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A PREACHER POLITICIAN HEALTH RESEARCHER AND FARMER AS WELL AS MUSICIAN AND RADIO SHOW PRO.
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Ioannis Alexandros Veliotes (December 28, 1921 – January 17, 2012), better known as Johnny Otis, was an American singer, musician, talent scout, disc jockey, composer, arranger, recording artist, record producer, vibraphonist, drummer, percussionist, bandleader, impresario and pastor. Born in Vallejo, California, he is commonly referred to as the "Godfather of Rhythm and Blues".
 Personal life
Otis was the child of Greek immigrants Alexander J. Veliotes, a Mare Island longshoreman and grocery store owner, and his wife, the former Irene Kiskakes, a painter.
He was the older brother of Nicholas A. Veliotes, former U.S. Ambassador to Jordan (1978–1981) and to Egypt (1984–1986).
Otis grew up in a predominantly black neighborhood in Berkeley, California, where his father owned and operated a neighborhood grocery store. Otis became well-known for his choice to live his professional and personal life as a member of the African-American community. He has written, "As a kid I decided that if our society dictated that one had to be black or white, I would be black."
He was the father of musician Shuggie Otis.
 Music career
After playing drums in a variety of swing orchestras, including Lloyd Hunter's Serenaders, and Harlan Leonard's Rockets, he founded his own band in 1945 and had one of the most enduring hits of the big band era, "Harlem Nocturne". His band included Wynonie Harris and Charles Brown. In 1947, he and Bardu Ali opened the Barrelhouse Club in the Watts district of Los Angeles, California. He reduced the size of his band and hired singers Mel Walker, Little Esther Phillips and the Robins (who later became the Coasters). He discovered the teenaged Phillips when she won one of the Barrelhouse Club's talent shows. With this band, which toured extensively throughout the United States as the California Rhythm and Blues Caravan, he had a long string of rhythm and blues hits through 1950.
In the late 1940s, he discovered Big Jay McNeely, who then performed on his "Barrelhouse Stomp". He began recording for the Newark, New Jersey-based Savoy label in 1949, and began releasing a stream of records that made the R&B chart, including "Double Crossing Blues", "Mistrustin' Blues" and "Cupid Boogie", which all featured either Little Esther or Mel Walker, or both, and all reached no. 1 on the Billboard R&B chart. He also began featuring himself on vibraphone on many of his recordings. Otis produced and played the vibraphone on Johnny Ace's "Pledging My Love", which was no. 1 on the Billboard R and B chart for 10 weeks in 1955.
He moved to the Mercury label in 1951, but his chart success began to diminish. However, he discovered Etta James and produced and co-wrote her first hit, "Roll With Me, Henry" (also known as "The Wallflower"). Otis produced, co-wrote, and played drums on the original recording of "Hound Dog" written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller with vocals by Big Mama Thornton, and was given a writing credit on all six of the 1953 releases of the song. He was a successful songwriter; one of his most famous compositions is "Every Beat of My Heart", first recorded by The Royals in 1952 on Federal Records but which became a hit for Gladys Knight and the Pips then just 'Pips' in 1961. He also wrote "So Fine" which was originally recorded by The Sheiks in 1955 on Federal. As an artist and repertory man for King Records he also discovered Jackie Wilson, Hank Ballard, and Little Willie John, among others. He also became an influential disc-jockey in Los Angeles.
After starting his own label, Dig, in 1955, he continued to perform and appeared on regular TV shows in Los Angeles from 1957. On the strength of their success, he signed to Capitol Records. Featuring singer Marie Adams, and with his band now being credited as the Johnny Otis Show, he made a comeback, at first in the British charts with "Ma He's Making Eyes At Me" in 1957. In April 1958, he recorded his best-known recording, "Willie and the Hand Jive", which relates to hand and arm motions in time with the music, called the hand jive. This went on to be a hit in the summer of 1958, peaking at #9 on the U.S. Pop chart, and becoming Otis' only Top 10 single. The single reached no. 1 on the Billboard R and B chart. The song was covered by Eric Clapton in 1974, and became a staple of his live repertoire. Otis' success with the song was short-lived, and he briefly moved to King Records in 1961, where he backed Johnny "Guitar" Watson on some recordings.
