The owner of WBEB-FM (101.1) is getting much mileage over his plan to sell one of his prized possessions and use the proceeds to fund one of his passions.
Lee, 74, owns one of the original Aston Martin Silver Birch DB5s used in the James Bond films Goldfinger and Thunderball - complete with nifty options such as smoke screen, radar, and passenger ejector seat. Kept in a spot of honor in his basement amid Bond lore for four decades, the sports car is in Canada being prepped for an Oct. 27 auction.
He paid $12,000 for it in 1969.
The expected sale price is north of $5 million.
Lee, a man of good taste, was reading The Inquirer in September 1969 when, he said, he saw "on the left-hand column, 'James Bond car for sale.' "
Lee rang up Aston Martin in England on a Wednesday and learned that its U.S. distributorship was in King of Prussia. Saturday, cashier's cheque in hand, he was at the factory in England with his assistant. (That was the only time he drove the car.) The vehicle was flown to Philly, where, after customs officials initially balked at its complement of machine guns, it was displayed at the 1969 Philadelphia Auto Show.
"It's a work of art," said Lee, who was approached by an auctioneer last year and got worldwide attention last week after telling his story to the Wall Street Journal.
"I love this car, but I have this incredible passion for changing the world," said Lee, who has given millions to the field of criminology. His foundation runs centers at Penn and the University of Cambridge in England and endows a research prize in Sweden.
Lee, who drives a Mercedes S550, said he'd probably put in an air-hockey table where the car once sat.
Honors for Kevin Eubanks
For his first major events since he left
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
last month, Germantown native
is coming home to receive a pair of honors.
On June 17, the musician will receive a plaque on the Philadelphia Music Alliance's Walk of Fame on South Broad Street, putting him in the sidewalk alongside such notables as Frankie Avalon, Dick Clark, John Coltrane, and Teddy Pendergrass.
The next night, Eubanks will join Billy Paul ("Me and Mrs. Jones"), the Intruders ("I'll Always Love My Mama"), and Joe "Butter" Tamburro (WDAS-FM, 105.3) as this year's honorees at the annual Phillies "Sound of Philadelphia" Night. They'll all get the 2010 Phillies Gamble & Huff Community Partnership Award.
Living in the city
WYSP-FM morning man
have a crew from DIY Network at their 200-year-old rowhouse on an Old City alley through Thursday. They're ripping out their kitchen for the
show. Handyman and former underwear model
, with Bonaduce's "help," is tripling the 30- to 40-square-foot galley, for which appliances and materials have to be loaded in and out by crane. "I never built anything in my whole life except a career," Bonaduce said. "Trust me. I know less than I thought I know." The episode is scheduled for Oct. 5.
didn't exactly twist
's arm when asking him to drop out of the Senate race last year, Sestak told newsman
during a taping Thursday of Kane's Comcast Network show,
Voice of Reason
, that will be shown at 9:30 p.m. Sunday. It was during a Feb. 18 taping for Kane's show that Sestak, in response to a question, first said the White House had offered him a job to keep him from running in the May primary against
. Sestak told Kane on Thursday that as soon as he had turned down Clinton, the former president had told him, "I knew you'd say that." Sestak also told Kane that Clinton had been one of "many" people urging him not to run - including his daughter,
A bit of Broadway comes to Broad Street:
Thomas Jefferson Byrd
, appearing through next Sunday in Philadelphia Theatre Company's production of
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre, is re-creating the role of Toledo, which won him a Tony nomination in 2003.
Philly choreographer Rennie Harris received an honorary doctor of fine arts degree from Bates College in Maine at its commencement last weekend. He's credited with being one of the first to bring hip-hop dance to concert stages.
To tune up fans' ears for the Carole King-James Taylor show at the Wachovia Center on Thursday: Their 2007 performance at the Troubadour in L.A. will be shown at 8 p.m. Sunday on WHYY TV12.