Sunday, September 23, 2007

Musical Monday Memories......

Hi Everybody!!...I hope everyone had a great weekend...I sure did!!
Not only did Michigan win it's 2nd straight game, but the Defense did NOT allow a touchdown for those 2 games either!!..I think that I'm gonna ride the Hog for the rest of the day, so I 'm going to post my Musical Monday blurb a bit early...

When you think of an oldie what do you think about?..."Hound Dog" by the King?
"Great Balls of Fire" by Jerry Lee Lewis?..."Stayin Alive"...The BG's.? "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice???? Whatever your interpretation of an oldie is, it seems like every "Oldie" station seems to play 3-5 old tunes that have become Oldies Anthems.."Wipe-Out" by the Safari's.."Louie Louie" by The Kingsman, and " 96 Tears " by Question Mark and the Mysterians!!
The band responsible for that hit, were the embodiment of a number of rock phenomena:
They were the ultimate 'garage band', they were living proof that anyone could be discovered and become a star. And they were the classic One Hit Wonder band that zoomed to the top and suddenly disappeared forever..
They had a little gimmick going on at the time, whereas they didn't reveal who their true identities were....Does the name Rudy Martinez mean anything to you? That's Question Mark's real name.
The band's members were actually 5 guys whose families all migrated from Mexico to work in Michigan's Saginaw Valley. They took their group name from a Japanese alien-invasion movie series from the early 60's, and then developed a pattern of secrecy from Rudy, who always sported dark sunglasses as his trademark..
The band played around the Saginaw area for a few years in the mid-60's, developing a repertoire that included an original number called..."Too Many Teardrops", a poem that Rudy had written and set to very simple music. The rest of the group liked the tune but NOT the title. They wanted to call it "69 Tears" , but they knew that it would never get on the airwaves if they did, so they called it "96" Tears.
Like millions of other garage bands of the 60's, Question mark wanted to make a record but no big label would sign them. They ended up contacting a woman named Lilly Gonzalez who owned a little outfit in Texas called Pa-Go-Go Records.. She set them up with a Bay City Michigan studio( a converted living room), for a recording session, and Pa-Go-Go pressed 500 copies of the song, and sent them to the band to schlep around to the local radio stations for some airplay!
Suprisingly several stations did just that, and one of the stations that did play it regularly was CKLW out of Detroit (actually Windsor Ontario, but it's just across the river). Then the miracle happened!! Executives at a national label that was almost bankrupt, Cameo Records, heard "96"Tears on CKLW, and picked it up for distribution. They began selling the record in other parts of the country, and suddenly it took off.. The song was recorded in February of 66,and by October it was the #1 song in America!!
The band broke up, according to lead singer Robert Balderama, because it's anonymous lead singer Question Mark, was on an "ego trip"...Go Figure!!!! Rudy finally settled down on a farm on the outskirts of Flint Michigan, ( Home of Michael Moore and Galen Haynes) and had a dog-breeding business for years..But in January of 2007, a fire destroyed all his belongings and priceless memorabilia, and he was left with nothing!!..Soon afterwards, news of this tragedy swept across the airwaves, and local businesses and promoters have had several benefit concerts in his honor!!!..God I remember seeing these guys at a great local rock venue called Mt. Holly..I also remember riding my Motorcycle out there in 1968 to see a local guy named Bob Segar for $5.00..he happened to have the #1 song in America at that time called "Ramblin Gamblin Man"!!.....For $5.00....hahahahaha...OLD OLD OLD!!!.. Peace!


ann said...

I haven't actually read your post... I just saw no one else had commented yet which makes me ... NO.1

wooooooo hoooooooo

ann said...

okay now about the post... I like to listen to the latest and be with it with the kids...

the fact is that this wrinkly's ab fab fav songs this year are Snow Patrol and Goo Goo Dolls and I never confess to knowing a song the first time round

I just don't wanna play grown ups

G-Man said...

