Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Shep & The Limelites - Our Anniversary (1962)

1962 LP Our Anniversary (Hull 1001)

01. Shep & The Limelights - Daddy's Home
02. Shep & The Limelights - This I Know
03. Shep & The Limelights - Ready For Love
04. Shep & The Limelights - You'Ll Be Sorry
05. Shep & The Limelights - What Did Daddy Do
06. Shep & The Limelights - Gee Baby What About You
07. Shep & The Limelights - Our Anniversary
08. Shep & The Limelights - Who Told The Sandman
09. Shep & The Limelights - Three Steps From The Altar
10. Shep & The Limelights - Oh What A Feeling
11. Shep & The Limelights - Stick By Me (And I'Ll Stick By You)
12. Shep & The Limelights - I'm A Hurting Inside

If you want to listen to the music... Look up in the right column.
Als je naar de muziek wilt luisteren... Kijk boven in de rechter kolom.

Shep & the Limelites' name will forever be etched in rock & roll history for recording the endearing "Daddy's Home," a tender ballad about returning from war that soared to number two on the pop charts in May 1961. James Sheppard's career began with the Heartbeats, a band from Jamaica, Queens, NY. (They were the Hearts until a female group from Harlem with the same name scored a minor hit called "Lonely Nights" in early 1955.) The Hearts would mimic songs by the Orioles, the Ravens, Five Keys, the Moonglows, the Larks, the Flamingos, and others. When not rehearsing, they competed with wannabes in parks and under street corner lamps. During one encounter they battled a group led by James Sheppard; impressed, the Hearts asked Sheppard to be their new lead.

The acquisition of Sheppard helped the Hearts twofold: not only could he blow, he also wrote gorgeous ballads. Shortly after he joined the Hearts, they became the Heartbeat Quintet and started playing clubs, weddings, graduations, ceremonies, and basement parties. Jazz saxophonist Illinois Jacquet befriended them and let them rehearse in his basement. Jacquet's brother arranged their first recording opportunity. "Tormented," a ballad written by Sheppard, was released on Network Records in Philadelphia, but lack of promotion killed any chance of success. After shortening their name to the Heartbeats, they came to the attention of William Miller, who worked for Hull Records. He introduced the quintet to owner Bea Caslin, who was impressed by their tight harmonies and Sheppard's songwriting skills; the group was soon signed to the label. Three initial releases sold well, particularly the magnificent "Your Way"; all were ballads written by Sheppard.
Read on +/-

The minor successes of the recordings encouraged Hull Records to invest in professional choreography to tighten the band's stage presentation. Appearances at premier New York venues like the Brooklyn Fox and the Apollo had become common. To the surprise of Hull Records, fans called radio stations in record numbers demanding to hear the flip of "Baby Don't Go," the exquisite "A Thousand Miles Away." Sheppard's craving for an ex-girlfriend who moved to Texas had inspired "A Thousand." Not only did the song do well locally and regionally, it started selling nationwide. Bookings poured in, providing appearances with luminaries like Ray Charles, B.B. King, and the Flamingos. Touring, however, didn't prove lucrative, as they experienced an inordinate share of misfortunes including vehicle breakdowns and promoters leaving with the proceeds. "Daddy's Home" would be the Heartbeats' final Hull Record release.

Bea Caslin then sold the Heartbeats' contract and the publishing rights to the Roulette Record conglomerate. "I Won't Be the Fool Anymore" came out on Rama Records in 1957; after another Rama release, Roulette switched them to Gee Records, and eventually to Roulette itself. "500 Miles to Go" and "After New Year's Eve" were the most successful commercially, while "Down on My Knees" was the most notable artistically.

Problems within the group began to show: the last straw came when Sheppard passed out at the microphone in Philadelphia, and bandmate Al Crump sang the lyrics until Sheppard was able to continue. The group wanted to breakup after this embarrassment but had commitments, so the group sang on gigs as a quartet doing standards, and Sheppard appeared afterward to sing the Heartbeat hits. They did their last gig in 1959 at the Howard Theater in Washington, D.C., and Sheppard opened a restaurant in Jamaica, Queens, singing solo on the side.

