The Who's Who Of Jim 'n' Dee Songs

A few days ago I bought a CD by Johnny Rivers And His L.A. Boogie Band called “Last Boogie In Paris.” It’s a live album recorded in 1974. Boy can this guy rock. I had to see who played on the album. While looking at the credits I noticed that four of the seven band members were guys who have recorded songs written by Dee and I. I Knoooow! How cool. So I went and pulled out some old vinyl, (for those of you too young to remember, that was a form of delivering music way back in the 20th century). Ones with some of our songs on them. I looked at the credits on those albums to see who had recorded some our songs. I’m shocked and amazed. Some of them were from the small group of musicians known as The Wrecking Crew.

Here’s a list with a bit of info I found on the ‘Net about The Wrecking Crew and some of the others.

The Wrecking Crew was a nickname coined by the drummer Hal Blaine after the fact for a group of session musicians in Los Angeles, California, who earned wide acclaim in the 1960s. They backed dozens of popular singers, and were one of the most successful "groups" of studio musicians in music history.
The Wrecking Crew's members typically had backgrounds in jazz or classical music, but were highly versatile. The talents of this group of 'first call' players were used on almost every style of recording, including television theme songs, film scores, advertising jingles, and almost every genre of American popular music, from The Monkees to Bing Crosby.

The figures most often associated with the Wrecking Crew are producer Phil Spector (who used the Crew to create his trademark "Wall of Sound"), and Beach Boys leader Brian Wilson, who used the Crew's talents on many of his mid-60s productions including the songs "Good Vibrations", "California Girls", the acclaimed album Pet Sounds, and the original recordings for Smile.

The Wrecking Crew were inducted into the Musicians Hall Of Fame on November 26, 2007.

Al Perkins is a Texas-born American guitarist. The Gibson guitar company called Perkins "the world's most influential Dobro player", and even began producing an "Al Perkins Signature" Dobro in 2001 - designed and autographed by Perkins.

After some time in the US Army, Perkins moved to California where he began playing with the band Shiloh. He went on to record and tour with The Flying Burrito Brothers, Richie Furay, Dan Fogelberg, Stephen Stills, Leonard Cohen, Gram Parsons, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, Daniel Amos, The Rolling Stones, Joe Walsh, Michael Nesmith, Randy Newman, James Taylor, Debby Boone, Tori Amos, The Eagles, Bethlehem, and McGuinn and Hillman. In 1971, Perkins became a member of Steven Stills band, Manassas.

Perkins began producing records in the mid 1970s. [He played on and produced a record for Sparrow Records which Dee and I recorded in 1976. Unfortunately, the album, “Help Is On the Way,” was never released. All that remains is a poorly recorded cassette tape of a rough mix without the finished vocals which we have considered making available but haven’t, yet.]

In the 1980s, Perkins joined Chris Hillman in the Desert Rose Band. Perkins started touring with Dolly Parton in 1986. Also that year, Perkins played Dobro on Bob Dylan's Knocked Out Loaded. In 1988, Perkins moved to Nashville, and the following year, he joined Emmylou Harris' new Grammy Award winning group, The Nash Ramblers, with whom he released the album Snapshots.

By the mid 1990s, Perkins began to work almost exclusively as a record producer and session guitarist, recording with artists like Tori Amos (From the Choirgirl Hotel), Owen Temple, Garth Brooks (Sevens), Wynonna Judd, Buddy Miller, and Cher.

In 2003, Perkins joined forces with Terry Talbot and other original members Bruce “Creeper” Kurnow and Tim Ayres to resurrect the country rock band Mason Proffit.

Barry McGuire is an American singer-songwriter best known for the hit song "Eve of Destruction", and later as a singer and songwriter of Contemporary Christian Music.

In 1963, McGuire along with Randy Sparks (the founder of The New Christy Minstrels) co-wrote, and sang lead vocal on, the Christys' first and biggest hit single: "Green, Green." He left the Christys in January, 1965, after recording the album, Cowboys and Indians.

As a folk rock solo singer in the 1960s, he was best known for his hit "Eve of Destruction" which sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. McGuire's LP, The Eve of Destruction, reached its peak of #37 on the Billboard Hot 200 chart during the week ending 25 September 1965. That same day the single of that name went to #1 on both charts.