My Favorite British Vincent D'Onofrio Stalker!
Glad to see you sweetie
..And you are #1 in many Many ways my dear!!

Serena Joy said...

I remember Question Mark well. That song got a lot of play when I was in, like, the 8th grade. This is the first I've ever heard about who they were and their background, though. Interesting! As always. No wonder they call you Mr. Knowitall.:)

G-Man said...

8th grade? I'm thinking more about 1st grade...
My little crimson flower!

Little Wing said...

Bob Segar for five bucks??!!
Bob Segar rocks!
I hear that song '96 tears' a lot on the oldies stations. So was the poem version set to the same music it has now????
You Rock, Good on your beloved Michigan team!
Have a great ride Big Daddy!

MONA said...


lime said...

love the background on all these one hit wonders. well oldies may be relative but even my 12 yr old likes the stuff that i am technically to young to even like. yeah we are enigmas here.

barman said...

I tend to think of songs from the 60s when I think of oldies. Stuff like "Downtown" and "These Boots Are Made for Walking" both two of my favorites. I hated when they started calling songs from the 70s oldies.

Love your Musical Monday Memories. I always learn so much. 96 Tears... great song.

Rebicmel said...

Bob Segar wow now that is a man who can sing. Lighter shade of gray and Turn the page, Old time rock n roll songs that people could relate to and enjoy. Great post Galen and you didn't once visit pltttttttttt you jest to much.

girl under cover said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Snow White said...

Okay, G-Man... you've stumped me! I can't place this song, and I listen to a lot of oldies! I'm sure once I heard it I would recognize it... surely! I'll definitely be listening for it now! And as for Bob Seger- I love him! I have his second greatest hits CD in the changer right now, and I think I removed his first greatest hits to put it in there!

As usual, great post. You rock!

J Morgetron said...

It makes me a little sad when I hear stuff from my childhood being played on the oldies station. But ... time goes on. Time ... goes ... on.


evalinn said...

Have a great Monday, G-man!

Cazzie!!! said...

wow, Galen, another bloody awesome post mate..I heart these posts especially :)

snowelf said...

((Okay, the responsible adult in me is wondering why they didn't have some sort of insurance to cover them in case of fire... or did they have some sort of insurance and it just didn't cover everything...?))

But getting past that, what an interesting story!! And who wouldn't want to settle down next to the Dangerously Great Galen Haynes!! ;)

Happy Monday!!

Anonymous said...

Drew and Mike from WRIF spoke to him (?)several years ago and he was still being

SignGurl said...

You got to do all the cool stuff! My generation will never get to claim anything when it comes to music :(

I grew up on Bob Segar. His was the musical theme of my parents' lives.

G-Man said...

Hi Jadey!!
How's My Little Wing today?..No one rocks harder than you Baby!!

Ah Ah Ah Ah .....Stayin Alive!xoxomrxoxox

It just goes to show you that great music knows NO boundaries!!
Oh enigmatic one!!

No kiddin Bryan...
With me it was the 60's!!

Hi Baby, how was camping!! Missed you around here!

Hi Sweetie, can I stay after school?

Hi MORGY!!!!!!!

My beautiful Swedish Meatball..xoxoxox

Well your bloody awesome yourself baby!!!
Happy Anniversary again!!

For whatever reason, he did NOT have any insurance...sad!!
But I'm sure glad you stopped by here!
Have a great day ..xoxoxo

He is still a strange duck!!You can see him didly-boppin around town still wearin his shades!
He's conspicuous in his anonymity!!!

Now that really made me feel young!!

tsduff said...

"Come to Papa" is my favorite Segar tune. Now, lets dance: "Just take those old records off the shelf... I sit and listen to them all by myself... today's music ain't got the same soul - I like that old time rock and roll!!!!!!!

Wooo baby - can't help it.

96 Tears was such the "cool" song - I had no idea at all of the history behind the artist though. Thanks. What an interesting post. You just keep slinging them out - and we keep eating them up :)