Two years after the the Heartbeats' demise, Sheppard met some old friends -- Clarence Bassett and Charles Baskerville of the Videos -- and formed Shep & the Limelites. Bassett had also warbled with the Five Sharps. After two flops on Apt. Records, Shep returned to Hull Records and Caslin signed them on the spot. "Daddy's Home" was Shep & the Limelites' first Hull release and it nearly aced the pop chart, stopping at number two. (Ricky Nelson's "Travelin' Man" kept it from the top spot.) Hull released 12 Shep & the Limelites singles between 1961 and 1965. "Our Anniversary" went to number seven R&B in 1962 and was their only other chart success. Personal differences caused the Limelites to disband by 1966. Baskervlle joined the Players, and Bassett sang with the Flamingos and later Creative Funk. Sheppard reunited with the Limelites in 1970 to perform on the oldie revival circuit, but this quickly ended when Sheppard was found on January 24, 1970, shot to death in his car on the Long Island expressway.

The Hunters (NL) - The singles

1965 SP Mr.Tambourine Man/It Ain't Me Babe (NL RCA Victor 47-9597)
1965 SP You Were On My Mind/Bury Me Beneath The Willow (NL RCA Victor 47-9599)
1966 SP Russian Spy And I/Spring (NL RCA Victor 47-9656)
1966 SP Janosh/When I See Babette (NL RCA Victor 47-9657)
1967 SP I'm The King/The Consul Of Sidney (NL RCA Victor 47-9751)
1968 SP Lost Money/Shovel Man (NL Imperial IH 818)
1968 SP Strange Things Appear/Blues In G (NL Imperial IH 791)

In 1965 Jan Akkerman and his band decided to change their name from "Johnny and The Cellar Rockers" to "Johnny and the Hunters", wich became simply "The Hunters" soon after. Paul Hubert replaced Jan Burgers on guitar, while Wilfred Arens was the new bassplayer. Wilfred on his turn was replaced by Ron Bijtelaar in 1966. Their first singles featured Rita Severijnse and Floor Klomp on vocals, but since "The Russian Spy and I", released in June 1966, they shared the vocals themselves. That single became a Top 40 hit in The Netherlands, as it reached #10. The next single "Janosh" wasn't very successful (#40) and not very good aether. But it was a logical follow-up to its predecessor, who became one of the milestones in Dutch pop history. After that single, Ron Bijtelaar was replaced by Frank Smit, before Ron finally returned to The Hunters, to play on their last single "Lost Money" in November 1968. The Hunters were, just like the "Cellar Rockers", also a backing group for several lead singers. For instance, they recorded a single with vocaliste Peggy March in 1966. Recently this photo from the recording session turned up. For more info about Jan Akkerman -- Holland's best guitar player ever:

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Super Stocks (1964)

1964 LP Thunder Road (US Capitol ST-2060)

01. The Super Stocks - Surf Route 101
02. The Super Stocks - Muscle Beach Party
03. The Super Stocks - Ventura
04. The Super Stocks - Santa Barbara
05. The Super Stocks - Redondo Beach
06. The Super Stocks - Surfin' Scene
07. The Super Stocks - Balboa Island
08. The Super Stocks - Oceanside
09. The Super Stocks - My First Love
10. The Super Stocks - Midnight Run
11. The Super Stocks - Malibu Blues
12. The Super Stocks - Newport Beach

If you want to listen to the music... Look up in the right column.
Als je naar de muziek wilt luisteren... Kijk boven in de rechter kolom.

1964 LP Surf Route 101 (US Capitol ST-2113)

01. The Super Stocks - Thunder Road
02. The Super Stocks - "T" Roadster
03. The Super Stocks - Ballad Of Bonneville
04. The Super Stocks - Ramcharger
05. The Super Stocks - 427 Super Stock
06. The Super Stocks - D/Gas Chevy
07. The Super Stocks - Wheel Stands
08. The Super Stocks - Trophy Run
09. The Super Stocks - Draggin' Deuce
10. The Super Stocks - Hot To Trot
11. The Super Stocks - Custom Caravan

If you want to listen to the music... Look up in the right column.
Als je naar de muziek wilt luisteren... Kijk boven in de rechter kolom.

