Story By: G. H. HARDING
Debbie Harry With Micky Dolenz

DOLENZ AT SKETCHFEST – Monkee-Micky Dolenz joined in with a stellar cast last weekend for SketchFest in San Francisco. The yearly fete is a combination of sketch, improv, stand-up, film, music and alternative comedy. They'll be another one in L. A. this Valentine’s weekend.

Spotted were John Cho, Dayle Reyfel, Steven Weber, Janeane Garofalo, Jennifer Tilly, and, producer Eugene Pack.

MORE GRAMMY NEWS --- We neglected to mention what an outstanding opening act, rock-legend AC/DC was during the 57th show last Sunday.

With neither a new release out there, or signed to a proper label, the venerable group literally blew the roof off the sucker. With much of the audience attired in an authorized AC/DC set of devil horns, they were stupendous.

And, one other note about Beck and his stunning win for his album Morning Phase: it’s a tremendous piece of work with real musicians and real songs. If you haven't heard it, do yourself a favor and get a copy.

Brian Williams

WILLIAMS GROUNDED --- Hoping to temper the controversy growing around one of its best-known on-air personalities, NBC News on Tuesday suspended Brian Williams, the most-watched evening-news anchor in the U. S., from his duties as chief anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News for six months without pay in the wake of a scandal over misleading statements he made about his time covering the Iraq War in 2003.

The furor over Williams’ embellishments have engulfed NBC News since early last week, when his account of facing enemy fire while riding in a helicopter in 2003 was challenged by Iraq veterans. Williams’ last broadcast took place on Friday. Lester Holt will continue as substitute anchor.

Honestly, I'm glad a move of this magnitude was made, however, six months does seem a long, long time. What will Williams be able to do during his suspension? Letterman, Barbara Walters? Does he begin an apology-tour? Does he look for another post? Does NBC News retain the ‘With Brian Williams’ tag during each broadcast?

It’s been an awkward position for everyone; last week NBC News beat the competition with startling ratings … and, now the anchor is gone for 6 months. Talk about controversy. Something had to be done and now it has, although I think NBC may have made it a tad too severe.

Short of having Kanye step into the news desk for as time … NBC has more problems for sure!

GEILS BACK --- On February 24, 2015, Eagle Rock will issue the first ever release of House Party Live In Germany – the classic Rockpalast concert from The J. Geils Band – on DVD+CD.

The year was 1979. The J. Geils Band were touring Europe in support of their Sanctuary album and its hit single “One Last Kiss,” when they made a pit stop in Essen, Germany to perform on the famed television series Rockpalast.

Filmed on April 21 at the Grugahalle, the aptly-named House Party Live In Germany features the band delivering their brand of raw, raucous, R&B-soaked rock ‘n roll in a solid 14-song set. The first half of the concert focuses on material from Sanctuary, while the second half blasts through earlier breakthrough hits, like “Looking For A Love,” “Give It To Me,” and “Ain’t Nothing But A House Party.”

In the 70’s, The J. Geils Band developed a reputation for their faithful devotion to down-n-dirty bar blues (while most of their contemporaries drew more heavily from British blues-rock and psychedelia). As time progressed, their sound expanded into new directions and acquired more pop influences, leading them to score massive crossover appeal and commercial success with their 1981 album Freeze Frame and its smash hit “Centerfold.” House Party Live In Germany catches the band just before that key turn in the band’s career.

CLOSING NOTES --- Jon Stewart leaving late night? I must admit, I've not been a viewer, although whenever I've seen him, he's been unbelievably funny. I saw him host a tribute to Bruce Springsteen and it was one of the funniest things I've ever seen. He's been on board there since 1999. More on Jon soon ...

Kudos to today's Today Show which handled the Brian Williams imbroglio very impressively. The story came on at 7:11 AM today and everything was covered thoroughly. Tough spot. Interesting that Williams two biggest supporters, have been Bill O'Reilly and Piers Morgan. Don't know if that's good ... or, just odd ...

SIGHTINGS --- Singer Frank Shiner at Le Jardin du Roi in Chappaqua Saturday night. Shiner appears at Steve Walter's Cutting Room on March 21 …

Photos By: Jakub Mosurp & RD/Kirkland/Retna