Monday, September 26, 2011
The Marathons were really a psydonymn for The Vibrations, who were under contract with Checker. When it was discovered they were recording for another label, a lawsuit resulted, and Checker released their own version of "Peanut Butter". These same folks charted with "Stranded In The Jungle" earlier under the name The Jayhawks (we covered The Cadets version of that song here).
As far as the Arvee label, here's a blurb from "West Coast Sock Hop", an Arvee compilation I came across:
"Richard Vaughn founded his Arvee Records (his initials formed the label's name) imprint in Los Angeles in 1959, and thanks in part to loose-limbed productions by H.B. Barnum and Marty Cooper, had hits right out of the box with frat party R&B acts like the Olympics and the Marathons, and although party R&B tracks (often with deliberate novelty appeal) remained the label's bread and butter, Arvee also dabbled in rock & roll, doo wop, and instrumental surf music."
I first encountered this tune on the wonderful "Talkin' Trash" compilation, but it was misattributed to The Olympics. Have a listen!
Monday, September 19, 2011
This is a classic tune, basically a standard amongst a certain set of bands. It influenced The Cramps' "Don't Eat Stuff Off The Sidewalk". It was covered by Los Straitjackets. The Ventures played it note-for-note and retitled it "The Fourth Dimension". I got in on the action too. So who were the original men behind the music?
The Frantics were based out of Seattle, Washington and were active between '55 and '65. Ron Petersen and Chuck Schoning started as a duo in jr. high, and the band grew from there. By the late 50's they were recording what would become their classic material with Dolton. The two most well-known cuts are probably "Werewolf" and "Fog Cutter", but "Straight Flush" also charted. In the 60's, the band line-up was shifting and thier sound drifted towards the RnB side of things. By '65, they disbanded. There's a great collection of info at this site for those who want to dig into it further.
Dolton was a Seattle-based label started by Bob Reisdorf and Bonnie Guitar, and was active until '67. First called "Dolphin", they changed the name after a few releases to avoid confusion with a Laurie "Dolphin" subsidiary (but they kept the fish in the logo). Aside from The Frantics, other acts included The Ventures, The Fleetwoods, and Vic Dana. Avnet scooped up the label in '63 and in '65 it was merged with Liberty. It was finally closed in '67.
Most of the other songs in The Frantics catalog seem to be of the tamer teen variety, but this one is tough and eerie. Have a listen:
Monday, September 12, 2011
Monday, September 5, 2011
I could find no info on The Pyramids. Anyway, this is a finger-poppin' tune about a girl that's a great cook. Obviously such praise can only elicit a response of "HOT DOG DOOLY WAHHH!"
|Better view of the logo on the flip, bet that was an issue with Shell Oil|