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Spectropop - Digest Number 180


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______________        S  P  E  C  T  R  O  P  O  P        ______________
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                    SPIN MY RECORD!  WATCH ME TWIRL!

There are 8 messages in this issue of Spectropop.

Topics in this Digest Number 180:

      1. Archies New CD & New Buddha Best-Of's
           From: Billy Spradlin
      2. Where The Action Is
           From: Paul Urbahns 
           From: "Mike Arcidiacono"
      4. Re: Rock Flowers
           From: "Donny Hampton" 
      5. Re: Rock Flowers/Goodees
           From: "Mike Arcidiacono" 
      6. Re:  Rock Flowers & Goodees
           From: Christopher Davidson
      7. Re: Goodees & Rock Flowers
           From: Kim Cooper
           From: Mick Patrick 


Message: 1
   Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2001 07:58:34 -0000
   From: Billy Spradlin 
Subject: Archies New CD & New Buddha Best-Of's

> On another topic: With all of the talk of the Archies on
> the list as of late, I'm surprised that nobody has
> mentioned the new Varese/Fuel 2000 16 track CD:
> Absolutely the Best of the Archies. Nice compilation
> (and art direction) from Bill Pitzonka. Any thoughts?

I got it last week from Not Lame records, and it's the
best sounding and compiled Archies best-of CD I have seen
so far. It's nice to finally get the "Everything's Archie"
TV Show theme song, plus the hard-to-find 1971 single
"This Is Love" on CD. (I've never heard this song before
but the chorus reminds me of...Matthew Sweet?!) My only
gripe is that it's only 39:20 and has "only" 16 tracks. A
lot of great LP tracks are missing, IMO. Despite the
short time this is the Archies CD to get if you havent
bought one before.  

A couple other CD's I highly reccomend to Bubblegum fans
is Buddha's new best-of's The 1910 Frutgum Company and
the Lemon Pipers. (I havent gotten the Ohio Express - its
on my want list) The sound is bright and super-punchy
unlike older CD's and both have interesting liner notes.
I bought them only to get the hits, but both groups had
several album cuts that were fantastic too...!(and full
of hooks that you wont be able to get out of your head
until you listen to that song again!) 


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 2
   Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 23:55:31 EDT
   From: Paul Urbahns
Subject: Where The Action Is

Freeman wrote:

> Have I missed ACTION? Is Dick Clark waiting 'til we're
> all blind before he makes us run out and spend a
> zillion $ on re-issues?

Now That Freeman mentions it, something must have
happened to the WTAI tapes, because I very seldom see the
clips used on rock documentaries. Normally it is studio
stuff from Shindig and Hallabaloo. Dick Clark uses his
own stuff on his specials so I wonder if there is some
licensing agreement that he can only use Bandstand
related material on a Bandstand related special. Any
comments out there?

Knowing as much as Dick Clark does on the music industry,
It's hard to believe he hasn't issued much.

Paul Urbahns

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 3
   Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 20:30:02 -0400
   From: "Mike Arcidiacono" 

"Dela Trinidad" wrote:

> there is a bootleg video called the Best of Where The
> Action Is that is floating around. I pick one up at a
> record show and it really brought back some great
> memories.

The problem with Where The Action Is is that is was not
videotaped because it was a daily show. The only things
that survived were some kinescopes made for Dick Clark,
and the quality is pretty bad, as they were made off of
a TV monitor.  i have a bunch of them, and while they
are enjoyable to watch, the poor quality makes you turn
it off after a while.


