The Sonics – Keep a Knockin’

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“Officer!! They’re looting the Food King!”

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Listen/Download – The Sonics – Keep a Knockin’

Greetings all.

As I was cleaning (or more aptly, working some level of organizational triage) in my record vault, I pulled the 45 you see before you today out of a box and thought to myself, ‘Hey, the time is right for something a little nutty.’

Sure, I could have put it back and whipped a little sunshine pop on you, or maybe even some fuzzy garage, but when fate steps up and hands you a Sonics 45, you kind of have to fall in line and do what you’re told.

If you don’t know the Sonics, even if only by reputation, then I don’t know what to say.

The day I first heard the Sonics, some 30-odd years ago, my brain was rewired permanently, in a way that only happens to you a few times in life (if you’re lucky).

I had some small amount of experience with ‘garage punk’, but no amount of snotty, teenage fuzz could have prepared me for the Sonics.

Taking form in the foggy, moss-covered glens of the Pacific Northwest in the early 60s, the Sonics sounded like (and I’m going to quote myself here, because I don’t think I can do any better)

“…pure, unbridled animal energy, mixed with an electrified libido and marinated in grain alcohol is reduced to a serum, injected into Little Richard, who then went to the zoo, mated with a hyena in a swimming pool during an electrical storm then took their unholy spawn into a recording studio (during a tornado) and whipped up something very, very heavy.”

The Little Richard comparison is apt, since today’s selection – ‘Keep a Knockin’ – was first unleashed on the world, via Mr Penniman in 1957, which seems like an eternity away, but when the Sonics recorded it (the b-side to their very first 45), was only seven years in the past.

Now, any fool knows that trying to beat Little Richard at his own game is work (usually) reserved for fools, but the Sonics had something special.

That something was the musical equivalent of a sledgehammer made of dynamite.

This is the sound of a band running at top speed plus, like a car used to burning gasoline with a tank full of rocket fuel instead.

There’s nothing subtle about the Sonics take on ‘Keep a Knockin’, but there never needed to be.

I’m convinced that their first album was called ‘Boom’, only because ‘KABLAMMO!!!’ wouldn’t fit on the cover.

You either grab on and hold tight, or fall under their wheels.

Your choice, buddy.

See you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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Iron Leg Radio Show #39

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Beep beep beep beep…..

Playlist

Alan Hawkshaw/Keith Mansfield – Action Scene (KPM)
The Cocktail Cabinet – Breathalyser (Page One)
Locomotive – Rudi’s In Love (Bell)
Earth Quake – I Get the Sweetest Feeling (A&M)
Harper and Rowe – Here Comes Yesterday Again (World Pacific)
Hal Blaine – Drums A Go Go (Dunhill)
Kim Fowley – Born to Be Wild (Imperial)
Wild Angels Promo

Bobby Sty – Incense and Peppermints (Hit Sounds)
Mike Landers – Hush (Hit Sounds)
Mike Landers – I Can See For Miles (Hit Sounds)
Mustang – Haight Ashbury Time (Somerset)
Mustang – The Acid Test (Somerset)
Soul Strings and a Funky Horn – Grazing In the Grass (Solid State)
Sam Wright Group – Green Onions (Curio)
Tommy Knight and the Knights – Tighten Up (Promenade)
Psych-Out Promo

Associated Soul Group – Are You Experienced (Contessa)
Electric Piano Playground – I Had Too Much To Dream Last Night (Bell)
Electric Piano Playground – Good Vibrations (Bell)
Electronic Concept Orchestra – Aquarius (Limelight)
Electric Indian – Storm Warning (UA)
Electric Tommy – Overture (Viva)
Marketts – Come to the Sunshine (World Pacific)
Stapleton-Morley Expression – Creeque Alley (Dunhill)
Stapleton-Morley Expression – 12:30 (Young Girls Are Coming to the Canyon) (Dunhill)
Stapleton-Morley Expression – San Francisco (Be Sure To Wear Some Flowers In Your Hair) (Dunhill)
101 Strings – A Taste of Soul (Alshire)
The Trip Promo

JP Rags – Scruffety (World Pacific)
JP Rags – The Bells 0f St Barbara (World Pacific)
JP Rags – Still Life (World Pacific)
Karen Karsh – Wasn’t Born To Follow (Dunhill)
Karen Karsh – Musty Dusty (Dunhill)
Brady Bunch – I Just Want To Be Your Friend (Paramount)
The Collage – Would You Like To Go (Smash)
New Life – Canterbury Road (Epic)
Wild In the Streets Promo

 

Listen/Download -Iron Leg Radio Show Episode 39 – 222MB/256kbps

Greetings all.

