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America and Hall & Oates...


James

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...were bands you toured with.

Did you hang out with these guys at all? I'm a fan of these bands (especially America) and think it would be interesting to hear insights into them as people/musicians. Is there anything about these guys, or your experience touring with them, that you can share?

Thanks in advance..

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Actually, the photo is of Gerry Beckley, David Cassidy and me. It was taken backstage at The Roxy Theater in L.A. in 1976, right after one of my performances ( hence, the sweaty hair and exhausted look on my face ). Gerry, David and I used to hang out when I lived in L.A.

Gerry wrote all the America songs I liked. He was the "Beatle influence" in the band. His songs were "I Need You", Sister Goldenhair" and "Daisy Jane." I was never much of a fan of Dewey's songs, although, for some reason, they were big hits.

"Ventura Highway", "A Horse With No Name" and "Muskrat Love" didn't do it for me. Actually, I kind of hate those songs.

I always liked Gerry's voice. He has the same innocent quality that Paul Simon has when he sings. It kept all his songs sounding a little "understated."

Having George Martin produce didn't hurt either.

I never hung out much with Hall and Oates, although John seems like a really nice guy. I think they're both pretty shy.

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Eric Carmen said:

Gerry wrote all the America songs I liked. He was the "Beatle influence" in the band. His songs were "I Need You", Sister Goldenhair" and "Daisy Jane." I was never much of a fan of Dewey's songs, although, for some reason, they were big hits.

"Ventura Highway", "A Horse With No Name" and "Muskrat Love" didn't do it for me. Actually, I kind of hate those songs.

I always liked Gerry's voice. He has the same innocent quality that Paul Simon has when he sings. It kept all his songs sounding a little "understated."

Having George Martin produce didn't hurt either.

I never realized they had seperate writers. Those three songs written by Gerry are three tunes I still listen to often. I may have to check out if he has any solo stuff after hearing that.

America used to have three members, until Dan Peek went solo. He put out a great solo album in the late seventies, that I wish I had on CD, called "All Things Are Possible".

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I loved it also.

Tons of great artists (painters, writers, musicians etc) are/were off the wall... they stretched from the "cool", accepted norm. They had the guts to do something they knew they'd be made fun of for. Read your history. Life would be boring without them.

Though I admit the song is ripe to be called silly, but I still like it a lot.

Signed,

James :cool: (successor to Socrates)

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ira said:

Those lyrics would even be too silly for the dopiest Hallmark "Thinkin' Of You" card!

I'm guessing that this is a knock against the Captain & Tenille. Daryl Dragon (the Captain) is quite an accomplished musician, with a host of credits including playing in the Beach Boys' band in the early 1970's, and recording with Elton John.

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Marv...I even know that Daryl Dragon's dad was a serious musician...that Daryl is a fine musician too....And Tenille was a very good singer (and talk-show host)...And you know I love commercial stuff...Just they did too much of that 70's-ish "Donnie and Marie Variety-Show"/"Give The People What They Want(-R. Davies)/Silly "Sonny and Cher" kibbitzing stuff for my liking.

Hell-I'm forever grateful that their version of "Love Will Keep Us Together" not only revived Mr. Sedaka's career...It was I believe the biggest record of the year...and gave Sedaka a chance to exhibit a whole new spectrum of his talent that I suppose he sorta had to temper in the 60's when the music scene was different.

And to further illustrate Marv...that Captain and Tenille's "pop" was not the issue...I love Sedaka's 60's 2 minute ditties as much and in a different way as his brilliant "Solitaire" and "One More Ride On The Merry-Go-Round"(BTW-brilliantly done by Jane Olivor as well) and all his 70's era stuff!

In brief...I teased their personna not their music.-Ira.

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Captain & Tenille fell into the same variety shw trap as Dean Martin and Glen Campbell - serious musicians whose careers took on another light, thanks to (as a result of) the way the public saw them in their varietys shows. You know what? In hindsight it would be great to have shows along those lines again today.

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Hey to go off on a real tangent as we always do...(See "Cleveland Censorship"?)...Here's Jane Olivor doing Sedaka's previously mentioned "One More Ride On The Merry"-Go-Round".

(Marv...BTW...You're right...In hindsight I enjoyed some aspects of the sheer innocence and exuberance of those variety shows...But hated the lowest common denominator/broadest-based programming pattern of ...metaphorically-speaking...the "Johnny Cash/Miss Piggy" duet type stuff that permeated the 70's.) :wacko:

-Enjoy!.....Ira.

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I remember the following fact as clear as day...Leba's dad and mom owned "Esther Manor"'...A very very nice Catskills hotel named after Leba's mom "Esther"( See "Dirty Dancing" for this era)...And the Catskils were abuzz when Neil married Leba.

Barbara...I just saw Neil in concert this summer with Jane Olivor.

He's "Tree-Men-Dous!

But I would like to ask you...Sometimes he seems a little taken with himself which perhaps I'd be too if I ever achieved his achievements.

Barbara...Was Mr. Sedaka nice to be with?-Ira.

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Barbara...My tangent continues...Here's a nice article from 2006 from a "Sullivan County" newspaper about Neil...His career...Leba...and his ties to the fabled Catskill Mountains.

Please forgive this "Tangent of Tangents"...But I never made any New Year's Resolutions that hinted at "No Tangents On EC.Com For Me In '09"....So I'm still allowed I figger! :) -Ira.

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Thanks so much for that inside info.

In the 50's and 60's...being raised in the awful quasi-religious quagmire known as Boro Park in Brooklyn...My lifeline was radio and Sedaka,Vee,Pitney,The Four Seasons,The Beach Boys,and later the British Invasion...provided my glimpse into a far more beautiful world of art and beauty!

"Shanah Tovah"-2008! (Have a good year!)-Barbara.-Ira.

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In the ending of "Love Will Keep Us Together", don't they sing "Sedaka is back"?

Daryl Dragon could definately play and I've heard that Toni Teneille was a great "torch singer". I wasn't into the whole "Muskrat thing", though! LOL

I'm currently reading the biography of Tony Orlando, titled "Halfway To Paradise", speaking of good musicians who got labeled into the variety show category.

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