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Raspbernie

Live at Brush High School

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Pictured above (from left to right) are: Marty Murphy, Bob Montague, Lee McManus and Eric.

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From Eric Carmen: Marathon Man:

It was at Brush High School that Eric met Marty Murphy. A year older than Eric, Murphy told him that he had a band—a real band with a drummer. Murphy was a dead-ringer for Paul McCartney, and it’s not too hard to understand how far that would take a young guy in a local rock band in 1966. All of the girls loved Marty, and Eric had a new best friend.

“The Sounds of Silence was a really cool band," says Murphy. "We were only sixteen years old and were too young to play bars, so we tapped into the college circuit and were a party band for a bunch of fraternities at Case Western Reserve University. We did killer versions of ‘19th Nervous Breakdown’ and ‘Hang On Sloopy.’"

This RARE photo of the band performing at Charles F. Brush High School in Lyndhurst, Ohio, was only previously printed once—in Eric's High School Yearbook in 1967.

Bernie

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Thank you Bernie! It's wonderful to look at a high school year book photo especially from 1967. How cool! One of a kind, if I do say so myself. smile
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phil   

Bernie,

Thanks so much! That is really cool! 1967 was the year I graduated from high school...same year as Eric. Its too bad the Sounds of Silence didn't play at our school! You can tell it is a semi formal dance with all of the guys wearing suits and the girls and their corsages!!! Black and white photo....it really brings back memories!

Phil

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So I'm just surfing stuff and—Whoa! I think I actually remember that dance. Anyway, the band was surprisingly tight (the practice schedule was Sunday and Tuesday nights) and vocal/harmony oriented for a high school rock and roll band (there were no monitors and the rule was—"if you can't hear the vocals through the PA, the instruments are too loud"—this worked surprisingly well). Eric had a distaste for reverb and the band got its hand on an Echoplex (a small box with a loop of recording tape that you could set the interval of time between the recording and automatic playback) that was used as part of the PA. There was not much in the way of portable keyboards at the time (and no electric pianos) and the band used a Farfisa compact organ that Eric hated (this is not a strong enough description of Eric's sentiments) but sufficed for things like Rascals songs and Left Banke material.

When Cyrus Erie was formed on stage and then scrambling to fill out a 4-set song list (while playing bookings at the same time), almost all of the non-Stones songs came from Sounds of Silence. In addition to the Who material (always wished we had kept The Kids Are Alright), these included the Byrds and Left Banke songs described by Wally when he first heard the band (always wished we had kept Bells of Rhymney, My Back Pages, Have You Seen Her Face, and She May Call You Up Tonight). Later, the Farfisa organ (mini-compact this time) and Echoplex made a comeback for Moody Blues material (per Jeff Beck, Cyrus Erie playing Nights in White Satin better than the Moody Blues—and it may be the only non-Beatle song to make it into Raspberries).

For the gear heads—all the amps were black-face Fenders. Two Twin Reverbs and at least 3 Bassmans.

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Kirk   

Whoa! What a great memory...thanks for taking the time to give a little history lesson smile Good stuff!

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phil   

Martin Wilbury:

I assume you are Marty Murphy a band member of Sounds of Silence. Thanks so much for your memories of your band and the dance that was in the photo. It would have been a real treat to have heard you guys. We also were blessed in our high school and city to have some very good bands that were probably somewhat similar to your band. Those bands were so good back in the day and played cover songs so well. But then back then in the sixties we had so many great great cover songs of the day to play!!!

Thanks again Marty,

Phil

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darlene   

Thanks Bernie and thanks Marty. WOW!!! I SO wish I had been there back then. But your description and that photo give us the next best thing. Glorious days (and nights!) in Cleveland!

Thanks a million. What a superb thread!

:)--Darlene

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