Zappa: The Penguins - Memories of El Monte

The Penguins - Memories of El Monte [Original Sound 1963]

Written by Frank Zappa & Ray Collins recalling the groups who performed at El Monte Legion Stadium. Although credited to The Penguins only Cleve Duncan remained from the original group which had a hit with "Earth Angel" ten years earlier and broke up around 1959.

Zappa described the other vocalists as "a bunch of guys from the car wash" but they were El Monte Legion Stadium favorites...The Viceroys.

"The very first tunes that I wrote were 50's doo wop, Memories Of El Monte, and stuff like that. It's always been my contention that the music that was happening during the 50's has been one of the
finest things that ever happened to American music and I loved it. I could sit down and write a hundred more of the 1950's type songs
right now, and enjoy every minute of it."
Frank Zappa - In His Own Words (1974)

The record was recorded at Paul Buff's studio in Ccamonga, California. Paul Conrad Buff grew up in Cucamonga. Joining the Marine Corps, after graduating, he trained in aviation electronics. He returned to civilian life and took a job making parts for guided missiles at General Dynamics. After a few months at the "Bomb factory", as FZ would refer to it, he was bored with his job so he borrowed $1000 and, knowing nothing about the music business, set up the Pal recording studio in Cucamonga. Recording studios were usually controlled by the big record companies at that time so he could offer a cheaper alternative for would-be bands to record. His lack of knowledge and finance meant that the studio produced a different sound from the major studios which became known as the "Pal Sound". He worked with groups such as the Surfaris ("Wipe Out"), The Chantays ("Pipeline"), and many others.

The Penguins Memories of El Monte

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