The Skeptics of Dayton, Ohio

The Skeptics Spring 45 WonderingHere’s a great single by the Skeptics, whom I’ve read were from Dayton, Ohio. The urgency and scuzzy burning distortion on the guitar on “Wondering” scream out 1968 to me, a date confirmed by the QCA # 80330, specifically March 1968. The flip is a slow recitative called “I’m Lonely Again” that I find less essential.

This band of Skeptics is not related to the Oklahoma group who cut “Apple Candy”, “Stripes”, and “Turn It On” among other classics.

There’s very little info on the label, even the publishing is limited to simply BMI. No trace seems to exist in BMI’s databases, but I found a Library of Congress copyright record listing Michael Downing (Michael Joseph Downing) and John Hoskins as composers of both songs, published by Lamar Music in May of 1968. Presumably Downing and Hoskins were part of the band.

Spring Records was part of O’Brien’s Recording Service in Springfield, Ohio, 24 miles north east of Dayton. There were at least a few releases on the Spring label, but this may be the only one in a rock style. The 45s were pressed at Queen City Albums in Cincinnati.

O’Brien’s Recording Service did register copyrights for a few of song-poem composer Irene Dollar Heffner’s songs, including one, “Vietnam Sweetheart” that was sung by Rodd Keith (under the alias of John Dough). The flip of that was arranged by Jeanne O’Brien.

The Skeptics Spring 45 I'm Lonely Again

The New Generations and the Cyclones of St Marys, PA

The New Generations Bomb 45 I Told You OnceThe New Generations came from St Marys, a rural town in NW Pennsylvania. They had one single on the amazingly-named Bomb Records, “It’s Alright” written by Victor St. John b/w “I Told You Once” by Blake Haberberger. Both songs were produced by Larry Fairchild and published by Magnetic Reproductions, BMI

I’m partial to the b-side, “I Told You Once” which has a perfectly moody, low-key atmosphere.

The New Generations Bomb 45 It's AlrightThe RCA custom pressing code SK4M 3110/1 indicates the second half of 1965, the labels also have other codes: 885-2, YZ 2154/5 whose meaning I don’t know.

I’ve read two members were with the St. Marys band the Cyclones, who had their own excellent single, “She’s No Good” / “Time for Me to Leave” both written by Hampton for Lee Music BMI in December 1965.

If anyone knows the names of other members of either band, or has a photo of either group, please contact me.

The Cyclones Lee 45 She's No Good

Murphy and the Mob

Murphy and the Mob Talisman 45 Born LoserDenny Murphy – lead vocals
Terry Murphy – lead guitar, lead vocals
Kenneth Sigler – bass
John Sebring – rhythm guitar
Ronnie Cooper – drums

The great majority of the information in this post is from Andrew Brown’s Brown Paper Sack.

Terry Murphy started playing with school friends when he was in 7th grade in 1964 in Tyler, Texas. The group was dubbed Murphy and the Mob by an adult as a joke but it stuck. A year later Terry found a more serious group of musicians, kept the band name and started practicing regularly in the Murphy family living room.

The group played live at a local teen club called The Plum, at the Bergfeld Park ampitheatre, at the YMCA and at their Catholic high school. At the Bergfeld Park battle of the bands produced by Rodney Kamel, Murphy & the Mob would compete with The Marauders (from Troup, TX), the Hobos from Jacksonville, and the Indifferents from Tyler, featuing Terry’s friend Sam Blanchard. (The Indifferents had a 45 on Valor, “Cindy” / “She’ll Be Back”).

In October 1966, the band went to Steve Wright Studios in Tyler to cut their only single, hoping for some success with “Because You Love Me” an original by Terry and featuring his lead vocal. Funds for the recording came from the father of Terry’s girlfriend, Diane Whitten. For a B-side, the band tried “Born Loser”, a song co-written by Terry, Denny and the group’s manager, Steve Brewerton, who was attending Tyler Junior College that year.

Dennis and Terry Murphy and Steve Brewerton (and their moms!) signed publishing contracts with Steve Wright’s Thunderball Music Co. for “Born Loser” in October 1966. Interestingly the three also signed a contract on July 14, 1966 for an unrecorded song called “Don’t Let It Blow Your Mind”.

The band pressed 500 copies to be sold at Anton’s Records in the Weingarten Shopping Center, and reached #11 on KDOK’s charts in November 1966. The band continued until the summer of 1967. Terry Murphy stayed in music while Denny Murphy and Ronnie Cooper left music. Sadly, Kenneth Sigler and John Sebring passed away many years ago.

