Doo-wop and ‘Hogan’s Heroes’ drums
By Mark Voger, author,
“Groovy: When Flower Power Bloomed in Pop Culture”
I’ve got a great brother. He gave me an entire day of his life on Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017. That’s when Brian and I recorded “Groovy Trailer Theme,” an instrumental I wrote and arranged to be used as a soundtrack for … you guessed it … the “Groovy” trailer. (I just call it “the jingle” for short.)
The jingle is going to be juxtaposed against images from my just-out book “Groovy,” as well as footage from the 1960s — the halcyon days of groovy culture. My hope was to come up with something evocative of the era. Of course, some modernity has crept in, but I think it works. Please have a listen:
(Note: This isn’t the final mix; my brother has since brought down the drums.)
Brian recorded, produced and mixed the track in his studio, and played bass on it. I put on the guitars, keyboards and digital drums (which I played on a keyboard). When I told my brother I wanted to put vocals on, he seemed puzzled. He thought I was planning to sing lyrics. I assured him: “No, just doo-wop.” (That’s my nickname for “oohs” and “aahs.”)
The following day, our old buddy David Arlen Sendrow, a.k.a. “Fro,” added the “Hogan’s Heroes”-style drums, bless him. I first started jamming with Fro in, I think it was, 1976.
Length-wise, I vowed to make the track 1:46 on the dot. I was militant about this because of a lesson learned on the trailer for my previous book, “Monster Mash.” Brian recorded my theme, which came in at 4:22. He gave it to his genius filmmaker son, Ian Voglesong. Ian called me and said, “Most trailers are under two minutes. It’s hard to keep interest at this length.” I said, “That’s OK — just treat it like a music video instead of a trailer.” Without further discussion, Ian edited the theme down to 1:46 and delivered a golden trailer. I learned my lesson.
So I used 1:46 as my mantra when writing the thing. My plan was to play more than I needed, and fade out at the 1:46 point. Ian said he might use more than 1:46, but if he does, that’s on him. I kept my vow.
Though 1:46 is a short length, recording it took all day, as I’m sure you can tell from all the overdubs. Let’s see … 18 guitars (two are backwards) … seven keyboards … 10 vocals …
Anyways, more developments as they occur!