Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen
Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen
Andy Stein (left), and John Tichy (right) at the Hollywood Bowl July 21, 1974 opening for the Grateful Dead
Photo: David Gans
Background information Origin Ann Arbor, Michigan
Genres Country rock, rockabilly and blues Years active 1967–1976, and 1997-Present as "The Commander Cody Band" Members George Frayne (Commander Cody)
Greg Irwin (interim)
Past members John Tichy
Billy C. Farlow
Paul "Buffalo" Bruce Barlow
Steve Davis (The West Virginia Creeper)
Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen is an American country rock band founded in 1967. Core members included founder George Frayne, John Tichy, Billy C. Farlow, Bill Kirchen, Andy Stein, Paul "Buffalo" Bruce Barlow, Lance Dickerson, and Bobby Black.
The band’s style mixed country music, rockabilly, and blues, on a foundation of boogie-woogie piano. It was among the first country-rock bands to take its cues less from folk-rock and bluegrass and more from barroom country of the Ernest Tubb and Ray Price style. A pioneer in incorporating Western swing into its style, the band became legendary for marathon live shows.
Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen formed in 1967 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with Frayne (b. July 19, 1944 in Boise, Idaho) taking the stage name Commander Cody. The band’s name was inspired by 1950s film serials featuring the character Commando Cody and from a feature version of an earlier serial, King of the Rocket Men, released under the title Lost Planet Airmen.
After playing for several years in local bars, the core members migrated to San Francisco (along with the similar Asleep at the Wheel) and soon got a recording contract with Paramount Records. The group released their first album in late 1971, Lost in the Ozone, which yielded its best-known hit, a version of the Rockabilly Hot Rod Lincoln, which reached the top ten on the Billboard singles chart in early 1972. It then moved to Texas; the band's 1974 live recording, Live from Deep in the Heart of Texas features cover art of armadillos by Jim Franklin. The band released several moderately-successful albums through the first half of the 70s. After appearing in the Roger Corman movie Hollywood Boulevard, Frayne disbanded the group in 1976.
John Tichy subsequently earned a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan and became head of the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in Troy, New York,
"Hot Rod Lincoln", the band's most famous recording, was voted a Legendary Michigan Song in 2008. The following year Commander Cody And His Lost Planet Airmen were inducted into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends Hall of Fame.
Geoffrey Stokes' 1976 book Star-Making Machinery featured Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen as its primary case study of music industry production and marketing. Stokes relates the difficulties the band had recording its first album for Warner Bros. Records. The label wanted a hit album along the lines of the soft country-rock of The Eagles, but the band was not inclined to change its raw-edged style.
Retaining his stage name of Commander Cody, Frayne had a subsequent solo career, touring and releasing albums from 1977 on. He released some later albums under the Lost Planet Airmen name. Recent releases have been as The Commander Cody Band. In addition to Frayne, current members of the band include Steve Barbuto on drums and Mark Emerick on guitar.
Frayne is also an artist. He received a bachelor's in design from the University of Michigan in 1966 and a master's in Sculpture and Painting from the Rackham School of Graduate Studies of the University of Michigan in 1968. He taught at University of Michigan and the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, and has had his art exhibited at numerous shows. He is a student of cinematography, and has a feature film in the Museum of Modern Art's permanent video archive. His paintings are oversized, and present photorealistic images from popular culture.
George's brother Chris Frayne is credited with the cover art for Lost in the Ozone, Sleazy Roadside Stories, and Hot Licks, Cold Steel & Truckers' Favorites albums. He shared credit with George for the album cover for Aces High, and designed other album covers in the music industry. He also wrote songs, including "The Letter That Johnny Walker Read" (on Asleep at the Wheel's album Take Me Back to Tulsa) and produced albums such as Comin' Your Way by John Mooney. Chris died in 1992 of multiple sclerosis. As can be discerned by their art as well as their music, both brothers were interested in hot rods.
