Rock ‘N Roll Breakfast: 60’s StyleSeptember 11, 2008
As a kid I never ate cereal. I couldn’t drink milk, hence, no cereal. But there were always plenty of boxes of the stuff on the kitchen table growing up as my siblings consumed mass quantities of it. But even though I didn’t eat cereal I sometimes was able to nab the prize in the box (rarely, as my younger brother & sister had priority) if it was Batman, Green Hornet or rock ‘n roll related. Which brings me to the subject of this blog entry (for all you youngsters who have no idea what a vinyl album (LP) is, this will really blow your mind).
Not long after the Archie TV show, Everything’s Archie, debuted (a Saturday morning cartoon based on the long-running comic book characters) on CBS in September 1968 a lot of the focus was on ‘The Archies’, a fictional rock group made up of the Archie gang. They released records (including mega-super hit Sugar Sugar) and other mass merchandising. One interesting way they marketed the Archie concept was releasing records on the back of cereal boxes! I don’t mean vinyl records attached to the box. I mean actual cardboard records manufactured right into the back of the box.
The cardboard records were embossed directly onto the backs of breakfast cereal boxes so that the cardboard record could be cut out and played on a turntable. The ‘records’ appeared on boxes of Post’s Super Sugar Crisp. Some of the releases included Sugar Sugar, Bang-Shang-A-Lang, Hide ‘N Seek and others. Whenever one would show up in the house I’d dutifully grab Mom’s scissors and cut it out and play it a couple times.
Producer Don Kirshner assembled a group of studio musicians to record the Archies music (they released 45s and albums) featuring performers like Ron Dante (lead singer on Sugar Sugar and a majority of the others), Jeff Berry, Maeretha Stewart, Andy Kim, Susan Morse, Joey Levine, Donna Marie and others.
They also issued cardboard records with songs by The Monkees and a couple other groups. Had ’em all!
The Archies were never my cup of tea (except the song Sugar Sugar). We usually had a scad of their comic books around (I remember my younger brother sending quarters for their ‘Summer Giants’ comic books) and the Filmation animation of the Everything’s Archie cartoons were pretty dismal, but getting those cardboard records increased my record collection numbers at the time.
Don’t you miss the 60’s?