Hep Stars, The


Band members               Related acts

Benny Andersson -- keyboards (1964-69)

- Janne Frisk -- vocals, lead guitar, backing vocals

  (1963-69)

- Lelle Hegland -- bass,  (1963-71)

- Svenne Hedlund -- vocals (1963-69)

- Hasse Ostlund -- keyboards (1963-64)

- Christer Pettersson (RIP 2006) -- drums (1963-71)

- Charlotte "Lotta" Butler Walker -- lead vocals (1968-69)

 

 

 

- ABBA (Benny Andersson)

- Björn & Benny (Benny Andersson)

- Svenne Hedlund (solo efforts)

- The Sherrys (Charlotte Walker)

- Svenne and Lotta (Svenne Hedlund and Charlotte Walker)

 

 

 


 

Genre: pop

Rating: 2 stars **

Title:  We and Our Cadillac

Company: Olga

Catalog: LPO -1

Year: 1965

Country/State: Sweden

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: Swedish pressing, very heavy vinyl

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 5084

Price: $70.00

 

Yeah, if you're not an ABBA fan you probably don't have a clue who these guys were ...

 

Bassist Lelle Hegland and drummer Christer Pettersson met while in Swedish Air Force.  Following their 1963 discharge they decided to form a band. Adding singer/lead guitarist Janne Frisk, lead singer Svenne Hedlund  and keyboardist Hasse Ostlund to the lineup they started out playing supper clubs and local dances, before deciding their was money to be made in rock and roll.  As The Hep Stars they were signed by EMI's Swedish Olga imprint, debuting with the 1964 single 'Kana KapilaI' b/w 'Got A Woman' (Olga catalog number SO-03).  Shortly after the single was released personality conflicts saw Ostlund quit the band.  He was quickly replaced by Elverkets Spelmanslag keyboard player Benny Andersson.

 

With Andersson in the line-up the band went back into the studio recording a mixture of covers and original material.  Their big break came as a result of a March 1965 appearance on the Swedish television program 'Drop In'.  Their enthusiastic performances saw them labeled as the country's version of The Beatles.  Suddenly a couple of marginally successful earlier 45s became massive chart hits, as did newly released material:

 

- 1964's 'A Tribute To Buddy Holly' b/w 'Bird Dog' (Olga catalog number SO-04)

 

 

- 1964's 'Summertime Blues' b/w 'If You Need Me' (Olga catalog number SO-05)

- 1965's 'Donna' b/w 'Farmer John' (Olga catalog number SO-???)

- 1965's 'Cadillac' b/w 'Mashed Potatoes' (Olga catalog number SO-09) 

 

 

In the wake of their commercial success Olga elected to release a supporting LP.  1965's "We and Our Cadillac" (always loved the title), served to compile their most recent with new studio material.  Heavy on popular UK and US pop and rock covers, musically the results were never less than competent, though seldom inspirational.  In their defense, these guys were as good, if not better than the vast majority of their English and US contemporaries.  Imagine most English or US bands trying to record an album of popular Swedish songs ...  Both Hedlund and Frisk were pretty good singers (neither had a particularly heavy accent), and the band were quite tight, with both Frisk and Andersson turning in some nice solos throughout (check out the opener 'Cadillac').  At least from my simplistic standpoint the set's biggest shortcoming was simply their poor choice of outside material.  Tracks like 'Be My Baby', 'Send Me Some Lovin'' and 'Young and Beautiful' were pleasant, but nothing more.  Moreover the band's occasional forays into slower country-influenced material ('That's When Your Heartaches Begin') were also a major misstep.  They should have stuck with more up tempo rock oriented numbers like Andersson's 'No Response' and their cover of Shel Talmy's 'Bald Headed Woman'.  Elsewhere the album spun off another successful single with Talmy's 'Bald Headed Woman' b/w 'Lonesome Town' (Olga catalog number SO-17).

 

"We and Our Cadillac" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Cadillac   (Brown - Gibson - Johnson - Mallett - Taylor) -

2.) Be My Baby   (Phil Spector - Ellie Greenwich - Jeff Barry) - 

3.) That's When Your Heartaches Begin   (Fred Fisher - William Raskin) -

4.) Send Me Some Lovin'   (Price - Marascalca) - 

5.) Young and Beautiful   (Aaron Schreder - Abner Silver) - 

6.) Rockin' Love  (Carl Mann) - 

 

(side 2)
1.) 
No Response   (Benny Andersson) - 

2.) I'll Never Quite Get Over You   (Arnold - Martin - Marrow) -

3.) Sweet Little Sixteen   (Chuick Berry) - 

4.) Oh! Carol   (Howard Greenfield - Neil Sedaka) - 

5.) Then She (He) Kissed Me  (Phil Spector) - 

6.) Bald Headed Woman   (Shel Talmy) - 

Drummer Pettersson died in August 2006.


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