PREVIOUSLY ARCHIVED RECORD REVIEWS FROM MY OLD BLOG
Here are some of my random thoughts and words about obscure and in-demand ’60s garage and psychedelic singles over the years. All of the original blog posts on my old website have since been deleted so no label scans or picture sleeves are available. Instead, I’ve used images scanned from a 1967 Playboy magazine.
THE REGENTS – ”Russian Spy And I” / ”Bald Headed Woman” (Dot 45-16970) October 1966
According to ’Teenbeat Mayhem’ TheRegents originated from Bakersfield, CA but perhaps they relocated to Los Angeles to be where the action is. I don’t know for sure, it’s just my hunch. Anyway, great information and comments from some group members can be found on Garagehangover.
”Russian Spy And I” was first recorded by Dutch group The Hunters. It’s a moody jangler with some fuzz and a fabulous rave-up ending. Hearing a surf styled guitar on record in 1966 must have been something of a flashback in time.
The other side is a version of ”Bald Headed Woman” which is a song I’ve never really liked much no matter who has recorded it. Many acts have issued the song as a single, either A or B side. Perhaps the most famous being The Who version.
THE SHERLOCKS – ”Too Good To Be True” / ”Shades Of Blue” (Dot 45-16953) September 1966
It is believed that The Sherlocks hailed from Sylvester, Georgia. Nothing has ever been written about them online or in fanzines and they’re one of those mid 60s combo’s that are way under the radar.
Their first single for Dot Records was the super cool fuzz rocker ”Skin Of My Teeth” backed with a spellbinding folk-janger ”Turn Her Down.” I don’t have a copy and it’s very sought after. Expect to pay in the region of $400 if you ever see one for sale.
”Turn Her Down” was first recorded by Barry Allen and released in Canada. His version is more pop than folk-rock. ”Skin Of My Teeth” was compiled back in the late 80s on ”Sixties Rebellion #5”
The Sherlocks second and last Dot 45 was ”Too Good To Be True” written by Ramona Wingate. It’s a moody beat affair and sounds very much influenced by The Zombies, at least to my ears. The other side ”Shades Of Blue” as the title suggests, is a bluesy outing with organ.
Both sides remain uncompiled.
NEIGHB’RHOOD CHILDR’N – ”Woman Think” / ”On Our Way” (Dot 45-17238) May 1969
Continuing with my exploration of the Dot catalogue with San Francisco based Neighb’rhood Childr’n. They have been well documented of late in Shindig magazine and of course the Sundazed collection ”Long Years In Space.”
”Woman Think” was their one and only single for Dot Records. It’s a typically laid back, mellow, late 60s rock affair with a slightly psychedelic edge, particularly the guitar sound. It may even have been recorded in 1968. The other side ”On Our Way” rock with horns and not really my scene.
GENE GRAY & the STINGRAYS – ”Surfer’’s Mood” / ”Surf Bunny” (Dot 45-16470) 1963
If someone ever compiles a primitive surf compilation album I’d be more than a little surprised if ”Surfer’s Mood” was not allocated a slot. On the latter recording, Gene Gray & the Stingrays sound like a surf garage band that would be at home on a ”Back From The Grave” comp. Yeah, it’s that primal.
The other side ”Surf Bunny” is my pick though. My cat ”Biba Ringo” digs it a whole lot. As I’m cranking out this 45 on my turntable at volume ”11” she’s banging away on a couple of coconuts and showing her teeth.
The single first appeared on Linda Records then it was picked up by Dot for a wider distribution.
LALO SCHIFRIN – ”Mission Impossible” / ”Jim On The Move” (Dot ZK-2169) December 1967
I recently bought a small collection of ”Mission Impossible” items including a couple of albums and three different releases of this Lalo Schifrin single. The US release on Dot Records came out during December 1967, the likelihood is that this New Zealand pressing was released a couple of months later.
Everyone must know the classic ”Mission Impossible” theme tune. I heard this so many times as a kid in the 70s when the show was on constant repeats. It’s seemingly never broadcast nowadays so perhaps youngsters may be hearing this for the first time. Take it in cos they just don’t make killer cuts like this any more.
THE SPLIT LEVEL – ”Love To Love You” / ”Can’t Complain” (Dot 45-17142) September 1968
The third and final Split Level single was released during September 1968. The non album cut ”Love To Love You” is decent flower pop but my pick is the Lenny Roberts penned ”Can’t Complain” on the other side.
