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______________        S  P  E  C  T  R  O  P  O  P        ______________
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         Incomparable stars of stage, screen, radio and records

There are 9 messages in this issue of Spectropop.

Topics in this Digest Number 279:

      1. Definitive Rock and other tales
           From: Michael Rashkow 
           From: Mick Patrick 
      3. Gary, The Monkees and "Where the girls are"
           From: "Guy Lawrence" 
      4. Re: The Gary Sound
           From: "Mike Arcidiacono" 
      5. Re: Recorded sounds
           From: Carol Kaye 
      6. Circus of Horrors
           From: Jane Wade 
      7. Re: doo lang, doo lang and so forth
           From: "Jan Kristensen" 
      8. Re: BRILL TONE CDs
           From: Mick Patrick 
      9. Halloween Spooktacular
           From: Michael Godin 


Message: 1
   Date: Tue, 30 Oct 2001 10:30:26 +0900
   From: Michael Rashkow 
Subject: Definitive Rock and other tales

"Phil Chapman" wrote:

> "Please Phil Spector" (writer: Mike Lendell)...

Mike Lendell was a non de plume and a non de guerre for
me Mike Rashkow --I gave it up after a period so some
things show under one name or another and sometimes as

> ...managed to find its way over to the UK as the
> flipside of "Washington Square" released on Philips
> BF1585 in 1967. The label credits production on both
> sides by M. Rashkow & J. Cymbal - A Mother! Production.

I never knew this was released.  Never knew the "group"
was called The Attack.  It was supposed to come out on a
label named Attack in the USA,  which was owned by Nate
McCalla ( a tough, black enforcer for Morris Levy owner
of Roulette) and Jerry Schifrin, (Lalo Schifrin's cousin)
who was a good guy and a good record man)  Attack was a
secondary label for them--the lead label was Calla.
Calla was a one room operation on the second floor of
the Roulette building--around the corner from the Brill.
On the same floor they had a small demo studio which was
partially owned by the arranger Don Costa and Teddy
Randazzo ( writer, vocalist, producer-including I Think
I'm Going Out of My Head).  Guy Costa, Don's nephew ran
it.  I worked there.  

I wrote Please Phil Spector as a joke and a way of
trying to get Phil's attention.  Ellie had little
contact with him at that time.  We were writing and
producing together and I wanted to find a way to get
involved with him--so  I did the thing and had her send
it to him.  He never responded.

The track was just a group of demo players--piano, bass
(possibly Chuck Rainey) guitar ( possibly Hugh McCraken)
drums ( Herb Lovell-Bernard Purdy-Bobby Greg???, one
horn a trombone can't remember the guy's name but a good
sesssion player...possibly Garrett Brown).  I engineered
the track and I think I did the vocal inside the booth
with the monitors off. It was basically a joke,  we gave
it to Calla for the B side because we had nothing else
and they didn't care.

Washington Square was written by Dennis Lambert (lots of
hits later on--a few before--Don't Pull Your Love Out on
me Baby, etc.).  I had engineered the piano voice demo
he did on the tune. We did it in the little demo studio
next to Calla. We may have used the piano track as a
base starting point--can't remember.

Loved the song.  Johnny Cymbal and I cut a track
(sloppy) as a demo for us to present, and Johnny was the
original lead singer.  Nate and Jerry gave us a budget
to finish it and bought the master for giving us the
budget. For some reasons, including the fact that he was
back in Cleveland when Schifrin wanted the record in his
hands, I did the vocal.  Not so wonderful-a singer I was
not.  John was displeased with this and it did cause a
rift in our relationship for a while.  I am proud of the
background parts I wrote for the bridge.  who sang them?
I don't know.  Possibly the guys from Cashman Pistilli
and West, maybe added Ellie and my ex-wife Mikie Harris.
Maybe just John and me.  It's a long time ago.

> I associate this record with another amusing but
> clever record around at the time by The Definitive
> Rock Chorale - "Variations On A Theme Called Hanky
> Panky" containing the line "I can't stand this song..."
> - I think Ellie & Mike Rashkow were involved with
> this? 