McGuire is mentioned several times in The Mamas & the Papas hit, "Creeque Alley." Frank Zappa wrote McGuire's name in the sleeve of his Freak Out! album (1966) as one of his musical influences.

Dee and I met Barry about six months after he became a Christian and traveled, sang, and, wrote with him for about a year prior to him recording his first Christian album and beginning his work with The Second Chapter Of Acts.

It was Barry who recorded most of these songs with these legendary musicians.

Billy Maxwell
Studio work as drummer: T-Bone Burnett, Paul Simon, The Nappy Roots, Luther Vandross, Bob Dylan, Freddie Hubbard, The Crusaders, Art Gunfunkel, Billy Preston, Quincy Jones.

Record producer (Eight Grammys): BeBe and CeCe Winans, Andrae Crouch, Keith Green, Michael McDonald and Chaka Khan.

Billy became Keith Green’s producer after playing on our album “Help Is O the Way.

Chuck Findley is an American session musician. Most widely-known as a trumpet player, he also plays other brass instruments such as flugelhorn and trombone.

A graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music, Findley's first professional work was with the Jimmy Dorsey Big Band before joining the Buddy Rich Band on a world tour. In 1989 he joined the Tonight Show Band on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson led by Doc Severinsen. He was also a member of the band on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno from 1994 to 2001.

A regular collaborator on recordings by artists such as B. B. King and Steely Dan, he has also played and/or recorded with Miles Davis, Stanley Turrentine, Toto, Pat Boone, Christopher Cross, Jaco Pastorius, Lee Ritenour, Jackson Browne, George Benson, George Harrison, Elton John, Carole King, Rickie Lee Jones, Joni Mitchell, The Rolling Stones, Dionne Warwick, Tom Waits, Randy Newman, Tina Turner, Al Jarreau, Sarah Vaughan, and many others. [Findley played on that Johhny Rivers’ album.]

David Kemper is a drummer who has played with some of rock and folk music's most renowned artists. He was a long-time member of both the Jerry Garcia Band (1983-1994) and Bob Dylan's band (1996-2001). He was with the Jerry Garcia Band for the last eleven years of Garcia's life. He played double drums with Jim Gordon on Barry McGuire's album “Seeds” in 1972 and the song, "Don't Blame God," on his “Lighten Up” album in 1974. [Findley played on that Johnny Rivers' album, too.]

Dean Parks is a leading session guitarist and producer from Ft. Worth, TX. Dean was member of The North Texas State One O'clock Lab Band before moving to Los Angeles to work with Sonny and Cher in 1970. Dean is best-known through his many contributions to albums by Steely Dan.

Notably, he played the melody line on "Beat It" by Michael Jackson. He has performed with such internationally-known artists as Madonna, Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Elton John, Celine Dion, The Monkees, America, Diana Ross, Rod Stewart, Randy Travis, Bob Seger, Billy Joel, Neil Diamond, Michael Bublé, Barry Manilow, David Lee Roth, Paul Simon, Dolly Parton, and B.B. King.

Parks joined David Crosby and Graham Nash on their U.S. tour in October 2008. [Another player on the Johhny Rivers' album.]

Don Menza is an American saxophonist, arranger, composer, session musician and jazz educator noted for his many contributions to American jazz and big band music.

Howard McCrary is an American musician, entertainer, and actor. He was nominated for Grammy award in 1986 for a gospel record. Credited for vocal performances and arrangements on the music albums of Chaka Khan, Quincy Jones, Michael Jackson, Earth, Wind & Fire and many others. He also appears in the first Gospel Album “The Chimes” of The Chung Brothers (Henry & Roger Chung) in Hong Kong, acting as arranger, pianist and singer in the song Soul Seranade, Part II.

Howard played organ on Barry McGuire’s "Seeds."

Jim Gordon is an American recording artist, musician, and songwriter. The Grammy Award winner was one of the most requested session drummers in the late 1960s and 1970s, recording albums with many well-known musicians of the time, and was the drummer in the blues-rock supergroup Derek And the Dominos.

Gordon began his career in 1963, at age seventeen, backing the Everly Brothers. Gordon performed on many notable recordings in the 1960s, including Pet Sounds by The Beach Boys, The Notorious Byrd Brothers by The Byrds, and the hit "Classical Gas" by Mason Williams. At the height of his career Gordon was reportedly so busy as a studio musician that he would fly back to Los Angeles from Las Vegas every day to do two or three recording sessions, and then return in time to play the evening show at Caesars Palace.

