Wednesday, July 31, 2013

WEHR Radio - Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers 1988

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

An interview with Tommy Conwell from college radio station WEHR, formerly a radio station in Penn State's East Residence Halls ("EHR" stands for "East Halls Radio").

In a segment called 'Rock Celebrity Spotlight,' WEHR interviews Tommy Conwell about the new album, Tommy's early goals for the Young Rumblers, his influences and being the band's leader.

The segment also includes a review of each track from the band's first national album release in 1988, Rumble.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Tommy Conwell Plays Theater Of Living Arts - March 23, 1989

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9] 

March 23, 1989

By Tom Moon
Philadelphia Inquirer Popular Music Critic

To some longtime followers of rocker Tommy Conwell, the first verse of his new song "Play Your Music," which he premiered last night at the Theater of Living Arts, probably sounded autobiographical: 

"Why do they gotta change him, and take away the beauty of his song, and make him look out of place?" 

...the young rocker wondered, musing on the star-making machinery that has kept him working (and highly visible) since the release of his debut album, Rumble, last fall.

His conclusion, then and all night long: Play your music. In this case it was a brawling, Rolling Stones-style backbeat. Later it was the blues, explored with confidence and a knowing familiarity you can't learn from method books. Still later, it was the assertive Philadelphia-style rock-and-roll of his originals "Love's On Fire" and "Gonna Breakdown."

Ticket stub and press [photo] pass for Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers concert at
Philadelphia's Theatre of Living Arts, March 23, 1989. Courtesy of Eric Hartline.

Performing the first of eight sold-out shows at the intimate South Street theater, Conwell and the Young Rumblers traded the gloss of the record for the true grit of anything-can-happen performance. In dramatic, far-flung stage dancing, Conwell stumbled more than once. But his musical miscues were few, and the energy he communicated was more than enough to compensate. It was as if he were admitting to a bit of sweetening in the studio, and atoning for it with an extra helping of spice.

The well-paced show included a few new selections - with "Play Your Music" among the strongest - but concentrated on material from Rumble. ''Walkin' On the Water" became a fluid celebration stung by darts from Conwell's guitar. "If We Never Meet Again" found Conwell tempering the hope of the lyric with a strong shot of bitterness. Even the snappy "Everything They Say Is True" benefited from the live setting's spaciousness.

Throughout the 90-minute show, the Young Rumblers - Jim Hannum, Rob Miller, Paul Slivka and Chris Day - pumped out lean, supportive backing. Guitarist Day sparked a two-guitar duel with Conwell on the blues "Workout," and turned in solos that equaled the leader's in fiestiness. Even during Conwell's extended foray into the crowd, which found him straddling rows and straining to keep his balance, the band shadowed his musical moves, responding to slight changes in volume level or tempo.

Decked in a Bird Lives T-shirt and stretch jeans, Conwell commanded most of the attention, however. He paid tribute to his influences - with blues choruses lifted from Muddy Waters and traces of "Salt Peanuts" and other jazz melodies sprinkled through his solos - and yet managed to retain and develop his own snarling personality. Sometimes he'd play everything he could, a flurry of notes that defied comprehension. At other times he'd find a particularly resonant tone and, following blues tradition, milk it for every drop of excitement. 

Encore performances included "I Want to Make You Happy" and a version of the Rolling Stones' "Hand of Fate."

As Conwell himself said after premiering "Play Your Music,"..."not too shabby." Not shabby at all.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Promo Sticker - Rumble

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9] 

A promo sticker (a/k/a "hype" stickers) from the Rumble LP with a review from Detroit Free Press.

“Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers, an explosive combination of roots-rock musicians, perform one of the hottest acts around! Powerful, compelling intense: words can’t adequately describe this fresh, talented, good-looking band.”
- Detroit Free Press

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Reaching Out Through Music

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

For as long as I can remember, I've always had an intense passion for music.

When I first started listening to Tommy Conwell and his music, it brought me back to the great true foundation artists
as I call them – namely the founders of rock ‘n’ roll.

Back in 1988, I was a lifelong fan of Philly radio and especially WMMR. But I was too young to  attend all the hot Philly talent playing local venues like the Chestnut Cabaret - you had to be 21 years old to get into the clubs!

My love of Tommy Conwell started when I heard the song "I'm Not Your Man" – and the message and lyrics of the song were perfectly in sync with a relationship I was experiencing at that time. It never ceases to amaze me when an artist can capture how I'm feeling.

When I heard this song, I called WMMR immediately. The DJ gave me the scoop about Tommy and his Young Rumblers. And the station even aired my call because they said I was so enthusiastic!

Of course, there was no social media back then. I was an avid reader of Circus Magazine and part of a rock fan pen pal circle from all across the country. We would make mix tapes of our local bands and share them with others. Needless to say I was sending Tommy's music to people as far away as Hawaii, Colorado, Virginia, Washington, etc.

One of my best memories was the thrill I had in seeing Tommy appear on the American Music Awards in 1989! A lot of my pen pal circle at the time saw the performance as well – it led to a lifelong love of Tommy's music.

Rumblers to Release Columbia Debut

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

Rumblers to Release Columbia Debut

Friday, July 29, 1988  
By Lauren R. Feola
Collegian Arts Writer

Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers, a group that has been around the block and up and down the East Coast. are on the brink of national exposure. 

"Look out, baby, here I come," sings Conwell, frontman and namesake for the group. To Philadelphia-vicinity fans, the lyric and name are familiar. But on August 9th, the Young Rumblers' new release Rumble on Columbia Records, will put their name into the national scope. 

Of course, the world of music television will be a factor. "The video, a performance video, was filmed last week, downstairs (in the 23 East Cabaret, a few miles outside of Philadelphia in Ardmore.) It will coincide with the release and be on MTV," said Patty Rose, an agent at Cornerstone Management. 

The bluesy hard-pop band's slow-brewing popularity has developed from a recipe of an independent album, a few friendly AOR radio stations and three years of constant roadwork.

A sparse Young Rumblers grouped early in 1984. Six months later, the three member band of Conwell on guitars, Paul Slivka on bass and Jim Hannum on drums signed with Cornerstone Management, the same company that the Hooters are with. 

After an intense touring schedule and the addition of Chris Day on guitar and Rob Miller on keyboards, the Young Rumblers' sound had solidified. They took to the studio in December 1986 and released the independent Walkin' on the Water. The album, which has sold approximately 50,000 copies, and more touring, which included a stop at the 1987 Interfraternity Council Dance Marathon, has gained the Young Rumblers some recognition and airplay. 

Some of the band's singles are occasionally exposed locally on WWZU. "They've gotten a lot better," disc jockey Shawn Carey said. "We've been playing the new version of 'I'm Not Your Man'". From the sound of the single, revamped from the independent album, the Young Rumblers have become musically stronger and more personalized. Especially, Miller's keyboard work has developed into a more important facet of the sound. 

The new album has samples of the group's past, present and future, according to Patty Rose at Cornerstone. "The album has things people heard in shows, stuff from the Walkin' on the Water and some brand new surprises that you've never heard before," she said.

The first single and video will be the newer, edgier "I'm Not Your Man," a coy farewell tune. Other titles mentioned by Rose were "I Wanna Make You Happy," with rollicking twangy guitars and "Gonna Breakdown," a gospel-influenced rocker.

"Tommy has a lot of influences, as you can tell on the new album," Rose said. "Mainly Bo Diddley as one, but the album is musically more complicated."

The Young Rumblers have promises of tour support from Columbia, which will eventually pull them from bar-band status. Besides Philadelphia, Harrisburg, New Jersey shore and Georgetown clubs, the band has had some positive larger-crowd experience. Last summer, they opened headliners David Bowie and Squeeze, Bryan Adams, and the Hooters. Most recently, the Young Rumblers performed in Hershey, opening Robert Plant's show last weekend. "They were fantastic," said Carey at WWZU.

WWZU is attempting to negotiate a sponsored performance for later this year. "We're not sure, though," said Carey. "They're talking about maybe going to Europe."

