The Rainy Days


l-r, back row: Paul Isaacson, Jim Nosakowski, Al Hafeli, Gary Rozycki; front: John Einowski, Tom Brzezina

The Rainy Days are known for a great version of “I Can Only Give You Everything”. They regularly won battle of the bands contests over Bob Seger and the Last Heard, and appeared many times on the Robin Seymour TV show, Swingin’ Time. The members were:

Tom Brzezina – vocals
Gary Rozycki – lead guitar
Alan Hafeli – rhythm guitar
Paul Isaacson – organ
John Einowski – bass
Jim Nosakowski – drums

In early 1967 the Rainy Days released two 45s on the Panik label. Their first 45 was supposed to include a version of the Fugs’ “Dirty Old Man”, which I would love to hear. Though acetates were made, that song’s uncommercial lyrics may have doomed a commercial release, and the song hasn’t surfaced in the years since it was recorded.

“Go On and Cry”, an original song written with their manager is excellent, with a soulful sound at times very reminiscent of the Stones’ “Heart of Stone”, plus the vocals are full of attitude. The Panik label put “Go On and Cry” on the b-side of each of their 45s, once with “Turn On Your Lovelight” and again with “I Can Only Give You Everything”. I’ve seen “Turn On Your Lovelight” issued on red vinyl, with a plain Panik label.

When their third release “Without A Soul” was shelved the band slowly faded away. Tom Brzezina joined Target with Dennis Wezalis, who had written “Without a Soul”, while the other members stayed active in music for some time. As yet, “Dirty Old Man”, “Without a Soul” and their appearances on the Robin Seymour show seem to be lost, but until they are found we have their Panik releases to listen to.

Jim Nosakowski, Gary Rozycki, Alan Hafeli wrote this description of the band:

In the wake of the British Invasion, interest in forming bands to play live music was rampant in Detroit as well as across the country. In 1965, two groups of enthusiastic, budding musicians, The Brimstones and The 69ers combined to form Mogen David and the Grapes of Wrath which soon became The Rainy Days. This hard-driving six man group was noticed by PANIK Records and in the fall of 1967 they released ” I Can Only Give You Everything” backed by the original song, “Go On and Cry”.

The single charted in Detroit and resulted in several appearances on CKLW’s (Windsor, Ontario) popular show “Swingin Time” with Robin Seymour. The Rainy Days appeared with James Brown, The Contours, Bobby Hebb, and others. Recordings of “Turn on Your Lovelight” and an original, “Without a Soul”, failed to chart and the band broke up shortly after a three year run of good fun and great music. Alan and Jim continue to play together after 40 years in various blues and oldies bands.


Mogen David and The Grapes of Wrath at the DrumBeat


l-r, back: Al Hafeli, Jim Nosakowski, mid row: Gary Rozycki, John Einowski, Paul Isaacson
front: Tom Brzezina
I asked Jim Nosakowski some questions about the band, and he responded with Alan Hefeli:

The 69′ers were experimenting with a keyboard player, John Issacson, who could not really play. His brother, Paul Issacson, was a friend of Alan and Gary from the Brimstones and was a very good keyboardist. Through these brothers, the two bands became aware of each other and ultimately Tom (lead singer), and Jim (drums) from the 69er’s, Alan (rhythm), Gary (lead guitar), and Paul (keyboards) formed Mogan David and the Grapes of Wrath. John (bass) was a friend of Tom’s. Dan Bayer (Brimstone’s drummer) joined some of the remaining 69er’s to form Mother’s Little Helpers, a good British-type rock band.

We had been trying to find someone to record us. We wanted to record “Gloria” by Them sensing a sure hit, but the Shadows of Night beat us to it. One agent was interested in Tom but not the rest of the band. A soul recording studio called Big Mack Records, as we recall, was interested in us as their first white group but nothing came of that.

One day our bass player, John, was hitchhiking with his guitar and was picked up by Tony Printz of PANIK Records (he was driving a very cool pale blue Continental convertible). He came to a few practices and decided to sign us. Soon after the decision was made to record “I Can Only Give You Everything”.

We recorded ICOGYE backed by an original credited to our manager, Tony Printz, though we all worked on it. The recording studio was United Sound, a Motown studio near Wayne State University. Our producer was Danny Dallas and as I recall, PANIK was paying $60 an hour for studio time.

When we heard the master we were really disappointed. The lead guitar was out of tune but Tony said it sounded ok. After much pleading by the band, he agreed to go back and redo the cut. The second effort was much better.

Shortly after we recorded, Tony got a call from someone at United Sound saying that the MC5 had also recorded a version of ICOGYE at the same studio two weeks after we did. This motivated PANIK to release our record as quickly as possible.


