Nightshades Gear 45 American Boy

The Nightshades on Gear

Nightshades Gear 45 American Boy

The Nightshades formed as the Deadly Nightshades at Glenbrook South High School in Glenview, IL, a suburb of Chicago. The group’s lineup changed, sometimes to a quartet or trio format, but included at various times:

Gary Schaeffer – vocals
Bob Zemke – lead guitar
Larry LaCoste – rhythm guitar
Phil Jernigan, replaced by Tom Lavin – bass
Don Locke, replaced by Kenny LaCoste – drums

I only have one of their singles, the second of three the band released on Gear Records in 1967 and 1968.

The first was “Summertime” / “Wonder Where My Baby Is Tonight” on Gear 747/8.

“Summertime” and the Kinks cover are cool enough, but I like the original songs on their second single on Gear C 749/750, “Flying High” and especially the heavier “American Boy” with its sustained guitar sound and lyrics that would tell an interesting story if I could decipher more of them. The labels list Zemke, La Cost, Jernigan as writers for both songs, published by Gear Music BMI, with arrangement by Bob Zemke, plus Gear Enterprises, c/o Ed Zemke.

I haven’t heard their last single, “Sweet Cecelia” / “My Mother Done Told Me (That You Were a Lover)” on Gear 751/2.

Nightshades Gear 45 Flying High

4 thoughts on “The Nightshades on Gear”

  1. Saw the Nightshades play as a power trio with singer at IIT in what ’67,’68? They played Sweet Cicelia and did a Who-like finale with their Vox amps tilted back and the guitars laying on the speaker cabinets feeding back! My buddy Barry had bought their single. Its cool!

  2. Don Locke, not Dan Locke. Don went on to be a gifted artist and author as well as graphic artist for NBC’s Tonight Show for over 25 years….

  3. Around five years ago I found 500 unplayed 45s of the Nightshades on Gear at a house liquidation sale. I believe they were all the same record(?). I also believe it was their last single from what I read above. I passed on these at $1.00 each, believing they were some sort of reissue because they were way too mint for a 45 year old record. My question is, Did one of the members live in North Tonawanda, NY where these records were found? Maybe someone in the production end lived there? Chicago is a long way off from this Buffalo, NY suburb. Any information would be greatly appreciated. This person (who owned the 45s) may have passed away sometime around 2011 or 2012(?).

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