In 1969 he recorded an album of sexually explicit material under the name Snatch and the Poontangs. In 1970 he played at the legendary Monterey Jazz Festival with Little Esther Phillips and Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson. In the 1980s he had a weekly radio show in Los Angeles, playing R&B music, and also recorded with his son Shuggie Otis, releasing the 1982 album The New Johnny Otis Show.
Otis continued performing through the 1990s and headlined the San Francisco Blues Festival in 1990 and 2000, although because of his many other interests he went through long periods where he did not perform. He was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994 as a nonperformer for his work as a songwriter and producer.
 Other work
In the 1960s, he entered journalism and politics, losing a campaign for a seat in the California State Assembly (one reason for the loss may be that he ran under his much less well known real name). He then became chief of staff for Democratic Congressman Mervyn M. Dymally. He was also was the pastor of Landmark Community Church.
In the 1990s, Otis bought a farm near Sebastopol, California, north of San Francisco. For a time he ran a coffee shop/grocery store/blues club, where one of the featured singers was the Georgia-born singer Jackie Payne. Around this time Otis also founded and pastored a new church, Landmark Community Gospel Church, which held weekly rehearsals in the tiny town of Forestville, California, and Sunday services in Santa Rosa, California. Landmark's worship services centered on Otis' preaching and the traditional-style performances of a gospel choir and a male gospel quartet, backed by a rocking band that featured Otis' son Nicky Otis and Shuggie's son, Lucky Otis. The church closed its doors in the mid-1990s.
Otis hosted a radio show on KPFA, The Johnny Otis Show. This show was aired every Saturday morning, live from the Powerhouse Brewery in Sebastopol. Listeners were invited to stop in for breakfast and enjoy the show live. Due to declining health, as well as his relocation to Los Angeles, his participation in the show decreased. The show last aired on August 19, 2006.
He died on January 17, 2012, just three days before Etta James, whom he discovered in the 1950's.
 Chart singles
|Year ||Single ||Artists ||Chart Positions |
|US Pop ||US |
|1948 ||"That's Your Last Boogie" ||Joe Swift with Johnny Otis & His Orchestra ||- ||10 ||- |
|1950 ||"Double Crossing Blues" ||Johnny Otis Quintette, The Robins and Little Esther ||- ||1 ||- |
|"Mistrustin' Blues" / |
|Little Esther with Mel Walker and the Johnny Otis Orchestra |
Little Esther with the Johnny Otis Orchestra
|"Cry Baby" ||The Johnny Otis Orchesta, Mel Walker and the Bluenotes ||- ||6 ||- |
|"Cupid Boogie" ||The Johnny Otis Orchesta, Little Esther and Mel Walker ||- ||1 ||- |
|"Deceivin' Blues" ||Little Esther and Mel Walker with the Johnny Otis Orchestra ||- ||4 ||- |
|"Dreamin' Blues" ||Mel Walker with the Johnny Otis Orchestra ||- ||8 ||- |
|"Wedding Boogie" / |
"Far Away Blues (Xmas Blues)"
|Johnny Otis' Congregation: Little Esther, Mel Walker, Lee Graves |
The Johnnie Otis Orchestra with Little Esther and Mel Walker
|"Rockin' Blues" ||The Johnny Otis Orchestra with Mel Walker ||- ||2 ||- |
|1951 ||"Gee Baby" / |
|The Johnny Otis Orchestra ||- |
|"All Nite Long" ||The Johnny Otis Orchestra ||- ||6 ||- |
|1952 ||"Sunset To Dawn" ||Mel Walker with the Johnny Otis Orchestra ||- ||10 ||- |
|"Call Operator 210" ||Johnny Otis and His Orchestra featuring Mel Walker ||- ||4 ||- |
|1957 ||"Ma He's Making Eyes At Me" ||Johnny Otis and His Orchestra with Marie Adams and The Three Tons of Joy ||- ||- ||2 |
|1958 ||"Bye Bye Baby" ||The Johnny Otis Show, vocals by Marie Adams and Johnny Otis ||- ||- ||20 |
|"Willie and the Hand Jive" ||The Johnny Otis Show ||9 ||1 ||- |
|"Crazy Country Hop" ||The Johnny Otis Show ||87 ||- ||- |
|1959 ||"Castin' My Spell" ||The Johnny Otis Show ||52 ||- ||- |
|1960 ||"Mumblin' Mosie" ||The Johnny Otis Show ||80 ||- ||- |
|1969 ||"Country Girl" ||The Johnny Otis Show ||- ||29 ||- |
- ^ a b c "California Birth Index, 1905-1995 - online database on-line". United States: The Generations Network. 2005. Retrieved 2009-11-23.
