Mark Lindsay - Paul Revere and the Raiders Charismatic Superstar - One on One
Paul Revere & the Raiders heroic Lead Singer/Songwriter/Producer - Mark Lindsay has impacted the music world in lots of memorable ways.
Mark's voice and persona while using Raiders made him a 60's and 70's icon along with a mainstay on classic hits radio. Not only did he obtain legendary status with all the band, he was the item for affection for your world's school girl population. Mark Lindsay's alluring smile, handsome profile, and mop-top dew together with his long trademark ponytail (que) were about the front cover of each one teen magazine world wide. And forget about those redcoats from England that called themselves The Beatles, Mark Lindsay & the Raiders were True Blue Patriots for American Rock & Roll.
Mark Lindsay will just as before be singing those timeless Paul Revere & the Raiders megahits on The Happy Together Tour 2011. Headlining the 2010 tour is -The Turtles featuring Flo & Eddie ("It Ain't Me Babe" "Happy Together" "She's My Girl"). Other legendary performers about the tour are -The Association ("Windy" "Cherish" "Along Comes Mary"), The Grassroots, ("Let's Love Today" "Midnight Confessions") and The Buckinghams ("Kind of a Drag" "Don't You Care" "Susan").
The tour are going to be stopping at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Tuesday July 19th.
All these GREAT performers using one exciting bill, and similar to the American Bandstand, Where the Action Is, Hullabaloo and Shindig TV show lineups of the 60's.
Paul Revere & the Raiders produced hit after hit through the entire 60's and early 70's. Memorable classics like "Kicks", "Steppin' Out", "Hungry", "Good Thing", "Just Like Me" and "Indian Reservation."
Marl Lindsay is a Florida native now. And because of Jeff Albright from the Albright Entertainment Group, I used to be able to speak with both Mark Lindsay and Mark Volman from the Turtles last week. The interview with Professor Volman are going to be following this article.
And now here's my interview with Mark Lindsay. Mark's a Singer/Writer/Producer/Hitmaker & Legendary Frontman of Paul Revere & the Raiders.
Hi Mark, many thanks spending a few moments along with me today. How are you?
"I'm great Ray. Where are you calling from?"
I'm calling from beautiful Bradenton, Florida.
"Well hey; I'm being placed in Florida right now. We're over near Jupiter and we're actually living in Florida now. I am married to Deborah for 20 years and in that 2 decades we've lived in Idaho, Oregon, Arizona, California, Maui, Nashville, Memphis, new york and Florida. So we've lived in all four corners of the country and Hawaii we like Florida the very best. Florida's cool, where else would you get summer 365 days a year, although it might get cold during the night. I think we're both lucky to generally be down here."
What was living in Hawaii like?
"Except for your ocean breeze that blows more or less all the time in Maui, the weather conditions is pretty much exactly the same. We lived there for eight many lived about two miles down the line from George Harrison really should be fact. We had three acres right on a cliff overlooking the ocean. It was great except there were a full time gardener, between him as well as two of us; we'd be out there three days a week just beating along the bushes. So it got crazy but it was fun."
Let's mention The Happy Together 2011 tour. It recently celebrated its 25th anniversary right?
"I was on a lot of the first ones plus they put me back about the tour last year. We have got great reviews and we're rear this year. I love it, it's so much fun, you get to hear lots of great songs and pay attention to all the guys, but it takes you back my good friend, it takes you back. You're gonna' view a giant slice of your charts from the 60's and 70's and several hits!"
I was a top 40 radio deejay during the late 70's/early 80's and then MTV and video wiped out the radio star.
"Then the world wide web wiped out the record. Means that digital, it's all downloads and unfortunately there's lots of piracy. But the kids today, it's a whole new generation, you have got a kid that's 12 or 13 yr old and he just doesn't understand why he can't hack in and download stuff because it's there and so why can't you have it."
