Category Archives: Scranton

Thee Avantis on Samron

Thee Avantis Samron 45 I Want To UnderstandSamron Records had a great run, releasing only a handful of singles but all that I’ve heard are top-notch rock ’n roll. Thee Avantis’ “I Want to Understand” / “Nancy” on Samron S-103, recorded in late 1965, is one of the best.

“I Want to Understand” is the kind of single I never get tired of, featuring a neat guitar hook, solid bass and drum playing, the right amount of organ and great vocals. There are fine guitar and organ breaks, the entire song clocking in at 2:27.

The other three singles on Samron are:

Samron S-101: The Wizards “Don’t Trust A Man” / “Sad Little Girl”
Samron S-102: Ognir & the Night People “I Found a New Love” (Nehring, Marusak) / “All My Heart” (Nehring, Molinaro) released October 1965

Samron S-104: The Five Flys “Livin’ for Love” / “Dance Her By Me”

Samron was run by Ronald Magazzu, and Sam Lesante was also involved. The first two singles listed Magazzu Productions in Hazleton, PA, while the label for the Five Flys changes the town to Coaldale, PA.

I’ve read Thee Avantis were from Scranton, but I found a notice in the Hazleton Standard-Speaker from March 5, 1966 listing the band for a Sunday Dance at the Fiesta Room in Hazleton, about an hour’s drive southwest of Scranton.

I only know the names of three members of Thee Avantis: Nick Fata on bass and Robert Schnessel who wrote both songs, plus Tom Flanagan. Magazzu Music Co. published both songs.

Thank you to Mike K and Mike Markesich for additional info on the label in their comments.

Thee Avantis Samron 45 Nancy

Karl Thaler

Karl Thaler 45 The StormKarl Thaler 45 Phoebe

Supreme obscurity here, though not garage at all. Karl Thaler plays acoustic guitar and sings doom-laden lyrics on the excellent composition “The Storm”, and plays guitar and harmonica on the instrumental “Phoebe”.

Karl Thaler – The Storm

I had no info other than what’s on the label, which includes the deadwax stamp “45 202 385” / “45 202 386”. A comment, below, informs me that this single was included with the University of Scranton, Pennsylvania’s literary magazine Esprit in 1969, when Karl Thaler was a student there. Any further info on about Mr. Thaler or the University of Scranton music scene this came from would be appreciated.