was a collective name for Crest Records' in-house group of songwriters
& musicians - Ray Stanley (piano), Jack Lewis (guitar) and Dale
Fitzsimmons (bass). Their name appeared on a few singles by Jack Lewis,
Lynn Marshall and Bonnie Paul. The only '45 which was entirely credited
to them was Crest #1019, coupling 'Old
Friends' with 'My Honest Name', the latter song written by Stanley,
Fitzsimmons and Jerry Capehart. Although Eddie Cochran did record
a demo of the song (which sounds more like a patriotic chant than
anything else !), it is unclear whether he actually sings or plays
on the released record. Probably not.
Thankfully, Eddie does not appear either on 'Teenage Goodnight' (the
flip of Crest #1025) or on 'Chickadee
Waltz' (b-side of Crest
#1035), two pieces of crap. But he DOES sing background vocals
on the wonderful 'Butterscotch
Candy And Strawberry Pie' (the
main side of Crest #1025).
see under both Jack Lewis,
Lynn Marshall & Ray Stanley for more info and photos in the tables
on the next pages.
Also, check out my pages devoted to The
Crest Records Story.
Good looking John Ashley is best known as an
actor who had roles of varying importance in several rock'n'roll films
between 1958 and 1968. He became a regular fixture in most of the
American-International 'beach party'-type movies of the '60s, home
of the ubiquitous Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon !
He was Johnny in 'Bikini Beach', one of those tripes from
'64, which featured
good tracks by Little Stevie Wonder and The Pyramids. The next year,
he starred in both 'Beach Blanket Bingo', where Donna Loren sang,
and 'How To Stuff A Wild Bikini', with music by the excellent Kingsmen
(of 'Louie, Louie' fame). 1967 saw him appear in 'Hell On Wheels'
(along with Marty Robbins) and 'Hell's Playground' (also called 'Riot
At Lauderdale'). However, his best moment was certainly as John Abernathy
The Third in an earlier and legendary American-International picture
from 1958 titled 'Hot Rod Gang' (re-titled 'Fury Unleashed' and severely
amputated for the UK market). Legendary because it also featured Gene
Vincent & His Blue Caps
Since Ashley was under contract with Jerry Capehart, there's an Eddie
here. Eddie and future members of The Kelly Four accompany John on
two rockers he sings
in the movie, namely 'Annie Laurie' and
'Hit & Run Lover'. Ashley also sang
'Believe Me' (without Eddie) which, like
the others, was not issued commercially.
Eddie also provided fine guitar backing to an early, unissued version
of 'Born To Rock' (predating the one
issued on Dot 15775 in May '58 with 'Pickin' On The Wrong Chicken'
on the flip ; this single does not feature Cochran but a full band
directed by Milton Rogers) and three more unissued rocking tunes :
'Don't Let Them Tear Us Apart',
'Mean Mean Woman' and the piano-led 'I
Can't Let You Go' which Eddie even produced. The latter track
first appeared (master take #11, in stereo and with studio chat) on
RockStar CD, 'L.
A. Sessions' (RSRCD
It's quite possible that Eddie Daniels should
be the piano player on it.
Ashley tried hard on all those 'big beat' sides but he's not really
convincing, this being probably the reason why they weren't released
at the time. His voice is therefore better suited to softer songs
such as the following, the only two sides produced by Jerry Capehart
and involving Eddie Cochran which were indeed issued on the Silver
label (an offshoot of Crest Records) in 1959, though they were waxed
in September of the previous year :
SL-0005 Seriously In Love
SL-0006 I Want
To Hear It From You
And what a fabulous 2-sider it is ! The top
side, 'Seriously In Love', comes from the always fertile pen of Johnny
Burnette ; that doo-woppish rock-a-ballad features Eddie Cochran on
guitar (probably both electric and acoustic) and has John singing
against a vocal backdrop by...The Four Dots !
The other side was written by Bill & Doree Post (of 'Weekend'
fame) ; a ballad with a girlie chorus, it is sung delicately by Ashley
with Eddie playing electric guitar and has a sort of 'Think Of Me'
feel about it.
This record is a typical slice of Hollywood 'teen sound' but of the
One of my top fifty favorite singles.
John's other Silver single (# 45-1005) does not feature Eddie but
is quite good too. 'One Love', written by Jerry Capehart, was later
recorded by the mysterious Eddie Donno on Jerry's own label. Sung
by Ashley to a simple acoustic guitar accompaniment, one wonders if
it wasn't only intended as a demo. 'The Cry Of The Wild Goose' was
an old Terry Gilkyson composition that Tennessee Ernie Ford had cut
way back in 1949. It was certainly selected because it was another
American Music copyright (the parent company to both Crest and Silver
Records) ; nonetheless, John sings it at a breakneck tempo over a
bright, effective guitar backing, with constant changes of key.
