Saturday, December 26, 2009

Song: "Cowboy Hats and Cadilacs"

Sung by Donel Austin, writtnen by Willy Henson. I wrote this song, "Cowboy Hats and Cadilacs", several years ago. I did collaborate a little with a friend of mine, Ron Lane. The tune had a country feel so I wanted a country singer to record it. A friend of mine knew a guy who was signed to a label and he introduced us. His name was Donel Austin. Donel came to my house for a meeting. I sang the song for him, he liked it and wanted to record it. He went to Nashville for the session. I wish I would have been there because I was disappointed with the finished product. He took too much liberty with my lyrics, changing and adding words. I would have also liked to have heard some better instrumentation and a better voice. Well, enough is enough. I guess it is what it is. The main reason I'm posting this song is because I wrote it. Maybe some good country singer will hear it and want to put it on an album or even cut single release. If done right, it's a pretty good country song with a nice message.

Tobin Matthews: Cashbox Magazine Article

Bobby Brooks Fashion Shows

Meet Claire Affens, New York Fashion Director for "Bobby Brooks" the popular young girls clothing line. Claire came up with the great idea of having a rock 'n roll singer appear at her "Bobby Brooks" fashion shows that introduced their new clothes for the season. Her thought was that having a recording artist included in her shows would help increase the attendance. She was right. I was lucky enough to be that singer. We did hundreds of shows throughout the country. As a result of her ingenuity, Claire won several awards from the fashion industry. She was quite a woman.
These teasers were placed in the fashion department of the various stores prior to the show.

These paper ribbons were given to the fans as they entered the show so they could pin them on their blouse.

Indy Pace Car

This is a promo shot in the Indy 500 Pace Car for a show I did in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Tobin Matthews: Willowbrook Ballroom - Compilation

Here is a four song compilation from "1991" at the "Willowbrook Ballroom" in Willow Springs, just outside of Chicago. It was recorded with a single mike VHS home recorder, so the sound and picture quality is what it is. This copy was recorded and given to me by Louie Kiefor, a good friend of mine for mamy, many years. Louie and I went to grade school and high school together. He is a lawyer in Calunet City, Illinois, which is good for me, in case I ever get in trouble!!!

Tobin Matthews: Autograph Session

This is a picture of an autograph session after a Bobby Brooks show up east.

Tobin Matthews & Barbara Ann Gloede (Miss New York) 1963

Barbara and I were invited to Eldridge Amusement Park in New York to crown the King & Queen of the park for that year. It was a fun time. After the ceremonies the two of us hit the rides. The newspaper article above shows us riding the roller coaster.

Bob Corcoran: Press Agent

Bob Corcoran was my press agent. He put me in more teen magazines than I had ever hoped for. More than that, he became a good friend. To have a friend and someone who believes in you is a very special thing. Some of the other artists Bob represented were, Dion, Tony Orlando, Anita Bryant, Bobby Vinton and several others. Bob passed away several years ago but, I will always cherish our friendship.

"Toys For Tots" Benefit in Detroit, Michigan

This was a 1962 post in Cash Box, a music trade magazine, telling about the "Toys For Tots" show.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Tobin Matthews: "Special Way"

I wrote "Special Way" many years ago. It was recorded in Chicago. Norby King and I rounded up some local musicians who were friends of ours and we hit the recording studio to record several songs. This song is short and was the last one we recorded. I probably should have written another verse or bridge, but we ran out of studio time. There is something I have always liked about this little song.

Tobin Matthews: Answering Fan Mail

This picture of me answering my fan mail was taken in my apartment in Greenwich Village, New York. I always answered all the mail I received. I sent a letter and included a picture. The fans were great.

Tobin Matthews: Cash Box Magazine

A picture published in Cash Box magazine in 1963.

Tobin Matthews Caricature Drawing

This caricature drawing of me was drawn by one of the guys who worked in the Columbia Records art department. I got a kick out of it when he gave it to me. Love the way he did the cleft in my chin.

Tobin Matthews & Tony Dow

This picture of Tobin and Tony Dow was taken in Florida. Most of us from the 1950's remember Tony played Wally, Beavers brother, on the TV show "Leave It To Beaver". Check out that beautiful Chevy.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Jimmy McHugh: "I Don't Want Everything" - Success Records

Jimmy Mchugh, from Hammond, Indiana, originated "The Jeepers Band". I joined them soon after they got together. Jimmy left the band after a few years to attend college, Drake University. It was while he was there that he wrote and recorded "I Don't Want Everything" for Success Records out of Des Moines, Iowa. The song was released in 1963 as a single and was also on an album titled "Only For Teenagers and Real Swinging Adults". This compilation album featured Jimmy McHugh, The Blendtones, The Extensions, The Martinels, Oscar Boyd and Cicero Blake. The tune "I Don't Want Everything" was one of Pittsburg's Favorites and received a lot of radio air play in that great town. Jimmy is a special friend and the two of us have kept in touch through all these years.

