The Honeycombs - Can't get through to you [Warner Brothers 1965]
One night a group, known then as The Sheratons, was playing in a London pub, The Mildmay Tavern in the Balls Pond Road. In the audience were Ken Howard and Alan Blaikley, a very prolific British songwriting team, who later wrote hits for such artists as Lulu, Elvis Presley, Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich and Petula Clark. Howard and Blaikley, then working in production for BBC Television, liked what they saw and suggested the band might like to hear some of their material. The band had an upcoming audition with indie record producer Joe Meek, whom most notably had produced The Tornados, and composed their number one hit ("Telstar") in 1962, and were eager for some new material. At the audition in Meek's studio in Holloway Road, they played Howard and Blaikley's "Have I the Right?" which Meek recorded.
Have I The Right?" hit number one in the UK and number five in the U.S. in the autumn of 1964 shortly after the start of the British Invasion. They were especially successful in Sweden (four consecutive number ones) and in Japan (where they issued a live album entitled, In Tokyo). Honey Lantree was an accomplished drummer and the star attraction of the group as she was one of very few female drummers at the time. The unique and heavily compressed bass drum sound on "Have I The Right?", which many other drummers of the period tried to replicate, was augmented by the group stamping on the stairs of Meek's studio. Meek achieved this by placing four microphones attached with bicycle clips under the stairs.
The group's founder Martin Murray had worked as a hairdresser, Honey Lantree being his assistant. They decided to combine his profession with the name of the drummer, and changed their name to The Honeycombs. They were signed to the Pye record label.
After proving a 'sleeper' for seven weeks the record took off in the summer of 1964 reaching the number one spot around the world
and selling over 2 million records. It was Meek's final hit in the
United States, where it was issued on the Interphon label (a Vee Jay label).
Listen to this Joe Meek penned b-side and get ready for an assault on your senses....
The Honeycombs Can't get through to you
Yaphet Koto - Have you ever seen the blues? [Chisa 1968]
A great actor who unfortunately came up when the Hollywood system allowed for only one or two Black actors to play prominent roles in marque movies. Had Kotto started in the 1990s, you would know his name as well as you know Jamie Foxx, Denzel Washington, and Samuel Jackson. But as it is, Yaphet Kotto remains a cult figure known mostly for his role as the best Bond villain, Dr. Karanga AKA Mr. Big, from Live & Let Die. Kotto fans thrill every time they see him show up in a bit role on TV or as a character in a movie.
Kotto did this jazz poetry blast back in '68, and it comes off as a bit less Burn Baby, Burn than The Last Poets. Perhaps that is because Kotto is the son of a Cameroonian prince! And his producer on this is fellow African Hugh Masekela. Coming from Africa and seeing the plight of American Blacks in the 1960s, especially the institutionalized poverty, is a bit different than living it. So maybe that is why Kotto doesn't spit the same rage as The Last Poets......or maybe he is just a different cat.
Man, I don't wanna kill your buzz so forget that jive for a second and check out Kotto's Beat-inspired 'try (as in poe'try).
Yaphet Koto Have you ever seen the blues?
Young Jessie - Don't think I will [Modern 1955]
Young Jessie, was born Obediah Donnell "Obie" Jessie on December 28, 1936, in Lincoln Manor, Dallas, Texas.
Jessie's father was a cook but had no musical background. His
mother, Malinda (née Harris) had a brief musical career playing piano under the name Plunky Harris. On his mother's side of the family, Jessie was also kin to blues musician Blind Lemon Jefferson.
Best known as the writer of his original "Mary Lou," [later covered by Ronnie Hawkins in 1959, Bob Seger in 1976, Gene Clark in 1977 and The Oblivians in 1997] as well as a stint in The Flairs in the early 1950s and The Coasters in 1957 singing lead on "Searchin'" and "Young Blood".
He made several solo singles in the 1950s and 1960s. He would later release a couple of jazz albums under the name Obie Jessie.
His younger brother DeWayne Jessie became an actor and
became well known as Otis Day in the film National Lampoon's
Check out the other side of "Mary Lou" a killer "doomba, doomba, dooma doom" with the great Mickey Baker on guitar.
Young Jessie Don't think I will
'Cile Turner - Crap Shootin' Sinner [Colonial '59]
"Lucile ('Cile) Turner, a young singer from southern Virginia, became fascinated with African-American music while attending the New England Conservatory of Music in the mid-1910s There she attracted attention by singing African-American folk songs and spirituals she had learned as a child from workers on her parents' farm.
By the 1920s, she was touring the Eastern United States giving programs of "Songs from the South," later hosting a popular weekly fifteen-minute radio program on NBC's coast-to-coast network. What began as a hobby for Turner evolved into a full-time profession for the next forty years as she traveled through the South collecting African-American songs and stories to present on radio, records, live performances, and later on her own syndicated television show.
In December 1959, her somewhat creepy 45 "Crap Shootin' Sinner" and "The Golden Rule" made the Cash Box Top 100, and several others received special mention in Billboard Magazine.
'Cile Turner Crap Shootin' Sinner
Eugene White - They Didn't Really Go To The Moon, pts 1&2 [Royal American]
How, where, why???? All good questions that come to mind when you listen to this slab of conspiracy theory, made-up-on-the-spot, explanation by one Eugene White...a grammar school drop-out for sure. He's got an explanation for just about everything his deer-in the-headlights buddy can throw at him.
I'm not sure when this was recorded but it had to be 1969 or later. Part 1 is on side A and part 2 on side B....I joined them so you could have an uninterrupted listening experience...whew!
The scary side of the whole thing is that the label says:
From the album "They Didn't Really Go To The Moon"
A whole LP of opinions from the man who almost made me wet my pants, Eugene White.
Eugene White They Didn't Really Go To The Moon
The Persuaders - Grunion Run [Original Sound 1963]
Around the same time that Frank Zappa was honing his doo-wop chops [See previous post / The Penguins - Memories of El Monte] he was also working with some of the local bands....one band was The Hollywood Persuaders....I don't know if they dropped the "Hollywood" or added it as I have another of their 45's "Drums A-Go-Go that is credited to The Hollywood Persuaders. I guess I could check the #'s but is it really necessary? Just check out Zappa's guitar on this slab of surf/psych!! Awesome.
What they are: Grunion are small sardine-shaped silvery fish that ride the waves in Del Mar City Beach, La Jolla Shores, Mission Beach and Silver Strand Beach up onto the sand to procreate, making for a veritable sea of squirming 4-8 inch fish out of water.
The deal is: The female grunion buries herself in the sand to lay her eggs and the male wraps himself around her to fertilize them--a female's eggs might be fertilized by up to eight males in one night. Then they wait for a wave to take them back out to sea.
The Persuaders Grunion Run