Rob Grill

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Rob Grill
The Grass Roots.png
The Grass Roots in 1969
Left to Right: Dennis Provisor, Warren Entner, Rob Grill & Rick Coonce
Background information
Birth nameRobert Frank Grill
Born(1943-11-30)November 30, 1943
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
DiedJuly 11, 2011(2011-07-11) (aged 67)
Mount Dora, Florida, U.S.
Genres Rock, folk, pop
Instruments Bass guitar, vocals
Years active1966–2011
Labels Dunhill, ABC, Haven, MCA, Gusto, Mercury Records, RFG, Cleopatra
Website The-GrassRoots.com

Robert Frank Grill (November 30, 1943 – July 11, 2011) [1] was an American lead singer, songwriter and bass guitarist, best known as a member of the rock and roll group The Grass Roots.

United States federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

Rock and roll is a genre of popular music that originated and evolved in the United States during the late 1940s and early 1950s from musical styles such as gospel, jump blues, jazz, boogie woogie, and rhythm and blues, along with country music. While elements of what was to become rock and roll can be heard in blues records from the 1920s and in country records of the 1930s, the genre did not acquire its name until 1954.

The Grass Roots American pop rock band

The Grass Roots is an American rock band that charted frequently between 1966 and 1975. The band was originally the creation of Lou Adler and songwriting duo P. F. Sloan and Steve Barri. In their career, they achieved two gold albums, one gold single and charted singles on the Billboard Hot 100 a total of 21 times. Among their charting singles, they achieved Top 10 three times, Top 20 three times and Top 40 eight times. They have sold over 20 million records worldwide.

Contents

Career

Grill was a native of Hollywood, California where he attended Hollywood High School. Soon after graduation, he began working at American Recording Studios with musician friends Cory Wells and John Kay (who later formed Three Dog Night and Steppenwolf, respectively).

Hollywood High School

Hollywood High School is a four-year public secondary school in the Los Angeles Unified School District, located at the intersection of North Highland Avenue and West Sunset Boulevard in the Hollywood district of Los Angeles, California.

Cory Wells American singer

Cory Wells was an American singer, best known as one of the three lead vocalists in the band Three Dog Night.

John Kay (musician) musician

John Kay is a German-Canadian rock singer, songwriter, and guitarist known as the frontman of Steppenwolf.

Grill was asked to join The Grass Roots, which grew out of a project originating from Dunhill Records owned by Lou Adler. Writer/producers P. F. Sloan and Steve Barri (The Mamas & the Papas, Tommy Roe, Four Tops and Dusty Springfield) were asked by Dunhill to write songs that would capitalize on the growing interest in the folk-rock movement. Their song “Where Were You When I Needed You”, recorded as a demo with P.F. Sloan as lead singer was released under the name “The Grass Roots” and started to get airplay in San Francisco Bay area. Dunhill searched for a band to become The Grass Roots. After the first group they chose departed, a Los Angeles band composed of Creed Bratton, Rick Coonce, Warren Entner, and Kenny Fukomoto, was recruited to become The Grass Roots.

Dunhill Records was started in 1964 by Lou Adler, Al Bennett, Pierre Cossette and Bobby Roberts as Dunhill Productions to release the music of Johnny Rivers on Imperial Records. It became a record label the following year and was distributed by ABC Records.

Lou Adler American record producer

Lou Adler is a Grammy Award-winning American record producer, music executive, talent manager, songwriter, film director, film producer, and co-owner of the famous Roxy Theatre in West Hollywood, California.

P. F. Sloan American singer-songwriter

P. F. "Flip" Sloan was an American pop-rock singer and songwriter. He was very successful during the mid-1960s, writing, performing, and producing Billboard top 20 hits for artists such as Barry McGuire, The Searchers, Jan and Dean, Herman's Hermits, Johnny Rivers, The Grass Roots, The Turtles and The Mamas & the Papas. Many of his songs were written in collaboration with Steve Barri. His most successful songs as a writer were three top ten hits. Barry McGuire's 1965 "Eve of Destruction", Johnny Rivers' 1966 "Secret Agent Man" and Herman's Hermits' 1966 "A Must to Avoid".

