Sunday, March 28, 2010

Junior Sollars and the Story of the Creepers

I'm pretty sure all of you are familiar with the legendary Creepers 45 on Rene called "Jammin' Granny." Well I happen to live in the same small Indiana town as Creepers guitarist Willard Sollars Jr. (known today as Junior Sollars). On a whim, I found his number, and called him. We hung out for a couple hours. He was really cool, and had no idea how much his 45 is admired. I am thinking about doing a biography/documentary on him and the Creepers, as well as Harry Weger (the country singer who produced the 45).
He has a huge shed full of memorabilia and a lot of cool info on the band. His father, whose pictures really intrigue me, was a hillbilly singer in the 30's and 40's named Willard Sollars (also known as Webb Sollars). Which I plan to learn more about and perhaps get some recordings of. Junior told me some cool facts about the Creepers; Jr. Sollars, a right-handed guitarist, has only two fingers on his left hand! He also said that in '65 they tried to pitch the 45 to Sam Phillips at Sun, he has some rare recordings of the Creepers live, as well as music from some of his post-Creepers bands, and he stated that the Creepers made two LPs.
This is a huge project that I am undertaking, I think it would be cool to bring a lot of this stuff to light, and to uncover the career of his father, whose pictures make him out to be the "Howlin' Wolf" of country music. I already took a bunch of pictures that are just awesome. Please let me know what you guys think about me doing this, because you guys are the people who really care, and are the fans of the Creepers and their sole 45. Please email me if anyone would like to see some pictures! Please give me feedback! Thanks!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Rock N Roll & Children

I took a few weeks off from most everything in order to have a child. My second son, Silas Wray Russell
was born on Friday, March 12th at 3:49 pm. Yes, he was named after Link Wray, in part. His mother's middle name
is Rae, so its kind of half and half. I can't think of a better middle name! So in tribute to my second son (and probably last) I give you Link Wray's "TV Baby." "TV Baby" is one of his earlier, more Hillbilly tracks. Great stuff!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Shock Rocker

You know a record is good, if the first few seconds of it are a declaration
of love screamed from the top of the lungs. Oh, and it helps too if Ike Turner is at the piano. Probably, or should be, a big hit with the Northern Soul crowd. This record, from 1961, is a prime example of that transitional phase from rockin' R&B to a more soul sound. Prior to this 45, Billy Gayles (guess he dropped the y) played with Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm. Great record, although it could definitely
use some bluesy guitar work. "I'm Hurting," by Billy Gales on Shock; great name for a record label!

Billy Gayles with Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm - I'm Tore Up