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Splatt Gallery's History of Michigan Concert Posters
A poster for Gerde’s Folk City in NYC with John Lee Hooker in a two-week engagement, January 19, 1964 through the end of the month.
Poster for an Autorama show in Hartford, Connecticut, February 19-23, 1964, featuring Stanley Mouse painting his Monster shirts.
A January 20, 1964 ad for WXYZ Radio in Detroit, Michigan with DJ’s Fred Wolf, Paul Winter, Joel Sebastian, and Lee Allen enacting the station’s “All American” theme.
A Tamla Motown Gordy Records ad in the January 23, 1964 issue of Billboard magazine for the singles:
“The Way You Do the Things You Do” by the Temptations, their seventh single and first #1 on the R&B Singles chart, just missing the Top Ten on the Hot 100 chart, peaking at #11.
“You’re A Wonderful One” by Marvin Gaye, his eighth single and second highest charting, after 1963’s “Pride And Joy”.
“My Guy” by Mary Wells, her tenth single, her third #1 on the R&B Singles chart, and her first #1, Motown’s third #1, on the Hot 100 chart.
“Can You Do It” by the Contours, their seventh single and their second highest charting single on the Hot 100 chart, although peaking at #41, a distant second from their 1962 hit “Do You Love Me” (#3 on the Hot 100 chart and their only #1 on the R&B Singles chart).
“In My Lonely Room” by Martha & the Vandellas, their eighth single, their second highest charting single on the R&B Singles chart.
One of the best of the “teen clubs” was Daniel’s Den which opened in 1964 in Saginaw, Michigan. A good synopsis of this ground-breaking venue is found here:
America was totally indifferent towards The Beatles as the group was taking over the UK in 1962 through 1963. Capitol Records, as the US subsidiary of EMI, had the rights to their records but continually turned them down, leading to their early US releases being on the small labels, Vee-Jay and Swan.
Finally, in December, 1963 the US record industry’s interest perked up when it was reported that the Beatles new single "I Want To Hold Your Hand" had attained one million in advance orders (and was still not enough to dislodge their current single "She Loves You" from the #1 spot on the UK charts). And when Ed Sullivan agreed to book the group on his show, it was an eleventh hour scramble to catch up with what the rest of the world had known for over a year - the Beatles were money makers.
Capitol budgeted $40,000 for marketing (nearly ten times the normal amount), and enlisted all the other record company's pressing plants to pull the release of “I Want To Hold Your Hand” ahead by two weeks. Check out this insanely detailed, raving memo that they sent out to the distributors on how to properly allocate all of the stickers, buttons, and Beatles wigs that they were going to be dumping on them - http://www.rarebeatles.com/photopg2/comstk.htm
The Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan show on February 4, 1964, setting a viewing audience record of 75 million. On April 4, 1964, the Beatles held all five of the top five positions on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, a feat that is likely to never be repeated.
The Beatles – I Saw Her Standing There (1963)
Poster/ad for Nina Simone and Herbie Mann at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan on February 23, 1964.
An ad for a “Battle of the Stars” at the Graystone Ballroom, Detroit, Michigan between the Velvelettes and the Supremes on February 29, 1964. The 2010 expanded edition re-issue of the “Meet The Supremes” album included seven tracks recorded live at the Graystone on the night before, February 28th.
Ed Wingate was already a successful businessman in Detroit when he decided to start a record company. Noting what he thought was a lack of professionalism in this particular industry, he modeled his new company, Golden World Records, along the lines of what he saw Berry Gordy doing over at Motown. One of the first groups that he signed was a white doo-wop group from Livonia, Michigan called The Reflections.
He gave them a song written by his staff writers called “(Just Like) Romeo & Juliet” which the band unanimously hated, but eager for a record contract, they agreed to record the song. When they arrived at the studio and heard the backing instrumentals that had already been recorded, they thought it sounded great, no doubt due it having been played by a group of moon-lighting Motown Funk Brothers.