When Fukumoto was drafted into the army, Grill was brought in as his replacement. With Grill as lead singer, they recorded another version of "Where Were You When I Needed You" and he became the band’s longest serving member, appearing with them for more than four decades. Grill went on to produce and manage the band and became owner of The Grass Roots name. [2]

Classic rock festivals

The Grass Roots played at the Fantasy Fair and Magic Mountain Music Festival on Sunday, June 11, 1967, in the "summer of love" as their top ten hit "Let's Live For Today" was hitting the airwaves. This music festival is important because it occurred before the Monterey Pop Festival but did not have a movie to document it for the ages (see List of electronic music festivals). On Sunday, October 27, 1968, they played at the San Francisco Pop Festival and then played at the Los Angeles Pop Festival and Miami Pop Festival in December of that year as their top ten hit "Midnight Confessions" was hitting the airwaves.

Fantasy Fair and Magic Mountain Music Festival

The KFRC Fantasy Fair and Magic Mountain Music Festival was an event held June 10 and 11, 1967 at the 4,000-seat Sidney B. Cushing Memorial Amphitheatre high on the south face of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California. At least 36,000 people attended the two-day concert and was the first of a series of San Francisco area cultural events known as the Summer of Love. The Fantasy Fair was influenced by the popular Renaissance Pleasure Faire and became a prototype for large scale multi-act outdoor rock music events now known as rock festivals.

Monterey Pop Festival three-day concert in California in 1967

The Monterey International Pop Music Festival was a three-day concert event held June 16 to June 18, 1967, at the Monterey County Fairgrounds in Monterey, California. The festival is remembered for the first major American appearances by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, the Who and Ravi Shankar, the first large-scale public performance of Janis Joplin and the introduction of Otis Redding to a mass American audience.

San Francisco Pop Festival

The KYA San Francisco International Pop Festival was held at the Alameda County Fairgrounds on Saturday October 26 and Sunday October 27, 1968.

The Grass Roots played at Newport Pop Festival 1969 at Devonshire Downs which was a racetrack at the time but now is part of the North Campus for California State University at Northridge. They played on Sunday June 22 which was the final day of the festival as their top twenty hit "Wait A Million Years" was hitting the airwaves. In Canada, they played at the Vancouver Pop Festival at the Paradise Valley Resort in British Columbia in August 1969 (see List of electronic music festivals).

Newport Pop Festival

The Newport Pop Festival, held in Costa Mesa, California, on August 3–4, 1968, was the first music concert ever to have more than 100,000 paid attendees. Its sequel, billed as Newport 69, was held in Northridge, California, on June 20–22, 1969, and had a total attendance estimated at 200,000.

Devonshire Downs, sometimes informally called The Downs, was a horse racing track and multipurpose event facility in Northridge, California. It was located at the southwest corner of Devonshire Street and Zelzah Avenue, east of Reseda Boulevard. The site is now owned by the California State University, Northridge, which renamed it North Campus.

Vancouver Pop Festival

The Vancouver Pop Festival was a Canadian rock festival held at the Paradise Valley Resort in Squamish, British Columbia. The dates of the festival were August 22, 23 and 24, 1969. It was produced by Candi Promotions.

