From the Land of Band Box Records

They Gave Us Rock and Roll: Part 6

June 6, 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 M through O. From the Chili Pepper who landed in Denver, Colorado for a time through the inventive Johnny Otis – more early-day rock and roll founders.  Almost all of these pioneers were born in the 1930’s and several in the 1940’s – paving the way for the Baby Boomers to follow.

1959 – Mando & The Chili Peppers – “On The Road with Rock and Roll”

Mando and the Chili Peppers were formed in the late 1950’s out of San Antonia – Members: Armando Almendarez, Chucho Perales; Rudolpho Martinez; Juventino Elizondo and Abel Garcia

1963 – Barry Mann – ABC Paramount 399 – “Who Put the Bomp”

Barry Mann was born in February of 1939 in Brooklyn, New York Barry Imberman and was one-half of the great Brill Building composing team of Mann and his wife Cynthia Weil.

Carl Mann – Phillips International – “Like Mann – Carl Mann Sings”

Carl Mann was born in August of 1942 in Huntingdon, Tennessee – He was one of the younger singers in Sam Phillips’ Sun Records stable of stars.

1960 – The Marathons – Arvee – “Peanut Butter”

The Marathons were actually a group called “The Vibrations” out of Los Angeles, California.  They formed in 1955 – Original Members were Don Bradley, Carl Fisher, Dave Govan, James Johnson and Ricky Owens.  They started off as “The Jay Hawks” and had a hit “Stranded in the Jungle” which reached number 18 in 1956.  That effort was topped by The Cadet’s version peaking at number 11.

They did not record an LP under the name “The Jay Hawks” but released several as “The Vibrations”.

“Peanut Butter” was recorded using “The Marathons” name while they were still working as “The Vibrations”


1964 – Bobby Marchan – Sphere Sound SSR-7004 – “There’s Something On Your Mind”

Bobby Marchan was born in April of 1930 in Youngstown, Ohio Oscar James Gibson  – He died on December 5th, 1999 – He was a member of the group “The Clowns” behind Huey “Piano” Smith – From there it was on to a solo career.

1960 – Ernie Maresca – Seville 119 – “Down on the Beach”

Ernie Maresca was born in August of 1938 in The Bronx – New York Ernest Peter Maresca – Ernie composed songs for Dion and the Belmonts both together and apart – He had been a member of “The Regents” of “Barbara Ann” fame – He composed hits for Jimmy Rodgers, Dean and Jean and Reparata and the Delrons among others.

Image result for ernie maresca shout lp

Image result for ernie maresca shout lp

1965 – Barbara Mason – Artic 1000 – “Yes, I’m Ready”

Barbara Mason was born in August of 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – She originally set her sites on composing songs but moved easily into recording.

1961 – Gene McDaniels – Liberty LRP 3191 – “100 Lbs of Clay”

Gene McDaniels was born in February of 1935 in Kansas City, Missouri Eugene Booker McDaniels – Not really a rocker but Gene was a solid teen influence – He began as a gospel singer and was with a group called “The Sultans” before going solo.

1959 – Big Jay McNeely – Federal 395 – “Big Jay in 3-D”

Big Jay McNeeley was born in April of 1929 in Los Angeles Cecil James McNeely

1958 – Clyde McPhatter – Atlantic 8024 – “Love Ballads”

Clyde McPhatter was born in November of 1932 in Durham, North Carolina Clyde Lensley McPhatter – He started off as lead singer for Billy Ward’s Dominoes and then went on to front The Drifters – He died on June 13th, 1972 – a victim of alcoholism

1959 – Memphis Slim – Folkways – “Memphis Slim & the Real Boogie Woogie”

Memphis Slim was born in September of 1915 in Memphis, Tennessee John Len Chatman – He died on February 24th, 1988

1957 – Mickey & Sylvia – Vik 1102 – “New Sounds”

Mickey and Sylvia formed in the mid 1950’s – Mickey Baker was born in October of 1925 in Louisville, Kentucky MacHouston Baker and he died on November 27th, 2012 in France. Sylvia Robinson was born in March of 1935 in New York City, New York Sylvia Vanderpool – She passed away on September 29th, 2011.

1952 – Amos Milburn – Aladdin 7 – “Rockin’ The Boogie”

Amos Milburn was born in April of 1927 in Houston, Texas Joseph Amos Milburn, Jr., – He died on January 3rd, 1980

1966 – Garnet Mimms (and the Enchanters) – United Artists USA 6498 – “I’ll Take Good Care of You”

Garnet Mimms was born in November of 1933 in Ashland, West Virginia Garrett Mimms  – He was earlier with “The Norfolk Four” and then “The Deltones” going on to “The Gainors”.  Members of the Enchanters included Sam Bell, Charles Boyer and Zola Pearnell.

1963 – Chris Montez – Monogram MLP 100 – “Let’s Dance And Have Some Kinda Fun!!!”

