Friday, September 20, 2013

Flashback Friday: ‘70s Teen Sensation Bay City Rollers Cover The Four Seasons’ Classic, ‘Bye, Bye, Baby’

Welcome to our musical Flashback Friday when we bring you “oldies but goodies” with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today we present the squeaky clean Bay City Rollers singing their 1975 version of The Four Seasons’ “Bye, Bye, Baby,” a tune that includes a key reference to a wedding ring.


In this song, the boy band’s lead singer, Les McKeown, confesses to his sweetheart that he would marry her, but he’s already committed to another… “Should have told her that I can't linger. There's a wedding ring on my finger. She's got me but I'm not free.”

Formed in 1966 as The Saxons, the Edinburgh, Scotland-based Bay City Rollers got their catchier name when one of the band members threw a dart at a map of the U.S. and it apparently landed “near” Bay City, Mich.

The Bay City Rollers ran off a string of chart-toppers in the mid-1970s, including 1975’s “Bye, Bye, Baby,” which sold more than a million copies and was the U.K.’s biggest hit of the year.

At the peak of their popularity, the Scottish teen heartthrobs — famous for wearing calf-length tartan trousers — were heralded as “the biggest group since the Beatles."

Ten years earlier, “Bye, Bye, Baby” was a hit for The Four Seasons, with Frankie Valli on lead vocals. The song reached #12 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and continues to be performed by the 79-year-old Valli, who is still touring.

We hope you enjoy the video of the Bay City Rollers singing “Bye, Bye, Baby.” The lyrics are below if you’d like to sing along.

“Bye Bye Baby (Baby Goodbye)”
Written by Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio. Performed by the Bay City Rollers.

If you hate me after what I say
Can't put it off any longer
Just gotta tell her anyway.

Bye bye baby, baby goodbye.
Bye baby, baby bye bye.
Bye bye baby, don't make me cry
Bye baby, baby bye bye.

You're the one girl in town I'd marry
Girl, I'd marry you now if I were free
I wish it could be
I could love you but why begin it
Cause there ain't any future in it
She's got me but I'm not free so


Wish I never had known you better
Wish I knew you before I met her
Gee, how good it would be for me
Should have told her that I can't linger
There's a wedding ring on my finger
She's got me but I'm not free so


Thursday, September 19, 2013

$7.5M Scale Model of Lamborghini Aventador Is Fashioned From a Half-Ton Block of Gold and Encrusted With 700 Diamonds

Fashioned from a half-ton block of pure gold and encrusted with 700 diamonds, this scale model of the Lamborghini Aventador is expected to fetch $7.5 million at auction, making it the world’s most expensive model car.


Designed in 1:8 scale by former Mercedes-Benz engineer and German model maker Robert Gulpen, the diminutive 24-inch-long supercar is 14 times more costly than its full-size, seven-speed, blazing-fast counterpart.


About $2.6 million of the total value can be attributed directly to the precious metals and gemstones used in the design. The finished model contains more than 55 pounds of pure gold.


The wheel coverings are fabricated in pure platinum, and the Lamborghini logo is designed in gold, platinum and diamonds. The car’s two seats and steering wheel are trimmed with 700 fine diamonds. Diamonds are also used to accent the headlights and taillights.


Gulpen claims that it took one-and-a-half years and a team of 10 engineers to make the model.

The actual full-size Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 has a seven-speed transmission, V12 engine, and goes from 0 to 60 mph in 2.9 seconds.


A near-exact prototype of Gulpen’s solid gold model is currently on display in Dubai, famously known as the “City of Gold.” The prototype, which is secured in a bullet-proof-glass case, mimics the final product, but is made of less valuable materials. The designer will be customizing the actual pure-gold version for the eventual owner.


Gulpen said the golden Lamborghini will secure three entries in the Guinness Book of World Records: most expensive model car, most secure showcase and the most luxurious logo. He also noted that $650,000 of the purchase price would go to charity.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

GIA’s ‘Faces of Eternity’ Exhibit to Feature 15 Intricately Carved Gem Skulls

Inspired by the juxtaposition of human mortality with the timelessness of gemstones, Peruvian artist and master carver Luis Alberto Quispe Aparicio will debut an ethereal collection of 15 gem skulls October 18 at the world headquarters of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in Carlsbad, Calif.


Titled Faces of Eternity, the exhibit will feature intricately carved and polished life-size skulls made from unusual gem crystals and ornamental rock.

“From fossilized whale bone to rainforest jasper, and from pink opal to peanut wood agate, Aparicio chose materials from a gem lover’s dream,” said Terri Ottaway, GIA museum curator. “Each skull has a distinctive look and feel to it, making this collection fascinating on both a gemological and artistic level.”

