From the Land of Band Box Records

They Gave Us Rock and Roll: Part 4

June 3, 2017

The Roots of Rock and Roll on Long Play in the U.S.

A hat’s off to these pioneers who set the stage – Here are their earliest long plays – Artists H through J.  Some really great ones here – Although I was very young at the time I was mesmerized by Little Willie John – and especially captured by his string filled “Sleep” – What a voice!

1955 – Bill Haley & The Comets – Decca DL 8225 – “Rock Around The Clock”

Bill Haley was born on July 6th, 1925 in Highland Park, Michigan William John Clifton Haley – He died on February 9th, 1981 – Haley and the Comets  formed in 1952 out of a his group called “Bill Haley and the Saddlemen”

Very Early Members of the Comets 1952-1953 era:  John Grande, Slim Allsman, Charlie Higler, Earl Famous, Dick Richards, Billy Gussak, Billy Williamson, Joey Ambrose, and Marshall Lytle.

1965 – Wilbert Harrison – Sphere Sound SSR 7000 – “Kansas City”

Wilbert Harrison was born in January of 1929 in Spencer, North Carolina Wilbert Huntington Harrison – He died on October 26th, 1994 – This LP – probably his most sought after – came six years after his big hit record.

1958 – Dale Hawkins – Chess 1429 – “Oh! Suzy-Q”

Dale Hawkins was born in August of 1936 in Little Rock, Arkansas Delmar Allen Hawkins – He died February 13th, 2010

1958 – Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – Epic LN 3448 – “At Home with Screamin’ Jay Hawkins”

Screamin Jay Hawkins was born on July 18th, 1929 in Cleveland, Ohio – He died February 12th, 2000 – A classically trained musician, Jay started off with an aim to become an opera singer influenced by Paul Robeson.


1964 – Lee Hazelwood – Mercury SR 60860 – “Trouble Is a Lonesome Town”

Lee Hazelwood was born in July of 1929 in Mannford, Oklahoma Barton Lee Hazelwood – He died on August 4th, 2007 – Lee has to be included here based on his rock and roll versatility as a composer, producer, and inovator – He bust onto the scene composing Sanford Clark’s “The Fool” and aligned himself as a producer/writer with Duane Eddy.

He enjoyed a run as part of “The Shacklefords” and as part of a duo with Nancy Sinatra.

1962 – Joe Henderson – Todd 2701 – “Snap Your Fingers”

Joe Henderson was born in April of 1937 in Lima, Ohio – He died on June 30th, 2001.

1959 – John Lee Hooker – Vee Jay VJLP 1007 – “I’m John Lee Hooker”

John Lee Hooker was born in August of 1912 in Tutwiler, Mississippi – He died on June 21st, 2001

1959 – Lightnin’ Hopkins – Folkways FS 3822 – “Lightnin’ Hopkins”

Lightnin’ Hopkins was born in March of 1912 in Centerville, Texas Samuel John Hopkins – He died on January 30th, 1982

1958 – Howlin’ Wolf – Chess LP 1434 – “Moanin’ In The Moonlight”

Howlin’ Wolf was born in June of 1910 in White Station, Mississippi Chester Arthur Burnett – He died on January 10th, 1976

1962 – Mississippi John Hurt – Piedmont 13157 – “Folk Songs and Blues”

Mississippi John Hurt was born in March of 1892 in Teoc, Mississippi – He died on November 2nd, 1966

1960 – Brian Hyland – Kapp 1202 – “The Bashful Blond”

Brian Hyland was born in November of 1943 in New York City (Queens) – His “Bikini” smash hit was recorded initially by Brian as a 16 year-old

1963 – The Impressions – ABC Paramount ABCS-450 – “The Impressions”

The Impressions formed in 1958 out of Chattanooga, Tennessee – Original Members: Sam Gooden, Richard Brooks and Arthur Brooks.  These three were originally called “The Roosters”.  They moved on to Chicago where they picked up both Jerry Butler and Curtis Mayfield and the rest is history.

1961 – The Innocents – Indigo 503 – “The Innocents”

The Innocents formed in 1958 in Sun Valley, California – Original Members: James West, Darron Stankey and Al Canalaria – They originally were called “The Echoes”.

1959 – The Isley Brothers – RCA Victor LPM 2156 – “Shout!”

The Isley Brothers formed in 1954 in Cincinnati, Ohio – Original Members: O’Kelly Isley, Jr., Rudolph Isley and Ronald Isley.  Vernon Isley joined the group a bit later on.

1962 – The Jacks – Crown 5372 – “The Jacks”

The Jacks were actually “The Cadets” out of Los Angeles, California.

1962 – Chuck Jackson – Wand 654 – “Any Day Now”

Chuck Jackson was born in July of 1937 in Latta, South Carolina

1960 – Elmore James – Crown 5168 – “Blues After Hours”

Elmore James was born in January of 1918 in Richland, Mississippi Elmore Brooks – He died on May 24th, 1963

1960 – Jan & Dean – Dore 101 – “Jan & Dean”

Jan and Dean formed in 1957 out of their high school in Torrence, California – Jan William Berry was born in April of 1941 and died on March 26th, 2004 – Dean Ormsby Torrence was born March 10th, 1940.

1956 – Little Willie John – King 564 – “Fever”

Little Willie John was born in November of 1937 in Cullendale, Arkansas William Edward John – He died on May 26th, 1968 – Willie died while in corrections in Washington state of a heart attack.

1959 – Johnny & The Hurricanes – Warwick W2007 – “Red River Rock”

Johnny and the Hurricanes formed in 1957 out of Toledo, Ohio first being named “The Orbits” – Members: Johnny Paris, Paul Tesluk, Dave Yorko, Lionel Mattice and Bill Savich – Johnny was John Matthew Pocisk born in Walbridge, Ohio – He passed on May 1st, 2006.

1960 – Marv Johnson – United Artists UAS 6081 – “Marvelous Marv Johnson”

Marv Johnson was born in October of 1938 in Detroit, Michigan – He died on May 16th, 1993. – He started off with the group “The Serenaders” and was one of Berry Gordy’s first produced artists.

1960 – Jimmy Jones – MGM 3847 – “Good Timin'”

Jimmy Jones was born in June of 1937 in Birmingham, Alabama James Jones – He died on August 2nd, 2012.  His first group was called “The Berliners” later changed to “The Sparks of Rhythm”.

1960 – Bill Justis – Phillips International 1950 – “Cloud 9”

Bill Justis was born in October of 1926 in Birmingham, Alabama William Everett Justis, Jr.  – He died on July 15th, 1982.  Justis was one of Sam Phillips’ stable of artists working for the Sun and Phillips labels a musician and producer.

One Comment

  1. More cool stuff! No matter what else you ever post, you’re my friend forever for knowing and posting Lee Hazlewood’s “Trouble Is a Lonesome Town,” a wonderfully bizarre album when new – and still. He was a fascinating and erratic artist, but a phenomenal writer, producer and character. Any record with his name on it is, to me, worth listening to at least once.

    So Screamin’ Jay Hawkins was going to be an opera singer? You can hear it here on Deep Purple from the album: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIalNvpPeJk. Not a masterpiece, but a nice surprise.

    The Innocents are one of my all-time favorite groups; their “rough velvet” sound is a signature for me. They had a four-track comeback CD before Darron Stankey passed a few years ago and Jim West also had some nice solo work posted on the net. (I haven’t looked lately to see if it was still there….)

    On to the next grouping – this is fun!

    Country Paul

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