Locally, the shows are going on; the Young Rumblers will be in Wilkes-Barre for a show at Market Street on August 4th. Next weekend, performances will be at the 23 East Cabaret, soon to be immortalized by MTV. A performance on August 12th in Atlantic City will be broadcast live on Philadelphia's WMMR.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Los Fanáticos - Imaginar [I'm Not Your Man]

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

Los Fanáticos are from Murcia, Spain

A cover of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers in Spanish!

Los Fanáticos, a rock group from Murcia, Spain, perform their own version of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' 80's hit, "I'm Not Your Man."

In a February 2013 interview with La Opinión de Murcia, the band talks about their recent tour, being a band from the 80's and recording again after 25 years. Their brand new album, Malos Hábitos (Bad Habits), is a self-released LP that the band is currently promoting with a tour across Spain.

In the interview, Los Fanáticos also discuss the band's history with the Young Rumblers' song and their cover version: 

Los Fanáticos 1988 Press Release photo.
Question: You have included a Spanish version of "I'm Not Your Man" by Tommy Conwell and  the Young Rumblers. What's so special about that song for you?

Los Fanáticos: It's a song from our years of touring the Latin bar scene that we first heard about from our friend Jose Antonio Martinez 'Chota'. It always had a lot of power for us when we played it.
So we decided to incorporate it when Peter brought us his version in Spanish.
     We kept to the original, but did our own verse at the beginning before the main song kicks in.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A Regional Rumble Goes National

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

New Kids In Town
Los Angeles Times
October 23, 1988 | Byline: Chris Willman

Band: Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers

Personnel: Tommy Conwell, vocals, lead guitar; Paul Slivka, bass; Jim Hannum, drums; Chris Day, rhythm guitar; Rob Miller, keyboards, guitar

History: Conwell and the Young Rumblers are a bonafide example of a regional success story gone national. They're hometown heroes in Philadelphia (an independent debut LP two years ago sold a reported 70,000 copies in the area), where their popularity may soon come to rival that of the Hooters (ex-Hooter Andy King co-produced the indie debut, and current Hooters contribute to the band's new major-label debut). The band's first Columbia album, "Rumble," was overseen by hit producer Rick Chertoff and released in July. The rollicking leadoff track, "I'm Your Man," hit the No. 1 spot on the national AOR (album-oriented rock) radio charts a few weeks ago, though the song inexplicably stalled on Top 40 formats.

Interview on MTV's Mouth to Mouth | 1988

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers interview in front of a studio audience. From Mouth to Mouth, a 1988 MTV talk show hosted by Steve Skrovan.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Life was a Cabaret!

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

Marc from Kennett Square is a long-time Young Rumbler "chronicler" with his website and photographs. Read more about his past work. He shares his memories about Rumble and what it meant for him to see his favorite band go national in 1988.
     Cheers to a GREAT band who left a lasting impression. Here is what I recall.....

     In 1988 I was a brash junior at Drexel and feeling good about life after returning from a semester abroad in London. I had money and energy to burn -- and there was nothing more exciting to me than live music with Philly bands like Dynagroove, Beru Revue, The Hooters, and of course my favorite, Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers.
Tommy Conwell joins The Hooters (Rob Hyman, Eric Bazilian) onstage at 23 East, 1988.         Photo: Sam Cali
I was a Rumbler FANATIC and went to countless gigs during that magical period after the local release of Walkin' on the Water and Rumble.

     Columbia Record's release of Rumble was a clear tipping point for this Philly kid. The album was released with a major national media blitz.  There were album release parties, billboards, videos on MTV, WMMR radio broadcasts from Europe, David Letterman shows, and even Rolling Stone mentions. On one hand, it was surreal to see the Rumblers EXPLODE. However, this time period also turned into a real void as my weekend road trips to the Stone Pony, Stone Balloon, and Bottle and Cork came to an abrupt end. Life was no longer a cabaret! I imagine that we all moved on with our lives and careers.

     What do I like about Rumble? The art work was absolutely brilliant!  I think the cover photo of the band is one of the slickest rock and roll shots. It captures the interesting chemistry that was always evident amongst the Rumblers - Tommy, Paulie, Jimmer, Chris, and Rob. As far as the songs, "If We Never Meet Again" and "Gonna Breakdown" are my winners. "Breakdown" has great spirit and reeks of optimism. I always thought that was a real highlight in their live gigs. "Never" is simply timeless. The song was perfectly executed on the recording.

