"The Wrecking Crew" Documentary

Last night, the Memphis Chapter of The Recording Academy hosted a screening of the documentary film, “The Wrecking Crew.” Great story about the great session musicians from L.A. in the 60s and 70s…here’s an excerpt from an interview by the film’s director, Danny Tedesco. There is also a link to the film’s website…definitely worth seeing…these were the players behind all those great hits…

What is the Wrecking Crew?

The Wrecking Crew were a group of Studio Musicians in Los Angeles in the 60s who played on hits for the “Beach Boys, Frank Sinatra, Nancy Sinatra, Sonny and Cher, Jan & Dean, The Monkees, Gary Lewis and the Playboys, Mamas and Papas, Tijuana Brass, Ricky Nelson, Johnny Rivers and were Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound. The amount of work that they were involved in was tremendous.

They were also involved in groups that I like to call, The Milli Vanilli’s of the day. A producer would get the guys in and lay down some instrumental tracks. If it became a hit, they would record an album and put a group together to go on the road. This happened many times with groups like the Marketts, Routers, and T-Bones. The next day they would do the same thing and call it another name. Same musicians, but different group Name.

At the time the record industry was primarily in New York, London and Detroit in the late 50’s and early 60s. Then there was a surge towards the mid-60s that pushed the recording to the west Coast. So these musicians were recording around the clock for a good 8 years. It’s hey day for this group was in 1967 when the charts turned to the west.

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