Monday, August 11, 2008

An Interview With Bobby Jameson And Jim Cantale!

The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench; a long, plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs.

There's also a negative side.

-Hunter S. Thompson-

I first met Bobby Jameson in the summer of 1964. My room mate at the time, Terry Knight, who was a DJ at CKLW in Windsor, Ontario invited me to a show on an island off the coast of Canada. There were several major acts as well as Bobby Jameson who was riding his ascending star with his hit, "I'm So Lonely."

When Terry introduced me to Bobby we talked briefly and I found him to be a charming and intelligent young man without an ounce of guile. In essence, he wasn't one of the jive talkers with whom I was used to meeting in the record business. I watched him perform and told Terry I thought he (Bobby) was headed straight for stardom.

The second time I ran into Bobby was in the offices of GRT Records and to be honest, I didn't recognize him as the same, gentle young man I had met six years earlier. To put it mildly, he was angry. I was angry too as GRT owed both of us a considerable amount and didn't want to pay.

He was stand-offish at first but soon we became reacquainted and I then heard the horror stories that had happened to him since we had last seen each other. Since many of the same instances had happened to me during that time, I believed every word. However, I was much more fortunate than he. I had one record company pay me accurately.... Impact Records of Detroit, Michigan whose owner, Harry Balk, is one of the most gifted and honorable men I ever had the pleasure of doing business with in the music industry.

Bobby Jameson is also one of the most brutally honest people I have had the good fortune to confront. The world would be a better place if everyone adhered to such a straightforward approach. Many people in the record business do not agree with such honesty. They just can't play the game that way.

Bobby was with me as I mixed the first Rastus LP at Sound City Studios in Van Nuys. When I offered him the opportunity to go to Ohio and work with Rastus writing songs, he jumped at the opportunity.

This is how Bobby Jameson came into our fold....the Rastus group.... and the stories that stem from this association are many. Here....directly from Bobby Jameson's lips, are true stories of the music business and some inside stories about of the best bands you never heard.

This audio clip is approximately fifty-two minutes long. It has not been altered or edited and there is some explicit language. It was recorded at Bobby's home in San Luis Obispo on August 9th in the afternoon. The speakers are myself, Bobby Jameson and Jim Cantale.

John Rhys/

Click here to listen to....An Interview With Bobby Jameson And Jim Cantale!

Click here to go to Bobby Jameson's blog.

Click here to go to Bobby Jameson's My Space page.

Click here to go to Bobby Jameson's YouTube page.

Click here to go to Jim Cantale's web site.


Blogger VickyLou said...

I can hardly believe that no one has yet commented on this. I finally followed the link to the Rastus interview on Bobby Jameson's blog, and gave it a listen. It's amazing what positive energy I could hear in you three. I prefer to hear the truth about people, and that's exactly what I heard in this interview--the truth. I hold this mp3 file close to my heart.
During what years were you in Chardon??? Just curious. I've been there, too. I was born and raised in Cleveland, where I am again living.
Best wishes,

February 21, 2009 7:28 PM  
Blogger John Rhys said...

Hi Vicky....We were in Chardon in 1970 and 1971 I believe. Coldest place I've ever been but the people in Chardon were very warm. John Rhys

February 24, 2009 12:18 PM  
Blogger VickyLou said...

Thanks, John!

March 1, 2009 7:04 PM  
Blogger Zuzu_Art_And_Design said...

I knew Smoke, Dave Smelko. He stayed with us in our desert house, walked among the cacti all night and watched the sunrise, this is when they did a gig in LA, the Whisky A Go Go. He had been the drummer for my late husband's bands around '68, and they played at the Plato in Clevleand. Band names Moe(Ron Modica, my husb.) and the Juniors and The Statesmen, and Unlimited Soul. Where was Smoke from? I wondered how they met. We were told a few years later Smoke passed away at age 21 from a heart details ... what a shame. I had classmates from Mentor who were the Choir and Rasberries - Cleveland rocks. I have recently come home after what - 40 years, and am compiling some detail for my adult kids to know more about their dad. Ron was killed by a drunk driver in '97, but still had a great voice. He is missed.

March 9, 2009 6:14 AM  
Blogger TR said...


Sorry to say that I didn't know your husband Ron. Dave "Smokey" Smelko was from Garfield Heights. He lived in the home facing Fordham Rd. off of Turney Rd. Dave and I went to Benedictine High School together.

Memory fails us all sooner or later, but Smokey passed on from a congenital heart condition around 1973/1974, so he would have been 28years old. His passing would have been a tremendous loss if he was just a great drummer, but Dave was a fine person as well.

I would go to a Rastus gig whenever I didn't have a gig of my own. Remember the great venues of the time?.....Nagels/Union Jack, The Pirate's Cove, Plato, Socrates Cave, The Chesterland Hullabaloo, and The Capri Lounge next to the old Cleveland Arena. Dave was way ahead of his time in playing ghost notes to sub-divide the tempo, and his right foot was scary.

I love what John is accomplishing in commemorating this great band.

Goodnight Nelda Greb....wherever you are! Smokey - RIP brother.

May 1, 2009 9:47 AM  

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