When I grew up, it was all about listening to your favorite deejay and knowing what the hit songs were. Should you liked what you heard about the radio you ran as a result of the record store and bought the 45 record. Then you usually bought the album.
"Yea, it absolutely was fun. I love vinyl, really should be fact I'm focusing on a project now and then we might end up using it vinyl as well due to there being a whole new market, youngsters are discovering the fact that vinyl sounds a hell of the lot better than digital."
I miss that echo effect sound coming from all those classic 45 records. I have no idea if we'll have the capacity to ever master that wonderful sound again. Jim McCarty of TheYardbirds agreed along with me when I spoke with him weeks ago, that magical sound on those early records will never be duplicated.
"Well many of it had to do with the live chambers. CBS records in Hollywood the spot that the Raiders cut most of their stuff, that they two special echo chambers that were just... well you've heard Simon & Garfunkel, Raiders, it all sounded great. Capitol Records had these echo chambers produced by Les Paul really should be fact. Yea all of that stuff -Frank Sinatra, The Beach Boys ladies sounded great. I get a lot of my old equipment, the vast majority of same equipment that I used back in the 60's we can get pretty close however, you cannot duplicate that echo. However an associate of mine is now around and sampled the vast majority of old chambers so they can get like 99% of how there. It's an brand new technique though."
There looked like there was a lot of pressure on those artists during the 60's, pressure to acquire a hit record about the radio along with a grueling touring schedule and constant TV appearances.
"I joined my first band after i was like 14 yr old and formed the Raiders with Paul after i was like 17 or 18. So I am on the road all my life for some strange reason I still as if it. I guess I've never surfaced. That's what's so good in regards to the Happy Together Tour; we're back on your way again. You mentioned McCarty, there we were lucky we had the show Where the Action Is. It was a great way to debut your record and everybody found it at once. Although we did tour, clearly there was like several years there where there we were on the road like maybe 200 nights a year."
Do you think it was that type of discipline that made the 60's music scene so excellent?
"I don't know if it was the discipline or perhaps the sheer joy of playing rock & roll. Walking out to my first record contract; I'd have paid them a nickel an increasing, you know? Anything to make music, but it wasn't about the bucks it absolutely was about playing music, and being on TV, and playing while in front of crowds."
Yea, what was the fame like Mark; Walking out to your picture being plastered about the front cover of each one teen magazine around?
"It had been a funny thing, produce there were two Mark Lindsay's. There were one guy that was on TV and then the magazine's and stuff, and then there was the real me that we knew wasn't prefer that guy. I was style of having a hard time putting the two together. Inside I used to be kind of this shy kid from Idaho when I got on stage everything changed."
I think most of us kids identified more with bands much like the Raiders and Turtles because you were amongst us. You were "American" bands.
"Well, there we were the American Revolution."
And you wore that que or ponytail.
"And you recognize I wish the heck that I had put a Copyright on that because only consider how many Hell's Angels would have been paying royalties at this time."
Are you still sporting the ponytail (que) or possibly it a thing of history?
"It's come and gone about four different times. I've grown it and cut it off. Right now I would not have it, I cut it off about three in years past but who knows I might start growing it rear, it comes and goes."
I desired to ask you about a song you did in 1966 called "Little Girl while in the 4th Row" from The Midnight Ride album, was there is a girl in the fourth row which you were singing about?
"Being on tour and you also look out at the audience and there'd be this babe, you recognize? But you know that clearly there was no way in the world that you might ever be able to meet her, you will see her out there, but like when the show was over BAM -you were over a bus or a limo or whatever towards the airport or wherever you're going and never stay with you, so it was kind of like one of those things. Then Mark started sing some of the lyrics towards the song, "Maybe someday you'll be closer than four rows away."
So you never actually got to meet her Mark?
