Category Archives: California

Apperson Jackrabbit “That’s Why” and “Shadows Falling”

Apperson Jackrabbit Calmis 45 That's WhyThe Apperson Jackrabbit have remained a mystery despite the quality of their single on Calmis. One side is the brooding “That’s Why” which has long been a favorite of mine after hearing it on Tony the Tyger’s Fuzz, Flaykes, & Shakes Vol. 4: Experiment in Color. The flip is the intense “Shadows Falling”.

Both songs were written by Steve Curtis and Mike Simmons, and it was released on Calmis 45-001 in the first half of 1967. The record is most often found in California, but a contributor to 45cat, Deadwax, found an address for the song publisher, Sival Music at 335 N Southland Dr. in Jackson, Mississippi 38212 in the The Musician’s Guide: The Directory of the World of Music (1980). If this seems an unlikely connection, it makes much more sense when looking at the label name, Calmis (Cal-Mis, get it?). What that connection is, I have no idea at this time. Nothing else was released on Calmis that I know of.

Apperson Jackrabbit Calmis 45 Shadows FallingThe band was named after a stylish line of autos manufactured in Kokomo, Indiana in the early twentieth century.

There is another 45 by the Apperson Jackrabbit, “Candy Cane Sound” (John R. Bicknell) and “More Than Just Friends” (Stan Smith), on Steamer Records 001 with publishing by Club Miami. I don’t have this record, but I suspect it is a different group as the credits are completely different and the pressing was done at King instead of an RCA custom.

I did find one listing for a group called the Apperson Jack Rabbit with Smokey playing at the Sleeping Lady Cafe in Fairfax, CA in 1973, but that seems to be too many years out to be this group.

The Grim Reepers “Two Souls” on Chalon

Grim Reepers Chalon 45 Two SoulsThe Grim Reepers cut the excellent single “Two Souls”, but are still something of a mystery group. I haven’t been able to find any photos or gig listings for the Grim Reapers or Reepers, however they intended to spell the band name.

Two likely members are Greg Magie and Mark Paterson. Greg Magie’s name is in the song writing credits of the album “Stuntrock” by the late ’70s Los Angeles group Sorcery, (sound track to the movie Stunt Rock), and he is also, I believe, the vocalist in Sorcery as Greg McGee.

J. Sturgis is another name on the song writing credits, but in the BMI database, “Two Souls” shows only Mark Patterson, Richard Serrana and Joanne Funk.

“Two Souls” / “Joanne” was released on Chalon 1003 in January of 1967. Besides a few country singles by Roy Stevens, the Grim Reepers is the only other release on Chalon Records that I know of. Produced by Walker – J-P Productions (including B. Walker?).

Grim Reepers Chalon 45 JoanneChalon Records shared an address of 5539 Sunset Boulevard with Impression Records. Ramhorn Pub. Co. published “Two Souls” and also published many of the songs released on the Impression label. J-P Productions shows up on the Dirty Shames’ Impression single. A. Jones who is credited with arranging the Grim Reepers single is almost certainly Al Jones. Al Jones and Joe Osborn’s names show up on many Impression singles, and on the writing credits to Roy Stevens “Over Again” on Chalon 001.

Greg Magie’s “Joanne” is published through Reklaw Music Co.

Beau Hannon on Dionysian

Beau Hannon Dionysian 45 Who's Got The Right Of Way“Who’s Got the Right of Way” is the snotty, upbeat B-side to the light “Rosie, Rosie”. Beau Hannon was a Canadian singer from Niagara Falls, Ontario. This single on Dionysian from late 1967 comes roughly in the middle of his recording career.

He started as Beau-Hannon and the Mint Juleps with a good rockin’ teen single “It’s All Over” / “Brainstorm” on the Hot Springs, Arkansas label United Southern Artists, Inc in 1961. The song writing credits for “It’s All Over” reveals his actual name, Jim Bohannon; “Brainstorm” is credited to Larry Fite.

