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Jerry and the Dekades

London/Corbin, KY 1964-72


L-R: Rob Brown, Jerry Marcum, John "Butch" Chadwell, Roger Hammons

Jerry and the Dekades were based out of London and Corbin, KY. They recorded for Jalyn records in Dayton.

The group originated in late 1964 and was originally known as Jerry Paul and the Mystics. They changed the name briefly in 1965 to Jerry and the Delrays before becoming known as Jerry and the Dekades later in 1965. The group continued with that name until they disbanded in the early 70s. Many of the group members over the years are still active in the music business. Over twenty different musicians were part of the act during the lifetime of the group.

Group leader, Jerry Marcum, relocated to Cincinnati after the Dekades disbanded and formed a new group, Backroads, which played in the Cincinnati / Kings Island area for several years. Jerry is still active as a song writer and occasional performer. He and Carl Stanifer, two of the group founders, are both now living in Nashville, TN.

The early influences of the Dekades were the Ventures and Lonnie Mack, but with the onset of Beatle mania in the mid-60s, the group gravitated to a British influenced sound. By 1968 the Dekades had expanded the group, added a brass section and evolved to an R&B sound, influenced by James Brown, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Junior Walker, Clarence Carter and others of that era.

The Dekades was managed by Concept 90 Productions of Knoxville, TN and also by the Cecil Jones Agency in Lexington, KY. The group was composed partially of college students and spent most of each year playing at fraternity parties and proms. Many week-ends the Dekades performed on fraternity row at either the University of Kentucky or the University of Tennessee. Summers were spent in Myrtle Beach, Daytona Beach and in Detroit. The group also performed regularly in Harlan, KY and Cumberland, KY., as well as their home towns of Corbin and London, KY.

More details, from Roger Hammons:"I was the drummer, and Rob Brown was the keyboard player, from 1969 thru the summer of 1970, at which time, Jerry left the band and we added guitarist Fred Wooten, and we changed our name to Joltwagon. I played with Joltwagon until about May of 1971, when I had to leave the band for basic training with the US Army. After completing basic training, Jerry Marcum had formed another Jerry and the Dekades, which was the house band at a club called Marty’s, in Lexington, KY. His drummer had to quit, and he asked me to replace him. So, again, I played for the Dekades from the fall of 1971 to the spring of 1972. I think It was at this time that Jerry decided to disband Jerry and the Dekades, and relocate to Cincinnati."


Recordings by the group achieved regional success in the Southeast and one record took over number one from the Beatles at a Harlan, KY radio station. They were fortunate to front for some touring groups, most notably the Tams and the Box Tops when they appeared in the area.

The following musicians worked with the Dekades at various times over the years:

Name Home town School
Jerry Marcum (lead vocals) London, KY Lily High
Jack Spitzer London, KY London High
George Watkins London, KY
Ivan Siler Corbin, KY Corbin High
Les Taylor (lead vocals) London, KY London High
Fred Wooten London, KY Lily High
Walker Hodges Knoxville, TN
Mike Paterno Williamsburg, KY

Bass guitar:
John "Butch" Chadwell Corbin, KY Corbin High
Tony Smith London, KY London High
Fred Brock Barbourville, KY
Barry Hodges Knoxville, TN

Larry Bowling Corbin, KY Corbin High
Jack Fawbush London, KY London High
David Profit (also trumpet) London, KY
Steve Jones Corbin, KY Corbin High
Rob Brown, Corbin, KY Corbin High

Carl Stanifer Corbin, KY Corbin High
Tommy Cottongem London, KY Lily High
Roger Hammons, Corbin, KY Corbin High

Lawrence Crawford London, KY London High
Kenny Smith Corbin, KY Corbin High