In 1969 and 1970, Gordon toured as part of the backing band for the group Delaney & Bonnie, which at the time included Eric Clapton. Derek and the Dominos’ first studio work was as the house band for George Harrison's first solo album, the three-disc set “All Things Must Pass.” In 1970, Gordon was part of Joe Cocker's Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour and played on Dave Mason's album Alone Together. In 1971, he toured with Traffic and appeared on two of their albums, including The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys. in 1974, Gordon played on the majority of tracks on Steely Dan's album Pretzel Logic, including the single "Rikki Don't Lose That Number." He worked with Chris Hillman of the Byrds as the drummer in the Souther-Hillman-Furay Band from 1973 to 1975.

Here’s a short list of other artists Gordon has recorded with: Duane Allman, Hoyt Axton, Joan Baez, Stephen Bishop, Bread, Jackson Browne, The Byrds, Glen Campbell, The Carpenters, Joe Cocker, Judy Collins, Crosby, Still, Nash, & Young, John Denver, Donavan, Neil Diamond, Hall & Oates, Jim Henson (yes, The Muppets!), B.B. King, John Lennon, Gordon Lightfoot, Manhattan Transfer, Dave Mason, the Monkees, Randy Newman, Harry Nilsson, Tom Petty, Linda Ronstadt, Leon Russel, Seals & Croft, John Sebastian, Carly Simon, Carole King, Mel Torme, Any Williams, Frank Zappa, etc. [One of the players on the Johnny Rivers' album.]

Jim Horn is an American saxophonist and woodwind player. He was born in Los Angeles, and after replacing saxophonist Steve Douglas in 1959, he toured with Duane Eddy for five years, playing sax and flute on the road, and in the recording studio. Along with Bobby Keys and Jim Price he became one of the most in-demand horn session players of the 1970s and 1980s.

Horn played on solo albums by three members of The Beatles, and worked on a session with Paul McCartney, who was producing a track for Duane Eddy's 1987 album project. Jim Horn also toured with John Denver on and off from late 1978 to early 1993. He also played with Denver in concert occasionally before and after the 1995 wildlife concert.

Horn also played flute and saxophone on The Beach Boys' album Pet Sounds.

More artists: The Mamas & the Papas, Leon Russel, Rita Coolidge, Joe Codker, Johnny Rivers, Jackson Browne, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, Harry Nillson, Linda Rondstat, Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presely, Joni Mitchell, The Carpenters, Garth Brooks, Canned Heat, the 5th Dimension, Elton John, The Rolling Stones, Steely Dan, Roy Orbison, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, U2, Eric Clapton, George Benson, Little Richard, Traveling Wilburys, Tom Petty, Vince Gill, Billy Joel, and so on…

Joe Osborn
in and American bass guitar virtuoso, notable for his work as a session musician in Los Angeles and Nashville during the period from 1960 through 1980. Osborn’s work is widely admired by fellow musicians.

In 1960, Osborn, along with James Burton joined pop star Rick Nelson’s band, where he spent four years. His playing on such Nelson hits as "Travellin' Man" began attracting wider notice, and he found opportunities to branch out into studio work with artists such as Johnny Rivers.

When the Nelson band dissolved in 1964, Osborn turned to studio work full-time. For the next ten years, he was considered a "first-call" bassist among Los Angeles studio musicians (The Wrecking Crew), and he worked with well-known producers such as Lou Adler and Bones Howe, frequently in combination with drummer Hal Blaine and keyboardist Larry Knechtel. His bass can be heard on many of the hit records cut in Los Angeles during that time, along with numerous film scores and television commercials.

Also played on records by: Kenny Rogers, Mel Tillis, Hank Wiliams, Jr., The Mamas & the Papas, The Association, The 5th Dimension, Simon & Garfunkel (“Bridge Over Troubled Waters), Neil Diamond, The Carpenters, and many, many more.

Larry Knechtel was an American keyboard player and bassist, best known for his work as a session musician with such artists as Simon & Garfunkel, Duane Eddy, The Beach Boys, The Mamas & the Papas, The Doors, and Elvis Presley, and as a member of the 1970s band, Bread.