Stephen Brewerton commented at On the Flipside:

Stephen Brewerton, Tyler Junior College Yearbook Photo
Stephen Brewerton, in the 1966 Tyler Junior College yearbook

I was a nerd going to junior college trying to avoid the draft. I began making fur vest out of old fur coats discarded behind a local high end department store. I began selling these fur vests to rock bands. Some were sold to bands that recorded at Robinhood Bryan’s recording studio and Steve Wright’s recording studio. I met Terry and Dennis Murphy and somehow became their manager. I wrote the lyrics to “Born Loser.” I managed them for two months. After I quit managing them, Terry and Dennis put music to my lyrics and recorded the songs at Steve Wright’s recording studio. The “A” side made it to the top 10 on KDOK radio station, the local rock station. “Born Loser” made it into the top 40 on KZEY, the local R & B station. After that I joined the Navy and went to war and became an alcoholic. I am a hell of a lot more proud of my small volume of poetry, “Ramblings Of An Alcoholic Mind” than I am the lyrics of “Born Loser.”

Stephen added to Oktay Gürbüz:

I have lost touch with all persons involved in [the] Mob and don’t know where to find them.  As I stated before, I am not interested in an MOB projects.  I cant remember even one word of “Born Loser”. Terry and Dennis probably consider this infatuation with Murphy and the Mob as I do as a mere childhood juvenile frivolity.

Thank you to Andrew Brown, Morgan Young, Terry Murphy and Stephen Brewerton, and to Oktay Gürbüz who prodded me to do this article for a long time!

I am a loner baby, I swing alone I’ve got my own pad and an unlisted phone
A steady job, that’s all I need
One pocket to fill, baby, just one mouth to feed

I got no pals, but look who’s got the gals
They come to my pad because they want me so bad
I sleep all day and I swing all night
I’m so cool, baby, I’m just out of sight

All these people. I mean, people they just don’t understand. They see me coming, they shake their head and
say, “Look at him. He’s the born loser. Well, look at him. Born loser.” All right.

– Born Loser by Murphy, Murphy and Brewerton

Murphy and the Mob and Thunderball Music contract
Murphy and the Mob and Thunderball Music contract for “Born Loser”, courtesy of Stephen Brewerton


Murphy and the Mob and Thunderball Music contract
Murphy and the Mob and Thunderball Music contract for “Don’t Let It Blow Your Mind”, courtesy of Stephen Brewerton

The Happy Hoss and Stark Records Discography

The Happy Hoss Stark 45 Call Me BabyStark Records in Mount Airy, North Carolina is famous for the single by the Nomads, “Not For Me” / “How Many Times” as well as a good rockabilly 45 by David Southerland and the Southerns. I don’t have the Nomads, but I’ve picked up this oddity, a soulful and very crude single by the Happy Hoss, which seems to be a pseudonym for song writer Alan Westmoreland.

The top side is “Call Me Baby”, the vocalist shouting out the repetitive lyrics in a hoarse voice (ha ha) answered by high-pitched backing vocals. The flip “You’re The One (I Love)” is a ballad with saxophone.

Mount Airy is a small town very close to the Virginia border, 37 miles northwest of Winston-Salem. Stark Records had at least fourteen singles and a couple albums. The label seems to have been run by Thomas Paul Stark, as every release has Tom Paul Music Co. BMI in the publishing.

The Nomads single is their first, and they recalled the studio being in a basement when they cut their 45 and demos. Their next 45 “Thoughts of a Madman” / “From Zero Down” was released on the Tornado Records label (Tornado 159 in April of 1967), which also featured a release by Joe Stone and Bobby Atkins (Tornado T-136, “Mister Bluegrass”) who have a 45 on Stark. Tornado Records was similarly dominated by country releases.

Stark Records Discography (any help with this would be appreciated):