Year Album Chart Positions Label US US Country CAN 1971 Lost in the Ozone 82 — 75 Paramount 1972 Hot Licks, Cold Steel & Truckers Favorites 94 — — 1973 Country Casanova 104 47 — 1974 Live from Deep in the Heart of Texas 105 — — 1975 Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen 58 — 95 Warner Bros. Tales from the Ozone 168 — — 1976 We've Got a Live One Here! 170 — — 1977 Rock 'N Roll Again (Midnight Man) 163 — — Arista 1978 Flying Dreams — — — 1980 Lose It Tonight — — — Line 1986 Let's Rock — — — Blind Pig 1988 Sleazy Roadside Stories — — — Relix 1990 Aces High — — — Too Much Fun: The Best Of — — — MCA 1994 Worst Case Scenario — — — Aim 1996 The Tour from Hell (1993) — — — 2000 Live at Gilley's — — — Atlantic 2002 Command Performance — — — BMG 2003 King Biscuit Flower Hour Archive Series: Greatest Hits Live — — — KBFH Records 2005 All the Way from Turkey Trot — — — Fa-Ka-Wee 2009 Dopers, Drunks and Everyday Losers — — — Blind Pig
Year Single Chart Positions Album US US Country CAN CAN Country CAN AC 1971 "Lost in the Ozone" — — — — — Lost in the Ozone 1972 "Hot Rod Lincoln" 9 51 7 — — "Beat Me Daddy Eight to the Bar" 81 — 87 — — "Truck Stop Rock" — — — — — Hot Licks, Cold Steel & Truckers Favorites 1973 "Semi-Truck" — — — — — "Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette)" 94 97 — 99 37 Country Cassanova 1974 "Diggy Liggy Lo" — — — — — Live from Deep in the Heart of Texas "Riot in Cell Block No. 9" — — — — — single only 1975 "Don't Let Go" 56 — 85 — — Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen "It's Gonna Be One of Those Nights" — — — — — Tales from the Ozone
- ^ http://www.commandercody.com/thebio.cfm
- ^ a b c d e "Vile Gossip", Jean Jennings, Automobile Magazine, February, 2007
- ^ Curriculum Vitae, George Frayne
- ^ Davis, John T., "A brush with art: Sensitive painter George Frayne still rocks as Commander Cody", Austin American-Statesman (October 18, 1986) p D-1
- ^ Asleep at the Wheel, Lyrics, The Letter That Johnny Walker Read
- ^ Comin' Your Way
- Official Site
- Commander Cody at awpi.com
- CCandhisLPA Amsterdam 1976 – live pics
- Official Myspace Page
- Commander Cody Live in New York City on March 14, 1976
- Commander Cody Live at the Bottom Line on August 15, 1977
- 2005 Interview at classicbands.com
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Commander Cody and his Lost Planet Airmen — Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Air Men waren eine amerikanische Countryrock Gruppe, die eine Stilvielfalt aus Country, Rock’n’Roll, Western Swing und alten Hymnen spielte. Neben dieser abwechslungsreichen Musik waren sie vor allem durch ihre… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen — Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Air Men waren eine amerikanische Countryrock Gruppe, die eine Stilvielfalt aus Country, Rock’n’Roll, Western Swing und alten Hymnen spielte. Neben dieser abwechslungsreichen Musik waren sie vor allem durch ihre… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen (album) — Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen Studio album by Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen … Wikipedia
Commander Cody — may refer to: The stage name of George Frayne, leader of the rock and roll band Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen, and, informally, the band itself Commander Cody, clone officer who appears in Star Wars: The Clone Wars (film) and Star… … Wikipedia
Commander Cody — and the Lost Planet Air Men waren eine amerikanische Countryrock Gruppe, die eine Stilvielfalt aus Country, Rock’n’Roll, Western Swing und alten Hymnen spielte. Neben dieser abwechslungsreichen Musik waren sie vor allem durch ihre fröhliche,… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Lost in the Ozone — Infobox Album | Name = Lost in the Ozone Type = Album Artist = Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen Released = 1971 Recorded = 1971 at Pacific High Recording Studios April, 1971 at Ann Arbor, Michigan July, 1971 at Long Branch Saloon and New … Wikipedia
Commando Cody — For the American rock musician, see Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen. Commando Cody Commando Cody in Radar Men from the Moon! Also known as Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe … Wikipedia
Leon Russell and the Shelter People — Infobox Album | Name = Leon Russell And The Shelter People Type = studio Artist = Leon Russell Released = 1971 Recorded = September December 1970 Genre = Pop/Rock Music Label = Shelter Producer = Leon Russell, Denny Cordell Reviews = * Allmusic… … Wikipedia
Country Casanova — Studio album by Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen Released May 1973 … Wikipedia
Armadillo World Headquarters — The Armadillo World Headquarters (usually called simply The Armadillo) was the premiere music hall and entertainment center in Austin, Texas from 1970 to 1980.HistoryIn 1970, Austin s flagship rock music venue, the Vulcan Gas Company, closed,… … Wikipedia