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June 12, 1974 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1974-06-12

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Wednesday, June 12, 1974

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page F'i ve

Opening night at the Knob

By CHUCK BLOOM
Music, I guess, like politics,
makes for strange bedfellows.
At least it seemed that way last
Saturday night at the Pine
Knob Music Theatre.
Opening its fourth summer
season, the outdoor palace locat-
ed in Clarkston brought togeth-
er the strangest mixture of peo-
ple for the concert of 60's
oldies.
The crowd was predominantly
suburban, totally white, and
generally older than what one
would expect for a "rock" con-
cert.
On display were all the Jama-
cian tans, suburban fashions,
and Mr. Phyllis coiffures. Many
of the on-lookers watched with
a scotch and soda in hand and
$10 bottles of wine were as visi-
ble there as Ripple is at a
Michigan football game. Where
in Ann Arbor dope is passed
through the crowd, at Pine
Knob, it is a bucket of chicken,
a barrel of fun, good-bye, ho-
hums.
It resembled the audience one
would expect for further Pine
Knob extravaganzas such as

Bob Hope, S-mmny Davis, or
Johnny Mathis. But here they
were, 10,000 strong to see and
hear songs they didn't know.
As for the concert itself, it
was an excellent comeback
from two of the acts and a slick
show from the third.
The show opened with Tommy
James and the Shondells, a
grop that touched all musical
bases darine its zenith. James
was in excellent voice and he
had a good ,tight group behind
him. After opening with "Drag-
gin' the Line", he and the Shon-
dells went back into time,
.down memory lane, with a
good boogie number, "Mony,
Mony" and that bubble-gum
standard "I think We're Alone
Now." His 30-minute stint closed
with his two biggest hits,
"Crimson and Clover" and
"Crystal Blue Persuasion",
which are a pair of decent num-
bers. It would be nice to see
James record again.
Three things, however ham-
pered the performance: the per-
enially bad Pine Knob sound
system, the ho'sr of the day (it
was too light outside to get

the crowd away from picnick-
ing, and the fact that James
put a lot of energy (voltage-
wise) into the show. And for
that crowd, it was the wrong
thing to do.
The whole theatre was elated
with the appearance of Frankie
Valli and the Four Seasons. The
falsetto - voiced singer from
Belleville, N.J. delighted the
throng with classics like
"Dawn", "Stay", "You're Too
Good to Be True", "Silence is
Golden", and many, many
others.
Back by the Motown orchestra
he new records with, Valli and
the "new" Seasons stirred the
hearts and memories of the au-
dience to the tune of five stand-
ing ovations after the hour-
long set.
What the audience appreciat-
ed, taking in mind the median
age, was the Vegas-type smooth-
ness with which Valli perform-
ed.
The wrap-up was a local
group made good, the Four
Tops, and even though their
act was good, they were poor-
ly treated by the crowd.

When the Tops were halfway
through the show, around 10
p.m., there was a noticeable
exodus on the part of the
"youthful" clan. While they
were not complaining about the
show, many mentioned late din-
ner dates, open bars, and coun-
try club parties as the reasons
for their rudeness.
But Levi Stubbs and company
continued like real troopers.
They went through their repe-
triore of songs, both past and
present. Opening with "Are You
Man Enough", continuing with

their early hits "Baby I Need
Your Loving", "Ask the Lone-
ly", and "It's the Same Old
Song", and finishing with "I
C'an't Help Myself," the De-
troiters, refugees from Motown
Records, gave that polished act
that has come to be expected
from all the old Motown stable
(i.e. the Temptations, Gladys
Knight amd the Pips, etc.).
All in all, it was quite an
opening night -- as though one
had been at a theatre opening
or in a night club. It was that
type of crowd.

