Sunday, August 30, 2020

In Dan's Garage...#138


Greetings music lovers!!!!! Looky here, I got to work in another post in as many weeks and I don't think I've done that in over four years. I figure if I'm just going to goof off and play records, I may as well rip them, scan the labels and fire away with another one, and the theme of this one is literally "goofing off listening to records". 

I had/have another blog that I largely ignore (because I just don't have the time) called "Dan's Leftovers. That's for the stuff that lies outside of the garage/psychedelic/surf orbit and includes pop, girl groups, novelty records, and just plain ol' weird stuff. I have TONS of 45's like these, and I actually like quite a few of them, so you may see more of this kind of  junk from time to time. I'll buy anything these days if it's priced right. Hell, I recently bought 150 Italian 45's that all came with picture sleeves and they were all in real nice shape. No garage or psych mind you, but a lot of San Remo pop type records plus three spoken word records by the Pope. In other words "oddballs". That's precisely what your getting here, a bunch of oddballs, girl groups, pop, and novelty records so enjoy this one and take all of this with a good sense of humor.

Tender Slim - Hey Joe! / Teenage Hayride (1959)
Here's a cool 45 by a guy named "Tender Slim" who from what I can gather was also known as "Tender Joe Richardson", and "Fender Guitar Slim". apparently he was the guitarist and bandleader for the Shirelles. This is good lo-fi blues/R&B/Rock And Roll that was produced by Teddy Vann who has a resume that's way to long to list here.

U.B.'s Group - Percussive Woman (1962)
O.K., This 45 is not going to go over well with the "Me Too" crowd and any of you out there who are "politically correct". This "novelty" record came out in 1962 when views of women were quite different than they are in 2020. Personally I find none of this offensive, in fact this is 4+ minutes of beatnik style poetry that describes woman's power over men. Maybe I'm wrong here. Maybe this is an attempt at showing how women are actually more powerful than men.(?) In any case, I find this record to be rather amusing and a real good microcosm of the times in 1962. P.S. I just realized that I did not add "Sneaky Pete" the A side to this 45 which is a great instro. I'll add it next time.

Carran Bruce - When The Rains Came / I Looked Away (196?)
This one is tough to get ant info on. I wanna say that this is someone from the east coast, perhaps someone here in upstate NY as it is a "Circa Release", a label that appears on many upstate NY records, but I can't say for sure. Anyway, I've had this 45 forever (one of the first things I ever bought for 25¢) and have listened to it on and off over the past...oh...35 years, and it has grown on me. Somewhere between girl group, garage, and country, this is actually quite an enjoyable record.

Henry Thome - Scotch And Soda / Wolf Bait (1962)
Well....I did a little research on this and discovered that this was a song performed by Johnny Ray back in 1962 but this is actually the original article which ol' John Boy copped off of Henry Thome. Now seriously, who's record are you gonna buy? Johnny Ray's or Henry Thome's??? Most people bought Johnny Ray's but frankly, I've listened to both and think Henry's is the superior cut. The flip is also great. An ode to a chick who Henry's got a thing for.

Ronnie Wallis & The Rajahs - Never Leave Me / Goin' Steady (1965)
Here's a 45 that is rather interesting. I read about this one a while back but have had trouble recalling the website where I read it (BOOKMARKS DAN!!!!) but I will paraphrase here. Ronnie Wallis' mother was somehow connected to the music business and ended up in Australia for something, I cannot recall, BUT, she brought her daughter with her, Ronnie, and got The Rajahs, who were a very popular group at the time to back Ronnie up on a few songs and these are at least two of them. The Rajahs basically did tributes to the Beatles, backed Johnny O'Keefe, a very popular Australian singer, and worked in the studio as well, as evidenced by this rather cool 45 by Ronnie Wallis. Ronnie never hit the big time but at least she left us with this little boppin' gem.

Kelly Garrett - Save Me From Myself / The Boy On The Drums (1965)
Here's a real nice 45 from Kelly Garret who made appearances on shows like "Shivaree", Shindig", "American Bandstand", etc. but never really hit the big time. I bought this 45 from Ebay from a seller who listed it as "garage", yet, it had a really low opening bid (99¢ I believe) so I figured what the hell. Excellent pop from the mid 60's and I'm not sure what happened to Kelly Garrett, I think she had a successful career as an actress on Broadway and Hollywood but at least she left us with this fine piece of pop music.

Dr. West's Medicine Show & Junk Band - The Eggplant That Ate Chicago / You Can't Fight City Hall Blues (1966)
If we weren't in novelty territory yet, we're here now. Dr. West and his band were basically Norman Greenbaum's side project as he was having huge hits on the top 40 with "Spirit In The Sky". This one is from 1966 and pre-dates his "hit" but is a good example of the "Jug Band meets novelty song" concept.

