The Detroit Riots

Detroit Riots Dearborn 45 A Fast Way to Die

Detroit Riots Dearborn 45 Pebble Stone
The Detroit Riots are an obscure group with one of my favorite singles on the Dearborn Records label. The A-side “Pebble Stone” has a commercial music track but buries the lead vocal. I prefer the flip, “A Fast Way to Die” for the contrast between the rhythm and lead guitar and a set of lyrics that fits the vocalist’s style.

Harry Wallace wrote both songs, copyrighted May, 1969 and published by ChetKay Music BMI.

Tome Webber arranged “Pebble Stone” and Elmer Wallace produced “A Fast Way to Die”.

According to a comment on a youtube video, the bass player was Paul Strothers. I don’t know the names of any other members.

Like the Chomps single I posted yesterday, Dearborn Records was a product of M.S.K Productions, and both singles share publishing by ChetKay. It’s also a Columbia custom press, ZTSC-142387/8.

The Chomps

The Chomps Kool Kat 45 Lookout World
The Chomps seem to be a studio group, releasing one pop side, “Kiss My Lips (One More Time)” (Kaplan, Rabinowitz for Chetkay, BMI and Floss, BMI) b/w a nifty, tongue-in-cheek biker tribute, “Lookout World” (Wilkins, Kaplan for Chetkay, BMI) on Kool Kat KK-1002 in 1968.

Copyright records show these names as Steve Rabinowitz and Eddy Marvin Kaplan. Eddy Kaplan produced and arranged the Chomps single.

Kool Kat is otherwise a soul label, run by M.S.K. Productions, Detroit, Michigan. The Chomps was a Columbia custom pressing, ZTSC 127041/2

Kool Kat 1001 – Joe Matthews – “(You Better) Check Yourself)” (C. McMurray, W. Hampton) / “Ain’t Nothin’ You Can Do”
Kool Kat 1003 – Hindal Butts – “Giggin” (Butts, Hicks, Block, instrumental, ZTSC 107007) / “Happiness (Is So Far Away)”
Kool Kat 1004 – Virgil Murray’s Tomorrow’s Yesterday – “I Still Care” (Huff, Murray, McGuire) / “Summer Dreamin'” (also released on Airtown A-015)

The Soul Source site gives some background on these names:

MSK stands for Martin, Schneider and Kajeski, who owned M-S records, Detroit. Chester J Kajeski owned the music publisher Chetkay, that published the Silky Hargraves tracks (DBA CHETKAY Music Pub, 15401 Tirman, DEARBORN, MI) Kool Kat records were a division of MSK productions, Detroit. Martin & Schneider also owned Marquee records, distributed by MSK productions. Marquee & Dearborn were run out of the same building in Dearborn.

Marquee put out the Free’s “Decision For Lost Soul Blue”. Dearborn is a cool label that had some in-demand soul singles, as well as rock stuff by Tino & the Revlons, the Undecided, H.T. & the Green Flames, the Jammers, Me & Dem Guys, and the Detroit Riots.

The Chomps Kool Kat 45 Kiss My Lips

The Beech Resorts

Beech Resorts Key 45 SpringtimeThe Beech Resorts give us two sides of teen anguish, pining for a girlfriend left behind in the maudlin “Springtime” while wondering why he’s in a relationship in the crude rocker “Distortion Don’t Know”. Why is “Distortion” part of the title? I don’t know.

According to Teen Beat Mayhem, the Beech Resorts came from Jackson, Michigan, a town 36 miles west of Ann Arbor and 66 miles east of Kalamazoo.

I can’t find any publishing info, but D. Williams wrote “Distortion Don’t Know” while “Springtime” is credited to T. Resor (anagram of Resort – a band composition)?

1609 Miles Ave, Kalamazoo was the home of Key Records. Key Records had at least 15 releases during the ’60s, mainly religious or country in nature, but with one other rock single, the Counts “All Night” / “Sittin Here Wonderin'” released in 1965 with a picture sleeve.

This is a Rite pressing from March 1967, 18829/30. Like other Key releases it lists “Raebet’s Productions” on the label.

Beech Resorts Key 45 Distortion Don't Know

Mike Ogilvie and the Blues of Purple

Mike Ogilvie and the Blues of Purple Sandle Wood 45 Miss DoveMike Ogilvie and the Blues of Purple released this one single “Miss Dove” / “Story Book Plays” on the Sandal Wood label in 1969. Tippy Smith was the vocalist and wrote both songs.