YES, THIS WAS OURS.  I came up with the concept for
doing Hanky Panky in a variety of musical styles.  Ellie
and I worked out the rough arrangements. We also did the
old Bye Bye Love as a 6/8 pop gospel kind of thing--cute,
but difficult and never got that completed though we
tried with a group of gospel girls from Brooklyn later

Anyway, we cut the tracks in Bell Studio B--can't
remember who actually wrote the charts, possibly Wisner,
possibly Joe Renzetti, possible Ron Frangipane--it's
probably on the label.  Had a top notch group of session
guys--I know that Jerome Richardson a great jazz man was
one sax, Herb Lovell was the drummer. I think Joe Macho
was the bass. It was a bad weather day, the charts were
there, but I don't think the arranger made it. I had
made arrangements for Cornell Dupree (later with Aretha)
to fly in from Texas where he was living at the time
because his father was sick. He'd made it very late and
a guy named Alan Ferguson (???) was the only guitar.
Eddie Smith, Phil Macy or Harry Yarmark was on the board.

The strings and vocals were done in Bell Studio A about
a week later.  There were a lot of voices used-- John
Cymbal, Ron Dante, Toni Wine, Ellie Greenwich, Tommy
West (Picardo), Terry Cashman, Dennis Minogue, and a
Puerto Rican girl (she only stayed in NY for a few
months - I have no idea what her name was).  Eddie Smith
did the overdubs I think.

I remembered that Jimmy Radcliff did the "James Brown"
style vocal where the line "I can't stand it, I can't
stand this song" was sung--My line parodizing James
Brown--Ellie never complained.  Radcliff passed away
several years ago. He was a good writer and did a lot of
demo work and jingle work.

By the way, Ron Dante was mentioned by someone.  I guess
you know that Dante was the Archies and about ten other
groups and pseudonyms. He also was Barry Manilow's
producer when he was hot. Last time I saw his name it
was as one of the producers of the Broadway revival of
Guys and Dolls.

Had he done the lead on Washington Square, we might have
had something. I sure couldn't help.

Also,  John Cymbal and I wrote again in the mid
1970's--some very good things that went nowhere.  One
song, Words and Music was recorded by several artists
including a way over the top version by a girl named
Julie Budd.  We alos had a #1 hit in Jamaica, Julie On
My Mind.

"David Gordon" wrote:

> All the Definitive Rock Chorale singles (3 on Philips,
> 2 on Bell) were produced by Ellie Greenwich and Mike
> Rashkow who formed a production company together after
> Ellie and Jeff Barry has split up.
> The Definitive Rock Chorale were a studio group - the
> vocals on "Hanky Panky" were Ellie, Ron Dante and
> Valerie Simpson.

I don't think Valerie was on this one, but maybe so. She
was the best ever as a studio singer.  You'd sing her
the idea and as you were singing she'd be singing it
with you.  Perfect pitch, great talent, nice human being.
She was on a lot of other stuff for sure and also Tasha

LePageWeb wrote:

> It occured to me that "A
> Mother ! Production" might have been a inside joke/pun
> on Mother Bertha with the "!" being the appropriate
> expletive. 

Not a play on Mother Bertha as I remember it, but the
rest is right.   

"Don Charles" wrote:

>The record is Ellie Greenwich Composes, Produces and
>Sings. Half the songs are originals. I don't think
>they're quite the classics some of her other tunes are
>but I like the arranging - by Hutch Davie...

Hutch was his nickname--real name Bun--I don't know why.
>From Bun to Bunny to Hutch.  Those that he arranged, I
was co-producer on but I didn't get credit for some
reason.  Hutch did some memorable stuff including The
Name Game but was classically trained and worked in that
field as well.  Gary Sherman (a podiatrist also by
training--never wore shoes--only sandal things)

>and Jimmy Wisner 

(Philly boy--did a lot of hits for a lot of people then 

 Of the things on this album, I was most responsible for
Nicky Hokey. Chose the song and functionally arranged it.
Also blocked out the background parts which were done by
the Sweet Inspirations (as I remember). Most of this stuff
was done at the old Mirasound studio with Brooks Arthur on
the board.  i was just starting to work with Ellie at this
time.  She wasn't too interested in the project--had an
obligation contractually to deliver it.
>Of the five originals, I think maybe "Goodnight
>Goodnight" could have been a hit. If it wasn't.