Other singles on Dot (#15878, 'Let The Good Times Roll' b/w 'My Story',
1958) and Intro (#6097, 'Let Yourself Go-Go-Go' b/w 'Bermuda', cut
at Radio Recorders on May 31, 1957) have no Cochran involvement, nor
does the one on Capehart (#5006). 'I Need Your Lovin' and 'Little
Lou' were both penned by Eddie Daniels with Jerry Capehart but although
Eddie Cochran had cut a fantastic demo of the latter (issued posthumously
in Europe), he does not play on Ashley's brassy version.
Sadly, John Ashley passed away in 1997. All the above tracks (and
more !) were collected on the 'Born To Rock'
2-CD set put out in 2001 by the German label, Hydra (BCK
& DORSEY BURNETTE
The great Johnny Burnette needs no real introduction
; a full appreciation of his career will soon appear elsewhere on my
Being such a good friend of Gene Vincent, Ricky Nelson, Sharon Sheeley
and of course Eddie Cochran inevitably led Johnny to use Eddie on a
number of recordings not yet clarified as of 2006.
One thing for sure, their collaboration began when Liberty launched
its first subsidiary, Freedom Records, during the summer of 1958. Jerry
Capehart was hired as A&R man and one of the first artists to be
signed was Johnny Burnette, whose name was mis-spelt Johnny Burnett
(without the final 'e') on Freedom's very first release. 'Kiss Me' b/w
'I'm Restless' (F-44 001) should have been a smash but it sank almost
without a trace. Who played on those tracks remains unknown although
Eddie might be the guitar player on 'I'm Restless'. Or is it
Joe Maphis who had already played on The Brothers' magnificent Imperial
'45 ('Warm Love' b/w 'My Honey', Imperial #5509) ? And who drums so
ferociously on 'Kiss Me ?
Johnny Burnette's second Freedom '45 coupled two highly original
tunes from different sessions :
And The Bear
Interestingly enough, a copy of this single was found in Eddie's own
record collection !
'Gumbo' may have been cut at the 'I'm Restless' date and although
it's never been ascertained, I'm one of many who think that Eddie plays
guitar on it - using effects not too dissimilar to those he employed
on 'Scratchin' for instance. In return, there's not any doubt as to
Eddie's presence on the other song, the noisy, sax-led, story-telling
'Me & The Bear' : the session sheets have been found and
indicate that Eddie, Joe Maphis, Connie 'Guybo' Smith, Plas Johnson,
Ray Johnson and Earl Palmer all played on that December 11, 1958, recording
date held at Gold Star Studios. What's more, Burnette and the band cut
three more songs - all Jerry Capehart compositions - for which, ALAS,
the tapes have been lost or destroyed :
FR-117 The Table
Eddie was not involved in Johnny's last Freedom single (another fabulous
platter coupling 'Sweet Baby Doll' b/w 'I'll Never Love Again', F-44
017) but he did play on another totally unissued (at the time) session
which took place at Gold Star on August 25-26-27, 1959, a decidedly
busy and productive period for Eddie Cochran.
Five tracks were committed to tape : Ballad Of
The One Eyed Jacks (Johnny would re-cut it in
February '61), You're Cheatin' On Me, Blue
School Days, Just Keep On Goin'
and Just A Memory. They first appeared,
complete with false starts and overdubs for 'You're Cheatin' On Me',
on another Hydra CD, 'Johnny & Dorsey Burnette
- Rock & Roll Tonight' (BCK 27110).
of course, in 2002, the legendary and exemplary Bear Family label put
out the definitive box set on Johnny Burnette : 'The
Train Kept A-Rollin' - Memphis To Hollywood' (BCD
16438), a 9-CD spectacular ! All the above
songs are featured plus just about everything Johnny cut for Von, Coral,
Imperial, Freedom, Liberty, Chancellor, Infinity, Reprise, Capitol and
Magic Lamp, the icing on the cake being the inclusion of more than a
hundred demo recordings.
Johnny's brother, Dorsey Burnette, was another
talented writer and singer, with a huskier voice. He cut several solo
sides for Imperial in 1959, one of which most certainly features
Eddie Cochran on rhythm guitar : a medium, chugging, hypnotic rocker
called 'Misery' (Imperial 5597, b/w 'Lonely
Train'), recorded on April 13, 1959. James Burton plays lead guitar.
