John Rhys recalls that
the name San Remo came about as a result of a vacation taken
by Ed and JoAnne to the town of the same name.
The first recording
by the San Remo Golden Strings was "Hungry for love"
(Pop #27) which was released in August 1965. It was significant in
itself because it is the first production by another of the
Hamilton brothers, Al Kent. In fact it was co-produced with
his brother Bob which suggests a learning curve.
provides some more detail, "We were always cutting tracks
which had a good feel and when "Hungry for love" came
out we added "All turned on" to the flip, as it was a
nice number. The musicians on this had to be the people we
used a lot such as Babbitt or Jamerson on bass."
Babbitt backs this
up, "the musicians were the same Funk Brothers along with
the same horn and string players that were on all of the
records. At times there would be one or two players. I
remember playing on some of the San Remo recordings and I
think I remember Jamerson on the others."
It would also appear
that some of the musicians in this group came from the
Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and I think this is nicely
backed up by the image on this chapter which was extracted
from the San Remo's album "Hungry for love." The
arranger on the album was Gil Askey.
The flip side is the
equally excellent "All turned on" by Bob Wilson
and the San Remo Quartet.
mentioned earlier, there was a 'Don Davis Trio' connection
to the follow up to "Hungry for love", "I'll
be satisfied". Perhaps the quartet are the trio again,
Ray Monette recalls
that Bob was a keyboard player who wrote and played on some
Golden World sessions. Later he would join up with Ray and
Michael Campbell playing locally for a short period before
Ray and Mike formed Scorpion. Ray also knows that Bob played
with Albert King for several years just before Albert's
death. Bob works in a 9-5 job these days.
It would be six
months before another release, "Festival time" c/w "Joy
road". "Festival time" is a great uptempo number and
was ably turned into a vocal by the great Laura Lee on
Ric-Tic111. "To win your heart" has a big following in
the UK and was interestingly released around the same time
as "Festival time." The flip "Joy road" was a
celebration of the road which runs for 40 odd miles from the
heart of Detroit to the west and Ann Arbor.
The final San Remo
release came in August 1966. "Quanto sei bella" c/w "International
love theme" was written by JoAnne and arranged by Mike
Terry and Bert Keyes.
Bert was a legendary
New York arranger who worked briefly with Golden World way
back in 1962.