The rumor factory is running over time these days.
One red-hot says the ROLLING STONES are on the verge of a purge of BRIAN JONES who may leave or be sent away. It could happen, too. A far-out report says he’ll be replaced by America’s JACK NITZCHE, who has been minting coin on his own as a songwriter and record producer. CHARLES WATTS scratches to get out, but still itches inside the group.
We don’t believe the one about the Yardbirds splitting. Jeff Beck, the only drop-out so far, is doing okay with his single Hi Ho Silver Lining, though it sold better in England than here. The rest of the group, we predict, will stick with Keith Relf. If he quits, however, it’s Bye-Bye-Yardbirdies.
The Raider splituation was in the wind for a long time. Their tune topper, Him Or Me—What’s It Gonna Be was a prophetic title. That’s how it was between Mark Lindsay and the rest of the Raidermen who’ve long griped that Paul Revere and Mark were cornering all the songwriting and other bread-winning creative chores, leaving them as mere sidemen comics. Harpo’s off on his own now. Phil Fang, drooly Drakey and smoothy Smitty are on their own trio trip.
The Mama’s and Papa’s always said they didn’t want to become slaves of success so they copped-out on one-nighter tours for six months. Then when they were ready to go, they couldn’t go due to Cass’ condition which hung them up another three months. Now all’s well and they are grooving again.
Baby Owen, a bit of feminine fluff despite the masculine monicker, made Mama Cass the proudest mother in the land. She’s divorcing the babe’s dad, Jimmy Hendricks, folk artist.
The M&Ps have a perfect score of gold. In their first 18 months as a tune team they released three albums, each a gold-LP winner. Not many new groups can make that statement.
John Phillips is a compulsive composer who never stops writing poetic lyrics and melodic music. John is America’s greatest contemporary composer, in our opinion. Not to knock Bob Dylan but let’s face it, he’s inclined to be not only mystical but also cynical whereas John’s lyrics flow with love and tenderness and his heart is soft as a moonbeam.
After being bed-ridden for near a year, Bob Dylan has climbed from the Valley of the Shadow of Death to a new high crest on his fuel-injected, speed-shifted, double-clutched-career wagon. It was nip and tuck whether groovy Bob would survive the great bodily and mental damage of his motorbike and medication.
First we heard Bob went to Woodstock, mid-New York State, where he filmed an underground experimental movie short to test his powers of direction and visual expression. Bob, an ardent follower of Andy Warhold’s mystic movie technique, aims to create a perfect marriage between the looking and the listening arts.
After Woodstock, Dylan choo-chooed to the banks of the Cumberland River, to a town called Nashville, where he sweated out his new album with that typical Dylanesque title, Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat. He has 14 more numbers to record for Columbia Records before he can shift his gift to the MGM label where his agents signed him. After everything Columbia did for Dylan since his early Greewich Village days, spinning him to wealth and world fame, his switch to Metro isn’t easy to understand.
Another smashed-up music star, Jan Berry is climbing slowly up the come-back trail. Nothing but rotten luck has dogged Jan and Dean since Dead Man’s Curve laid on a hit. Jan was mangled in a train wreck the first day of shooting their first film, then he was nearly totaled when he smashed his sportscar into a parked truck in broad daylight. Loyal Dean Torrence might have gone solo or found a new pard but he waited for pal Jan to recoup. J&D are etching a new LP now although Jan’s mind is still fuzzy, his memory tricky and his speech blurry.
Be a pop star and live dangerously. Jim Morrison, lead vocalist and head Door, got so carried away with his jumping, shaking, quaking, singing and shouting on the high-rise bandstand at the Cheetah in Santa Monica that he forgot where his left foot was. Where it was, was over the edge of the platform. He felt himself going over, grabbed the mikestand for support but that was as loose as his left foot. In full view of 5,000 admirers, Jim performed a beautiful loop-the-loop into a sea of humanity 15 feet below. The heavy mikestand missed all the heads and dented the deck but the fans caught Jim in mid-air and broke his fall. Nobody was hurt. Door people acclaimed Jim’s finest performance.
In another concert, an Animal toppled from the stage and hit the ork pit on his head. He went down so fast and got back so quick we couldn’t see which Animal it was. Eric Burdon and the others didn’t miss a beat during the offstage flip-flop. Aretha Franklin lucked out. She broke her arm when she fell off stage in Cleveland.
The Beach Boys may have to sing-along without Carl Wilson for a year or two. As a conscientous [sic] objector he refused to shoot a gun at anyone. The law may (or may not) recognize his claim and offer him non-combat service as a medic in the army, civvie duty in a public service, or other alternative. If Carl refuses, he may have to serve a term in the pen.