- ^ a b Lewis, Randy. "Johnny Otis obituary: R&B singer, drummer, bandleader dies at 90". latimes.com. Retrieved 2012-01-19.
- ^ "Johnny Otis". www.history-of-rock.com. Retrieved 2008-07-01.
- ^ "Fifteenth Census of the United States (1930) [database on-line, Berkeley (Health District 2), Alameda County, California, Enumeration District: 1-280, Page: 16A, Lines: 1-6, household of Alex J. Veliotes"]. United States: The Generations Network. 1930-04-10. Retrieved 2009-11-23.
- ^ Dahl, Bill. "Johnny Otis". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation.
- ^ "Johnny Otis" entry at Soulbot.com"
- ^ Powers, Ann (2007-03-27). "Will the real Stone rise up?". Los Angeles Times.
- ^ Johnny Otis, with preface by George Lipsitz (1968). Listen to the Lambs, p. xiii. University of Minnesota Press. ISBN 978-0-8166-6531-0.
- ^ Perry, J.J. (1998) "Johnny Otis: Pioneering Rhythm and Blues Legend", Bloomington, Indiana Herald-Times (10/23/1998). Retrieved 7/4/2007.
- ^ a b c d e f Bill Dahl, Biography of Johnny Otis at Allmusic.com. Accessed 19 January 2012
- ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (1996). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-1995. Record Research. p. 336.
- ^ "Ask 'Mr. Music' Jerry Osborne: For the week of March 26, 2007". Mr. Music. Retrieved 2011-10-10.
- ^ "Hank Ballard". Soulful Kinda Music. Retrieved 2011-10-10.
- ^ Honkers And Shouters. The Golden Years Of Rhythm And Blues. Crowell-Collier Press, New York, 1978, p. 160
- ^ J. C. Marion, My Search Is Over - Marie Adams, 2002. Accessed 19 January 2012
- ^ Richie Unterberger, Snatch and the Poontangs, Allmusic.com
- ^ Kiersh, Ed (August 1985). "Ike's Story". Spin 1 (4): 36–43. doi:August 2005. Retrieved 2011-10-05.
- ^ "Johnny Otis: inducted in 1994". The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. Retrieved 2011-10-10.
- ^ Otis, Johnny (1993). Upside Your Head!. Wesleyan University Press. p. xxviii. ISBN 0819562874.
- ^ Whitburn, Joel (2003). Top Pop Singles 1955-2002 (1st ed.). Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc.. p. 529. ISBN 0-89820-155-1.
- ^ Betts, Graham (2004). Complete UK Hit Singles 1952-2004 (1st ed.). London: Collins. p. 577. ISBN 0-00-717931-6.
He died on January 17, 2012, just three days before Etta James, whom he discovered in the 1950's.
Etta James (born Jamesetta Hawkins; January 25, 1938 – January 20, 2012) was an American singer. Her style spanned a variety of music genres including blues, rhythm and blues, rock and roll, soul, gospel and jazz. Starting her career in the mid-1950s, she gained fame with hits such as "Dance With Me, Henry", "At Last", "Tell Mama", and "I'd Rather Go Blind" for which she wrote the lyrics. She faced a number of personal problems, including drug addiction, before making a musical resurgence in the late 1980s with the album The Seven Year Itch.