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 4
   Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2001 00:22:44 -0000
   From: "Donny Hampton" 
Subject: Re: Rock Flowers

Patrick wrote:

>The Rock Flower dolls are one of the best gimmicks I've
>ever come across - a doll that spins on top of a colorful
>single - what a great idea! And the 1970s outfits are
>wonderful! Their music reminds me of Ellie Greenwich's
>from that same time period. They even do one of her songs,
>and also I have a single composed by Jeff Barry and
>others. What's interesting about them is that they were a
>group and then had dolls modeled after them... or vice

I'd be willing to bet that the Rock Flowers were inspired
by Josie and The Pussycats . . . that's where the two
white girls with one black girl concept originated. 
Besides that, the Flowers' producer, Wes Farrell, was
closely associated with the Pussycats' producer, Danny
Janssen (they wrote the Patridge Family theme song
together).  I have both Rock Flowers albums.  For the
record, they were Debbie Clinger, Ardie Tillman and Rindy
Dunn (who was replaced by Jacquie Wiseman, if I remember
correctly), and they are the source for the original
versions of the Ellie Greenwich-Toni Wine songs "Gettin'
Together" and "If You Loved Me Once."  They recorded a
Jeff Barry number, you say?  Tell me more!

Don Charles

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 5
   Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 21:40:13 -0400
   From: "Mike Arcidiacono" 
Subject: Re: Rock Flowers/Goodees

"Patrick" wrote

> I've been getting into the Rock Flowers and the Goodees
> this year. Is there anyone here who could perhaps shed
> some light on both of these groups and put them into
> historical perspective?


My best friends Dad was Joe Dimperio, who ran Wheel
Records, which had The Rockflowers. Since Joe Jr and I
were in a band, and were recording at the time (his Dad
produced us), we had many discussions about the music biz
and he talked about the Rockflowers.  I called Joe (I
was going to, anyway, as I found some of our old tapes)
and got what he remembers - it pretty much matches my's the scoop:

Joe's dad was a Vice President for RCA Records in the 60s
and 70s.  One of the acts he wanted to sign was The
Rockflowers, as their demo tape showed a nice mix of
voices, and with the right backing, he felt they could
hit the charts.  RCA, however wasn't so sure and passed
on them.

Enter Ringling Bros.  They had been trying to get into
the record business, but for some reason they were not
able to make it work. They offered Joe's dad a fantastic
deal to run Wheel Records (get it, Circus Wheel...) The
guy who owned the label was Irving Feld. So Joe's dad
quit RCA and started Wheel Records. The first act he
tried to sign was Charlie Rich, but RCA came in and
re-signed him to an enormous contract. Rich had lots of
hits for RCA Nashville, and one wonders what would have
happened if he had signed with Wheel.

So, next, they contacted the Rockflowers agent (who, I
*think* was Jerry Petrocino), and signed the group. They
brought Producer Wes Farrell in to produce (he had done
The Partridge Family and TONS of other POP hits) and got
the LA Session players (Hal Blaine, Joe Osborn, etc.) to
record the music.

Other artists on the label were The Klowns (Barry
Bostwick!!) and I think that Andy Kim was also briefly
on the label.

The first single (if i remember right) was "Number
Wonderful", a total slice of '60s Girl Pop. Great
record, actually, and sounded like a Partridge Family
song (big surprise there, right??). I think it did
chart in the lower 60s or something like that.  They
also released an LP with the song on it. I think they
released a couple more singles, but the song that they
were banking on to finally hit the top 40 was a song
called "You Always Call Me Up When You're Lonely".
However, I do not think it was ever released, although
I could be wrong. The reason is coming up next.

Matte Toys and Ringling Bros either merged, or RB
bought a TON of Mattel stock, I'm not sure. That's
where the Rock Flowers dolls came in. It was supposed
to be a marketing strategy to sell more records and
give the group some needed exposure (kinda dumb, 6 year old girls buy records?). After the
video game crash, Mattel stock tanked, and it took RB
down with it. They pulled the plug on Wheel Records,
and that was it.

Now the good part.  Joe's dad gave me a few things from
Wheel Records as gifts. One was the Rockflowers LP, and
a copy of the "Number Wonderful" 45 with a picture
sleeve!! He ALSO gave me....a  1/4 reel to reel dub of
some of the songs that would have been on the second LP,
which I believe was never released. "You Always Call Me
Up" is on it.  I think that this reel still exists in my
tape trunk, which has been in storage since I moved.  If
it is, it's probably the only place these songs exist,
because I'm quite sure that the multis were thrown out
years ago.

