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Messages - Mark A. Moore

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DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Jan Berry Biography
« on: August 20, 2019, 02:42:12 PM »
Hi Mark

Just touching base again. Any news on the stand alone?


It's wrapping up nicely. It should be out next year sometime.


DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Surf City collaboration
« on: August 20, 2019, 02:41:07 PM »
Mark raises a very interesting point about the credits, and one which suggests that they might not always be accurate. "Old Ladies Seldom Powershift" is credited to both Jan and Dean, but it is an instrumental. Which bit of it did Dean write then?

Several possibilities come to mind. Dean came up with the title, it made Jan laugh, he gave Dean a credit. Alternatively, Dean's contributions were real but scattered across the songs, and Jan credited him with the instrumental because he deserved some songwriting royalties from the album, so why not credit him with this one.

I raise the second possibility because Dean has suggested several places that the atmosphere was collegial, with people throwing in ideas and contributing in an ad hoc way. This might suggest that th credits were not always shared in a musically accurate way, but on a much looser basis.

Of course its always possible that Dean came up with the melody to the instrumental and Jan expanded upon it and it WAS a completely musically accurate credit. Maybe.

In the case of "Old Ladies Seldom Power Shift," Dean came up with the title and Jan gave him a songwriting credit for it.

But it's much deeper than that. You have to understand that "Old Ladies Seldom Power Shift" was originally titled "Mr. Chan," a song written by Jan Berry.

It was later re-titled "Bucket Seats" and released on the "Rally-Packs" single on Imperial with "Move Out, Little Mustang" (also co-written by Jan). But since Jan purposely withheld his songwriting credits in an effort to bypass his obligations to Screen Gems and place the publishing for these songs with Trousdale Music, Jan gave Don Altfeld the credit for "Bucket Seats." Jan arranged and produced both sides, but again withheld his production credit in order to place the production with Dunhill.

This was all part of Jan's scheme to branch out and make additional money through other publishers and other production companies. But Screen Gems found out and busted Jan for it, and the "Rally-Packs" release mentioned above was one of the reasons Jan and Lou Adler were sued by Screen Gems in 1964.

When it came time to flesh out The Little Old Lady from Pasadena LP in late '64, "Mr. Chan," aka "Bucket Seats," still counted against Jan's Screen Gems quota, so the title was changed to "Old Ladies Seldom Power Shift" . . . and Jan gave Dean credit for the title. Thus, Dean got a songwriting credit for it.

The details are in my book. There was much more to the lawsuit.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Surf City collaboration
« on: June 19, 2019, 02:51:21 PM »
Jan was writing toward fulfilling the terms of his songwriting contract with Nevins-Kirshner (which was in the process of changing over to Screen Gems), and they viewed Jan as the principal creator of product for the company. He had quotas to meet. A documented fact. Jan was free to work with collaborators, so long as they understood that Screen Gems would be the publisher.

The fact that Brian was comfortable enough to collaborate with Jan—on a song that originated with Brian—knowing full well that Sea of Tunes would not be able to claim the publishing, is telling. Brian understood that Screen Gems would be the publisher, per the terms of Jan’s contract, which indicates Brian’s level of comfort with Jan’s creative input.

Jan and Brian split the songwriting royalty for “Surf City” 50-50 (the publishing royalty was separate, which is why Murry Wilson flipped out). The copyright for “Surf City” was filed on May 13, 1963, four days before the song was released.

Questions to ponder . . .

There was no way to know that “Surf City” would become a hit, let alone reach #1. So why would Jan want to deprive Dean of credit prior to release? Especially since they had co-written half of their first album together.

Why would Dean get credit for songs like “Bucket ‘T,’” “Schlock Rod,” and “Old Ladies Seldom Powershift,” but not the majority of other songs in the Jan & Dean canon?

If Dean co-wrote “Surf City,” he should have received credit. But there is no basis for minimizing Jan’s contribution. There’s a reason he was the one signed to the production companies as a songwriter, both Nevins-Kirshner and successor Screen Gems.

And remember, Roger Christian also claimed to have co-written “Surf City” . . . after it hit #1.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: fun question about the movie "Christine"
« on: March 18, 2019, 06:38:33 PM »
Stephen King is my all-time favorite author, and Christine (1983) ranks among my favorite King novels, along with The Shining (1977) and Pet Sematary (1983).

Jan Berry and Jan & Dean are mentioned in the novel Christine. King quotes song lyrics at the beginning of each chapter . . . including "Surf City" (Chapter 5) and "Dead Man's Curve" (Chapter 49).

And King mentions Jan specifically in the "Author's Note":

“Lyrics quotes in this book are assigned to the singer (or singers, or group) most commonly associated with them. This may offend the purist who feels that a song lyric belongs more to the writer than the singer. What you have done, the purist might argue, is akin to ascribing the works of Mark Twain to Hal Holbrook. I don't agree. In the world of popular song, it is as the Rolling Stones say: the singer, not the song. But I thank them all, writers and singers - most particularly Chuck Berry, Bruce Springsteen, Brian Wilson and Jan Berry, of Jan and Dean. He did come back from Deadman's Curve.”Stephen King, from the Author's Note to Christine, 1983

(Beach Boys songs quoted include: "This Car of Mine," "Little Deuce Coupe," "Shut Down." "409," and "Custom Machine.")

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Jan & Dean's Tiki Lounge — Now Open
« on: November 30, 2018, 07:18:29 PM »

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Dean Torrence - Album Cover Hall of Fame
« on: November 30, 2018, 06:59:56 PM »
Dean Torrence has been inducted into the Album Cover Hall of Fame . . . in two (2) categories: Album Cover Illustrator and Album Cover Art Director (2018). . . . Give us one, Spleen !!