Stark SR-002 – Joe Stone and Bobby Atkins & the Dixie Mountaineers – “Love Is A Lot To Understand” / “Bob’s Special”
Stark SR-003 – Bobby Atkins & the Farm Hands – “Lonesome Banjo” / “My Darling And Me”
Stark SR-004 – The Country Cousins – “Wrong Side Of Town” / “Bought Me A Farm”
Stark SR-005 – David Sutherland and the Southerns – “You Better Leave My Baby Alone” (Sutherland) / “Whispering Bill” (“A Product of Pilot Record Co.”)
Stark SR-006 – Randy Scott – “If Seeing Is Believing” (David Sutherland) / “You’ve Lost Too Much”
Stark SR-006 EP – Siney Ann Wooten – “Darling You Don’t Love Me Anymore” (Paul Johnson, Johnny Long) / “Crazy Mixed Up Town” (David Sutherland)
I believe the A-side of the EP repeats the two songs from the Randy Scott SR-006 single, but I need confirmation of that.
Stark SR-007 – Randy Scott – “So Welcome to the Club” / “Back Up Troubles”
Stark SR-008 – Bob Hastings – “Crazy Mixed Up Town” (David Sutherland) / “Two Kings and One Kingdom” (Johnny Long)
Stark SR-009 – The Nomads – “How Many Times” / “Not For Me” (Bruce Evans, Larry Deatherage, Tom Paul Music Co. BMI, July 1966)
Stark SR-0010 – Intellectuals Combo – “Our True Love” / “That Ain’t Nice” (instrumental, written by Mike Dee Love)
Stark SR-0011 – Siney Ann – “I’m So Lonesome (I Could Cry)” / “I Can’t Help It (If I’m Still In Love With You)”
Stark SR-0012 – Jimmy and Wesley and the Twin County Pardners – “Make Me A Pallet On The Floor” / “The World Is Still Waiting For The Sunrise” (Jimmy Arnold and Wesley Golden)
Stark SR-0013 – Hank Riley – “Record Of Heartbreak” / “Consolated Egotated Love”
Stark SR-0014 – Deep Valley Boys – “Please Don’t Honey, Please” / “Some Dark Hollow”
Stark SR-0015 – The Happy Hoss – “Call Me Baby” / “You’re The One (I Love)” both by Alan Westmoreland, Tompaul Music Co.
Stark SR-0016 – Four Souls – “Freedom Bound” / “Louise” (both by Paul Cain, Dennis Inman)
Stark SR-0017 – Tony Zito – “Hide Away Moments in Prayer” / ?
Stark SR-0018 – Bobby Atkins – “Memories Of President John F. Kennedy” (Paul Johnson) / “Love Valley” (1968, recorded by Lookabill’s Studio, Greensboro)
Stark SR-0019 – Don Sawyers and the Grangers – “My Favorite Way to Cry” (Larry D. Alderman – Don Sawyers, vocal by Larry D. Alderman and Don Sawyers) / “Imagination Trapped Within My Mind” (Don Sawyers, vocal by Don Sawyers) 1970
Stark SR-0020 – Carl P. Tolbert – “Liquor By the Drink” / “Changing of the Time” (1974)
Stark 100 – Pete Holden & the Baux Mountain Boys – “Truck Driver’s Vow” / “Legend Of Charlie Monroe”


Stark SR-200-1 – Easter Brothers & the Green Valley Quartet – Bluegrass & Country Hymns (1967)
Stark SR-0001 – The Carolina Gospel Singers (1969)

Most of Stark’s output was country music. Early singles have deep red labels and give the address as 1312 Summit Drive, Mt. Airy, North Carolina. Later ones read 628 South Street, Mount Airy, N.C. Later singles were produced by Paul Johnson.

Max Waller writes: “The Intellectuals had at least one further 45, “I Don’t Want To Cry” (as Mike Watson & the Intellectuals) / Danny Boy (as Glenn Wall & the Intellectuals) on M.K.B. 120 from Jan 1968 (SO 4898)”. MKB Recording was located in Tobaccoville, NC, just northwest of Winston-Salem.

Thank you to Max Waller, Lightnin’ Wells and Franz Kunst for help with this discography.

The Happy Hoss Stark 45 You're The One (I Love)

The X-Terminators

X-Terminators Eugene Register Guard July 26, 1964
X-Terminators, July 26, 1964

X-Terminators Century Custom 45 X-TerminationThe X-Terminators came from Oakridge, Oregon, a small town about 40 miles southeast of Eugene, OR. I don’t have this 45 yet (if anyone has a copy please write to me) but came across this article and thought I’d write about the band.

Members were:

Craig Sorseth – lead guitar
Doug Bates – rhythm guitar, electric piano
Frank Worth – bass guitar
Jerry Westling – drums

The group formed in high school in January 1964. About six months later they went to Century Custom Recording Service in Eugene and cut two great original instrumentals, “X-Termination” and “Wild Hare” You can find both on Youtube, but for some reason slowed down by roughly 10%.

An article in the Register-Guard from July 1964 says “the selections are two of ten [original songs] the X-terminators composed by ear, since none of the boys read music for the instruments they play.”

With two of the members going to college in the fall, it’s unlikely the band stayed together much longer.

X-Terminators Century Custom 45 Wild Hare

Sean and the Sheas

Sean and the Sheas Yorkshire 45 Hi DiddleSean and the Sheas Yorkshire 45 Come to the Party

Sean and the Sheas Yorkshire 45 Spiders
Joe Rodie sent the excellent scans seen here of rare singles by an unknown Detroit area band, Sean and the Sheas, who released two 45s in 1966. Joe is looking for information on the group, but unfortunately I couldn’t provide any yet.

Sean and the Sheas first release is the upbeat soul-influenced “Come to the Party” backed with an adaption of the nursery rhyme, “Hi Diddle”.

This was Yorkshire Y-001-A/Y-001-X, with “Come to the Party” written by John Rankin and “Hi Diddle” credited to B. Cozad – J. Rankin. The writers must have been aware a new arrangement of a traditional song could be copyrighted. The label reads recorded in Detroit, Mich., but I don’t know which studio. The producer was John Rankin, and executive producer Henry Cozad.

Sean and the Sheas Yorkshire 45 Hi Diddle
second release of “Hi Diddle”
For the second single, “Hi Diddle” repeated this time as Yorkshire Y-004-X while “Spiders” which I haven’t heard is listed as Yorkshire Y-004-XX. Terry Mohr wrote “Spiders” and he also appears as arranger on this 45, produced by Bill Cozad and John Rankin and this time oddly “Recorded in America”.