Solo career & 60's nostalgia

Grill launched a solo career in 1979, assisted on his solo album by several members of Fleetwood Mac. Responding to 60s nostalgia, Grill then led The Grass Roots (billed "The Grass Roots Starring Rob Grill") and toured the United States until his death in 2011. While in the arms of his wife Nancy, Grill died July 11, 2011 in an Orlando, Florida hospital from complications after a stroke. [1] [3]

Compositions and musical release performance

Grill composed sixteen songs for The Grass Roots and his solo album. One of these, "Come On and Say It", appeared as a single "A" side. His other fifteen compositions appeared on single "B" sides and albums. He wrote frequently with Warren Entner and they were considered a songwriting team. Grill played with The Grass Roots on sixteen albums, seven of which charted. He took part in thirty-two Grass Roots singles released, twenty-one of which charted. [4]

Discography

Singles

Release dateTitleFlip sideRecord LabelChart Positions
US Billboard US Cashbox UK
1967 Let's Live for Today Depressed FeelingDunhill85
Things I Should Have SaidTip Of My TongueDunhill2336
Wake Up, Wake UpNo ExitDunhill6861
1968Melody For YouHey FriendDunhill123
FeelingsHere's Where You BelongDunhill
Midnight Confessions +Who Will You Be TomorrowDunhill55
1969Bella LindaHot Bright LightsDunhill2820
Melody For YouAll Good Things Come To An EndDunhill
Lovin' ThingsYou And Love Are The SameDunhill4935
River Is Wide, The(You Gotta) Live For LoveDunhill3116
I'd Wait A Million YearsFly Me To HavanaDunhill1512
Heaven KnowsDon't Remind MeDunhill2413
1970Walking Through The CountryTruck Drivin' ManDunhill4430
Baby Hold OnGet It TogetherDunhill3525
Come On And Say ItSomething's Comin' Over MeDunhill6139
Temptation Eyes Keepin' Me DownDunhill1516
1971Sooner Or LaterI Can Turn Off The RainDunhill912
Two Divided By LoveLet It GoDunhill168
1972Glory BoundOnly OneDunhill3422
Runway, TheMove AlongDunhill3929
Anyway The Wind BlowsMonday LoveDunhill107
1973Love Is What You Make ItSomeone To LoveDunhill55
Where There's Smoke There's FireLook But Don't TouchDunhill
We Can't Dance To Your MusicLook But Don't TouchDunhill
Stealin' Love (In The Night)We Almost Made It TogetherDunhill
1975MamacitaLast Time Around, TheHaven71
Naked ManNothing Good Comes EasyHaven
1976Out In The OpenOptical IllusionHaven
1979Rock SugarHave MercyMercury
1982Here Comes That Feeling AgainTemptation EyeMCA
She Don't Know Me Keep On BurningMCA
Powers Of The NightPowers Of The NightMCA

+ - Gold Record - RIAA Certification

Albums

(All albums are with the Grass Roots, unless otherwise noted)

Release dateTitleRecord LabelChart Positions
US Billboard US Cashbox UK
1967 Let's Live for Today Dunhill75
1968 Feelings Dunhill
Golden Grass +Dunhill25
1969 Lovin' Things Dunhill73
Leaving It All Behind Dunhill36
1970 More Golden Grass Dunhill152
1971 Their 16 Greatest Hits +Dunhill58
1972Move AlongDunhill86
1973Alotta' MileageDunhill
1976The ABC CollectionABC
197814 GreatestGusto
1979Uprooted(solo album)Mercury
1982Powers Of The NightMCA
2000Live At LastRFG
2001Symphonic HitsCleopatra
2008Live GoldRFG

+ - Gold Record - RIAA Certification

Related Research Articles

Eve of Destruction (song) single

"Eve of Destruction" is a protest song written by P. F. Sloan in mid-1964. Several artists have recorded it, but the best-known recording was by Barry McGuire. This recording was made between July 12 and July 15, 1965, and released by Dunhill Records. The accompanying musicians were top-tier Los Angeles session players: P. F. Sloan on guitar, Hal Blaine on drums, and Larry Knechtel on bass guitar. The vocal track was thrown on as a rough mix and was not intended to be the final version, but a copy of the recording "leaked" out to a disc jockey, who began playing it. The song was an instant hit and as a result the more polished vocal track that was at first envisioned was never recorded.

Creed Bratton American musician

Creed Bratton is an American actor and musician. He is a former member of the band The Grass Roots. He is more recently known for playing a fictional version of himself on The Office on NBC.

