Sunday, October 24, 2010
Jango Song Of The Day-The Merry-Go-Round
Album:Listen, Listen: The Definitive Collection
For a short period of time in the mid-60s, The Merry-Go-Round were one of the most popular bands in Los Angeles. They were even on a major label. But they just never clicked in a big way. They only released one album and Live was their best known song. The lead singer and main songwriter was Emitt Rhodes. After his group The Palace Guard split up, he started rehearsing in his garage with his high school buddy guitarist Gary Kato. Rhodes brought in The Leaves bassist Bill Rinehart and drummer Joel Larson from The Grass Roots. They had been working with Gene Clark of The Byrds. The Merry-Go-Round sent out demos and signed with A & M Records. Live reached #63 on the Billboard Hot 100 but it was a big hit in Los Angeles. Follow up singles didn't do as well and then A & M put an album of singles and demos together thinking that the band's shelf life would be very short. The album did not do well. Rinehart left The Merry-Go-Round and was replaced by Rick Dey. The group ran out of gas and split up soon after. Emitt Rhodes went on to a brief solo career and left the music business in the early 70s. This comp from the British label Rev-Ola has The Merry-Go-Round album and Rhodes first solo album. You can also get Live on Rhino's Nuggets box set. Gary Kato was a member of the group Derek. They had a hit with Cinnamon. Joel Larson worked with Lee Michaels (Do You Know What I Mean). He rejoined The Grass Roots in 1971. He has continued to play sessions in Los Angeles while operating his own property management business. And he has also worked in films as a production coordinator. Recently Rhodes and Larson have been recording with former Counting Crows bassist Matt Malley but nothing has been released. Here's The Merry-Go-Round performing Live and Listen, Listen on The Hollywood Palace 1967.