The record was released in February 1964, got played on CKLW radio which led to it becoming a national hit and got The Reflections invited to be part of Dick Clark’s Caravan of Stars tour. James Brown also loved the record and took them on tour with his show, ending with a well-received performance at the legendary Apollo Theater.
The Reflections – (Just Like) Romeo & Juliet (1964)
A Golden World Records ad for the single “(Just Like) Romeo and Juliet” by The Reflections.
The February 1964 edition of Playboy magazine’s annual All-Star Jazz Band, with the collage illustration by Beatrice Paul. The line-up, which hadn’t changed much from the previous year, featured band leader Henry Mancini, in the position he would keep all the way up to 1970, Dave Brubeck would be on piano up to 1971, Lionel Hampton, apparently the only known musician who played Vibes, would hold on to that instrument position at least up through 1975, and the horn section, which in-explicitly included four trombones, would remain essentially unchanged for just as long.
Poster by an unknown artist for a “Battle of the Stars” show at the Graystone Ballroom, March 7, 1964.
A full-page Tamla/Motown Records ad in the March 14, 1964 issue of Billboard magazine, with the Supremes’ 8th single, “Run, Run, Run”, which would mark the end of their “losing streak”, their next five records would all go to #1.
“Run, Run, Run” was the second Supremes single written and produced by Holland–Dozier–Holland.
The Supremes – Run, Run, Run (1964)
The Beatles arrived in America on February 7, 1964 for their debut performance on the Ed Sullivan TV show on February 9th. Previous to this, Americans had first seen the group in a four-minute report on the Huntley-Brinkley Report newscast on November 18, 1963. Another five-minute report was broadcast on the CBS Morning News on November 22nd, a scheduled repeat on the evening news program was pre-empted by the news of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Walter Cronkite ran the piece on the evening news on December 10th. Jack Paar scooped the planned Sullivan show appearance by running footage from the BBC on his show on January 3, 1964, “as a joke”, but that was the extent of America’s exposure to the band before the February 9th Sullivan show.
After drawing a record audience for a TV show, with 73 million viewers, the Beatles performed their first proper US concert in Washington DC on February 11, followed by their second concert the next day at Carnegie Hall in New York City. On February 16th, a second Ed Sullivan appearance was broadcast from a live concert in Miami Beach, Florida. On February 22nd, the Beatles returned to England, one day before a third Sullivan broadcast on the 23rd, from a taping that had been made, but not broadcast, during their first appearance on the 9th.
On March 14-15, 1964, a tape of the DC concert was shown in theaters via closed circuit, along with separately taped performances by the Beach Boys and Leslie Gore, the first time that closed-circuit technology was used for anything other than championship boxing matches.
The above poster has two Detroit locations for the closed-circuit broadcast, the Fox Theatre and the State Fair Coliseum. It would be nearly six months later until the Beatles made their Detroit live debut.
Two days after their appearance on The Ed Sullivan show, The Beatles performed their first US concert in Washington DC, on February 11, 1964. The concert was filmed and later transmitted over telephone lines as a closed-circuit broadcast to selected theaters, including the Fox Theatre and the State Fair Coliseum in Detroit, over the weekend of March 14-15, 1964, something that had been done previously for boxing matches, but for the first time for a rock concert. The promoter, Theater Color Vision, raked in an estimated $4 million (roughly $30 million in today’s dollars).
John Lee Hooker had his own touring Revue shows, as seen on this Tilghman Press poster for March 28, 1964. All of the support acts seem to have a relation to Redbug Records in Dayton, Ohio. This is the only tune we’ve managed to track down, but it’s a corker.
Lee Roye – Tears (Nothing but Tears) (1968)
Long-time readers know how we always suspect a concert poster that lists the year of the show, but this one, from March 28, 1964, is so obscure that it has to be authentic. We have been able to confirm the location of the Local 157 Hall, but we cannot find anything on the dynamic Impassions, song stylist Tammie White, exotic dancer Chari Quencee, or Turk & the Vibratones. The poster was made by the Detroit Tribune Publishing Co., the Tribune was Michigan’s “oldest colored weekly newspaper”. We say this is as real as it gets.
