Category Archives: US

The Banshees / Ariel / Kensington Forest


The Banshees

Updated August 7, 2008

The Banshees were students at Mills High School in Millbrae, just south of San Francisco. They had started in 1962 as an instrumental group the Black Knights, changing their name to the Banshees when they added a vocalist in ’64. Members were Jack Walters, Chris Guiver and Paul and Dennis Studebaker, and for a short time Bob Morelli.

They released two records on the Solo label including the crude and energetic “They Prefer Blondes” / “Take a Ride with Me”. “They Prefer Blondes” was written by Jack Walters, while “Take a Ride with Me” was by Paul Studebaker, and both songs were arranged by Paul Studebaker. Lou Dorren, a high-school friend of the band produced both of their Solo 45s, and also recorded them in a later incarnation as the Kensington Forest.

With the help of his brother, George Guiver, I’ve heard from founding member of the band Chris Guiver, who kindly gave a detailed history of the band. Jason Sweitzer spoke to the Banshees’ friend and producer Lou Dorren about his early years as a sound engineer. Fascinating in itself, Lou’s story sheds light on the Banshees progression from garage act to professional musicians.

Chris Guiver:

Jack and I knew of each other from Lincoln School kindergarten. They lived within walking distance in old Burlingame. Later, in early high school (1962-63), we became best of friends through music and life. My mom was a great singer and dancer from the 40’s and apparent genetics rubbed off. I elected to learn saxophone in the 4th grade, taking school lessons. Jack was taking guitar lessons from early on too, found surf music an attraction and moved to electric – always a Fender Telecaster.

Paul and Dennis, the Studebaker brothers, were talent and intelligence beyond belief. Paul played lead trumpet in the Mills High band and orchestra. Dennis played tenor sax in the band. Paul, Dennis and I all went crazy for swing and were members of the award-winning jazz band at the high school. The three played in jazz combos, free-lance and otherwise and actually played “gigs” This is also where we connected with Jack Walters, who to this day, is viewed as a genius song writer.

At the end of that freshman year and in summer, the foursome started to play rock together. Songs like “What’d I Say” and “La Bamba” were played over and over at the YMCA dances and eventually at San Jose State frat parties. Many practice hours in the Studebaker basement began to bring proficiency, style and a great joy in music and friendships. And that is when the first recording of “They Prefer Blondes” and “Take A Ride With Me” was recorded in the hall of the Presbyterian Church (couple of mics and shared amplifiers).

Later in the sophomore year (1964), Jack, Paul and Dennis met Bob Morelli who sang like Gerry of Gerry and the Pacemakers. The four of them linked up and established great harmonies together and won the California Band Wars as The Banshees. Shortly after, missing the sax, I was asked to join again. The five-some played together for about 6 months, playing once as a greeting band for “Chad and Jeremy” and “Sonny and Cher”. Bob went his way, leaving the four-some alone as the Banshees.

For the Banshees around these times, four gods began to walk the earth – naming themselves “The Beatles”. Went to both San Francisco concerts.

The original “geek” of the high school, Lou Dorren, heard the group and wished to record them in his garage. That was the beginning onslaught of fantastic original material written by Jack.

Jason Sweitzer notes Lou’s perspective on the first Banshees record:

The SOLO imprint was Lou’s conception. He was 15 when he recorded and produced “They Prefer Blondes” in the Millbrae Presbyterian Church recreation room, with full permission of the priest! Prior to this he hadn’t made any garage recordings of them.

Originally, the song was going to be titled “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” but Marilyn Monroe had recorded a song with that title for a movie of the same name.

Using a Roberts Crossfield 770 reel-to-reel recorder and two cardioid dynamic microphones, which Lou and his friend Don purchased for the occasion from Lafayette Electronics in San Francisco, they recorded five or six takes each of “They Prefer Blondes” and “Take a Ride with Me” until the band got the one they liked.

Lou had the tracks mastered and sent to Monarch Record Mfg Co., Los Angeles. Two thousand copies were pressed circa July 1965 and the majority of them were sold for 99¢ at LeCor Camera & Hi-Fi in Millbrae, where Lou worked a part time after-school job, and at White Front Department Store in Sunnyvale, where Lou’s uncle was manager.

Despite being a local success, Lou was unhappy with the sound of SOLO 1 and decided to book time at Coast Recorders at 960 Bush St. in San Francisco to record a follow-up.

At Coast they recorded “Never Said I Loved You” and “So Hard to Bear” on a ½” 3-track vacuum tube recorder. This was Lou’s first shot at mixing, and SOLO 2 was pressed mid-September 1965.

These songs show the band developing their melodic side which they would improve upon in their next incarnation. Both songs were written by Jack Walters and arranged by Paul Studebaker.

With this brief stint at Coast under his belt, Lou begged manager Mel Tanner for a job and began helping out in the studio under the supervision of chief engineer Don Geis. It wasn’t long before Lou made his first master cut of the Beau Brummels “Don’t Talk to Strangers.”

Meanwhile the Banshees continued performing, soon landing their first recording contract.


The Banshees playing in front of the Hyatt Theater, before a Chad & Jeremy and Sonny & Cher concert.


from the 1966 San Francisco yellow pages
The Ariel

In the fall of 1966 the Banshees received a deal with Bob Shad’s Mainstream label, and traveled down to L.A. to record one single, the very beautiful “It Feels Like I’m Crying” b/w “I Love You.”

This 45 was released as “The Ariel” on the Brent label (another company owned by Shad). In sound these songs are a world away from They Prefer Blondes, with excellent harmonies, introspective lyrics and a delicate melodic sense.

The words of “It Feels Like I’m Crying” are agonizing:

Many times I feel like screaming,
Many times I feel like dying,
Cause you you, you you, you you, you …
Lied and it feels like I’m crying, crying, crying.

Never will I show my feelings,
Never will I show the reason,
Why she she, she she, she she, she….
Lied and it feels like I’m crying, crying, crying.

Chris Guiver:

Through ‘65 many concerts and performances with largely original material brought an inquiry by a large record label and the band was asked to “try out” at a studio in the city. One of the other bands had a pretty good singer named Janis Joplin. Both bands were contracted to go to L.A. and record in the same studio the Rolling Stones used. What a difference from the old church recordings. Big Brother and the Holding Company could just go. The Banshees had to get parental approval. The producer then didn’t feel Janis had a present enough voice and, yes, required her to double-track her singing!

Local fame had risen and a highlight moment was a senior dance at the high school. The air was sparked with excitement. Regrettably, Paul took ill and couldn’t perform leaving the 3 to fake it. Paul was a year ahead and had gone off to Berkeley leaving the band without its leader and at the end of the ‘65/’66 year the band dispersed.

Kensington Forest

In early 1967 Jack Walters brought Lou a demo of his new song “Bells.” Lou suggested Jack assemble a band and invited them over to Coast Recorders to record it. The newly named Kensington Forest included Jack Walters, Chris Guiver, Dennis Studebaker and Jack’s sister. As the flip to “Bells,” they recorded another Jack Walters original, “Movin’ On.”

While “Movin’ On” was mixed to mono only, Lou made both stereo and mono mixes of “Bells,” and cut separate master plates for each version himself. One thousand copies were pressed with both sides in mono and another thousand made with the stereo version of “Bells” and the mono version of “Movin’ On.” According to Lou, “Bells” was the first stereo 45 engineered to be fully compatible with a mono cartridge.

Pressed at Monarch in mid-to-late May, 1967, and distributed by Melody Sales of San Francisco, “Bells” was a popular regional hit during the summer.

Lou recalls he was driving down El Camino Real listening to “The Emperor” Gene Nelson on KYA when suddenly “Bells” was introduced. It was the first time he heard the 45 played over the radio and he describes it as a peak experience, having stopped his car mid-road to jump up and down ecstatic. Not far away the rest of the band, driving around together in Jack’s car, were doing the same on California Drive!