Michael Lobel (guitar, flute, piano)
Lenny Roberts (6 & 12 string guitars / vocals)
Al Dana (bass, sitar, vocals)
Liz Seneff (vocals, tambourine) – died 1993
THE SPLIT LEVEL – ”I Don’t Know Where You Are” / ”Looking At The Rose Through World Colored Glasses” (Dot 45-17036) August 1967
I recently wrote about The Split Level album but what about their singles? The first 45 released was the Dave Frishberg composed ”I Don’t Know Where You Live.” This is a required purchase for two reasons. The first being that it’s a classy flower pop mover and non album cut, the second of course for the overtly psychedelic flip ”Looking At The Rose Through World Colored Glasses.”
COLOURS – ”God Please Take My Life” / ”Angie” (Dot 45-17280) July 1969
This single was the second and last from the Colours studio album ”Atmosphere” with both sides being unedited and direct stereo mixes used on the long player.
Both songs display the laid back, late 60s rock style typical of 1969. In other words radio friendly tunes especially ”God Please Take My Life” which should have faired better but I’ll be surprised if the release got any further than this white label promo.
COLOURS – ”Atmosphere” (Dot DLP-25935) May 1969
By the time Colours reconvened to record their second (and last) album for Dot Records they were down to a duo, Jack Dalton and Gary Montgomery. Bassist Carl Radle and drummer Chuck Blackwell joined Delaney & Bonnie, Rob Edwards also quit the band.
New members on board to help with the recording of ”Atmosphere” were Richard Crooks (drums), ex Moon member, David Jackson (bass) one time Beach Boy and David Marks (guitar). Former bassist Carl Radle also helped out on some cuts.
”Atmosphere” is less heavy on The Beatles influence and more late 60s rock with jazzy moves. There are some pleasing songs especially my pick ”It’s Time To Tell You” which sounds very much like Dalton and Montgomery were listening to a lot of Cream before recording this one.
Sessions for the album took place at the back end of 1968 at Columbia Studios and Sound Recorders. Also interesting is the albums artwork which was created by legendary Fillmore poster designer Victor Moscoso.
COLOURS – ”Love Heals” / ”Bad Day At Black Rock, Baby” (Dot 45-17132) August 1968
This was the second single released from the Colours superb Beatles-esque album. August 1968 was the release but of course the music on both sides of the disc were recorded during late 1967.
I can only presume that the ”Sgt Pepper” influenced ”Love Heals” was the choice of A-Side simply because I found a music sheet online. I didn’t buy it but downloaded the image for this post. I don’t expect many of these to have been produced or survived the ravages of time for that matter.
My pick though is the superlative ”Bad Day At Black Rock, Baby” with it’s stunning orchestration, time changes, eerie harmonies and of course the subject matter. Some freak going out to rob a liquor store with a wooden gun, polished and painted black to look real. This situation is gonna end in carnage.
COLOURS – ”Brother Lou’s Love Colony” (Dot 45-17060) December 1967
The first single to be released from the Colours album was ”Brother Lou’s Love Colony”
My copy is a green label promo disc with two versions of the song. An edited take at a radio friendly 2:30 minutes and the album version at just under four minutes in length. Other copies came with ”Lovin” on the B-Side.
”Brother Lou’s Love Colony” perfectly encapsulates the ’67 hippie movement of California in both music and lyrical content. The sound is very Beatles-esque, which was a Colours speciality. It comes complete with orchestration, mellow fuzz guitar, sitar, trippy keyboards, effects, bagpipes and harmonizing vocals.
It’s a shame that this lysergically enhanced single appeared to be completely over-looked.
COLOURS – ”Colours” (Dot DLP-25854) May 1968
They spell it the English way, and for jolly good reason. Colours have the crystalline sharpness of The Beatles before they turned acid.
Colours have a rainbow sound, but you can distinguish one hue from another rather than fight through a haze of fuzzy static, funky confusion, and screeching feedback.
They also write love songs. ”Helping You Out” has a kind of walk up honesty that cuts through the dreamy creamy gush lyrics.
”Washing your clothes when you’re gone for the day and then hanging them out, helping you out.”
The spectrum of Colours features Jack Dalton and Gary Montgomery, neither more than a quarter century old, both of whom are professional musicians. They write the songs that lead guitarist Rob Edwards, drummer Chuck Blackwell, and bass guitarist Carl Radle help spread on a palette of sound.
They will tackle a mess of changing time signatures, such as their ”Bad Day At Black Rock, Baby ” where they move through six sharps from 6/8 to 4/8 to 3/8 then 5/4 and even 5/8, changing rhythms with the quick ease of the most wigged-out electronic classic composer.