1964 LP School Is A Drag (US Capitol ST-2190)

01. The Super Stocks - School Is A Drag
02. The Super Stocks - School Bus Blues
03. The Super Stocks - Hot Rod High
04. The Super Stocks - Let Freedom Ring
05. The Super Stocks - Class Day
06. The Super Stocks - Gridiron Goodie
07. The Super Stocks - Saturday's Hero
08. The Super Stocks - Readin', Ridin', And Racin'
09. The Super Stocks - A Guy Without Wheels
10. The Super Stocks - Wild One
11. The Super Stocks - Little Honda
12. The Super Stocks - The Last Walk

If you want to listen to the music... Look up in the right column.
Als je naar de muziek wilt luisteren... Kijk boven in de rechter kolom.

The Super Stocks were one of the better and more interesting studio creations of producer-composer Gary Usher. Usher had been a singer and recording artist in his own right, but made his biggest splash in the music business during the early '60s, through his collaborations with Brian Wilson on such songs as "In My Room" and "409." He wrote more songs in that vein in collaboration with Roger Christian (who also worked with Brian Wilson), and was soon prevailed upon to provide actual recordings of surf and car songs, which were a hot sound in 1963. This resulted in his organizing of several "groups" that existed only in the studio (usually comprised of the same singers and featuring the same session musicians playing on them), including the Hondells, the Revells, and the Surfaris (who were an actual group produced by Usher, and who saw lots of the same session people turn up on their records). The Super Stocks were among Usher's more fondly remembered surf "bands" of this period, and one of the more ubiquitous, with three complete LPs to their credit as well as appearances on two popular compilation albums.

The Super Stocks first showed up on the Capitol Records car song compilation album Shut Down (not to be confused with the Beach Boys' Shut Down, Vol. Two, which was done in its wake), on which they had four songs. They also contributed six songs to the album Hot Rod Rally, but the group's main claim to fame lies in the three LPs of their own that they released in 1964: Thunder Road, Surf Route 101, and School Is a Drag. Following those odd early sides, Usher assembled a core of regular players, including Glen Campbell, Richie Podolor, and Paul Johnson on guitars; Hal Blaine on drums; and Steve Douglas on sax. He handled some of the early vocals himself, with Chuck Girard, Ritchie Burns, and Joe Kelly also singing; and Girard eventually took over most of the vocal chores. Read on +/-

The Super Stocks were a good match for the early Beach Boys in the field of surf music or car songs -- which isn't surprising, as they utilized several session musicians who subsequently moved in and out of the Beach Boys' orbit (as well as those of the similar-sounding Hondells, Revells, Surfaris, et al.) during the mid-'60s, as well as Usher and Christian as songwriters -- but never for anything beyond that. The personalized touch that Brian Wilson and company began bringing to their work, however, both in music and lyrics, as they matured in 1964 and 1965, was totally lacking in the Super Stocks' work. On the other hand, blasphemous though it may sound, some enthusiasts for the Beach Boys' early sound regarded that maturation with disdain (more than one fan echoed Pete Townshend's criticism of Pet Sounds at the time as too soft, romantic, and sentimental), and surf and car song buffs understandably love the three Super Stocks albums. The group might well have continued, had Usher not become much more interested in releasing records by the Hondells (utilizing most of the same musicians, who enjoyed a Top Ten hit with "Little Honda"), the Revells, and other outfits that he'd created; before joining Columbia Records as a staff producer in 1965. Most of the Super Stocks' alumni were already busy and established musicians -- Glen Campbell became a superstar, Hal Blaine a legend, and Richard Podolor one of the most successful producers of the 1970s -- but among the relative neophytes, Chuck Girard became the best known to the fans, by virtue of his lead vocals.

