Friday, November 09, 2007


Journey back to 1974, when Frank Zappa's Discreet label discretely ended the careers of Southern roots rockers Kathy Dalton and Brenda Patterson. The label's male roster included Ted Nugent and Tim Buckley, but the gals never had a chance. Managing a handful of releases (1973-75) the company dried up, releasing only a bit of Zappa stuff before getting zapped.
Kathy Dalton's solo album was actually released twice, the second time (the one you get here) with a song called "Long Gone Charlie" booted in favor of the new title track, "Boogie Bands and One Night Stands." The strategy paid off...22 years later when "Boogie Bands and One Night Stands" was picked for the soundtrack for the film "Sleepers" (nestled in between tracks by Frankie Valli, Dean Martin, Doris Day and The Beach Boys). Before going solo, Dalton, as Kathy Yesse, fronted the Daughters of Albion, a group that made one album produced by Leon Russell.
Hardly anyone mentions Kathy Dalton except when confusing her with Karen Dalton, the folkie with the damaged Billie Holiday voice who was around when Bob Dylan hit the Village, and disappeared into a haze of drug and alcohol problems, suffering an obscure and lonely death in 1993. At least her two albums are re-issued on CD.
The only KATHY Dalton singing you'll find on CD is her work on "Jump," the 1984 Van Dyke Parks album which featured her among various supporting singers.
In addition to Dalton's album, you get 3 bonus tracks...some of the best cuts from Discreet label-mate Brenda Patterson. The tracks are: "I'll Be There," "Crazy" and "I've Never Been a Fool Like This."
Brenda started the 70's on Epic with "Keep On Keepin' On," which included her cover version of "This Wheel's On Fire." Nothing ignited. In 1973, she joined the ill-fated Playboy Records label for an album that included "Bury Me Down By the River" by Maurice and Barry Gibb, the old Pitney classic "I'm Gonna Be Strong," and Paul Simon's "Congratulations." The 1974 Discreet album "Like Good Wine" was the end of the solo road.
A few years later she fronted The Coon Elder Band, which had a one-off deal with Mercury. The last track, and the last I've heard of Brenda, is a tune called "Grinnin' My Blues Away," and Brenda, wherever you are, in show biz or out of it, I hope you're still grinnin'.
Back at ya...Kathy Dalton and Brenda Patterson.


Bertil said...

Many thanks for the Kathy Dalton tracks!

Anonymous said...

If I'm not mistaken - Little Feat is the backing band on the Kathy Dalton LP.

sosolobi said...

hi, is this the same Brenda Patterson who sang "building fires" on soundtrack "The Border". That is a pretty amazing song! Trying to ge some of her stuff, but it's probably going to be pretty hard. Wonder if she still sings and is around.

sosolobi said...

If you have more tracks by Brenda... Please DO share and yell when you do so. THANKS

Bruce La Rochelle said...

Thank you very, very much for discussing these two great singers, both of whom merit the release of compilation CDs. I have commented on Brenda Patterson here:

Anonymous said...

Both of these releases are now on iTunes...

Evan Cohen
Manifesto Records