Tino and the Revlons

Band members               Related acts

- Cheech -- keyboards

- Johnny Caoloa (aka Johnny Angel, aka Eddie Heeran) --

  lead guitar

- Hoot Gibson -- drums, percussion

- Tino (RIP) -- vocals, bass




Jeannie and the Hurricanes (Johnny Angel)

- The Neanderthals (Johnny Angel)

- Johnny Rabb (Johnny Angel)

- The Rockiní Dakotas (Johnny Angel)

- Tex Rubinowitz (Johnny Angel)

- The Star Spangled Washboard Band (Johnny Angel)

- Los Straitjackets (Johnny Angel)




Genre: garage

Rating: 3 stars ***

Title:  By Request at the Sway-zee

Company: Dearborn

Catalog: DLP 1004

Year: 1966

Country/State: Detroit, Michigan

Grade (cover/record): VG / VG

Comments: sticker on cover with initials 'D.M.E.'; signed by the band members in blue ink on cover

Available: 1

GEMM catalog ID: 5219

Price: $150.00


The cheesy cover, exceptionally uncool band photos, and fawning liner notes by New York DJ Lee Gray are enough to tell you this one's gonna have some camp value.   


Apparently formed in Michigan in the early 1960s, Tino and Revlons spent several years steadily working the east cost club circuit, recording occasional local singles:


- 'Story of Love' b/w Black Bermudas and Knee Socks' (Mark catalog number 154)

- 'Wedding Bells Will Ring' b/w 'Heidi' (Pip catalog number 4000)


Serving as opening act for various Mersybeat bands including The Dave Clark Five and Hermit's Hermits brought with it increasing attention and in 1965 the band was signed by the small Dearborn label, recording a series of three 45s over the next year:


- 1965's 'Little Girl Little Girl' b/w 'Rave On' (Dearborn catalog number D-525)

- 1965's 'Lazy Mary Memphis' b/w 'I'm Coming Home' (Dearborn catalog number D-530)

- 1966's 'Lotta Lotts Lovin'' b/w 'Red Sails In the Sunset' (Dearborn catalog number D-540)


While none of the singles proved a commercial blockbuster, they generated sufficient attention for Dearborn to finance an album.  Released in 1966 "By Request at the Sway-zee" featured a conventional set of popular garage and rock covers.  Like thousands of other cover bands, the performances were most competent, but unexceptional.  As a rule of thumb they were better on the up-tempo numbers with the best probably being their instrumental cover of Link Wray's 'Rumble'.  Lacking a strong lead singer, ballads like 'Ask Me' and 'Because' tended to be far less impressive.  To be honest virtually none of the 11 tracks differed much from the originals (of course imitation is the sincerest form of flattery).  Namesake Tino handled most of the vocals with a strange, but engaging Mickey Mouse edge to his voice (check out their cover of 'Louie Louie').  Giving them credit where due, they were probably far more impressive in a small live setting than on LP and I've certainly heard worse.  'Course that leaves you wondering what all of the excitement was about.  In this case my guess would be that it had something to do with rarity than quality and the 'Pokora effect'.  This one showed up in one of Hans Pokora's "Record Collectors Dreams" books (think it' was the 2001 volume).  


"By Request at the Sway-zee" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Louie Louie  (Richard Berry) - 

2.) Wooly Booly   (Sam Samudia) - 

3.) This Could Be the Last Time  (Keith Richards - Mick Jagger) - 

4.) Honky Tonk Angels   (A. Carter - W. Warren) - 

5.) Little GTO () - 

6.) House of the Rising Sun   (Alan Price) - 


(side 2)
1.) Ask Me   (Nodugna - Grant - Baum - Kaye) - 

2.) Because   (Dave Clark) - 

3.) Rumble (instrumental)   (Link Wray - Grant) - 

4.) I Can't Get Bo Satisfaction  (Keith Richards - Mick Jagger) - 

5.) One Time - Break Time


Guitarist Angel continues to pursue an eclectic career in music.  Tino was apparently killed in Jamaica in the mid-1970s.