“A Basket of Easter Dance Stars at the Graystone Ballroom in Detroit, Michigan, Easter Sunday, March 29, 1964.
An ad for Mouse Decals in the April 1964 issue of Car Model magazine, along with a detail of the “Sometimes It Hurts To Shift” decal. Stanley Mouse working from a post office box in Dearborn, Michigan.
The Motortown Revue was back on the road, with Nashville, Tennessee on April 5, 1964, Cincinnati, Ohio on April 6th, and Indianapolis, Indiana on April 7th.
A poster/flyer by an unknown artist for Joan Baez, in her third Michigan appearance, at the Masonic Auditorium in Detroit, April 12, 1964.
April in Detroit is the start of Tiger baseball, and “hits” become a double entendre. This Motown Records ad from April 14, 1964, has Tamla, Motown, and Gordy pennants waving in the breeze from the flying baseballs, launched by a pretty strong bunter, and each ball carries the name of five singles (another double entendre), by Brenda Holloway, Eddie Holland, the Temptations, Bobby Breen, and Marvin Gaye & Mary Wells.
An ad for WCHB Radio in the April 24, 1964 edition of the Detroit Free Press newspaper, featuring Martha Jean (the Queen).
A long newspaper ad for James Brown’s first Michigan appearance, at the Cobo Arena in Detroit on April 25, 1964, with local acts The Reflections and Gino Washington, plus DJ’s Robin Seymour, Ernie Durham, and Bill Williams. This was also the first Michigan appearance by Otis Redding and by Dionne Warwick, and the earliest known show by Gino Washington.
A newspaper ad for Joan Baez at the Civic Center in Lansing, Michigan on April 26, 1964.
A beautiful poster, for an appearance by Marvin Gaye and The Spinners in Albuquerque, New Mexico on May 2, 1964, printed by the Tilghman Press which was started in Oakland, California in 1919 by “Oakland’s Black Printing Pioneer” Charles Tilghman. The same poster will also be used, with the information on the top changed, to promote more upcoming shows.
The Quackenbush brothers, Gary and Glenn, were in a Birmingham, Michigan based band called The Tremolos which had the distinction of being one of the few bands at the time that featured vocals. Gary played guitar and Glenn played keyboards. While playing a frat party at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in late 1963 they met a student named Edward “Punch” Andrews who invited them to play a New Year’s Eve party in Grosse Point where they were introduced to Andrew’s friend Dave Leone.
Leone and Andrews had aspirations to become record executives and they offered the band a chance to make a record. Leone was a big fan of the TV show, The Fugitive, and he had written a song which he hoped would become the show’s theme. As part of the deal, the band agreed to change their name from The Tremolos to The Fugitives. The song was recorded at the United Sound studio in Detroit and was released on Mike Hanks’ D-Town label.
As you can hear for yourself, the song may be one of the dumbest ever, the producers of The Fugitive TV show, Quinn Martin, not only turned it down but also issued an injunction against it (prompting the change of the name of the tune to “A Fugitive”), and being somewhat misplaced on the soul label D-Town, the record went nowhere.
It did however mark a starting point to some significant developments. In May, 1964 Dave Leone opened The Hideout club in Harper Woods with The Fugitives as the house band. The Hideout clubs (eventually four of them) and Leone and Andrews will figure prominently in upcoming episodes. The Fugitives, a few years later would evolve into the band SRC.
The Fugitives – A Fugitive (1964)
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About eighty people came to the first dance, on May 8, 1964 that Dave Leone held at the rented VFW Hall that he dubbed “The Hideout” on Friday nights with The Fugitives. Word spread quickly and within weeks the 550 person capacity was reached every time. The live music was much more exciting than the record hops and best of all there were no chaperones.
There are hardly any posters to be found for the first year of the Hideout in 1964, so the following is a bit compressed, but from what follows we can assume that the first year was very successful.
Things were going so well that shortly after the club’s first year anniversary in May 1965, Leone found a second location, a Knights of Columbus Hall in Southfield, Michigan, called it Hideout #2 and put his friend, Punch Andrews in charge of it. The Fugitives moved over to the new location and another band, The Underdogs, began playing the original spot.
Dissatisfied with the D-Town label’s handling of The Fugitives’ record, Leone decided to start his own label, called Hideout Records. For his first release he wanted to make an album as a “thank you” to the Hideout patrons. Recording a set by The Fugitives at the Quackenbush brothers’ home and adding crowd noise and applause on a second track, he made 300 copies of the “live” album, “The Fugitives at Dave’s Hideout” and sold them at the club for $3 each, selling out immediately. It may be the very first album of what would later be labeled “garage rock”, it certainly was the first in the Detroit area.
For the label’s first single, Leone released The Underdogs’ song “Man In A Glass”. The single was just starting to get some traction when it was discovered that although the band claimed to have written the lyrics for the song, they were actually taken, pretty much verbatim, from the pledge used at Alcoholics Anonymous. The single was immediately pulled from distribution.
The Underdogs – Friday Night at The Hideout (1965)
A full-page Amy-Mala Records ad in the May 9, 1964 issue of Billboard magazine with one of the last singles by The Royaltones. The A-side was a ballad written by George Katsakis and Dennis Coffey, while the B-side, written by Coffey and R. Kreiner, was a rocker, and a showcase for Coffey’s guitar playing. Both tracks also featured Coffey’s future Funk Brother, bassist Bob Babbitt.
The Royaltones – Our Faded Love (1964)
The Royaltones – Holy Smokes (1964)
An ad for WKNR AM radio in Detroit, Michigan in the May 11, 1964 issue of Broadcasting magazine.
Three posters by Tilghman Press for Marvin Gaye at the Cascade Ballroom in Springfield, Oregon on May 19, 1964, the Hollywood Bowl in New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada on May 23, 1964, and at the Evergreen Ballroom in Olympia, Washington on May 24, 1964. All shows were supported by the Spinners and Hattie Littles. Incidentally, Gaye played the drums on the Spinners’ 1961 debut single “That's What Girls Are Made For”.
Poster/ad for James Brown’s second Michigan appearance, this time for a six-night engagement at the Fox Theatre in Detroit running from May 30, 1964 through June 4th. These were the first Michigan shows for Patti LaBelle & the Blue Belles. The movie feature was “Horror of the Stone Women”.
Poster for Dave Leone’s Hideout Club in Harper Woods, Michigan, June 10, 1964, about a month after the club’s opening, and the only poster that we have found from the club’s first year. A Battle of the Bands, with the Del Rays, the Blazers, the Royal Chessmen, and the Ram Rods, plus the Fantastic Fugitives. Coming up on June 19th, Gino Washington.
The day after the Quatro sisters, Suzi and Patti, of Gross Pointe, Michigan saw The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show, they started a band. They recruited a third sister, Arlene, along with The Ball sisters, Nancy and Mary-Lou and called themselves The Pleasure Seekers.
Although she was only fourteen, Suzi started hanging out at The Hideout and Dave Leone gave her a job selling Cokes at the bar. One night, during a Battle of the Bands show, Suzi told Dave that her band was better than any of those playing and so he helped them get some equipment and put them on stage. At first, the all-girl band was considered a novelty, but these girls could really rock.
The Pleasure Seekers – What A Way to Die (1965)
Punch Andrews was now managing The Underdogs and was looking for a new song for them to record as a follow-up to the ill-fated “Man In A Glass”. He asked another Hideout club band, (and one that also worked closely with Del Shannon) called Doug Brown and The Omens to come up with one. Doug wrote one and he also submitted another one that had been written by his new keyboard player, a guy named Bob Seger.
