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Wednesday, September 21, 2011


The Story Tellers were (left) Ruben Ochoa - bass & baritone, (center) Nick Delgado - first tenor & lead, (right) Al Sanchez - second tenor & lead and (not pictured) Sal Delgado - second tenor & bass. Ruben, Nick & Al were part of the high school glee club.
  They started as a group called The Pretenders while attending San Gabriel Mission High School in 1958. Ruben Ochoa && Al Sanchez were cousins.
  Norty Beckman, owner of Norty's Records on Faifax Avenue in Los Angeles heard the group singing at a gig in Long Beach signed them to a contract & changed their name to The Story Tellers.
  In 1959 the group recorded "You Played Me A Fool" and "Hey Baby". The record was first released on the Zenith label (Zenith 101) and the on the Stack label (Stack 501). At the same recording session they also backed Jess Davis & the Flashes and Freddy Flynn & The Flashes on their recordings. The record got a lot of local air play on late night shows & today is a highly sought-after record by collectors.

You May Hear The Story Tellers "You Played Me A Fool" Here:

According to Al Sanchez, they had wanted to record a remake of The Rivileers' "A Thousand Stars," but Beckman nixed the idea. Not long afterward, the song was a major hit for Kathy Young & The Innocents.

The group reunited in 1990 to record three singles for Bruce Patch's Classic Artists label. The are some of the finest doo wop tracks to come out of the Los Angeles area.

The first single was "Please Remember My Love" and "Gee But I Like Your Smile" Classic Artists 118

You May Listen To The Story Tellers "Please Remember My Love" Here:

You May Listen To The Story Tellers "Gee But I Like Your Smile" Here:

In 1991 they recorded the second single "Heaven's For Real" and "This Is Goodbye" Classic Artists 128

You May Listen To The Story Tellers "Heaven's For Real" Here:

In 1992 The Story Tellers recorded their third single "Heart For Heart" and "The L.A. Shuffle" Classic Artists 133

You May Listen To The Story Tellers "Heart For Heart" Here:

You May Listen To The Story Tellers "The L.A. Shuffle" Here:

The three Story Tellers 45's on Classic Artists are also available on red wax.

In 2007 the Story Tellers recorded "Rosie", a tribute to Rosie Hamlin of Rosie & The Originals for a benefit concert in her honor.

You may listen to The Story Tellers "Rosie" on the Color Radio web site here:


Soley for historical, educational and listening pleasure.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


The Eastside Sound comes to Anaheim, California this Saturday night, September 24, 2011 featuring three of East LA's finest acts. Tierra, El Chicano & Thee Midniters take the stage at the House Of Blues. It will certainly be a night to remeber and a show you won't want to miss. Re-live the music & memories of a day gone by with the Latin Legends Live.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


The Eastside Sound can be heard once again at Nick's Taste Of Texas in Covina, California on September 17, 2011 as they celebrate Mexico's Independence with a show headlined by Ersi Arvisu and The Sisters.

Come & join in on the sights & sounds of East LA. Nick's Taste Of Texas is a great vevue for a show. Great Texas style food, beer & all your favorite adult beverages. Large floor to dance the night away. It's a show you won't want to miss.

I have tried to do my posts in somewhat of a chronological order but I will deviate a little with this post in honor of The Sisters appearance at Nick's.

The Sisters are a vocal trio made up of Ersi, Rosella and Mary Arvisu. They grew up in East Los Angeles, California. Their parents were musical performers and The Sisters would accompany them on some of their gigs to sing. As they learned to sing R&B they became known as the Eastside's answer to Motown's Supremes. They were also influenced by Martha & The Vandellas and The Ronettes.

  Rosella was discovered singing at a high school show by manager/producer Billy Cardenas. She told Billy that she had two sisters. The group became part on The Romancers stage show & also recorded with the band, The Blue Satins.

  Billy Cardenas took the girls to Bill Keane at Del-Fi Records and in 1964 they recorded "Gee Baby Gee', (a cover of the song the Butterfly's recorded for Red Bird) and "All Grown Up" (A cover of The Crystals hit).  (Del-Fi 4300) "Gee Baby Gee" became an instant Eastside classic.

You May Listen To The Sisters "Gee Baby Gee" Here:

You May Listen To The Sisters "All Grown Up" Here:

Their next single also recorded in 1964 was "Ooh Poo Pa Do" and "Happy New Year Baby" (Del-Fi 4302). On this single they were backed by the band, Ronnie & The Casuals. "Ooh Poo Pa Do" was a smash hit for Jesse Hill in 1960.

