Jump to content
LobsterLvr

Renaming Raspberries

Recommended Posts

Billy K.   
On 6/26/2012 at 8:47 AM, Batman said:

The name Cyrus Erie came from the farm equipment manufacturer.

This is also how the group Buffalo Springfield got their name...from a tractor! Maybe someone should try the name John Deere or International Harvester next!!! :o

I think there's a country band called the National Harvesters, if I'm not mistaken......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Capitol Records didn't "get" that "Rasberries" is another word for the "Bronx Cheer." The logo should have been vibrating lips with a tongue sticking out, because the whole concept of the band, from it's inception was to "blow raspberries in the face of Prog Rock, which was all the rage at FM radio in 1970. I HATED what was happening to music at that time. I remember being bored out of my freakin/ mind by supposedly "heavy" groups like Jethro Tull and Traffic. The GREAT, three minute songs of The Beatles, The Who, The Byrds, The Beach Boys and all the Motown artists were suddenly replaced with long, tedious flute solos and self-indulgent noodling around by every guitarist, no matter whether they sucked or not ( and many of them DID suck ) and organ solos and all manner of horrible, pointless nonsense. 

Personally, no one thinks Keith Richards is that great a guitarist, or Pete Townsend, but Keith has managed to come up with more brilliant guitar intros than anyone in history, and Pete was a WONDER to see live! He was so riveting when Cyrus Erie opened for The Who, July 14, 1968, a date I will never forget, that, even with Roger Daltrey swinging his mic on a twenty foot cable and catching it just in time to sing, and Keith Moon playing drums like an absolute mad man, I realized I hadn't even glanced at either one of them for at least 15 minutes. He was just incredible.

I was in the studio once and Little Feat (blech) were winding up their session and my session was about to begin, and I asked Lowell George who his favorite guitarist was. He said "Keith Richards" and broke out laughing. I wanted to clock him.

I would take The Who or The Rolling Stones over ANY bunch of supposedly "heavy" prog rock goons ANYDAY!

And that's what the name REALLY meant, but Capitol got it wrong, like everything else, and put those four little fuzzy berries on the back of the album, and the sticker on the front, and our fate was sealed.

It was the BRONX CHEER DUMMIES!!!!!

Oh, and, by the way, we never got to see ANY of the artwork for the first three albums until they were in the record stores. I think we finally made such a stink about it, we got to see the "Starting Over" album cover before it was released.

We thought it looked like a "bootleg," but at least we got to choose the photographer, for once. 

We actually learned about the sticker after some girl called Dave, and told him she'd just purchased the eight track. Dave, incredulous that someone actually bought it, and we didn't even know it had been released, asked her to tell him the song titles, and she did. And finally she told him that she had heard, at the record store, that the album was going to come out a little later because, when you squeezed it, raspberry jam was going to ooze out.

He called me in a panic, and then we called Jimmy Ienner and he told us about the sticker.

e

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, I left out "Hot Tuna", possibly the most stupefyingly horrible band, ever. I think the guitarist from the Jefferson Airplane was in the group, along with someone who played the absolute most God awful solos on an electric violin, or any other instrument I have ever heard ( GREAT CONCEPT! ). I remember hearing them played on WMMS, and being completely flabbergasted that ANYONE ON EARTH would play the record, let alone listen to it, LET ALONE RECORD IT!

It was the audio equivalent of watching an animal disembowel it's prey. Horrible beyond words. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hilarious!  Why would anyone willingly name a band HOT TUNA? 

(OMG!  I just realized...after I posted...and at first I thought "why would someone name a band after tuna casserole??")... :lol:  

I know some people here don't remember Hot Tuna, so I'll give you a little sample of song writing via

"Keep on Truckin'":

Ashes to ashes baby, dust to dust

Whatcha gonna do when that damn thing rusts?

Imagine how you'd feel if you could also hear the twisted musical stylings...with some of the most awful lyrics ever written.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
marvin   
On 9/7/2013 at 0:30 PM, Eric Carmen said:

Oh, I left out "Hot Tuna", possibly the most stupefyingly horrible band, ever. I think the guitarist from the Jefferson Airplane was in the group, along with someone who played the absolute most God awful solos on an electric violin, or any other instrument I have ever heard ( GREAT CONCEPT! ). I remember hearing them played on WMMS, and being completely flabbergasted that ANYONE ON EARTH would play the record, let alone listen to it, LET ALONE RECORD IT!

It was the audio equivalent of watching an animal disembowel it's prey. Horrible beyond words. 

Yes original Airplane members Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady were part of Hot Tuna. They basically played everything from blues to jazz to bluegrass. I believe the core of the band still exists today.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JohnO   

Yes original Airplane members Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady were part of Hot Tuna. They basically played everything from blues to jazz to bluegrass. I believe the core of the band still exists today.

Two really quick points of info.......(1) Hot Tuna most certainly did NOT write "Keep On Truckin".  It's a very old blues tune dating back to the 30s, via Blind Boy Fuller and Tampa Red.  I doubt that Jorma and Jack claimed that they wrote it, but stranger things have happened regarding songwriting credits.  (2) The screechy violinist with Hot Tuna was Papa John Creach, who recorded maybe 3-4 albums with Jorma, Jack and Joey Covington, as well as playing with Jefferson Starship later.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

JohnO,

The original song "Keep on Truckin'" may be a very old blues song.

But, Hot Tuna definitely did write a song called "Keep on Truckin'."  I believe from the Burgers album but I could be wrong on that.  I also believe Papa John did play on the Burgers album in 1972.  Google it and you will be as disgusted by the lyrics as anything you've ever read.  And as Eric mentioned earlier, the screechy violin certainly didn't add anything to the hideousness of the band's songs and/or playing.

Eddie Kendricks also wrote a song named "Keep on Truckin' (Baby)" which you will most likely remember.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JohnO   
On 9/11/2013 at 4:42 PM, Cayennegirl said:

JohnO,

The original song "Keep on Truckin'" may be a very old blues song.

But, Hot Tuna definitely did write a song called "Keep on Truckin'."  I believe from the Burgers album but I could be wrong on that.  I also believe Papa John did play on the Burgers album in 1972.  Google it and you will be as disgusted by the lyrics as anything you've ever read.  And as Eric mentioned earlier, the screechy violin certainly didn't add anything to the hideousness of the band's songs and/or playing.

Eddie Kendricks also wrote a song named "Keep on Truckin' (Baby)" which you will most likely remember.

Cayennegirl - Yes, and my contention is that they stole/borrowed most, if not all, of their lyrics.....please read below.....from The Hangar website.........

"For the origin of the lyrics to the Tuna staple, one would have to dig deep into the blues bag for a handful of songs that were passed around during the 1920s and '30s. A good place to start would be guitarist Tampa Red's "What Is It That Tastes Like Gravy?," an 8-bar blues with a melody remarkably similar to "Ja-Da" and filled with double-entendre lyrics that center on a woman's aroma and taste during sexual stimulation and the act of cunnilingus.

From there, fast-forward to 1936 and a blues guitarist named Blind Boy Fuller, a contemporary of [Jorma's main influence] Rev. Gary Davis. Fuller made a series of recordings for the American Record Corporation (ARC), among them one that he called "Truckin' My Blues Away," whose chorus is identical to the Hot Tuna track. A couple of years later, Fuller returned to the same melody for another risque blues called "What's That Smell Like Fish."

Jorma, who began singing a version of "Keep On Truckin'" as early as college, borrowed Carleton's original melody as coopted by Tampa Red and Blind Boy Fuller, the chorus of "Truckin' My Blues Away," and the key phrase and a handful of other lines from "What's That Smell Like Fish" to construct his own classic.

But where Blind Boy Fuller suggested in his song that the answer to the question he posed could very well be "sardines but it ain't in no can," Jorma left the particular kind of fish out of his interpretation and answered instead with the name of his group."

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JohnO   

Oh, and by the way.......Hot Tuna did NOT claim writing credit for "Keep On Truckin".  They credit it to old 20s/30s piano player Bob Carleton.  Google "Burgers" and look it up, please........

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

JohnO,

I and certainly others appreciate the clarification on the "hot tuna" issue. I was trying to be discreet with my response, and I don't think I ever said HT claimed a writing credit for the original song.

I also know more than a few people who think some of the Rs' lyrics were a little too much on the raunchy side in at least one song (NOT GATW). 

Just so you can know what raunchy lyrics really are, I'll give my gal-pals here their own taste of HOT TUNA.  Remember too, this is all with a screechy electric violin in the background!   I think I might start a board dedicated only to deconstructing HOT TUNA lyrics.

Overall, I think this song is really a beautiful portrayal of a misunderstood young woman.

Many, many thanks to that darling Eric for not naming the band Hot Tuna!

And so we begin -

Well, now keep on truckin' mama
Truck my blues away

Well I say, keep on truckin' mama
Truck my blues away

Here you come baby big as sin  - (I can relate to this suggestion.)
Tell what you been doin' by the shape you're in

So keep on truckin' mama
Now truck my blues away

If you been doin' like I think you been doin'
I can't do that 'round here
I said, you been doin' like I think you been doin'
I can't do that 'round here

Here you come mama big as hell - (this is truly my favorite line of the song.)
Tell you knew by way you smell - (??)

So keep on truckin' mama
Truck my blues away

Now what's that smell like fish oh babe - (worst pick-up line, EVER.)
I really would like to know

And tell me, what's that smell like fish pretty mama
I really would like to know

That ain't puddin' baby, that ain't no pie - (sounds like sour grapes now, doesn't it?)
It's the stuff that I got you by

So keep on truckin' mama
Truck my blues away

Now yes you gotta leave my house this mornin'
Get your yas yas outta my door

Well I said, yes you gotta leave my house this mornin'
Get your yas yas outta my door

Ashes to ashes baby, dust to dust - ( a legit question to ponder.)
Whatcha gonna do when that damn thing rusts