     The 1980's are long gone but Rumble left a lasting impression. I will never forget that exciting time period in Philadelphia.

Marc Pelletier
Kennett Square, Pennsylvania

Monday, July 22, 2013

'Rumble' Flyer - 1988

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

A flyer from Cornerstone Management in promotion of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' new LP, Rumble. Also promoting Rob Hyman and Eric Bazilian on the track, "Half a Heart."
The inside portion of the flyer contains phone numbers across the country for fans to call and request "I'm Not Your Man" to their local radio stations.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Marcy Rauer Wagman Looks Back at 'Rumble'

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

Tommy Conwell and Marcy Rauer Wagman, 1986.
     Entertainment attorney, songwriter, recording artist and Philly music legend Marcy Rauer Wagman and Tommy Conwell co-wrote many of the most beloved  Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers tunes together, including "Gonna Breakdown," and "Rock With You." Their most successful collaboration was with  "I'm Not Your Man," the first single released on "Rumble." It went on to become a No. 1 hit on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks, the first week of October 1988.
     Rauer Wagman graciously shares with Audio Rumble her memories of writing songs with Tommy Conwell and her thoughts on the 25th anniversary of "Rumble." 

Writing “I’m Not Your Man” was so amazing…. I remember Steve Mountain called me and said that he needed me to get together with Tommy and write a hit single for their first independent album, Walkin' on the Water.
On co-writing "I’m Not your Man"
     The riff that Tommy brought originally was really slow and I thought, "OK, that’s great, but let’s work on that some more." Also I told him that the last part of the song you should perform kind of quiet, maybe almost whispering because you are telling this girl in a serious way, "Hey. Really. I'm not your man!”

     I remember our favorite thing to eat during a lot of the writing sessions was cherry red twizzlers. In fact, I think I got him hooked on them…

On her reaction to the heavy rotation of "I'm Not Your Man" on radio and MTV
     It was great. I was really happy for Tommy. He’s an incredibly talented artist. I personally felt that having that kind of hit just validates you as a songwriter. Tommy is still one of the most talented people that I’ve ever met in my life -- and I have met a lot of people in this industry. He is one of those artists who could play a venue like the Spectrum and he made it so intimate - he played it like you were at a cabaret. I've written with so many different people over the years and Tommy remains in the top three, if not the number one favorite person that I have written with.

On her thoughts about Tommy Conwell as an artist
     He was fearless as far as his art is concerned. From the swagger onstage to the way he belted his tunes; it was all genuine. It was honest. And as a musician, composer and songwriter myself, he just made my job easier.
     When I think about "Rumble" celebrating it's 25th anniversary, I just feel really great for being a part of what Tommy accomplished and, as an artist myself, working with someone like him. 

[You can read more about Marcy Rauer Wagman's famed and storied career in music courtesy of Philadelphia City Paper's feature article, "Off the Charts."]

Everything They Say Is True (live) - Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers

Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers recorded live at the Bottom Line, NYC in 1988. Performing "Everything They Say is True." 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

