Ron Chapman

Goodbye to an old friend

Ron Chapman died recently. He was 85 years old. Ron was one of the first local on-air DJ’s to see potential in Kenny and the Kasuals. He reviewed the band’s concert performances, even going as far to say that the Kasuals outperformed The Beach Boys in 1966. Ron had the band perform on his WFAA tv show, Sumpin Else, eleven times. Then in 1985, Ron had the Kasuals play on his 20th year reunion special. Ron was a nice person, who loved music, people, and making things happen. We will miss his great spirit and smiling face. From all the members of the Kasuals, thanks Ron for everything you did! 

Gator's Garage Podcasts

R.I.P - Jimmy Rabbitt  

Jimmy Rabbit was a great guy, a pioneer, and a major player in the golden days of KLIF to whom Kenny and the Kasuals owe their success with Journey To Tyme. 

Mark Lee - Manager for Kenny and the Kasuals


RABBITT, Jimmy: KFI; KRLA, 1969-70; KLAC, 1971; KMET, 1971-72; KBBQ, 1972; KROQ, 1972-73; KMET, 1975; KGBS, 1975; KLAC, 1976; KROQ, 1976-78. Jimmy is one of radio's outlaw characters. He died during the Thanksgiving holiday of 2020. 

Born Dale Payne in 1941, he grew up in Tyler, Texas, joined the Marine Corps, then sold shoes until his first radio gig at KGKB in Tyler. Jimmy flourished at KLIF-Dallas, and with music changing in the 1960s, KLIF’s pd allowed Rabbit a Sunday-night-only show, featuring "psychedelic" music. Soon he was on nightly, and Gordon McLendon spent a fortune putting psychedelic lights in the KLIF studio windows, visible from outside. 

In 1968, he was off to KCBQ-San Diego. When the station tightened its playlist in 1969, Jimmy, looking for a way out, contacted his buddy Doug Cox, who was programming KRLA. The times were a-changing in 1969 when Doug put Jimmy on the air for a combination of “free-form” sprinkled with Country music. He left the station less than a year later. 

In 1969, the LA Times named Jimmy rock dj of the year. When times got tough, Jimmie rode horses in Topanga Canyon. He joined KMET for the first time on January 18, 1971, for the 11 a.m.- 4 p.m. shift. In May 1972, “The Rabbitt” was on KHJ for three days. He was called to a meeting at Nickodell's (an industry hangout) with Ted Atkins and Bill Watson. According to Jimmy in a Billboard magazine profile, Watson said, "We don't want another Robert W. Morgan at night." Jimmy was suspended, not fired, but only because Bill Drake had hired him and Bill was in Hawaii; he was eventually fired after Drake approved it. 

Later in 1972, Jimmie joined Bob Hamilton's Radio Report publication as Country editor. In 1975, he was back on KMET in the early evenings. When things didn't work out on KMET, management put him on sister Metromedia station, Country KLAC. A fellow worker marveled at Jimmy's ability to meld Progressive music with Country. "He'd mix classic country oldies with the Eagles and Linda Ronstadt." Jimmy’s band, “Renegade,” played the Palomino Club, and had moderate record-selling success. Between radio assignments, he did a one-to-one voiceover workshop at Wally Heider Studios, up the block from local jock hangout Martoni's. In 1996 Jimmy returned to Tyler, Texas and was working at KKUS. He's now at KAFM/fm Community Radio in Grand Junction, Colorado.


Gator's Garage S1 E5 - Kenny and the Kasuals - Lee, Paul, Duncan and Ellis  

This is the final episode in the Kenny and the Kasuals - Early Days series. 

Today's episode includes a comment from Lee Lightfoot, commentary by Paul Roach and reflections from Duncan and Ellis, the two guys who handled the equipment and drove the hearse filled with the band's gear and sometimes the band!

News episodes of Gator's Garage will start again in September. The first guest in the new season will be singer/songwriter Tedd Brumm. Tedd talks about his musical past and his association with Kenny Daniel in the band Summerfield. 

Gator's Garage S1 E1 - Kenny and the Kasuals - Tommy Nichols interview  

In Season 1 Episode 1, Tommy Nichols is interviewed and tells how Kenny and Tommy came together to form a band in 1964. From this duo's beginnings the core of the band forms and leads to bigger and better musical adventures. Hear Tommy talk about writing the Kasuals first recorded song (Nothin Better To Do) on the stairs of the Studio Club. An in-depth look at the formative moments of Kenny and the Kasuals.

Gator's Garage Podcast Coming Soon! 

Coming in July, AstroMarkMusic will be adding a podcast to the website. Gator's Garage first season will feature in-depth interviews with all of the original band members of Kenny and the Kasuals. You will get to hear their stories directly from them, plus interviews with Mark Lee the band's manager, several of the other lead guitar players who played in various versions of the band. There will also be mystery appearances from people who worked for the band (roadies). Don't miss this debut season as it will reveal the good, and the bad of a garage band that made it but didn't make it, and then refused to die. A true tale of zombie musicians and what playing rock music will do to you. Not to be missed. Sign up for our email updates to be notified.   

The Coming of Summer! 

2020 has already set a lot of records, and I don't mean vinyl. No, the crazy year is just that, abnormal! At this point, I would be happy to watch a baseball game on TV with empty stands. I'm sure the networks can make faux crowd noise but who cares, just something halfway normal would be just fine. I know so many musicians who have been hurt financially, as have bars, restaurants, waitstaff, and venues. Everyone's life was put on hold. It feels like it's lasted a long time and in many ways it has, but what comes next, as we hope to return to some level of normalcy? 

At this point, there are many companies working on a vaccine. It takes time to go through clinical trials. Many fail, others succeed only to fail in later trials. Until there is a vaccine, there can be no herd immunity, and we are not dealing with influenza here but a coronavirus. Currently, there are no vaccines for any coronavirus (common cold, HIV, Ebola.) That should give us all pause and consider that we may be impacted by this virus for the next year or two until it finally burns out.

Maybe all of this is a trial run to see how we can operate around a pandemic? Musicians are doing a good job of playing online and taking donations to keep paying the bills. As we head into Summer with normal in our rearview mirror, I hope that everyone can continue to work together and support each other the best we can. Nobody asked for this to happen but we can be supportive of our friends, families, neighbors, and local businesses. Together we are not alone, we are all in this together.

Be Well

The AstroMarkMusic Crew

AstroMarkMusic Playlists 

Hi Folks! 

AstroMarkMusic added some music for your enjoyment. Our playlists are our way of saying thanks and hope you enjoy listening to them. If there is something, in particular, you would enjoy listening to, let us know. We plan on updating our playlists often and would love to include your requests. 

In the meantime, let us know if there is anything you would like to see on the website. We are always happy to hear from you!

Be well,

All the gang at AstroMarkMusic


Big Addition To Collector's Corner 

After two months of COVID-19, unemployed musicians, and the world in suspended animation, we are excited to announce the arrival of some new vintage vinyl in Collector's Corner! We finally have an IMPACT album available! In addition, there are several other offerings in the classic Kasual lineup. In addition to the new collectibles, AstroMarkMusic is now shipping internationally. Our first shipment headed to France followed by Canada! While there are delays in shipping anything during the pandemic, we are happy to see buyers returning to the marketplace in spite of the delays. We do know that all of our t-shirt provides are experiencing major delays due to closings and supply chain disruptions but we are assured that the delays are no longer than 10 business days from the date of order. So please know we will continue to monitor shipping and product availability for these suppliers. 

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