Welcome to this month’s episode of the Iron Leg Radio Show.

This time out I have a nice, long show for you, with more than two hours of sonic wonderment.

We get things off to a start with some groovy new arrivals, segue into two long sets looking at the various and sundry types of musical exploitation, and then some softer sounds to round out the show.

If this is your first taste, make sure to drop into the archive in the header and check out the previous 38 (?!?) episodes.

I think you’ll dig it.

See you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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Merrilee Rush – Reach Out

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Merrilee Rush

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Listen/Download – Merrilee Rush – Reach Out

Greetings all.

The tune I bring you today is something I picked upwhilst digging in the New York hinterlands.

While I certainly knew who Merrilee Rush was – i.e. singer of ‘Angel of the Morning’, a huge hit in 1968 – I had no idea that she had ever recorded a version of the Four Tops ‘Reach Out’.

My obsession with Pacific Northwest rock had clued me in that Rush hailed from and had started her career in Seattle.

What I did not know (and what would have explained the AGP 45) is that she recorded ‘Angel of the Morning’, in Memphis with famed producer Chips Moman at the dials, and the American Studios group playing.

Following her hit with ‘Angel…’ Rush signed with Moman and the AGP imprint and recorded a series of 45s in 1968 and 1969, before moving on to Scepter Records.

I picked this 45 up out of curiosity, but was very happy indeed when I finally got it home and gave it a spin.

Unlike the placid pop of ‘Angel…’, Rush’s take on the Four Tops hit seems as if Rush had been marinating in the Vanilla Fudge version of another Motown classic, ‘You Keep Me Hangin’ On’.

You get the fuzz guitar, organ, a fairly restrained horn section and plenty of busy, Appice-like drumming.

The overall effect seems aimed at the psychedelicized listeners (though the oddly warped sounding organ at 1:54 sounds like a mistake), especially the fact that the track stretches out to nearly five minutes!

I’m inclined to attribute any lysergic effect at the feet of the studious, flexible American Studios crew, who were able to tap into (and channel) the zeitgeist without experiencing any of it directly, i.e. why reinvent Vanilla Fudge when a room full of professionals can whip up a satisfactory simulacrum?

‘Reach Out’ seems to have had some small measure of success, charting in the Northeast and a few other regional markets, but it would be Rush’s second to last hit (with ‘Everyday Livin’ Days’ her last, and much less successful entry a few months later).

Rush would continue to record into the 1970s.

You can get this track, and her other AGP 45s on the Rev-Ola reissue:  Angel of the Morning / Comp Bell Sides.

I hope you dig the track, and I’ll see you all next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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PS Head over to Funky16Corners for some soul.

Paul and Barry Ryan – Keep It Out of Sight

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The Brothers Ryan

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Listen/Download – Paul and Barry Ryan – Keep It Out of Sight

Greetings all.

Welcome to the new week, here at the leg of iron (not as delicious as leg of lamb, but it’ll do).

The track I bring you today is one of those numbers that dropped intoi my ears via a Mr Luther mixtape back in the olden days and lodged itself deep in my skull.

I kept my eyes peeled for a copy for many (many) years, until a few months ago one popped up on a sales list and I grabbed it forthwith.

The artists are Paul and Barry Ryan, who have appeared in this space before (more on them here) with a number of tracks from their excellent 1968 UK LP ‘The Ryans’, most especially ‘Hey Mister Wiseman’, quite the delicious slice of freakbeat.

On that particular tip, is the record I was referencing above, which is not coincidentally this week’s selection, ‘Keep It Out of Sight’.