"Well actually I did, believe it or not in Buffalo New york city in 1967 clearly there was this priest which come up before the show and after the soundcheck before the show curtain opened. He stated, 'Mark, I'm kind of the unofficial greeter here, there's these young girls that are sitting out here that would love to meet you.' Thus i said, 'Sure bring them on back.' So there was clearly three girls that go back, and one of them was really- really cute, she had these cat eyeglasses and there was this instant attraction, we thought wait 60 seconds this girl is 14 yr old this is not going to happen. Thus i gave her a rose along with a kiss on top of the pinnacle and that was it.
Fast toward the 80's, I'm within this meeting in Beverly Hills to get this done commercial for this big corporation and appearance at one of their functions. That i'm there with this gal and another of the guys on the agency. And this girl we just hit it off instantly, and we're a slave to laughing and the guy says, 'Well I will as well leave; it's obvious which you two know each other.' And I said, 'No-no, we've never met,' as well as girl said, 'Actually we did meet several years ago but you wouldn't remember it.' I said, 'When did we meet?' She said, 'Buffalo in '67.' I said, 'You're over that I gave the rose to.' We ended up marrying her."
You're kidding me?
"Nope, that's my lady now."
Wow, what a great story Mark.
"Oh yea. It was right, we were like star-crossed lovers. It was meant to be but it only agreed to be too early the first time around."
That is amazing.
"My life reads being a novel and so I'm focusing on a book."
Yea, I did hear which you were working on an ebook. As a matter of fact my first book was introduced recently - it's called Check the Gs -The True Story of Eclectic American Family and Wacky Family Business. The length of time are you along inside your story?
"Well you know I'm almost done, I've written it and rewritten it three or more times and I am working on it for 10-15 years. But ultimately every time I get almost finished, I start reading it we say no, no, no, that is not the way it really happened, I'm envious myself look too good here, this isn't really real. Thus i go back and write what really happened without really stretching the information presented over the real things know? So as I conducted that several times as well as as I get a little older I get a little more honest with myself. So I'm really nearing the truth now as well as truth reads superior to fiction."
Are you scripting this totally on your own or getting some help with it?
"No, I'm performing it myself. Actually a several years ago I sent a handful of chapters to a publisher we said maybe I would like some help with this, plus they no, no, no, we like your style just keep doing the way you're doing. They desired to make a deal however said I'm not ready yet."
Eventually, like I did, you're going to say enough, it's ready, I'm done.
"Well, if it is right it's right! It's like writing a song, I'll work on it within my head -and it's amazing in older times I use to write a song and that's it great -spitted out you know. Now Sometimes a little harder with them and just keep focusing on it until I begin things out so when I start taking things out I figure you're ready to stop."
My book took 2 years to write and I think back and say where did the two years go? My mind was totally focused back then on the story.
"It's a consuming art yet it's worth it. And when you have through it you've got something you can look at through-out your life."
When we leave this planet, well... you already have your legacy; I suppose I'll have mine with my book.
"No, I'm working on mine; For sale lot more stuff to do. I kind of hit a renaissance period and I've written more songs during the last eight months versus the previous eight years. And For sale couple projects going, can't really mention them but one advisors if it happens, will fulfill my horoscope. Extremely popular 60's, Gloria Stavers, you mentioned 16 Magazine; she was the editor of 16, she gave me for my birthday one year my horoscope by Linda Goodman, a non-public horoscope right, but it predicted that you would end up with the mansion high on the hill, and affirmed I shared this big mansion with Terry Melcher, leading to a sports car in the spare room and I had the red Ferrari in the administration area but she said these items will not make you happy you are going to want more, you are going to move on past this and do all of these things and then be famous then you believed you could. But it won't make you smile.
But much later in life you are going to have a second career which is going to be so phenomenal that it will almost out eclipse the first career entirely. You may be known by millions a lot more people. So I'm focusing on that and so if that comes true then there you go. And if this project works, that can happen, but I can't say something more about it than that, but wait and pay attention to."
Tell me a little bit about Terry Melcher, he was a significant guy in the 60's wasn't he?