“Bells” has a rougher sound than the polish of the Ariel 45, but the harmonies and melodic talent are still there, along with some fine guitar work. “Movin’ On” shows the influence of the early San Francisco ballroom groups like the Charlatans and the Dead. If anyone has a better quality transfer of Bells in stereo, please get in touch.

Kensington Forest – Movin’ On
Kensington Forest – Bells (Mono version)
Kensington Forest – Bells (Stereo version)

Chris Guiver:

Dennis and I went to San Jose State the next year as dorm-mates. We stayed in touch with Jack who went to Berkeley too but dropped out after a short time wishing to continue writing songs. After a short time, Dennis met a yogi and disappeared into the spiritual only reuniting with me at the 20-year high school class reunion.

Jack and I, with another Bob, formed a group after high school. Jack’s originals, including “Oddie the Troll”, were recorded but Bob was an enthusiast of “The Who”, which didn’t always fly even though Jack was competent in the lead guitaring. I played drums. The group did record probably Jack’s greatest work “Wine Flower” for the guy who produced “Go Granny Go!” in L.A. “Wine Flower” included a string section with tremendous arrangement and harmony – along the lines of the Banshees’ “I Love You”. It is a great misfortune that Jack took mentally ill shortly after.

Gypsum Heaps

Paul Rose of Fantasy Records took an interest in “Bells” and introduced Lou to Max Weiss and Saul Zaentz. After hearing “Bells”, Max offered to distribute Lou’s fledgling Bay Sound Productions and gave Lou a job as sound engineer with Fantasy.

In late 1967 Lou placed audition ads in the San Francisco Chronicle and Examiner looking for new bands to record for Bay Sound Productions. By the end of the year he began releasing records on his new Onyx label, one 45 each by the Styx (Onyx 2200); the Tears (Onyx 2201); Weird Herald (Onyx 2202); and Gypsum Heaps (Onyx 2203); with Mark Darnell an unconfirmed 5th artist.

Chris Guiver:

I continued in music and minored at San Jose State, studying and playing bass. I hooked up with Rick Quintinel who became a top California drummer. Rick was connected with the East Bay sound and he and I joined together as a funky rhythm section for soul bands. During that time Rick and I played jazz too and hooked up with a group in “the 10th Street House” that was music 24/7. Two cool things transpired.

By chance, I neighbored with Pat Simmons who became the founder of the “Doobie Brothers”. I used to back him up on bass when all he wanted to perform was James Taylor and “would never go electric”. Tommy Johnson, the Doobie’s lead guitar connected with Pat at “the house” and the rest is history (noting Pat did go electric when Tommy’s Chicago Blues-style got him and they wrote songs that produced a lucrative Warner Brother’s deal.)

Wandering through the East Bay sound playing funk, Rick and I formed a band called “Gypsum Heaps”. Full rhythm section, organ and horns. The singers were Rufus Miller, the original lead singer for “Tower of Power” and Rat his gospel cousin. Hot. I wrote a song called “Would You Love”, which was recorded at Fantasy Records – the other side of the record was the Banshees’ “Movin’ On” by Jack Walters. One can easily imagine the song arranged as a “Tower of Power”. The release landed a concert for 20,000 people with “Santana” as the headliner. The Banshees lived on.

The Banshees were a unique bunch with a great love of all types of music, deep friendships and many talents. If an arrangement called for it, one might say to the other – “I think it would be better if I played guitar and you played drums so I can sing easier”. The other would respond – “Sounds good, lets do it”.

It is a great experience and honor to have played with and known The Banshees, The Ariel and Kensington Forest all of whom were the same guys in different musical venues. It is a trip after 40 years to once again hear some of our music through the efforts of Garage Hangover.

