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.

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).

Grill was asked to join The Grass Roots, which grew out of a project originating from Dunhill Records owned by Lou Adler. Writers/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. After 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 received airplay in the 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.

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.

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).

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]

Death

Grill died from complications of a head injury sustained in a fall in June 2011. After suffering two strokes following the fall, each located in different parts of his brain, he fell into a coma. [5]

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

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<i>Lets Live for Today</i> (album) 1967 studio 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.

Midnight Confessions single by The Grass Roots

"Midnight Confessions" is a song written by Lou T. Josie and originally performed by the Ever-Green Blues. It was later made famous by American rock band The Grass Roots, who released the song as a single in 1968. Though never released on any of the group's studio albums, it was on their first compilation album, Golden Grass, and has been included on many of their other compilations since.

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".

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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> 1971 greatest hits 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> 1966 studio album by The Grass Roots

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

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<i>Feelings</i> (The Grass Roots album) 1968 studio 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> 1969 studio 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> 1968 compilation 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> 1969 studio 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) 1972 studio album by The Grass Roots

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.
  5. Perpetua, Matthews (July 13, 2011). "Grass Roots Frontman Rob Grill Dead at 67". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 13 October 2019.