Impressively, the artist designed and created his complete 26-skull collection during a one-year period. The 11 skulls not included in the GIA exhibit are now part of private collections.


Highlights of the exhibit include “Chocolate with Peanut Butter” (top photo) featuring petrified palm wood agate from Australia, vermeil and obsidian; “Top Hat Gentle-Skull” featuring rock crystal quartz from Madagascar, snowflake obsidian and vermeil; and “Everlasting Youth” featuring aquamarine from Mozambique, vermeil and rock crystal quartz.

“The skulls collection was one of my favorite to create,” Aparicio said. “By carving natural gemstones with a combination of lapidary art and metalsmith techniques, you can really see how the colors and textures in each stone brings each piece to life.”

The Faces of Eternity exhibit will be on display at the GIA from October 18, 2013, through April 2014.

Photos by Pedro Grijalba.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Cancer Patient Enjoys Tearful Reunion With College Ring He Lost 39 Years Ago Thanks to Fossil Hunter Who Found It at the Bottom of a River

A 61-year-old cancer patient enjoyed an emotional, tearful reunion with his beloved college class ring — 39 years after losing it — thanks to the selfless efforts of a recreational fossil hunter who rescued the cherished keepsake from the bottom of the Cooper River in South Carolina.


CNN reported that Dr. Brian Tovin of Atlanta was diving for fossils and relics in 40 feet of murky water on August 23 when he spotted a shiny object embedded in the gravel. On closer inspection he realized he had found a 1974 College of Charleston class ring inscribed with the initials “RLP.”


Determined to find the owner of the large men’s ring, Tovin contacted the college’s alumni association and learned that only two people in the 1974 graduating class had those initials, and one was a woman. The “RLP” on this ring had to be the initials of Robert LeVaughn Phillips, so Tovin used his social media skills to track down Robert’s son, Eric.

The younger Phillips told Tovin that his dad was battling cancer and was still in the hospital recovering from brain surgery. Despite his dad’s fragile condition, the young Phillips arranged for Tovin to visit his dad’s hospital room in Charleston to make the special presentation.


On bended knee, Tovin opened a box that contained the ring Phillips hadn’t seen in 39 years. Phillips wept as he recounted that the ring was the last gift his mom gave him before she died of pancreatic cancer. He told a reporter that he believed his mom’s spirit may have played a role in the return of the ring that symbolized all that he was able to accomplish in his youth despite growing up without a father in his life. He had graduated from the College of Charleston with a degree in business administration.


On a lighter note, Phillips revealed to Tovin and a CNN reporter how he lost the ring in the first place. He had been enjoying a day of boating with his future wife, Nancy, on the Cooper River when his two-week-old class ring got tangled in the pop-top of a beer can he had just opened. When he shook his hand to free the pop-top, the poorly sized ring shot off his finger and went flying into the water.

"No matter how much time he has with us, we'll always have that ring. And it will always signify a good season of our life and a good memory of our father, and the fact that he got to share in it before he left us," Eric Phillips told CNN.

Monday, September 16, 2013

John Legend and Chrissy Teigen Tie the Knot in Italy; Cushion-Cut Diamond Engagement Ring Is Nearly As Pretty as the Bride

Seven-time Grammy Award winner John Legend exchanged vows with Sports Illustrated supermodel Chrissy Teigen in an intimate wedding ceremony at Lake Como, Italy, on Saturday. Lake Como is the place they first fell in love.


The model looked ravishing in a Vera Wang gown, and sparkling on her left hand was the breathtaking cushion-cut diamond engagement ring that made headlines when Legend gave it to her during the holiday season of 2011.


The couple had been dating for seven years and became engaged in late 2011 while vacationing in the Maldives. At the time, Teigen dished a few tidbits about her ring…

“It’s none of my doing at all. It was all left up to him,” she told “All I know is that it’s a cushion cut, and I had never even heard of that before.”


The cushion cut is considered a “fancy” diamond shape and is often selected as a progressive alternative to the more common oval- or princess-cut diamond. It’s essentially a “pillow” shape — a square outline with softened, rounded corners. The modern cushion cut is based on an antique cushion cut that can trace its history to the 1830s.

Teigen told People in May that her talented 34-year-old fiancĂ© would perform “All of Me” at the wedding — a brand new song that was written especially for her. The song is featured on his latest album, Love in the Future.

In January of this year, Teigen half-joked to the New York Daily News during the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue launch party that Legend had until the end of the year to tie the knot, or she was going to “hit the road.” Seems like Legend got the message.