James is regarded as having bridged the gap between rhythm and blues and rock and roll, and is the winner of six Grammys and 17 Blues Music Awards. She was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, the Blues Hall of Fame in 2001, and the Grammy Hall of Fame in both 1999 and 2008. Rolling Stone ranked James number 22 on their list of the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time and number 62 on the list of the 100 Greatest Artists.
James in 2006 in Lansing, Michigan
R.I.P. DAVY JONES
MINSTREL AND JESTER CLOWN BROTHER
OF THE BLOODY BRITISH INTRUSION...
SURVIVOR OF REPUBLICAN CORPORATE FASCIST "COVERT WAR AGAINST ROCK" Book.
www.VideoRanch.com Michael Nesmith
"Circus Boy" TV Show. Mickey Dolenz as Corky.
Davy Jones Master of the Mullet !!
Ronnie Montrose (November 29, 1947 – March 3, 2012) was an American rock guitarist who led a number of his own bands as well as performing with a variety of musicians, including Sammy Hagar, Herbie Hancock, Van Morrison, The Beau Brummels, Boz Scaggs, Beaver & Krause, Gary Wright, Tony Williams, The Neville Brothers, Dan Hartman, Edgar Winter and Johnny Winter.
Moore: Born in San Francisco, died in Millbrae. Cheers fellow Rocker & Son of the Bay!
(November 29, 1947 – March 3, 2012) was an American
who led a number of his own bands as well as performed and did session work with a variety of musicians, including Sammy Hagar
, Herbie Hancock
, Van Morrison
, The Beau Brummels
, Boz Scaggs
, Beaver & Krause
, Gary Wright
, Tony Williams
, The Neville Brothers
, Dan Hartman
, Edgar Winter
and Johnny Winter
Ronnie was married to his wife and manager Leighsa Montrose
, Ronnie had two children son Jesse and daughter Kira, who gave them five grandchildren.
November 29, 1947 – March 3, 2012
A few months ago, we held a surprise party for Ronnie Montrose's 64th birthday. He gave an impromptu speech, and told us that after a long life, filled with joy and hardship, he didn't take any of our love for granted.
He passed today. He'd battled cancer, and staved off old age for long enough. And true to form, he chose his own exit the way he chose his own life. We miss him already, but we're glad to have shared with him while we could.
DISNEY LEGEND DEAD
Published on: March 6, 2012
Photography by: Buena Vista Productions/"Mary Poppins"
The Oscar winning tunesmith behind classic Disney classic songs ROBERT B. SHERMAN gone at 86.
The “It's A Small World (After All)” and “A Spoonful of Sugar” songwriter passed away at his London Home.
Together with his brother Richard, The Shermans garnered a Grammy and two Academy Awards in 1965 for their “Mary Poppins” hits.
Sherman's son Jeff confirmed the sad news on Facebook, "He went peacefully after months of truly valiantly fending off death. He loved life and his dear heart finally slowed to a stop when he could fight no more...
"He wanted to bring happiness to the world and, unquestionably, he succeeded. His love and his prayers, his philosophy and his poetry will live on forever.
“Forever his songs and his genius will bring hope, joy and love to this small, small world."
Sherman also worked on songs for classic films including “Winnie the Pooh”, “The Jungle Book”, “Bedknobs and Broomsticks” “That Darn Cat” and “The Monkey’s Uncle” and "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and many others.
POP FYI: “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” at 34 letters is one of the longest words in the English language. It was created by The Shermans for “Mary Poppins”.
TWO VIDEOS ON ORIGINAL PAGE
Here are the four mini dolls that were made in the 60s. Each Monkee was represented. Each package also claims to have a "Groovy 331/3 Record" that tells all about each Monkee. Does anyone have these?
Here is a postcard that was sent to fan club members welcoming them to the club. I actually have this one!