Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Ohio Express

I dropped my wife off for a hair appointment a couple days ago, and decided to kill time at a local thrift shop, while waiting for her.

As I opened the door to enter, I nearly knocked a fellow down who was leaving.  "Excuse me."  "No problem."  "Anything in particular you're looking for?"  "No, just looking around, while my wife gets her hair done around the corned."  "Well, make yourself at home, and if you need help, guy is back there."  "OK, thanks."  Nice fella.  So, off I go on my scavenging journey.

It's a funky warehouse filled with the usual 'bargains', plus several guitars of varying condition, and a mezzanine loaded with musical equipment.  My first thought was, "What's that all about?"

I was looking around at all the treasures and bumped into the guy, who was working around the place straightening up tables and helping another fellow hammer studs together in the form of a table frame or something equally as exciting.  To break the conversational silence between us, I asked the guy what the deal was with the gear upstairs?

"We're the Ohio Express, and that's our gear.  "Ya, right," I said.  "Really," he said.  That broke the ice and he proceeded to tell me that the band rehearsed there two days a week, and that they had just been signed to a recording contract.  "That's great," I said.  "Oh, by the way, my name's Guy," he said.  Guy was the guy!

The Ohio Express is a Mansfield group formed in the mid-60s, who had a few hit singles ('Chewy, Chewy' and 'Yummy, Yummy, Yummy'), and several gold albums back in the day -- 1968-1973.  And, today, they are still making the circuit belting out bubble gum songs from the day, and having a good time.


The fellow I nearly knocked down leaving the store is Jeff Burgess (second from left), and the 'guy' is Guy Hoffman (in front of Burgess, third from left).  The other fella I saw building the frames is Warren Sawyer (in the tie dyed T-shirt).

They're older now, wiser too, I'm sure.  What a hoot to bump into them.

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