Success Record Album - Featuring Jimmy Mchugh

Above are front and back pictures of the "Success Records" album, S-LP 1011MX, that included Jimmy's song "I Don't Want Everything".
This is a mini bio from the back of the "Success Records" album.

Jimmy McHugh

Jimmy having a good time on stage.

"Jeepers" Reunion

This picture was taken at "The Jeepers" 30 year reunion thrown by Jan Gabriel. Pictured, left to right are - Jimmy McHugh, Ron Lane, Norby King, Tobin and Frankie Gage.

Friday, October 23, 2009

My "50" Year Class Reunion

I know this has nothing to do with singing but, it was a very special evening to me and part of my life. This picture was taken at my "50" year class reunion, Septerber, 2009. Pictured with me in front of a beautiful lighted fountain outside the reunion hall are Bonnie (Hart) and Chuck Ferczok. They have been married for more years than I can remember. Bonnie and I went to grade school and high school together and Chuck and I were high school classmates. Bonnie, God Bless Miss Hall. Secret note to Chuck - That SOB photographer was lucky we didn't carry out our plans about what we were going to do with him and the fountain!!! Love you and I'm glad you were a part of my life.Jay Kapers, me, Rich Berwanger and George Gruich. Rich Lukowski, me and Rich Berwanger at an earlier class reunion. Rich (Birdy) Berwanger and me. Cold beer and food on the grill on an autumn day in Indiana. Birdy is probably my oldest friend. We met in grade school and have kept in touch on a regular basis through all these years. Friendship isn't a big thing - it's a million little things.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Tobin Matthews: "Don't Make Faces"

I recorded this song, "Don't Make Faces", in New York on Warner Bros, Records in the early 60s. It was written by "Bob Gaudio" one of the "Four Seasons". Bob wrote most of the great "Four Seasons" hits. It was produced by "Al Kasha" and arranged & conducted by "Denny Randell". "Frankie Valli" came to my session to help in any way he could with the recording of the song. Frankie is actually doing that foot-stomping sound you hear in the background and he came up with some other ideas that we were glad to use. I was honored to have him there.

Tobin Matthews: Doing a TV Record Hop Show

Clair Affens, "Bobby Brooks" fashion coordinator, and I being interviewed by the host of a TV Record Hop Show before I performed, singing with my record.

Tobin Matthews: Greeted At Small Airport

This picture was taken up east where I flew from one small town to another, in a small plane, during a series of one nighters. The fans were always there which made me feel great. I thank them all.

Tobin Matthews & Sally Struthers

This picture of "Sally Struthers" and me was taken in her home in California. As you probably know, Sally played Gloria in the hit TV show "All In The Family". We are in her neat little bar where I had a few beers but, not enough to become "Meat Head"!! Great time!!!

Tobin Matthews: Sun Records

This picture was taken in the Sun Records Studio. The people who owned Sun Studios, at the time I was there, told me that THAT microphone was THE mike that "Elvis" used when he recorded at Sun. Well, I had to sing a little using that original mike, even though it wasn't hooked up. The mike in the picture behind me sure looks like the same one I'm singing into.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Live Video from MBC Show - Compilation

This is a small compilation of a video taken by Tom Barnhart, of Music Lab, with a home video camera, so the picture and sound quality is what it is. Tom also supplied the instruments and sound equipment for the band and I. It was recorded in the early 1980s in Chicago at the Museum of Broadcast Communications, (MBC) for a show we did for Jim Lounsbury when he was inducted into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame. The guys in the band were, Ron Lane - guitar, Ronnie Lass - Guitar, Norby King - drums, Dave Spanier - bass, and Eli Rios - keyboard. This was the first time my daughters, Holly & Carrie, saw me perform live. I was happy and proud that they could be there on this special night.