Yet underneath is a straight, raw narrative about a tragic hero who, unlike the dramatic victims of a folk song, knows what is in store for him from the futile start.
They have clarity, a gently dissonant sound full of the blues, the beat of a street band, the horns of a jazz connection, even the words of folk nostalgia. ”Brother Lou’s Love Colony” is a free form cantata about the hippie colony in California. It ends with a classy coda underscored with, of all sounds, bagpipes.
In ”Rather Be Me” a number about identity, the drone vocal and music suggests music from Morocco or the whine of a sitar weaving an Indian raga. All that in the rarely used key of Eb minor lends a greater weirdness to the song.
Colours takes a trip in ”Cataleptic”, richly harmonizing over eerie organ music, or rips off a bold, bouncy ”Lovin” and ”Don’t You Realize” in a style that smacks of music hall and vaudeville energy.
So Colours does have that broad spectrum of electric sounds so prized in today’s rock, but they pull it off without indulging in jarring cliches. And, with a youthful joyfulness, they don’t paint it black. (Jon Borgzinner – back cover liners)
THE PEPPERMINT TROLLEY COMPANY – ”Trust” EP (Dot EP-44-3) 1968
I’ve loved the music of The Peppermint Trolley Company since the late 80s after buying their Acta label album based on the description offered by the seller, it was something like ’Californian sunshine pop with a bubblegum edge’ – well that sounded right up my street and I never looked back.
They’ve appeared on my blog before. Today I’ll promote their rare Portuguese EP released on Dot Records. As you probably know The Peppermint Trolley Company were an Acta label group (Acta was a subsidiary label of Dot set up primarily to release psychedelic rock music). So quite how the Portuguese four song EP came about on Dot is unknown.
All four songs can be found on their studio album but only ”Sunrise” written by Pat McClure was never released at 45 r.p.m. This is why, for vinyl nerds like me, this EP is essential.
THE LICORICE SCHTIK – ”The Kissin’ Game” / ”Flowers Flowers” (Dot 45-17131) August 1968
This obscure single was the work of Milan a.k.a. The Leather Boy and a few other guises. He was undoubtedly a genius who didn’t achieve the success he deserved. ”The Kissin’ Game” is something of a novelty bubblegum dancer and with bubblegum at it’s peak in the Summer of 1968 I can’t understand how it never took off and became a hit.
The other side is the magnificent psychedelic rocker ”Flowers Flowers” It saddens me somewhat that this was the B-Side and probably unheard back in the day. This is perhaps my favourite ever Milan song. The whispered ’flowers flowers’ line is so far-out it’s untrue. Play this loud and rejoice and make believe it’s 1968 all over again.
”Flowers flowers wear them in your hair,
Flowers flowers show me that you care
Flowers flowers wear them everywhere.”
THE LIME – ”Beautiful Day” / ”Satisfied” (Dot 45-17298) September 1969
I have the earlier Lime single from 1967 on the Westwood label where they offer a groovy ”Love A-Go-Go” with a spirited version of ”Soul Kitchen.” I don’t know why I’ve never highlighted that single here before but the seed has started to germinate in my mind so I’ll bring it soon.
First though is their one and only single on Dot Records. Both sides were released earlier in 1969 on their own Interpolation label. Here’s an extract of a Steve Sanders interview on 60sgaragebands.com
Steve was The Lime’s guitarist.
”Our second recording session was done at Cleveland Recording with Kenny Hammond as the engineer. The single ”Beautiful Day” came out of that. Richie Greenbaum (aka Dick Whittington) helped produce that one.
We had a string ensemble from the Cleveland Orchestra. It was released on our own label, Interpolation, and later picked up by Paramount’s Dot Records (Dot 17298).
”Beautiful Day” had a four-star pick in Cashbox/Record World magazine in ’68 predicting our band ”was going to go far with this little ditty”. (Note: the flipside was a cover of The Dantes ”Satisfied.”
The unreleased ’Love Seeds,’ ’Questions,’ ’Pretty Girl Why’ and ’Something On My Mind’ were also also recorded during this session)
ZACK HILTON – ”Next Train To Toledo” / ”Usually On Tuesday” (Dot 45-17191) January 1969
Here’s another Dot Records mystery performer. Who was Zack Hilton? I’ve spent some time looking around the internet and combing through my reference guides for any relevant information but have drawn a blank.