The new Beatle masterworks album, Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, has not less than six songs worthy of singles release although they usually release not more than three 45’s per 33 LP. The album cover with all its goodies is something else.
The censorship war is escalating. Two In The Afternoon by Dino, Desi and Billy was scratched from many U.S. radio playlists. Daily Variety reported: “Dean Martin is jealous of his son Dino whose latest recording was banned in Boston. Said he, ‘I don’t know what Desi Arnaz and Billy Hinsche think, but I’m proud and jealous. I’ve been recording since before they were born and I’ve never been banned even in Peoria.’”
Society’s Child, a heartache ballad by Janis Ian, was black-listed by radio outlets everywhere for eight months. It busted loose and ran riot on the charts only after Leonard Bernstein introed Janis and her song on TV’s The Rock Revolution documentary.
Janis wrote and recorded her first song album when she was a flowering fifteen-year-old New Jersey maid. Now a 16-year-old New Yorker (b. April 7, 1951), la Ian is already a showbiz legend for her sad, satirical and controversial songs and speaks. Although she laffs a lot and digs the cool, Janis does a burn on social pressures, injustices and rotten attitudes she sees among phonies of all ages including kids she calls “dittybops”—the unhip apers of hip.
“I’m not out to crucify anyone or to spare them.” she told her biographer. “People sometimes ask me whose side I’m on. I’m on my own side.”
Pals are worried about the Byrds again. Their platters are as groovy as ever but their personal appearances are laying on the uncools. They couldn’t keep the beat one night at the Cheetah. Skedded for four nights at the Whisky a-Go-Go the boys showed up for only one due to various reasons and last-minute subs had to be found.
Sonny and Cher are already reading scripts for their second movie. That’s the direction they want to go. S/C hosted a fantastic garden party for Twiggy with an army of celebs present. Cher took the occasion to intro her new look: mini and micro skirt, peek-a-boo blouse and colored net body stockings. Bell bottoms are out like the gout.
Test your knowledge; list the records you think were the Top 20 best-selling disks of the first half of 1967. Turn to page 58 for the answers. Twelve correct makes you a winner, less than eight you’re a loser.
The skirt skirmish is set to start this fall. The old-line fashion designers have joined in a united campaign to lower the hemline to half-way between the knees and ankles. Don’t think they don’t have a lot of power. They never dug the mini and accepted them only under pressure from the mods.
Down with skirts is their war cry for the fall. Up from mini to micro, cry the boutique trend-setters. Boutiquers describe a miniskirt as five inches above the knees, a micro skirt as ten inches above; that is for a girl of average height, about five-feet-five.
Liverpool’s Cavern Club was made a national shrine when the British Prime Minister Harold Wilson placed a plaque over the door of the old cellar club reading, “The Beatles Played Here 292 Times.” It was also the first home of the Hollies, Gerry and the Pacemakers, Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas, Searchers, Swinging Blue Jeans and others. When they left to graze in greener world pastures, the Cavern shut down. All the swingers began to hitch-hike to Manchester, Liverpool’s deadly rival city 35 miles east. Manchester, the home of Monkeeboy Davy Jones, was a wideopen town where almost nothing was banned. Now the Cavern walls are blasting with the mighty rock sound again. Current music headliner is Larry Cawntor, former attendant there, who is willing to try anything to become a star and leave L’pool like the Beatles did.
“You’ve got to find a new sound,” he says. “My group, the Motivations, is experimenting with new instruments, new kicks, anything that will hold the kids… We’ll give them an arm or a leg if that’s what they want.”
London, which swings like a pendulum do, is fighting a losing battle against the California sound, the musicombos from Los Angeles and San Francisco. London’s Who finish a performance by smashing their guitars against the amplifiers, twisting the mikes like pretzels, kicking in the drums. The Move bring a car on stage to smash it to rubble with sledge hammers while exploding strings of firecrackers. It ain’t music but it is excitement which is what the audiences dig as much as the melodies.
Jim McGuinn no longer wears the odd shades he once made famous. Instead he sports a beard. Dave Crosby has a beard and hairy sideburns.
Herman and the Hermits flew from London to open the new Convention Center at Anaheim, Calif., home of the Angels nine. The Who came over to play for free at the Monterey Pop Music Festival. The Turtles, after a grand tour of Europe, chartered a DC-3 prop plane to wind up their U.S. summer tour. Marcia Strassman, 19-year-old blonde beauty whose debut disk, The Flower Children, was a monster smash, is recording an album, Go Talk To The Flowers.
Long live the Flower Children!