Fun at the Museum

Dancing in the foreground are Nick Nobel, and Joni James. They both had hit records in the early 1950s. I can't name then all but, Nick had "The Bible Tells Me So" and Joni had "Why Don't You Believe Me" & "Have You Heard".
My daughters, Carrie & Holly with me, Jim & Helen.
Tom & Sharon Barnhart with Tobin & Jim.
This was taken after the show that night. Pictured are Tobin, Norby, Jim, Dave, Ronnie, Ron, Eli and Helen.

Tobin Matthews & Reggie Jackson "Mr. October"

This picture of Reggie and me was taken in Oakland, California at his warehouse where he stores his great collection of "Muscle Cars". We also went to his home in Oakland where I was lucky enough to see a lot of his baseball awards. Sadly, he lost that home to an Oakland fire. Reggie was a real down to earth person, just like one of the guys.

Tobin Matthews: Detroit, Michigan

Tobin signing autographs for teen fans during a U.S. Marines "Toys For Tots Jamboree" held at Edgewater Park in Detroit, Michigan in the early 1960s.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tobin Matthews: "Susan" (single voice version)

Very few people have ever heard this single voice version of "Susan". This is the initial recording before I over dubbed my harmony and unison and before we added a little more instrumentation, did some mixing and had our finished product. Hope you enjoy this rare and unreleased recording of "Susan".

Tobin Matthews Autograph Session

This picture was taken when I was on tour up east. We are in a record store signing pictures and records for the fans.

Tobin Matthews & Anita Bryant

These two pictures were taken in Columbia Records studio in New York during one of Anita's recording sessions.

Tobin Matthews Promo Photo

This is a Columbia Records promo picture taken in 1962.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tobin Matthews: "Can't Stop Talkin' About You"

"Can't Stop Talkin' About You" was written by "Carole King" & "Gerry Goffin", the great early 60s writing team fron New York's acclaimed Brill Building. Carole King later went on to become a popular singing star with her "Tapestry" album plus many other recordings.
"Can't Stop Talkin' About You" was my first release for Warner Bros. Records. We recorded it in New York in "1963". The session was produced by "Al Kasha", arranged and conducted by "Alan Lorber"

Comment From: Tom Diehl

Tobin Matthews is from Calumet City, Illinois and he recorded so many great records over the years.... I have never heard a bad one! Why wasn't this record a smash hit?? This is one of the best records I've heard in a long time. I find myself playing it multiple times over just because it is fantastic! It was written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King and was later recorded by Steve Lawrence & Eydie Gorme... but this is the definitive version to me. This is a smash hit in my book and I hope you dig it even a little bit! You can hear killer records like this one live every night on!

Al Kasha & Tobin Matthews

This picture of Al Kasha and me was taken during the recording session of "Can't Stop Talkin' About You". I couldn't have asked for a better guy to work with. He was a real pro!!

Carole King & Gerry Goffin

Carole and Gerry wrote "Can't Stop Talking About You" a song I recorded for Warner Bros. This successful writing team also wrote "Will You Love Me Tomorrow", "Take good Care Of My Baby", "Every Breath I Take", "The Loco Motion", "One Fine Day", "Up On The Roof" and many other smash hits.
This is a 1963 record review of "Can't Stop Talkin' About You" by Peter Aldersley who wrote for Pop Weekly, a music magazine, out of London, England. I thank you Peter for the great review.

Tobin Matthews & Fess Parker (Davy Crockett)

This was a real thrill for me!! When Fess Parker starred in the hit TV show "Davy Crockett", I was in 8th grade. Now, about 7 years later, I'm in Detroit, Michigan doing a couple of live shows with Fess Parker on the bill. I was like a kid at Christmas, the same kind of excitement. We were doing a U.S. Marines "Toys For Tots Jamboree", with the cooperation of WXYZ radio and television. We performed for over 22,000 people who attended the outdoor shows at Edgewater Park.

Tobin Matthews: Museum of Broadcast Communications

This picture was taken in Chicago, at the Museum of Broadcast Communications. It was a special show for Jim Lounsbury after his induction into the museums Hall of Fame. Pictured are, Tobin, Ron Lane on guitar and in the rear, Dave Spanier on bass guitar.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tobin Matthews: "Sunshine High"

I wrote this song many years ago and recorded it in Chicago at "Pumpkin Studios". I have included a slide show of my Grandchildren, Cam, Ty, and Payge. They are my "Sunshine High". I thank my daughters Holly and Carrie for these three treasures.

Tobin Matthews & Jimmy McHugh

Jimmy McHugh, on guitar, and me performing at a show in Indiana in 1969.

Tobin Matthews: Sings at Civic Center