Released in 1967 in the UK on Decca (where it made it into the Top 40) and on the US on MGM, ‘Keep It Out of Sight’ is also freakbeaty, big and bouncy, with plety of rock, but also enough Carnaby Street freakery on the fringes to keep the flower children pleased.

In a special bit of extra credit bonus-ery, it was also penned by none other than Cat Stevens, who was – at the time – working the same side of the stylistic street before stepping out of his brogues and into some bare feet for a successful run as a gentle soul.

‘Keep It Out of Sight’ has a very groovy arrangement (by library composer Alan Tew) mixing acoustic guitar, swirling strings, fuzz guitar, castanets, seagulls (yes, seagulls) and some particularly nice electric bass.

It really ought to have been a bigger hit, but it wasn’t, so you get to dig it now and lord it over the cool kids at the record hop (not really).

That said, I hope you dig it as much as I do, and I’ll see you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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PS Head over to Funky16Corners for some soul.

Iron Leg Radio Show Episode #38

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Beep beep beep beep…..

Playlist

Alan Hawkshaw and Keith Mansfield – Action Scene (KPM)
The Van Dyke Parks –Number Nine (MGM)
The Van Dyke Parks – Do What You Wanta (MGM)
Van Dyke Parks – Come To the Sunshine (MGM)
Van Dyke Parks – Farther Along (MGM)
The Byrds – 5D (Columbia)
The Byrds – Voices of Vista Segment/Don’t Make Waves
Cheetah Club Commercial

Manfred Mann – 5-4-3-2-1 (Prestige)
Manfred Mann – The One In the Middle (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Come Tomorrow (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Dashing Away With a Smoothing Iron (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – I’m Your Kingpin (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – It’s Gonna Work Out Fine (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Untie Me (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Sack O Woe (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Watermelon Man (Ascot)
Manfred Mann – Watch Your Step (EMI) Mann Made

Jerry Blavat and the Yon Teenagers – Discophonic Walk (Favor)
Jerry Blavat – The Geator and the Geatorettes – Tasty (To Me) (Bond)
Jerry Blavat The Geator and the Geatorettes – All Be Joyous (Bond)
The Esko Affair – Morning Dull Fires (Mercury)

Eldridge Holmes – If I Were a Carpenter (Deesu)
ZZ Hill – Don’t Make Promises (Kent)
The Dillards – Reason to Believe (Elektra)
Bobby Darin – Misty Roses (Atlantic)
Bobby Darin – Red Balloon (Atlantic)
Wayne Cochran – If I Were Carpenter (King)
Gary Puckett and the Union Gap – Don’t Make Promises (Columbia)
Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich – If I Were a Carpenter (Imperial)

 

 

Listen/Download -Iron Leg Radio Show Episode 38 – 172MB/256kbps

Greetings all.

Welcome to this month’s episode of the Iron Leg Radio Show.

I have a very groovy collection of sounds for you this month, with sets devoted to Van Dyke Parks, Manfred Mann, the long lost musical career of Jerry ‘The Geator’ Blavat, and some very cool covers of Tim Hardin songs.

I think you’ll dig it.

See you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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Return of the Au Go Go Mixes!

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Iron Leg Digital Trip Number Five – The Party

Playlist

1 Henry Mancini (The Party OST) – The Party (vocal) (RCA)
2 Keith Mansfield – Boogaloo (CBS)
3 Enoch Light – Over Under Sideways Down (Project 3)
4 Moe Koffman – Dr Swahili (Jubilee)
5 Mr Jamo – Shake What You Brought With You Pt1 (SSS Intl)
6 Dick Hyman – The Liquidators (Command)
7 Walter Wanderley – Kee Ka Roo (Verve)
8 Sweet Charity OST – The Pompeii Club (Rich Man’s Frug) (Decca)
9 John Philip Soul & his Stone Marching Band – That Memphis Thing (Pepper)
10 Andre Brasseur – The Duck (Palette)
11 Tony Newman – Soul Thing (Parrot)
12 Jimmy Caravan – Look Into the Flower (Vault)
13 Vic Mizzy (Don’t Make Waves OST) – Vox Box (MGM)
14 New London Rhythm & Blues Band – Soul Stream (Vocalion)
15 Dave Grusin (Candy OST) – Ascension to Virginity (ABC)
16 Henry Mancini (the Party OST) – The Party (instr) (RCA)