The top side aimed at the record buying public was the folk-country pop of ”Next Train To Toledo” but it’s not something I need to hear. Much better is the baroque pop of ”Usually On Tuesday” hidden away on the other side. Surely a song just waiting to be discovered on one of those ”Soft Sounds For Gentle People” CD compilations.
Both sides written and performed by the mysterious Zack Hilton with strings and things arranged by Bergen White, famous for his orchestration work with Elvis, Tony Joe White and Dolly Parton. Produced by in house Dot Records knob twiddler Henry Hurt.
HAMILTON STREETCAR – ”Honey And Wine” / ”Now I Taste The Tears” (Dot 45-17306) September 1969
The third and final Hamilton Streetcar single released on Dot Records showcased another Goffin – King song, probably not one of their strongest tunes but several acts also recorded it including The Hollies, Fran Jeffries, and Back Porch Majority.
It’s the usual late 60s Hamilton Streetcar, quite bombastic and over-produced with macho lead vocals akin to Jim Morrison’s. Their LHI material is far superior, but we all know that anyway.
HAMILTON STREETCAR – ”Wasn’t It You” / ”Brother Speed” (Dot 45-17279) July 1969
Six songs from the Hamilton Streetcar album were released on three singles during 1969, ”Wasn’t It You” was the second. It was backed with ”Brother Speed” written by John Boylan who recorded as The Appletree Theatre with his brother Terry.
”Wasn’t It You” was written by the Goffin – King song writing partnership and recorded by many artists including The Action, 3’s A Crowd, Petula Clark and Spanky & Our Gang.
THE CHANTAYS – ”Pipeline” / ”Move It” (London HLD-9696) March 1963
Here’s one of the all time great surf instrumentals, who doesn’t know ”Pipeline” I’m guessing not many, so much so that I’m not even gonna bother uploading the tune for inspection. Head off to YouTube and watch The Chantays mime this greatness on The Lawrence Welk Show in May 1963.
The record was released on the London label in Britain during March 1963 and got as high as #16 on the Chart. The vital Dot logo is present and correct.
”Pipeline” was released in America on Dot Records at the start of 1963, but before Dot picked it up for national release it came out on the small Downey label some months earlier.
When surf music became last years news The Chantays changed their name to The Leaping Ferns before adopting the moniker The Ill Winds for a couple of 45s on Reprise and started recording in the in-vogue 1965 folk-rock style. Those records will be covered here later.
HAMILTON STREETCAR – ”Hamilton Streetcar” (Dot DLP-25939) 1969
A trolley token. Or fifteen cents. A small price. A wondrous journey on a trans-cranial streetcar. Ahhh, the scenery laid before me. All the joy and pain and love and lust and beauty…. and pain…. the depths of the heights…. and the pain….and the love.
Flight on silver wings of trolley track….above it all….and all a part of me…. and you….And all.
The Hamilton Streetcar of your head.
”Pleasant Street” is an album track demonstrating that they had a very strong Doors influence. It could be argued that ”Pleasant Street”, written by Tim Buckley has become their very own ”Love Street” The vocals are quite bombastic, it could almost be Jim Morrison.
FEAR ITSELF – ”The Letter” / ”Born Under A Bad Sign” (Dot Records 45-17278) July 1969
I bought this record several years ago and remember the seller billed it as ’psychedelic blues rock’ but there is no way I’d describe the music as such. To me, it’s simply late 60s hippie rock. There is nothing psychedelic about Fear Itself. They were hippies.
”The Letter” is the much covered song written by Wayne Carson. Perhaps the best known version is by The Box Tops. This version by Fear Itself doesn’t really do much for me but I’ve decided to post it here during my Dot Records expose. Both songs on this 45 were part of their album, something I’ve never heard (apart from these two songs) but they’re just not my scene to be honest.
THE CLOCKWATCHERS – ”Hey It’s Summertime” / ”Make Me Not Love You” (Dot Records 45-17026) June 1967
Here’s another mystery group from the Dot label. I have no idea who The Clockwatchers were, maybe they were not actually a band but a studio creation by songwriter and producer Dick Torst?
Both songs on this disc were written by him with ”Hey It’s Summertime” my pick. Don’t expect anything more than lyte harmony pop with harpsichord, corny lyrics and typical ’Summer of Love” Association style bah, bah, bah’s.
”Feelin’ good and groovy,
Summer’s gettin’ to me.”
Dick Torst also wrote and produced both songs on each of the two singles released by The Chosen Few. Check out ”Last Man Alive” and ”Asian Chrome” for some wacked-out and strange psychedelia.