Michigan Daily
Arts

Record counterfeits:
The multi-rn lion dollar r4-of

By TIM REITERMAN
Associated Press Writer
SAN FRANCISCO - Counter-
feiters are pressing bogus pho-
nograph records which fool most
customers and cost the record-
ing industry millions of dollars
each year.
"These parasites wait until a
record becomes a hit, then
move in and try to skim off the
top," says an attorney for Co-
lumbia Records in Los Angeles,
"They victimize the artist, writ-
ers, companies and public with
lousy records."
Detecting counterfeits poses
problems for the consumer, be-
cause both the sound and pack-
aging are copied. In fact, it us-
ually takes a keen eye to spot
the cover art's slightly faded
colors and sloppy lettering, and

a careful ear to pick up most
audio failings.
Though impossible to accur-
ately compute the number in
circulation, the Recording In-
dustry Association of America
estimates about five million
phony discs have been sold dur-
ing the past two years at a loss
of more than $15 million to the
industry. In addition, the indus-
try claims it loses millions in
pirated tape sales.
In New York, Jules Yarnell,
special counsel on piracy for the
55-company association, said 12
to 15 companies reported record
counterfeiting in the past year
alone,
Capitol, CBS, A&M, Warner
Brothers and RCA were among
the companies hit. Counterfeited
artists included Elvis Presley,

Paul Simon, Sly and the Family
Stone, Bill Withers and the late
Janis Joplin.
In some cases, Yarnell said,
bogus albums were easily spot-
ted because they sold for less
than $3, below what the retailer
normally pays for a legitimate
hit album. In other cases, he
said, counterfeits have been
sold at the same price or higher
than the real product.
Usually, counterfeits are dis-
covered when consumers return
records with complaints. As the
Columbia attorney said, "The
customer who unwittingly buys
a counterfeit and doesn't like
the quality will see our label
and think we ripped him off,"
Concern over damage to its
reputation and financial losses
led Columbia to post bounties,
offering its hundreds of field
staffers $50 for each tip result-
ing in an arrest or a civil suit.
The counterfeiters do not con-
fine themselves to big corpor-
ate prey who can usually absorb
losses. The Grateful Dead Re-
cording Co.'s first album Wake
of the Flood," barely hit the
streets last October before imi-
tations started competing for
sales.
"We went out and bought 60
or so counterfeits for a couple
of bucks each," company presi-
dent Ron Rakow said in San Ra-
fael, Cal. "We gave the distrib-
utors a few copies each so they
could compare them with the
real thing."
An FBI affidavit filed last De-
cember quoted one Los Angeles
record dealer as saying he
was offered 100,000 counterfeit
Grateful Dead bums at $1.50
each, compared to a wholesale
price of about $2.40 for the legi-
timate product.
A Berkeley, Calif. dealer pur-
chased 297 counterfeits and a
Denver dealer was offered the
same Grateful Dead album at
$1.65 per copy, the FBI said.
Both outlets dealt with the same
Van Nuys, Calif. distributor.
"There have been no arrests
but we have served some search
warrants," said FBI spokesman
John Morrison in Los Angeles.
"As to where the counterfeits
are originating from, we don't

know at this time."
The penalty for violation of
federal copyright statutes can
include a $100 to $1,000 fine and
as much as one year in prison
on each count. However, Asst.
U. S. Atty. Robert Brosio said
felony charges of interstate
transportation or stolen proper-
ty and mail fraud would be
likely companion charges.
While law enforcement offic-
ials are pursuing the origins of
illicit records, the record com-
panies are attempting to shut
off the flow at the retail level.
That presents great obstacles,
too.
Pat Nichols of Discount Re-
cords here, a division of CBS
retail stores, said the store ac-
cidentally received some coun-
terfeits through its regular dis-

tributors. "We had them on our
shelves briefly but returned
them when we found out," he
said.
"Counterfeiting is an easy
thing to do," said Bob Tolefson
of the seven-store Record Fac-
tory chain here. "You take a
picture of the album cover,
front and back, paste it togeth-
er and press the record. The
average customer can't even
tell the difference."
Stan Goman, manager of
Tower Records here, said, "It's
a bizarre thing that's hard to
control because unscrupulous
dealers always will be looking
for cheap counterfeits,
"We haven't noticed any
here," he said. "But maybe
they're so good you can't tell
them from the real thing."

Genuine

Counterfeit

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