The Shadows - Three EP's (1962)

1961 EP The Shadows (UK Columbia SEG-8061)

1961 EP The Shadows To The Fore (UK Columbia SEG-8094)

1961 EP Live At The Colosseum (SEGJ-11014)

1962 EP Theme Music From "The Boys" (UK Columbia SEG-8193)
Shadows - Sweet Dreams
Shadows - The Boys
Shadows - The Girls
Shadows - The Theme From 'The Boys'

1962 EP Spotlight On The Shadows (UK Columbia SEG-8135)
Shadows - Kon-Tiki
Shadows - Peace Pipe
Shadows - The Frightened City
Shadows - The Savage

1962 EP Wonderful Land Of The Shadows (UK Columbia SEG-8171)
Shadows - 36-24-36
Shadows - Midnight
Shadows - Stars Fell On Stockton
Shadows - Wonderful Land

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Shadows - Three EP's (1961)

1961 EP The Shadows (UK Columbia SEG-8061)

1961 EP The Shadows To The Fore (UK Columbia SEG-8094)

1961 EP Live At The Colosseum (SEGJ-11014)

1961 EP The Shadows (UK Columbia SEG-8061)
Shadows - Mustang
Shadows - Shotgun
Shadows - Theme From 'Giant'
Shadows - Theme From 'Shane'

1961 EP The Shadows To The Fore (UK Columbia SEG-8094)
Shadows - Apache
Shadows - F.B.I.
Shadows - Man Of Mystery
Shadows - The Stranger

1961 EP Live At The Colosseum (SEGJ-11014)
Shadows - Shazam!
Shadows - Guitar Boogie
Shadows - Sleepwalk
Shadows - F.B.I.

The Jumping Jewels

1963 LP Jumping High (NL Philips P 08082 L)

  1. The Jumping Jewels - Istanbul
  2. The Jumping Jewels - Quiereme Mucho
  3. The Jumping Jewels - Trek To Rome
  4. The Jumping Jewels - Dream Of The West
  5. The Jumping Jewels - Wild Geese
  6. The Jumping Jewels - South Of The Border
  7. The Jumping Jewels - Blue Skies
  8. The Jumping Jewels - El Choclo
  9. The Jumping Jewels - Rumble
  10. The Jumping Jewels - San Antonio Rose
  11. The Jumping Jewels - Smoke Signals
  12. The Jumping Jewels - Zero Zero

1964 LP Guitars About Town (UK De Wolfe DWLP 2821)

At the end of 1963, Herman Batelaan -- manager of The Jumping Jewels -- had contact with music publisher De Wolfe Ltd. in London. Music-De Wolfe was specialized in the delivery of background music for film, TV and radio, and produces a variety of material for the catalog of De Wolfe with composers and musicians from home and abroad. The Jumping Jewels recorded in a small Philips studio 12 new compositions for release in the UK on a 25 cm (10") LP. The LP was intended for general use as background music. The title of the LP was 'Guitars About Town'. Composers of the instrumentals were: Keith Papworth; Anthony Mawer; Wayne Hill and Jack Trombey -- an authors pseudonym of the Dutch composer Jan Stoeckart. The songs "Black Twist," "Lullaby," "Rock-A-Bye-Baby," "Lottery"and "Twisting Jewels" are his.

The LP, with 12 new pieces written for The Jumping Jewels, remains almost completely unknown for 15 years. Early 1978 an English collector found a box with 25 copies at a clearance in the warehouse of Wolfe Music in London. In 1979 a bootleg of this album saw daylight, made in Brussels by CL Records. In April 1981, the material was finally released in the Netherlands by DSR Records -- titled 'Rock On With The Jumping Jewels'. The accompanying text on the cover was written by Herman Batelaan. Herman explains: " complex contractual obligations since the first release, nothing happened with the recordings. A clear case of 'shame' as I subsequently thought by listening to this Dutch instrumental band from a thunderous -- but unfortunately past -- history."

  1. The Jumping Jewels - Black Twist
  2. The Jumping Jewels - Utopia
  3. The Jumping Jewels - Footloose
  4. The Jumping Jewels - Lullabye
  5. The Jumping Jewels - Guitars About Town
  6. The Jumping Jewels - Motorway
  7. The Jumping Jewels - Night People
  8. The Jumping Jewels - Twist And Shake
  9. The Jumping Jewels - Rock-A Bye Baby
  10. The Jumping Jewels - Tombola
  11. The Jumping Jewels - Shakin' And Breakin'
  12. The Jumping Jewels - Twisting Jewels

In 1958 -- in youth club 'Don Bosco', Rijswijk, Netherlands -- the 13-years old Hans van Eijk met Johnny Lion (Jan van Leeuwarden), who formed a singing duo at that time with his brother Fred. Together Johnny and Hans create a band: Johnny & The Jewels. Initially it was a seven piece orchestra which played -- in addition to their performances on party's -- in the parish hall of the Catholic Church. Drummer Frits Tamminga was already in the first line up and also Joop Oonk -- trained by Hans van Eijk for bass player. Peter Tamminga did play piano and Chris Jackson guitar. And then there was a certain Bas -- school companion of Hans van Eijk -- and a girl singer: Nellie. Later on Tjibbe Veeloo replaced the rhythm guitarist of the first line up: Chris Jones. The original 'Frisian' Tjibbe also learned to play guitar with the help of Hans.

Summer 1960, Willy Wissink (Willy & His Giants) operates the dancing pavilion of the roller rink in the Zuiderpark in The Hague. He also performed there with his own group: The Real Rhythm Teens. Johnny & The Jewels play there on weekends. A cousin of laundry owner Herman Batelaan played with Willy Wissink, and so comes Batelaan had contact with Wissink. When Willy leaved The Hague, Herman did take over the dances in the South Park and met Hans van Eijk and his guys. Herman Batelaan sets itself up as business manager. The orchestra was reduced to five men and from October 1960 they continue under the name The Jumping Jewels. Early 1961, record company Phonogram was looking for a guitar group -- in the style of the successful British Shadows -- who could record the world hits "Wheels" and "(Ghost) Riders In The Sky" for the Philips label. Herman Batelaan brought The Jumping Jewels at the right time in contact with Phonogram. The result was that, March, 1961, their version of the two instrumentals could be found in the record stores.

The group scores -- both, with singer Johnny Lion as instrumental -- a reasonable number of hits and grows as the most popular guitar group from the lowlands. But also in the rest of Europe and Asia they sold many records. In 1964 Pakistan, Malaysia and Singapore are visited. In Singapore approximately 10,000 fans saw their performances at the Odeon theater, in the middle of the city. 1965 Is a turbulent year for The Jumping Jewels. In April, they join Johnny Lion in the circus of Toni Boltini, but it also came to a break that summer. Johnny Lion scored a big hit with the Dutch song "Sophietje," without the Jewels. Their share was acquired by The Young Ones. The Jumping Jewels ended then their contract with Herman Batelaan and continued as a backing group for Rob de Nijs -- another popular Dutch singer. Batelaan however went to court because of rights of the groups name. He won the lawsuit which meant the end of the Jumping Jewels. Early 1966 Hans van Eijk and his men made a relaunch as a beat group: 'The Jay Jays'.

ZZ & de Maskers

1964 - ZZ & De Maskers (Artone PDR-138)

01. ZZ & De Maskers - Greensleeves
02. ZZ & De Maskers - Ik Heb Genoeg Van Jou
03. ZZ & De Maskers - Main Theme From James Bond 007
04. ZZ & De Maskers - La Comparsa
05. ZZ & De Maskers - Quizas Quizas Quizas
06. ZZ & De Maskers - Shake Hands
07. ZZ & De Maskers - Beat Girl
08. ZZ & De Maskers - Spanish Tears
09. ZZ & De Maskers - Cadillac
10. ZZ & De Maskers - Till
11. ZZ & De Maskers - Tamara
12. ZZ & De Maskers - Dracula

1965 - ZZ and de Maskers (Artone POS-020)

01. ZZ & De Maskers - Playboy Loves Playgirl
02. ZZ & De Maskers - So Sorry
03. ZZ & De Maskers - I Wanna Relax
04. ZZ & De Maskers - You're Old And Leaf
05. ZZ & De Maskers - Do, Do, Do You Love Me
06. ZZ & De Maskers - They Tell You
07. ZZ & De Maskers - I Wanna Keep You
08. ZZ & De Maskers - Slopping In Las Vegas
09. ZZ & De Maskers - She's Got My Heart
10. ZZ & De Maskers - Love Is Just A One Night Thing
11. ZZ & De Maskers - Nothing To Do
12. ZZ & De Maskers - Cheat Cheat
13. ZZ & De Maskers - Dracula (English Version)

