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TGIF Rock-n-Roll Oldies: Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen - 1971
Reaganite Republican ^ | March 4, 2011 | Reaganite Republican

Posted on 03/04/2011 12:28:27 PM PST by Reaganite Republican

"That story is true, and I'm here to say:
I was drivin' that Model A..."


Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen was a pioneering American country-rock band founded in 1967 in Ann Arbor, Michigan: they're known for such hits as "Hot Rod Lincoln", "Smoke Smoke Smoke (that Cigarette)", "Don't Let Go", as well as an exceptional cover of boogie-woogie standard (and Andrews Sisters hit) "Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar" that managed to chart too.

The band’s style fused country, rockabilly, and blues together on a base of boogie-woogie piano. It was among the first country-rock bands to take its cues less from folk-rock and bluegrass and more from real hardcore barroom country- they became legendary for raucous, extended live performances.

Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen was formed in 1967 with a newly-recruited George Frayne (7.19.1944 Boise, Idaho), who then took the stage name Commander Cody. The band’s name was inspired by 1950s film serials featuring the character Commando Cody... and from a feature version of another serial, King of the Rocket Men, came the "Lost Planet Airmen."


After playing for several years in Michigan bars, core members migrated to San Francisco, where they promptly landed a recording contract. They subsequently released the 1971 debut album Lost in the Ozone.  The record brought the group's best-known hit, a version of the rockabilly standard Hot Rod Lincoln, which went Top Ten on the Billboard US singles chart in early '72 (featured video below). 

Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen then headed-off for Texas, where they made their 1974 live recording Live from Deep in the Heart of Texas. 

The band released several moderately-successful albums through the first half of the 70s. After appearing in the Roger Corman movie Hollywood Boulevard, Frayne disbanded the group in 1976. 

Interestingly, Geoffrey Stokes' 1976 book Star-Making Machinery featured Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen as its primary case study of music industry production and marketing. Stokes relates the difficulties the band had recording its first album for Warner Bros. Records: the label wanted a hit album along the lines of the soft country-rock of The Eagles, but this band was not interested in losing their rough-edged style and adding a bunch of layered harmonies.

Staying with the stage name Commander Cody, George Frayne had a subsequent solo career, touring and releasing albums from 1977-on. He released some later albums under the Lost Planet Airmen name. Recent releases have been as The Commander Cody Band.

And back in a time when I wasn't into country music really -say, late teens/early 20s- I sure was plenty into "Hot Rod Lincoln"- went out and bought the record, too. How could any red-blooded American gearhead not relate?

But I couldn't find a live version with decent sound to post, so here's the '45' single with a hot rod slide show somebody put together... what a great tune:

Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen:
Hot Rod Lincoln - 1971


[video]

_________________________________________________
Commander Cody.com   Wikipedia   YouTube


Previous RR Rock n Roll Oldies features -here-



TOPICS: Chit/Chat; History; Music/Entertainment; Society
KEYWORDS: country; music; oldies; rock

1 posted on 03/04/2011 12:28:34 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: All

thanks, very cool....


2 posted on 03/04/2011 12:31:15 PM PST by Maverick68
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To: Reaganite Republican

The Good Commander and his band provided much of the soundtrack of my youth-!! Webb Wilder is in the same league-!!


3 posted on 03/04/2011 12:34:28 PM PST by imjimbo (The constitution SHOULD be our "gun permit")
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To: imjimbo

These guys are simply great, love ‘em


4 posted on 03/04/2011 12:35:27 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: Reaganite Republican

Saw “The Commander” in concert with Jefferson Starship in 1975. They stole the show. Thass righhhhhhhhhht!


5 posted on 03/04/2011 12:38:16 PM PST by Huskrrrr
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To: Reaganite Republican

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8MS9fk1u6kA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZu5TwRbYiA


6 posted on 03/04/2011 12:38:43 PM PST by pookie18 (Palin/West '12)
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To: Reaganite Republican
"Bill Kirchen is best known for his work in the '70s with the rebel band Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen. Leading the way, this gang of rock & roll honky tonkers cut a wide path thro..."


7 posted on 03/04/2011 12:41:02 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: Reaganite Republican

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rKXCLCZBYrg


8 posted on 03/04/2011 12:42:45 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: Reaganite Republican

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAJuRK9x4No


9 posted on 03/04/2011 12:56:18 PM PST by Huskrrrr
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To: Reaganite Republican

"Hot Licks, Cold Steel & Truckers Favorites"

Outstanding LP.

My particular favorites inlude "Truck Drivin' Man", "Semi-Truck", and "Mama Hated Diesels".

10 posted on 03/04/2011 1:01:40 PM PST by holymoly (Will winter EVER be over? Al Gore, WHERE ARE YOU?)
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To: Huskrrrr

I saw them play at the Troubador in LA in the early 70’s and got the whole band to sign my album after the show. Unfortunately I appear to have lost it.


