A "SMASH ENTERTAINMENT MEDIA"/"REACH DIGITAL MANAGEMENT" COLLABORATION

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SMASH

BANDS

1967 TO PRESENT

1967 TO 1969  FRENCHIE & THE OUI-OUIS

1969 TO 1974   PURE FUNK

1974 TO 1976   ROADMASTER

1976 TO 1977   CHAMPION BAND

1982 TO 1988   SMASH BAND D.C.

1995 TO 1996   LEGENDARY FIREBIRDS
1997 TO  NOW   SMASH BAND ST. LOUIS

This is the first band, the first gig in October of 1967 in the cafeteria at Indianapolis Shortridge High School for our Junior Class Dance.  I was Jr. Class President and in charge of the event.  The school and faculty sponsors wouldn't give me any money to hire the band I wanted to hire ("The DelVados").  I gathered with these friends and fellow classmates.  We put together "The Oui-Ouis" and a ten song set and saved the dance.  From there a career/lifestyle was born.  L2R = Pat Nolan (Drums), Me (Young Smash), Steve Isenberg (Bass), Mike Read (Piano) and Fred Rice (sax).  Our friend Randy Bernstein (from North Central High School) joined later adding an extra keyboard with the Farfisa Organ.  I remember the Summer of '68 we were in the Indiana State Fair Battle Of The Bands.  We got to the Top 2...the Finals!  I think we performed "Hey Baby, They're Playing Our Song" by The Buckinghams and "Land Of 1000 Dances" by Cannibal and The Head Hunters.  I don't remember what our competitor band played but, they didn't have a keyboard, I remember that.  I don't even remember the band name.  I do remember that they had a blind accordionist.  The judges gave them the Battle Of The Bands win.  We had two keyboards with great musicians playing them...and we got beat by a band with a blind accordion player.  I was stunned, mad yet humbled.  A great life's lesson learned, though.  The initially percieved "handicap" was the accordion player's "blindness" but, instead, my assumptive take it for granted attitude was the real "handicap" here.  Again, a great life's lesson learned and carried on into adulthood.  The 60's...a great era to be in a great band like "Frenchie."      

THE FIRST BIZ CARD AND THE FIRST BAND!

THAT   WAS   HIGH   SCHOOL ...HERE  COMES  COLLEGE!

PURE FUNK  INDIANA UNIVERSITY  BLOOMINGTON   1969 to 1974

This was our "college band," an extension of "Frenchie & The Oui-Ouis," our high school band.  Along with the Rock & Roll, we were White guys playing the R&B, Funk and Soul music of the era.  We put it together just after our Freshman year at I.U.  Keyboardist Mike Read (classmate and fellow "Frenchie & The Oui-Ouis" band mate) was the maestro with the music.  Drummer Roger Holloway (a friend and classmate from Shortridge H.S.) and I handled the promotion, marketing, booking and business of the band.  Roger and I went and knocked on every sorority and frat house door...to every "student union" on every college campus in Indiana and most of the Midwest.  We worked it...and IT worked!  The music was right, with Mike and fellow Shortridge High Schooler Bill Fatout (Oat Willis) on Bass and fellow I.U. student Steve Pritchard (Dr. Titts) on guitar.  We built the combination into the premier college party band in the realm through musicianship, music choice

entertainment value and business savvy/hustle/application,   In our, years we had a number of different players.  Below are some views...

1972

Rob Swaynie (Guitar) & Me

1971

Smash/Mike Read/Bill Fatout/Kent Halladay (Guitar)/Roger Holloway & the first  band bus

ORIGINAL PURE FUNK  1969

ROADMASTER  BLOOMINGTON/INDIANAPOLIS   1974 TO 1976

As was "Pure Funk" the ultimate party band of it's day,
"Roadmaster" was the extention thereof.  Still partying, but now, we were into writing, producing and performing our own "original" music.  And we were still getting over big with the crowds.  In the formation of our "sound," Todd Rundgren was one who we looked up to.  We did immensely appreciate his music, his creativity...him.
We're playing at a big and magnificent Rock & Roll nightclub called "Reflections" in Cincinnati (1975?).  Rundgren was playing in whatever Cincy arena that night.  After his concert, who walks into our gig?  Yup!  At the time we were doing a Todd song in our repertoire titled "Slut."  In my debaucherous nature of the time, I had rewritten the song lyrics to depict a more "sensual" take on the tune.  Rundgren loved it.  He dug our originals too.  He invited us onto his tour bus at the end of the night.  In the back of the bus, I talked with him about the album we wanted to put out.  Asked him what it would take for him to produce it.  He offered to do three songs, one of which is our first "45" release above (which played on Dick Clark's "American Bandstand").  We took him up on his offer (at no charge!).  We all drove from Indianapolis to his home studio in Bearsville, New York in our Ford station wagon band car.  An amazing time/experience for us Indiana Hoosiers.

