The Mark V (Redlands, CA) was basically a dance combo (piano, drums, bass, trombone, sax, and trumpet) but we dabbled in guitars, harmonicas, and tambourines. The Mark V band members were:
Brad Madson (piano)
Steve Hauser (sax, clarinet, flute, vocals)
Dick Owens (drums)
Danny Faragher (trombone, harmonica, vocals)
Jimmy Faragher (bass, guitar, vocals)
Dave Kelliher (aka Dave Roberts) (trumpet, guitar, vocals)
We had recorded an instrumental at Universal Studios at 5539 Sunset Blvd. in 1964. Instrumentals (particularly surf tunes) were hot. But also you had songs like Wonderland By Night, Midnight in Moscow, The Lonely Bull, The Theme from Mondo Cane, and all of that Al Hirt and Tijuana Brass stuff on the charts in the early 60’s (a lot of trumpet solos there…). Also, novelty songs were big (“No Matter What Shape Your Stomach’s In” from the Alka Seltzer commercial).
Well, there was a fairly new corn chip on the market called Wampums so…we came up with this little gem on our own…and believe or not, it was a big hit at dances and proms…girls in huge prom dresses, dancing like Indians and doin’ the Wampum battle cry…it wasn’t pretty. And Steve Hauser was one helluva saxophonist, as you can hear. Steve, by the way, was the leader of the band and probably has more (and perhaps more accurate) accounts of all of this.
The Mark V – Wampum (Universal Studios demo)
We went back a year later to get our masters but Universal was out of business, replaced by Impression Records. We had some other demos we were shopping around on our own–recorded at Wm. Locy Sound Studio in Riverside, CA. in 1964. No producer, just us and whatever studio time a hundred bucks would buy.
The Mark V – I’m Through with You (Locy demo)
Now, to my ear, it’s got more “soul” to it [than the remake on Impression], as rough as it is. Brad Madson’s piano work is really featured here, with a kind of haunting Gerry & The Pacemakers sound. (Okay, and I like my trumpet solo better.)
We were greeted by Sonny and Al Jones who want to hear our stuff. In no time we signed with Impression and cranked out a couple of things under Mark V, the one record as Intercoms, and another under the C-Minors. But it was the same six guys. It was heady…I was the youngest at 15 and the oldest was 17. Al and Sonny were country guys…Dorsey Burnette used to hang around there all the time.
Al and Sonny needed something quick and probably had a narrow window in which to work with John Fisher, who was riding high with “Suspicion” by Terry Stafford. (Fisher loved to tell the story of how they got that strange sound in “Suspicion” …they put a paper bag over a the organ’s Leslie speaker.) And you can’t underestimate how the British Invasion really fired up the band scene in L.A.
So, they threw all against the wall to see what would stick. We did hear “I’m Through With You” on local radio (KMEN, San Bernardino; KASK, Pomona) and it apparently got a little action in various small markets around the country. I don’t think the other stuff modulated many transmitters out there. They all came out at the same time.
By the way, we hated those other names but we figured they knew what they were doing.
The Mark Five’s first Impression release [is] “I’m Through With You”. They brought in a session guitarist for this and it was either James Burton or Jerry McGee. Both were on one of our recordings and I’m pretty sure it was the former. You could probably tell by listening…at 15 I had no idea I was in the presence of a phenom. Even though I didn’t get to play guitar on it, that is me on the trumpet.
The flip side – “I’ll Keep On Trying”. Again, I’m pretty sure this is Jerry McGee on guitar (think Rita Coolidge riffs). By the way, both were produced by Al Jones, Sonny Jones, and John Fisher.
A Mark Five record released as the C-Minors – “Just A Little Feeling,” / “Don’t Go” Impression 106. That is me on guitar and of course, trumpet, back up vocals, nail biting, etc.