The Unknown IV

The Unknown IV were from the Raleigh, NC area which was also the base of the JCP label. “I Want You To Be Mine” is a good number that the band recorded twice, once for the JCP label with a good rockin’ flipside, “All of the Time”, and again for the Howell label with a country-style weeper, “Happiness Ain’t Comin’ to My House” on the flip.I’m not sure which version came first, but I’d guess the JCP as the Howell recording is a little faster and more confident.

Jerry Evans was the lead vocalist and songwriter for the group, I don’t know the rest of the members.

I haven’t heard their second 45 on JCP, “What’s Gonna Happen” / “Give Me a Chance”.

More on the JCP label at a later post. Thanks to Gary Cease for contacting me about the Unknown IV.

Anyone have a photo of the group?

41 thoughts on “The Unknown IV”

  1. They were absolutely from Raleigh. I saw them a few times as a kid. First time was down the street from my house at the local shopping center, playing on a large flatbed truck acting as a stage where there was also a WKIX remote location broadcast. One of those towed, remote booths that looked like an old-style broadcast microphone. Later saw them at a few battle of the bands. The also opened a few shows promoted by Joe Murnick, who at that time was branching out from wrestling promotion to book concerts. The Unknown IV were the best “beat” style group in the area in the mid-60’s, as most other top groups were soul (ala the Embers). Any great group around that time (say 1 or 2 years later) was The Nightwalkers, who also recorded some stuff for Jimmy Capps on JCP. If I’m remembering correctly, Chip Crawford was the keyboardist for The Nightwalkers and later begat Frankie & The Damons, who had the awesome rock/soul fusion hit “Man From Soul”. Now famous due to a few Northern Soul dj’s.

    – Michael, ex-Raleighite

    1. Jimmy Capps daughter. Son iswas called “Jimbo”, now Jim, lives in Greenville, NC. I stay in touch with his young daughter. His son is all into music. Get in touch!

    2. Reply to Michael Coxe, ex-Raleighite re: “28 Thoughts on ‘The Unknown IV'”, posted 04/16/07@12:31PM.
      Hi! Michael,
      I appreciated your mention of “The Nightwalkers”, in your “28 Thoughts of the Unkown IV”. What a great memory you have!
      The musical genius Chip Crawford was indeed the keyboardist for “Frankie & The Damons”, JCP hit “Man From Soul”.
      However, it was me, Paul Proctor, who was the keyboardist and lead vocalist for “The Nightwalkers”. Since Chip Crawford was a football player, I often substituted on keyboards for Chip with “Frankie & The Damons” during football season. My substituting for Chip may have caused some confusion.
      “The Nightwalkers” were fortunate to get to know and work with Jimmy Capps, the multi-talented producer, promoter, and announcer. He was the velvet voice behind the mic of the syndicated radio hit, “Our Best To You”; and Producing President of “JCP Records”.
      “The Nightwalkers” became part of Jimmy’s professional and personal family, which included Larry Gardner, his engineer; Aimee, his soul mate; “Jimbo”, his son; and Jane, his daughter. This family extended into other JCP acts and individuals such as The Villagers, The Inmates, The Embers, Frankie & The Damons, Dayv Butler, Johnny Hopkins, Reed Goe, Ben Freeman, Durwood Martin, Wally Wright, Frankie Presnell, Rick Huxley, and Mike Smith to mention a few.
      “The Nightwalkers” recorded the last record for the JCP label just months before Jimmy Capps passed away. The A-side was “It’ll Only Hurt Just A Little While”, backed with the B-side “Till There Was You”.
      Our record received considerable nationwide radio air play, numerous radio interviews, and television appearances. However, without the personal promotion and management of Jimmy Capps, our sales were fair but by no means a hit.
      The silver lining came when “The Nightwalkers” record got the attention of the A&R Department of Liberty Records. Liberty authorized the recording of an album of original material and music the band performed regularly.
      During the album’s recording process, the band’s personnel line-up changed on numerous ocassions with the addition of session musicians.
      After the recording session’s conclusion, Liberty Records’ A&R Department and Management wanted a new name for “The Nightwalkers” due to our ongoing change in the band’s sounds.
      Nationally, music started changing with Latin and percussive sounds. With “The Nightwalkers” years of Miami influences, the Raleigh band became known as “The Casanovas”.