"Terry was really the sixth Raider, for those who listen to any of the songs around the first record that I produced which was A lot Talk; before that Terry was on every Raider record. We'd finish a song and he and I would return into the studio later and hubby and I would mainly perform background. He had a great high sounding voice but it just blended so well. He had been a big part of the Raiders sound. He was real instrumental in aiding the Raiders in becoming the hitmakers we were holding and I really miss him, he's gone now."
He left us excessively soon, didn't he?
"Sure did, the past four or five years before he died, I said seriously Terry let's get back in and write something, let's take a step again, and he said, well...I not really know. But his last big song was "Kokomo," (The Beach Boys) he's throughout that for sure."
Yea, Terry Melcher was instrumental to lots of important bands- including The Beach Boys plus the Byrds. When I attended broadcasting school during the late 70's, my instructors were deejays with illustrious broadcasting careers plus they all had Dick Clark stories. That which was it like to work together with Dick Clark?
"Well, he was totally professional. When the camera would come on or perhaps the Microphone would come on and hubby would be all smiles. He was completely a professional and if something didn't go his way you knew over it. But he got done what he wanted done and done his way but it sure worked for him."
So Dick Clark had also been instrumental to the Raiders success right?
"Well sure, he previously an idea for Where the Action Is; he hired us for your pilot because we worked cheap, and when he sold the idea to ABC he hired us for just a thirteen week period. He knew how visual there we were right and we would work cheap, and he laughed and said years later, 'You understand what? I thought I'd hire you guys for thirteen weeks and whenever the show removed I'd hire a real band.' In order that they liked what they saw and also by the end of that thirteen week period there were become that real band. I was the house band for nearly three years."
You guys cranked out some hits man, but what really amazed me is the fact "Indian Reservation" was your only Number 1 hit?
"Yea, even "Arizona" which had been up to where it made platinum however, not Number One. But we did have some gold records, it absolutely was the only Number One as well as funny thing would it be was suppose to become follow up to "Arizona." It was a Mark Lindsay record, I produced it we usually didn't produce myself, Jerry Fuller did, so when I got through with all the record Jack Gold said, 'Why now don't put it out since the Raiders, you produce the Raiders plus they need a hit.' And then we put it under the name of your Raiders and it became the biggest selling hit while in the history of CBS records."
Any regrets for calling the group Paul Revere? (Keyboardist Paul Revere Dick continued to tour without Mark while using Raiders name)
"In the beginning, made use of to the beginning before we have on CBS, we signed our first record contract over a little label called Gardena as well as owner said, 'You got a chance to sign the contract and sign your full legal name,' so my full legal name is Mark Allen Lindsay we signed my name and then everybody else signed their name and Paul's name was signed Paul Revere Dick, that was his full name.
Then he viewed at us and said, 'Paul Revere...Paul Revere, Paul Revere, wait 60 seconds, wait a minute, wait...a...minute! That's a great gimmick. After all the Downbeats are okay but Paul Revere now that is a hook. Everybody knows Paul Revere's ride seriously.'
He said, 'I'm going to call this band Paul Revere & the Nightriders or something' and Paul especially hated it because he'd been teased all his life at school about, 'Hey Paul Revere- where's your horse?' So he just dropped his name Paul and went by the name Revere Dick. However, if our first record became available, our first record said Paul Revere & the Nightriders. And even though name (Using Paul Revere) did cause some confusion yet it's probably a lot like The Dave Clark Five where Mike Smith was charge singer and Dave Clark (the drummer) was the particular band."
There are so many bands walking around out there without the original lead singers anymore.
"Well, just what are you going to do...just what are you going to do. Just make sure see the Happy Together tour you are going to see the real deal here, I've sang every hit that Paul Revere & the Raiders been able to. And Mark & Howard through the Turtles, if they're not bona fide then I never saw one."
I'm really eager for the show, for hoping to get a pass to protect the show from backstage. I have to take a lot of pictures.
