The Travelers "Spanish Moon"/"She's Got the Blues"
Yellow Sand Records, 1963; Princess Records of California, 1964; Vault Records, 1964.
The Travelers "Spanish Moon" was released on three different labels, first on guitarist/songwriter Ron Story's own Yellow Sand Records, then the Southern California-based Princess Records, co-owned by The Challenger's Richard Delvy and producer John Marascalco and was finally picked up by the nationally distributed Vault Records (via Atco/Atlantic) where in April 1964 the single sold about 5000 copies, topping the charts on KAFY in Bakersfield, as well as hitting No. 3 on KTKT's Top Forty. Ron Story met The Ventures, gave them a copy of the record asking if they wanted to cover the song. Sure enough, they did, but re-named the ditty "Tomorrow's Love" and promptly took the songwriting credit, releasing it on their Knock Me Out LP. The Travelers were formerly known as The Gents when ex-Californian Story joined the group, who included Angel Dorame on guitar, Tommy Dorame on bass, and 14-year-old Freddy Gonzales on drums. The group recorded a total of three 45s and backed up The Righteous Brothers at a UA Frat Party which Ron Story said was the "highlight" of their career! The group drifted apart and Story formed The Ric-A-Shays (the name suggested by Marascalco) who disbanded when Story joined the Navy. Check out Ron Story's book The Encyclopedia of Extraterrestrial Encounters and check out his fine guitar playing with an even newer version of The Travelers in St, Petersburg, Florida! Wow!
Lee Joseph grew up in Tucson. He's a DJ (Luxuriamusic.com), marketer of cool shit (Reverberations Media) and founder/CEO of internationally respected Dionysus Records, an indie that has long specialized in releasing super-rare music, and more. He came of age in the first wave of Tucson punk rock and is an expert on Tucson music. He now lives in California. Vintage Vinyl is a new, recurring addition to the Tucson Weekly.