All songs published by Bico Music BMI, 1966.

The 45s have Nashville Matrix stamps and “95” etched into them. The “95” means they were pressed by Norman Archer at Archer Record Pressing, at 7401 E. Davidson in Detroit, as that was his account number at Matrix of Nashville. Archer handled many smaller Detroit labels, so despite the resemblance to the font used for Wheel’s 4 Records, Yorkshire was probably an unrelated label. There were several Yorkshire Records labels around the country at the time, but I can’t find any other release by this Detroit company.

With all the names on these singles I would think there would be some information on the group out there, but I can’t find any yet.

Thank you to Joe Rodie for the scans and motivating me to write about this group.

The Livin’ End of Dayton, Ohio

The Livin' End Rite 45 You're My WomanDespite the band members’ names on the label, this group is still something of a mystery. Members were Doug Dehart, Ron Riddle, Jim Frizell, Don Jones, and Ray Reade.

“You’re My Woman” has a murky, dirty sound to the rhythm guitar that flashes throughout the song. It has a dim, psychedelic aura from the last days of 1967. The flip side, “Our Love Was Strong” is a strange number alternating long harmony aahs with a plain, almost recited vocal.

The Buckeye Beat site states it was recorded at Commercial Recorders in Dayton, Ohio. This is a Rite pressing, with account # 1190 in the dead wax of both sides.

Anyone have a photo of the group?

The Livin' End Rite 45 Our Love Was Strong

Bobby Simms & the Simmers

Bobby Simms was born Robert Siemiaskzo. While still in high school in 1961 he joined the Mus-Twangs as lead vocalist. The Mus-Twangs were based out of Harvey, Illinois, about 20 miles south of central Chicago and just west of Hammond, Indiana. The Mus-Twangs had two instrumental singles on Smash, including the very first single ever released by that label, “Marie” / “Roch Lomond”.

Simms left the Mustangs in 1962 and started the Bobby Simms Trio with Mus-Twangs bassist Keith Anderson, recording a good Mersey-influenced single in 1964 on New Breed “And Your Mine” / “Do Things Right” featuring the drumming and harmonica of Verne Johnson (later of Illinois Speed Press).

Bobby Simms Billboard 1965 April 10In 1965 Simms had his own single on Smash, “The World Is Funny” / “You’re My Everything” which I haven’t heard yet.

The following year he released a 45 as Bobby Simms and the Simmers, featuring two of his original songs, the raucous “Big Mama” backed with a much gentler harmony sound in “Please Please Believe”.

Bobby Simms & the Simmers WMRC 45 Big MamaThis seems to be the only release on WM & RC Records, though there were two different labels, one featuring a key and distribution by Summit. WM standing for Walter Melnyk, the manager of Simms and owner of the M.B. Club in the Burnside neighborhood of Chicago. The “C” in RC stands for Cox, co-producer of the sinle with Melnyk. Publishing was by M.B. Key BMI.

Musicians on the Simmers single included Keith Anderson and Verne Johnson from the Trio, plus guitarist Paul Cotton from the Mus-Twangs.

In 1967 Simms became one of the founding members of the Rotary Connection. Keith Anderson and Paul Cotton formed the Rovin’ Kind, which evolved into Illinois Speed Press.

I’m sorry to report that while researching this post I saw a comment from Keith Anderson that Bobby Simms passed away on May 29, 2015.

Information for this post came from Paul Cotton’s excellent site, especially this page on Bobby Simms.

Bobby Simms & the Simmers WMRC 45 Please Please BelieveBobby Simms & the Simmers WM & RC 45 Big Mama Key Production

The Colony, Platter Records, Chiyo & the Crescents

The Colony, Platter Records 45, All I Want

The Colony, Platter Records 45, Things On My MindIn April of 1967 a band called The Colony released their only single, the wild “All I Want” b/w a great song called “Things On My Mind” on Platter Records P-105. The two make for an interesting contrast: one is hard-edged r&b with a desperate-sounding vocal, the other a much more polished production that includes string arrangements but keeps its drive.

Both songs were written by Mike Foley and Bill Eucker for Worlday-Jenks BMI.

Platter Records: a redundant name wouldn’t you say? Platter was located at 34 San Clemente St, in Ventura, California.

