Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Idle Few - Indianapolis - Indiana - Kingsmen


The Idle Few were born of the Arlington Kings'Men from 1964. When they decided to cut a 45, the other Kingsmen (maybe you have heard of "Louie Louie"), kinda stood in the way of the Kingsmen name.
Members included:
Rick Webster - guitarist
Ronnie Bennett - Sax - Lead Vocals
Greg Taggart - Bass
Dan McLean - drums
Mark Grey - organ

Hear Farmer John and Another World here.

There is an ongoing debate as to whether the Idle Few also did a
45 on Blue Book with the titles "people that's why / land of dreams". I say not the same, but if I'm wrong, please let me know!!!

Update 1: Jason sent a scan showing the writer credits on the Blue Book 45. I'm sure now it's the same Idle Few. Now I have to get that 45.

Update 2: Did you notice the "Skeet Bushor" production tag? Skeet played in the "Boys Next Door" and had writer credits on the "Sounds Unlimited" 45. Great guy to keep your eye on!

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

The photo on this sight does not show the members of this group at the time this recording was made. Ron Knoop was the organ player and Paul Romine was on base. I have a photo of the band available for posting if you care to contact me.Ron knoop
bugrat101@q.com

Anonymous said...

my freind Don Larrabee and I were fans of the Kingsmen/Idle Few. As budding musicians attending Arlington High School from 1964 thru 1968,we always showed up when these guys were gigging. Whenever they played the Flame Club, it was the scene to make. Wether learning "chops"or picking up on their cool stage presence we learned alot from these guys. They were a very tight, polished,and profesional band. When we put together our band, The Poor Boys, in 1965, we modeled ourselves after these guys.Ronnie Bennet was the epitome of the Cool Frontman and vocalist, and Romine with his candy apple red Fender Jazz bass could lay down a serious groove that would get everybody on the dance floor. Rock on, John Ott

vinylfool said...

John! Thanks for checkin' in. I just have to know if you were part of the Poor Boys that recorded "Think of Livin' / Julie, Julie" on the Flame label. Send me a note about your band no matter what!

Tim

dolphin1017 said...

Just read in the Indianapolis Star that Rick Webster passed away last Tuesday October 21st at St. Vincents Heart Hospital. He was 62. Long live the IDLE FEW! John Blazier, Indianapolis, Indiana.

vinylfool said...

Bummer. I hadn't read the paper yet today, I get the Star and Columbus Republic daily.

You can view it here, seems like a top notch guy. Rick Webster Obit from Indy Star

Anonymous said...

Love The Site,I Lived Next Door To Sherwood And Worked There Back In The Day,The Idle Few Play There A Lot Ron Was Truely A Nice Guy,Sure Do Miss The Good Ole Days, Poe

Anonymous said...

Interesting blog. I played guitar for a group called 'Ronnie and the Rascals' in the 1960s, as well as a number of other groups. The Flame Club was one of my favorite venues. Ron Blackstone, the lead singer of the group died in 2002. I have long since lost track of Lanny lambert, our bass player, but Rick Wilhelm and Mike Quick are alive and well.

Other notable venues from the '60s were the 'House of Sounds' in Plainfield, 'Westlake Country Club' and 'The Whiteland Barn.'

I no longer play music professionally, but have taken up the piano for my own enjoyment. I also shoot still photography, not only in America, but western Europe as well. Examples of my work can be seen on my website.

Best,
Bob Brown

Alan said...

Where does "people that's why / land of dreams" fit into the discography?

Also, is the single "Letter To Santa"/"Splishin' And Splashin'" attached to this group?

Alan

CopperScaleDragon said...

Ahh the Idle Few. Did I list Greg Taggear for the wrong band in my last comment here? (International Silver String Submarine Band comment)

Anonymous said...

What a neat site! THanks guys for sharing all your memories...My dad (Rick Webster of the Idle Few) would have been tickled that people still talk about them. He loved his band and enjoyed every moment performing. I loved hearing his stories. It has been about a year and a half since he passed and I still love to listen to some of his old songs...He at one point had them converted to CD's!!! Just thought I would share my story!! THanks for keeping the memories alive! Sarah Webster

Anonymous said...

I was with Ron when he died many years ago. We dated back when the Idle Few/Kingsmen were one of the hottest groups in Indy. Strange we got back together in our 40's. Loved him dearly and miss him very much.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Rick Webster was my uncle (6 yrs older) and provided my earliest exposure to 60's rock and roll (among other things). He taught me my first guitar chords. As a 10 year old (1962), I remember playing the rhythm background to his lead on "Walk Don't Run". Dan McLean was my percussion mentor. He picked out my first drum set. The other two King's Men members, Paul Romine (bass), and John Chappelow (guitar), rounded out the original combo. Ron Bennett came aboard around the time of the name change to The Idle Few, and Bill Compton replaced Romine. Ron Knoop played keys. Chappelow died in a car crash on the way home from a gig (summer of '67 I think). As a tribute, they opened every succeeding show with "Johnny B. Goode". Bennett died in 1996. Rick Webster died in 2008. As a footnote, in 1966, I became the drummer for a group called "The Tikis" a regionally recognized band from northern Indiana, and I have a nephew who continues the tradition in Connecticut. Dave Webster

Joseph Kuklak said...

