Ask “Mr. Music”
Jerry Osborne


DEAR JERRY: I'd like some help locating some recordings by a group named Red Bone. While in Oregon in the early '70s I first heard an album by this band. They are made up of Native American Indians.

Since then, I have often heard their most famous song, “Come and Get Your Love,” played on the oldies stations. They are even featured on a TV commercial, for which I hope they're being paid.

Please help, as my brother and sister are having birthdays soon and I'd like to surprise them with a collection of Red Bone songs. Of course I'd also like one for myself.
—Cliff Cooper Jr., Tacoma, Wash.

DEAR CLIFF: As Redbone (one word), the band began in 1968; however, their story begins seven years earlier.

In 1961, brothers Pat Vegas and Lolly Vegas each recorded solo tracks. In '62 they began recording together using various names. The following year, as Pat & Lolly Vegas, they had their first regional hit, “The Robot Walk,” about a new teen dance.

As Redbone, they added Anthony Bellamy, Peter DePoe, and later Butch Rillera. Their greatest success came in the early '70s, with “Come and Get Your Love; Maggie;” and “The Witch Queen of New Orleans.”

Fortunately, you have at least a half-dozen readily available CDs from which to choose, any of which would make nice surprise gifts:

“Greatest Songs: Come and Get Your Love)” (Curb 715187-77462-9); “Wovoka” (Columbia 074643-24622-4); “Golden Classics” (Collectables 090431-58022-6); “To the Bone” (Sony 079892-85812-9); “Very Best of Redbone” (Sony 509974-67936-23); and the recently issued (June 2003) “Essential Redbone” (Legacy 696998-60722-4).

DEAR JERRY: I have a medium size record collection of 45s and LPs that I would like to sell. Unfortunately, I do not know how to go about it and the few shops I offered them to didn't want to buy any.

Other than giving them to the Goodwill store, what's a person to do?
—Dale Willis, York, Pa.

DEAR DALE: For you, as well as for Linda Saldivar (Milwaukee), whose letter arrived the same day as yours, here are some tips.

You must consider the possibility that what you have is simply of no interest to those dealers or shops, who would only buy items that are likely to be sold to their clientele.

Condition is always a very important factor. Unless what you offering is among the world's most sought-after records, noticeable wear and tear will surely kill any possible sale.

Otherwise, a collection of in-demand, well-cared-for records should be able to be marketed.

Don't limit your options to just a few local shops. Using any of the publications aimed at record collectors, or any of the online sales or auction sites, you can easily reach tens of thousands of potential customers.

Regular record fairs or conventions are held in most areas of the USA and UK. Find one that you can attend, and bring your collection, or at least an easy-to-read list of what you have, and be prepared to negotiate.

It is a numbers game, and the more people you reach the better your chance to succeed.

IZ ZAT SO? Keeping in tune with the times — specifically 1963 and '64 — Pat and Lolly Vegas recorded several surf music instrumentals using names like the Avantis and the Sharks.

The Avantis only surf hit is “Wax 'Em Down,” but among their other titles are “Surfin' Granny” and “The Phantom Surfer.”

As the Sharks the made “Big Surf,” and released “Potato Mash” as the Individuals.

Their first album came out in 1966 on Mercury, titled “Pat & Lolly Vegas at the Haunted House.”

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