His second single “Stop Me From Falling In Love” on Eskee was picked up for release in Canada, Belgium and Germany, and later he had an LP of lighter pop, Most Requested on Birchmont.

This was the first of two releases on Dionysian Records, DP-101 / DP-102. Arnold Rosenthal wrote both songs, published by Appolonian (BMI), and Georgie Dee and Rick Centman produced both sides. Δ-69230 in the deadwax indicates a December 1967 pressing. It was almost certainly cut in Los Angeles.

The only other release I know of is Dionysian DP-103 A/B, Richard Williams singing I’m a Free Man” with a similar arrangement of “Who’s Got the Right of Way” on the flip. Notable on this release is Jesse Edwin Davis credited with arrangement, and a co-writing credit on “I’m a Free Man” to Davis and Bramlett (published by Appolonian / Lawana).

A white label promotional copy of Dionysian DP-103 has the artist credited as “Beyond Good And Evil”. On the label photo I’ve seen, this artist name is crossed out and Richard Williams’ name is written at top.

One source notes Richard Williams was Dick Anthony Williams who had a career as an actor, but I can’t confirm this.

Arnold Rosenthal has many song-writing and occasional production credits, but he doesn’t seem to have held a position at any label or company for long. He seems to have been most active from ’69 to ’72, when he wrote much of Gary Lewis’s ‎”I’m On The Right Road Now” album, and played bass on Jesse Ed Davis’s version of “White Line Fever” and on a couple tracks from Ben Sidran’s Feel Your Groove LP.

Baker Knight “Are You Satisfied Now” alternate version

Baker Knight Stereo Masters Demo 45 Are You Satisfied Now

Here’s an excerpt of an alternate version of Baker Knight’s original “Are You Satisfied Now”.

The Reprise single version of “Are You Satisfied Now” has horns, a female chorus, a completely different band and a smoother vocal from Baker. It was the b-side of “The Verge Of Success”, Knight’s seventh and last release on Reprise Records from April, 1968. That version was produced by Jimmy Bowen.

This demo definitely comes from an earlier session, I’d guess around 1966 given the folk-rock backing and grittier vocal. Although this demo lists Hill & Range publishing, by the time Knight registered the song in 1968 that had changed to Smooth Music / Noma Music as it is on the single. In fact I don’t find any evidence of Baker publishing through Hill & Range during the mid-60s.

I only wish Knight would stop singing long enough for a guitar break, but he had plenty of lyrics to get through.

The Ugly Z on Rondo

Ugly Z Rondo 45 Down To My Very Last Tear

The Ugly Z are a mystery band to me. There are plenty of names on the labels, but it may be that none of them belong to the band’s members.

“Down to My Very Last Tear” has a cool twelve-string guitar opening and a good band performance full of harmony singing. It was credited to the Ugly Z and Steve Fazio Jr.

Chris Crocket wrote “Kathy’s Back” which is similar to the flip in sound and almost as catchy.

Rick Lawrence, Stuart Richard produced the record, with Richard also arranging both sides.

It was released on Rondo 9158 in June, 1965, as shown from the Alco delta numbers: ∆57098 / ∆57098-X. Rondo had its address at 15101 Magnolia Blvd in Sherman Oaks, CA, and also published the songs through Rondo BMI.

Steve Fazio would show up about a year later as a talent scout for Valiant Records and producer Al Kavelin. Steve Fazio, Jr. also wrote “All Because Of You” recorded by Guiseppi Apollo with the Revels & the Mapes Sisters on Impact 12-IMX, published by Anthony Music.

Info on Steve Fazio’s connection with the West Coast Branch from the West Coast Fog site.

Ugly Z Rondo 45 Kathy's Back

The Cosmic Tones

The Cosmic Tones photo: Morris Ochoa, Vincent Hernandez, David Silva, Terry Williams and (kneeling) Alex Hernandez
The Cosmic Tones, from left: Morris Ochoa, Vincent Hernandez, David Silva, Terry Williams and (kneeling) Alex Hernandez

The Cosmic Tones came out of Bell Gardens, CA, the same town as the Nite Walkers. They cut one single for the Discovery label, “Gonna Build Me a Woman” / “Hold It”. Discovery later released a cool single by the Missing Links. Like the Missing Links, publishing was through Jarhill Pub. Co, (an amalgam R. Jarrard and James Hilton, who are credited on the Missing Links single).