Warren Patients and the Cobras playing in Hazleton, PA, Feb. 25, 1967
Warren Patients and the Cobras playing in Hazleton, PA, Feb. 25, 1967

The Platter Records discography looks like this (any additions would be appreciated):

Platter 1001: Homer Lee – “Pedernales River” (Bert Peck) / “I’ve Got Some Crying To Do” (June 1966)
Platter 1002: The Cobras featuring Warren Patience – “It’s a Lie” (Michael Walker) Worlday-Jenks BMI / “Thoughts of You (Are Wrecking Me)” Sept. 1966
Platter 1003: Morrie Hamilton “Wimoweh” / “Pickin’ and Grin’in” (Morrie Hamilton – Chas. Wright for Worlday-Proctor BMI) (produced by Joe Bill D’Angelo)
Platter 1004: The Two of Us (Bill & Dorice) “You’ll Love Me” (Richie Carpenter, Lightup Music BMI.) / “Piki Teepee” (no artist listed)
Platter 1005 – The Colony – “All I Want” / “Things On My Mind” (Mike Foley and Bill Eucker) April 1967

Burt Peck, Homer Lee, Platter Records Billboard, June 18, 1966
Billboard mentions Burt Peck and Homer Lee’s Platter release, Billboard, June 18, 1966

The Cobras came from Kingston, Pennsylvania, west of Scranton. I have no idea how they came to be on Platter Records, but their 45 is a rare and classic garage single. The label for the Cobras reads “featuring Warren Patience” but an ad I found in a central PA newspaper puts his name as Warren Patients.

Homer Lee worked with a song writer out of Dallas, Texas. Morrie Hamilton worked in various locations including Denver. The Two of Us (Bill McClure and Dorice Vance) worked around Anaheim and Santa Ana in Orange County.

With the widespread origins of these artists, the Colony may have been the only act on the label actually from the Ventura area.

Chiyo Platter Records 45 Piki Teepee
Platter Records reissue of “Piki Teepee”, originally the b-side of the Sundancers Breakout 45 “Devil Surf”
Bill Eucker produced and arranged both sides of the Colony single. His full name is William Herschel Eucker. I have no other clue as to who performed on the Colony single, or if they were even a real band outside the session for these two songs. Bill Eucker’s name connects Platter Records with an earlier label from the Oxnard area, Break Out Records.

One odd thing about this discography is the B-side to the Two of Us single, credited only by its title “Piki Teepee”. This instrumental had original release two years earlier as the flip to the Sundancers’ Break Out Records single, “Devil Surf”. Who were the Sundancers? They were Chiyo & the Crescents by another name.

Chiyo & the Crescents and Break Out Records

The best info on Chiyo comes from the article and comments section of Office Naps’ post Everybody Wipe Out Now, which I’ll summarize here, though I can’t attest to the veracity of all this information.

Chiyo was supposedly of Hopi Indian descent, originally named Chizomana. In the 1940s Chiyo went to the University of Nebraska in Lincoln to study music. She married an engineer by the name of Fred Ishii who worked at Pt. Mugu Naval Air Station in Oxnard. She began giving lessons in various instruments at her home, but by the early ’60s she opened up her shop, Chiyo’s Guitars and Drums, on Saviers Road in Oxnard where she continued teaching, notably flamenco-style guitar.

Chiyo and the Crescents Break Out Records 45 Devil SurfAround 1962 or 1963, Chiyo formed a band called the Crescents:

Chiyo Ishii – lead guitar
Thom Bresh – rhythm guitar
Tom Mitchell – bass
Ray Reed – sax
Bob Ross – drums

Thom Bresh is Merle Travis’s son. He would have been about 15 or 16 at the time of these recordings. Bresh was taking lessons at Ernie Ball’s store in Thousand Oaks, where Bill Eucker was teaching. Eucker wrote an instrumental he called “Pink Dominos”, which would become the first of three singles by the Crescents on Break Out Records. Oddly each of the three releases has a different artist name, even though all are by Chiyo & the Crescents.

The only single on Breakout not by Chiyo and the Crescents was by the Dar Vons: “Hot Pepperoni” (obviously trying to cash in on the Dartells “Hot Pastrami”) b/w “Bowling Alley Baby”. The Dar Vons or Darvons included Dave Bowers and previously were known as the Surftones – but I don’t believe this is the same Surftones that backed Dave Myers, that band included Johnny Curtis, Ed Quarry, Dennis Merritt, Seaton Blanco, and Bob Colwell.

Break Out Records discography

Break Out BBM-3/4 – Chiyo & the Crescents – “Pink Dominos” (Bill Eucker) / “Devil Surf” (Chiyo)
Break Out 111 – The Sundancers – “Devil Surf” / “Piki Teepee” (both by Chiyo)
Break Out 105-A/106-B – Kresents – “Purple Checkers” (Bill Eucker, Dimondaire Music BMI) / “Maple Syrup” (Chiyo) (February, 1964)
Break Out 107-AA/108 – Dar Vons – “Hot Pepperoni” (Steve Middleton, B. Peeler) / “Bowling Alley Baby” (Waldemar Mennigen – Jerry Jaye) produced by Moraga- B. Moon

I could use good scans of either the Sundancers and the Kresents singles if anyone has them.

Break Out was at least partly owned by Harold Moraga. Moraga also owned part of Dimondaire Music BMI, which published all the songs on Break Out.