Agree `100%. One of the best things Ellie ever wrote
although I'm not sure who was key on it-her or Crewe.  I
still love that song. It was done before I worked with

>I don't recognize any of the originals myself.

I think Artie Butler did that chart, I know Artie Kaplan
did the little sax solo. 

"Goodnight, Goodnight" is great, isn't it? That and "The
Sunshine After The Rain" are my faves from Ellie's first
album. I was lucky enough to find a copy years ago, at a
reasonable price. I'll bet dealers want an arm and two
legs for it nowadays! I saw it for $25 in New Orleans a
few years back.  It may be on a more recent compilation.

> >Anyway in the liner notes it says she's about to produce
> >a group called The Definitive Rock Chorale. Did that
> >happen? That sounds interesting.
> Yes, Ellie did produce singles by The Original Rock
> Chorale, with Mike Rashkow, who was her partner in the
> late '60s. I think one of the titles was "I Hear The
> Grass Singing'" with Tony Passalacqua on lead vocals.

How did you know his name was Passalaqua?  The label only
says Tony Pass, right?   Actually, Tony only did the B
side Let Me Be Forever which was written by Steve
Tudanger, who Ellie and I were just starting to work with.
Wonderful writer,  never got lucky.  Tony had grown up
with Ellie in Levittown, NY and had done some things as a
kid with no success. He was not in the business at the
time but we got him in to do that one.

The vocals on I Hear The Grass Singing were done by Ellie
and Danny Infantino a writer/singer/guitarist from a duo,
Infantino and Ivans, whom Ellie and I were trying to get
a deal for.  Never did...but they had some great
stuff...a little ahead oftheir time. 

An interesting thing about that side is this:  Ellie and I
had a deal to write 6 or 8 songs for a animated TV show
caled the Hardy Boys.  There was really no group. The
stuff was produced in Chicago with studio people. We went
out and did a couple of the things...but the deal we made
was that the demo tracks became our property.  This record
was made on the demo track, sweetened. I did all the
engineering at Broadway Recording where I worked during
this period.  We sweetened the demo with charts done by a
guy we met when we were out in Chicago producing the Hardy

One of the reasons (besides bad memory at 60) that I'm not
sure of this stuff is that all of my records and
memorabilia is in storage now that I'm a full time RV'er.

Thanks everyone for your interest.  Let me know if you'd
like to know anything else.  I'd like a copy of Please
Phil Spector on Phillips.  All I have is a single test
pressing with no label and it is worn down to the bottom.

I do have some DRC 45's and Ellie 45's etc.  If anybody
really cares.

Best regards,

Michael Rashkow

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

Message: 2
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 20:40:31 +0000 (GMT)
   From: Mick Patrick 


Jack "Shoop Shoop" Madani wrote:

> For years I've carefully held close to my heaving
> breast a vinyl compilation from 1984, called "Where
> The Girls Are."...Thus began my love affair with
> faux-Spector...and guess whose name is listed under
> the liner notes as well as under the "compiled by"? 
> Our own Mick Patrick.

That was the first LP I compiled, Jack. It was the
brainchild of my colleague Andy Croasdell and might have
been the first ever girl-group compilation album. Anyone
know for sure? So you quite like it, huh? Every time I
hear "In His Car" by Robin Ward I will picture in my mind
your beloved copy of Kent LP 016 locked between your solid
arms and your pounding chest.

I'm presently putting the finishing touches to WHERE THE
GIRLS ARE #5. My pal Mike Carter and all the other "CK
heads" out there might like to know that it will contain
not one, two or three but FOUR Goffin/King compositions.

