Da Band!

On Stage Performing Stretch Jackson

Story of the Band

Raisins at the Theatre

The California Raisins started off by two brothers, AC and Beebop, that discovered they could hum in tune with each other while playing in their backyard. The two brothers grew up outside of L. A. They joined up with their cousin Red at age 12 and started their first band, playing at high school gigs and shows. They recruited a base player, named Zoot, and called themselves The Vinyls.

The group caught the eye of an upcoming manager named Rudy Bagaman. They got their first show at Le Roach Lounge, a small time bar in the middle of nowhere. After performing for a while and not making any progress the band decided that Zoot just didn’t fit in. Zoot was let go and replaced by Stretch Thompson, who they recruited from an all bass quartet. Zoot felt no anger towards the band but never fully recovered, he went around from there on always talking about how he was a writer and how he wrote the songs the Vinyls performed. They got their first television gig on the show “Talent of Consequences”. Host Ed McMellon and Co-host Banana White were so so on the abilities of the unknown band. The group was challenged to be good while performing under a 1 ton steel block, held up just by Banana White. The Raisins showed no doubt in themselves and were going to give the best show they could. During their performance the crowd was going wild, everyone seemed to love them. Banana White decided to clap in approval releasing the rope holding the 1 ton steel block, crushing the Vinyls and putting them in the hospital. Their song Tutti-Frutti was a huge hit, going to the top of the most requested list the very next day. The news goes crazy over the group, stating “The California Raisins a Smash Hit”. And so they received their new name as The California Raisins.

Rumors started to spread when the band didn’t show up for tour dates and performances, but they were recovering in the hospital for a year. They played for their fellow injured hospital buddies during their recuperation. When they finally got release from the hospital they had nothing and were forced to start all over. While Lic Broccli, the current artist of interest, was the first of the British Broccli invasion.

The California Raisins were having trouble finding work so their manager decided to try some fresh ideas. They tried out live elevator music which didn’t really catch on. Then they tried singing telegrams to make some money, they didn’t like their job title so referred to it as “Intimate Outdoor Performances”. While performing one of their telegrams to a mountain climber ended with them saving his life and becoming heros. They then caught the attention of an unknown Italian film director Frederico Raspberrini, his reputation as a director was not to great. Their first movie “The Good the Bad and the Wrinkled” wasn’t a huge hit with a total of 2 viewers, but they continued on in hope of success. Their 2nd and 3rd films “Two Thousand Some” and “Star Truck” were bigger hits then the 1st but the band just couldn’t catch the break they needed. The films were embargoed from leaving Europe, stopping their spread to the states.

Since the Raisins couldn’t catch any breaks while in Europe they decided to go on tour with the little money they had remaining. They decided to tour uncharted land and plotted a course around the arctic circle. The tour isn’t successful at all but the band, exhausted with tempers running high, ventures on hoping for a break. The tour looses money so the Raisins and their manager decide its time to just head home. On September 14 while in flight to Fresno, the bands jet encounters a massive thunderstorm. In their flight path was Lic Broccli and his band The Herbicides playing a concert, with unknown luck the Raisins plane is struck by lightning and goes down crashing into the concert hall. The stage abandoned, the California Raisins take over the stage and start to perform. The crowd goes almost instantly crazy over the band, their first televised performance in a long time is a huge hit. Dropping in on this concert sparked off the Raisins career, giving them hit after hit as they continue their domination of the music industry over the years.

AC and Beebop’s mother, Lulu Arboreman, when questioned about how she felt about her sons huge success was bewildered and stated “You mean that they’re not in their room?”. The final statement for this great band was put like this, “Some are born Grape.... Others achieve Grapness.... Then few have Grapness thrust upon them!”, And so the California Raisins go down into history to be remembered for generations.

(story line from the movie, “Meet the Raisins”.)

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