The Crescents featuring Chiyo Era 45 Pink Dominos
The Crescents featuring Chiyo, Era 45 “Pink Dominos” – written by Bill Eucker
Kim Fowley bought the master for “Pink Dominos” and placed it with Era Records for a wider release, reaching  #95 in Billboard on December 28, 1963 and reportedly climbing as high as #69 in early 1964. I read Ghoulardi used it on his show so it became an in-demand in the Cleveland, Ohio area.

Fowley controlled half the publishing for both sides through Room Seven Music, BMI. The flip side “Breakout” is credited to Moon and Moraga and even though Chiyo’s name is on the label, this sounds like a different group using a cheap organ sound.

Despite the success of the single, the two follow ups on Break Out were recorded under different band names. The first repeated “Devil Surf” and added “Pink Teepee”. For the third, Bill Eucker wrote “Purple Checkers” and Chiyo contributed “Maple Syrup”. BMI shows he wrote a song called “Torment” during this period, which seems to have gone unrecorded.

I wonder what Bill Eucker was doing in the two or three years between writing for the Crescents and recording the Colony single. It’s also a mystery how “Pink Teepee” shows up on the flip to the Two of Us single, as there doesn’t seem to be any overlap in publishing or production between the Break Out and Platter labels.

I find no more credits for Bill Eucker until 1972, when he turns up playing guitar on the John Henry Kurtz LP Reunion on ABC Records. That record that contains the original version of “Drift Away”, a later version of which continues to be heard in supermarkets across the country.

Thank you to Dick Blackburn for adding the Dar Vons to the Break Out discography.

The Crescents featuring Chiyo Era 45 Breakout
“Breakout” – credited to the Crescents, but sounding like another group altogether.

Elton John and Bluesology

Today, Elton John is one of rock music’s most revered artists but during the early-mid 1960s he struggled for recognition, learning his trade as Reg Dwight with West London R&B outfit, Bluesology.

Below, I have started to piece together a timeline on this band’s history, including the period after Reg Dwight/Elton John left in March 1968 to start his solo career.

In particular, I need to credit the invaluable work carried out by Keith Hayward, who has written the excellent book, Tin Pan Alley: The Rise of Elton John, for some of this material. He has been a huge help. I have also reference below sources that I have drawn on for live dates.

I would welcome any additions and corrections in the comment box below.


Bluesology was formed in 1962 after Reg Dwight and Stu Brown had played in Pinner, Middlesex group, the Corvettes. The original line up comprised:

Stu Brown – guitar/vocals

Reg Dwight – keyboards/vocals

Geoff Dyson – bass

Mick Inkpen – drums


Circa May 1965 – Reg Dwight’s ‘Come Back Baby’ recorded

6 May 1965 – Elms Club, Corbins Lane, South Harrow (every Thursday)

13 May 1965 – Elms Club, Corbins Lane, South Harrow (every Thursday)

20 May 1965 – Elms Club, Corbins Lane, South Harrow (every Thursday)

27 May 1965 – Elms Club, Corbins Lane, South Harrow (every Thursday)

(Source: Harrow Weekly Post – stopped advertising after above date)



June 1965: Dyson leaves to join Mockingbirds

+ Rex Bishop – bass

Circa June 1965 – ‘Times Are Getting Tougher Than Tough’ recorded


23 July 1965 – ‘Come Back Baby’ c/w ‘Times Are Getting Tougher Than Tough’ released (Source:


November 1965:

+ Pat Higgs – trumpet

+ Dave Murphy – saxophone


3-20 December 1965 – Major Lance tour with Bluesology (Source: Melody Maker)

3 December 1965 – Flamingo, Soho and In Place

4 December 1965 – Manchester

5 December 1965 – Nottingham

6 December 1965 – Rochester

7 December 1965 – Bird Cage, Portsmouth

8 December 1965 – Bromley Court Hotel, Bromley, Kent

9 December 1965 – Paddington (most likely Cue Club)

10 December 1965 – Durham (most likely the university)

11 December 1965 – Middlesbrough

14 December 1965 – Harlow

16 December 1965 – Cromwellian, South Kensington

16 December 1965 – Marquee, London with Alan Price Set (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

17 December 1965 – Stockport (most likely Tabernacle)

18 December 1965 – New All-Star Club, 9 Artillery Passage, London, E1

19 December 1965 – El Partido, Lewisham, London with Duke Lee

19 December 1965 – Flamingo, Soho

20 December 1965 – Cooks Ferry Inn, Edmonton (Source: Melody Maker)


5-19 January 1966 – Patti La Belle & The Bluebelles first tour with Bluesology (Source: Melody Maker)

5 January 1966 – Scotch of St James, Mayfair

6 January 1966 – Cue Club, Paddington

8 January 1966 – Oasis, Manchester with The Checkpoints

9 January 1966 – Flamingo, Soho

11 January 1966 – Cromwellian, South Kensington

14 January 1966 – All Star Club, Liverpool Street and Flamingo, Soho

15 January 1966 – Dungeon, Nottingham

15 January 1966 – Mojo, Sheffield

16 January 1966 – Plaza, Birmingham (Handsworth?) (Source: Melody Maker)


February 1966 – Reg Dwight’s ‘Mr Frantic’ c/w ‘Every Day I Have The Blues’ released