His 2D Production Company with Dick Parker crop up again on ”Knock Knock” by The Humane Society and the late 60s recordings of Rabbit Mackay, including his wonderful ”Tendency To Be Free” Another one of his songs is ”Childhood Friends” recorded by The Yellow Payges, The Foremost Authority and Teddy & the Pandas. He obviously had some form and was a significant songwriter from the L.A. music scene.
Even more interesting is the 2D production of the beautifully hip psychedelic single by The Children Of The Mushroom, Dick Torst is also believed to have added his backing vocals to their ”August Mademoiselle” and ”You Can’t Erase A Mirror.”
Anyway, back to The Clockwatchers. If anyone knows any information about them please get in touch.
THE BEETHOVEN SOUL – ”The Beethoven Soul” (Dot Records DLP-3821) September 1967
This album by Los Angeles group The Beethoven Soul is not mind bending psychedelia but if you dig sunshine pop with some flower-power hippie elements from the ’67 pop era then this album is probably gonna be your bag.
I wrote about the single taken from the album a few days ago ”The Walls Are High” / ”Good Time Gal” which gives a good indication of the type of well produced harmony pop on offer.
Another highlight is their version of ”Walkin’ Through The Streets Of My Mind” also recorded by English group Timebox and released as a single B-Side during October 1967.
Not a great deal of information exists online about The Beethoven Soul and I’m curious if they played gigs on the Sunset Strip. Members Otis Hale, John Lambert and Richard Lewis became members of Pollution who released records on Capitol and then Prophecy.
Andrea Kouratou (strings)
Bill Powell (guitar)
John Lambart (bass)
Dick Lewis (brass – keyboards)
Otis Hale (woodwinds)
Terry Nu (percussion)
THE BEETHOVEN SOUL – ”The Walls Are High” / ”Good Time Gal” (Dot Records 45-17031) July 1967
I’ll continue my look at some of the ’opulent conceptions’ friendly Dot Records releases with this single by The Beethoven Soul, who were from Los Angeles. I have their Dot album too, so I’ll take a look at that sometime soon.
They certainly look the part, with their way-out flower-power gear, bowl haircuts and even feature a female musician who adds strings but no vocal parts.
”The Walls Are High” is a commercial pop song with orchestration, a steady memorable beat and at just over two minutes long is a radio friendly nugget.
According to ARSA, the online radio survey site, the single went Top 30 in Orlando, Florida.
The other side featured ”Good Time Gal” written by Roger Tillison who was a member of The Gypsy Trips and The Leathercoated Minds.
BOBBY ALLEN – ”House Of The Rising Sun” / ”Orphan Of Love” (Dot Records 45-17079) July 1968
Bobby Allen is a complete mystery to me, I’ve spent some time researching this disc and have come up with next to nothing. So if anyone can fill me in with some relevant details please get in touch.
”House Of The Rising Sun” seems a strange song to release in mid 1968 as I would have thought that The Animals huge hit with it in 1964 was the only version for your sensory requirements. How wrong was I? Bobby Allen’s version is terrific, his vocals are moody and slightly menacing in an outsider kind of way, there is no lengthy organ solo, in fact the organ is a bit too quiet and hidden in the mix. I wish it was louder.
The flip ”Orphan Of Love” is a soul tinged mod mover, strangely credited to Alan Price. I just think that Dot Records got the label information the wrong way round as ”House Of The Rising Sun” is credited to Bobby Allen – Orlie Trujillo, who released many singles in the early 60s on Band Box.
Monument Records songwriter Bob Tubert produced this disc so perhaps Bobby Allen was a performer from the Nashville area.
This is apparently the same Bob Allen that recorded for Diamond records (it sounds like him, anyway). He wrote Orphan Of Love and is credited on BMI under the name Bob Kornegay for that song. Perhaps that is the real identity of Bobby Allen.
THE SPLIT LEVEL – ”The Split Level” (Dot Records DLP 25836) February 1968
This is a very interesting album full of strangeness and experimentation combining two distinct styles, lyte flower pop psychedelia with medieval hymn madrigals. It’s well worth tracking down but you’ll need to find an original copy as there has been no re-issue on vinyl or CD.
A very good review of the album can be found here but I’ll make some brief comments. The Split Level were formed sometime in 1967 from the ashes of a couple of folk outfits, Liz Seneff was the vocalist in The Whiskeyhill Singers while Michael Lobel and Al Dana were a folk duo.