Didn't The Idle Few do a Christmas song?

Anonymous said...

Around 5 or 6 years ago I read a story in the Star about Steve Drybread, bassist in the Boys Next Door, that stated that he was killed in a plane crash in Hamilton County, I think. If this was the same guy, no mention was made of his association with the group. I called the writer of the story, at the paper, and she wasn't aware if he was the "Steve". If anyone can verify this story, please reply to this site.

Anonymous said...

Around 5 or 6 years ago I read an article in the Star that stated Steve Drybread, bassist for the Boys Next Door, was killed in a plane crash north of Indianapolis. I called the writer of the story and she had no knowledge of his past or whether or not he was actually with the band. If anyone out there can verify this, please reply to this site.

vinylfool said...

This is from the NCHS alumni website for Steve's scholarship awards.

"Steven (Steve) Drybread was a North Central graduate who played Electric Bass and Saxophone in a popular 60's band, named "The Boys Next Door". Steve died test-flying one of his customer's planes in May 2002."

Alas, I didn't know either.

Anonymous said...

I graduated from Arlington in 1964 and was good friends with Rick Webster, Dan McClean, and Johnny Chappelow. In 1965 we formed a fun but not big time band called "The Five Fates" Reb Porter liked us and got us a lot of gigs.
Members were John Atkins - Rhythm Guitar, Tim Thompson - Lead Guitar - Dana Tygrett - Bass - Frankie McMahon - Drums and Steve Augustin - Vocals.
I got drafted in 1966 and the band kinda fell apart. Aaaah the memories of The Flame, Indiana Roof, Claypool Hall, Purple Panther, and The Whiteland Barn.
John Atkins

Anonymous said...

I graduated from Arlington High School in 1964 and was friends with Rick Webster, Danny Mclean, and a great guy Johnny Chappelow. We formed a fun but not top of the mill band in 1965 called "The Five Fates" John Atkins-Rhythm - Tim Thompson-Lead - Dana Tygrett-Bass -Frankie McMahon - Drums and Steve Augustine - Vocals.
The memories of The Purple Panther-Whiteland Barn-The Flame-Indiana Roof-Claypool Hotel Ball Room - And The Diana Shop at The Meadows. Reb Porter took a liking to us and helped a lot. I got drafted in 1966 and the band kinda went away. Wish I had my guitar back with "JOHNNY" in chrome letters that I was forced to sell.
It was a good time indeed. By the way the Five Fates are fire, plague,flood,famine, and death. I was fire.
John Atkins

Anonymous said...

I was the drummer for the IDLE FEW on the recording of "PEOPLE THAT'S WHY" and "LAND OF DREAMS". I may have the only two copies known to man.I was also the drummer for THE NOBLEMEN and may have the only two copies of "SHE STILL THINKS I LOVE HER" AND "SATISFIED". MAN, WHAT A RIDE.

oldgatorlady said...

I too long ago dated Ron. I always hoped he would find calm n someone wonder ful. I am so happy he had u. What did he do after the band broke up, how did he die n when? Thank u Linda

Jim M said...

Does anyone on this site remember where the Highland Barn was located? I remember playing there with one of my bands (The Cloud, The Poor Boys or Reformation) but I can't remember whether it was located in Highland, south of Indy. Anyone remember?

Anonymous said...

Nah, the Blue Book guys were from N. England

Anonymous said...

You have to be thinking about the Whiteland barn that was on the south side of town.

Anonymous said...

I dated Greg Taggart way back when.I remember he had a day job working for a frozen food place and he had to have "short hair" so he put his hair up under a wig. I remember the Idle Few playing at a place called "The Porch" I believe it was on W 10TH ST. They played the Beatles Magical Mystery Tour...it blew everyone away! I have no idea what happened to him. I know he wanted to go to Egypt. I don't know if he made it or not.I also remember them playing the Battle of the Bands at the fairgrounds, where I first met Greg, and heard his band. He was a very talented, and sweet guy...fantastic band!

RKW said...

Hearing the names Lannie Lambert, Greg Taggart, and Steve Drybread brings back old memories. Used to Jam with Greg at Nicks music store, Lannie was a friend in those days, and Steve was a good friend for years. Last time I saw Steve, was in a guitar store off Keystone Ave, when I was buying my son a Fender guitar for his birthday. Steve stopped over to say hello. My then girlfriend (now wife of 45 years) and I double dated with Steve and Lynn Tatum, on Steve's 21st birthday. We went to Sam's Attic. He in his 65 GTO, us in my little Austin Healey. (What ever happened to Lynn Tatum? What a great gal). Ron Bennet was a great guy, and Mark Gray was a wonderful musician. Our organ player, Dave Franks, from The Hurd eventually joined the Idle Few in its later years, late 60's early 70's.

stang said...

