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Scott McCarl


Omaha, Nebraska, was the New York, New York, to Kansas City’s Ithaca. Woodstock had finally reached eastern Nebraska, producing the bell-bottomed Country Joe knock-offs Bumpy Action and Lincoln’s Grundy Gilpin, the latter an early incarnation of the Boys. Though disbanded, the surf and garage aftershocks of the Rumbles, Coachmen, and Chevrons could still be felt, and likely heard, on Mighty 1290 KOIL. The town’s teen scene produced dozens of post-Invasion groups with oil-stained shoe soles, including Yellow Hair and the Quiet, both featuring future Raspberry Scott McCarl on bass and vocals with Tom Sorrells on drums. Across town, Arlis Peach and Larry Lee pitched a no-hitter for RCA with “Hold On” before Peach teamed up with McCarl and Hilly Michaels in 1973 for an impromptu recording session. Unbeknownst to anyone at the time, the seeds of Titan were being sown. Recorded in Peach’s living room, “I Hope” is the very earliest unintended prequel to the Titan label.

During the early 90s, a minor power pop resurgence had taken place, leading to orders from boutique distributors and a P.O. box full of fan mail from around the world. Singles and LPs began to creep out; the long-empty Titan coffers were filling up. After hearing Scott McCarl’s homeless solo album, Sorrells knew exactly where to invest his newfound hundreds. The ten-song album was expanded to 17 to include a handful of McCarl curiosities, including Peach's living room-recorded “I Hope” and “I Think About You” from a 1981 L.A. demo. Play On, Titan’s only compact disc, was issued in November of 1997 to the best critical and sales response the label had ever seen. Of course, Sorrells also invested in a McCarl 45, which promptly fizzled. Perhaps format had been the problem from the get go.


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