'Rumble' On The Streets - Review of First Album from Philadelphia Daily News

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

'Rumble' On The Streets Tommy Conwell Brings Back 'Heartland' Sound

By JONATHAN TAKIFF, Daily News Staff Writer
Posted: August 09, 1988

     When a band has been warming up in the bullpen as long as Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers, you might suspect they'd go a little crazy, act a bit excessive, when they finally take the field with their major league album debut.
     On the contrary, one marvel of "Rumble," the group's four-years-in-the- coming Columbia album hitting the streets (and stores) today, is how straightforward, how frill-free and nitty-gritty, their musical nuggets seem.
     Another marvel - much more important - is how often these guys seem to be connecting with home runs, track after track. And they make it look so easy!
     Close those eyes and hold the 'phones to your ears. You'll readily envision this blues-rocking quintet performing live - knocking out their 1950s- flavored Chuck Berry-ish tribute "Workout" or flying high on the giddy ''Walkin' on the Water," cutting to the quick with their rebel yell "I'm Not Your Man" or wailing their "Boss"-like "Love's on Fire."
     Tommy's raspy/righteous vocals are just as warm and intimate on tape as in concert. I can almost see this consummate mugger rolling his eyes and licking his sweat. His spitfire guitar runs are a mite abbreviated compared to his showboating live renderings (playing one-handed or behind his back), yet recorded versions still maintain the sting and vigor.
     Overall, the band (original drummer Jim Hannum and bassist Paul Slivka, late 1986 additions Chris Day on guitar and keyboardist/guitarist Rob Miller) sounds cohesive but never sterile or packaged in this Rick Chertoff-produced long player. And the good impression lingers even after hearing the album a half dozen times.
     Don't take just my word for it. America's rock radio programmers have also responded well to Conwell's clarion call of back-to-the-basics "heartland" music, by making "I'm Not Your Man" the most-added track to their playlists for two weeks running. Other ear-catchers like "Half a Heart" and the touching ballad "If We Never Meet Again" (a Jules Shear original also found on his Restless Sleepers album in a less-accessible rendering) are already being talked about as strong follow-up singles.
     "We want radio to tell us what the hits are," said Rumblers manager Steve Mountain. "We want them to spread the word, rather than us hype them."
     Leading up to their radio coup, the Rumblers stomped a whole lotta rump at a recent Columbia-organized showcase performance at the Chestnut Cabaret (on the stormy night of July 21). Lured by a big advance buzz on this band - including a favorable Rolling Stone profile, the 70,000 sales of the group's indie record "Walkin' on the Water" and a bidding war involving 13 record labels for the Rumblers' services - the pilgrims came to Philly in droves. They included the nation's top 15 concert promoters, representatives of the 10 biggest record chains and 30 radio programmers from the United States and Europe. And when all was said and sung, these seasoned pros cheered as hard as the old-line hometown Conwell fans.
     How is Tommy Conwell reacting to all this fuss? With the same sort of low- stress, forthright and good-humored attitude that makes his music seem so fresh. "Nobody can schmooze like industry people. They can make you feel like Beethoven," he related the other night before hitting the stage at 23 East. ''All that's nice. It's fun, if you don't take it too seriously. But what I do take seriously is that people seem genuinely enthused, ready to support us, and that's no jive."
     Asked why he chose to tack a comical rap onto the beginning of "I'm Not Your Man," Conwell suggested (tongue-clearly-in-cheek) it's "because we're always controversial. Yeah, The Rumblers are such upsetters. Actually, we're giving radio two versions - with or without the talk - so they can play it as they want."
     Quite a student of soul and blues music, Conwell, 26, concedes that his rap was inspired by a "soul humorist of the '60s, Rudy Ray Moore. He was the soul version of Lord Buckley, a really hysterical guy."
     Yet in general, there isn't nearly as much straight-ahead blues to be heard in the Rumblers' sound today, at least not compared to four years ago, when the group first started as a trio. Conwell, a native of Bala Cynwyd, started out taking piano lessons in second grade and in high school started to play jazz guitar. Then, at the University of Delaware, he started making connnections between jazz and blues, and learned how to emote through his ax.
     "I still love the blues, still go to the record store and buy blues records all the time. But I haven't written a song like 'A Million Pretty Girls' in a while. I guess it comes down to the realization that I'm not black and I don't live in the 1950s. I'm a white man in 1988. I do the blues because I love it, but I don't think I can do it justice as much as with rock and roll, which is music for young white guys who love the blues. That's how it was when Elvis Presley did it. And how I want to continue holding onto it, in my way."
     "There are no blues songs on this album," said Conwell. "But in my guitar solos I flatter myself to think I can hear the influences of Chuck Berry and B.B. King, Albert King and Elmore James. There's also some Philly funk - on Kae Williams' collaboration 'I Wanna Make You Happy' - and Texas blues when I play my guitar through a Leslie organ amp on 'Everything They Say Is True.' So while it's basically rock and roll, there are blues nods all over the place."

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Making of "I'm Not Your Man" - Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers First Music Video

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

An article about the making of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers first music video, "I'm Not Your Man." From the front page of the Entertainment section in News of Delaware County on July 27, 1988.

