Saturday, January 31, 2009

This, That and a Little Bit of the Other

There's not much new going on in Yankee Boy land these days. Unemployment is playing absolute havoc with my sleep patterns and as I am somewhat of a compulsive overeater, that makes it harder to maintain any kind of healthy food diet. I still keep in contact with my old manager from my last job and every time we speak he tells me of more people that I know who are no longer with the bank, having been laid off. They keep calling this a recession but it's starting to feel more like a full-fledged depression to me.  A friend of mine said that instead of bailing out Wall Street who it seems are using much of that money to give themselves bonuses despite their lousy performance, we should give that money to all the crack heads and junkies out there. At least we know that they will spend the money and put it back into the economy which can certainly use the influx of cash. Maybe he's onto something. 

The Sonics - Psycho
Leading things off this go round is a pounding classic that is a favorite of just about any garage music fan out there. Many of you probably already have this record on one compilation or another but it's always fun to hear one more time. 
Aerosmith - Shame, Shame, Shame
Smiley Lewis' New Orleans standard has been covered by a number of artists over the years but this is the most flat-out rockin'est version I've heard yet. From their overlooked "Honkin' on Bobo" album.
Blondie - Look Good In Blue
Here's another song that most visitors to this blog have likely heard many times. For some reason I woke up singing it a few days ago so here it is. 
Bo Diddley - 'Deed & 'Deed I Do
This is one of Bo's lesser known efforts on which he is backed by a vocal group, probably labelmates The Moonglows. 
Bobby Moore's Rhythm Aces - Chained To Your Heart
Although I'd never heard this record until fairly recently, it's quickly become a favorite. Despite it's tailor-made Northern Soul beat I think that copies can be found fairly cheaply. Check Gemm Music if you're so moved.
The Epics - Louie Come Home
How many thousands of garage bands were inspired by "Louie Louie" to write and record their own 1-4-5-chord masterpieces? Here's one more in all it's scratchy glory.
The Finkers - Up To You
I'm not sure if Dom Mariani was involved with this record in any way but this Australian combo sounds like they definitely took a page from the Stems/DM3 book of Power Pop.  I don't know if it was originally released as a single (I'm guessing it was) but I got it off of the "Lost Weekend" comp which is now, unfortunately, out of print. 
Home & Abroad - Alison (Please Don't Fall)
"Alison..." is another record that my friend TweeKid turned me onto back in the 90s. I love this guy's voice. They released a few 45s and a cassette back in the day and I'm hoping that the master tapes still exist and that someone eventually puts everything out on CD as I have never heard a copy of this 45 without a fair amount of background noise.
Willie Tee - Walking Up A One-Way Street
I saw Willie Tee at a soul revue a few summers ago and his voice is still in fine form. This mid-tempo stroller was as close as he came to a hit back in 1965.
Los Baby Rocks - Me Nena
It's no secret that south of the border, just like in the US, crazy-assed Rock & Roll reigned supreme back in the late 50s and throughout most of the 60s. Over the years I've heard a few versions of Ron Holden's "My Babe" but this is the wildest one yet.   
The Meteors - Dance Crazy Baby
Speaking of insane crazy Rock & Roll, I've always been partial to The Meteors who manage to combine the rebellious spirit and basic sound of Rockabilly with the pumped-up angry energy of Punk better than just about anyone.   
The Greenhornes - Satisfy My Mind
The first time I saw The Greenhornes they were playing CBGBs on a bill that included The Mooney Suzuki and The Swingin' Neckbreakers and, not to take away anything from the other bands, they totally stole the show. Listening to this years later it's not hard to see why. 
The Primitives - Let Them Tell
There's nothing very original about The Primitives. The wailing harp, the snotty vocals and the double speed tempo are all de rigueur for  British R&B bands circa 1965. But that's precisely the point. So excuse me while I go put on "The Rolling Stones Now".
