Thursday, November 15, 2012
THEE MIDNITERS REHEARSE AT THE HOME OF EDDIE TORRES
Arguably, the best band to come out of the East Los Angeles area was Thee Midniters. The complex story of Thee Midniters can not be told without first touching upon the life and contributions of their producer, promoter & manager, Eddie Torres.
Eddie Torres was born and raised in Texas and after a stint in the Marine Corp he relocated to California.
Eddie attended East Los Angeles College and majored in sociology. Upon graduation Eddie took on a job working with gang members and potential gang members to keep them out of trouble.
As part of his plan in helping gang members, Eddie began promoting dances with local bands. At a dance held at St Alonsos Church in East Los Angeles, Eddie met a band called The Fabulous Gentiles. Impressed by the band Eddie urged them to change their name. They became Thee Midniters (taken from one of their favorite groups Hank Ballard & The Midnighters).
Eddie became the groups manager and arranged concerts for the band while giving them discipline and direction. The band would do as many as four shows a night traveling great distances between performances and their popularity grew.
To promote the band, Torres contacted Mike Carcano, owner of The Record Inn on Whittier Boulevard who showcased the band's record releases by holding in-store appearances. While the rest of the world was caught up in Beatlemania, Eddie Torres in East Los Angeles, California was giving rise to Midnitersmania.
In December, 1965 Eddie booked Thee Midniters to a major concert held at the Hollywood Bowl and hosted by Casey Kasem and radio station KRLA. The band also got exposure on local television shows Shebang and 9th Street West.
In 1966, Torres started his own record label, Whittier Records to further promote the band and their music. Thee Midniters were now the hottest band in town but Eddie wanted them to get them to the next level. He urged them to start writing their own songs which under major presuure they did.
The only thing missing was a record deal with a major record label and national exposure. Eddie contended that his Whittier label would become as big as another local record label, A&M Records but try as he might Eddie could never achieve that success.
RCA Records became interested in signing the band but a deal was never made. The band has their side of the story and Eddie has his. Whether Torres didn't want to lose control of the band and sabatoged any deal or the fact that RCA didn't want to give Torres or the band any upfront money for their album "Love Sprecial Delivery" is up for discussion.
The RCA debacle maked the beginning of the end of the relationship between Eddie and the band. Eddie officially departed in late 1968.
Eddie did not leave the music business. He would go on to promote other Chicano musicians including Mark Guerrero. The importance and impact of Eddie Torres on the East Los Angeles music scene can not be over emphasized. He gave us the best band to ever come out of East L.A...... Thee Midniters.
NO COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT INTENDED!!!!
Soley for historical & educational purposes.
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
The Southern Soul Spinners take their vinyl road show to the VFW in the City Of Industry, CA this Saturday, November 10, 2012. DJ's Ruben Molina & Soulera 5150 host a soul & funk dance and food drive. Show starts at 5 P.M. Be There!!