      Paul Proctor,
      The Nightwalkers / The Casanovas

      1. Oh my goodness, Paul Proctor! Apologies for the Chip Crawford confusion. 7 years back when in Raleigh (moved away in 78) I asked Ben Runkle (guitarist for Frankie & The Damons) about The Nightwalkers but he drew a blank. Tho I didn’t know you personally, via my friends Gilliam Nicholson & Doug Knott I sorta knew The Nightwalkers rhythm section, the Presley brothers (do I have their last name right?). I heard about the album’s worth a material but of course never got to hear any of it. Did any of that survive? I wrote Larry Gardner (twice!) ages ago about surviving JCP tapes but he never responded. Saw The Nightwalkers many times; the combo I was associated with (Fabulous Sensations), played a party or open house with you guys once. Your version of The Buckinghams’ “Why Don’t You Love Me” remains my all-time fave cover song.

    3. I, the former Carline Clayton
      , was the female vocalist & bass guitarist for the Unknown IV. Frankie Presnell was the drummer, Roy Stewart, lead guitar, Jerry Evans, rhythm guitar & lead vocalist. Frankie & I left this group and started The Damons with Rick Price, lead guitarist & Chip Crawford, keyboards. I was again bass guitarist.

  2. I’ve just finished recording my record collection onto CDs, and I have 2 records by the Unknown IV, their WKIX Top 100 hit from 1965 titled “I Want You To Be Mine”, and their follow-up “What’s Gonna Happen?”

    I also recorded some other local bands’ songs onto this CD, including the Huckleberry Mudflap’s “Blue Surf” from 1969; 3 songs by the Villagers: “I’ll Be Back Again”, “Brazos”, and “Headless Nightmare” from 1963; plus one other group called the Courtland III. Their 1963 song was titled “Early In The Morning”.

    I have no personal knowledge of anyone in those groups except for the Huckleberry Mudflap’s drummer, Jimmy Amspacher, a high school buddy. I thought the Blue Surf song was pretty good, as well as the Villagers’ Headless Nightmare.

    Woody in Wake County, NC

    1. Didn’t The Villagers record at JCP? I remember them, either from daddy’s studio or maybe they played at country clubs after football games early on. I was born in 52…prob. a few years young than these guys. My brother Jimbo Capps I bet somebody remembers. He was born 1950. Jimmy Capps children. ‘mail me!

    2. Regarding the Courtland III, it was comprised of Chan Poyner, Bennett Little and Nancy Rawlings from Raleigh. Margaret Poyner (Chan’s sister) joined them later and they became the Courtland IV. Their 45 hit, on the JCP label, was “Early In The Morning” (b-side “Pigtail Tail”). It was a top 10 hit in the Raleigh area. The group also made a Piggly Wiggly commercial that was played in the Morehead City area. Eventually Bennett Little dropped out of the group, Edythe Poyner (youngest sister of Chan & Margaret) joined the group and they changed the groups name to Daughters of James.

  3. Woody,

    As as kid in Raleigh I saw Courtland III play at the YMCA on Hillsborough St one Saturday afternoon. They were a folk group like the Villagers, either M/F mixed or all female (can’t remember). The Y used to bring in local groups to perform to us kids. I’d love to have a copy of “Early In the Morning”. All my JCP 45’s are long gone. If you can, please email an mp3 to .

    – Michael, ex-Raleighite

  4. I’m trying to fill some of the numbers on the JCP label discography. You mentioned recording three songs by the Villagers. One was on JCP 1012 (I’ll Be Back Again). Were the other two songs also on the JCP label? I would like to have that information if you can provide it. Thanks.

