Monday, November 7, 2022

Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas - BBC Sessions, Volume 1 (1964-1965)

Next up in my BBC project is the British Invasion band Billy J. Kramer and the Dakotas.I'm trying to get through most of the 1960s BBC stuff before getting more heavily into the 1970s stuff. There's enough material for two BBC volumes.

These days, Kramer and the Dakotas don't have that good of a reputation. Admittedly, they were a lower tier British Invasion band. They were managed by Brian Epstein, the same as the Beatles, and so they benefited by having hits with some Beatles leftovers. (The Beatles were so good that even their rejects almost always were hits for others.) That said, they did have talent, and they had a lot of hits for a couple of years, before musical tastes changed. It helps that they generally played their better songs for the BBC, so this is much like a two volume best of.

All but the first four songs here are unreleased and come from BBC transcription discs. That means the sound quality is excellent. I added the first four before the BBC recordings missed some of their biggest hits. It seemed that not many BBC recordings have survived from about the middle of 1964 and earlier, unless it's a big artist like the Beatles or the Rolling Stones, and this fits the pattern. So the first two songs are unreleased and come from an appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show. The third and fourth are released, but only on a box set of the band's complete works. They come from live concerts in 1964.

This album is 40 minutes long.

01 Bad to Me (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
02 Pride [It's Such a Little Word] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
03 I Call Your Name (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
04 I'll Keep You Satisfied (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
05 Little Chidren (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
06 From a Window (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
07 Irresistable You (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
08 Love's Made a Fool of You (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
09 When You Ask about Love [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
10 Sneakin' Around [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
11 It's Got to Last Forever (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
12 Under the Boardwalk [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
13 Don't You Do It No More [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
14 Hello Josephine [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
15 My Babe [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
16 Trains and Boats and Planes (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)
17 Today’s Teardrops [Edit] (Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas)

The cover photo comes from a concert in London in 1964.

1 comment:

  1. Just a minor detail: officially they were billed as Billy J. Kramer with the Dakotas, not "and". Apoparently this is because the Dakotas were already an established group in their own right before they started backing Billy. In fact they had an instrumental hit without him, "The Cruel Sea".