THE ROBBS - BITTERSWEET - END OF THE WEEK

THE ROBBS - 'Bittersweet' / 'End Of The Week' (Mercury 72641) Jan 1967

(Original review 31/05/08) 

I was doing a bit of internet surfing the other day and learnt that Dee Robb from The Robbs died in February 2008. It's always sad for me when I read that 60s songwriters/musicians die. Fortunately their music will survive a lot longer.

Dee Robb was the lead singer and chief songwriter of Milwaukee band The Robbs. It turned out that The Robbs may have been one of the unluckiest bands of the mid to late 60s. Although their 45s charted locally they never succeeded in achieving national acclaim because almost every one of their releases only reached the 'bubbling' under section of The Billboard chart.

'Bittersweet' was The Robbs third Mercury 45. On this disc the services of hot production team P.F. Sloan and Steve Barri were given control to perhaps push the band to the next level. After all, their songs had been big hits for The Grass Roots, The Turtles and The Searchers. Maybe none bigger than 'Eve Of Destruction' made popular by Barry McGuire.

'Bittersweet' is a magical folk-rock tune notable for it's catchy chorus and pleasant Robbs harmonies. Surprisingly this song has only really ever been digitally compiled on my series of comps. Check it out on Cavestones #20..
A recent search on the Searchin' For Shakes database reveals that The Robbs have no comp action apart from a cassette only release put out by Strange Things magazine back in 1990...On this they introduced 'Bittersweet'...I doubt if this cassette is around anymore.

The flip of this 45 is a Dee Robb original titled 'End Of The Week'....this time around they go for a surf pop approach, similar in style to The Beach Boys' more obscure surf moments. This song is non LP so well worth you getting a copy.


line-up:

David Donaldson (aka Dee Robb) guitar/vocals
Robert Donaldson (aka Bruce Robb) organ
George Donaldson (aka Joe Robb) guitar
Craig Krampf (aka Craig Robb) drums

bass duties was usually done by session players from Hollywood notably Larry Knetchel or Joe Osborn 

THE ROBBS - End Of The Week


The Robbs 'Bittersweet' up to #3 on the Milwaukee WRIT Radio Chart 29/01/67







Comments

  1. I *love* The Robbs.
    Like you mention, not a lot of comp action, but a label called Wet World will soon release a 4 disc box set (3 CD's + 1 DVD), which, if the sound quality is up to par, should be awesome!

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  2. That GREAT! Another reader let me know of a future release but I didn't realise that it would be so in depth.

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  3. It was absolutely wonderful to hear "End Of The Week" at last, and what a great song!it could have been an A side, great harmonies, guitars and song. Many, many thanks!!!
    By the way my mono copy of their
    1st album has "a Robb production" stamped on the cover and there is no mention of Sloan, Barri or Garrett as producers.

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  4. Here's the track list for the upcoming box set:

    1.1. THE PROM (DEE ROBB)
    1.2. BYE BYE BABY (DEE ROBB)
    1.3. SURFER'S LIFE (ROBBY & THE ROBINS)
    1.4. SHE CRIED (ROBBY & THE ROBINS)
    1.5. SAY THAT THING (DEE ROBB & THE ROBI
    1.6. HE'S GOT THE WHOLE WORLD (DEE ROBB
    1.7. RACE WITH THE WORLD
    1.8. IN A FUNNY SORT OF WAY
    1.9. NEXT TIME YOU SEE ME
    1.10. I DON'T FEEL ALONE
    1.11. BITTERSWEET
    1.12. END OF THE WEEK
    1.13. RAPID TRANSIT
    1.14. CYNTHIA LOVES IT
    1.15. GIRLS GIRLS
    1.16. VIOLETS OF DAWN
    1.17. JOLLY MILLER
    1.18. SEE JANE RUN
    1.19. CASTLES IN THE AIR
    1.20. I DON'T WANT TO DISCUSS IT
    1.21. CHANGIN' WINDS
    1.22. A GOOD TIME SONG
    1.23. MOVIN'
    1.24. WRITE TO ME
    1.25. LAST OF THE WINE
    1.26. WRITTEN IN THE DUST
    1.27. I'LL NEVER GET ENOUGH
    1.28. IT ALL COMES BACK
    1.29. BORN TO FOLLOW
    2.1. RACE WITH THE WIND
    2.2. CATCH IF YOU CAN
    2.3. IRENE GOODNIGHT
    2.4. SEA CRUISE
    2.5. SIX DAYS ON THE ROAD
    2.6. WILLIE & THE HAND JIVE
    2.7. THE NEWSONG
    2.8. LINDY LU
    2.9. SO YOU WANT TO BE A ROCK ' ROLL STA
    2.10. LET IT ROCK
    2.11. HEY GRANDMA
    2.12. PROMISED LAND
    2.13. LAST OF THE WINE
    3.1. ROSEANNA
    3.2. SOMETHING TO BELIEVE IN
    3.3. FUNKY BUSINESS
    3.4. LADY ON MY MIND
    3.5. IT DOESN'T MATTER ANYMORE
    3.6. STRANGE WAYS
    3.7. ALL THE WAY HOME
    3.8. CHANGIN' WINDS
    3.9. CHATTANOOGA
    3.10. FEEL US LOVE
    3.11. CATCH THE VELVET EVENING
    3.12. GIRL I GOT NEWS FOR YOU (MONO: NON-
    3.13. GIRL I GOT NEWS FOR YOU (STEREO: NO
    4.1. SHAPES OF THINGS
    4.2. BLOWIN' IN THE WIND
    4.3. DO YOU BELIEVE IN MAGIC?
    4.4. FUN FUN FUN
    4.5. YOU'VE GOT YOUR TROUBLES

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  5. The Robbs album was reissued on CD in 2005 by Collectors' Choice: http://www.amazon.com/The-Robbs/dp/B0002LO7D8

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