TSU Toronados Ex-Bassist Jerry Jenkins Interviewed On Allbutforgottenoldies.net

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Jerry Jenkins, the former bassist for the TSU Toronados, was interviewed via email by Amy Gold of allbutforgottenoldies.net. The TSU Toronados were an instrumental R&B group from Houston, TX, formed in 1965. To avid oldies music fans, they are best remembered as the band that provided the instrumental backup for Archie Bell and the Drells' 1968 smash hit, "Tighten-Up." In this interview, Jenkins gives a history of the TSU Toronados and the story behind the making of "Tighten-Up."

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The TSU Toronados ex-bassist, Jerry Jenkins, gives a history of the band and discusses the making of "Tighten-Up" on http://www.allbutforgottenoldies.net in an email interview.

For those of you who were around in the late 1960s, you will almost certainly remember Archie Bell and the Drells' smash hit, "Tighten-Up," which topped both the R&B and Pop/Rock charts in 1968. Not many people know, however, that it was actually the TSU Toronados who provided the instrumental backup for this oldies R&B dance classic.

The TSU Toronados were an instrumental R&B group from Houston, TX, formed in 1965. The founding members were students at Texas Southern University (TSU). The band got its name from the founding members' school and the Oldsmobile Toronado. In 1969, the TSU Toronados charted with "Getting The Corners." Throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s, they toured extensively and were a major part of the Houston music scene. They worked with numerous bands and artists that included James Brown, the Who, Vanilla Fudge, Kenny Rogers, Tyrone Davis, the Chi-Lites, Wilson Pickett, Gene Chandler, Barbara Lynn, Roy Head, the Five Stairsteps, Carla and Rufus Thomas, Ronnie Dyson, Carl Carlton, and B.J. Thomas. In 1994, all of the original TSU Toronados band members (except for saxophonist Leroy Lewis) reunited to make one last live recording.

To avid oldies music fans, the TSU Toronados are famous as the band behind "Tighten-Up." This song's catchy riff was taken from an instrumental written by the TSU Toronados which they would often perform at the local clubs. As Jenkins remembers, "every time we played this song everyone would hit the dance floor."

"Tighten-Up" was recorded on Ovide Records in 1967 in only two days. The TSU Toronados recorded the instrumental rhythm section in one night and Archie Bell and the Drells recorded the vocals separately the following day. At the time, the TSU Toronados were not properly credited for their work on "Tighten-Up," but people gradually became aware of the connection between the TSU Toronados and "Tighten-Up" when they recorded another song ("You're Such A Beautiful Child") later in 1967 with Archie Bell on Atlantic Records.

To read the entire interview, go to: http://www.allbutforgottenoldies.net/interviews/jerry-jenkins/

About allbutforgottenoldies.net
http://www.allbutforgottenoldies.net is an oldies music website with tips and resources for naming long-lost tunes and locating hard-to-find recordings by song title. Allbutforgottenoldies.net was featured on USAToday.com and Komando.com in 2004. For a complete list of interviews on allbutforgottenoldies.net, go to: http://www.allbutforgottenoldies.net/interviews/

Amy Gold


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