Thank you to Dan for the clips of “Never Said I Loved You” and “So Hard to Bear”. Special thanks to George Guiver for the photo of the band playing outside the Hyatt Theater, and for putting us in contact with his brother Chris.

This article written by Chris Bishop and Jason Sweitzer.

The Light Brigade

The Light Brigade were the three Cole brothers and their friends from Little Rock, Arkansas. They released their first 45 on the My label in 1967, which included James Williams on lead guitar.

“Baby You Don’t Care” rides a great fuzz tone while “Won’t You Tell Me” is much gentler. Both these songs were written by Dean Cole and bassist Lonnie Cole. Ray Cole was the other brother in the group.

“Lonnie’s Song” is from 1969, released on the E&M label. The band stopped playing around 1971.

Thank you to Angela for correcting the name of her father – James Williams, not Williamson as I had read from a comment.

Cecil Cotten, 1945-2008

I’m very sad to report that Cecil Cotten passed away on Friday, April 4, in Winnsboro, TX, at the age of 62.

Cecil was lead singer of the Briks, one of the great bands to come out of Dallas in the 1960s. He composed the lyrics for many of their songs, including “Foolish Baby”, “It’s Your Choice”, and “Can You See Me”. His singing on “It’s Your Choice” shows a maturity that no other vocal from the era matches, and he was only about 20 years old at the time.

When the Briks broke up, Cecil played for a short time in Texas with three members of the Chessmen: Jimmie Vaughan, Tommy Carter and Billy Etheridge, plus Sammy Piazza on drums. They were managed by Jimmy Rabbit and recorded some songs at Robin Hood Brians studio in Tyler which have never been released.

In 1969 he moved to San Francisco and started Benny, Cecil & the Snakes with Benny Roe, Keith Ferguson, Steve Karnavas and Steve Davis. The Snakes played house parties for the publishers of Zap Comix, the Rip Off Press.

In recent years Cecil and former Briks bandmate Mike Neal recorded a CD of blues-inspired songs as The Pickin’ Cotten Band.

It’s one of my great regrets that I never met Cecil, and his music will always mean a great deal to me.

The Brākmen


At the Brāk-Up Club, l-r: Tom Schultz, Gordon Kruse, Jim Ladd, Bob Kellogg, Jerry Ladd, and Landy Landholm.
The band just prior to recording the 45.
 

The Brākmen came from the town of Freemont, Nebraska a short drive northwest of Omaha. Lowell Reithmuller (keyboards), Bob Kellogg (guitar), and Gordon Kruse (guitar) formed the Brakemen while in high school in 1963. Other early members include Ken McMahon on guitar and Kent Armstrong on drums. In 1964 they found first Gene Starmer then Dave Nelson to play bass, and Jerry Ladd from another local group the Fugitives, on drums. With the addition of Jerry’s older brother Jim Ladd, they became the Six Wild Brākmen.

They gave their first live show in April, 1965 at the DeMolay building in Freemont, but a Battle of the Bands at the Armory was their first big performance; a home-made light show helped them win. They became known for their wild stage antics and shouted vocals. They started playing at a teen club in Omaha called Sandy’s Escape, and soon became house band at the Brāk-Up Club in Fremont and toured into Colorado and Iowa.

After many personnel changes, the lineup at the time of recording was Jim Ladd on vocals, his younger brother Jerry on drums, and Gordon Kruse and Bob Kellogg on guitars, Landy Landholm on keyboards and Eric Stark on bass.

In 1967 they traveled to A1 Studio in Council Bluffs, Iowa to record a 45 financed by Jim and Jerry’s father, Jack Ladd. ‘Minutes & Minutes’ really cooks, propelled by a fat, fuzzed-out guitar line, organ and good use of horns, with some great shouting. It was written by Stark and Kruse.

‘Movin’, written by Jim Ladd and Bob Kellogg is more controlled but equally intense. Jerry keeps up a constant beat on the toms, while Eric makes some Entwistle-like runs on the bass and the horns repeat a line in the background. I’m not sure how they decided to add horns to these tracks, or who plays them.