All of Dorsey's Imperial recordings were collected on a RockStar CD
from 1994, 'The Burnette Brothers' (RSRCD
The role that Missouri-born
Jerry Neal Capehart played in Eddie Cochran's
career is ambiguous - and one could easily draw a parallel with Norman
Petty's guidance of Buddy Holly's career. In the mid-fifties, Jerry
decided to seek fortune in the country music field and began writing
songs. He met Eddie Cochran at a music store in Bell Gardens while
Eddie was still part of The Cochran Brothers and hooked up with them
in order to cut some demos.
ROCKSTAR RSR-EP 2010
Closer, Closer, Closer
A Healer Like Time
These were two of the earliest examples of their collaboration.
It was already apparent that Jerry was not really a singer, a fact
which became evident when he secured a one-off record deal with John
Dolphin and somehow tried his hand at the new shakin' music with the
mythical single :
1021-A Walkin' Stick
Eddie and Hank on guitars, the backing band was Ernie Freeman's,
with Ernie himself on paino.
easily stole the show with his inventive guitar breaks but the record
At this early stage, however, there's no denying the entrepreneurial
skills of Jerry Capehart : proof is, a deal with American Music,
a huge publishing house, followed in the early months of 1956. More
demos were cut, mostly at Gold Star Studios with Eddie and Hank
on guitars plus Connie 'Guybo' Smith on bass fiddle, up to the time
of Eddie's first solo single on Crest.
These are the ones on which Capehart sang, first published by RockStar
ROCKSTAR RSR-LP 1009
That's What It Takes To Make A Man
ROCKSTAR RSR-EP 2010
Of A Fool
ROCKSTAR RSR-EP 2003
ROCKSTAR RSRCD 010
This Must Be The
What It Takes...' is probably
Jerry's best vocal, with sumptuous Chet Atkins-style backing from
Ed who shines again on 'Heart Of A Fool' with a perfect rockabilly
solo. 'Latch On' had already been cut twice by The Cochran Brothers
with Hank Cochran on lead vocal. They had a third go at it, Bill
Haley-style this time, at the 'Skinny Jim' session - with Capehart's
Hank Cochran split, Capehart took Eddie under his wing and soon
became his manager & producer. Capehart was undoubtedly a good
songwriter (as Bob Denton has rightly pointed out in interviews)
but he knew nothing about record production.
I guess he learned a lot from both Stan Ross (at Gold Star Studios)
and from Eddie himself.
He nonetheless contributed to shaping Eddie's style and sound over
In August 1958, Jerry released a 'novelty' single under the pseudonym,
Jerry Neal, the top side of which was a fabulous Cochran instro
MW-11602 I Hates
The flip was probably (and fortunately) the
last song ever sung by Jerry ! But in that 'novelty' context,
and with crack accompaniment by Eddie, Earl Palmer and Plas Johnson,
it worked OK.
Some, like Ray Stanley, thought Capehart was
'in for the quick buck' (that's what he told me in 1987). Indeed,
Jerry strived to find a replacement for Eddie after his death and
even issued a record under his own name featuring
another Cochran instrumental, at first cleverly titled 'The Fourth
Man Theme' :
Song Of New-Orleans
The Young And Blue
By the end of 1959, Eddie's relationship with Jerry had soured considerably.
Capehart had taken on too many other commitments and certainly
couldn't concentrate on Eddie's career. There was also the fact
that Snuff Garrett had put horrible strident strings on 'Hallelujah,
I Love Her So', perhaps with Jerry's complicity. Plus,
Eddie's pals were not Jerry's, and vice versa. Consequently, Jerry
did not participate in Eddie's last recording session (January 8,
1960) and didn't go with him to England afterwards.
But he co-wrote top class material with Eddie and undoubtedly helped
him get off the ground and find his own way.
for a complete listing of Jerry Capehart's compositions.
Casey was a major figure on the Arizona and Los Angeles
recording scenes of the '50s a nd '60s. A top
flight guitar player, with a highly distinctive style, he
was also prominent on just about any other stringed instrument - including
the piano. His classic guitar licks appear on countless Duane Eddy,
Jody Reynolds, Loy Clingman and Sanford Clark cuts but he's best remembered
for his stellar work on Sanford's 'The Fool' in 1956 (M.C.I #1003,
then Dot #15481). He released a handful of solo singles in the '50s,
notably 'A Fool's Blues' b/w 'Juice' (Dot #15524, in November '56)
and '(Got The) Teenage Blues' b/w 'Give'n Up' (Highland #1002). In
'62 and '63, he cut a clutch of great surfin' singles on the Stacy
label (for instance 'Surfin' Blues' b/w 'Guitars, Guitars, Guitars',
Stacy #964) with some success ; the label even issued a very rare
album by him, 'Surfin' Hootenanny' (Stacy #100, in September 1963),
pressed on mottled green vinyl.