Doc Starkes - Love Me Like Crazy
"Crazy uhh!! Baby yeah!!" If this ain't a love song I don't know what is. I was going to save this for my next 3CLFS post but it seemed to fit in pretty well here so what the hell.
The Rich Kids - Ghosts of Princes In Towers
When Glen Matlock left the Sex Pistols, voluntarily or not, he hooked up with some guys who could actually play their instruments. I didn't pay the RKs much mind at the time but over the last 30 years (my God, has it really been that long ?!?!) this has aged quite well.      
Sounds Unlimited - Why Doesn't She Believe Me
According to the Garage Database there were at least 4 bands calling themselves Sounds Unlimited back in the mid-60s. These particular Sounds came from Hialeah, Florida. When I used to DJ this record could always be depended on to get the crowd off their butts.  
The New Pornograpphers - It's Only Divine Right
These guys have made 3 albums so far and as far as I am concerned, they are all must-owns for any power pop fan. This song in particular has always been a favorite with that gorgeous melody, those Left Banke styled vocals propelled along by a peppy backbeat and some nice guitar playing. For me this is heaven.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Something Better Beginning

Like most Americans and indeed, many people around the world, I was (and still am) quite excited about the events of this past Tuesday and the promise of a new administration in Washington. Not just any new administration but this one in particular. On more than one occasion President Obama's inauguration speech actually gave me goosebumps, I was so moved. When I listen to him speak I get a real feeling that he has a genuine interest in fair play for everyone, that he is much less concerned about towing the party line and playing politics and that while he is definitely his own man, he will listen to and seriously consider the advice of the experts he has surrounded himself with, even when they disagree with him. I like the fact that he doesn't try to sugarcoat things and tell us that everything is going to be fine. From day one he has made no bones about the fact that it will be a long time before everything is fine again and that a lot of hard work and sacrifices lie ahead before that day comes. But with President Obama (it feels so good to be saying that instead of you-know-who) leading this country I believe that we have made a good start at setting things right again, not just with the economy here at home but with our standing with the rest of the world. So, for this posting I have tried to pick songs that are optimistic and celebratory in some way. History was made on Tuesday, Jan 20, 2009 and something better is definitely beginning. President Obama, you have made me feel proud to be an American once again.   

The Kinks - Something Better Beginning
There can be no better way to start off this post than with a song by one of my all-time favorite bands. And I can think of no other song that captures that sense of cautious optimism that many of us are feeling better than this Kinks classic.
Barrance Whitfield - Rockin' the Mule
Barrance's take on this old R&B pounder doesn't stray far from the original but that's more than OK with me. When he really gets going nobody can rock the house like him.
The Who - I Can't Explain
From the first time I heard this song as a 13 year old tyke back in March of '65 I knew that these guys were special and that this record was the most incredible thing I'd ever heard up to that point. 40-plus years later it still gets my adrenaline pumping. 
Dave Edmunds - From Small Things Big Things Will Come
I've always loved the 'can do' spirit of this song and in these times it seems like an especially appropriate message.  
Fontella Bass - Safe And Sound
While she doesn't stray too far from the sound of her big hit "Rescue Me", I still love the sound of this. I'm guessing that "Safe..." is a big favorite among the Northern Soul crowd.  
Bobby Fuller - Keep On Dancing
Although this was recorded a few years before he hit it big, it's obvious that BF's sound and style was pretty much developed by the time he laid this one down. I'm not sure if it was released at the time but it did show up later, with some slightly different lyrics as "Let Her Dance" on his "I Fought The Law" LP.
Bull Moose Jackson - Big Ten-Inch Record
It's just a crazy hunch on my part but I don't think he's really talking about a record here - ha ha ha. While this is considered an R&B classic in the 21st century, I have to wonder how much airplay this got at the time back in the early 50's.
The Honeycombs - I Can't Stop
This was their follow-up to their Top 5 hit "Have I The Right" and it actually cracked the Top 50 on it's own, making it up to number 49 in December of 1964. For you shoppers out there, beware that there are 2 versions of this song and this, the US single version, is way superior to the other one.  