Andrews liked the one that Seger had written but he didn’t like the way The Underdogs performed it so he had Seger record the song with Doug Brown and The Omens backing him. The song, “East Side Story” was an instant hit and the demand was too much for the Hideout Records label to handle so it was picked up by the Cameo label for larger distribution. Seger quickly put together a band of his own, called The Last Heard, and landed his first television appearance on Robin Seymour’s Swingin’ Time show.
Bob Seger – East Side Story (1966)
Soon after the Beatles and the Rolling Stones invaded America, John Lee Hooker returned the volley with a tour of England, backed by John Mayall’s Blues Breakers, and even performing at the Beatle’s home-central Cavern Club in Liverpool on June 12, 1964, and opening for the Rolling Stones at a Rolling Stones Fan Club party in London on June 26th.
The pairing of Hooker with Mayall drew some criticism from some UK blues purists who thought that Mayall’s full band, and in particular, Mayall’s organ playing was overbearing, as they had hoped to hear the raw sound of Hooker alone on the guitar, and they felt this affected the set choice of songs that seemed to be aimed at more of a pop audience.
In the final week of the tour, Mayall and the Blues Breakers had another commitment, so a UK blues band called The Groundhogs, who had taken their name from the Hooker song “Ground Hog Blues”, were recruited. They turned out to be a better fit, they adopted the name John Lee’s Groundhogs, and Hooker promised to use them when he returned to the UK, which he did often, and later, they recorded an album together.
Here’s a clip of Hooker performing with the Groundhogs in 1965:
The Rolling Stones came to Detroit on June 14, 1964, three months before the Beatles first appearance. And like most stops on this first US tour in 1964, the attendance was abysmal. Less than 1,000 people, maybe as few as 300, were inside the 12,000 seat Olympia Stadium. The day before the Detroit show, they appeared in Omaha, billed as “Bigger Than The Beatles”. A police motorcade met them at the Omaha airport, but that’s all who showed up.
For the Stones, however, they got a taste of America (for better or worse), Keith bought a gun, they realized a dream by recording at Chess Records in Chicago, and they got to spend a day off in Detroit in the company of a lovely young lady, Jackie Kallen, who tells her story here:
The Rolling Stones – Around & Around (1964)
Billboard magazine ad for the arrival of the Rolling Stones that appeared one month before the band’s first Detroit appearance, which was June 14, 1964.
Fairly well-known (ie, commonly bootlegged) poster for Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels at the Dalles Civic Center in Washington, June 18, 1964.
Johnny & the Hurricanes released a cover version of Jesse Stone’s “Money Honey” in July 1964. As with an earlier released single, “It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World”, Royaltones’ guitarist Dennis Coffey performed with the group on the studio recording.
Johnny & The Hurricanes - Money Honey (1964)
When the Four Tops released their first single on Motown Records, on July 10, 1964, they had already been a working group for more than ten years, beginning while still in Detroit high schools in 1953. Levi Stubbs and Abdul “Duke” Fakir from Pershing High teamed up with Renaldo “Obie” Benson and Lawrence Payton from Northern High for a performance at a birthday party, and they liked the way they sounded.
Payton’s cousin was Roquel "Billy" Davis, who would become the famed songwriter/producer, and he wrote and produced a couple of tracks for the group that were released on Chess Records and a few smaller labels, but went nowhere. Yet they performed frequently at the Flame Show Bar and developed a polished stage act that drew the attention of Berry Gordy, who signed them in 1963.
They added background vocals for other Motown artist’s singles and worked on Gordy’s short-lived jazz subsidiary label Workshop Jazz Records, until the Holland-Dozier-Holland team brought them a completed instrumental track that they didn’t know what to do with, which soon became “Baby I Need Your Loving”.