”You Can’t Go” is Peanut Butter Conspiracy-like and has a turned-on folk-rock sound with jangle and comes over like a Sunset Strip mover from ’66, the flower psych vocals and harmonies add to the coolness, then comes a short burst of flute before The Split Level drive their ”in sound” back to NYC where they were based.
Three singles were also released on Dot Records in 1968. Some of these have non-album cuts and of course I hope to add those to my collection and review them here at some point in time.
Michael Lobel (guitar, flute, piano)
Lenny Roberts (6 & 12 string guitars / vocals)
Al Dana (bass, sitar, vocals)
Liz Seneff (vocals, tambourine) – died 1993
THE BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – ”Featuring Space Rock – Part 2” (Dot Records DLP 25823) September 1967
You’ve heard and read about their records on my site, so let me bring you the boys themselves, The Baskerville Hounds.
Dante Rossi: Age 23 – Guitar and singer
Dante has the drawing power of a huge magnet. On stage his comic appearance, combined with a bubbling personality, constitutes leadership. He is always himself, he doesn’t believe there is a time and place for everything, but instead is spontaneous. A natural wit, he usually speaks before he thinks.
This is normally disastrous, but in Dante’s case, it becomes a tool of his trade. Dante loves girls, in any size, shape or form (with great ”success”), pizza and spaghetti, in that order.
William Emery: Age 21 – Bass guitar
A child prodigy, Bill plays concert violin. As a gag he tried the bass guitar and found that he enjoyed it. He has a sleepy look on his face which seems to attract the girls.
Many gags have been tried on Bill, when he is performing, to try to make him crack a smile. It has not yet been accomplished. Whoever does this will have great esteem among his friends. Bill loves sports cars, tall brunettes and sleep, sleep and more sleep.
Lawrence Meese: Age 20 – Lead guitar, harmonica, singer
Larry is an accomplished jazz guitarist with speed, technique and soul. When Larry sings his R&B sound is completely authentic. He writes, arranges, produces and is truly in love with his guitar. Larry’s sexy voice is featured on three numbers in this album. Larry is as homespun and gingham and apple pie.
He is not a gambler, doesn’t drink, smoke and is deeply religious. Larry loves music, girls named Pam and dogs.
Jack Topper: Age 19 – Organ, Piano, Vibes, Accordion, singer
A child prodigy who performed on the piano at Carnegie Hall at the age of 10. Jack is a very warm person, who’s magnetic personality is reflected in his music.
Jack eats, sleeps, walks and talks music. Jack is one of our finest critics. Jack’s cosmopolitan background has had a great influence on his natural ability to make friends.
He was born in Italy, lived for a time in Israel and finally settled in America. Listen to him on ”Jackie’s Theme” which he penned himself. Jack digs girls, food, girls, food, more girls and more food.
Michael Macron: Age 19 – Drums, singer
A real tough drummer who had big shoes to fill and has done a wonderful job of filling them. The Hounds demand a tremendous punch, true cadence and tight brakes.
Mike supplies the pulse of the big sound of The Baskerville Hounds. He has a natural acting ability and the remarkable talent of portraying a store window mannequin, which has convulsed audiences. Mike loves Lebanese food, slender blondes (girls) and Danny Thomas.
write to The ”Hounds” in care of Tema Enterprises, 13310 Caine Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio, 44105.
THE BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – “Jackie’s Theme” / ”Debbie” (Dot Records 45-17017) April 1967
Both of these songs feature on their album ”Space Rock”
”Debbie” is a beat ballad while the instrumental ”Jackie’s Theme” recalls early 60s English rock ’n roll to my ears such as those weird and wonderful Joe Meek sounding productions.
It is primarily an organ instro, written by their organist Jack Topper. Hence the song title ”Jackie’s Theme” and was no doubt part of the live act.
THE BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – ”Christmas Is Here” / ”Make Me Your Man” (Tema 131) December 1965
This record appears to have been released with Christmas in mind during December 1965. ”Christmas Is Here” is a beat carol but not something I’d want to listen to much, even at Christmas. At least the boys donned their favourite Beatles gear for the picture sleeve and shaped their hair like they were a gaggle of Paul McCartney’s.
”Make Me Your Man” is the vinyl treat here. It’s a Sir Douglas Quintet “She’s About A Mover” inspired rocker with harmonica, Jagger influenced vocal delivery and farfisa organ frills. For some reason the song was used almost two years later as part of their Dot album from mid 1967.