Listen/Download 46MB Mixed MP3 – MP3

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Iron Leg Digital Trip #32 – A Not Unpleasing Splash of Colour

Playlist
Keith Mansfield – Soul Thing (Pronit)
101 Strings – Jesus Christ Superstar (edit) (Alshire)
Jimmy Smith – The Cat (45 edit) (Verve)
Enoch Light – C’Mon and Swim (Command)
Living Strings – Out and About (Camden)
Mariano and the Unbelievables – Sunshine Superman (Capitol)
Lady Nelson and the Lords – Soho Strut (Dunhill)
Louis Bellson – The Eel (Project 3)
Quincy Jones – Mohair Sam (Mercury)
Lloyd Green – Steel Blue (Chart)
Mike Sharpe – Spook A Lou (Liberty)
Dave Pike Set – You’ve Got the Feeling (Wagram)
Vic Mizzy – Daybreak In Malibu (MGM)
Andre Brasseur – Pow Pow (MFP)
Virtues – Meditation of the Soul (Andee)
Enoch Light – Bond Street (Project 3)
New London Rhythm and Blues Band – Soul Mate (Vocalion)
Freddie Scott and the Seven Steps – It’s Not Unusual (Marlin)
101 Strings – Spinning Wheel (Alshire)
Mohawks – Baby Hold On Pt2 (Cotillion)
Moe Koffman – Funky Monkey (Jubilee)
US Air Force Academy Falconaires – Day Tripper (USAFA)
Keith Mansfield – Funky Fanfare (KPM)

Listen/Download 102MB/256K Mixed Mp3

 

Greetings all.

This week sees the return (by special request) of two of my favorite Iron Leg Digital Trip mixes, #5 and #32, aka The Au Go Go Mixes.

The yearly Funky16Corners Pledge Drive is underway, and since Iron Leg is an important part of the Funky16Corners Blogcasting Network, and depends on the same paid storage space in which to function, I thought it made sense to tie this blog in with the goings on at that (blog).

If you dig what we do here (or there,or in both places) fall by Funky16Corners, click on the Paypal button and drop a coin (or two) in the jukebox (as it were).

It will be greatly appreciated.

Iron Leg Digital Trips numbers 5 and 32 really do belong together, with the latter being intended as a sequel to the former.
They are my take on the Au Go Go vibe of the swinging 60s, with all manner of groovy stuff stitched together from soundtracks, library music, jazz, pop, soul, funk and kitsch.

You can read the original manifesto here.

So mix yourselves up a cocktail, pull down the ones and zeros and I’ll be back next week with some garage punk.

Peace

Larry

 

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PS Head over to Funky16Corners for some soul.

Tom Northcott – 1941 / Sunny Goodge Street

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A Euro P/S for 1941

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Listen/Download – Tom Northcott – 1941

Listen/Download – Tom Northcott – Sunny Goodge Street

Greetings all.

I can’t remember when I first became aware of Tom Northcott, but I am pretty sure that I knew his name for years before I ever heard a note of the music he made.

Northcott, who was based in British Columbia, in Canada made all of his records in the relatively short window of 1965 to 1971.

Though he made a few regional records in Canada, Northcott is best remembered these days for a series of 45s he did for Warner Brothers in the mid-to-late 60s and an LP he recorded for UNI in 1971.

He had the kind of high, clear tenor voice that was very popular during the folk revival.

He recorded a couple of folk rock 45s with the Tom Northcott Trio and the Vancouver Playboys before signing with Warner Brothers in 1967.

Northcott recorded a variety of cover and original material, waxing songs by Bob Dylan (‘Girl of the North Country’), Nilsson (‘1941’) and Donovan (‘Sunny Goodge Street’), all of which were Canadian hits in 1967 and 1968.

I bring you the latter two tracks today, because of all the Northcott material I’ve managed to find, they are my favorites.

