The Buckeye Biscuit Band were one of a few Cleveland bands that played contemporary country rock during the 1970s. Although the band was based in Cleveland, at least three of the members, including original members Joel Culp and Mike Casey, were from the Wooster area.
The band started in 1974 as a more traditional styled band, with banjo, mandolin, and dobro. The details of the band's formation are not well known, but in July of 1975, they recorded a released a self promoted EP, under the name of Buckeye Biscuit (without Band, which was added later). There was a real Buckeye Biscuit company that sold over the NE Ohio area. At the time of the EP, the group included Ron Franklin (vocals, guitar), Joel Culp (mandolin, bass), Bruce Michael (vocals, banjo, guitar), Steve Adams (vocals, dobro, bass) and Mike Casey (drums). In the 1960s, Culp was in Me and the Guys, and Michael was in the New Community Singers (of "Manry and the Sea" fame). The record was recorded by Richie "Dick Whittington" Green. The songs included covers and standards.
Over the next few years, the band had a nealy complete overhaul of membersn (only Steve Adams and Michael were left) and the band's sound became more rock and the dropped the traditional string instruments. Joel Culp left to join the more traditional sounding Deadly Earnest and the Honky Tonk Heroes, one of the three main country rock bands (the third being Flatbush) in late 1970s Cleveland. Ron Jarvis, who was trom Orrville (near Wooster) joined on bass and became a key member, writing some of the band's original songs. In the 1960s Jarvis was in the Repercussions from Orrville (it's thought that Mike Casey may also have been in this band but it's not confirmed). Along with Adams, Jarvis, and Micheal, other newer members were Elbert Webb on lead vocals and Ron Reisman on drums.
The band had been playing Cleveland clubs with regularity but it wasn't until Dewey Forward opened Peabody's Cafe in 1977 (in the former home of the Cellar Door where the BBB had been played) that the band had a home and large fan base. Forward not only booked the band but managed them, and in 1979, put up the money for the band to record a full LP (with the players listed above). The record was recorded at the revived Audio Recording with old Audio engineers George Stage and Bill Cavanaugh. The record sold well locally and a couple of the songs got regional airplay, with "East Cleveland Hotel" one of the fan favorites.
Although the LP was probably the high point of their lifetime, about a year or so later, the band decided to call it quits. One of reasons given for their demise was the stigma, and decline, of the "Urban Cowboy" pop culture phenomenon of 1980/1. Ron Jarvis (who left in 1980) joined the well know Cleveland reggae bands I-Tal and later, First Light.
The band has had a few reunions over the years.
(EP) "First Batch" - Sailin' ; Ruby / I'll Fly Away - Will The Circle Be Unbroken ; Bring It On Home To Me - no label, no #
(LP) "Fresh Candy" - Peabody' 1001, 1979