The label name, LSK was taken from the initials of the members’ last names. The record sold well locally, and a second 45 on LSK Nitey Nite is rumored to exist, but may have never been released.

Soon after the record’s release, the band almost signed with Kasenetz and Katz, but Jim Ladd was drafted and other members wanted to stay in college to keep their student deferments. The band continued until 1969, when Jerry Ladd was drafted. In 2001 the Brākmen were inducted into the Nebraska Music Hall of Fame.

Sources: The Nebraska Music Hall of Fame and the 7 Legends site (http://www.geocities.com/the7legends/thebrakmen.html – now defunct) site both have lots of information, photos and recollections of the Brākmen.

The Si-Dells

Hubert Deans was organ player for the Durham, North Carolina band the Si-Dells in 1968, when they recorded his song “Watch Out Mother” for the East Coast Sound label, produced by Don Scoggins.

Hubert gives the history of the band in his own words:

The Si-Dells was the first “real” band I was in. In those days bands would typically reorganize in the summer, due to people going off to college.

The Si-Dells were started by:
Keith Thompson on guitar
John Thomson on drums
Lee James on guitar

They advertised in the Durham Herald-Sun for an organ player. That’s where I came in and brought a bass player named Joe Kirschner.

Charlie Clark joined last to play sax. However, Charlie played piano on both sides of the the record – no sax.

Side A was a sappy love song called “She’s The Only Girl For Me”, nothing like “Watch Out Mother”.

The record was recorded “live” in a studio that was built and run by a HVAC contractor. It was a converted corner of his warehouse. It was located at the intersection of 751 and HWY 70 across the street from Jacobs glass.

The record was actually the second recording of the song. The first (and probably better) version was lost by the pressing plant. We were called at around 3pm one Saturday and told to come back in and re-record it. We did and still managed to make our gig later that night.

I left the Si-Dells to join the Bondsmen. I replaced Gene Galligan in the Bondsmen when he went off to college. We (Bondsmen) recorded several tapes but never released anything else.

Q. Listening to the lyrics closely, is Watch Out Mother about a nuclear winter?

No, it’s just about the “natural” end of the world. It was the result of a homework assignment in the tenth grade. The teacher told us to choose a poem by Robert Frost and write one of our own, similar to the one we picked. It was easier for me to write a song and then use the lyrics as a poem. The big news story at the time was a cold spell all across the country, sub zero in the midwest and even in single digits here in NC. It sort of inspired me to go in that direction.

Plus, there was a TV commercial at the time about margarine featuring Mother Nature. The narrator tries to fool mother nature into thinking it’s butter. She ends up causing thunder and lightning and saying “it’s not nice to fool mother nature”. I guess the song was just a product of what was going on in my life at the time. Or maybe a premonition about the greenhouse effect we are seeing now.

After the Bondsmen, I joined a group called “Daze End” which later changed names to Still Creek Band and in 1974 released “Can I Move You”, an international release on MCA. We were pick hit of the week in the UK and Japan, but never sold enough records to amount to anything – no chart action. It’s so bizarre to me that the first thing I ever did seems to be stirring up the most notoriety.

Keith Thompson went on to play with Staircase Band and is still in Durham. His brother John is still around too, I believe, though I haven’t seen him in a while.

Lee James worked for IBM and I haven’t seen him since the 80s. If he’s still around it would probably be in Raleigh. Charlie worked for IBM also. Don’t know what ever happened to him. Joe Kirschner left the state with his family before we graduated from high school (’69). Haven’t heard from him since.

Thanks to Hubert for sharing the history of the band, and for the scan of the 45. Hubert runs the Snow Hill Music recording studio in Hillsborough.

Me and the Guys

Me and the Guys were a band from Wooster, Ohio, southwest of Akron.

“I Can’t Take It” / “Why Can’t You Be True” is a double-sided winner from 1966, both sides written by Culp and Taylor.