Rick Coonce American musician

Erik Michael Coonce, better known as Rick Coonce, was the drummer for The Grass Roots, a successful rock group that received heavy airplay on the radio from 1967 to 1972. Due to renewed interest in classic bands, The Grass Roots and Coonce's driving drum beats are popular even into the new millennium. He was born in Los Angeles, California on August 1, 1946, at The City Of Angels Hospital.

Steve Barri is an American songwriter and record producer.

Joel Larson is a rock drummer and percussionist from California. He was born on April 29, 1947, at St. Francis Hospital in San Francisco. He lived near Lincoln Park until he was 12 years old. He took up drumming at the age of 12 and moved near Avalon Park until he was 17. During these five years he honed his skills in the rock music scene of the early sixties. His destiny was to become one of The Grass Roots.

<i>Lets Live for Today</i> (album) album by The Grass Roots

Let's Live for Today is the second studio album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in July 1967 by Dunhill Records. A new group was brought in for this album which included Creed Bratton, Rick Coonce, Warren Entner and Rob Grill. It features their first top-ten hit by the same name, "Let's Live for Today". The bulk of the compositions are by group creators Sloan and Barri, but the new group was allowed to compose four songs and was given some input in the studio instrumentation. The other A and B side singles released were "Depressed Feeling", "Things I Should Have Said" b/w "Tip of My Tongue", and "Wake Up, Wake Up" b/w "No Exit". The album charted at #75.

Lets Live for Today (song) single by The Grass Roots

"Let's Live for Today" is a song written by David "Shel" Shapiro and Italian lyricist Mogol, with additional English lyrics provided by Michael Julien. It was first recorded, with Italian lyrics, under the title of "Piangi Con Me" by the English band the Rokes in 1966. Later, when "Piangi Con Me" was to be released in the United Kingdom, publisher Dick James Music requested that staff writer Julien compose English lyrics for the song. Julien composed new lyrics, rather than translating from the Italian, and it was his input that transformed "Piangi Con Me" into "Let's Live for Today".

Warren Entner is an American singer, songwriter, organist and guitarist for the rock and roll band, The Grass Roots. He then became a manager for several successful heavy metal/rock groups.

Dennis Provisor is an American musician and songwriter. He recorded on several different labels, including 20th Century Fox and Valiant, under the name of Denny Provisor. He released some soulful singles as a solo artist. He later joined the groups The Hook, Blue Rose, and The Grass Roots. Provisor is a lead singer, keyboard player and songwriter.

<i>Their 16 Greatest Hits</i> album by The Grass Roots

Their 16 Greatest Hits is the third compilation album by the American rock band The Grass Roots. It was originally released by Dunhill Records in September 1971 shortly after the success of "Sooner or Later" earlier that year. The album also included many other hit singles that were released from 1966 to 1971. The album was released on both stereo LP & tape as well as in Quadraphonic Sound on both LP & tape. This album was the only Quadraphonic album released by The Grass Roots.

<i>Where Were You When I Needed You</i> album by The Grass Roots

Where Were You When I Needed You is the debut studio album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in October 1966 by Dunhill Records. Most of the album is performed by the songwriter/producer duo of P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri. Some of the album features members of a San Francisco band that became the first Grass Roots. The members who recorded are vocalist Willie Fulton and drummer Joel Larson. The A and B side singles released are "Mr. Jones ", "You're a Lonely Girl", "Where Were You When I Needed You", "(These Are) Bad Times", "Only When You're Lonely", "This Is What I Was Made For", Tip of My Tongue" and "Look Out Girl".

<i>More Golden Grass</i> 1970 compilation album by The Grass Roots

More Golden Grass is the second compilation album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in September 1970 by Dunhill Records. It includes the #15 charting single "Temptation Eyes", the #61 charting single "Come On And Say It", and the #35 charting single "Baby Hold On". The album charted at #152.

