documenting the optical sounds of '60s pop, Acid Punk & Psychedelia

A Journey To Tyme: Volume 2 (Phantom Records) 1984

A much stronger follow-up to the earlier volume of this series including cuts from Faine Jade, Canterbury Fair, Fe-Fi-Four Plus 2 and others

THEE MIDNITERS – ’Never Knew I Had It So Bad’/’The Walking Song’ (Whittier Records 504) Jan 1967

East Los Angeles had a host of great 60s groups and perhaps the most well known were Thee Midniters. They had a command of a wide range of musical styles but it’s their uptempo garage ravers that make the EXPO67 playlist.

’Never Knew I Had It So Bad’ is classic garage rock medicine complete with a snarling fuzztone tirade. The song has sadly evaded compilers apart from an outing years ago on ’A Journey To Tyme Volume 2’

THE ROOSTERS – ’One Of These Days’/’You Gotta Run’ (Progressive Sounds Of America PSA 1151) April 1966

Flower Bomb Songs favourites The Roosters hailed from Westchester, a suburb of Los Angeles. According to lead singer Ray Mangigian, this group of teenagers were hugely influenced by The Byrds and The Hollies in equal measure.

It’s not hard to hear how that influence created some fantastic folk jangle with beautiful harmonies. ’One Of These Days’ is the perfect embodiment of the Sunset Strip sound. The flip ’You Gotta Run’ is more 12 string jangle but this time is a mournful ballad of sorts. Both sides are KILLER all the way!

When I exchanged emails with Ray last year he claimed that their best moment as a group was performing as the backing band for Sonny & Cher in ’66 at Reb Foster’s Revelaire Club. Such was this Hollywood couple’s fame, they arrived at the Club’s parking lot by helicopter.

My interview with Ray Mangigian

THE FIFTH ORDER – ’Goin’ Too Far’/’Walkin’ Away’ (Diamond D-212) November 1966

Teenage group The Fifth Order hailed from Columbus, Ohio and their 1966 release ’Goin’ Too Far’ is considered a garage classic and quite rightly so. By late 1966, The Fifth Order had acquired a strong fan base due in most part to their wild gigs and lead singer Billy Carroll who had a stage presence that the girls went nuts for.

The group recorded the fruits of this 45 at a studio in Louisville, Kentucky. The chose two originals by songwriter Jack Sender (who was not in the group) and it was released on the small indie label Counterpart. Sales of the record went through the roof.

According to the liners of the Break-A-Way retrospective from 2004, it sold upwards of 18,000 copies. It was a number 1 smash in Columbus and charted in Ohio and the Midwest.

Diamond Records then licensed it for national release but it didn’t sell in the quantities hoped for. But good news for garage fans in 2011 because it’s a fairly easy 45 to score. The flip ’Walkin’ Away’ has merseybeat moves and is another strong song with immediate appeal. (20/04/11)

THE HALLMARKS – ’Soul Shakin’ Psychedelic Sally’ / ’Girl Of My Dreams’ (Smash S-2115) Aug 1967

Here’s another 45 from the Bosshoss66 archives that I downloaded as a flac and saved the label shot about three years ago.

The Hallmarks, from Oceanport, New Jersey cut this tune as ’I Know Why’ in ’66 but it was never released, however, the acetate was compiled on Back From The Grave Volume 4.

The ’Grave’ version sounds the same to my ears except for the ’groovy shit, like backward sound effects and psychedelic voice phasing’ this is a quote taken from the liners.

According to the compiler he thought all that psych stuff destroyed the song.

In my opinion, all that ’groovy shit’ makes this bubblegum punker better. Just wish the lead guitarist wasn’t so inept. He tried his best Jeff Beck solo but failed after about three seconds.

Yes, very true, Oceanport is one word. I am second cousin to Russ Scalzo (lead vocals, rhythm guitar, author of ”I Know Why/SSPS”) and Joe Scalzo (drums). (28/08/08)

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