In 1967 we weren't terribly surprised anymore by the names of the groups on the record labels, but I remember chuckling the day I saw the name: VANILLA FUDGE. ( The group consisted of: legendary drummer-Carmine Appice, Tim Bogert - bass, vocals, Vince Martell - guitar, vocals and Mark Stein - lead vocals, and keyboards) The other interesting thing was the title of the song, YOU KEEP ME HANGING ON, could this be a cover of THE SUPREMES hit from last year? It sure was, but the Fudge had taken the song so beautifully done by Diana, Mary and Flo, and given it a dose of Acid.
It was psychedelic to the Max, and it turns out that although the 45 rpm Single was under 3 minutes (Top 40 radio didn't want them any longer, so we could play more commercials, and 2 or 3 in a row, and say, "Much More Musiiiiic"). But the L.P. cut was seven and a half minutes long, and appropriate for the new FM AOR format that was sweeping the country, featuring disc jockeys that sounded like they were stoned; no comment.
The "You Keep Me Hanging On" single, went to #6 on the Pop Chart and between 1967 and 1969 they had 3 Top 20 albums, including their first eponymous L.P. which also topped out at #6. Today musicologists tend to think that The Fudge was a bridge between Psychedelic and Hard Rock music, and their Concerts were certainly loud enough. Fun Fact: When they signed with ATLANTIC Records Label Chief, Ahmet Eregtun, hated their name, THE PIGEONS, (Yes, really) and told them to change it.
Carmen said they were playing a Club Gig on Long Island when one of the girls that worked there, Dee Dee, said her grandfather used to call her, Vanilla Fudge, and that was it. One more thing: Vanilla Fudge was managed by Phil Basile, a member of the Lucchese crime family; no one messed with them. So here they are, Vanilla Fudge in the mid-60's, Psychedelic Clothes and Light Show, Live with good Picture and Sound. Note how dramatic and physical they were, and keeping it up through the whole show. @therealdonrocks
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