off, a big THANK YOU to Bill Bohs, a
fellow Del-Aires enthusiast, whose
persistence and patience helped make this
interview happen. Initially, Mr. Bohs
e-mailed me saying that Bobby Osborne, the
bespectacled member of the Del-Aires,
wanted to get a hold of me but didn't have
e-mail access. With Bill as a go between,
I left a number where I could be reached
for an interview. Almost a week passed
before the phone rang one fateful morning.
I was still asleep, and, determined to
stay that way, decided to let the machine
get it. When it kicked on with a familiar
beep, the caller introduced himself as Bobby
Osborne of the Dynamic Del-Aires. Hearing
that, I immediately scrambled out of bed,
got tangled in the covers, and gave myself
a nice face-burger before regrouping and
crawled toward the phone, knowing I'd
never make it in time, and begging him to
please leave a number and I'd call him
back. Please! Please! Please!
did. And I called him back. Twice
as a matter of fact ... For both of those
calls, Mr. Osborne was patient, polite,
engaging, enthusiastic and very forthright
in answering all my questions. So much so
that I had trouble keeping up with him
while scribbling it all down. Here is what I was
able to translate:
Theater :: If someone would have
told me twenty years ago after first
Horror of Party Beach that I'd be
talking to an actual member of the
Del-Aires, I'd of said that knob was crazy,
but here we are.
:: Thanks, man. Glad to be here. Can
you answer me a question first?
Theater :: Sure.
are you from? How did you get into us?
I'm from Nebraska, of all places, and I
got in to you guys after watching The
Horror of Party Beach. I dug your
tunes. Thought you guys were pretty good
but couldn't find anything out about you.
So when I started this review website, I
decided to make a corner of it dedicated
to you guys, hoping, perhaps, to find out
what happened to you some day. Heck, I
didn't even know you and John Becker were
in the band until recently. The credits
for the film through us all for a whammy.
a problem. You weren't the first one to
get tripped up on that. Do you have any of
wish. You guys have got quite a cult
following. Your records are pretty scarce
and rare and going for well over $100
bucks on EBay.
Can I get any of that? (Laughs.) Listen, I
can probably get you some recordings of
our songs, some live shows and promotional
stuff if you like. Just give me your
would be outstanding. Thanks!
a problem. So what do you need to know?
What can I tell you?
start at the beginning. How did you guys
I was only fifteen at the time and this
was back in '58. Ronnie Linares and the
other guys were playing at Lippy's Casino,
while I was playing sax and keyboards at
the Cha-Cha Club and they asked me to join
them. That was me playing sax on "Drag"
(-- the song playing during the
credits of The Horror of Party
this was in New Jersey right?
Patterson, New Jersey.
Theater :: Who
was all in the band at this time.
was Ronnie Linares, Gary "Big
Al" Jones, Jimmy Jersey and John
Becker on the drums. Our first big gig was
playing the Atlantis Club at Coney Island.
heard your live shows were pretty wild.
were. Ronnie was a wild man and I'd jump
up on Jimmy's shoulders and blow the sax
and we'd walk out into the audience. I
tell you, John Becker was a helluva
drummer. He was a big fan of Buddy Rich
and would do these amazing drum solos and
then kick over his equipment -- before
Keith Moon made it famous.
guys eventually got signed by Coral
Records. How did that come about?
got hooked up with a booking agent and
started getting more gigs at places like
The Peppermint Lounge. They saw us, liked
us and we did our first record for them
which was "Elaine" and "Wiggle
Wobble". You know [sings] "Wiggle
Wobble!" Those two songs, of
course, wound up in the movie. They also
released "Drag" and "My
did you guys get involved with The
Horror of Party Beach?
was through the booking agent. Del Tenney
was looking for a band for his movie. We
auditioned and got the gig.
good stories from the shoot?
not really. We were just involved for
about two or three days of shooting. They
brought us up to Stamford, Connecticut and
put us in a hotel room. We did the shoot
out at the beach and that was about it.
did you think of that bratwurst monster?
know, we went to Del Tenney's house and he
had the costume there. Those weren't
hotdogs. Those were rubber gloves chopped
up and stuffed in the mouth. And the
eye-balls were ping-pong balls. Del
actually shows up in the movie twice.
know he was the gas station attendant
where else is he?
was the guy wearing glasses getting a
newspaper from the newsboy. There was also
a bigger part in the movie for that head
biker guy but there was a big accident. I
think they all piled up into each other.
The guy was hurt pretty bad so they had to
change the script.
here's a question that needs settling. Was
there a soundtrack for the film recorded
as several sources claim?
No soundtrack. Like I said a couple songs
wound up on the Coral singles but that was
guess I can stop looking for one then. It
wasn't that long after you guys made the
movie that you broke up. What happened?
we played a few more shows and a couple of
Drive-In gigs to help promote the movie.
We attended the premiere at New York's
Paramount Theater and had to sign the
Fright Release to get in. I think our last
release for Coral was "I'm Your
Baby". We were young. Music was
changing. The Beatles were just starting
to hit big and we all just wanted to go in
a different direction musically.
it an amicable split?
you still in touch with the other guys?
honestly don't know where John or Gary
are. I'd love to talk to them again. Maybe
we can do a reunion show (Laughs.) If you
find them shoo them my way. Ronnie and I
have stayed in touch though. We're like
brothers and we still play together on a
what have you been up to since? Still in
the business I hear.
the Del-Aires broke up, I continued to
play. I was in a band called Gas Mask. We
toured and opened for the likes of Sly and
the Family Stone. We released some tracks
through Tonsil Records. Did some studio
work and still performing today, here in
Bonita Springs, Florida. Ronnie and I will
do a gig together. That's how I found out
about the website. He told me "You're
not going to believe this. We've got a
website." We got so excited we played
some of the old songs again. I think
Ronnie wants to talk to you too.
give him my number.
do. He's 59 years old but still a wild man
and you can usually find him walking the
piers doing some juggling.
you've answered all my questions. Thanks,
I really appreciate it.
welcome. It's nice to know we've got some
Theater :: Probably
a lot more than you think. The fan
response to the website has been huge.
There's a lot of Del-Aires fans out there.
Publish my address if you want too. I'd
love to hear from them.
It might be fun. If you need anything else
give me a call. I'll try to get that stuff
sent to you as soon as you can.
problem, m'man. Take your time; no hurry
on this end.
big thanks again to both Bobby Osborne for
the interview and Bill Bohs for hooking us
up. And, as promised, Osborne's last known
address: 1009 S. Pine St., Lake Worth, FL