"Tell them Mark declared that they'd better apply it or I won't do "Kicks."
I'll definitely actually tell them that. My favorite Paul Revere & the Raiders tune happens to be "Good Thing."
"Yea we'll be doing regular that, I love that tune, after we do it on stage it sounds just like we did about the record. The guys while in the band all sing like birds or perhaps the Byrds -I'm not sure. But I do my far better to make the stuff that perform sound like in the day or better you recognize. So there you go."
You've always were built with a great voice and your voice today may sound like your only 35 yr old and it appears which you take really good care of yourself. (Mark is 69 yr old)
"Well, I walk six miles every day; I get up two to three or four each and every morning and out by sunrise. This is where I write, I will be on the trail. I strive to eat right and rehearse another hour after i get back home. While I went looking for a checkup recently my doctor said, 'Whatever you're doing don't stop it' (After getting a recent physical his doctor said you're likely to be 25 years old)."
After Paul Revere & the Raiders you worked just as one A&R executive with United Artist Records?
"Yea, I think I was qualified, I'd been an Artist, Producer, Writer, a Publisher, well, i thought I knew the way to select songs and it had been a lot of fun we did pick some hits. I needed a great run there until Capitol bought the business and just like a radio station, somebody arrived and said okay we have your job now."
"What style of hits did you pick?"
"The first project how they gave me was the town to City album by Gerry Rafferty. The course notes said, 'Any hits on here?'I said, 'Well, well then, i'll take it home and I'll show you.' So I went home over the past weekend and came back and said 'Okay, Baker Street is a monster, it's going to be about a million-seller, it's way too long but we can easily edit it down. Plus they said, 'What's the next connection?' I said '"Right DownThe Line," not as big as "Baker Street" still might not sell quite a million -maybe eight hundred-nine hundred thousand, as well as third single needs to be "Home And Dry" maybe three hundred-four hundred thousand that is about it.' Plus they said, 'You're on!'
So we released "Baker Street" and nobody's playing it. Thus i went to Charlie Minor, the pinnacle of promotions and said, 'Let me sit inside your office, when you make all of these calls to the stations and I'll jump on the extension. Request if they're on it yet and, if they're not, why they are certainly not playing it. Don't hand them over reasons to play it. Request why they're not playing it.' So he did we listened and wrote down all of these notes.
One station said, 'Well, playing the guitar is a little too raucous for our format.' Another said, 'That sax thing should not be at the front, it should be towards the end.' And so on and so forth.
I had a little studio within my house. I went home, got out a razor blade and made 17 different custom edits for these particular 17 stations. I threw them on Charlie's desk on Monday morning and said, 'Okay, send these out and ask them why they won't play them now.' We guess maybe we were holding so flattered that we'd produced custom edit for their station - now, with digital stuff, naturally everybody makes his or her custom edits. However they had said, 'We'll take you on temporarily,' so if that happened the course notes said, 'Okay you got the gig.'"
Do you continue to talk with Paul (Paul Revere Dick) in any way?
"We talk occasionally; we haven't played together for decades. You guys are always asking me can you ever do something together where there was awhile when I'd decline but nowadays I would not give a crap you recognize, why not? It might happened, it might not, if it does fine, if doesn't that's cool too."
It seems like Paul's version of the band took a uniquely different direction with additional of a comedic flare, as if a lounge act.
"Paul is a fantastic natural comedian; when he grew up his heroes were like Danny Kaye and the Marx Brothers and the ones like that. And he just loved comedy. Now he has got a band and hubby does comedy bits plus they play the hits as well as it entertaining but it's not the Raiders that I remember. But given that he's putting people while in the seats he's doing what's right."
Mark, I want to thank you so much for chilling with me today, we look forward to meeting you face-to-face backstage at The Happy Together show at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on July 19th.
"I enjoy meeting with you Ray, thanks a lot."
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