This site is happy to introduce the first installment of the unreleased recordings of Michael Kaye, a closer look at some of the highlights of the extensive post-band output of the vocalist, pianist, and keyboard player with Hap Snow’s Whirlwinds from 1960 to 1964. The music covered in this section includes pop and rock ‘n roll recorded between 1963 and 2009.
Besides working in duos and groups, Michael Kaye also developed a successful one-man lounge act that he has been performing throughout the Northeast United States for several decades. Musical genres covered span easy listening, pop, funk, and classic rock ‘n’ roll. In fact, a number of the 50’s and 60’s rock hits were first performed with Hap Snow’s Whirlwinds.
Kaye’s talent for writing his own arrangements of popular songs and piecing together medleys is seen once again in the following “Twist & Shout Medley” recorded at the Southwind in Rye, New Hampshire in 1976:
In the mid-1980s, one of the New England venues Michael Kaye appeared at regularly was the Town House in Chelmsford, Massachusetts. A newly digitized recording from the final night’s engagement in 1985 includes “Those Oldies But Goodies Medley,” “Splish Splash Medley: Splish, Splash / Walk, Don’t Run / Wipe Out / Splish Splash (Reprise),” a “Runaround Sue Medley,” and an Elvis Medley with “Jailhouse Rock / Hound Dog / Jailhouse Rock (Reprise).”
The 20-minute plus online EP for the final engagement at the Town House is on SoundCloud:
New Video for “Sierra” Posted Online
A video for Michael Kaye’s take on the Boz Scaggs’ composition “Sierra,” is now on YouTube, part of the A Lullaby for Emily video EP featuring home demos made between 2009 and 2010. Although recorded at a home studio in Massachusetts around 2010, this is the identical version Kaye delivered to his new bride Lynn at their wedding in 1997.
Michael Kaye’s “Sierra” is here:
During his tenure as a Whirlwind, Michael Kaye recorded four tracks with the band. Early and alternate versions of “Whole Lot of Rockin’ (Version),” “She,” and “He Can Have Her” are included in The 1963 Acetates, Part II: Early And Alternate Tracks EP. All three original compositions by Steve Fradkin (known as Steve James in the band) were recorded at a home studio in Massachusetts around 1963.
A video for the EP features Bill Elgart on drums, Steve James on rhythm guitar and lead vocals, James K. “Hap” Snow on lead guitar and vocals, and Kaye on piano and vocals:
In the Studio: The Complete Recordings 1959-1964 EP
Between 1959 and 1964, Hap Snow’s Whirlwinds recorded five tracks in the studio. “Banshee,” “Bottom’s Up,” “Let’s Have a Party,” and “Len’s Hassle” were cut at Ace Recording Studios in Boston, Massachusetts in 1959 and 1960, while “Back Again” was recorded at WNEU Studio at Northeastern University in 1964, produced by Ron Frizzell.
The first two tracks feature Art Bearon, Harry Lewis, James K. “Hap” Snow, and Stefano Torossi. The second pair of tracks feature Bearon, Leonard Hochman (Len Arnold), and Snow. The final track features Frank Chiumento (Frankie Mento), Steve Fradkin (Steve James), Ted Pina, Snow, and the fourth track by Michael Kaye:
And one more rock ‘n’ roll gem, Michael Kaye’s spirited version of The Big Bopper’s “Chantilly Lace,” recorded live at a function in Massachusetts around 2009: