the Motions


L-R: Dave Gardina, Johnny Joe Gardina, Wayne Vlcan, John Casale

Brookpark, 1962-6

A quartet of teens from the Cleveland suburb of Brookpark who started as a Ventures/surf styled instrumental band. The band included Dave Gardina (rhythm guitar), his brother Johnny Joe Gardina (bass), Wayne Vlcan (lead guitar), and John Casale (drums). Redda Robbins became their manager and got them a 45 release on ABC. After the Beatles hit, the Motions and Robbins came up with a boss idea - take a Motions instrumental and scream the name "Ringo" over it, and name the song "Beatle Drums"...and for this bit o'marketing genius they were rewarded with a big local hit. JohnnyJoe Gardina was responsible for the “Ringo” cry and the girl backing is believed to have been the Three Blond Mice, a young girl group from the Gene Carroll show. Robbins used her connections to get the band signed with Mercury Records, where they released two addtional 45s. Their 3rd 45 "Land Beyond the Moon" b/w "I Can Dance" showed they could master vocal action as well, although the wailin' guitars (with Robbins' budget Joe Meek production technique) were always the lead. A final 45 reverted to the instrumental sound.

John Casale recalls - "We were teamed up with radio station KYW (later WKYC) and became the opening act for many concerts that came to Cleveland in the mid 60s including the Rolling Stones and Dave Clark Five at  Public Hall, the Animals at the Cleveland Arena, and numerous concerts at Euclid Beach (an amusement park on the shore of Lake Erie which closed in 1969) Pavilion with the Beach Boys, Four Seasons, Jan & Dean, Jay and the Americans and even backed up Glenn Campbell, who frequently accompanied the Beach Boys. Toward the end, we appeared at Cedar Point (another amusement park which is still going strong) for dances as well as backing Wilson Pickett at a concert  there."

"We recorded our records at Cleveland Recording studio and prior to being manager by Redda Robbins, we were led by JImmy Testa and Carl Maduri, if you look at a couple of our records you will see their names. They along with our band helped develop some of our songs. We also had help from a producer from California named Mike Curb who also produced records for the Hondells (and many others and later ran MGM records - the editor)."


Thanks to John Casale,  Joe Kurilec