The Rocking Vickers - I Go Ape
Those of you who are as old as I am will remember when 'going ape' was a pretty common slang
expression. Unfortunately that didn't translate into any chart success for this cool Merseybeat styled raver, at least here in the US.
Ron Tyson - Oh What A Night For Love
I'm a total sucker for a nice upbeat Frankie Lymon-esque kiddie vocal rocker. Enough so that I paid about $25 for a M- copy of this about 20 years ago. I consider it well worth the money. Whenever this comes on the Ipod it always adds a little bounce to my step.  
Shirley & Lee - Feel So Good
This record should need no introduction to anyone reading this. Despite the fact that I've heard it hundreds of times (if not more) over the years it never gets old.
The Small Faces - Sha-La-La-La-Lee
"Picked her up on a Friday night, Sha la la la lee" and by the third verse "We invited just a few close friends". Remember when life really seemed that simple?  
The Soul Children - Bring It Here
I first heard this song as a cut on a Soul Children album that wasn't all that hot - at least I thought so at the time. I don't think it was ever released as a single so I decided to 'bring it here' for all to hear.  That was an awful rhyme, I'm sorry. 
The Sweet - Wig-Wam Bam
Glam was never as big here in the US as it was in Europe. I'm not sure why - maybe we were all too busy protesting the ongoing Vietnam War (er, I mean - conflict) and worrying about Watergate. While The Sweet did manage to have a few chart hits, this was not one of them but it's a fine record nonetheless. It's always been one of my favorites.
The Flys - Be What You Is
From McLean, Virginia The Flys had their 15 minutes of fame with this garage stomper back in 1966. I'm glad my English teacher at the time never heard this.
Throw That Beat In The Garbage Can! - Little Red Go Cart
TTB..., named after a song by the B52s originally hailed from Germany and had a number of releases both in the US and in Europe. While not quite as campy as their namesakes, it's not too hard to hear their musical influence.    
The Vacant Lot - Sweetest Sound
I've written about these guys here before so I'm not going to go into a lot of detail again here except to say that they did release a handful of CDs and 45s, all of which are well worth picking up and can probably be found online for not too much money. Check Amazon.
Adam Faith & The Roulettes - It's Alright
Adam Faith with the Roulettes was a totally different animal than when he was on his own. As a solo he was little more than a second rate cabaret singer (IMHO anyway) but with the band, he cut a handful of rockers that hold their own with the best of what was coming out of England back in the day.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Back to the Drawing Board

I had a job interview this week for a Programmer/Analyst position in New Jersey. It was only my third actual interview since last August so it was kind of hard not to put a lot of emotional stake into it. I did quite well - I answered all the questions clearly and concisely, presented myself as an agreeable team player and asked a few relevant questions of my own. In short, I did everything right. I could tell that the interviewer liked me as, for one thing, he spent over an hour talking to me. Unfortunately, I don't think I am going to get the job. On one hand I am somewhat overqualified. This job is strictly writing or making changes to programs according to specs that have already been written. I am used to being the one who writes those specs, either to give to others or to do myself. On the other hand, their shop is totally DB2 (a type of database) and my DB2 experience is not that strong. Not that I couldn't learn it in a few weeks and bring myself up to speed - it's really not all that difficult. And I think my interviewer realized that. But with all the competition out there I am sure they will find someone with exactly the right type and amount of experience they need. My severance pay (and insurance) ends at the end of February and although I still have some options even then, I am feeling the pressure more and more. So, for the last two days I did little more than eat bad-for-ya's and watch TV but now it's time to rejoin the living. And there's no better way to get started than with a batch of cool tunes.

The A-Bones - Betty Lou Got A New Tattoo
Over the years I've seen the A-Bones play at least 50 times and some of my craziest, drunkenest evenings have been spent carrying on with various members of the band. They are all all about fun, pure and simple.   