He's Their Man | Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers Shoot First Video
By John P. Fox and Jay Friel

A million pretty girls.

Actually 200, waiting and wondering what small part they were about to play in local rock history.
     While they paced in the stifling heat outside Ardmore's 23 East, This was the scene this past Monday at Ardmore's 23 East, local rocker Tommy Conwell, the object of their loyalty, sweated out the taping of his first video for Columbia Records, ironically titled, "I'm Not Your Man." 

     Conwell and the Young Rumblers will release "Rumble," their first Columbia album, on Aug. 9. And in this, the video age, any national album deal requires videos for each single. "I'm Not Your Man" will be that first single.
The young fans had been invited by Cornerstone Management to play a familiar role in the video: pack the 23 East for a raucous Rumblers' show.
Director David Hogan has worked on hundreds of rock videos, including those by Conwell's Cornerstone brothers, the Hooters ("Satellite"), Robbie Robertson, Rod Stewart, Prince and Bob Seger. This production is aimed at capturing the band in a live performance. Appropriately, the video's setting is the 23 East, the home turf for the Rumblers since their earliest beginnings.
The production crew began setting up lights, cables and cameras about 8:30 a.m. on July 18, and the actual shooting began in the early afternoon.
Conwell, sans the Rumblers, was swamped by technicians as the cameras keyed in on his hands and his hollow-body Guild guitar.
"All right, roll playback," boomed an authoritative voice. "Quiet on the set."
The background bustling stopped as Conwell's raspy voice carried from the speakers and spotlights beamed their heat on the Lower Merion High School graduate. 
     "Cut," broke the tension, and simultaneously the crew scurried with cable and lights preparing the band to take the stage and the fans to fill the floor.
Outside, the parking lot resembled a casting call for "Club MTV," as aspiring video stars waited for the cue to come inside.       Some of them, coming from as far away as Long Island, N.Y., Harrisburg and Holland, Pa., had waited for hours in the heat.

Their vigil was momentarily forgotten when Conwell stepped outside to say "Howdee."      "It's nice that someone from Philly decided to shoot a video here," said Lucinda Brzozowski of Northeast Philadelphia, who has been following the Rumblers for more than two years.      "I won't complain if I get in the video," Donna McQuillan of Ridley Park said. "But I'm really here to experience it. I just wanted to see how they shoot a video."
McQuillan, who came to the 23 East alone, had made several new friends during the day.
"It was easy to meet people because we all have one thing in common, we're Tommy Conwell fans," she explained.     The call finally came around 3:15 p.m. when the girls were given final instructions and ushered inside; their mood shifting from excited anticipation to cautious curiosity. They would not leave the Cabaret until after midnight.
The scene set: Conwell and the Rumblers took to the stage amidst the accustomed cheers.
"This is about music. We don't want you googly-eyeing the band," Conwell told the crowd. "You're here because you like good music. Remember just jam with the music." That would be the easiest part of a long, hot day.

Inset article:
'Rumblin' Coast to Coast

      "Rumble," Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' first album on Columbia Records is due in the record stores Monday, Aug. 8.
     The re-worked "I'm Not Your Man" will serve as the first single, with the video expected to be released sometime during the second week of August. A copy of "I"m Not Your Man" has been shipped to rock radio stations across the country, bringing Rumblers rock 'n' roll to a new audience.
The band played to a packed Chestnut Cabaret last Thursday night. In the crowd were Columbia executives flown in from around the country to see one of the brightest new artists in person. From all accounts, those executives left the Cabaret with smiles on their faces, and dollar signs dancing in their heads.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

"Rumble"-era Concert Tickets

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

An assortment of concert tickets from the Rumblers' first national tour promoting "Rumble."

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Promotional Flyer - 'Rumble' Radio Fan Support

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

A Cornerstone Management flyer promoting Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers for the continued support of Rumble in late 1988/early 1989. Also a call for fan support for the band's latest single, "If We Never Meet Again" with request line numbers for local radio stations across the country to call.