Members of the Cosmic Tones were:

David Silva – lead guitar
Morris Ochoa – rhythm guitar
Terry Williams – rhythm guitar
Alex Hernandez – bass guitar
Vincent Hernandez – drums

Bass player Alex Hernandez sent me a photo of the group and told me about the Cosmic Tones:

My name is Alex Hernandez and I played bass in the Cosmic Tones in Bell Gardens, CA. I had wanted to play the guitar since I was about 5 years old. My uncle Chris asked me what song I wanted him to teach me and I said “La Bamba” by Richie Valens. He taught me this song and it was the start of my playing. When I was 13 I wanted to start a band so I started asking around and my friend Terry Williams was interested. He was 13 also and played rhythm guitar for us. My brother Vincent wanted to play drums, he was 14 years old.

We found David Silva who played lead guitar for us. He was a little older, he was 17 years old. We had a 5th addition in the band, Morris Ochoa and he was 14 then. He only stayed with us for about two months.

We all styled our hair back after ratting it up. We all used about a 1/2 can of Aqua Net hairspray before each play. After being together for about a month we had our first gig on Channel 34, a Mexican channel. We played an instrumental of “La Bamba” and it seemed to be a big hit.

We played songs such as “Whittier Blvd”, “My Girl”, “Land Of a Thousand Dances”. What a great time the ‘60s were. “Twist and Shout” was a favorite. We used to practice at any park that would let us, City of Commerce Park, Bell Gardens Park, Ford Park, and also at a park in Watts. We played at the junior high assemblies.

We also played in many battle of the bands and came in second at Ford Park out of around 12 groups. We played at the Cinnamon Cinder in Hollywood & at the Bob Hope telethon in Hollywood. We played at the Watts Festival and had a great time. We played at the White Front store in L.A. for two weeks after school to promote cerebal palsy research. We played at a teen club the Diamond Horseshoe in La Puenta, & for a CB club in Hidden Valley.

My Dad had us cut one 45 record and on side A was a song sung by my brother, “I’m Gonna Build Me A Woman” and side B was an original instrumental.

Our rival band in Bell Gardens was the Nite Walkers. They were a real good group and we all went to school together. We always tried to be better than them and they wanted to be better than us.

The group broke up after about two years and I started playing the upright bass in high school. I joined the Army for 8 years in 1971, My brother joined the Army in 1969 and went to Viet Nam.

We lost sight of David Silva, and Terry Williams holds a jam session up towards San Diego weekly. I don’t know where Morris Ochoa went, My brother retired with the railroad and now manages a trailer park.  We are all in our mid ‘60s now but I do know we still enjoy music every day. I retired with FedEx freight in 2013.

The last play I had was with my brother’s group the TCB Flash which is one of the best Elvis groups in southern CA. I sang and played four songs for New Years in 2016 at the Grove Theater in Upland CA. My songs were “House of the Rising Sun”, “Hang On Sloopy”, “Gloria” and “Wooly Bully”. Had a blast from the past and the audience seemed to really enjoy the show.

– Alex Hernandez, 2017

Marty and the Monks “Mexican Party”

Marty and the Monks Associated Artists 45 Mexican Party

Herman’s Hermits “Mrs. Brown, You’ve Got a Lovely Daughter” topped the Billboard Hot 100 in May of 1965, so a Hollywood studio owner rushed out a parody, “Mrs. Schwartz You’ve Got An Ugly Daughter” with the artist listed as Marty & the Monks. This version is on youtube if you want to subject yourself to it, but the real gold is the instrumental on flip, cut by a group that seems to have been totally unrelated to the musicians on the A-side.

