MusicDish e-Journal - January 21, 2020
MusicDish Advertising Network
Search MusicDish e-Journal (Advanced)
Subscribe To MusicDish e-Journal
About | Contact | Advertise | RSS | Submit Article | Submit News | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution
Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network

The Redcoats Are Coming!
Part Two: An In-depth '60s Garage Band Biography
By Zack Bocelle, The Lance Monthly
(more articles from this author)
Comment | Email | Print | RSS

Thanks to Steven Rappaport, The Lance Monthly was able to contact the Redcoats' rhythm guitarist, Zack Bocelle. Though originally approached to participate in an email interview, Zack's first submission was so interesting and entertaining that we thought it best to print exactly as written. Zack's story is being told in nine monthly installments. This is number two. Meet the Redcoats - FINALLY! [Editors' note: To read part one, please click onto the archives link at the top of this issue.]

John and Mike were waiting for us to come home from school that Friday. We loaded up our amps and guitars and headed off for Wildwood. The Spirt household is a story in itself. I will say, that for all their strange quirks and idiosyncracies, they took us into their home and treated us like family. They were loving parents who were ready to do anything they could to help see their son John's dream come to fruition.

John had his drums set up in the living room. We set up our stuff and decided to play a song with which we were all familiar. A simple song: "Twist and Shout." We didn't have a PA system, but John had a reel-to-reel tape recorder, so we sang into that. As soon as the song ended, John came around from behind his drums to play it back. It was very rough. It was very raw. But it was also very magical. We sounded like the Beatles. Randy and Mike were both excellent guitar players, but it was decided, that because Randy's roll in the band would be that of Paul McCartney, he would play bass. There were no arguments. There were no clashing egos. There were only four young kids on a mission. John was thrilled. He put on another tape and started playing songs that he and Mike had written.

We immediately went about the business of learning the material. The first song we learned was, "Love Unreturned." It had an Everly Brothers quality to it that Randy and I were quite comfortable with. John and Mike helped us with the most troublesome part - the accents. I had already done some acting so it was easier for me. Randy had some problems with it at first, but eventually he got it. And the fact that Mike actually WAS English helped a lot. John wanted us to speak in English accents all the time. So we did. I can remember going to the diner and everyone thought we were really English. It was funny.

Wildwood is basically tourists. Nobody really knew us. We'd go up on the boardwalk, and John would be goofing off like Ringo Starr. Randy was our Paul McCartney and Mike our George Harrison. And me? Well . . . I was lucky enough to play the part of John Lennon. I always loved John Lennon anyway. Hey! I still love the guy! And very soon we would be introduced to our fifth member. Our Brian Epstein. His name is Steven Rappaport.

John explained that Steven would be our producer. Randy and I didn't even know what a producer was, but it sounded good. He came to John's to hear us, and saw something in us. He too believed in the dream.

We spent the next few weekends working on John's songs. Steven was always there to offer advice, make suggestions, and help us in any way he could. The five of us were growing closer everyday. We were becoming like brothers. Brothers united in the same quest. Steven's help was always greatly appreciated. He was then, and is now, a very dear and true friend. He is also very talented in his own right, and he has a GREAT ear for music.

Spring break came, and Mr. Spirt took us all to Manny's Music in New York. Randy and I were in awe to say the least. We'd never seen anything like this before. We weren't there very long. John already knew exactly what we needed. We needed amps. Not just any amps. They had to be Vox amps. The guitars had to be Rickenbackers. It had to be a violin shaped Hofner bass. Everything had to be perfect, and it was. Mr. Spirt even bought us a PA system and microphones. We were excited as anyone could ever be. We couldn't wait to get back to Wildwood to hear ourselves with all this new stuff. It was like Christmas at Easter time.

We spent the rest of spring break practicing. We played from the time we got up in the morning until the police would come at night and tell us we had to stop. For all the inconvenience and embarrassment they surely must have felt, never once did Mr. or Mrs. Spirt ever complain. They were very supportive. Even the cops who came by would listen to us for a while before making us quit. And even after they left, there would always be something musically going on. Always. John and Mike would go into the other room to write; Randy and I would work on harmony parts. Always something. We had become like dedicated little music machines, all united in the same dream. John's dream was now our dream, too.

Steven came to us with wonderful news. He had arranged for us to have a live audition with a record company in New York. We picked out the songs that we would do, and practiced them until we could play them in our sleep. We were getting better all the time. I don't know if it's okay to mention the name of the company or not, but it was Laurie Records. They liked us a lot, but said that we were too heavy for them; we were too much like the Beatles. They were looking for someone more along the lines of a Herman's Hermits. We were very disappointed.

The ride back to Wildwood was pretty depressing. Steven assured us that something else would come up. Mike was downright angry. Randy and I were sure that after spring break was over, the dream would be dead in the water - maybe even out of the water - who knew? John Spirt knew. He didn't say anything all the way home. We thought he was just depressed like the rest of us, but he wasn't. His wheels were already turning.

