All posts by Ken Friedman

Tornado Records of Greensboro, NC

The Nomads
The Nomads

Nomads Tornado 45 Thoughts of a MadmanNorth Carolina had many record labels in the 1960’s, but few were as prolific as Tornado Records. Based in Greensboro, the label had offices at 1712 Farrell Avenue, but also did business via PO Drawer 6787.

Tornado’s stock in trade was regional Country & Western music, although artists from as far away as Pennsylvania and Maine were released by the label. Tornado was owned by David Lee Perkins, whose name appears frequently with author credits on many releases.

The years of operation for the label seem to have been rather compact, roughly estimated to range from late 1964 to mid-1967, referencing Mike Markesich’s excellent tome, “Teenbeat Mayhem.”

Caravans Tornado 45 Twistin', Rockin', BabyAlthough typically beyond the scope of Garage Hangover, Tornado registers in the minds of garage fans as the home of the second single by The Nomads of Mt. Airy, North Carolina. As far as Tornado was concerned, The Nomads were a “Sensational New Discovery,” and said just that right on the record label. “Thoughts of a Madman” b/w “From Zero Down” was released in April of 1967, and ranks high among garage rock enthusiasts nationwide. It was the Nomads second single, the first being on the Stark label profiled on this site.

Also of note are the Caravans from Greensboro. Their single, “Twistin’ Rockin’ Baby” b/w “Rainbow of Love” from a couple of years earlier rocks pretty well, with an occasionally cool, John Lennon-esque vocal on the A-side.

Profile of Tornado Records artist Gail Day, Feb. 2, 1967
Profile of Tornado Records artist Gail Day, Feb. 2, 1967

Tornado Records Discography (if anyone can help fill in the gaps, more power to them):

Tornado EP-100 – Roy & Jackie Baker & the South Mountain Boys – You’re Not the Girl I Used to Know, I’m Showing You the Way/Little Heart, What Life Could Have Been

Tornado T-101 – Glenn Thompson “My Mary” / “What A Line”
Tornado T-102 – South Mountain Boys featuring Little Debbie Baker – “Twistin’ Rockin’ Baby” / “I’m Falling for You, You, You”
Tornado T-103 – Dewey Ritter & the Panhandle Boys “I Walk A Lonely Road (Because of You)” / “Be My Sunshine Forever”
Tornado T-104 – South Mountain Boys “Gonna Hand You A Ticket” / “Dial My Number”
Tornado T-105 – Roy Baker & the South Mountain Boys “Jocassee Nona” / “Close As The Nearest Phone”
Tornado T-106 – Caravans “Twistin’ Rockin’ Baby” / “Rainbow of Love” (Greensboro)
Tornado T-107EP – Gloria Weston “Missing in Action (In Vietnam),” Kenny Craft “What A Fool Am I,” and Rod Rodgers “Hot Game of Dice” and “A Daughter Never Fools Her Mother”
Tornado T-108 – Joyce Mills “You’re Not the Boy I Used To Know” / ??
Tornado T-109 – Dewey Ritter – “Big Deal”  /  “Georgia Took My Name”

