Wednesday, October 22, 2008

who were the contessas?

" I Keep On Keepin' On" was re-released in 2005 on a compilation album called "Tunesmith". Jimmy also wrote a book by the same name "Tunesmith...inside the art of songwriting" in 1998 and talked about our group.

From Jimmy's book...

" I was a regular fixture around Motown for a while. Frank Wilson turned out to be a great producer and a real nuts and bolts songwriting whiz. He knew about all the basic parts and how to rivet them together. We wrote together and worked with Billy Eckstein ( "I Did It All For You", Webb and Wilson, c1965). Marc Gordon ran the place and second-in-command was Hal Davis, a sweet guy with a pronounced limp and lisp who sang under the nom de plume of Danny Day.
The Contessas were my pet project, all white and all blonde, the cream of the crop of a century of cheerleader gene pruning, all dressed in identical little blue gingham dresses, and when I walked into Motown with them, Vicki (front desk girl) started laughing harder than ever. She put her head down on her desk and cried. The Executive Suite became a free range for the girls. They came, saw and conquered, though as far as I know, nobody ever gave anything up. Marc and Hal decided to organize some orchestra sessions for me across the alley at Bob Ross's farmhouse studio. They must have been dazzled by blue eyes, white teeth and blonde hair. The session sounded pretty good for a first time out...more like a miracle...while the Contessas gyrated around the control room, four angelic look-alikes."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Suzanne, thank you for contacting me and setting the record straight when I had a question regarding another group from '62 who had also used the name The Contessas for a recording. I really appreciated your help.
It's great to see that someone else also paid tribute to your group via that You Tube clip, of your Shivaree appearance.
Walter Watson