1966 - Sensations In Sound (Artone PDS-510)

01. De Maskers - As Long As I Have You
02. De Maskers - Masters Of War
03. De Maskers - Living In The Past
04. De Maskers - Angelique
05. De Maskers - Play The Game Now
06. De Maskers - Three's A Crowd
07. De Maskers - Baby Blue.mp3
08. De Maskers - Love Passed By
09. De Maskers - Danny Boy
10. De Maskers - Hodge Podge
11. De Maskers - What Price Fame
12. De Maskers - Kashbah
13. De Maskers - Turn Of The Tide

1967 - Beat Meets Rhythm & Blues (Artone PDR-552)

01. De Maskers - Batman TV Theme
02. De Maskers - Brand New Cadillac
03. De Maskers - Georgia On My Mind
04. De Maskers - Goldfinger
05. De Maskers - Smack Dab In The Middle
06. De Maskers - He Cursed Him
07. De Maskers - The Saint
08. De Maskers - Shame And Scandal In The Family
09. De Maskers - Come On Boy, Join The Army
10. De Maskers - Formula V Special
11. De Maskers - Unchain My Heart
12. De Maskers - Come With Me My Honey
13. De Maskers - Let The Good Times Roll
14. De Maskers - Ave Maria No Morro
15. De Maskers - Because I'm In Love
16. De Maskers - North Sea Melody

1967 - Shame On You (Artone PDS-560)

01. De Maskers - Shame On You
02. De Maskers - No Use Crying
03. De Maskers - I'll Take Care Of You
04. De Maskers - It Will Never Happen Again
05. De Maskers - Wade In The Water
o6. De Maskers - Hard Times
07. De Maskers - You're Taking Hold Of Me
08. De Maskers - Baby Don't You Do It
09. De Maskers - I Believe To My Soul
10. De Maskers - Watermelon Man
11. De Maskers - Sack O'Woe
12. De Maskers - Bill Bailey

The group arises late 1962 as singer Bob Bouber saw the Amsterdam band the Apron Strings on stage. He thougt the concept of ZZ & de Maskers with the entire group (including him self as ZZ) acting with masks. Later Bouber discard his mask. The group was initially focused on Dutch rock with songs like "Dracula," "Ik Heb Genoeg Van Jou," and "Shake Hands." In addition to the vocals of Bob Bouber they played a large number of instrumental tracks as ZZ & de Maskers -- although Bouber was not contributing to them. Jan de Hont was the soloist in these songs, of which La Comparsa became a classic. Inspired by the British beat music in 1964, the group also recorded songs in English as "Sloppin' in Las Vegas" (also as "Stoppin' In Las Vegas" with Chubby Checker in 1965) and "Cheat, Cheat, Cheat.

After five mostly instrumental years as "ZZ en de Maskers", and the split from their singer Bob Bouber, Jan de Hont and his Amsterdam guys tried to find new roads as De Maskers. Times had changed. Beat and Rhythm & Blues had taken over from instrumentals. The first single with the new face was "Brand New Cadillac", a cover from The Renegades. The record reaches #15 in the Dutch hit list. After that a new single came with Chubby Checker; "Baby, Baby, Balla, Balla!!!, who reached #17 in Holland and climbed to #1 in Germany. De Maskers recorded three original lp's, from who --in my opinion-- the first: "Sensations In Sound" was the best. The second lp mixed up some new tracks with a couple of older instrumentals. The record company had for sure troubles with the new 'beat face' of De Maskers, and tried to please the old fans this way. That makes it even more difficult for the band to build up a new public image. The third and last long player was more Rhythm and Blues orientated, but missed the real touch from --for instance-- The Incrowd and The Rodys, two other Dutch R&B groups. But overall De Maskers were one off the best and most important Dutch bands in the sixties with their superb guitarist Jan de Hont.

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