Shannons - Born Too Late / Mr. Sunshine Man (1968)
Very nice sunshine pop from a trio of L.A. girls that sound so sweet on their cover of the Poni-Tails big hit. Unfortunately, the public wasn't into a re-make of an "oldie" from six or seven years ago. Perhaps if The Shannons had made "Mr. Sunshine Man" their 'A' side , they would have had better luck. Just speculating......

Vanity Fair - Peter Who? (Peter Pan) (1967)
Sooo...another girl group,and from what I've gathered, they were from somewhere around Houston, TX as they were managed buy the same crew that managed Fever Tree, who were on Mainstream Records, an affiliate of Brent. Not to be confused with the British group of the same name that had a hit with "Hitchin' A Ride".

Dion - Purple Haze (1967)
Yow! Everyone knows Dion DiMucci, a great Italian American, from the Bronx, who led one of the most iconic do-wop groups ever, recorded tons of hits and had a great career. Well, somewhere in the mid sixties, Dion got sidetracked somehow and recorded this absolutely bizarre take on Jimi Hendrix's classic. I can't rally describe this one, except that ol' Dion was probably pretty high at the time and decided to take the song in a different direction???

Art Nouveaux - Extraterrestrial Visitations / The Way To Play It (1967)
Here's a 45 that's probably some sort of studio concoction. I can't really find any info on this 45 except that producer Steve Douglas was a respected sax player and session musician who worked with Phil Spector, Duane Eddy, The Beach Boys, and also produced The Lettermen and Mink DeVille. I think if this was a studio group it would be safe to assume that the band here were a bunch of The Wrecking Crew.

Daddy Dewdrop - March Of The White Corpuscles / Fox Huntin' (On The Weekend) (1971)
Daddy Dewdrop a/k/a Dick Monda, released an LP and a few 45's in the early 70's including "Chick A Boom" (Don't Ya Jes' Love It)" which reach #9 on the Billboard charts. I must admit, I've never heard that song in my entire life and I grew up on AM radio back in the early seventies (I was in 'junior high" at the time) and stil haven't heard it, in fact, I never heard of Daddy Dewdrop until I picked up this kooky 45 a while back. It's actually kind of cool with a haunting organ and the vocals sounding like they were piped through a Leslie speaker to nice effect. The B side sounds like typical early seventies "rock".

Misty - Resurrection Shuffle / Baby, I Love You (197?)
Another one of these 99¢ 45 listed as "garage" that I was able to score for the low bid. I'm not sure if "Misty' is a band or solo artist but it really doesn't make a difference. The first time I ever heard this was truly a WTF moment. The band is nothing terribly exciting, it's when "Misty" starts singing. That's when things get, well....exciting? Misty's voice is, to be kind, "unique". I'm not sure if she's an 11 year old, or an adult trying to sound different, but rest assured, the results are flabbergasting. The A side is a cover of  Ashton, Gardner, & Dyke's "Resurrection Shuffle", another song of which I was totally unfamiliar with, until I heard this. The B side is, well...if Misty is 11 years old, rather disturbing to say the least. After hearing this I tried doing some research on this record, and outside of a couple of other bloggers who pretty much hold the same opinion as mine, I came to a dead end. I have some other 45's that are from Ohio which have similar labels, so that might be a good guess as to where they're from, but I really can't say for sure. Don't say I didn't warn you.

Willard & The Kohouteks - Purple People Eater / I Can Make It By Myself (1973)
In late 1973 when I was a young lad of 12 going on 13, the comet Kohoutek was one of the biggest crazes in pop culture at the time. It was huge, it was from outer space, it was supposedly from outside the solar system and in December of that year, it was going to light up the sky like nothing any earthling had ever seen in their lifetime. Well....Kohoutek turned out to be a big dud, but not before these guys decided to cash in on the hype with a re-make of Sheb Wooley's classic "Purple People Eater" done in true early seventies "rock" style!!!!

Dust - The Pledge / Bertha (1969)
I'm going to end this post with a 45 that's not actually a "45". "Dust", I believe, were from the Detroit area, or perhaps western Ohio, I've seen different info, but these are definitely not the guys who had a couple of LP's on Kama Sutra and featured Richie Wise and Kenny Aaronson. This group had two 45's, this being their second and I must say, it's another kook fest. Don't get me wrong here...I'm all for the Pledge Of Allegiance, and I consider myself a pretty patriotic guy, but the "lead vocalist" goes way over above and beyond mere patriotism, no, the lead vocalist here explains (in 6:55 excruciating minutes) what "The Pledge" means to him, all this done over a backdrop of "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother". The flip is a comedy routine done over Them's "Gloria" so you sort of get a two-fer of nuttiness on this 7 incher. So, why is this not really a "45"???? Because in order to fit the lead singer's pledge soliloquy on the A side, they had to slow things down to 33⅓ in order to fit every word. Pretty clever huh?


