What comes to your mind when you see those three letters together or hear them spoken?
I picture a motor oil additive that, for years, was the primary sponsor on the racing cars of Richard Petty and Mario Andretti.
My grown-up kids, on the other hand, are more likely to associate STP with a hard rock group from the 90’s called Stone Temple Pilots.
Josh Munce, my young friend and long time Keloland colleague, wrote on Facebook the other day that he was all excited about heading down to Sioux City last Wednesday to see STP. (The band)
I gotta confess that, until this week, I’ve never heard of STP. (The band)
So, some of you are probably shaking your head and saying, well, how can you sit on the South Dakota Rock and Roll Hall of Fame board of directors and not even have a clue about this Grammy award winning rock group that’s piled up 15 top ten singles over 20 years? (I looked it up)
It’s simple. I happened to be there at the beginning of rock and roll before it needed any additional adjectives ( like punk..or grunge..or acid..or altertative) to describe what it was besides fun. When rock groups started aiming their guitars at the speakers to get ear piercing feedback or painfully screaming incoherently and unendingly into he microphone..it stopped being fun for me and I couldn’t change the radio station fast enough.
So, while some of us are still around, we’re going to first acknowledge and induct those individuals and bands who really were the pace setters in the fun business of rock and roll music from the fifties and sixties in South Dakota before passing the torch to the next generation who loved their rock and roll as much as we. But for now, let us have our fun. Here are a few more of this year’s inductees.
Dale Gregory and the Shouters were certainly one of those fun bands that came on the Sioux Falls scene in 1964. Members included Dale Gregory Yost(lead guitar), Gary Tabbert(bass), Ted Christy(drums), Pat O’Brien(keyboards,vocals..yeah, THAT Pat O’Brien of national TV fame), and Greg Blomberg(guitar,vocals). They were all students at Washington High School and instant local hits.
The Coliseum Annex was a hot spot for teen dances and on many occasions the Shouters would play to crowds of well over a thousand.In February of 1966 the guys went to Dove Studios in Minneapolis and recorded a 45 written and sung by Greg. "Did Ya Need To Know" was released on the "B Sharp" label. It became an instant local hit in the Sioux Falls area and opened a lot of doors. They played area ballrooms, armories, battle of the bands, and even on TV. In 1966 several of the originals left the group and new personnel came aboard. The band continued to entertain large crowds through 1967 when they finally called it quits.
As a sophomore at Spearfish high School, Larry Bell got his first taste of musical success when he and a couple of buddies won a Talent contest in 1959. It marked the beginning of Larry Bell and the Star Guitars..which featured Don Ainsworth and Doug Erickson. In 1961 Don left for the service and was replaced by Jim Anschutz and Jack Robinson. They played throughout Eastern Wyoming, Northwest Nebraska, and Western South Dakota.As Larry Bell and the Continentals, they got a gig in Denver that lasted 54 straight weeks, becoming one of the top bands in that city. They recorded two records at the well known "Norman Petty Studios" in Clovis, NM.
Larry also recorded for Gary Paxton (of Alley-Oop fame) in Nashville. He produced some terrific music and, like Myron Lee, just missed being a national star
Phil Heuer was never a household name in this area but mention Lord Douglas or Harley Worthit to anyone over 40 years old and you are bound to bring a smile to their face.It all started when KELO hired Phil as a disc jockey and he launched "Nite Rock", in December of 1964. It was a huge hit and soon Lord Douglas had a cult like following never seen before in Sioux Falls..including an "official" fan club. A Saturday afternoon TV show on KELO, L.D. Rock, soon followed and eventually led to a job with KDWB radio in the Twin Cities.In 1975 Phil returned to Sioux Falls and KELO radio hosting a morning show. He was South Dakota’s first "shock-jock" DJ and again had an enormous following..as well as several suspensions.
To learn more about this year’s inductees, check out the South Dakota Rock and Roll Hall of Fame website. CLICK HERE.
And don’t forget to get your tickets for this year’s induction ceremony and concert April 24th at the Ramkota Exhibit Hall in Sioux Falls. 8 bands, including The Talismen, The Flippers, The Red Dogs will be performing!
Tickets are 20 dollars and available on the website or at Lewis Drug Southgate in Sioux Falls or any of your area Sunshine Food Stores.p.s. Thanks to 2009 R&R HOF inductee, Ken Mills for many of the fabulous photos!
Let’s Rock Some More
By: Doug Lund