“Good Vibrations”…”California Dreamin”…”Bridge Over Troubled Water”
Recognize those names? Alright try these:
Hal Blaine. Larry Knechtel. Carol Kaye.
How did you do? If you’re like most people, you probably haven’t heard of them. They’re three members of The Wrecking Crew — group of L.A. musicians who played on some of the biggest hits of the ‘60s and ‘70s.
For nearly a decade, if you were an L.A. producer and you wanted to record a hit single, you’d call in The Wrecking Crew. Members of The Byrds, The Beach Boys, and The Mamas and the Papas would step aside as The Wrecking Crew laid down the instrumental tracks. Then, the members of the main band would come back to add the vocals on top.
We spoke with Kent Hartman in 2012 about his book, The Wrecking Crew, which documents the lives and careers of these hit-making musicians, and goes behind the scenes at the studios where they performed.
Here is an Oregon Art Beat story about one of the original Wrecking Crew musicians, Lyle Ritz, returning to his roots as a ukulele master.