Beau Dollar & The Dapps – according to Dave Thompson’s history simply entitled, Funk – were the resident band at Cincinnati’s Living Room night club “when they were discovered by James Brown” in 1965. Cincinnati music writer and producer, Randy McNutt, on the other hand, asserts in his King Records of Cincinnati (as well as his Home of the Hits music blog) that the group was initially spotted at The Inner Circle — which makes sense, in light of Zero to 180’s feature piece on The Dapps from July 2020. [The following year, Lonnie Mack would produce their stellar arrangement of “Soul Serenade” – as recently featured here.]
William “Beau Dollar” Bowman: drums & vocals
Tim Drummond & Charles Summers: bass
Eddie Setser & Troy Seals: guitar
Tim Hedding: keyboards
Les Asch & David Parkinson: saxophone
Ron Geisman & Ken Tibbetts: trumpet
In any event, due to a contractual dispute with Syd Nathan, Brown was unable to issue their two-part Dapps single “It’s a Gas” on King. However, Brown did put the band in touch with Arthur ‘Pee Wee’ Ellis, his musical director. Ellis and The Dapps would then issue two singles – “Bringing Up the Guitar” & “There Was a Time” – in quick succession.
Thompson neglects to mention, however, “The Rabbit Got the Gun” – the B-side that manages to keep pace with its equally heavyweight A-side, “There Was a Time“:
Billboard, in its June 29, 1968 edition, would put “The Rabbit Got the Gun” in its official “spotlight” and identify the song as one “predicted to reach the R&B Singles chart.”
Mustachioed rabbit with blunderbuss on picture sleeve for 1972 French 45
Fascinating to find that the French were in on the funk at the time it was all going down – as evidenced by these three French releases between the years 1968-1972 that all contain recordings by The Dapps – along with many other heavy funk and soul tracks that were laid down at Cincinnati’s King studios.
Track listing for 1969 French compilation of King tracks, Nonstop Soul.
Hip picture sleeve for 1968 French Hank Ballard 45 – with backing by The Dapps.
Track listing for 1970 German (neighboring country) “James Brown & Friends” LP.