February 1966 – Doris Troy tour with Bluesology

11 February 1966 – Cue Club, Paddington with Herbie Goins & The Nightimers

11 February 1966 – El Partido, Lewisham, London with Duke Lee (Source: Melody Maker)

12 February 1966 – Oasis, Manchester with Manchester’s Playboys (Source:

13 February 1966 – Flamingo, Soho with Chessmen

18 February 1966 – Club West Indies, Stonebridge, Middlesex with Caribbean Show Band

18 February 1966 – Golders Green Refectory, Golders Green

19 February 1966 – New All Star Club, Liverpool St with Captain First (Source: Melody Maker)

22 February 1966 – Marquee, London with Spencer Davis Group (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


March 1966 – Bluesology travels to Hamburg to play Top Ten Club with Linda Laine & The Sinners


12 April 1966 – Marquee, London with Manfred Mann

22 April 1966 – Marquee, London with Sands (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


Late April/early May 1966: Inkpen leaves

+ Paul Gale – drums

Late April/early May 1966: Bishop departs

+ Freddy Gandy – bass


3-circa 21 May 1966 – Patti La Belle & The Bluebelles second UK tour (Source: Melody Maker)

3 May 1966 – Birdland, London

4 May 1966 – Scotch of St James, Mayfair

5 May 1966 – Ram Jam, Brixton

6 May 1966 – Ricky Tick, Windsor, Berkshire

7 May 1966 – New All Star Club, Liverpool St (Source: Melody Maker)

8 May 1966 – Oasis, Manchester with Patti La Belle & The Bluebelles and Polecatz (Source:

9 May 1966 – Whisky A Go Go, London

13 May 1966 – Flamingo, Soho with The Gass (Source: Melody Maker)

14 May 1966 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester with Patti La Belle & The Bluebelles and Ram Jam Band (Source:

17 May 1966 – Marquee, London (Patti La Belle & Her Belles with The Clayton Squares) (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon) (probably with Bluesology backing Patti La Belle)

 17 May 1966 – Whisky A Go Go, London

21 May 1966 – Cue Club, Paddington (Source: Melody Maker)

 21 May 1966 – Rhodes Centre, Bishop Stortford, Hertfordshire (Patti La Belle & The Bluebelles with Bluesology and The Ultimates (Source: The Day Before Yesterday: Steve Ingless)


3-19 June – Ink Spots tour (Source: Melody Maker)

3 June 1966 – RAF West Ruislip, Middlesex

4 June 1966 – Douglas House, London

4 June 1966 – New All Star Club, Liverpool St with Admiral Ken Sound System

5 June 1966 – Plaza Ballrooms, Birmingham

7 June 1966 – Whisky A Go Go, London

10 June 1966 – Orchid Ballroom, Purley, Surrey

10 June 1966 – New All Star Club, Liverpool St with Admiral Ken Sound System (Source: Melody Maker)

11 June 1966 – Twisted Wheel, Manchester (Inkspots with Alan Bown Set) (Source:

12 June 1966 – Riverboat, Gainsborough

13 June 1966 – Douglas House, London

15 June 1966 – Riverboat, Gainsborough

16 June 1966 – Streatham Locarno, Streatham, London

17 June 1966 – Royal Tottenham, Tottenham, London

18 June 1966 – Marcam Hall, March, Cambridgeshire

18 June 1966 – Mojo Club, Sheffield (Source: Melody Maker)

Circa June 1966:

+ Neil Hubbard – guitar (joins around this time)

25 June 1966 – Marquee, London (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


8 July 1966 – Marquee, London with The VIPs

14 July 1966 – Marquee, London with The Move (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


6 August 1966 – Marquee, London with The Soul Agents

11 August 1966 – Marquee, London with The Move (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

29 August 1966 – Nottingham Blues Festival, Sherwood Rooms, Nottingham with Jimi Hendrix Experience, Jimmy James & The Vagabonds, Jimmy Cliff & The Shakedown Sound and Wynder K Frog (Source: Derby Evening Telegraph)


Mid-August-mid-September, Bluesology travels to St Tropez for a month (Papagayos).

26 September 1966 – Marquee, London with Jimmy James & The Vagagonds (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


7 October 1966 – Marquee, London with Gary Farr & The T-Bones

20 October 1966 – Marquee, London with The Move

29 October 1966 – Marquee, London with The Herd (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

29 October 1966 – Shoreline, Bognor Regis with Long John Baldry, The Action and David Bowie & The Buzz (Source: Bognor Regis Post)


5 November 1966 – Starlight Ballroom, Crawley, West Sussex with Deadly Nightshade (billed as Long John Baldry – not sure if they have linked up with Baldry yet?)  (Source: Crawley Advertiser)

12 November 1966 – Marquee, London with The Herd (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

Mid-November 1966: Neil Hubbard departs

Around mid-late November – Bluesology travel to Sweden for mini-tour???

