1966-1968: On the recommendation of the band leader of the Surfers about to depart, the group signed with Baal Records. Their first record was distributed by EMI with Hooray for Hazel reaching No.1 in Singapore and Malaysia. Not happy with EMI and to avoid legal hassels, the group decided to change its name to October Cherries with recording, production and distribution moving to Baal Records in 1968.The group practiced at Baal Records and the EMI recording studios were 500 feet from Baal in 12 Orchard Road. October Cherries was coined by Baal who from 1962 represented The Rosicrucians who had their headquarters in San Jose, California from combining Cherry Orchards profuse in then San Jose & Palo Alto, and October as the known month for revolutions. Doubly, they originated from Orchard Road, where the group held band practices which were usually interrupted by the police.
The virgin release on Baal of Cucucu Choo and Coffee Toffee Squares hit No. 1 in Brazil, Venezuela, Singapore and Malaysia consecutively. The Vietnam war was coming down and Bangkok was booming. Psychedelic clubs become a wave in the U.S.
The Montein Hotel Group in Bangkok opens its state of the art mind-blowing disco, The An-an featuring the October Cherries. The Cherries pack in thousands to the disco.
Arriving in England in 1971 to promote their single All Things Work the October Cherries were prohibited from entering London. Jay and Pete were through immigration and customs checks and were at the baggage area. Ben was behind Bib in the queue. Bib was stopped. British officers then went looking for everyone connected with the Cherries and held them in security for 8 hours after their 18 hour flight into England. They were asked to leave, without any reason and their passports were Xed with a large cross where Pete and Jay had first been stamped and given access to enter. They left that night for Brussels.
Meet the October Cherries album was recorded and completed in 1969. From this their hit Far Away Now, which later Andrew Lloyd Webb used and modfied to Don't Cry For Me Argentina becomes No. 1 in Argentina, Venezuela, Brazil, and Malaysia. Dick James signs up the track Na Na Song for Elton John but it fails to go through as Elton's first release Your Song soars to No.1 changing all old plans for Elton.
All Things Work Together
1970: The single All Things Work Together was recorded and reaches the No.10 spot in the Dutch charts. EMI Europe signs a distribution and recording agreement for the October Cherries with Baal Records. The first of a series of World Hits Records ensues from EMI/Baal. Song
World Hits - Butterfly
2001: The single All Things Work Together composed in 1968 contains lyrics that cover wars, crumbling towers, shrouded faces and burning flesh. It somehow reasons that they all work together for a collective good.
1971: The single, I Love Suzie was released commensurate with the release of the Dreamseller album by EMI over the objections of Baal Records in the choice of the single. The covers in Europe and Asia are controversial and EMI rejects them designing and providing their own. The Dreamseller contains 14 original recordings one of which, Lay Down Your Love, was labeled "Pepperism" and appears on illegal non-authorized albums. The Asian and Latin American versions include All Things Work which enters the Brazilian charts.
Funkgus I Man With a Gun
1974: In late 1973 prior to the Asia College Tour the October Cherries began putting down tracks that was in keeping with their club performances. These were normally funky, rock and rhythm and blues stuff originating from the likes of James Brown, Sly & Family Stone and others in that genre. The
album wasn't complete and only the backing tracks were laid down before the group started the tour. Then Peter left the band since his wife was with his first child. Capitol Records issued an urgent cable to EMI in Europe to send the group to Burbank. The sudden departure of Peter to the birthplace of his wife, England, left the group in a quandary and EMI officials, notably Robin Kay and Christopher Luhr failed to inform the Cherries or Baal Records of Capitol's contract. Peter's leaving led to the breakup in early 1974. Which then saw Baal Records take up the Stylistics and Van McCoy and build them up outside of the U.S.A. Funkgus I, Man With a Gun was then completed with the remaining members of the group, the reason why Pete's voice isn't in any of the vocals. The biggest pirate in Asia, Tony Wong takes Baal Records President aside at a IFPI conference and says Man with a Gun is his all time greatest hit song in Indonesia selling over a quarter million copies.