cover image You Only Rock Once

You Only Rock Once

Jerry Blavat. Running Press, $23 (384p) ISBN 978-0-7624-4215-7

Writing a narrative that teems with zest and hipness, Blavat invites readers to accompany him on the inside track through the early days of doo wop and R&B to his national stature as an influential figure on the pop scene. Bandstand icon Dick Clark, in his foreword, spells out how much clout Blavat wielded in the heyday of the top acts of the '60s and '70s, rising from a teen "committee member" of the popular TV show to a powerhouse DJ on the East Coast from his studio built in his garage in Philadelphia, and later a top-rated TV stint. He discusses his ground-breaking Alan Freed%E2%80%93sponsored shows at the famed Paramount, his friendships with black doo wop and soul groups before the Jim Crow barrier came down, and his hobnobbing with Hollywood royalty including Sinatra, Frankie Avalon, Tony Curtis, and Sammy Davis Jr. He doesn't shy from talking about his wild ways with the ladies and the run-ins with the law concerning his mobbed-up pals. This soulful memoir by a "little cockroach kid from South Philadelphia" offers readers an insider's view into the golden era of rock and roll and pop music and entertainment. (Aug.)