As a certified Nilsson freak, I am constitutionally incapable of passing up a cover version of ‘1941’, and Northcott’s is excellent.

Both of these 45s were recorded in Los Angeles, produced by Lenny Waronker and Leon Russell and arranged by Russell as well.

Northcott takes ‘1941’ at a much faster pace than any of the other versions I’ve heard (which tend to hew closely to the Nilsson original) and it’s a refreshing change of pace. Though Russell adds in some brass, the arrangement isn’t too busy.

His version of Donovan’s ‘Sunny Goodge Street’ is a much more ornate, upbeat take on the song. The original is a quiet, meandering affair with a jazz combo and a bowed bass violin. Northcott’s version is a bright, baroque popsike waltz, with accordion, and what sounds like a cimbalom, producing an almost calliope-like effect.

There’s a very cool video of an appearance that Northcott made on the Canadian TV show ‘Where It’s At’ performing ‘Sunny Goodge Street’ and ‘Girl From the North Country’ (hosted by Lulu. No less!).

Northcott’s UNI LP is a slightly more rock-oriented project, including covers of Leonard Cohen, Randy Newman and a cool version of the Move’s ‘Blackberry Way’. It tends not to be very expensive and I would highly recommend you pick it up if you dig the tracks I’ve posted today.

Rhino Handmade released a comp of Northcott’s Warner Brothers material, but it appears to be long out of print.

Interestingly, not long after his 1971 LP, Northcott left the music business to become a commercial fisherman, and later got a law degree, specializing in maritime law.

There’s a video on YouTube of a 1988 Canadian TV show with an interview with Northcott (fast forward to around 4:30).

I hope you dig the sounds, and I’ll see you all next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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PS Head over to Funky16Corners for some soul.

Iron Leg Radio Show Episode #37

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Beep beep beep beep…..

Playlist

Alan Hawkshaw/Keith Mansfield – Action Scene (KPM)
Bobby Fuller Four – Gallancamps Shoes Commercial
Bobby Fuller Four – Let Her Dance (Mustang)
Bobby Fuller Four – Another Sad and Lonely Night (Mustang)
Bobby Fuller Four – KHJ Big Kahuna Theme
Bobby Fuller Four – Take My Word (Mustang)
Bobby Fuller Four – Never To Be Forgotten (Mustang)
Bobby Fuller Four – KRLA King of the Wheels Theme

Free Design – 2002 a Hit Song (Project 3)
Free Design – Kites are Fun (Project 3)
Free Design – Butterflies are Free (Project 3)
Free Design – Bubbles (Project 3)
Free Design – California Dreaming (Project 3)
Free Design – Eleanor Rigby (Project 3)
Free Design – Kije’s Ouija (Project 3)
Free Design – Where Do I Go (Project 3)
Free Design – My Brother Woody (Project 3)
Free Design – Stay Another Season (Project 3)
Free Design – Windows of the World (Project 3)
Free Design – I Found Love (Project 3)
Free Design – Jack In the Box Commercial

Paul Butterfield Blues Band – Mary Mary (Elektra)
Dave Clark Five – All Night Long (Epic)
Glen Campbell – Bowling Green (Capitol)
Nitty Gritty Dirt Band – These Days (Liberty)
Donovan – Tangerine Puppet (Hickory)
Jake Thackray – The Black Swan (Philips)
The Beach Boys – Feel Flow (Brother/WB)
The Beach Boys – Surf’s Up (Brother/WB)
The Beach Boys – Til I Die (Brother/WB)

 

 

Listen/Download -Iron Leg Radio Show Episode 37 – 172MB/256kbps

Greetings all.

Welcome to this month’s episode of the Iron Leg Radio Show.

This month you get a set of groovers by the Bobby Fuller Four, a look at the sounds of one of my favorite pop groups, the Free Design as well as a set of new arrivals.

I hope you dig it all, and if you’re new to the Iron Leg Radio Show, take a dip in the archive.

See you all next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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Bowling Green Times Two

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The Everly Brothers

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Glen Campbell

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Listen/Download – the Everly Brothers – Bowling Green

Listen/Download – Glen Campbell – Bowling Green

Greetings all.