You May Listen To The Sisters "Ooh Poo Pa Doo" Here:

You May Listen To The Sisters "Happy New Year Baby" Here:

Their third and last record "Wait Till My Bobby Gets Home" ( cover of the Darlene Love smash hit) and "For Sentimental Reasons" (in my opinion The Sisters best recording) (Del-Fi 4306) was also the final release for the label.

You May Listen To The Sisters "Wait Til My Bobby Gets Home" Here:

You May Listen To The Sisters "For Sentimental Reasons" Here:

Also in 1964 The Sisters would record a song that was never released, "His Name Was John". You may listen to this track here:

All of The Sisters released music can be found on the CD "Del-Fi Girl Groups: Gee Baby Gee" (DFCD 71266). I highly recommend you purchasing their truly fine compact disc.

Here is a rare photograph of The Sisters performing in the mid-1960's:

After thier third single the group would break-up. In 1969, Ersi Arvisu would join a band called the VIP's which would later become El Chicano. Ersi would sing on El Chicano's second Album, "Revolution" the classic Mexican standard "Sabor A Mi". Her version of "Sabor A Mi" would become an Eastside classic and my favorite version of the tune.

You May Listen To El Chicano (Featuring Ersi Arvisu) "Sabor A Mi" Here:


Soley for historical, educational and listening pleasure.

Friday, September 9, 2011


Roberto Avant-Mier is Associate Professor in the Department of Communication, University of Texas, El Paso. His research focuses on the discursive construction of Latino/a identity(ies) as well as cultural issues in popular music and other media. In addition to research on Latino/as and rock music (in various sub-genres), other forthcoming research focuses on rap music and world music.
  In his book "Rock The Nation Latin/O Identities And The Rock Diaspora", author Roberto Avant-Mier looks at the Latino influence in many of rock's genres including the Eastside Sound, Tex-Mex, Hard Rock & even rap.
Here is a review fron the GoodReads website:
This is an alternative history of rock music, from a Latino/Hispanic perspective, which focuses on the story of the rock genre with an emphasis on identity politics. "Rock the Nation" amounts to a first-time-ever scholarly study of Latino/Hispanic identity through an examination of the history of rock 'n' roll music by linking Latin Rock from the U.S. with Latin Rock music from Latin America. As the author argues, the developments of both U.S.-based Latin Rock music and non-U.S. Latin Rock illuminate several contemporary issues and reveal interesting paradoxes with regard to identity politics (e.g., language, culture, race, class, gender and nationality). Music in Spanish has been used to resist English and the imposition of mainstream U.S. culture in general; yet for Latin Americans, singing in English and adopting U.S. popular culture has allowed youth to resist the hegemonic nationalisms of their own countries (i.e., countering notions of U.S. cultural imperialism). Therefore, in both U.S.- Latin Rock and Latin American Rock music, the rock 'n' roll genre reveals how Latino/a youth use rock music for achieving assimilation to mainstream culture(s) at the same time that they resist the hegemony of dominant culture(s).
I have just recently purchased this book and will be back with my own review after I give it a good read.
Soley for historical, educational and listening pleasure.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


Doug Salma (Salamanca) and Freddy Ruiz were junior high school students at Mountain View Junior High School in El Monte, California in the late 1950's. They had written a song called "Wedding Ring" and recorded a demo. They took the demo to Johnny Otis who was a disc jockey on radio station KALI. A dispute arose over the song's publishing rights and iy was never released.
  The duo was approached by Sugar Hall, wife of guitarist Rene Hall who took a demo tape to Rod Pierce and Jake Levy who owned Rendevous Records. In 1959, their first release would be "A Lover's Plea" and "I Believe In Love". The two tracks are very nice "teen" sounds. The record would lead to a number of local appearances at El Monte Legion Stadium with Ritchie Valens and Little Julian Herrera also on the bill.

You May Listen To Doug & Freddy "A Lover's Plea" and "I Believe In Love" Here:

  In 1961 Doug Salma met producer Kim Fowley who would release Doug & Freddy's next single "Need Your Love" and "Campus Girl" on the K&G label (K&G 100). At the session they would be backed by the local band Pat & The Panics (Pat Patensio). Again two very nice "teen" sounds

In 1962 Fowley release "Itty Bitty Girl" and "Darling It's Wonderful" on the Old Sound label (Old Sound 809). by Salma & Ruiz but under the name of The Memories. "Itty Bitty Girl" had been recorded at the "Wedding Ring" demo session and "Darling It's Wonderful" was a remake of the 1957 hit by The Lovers. The backing band was Bill Destro & The Destinies. A special thank you to my dear friend in Ireland, RossyBoy for sending me this valuable record to add to my collection.

