Friday, December 23, 2011

The Atlantics - with Johnny Rebb on Vocal (The Legendary JRA/ Ramrod sessions 1964-1969)


A new image & style
So in 1965, they reinvented themselves. They set up their own production company JRA productions. They exchanged their suits and thin CIA ties for casual shirts, t-shirts and jeans and grew their hair long, guitarist Theo Penglis switched to keyboards and they added a vocalist, Johnny Rebb. Johnny Rebb had been a rock star in Australia in his own right in the late 1950s. Indeed he had at one time been known as the "Gentleman of Rock". With Johnny on vocals they proceeded to release a number of tough sounding singles starting with a hard rockin' revival of Little Richard's "The Girl Can't Help It" and Bo Diddley's, R 'n B, "You Can't Judge A Book By Its Cover". They recorded songs with a variety of styles between 1965 and 1970 including a cover of The Beau Brummels' top 40 hit "You Tell Me Why" with 12 string guitar hook & harmonies, and an instrumental, "Take A Trip," under the pseudonym band name as The Gift of Love. However they only succeeded chart-wise with an excellent version of Screaming Jay Hawkins "I Put A Spell On You", which reached #29 on the Sydney charts in 1966. In 1967 they put out the song that is now widely regarded as a classic punk/garage track, Peter Hood's "Come On". During this time Johnny Rebb continued to release a number of singles under his own name with The Atlantics backing him. They also provided backing on a string of singles for Russ Kruger, Johnny Rebb's brother, and female singer Kelly Green. It was during this time that The Atlantics started their own independent label, Ramrod. They were one of the first Australian bands to set up their own independent label. From September 1967 all their recordings and all those for the above artists were released on their Ramrod label. As well they put out recordings by other bands such as The Motivation.



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