Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Hanna-Barbera Records Spotlight: Tidal Waves - I Don't Need Love

As we drink our Flip-Side coffee and thumb through the massive volumes of records in our highly secure Flip-Side record vault 13 stories below ground, we keep finding more 45s from the HBR label that we want to share with you. But I have to admit, I present today's song to you with a noticeable amount of hesitation. Not because it's not a great song (because it is), but because it is not an obvious attention grabber. We usually try to spin a certain type of song that will grab people's attention from the first beat. Cool groove, nice riff, compelling vocals and high energy. I think this song is great, but I do have concerns that the melancholy presentation of the song doesn't fit the standard. I hope you'll stick around the song long enough to fully appreciate what we have here. 

The Tidal Waves were a bunch of Middle Schoolers (seriously!) and High Schoolers who hailed from Roseville, Michigan, a northern suburb of Detroit along Lake St. Clair. The band consisted of Roseville High Schoolers Mark Karpinski and Tom Wearing and Burton Junior High alums, Bob Slap, Bill Long and John Wearing. In the Spring of 1966 the quintet of pubescent punks released a cover of Farmer John on the local SVR label. The upbeat dance number went to number 1 on the local charts and HBR did what they did, they swooped in and bought the record contract of the teens and released Farmer John nationally. Bob Slap left the band and Dennis Mills stepped in as a replacement. He brought with him a moody number he had written called I Don't Need Love. HBR put some money behind the band and the kids recorded the minor key original with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in the Summer of '66. Pretty cool. The number did well locally but flopped nationally, which is not surprising since the song is a bit of a downer (in a good way). I Don't Need Love tells the tale of a tearful young man who gets burned by a girl and decides his days of  being in love are over...at the tender age of 14. This teen troubadour doesn't need a girl. No way! Too much trouble. All this kid needs to survive in life is a paper route, a tutor in algebra and for his dad to leave him alone on Wednesday and Thursday nights just long enough for him to watch Batman on ABC. Macaroni and Cheese for dinner wouldn't be too bad either, mom. 

Tidal Waves recorded one more record for HBR, the upbeat Action (Speaks Louder Than Words), but HBR was shuttering their doors and the record was barely even distributed let alone promoted. All three of the bands' records are worth seeking out. Action gets all the love from collectors, but I Don't Need Love isn't so bad either. Don't yo agree?

Until next time, we'll see you On The Flip-Side!

9 comments:

  1. I like this one. Kind of Left Banke-ish. That opener catches my attention, by the way.

    One note. I think it's Tidal Waves, not The Tidal Waves. All their records say as much.

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    1. Very Left Banke-ish. The "The" has been removed.

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    2. Denny Mills the writer of I Don't Need Love and Action was actually more mature as a player and I believe the band would have done better off using his ideas.With problems between the Wearing Bros. and Jack Checkaway,their cousin and manager there was little to hold them together.Checkaway ended up kicking out the Wearings and the band soon fell apart.Jon Wearing went on the tour and record with Frijid Pink,Dallas Hodge Deluxe Band and Joe Walsh.

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    3. R.M. Wearing. Nice to have you join us here. Are you one of the Wearings from the band? Can you humor us with any more insight?

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  2. Sorry Morgan,I just saw your post.One piece of information that may be useful is this.The Underdogs-Dave Whitehouse,Tony Roumell and Chris Lena were courting brother Tom to be the new drummer with them.The Underdogs had some pretty good success with Motown's VIP label.Love's Gone Bad and MoJo Hanna were big hits in Michigan and having James Jameson on bass didn't hurt.Unfortunately Tom was drafted in 67 and had to go to Vietnam.But not before doing some rather prestigious gigs at the Grande ballroom in Detroit with the Cream in June of 67,and Procul Harum in August 67.Tom spent 68-69 as a corpsman in Vietnam.

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    1. Great info, Rick. We have The Underdogs' version of Love's Gone Bad in our vaults. We're currently doing a regional battle of the bands and will be hitting the great lakes area very soon. Maybe we'll spin that song along with another Tidal Waves record (Action?) in the coming weeks. Keep coming back!

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    2. Hi Morgan,I wanted you to know some new info on the Tidalwaves.Robert Slap the original Bass player has a website you may want to check out.Robert is a wonderful soul and has a wealth of information and pictures of his time with the Waves and with the MC5 members including Dennis (Machinegun)Thompson in a band called Secrets.They did a few 45s and I believe an album and it's good stuff.All the Tidalwaves went on to careers in music including Jon Wearing who recorded 2 45s,an album (Earth Omen),and toured with the Frijid Pink.He also co-founded the Deluxe band with Dallas Hodge.Dallas went on with Bonnie Raitt,Canned Heat and Steve Marriott.

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  3. Hi Morgan, Bill Long here lead guitar for the Tidal Waves, I played the guitar part along with Denny Mills on a Gibson LG2 guitar on this record. I believe he was 18 years when he wrote I Don't Need Love, I was 15. I am still playing music in the Detroit area, in fact music has been my only living all these years. I was in the 100 Proof, the HDH band when I was 18 (Somebody's Been Sleeping In My Bed) and Ellie Pop (Mainstream records) after the Tidal Waves.You have a great site, keep up the good work. www.BillLongBand.com

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