<i>Feelings</i> (The Grass Roots album) album by The Grass Roots

Feelings is the third studio album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in February 1968 by Dunhill Records. It contained many songs composed by the group's members and studio performances of the musician's instrumentation. The album was intended to take the group into a heavier psychedelic direction with their music. The A and B side singles released from the album were "Melody For You" b/w "Hey Friend", "Feelings" b/w "Here's Where You Belong", "Who Will You Be Tomorrow", "Hot Bright Lights", "All Good Things Come to an End" and "You and Love Are the Same". Midway during this run "Midnight Confessions" was released as an A side and became the group's highest charting single.

<i>Lovin Things</i> album by The Grass Roots

Lovin' Things is the fourth album by American rock group The Grass Roots. The album was originally released by Dunhill Records in 1969. The album charted at #73. It contained only two songs composed by the group. The album was intended to take the group into a soulful direction that was being rewarded by charting singles. The A and B side singles released were "Lovin' Things", "The River Is Wide", "(You Gotta) Live for Love" and "Fly Me to Havana". At the end of this run, "I'd Wait a Million Years" was released as an A side and became the group's next charting single, appearing on their next album, Leaving It All Behind.

<i>Golden Grass</i> album by The Grass Roots

Golden Grass is the first compilation album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in November 1968 by Dunhill Records. The LP's release in the fall of 1968 followed the success of the group's highest charting single, "Midnight Confessions". It featured a song written by Carole King and Tony Stern titled "Lady Pleasure", which was previously unreleased by the group, as well as a new single, "Bella Linda", which was originally written by the Italian songwriting duo of Lucio Battisti and Mogol. The Grass Roots' version of the song, which was given English lyrics by Barry Gross and Steve Barri, charted at #28. Golden Grass is the highest charting Grass Roots album at #25, and was certified gold by the RIAA in 1970.

<i>Leaving It All Behind</i> album by The Grass Roots

Leaving It All Behind is the fifth studio album by the American rock band The Grass Roots, released in November 1969 by Dunhill Records. Following the departure of Creed Bratton, who left in April 1969, seasoned musician Dennis Provisor joined the group solidifying the new direction of the band. Terry Furlong and Brian Naughton became alternating touring guitarists for the group. In a return to grace for the group member composers, it contained six songs written by the group. The album was intended to move the group further in a soulful direction that was being rewarded by more charting singles. The A and B side singles released were "I'd Wait a Million Years", "Heaven Knows" b/w "Don't Remind Me", and "Walking Through The Country" b/w "Truck Drivin' Man". At the end of this run "Something's Comin' Over Me" was released as a B side to "Come On And Say It", a charting single written by the group that appeared on the band's next compilation album, More Golden Grass. The album charted at #36, making it the group's highest-charting studio album. As of June 27, 2018, Leaving It All Behind is the only original studio album by The Grass Roots available on iTunes.

<i>Move Along</i> (The Grass Roots album) album

Move Along is the sixth studio album by the American rock group The Grass Roots. The album was released in 1972 and charted at #86. It was the last of the group's albums to chart on the Billboard 200. The album marked the departures of longtime drummer Rick Coonce and keyboardist Dennis Provisor from the group, though Provisor still contributed to the album both as a performer (uncredited) and as a composer. The A and B side singles released were "Two Divided by Love", "Glory Bound" b/w "Only One", "The Runway" b/w "Move Along", and "Anyway the Wind Blows" b/w "Monday Love". Later, the song "Someone to Love" was released as the B side to the song "Love Is What You Make It", which appeared on the band's following album, Alotta Mileage.

References

  1. 1 2 Riedel, David (12 July 2011). "Rob Grill of the Grass Roots dead at 67". CBS News. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  2. Rob Grill Biography
  3. Moser, John J. (12 July 2011). "Grass Roots singer Rob Grill dies hours before SteelStacks show; group plays tribute set". The Morning Call (Lehigh Valley, PA). Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  4. "Rob Grill Songs" . Retrieved 2016-12-01.