THE BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – ”Baby Am I Losing” / ”Never On Sunday” (Dot Records 45-17037) August 1967
”Baby Am I Losing” sounds like it could have been recorded at least a year earlier as it has all of the trademark signs such as the mid period Beatlesesque jangle pop sound and harmonies. A steady farfisa organ riff gives it a forceful drive. This song is perhaps my favourite cut of theirs under The Baskerville Hounds moniker.
Obviously it will be hard to top ”Hurtin’ Kind” which they released on Tema Records as The Tula Babies during April 1965. I dug around and found a fabulous photo of The Baskerville Hounds with Mick Jagger taken when they supported The Rolling Stones at a gig in Cleveland. Thanks to their Facebook page uploader.
THE BRIKS – ’Foolish Baby’ / ’Can You See Me’ (Dot 16878) April 1966
Here’s one of thee classic 45s of the mid 60s. It was originally released on the smaller label Bismark but was picked up by Dot for national distribution. Inexplicably, the record went nowhere other than healthy sales in and around Dallas.
Both sides are GREAT! ’Foolish Baby’ is a powerful garage rocker built around a Kinks like beat. The other side ’Can You See Me’ is a beautiful folk rock jangler.
Lead guitar player Richard Borgens later teamed up with The Truth
THE CITY ZU – ”Quick Like A Bunny (On The Way To Your Heart)” / ”Stop Running Away” (Dot Records 45-17266) June 1969
To complete my focus on the records left behind by The City Zu, here’s their final single released on Dot Records during the Summer of 1969. Both sides are pleasant bubblegum rockers with a hard edge.
My pick is the flip ”Stop Running Away” co-written by Dick Monda a.k.a. Daddy Dewdrop, the former Moonglow recording artist and producer of The Cindermen. As with the other Dot release Ray Ruff produced. I’ve not found any evidence that this disc ever dented the charts or even got passed the white label promo stage.
After this flop The City Zu probably disbanded. I wonder if members continued in the music business with other groups?
THE CITY ZU – ”Give A Little Bit” / ”I’ll Find Another” (Columbia 4-44342) November 1967
This is the second time The City Zu have been featured on my blog. Check out my updated entry from 2011 when I featured their psychedelic rocker ”Too Much, Too Soon, Too Fast” here.
The A-Side ”Give A Little Bit” was a regional hit in the North West and possibly went Top 20 in Seattle. I’ve located a radio sheet from ARSA showing the disc just outside the twenty.
Either way it was a success and got The City Zu attention. Surprisingly they never released anything else on Columbia, moving to Dot Records for a couple of singles. I’ve read elsewhere that the band recorded more material that was never released at the time. Maybe one day, if it’s true, a re-issue label could dig a little deeper and release them.
By the way ”Give A Little Bit” was recorded by The Knickerbockers in February 1966 but their version was never released. The song was written by Glen Campbell.
”I’ll Find Another” is a tuff garage pop mover with a bouncy rhythm, organ and sax. it was written by Jerry ”Zu” Matheson
My latest project is to identify and focus on rock ’n roll, psych and quirky 45s and albums released on the Dot Records label circa 1964 – 1969. I’ll concentrate on the discs that are ”Opulent Conceptions” friendly. This will obviously take some time to achieve so I’ll update this list on a regular basis.
First of all, here are the discs in my record collection. A & B sides with compilation appearance noted.
BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – BABY AM I LOSING
BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – DEBBIE
BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – JACKIE’S THEME
BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – NEVER ON SUNDAY
BEETHOVEN SOUL – GOOD TIME GAL
BEETHOVEN SOUL – THE WALLS ARE HIGH
BOBBY ALLEN – HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN
BOBBY ALLEN – ORPHAN OF LOVE
BRIKS – CAN YOU SEE ME (”Texas Punk #7”)
BRIKS – FOOLISH BABY (”Texas Punk #7”) (”HITMS #13”)
CATCH – AMBER
CATCH – CITY DITTY
CATCH – I’M ON THE ROAD TO MEMPHIS
CATCH – STORM
CHANTAYS – PIPELINE
CHANTAYS – MOVE IT
CITY ZU – EENY MEENY
CITY ZU – QUICK LIKE A BUNNY
CITY ZU – STOP RUNNING AWAY
CITY ZU – TOO MUCH, TOO SOON, TOO FAST (”HITMS #16”)
CLOCKWATCHERS – HEY IT’S SUMMERTIME
CLOCKWATCHERS – MAKE ME NOT LOVE YOU
COLOURS – ANGIE
COLOURS – BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK, BABY
COLOURS – GOD PLEASE TAKE MY LIFE
COLOURS – LOVE HEALS
COLOURS – BROTHER LOU’S LOVE COLONY (short version)
COLOURS – BROTHER LOU’S LOVE COLONY (album version)
FEAR ITSELF – BORN UNDER A BAD SIGN (”World In Sound Tracks #1”)
FEAR ITSELF – THE LETTER
GENE GRAY & THE STINGRAYS – SURF BUNNY
GENE GRAY & THE STINGRAYS – SURFER’S MOOD
HAMILTON STREETCAR – BROTHER SPEED (”Neurotic Reactions”)
HAMILTON STREETCAR – HONEY AND WINE
HAMILTON STREETCAR – NOW I TASTE THE TEARS
HAMILTON STREETCAR – WASN’T IT YOU
LALO SCHIFRIN – MISSION IMPOSSIBLE
LALO SCHIFRIN – JIM ON THE MOVE
LICORICE SCHTIK – FLOWERS FLOWERS
LICORICE SCHTIK – THE KISSIN’ GAME
LIME – BEAUTIFUL DAY
LIME – SATISFIED
MOD SQUAD – BEAUTIFUL WOMAN
MOD SQUAD – THIS IS MY WOMAN
NEIGHB’RHOOD CHILDR’N – ON OUR WAY
NEIGHB’RHOOD CHILDR’N – WOMAN THINK
PEPPERMINT TROLLEY COMPANY – TRUST EP
PRICE AND WALSH – LOVE IS THE ORDER OF THE DAY
PRICE AND WALSH – THE HOUSE OF ILENE CASTLE
REGENTS – BALD HEADED WOMAN
REGENTS – RUSSIAN SPY AND I (”Psychedelic Unknowns #9”)
SHERLOCKS – SHADES OF BLUE
SHERLOCKS – TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE
SOUNDS OF DAWN – STEPHANIE SAYS
SOUNDS OF DAWN – WALKIN’ OUT ON YOU
SPLIT LEVEL – CAN’T COMPLAIN
SPLIT LEVEL – LOVE TO LOVE YOU
SPLIT LEVEL – I DON’T KNOW WHERE YOU ARE
SPLIT LEVEL – LOOKING AT THE ROSE THROUGH WORLD COLORED GLASSES
SURFARIS – WIPE OUT
SURFARIS – SURFER JOE
SURFARIS – CHICAGO GREEN
SURFARIS – SEARCH
SURFARIS – SHAKE
SURFARIS – SHOW BIZ
SYNDICATE – THE EGYPTIAN THING (”Back From The Grave #7”)
SYNDICATE – SHE HAUNTS YOU (”No No No”)
TRIPPERS – DANCE WITH ME
TRIPPERS – KEEP A KNOCKIN’
UN-FOUR-GIVEN – CRY, CRY (Cry little Girl)
UN-FOUR-GIVEN – LOVE ME TO PIECES
YANKEE DOLLAR – CITY SIDEWALKS (”Who Needs Tomorrow”)
YANKEE DOLLAR – MUCKY TRUCKEE RIVER
YANKEE DOLLAR – REFLECTIONS OF A SHATTERED MIND (”The Electric Coffee Shop”)
YANKEE DOLLAR – SANCTUARY
ZACK HILTON – NEXT TRAIN BACK TO TOLEDO
ZACK HILTON – USUALLY ON TUESDAY
BEETHOVEN SOUL – BEETHOVEN SOUL (DLP-3821)
BASKERVILLE HOUNDS – BASKERVILLE HOUNDS (DLP-3823)
SPLIT LEVEL – SPLIT LEVEL (DLP-3836)
COLOURS – COLOURS (DLP-3854)
YANKEE DOLLAR – YANKEE DOLLAR (DLP-25875)
VAL STOECKLEIN – VAL STOECKLEIN (DLP-25904)
COLOURS – ATMOSPHERE (DLP-25934)
HAMILTON STREETCAR – HAMILTON STREETCAR (DLP-25939)
CATCH – CATCH (DLP-25956)
MIND EXPANDERS – WHAT’S HAPPENING (DLP-3773)
BUBBLE – CHO CHO
CHANCES – CAMELBACK
CHUCK BARRIS SYNDICATE – DONNIE
CORONADOS – THE NOMAD
ESQUIRES – SHE’S MY WOMAN
LINCOLNS – POP KAT
OPPOSITE SIX – ALL NIGHT LONG (soul with sax break – not ”Opulent Conceptions” worthy)