Mid-West Battle of the Garage Bands rolls on. Today we welcome you to Mankato, Minnesota!
Mankato is a small farming town about 90 minutes south of Minneapolis and about 90 minutes north of the Iowa border. Of the 24,000 residents living in Mankato in 1964, we're going to focus today on four of them: Gus Dewey, Tom Klugherz, Bruce Waterston and Dale Menten. Together the Mankato-four were known as The Gestures. They started off in high school playing surf music but quickly transitioned to vocal rock. In October of 1964 the band released their first single for the regional label Soma Records. That song, written by Menten, was the excellent Run, Run, Run. Believe it or not they had a real hit on their hands. The song went to number 44 nationally, number 1 in Minneapolis, number 1 in New York City and number 3 in Los Angeles. The small town band and the small local label couldn't keep up with production and the song began to fall from the charts as there literally weren't enough records to ship to the stores. At least Soma Records had the good idea to print a limited edition of the records in blue vinyl! How cool!
Now we get to flip that record over and dig on the brilliant It Seems To Me, also written by Dale Menten. It Seems To Me is a jazzy little number that really shows the maturity of Menten's songwriting.
Sadly, after just two releases the band dispersed.
Until next time, we'll see you On The Flip-Side!