Andre Williams - Didlee Didlee Womp Womp
I've also been fortunate enough to see Andre Williams perform on a number of occasions and he's never been anything less than a total blast.  He must be in his 70s at least, but age has not slowed him down one bit.  
The Bedforde Set - Girl Go Run Away
In God's perfect world some garage fanatic (like myself maybe) would be given free reign to go through RCA's vault of single masters from the 60s and put together a fantastic 1 or 2-disc set of some of the fiercest garage records known to man. They released a ton of 'em  back in the day and this is one of my favorites. I paid $20 for mine about 12 years ago but now I see it's going for almost $150 on Gemm Music. Luckily you can also find it on Fuzz, Flaykes & Shakes Vol. 3.
Couple - Gurl Stop It Now
A few weeks ago I posted an item about Couple's new album "Teenage Disc Fantastic" and while it is not yet for sale anyplace in the US, it has been released in Malaysia and has sold over 800 copies just at their gigs alone with no real distribution. Keep checking back and as soon as it's available I'll post all the relevant info. In the meantime, here is one of my favorite songs from the album.
Hot Boogie Chillun - You'll Never Know
I'm not too crazy about many of the newer Rockabilly bands playing about, but HBC are better than most. They've got a nice Stonesey R&B/Garage influence going on and they've even been known to cover an occasional Wailers or Sonics song.
Adrian Lloyd - Lorna
Here's another Garage classic that would sell for majorly big bucks if you could even find a copy. Like most of the Garage loving world, I first heard this screamer on Vol. 8 of Back From The Grave. God bless Crypt Records!
Jackie Moore - Precious Precious
In my last music post I talked about how not all 70s Soul music is about Disco. Here Jackie Moore sings in a pure Southern Soul style that sounds as timeless as anything that came out on Stax a decade or so earlier.    
Jefferson Airplane - It's No Secret
I'm generally not all that into live recordings (unless I was actually there) but JA's version of "...Secret" recorded at the Fillmore East is way superior to the one found on their first album.
The Jelly Bean Bandits - Generation
This Newburgh, NY combo sounds as if they either took "Star Trek" a little too seriously or perhaps there was something funny in the water. But either way "Generation" is 3 minutes of pure  demented, psychedelic genius.
Bevis Frond - He'd Be a Diamond
This is the original version of "...Diamond" which was covered by Teenage Fanclub and posted here last November.   
Kenny Lund - Rip It Up, Potato Chip
I heard this song on Dave The Rave's "Relics and Rarities" show on Top Shelf Oldies last Saturday night and was relieved to see that at least I had it on an mp3 when I couldn't find a copy on either Gemm Records or Ebay. If you are home on Saturday night from 10 PM to 3 AM EST, you should give Dave a listen as he has an incredible record collection and you never know what he's going to play. 
Manfred Mann - Pretty Flamingo
When I was learning to play guitar I used to play this song for hours on end. It's a testament to how great this record is in that I never got sick of it. I also never got to be any good on guitar either - unless you count air guitar. 
Nick Lowe - American Squirm
I've always loved this song. I'm probably way wrong but I've always had this idea that there was some deep sexual connotation to this song. I mean, how DID he make that American squirm?
Ronnie Bird - I Can Only Give You Everything
Them's version of this classic stompfest will always be the definitive one but Ronnie more than holds his own here. I've never thought of French as the language of Rock & Roll before but I guess there's always a first time.  
The Soul Brothers Six -You Better Check Yourself
These guys had a handful of singles in somewhat the same style as "Some Kind of Wonderful" which ended up being covered by Grand Funk Railroad. Most, if not all, of their classic 60s soul pounders came out on Atlantic so maybe one of these days someone will actually do a definitive SB6 package. 
Teenage Fanclub - Take the Long Way Round
From their "Songs From Northern Britain" album, "...Long Way Round" is TFC doing what they do best. Slightly wistful but not depressing and just upbeat and melodic enough to sing along to by the second or third chorus. I mentioned this once before but I hope at some point they decide to put out a box set that includes some of their single b-sides. 
