February 25, 2017

THE COBRAS (Newton Centre, MA)

Totally unaware of the other Cobras who slithered down to Beantown from northern Maine, this crew of Newton high schoolers played together for three years, cut a cool 45, and promptly vanished.

The class of 1967 combo was comprised of David Rosen on lead guitar and background vocals (Newton South High School); Dennis Hannon on lead vocals and rhythm guitar (Newton North High School); Richard Mushlin on bass (Newton South High School); and Tommy Thompson on drums (Newton North High School). Their first gig was at David's brother's New Year's Eve party at a hotel on Route 9 in Framingham, Mass. Friends had adjoining rooms and the band set up in the hallway!

The Cobras played frats and mixers at colleges such as Boston University and MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). At one fortuitous gig at Lesley University in Cambridge, an A&R scout from AAA Recording Studios was impressed enough to set them up with a record deal. But by the time they got around to their studio date, the guy no longer worked there. Luckily, studio owner Joe Saia said they'd put out the record anyways. The band didn't have to pay for recording, however they wound up stuck with boxes of records and none of the promotion promised in the initial proposal. The record featured one David Rosen original, backed with a version of the standard "Summertime." Both sides showcase the surprisingly professional-sounding vocals of singer Dennis Hannon.

As for the band name, David recalls they made a list of potentials, then called up people to see what names they liked most, and the Cobras won!

Though unfortunately no photos turned up yet, you can visualize the band in their matching outfits of yellow jackets with black velvet collars and skinny ties.

Band members, relatives and old friends: We'd love more info and photos. Please get in touch!

Come On Back / Summertime
Feature Record Productions
April 1967

No comments:

Post a Comment