Monday, March 31, 2014

Lee & Fritz

"Three Short Summers: The Story of Hiawatha Caverns (written for the Journal of Spelean History, July, 1974)

by Gary K. Soule

Hiawatha Gaverns is a formerly commercialized cave located in the hilly farmland near Witoka, in southeastern Minnesota. Although the cave was discovered as recently as 1962, and operated commercially during the summers of 1964, 1965, and 1966. today the only thing remaining is an old shed with the words "Hiawatha Caverns" in big red letters painted on it. Inside the shed a few of the old directional signs to the cave may be found, and a short distance down a brush-covered hill one may find the entrance to a steeply slanted metal tunnel that disappears into the side of a hill. Although the farmer Ed Meitzke, who owns the land tries to keep the tunnel door locked, vandals have partly succeeded in destroying what at one time was a very pretty commercial cave.

One Spring Ed Neitzke noticed that a narrow shaft open­ ed up on the side of a hill that was being used as a cow pasture. He was afraid of losing a cow into the opening. so he filled it with fence posts. Shortly afterwards a neighbor boy. Carl Douglas, tied a piece of rope to a fence post and worked his way down a narrow partially blocked opening. He discovered a cave, that according to the Winona Daily News reports, reached a depth of 70 feet and had a length of about 1/4 mile. (After seeing the cave myself I would say the total depth is about 30 to 40 feet, and the cave has a little bit less than l/8th mile of passage which had been opened to the public.)

The cave went largely unnoticed until the following year, when two Illinois business men became interested in the cave. They talked the owner into giving them a 99-year lease on the cave so that they could commercialize it. In turn, they would pay him $2,500 a year, plus 10% of all admission fees collected. They spent all of 1963 and the first six months of 1964 developing the cave at a cost of $20,000.

The development included removing about 1/2 million pounds of clay and rock, and digging a new horizontal entrance into the cave. Colored electric lights and gravel­ed walkways were put into the cave.

The commercial cave tours were priced at $2.00 for adults and lasted about one hour. At one time, there had been another entrance to the cave some 15 yards from the main entrance. but today it is sealed shut. All the cave guides were girls and at one. time ten of them were employed.

The third summer, a man named Blanchard took over the management of the cave. The managers realized that the cave was not going to be a success. One summer night during the 1966 tourist season, this second owner packed up and left in the middle of the night, never to be heard from again. The cave was crudely run until the fall of 1966, and then closed for good, thus adding another name to the never ending list of commercial caves that are no more.

For those who are interested in old commercial cave literature and related memorabilia, it should be pointed out that in addition to several newspaper clippings and ads, the cave had two different types of red, white and black brochures, a car bumper sticker., and lettered T-shirts that had the cave name printed on them.

The bumper sticker was of the adhesive -type and featured red letters on a black background. A row of simulated stalactites was sketched on the bottom third of the sticker, which read "Newly discovered Hiawatha Caverns". Witoka, Minn.

While it is true that this cave is not historically old like the Decorah Ice Cave and Wompi Cave in Iowa, it still has a fascinating, although short history of its own -- one that should be recorded for the sake of spelean history."

I don't have any information about Lee & Fritz.

Hiawatha Caverns
Year: 1964
Label location: Minnesota
Pressed by: Kay Bank

The Ballad Of Hiawatha Caverns

Ease My Aching Heart

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Sunday, March 30, 2014

Lonnie Smith and Kathleen

Spann SG-445
Year: 1964
Label location: Chattanooga, Tn
Pressed by: RCA

Golden Guitar

Jordon's Dark River

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Big 4 Hits batch

What we have here are 7 complete discs from the Big 4 Hits label, plus 20+ odd tracks from other Big 4 Hits records.  I want to thank Hank The Smoker who does the Hank Williams discography page.  He sent me some tracks for this.

My Wasted Past

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Scottie, Lue and Don

Dewain Olby (1925-1981) is known for his "Ironworker Blues" single on Soma, but I haven't seen anything else by him until now.  He was from Wisconsin.

"I heard of Wren Studios.  Lee Newman who used to be the engineer at WTCN, opened a recording studio at the Time building, which is no longer there. I think the Glenrays original acetate, prior to me was done there. - David Hersk (email)

This is possibly an answer song to Bill Anderson's "City Lights".  Similar melody.

Year: 1959
Label location: Wisconsin (?)
Pressed by: RCA

Beyond Those City Lights

Go Then

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Sunday, March 23, 2014

Bob Tennant

Bryte 10034
Year: ?
Label location: Newbury, Ohio
Pressed by: ? (no rite matrix)

Lonely Heart

Kiss Her Once For Me

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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cliff Rodgers and his Buckeye Pals

original sleeve

Engagement ring bonus gift.  Guess if she says no, you can play the bside for solace.