Album Cover Hall of Fame — Class of 2018

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Jan's stand alone biography
« on: November 30, 2018, 06:51:47 PM »
Hi Mark

I just wondered how the biography was going?

All the best as always from the UK.

Thanks Surferbee. It's going very well, but I had to get the date for delivering the manuscript pushed back until 2019. Too much other stuff going on. I'll post updates as things develop.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: The girls on the cover of Mark's book
« on: October 30, 2018, 02:04:36 PM »
Does anyone know the identities of the 3 girls that are on the cover of Mark's book, The Jan & Dean Record?  According to Dean in his latest book, it seems that photo by his sister took place at Columbia Recording Studio in April 1966. Possibly on the 6th. Mark also confirms that date but there is no mention of the 3. The only vocalist listed were Jan & Dean.

When I asked Dean about it, he said he didn't remember the girls' names. He originally told me he thought the photo was taken by Kathy at Liberty Studios, and that one of the girls was possibly the daughter of someone affiliated with the studio. But after my book came out, Dean identified the studio as Columbia Square when he put the photo in his memoir, plus the one of Jan at the piano in the same studio.

It makes sense. It's 1966 and matches a known session at Columbia.

Miscellaneous / Re: Happy Birthday, Gertie
« on: July 25, 2018, 04:54:32 AM »
Gertie, Just in case you take a peek in here now & then...

Wishing you a very Happy Birthday today.

I spoke to Gertie recently. We're having some work done on the back end to upgrade the main site. For those who don't know, or don't remember, Gertie owns this entire website.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Jan's coma
« on: July 22, 2018, 10:43:16 AM »
There's no conflicting evidence, just bad information from various sources.

Jan was semi-conscious after two weeks in the hospital. He was conscious by early May and spoke for the first time in mid-May 1966. Documented.

He was released from UCLA Medical Center in mid-June and transferred to the rehabilitation facility at Cedars Sinai.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Jan's 1958 Corvette
« on: March 20, 2018, 02:27:22 PM »
Right, but Jim damaged the hardtop with a body sander in 1972. The paint had begun to blister and he went too far with the sander. So around 1978 he purchased and installed the complete hardware for a soft-top. "The holes for this top had never been drilled behind the seats, but I felt justified in adding it as my personal comfort was involved."

The car was originally white with red interior. After it was damaged in the Bel Air Fire of '61, Jan had it refurbished and painted black.

Jim began restoring it in 1980. He saved the hardtop with multiple layers of gel coat and block sanding. He painted the car red with white fender coves.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Jan's Corvette Sting Rays
« on: September 26, 2017, 11:26:19 PM »
Corvette enthusiasts have shown interest in Jan's cars over the years.

Jerry Bramlett and one of the Corvette societies helped me run the VIN number for Jan's demolished '66 'Vette to see if the frame was still in circulation. It was not, which was consistent with the documentation I have indicating the car was sold for scrap in the fall of '66.

And of course Jim Blanchard has owned Jan's 1958 Corvette since 1963. He published an article about it and has displayed the car in multiple shows over the years.

Here's an article I wrote that supplements the liner notes for Filet of Soul Redux, providing documentable historical context for Jan Berry on the business end, as it related to the Filet of Soul album. This crucial history is wholly lacking in the liners penned by Dean Torrence and David Beard.

By Mark A. Moore
Author of The Jan & Dean Record (McFarland 2016)

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Filet of Soul Liner Notes
« on: September 10, 2017, 11:47:28 PM »
David, as the publisher of a fan magazine, you rely on people’s memories for the interviews you conduct. You ask questions and print the answers verbatim. You don’t have any other significant context. Consequently, you don’t know if the person is giving you an accurate account, a personal agenda, or both. Those firsthand accounts are one of the main things you publish in ESQ. I get that, and it’s important.

Dean’s firsthand accounts will always be important. But relying solely on Dean’s memories, especially after 50-some years, is unacceptable. For one thing, Dean has muddied the waters significantly by telling differing stories over the years (and I’ve broached that subject with him).

The documentary record that was generated in the ‘50s and ‘60s, hardcore historical evidence that still exists today, especially as it relates to Jan’s career, will almost always trump Dean’s memories or personal agenda. The majority of the business and legal correspondence for Jan & Dean was not addressed to Dean, nor was it generated by Dean, and he didn’t have a major say in how things unfolded. That’s just the way it was.

At the same time, however, the documentary record can in many cases corroborate Dean’s accounts. On the whole, I do think it all meshes together quite well—more often than not.

Dean will always have insight that we don’t have. But Dean’s insight does not exist in a vacuum. Putting it all together is crucial.

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Filet of Soul Liner notes
« on: September 07, 2017, 06:11:55 AM »
My CD just came in. I love it!! Filet of Soul is a great album! The liner notes were good but I'm not sure how accurate some of that is. Dean mentions the Popsicle thing again where he remixes the song. But there is no evidence that he did. David Beard does a great job on his section. But he does sort of imply that Brian Wilson just gave a completed Surf City to Jan and Dean. And then the producer credits has
Producer: Jan Berry
Co-Producer: Dean Torrence
Is that how the credits would have read on the album?
I'm not saying it's not true. Hell, I don't know. I'm just asking.

Here's an article I wrote that supplements the liner notes, providing documentable historical context for Jan on the business end, as it related to Filet of Soul.

Corporate Soul: Jan Berry’s Quest for Business Autonomy in 1966

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