Albert Ayler - Love Cry
This took me a few plays to fully appreciate. The first few times I listened to it I concentrated mainly on the melody he plays on his alto sax (which on its own is actually quite lovely) and gradually the rest of it fell into place. I purposely placed it at the end of the set so it is easy to skip but I strongly encourage you to give it a chance.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Glad to see you go go go go goodbye

These days, politics is a part of life. For the most part I try to keep this blog about mainly music and keep my writings as to how that music has affected my life. But in these crazy times what happens politically affects us all. Which is why I spent so much time encouraging U.S. voters who read my blog to vote for Barack Obama. In case there is anyone who doubts the wisdom of that,  I encourage you to read this article I found online.  There's little or nothing in it that most of us don't already know but it does put things into an interesting, if eerie, perspective. More music to come soon. Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Some Random Thoughts (And Of Course Some Music)

By now almost everyone reading this knows of the passing of Ron Ashton, guitarist for The Stooges. I think it's a pretty safe assumption that without the Stooges (and the Velvet Underground), Punk as we know it would likely never have happened. To me that first Stooges album stands alone as something truly special. I bought it when I was 18 in the summer of 1969, probably because it was on Elektra Records which was still considered one of the hippest labels at that time. I'm not sure what I was expecting to hear but I had certainly never heard anything like them before and it immediately became one of my favorite albums. Of course, back then my crowd was into stuff like The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Donovan, Dylan and the like (so was I) and a lot of my friends absolutely hated this record. Perhaps that was partially why I liked it so much although at this point in time I don't know anyone who doesn't love that first album. Listening to it again this week it still sounds as fresh and new as ever.

I was also saddened to learn of Dave Dee's death from cancer this week. While Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tish never came close to the cultural icon status of The Stooges, they did record a number of delightful beat-pop singles in the late 60s that are still fun to listen to today...Earlier this week I saw Robert Gordon with Chris Spedding at BB Kings here in NYC. While Robert has put on a few pounds and no longer looks like the young Rockabilly rebel of yore, he can still really sing and it's obvious that he truly loves the music. My only criticism of the show is that Chris Spedding, who is one incredible guitar player, did his own set in the middle of Robert's which kind of spoiled the momentum. My friend Randy summed it up perfectly: "As a singer Chris Spedding is a great guitar player". But that aside, if Robert plays anywhere near you I'd recommend going to see him...Now that the holidays are over my thoughts are turning to baseball. Spring training will be starting in about one month's time. As a diehard Yankee fan I have rather mixed feelings about their off season spending spree. While CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Mark Teixeira are all potential Hall of Fame calibre players, it remains to be seen how they will fare in the media circus that is New York City in general and the Yankees organization in particular. Personally my favorite Yankee teams were those of the late 90s when they didn't have many superstars but rather, a whole lot of really good players who felt comfortable in the roles that they played.

The Stooges - I Wanna Be Your Dog
Back in my young and innocent teenage years when I first heard this, I had no idea what he was really getting at. In fact, I'm still not one-hundred percent sure. But then as now, it sounded dirty and forbidden and that was good enough for me.
Bobby Fuller Four - Baby, My Heart
According to Wikipedia's BF discography "Baby..." was never released as a 45 which is a shame because it sounds like it could've been a hit. It's a little poppier than "I Fought The Law" and I can't help but think how great this would have sounded blasting out of car and transistor radio speakers. 
Ace Spectrum - Don't Send Nobody Else
When many people, myself included, think about 70's Soul, crappy Disco is what mainly comes to mind. While that perception is not altogether inaccurate there are many exceptions to that rule. Ace Spectrum's 1974 mini-hit on Atlantic Records is but one of them. Listen and enjoy. 
The Scientists - Swampland
"Swampland" was recorded in the early 80's as the Scientists were transforming from a Power Pop combo into something more darkly psychedelic.  