Saturday, August 22, 2020

In Dan's Garage...#137

Greetings music lovers!!!!! Holy crap, as I write this I'm trying to wade through a bunch of changes that the "blogger app" has gone through and being a very old school guy, am having a bit of difficulty with it. But I'm sure after muddling through this for an hour or so, I'll get the hang of it. 

HEY!!! I haven't communicated with you for a while and I'm feeling somewhat guilty about that, but as you all know, we only have so much time on our hands to play around with this shit, and time is a precious commodity these days (as always) but I managed to get a couple of hours of solitude to spin some 45's, scan some labels, and now I'm here writing!

Thanks to all the friends and followers who've stuck around, I appreciate your continued interest in this humble blog of mine which will keep going on for the foreseeable future.

I managed to somewhat organize my 45's this summer into "posted" 45's and "not posted" 45's. That took several days and you'll all be glad to hear that there's TONS that haven't been posted yet.
I did take a hiatus from buying stuff due to the covids and the financial uncertainty that it caused. I'm happy to report that all is well here and my lovely wife Red and I are doing fine, as well as the rest of my family and my mother who will be turning 90 on September 2. I visit with her at least twice a week, and outside of the usual creakyness a 90 year old experiences, she's in excellent health and she's sharp as a tack. But I am back to procuring cool 45's and have gotten a few gems in the last few weeks. Please stay tuned!

On a more somber note, my best pal and band mate Jerry Flanagan passed away on June 23rd from cancer which was diagnosed in April. He was experiencing some discomfort in his chest around Christmastime and by the time he got a proper diagnosis, it was too late. I played in a band with this guy for the better part of 37 years and I will miss him dearly. We were still playing together as of December 2019 and our last "gig" was a Christmas party we played here at my house back in mid December. It was one of our better performances but never in my life did I think it would be our last. So I dedicate this post to his memory. 
R.I.P. Jerry Flanagan

So here we are, August 2020 and I'm trying to get this thing back up and running on a regular basis. As usual we have a varied mix of styles here from straight up raunchy garage to beautiful Sunshine Pop. So pleas sit back and enjoy the ride!!!!

Ravens - Are You A Boy, Or Are You A Girl / Imagine You And Me (1966)
I'm not sure where these guys are from, but somewhere near Cincinnati, OH would be a good guess as this 45 was pressed at the Rite Records factory in WKRP town. "Ravens" do a weird job on the Barbarian's classic here with a very slow loopy delivery and a wicked cool sax as well. Extremely lo-fi this record is one my coolest acquisitions of the last two years or so. The flip is a real slow ballad, but is cool nonetheless.

Classels - Love Is / Tomorrow May Be Too Late (1966)
The Classels were a very popular outfit out of Montreal, Quebec, CA and had over twenty 45's released up there, this one here is the only one to be released in the U.S. Most, if not all of their Canadian singles were sung in French but on this one here they sing in English, the A sided being a take on the traditional French song "Alouette" and the B side a nice beat/pop number. Their "schtick" was wearing multi colored or all white suits and having their hair dyed bleach blond. They are well featured on IDG #56. Check it out!

Last Five - Kicking You / Weatherman (1966)
A decent 45 from a Hartford, CT that features a nice B-3 organ and a cheezy guitar solo as well. Apparently this was their only 45 but they evolved into a group called Boffalongo that had a few 45's on United Artists including the original version of  the soft rock classic "Dancing In The Moonlight". Eventually Boffalongo evolved into King Harvest, re-recorded the song and had a huge hit with it.

Victor & The Spoils - I Wish That I Could Make You Love Me / Lonely Memory (1966)
Here's a 45 that I would presume was a studio concoction by Bo Gentry who was involved with Tommy James & The Shondells, The 1910 Fruitgum Co., had at least one solo 45 that I know of and some collaborations with Richie Cordell who was also heavily involved with Tommy James. This isn't a spectacular 45, but it's kinda nice with it's Buddy Holly flavor, think "Everyday" only with a little more drive so to speak.

Little Boy Blues - Look At The Sun / Love For A Day (1965)
The Little Boy Blues were a band out of Chicago, Il and had about a half dozen 45's released and all of them are good to fantastic. Their claim to fame was "The Great Train Robbery" which was featured on "Highs In The Mid 60's Vol. 4" one of my favorite comps. This is their first 45 on IRC, a local Chicago label, and its great folk rock with some wailing harmonica and twangy guitars. They would later release an LP and a 45 on Fontana which are good, but they headed in a decidedly heavier  direction.

Rock A Go-Go's - I'm Out To Win You Over / Blossoms In May (1968)
I don't know a thing about this group, but 'm guessing by the label they were an east coast act????? Perhaps, but in any case the B side which I'm featuring first is the standout track. It starts off really cool with some nice fuzz guitar and some pounding drums, but then settles into somewhat of a pop tune with these "do-do-wah" backing vocals as well as a few shifts in the rhythm. Very cool overall and a nice find. The A side is a pretty typical garage band ballad.

