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The Footprints

The Footprints - Never Say Die / Mama Rand's - 7

Never Say Die / Mama Rand's - 7"
Capitol - 1967

Michael Panontin
This totally forgotten Montreal band released a few singles in the 1960s on the Columbia and Capitol labels, the best of which is probably this cool double-sider, which according to Billboard magazine was rush-released by Capitol the week before Christmas 1967. 'Never Say Die' didn't bother the charts much, but the bouncy organ and guitar dance could certainly have foreshadowed the nascent bubblegum genre that exploded the following year with the likes of the Ohio Express, the Archies, the Lemon Pipers and all those guilty pleasures. Much better, though, is what's over on the backside. With a groovy popsike organ and those falsetto vocals, 'Mama Rand's' must have had the kids shaking a tail feather or two in the clubs of the day.

But what really makes this record one to search for - aside from the still reasonable $50 price point - is the fact that the Footprints were fronted by a 19-year-old singer named Yank Barry. Born one Gerald Barry Falovitch, the pioneering producer (responsible for the first quadrophonic recording in 1970), ex-shady huckster (sentenced to six years for extortion in 1982) and now philanthropist and Nobel Peace Prize nominee has received more than 20 humanitarian awards for his Global Village Champions Foundation, which strives to provide nutritious meals to the poor all over the world...at over a billion and counting!

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