So keep on truckin' mama
Truck my blues away

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JohnO   

At the risk of nitpicking.........in that last post above, how did the names of Wilson, Caston & Poore wind up getting the songwriting credit at the bottom???  They're the guys who wrote The Temptations' song titled "Keep on Truckin"........and the lyrics to that song are completely different!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I will be the first to admit..I know next to nothing about music history...but thanks for the great stories Eric.. (always told so amusingly) and John, Marvin and there are others..for all the music info you provide.  Bernie's site has been the best 'music' class I have ever had the pleasure of attending! :D

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And to think I was so distracted by the horrible sound of the whole record, that I never had any idea that the lyrics were even MORE disgusting than the music.  It stands out in my mind because , in my humble opinion, it was, and remains, the most horrific assault upon my eardrums and psyche that I have ever heard. Quite an accomplishment, considering the amount of abysmal garbage polluting the airwaves for the past two decades.

e

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Brian   

Eric....You had me rolling on the floor laughing about what you thought of those prog rock acts of the early 70's.....I was there with you.....in Cleveland...the same clubs.....I liked The Agora.....The Piccadilly(the penthouse club).....the Hullabaloos.....but could never get that excited about going to Peabodys......or any of the blues clubs. Yes, I was there when Cyrus Erie played with the Who at Musicarnival and agree....no one plays or puts on a show like the Who in their heyday. I have to admit though, after Tommy they lost something.

It's hard to relate to out of towners......or children of this new generation what we had back then......You guys showed up with stacks of Marshalls.....a huge drumkit...flashy clothes...and kicked ass on those great songs..

BTW...went to Beachwood Mall yesterday....was hoping to see you....

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, I have to agree The Cyrus Erie band was nothing less than AMAZING!!  

I remember another band I think - The Islanders?  Someone in their group sprayed silly string in my hair and it took days to get out.  Also, I may be dreaming this name up but I swear there was some bar called "Phil McNasty's" or some variation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Brian   

Cayennegirl......That was Filthy McNasty's in Kent.   A large dumpy dance bar....certainly not to be confused with J.B.'s in Kent who hosted The James Gang,Raspberries.....got drunk in there one night when ec and Marty Murphy rescued me.....

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Brian,

Glad you clarified the name of PMc's for me, but I definitely wouldn't confuse it with J.B.'s in Kent.  I'm glad the guys rescued you from whatever doom may have awaited without their assistance, and I recall being rescued myself.   I definitely remember the James Gang too, but wasn't there a band called something like Sweetleaf playing around during that time as well?

(Think I need to change my screen name to LA. Woman...).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Awesome E,

I must admit for a couple of seconds when I heard the band name "Raspberries" I wondered why you'd name a band after a small fruit, but then I got it. 

But while we are on the topic of band names (sans HT), I'll list the 20 Worst Band Names of All Time via Mandatory.com. Whatever these people played is hardly relevant because I doubt most could get past the name to even listen.

I did not make these names up.

Half Man Half Biscuit
The Pillows
Some Velvet Sidewalk
Son of Dork
pre )Thing
Default
iwrestledabearonce
OLD
And Also The Trees
An Horse
The Dinner is Ruined
Lunchmeat
Suburban Kids With Biblical Names
Gay Black Republican
Escrow Tomato
Goddamn Electric Bill
Albino Toilet Boys

I bet a dollar no one ever declared "Albino Toilet Boys ROCK!!!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After hearing their music, they could have been called anything, and I would still have been a fan forever.

Though I didn't know of them at the time, I was at their first show as Raspberries - I was 15 or 16. I was a student at Berea High School in Ohio, and a friend brought me out to The Cyrus Erie club where they were performing; I didn't even know they were going to be there, nor had I ever heard of them. Eric was on bass, and I remember how intense he looked. They were flawless and soooo tight. Needless to say... "they were amazing". I also saw them perform as Cyrus Erie, on a flatbed truck in front of Cleveland Auditorium, on they day of my first concert ever (The Doors). On that day... they were the better band. They were tighter, rocked harder, and were more professional on that day, than The Doors. There was also a real joy from the fans at their performance, that seemed to take on a hyped up worship vibe at The Doors concert later that evening. Though I didn't realize the importance (maybe that's a good thing, and the joy of discovery), I'm sure glad I was there...    

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree Horizon! 

I met E when he was playing in Cyrus Erie and the band name wasn't an issue.  Lord, you are so right to recall Eric was so intense personally and with the band he was amazing. 

I told my friends "that boy will be a star"...and so he is!!

It was ever-lasting love for me...

Cool that we shared some of the same experiences and can be here writing about it at this moment!

Cayenne

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was playing music from 2003 to 2011 over in Scotland, when the Raspberries had their reunion (still sick over that one). I've been back  in the States for 2yrs, and I would travel anywhere in the U.S. to see them again. It isn't even a nostalgia thing with me. While there's a good deal of music out there being made, nothing moves me like that era. I've played GATW many times, along with many really good modern tracks, but everytime I've played that GATW intro... it still gives me chills. That tone (which isn't easily reproduced) has always sounded like something bubbling. As if it was an aural metaphor for passion. Everyone always talks about how great the song is, and rightfully so. But at the same time... it an amazing production. It was everything, that made this record a timeless classic

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×