Lynn Tatum? Always wanted to see her one more time

stang said...

Wow I remember Don Larrabee, and others from this time period , Mark Tribby for one is alive and well. His brother Greg died a few years ago , class of 69 , also my class.

Unknown said...

Hi! I'm Dave Lovell. I played with the Idle Few during the 60s. Guitar. I would like to hear from any of you who were around in those days. Dave@davelovellshow.com (954) 848-5080

dolphin1017 said...

Just received word that Dan McLean, the drummer for the Idle Few, passed away last night from cancer. Our sincere condolences to his wife Sandy and all of the family. John Blazier, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Anonymous said...

My neighbor and good friend Dan McLean passed away at the age of 70 on October 3rd. Memorial service is in Greensburg IN at the Porter Oliger Pearson Funeral Home on Wednesday the 7th at 4:00 pm. A Kingmans original.

Anonymous said...

Ron Bennett died of a burst spleen. Literally bled to death internally. We were living together at the time. Don't know who said they were with him at the time he died but he was home alone and called 911. Unfortunately I don'think he ever found peace with himself. Hope he's making music wherever he is!

Unknown said...

I am the son of Dan McLean And I carry on his tradition and to a certain extent. I play in a band as well OGR Band . And we did learn a cover tune of the idol fuse greatest hit which was called another world. My father was sick and we learned it and never got To hear us live but he did see a video recording of us playing it. I played and worked my way through college in a rock band. But now I just play for fun with my OGR band but we are popular in our area and I think of my father every time I play

Pat Finnigan said...

Shout to Dave Lovell! Remember him when I was playing for the Dawn 5. I did not know Ron Bennet passed away. I'll never forget Ron Knoop's dad opening his garage door to reveal a pristine 1937 Cord 812! Anyone know what became of Mark Grey? Those were the days fondly remembered...

Anonymous said...

It was indeed.

Dan Cook said...

I knew Mark Gray, we both went to Broad Ripple High School and he joined the Idle Few in the fall of 66 I think...it was our junior year. He was playing keyboard then and a couple years later moved to bass and Dave Franks, mentioned above, came in on keys. Later Mark moved to Bloomington and played in the Screaming Gypsy Bandits. He was very talented, I'wouldn't be surprised if he were in IU's great Music School but I don't know that for sure. He later moved to NYC continuing to work as a musician and think he died there about 20 years ago.

oldladygator15 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
oldladygator15 said...

Yes "A LETTER TO SANTA" 1966
IT IN ON THIS THREAD.

Unknown said...

Those were great memories. Cool site. The Indy Kings Men / Idle Few that was a great time in my life. The original Kings Men. John, Danny, Rick, Bennett, and myself. Hell I am the only one left.
Paul Romine

luv2scrapbook said...

Paul,
I'm not sure you will see this comment or not. My sister, Kathy, was the singer for The VARS. In going thru her things that my mom saved, I found in her notes that she mentioned The VARS playing for your band as well as some other interactions with you the following year. By chance, do you have any pictures of The Vars with your band, etc?

Shari Bibler Skaggs

Tom Foster said...

I just this evening (10-27-2019) came across this web site: "^0's Indiana Band Szene" when looking up info for my scans of my yearbooks of Lawrence Central High in the 1960's. (I've done all of them: 1967, '68, '69 and 1970 plus the Belzer Junior High books of 1965 & '66...all put in a well edited, special effects, organized slide/music videos)
Tonight's search was about "The Idle Few" from Indy. Those guys played at L.C.'s October 3, 1969 Football Homecoming, which I was there to see. I was in my senior year at L.C.
One of the scanned photos that was in the 1970 yearbook was of the group playing at the Homecoming Dance in the old rotunda gym (which was torn down a few years ago and originally built with the new campus building in 1962 - '63)
I, along with many others of my age generation who liked pop/rock remember the "Few" as the "Kingsmen". I didn't know those guys came from Arlington High that is in the old Devington suburb.
Yes! "Louie, Louie" stirred up a lot of controversy in its beginnings. I remember my folks talking about the lyrics.

Joyce said...

I have the 45, people that's why

Unknown said...

My life long friend, Kathy & I followed the Idel Few to all of their venues from the time we were 13 till we were 18. Rick was such a super guy! When my Dad died when I was 16, the whole band of Idle Few came to his funeral. That ment the World to me!

Unknown said...

Greg did get to Egypt & climbed the pyramids. I was living with him at the time. He asked me to go with him, but I couldn't leave his Mom alone. A few years later, he said he wanted to go back & climb the pyramids 1 more time. That was the last time I saw him.