Knechtel became a prominent member of The Wrecking Crew. His most famous piano work is his 1970 Grammy Award winning contribution to "Bridge over Troubled Water" by Simon and Garfunkel.

There’s no need tocontinue to list all the records anyone from The Wrecking Crew worked on.

Michael Omartian is a singer-songwriter, keyboardist, and music producer. He has been a participant in over 350,000,000 albums and CD’s sold worldwide, as a producer, arranger, artist, or musician, during a career that has spanned over 38 years. He is the first producer in recording history to have #1 records in three consecutive decades. Others in this group include George Martin. Michael is a multiple Grammy Award winner, including Grammy for keyboardist of the year.

Michael has produced albums for several pop artists including Rod Stewart, Cliff Richard, Christopher Cross, Michael Bolton, Whitney Houston, the Jacksons, Trisha Yearwood, Clint Black, Donna Summer, Joe "Bean" Esposito, Peter Cetera, Benny Hester, Steve Camp, The Imperials, Amy Grant, and Steely Dan. In 1985 Michael Omartian, along with Quincy Jones, co-produced the #1 hit "We Are the World" by a supergroup of popular musicians billed as USA for Africa.

In one year alone, he was nominated for ten Grammy Awards, three of which he won for his work on Christopher Cross' debut album. he also played as a session musician for artists including Koinonia, Steely Dan, The Four Tops, Seals and Crofts and Loggins & Messina.

Some other acts he has produced include: The Richie Furay Band, Dion, Dionne Warwick, Debby Boone, Kenny Logins, The Commodores, Stephen Bishop, The Disney Company, Gary Chapman, First Call, 4Him, Point Of Grace, Barry Manilow, “Anastasia” original soundtrack, Boz Scaggs, and Kenny Loggins.

Born and raised in Southern California, Mike Deasy began playing the guitar and singing at a young age. By the time he was in high school in the middle 50's, Mike was playing in rock concerts with artists like Ricky Nelson and the Everly Brothers. After graduation, he went on to tour as guitarist with The Coasters, Richie Valens, Eddie Cochrane, and Duane Eddy. 

In the middle and late 60's and early 70's, Mike became one of the top studio guitarists in Los Angeles, working with performers such as Elvis Presley, The Beach Boys, Michael Jackson, Kenny rogers, The Monkees, Sonny & Cher, Frank Zappa, Billy Joel, Frank Sinatra, and Barbara Streisand.

Mike also did many movie soundtracks including numerous Clint Eastwood films such as, "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly," "High Plains Drifter," and the, "Dirty  Harry" movies. And Mike's guitar can even be heard on soundtracks from more recent movies like "Forest Gump" and "The Rock."

Deasy performed on many TV shows such as, "The Bill Cosby Show," "The Flip Wilson Show," "The Sonny & Cher Show," "The Smothers Brothers Show," "The Partridge Family,” and the Saturday morning cartoon, "Josie and the Pussycats." He also did many TV commercials, including Coca-Cola, and Barbie Doll from Mattel Toys.

Ollie Mitchell became a top Hollywood studio musician during the ‘60’s and continued on into the ‘70’s and early ‘80’s. He became part of the sound of pop music on thousands of records, TV shows, jingles, cartoons, and movies during those years. The list of artists he has played with and for is several pages long and includes the Concert for Bangladesh held in Madison Square Garden in New York in 1971.

The 2nd Chapter of Acts was a Jesus Music and early Contemporary Christian Music group composed of sisters Annie Herring and Nelly Greisen and brother Matthew Ward. They began performing in 1973 and enjoyed their period of greatest success during the 1970s. The group disbanded in 1988.

So, if all of these folks really wanted to polish-out their resumes they could add that they played on recordings of songs written by Jim and Dee Patton, right? Yeah, right!

So, what does all this mean? Not much. It really just means we were in the right place at the right time. We also have Gold and Platinum records for some of our kid’s songs we wrote on the albums, “Music Machine,” “Bullfrogs And Butterflies,” and “Nathaniel the Grublet.” For the most part we didn’t gain any notoriety or make any money to speak of. But at least our kids and grandkids can say that there were some of the best musicans in the world recording songs written by their parents and grandparents back in the day. So it’s all good.

Oh, and thanks to Johhny Rivers for re-releasing this album so I could be reminded about this whole thing.


Leave a comment