The flyer also promotes the appearance of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers on the American Music Awards, January 30, 1989.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Young Rumblers in Concert - 1988

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

An e-mail from New Jersey:

"Hi! Thanks for the TCYR month of Rumble posts on your blog. Here are some pictures when the band first launched their tour in Sept. 1988. The venue might have been Chestnut, but we saw them lots. Time, memories are fuzzy by now.

Also, got some autographs from Rob and Jimmer - my two prize possessions! 

Friday, July 12, 2013

'Rumble' Memories

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

A written submission courtesy of Chuck Harrell, a San-Francisco-based Emmy® Award winning video professional with over 15 years experience in broadcast television and corporate video production. A native of North Carolina, Chuck was kind enough to share some of his thoughts about Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers, music documentaries, and his memories about playing Rumble at East Carolina University's college radio station, WZMB

"Wow, I loved Tommy Conwell in college!  I used to play his record on the East Carolina University campus station, WZMB -- Rumble, the national debut record with "I'm Not Your Man."
I'm originally from North Carolina, I grew up in Mount Olive (very small town) so you had to drive to get to see a decent band. Once I became aware of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers, I'd have driven a long way to get to see him live. I really thought they were a good band and "Rumble" a solid debut.
Tommy was one of those guys I always expected would blow up and be HUGE, but it just didn't happen for some reason. Some of his songs tie me directly to an ex-girlfriend, it's funny how certain music gets assigned significance to people, places and time. But I thought his big label debut was great!
I played at least three songs consistently off that record every shift I worked. And those three songs came by request; it wasn't just me playing them for my own enjoyment. We had a rotation clock to follow, so that proved -- to me, anyway -- that the listeners really loved them. 
Again, I sure did think Tommy and the Rumblers would have gotten big one day, but I guess there are far more stories of "near success" vs. "real success" in the music industry. Far too many great bands lose that brass ring right when they almost have it in their hands, sadly.

The rockumentary is got to fulfill sort of a dream of mine, doing a documentary about something that you're passionate about -- that's just awesome! Good for you, no matter what grade you got, you got to do something which is really important, which is to document a bit of music history."

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Tommy Conwell Heads Chestnut Cabaret Bill - 1987

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

A 1987 article from the Philadelphia Inquirer talks about Tommy Conwell and the Rumblers performing at the Chestnut Cabaret and getting ready to go into the studio to record RUMBLE for Columbia.
Tommy Conwell Heads Chestnut Cabaret Bill
October 9, 1987 | By David Hiltbrand, Special to The Inquirer
Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers are at the Chestnut Cabaret tomorrow night with Dynagroove. Next month, Conwell goes into the studio to record his debut album for Columbia. It will be produced by Rick Chertoff and contains songs from his locally released album, Walkin’ on the Water. Sound familiar? It's the blueprint from the Hooters' path to stardom. The result should be about the same for Conwell, a smoking performer who combines the intensity of pub rocker Graham Parker with a deft pop touch and a great guitar style on his hollow-body Guild.

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer Archives

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Tommy Conwell Interview on Super Channel (1988)

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9]

A Rumble-era interview with Tommy Conwell for Europe’s Super Channel television in 1988. The best part comes at the end with all of the Young Rumblers running up the “Rocky steps” and giving a victory cheer at the top of the 72 stone steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Hooters on Rockline - 1987

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers' Rumble. [July 9 - August 9] 

The first time DJ Caterina ever heard the band name "Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers" happened while listening to an episode of 'Rockline' featuring The Hooters in 1987.

Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers shared the Hooters’ management company, Cornerstone.

25th Anniversary of Rumble - August 9, 1988

August 9, 2013, is the 25th anniversary of Tommy Conwell and the Young Rumblers 1988 debut national album, Rumble.

Audio Rumble celebrates the release of Rumble with a month-long retrospective [July 9 – August 9] featuring articles, aud
io, images, interviews, video and lots of other bonus material!

If you would like to contribute your memories related to the band and the release of Rumble, please send your e-mail to Audio Rumble already has several contributions waiting in the wings…

So, do you think Rumble was overlooked? Not really! In 2004, Philadelphia Weekly listed Rumble at #100 in the 100 Best Philly Albums of All Time!