Jack continued:

> There are a couple of songs that just kill me because
> of the backing vocal chants..."It Hurts To Be Sixteen"
> by Barbara Chandler, has the girls singing "ratta tang
> ratta tang sh-tang sh-tang."  Another tune, "You
> Better Leave Him Alone" by The Ginger Snaps featuring
> Dandee Dawson, is actually subtitled "The Sh-Down Down
> Song."  You can guess what THOSE girls are singing in
> the background. Re-listening to these songs got me to
> thinking about all the crazy, wacked-out
> spectropoppish tunes that I have loved over the years
> that have similarly bizarre backing vocal
> chants...sung by a trio of gum-snapping high school
> cuties. What kind of warped genius does it take to
> come up with these pearls of wisdom, and are there
> some individuals who seemed to be particular masterful
> at this special task?

This one could run and run. As I'm sure you're aware,
Barbara Chandler's back-up dolls lifted those "ratta tangs"
directly from the superior original version by Andrea
Carroll who had the extreme good fortune to have not only
the Chiffons but also Ellie Greenwich in her backing-group.
DOO FREAKIN' LANG! Here are a few more of my favourite
examples to start the ball rolling. And guess what, some
of these babies ARE available on legit CDs but, for once,
I'll refrain from plugging my own compilations. It's not
as if I'm on a royalty or anything. Personally, when I
decide I want a track, I'm unable to get my beauty sleep
until I've tracked down an original vinyl copy. Hey, it's
a mucky job but someone has to do it:

"Doo d boppa kow kow kow" - the Jelly Beans' "Ain't Love A Funny Thing"
"Ska da da, skada shweeby ska" - Tammi Terrell's "Sinner's Devotion"
"Bop bop sookie doo wah" - the Velvelettes' "He Was Really Saying Something"
"Wah wah chuffa chuffa" - Caroline Day's "Steam"


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

Message: 3
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 18:02:56 -0000
   From: "Guy Lawrence" 
Subject: Gary, The Monkees and "Where the girls are"

Whatever the answer is to the "Gary sound", the Monkees
certainly DID play their own instruments on all their
live dates albeit augmented here and there and, later on,
with a full backing group. If you don't believe me ask
Rhino Handmade! "Where the girls are" certainly was a
great album, one of my first girl-group comps too, but
(and I hate to introduce a note of negativity) I've
always thought "In His Car" by Robin Ward was the worst
girl-group record I've ever heard! Don't get me wrong, I
can take as much G.G. as Mick Patrick can throw at me, I
just find it really wet! 

Guy Lawrence.

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

Message: 4
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 01:03:16 -0800
   From: "Mike Arcidiacono" 
Subject: Re: The Gary Sound

Alan Zweig wrote:

>I agree that there is (sort of) a Gary Lewis sound. But
>this begs the question "where did that sound come from?"
>Their job was to serve a vision, not create one. Anyway,
>anyone have any idea how the Gary Lewis sound was arrived
>at.  It had something to do with his voice.

Well, for me, it's in the arrangements and production.
Gary's voice is a part of it, but in almost every GL hit,
youll hear the piano very clearly from the backing
instros , the drums up front in the mix, and of course,
the famous glockenspiel trills before a drum fill. The
other thing, as I mentioned, were the quarter note
"steps" like at the end of "Count Me In".  You always
knew it was a Gary Lewis record when you heard those,
even if you didnt hear Gary's voice!!

Its interesting, when Gary did a couple of Coke
commercials, they got the trademark GL sound down pat,
even tho Snuff Garrett didnt produce!! So it must have
been pretty obvious how to create the GL sound.


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

Message: 5
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 11:42:25 -0800
   From: Carol Kaye 
Subject: Re: Recorded sounds

> I agree that there is (sort of) a Gary Lewis sound.
> But this begs the question "where did that sound come
> from?" I don't think it came from Gary but if Hal
> Blaine changed his sound to achieve the Gary Lewis
> sound, then clearly he was working in service of
> another vision.

