THE FABULOUS FLIPPERS
Harlem Shuffle / I Don't Want to Cry
~ Quill 111
I Don't Want To Cry / Harlem Shuffle
A Quill Records, Inc. Production
~ Cameo C-439
Shout / Turn On Your Love Light
A Quill Records, Inc. Production
Arranged by Frank Tesinsky
~ Cameo C-454
Women Ain't Good For Me (TM-2770) / West Side Story
Produced by Winters
~ Fona 312
333 North Michigan Avenue
TM-2769 Flippers: West Side Story
TM-2770 Flippers: Women Ain't Good For Me
TM-2771 The Rooks: Turquoise
TM-2772 The Rooks: Ice And Fire
West Side Story
It Was A Very Good Year
Peace Of Mind
More Today Than Yesterday
You Always Hurt Me
For Once In My Life
Who Can I Turn To
National Promotion Corporation
Jayhawker Building, Suite 2
Lawrence, Kansas 66044
WILLARD ALEXANDER, INC.
333 North Michigan Avenue
THE FABULOUS FLIPPERS:
THE EIGHT EIGHTH WONDERS OF THE WORLD
And talk about-
THE FABULOUS FLIPPERS
The Fabulous Flippers were originally formed in Hays, Kansas almost seven years ago. The band was then a five piece. Terry Wierman was the leader who formed the group for the purpose of playing local dance jobs on the weekends. Unlike most groups, this band early in high school met with very good success locally and were able to stay together through four years of high school.
The beginning of the eight piece show band that has captured the attention of everyone in the mid-west, was in June 1964. Auditions were held over a four state area to come up with the best talent possible. Seven men were selected and were told they had two days to put together a show and get on the road. The boys had just me, but it was soon discovered that working together was easy. Each man that was selected had been playing in various bands for at least five years. All of the boys were 19 and 20. Terry Wierman was still the leader and was the only original Flipper.
The summer of 1964 proved to be one summer that the people of Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, North and South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa will never forget. Radio station KOMA in Oklahoma City was used for advertising. Regular spots ran every day and people all over [the] central United States heard the name of the Flippers. Posters, handbills, and newspapers were used that summer as the Flippers started their journey across becoming a legend that was to build bigger every time they played. It was not uncommon at all for the Flippers to be mobbed when they came into town. Many times extra police officers had to be called in to hold back the excited mobs that would try to get to the band on stage. By the time the band had been on the road for five or six weeks the word [began] to get around about the band. Many newspapers interviewed the boys and did full page articles on the band. In almost every town pictures appeared in local newspapers about the band.
The reason for the large success of the band was this. The band was then seven pieces, using a standard five piece [rhythm] section plus one trumpet and one sax. The band was playing the current hits, but had re-worked the songs, [adding] horns, [choreography], trick lighting systems, and dyed [blonde] hair. This unusual combination of horns with popular songs was [new] [to] the kids [;] they were liking it so much that the Flippers would average 1,000 people a night playing in towns that most agencies have never heard of.
Probably one of the main secrets of the success of the band was the show they put on. On [no] song, at any time, was anyone standing still. The band had spent many hours practicing and working out routines for each song. Dance steps were used, and at [points] of the evening, a vaudeville show was put on. And it was done well. The boys ended the summer playing 108 dances in eight states, and leaving people talking about the band everywhere they went.
It s not even fair to compare this band with other groups. All you can say is they work together with a talent that is unbelievable. You can say all you want about this band, and when you see them you ll have to admit that enough hasn t been said yet. The foresight and talent of this band is expressed by the way the band predicted a coming trend for horns and went to eight pieces. This gave them three horns on every number, and sometimes up to five since almost everyone in the band plays every instrument except the drummer. The drummer would if he had a chance, but to describe the drummer is like talking about the seven wonders of the world, so he stays on the drums. Bands all over the mid-west have copied the Flippers. Anyone who has ever been to a mid-west dance knows that there s a different kind of music out there.
More than a year ago the Flippers changed the musical trends of the mid-west They started playing [Rhythm] and Blues with a Blue Eyed Sound. They added trumpets to old blues songs which had not been heard of in the mid-west except by a few. The songs were re-arranged and presented to the public and the response was overwhelming. The Flippers had done it again. The whole mid-west was behind them. The Flippers were doing Taste Of Honey with two trumpets and a trombone three months before Herb Albert brought it to the public.
Last year the Flippers were asked to play for [the] National Ballroom Operators Convention. After their performance a special meeting was held by the operators. They could not believe it. The Flippers moved into Minnesota and Iowa and completely upset the ballroom circuit The second and third times around many attendance records were set. Many crowds over 2,500 were recorded.
WATCH OUT WORLD, the Flippers may be coming your way, and when they do, you won t believe it. It s easy to say that the world would stand, watch, and be entertained by this eight piece band like they have never been entertained before. Anybody who has seen this band once can t help expressing their respect, admiration for this eight piece group of musical talents called THE FABULOUS FLIPPERS
P.S., And this is [an understatement,] see them, you ll be writing letters too.