  5. I don’t have mp3 but can send you a hard CD with this song, Early In The Morning, on it, if I have a snail mail address to send it. Woody

  6. stumbled on this site somehow and thought I’d post…..I played with some of the bands I see here…..Unknown IV definately from Raleigh, Vigilantes from Angier and a couple of others….damn. I’m old

  7. I’m Jerry Evans, thanks for doing this web site. I didn’t know anyone remember The Unknown IV.
    I’m now a pastor, & am doing Gospel music,

    1. I was a kid when this band was around. Jerry Evans was a friend of the family where he had a business next to my parents place of business on what was then a two lane “Hwy 1 north” near Gresham’s Lake in north Raleigh. He showed my brother a few licks on the guitar and I have his set of Slingerland drums with the “The Unknown IV” painted on the kick drum head. My brother and I still play. I remember going down to his shop to hear him play acoustic guitar and sing “Happiness Ain’t Coming To My House”. I have that 45!

      1. Hi Dale, Jerry told me you had his set of drums from the band Unknown IV, It would be so nice to surprise him with them, would you be willing to sell them to me and if so how much. At the time they were sold Jerry knew nothing about it, If you know Jerry, he would have never sold his drums, just thought I’d ask. Even if they aren’t in good shape I’d still like to get them for him if possible. Look forward to hearing from you.

      1. Yes, also his brother, Danny Adams, Kenneth Buffaloes. Unknown IV played from 1964 to 1980. Used a lot of different musicians over the years!

  8. Woody: Do you still have access to a CD disc recording of the Courtland III song? I’d love to hear it again! Thanks.

  9. Jerry WOW!! Long Time!!
    Remember playing with the Beach Boys in Raleigh & Greensboro , July 12th & 13th 1965 ? There was a video made at the concert in Raleigh. Do you still have it ?
    Your Drummer,
    Danny Pearson

  10. In 1966 I was stationed in Germany.In one of the bars was a jukebox with a song by Jerry Evans titled “I’m Still In Love With You”.I played the heck out of that song.Are you that Jerry Evans?I’d sure like to have a copy of that song.I’ve searched the world
    for it and not found it anywhere. Tommy

  11. I really hope you get this Jerry. I’ve been trying to find you for years. I’m still married to Margie (43 years, give her all the credit for putting up with me). I saw Ronnie James a few months ago (the Elvis singer) and we talked fondly about the 60’s. I still have the shinny red and black coat we used to wear with pink shirts. Wow, we’re getting old.

    Email me sometime,

    Jimmy@dunnauto.com

    With fond memories,

    Jimmy

  12. I forget what the guy’s name was that had that GTO. The video at the Dorton Arena was made by Ray somebody (sorry my memory is fading). It was an 8mm with no sound. I remember looking like an idiot shaking on stage and someone way high up (in the cheap seats) yelling our names. We were something.

  13. I just talked with Jimmy Andersn, someone I played with years ago. Thanks Jimmy for calling.
    You told me a lot of stuff I forgot. Raeford Hill took the vidio of the Beach boys. Any one else connected with the Unknown IV would love to talk to you. Jerry Evans

  14. hey Jerry, this is like old home week….was in touch with some guys I was in the vigilantes with…..remember you and I usta play with Ed and Danny? different worls 🙂 Wayne Johnson

  15. If you’re reading this in December 2011, Jeff Waller of Kannapolis has a copy of the Courtland III 45 (Early In The Morning)for sale on eBay right now. It’s in good, playable shape and as you can imagine, quite rare.

  16. Please post sound files of these records. I’m loving this site and it would be even better with links to Soundcloud files.

  17. I was a kid when this band was around. Jerry Evans was a friend of the family where he had a business next to my parents place of business on what was then a two lane “Hwy 1 north” near Gresham’s Lake in north Raleigh. He showed my brother a few licks on the guitar and I have his set of Slingerland drums with the “The Unknown IV” painted on the kick drum head. My brother and I still play. I remember going down to his shop to hear him play acoustic guitar and sing “Happiness Ain’t Coming To My House”. I have that 45!

      1. I am, thanks. I told Steve I “found” you online and we would love to talk about old times…. You still in NC? We are still in Knightdale, though the scenery has changed! I saw in earlier post you were making a gospel album?

        1. So good to hear from ya’ll! I live in Princeton.
          Yea have been working on gospel.
          I’m still playing. Are ya’ll on Facebook, send me a friend request so we can keep in touch!

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