The Wrecking Crew-a must see

Discussion in 'V.C.'s Parlor' started by surf green, Dec 5, 2021.

  1. surf green

    surf green Squier-holic

    Jul 15, 2014
    While switching channels, I came upon "The Wrecking Crew" on HBO. I'd certainly heard the name over the years, a group of pro musicians, including Glen Campbell, who recorded "background" tracks in the 60's.
    Well, that turns out to be only the tip of the iceberg. The value of these legends goes much deeper than that.
    As paid "hit men", they made mountains out of ordinary molehill talent. They worked for "everybody", if you can remember a band from the 60's, who had a hit song, the Crew was involved.
    If you had a player who didn't have "studio chops", you hired the crew. I laughed when a guitarist, watching a pro record his guitar part (who was really getting into the song), had to pull him aside and ask him to "dumb down" the riff, as he would never be able to play the song live. 'Nuf said, top notch music entertainment. Here's the trailer.............

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  2. ALinPHL

    ALinPHL Squier-Meister

    Feb 18, 2021
    They were to LA what the Funk Brothers were to Motown. If there was a hit they were probably on it. Dwight Yokam talks alot about the Wrecking Crew on his radio show. He likes to say they really knew how to wreck a record.
  3. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Guy Who Likes to Play Guitar Silver Supporting Member

    After I watched it I looked up who played on Joe Cocker's Feelin' Alright. It was those guys, and Carol Kaye played bass. I had always assumed it was the usual guys back then like Carl Radle on bass and Chris Stainton on piano.
  4. duceditor

    duceditor Squier-Axpert

    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
    Yes. Good stuff!

    As I've mentioned before my own group, The Abstracts, missed out on an opportunity to be Columbia Record's "it" group. Chosen for that honor, after several groups (including the Abstracts) had had sessions for the label, were the Byrds.

    Only many years later did I learn that the Byrds, as good musicians as they were, were apart from one band member, kept completely out of the studio. Their first record, a rock cover of Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man," was done almost totally by studio musicians.

    Music Historian Mike Dugo -- the guy who 'found me out' (which finally led, in 2011, to the release of the Abstracts' Columbia sessions) -- once asked me if the Abstracts would have cooperated with that. And thinking about it, remembering who we were back then (idealistic and naive) said likely not. "Then you'd no have gotten your record out."

    Sad, but seemingly so.

    Music is mostly about marketing. Selling a "product." Might as well be fish fingers for all the business monkeys care.

    'Tis what it is. But real talent does exist. Just not where we were told it was. In such people as the said Wreaking Crew and the Funk Brothers.

  5. miket1117

    miket1117 Squier-holic Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    Kansas City
    Standing in the Shadows and The Wrecking Crew are awesome documentaries... eye openers. Two other good ones are Twenty-Feet From Stardom, which is doc about back-up singers (details escape me now), and a documentary about Muscle Shoals, anchored musically by Booker T. great viewing, great music.

    And one other of note... The Other One, a documentary on Bob Weir of The Grateful Dead. I've watched that one three times.
  6. White Dog

    White Dog Squier-Meister

    Oct 19, 2011
    The Swampers were the sessions band.
    miket1117 and surf green like this.
  7. radiotech

    radiotech Squier-Axpert

    Apr 23, 2014
  8. miket1117

    miket1117 Squier-holic Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    Kansas City
    that's it! couldnt remember their nickname. but booker t was in that group wasnt he?
  9. bigtuna

    bigtuna Squier-holic

    Nov 1, 2015
    Yes have seen this a while back.. amazing sjow
  10. Year Zero

    Year Zero Squier-Nut

    Oct 27, 2020
    I've seen the Wrecking crew some 10 times. Watching the new Let It Be not.
  11. Davis Sharp

    Davis Sharp Dr. Squier ‎‎‎‎‏‏‎ ‎

    Jan 7, 2016
    Maryland, USA
    Booker T and the MGs, with Steve Cropper.
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  12. I watched a documentary a while back about these guys, it might've been the one mentioned above. If I remember correctly, Glen Campbell couldn't read a lick of sheet music - just shows how good he was that he could hang with the best studio musicians at the time.

    Here's a link if anyone wants to watch in on YouTube. I'm pretty sure this is the one that surf green is referring to:
  13. miket1117

    miket1117 Squier-holic Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    Kansas City
    thanks! been a while since i watched it.
  14. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-holic

    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    Great documentary that I need to watch again. Carol Kaye is incredible. You'll need to click Youtube to view this.

  15. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Nov 29, 2010
    Really good and very interesting. I have the DVD.
  16. NickDG

    NickDG Squier Talker

    Dec 3, 2017
    So Cal
    As I got older I came to appreciate the talent of the Wrecking Crew, however when I first heard of them many years ago I felt a bit betrayed. Growing up I actually thought the Beach Boys wrote and recorded all their songs in a garage in Santa Monica between surf sessions. Although, I do recall wondering how they did Pet Sounds in a garage? (And, yes, I know now only one of the Beach Boys actually surfed.) So of course, I thought along similar lines for so many other acts that turned out to be the WC - except for the vocals.

    Back in the day when I poured over every word on album covers I never saw any mention of the WC. And when it came to light most big acts deferred to the WC on their most popular songs I thought it would become a musical scandal the likes of which we haven't seen since Payola and Milli Vanilli. But nothing ever came of it. And I think the reason is a simple one. The Wrecking Crew was so damned good - and produced so much great music - that nobody cared.

    I remember when I was teaching myself to play bass guitar from Beach Boys albums and I thought I was channeling Brian Wilson. And no doubt Brian is a better than decent bass player but it was really Carol Kaye I was listening to and trying to copy although I didn't know it at the time.

    surf green likes this.
  17. techowiz

    techowiz Squier-holic

    Aug 21, 2014
    new york
  18. driver8

    driver8 Squier-Meister

    Jun 19, 2020
    That looks great, definitely going on my watch list, thanks!
  19. BarnyardShark1979

    BarnyardShark1979 Squier-Nut

    Jul 9, 2020
    Baltimore Maryland
    "Hired Guns" is another decent doc in this vein.
    miket1117 likes this.
  20. Angry Possum

    Angry Possum Obsessed With Music & Guitars Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 30, 2019
    Squier Town NY
    I saw this awhile back. Carol Kaye is amazing.