“Miss Dove” has buzzing guitar over a very English sounding track and vocal. The flip is gentler with the piano more prominent than the guitars.

Although the label has an address at 100 Ardmore Ave, on Staten Island, NY, I’ve also read the band was from Jacksonville, Florida. I’ve read some copies have a sticker changing the artist name to Blues Uv Purple but I haven’t seen that yet. Confusingly, a CD compilation listed the band as the Powers Uv Purple, I’m not sure where they got that name.

The only other member of the group I know of besides Mike Ogilvie and Tippy Smith is Patrick Ogilvie who played organ.

This seems to be the only release on the Sandal Wood Records label. Sandalwood Music BMI published the songs and the pressing was done by Sound of Nashville, SoN 63051.

Mike Ogilvie and the Blues of Purple Sandle Wood 45 Story Book Plays

The Myst

The Myst Open 45 Coney Island Wild Child

The Myst came from Philadelphia PA and cut this one single for release on Open Records 1252 in September, 1969. The A-side was a Gary Usher- Roger Val Christian song, “Coney Island Wild Child” which had been cut by Billy Harner for Lawn back in 1964. It would be a bit dated but the singer has an rushed, off-hand attitude that suits the song.

Following the Myst single, Open Records released three singles and an LP by Billy Harner, and I believe the Myst was backing Harner in live appearances at this time.

“I’m Crying” is a heavy guitar and Hammond rocker, with a good lead vocal and sustained guitar running continuously throughout the song. The song was written by Joe Siderio, who may have been a member of the group, published by Caldwell Music, BMI.

I don’t know anything else about the Myst or who was in the group.

Open Records, later shortened to OR, was located at 3126 N. Broad St., Philadelphia, most of their records have “A Call-Bill Production” on the label.
The Myst Open 45 I'm Crying

Romuald i Roman

Romuald i Roman Muza Polskie Nagrania EP
Romuald i Roman’s only EP

Pete Kowalski,  a new contributor, is beginning a series on some very rare ’60s rock records from Poland, starting with Romuald i Roman:

Romuald i Roman PosterRomuald & Roman, one of the most interesting Polish bands active in the 1960s was founded in Wrocław, Poland in the spring of 1968 with the following lineup:

Romuald Piasecki – guitar, vocals
Roman Runowicz – guitar, vocals
Jacek Baron – bass, vocals
Andrzej Tylec – drums, vocals

After a few months of concert activity, Jacek Baron was replaced by Leszek Muth. Core members of the band were Romuald Piasecki and Roman Runowicz, hence the band’s name.

Romuald i Roman Muza Polskie Nagrania 45 Pytanie Czy HasłoRomuald & Roman were one of the first Polish groups whose music could be easily called “psychedelic” (a notable mention goes to ELAR-5, their 1967 recording “Moloch” is vastly reminiscent of Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd, with intense guitar feedback and fuzz) and they were the first avant-garde rock band in communist Poland to release a record which was only possible through state-owned and state-controlled record company Polskie Nagrania. Their shows often incorporated innovative, psychedelic light shows, at the time unheard of on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain.

Romuald i Roman Muza Polskie Nagrania 45 CzłowiekTheir officially released discography is rather modest but as with many Polish groups, the amount of what was released on records is notwithstanding the number of actual recordings, often committed in local radio station studios. Romuald & Roman recorded about 2LPs worth of material, but only one EP and one song on a pop music compilation album was released:

Muza N0560 – “Pytanie czy hasło” / “Człowiek” (7” 45rpm extended play; 1969)
Muza XL0623 – Przeboje Non-Stop – side B, track 2: “Bobas” (12” LP compilation album, 1970)

The aforementioned 45 is among the rarest and the most wanted Polish beat records. Both sides are deeply psychedelic, with hypnotic, hallucinatory “Pytanie czy hasło” (“Question or Password”) being especially recommended to any collector interested in 1960s rock music from behind the Iron Curtain. “Człowiek” (“Man”) is more upbeat yet full of broken rhythmic patterns, strange sound effects and assorted psychedelia.

“Bobas” (“Tot”) is probably their best-known song, starting with a loud fuzzed-out feedback and bizarre screams. The lyrics are witty, showing a tot’s point of view mixed with philosophical reflections: “No, I don’t want to grow so old to have to swear all the time”.

