Monday, January 25, 2016

The Guess Who - Voice Your Choice

The Guess Who formed in Winnipeg, Manitoba in the mid-'60s. The original group was named Chad Allen & The Expressions and consisted of Chad Allen (lead vocals and guitar), Randy Bachman (guitar), Bob Ashley (piano), Jim Kale (bass), and Garry Peterson (drums). From that line-up came one of the best rock and roll records ever to come out of Canada, Shakin' All Over, originally recorded by England's Johnny Kidd & The Pirates. But in my opinion, Chad Allen's riveting vocals and the entire band's electric performance completely outshone the original UK single. Two interesting notes about this record: 1 - this song was recorded in a TV studio, CKY in Winnipeg; and 2 - when released in the United States by Scepter Records in New York City, the label felt it had a real "British Invasion" sound and so decided to not reveal the name of the group, but simply printed "Guess Who" on the label. Well the name obviously stuck!

Burton Cummings joined the band in 1966, replacing Bob Ashley on piano. Shortly thereafter Chad Allen left, and Burton became the new lead singer. It took four years and a great record producer, Jack Richardson (who by the way also produced the Bob Seger classic Night Moves at Toronto's Nimbus 9 Studios), but the end result was their first Gold record, the chart smash These Eyes.

The hits kept on coming for the next five years until the end of 1974, including six Top Ten songs and three Gold Records.

Treasure Island Oldies presents The Guess Who on Voice Your Choice. Cast you vote at the Voice Your Choice page for either Shakin' All Over or American Woman. I'll play the winner in the 3rd hour of next week's show.