Harold Crosby
Harold Crosby

Tornado T-110 – Harold Crosby “Big Big Truck” / “I Will Mend Your Heartaches Tomorrow” (Maine)
Tornado T-111 – ?
Tornado T-112 – ?
Tornado T-113 – Dick Mosely “Cry No More” / “Wagons-Ho”
Tornado T-114 – Henry E. Noe & the Calvary Gospel Team – Tell Them When You Saw Me, Cry Aloud & Spare Not/Ananias, I’m Moving Up
Tornado T-115 – Joyce Love “Judy Judy” / “Strawberry Sundae”
Tornado T-116 – Gord Worrall – “Wagon’s Ho” / “Freedom Will Take Command”
Tornado T-117 – Joyce Lynn “Touch of Heartache” / “Heaven Help Me (Another Lonely Day)”
Tornado T-118 – Dick Mosely “Getting My Kicks in ’66” / ??
Tornado T-119 – Margie Lee “It’s Too Late” / “Let’s Fall In Love Together”
Tornado T-120 – ?
Tornado T-121 – Carl Pride “You Can’t Catch My Mustang” / “If I Don’t Miss You” (Greensboro)
Tornado T-122 – Lorene Weaver & the Country Boys – I’m Leaving You/ ?
Tornado T-123 – Larry Campbell & the Country Playboys “Break-Through” / “Bluegrass Mountain Home”
Tornado T-124 – Bobby Adkins & Allen Mills “Bluegrass in Kentucky” / “I’m So Sorry That I Threw Your Love Away”
Tornado T-125 – George Dry & the Daydreamers “One Lung Charlie” / “Hard-Rock Sam” (PA)
Tornado T-126 – Jimmy Hart – Symbol of Love/I Think I Know
Tornado T-127 – Joe Stone & Bobby Atkins “Singing Love Songs (Bluegrass Style)” / “Tears and Roses”
Tornado T-128 – ?
Tornado T-129 – Billy Beal “Rainy Day Blues” / “Cold, Dark And Deep”
Tornado T-130 – Tommy Jones & the Hayriders “Ballad of Gamblin’ Lil” / “God – Dollar”
Tornado T-131 – ?
Tornado T-132 – Joni Day “I Wonder If” / “Again He Said to Me” (PA)
Tornado T-133 – Johnny Jones “You’ve Turned Me Down” / “A Million Times”
Tornado T-134 – Harold Crosby “Bright Lights (and Blond Haired Women)” / “Let’s Fall in Love Together” (Maine)
Tornado T-135 – ?
Tornado T-136 – Joe Stone & Bobby Atkins “Stolen Kisses Are The Sweetest” / “Mister Bluegrass (Here’s To You)”
Tornado T-137 – Gail Day “Santa Didn’t Come” / “Please, Mr. Santa” (8 year old daughter of George and Joni Day) (PA)
Tornado T-138 – Bobby Adkins “Bluest Guy In Town” / “You Stopped Loving Me”
Tornado T-139 – Ray Josey “Orchids & Diamonds” / “Silver Tears”
Tornado T-140 – Joyce Lynn – “Stop That Knockin'” / “Though Not as Yet” (Clint Thompson, D.L. Perkins)
Tornado TLP-141 – George & Joni Day EP “Tears In My Heart,” “Sorry,” “The One You Left Me For,” “Make Up Your Mind,” “Too Many – Too Few,” “We’ll Work It Out” (PA)
Tornado T-142 – Tommy Jones – Country D.J./He Started With a Quarter
Tornado T-143 – Glenn Thompson “Bad, Bad Dream” / “Thirteen Stripes in Old Glory”
Tornado T-144 – Glenn Thompson “Walk Softly (You’re Walking On My Heart)” / “You Didn’t Want Me Yesterday (I Don’t Want You Today)”
Tornado T-145 – Hank Brooks & the Midnite Rangers “Big, Big Heart” / “Pretty Picture On My Wall”

Lefty Hales
Lefty Hales

Tornado T-146 – Lefty Hales & the Carolina Partners “Stop Me” / “Anywhere, Anytime” (Goldsboro)
Tornado T-147 – Mettie Lou “A Soldier’s Prayer” / ??
Tornado T-148 – Bobby Adkins “Soldier’s Return” / “There’s Not Enough Words”
Tornado T-149 – Tommy Jones & the Hayriders “The Commies Are Coming” / “Love Is A Mountain Of Gold”
Tornado T-150 – ?
Tornado T-151 – ?
Tornado T-152 – Garland Atkins & the Sunny Mountain Partners “I Miss You Most Of All” / “Singin’ The Blues”
Tornado T-153 – Tommy Harrell & the Country Valients “One Drink Too Many” / You Sure Got The Best Of Me” (Eastern NC)
Tornado T-154 – ?
Tornado T-155 – ?
Tornado T-156 – ?
Tornado T-157 – Cousin Lee & Little Hank EP “Lonely and Blue,” “Don’t Judge Another Person,” “Lifetime To Forget,” “Little Hank’s Shuffle”
Tornado T-158 – Tommy Jones & the Hayriders “You Got Something Gal” / “Let Her Go”
Tornado T-159 – The Nomads “Thoughts Of A Madman” / “From Zero Down” (Mt. Airy)
Tornado T-160 – Glenn Thompson Sunshine Through The Rain” / “You’re Not The Girl I Used To Know”
Tornado T-161 – Dick Mosely “Truck Stop Number Three” / “Under the Double Eagle”
Tornado T-162 – Billy Beal  “A Lifetime to Forget”  /  “Queen Without a Throne”
Tornado T-163 – Bobby Adkins “Ballad of Gamblin’ Lil” / “What About My Blue Heart”
Tornado T-164 – Bobby Adkins “Miss Thirteen, Teenage Queen” / “Day of God’s Wrath”
Glenn Thompson Tornado LP Best OfTornado T-165 – ?
Tornado T-166 – Glenn Thompson “Where The Red River Flows” / “King of the Endless Highways”

One Tornado LP has been identified thus far:

Tornado LP-102 The Best of Glenn Thompson

Thanks to Chris Bishop for additions, Lightnin’ Wells, Bob Clere for jpegs and helpful comments, and to Mike Markesich for key dates.

Glenn Thompson Tornado 45 What a LineGeorge Dry & the Daydreamers Tornado 45 One-Lung Charlie

Tommy Jones & the Hayriders Tornado 45 The Commies Are CommingCarl Pride Tornado 45 You Can't Catch My Mustang

The Nomads
The Nomads
The Nomads
The Nomads