Other songs by Romuald & Roman include: “Stał ten dom” (“There Used to Be a House”; an anti-war protest song), “Towarowy Rusza do Indii” (their most psychedelic recording, with a running time of nearly 10 minutes, the abbreviation of the title: TRI is the name of a solvent frequently used by Polish hippies to get high – the title is a Polish counterpart to “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds)”, “A ja nigdy i basta” (“I Will Never Get Married, Period”).

The band didn’t get much promotion in the media, which was more interested in less subversive music (psych pop renditions of soldier songs, for instance). After 1971, the band would often go through line-up changes, repeatedly suspending activity. No further recordings were released in the 1970s. Most of Romuald & Roman’s recorded material is available on 2CD compilation released by Polskie Radio.

Romuald i Roman Muza Polskie Nagrania EP back

Buddy and the Beaumen

Buddy and the Beaumen photo
Buddy and the Beaumen

Buddy and the Beaumen Gretchem 45 Blue Feelin'Buddy and the Beaumen had one single on Gretchem 101, “Blue Feelin'” / “Hold On I’m Comin'” released in 1967.

Although the label for “Blue Feelin'” lists J. Henslee as songwriter, “Blue Feeling” was written by James Henshaw and made famous by the Animals in 1964.

Buddy Smith produced the single but I don’t know who else was in the group. The band photo lists Fort Worth for their location.

The Beaumen are listed as playing on the opening night of the 19th Annual Optimist Carnival in Waxahachie in August, 1966, followed by a group I haven’t heard of, the Unexpecteds on the next night. Waxahachie is about 30 miles south of the center of Dallas.

In early 1967 Buddy & the Beaumen shared billing with the Mystics as the top attractions at the Irving Teen A-Go-Go in early 1967.

When I bought this photo, it came with another, unknown group photo (the Pathfinders?) from the Brewer Photography Class, probably the Brewer High School on the west side of Fort Worth.

The Feebeez

Feebeez Stange 45 Walk Away

Albuquerque, New Mexico was home to the Feebeez. According to a couple comments on the web, the band members were:

Sharon Westcott – lead vocals, guitar
Sherry Haglar – keyboards
Chris (surname?) – bass
Sherry Stange – drums

Luckily the group cut a single with two original songs by guitarist Sharon Westcott. “Walk Away” has a quick, unusual beat with vocals in unison. The flip is maybe even better, the moody “Season Comes”.

Sharon Westcott copyrighted both songs in October, 1966 with Scovel Music, BMI.

The band released the single on Stange R-2216, according to one comment on youtube, Ed Stange financed the single for his daughter Sherry. There’s a rare promotional insert with a photo of the group – if anyone has a copy please send me a scan of it!

Feebeez Stange 45 Season Comes

The Starfires from Long Beach

The Starfires of Long Beach, from left: John Cameron, Pete Wilson, Dave Christopherson and Al (surname?) on sax
The Starfires of Long Beach entertaining at the Terminal Island Officer’s Club “Shipwreck Party” in 1967. From left: John Cameron, Pete Wilson, Dave Christopherson and Al (surname?) on sax

Starfires Long Beach business cardA couple years ago I posted some business cards from the Los Angeles area music scene, including two cards from the Starfires. I assumed these were from the Downey group that had six singles, including the famous “I Never Loved Her”.

The Starfires Garrison Recording Studio demo, never released
The Starfires Garrison Recording Studio demo, never released
It turns out that at least one of those cards belongs to a different Starfires group, operating out of Long Beach, only 15 miles to the south. Apparently this town was big enough for two groups of the same name!

Chris Robere sent me the photos and scans seen here with a little info on the group.

In 1965, the band members included:

Pete Wilson – lead guitar
John Cameron – bass and rhythm guitar
Don Schraider – sax
Dave Christopherson – drums

The band seems to have been popular with the Naval base in Long Beach. They had at least one recording session, as an acetate demo exists from the Garrison Recording Studio in Long Beach. I haven’t heard of “No Hair McCann” before so I expect that must be an original song.

John Irvin Cameron passed away on September 15, 2015.

John Cameron's business ard
John Cameron’s business card

The other Starfires, from Downey, deserves to be covered on this site. That group included Chuck Butler lead vocals, Dave Anderson lead guitar, Sonny Lathrop rhythm guitar, Freddie Fields bass guitar, and Jack Emerick on drums. Freddie Fields seems to have done most of their song writing.

Starfires Long Beach Naval Station Officers Mess Monthly December, 1965
The Starfires featured in the Long Beach Naval Station Officers Mess newsletter in December, 1965

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