In 1961 Doug & Freddy would record with an intrumental group called The Pyramids and produced by Gary Paxton.  The teen doo wop tunes "Take A Chance On Love" and "And I Know You're Lyin'" would be released on the Finer Arts label (Finer Arts 101) . The record was released twice, one label showing a Hollywood address and the other a Denver, Coloroado origin.

You May Listen To Doug & Freddy "Take A Chance On Love" Here:

In 1963 Doug & Freddy backed Johnny Flamingo on "I Just Cry" and "Is It A Dream"

You May Listen To Johnny Flamingo "I Just Cry" Here:

You May Listen To Johnny Flamingo "Is It A Dream" Here:

Shortly thereafter, Doug & Freddy would split up.

In 1964 Doug Salma teamed up with Richard Berry & his wife Dorothy & became The Tri-Tones. They would release "Tear Drops" and "Everytime I Think Of You" an the Miss Julie label (Miss Julie 6501). The tunes are classic doo wop.

You May Listen To The Tri-Tones "Tear Drops" Here:

You May Listen To The Tri-Tones "Everytime I Think Of You" Here:

Later in 1964, The Tri-Tones backed Doug Stevens on "Summer's A Comin" and "You're Gonna Be Sorry" for the Miss Julie label (Miss Julie 6503).


Many thanks to my good friend and fellow collector from across the pond, RossyBoy for providing the scans for The Memories 45.


Soley for historical, educational & listening pleasure.


                 (Photos courtesy of Renee (Gordy's daughter)

The Perez Brothers were the Hispanic duo of Ralph "Gordy" Perez and Louie Perez. They hailed from Canoga Park, California. On their 1963 recording of "(At Night) Dream A Little Dream" and "I'm Truly Truly Yours" the brothers were backed by the group, The Gents.

Louie "Donsi" Perez (vocals,bass)
Raplh "Gordy" Perez (vocals, drums)
Danny Rosales (keyboards)
Gil Rocha (vibes)
Sal Barragan (sax)
Phil Barragan (trumpet)
Gil Luna (trumpet)
Dick Lowe (trumpet)
Walter Takate (trumpet)

  The single was funded by Ofie Martinez, a woman who broadcast a radio show from the San Fernando valley and also ran a record shop in Pacoima. The single was released on the Ofie label (Ofie 200) and on the Wolfie label (Wolfie 103).
  "(At Night) Dream A Little Dream is a remake of a tune by Fred Parris & The New Yorkers. "I'm Truly Truly Yours" is a remake of a Robert & Johnny tune.

The single caught on quickly in the Los Angeles area & the duo performed at many venues such as the Monebello Ball Room, the Shrine Auditorium and the El Monte Legion Stadium. They were also featured on several televison dance shows including Larry McCormick's "Kicksville".

  Both "Dream A Little Dream" and "Truly Truly Yours" are Eastside Classics.

You May Listen To The Perez Brothers "Dream A Little Dream" Here:

You May Listen To The Perez Brothers "I'm Truly Truly Yours" Here:

Photo courtesy of Gilbert Rocha


Soley for historical, educational and listening pleasure.


Thursday, September 1, 2011


Manuel Chavez and Herman "Sonny" Chaney were original members of the vocal group The Jaguars (see my post from July 4,2011) before they began recording as a duo.
  In 1959 and recording under the name Frankie & Johnny they cut "My First Love" and "Do You Love Me" for John Marascalco on the Sabrina label (Sabrina 331) It would be re-issued on the Liberty label in 1960 (Liberty 55271).

"My First Love" is an Eastside classic and fine doo wop ballad.

You May Listen To Frankie & Johnny "My First Love" Here:

You May Listen To Frankie & Johnny "Do You Love Me" Here:

In 1960 Chavez & Chaney would record "Be My Love" and Picadilly Rose" for producer Tony Hilder on the Spry label (Spry 122) under their own names.

" Be My Love" would be re-issued as "Please Be My Love Tonight" with overdubbed strings (Blast Off 100) and again credited to Frankie & Johnny.

You May Listen To Frankie & Johnny "Please Be My Love Tonight" Here:

You May Listen To Chavez & Chaney AKA Frankie & Johnny "Picadilly Rose" Here:

Frankie & Johnny "Do You Love Me" and Chavez & Chaney "Picadilly Rose" are available on the CD The Jaguars "The Way You Look Tonight" (Earth Angel Records)

In 1960 Manny Chavez would form a group called the Sevilles and record an Eastside classic "Charlena" The group included Johnny White & Charles Wright of The Shields, Tommy "Buster" Williams of the Turks and Johnny Morisette of The Medallions.

You May Listen To The Sevilles "Charlena" Here:

You will find more information on the group, The Sevilles and their subsequent recordings at the Color Radio website found here:


Soley for historical, educational and listening pleasure.