Joe jr says his dad never had them in the house, and the
studio that recorded them has been out of business since
the early 1980s. Joe also does not remember ever seeing
the second LP. If it had been released, I'm pretty sure
they would have had it.  By the way, Joe's dad was a
wonderful man, he was very good to me, and sadly, passed
away in the mid 1980s. Joe Jr recorded an LP called
"Ladykiller" in the 80s that I worked on , and he is
still my friend today.

Whew!!  Sorry for the long post, but I thought this
would help clear up the mystery of The Rockflowers. My
question is...where are they today??


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 6
   Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2001 06:53:26 -0700 (PDT)
   From: Christopher Davidson 
Subject: Re:  Rock Flowers & Goodees

I know a little about the Rock Flowers.  Apparently
they were a live group assembled by Partridge Family
producer Wes Farrell as a tie-in to the toy line.  I
believe they cut two albums, both on Wheel.  I have
the first, which is great girl sound/light pop.  I
think one of the vocalists was one of the awesome
Clinger sisters.  Don't have the LP in front of me. 
They also had a couple of singles.  I've always wanted
to know if the little records that came with the dolls
were the same songs that were on the albums/singles. 
I've seen some of the dolls at toy shows, but they
never have the records w/ them, although Ebay always
has a bunch for sale.

As for the Goodees, wasn't there a good article about
them in Scram not too long ago?  Kim, are you there?


Chris Davidson
CAD Records

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 7
   Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2001 05:59:29 -0700
   From: Kim Cooper 
Subject: Re: Goodees & Rock Flowers

Patrick asked about the Goodees & the Rock Flowers.  We
ran an appreciation of the former group--comparing and
contrasting them with the Shangri-Las, who seem to have
been producer Don Davis's model--in Scram #9.
Unfortunately I was able to find very little factual
information available about the band, though I did
discover their names, which appear nowhere on the record:
Kay Evans, Sandra Johnson, and Judy Williams.  Copies of
Scram #9 are still available.  This issue also features
Chad & Jeremy's psychedelic records, Scott Miller (Game
Theory/Loud Family) on his favorite guilty musical
pleasures, and a tribute to Dusty Springfield.

Re: Rockflowers, stay tuned for the upcoming publication
of "Bubblegum Music is the Naked Truth"--promised since
May, they should ship from the printer in the next couple
of weeks.  Lisa Sutton has done a great job reporting on
this amazing marketing scheme and the Wes Farrell-produced
records.  Yup, that's the Wrecking Crew backing up Rindy
Dunn (later replaced by Jacquie Wiseman), Ardie Tillman,
and Debby Clinger on the astonishing "Mother You, Smother
You" and other great pop-soul confections.

Kim Cooper

--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

Message: 8
   Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2001 19:45:48 +0100 (BST)
   From: Mick Patrick 


I could be wrong but I reckon there's a good chance that
DEBBIE CLINGER of the Rock Flowers was previously a
member of mid-'60s Tollie label girl-group the CLINGER
SISTERS ("The Lipstick Song", anyone?). The group
subsequently waxed as THE CLINGERS with KIM FOWLEY in the
producer's chair. Debbie Clinger also wrote some songs

By the way, I don't know if JEFF BARRY or ELLIE GREENWICH
get to see Spectropop posts but I spent a little time
with their old Red Bird/Blue Cat colleague SIDNEY BARNES
reecently. He was full of great stories about his BRILL
BUILDING days and requested that his admiration and
respect be passed on to his old friends. Hopefully
someone will forward Sidney's message to Jeff and Ellie.

If I could master this miniscule keyboard I'd bore you
all rigid with my review of Sidney's first ever live UK
gig. But I can't. So I won't. 

See some of you at the LEIBER & STOLLER documentary
screening, perhaps.


--------------------[ archived by Spectropop ]--------------------

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