My copy is autographed with the following names: Joel Culp, Tommy Taylor, Bill Ross and Steve Young.

Since posting this, I see Buckeye Beat has the full story on the group, including a couple additional photos from George’s collection.

The only other garage band I know of on the Ohio label Pla Me are the Oceans. This label doesn’t seem to be connected with the Pla-Me label located in Muskogee, Oklahoma, that released the Standels’ (not the Standells) ‘Let’s Go’ 45 as well as rockabilly 45s by Curtis Long, Walter Perkins, Jimmie Belden, and Gene Mooney & Joanie Hardesty.

The Escape Machine

The Escape Machine produced their own 45, recorded at Wayne Sound in a small town called Jersey Shore, located not anywhere close to what most east coast folks would think of as the Jersey Shore. It’s in central Pennsylvania, about 50 miles northeast of State College and 95 miles north of Harrisburg.

“Stop!” is a gloomy psychedelic piece written by M. Paige and A. Womer.

The flip, “I’ll Go on Loving You” is totally different, a country vocal written by K. Shingara and E. Shingara. Engineer on both tracks was J. Goditus.

The Boy Blues

Updated December, 2009

The Boy Blues came from Chico, and released two 45s in February 1966 and 1967.

This article is superceded by the release on CD of ‘Up From The Grave’ on Frantic Records (the reissue label, not the original Frantic label based in Universal City), which has all four songs they recorded in incredible sound quality, plus an extensive history of the group including some outrageous stories of baby food and a drug bust that I won’t repeat here. Get the CD to read the full story and hear 30 tracks by a number of Sacramento Valley bands. I recommend it highly.

Below is a brief history of the group:

The Boy Blues started out of a band called the Disciples, with Mark Cipolla on guitar and vocals, Jim Conley on lead guitar, Randy Reaves on bass and Rick Wagner on drums. Bob Brien joined to share rhythm guitar and vocal duties with Mark Cipolla, and then the band changed their name to the Boy Blues. Conley left and Chris Howard joined as lead guitarist.

They met their manager George Martin at a battle of the bands in Marysville, and in early ’66 he brought the band into Ikon Studios in Sacramento to cut their first 45 for release on the Vardan label.

The top side “Living Child” would be re-recorded in a much different arrangement for the b-side of their second 45. Most people prefer the Frantic label version, mainly because it has distorted guitar throughout instead of horns. Still, I wouldn’t dismiss the Vardan version, it’s faster and tighter, and even if the horns are superfluous, they add some dissonance to the chorus.

The b-side of the Vardan 45 is another good Bob Brien song, “Think About It Baby”, with a thick layer of horns arranged by Arthur Wright. I like this one as well, especially the Byrds-like guitar solo. The squeak of the bass drum pedal is really noticeable, especially in the introduction.

Would this be a better 45 without the horns? Maybe – it definitely would have had a more typical garage sound, but the horns don’t ruin either cut for me.

A drug bust in Novato got the band on the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle, and led to the departure of Randy Reaves and Chris Howard.

The band heard John Palmer playing while driving by his garage in Richmond, in the East Bay, where he had been a member of the Plague. The band convinced John to come up to Chico to join them as lead guitarist, and added Jeff Gadbois, who has since passed away, on bass.

The bust didn’t stop their popularity at live shows, nor did it dampen the expectations of George Martin, who brought the new lineup into Sountronics in Lodi for their second single.

‘Coming Down to You’ chugs along to the Batman theme for most of its three minutes, and features a great fuzz solo after its somewhat dreamy chorus. It was written by Bob Brien and Mark Cipolla. Some copies of this 45 were released with a picture sleeve that features the earlier lineup of the group.

John Palmer and Jeff Gadbois were with the group for about six months before departing to play a heavier type of music with Lincoln’s Promise. In the spring of ’67 John went back home to Richmond where he became a founding member of Savage Resurrection.