DDDBM&T - Hold Tight
Like I said on top, Dave Dee & Co. were responsible for a whole slew of poppy upbeat singles that served no purpose other than to make people feel good for 2-plus minutes. And 40 years later they are still doing just that. Not a bad legacy for anyone.
Dave Edmunds - Dear Dad
Dave Edmunds playing Chuck Berry is about as perfect a combination as anyone could ask for. This tale of automotive woe is one of CB's later lesser-known singles and Dave does a great version, sticking pretty close to the original arrangement. 
The Gnomes - Something's Going Wrong
Being a teenage misfit is no fun and "Something..." is pure High School white-boy blues, nasal vocals and all. Perfection personified!
Marshall Crenshaw - Someday Someway
When he is in peak form, nobody can do infectious power pop like Marshall Crenshaw. His Buddy Hollyish twang makes this track from his first self-titled album (copies of which are incredibly cheap on Amazon) even more delectable, giving it a warm, naive charm. 
Muddy Waters - Sugar Sweet
Almost a polar opposite to Marshal Crenshaw, there is nothing sweet and innocent about this track by one of the all-time greatest blues men, despite the song's title. Anyone who is interested in hearing where 60's Brit rockers like The Stones and The Animals got their inspiration would do well to check out one of his numerous hit packages on Chess Records. 
DC5 - Try Too Hard
Speaking of infectious, in the 42 years that this record has been a part of my life, I have yet to be able to sit still when it comes on. Back in the 80's, Long Island Beat rockers The Mosquitos used to do a cover of "TTH" but even they couldn't recreate the excitement of the original.
Robert Gordon - The Way I Walk
Robert played this when we saw him earlier this week. For me, The Cramps' demented version of this Jack Scott classic will always be the definitive one but Robert does a great job while sticking more closely to the style of the original. 
The Beckies - River Bayou
After Michael Brown quit the Left Banke, he was in a number of groups, the most well known of which was Stories. The Beckies came after them and the plaintive choirboy vocals of singer Gary Hodgden helps recreate the unique sound that made The Left Banke so special. 
The Soft Boys - The Queen Of Eyes
Before he went solo Robyn Hitchcock fronted The Soft Boys and this song is from their best album "Underwater Moonlight" which was reissued a few years ago as a 2-CD set with a whole slew of demos and alternates.  
Bob Dylan - I Want You
Nobody can write a love song like Dylan. No hearts and flowers, no BS just raw feeling. "I want you soooo bad". Pure, simple and to the point.
The Third Bardo - Five Years Ahead of my Time
With lyrics like "I'm doing exactly what I want to. Society can't play with my mind", "Five Years..." could not have been written in any other time but the years 1966-1968. So yeah, it's a little dated but it still retains its own peculiar charm. Luckily for us it's on a number of compilations including Rhino's Nuggets box as last I heard, original copies of the 45 were selling in the high 3 figures. 
X-Ray Spex - The Day The World Turned Day-Glo
I think I like this second single by X-Ray Spex even better than "Oh Bondage Up Yours". Play it at top volume and please your neighbors.
The Jesters - Cadillac Man
By the mid-60s Sun Record's better days were definitely behind them but they still came up with a gem every now and then as this shake 'n' shout classic aptly demonstrates. Ace Records has just released a whole CD by these guys which I haven't heard yet but if this is typical of their output, I'm sure it's a killer. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Back From The Ipod 3

Greetings, salutations and Happy 2009. There's not much to say at this point that hasn't already been said so I'm going to keep this intro brief. For this posting I went back to my trusty Ipod and pulled off some of my favorites. As always, comments are more than welcome.   
The Anteeeks - I Don't Want You
Kicking things off in fine fashion are The Anteeeks (that's right - 3 e's) from Kilmarnock, U.K. Like most Garage/Freakbeat music lovers I first heard this song on one of the "Chocolate Soup for Diabetics" comps about 20 years ago and it's certainly aged well.
