When Norman Greenbaum's “Spirit in the Sky” (1970), Carl Douglas' “Kung Fu Fighting” (1974) or the Buggles' “Video Killed the Radio Star” (1979) come on the radio or pop up in a commercial, do you ever wonder what happened to the artists who made them famous? I do.
NBC's short-lived 2005 series “Hit Me Baby One More Time” and VH1's “Where Are They Now?” and “Bands Reunited” helped track down a number of '80s and '90s acts, but it's rare these days to learn what's become of groups behind older staples.
So I'm pleased to be able to tout the resurfacing of a frontman for one of those acts: Myke Scavone, who scored a hit with “Black Betty” in 1977 while leading hard rockers Ram Jam.
Before Ram Jam, he was part of a band called the Doughboys, a popular act in its home of central New Jersey during the mid- to late '60s that shared bills with the Beach Boys and Neil Diamond.
Scavone recently regrouped with the Doughboys, and the first track from his reunited Doughboys' new disc “Is It Now?” is a recent favorite of Bruce Springsteen cohort and rock tastemaker Little Steven, who spins it on his “Underground Garage” radio show. The rest of the disc revisits Stones-meets-Stooges classic rock.
If you're free tonight, it's a band well worth rediscovering.