Chris Montez was born in January of 1943 in Los Angeles, California Ezekiel Christopher Montanez – He made a big style change during the 1960’s signing on to the A&M label and going quite soft.

1959 – The Moonglows – Chess LP 1430 – “Look! It’s The Moonglows”

The Moonglows formed in Cleveland, Ohio in 1953 – Original Members: Harvey Fuqua, Bobby Lester, Danny Coggins and Prentiss Barnes – They were first named “The Crazy Sounds” before DJ Alan Freed renamed them.

1958 – Johnny Nash – ABC Paramount – “Johnny Nash”

Johnny Nash was born in August of 1940 in Houston, Texas John Lester Nash, Jr. – Johnny underwent several style changes into the 1970’s from teen type to reggae-like to pop – enjoying success all along the way.  He co-formed a music label and his first signing was “The Cowsills”.

1957 – Ricky Nelson – Verve MG V 2083 – “Teen Time”

Ricky Nelson was born in May of 1940 in Teaneck, New Jersey Eric Hilliard Nelson – He died in a plane crash on December 31st, 1985. – Although a “show business kid” Ricky was no rock and roll light weight.  His choice of songs, his delivery and longevity rank him very high toward the top of the pioneers.

1966 – Aaron Neville – Par Lo – “Tell It Like It Is”

Aaron Neville was born in January of 1941 in New Orleans, Louisiana – Aaron was a part of his family’s group “The Neville Brothers”

1964 – The Newbeats – Hickory LPM 120 – “Bread and Butter”

The Newbeats formed in Shreveport, Louisiana in 1964 – Members: Larry Henley , Dean Mathis and brother Mark Mathis – Henley died on December 18th, 2014

1963 – Jack Nitzsche – Reprise – “The Lonely Surfer”

Jack Nitzsche was born in April of 1937 in Chicago, Illinois Bernard Alfred Nitzsche – He passed away on August 25th, 2000 – Nitzsche was an industry mainstay working with Phil Specter, the Rolling Stones, Neil Young  and more.  He composed the Searcher’s massive hit record “Needles and Pins”. For a time he was married to Buff Sainte-Marie.

1960 – The Olympics – Arvee A423 – “Doin’ The Hully Gully”

The Olympics formed in 1957 in Los Angeles, California – Original Members: Walter Ward, Eddie Lewis, Walter Hammond, Melvin King and Charles Fizer – They started off as “The Challengers” – One of their more obscure cuts “Good Lovin'” was covered by The Young Rascals which rose to the nation’s number 1 spot.-

1961 – Roy Orbison – Monument XM 4002 – “Lonely and Blue”

Roy Orbison was born in April of 1936 in Vernon, Texas Roy Kelton Orbison – He died on December 6th, 1988 – another icon from Sam Phillips’ Sun Records stable of rockers.

1962 – The Orioles – Charlie Parker PLP 816 – “Modern Sounds of the Orioles – Greatest Hits”

The Orioles formed in 1946 in Baltimore, Maryland – Members included: Sonny Til, Alexander Sharp, George Nelson, Johnny Reed and Tommy Gaither – The Orioles led the way for the original “bird groups” and were largely responsible for pioneering “doo-wop” vocals rock and roll.  Lead singer Sonny Til died on December 9th, 1981

1963 – The Orlons – Cameo C-1054 – “Not Me”

The Orlons formed in 1960 out of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – part of a talented stable of artists from the Cameo/Parkway record family.  Members: Rosetta Hightower, Shirley Brickley, Marlena Davis and Stephen Caldwell.  All three original female members have passed away.

1958 – The Johnny Otis Show – Capitol – “The Johnny Otis Show”

J0hnny Otis was born in December of 1921 in Vallejo, California Loannis Alexandres Veliotes – He died on January 17th, 2012 – Notable musicians who passed through the Johnny Otis Show included Etta James, Jackie Wilson, Esther Phillips, Big Mama Thornton, Johnny Ace, Little Willie John, and Hank Ballard.

One Comment

  1. More goodies, Craig! Thank you!

    For those who don’t know him for his songwriting, Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil were responsible for at least as many good songs as Goffin and King. But checkout what I think is his masterpiece – the original author’s version of We Gotta Get Out of This Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sgbi7v-U-ds. This is potent!!! To my ears, The Animals pale by comparison.

    Wow – you got me with the “Teen Time” album. Amazing how Verve had only three tracks on Rick Nelson and still padded up an album. I haven’t seen it since 1990 or so, but there was a special with Rick Nelson and Fats Domino which ended with both duetting on “I’m Walkin’.” Their breathtaking performance is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qWfsJx1ycY0. As I recall, it was Nelson’s last recorded concert before the fatal plane crash that killed him and his band. He was such a fine and underrated artist.

    And the beat goes on….

    Country Paul

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