Cipolla moved to bass, while he and Bob Brien found new members Pat Varvel on drums, Ed Seymour on keyboards and Chuck Edwards on guitar and vocals. They changed their name to Colours and moved to the Bay Area for a new start. That period is documented in a two CD set also released by Frantic, but I haven’t heard it yet.

Arvey Andrews produced the Vardan 45, and co-produced the Frantic release with his business partner, George Martin, while they were stationed at Beale Air Force Base east of Yuba City.

Frantic had other good releases, including the Styx with ‘Stay Away’ and ‘My Girl’ (CR-2125/6), a group called Psycho with ‘You Need Me (CR-2128), and the Mystic ‘I Get So Disgusted’ / ‘Weekend People’. The Boy Blues might be the last 45 on the label.


Sleeve for their second 45 – but showing the earlier lineup of the group
anyone have a better quality scan of this sleeve?

The End

The End band at Andover
The End at Andover, photo courtesy of Tony Curtiss

The End came out of Philips Academy in Andover, a private boarding school. In 1966, the band traveled forty miles south to Continental Recordings in Framingham to make their only record. Continental’s label Cori pressed their 45 for them with the End’s custom Insegrievious label.

Many Andover bands recorded during the sixties, including the Invictas in 1961, the Satans’ Raising Hell LP from ’62, the Torques in ’63, the Apostles with two albums in 1964-65, and the Group with a four song EP in 1967. The Ha’pennys recorded their album Love Is Not the Same at Continental about the same time as The End made their 45.

A year later another Philips Academy band, the Rising Storm would also travel to Framingham to make their LP, Calm Before…, by far the most famous of all these releases.

The End only recorded one 45 while the rest of these bands (with the exception of the Group) recorded entire LPs. In any case they do well with their two original songs, especially the catchy “Bad Night”. The flip, “Make Our Love Come Through” is a fine ballad.

As for the label name, that apparently comes from the Batman TV series, hugely popular that year: “Catwoman, I find you to be odious, abhorrent, and insegrievious.” It’s not as bad as it sounds – a slang dictionary defines insegrievious as expressing anything and nothing at the same time in an impressive sounding way.

Tony Curtiss wrote to me about the band:

It was my cheesy organ solo in “Bad Night.” Here is the band’s lineup:

John Leone: The lead singer and writer of “Bad Night” and co-writer of “Make Our Love Come Through.”
Jeff Lemkin: Lead guitar
Chris Moore: Backup singer
Cai Underwood: Drums. Cai had earlier been drummer for the Apostles at Andover.
Bruce Curran: Rhythm guitar
Mel Kendrick: Bass
Tony Curtiss: Organ and co-writer of “Make Our Love Come Through.”

The band only made this one record in the Spring of 1966 as all but Mel Kendrick graduated from Andover in June of 1966 (Mel in June of 1967). We soon scattered to the winds. John Leone was off to Harvard, Chris Moore headed to Princeton, I went out west to Stanford etc. Thanks for remembering us, Tony Curtiss

Thank you to Tony for sharing these photos of the band.

The End at Continental Recording Studio, Framingham, MA
The End at Continental Recording Studio, Framingham, MA, “during the recording of ‘Bad Night.’ From left to right is me (Tony Curtiss), Jeff Lemkin’s dad who drove us, Bruce Curran, Chris Moore and John Leone (in glasses).

The Saucer Men

I didn’t know where the Saucer Men were from until one of the comments below gave Paterson, New Jersey. The ZTSP prefix on the label indicates this was a Columbia Records custom pressing, most likely out of New York. This band has nothing to do with the Saucermen of Dickie Goodman and Bill Buchanan fame.

“Another Chance” is a maudlin tune, good if you like the downbeat, weepy garage numbers. The flip, “Don’t Do It” is a poppier, somewhat awkward song.

Both songs were written by Tom and Nick Bonagura and released on their own Bonna label.

Thanks to Ra for sending in these clips and the label photo.