The record peaked at #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart, not at all bad for a first try, and it had a longevity that has always kept it popular. Unlike other top Motown groups that experienced frequent, sometimes volatile line-up changes, the Four Tops had the rare distinction of maintaining all of the original members throughout their entire lengthy career, 44 years in total, until 1997 when Lawrence Payton passed away at age 59.
The Four Tops – Baby I Need Your Loving (1964)
A WCHB Radio Talent Contest at the Fox Theater in Detroit, Michigan, July 11, 1964, featuring the Contours, Eddie Holland, and Carolyn Crawford.
An awesome ad from Tamla Motown Records for the release of The Supremes’ single “Where Did Our Love Go” on July 17, 1964. It was their first #1 single, starting their unprecedented run of five consecutive Number One songs.
In the two videos below, the first is some high-quality footage from a Hullabaloo type TV show, and the second is a promo video shot in Paris, France with the group traipsing through street traffic until a policeman cuts it short.
The Supremes – Where Did Our Go (1964)
The Supremes – Where Did Our Go (promo video) (1964)
A full-page Motown Records ad (colorized by yours truly) in the July 18, 1964 issue of Billboard magazine. Although it took the Supremes nearly four years and nine released singles to hit #1 on the charts, they more than made up for that as “Where Did Our Love Go” started an unprecedented run of five consecutive Number One records.
A poster by the Murray Poster Printing Co. for the 1964 Caravan of Record Stars stop in Lexington. Kentucky on July 21, 1964, with three Michigan-related artists included on the bill, the Reflections, the Supremes, and Brenda Holloway.
Holloway, who was Motown’s first West Coast signing and was working from Motown’s Los Angeles, California studio at the time, had scored a Top Twenty hit with “Every Little Bit Hurts” which earned her an invitation to join the tour. Berry Gordy agreed, as long as the tour afforded the still-struggling Supremes a spot on the bill as well.
Ironically, during the course of the tour, the Supremes single “Where Did Our Love Go” began climbing up the charts, ultimately becoming their first #1 hit, the first of five #1 songs in a row, (the others being "Baby Love", "Come See About Me", "Stop! In the Name of Love", and "Back in My Arms Again").
An ad for WJLB radio station in Detroit, Michigan dated July 31, 1964, the same day that Martha & the Vandellas released the single "Dancing in the Street".
On the last day of July 1964, Motown released a single by Martha & The Vandellas that would become one of the all-time great Detroit anthems, even though the name of the city is never mentioned. By the way, the actual lyrics are “Can’t forget the Motor City”. “Don’t forget the Motor City” is the name of the Detroit Rock Poster Show at Splatt Gallery.
Martha & the Vandellas – Dancing In The Street (1964)
The 1964 World's fair in New York drew visitors from all over the world. One particularly colorful group, who called themselves "The Merry Pranksters" had driven across country from La Honda, California in a wildly converted school bus that they had named "Furthur". The group was organized and led by author Ken Kesey who used the trip as a cross-country film-making experiment under the influence of the drug LSD.
LSD was synthesized by Dr. Albert Hoffman of Sandoz Labs in Switzerland in 1938. Five years later he accidentally discovered its effects. On April 19, 1943, he took the first deliberate dose. Feeling anxious, he left the lab to go home on his bicycle, pedaling off into the world's first acid trip. In certain quarters, April 19th is known as "Bicycle Day" (interestingly, the day before the modern-day "4-20" "holiday").
It' s amazing how prevalent the usage of the LSD was though-out the 1940's and 1950's in studies ranging from the treatment of schizophrenia to alcoholism with hundreds of published studies and tens-of-thousands of test subjects, both willing and unwilling. A handful of celebrities, most famously the actor Carey Grant, were publicly extolling the benefits of LSD.