All the while, he played on sessions for established as well as obscure
artists, such as Don Cole ('Snake Eyed Mama' b/w 'Kiss Of Love', RPM
#502). Interestingly, the rockin' top side of that record features
Al on piano. A piano sound which is also present on the following
Al Casey solo single (cut at Gold Star Studio B in late '57), one
of particular interest to all of us because it does feature Eddie
Cochran on guitar.
45-LB-804 Willa Mae
45-LB-805 She Gotta
discographies state that Eddie plays rhythm guitar on the excellent
rocker, 'Willa Mae'. Al Casey himself confirmed Eddie's presence 'on
electric rhythm guitar'. The only problem is, there is indeed a second
guitar but it's an acoustic one ! To me, Al sings and plays piano
on this track while Eddie plays LEAD guitar. If you listen closely
to the solo, it begins as pure Casey but ends as pure Cochran. In
Sue Van Ecke's & Bobby Cochran's book, 'Three Steps To Heaven',
Jody Reynolds confirms that Eddie DID play the solo, using a '$39
box tremolo by DeArmond that had a vial of mercury in it that bobbed
up and down to electric impulse'.
The flip, 'She Gotta
Shake', is a typical Phoenix-style instrumental - funky and reverb-heavy
on the guitar - with some vocal interjections by Casey. Apparently,
Eddie is not involved. But the story doesn't end there.
Its basic track was overdubbed with sax and vocal background a few
months later and became the flip side of 'Ramrod', another Al Casey
instro which was issued as Duane Eddy's third Jamie single (#1109)
during the summer of 1958.
Around the same time, Eddie Cochran was playing on sessions with a
vocal group, The Four Dots (see table on the next page). One of the
songs, 'Bread Fred', has an almost identical
backing track in terms of melody line. Did Eddie remember the tune
from the session itself ? Or was it some kind of arrangement with
Al Casey since he had played lead on his record ? I'd like to know.
- MIKE CLIFFORD
don't have much on Mike Clifford whose career
seems to have lasted pretty long and who had a top twenty hit in the
US with 'Close To Cathy' (UA #489, late '62).
Having previously been with Columbia, he went on to record for Cameo,
Sidewalk, Air and American International. He also sang 'The Golden Breed',
the title song to the movie of the same name (a Sidewalk production
from 1967 about 'the world's best surfers, their girls and their action
- in and out of the Big Surf !') whose excellent soundtrack appears
on a scarce Capitol album (ST 2886).
But his career began in 1959 with two singles on the Liberty label,
the first of which featured Eddie Cochran on guitar !
45-LB-988 Whisper, Whisper
a 1989 interview with Alan Clark, Mike Clifford recalled that his producer,
Mark McIntyre, was friendly with Eddie and asked him to play on 'Should
I', a lightweight rocker co-written by J. Bachelor and R. Stephens (not
the Larry Bright song of the same name on Highland #1052). Clifford
explained that he was not present when the backing track was laid down
and only met Eddie a bit later at the mixing session. He must have been
proud of the results because Eddie's stinging guitar work
really saved the disc, which saw Mike backed up vocally by Patience
& Prudence on both sides !
Mike Clifford's other Liberty release (#55219) coupled the standard,
'I Don't Know Why', with a song co-written by Mark Mc Intyre,
'I'm Afraid To Say I Love You', which sounds like a rip-off of both
'Poor Little Fool' and 'Teenager In Love' ! Not bad, though, but it's
clear that the Liberty management was looking for their own Fabian or
Frankie Avalon !
Man Who Made An Angel Cry
- JUNE COCHRAN
I Dream Of You
- The COCHRAN BROTHERS
- EDDIE DANIELS
Oh Little Girl
- DARLA DARET
DAVIS * Click
on Bo's link for all details !
Z Drownin' All My Sorrows
on Don's link for a full story & discography!
45-HN-135 My Blind Date
45-HN-133 Even Then
Rockin' & Flyin'
Ya Gonna Do
45-LB-871 Gonna Build A Rocket
H4PW-3958 Climb Love Mountain
My Mind Again
MW-9663 Always Late
Me So I'll Know
MW-9926 I'm Sending You This Record
CM-1101 Thinkin' About You
Sick & Tired
Nothin' To Me
CA 5003 One
CA 5004 Rough Stuff
Jammin' With Jimmy
Steelin' The Blues
Two Of A Kind
Chuck & Eddie's Boogie
In The Mood
I'll See You In My Dreams