Leroy's Jewelry Records
Year: 1956
Label location: Akron, Ohio
Pressed by: RCA

Will Ya' Or Won't Cha'

Harbor Of Broken Hearts

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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Bobby Hankins

Audio Deluxe (AD) 104
Year: 1961
Label location: Oelwein, Iowa
Pressed by: RCA

Deep Water

Honky Tonk Queen

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Saturday, March 15, 2014

Kay Arnold

picture from back of Sims LP "Kay Arnold Sings Eddy Arnold"

Chart 1080
Year: 1965
Label location: Nashville, Tn
Pressed by:  Columbia ZTSB-93752 & 93753

Colder Than Diamonds

Lovin' Time

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Friday, March 14, 2014

Tony Darro

Billboard January 18, 1960

I got an email from the real Tony Darro, so I thought I'd revise this 2011 post.  I want to thank Tony for allowing me to share his music on the blog, and for not being offended and trying to sue me like some folks who I won't mention by name (because they'll sue me!)

For some reason the RCA matrix starts with a letter K, which meant 1959.  But every other source says 1960 for this record.

Here is an email from Tony:

"Tony Darro was the stage name I adopted when I became a singer in 1960, at the age of 20.  I was born in Philly (West) in 1939 on Dec. 18th and the song Sad Sad and Lonely was a song my Mother to use to sing to me and my two brothers in a much slower beat.  I recorded a number of songs at Bell Sound Studios in New York back in 1960, including: Young Hearts, The Tender Age , I Haven't Anybody to Love, Double Brandy, Packing My Blues, Cleo.  As a matter of fact, Bobby Rydell also recorded some songs in the same studio the same night I did. 

My name often gets confused with the actor Tony Darrow who spells his name with a W.   I was also on both the Milt Grant and Buddy Dean shows on Television in New York back in the 60's, I performed at shows ( record hops ) with chubby Checker, Bobby Rydell, Freddie Cannon, Fats Domino, (among others whom I've forgotten).  I am 74 yrs old now and still married to the same woman for 52 years. Three Children, Girl Angela, Boys , Anthony (Tony) and Richard , 6 grandchildren and live in Myrtle Beach SC"

Here is one of my fan club pictures:

Crosley 217
Year: 1960
Label location: Philadelphia, Pa
Pressed by: RCA

I Haven't Anybody To Love

The Tender Age

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Roy Rowan

Studio City 1020
Year: 1964
Label location: Minneapolis, Mn
Pressed by: Kay Bank 4553

I Never Thought You'd Turn Me Down

Our Love

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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Pam & Jane

Petal 1230
Year: 1964
Label location: either Tennessee or North Carolina (?)
Pressed by: Sound of Nashville

Little Girl Stay Away

There Goes Linda

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Promenade C&W Hits of 1963

This record is in pretty rough shape, but it's probably worth sharing.  I think the mixing could have been better, as the voices get drowned out by the instruments.  Could have been part of a set since it says Record 1.

Promenade HH 41
Year: 1963
Label location: Newark, NJ
Pressed by: Synthetics Plastics Company

Talk Back Trembling Lips

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Monday, March 10, 2014

Don Bach (2nd post)

real name: Don Bachman
(as Don Buck on this release)

Cardinal  5015
Year: 1964
Label Location: Iowa
Pressed by: Kay Bank 4373

Three Cheers For The Loser

40 Hour Week

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Saturday, March 8, 2014

Lynn Greer

Estrella 100
Year: 1962
Label location: Bruceton, Tennessee
Pressed by: Southern Plastics

Po' Folks

Saving My Love (for you)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Bob Geesling

Bob is mentioned in this post:

C and S
Year: ?
Label location: Dennison, Texas
Pressed by: ? (dead wax: TSS 640336)

Born To Be Lonesome

I Don't Want To Fall In Love With You

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Bonnie Baldwin

Polly Bee
Year: 1967
Label location: Bridgeport, Ohio
Pressed by: Rite 1550

I'm Just An Image Of A Girl

I'm Trembling Like A Leaf

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Monday, March 3, 2014

Lynn Reed

I think this one fits in here somewhere:

Dial 107 A
Year: 1959
Label location: Nashville, Tn
Pressed by: Rite

Just Another Love Affair

My Little Pixie

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Mary Cox

Rimrock 225
Year: 1967
Label location: Concord, Arkansas
Pressed by: Rimrock

Just In Case


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