany, which he calls "Aftershaven." O'Brien was in town to appear on Letterman rip-off "Die Harald Schmidt Show."
11/15, William Shatner married Nerine Kidd
11/17, "Bring The Pain" video by Chris Rock was certified Gold by the RIAA
11/19, on "South Park", after the boys contact an agency that helps starving children, Government authorities send Cartman to Ethiopia.
11/20, "Seinfeld" on NBC told one of their episodes, in reverse order.
11/25, "The Jerky Boys 3" album by The Jerky Boys was certified Gold by the RIAA
11/25, Garth Brooks's multi-platinum "Sevens" CD was released. On an unrelated note, "Weird Al" Yankovic was reportedly working on a parody of that..."Twenty-Sevens", but it never materialized.
11/26, the Disney movie "Flubber" starring Robin Williams opened in movie theaters in the USA
11/28, The final original regular installment of MTV's "Beavis & Butt-head," entitled "Beavis and Butt-head Are Dead," aired on MTV.
11/28, Chumbawamba singer Danbert Nobacon (NO'-bay-kon) was arrested in Florence, Italy, for wearing a skirt. He was released when a police officer recognized the name "Chumbawamba."
12/01, Kenny G set a record for the longest-held note -- an E flat, which he held on his sax for 45 minutes and 47 seconds, said Mark C. Young, Guinness Book of Records publisher. The feat was accomplished in a New York music store.
12/03, "Hot" album by Squirrel Nut Zippers was certified Platinum by the RIAA
12/16, over 700 Japanese children suffer nausea and seizures of a condition deemed "light epilepsy" or "Nintendo epilepsy" after watching a strobe effect from a cartoon. It is announced within the week that the show will soon be imported to America, without the "dangerous effect." The cartoon's name? Now it's the adults who get sick watching the show, called "Pokemon."
12/17, in "South Park", because he's Jewish, Kyle is denied involvement in the Nativity play and excluded from trips to see Santa. Also debuting is Mr. Hanky, the Christmas Poo.
12/18, comedian Chris Farley was found dead in his Chicago apartment; he was 33.
12/19, James Cameron's epic "Titanic," the highest grossing film ever made, and starring Leonardo Dicaprio, Kate Winslet, Bill Paxton, opened in American movie theaters. Thanks to hunk Leonard DiCaprio, with the help of mostly teenage girls, this movie became the all-time mother of all blockbusters, along with the Celine Dion hit single in early 1998.
12/25, comedian Jerry Seinfeld announced plans to fold his highly successful NBC sitcom "Seinfeld" at the end of the current season. At the beginning of 1997, there was a show about nothing on NBC; a year later, Datebook author David Tanny finds nothing to watch on NBC.
12/31, "Men in Black" star Will Smith married actress Jada Pinkett in a New Year's Eve ceremony in Baltimore.