Thanks to Jim, Gary and Alan for sending in the photos and history of the band, and to Don Rozycki for putting me in touch with his brother. One source for this story was Koen Goossens interview with Tom Brzezina and Jim Nosakowski on his site devoted to the song I Can Only Give You Everything. The link for that is http://icogye.0catch.com/icogyeinterview1.htm – but be warned of ugly pop-up ads that can crash your browser!


l-r, back row: Al Hafeli, John Einowski, Tom Brzezina, Jim Nosakowski; front: Paul Isaacson, Gary Rozycki

l-r: John Einowski, Gary Rozycki, Al Hafeli, Jim Nosakowski, Paul Isaacson, Tom Brzezina

11 thoughts on “The Rainy Days”

  1. I want to give a huge thanks to my distant relative Alan Hafeli. I ran into him a few years ago at the Armada flea market in Armada, Mi. and was going to sell a vintage Gibson guitar & Geib hard case to a dealer there and he talked me out of doing it. I had a huge argument with my husband on the spot and ending up paying for the banjo he wanted and keeping the guitar. Years later I find out the guitar is a 1940′s Gibson ES-150 Charlie Christian with original Geib tweed case in like mint condition. I had owe him a major thanks for saving me from a big mistake! Alan if you read this if you are ever in Texas I’ll buy you dinner! Karla Koch Whisnant (Mary Garbarino’s Daughter)

  2. I remember that incident well. I knew it was a good guitar but I didn’t know how good! Charlie Christian was with the Benny Goodman Band and as I recall, he only had three fingers on his fretting hand.

    The guitar went out of production in 1956. If you have a chance, I’d like to see a picture of the guitar.

    Good hearing from you,

    Your some kind of cousin,

    Alan

  3. Alan, this is Kerstin Koch – Karla’s sister. My sister just told me about this story and contacting you. I hope this makes it to you somehow. My sister was killed in an automobile accident Friday, 1/30/09 and her husband is still in the hospital. Please pass this along and your thoughts & prayers are appreciated.

  4. Quite recently I learned that the John Einowski who I’ve worked with off and on since the late 70s is THE John Einowski, bass player of the Rainy Days. At one time he played with Catfish Hodge.

    Also, the Rainy Days and the GarageHangover website are mentioned in the 10th Annual Oxford American Southern Music Issue (on sale now for $9.95, including two cds).

    Go figure and enjoy!

  5. Hafeli was a teacher at the high school I attended, years back. Did a ‘phone interview with him for the Goldmine magazine article I wrote covering several 1960s MI garage bands. Recommend the article (it’s not online) for further info on this band and much more; everyone who helped in its development was wonderful and generous with their memories, and there was info that I hadn’t previously known of elsewhere, so check it out if you can. The issue appeared about ten years ago, part of a set of two MI rock-themed issues. Question Mark and others were interviewed, too–the book Grit, Noise, and Revolution ‘lifted’ several segments (including my specific phraseology, you can make the comparisons quite readily, take a look) by way of excerpting material originally published by myself and the many other writers whose work was paraphrased in that entertaining, but highly derivative book. (Among other writings, I also did an MC5 interview-based article which may be found online, at the “homepage” address I submitted here; this also was paraphrased in GNR). Was able to see these guys–the former Rainy Days–in their latter-day incarnation performing live a few years back. MI has long been a stronghold of great music, as those who frequent this page are probably well aware. Would love to be able to locate any old TV appearances of the Rainy Days.

  6. This is the second time I’ve run into Jim Thompson ranting online as to his contributions to David Carson’s highly regarded book on Detroit rock history (Grit Noise & Revolution). As I pointed out elsewhere, Carson lists well over a thousand author citations in the chapter notes section. If you go through those as I have, you will find that Jim Thompson is cited only five or six times – just three having to do with the MC5 and those were for quotes from Dennis Thompson, so Jim Thompson’s articles were hardly a major source. Carson did interview all three members of the MC5.
    Oh – really enjoyed the Rainy Days photos & info on this site.
    Eric

  7. No need to be excited, but I know other writers who were paraphrased in the book, too. All own their copyrights, none were consulted beforehand. All material; was from print publications. I was just one of them. All of my material was either original or used with prior permission.

  8. .I was the kid brother of Tom and Jon Wearing who did a remake of Farmer John with a band called the TidalWaves.My brothers were at the beginnings of the scene and our home was nuts with visits from members of the Blues Magoos,Cold Blood,Vanilla Fudge ,Romantics,and many Michigan music makers as well.Tom and Jon went on to be in bands such as the Dick Wagner Band,Frijid Pink,Catfish,Bobby Lewis and the Crackerjack Band.Both knew everybody and everybody was welcome at our home,anytime.During those years I don’t know how ,why, where I came upon a guy named Tommy Brezzina.Right from the start I felt a connection with this guy.Maybe its because he came from the same kind of blue collar hard working background as the Wearing’s and there was absolutely no bullshit about this guy.I didn’t really keep up contact with Tom although I saw him once or twice with the Buzztones.In my opinion Tom created the persona of that band. I will say no more because I am aware some of the sidemen have reached some level of success and popularity and I don’t care to diminish their worth.I don’t know what happened to him but I remember his fire,tenacity and I hope he has done well.
    Ricky Wearing

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