“Mexican Party” is a rocking take-off on “Money” that sounds like it was actually recorded live in the studio. There are whoops, shouts, lots of string bending, a ridiculous horn blast. It has a lot in common with the Pacific Northwest sound like the Moguls “Avalanche”, the Jesters’ “Alki Point” or even Don & the Goodtimes version of “Money”.

Released on Associated Artists AA-3066, the song was retitled “Psychedelic City” when it came out as the flip to “Mrs. Schwartz” on Era Records 5037.

Marty & the Monks Era 45 Mexican Party
Jesse Hodges is credited as producer. Hodges owned Hollywood Sound Recorders and I believe he owned the Associated Artists label, which released about twenty 45s, including a couple of Hodges’ own singles. K. Young, G. Connor, and T. Reed have writer credits on “Mexican Party”, but none of their names appear on other Associated Artists releases as far as I can tell.

Both the Associated Artists 45 and the Era release have ∆-57190 in the deadwax, which dates the stampers for both 45s to June of 1965. I assume the Associated Artists was the original release. I have no idea when this “Golden Era Series” came out but 1967 wouldn’t be a bad guess, given the new, topical title.

My fellow WGXC deejay Jillian found a possible source for the band name in the obscure Marty the Monk cartoons of the 1930s.

Marty & the Monks Era 45 Mrs Brown You Got An Ugly Daughter

The Xanadus

Xanadus Angelus 45 Before the DawnXanadus Encore 45 Before the Dawn

I mentioned the Xanadus when I wrote about Angelus Records, a label for Christian music based out of Lorin Whitney’s studio in Glendale. The Xanadus first single was on Angelus, even though it was not a religious record. On hearing their second single recently, I decided the Xanadus deserve their own entry.

Their first single, “Before the Dawn” features a basic ensemble of lightly-amplified guitars, tambourine and harmony singing. “Little Girl” is a ballad, even more low-key than the A-side. Both songs are on youtube but not in great sound quality. It came out on Angelus WR-4442, and then the band reissued it on their own Encore label with the same catalog # 4442.

Xanadus Encore 45 You Turn Me OnThere are only a few instrumental or pop releases on Angelus. The Xanadus single is more pop in style and subject matter, but it’s so light and innocuous it doesn’t clash with the typical Angelus subject matter.

However, there’s no way Angelus would allow the band to use the label for their second 45, the salacious and amazing “You Turn Me On” / “Bankrupt Bothered & Bewildered”, released on Encore 4443. These are sharp, cutting rockers, with good guitar breaks. “Bankrupt Bothered & Bewildered” sounds like it was recorded live, shouting and hooting in the background.

Photos in the videos are different bands.

Angelus WR-4442 – “Before the Dawn” (Boyd & Adams) / “Little Girl” (Wray) produced by J & R Productions
Encore 4442 – Xanadus – “Before the Dawn” (Boyd & Adams) / “Little Girl” (Wray) (WR-4442-45) released Feb. 1965
Encore 4443 – “You Turn Me On” / “Bankrupt, Bothered & Bewildered” released April 1965

Both Encore releases have publishing by Shat-Shep Music BMI.

At this time I know nothing about the band.

The Shat-Shep Music credit shows up on at least a couple other singles of the period. One is Gail Da Corsi ‎– “I’ve Lost In Life” / “Touch Of Yesterday” on Dolton 314. The other is the Universals “I’m In Love” / “A Love Only You Can Give” on Shepherd SR 2200, a doo-wop style 45 from 1962.

Another Shepherd release, though without the Shat-Shep credit is Ritchie Marsh “They Say” (Pat Vegas, R. Marsh, pub. by Debutante Music) / “Darling I Swear That It’s True” on Shepherd SR-2203. Ritchie Marsh is better known as Sky Saxon.

The Shepherd label came out of Hollywood.

Thank you to Dan Peterson for the scan of the Angelus 45. If you have better scans of the second Encore single, please contact me.

Anyone have more info or a photo of the band?