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The Rascals

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The Rascals, along with the Righteous Brothers, Mitch Ryder, and precious few others, were the pinnacle of '60s blue-eyed soul. The Rascals' talents, however, would have to rate above their rivals, if for nothing else than the simple fact that they, unlike many other blue-eyed soulsters, penned much of their own material. They also proved more adept at changing with the fast-moving times, drawing much of their inspiration from British Invasion bands, psychedelic rock, gospel, and even a bit of jazz and Latin music. They were at their best on classic singles like "Good Lovin'," "How Can I Be Sure," "Groovin'," and "People Got to Be Free." When they tried to stretch their talents beyond the impositions of the three-minute 45, they couldn't pull it off, a failure which -- along with crucial personnel losses -- effectively finished the band as a major force by the 1970s. The roots of the Rascals were in New York-area twist and bar bands. Keyboardist/singer Felix Cavaliere, the guiding force of the group, had played with Joey Dee & the Starliters, where he met Canadian guitarist Gene Cornish and singer Eddie Brigati. Brigati would split the lead vocals with Cavaliere and also write much of the band's material with him. With the addition of drummer Dino Danelli, they became the Rascals. Over their objections, manager Sid Bernstein (who had promoted the famous Beatles concerts at Carnegie Hall and Shea Stadium) dubbed them the Young Rascals, although the "Young" was permanently dropped from the billing in a couple of years. After a small hit with "I Ain't Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore" in 1965, the group hit number one with "Good Lovin'," a cover of an R&B tune by the Olympics, in 1966. This was the model for the Rascals' early sound: a mixture of hard R&B and British Invasion energy, with tight harmony vocals and arrangements highlighting Cavaliere's Hammond organ. After several smaller hits in the same vein, the group began to mature at a rapid rate in 1967, particularly as songwriters. "Groovin'," "Beautiful Morning," "It's Wonderful," and "How Can I Be Sure?" married increasingly introspective and philosophical lyrics to increasingly sophisticated arrangements and production, without watering down the band's most soulful qualities. They were also big hits, compiled for the 1968 LP release Time Piece: The Rascals' Greatest Hits, and provided some of the era's most satisfying blends of commercial and artistic appeal. During the summer of 1968, almost as if to prove they could shake 'em down as hard as any soul revue, the Rascals made number one with one of their best songs, "People Got to Be Free." An infectious summons to unity and tolerance in the midst of a very turbulent year for American society, it also reflected the Rascals' own integrationist goals. Not only did they blend white and black in their music; they also, unlike many acts of the time, refused to tour on bills that weren't integrated as well. "People Got to Be Free," surprisingly, was the group's last Top 20 hit, although they would have several other small chart entries over the next few years, often in a more explicitly gospel-influenced style. The problem wasn't bad timing or shifting commercial taste; the problem was the material itself, which wasn't up to the level of their best smashes. More worrisome were their increasingly ambitious albums, such as the 1969 releases Freedom Suite and See, which found Cavaliere in particular trying to expand into jazz, instrumentals, and Eastern philosophy. Not that this couldn't have worked well, but it didn't. They had never been an album-oriented group, but unlike other some other great mid-'60s bands, they were unable to satisfactorily expand their talents into full-length formats. A more serious problem was the departure of Brigati, the band's primary lyricist, in 1970. Cornish was also gone a year later, although Cavaliere and Danelli kept the Rascals going a little longer with other musicians. The band broke up in 1972, with none of the members going on to notable commercial or artistic success on his own, though Cavaliere remained the most active. ~ Richie Unterberger
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Stations Featuring
The Rascals

    Oldies Hits

    Oldies Hits
    7 songs

    Oldies Party

    Oldies Party
    7 songs

    '60s Oldies

    '60s Oldies
    3 songs

    Classic Summer Songs

    Classic Summer Songs
    1 song

    Patriotic Songs

    1 song

    Classic Hits

    3 songs

    Coffeehouse Corner

    1 song

    Classic Soul

    1 song

    Love Songs

    1 song

Albums by
The Rascals

Top Songs by
The Rascals

  1.   Song
    Popularity
  2.   Groovin'
  3.   A Beautiful Morning
  4.   Good Lovin'
  5.   People Got to Be Free by The Young Rascals
  6.   I've Been Lonely Too Long
  7.   How Can I Be Sure
  8.   A Girl Like You
  9.   You Better Run
  10.   I Ain't Gonna Eat Out My Heart Anymore
  11.   It's Wonderful
  12.   In the Midnight Hour
  13.   Like a Rolling Stone by The Young Rascals
  14.   Mustang Sally by The Young Rascals
  15.   See
  16.   Buttercup
  17.   Rainy Day by The Young Rascals
  18.   My Hawaii
  19.   Me and My Friends by The Young Rascals
  20.   Silly Girl
  21.   Please Love Me by The Young Rascals
  22.   Away Away
  23.   Just a Little by The Young Rascals
  24.   Slow Down by The Young Rascals
  25.   Lucky Day
  26.   Nubia
  27.   Love Is a Beautiful Thing
  28.   Heaven by The Young Rascals
  29.   A Ray of Hope by The Young Rascals
  30.   I'd Like to Take You Home
  31.   I'm Blue
  32.   Come on Up
  33.   Intro/Easy Rollin'
  34.   Stop and Think
  35.   Lament
  36.   Time Will Tell
  37.   Echoes
  38.   Hummin' Song
  39.   Island of Real
  40.   Jungle Walk
  41.   Be on the Real Side
  42.   Brother Tree
  43.   Saga of New York
  44.   Real Thing
  45.   Temptation's 'Bout to Get Me
  46.   Baby Let's Wait by The Young Rascals
  47.   Do You Feel It by The Young Rascals
  48.   Mickey's Monkey/Love Lights by The Young Rascals
  49.   Of Course by The Young Rascals
  50.   Any Dance'll Do by The Young Rascals
  51.   America the Beautiful by The Young Rascals
  52.   Ready for Love
  53.   I'm Gonna Love You
  54.   My World
  55.   Singin' the Blues Too Long
  56.   Sattva
  57.   Finale: Once Upon a Dream by The Young Rascals
  58.   Love Was So Easy to Give by The Young Rascals
  59.   Boom by The Young Rascals
  60.   Look Around by The Young Rascals
  61.   Hold On
  62.   Death's Reply
  63.   Remember Me
  64.   Little Dove
  65.   Easy Rollin' by The Young Rascals
  66.   Carry Me Back
  67.   What Is the Reason
  68.   Cute by The Young Rascals
  69.   Adrian's Birthday by The Young Rascals
  70.   Baby I'm Blue by The Young Rascals
  71.   Island of Love by The Young Rascals
  72.   Right On
  73.   Glory Glory
  74.   You Don't Know
  75.   The Letter
  76.   Thank You Baby
  77.   I Believe
  78.   Almost Home
  79.   Fortunes
  80.   Nama

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