Late November 1966: Paul Gale departs while the band is in Sweden

+ Pete Gavin – drums (ex-Soul Pushers)


11 December 1966 – Saville Theatre, London with Little Richard and Alan Price Set (Source: Melody Maker)

Around this time, Bluesology become Long John Baldry’s back-up band

+ Long John Baldry – vocals

+ Alan Walker – vocals (ex-Roadhogs)

30 December 1966 – Marquee, London (billed as Long John Baldry Show) with The Good-Goods (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

31 December 1966 – Blue Moon, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire (billed as Long John Baldry featuring Alan Walker, Stuart Brown & Bluesology) (Source: Gloucestershire Echo, 1966)


15 January 1967 – Gyro Club, Troutbeck Hotel, IIlkley, West Yorkshire (billed as Long John Baldry with Bluesology) (Source: Yorkshire Evening Post)

31 January 1967 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead (billed as Long John Baldry) (Source: Decca Studios and Klooks Kleek: Dick Weindling and Marianne Colloms)


17 March 1967 – Marquee, London with The Long John Baldry Show and Timebox (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


3 April 1967 – Feathers, Ealing, Middlesex (billed as Long John Baldry & Bluesology) (Source: Melody Maker)

21 April 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with Timebox (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

22 April 1967 – Blue Moon, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire (billed as Long John Baldry featuring Alan Walker) (Source: Gloucestershire Echo, 1967)


2 May 1967 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead (billed as Long John Baldry)

11 May 1967 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead (billed as Bluesology) (Source: Decca Studios and Klooks Kleek: Dick Weindling and Marianne Colloms)

Mid-May 1967: Pat Higgs and Dave Murphy both left immediately after this gig (Higgs also working with Hamilton & The Hamilton Movement during late 1966/early 1967)

+ Marsha Hunt – vocals

+ Elton Dean – saxophone (ex-Soul Pushers)


+ Marc Charig – saxophone (ex-Sidewinders)


21 May 1967 – Co-op, Warrington, Cheshire (billed as Long John Baldry Show) (Source: Manchester Evening Post, 1967)


1 June 1967 – Clouds, Derby ‘for Derby College Students’ Rag Week’ (billed as Long John Baldry Show with Bluesology and Pepper’s Machine) (Source: Derby Evening Telegraph)

9 June 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldy Show) with C-Jam Blues (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


16 July 1967 – Starlite Ballroom, Greenford, Middlesex (billed as Long John Baldry Show)

28 July 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with The Workshop (Source: Melody Maker)


11 August 1967 – Bluesville ’67, Manor House, London (billed as Long John Baldry Show)

14 August 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with Jimmy Powell & The Dimensions (Source: Melody Maker)

20 August 1967 – Carlton Ballroom, Erdington, West Midlands (billed as Long John Baldry Show) (Source: Birmingham Evening Mail)

26 August 1967 – New All Star Club, Liverpool Street, London (Source: Melody Maker)


September 1967: Around this time Reg Dwight took part in Scottish tour with Simon Dupree

3 September 1967 – Beau Brummel Club, Nantwich, Cheshire (billed as Long John Baldry, Bluesology, Stewart A Brown, Marsha Hunt and The Scorpions) (Source: Northwich Chronicle)

10 September 1967 – Hotel Leofric, Coventry, West Midlands (billed as Long John Baldry Show with Stuart A Brown and Marsha Hunt and Deuce Coupe) (Source: Coventry Evening Telegraph)

12 September 1967 – Klooks Kleek, West Hampstead (billed as Long John Baldry)

15 September 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with The Remo Four (Source: Melody Maker)


5 October 1967 – ‘Since I Lost My Baby’ c/w ‘Just A Little Bit’ released (Source:

19 October 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with Timebox (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)

Late October 1967: Stu Brown leaves around this time to record as solo artist

+ Caleb Quaye – lead guitar/vocals


23 November 1967 – Marquee, London (billed as The Long John Baldry Show) with The Nite People (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


23 Februay 1968 – Clockwork Orange, Chester (billed as Long John Baldry and the Long John Baldry Show and Soul Finger) (Source: Northwich Chronicle)


March 1968: Reg Dwight and Caleb Quaye leave Bluesology

+ Bernie Holland – guitar (ex-Jam)

(Source: Georgie Fame – There’s Nothing Else To Do. Life and Music: Uli Twelker)

+ Jimmy Horowitz – keyboards (ex-Five Proud Walkers) (Source:

26 March 1968 – Mr Smith’s Club, Winsford, Cheshire (billed as Long John Baldry) with Look Twice (Source: Northwich Chronicle)


30 April 1968 – Marquee, London (billed as Long John Baldry (Source: London Live: Tony Bacon)


In late 1968 the group backed The Paper Dolls before splintering.







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