Blue Ash in 1969…Jim Kendzor (vocals) and Frank Secich (bass guitar) Rare never-before-heard recordings from this era are coming soon. Stay tuned!
The songs from Blue Ash’s "Around Again" (a 2004 two cd retrospective) will soon be available for collective and individual downloads. Also, over 170 Blue Ash songs that were found in the vaults a few years ago will also be available for the first time anywhere. Some of the titles are "Walls", "I’ll Be Standing By", "Dinner At Mr. Billy’s", "Make It Easy","It’s All In Your Mind", "Look Out Your Window Baby I’m On Your Porch", "Baby Doll", "It’s Alright By Me", "Dangerous! Dynamite!", "You Know My Number", "Freeloader","When I Get You", " If I Were Ever Minus You","Movin’ Right Along","You Really Get To Me",…and dozens of other tunes that have never before been heard by anyone outside of the band members themselves. All of it was written by the Blue Ash songwriting team of Bill "Cupid" Bartolin and Frank Secich. The songs were recorded in Youngstown, Ohio at Peppermint studios between 1972 and 1976. More details will be forthcoming here at "Lost In The Grooves" in the next few weeks.
Club Wow 1982 Left to right: Billy Sullivan, Frank Secich, Jeff West and Jimmy Zero
Two members of Blue Ash (Bill Bartolin and Frank Secich) will be appearing on a cut for the upcoming tribute to Greg Shaw on Bomp Records. The song they recorded is a cover of "Him Or Me….What’s It Gonna Be?" by Paul Revere and the Raiders. Also, featured on the track are Ohio musicians: Jimmy Zero (Dead Boys), George Cabaniss (Color Me Gone, Hammer Damage Band), Billy Sullivan (Raspberries reunion band), John Koury and Pete Drivere (Infidels), Dave Swanson (Rainy Day Saints) and Canadian, David "Quinton" Steinberg of (Stiv Bators Band and Mods). The tribute album to Greg is novel in it’s approach in that it will be comprised of Greg’s favorite songs done by some of his favorite artists. It’s tentatively scheduled for release late this year or early 2007. Blue Ash also have 2 never-before-released cuts "She Cried For 15 Years" and "Say Goodbye" on an Australian compilation called "Planet Of The Popboomerang 2". It’s a 2cd set that features American power pop artists on one disc and on the other, artists from all over the world. You can check out samples at: www.popboomerang.com Frank Secich will also appear as a solo artist on an upcoming tribute to Stiv Bators out of Italy. The tribute is called "I’m Not Just Anyone…A Portrait Of Stiv" Frank’s song is called "The Stiv Bators Ghost Tour". Artists from around the world have contributed covers of Dead Boys, Wanderers, Lords Of The New Church and Stiv Bators Band songs. Http://www.latexxxteens.com/
Frank Secich, Jim Kendzor, Bill Bartolin and Jeff Rozniata of Blue Ash 1974
Blue Ash is glad and honored to be part of the "Lost In The Grooves" family. This is a brief history of the band. Blue Ash was formed in 1969 by Frank Secich (bass guitar), Jim Kendzor (vocals), Bill "Goog" Yendrek (lead guitar) and David Evans (drums). The band debuted at a psychedelic club called "The Freak Out" in Youngstown, Ohio on October 3, 1969. Determined to go against the then omnipresent long-guitar-solo-jam bands, Blue Ash would forge a style in the manner of their own teen-aged years heroes: Beatles, Who, Kinks, Byrds, Beau Brummels, Hollies, Rolling Stones, Yardbirds, and many others mixed in from the mid-60’s. Coupled with a wild stage-show and the management of Geoffrey Jones, Blue Ash soon became very popular on the teen-dance and club circuit of PA, NY, Ohio and W.VA. In October of 1970, guitarist Bill Yendrek was replaced by Bill Bartolin. For the next few years Blue Ash played a hectic 200-250 dates a year throughout the region. During that time the songwriting team of Secich-Bartolin were stockpiling an enormous amount of original material. In 1972, they were signed to a recording contract with Mercury Records by the late , great (legendary A&R man/ rock writer) Paul Nelson. Paul also signed " The New York Dolls" around the same time. Their debut lp "No More, No Less" (1973) received rhapsodic reviews in the rock press. Blue Ash along with Big Star and Raspberries became critical darlings of a new sound later to be called "power pop". With not enough sales or FM airplay came the death knell to the first wave of 70’s power pop bands. Blue Ash continued on and in 1977 released a 2nd lp on Playboy Records. In 1979 the band broke up. In the ensuing years Blue Ash developed a world-wide cult following with many groups recording their songs: Records, Finkers, Michael Monroe to name a few. Over the years there was rumoured to be tons of unreleased Blue Ash material. In 2004, Not Lame Records released a 2CD set of it with 44 songs called "Around Again". Blue Ash is now reformed (but not too reformed) and play out occasionally. The band consists of all 4 original members plus 2nd drummer Jeff Rozniata, Bob Darke (bass) and Brian Wingrove (piano, vocals). For more about Blue Ash go to: www.BlueAshMusic.com and…. http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BlueAsh/
Sex Clark 5's Strum & Drum! is a Lost in the Grooves exclusive, with bonus tracks. Click below to sample music or purchase.Â
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Sex Clark 5 Strum & Drum! (Records to Russia, 1987/ Beehive Rebellion, 1996)
Hailing from Huntsville, Alabamaâ€”the place where Wernher von Braun traded rocketry know-how for immunity, but perhaps more significantly birthplace of â€œEight Miles Highâ€â€”these lo-fi pop wunderkinder had one of the eightiesâ€™ great lost discs in Strum & Drum! Their name is one of the broad strokes forming a sly humored sensibility, this from a group also given to titling a noisy piss-take â€œGet Back Yoko,â€ and producing an electronic loop of the phrase â€œGirls of Somalia,â€ apparently a 5th dimensional play on the Beach Boysâ€™ celebrations of regional pulchritude. But these are the oddities on a disc thatâ€™s 95% ebullient, near-perfect Beatlesque pop, delivered with careless glee all but unheard of in the power pop ghetto. None of singer/guitarist James Butlerâ€™s twenty songs clocks in above 2:43, giving them the opportunity to charm without boring. SC5 leaves you wanting more, but with the next unforgettable melody never far away. Take â€œDetention Girls,â€ a reductive micro opera with a cheerleaderâ€™s chant giving the if-you-blinked-you-missed-it bridge that extra jolt sending the whole marvelous package into sugary hyperdrive. â€œModern Fixâ€ is at once daffy and poignant. The powerfully delivered line â€œWhy donâ€™t we take all our gimmicks, put â€˜em all in one box/ And trade â€˜em for a bag of tube socks?â€ seems (and is) absurd on its face, but in context itâ€™s the possibly final plea of a lover trying to make a rough love work. â€œValerieâ€â€™s singsong melody seems somehow backwards, an exquisite medieval meander fused with a sweetness straight out of the McCartney songbook. Lightning-paced â€œAlaiâ€ is blessed with one of those hooks that wonâ€™t quit, though what the â€œalai-lai-lai-laiâ€ the band is on about may never be revealed. Sometimes bassist Joy Johnson sings in the sweet, slightly flat voice of a serious little kid, but mostly Butler leads the show, mouth racing to keep up with the shambling, ecstatic rush of his band. These dizzy, precise little tunes are like musical meringues, each one a brilliant gem of an idea whipped to soft, gooey peaks. Look for the out-of-print 1996 CD reissue that includes the magical early â€œNeita Grew Up Last Nightâ€ EP. (Kim Cooper, from the book Lost in the Grooves)