In response to the John Frigo item in the next exhibit, Rifftides reader Jim Brown writes:
In later years, I heard Johnny say of “Detour” that “it was all mine, words and music.” He explained that The Soft Winds was a co-op group, and they had an agreement that all of their names would go on anything they wrote while they were together. On his self-produced CD Rennnaissance Man (recorded 1985, released 1999), “Detour Ahead” is credited as “words and music by Johnny Frigo, with thanks to Lou Carter and Herb Ellis.”
Johnny was also a superb country and western fiddle player, and held a long time gig (decades) on the WLS Barn Dance. On one track of Rennaissance Man (Back Home Again in Indiana), the band breaks into a kicking C&W bag for a half chorus. The band is Larry Novak (p), Larry Gray (bs), Kenny Soderblom (ts), Pat Ferreri (g), Howard Levy (harm), and Rick Frigo (d).
Johnny continued to write music throughout his life, from jingles to jazz tunes. Rennaissance Man includes two of his later compositions, “Apogee” and “Bow Jest.” “Hey, Hey, Holy Mackerel” (the Cubs are on their way) (1969) was played on WGN, Chicago, for several decades as the opening theme for Cubs broadcasts. The title was an amalgam of lines used by Cubs broadcaster Jack Brickhouse. Chicagoan Scott Simon chose it to close his remembrance on NPR’s Weekend Edition.
Thanks for the YouTube links. They are typical of Johnny’s writing and style. He would read several things like this during an evening in a club.
Mr. Brown, long a Chicagoan, now lives in northern California.