11 posted on 03/04/2011 1:13:09 PM PST by Argus
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To: Reaganite Republican

Good Grief!!! I have several tapes of his. I used to have a 1965 GTO with personal plates of: CDR-CDY


12 posted on 03/04/2011 1:15:53 PM PST by ReverendJames (Only A Painter Or A Liberal Can Change Black To White.)
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To: Reaganite Republican

There was one number I liked, can’t remember the name, but it was about a train that arrived at a station with nobody on-board.


13 posted on 03/04/2011 1:18:06 PM PST by ReverendJames (Only A Painter Or A Liberal Can Change Black To White.)
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To: Reaganite Republican

This guy was the real deal playing country, bluegrass and rock with The Golden State Boys, The Pine Valley Boys, The Squirell Barkers and The Kentucky Colonels plus The Byrds.

He was Californian before it became a lib hell hole destroyed by NY transplants.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcEjCnMlxfY


14 posted on 03/04/2011 1:24:43 PM PST by Frantzie (HD TV - Total Brain-washing now in High Def. 3-D Coming soon)
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To: Huskrrrr

Now THAT’s a show lol

I’m jealous... missed them both


15 posted on 03/04/2011 1:34:49 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: Huskrrrr
Saw “The Commander” in concert with Jefferson Starship in 1975. They stole the show. Thass righhhhhhhhhht!

It was somewhere right around that time that I saw Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, Pure Prairie League, and New Riders of the Purple Sage in concert in the Kibbie Dome in Moscow, Idaho. Great show.

16 posted on 03/04/2011 1:35:29 PM PST by CommerceComet (Governor Romney, why would any conservative vote for the author of the beta version of ObamaCare?)
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To: pookie18

I love it, Pookie

But got to give it to The Commander... he brought a lot to the material


17 posted on 03/04/2011 1:38:21 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: Paladin2

His version sounds real good here, thx


18 posted on 03/04/2011 1:39:59 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: Huskrrrr

I’ve never seen that, new to me... but they opened for the Dead on one tour, seemed to be pretty good buds, both operating out of SF in the late 60s


19 posted on 03/04/2011 1:41:19 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: CommerceComet

Wow, great show!


20 posted on 03/04/2011 1:41:31 PM PST by Huskrrrr
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To: ReverendJames

You had a 65 Goat? Lord, I’m jealous

I was a big Pontiac guy back in the days, had a few myself but that would be high on the wish list still... can’t believe the prices they bring these days tho lol


21 posted on 03/04/2011 1:43:23 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: holymoly

Agreed- still got a copy around somewhere on vinyl, scratched of course


22 posted on 03/04/2011 1:46:38 PM PST by Reaganite Republican
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To: holymoly

“Now it’s me and the local preacher
Standing in the graveyard grass
Staring down at the highway
Watching those big boys pass
Well he laid his hand upon me
And he prayed for quite some time
But I could barely understand the words he said
Behind that highway’s whine

Then he handed me a faded photograph
He said he found it in my mama’s hand
He said “Son I’m afraid that you and this picture
Were the best your Mama ever had”
Well I looked down at that picture
It was Mama and some guy
Standing in front of a semi-truck
“Just Married” painted on the side.”

It just doesn’t get any better for me.


23 posted on 03/04/2011 2:03:17 PM PST by freefdny
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To: Reaganite Republican

A ‘65 and a ‘66. I sold the ‘65 in LA back in 1989 for ten grand. Looked sharp but the engine burned oil.


24 posted on 03/04/2011 2:04:23 PM PST by ReverendJames (Only A Painter Or A Liberal Can Change Black To White.)
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To: Reaganite Republican; All
No one can touch Cody and his Airmen's Hot Rod Lincoln for 'Car Passin' Music'! Or Semi~Truck for lamented love lost.

Always loved the Honky~Tonk sounds of the Commander and his crew. Superb guitar, drum, piano, pedal steel and occasional fiddles put them way above all others.

Closest to their style would be the New Riders when Jerry Garcia would sit in with them. Especially Panama Red and their immortal, Henry

Just my 2 cents.

Jack.
25 posted on 03/04/2011 2:09:55 PM PST by Jack Deth (Knight Errant and Resident FReeper Kitty Poem /Haiku Guy)
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To: Reaganite Republican
Yeah, just posting the vids of the 2 who had hits with it before the Commander's covered version...


26 posted on 03/04/2011 2:12:18 PM PST by pookie18 (Palin/West '12)
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To: Reaganite Republican

27 posted on 03/04/2011 4:50:18 PM PST by hattend (Obama got his 3am call about Egypt. The call went right to the answering machine.- Sarah Palin)
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To: ReverendJames

Or the one about not having any leafy green material anymore, just sticks and stuff.


28 posted on 03/04/2011 9:30:58 PM PST by drubyfive
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To: drubyfive

Ah yes, our veggies.


29 posted on 03/05/2011 9:51:16 AM PST by ReverendJames (Only A Painter Or A Liberal Can Change Black To White.)
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