Culver Street Playground - East River Lovers / Feedback (1968)
Oh man oh man, THIS is one of my all time faves!!!!! I was first turned on to this by guy named Ron Simpson from Indiana who used to trade tapes with in the 80's and into the early 90's. Somehow these two songs always were standouts with me and my old band The Projectiles even covered "Feedback" a way cool bit of psychedelia if I do say so myself and "East River Lovers" is perhaps one of the best "moody" garage band ballads I've ever heard, in my humble opinion. From what I gather this band was from New York City and they did have another 45 which I featured on IDG #40.

Association - Everything That Touches You / We Love Us (1968)
I don't normally post stuff like this, well..... yeah, I actually post a LOT of stuff like this, but not by big time bands like The Association who had a bunch of hits in the mid sixties, and they had so many I'm not going to reference all of  them here. Turn on oldies radio and you will hear them eventually without waiting too long. This one did pretty well hitting #10 on the Billboard in 1968, but it never stuck in my brain like the other ones they had (you know what I'm talking about). I plucked this 45 out of a stack that was lying around (as many around here at Dan's Garage Central do) and decided to give it a spin. I recall hearing this song in the past but never realized how good it was. When it comes to sunshiny pop type songs, it really doesn't get any better than this. Nice harmonies and the arrangement isn't way over the top. Sit back, close your eyes, and marinate in some top notch pop music goodness.

Joe Brown - A Little Help From My Friends / Won'tcha Show Me Around (1967)
I got this one in a "lot" of what some people on Ebay call "weird" 45's so I took a chance and ended up with about a half dozen very cool records including this one here. Joe Brown is a very famous, well pretty famous singer and guitarist that influenced quite a few young British lads back in the early sixties. Guys like Hank Marvin and The Beatles come to mind as Brian Epstein worked out a deal where The Beatles could warm up for Joe so's they could be exposed to a wider audience. In any case, The Beatles fame eclipsed Joe's but he did record this gem in 1967 not long after Sgt. Pepper's was released, and I must say, Joe did an excellent job of it. "With A Little Help From My Friends" is one of my all time favorite songs and Joe Brown does true justice to this tune. I like this way better than Joe Cocker's cover hands down. Oh, by the way...the flip's pretty good as well!

Future - Shape Of Things To Come / 52% (1968)
So here we have a another unknown group that I would assume was out of L.A or San Francisco or some other west coast town, doing a cover of "Max Frost & The Trooper's" "Shape Of Things To Come". This 45 was arranged by Vic Briggs who played guitar with Eric Burdon & The Animals, and I think it's his fuzz guitar that is heard on "When I Was Young". I don't know why "Shape" always reminds me of some old Dragnet episode where Joe Friday & Frank Gannon corner some hippies and lecture them about how their lifestyle is going to ruin America and they should get on the straight and narrow and all this hippy revolution stuff is nothing but bullshit! Oh...where was I???? Yeah, I'm not exactly sure where "Future" was from, but they do an excellent job on this two sider and their version of the A side might be better than Max Frost & The Trooper's???? Now THAT'S a revolution!

Maryann Farra And The Genesis - Society's Child / One Day Boy (1971)
Society's Child was originally written and recorded by Janis Ian in 1966 and was subsequently covered by at least a dozen other acts including Spooky Tooth, Camel, plus a slew of garage/psychedelic acts including this east coast act from 1971. I couldn't get much info on Maryann Farra and her backing band, but apparently she became a disco singer in the mid-seventies. I think this version and the flip are pretty good, and this doesn't sound like typical early seventies "progressive" rock.

Wet Paint - Glass Road / Give You Everything I've Got (1970)
Here's a cool 45 by a group from New England, but since I really couldn't find much info them, I can't pinpoint exactly where they're from since Methuen is just over the border from New Hampshire, and just north of Lowell, MA and perhaps an hour's drive from Boston. I love records like this because here it is, 1970, and these guys sound like they just stepped out of the garage (or basement) with a rather crude sound for that era. Both sides are great and to make up for any perceived ineptitude, they released this in stereo!!!!

Wool - The Witch /Listen To The Sound (1970)
Wool was led by guitarist Ed Wool who was from Watertown, NY, about 3 hours northeast of Dan's Garage Central. He recorded as Ed Wool & The Nomads, The Sure Cure, The Pineapple Heard, and eventually Wool. They had an LP and a couple 45's on ABC and then landed a deal with Columbia which produced two 45's before the label dropped them. One was a cover of Elton John's "Take Me To The Pilot" and the other is this one, a cover of The Rattles' "The Witch" a good choice, but I think these guys could have shown a little more intensity in their execution.