I hope the new week finds you all well.

I had planned on bringing you the Everly Brothers (original) version of ‘Bowling Green’ for a while.

Fortunately for all of us, whilst I was a-digging through the crates I discovered that I had another, very groovy version of the song already, by none other than Glen Campbell.

I should start out by saying that the recent news of Campbell moving in to an assisted living facility due to the progression of Alzheimer’s disease was saddening.

Glen Campbell is one of those artists who had enough mainstream success that the true depth of his talent (and discography) is often overlooked.

He was an important part of the famous Wrecking Crew studio outfit, as well as having recorded some very cool albums for Capitol in the 1960s.

Though he is often thought of as a country-pop artist, he had excellent taste in covers and recorded many great songs by folks like Harry Nilsson, Donovan, Sonny Curtis, The Bee Gees, Otis Redding, Dorsey Burnett and even Paul Revere and the Raiders.

The song I bring you today was first recorded by the Everly Brothers (on their excellent ‘Everly Brothers Sing’ LP) in 1967.

‘Bowling Green’, written by the Everly’s bassist Terry Slater with Jacqueline Ertel (I don’t know why she’s not credited on either of these labels) was a Top 40 hit for the brothers in the Spring of 1967.

Campbell recorded it later that year on his ‘Gentle On My Mind’ LP.

While the Everly’s version features their unmatchable harmonies, Campbell’s take on the song sports a much livelier arrangement by none other than Leon Russell!

Interestingly, the song was recorded again, a year later by the Gosdin Brothers, who gave it a slightly more countrified feel.

Both versions are excellent, and I would recommend picking up both albums (especially the Everly Brothers LP which has some surprising, even psychedelic touches) if you find them.

I hope you dig the sounds, and I’ll see you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

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PS Head over to Funky16Corners for some soul.

The Remains – Diddy Wah Diddy b/w Once Before

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The Remains

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Listen/Download – The Remains – Diddy Wah Diddy

Listen/Download – The Remains – Once Before

Greetings all.

Near the end of February, the sad news came down that the drummer of the mighty Remains, Chip Damiani had passed away at the age of 68.

Back in the garage/mod days of the 80s, when reissues of classic 60s material were coming fast and furious, the French import comp of the Remains best material was a big favorite.

Record collector types are always bending someone’s ear about how their favorite band really should have been huge, but in the case of the Remains, that old saw has the ring of truth.

Formed in Boston in 1964, the Remains made music that was hard edged – often muscling in on the garage punk vibe – full of R&B swagger yet with enough pop flavor to get them (theoretically, anyway) on the radio.

They were enshrined on 1972’s ‘Nuggets’ comp, with ‘Don’t Look Back’ (written by a young Billy Vera), but that record – as great as it was – only scratched the surface.

Despite a lack in actual chart success (outside of Boston), the Remains managed to make it onto the Ed Sullivan show, and score themselves a spot opening for the Beatles on their last tour in 1966.

They shoulda/coulda been, but broke up not long after the Beatles tour.

In their short career they recorded one rare LP for Epic, a handful of 45s (most of the tracks from the LP), and that – as they say – was that.

The two tracks I bring you today were released on 45 in 1966.

Their reading of Bo Diddley’s ‘Diddy Wah Diddy’ was their biggest hit – charting in the Northeast and southern California – and has a big, booming sound. The drums, acoustic guitar and electric piano get things rolling before the harp and vocals come in. There’s plenty of forward motion for the dance floor, and just enough grit for the longhairs in the crowd.

The flipside, ‘Once Before’ – opening with a razor sharp rhythm guitar slash – sounds like what the Yardbirds might have sounded like had they emerged on the opposite side of the Atlantic. Written by Chip Damiani and bassist Vern Miller, the song is my favorite of the band’s original songs, and in a just world would have been a hit.

Fortunately, after decades of doing other things (with Barry Tashian crossing paths with Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris) the Remains came back together in the late 90s and performed at many modern garage fests.

You can grab all of their material in reissue (hard copy and digital), and if you dig these tracks, I assure you that the rest of their catalog will not disappoint.

See you next week.

Peace

Larry

 

Example


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