January 1958 : Gene starts a new tour, from Texas to the West Coast. He records in Dallas the demo reels for ‘Lonesome Boy’ and ‘Lady Bug’, a Johnny Caroll cover, for the Ed McLemore agency with Big O’s musicians. (Roy Orbison). Dallas 1958 January 1958 : on Saturday night, Gene performs in Austin (Texas) at the Teenage Canteen of the Civilian Club, with Ray Campi, Joyce Webb, the Traits, the Shanies, Charlie Elgin, the Five Capris, the Debs, the Hi-Cards, and Dean Hester & The Clods. Austin Texas 1958 January 1958 : release of ‘I Got A Baby’/’Walking Home From School’ (Capitol F 3874 US) March 1958 : drummer Dickie Harrell leaves once again the Blue Caps. Gene replaces him with a 15 years old Mexican boy, Juvey Gomez March 1958 : Release of the album ‘Gene Vincent Rocks ! And The Blue Caps Roll’ (Capitol T 970 US) : Brand New Beat/ By The Light Of The Silvery Moon / You'll Never Walk Alone / Frankie And Johnny / In My Dreams / Flea Brain / Rollin' Danny / You Belong To Me / Your Cheatin' Heart / Time Will Bring You Everything / Should I Ever Love Again / It's No Lie. Picture taken during the recording sessions of march 1958. From left to right: Simmons, Owens, Jones Meeks. 25th/29th March 1958 : recording sessions for a new album, and for the movie ‘Hot Rod Gang’, in which Gene woul have a cameo thanks to the McLemore agency. Juvey Gomez, from Dallas, is hired as a drummer. Paul Peek and Tommy Facenda are back for the recording sessions in Hollywood. Eddie Cochran joins them, as a vocalist, on the 25th, 26th and 27th March. On the 28th, Eddie records ‘Summertime Blues’. 30th March 1958 : scenes from the movie ‘Hot Rod Gang’ are shot in Hollywood, under the direction of Jerry Capehart, Eddie Cochran’s manager. Meanwhile, Gene gives a few concerts in California. Dance In The Street 1958 - Hot Rod Gang Movie Baby blue 1958 - Hot Rod Gang Movie April 1958 : at the beginning of the month, drummer Juvey Gomez leaves the Blue Caps, and so do Johnny Meeks and Bobby Jones. A new band is put together for a 40 days long tour in Canada, with Howard Reed (from Dallas, guitar), Bill Mack (bass) Cliff Simmons (piano), Dude Kahn (drums), Grady Owen and Max Lipscomb (Clapper Boys). In Fargo, Dude Kahn is replaced by D.J.Fontana (since Elvis Presley is doing his military service). Gene Canada May 1958 : Release of "Baby Blue" / "True To You" (Capitol F 3959 US), and of the compilation “Teenage Rock!” (Capitol T 1009 US) with Ferlin Husky, Sonny James and Tommy Sands. The release of ‘Baby Blue’, one of the most powerful blues ever recorded by a White, doesn not do much regarding Gene’s popularity, both with the Disc-Jokeys and the audience. This song was ahead of its time. Moreover, Capitol is one of the last record company which does not follow the rules of the recording business (paying the radio programmers). Capitol Records had certified their anti-payola policies. The practise of payola means paying the radio stations and the DJs for them to play a song and thus make it a hit. May 1958 : after the concert of Ponchartrain Beach in Louisiana, the band split up. Gene put together a new band with Cliff Simmons (piano), Bill Mack (bass), Howard Reed (guitar), and Grady Owen (clapper boy), they will be later joined by Jerry Haynes and Butch White (drums). Nappy Brown Sugar Pie Desanto Gene Vincent Peewee Parham (Sugar Pie’s husband) May 58 May 1958 : Gene marries Darlene Hicks, who already had a daughter from a previous union, Debbie. Darlene 13th June 1958 : concerts in Oregon, at the Dumont’s Park, and in the Washington state. Gene, in Washington 2nd July 1958 : national release of the movie ‘Hot Rod Gang’ (these pictures are from the movie) July 1958 : release of "Rocky Road Blues" / "Yes I Love You Baby" (Capitol F 4010 US). August 1958 : Release of the EP "Hot Rod Gang" (Capitol EAP 1-985 US) : Dance In The Street / Baby Blue / Lovely Loretta / Dance To The Bop. September 1958 : release of "Git It" / "Little Lover" (Capitol F 4051 US). 13th/21st October 1958 : Recording sessions at the Capitol Tower. The members of the Blue Caps attending these sessions are: Johnny Meeks (guitar), Grady Owen (clapper boy), Cliff Simmons (piano), Jackie Kelso (sax), Clyde Pennington and Jerry Singleton, Johnny, Grady and Clyde did the background vocals. Octobre 1958 : You Win Again- Town Hall Party 1958 Rip It Up - Town Hall Party 1958 For your Precious Love - Town Hall Party 1958 Dance To The Bop - Town Hall Party 1958 Be Bop A Lula 1958 - Town Hall Party 1958 October 1958 : at the end of the month, Gene performs in the suburbs of Los Angeles. November 1958 : release of "Say Mama" / "Be Bop Boogie Boy" (Capitol F4105US) and of the album " A Gene Vincent Record Date" (Capitol T1059US) : Five Feet Of Lovin" / The Wayward Wind" / Somebody Help Me / Keep It A Secret / Hey, Good Lookin' / Git It / Teennage Partner / Peace Of Mind / Look What You Gone And Don't To Me / Summertime / I Can't Help It / I love You (also available as 3 EP s) Gene and Eddie Cochran befriended each other during their touring in Australaia: Eddie Cochran is glad to help Peek and Facenda for the background vocals of the 4th album ‘Record Date’. He made the band benefir of his ideas and of his deep voice that can be noticed in ‘Git It’ or ‘Peace of Mind’ among others. Gene and Eddie Cochran’s Gretsch
Gene, Darlene & Eddie Cochran
From a technical point of view, this album is more advanced than the previous ones. Meeks has at last his own microphone. But Jones and Owens use the same one. Cliff Simmons does a terrific job on the grand piano, and something else is new: Gomez has a whole drum kit (while Dickie Harrell only had a snare, a cymbal and a bass drum).
Gene, Usa 1958
November 1958 : Gene appeared at the Country American Show in Los Angeles. The Blue Caps split up for good. Then Gene goes to Alaska with his wife Darlene. Los Angeles at that time
December 1958 : Gene resumes his performances in the Northern States, with the support of his manager Pat Mason. Gene is now accompanied by local bands and guitar player Jerry Lee Merritt. Jerry Lee Merritt 12th December 1958 : Concert in Portland, Oregon, with Clayton Watson & His Silhouettes.
Portland Oregon 1958
At the end of 1958, the Blue Caps split up and Gene left the McLemore agency from Dallas. Gene had come to the end of a step in his career.
Gene & Darlene, Christmas 1958 :
Gene, Darlene, Debbie (born from a previous union), and Darlene’s parents)