Other, more clandestine, experiments were being conducted by government agencies, most notoriously, the CIA's MK-ULTRA project and the bizarre 1962 death of Tusko the elephant at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Oklahoma City. A shady character with a checkered past and associations with very high-level contacts named "Captain" Alfred Hubbard was traveling around the world, dispensing the drug from his famous leather satchel to an estimated 6,000 people, including Humphry Osmond (who coined the term "psychedelic"), Aldous Huxley, Myron Stolaroff (creator of the Ampex 200A tape recorder), and Bill W. (founder of Alcoholics Anonymous).
Hubbard has been called "the Johnny Appleseed of LSD" and "the original Captain Trips". A fellow traveler, Michael Hollingshead from the UK carried a mayonnaise jar containing 5,000 hits and was responsible for turning on Timothy Leary, jazz musicians Maynard Ferguson and Charles Mingus (both of whom lived at Leary's estate), Alan Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, Roman Polanski, and The Beatles' dentist.
Ken Kesey was a voluntary participant in the MK-ULTRA experiments, inspiring his novel "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest". The success of that book allowed him to buy an estate in La Honda, California that became a commune for his group of friends, called the Merry Pranksters. Their bus trip across the country to visit the 1964 World's Fair in New York was indeed filmed, but was never released until 2011.
While in New York, the group made a visit to Timothy Leary's Millbrook estate although the groups apparently did not mesh. Kesey thought Leary was too staid, and Leary thought Kesey was too outlandish (ironically, it would be Leary's antics that eventually brought the whole thing down). When the Merry Pranksters returned to La Honda they began hosting a series of "Acid Test" parties featuring Kesey's favorite local band, The Warlocks (later re-named, The Grateful Dead).
The Sandoz patent on LSD expired in 1963 and a small number of chemists began manufacturing the drug, the most famous being Owsley Stanley who was Kesey's main source of supply and was also the sound engineer for the Grateful Dead (designing their massive wall-of-sound speaker set-up). Owsley is estimated to have manufactured more than five million doses. Owsley's apprentice, Tim Scully developed the benchmark quality "Orange Sunshine" product. In 1966 LSD was finally made illegal.
Tommy Hall was a volunteer subject in LSD experiments being conducted at the University of Texas in Austin. Looking for a better environment than the soul-less laboratory in which to explore his cosmic consciousness, he assembled a band by putting a singer named Roky Erickson together with a local bar band and calling them The 13th Floor Elevators. Hall contributed his song writing, his electric jug playing, and a constant supply of acid, which he insisted the band partake anytime they picked up their instruments, be it in rehearsal, in the studio, on stage, or on TV.
Their first album, “The Psychedelic Sounds of The 13th Floor Elevators”, released in October, 1966 was the first record with the word “psychedelic” in the title, beating by only a matter of days, “Psychedelic Moods” by The Deep and “Psychedelic Lollipop” by The Blues Magoos.
The 13th Floor Elevators – You’re Gonna Miss Me (1966)
1964 was the year of the New York World’s Fair where visitors were enthralled by futuristic inventions such as the push-button phone, the picture phone, and the Ford Mustang. You know that giant Uniroyal tire out on I-94? That was actually a functioning Ferris wheel at the fair.
1964 was also the final year for The Royaltones as a band. Dennis Coffey and Bob Babbitt would move over to Motown to join the Funk Brothers. Original founding member, George Katsakis would end up in Detroit’s first, maybe only, certainly weirdest PROG ROCK band – but we’ll save that for later.
The Royaltones – Misty Sea (1964)
Volume Two - 1964 to 1966 - continues - HERE
When the Beatles’ sixth single “Can’t Buy Me Love” hit the #1 spot on Billboard Magazine’s Hot 100 singles chart on April 4, 1964, they made chart history. It was their third consecutive #1 single, as "Can't Buy Me Love" replaced "She Loves You", which had replaced "I Want to Hold Your Hand", a feat unmatched by any other artist.
It is also the only time that an act has held the top five spots simultaneously. During its second, of five, weeks at #1, the Beatles had fourteen songs on the Hot 100 at the same time.