It was very late when we got back into Wildwood. We were exhausted. Normally, John Spirt never got out of bed before noon. But the next morning, he woke Randy and me very early. We thought he was sick or something. He called Mike and told him to come over right away. It seemed he'd stayed up and written a song he wanted us to learn right away. He sang it for Mike, and Mike picked out the chords. He said it was called "The Dumb Dumb Song." Randy and I thought it sounded pretty stupid, but John was our fearless leader, so we went along with it. Again Mike, Randy and I were very young, and it would not be until very recently, that we finally came to the understanding that John Spirt was a musical genius. But that's what he was, and is. An unrecognized musical genius.

Well . . . John sang all our parts for us, and we learned this song. We practiced it and played it, and changed it until John was happy with it. Then he told me to sing it like Peter Noone. "WHAT? Like who, John?" "You know," he chuckled. "The guy from Herman's Hermits." We recorded that song live, on his little tape recorder, right in his living room.

Spring break was now over. Randy and I got back into the routine of going to school during the week, and spending weekends in Wildwood. Steven would take that tape to Laurie Records, and they would love it. Soon summer would come and it would be a summer we would never forget. (to be continued)


To experience a bit of Redcoatmania yourself, pick up "Meet The Redcoats - Finally" on Dionysus Records (

Home » Music Spotlight » The Redcoats Are Coming!
Email |Print |Comment |RSS

back | top

MusicDish Advertising Network

Music Spotlight

» Hollywood Heavyweights Launch New Christian Music Label

» Round Hill Music And Zync Sign Madge To Joint Venture

» YG PLUS and Gracenote to Bring K-POP to Fans around the World

» Lithuanian Band Grabs Bronze at the Silk Road Indie Music Festival 2017

» HBC Fall Festival Celebrates 12 years of HBC Fest

Music Spotlight Directory

» [2018-09-16] Live Nation Electronic Asia Inks Deal With Budweiser For Creamfields Festivals; Together, Creamfields And Budweiser Will Focus On Building Entirely New Content For Dedicated Electronic Music Fans Throughout Asia

» [2018-08-23] Andy Ma Appointed Warner Music China CEO; Andy Ma Has Also Been Appointed EVP, Commercial And Business Development For Greater China

» [2018-08-23] IndieOn Connects Music To The Blockchain; IndieOn Is Confident Of Creating A "music Miner" Who Listens More And Grow Their Token Value

» [2018-06-23] The 2018 MIDEM Silk Road International Music Alliance Signing; International Music Industries Signing Of A Mutual Resource Sharing Agreement With Shanghai Conservatory Of Music & The China Records Group

» [2018-06-06] Screen Music Connect To Explore The Music Of Film, Television And Interactive Media; Created By James Hannigan, Award-winning Composer And Game Music Connect Co-founder, Screen Music Connect Builds On The Success Of The Sold-out Game Music Conferences

» [2018-06-05] Fred Casimir To Develop BMG's Global Recordings Business; As Well As Building BMG's European Infrastructure, Casimir Was Instrumental In Developing BMG's Recordings Business

» [2018-06-03] 13 Music Label Sold To MTN; DSN Music Spins Off Record Label To Albuquerque Music Entrepreneur's New Group

» [2018-06-02] CISAC 2018 Annual Report; A Comprehensive Overview Of The Confederation's Work To Serve 4 Million Creators And 239 Authors Societies Across The World

» [2018-06-02] MusicDish Announces A Love Electric 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Crisscross Through China With 12 Shows In 8 Cities, Including Guangzhou, Dongguan, Zhuhai, Shenzhen, Kunming, Jiaxin, Wuhan And Beijing

» [2018-06-02] Darcus Beese Named President Of Island Records; Renowned U.K. Music Executive To Join Universal Music Group's U.S. Label Leadership

» [2018-05-17] Avant-Garde Label Maybe Noise Launches In Beijing; The Official Launch Will Be On May 26 At Magnet Theater With A Performance Supporting Its First Vinyl Release: Png Z

» [2018-05-04] Award-Winning Lithuanian Rock Band Colours Of Bubbles "She Is The Darkness" 2018 China Tour; The Tour Will Kickoff In Shanghai Where The Band Will Represent Lithuania During The Country's Signing To The Silk Road Music Alliance
MusicDish Advertising Network

follow MusicDish on
Follow MusicDish on Twitter

Mi2N Music PR

Micayla De Ette, Star Of The Upcoming Film Hold On, Releases Her New Single And Music Video "Write A Song", Featuring Flavor Flav

AWOLNATION Brings Fans "The Best" / Announces Tour With Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness

Pianist Luo Tingyuan Actively Advocates Cultural Exchanges On Classical And New Music - A Review For 'Young Professionals On Stage' Recital Series

Deadline Looms For Musicians - The 16th Annual Acoustic Music Awards

C Z A R I N A Releases Samurai Music Film "BLAZE: Dances Of The Yokai"

Stephanie Ryann Releases Her Official Music Video For "Whiskey Regret"

New Jersey Rock Band Scores Endorsement And Big Shows

Websites: Mi2N | MusicDish*China | MusicDish Network | MusicDishTV | Urban Music News Network
Services: Submit Article | Submit News | Submit Video | Artist Development | Premium PR Distribution

Copyright © 1997-2018 MusicDish LLC., all rights reserved.
About MusicDish e-Journal | Contact Us | Advertise | RSS | Internships