Our group of musicians were very capable of changing our
sounds and took our cues from the producer. The kind of
music it was, even the sounds that were mixed in
different studios were quite different....the Playboys
stuff was cut in the big studio at Western from what I

Instrumentation has a lot to do with the sound identity
of a group, and the sound ideas imparted from the
arranger who wrote the charts too....charts that we
always added our invented lines on, especially in the
1960s (if there were I've said many a time,
sometimes there weren't charts or just the barest of
chord charts).  Everyone goes with the sounds and
direction of their first hit, if that worked, then keep
the formula.

> remind me a bit of talking about the (talented) crew
> members on films.

You cannot compare us to a film crew at all, this is the
music business, not the movie business (altho' lately I
think they mix quite well 8-)

We were hired guns yes, but we took our different
accounts seriously. For Sonny and Cher, I knew they
wanted a certain sound from me on my elec. 12-string for
a string of was part of their "identity"
- the formula that they were getting hits from:  sounds
of us all, our creating of lines, the Gold Star studio
sounds, the musician feeling of us all together, plus
the instrumentation, and I knew about the right elec.
12-string guitar sounds Sonny wanted too (as other
musicians did too on their instruments), no problem.  I
knew the kinds of bass sounds that Brian Wilson wanted
on his BB dates, and on down the line.  You pleased
everyone and you pleased yourself too when you could
make the recording happen by the groove you created.

Much much different than the creating of a film
score.....we were the "writers" and the "actors" and
several other main roles in the music dept. sometimes
helping the engineer to get a good sound too by
suggesting different mikes, and then going in the booth
to listen to the sounds to make sure they were coming
off good enough for the product. It's wayy too different
to even begin to write about here, you cannot compare us
to film-making.

To compare us as like a film crew, is a disservice but
I'm not surprised at emphasis was given to
studio musicians before for good reason:  marketing.  We
cannot be controlled for publicity purposes for
marketing for latter-day people who jump on the
bandwagon of fame and/or fortune either.

Carol Kaye

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

Message: 6
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 09:07:15 -0800 (PST)
   From: Jane Wade 
Subject: Circus of Horrors

"Look for a Star" came from the Hammer horror classic,
"Circus of Horrors", a lurid little meller from the
mid 60's...which was quite a nifty little flick.  I
recommend it!  

The song is played throughout the movie, during the
high wire scenes when the damsal in distress is being
menaced by the killer/owner of the circus.

Recommendation: Leave the lights on and don't view


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

Message: 7
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 18:00:06 +0100
   From: "Jan Kristensen" 
Subject: Re: doo lang, doo lang and so forth

In addition to "Where the girls are" there are also at
least 2 vinyl compilations from 1985 from the hands of
Mick Patrick - "Stop, look and Listen" and "Girls About
Town". Most of the songs on these LP's are to be found on
CD's today, the only 2 I haven't seen is Dawn: "I believe
they're all talking about me" and The Cheese Cakes:
"Heading for a heartbreak" on Stop, Look and Listen. But
Mick   - who are the 3 girls on the cover of "Stop, Look
and Listen" - Just models or a girl group?

Jan K

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

Message: 8
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 08:28:53 +0000 (GMT)
   From: Mick Patrick 
Subject: Re: BRILL TONE CDs


> Could somebody provide adress to catch the CDs with
> Carole King and Barry Mann demo material.

Peter, the Brill Tone bootleg CDs by Barry Mann, Jeff
Barry, Carole King and Ellie Greenwich are available...

These CDs are made in Holland so you should be able to
find them for a lower price if you tried a local bootleg


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

Message: 9
   Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 11:28:33 -0800
   From: Michael Godin 
Subject: Halloween Spooktacular

Hi Fellow Spectropoppers,

Just wanted to drop off a line to invite you to listen to
the 5th Annual Halloween Spooktacular of my Oldies
Internet show, Treasure Island Oldies. This special
edition is available on demand at:

By the way, frequent contributor to Spectropop, Ian
Chapman, has a weekly feature on the show: Ian Chapman's
Girl Groups. It's a nice tight short piece where Ian
provides the background story to a particular girl group
and then I play the song relating to his story. Very cool.

Happy Halloween to you all!

Michael Godin
Treasure Island Oldies

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

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