CHAMPION BAND INDIANAPOLIS   1976 TO 1977   

Following my firing/departure from the "Roadmaster" band, I was a man without a country (band).  In thebooking agency that I co-owned, we had a great "blue collar" Rock & Roll that we represented called "Jason Beckett."  These guys were a cross between Seger and Skynyrd.  A straight up strong rocking group of talented musicians, they didn't need me.  I thought I'd take a chance and make them a business proposal on me joining their band.  They bought the proposition.  We changed the name to "Champion" in that we were going to champion the music to "the masses."  I was honored (still am) that they would

take me in and provide me with a new musical home.  I booked us everywhere that I used to play with Roadmaster and the crowds loved the "grit" of the band.  I stayed about a year and a half and then was offered and I took the opportunity to get my first radio job at WNAP.  Like I said at the start, these guys didn't need me.  They went on to a great local and regional success on their own.

jason beckett

Snooky       DaMoan

SMASH BAND D.C.  WASHINGTON, D.C.  1982 TO 1988

     I started Smash Band in the nation's capital, first because I enjoyed "the band life," the music.  Along with that, this group was/is a prime promotional vehicle for the radio station as an entity and me as a public figure/community ambassador for that entity (DC-101).  Smash Band got to be big in D.C. because of the support of our employers, the station, my fellow "big boss jocks" and the D.C. music fans/followers.  And that came because those supporters saw smart music choices, strong performance capabilities, an on-site party to the max and an entertainment value provided like no other band of it's time could deliver in that D.C./Virginia/Maryland area. 

     Drummer, Thor Smith helped me start up the band.  Innovative keyboardist Chris Biondo joined up shortly thereafter.  Ward McClung brought in the bass thumpularity.  The spectacular Abaad Behram was/is as good as there do be.  The "Singing Swinging Smashettes" were born with the vocalistics and beauty brought by Martha Currie and Andrea McClung (Ward's wife).  On saxaphone, three greats covered that position in those years...Patti Knuckles, Bill Massey and

the extraordinary Tom Crawford.  The great thing about these musicians (like all I've been blessed to be with) is that beyond the personal mastery of their instruments, we all had a sense of humor that was easily integrated into giggin' on the fun side and the actual work side of it all.  We played all the great (and some of the seediest) bars, the most formal of wedding receptions, the coolest of concerts, we played rowdy Redskins football rallies.

LEGENDARY FIREBIRDS   INDIANAPOLIS  1995 TO 1996

     In the mid 90's, I returned to Indianapolis to get back on-the-air.  In that time, Dave Bennett (an old friend from back in the days of "Faith Band') asked me if I'd join up with his newest band "The Legendary Firebirds."  Dave is an astounding artist on the guitar.  I love his playing.  That invitation was  enhanced by the presence of my friend and musical favorite Dave Barnes on drums (also from "Faith Band").  Just from those two...I was all in.  Our first practice...Larry Abrams (Percussion), Mike Davis (Bass) and "The Fabulous Johnny Ray" (Blues Harp) joined us and a rockin' killer "White Boy Blues Band" was born.  The CD album next door has some great "Blues" music classics on it.  Songs like "300 lbs Of Heavenly Joy" (I weighed many more lbs back then), "Born In Chicago" and "Do The Hip Shake" make the CD move.  This was a ferocious and driving band.  I eventually wound up moving back to St. Louis and started up the next Smash Band.  Leaving this group was tough.

Smash     Mike   Benny     Johnny     Barnsey   Larry

SMASH BAND  ST. LOUIS 1997 TO NOW

This has been a dream band for me.  We got up to twelve pieces at one point.  The instrumentation, musicianship and vocalizing make it possible for us do do any kind of music.  From Skynyrd to Sinatra, we cover it all.  From GaGa to Aretha, we cover it all.  From The Temptations to The Doors, we cover it all.  From Tim McGraw to Faith Hill, we cover it all.  From the Charlie Daniels Band to the Zac Brown Band, we cover it all.  From KC & The Sunshine Band to Donna Summer, we cover it all.  We cover it all and have covered it all because of the talents of the excellent folksright here: 

Ronni

Jenni

Moser

 

Alexis                          Sophia        Rhonda
Anthony                       Mullegan     Cathay

Charity
Briles

Susan
Davis

Elle Rogers

Pam
Camp

Tiffany Glasco

Ronni Gregory

Tess Boyer

Grant Texier

So above...All the girls (discounting me, Grant and Billy) in Smash Band St. Louis over the 20 years (and still running strong).  Each lady brought an individual, unique and special personality, beauty, talent, appeal and application to the delivery of their role in the scheme of things that always resulted in "Smash Band...Bringing The Party."  Along with that truth, every singer every where knows that you have nothing to sing if you don't have the right musicians/band giving you the back up, the strength to "put it out there" for the party purposes that the gig has called you for.  The men of the music: 

Billy
Barnett

Joe Turek

Randy

Blatterman

Isaac Benrubi

Scott Patterson

Steve Bivens

Kenny Smith

Preston
Vaden

Stan Hale

Mike Fallert

Herman Semidey, Jr.

Gian Vianello

Ray Vollmar

John Feltner

Wally Davis

Rich

Wilfong

Mark
Huth

Bill
Sextro

Tony Jacobs

SHYTOWER EVENT AUDIO

Ron Carr
BRYAN PETERS
SOUND
JERRY BOSCHERT
SOUND

 12 YEARS THE OFFICIAL RAMS TAILGATE PARTY BAND!

Rams QB 
Kurt Warner

Rams

Stadium Announcer

& Production Voice...

The Smash

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