Never will you see a group that works so hard to please a crowd.
This band uses eight men who play with a sound that only big bands can equal.
This band is destined to be the Count Basie of this era.
Every number is accompanied by a show also.
This band has held crowds of thousands spellbound. It s not uncommon for crowds to just watch for the first hour.
This band has been together for two years and has a following bigger than most recording groups.
The Des Moines Register July 1, 1993, Thursday SECTION: DATEBOOK Pg.3 BYLINE: Tayer Kellie Still fabulous Fabulous Flippers -- 7:30 tonight, Val Air Ballroom. No, we're not talking about a bunch of singing dolphins here. The guys in the Fabulous Flippers, a Midwest musical phenomenon of the 1960s, have reunited for a three-city swing in Iowa, starting tonight in Des Moines. The group came together in 1964 in Lawrence, Kan. The Flipper's trademark was the band's emphasis on a big sound and stage show. The band incorporated percussion, brass and strings into its unique sound, along with vocals. Their music ran the gamut from jazz and rhythm to rock and blues and it was once said about them (by their former promoter Randy Winters) that "they were a bunch of white boys playing black music." Their music was played on Oklahoma City radio station KOMA and they caught on in a big way, playing in ballrooms and armories on the weekends. (They attended Kansas University during the week and made music on weekends.) Though their fame never burgeoned beyond the regional arena, they were known in at least 14 states and developed a following that, to this day, won't let them fade. It's largely due to demand from fans that their current reunion happened. "We had a reunion two years ago in Lawrence, Kan., just for ourselves," says band member Gary Claxton. "But this reunion happened because they (the fans) can't let the music and nostalgia die down. To know other people share our memories is almost kind of humbling." The group is 40somethings Dennes Frederick (who today works in the pharmaceutical business in Nashville), Dennis Loewen (who works in gospel music and real estate in Lawrence, Kan.), Roger Lewis (head of the Department of Music at the University of Kansas in Wichita), Doug Crotty (a lawyer in Garden City, Kan.), Claxton (a health insurance broker in Des Moines), Jerry Tammen (retired from the real estate business and living in Kansas) and Daniel Hein (real estate and music producer in California). The Flippers, as it once was said, is the "band that introduced rhythm and blues to white Midwestern kids." Claxton said they used to hit the used record stores looking for old rhythm and blues records and then arrange them to their style (by adding brass). "We played what blacks had been playing for years, only we played where they weren't allowed," he said, referring to the racial tension and situation of the '60s. "We were unknown everywhere we went, but because of word-of-mouth and advertising the crowds grew and grew and took on a life of their own. Also, we didn't have the technology back then (that we do now) with the equipment, so we just did the ballroom circuit and actually started with the crowds before we had the records," said Claxton. The Flippers' biggest hit, "The Harlem Shuffle," went to the top of the Midwest charts in 1966. That song and "Love Light" and "Shout" were among the group's most popular numbers. They eventually broke up in 1970, amicably, and all went on to their other careers. An Iowa group called The Bank Street Band will open for the Flippers. Tickets for the benefit for the Easter Seal Society are $ 12.50 at the door. Both bands play Clear Lake on July 2 and Okoboji on July 3. Call 289-1933 for more information. ? Kellie Tayer
The Des Moines Register June 24, 1993, Thursday SECTION: DATEBOOK Pg.2 BYLINE: Berdan and Patrick Beach Kathy Hot tickets They call them Flippers. If you were out and about in the 1960s, you undoubtedly caught the Fabulous Flippers. A regional success story out of Lawrence, Kan., the Flippers were a bunch of college students who played from Texas to Minnesota. They're getting back together to do some shows, including a stop at the Val Air Ballroom on July 1. It's a bennie for Easter Seals, and tickets are $ 12.50 at the door, $ 11.50 in advance from the Val Air, Co-op Records, Peeple's or Easter Seals. For more, call 289-1933 and ask for Perry (we love to say that because it sounds like a secret password).
Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN) August 26, 1998, Metro Edition SECTION: Backfence; Pg. 3B HEADLINE: Despite evidence, I still question 'fair' existence; Glimpse into '68 secret teen scene looks real, but it's urban legend if you ask Me BYLINE: James Lileks; Staff Writer I don't know if you're aware of this, but tomorrow is the start of this thing called the "fair." Or so the rumors say. What it is, I don't know - information is sketchy and inconclusive, but apparently it's been going on for a few years now. Exhibit one is on my desk: a fair yearbook from 1968. Yes, you read that correctly; this "fair" has been going on for 30 years. The yearbook contains many interesting glimpses into the secretive world of the "fair." In '68, there was something called the Young America center, described as a "teenage paradise, [where] the fashion center carries a selection of the latest teen fashions, ranging from mod to pop to the all-new Nehru look." There's a picture of mod and/or popteens in fair attire - the young men are dressed for August in corduroy pants, shirts buttoned tighter than Tupperware, and white ties. There's a fashion-forward idea. Walking around eating food dripping with ketchup? Why not put on a white tie as wide as a plane propeller? To ensure that Nehru-crazed youth didn't spill into the fair and rip the lapels off Establishment Squares, the teen paradise had a variety of activities to quell their restless spirits. "In the cabana-type booths are games of skill, paint-a-pictures [and] hot dogs." ("Calm down, Riff. C'mon - Spin-Art will take your mind off Nam.") And of course there's rock and roll: The Fabulous Flippers were playing, along with Michael's Mystics, the Inmates, the Accents and "the ever-popular Danny's Reasons," which sounds like the defense's closing arguments at the last Bonaduce trial. Personally, I think it's a hoax. I think this "fair" is just an urban legend. But I'm always interested in being proved wrong, so if you have memories of this purported event, send them in.
The Des Moines Register July 18, 1998, Saturday SECTION: Metro Iowa Pg.5 HEADLINE: Iowa Rock Hall to honor pop icons SOURCE: Registers Iowa News Service Decorah, Ia. - The Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in Decorah will honor several musicians, disc jockeys and at least two ballrooms at its 1998 induction ceremonies this Labor Day weekend in Okoboji. The Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake and the Val Air Ballroom in West Des Moines will go into the hall as favorite venues. Former KIOA "good guy" Jim Michaels of Des Moines and KOEL's Dale Wood of Oelwein will be tapped for their long- standing work. Other inductees will be: * The Fabulous Flippers from Lawrence, Kan., most influential band from outside Iowa. * The Notorious Noblemen, Albert City, northern Iowa band. * Al and the Untouchables, Cedar Rapids, eastern Iowa band. * Echo's Five, Des Moines band. * Jerry Martin and the Sounds, Albia, southern Iowa band. They will be inducted Sept. 6 at the New Roof Garden Ballroom, where all five bands will perform. Information: (319) 382-2256.
The Des Moines Register November 11, 1997, Tuesday SECTION: Metro Iowa Pg.3 HEADLINE: Managing Val Air a 'dream come true' for Kaser Phil Kaser is planning to hold a variety of events and shows at the landmark ballroom. BYLINE: Susan Fritz SOURCE: Register Staff Writer Though going from a business manager to general manager meant returning to a crazy schedule, Phil Kaser knew the right venue would make the jump worth it. "And the Val Air Ballroom was No. 1 on my list," he said. "This is a dream come true." Kaser, 45, a longtime restaurateur, is now general manager and part owner of the 56-year-old landmark at 301 Ashworth Road in West Des Moines, which has been closed since early last year. A Des Moines native, Kaser lives here with his wife, Judy, and their two daughters, Melissa, 16, and Breeana, 11. "In fact," he says, "I'm living in the same house I was born in." Evenings at the Val Air were part of growing up. "Though everyone talks about the big acts that used to play here, I remember most of the local acts, like the Rumbles Limited and the Fabulous Flippers, " Kaser recalls. "I've been interested in managing the ballroom for about a decade, but my active pursuit began early this summer." Mark Kennedy is Kaser's partner in this latest venture and the head of the investor group L.L.C. Valley Ballroom. Both Roosevelt High School grads, Kaser and Kennedy now have daughters there in the same class. "I've known Mark for about seven years. We coached softball together and we belong to the same church," said Kaser. While Kennedy will handle the policies and direction of the Val Air, Kaser will be more involved with the day-to-day events, something he's had a lot of experience with. At age 15, Kaser became a busboy and has stayed in the restaurant business ever since. His affiliations include the Ames Golf and Country Club, The Greenbrier, The Metz and, his latest, The Strawtown Inn in Pella. Several years ago, he was general manager of King Arthur's Castle, the former restaurant in the giant castle-like structure at 1300 Eighth St., West Des Moines, which had been in his family for years. Having been a general manager for most of his career, he decided nearly 12 years ago to change pace and work as a business manager. "I'm back to crazy hours again, " Kaser jokes, talking about his return. Though he's personally a big fan of rock 'n' roll, he and Kennedy plan to bring an eclectic mix of acts to attract a variety of audiences. "And we plan to recruit a lot of local talent. "We intend to book events that will appeal to all audiences and age groups," Kaser said. "For example, we're planning on having a 'teen night' on a regular basis where kids can have some fun in a drug-free, alcohol-free environment." Other plans include business seminars, comedy shows, craft exhibits, musicals and much more. Extensive remodeling is already under way and the facility will be open for private parties next month. The official grand opening is Dec. 13, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony followed by a dance with the Guy Lombardo Band. Phil Kaser says he's excited about his new job, even though it will mean keeping a 'crazy schedule.'
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