Bee Arnold - Plant You Now, Dig You Later
While Bee Arnold might be considered an also-ran in the Rockabilly world, I'm sure he must have been something to see back in the Louisiana bayou where he recorded this fiery little rocker for Goldband Records.  
Del Shannon - The Big Hurt
Although "...Hurt" was a huge hit for Miss Toni Fisher, Del turns in an admirable performance in an arrangement similar to the her's. In fact, this is good enough to have been a hit for Del all over again had it been released as a single.
The Knight Riders - I
I first heard this record on a compilation of singles on the Dunwich label (home of the Shadows of Knight) that came out on Sundazed about 10 or so years ago. Recently a DJ friend of mine played it at a club downtown and it was great to discover it all over again.  
Little Jerry Williams - Hum-Baby
This  punchy little gem is available on a few different compilations of 50s black rockers who were influenced by, as Leon Russell once referred to him, the all-time queen of Rock & Roll, Little Richard. Mmmmm Baby!! 
The Nashville Ramblers - The Trains
I've seen The nashville Ramblers play live a few times over the years and they never fail to totally bowl me over with their spot on encapsulation of everything I've ever loved about 60s music. I think if I had the money I'd get rid of my Ipod and hire these guys to follow me around playing music wherever I go. This is their one and only single. They played recently in NYC where a friend of mine shot a few songs on video and posted them on YouTube.  Click on "More from Epstwain" to see the rest of them. 
Nervous Norvus - The Fang
Of course NN is mostly known for "Transfusion" but I've always been much more partial to this tale of space-aged coolness. A few years ago Norton Records put out a compilation of everything he ever recorded which has to be heard to be believed. Zoink Zoink indeed! 
Nils Lofgren - Keith Don't Go
I'm not sure where Nils got the idea for this but nonetheless it's a terrific love song to the man who many believe is the true heart and soul of the best Rock and Roll band that ever was. 
Rockin' Sidney - You Ain't Nothin' But Fine
And this record ain't nothin' but fine fine fine either. What more is there to say? 
The Swingin' Neckbreakers - The Girl Can't Dance/Look Away
For the first few years of their existence The Neckbreakers were second to none, especially when they played live and this song was always the highlight of their set. I still remember the first time I saw them opening up for the Lyres at CBGBs. After they finished anyone else, even Jeff C & Company had to pale by comparison. 
Tommy Blake - Kool It (Baby)
Although he never made it big, Tommy had a number of great records and a rather interesting and colorful career when he wasn't busy being his own worst enemy. Read more about him here.
The Uniques - You Aint Tough
Featuring future Country singing star Joe Stampley, with it's pounding beat and wailing harp, "...Tough" has long been a favorite among 60s garage lovers. And I'm definitely one of them.  
The Valiants - Freida Freida
Featuring another screamer in the Little Richard soundalike sweepstakes, these guys cut a few records back in the day, all of which are worth hearing.
Dwight Pullen - Let's All Go Wild
While Dwight is mostly known for "Sunglasses After Dark" which was covered by The Cramps, he had a handful of other records that were just as collector-worthy. Unfortunately he died way too young at the age of 30. You can read his story here
A Group Called Eve -Within A World Of You
For some reason I was positive that these guys (?) were a British group but, according to Soybomb's Garage Database, AGCE were from Cleveland, Ohio. Either way, this is still a lovely folk-rock lite record that deserved more than the obscurity it found back upon its release in 1967 or so.   
The Jetset - You Should Know By Now
These guys are often lumped in with the whole Mod revival of the 70's but to me they had more in common with pop rockers like The Monkees and The Knickerbockers than they did with the early Mods.
The Myddle Class – Don't Look Back
This is one of my all-time personal favorites, a remake of the Temptations hit done in a more folk-rock garage style. Whoever came up with this idea deserves a pat on the back for this stroke of genius. Unfortunately, it didn't pay off with either radio play or sales.