Once, in Greenwich Village,
Where it’s really at,
There sang a group of fellows
Led by a handsome cat.
Four on stage and singing
All accounted for,
when swagger, stalk and saunter,
The man came through the door.
“You guys really make it,”
Said the man with the cigar.
“I’ll make you rich and famous
And I can get a new car.”
The boys stood at attention
and counted off their names.
“Jesse Colin Young here—
Let’s get on with the games!”
“Well, I’m… uh… Jerry…
Corbitt, yeh that’s it!
Give me pen and paper,
I’ll write you guys a hit!”
Jerry sat in the corner
Eating his… no, writing a song.
While Joe smiled beneath his mustache,
saying, “We’ll be on top ’fore long.”
Behind the electric piano,
Under the fright wig of black,
smiles Banana, who believe it or not,
once had a group called Banana
and the Bunch—Music with appeal.
The New Vaudeville Band
Suddenly, every radio station was playing a song called “Winchester Cathedral.” The sound was an old one, one we remembered from seeing old Rudy Vallee movies. But the song was new, the group was new and the sound was about to be reborn into the jet set world of 1967.
The group was so new that they weren’t even yet a group! Just as Herb Alpert formed his Tijuana Brass after the success of his first record, so did Geoff Stephens when his version of “Winchester Cathedral” began to catch on.
Geoff Stephens is no newcomer to the music world. He produced Donovan’s early recordings, as well as many others. When he decided to sing his own composition, it was because he had written something which included what he had been personally interested in for many years. Geoff had been a fancier of “junk” items, including records from the 1920’s and 30’s, was fascinated by the ever-changing rebirth of fads and fashions… and needed some money.
He had no idea that the song would become such an instant success. He had considered it merely a “good time” sound, with his own personal touch of vaudeville in it. Instead, it has turned out to be perhaps the biggest rage in music since rock ’n’ roll. (Folk rock?)
Several months ago, there was a very discouraged young man walking the streets of New York. (As a matter of fact, there were probably lots of them, but we’re going to choose just one of them this time).
This particular young man had a record under his arm; one which he had recorded and hoped would be a hit. Somewhere in New York, a radio blared the hit version of the same song, sung by a group from California.
Today, Tim Rose is strutting around singing “Hey, Joe” at the top of his lungs, proudly showing his own arrangement of the song, which at last is being played around the country.
While a high school student in Washington, D.C., Tim won his school’s highest music award. He went on to earn his college money by playing weekend dates with one of Lester Lanin’s orchestras. After “a year and a half of that hassle,” Tim enlisted in the Air Force. In his spare time (of which there was little, as Tim was completing his college education at night classes), Tim worked with a group he had formed. This group won the honor of being the best group in the Air Force in 1962.
Out of the uniform of the government, and back into the Village scene, Tim formed a folk trio with Mama Cass Elliot, who went on to be famous Mama Cass Elliot. Tim Rose went on to be Tim Rose, single artist, starving artist, until his own version of “Hey, Joe” began to get the recognition it deserved.
Tommy Boyce & Bobby Hart
Hey Hey, they’re the Monkees… we’re Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart! (which may not exactly ring a bell, but we write the Monkees’ music.)
We haven’t always written together, but the Monkees’ songs aren’t the first to be hits. “Be My Guest,” recorded by Fats Domino was a number one hit in the nation. Tommy wrote that one alone. I wrote one with Teddy Randazzo called “Hurt So Bad,” which was a hit for Little Anthony and the Imperials.
Together, we wrote “Come a Little Bit Closer,” “Peaches and Cream” and “Action.” Several more songs besides the Monkees’ will appear on albums early this year.
Before we met, I had tried to make my mark in Hollywood, but no one would listen to my songs. Tommy Sands recorded one of them but, besides that, my future looked pretty black. Meanwhile, Tommy (Boyce) had sold “Be My Guest” and was looking forward to great things.
After we met (through Don Costa), Tommy continued to write on his own and I worked with Randazzo. Tommy came up with “Pretty Little Angel Eyes,” “Missing You,” and several others which were minor and semi-major hits.
When, at last, we became permanent partners, we decided that the only place to be was Hollywood. Screen Gems gave us some work and were so pleased with the results that they asked us if we would like to work with four unknown young men they were going to mold into a singing group… the Monkees. Since then, we’ve watched our songs sell millions of records and the album has already grossed over a $1,000,000. And all that’s left to say is… Thank You!!!
If a picture is worth a thousand words, seeing the Mandala perform live must be like writing a book. As a matter of fact, seeing the Mandala is like writing a book! The plot is to capture the audience. The main character is High Priest George Olliver. The villain is the kid in the front row who snickers as George falls down on a black leather knee patch to pour out his soul. The moral is: Practice makes perfect.
The Mandala are extremely professional in their serious interpretation of brown-eyed soul. From the very choreographed instrumentals to the “circle of soul” finale, the five know at each moment what they will do next.
The Manadala [sic] are from Canada, where they teamed their individual talents to produce a total sound which is described as a “dizzying act.” Three of the five are European-born. Joey was born in Poland, which is why we won’t print his last name. Whitey Glann, born in Finland, now drums for the Mandala. Don Troiana was born in Italy and is given the title of group leader. He and George write the group’s original material.
A drum beat starts the set, is joined by the other instruments, the lights black out for a second, and George Olliver swings into the spotlight, his blue eyes sparkling, his feet moving faster than bats out of the Bat Cave. As each song progresses, George becomes more involved in it, dancing from one side of the stage to the other. As the beat reaches a fever pitch, the strobe light starts flashing, and you think you are watching a silent movie. Only it is far from silent. At the end of each number, the lights go dark for one second, just long enough for George to catch his breath, bow to the audience, pick up the microphone and start all over again.
The Cryan Shames
Hi! I’m Grape and I’m one of the Cryan Shames. My real name is David A. Purple. The A stands for Ambitious. My biggest ambition is to be rich. Also, I would like to be the world’s best bass player. But, since those seem to be pretty far in the future (ouch!), I’ll just settle for introducing the other guys in the group.
Denny is our drummer. He likes Eric Burdon, the Beatles, Byrds and the Lovin’ Spoonful. He has blue eyes and brown hair, was born in Chicago, and doesn’t remember his first public appearance. (Which tells you where he was at!!)
Toad (Thomas Doody) is an Irishman with green hair and black eyes… no, just a second… black hair and green eyes. Toad’s professional ambition is to put Chicago on the map musically. (I figure if Marvin Gaye can’t do it…) His personal ambition is to be happy always.
Jimmy says his favorite composers are Gene Clark and Bach. His personal ambition is to be a well-rounded person. He just might make it. His pet peeve is seeing a poor song become a hit. The Poor, of course, aren’t too excited about the songs we do.
The tallest member of our group is J.C. Hooke, who’s a Sagittarius. I think that means that he wants to be the first-chair mouth harp for the Philharmonic. Maybe not. J.C. plays the tambourine, kazoo, mouth harp, auto harp, elbow harp, bicycle harp…
Gerald F. Stone goes by the name Stonehenge because when he was little, all the kids called him Stonehead. Gerald, being a lot like they suspected him to be, misunderstood and assumed the nickname “Stonehenge.”
We record for Columbia, we have an album called “Sugar and Spice,” named after our first single, and we have a new single, “I Wanna Meet You.”.