Al Casey: Friends with Bats

Thanks to Amy Bucci at National Geographic for encouraging my interest in bats by giving me a special set of US postage stamps (“Night Friends” from 2002) that celebrate the world’s only flying mammal.

Bat Postage StampsThe world’s bat population is imperiled for a whole host of reasons and irrationally targeted by fearful humans despite all the good they do for our planet.

Fortunately, Al Casey and his Bats (plus Corkey!) are not giving up — er, I guess they are:

“Give’n Up”     Al Casey (& Corkey) and the Bats     1958

“Give’n Up” was composed by Danny Wolfe, produced by Lester Sill & Lee Hazlewood.  1958 would make this one of Lee Hazlewood‘s earlier productions (although “The Fool,” written for Sanford Clark in 1956, is Hazlewood’s official entré into the music industry).

Five years later, Al Casey would almost hit the Top 40 with the Lee Hazlewood-penned “Surfin’ Hootenanny” – a playful tune that features guitar solos in the styles of (1) Dick Dale, (2) The Ventures, and (3) Duane Eddy.  Though primarily a session player, Al Casey would hit the Billboard Top 100 at least thrice, each time with an instrumental recording.

“Hamburger Patti”: Boy Flips Over Burger Gal

Veteran songwriter/producer/arranger, Marty Cooper, wrote and produced this teen drama send-up — “Hamburger Patti” — that was arranged by seasoned West Coast session guitarist, Al Casey:

“Hamburger Patti”     The Inconceivables     1966

To my ears, it sure sounds like Casey and Cooper were able to hire some of Los Angeles’ finest musicians (is that Hal Blaine on drums?) to help bring this song to life.   Released as a promo 45 in 1966 on Columbia, “Hamburger Patti” would later be included on a double album hodge-podge of recordings owned by Columbia, California U.S.A.