Barone ~ Lead Guitar, Vocals
Curt Dorey ~ Bass
Ron Kinscherf ~ Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Tony Morgan ~ Drums
Steve Nelsen ~ Keyboards, Vocals
Cary Ordway ~ Keyboards
Jerry Riley ~ Drums
I Need Your Love (Kinscher)
In the News (Barone/Nelsen)
I'm So Alone (Barone)
You Got a Hold (Barone)
The Chargers, at the time of the recordings, were Steve Nelsen, Ron Kinscherf, Curt Dorey, Bass, and Tony Morgan.
The band started in 1966, original members included Larry Roller, guitar, Don Sandstrom, vocals, and after evolving into the recording unit described above, after a couple years of intense gigging, Jerry Riley became the drummer, which made the band complete. We played nearly every high school dance plus all the teen clubs, in five counties surrounding us. After the record hit the street, we were rock stars. But then I decided to join the Army on the wise advice of the local police after a bunch of us got busted for pot...and that about ended it. Ron sruggled on for a while with different musicians but it was never the same. Since then we all played music, Ron and I still perform as much as possible. Unfortunately Jerry Riley passed away in 1970. I still miss him.
Steve Barone, November 2010
I wanted to share something exciting! The Chargers made their first public appearance after more than 40 years last night (9 March 2012)!
I've got a page on my site talking about it! http://julianrecords.com/chargersreturn/
Dustin Hays, March 2012
Playing 60’s in our 60’s
By Cary Ordway
Long before Nirvana and Pearl Jam, there was a vibrant Northwest rock scene and, interestingly enough, bands from right here in Wenatchee are now featured on sites like www.garagehangover.com because they played such a big part in the development of Northwest rock and roll. One of those bands is still around – the band I am in called the Chargers. And yes, by now each member is several decades past puberty.
I don't think any of us realized, back when we were in our early teens strapping on guitars to play Beatles music, that one day we would be playing 60’s in our 60’s. When I'm 64 was supposed to be “many years from now” but Sir Paul McCartney is already well past that milestone and, like it or not, the rest of us are catching up.
Now here we are, rocking local clubs with 60’s music when we should be sitting at home watching Lawrence Welk. Well, as they say, the new 30 is 60 – at least we like to say that – and these are not your father’s Golden Years.
Before I make us sound too old, I should point out that we really are just barely into our 60’s. Okay, the equipment we have to schlep around seems awfully heavy and each long gig is best followed by a glorious hot soak in the Jacuzzi. But we still remember the lyrics, we still have dexterity in our fingers and not one of us, as far as I can tell, is drooling on his microphone.
Now it might not be obvious when you first come see us down at the Wenatchee Eagles or Clearwater Saloon, but we're actually world-famous. Through the wonder of the internet we are known to record collectors around the world for the 45 RPM recordings we did back in the late 1960’s on Wenatchee’s own Julian Records label. What you might find even more interesting is that we are not just well known as the Chargers – we also have a very strong connection to another local group making records in the 60’s called the Aztecs. And that connection is me.
Truth be told, I was not always a Charger and, in fact, have only recently joined the group. I was in the Aztecs, a Waterville-based group that competed head-to-head with the Chargers in the biggest battle of the bands anyone can remember around Wenatchee. That was held at Sterling Junior High School back in 1967 and, out of a dozen or so bands competing, the Chargers came out No. 1. The Aztecs were No. 3. Both the Chargers and the Aztecs soon released records on Julian.
Fast forward to 2011 and the Chargers, long since disbanded, were called together for a special performance at one member's 60th birthday party. “We started jammin’ and there was so much potential still there,” remembers guitarist Ron Kinscherf. A year later, he had convinced the other members to put the band back together and play authentic 60’s music to local audiences hungry for musical nostalgia. After four decades apart, the Chargers were now “recharged” and playing with almost the same lineup as the late 60’s: Steve Barone, Ron Kinscherf, Curt Dorey and Tony Morgan, all Wenatchee Valley natives.
About that same time I was playing keyboards on the San Diego rock scene and preparing for a move back to the Wenatchee Valley to be closer to family. I went to hear the 2012 edition of the Chargers, one thing led to another, and I am now the “fifth Charger,” replacing the Chargers’ valued keyboard player Steve Nelson who has passed away.
The success that both the Chargers and Aztecs had with record collectors, and the way both groups’ recordings kept popping up on hundreds of internet sites, led to new record deals for both bands. The Aztecs’ recordings of World of Woe and Why Can’t You Tell Me will be re-released on vinyl this summer by SunDazed Records. About the same time, the Chargers will re-release Taxi on Get Hip Records, as well as put out new releases of Need Your Love, You Got a Hold and In the News, all recorded back in the 60’s but never before pressed into records.
The original 45 RPM records continue to be in demand on record-collector sites – an original copy of World of Woe, for example, can fetch up to $400. When the collectors learned we still had copies to sell, we were getting calls and emails from almost every part of the world.
So what’s it like being an aging rocker? The guys will tell you it’s just as much fun as it was back in high school when we were playing dances all over Central Washington and hearing our songs on KMEL radio. The music from the 60’s and early 70’s – that time period we specialize in – never seems to get old to us. How can you go wrong with the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, the Eagles, and Lynyrd Skynyrd? Audiences of all ages enjoy this music and I don't know if it will ever go out of style.
While I’m a Johnny-come-lately to the Chargers (just by 45 years or so), my band mates have treated me like a brother which, when you get right down to it, is one reason we older guys continue to play rock and roll. The shared experience of creating good music never gets old. We all grew up in the same area, played the same tunes and gigged at the same venues all those years ago, so the transition has been as natural as can be. We’re that Cialis commercial come to life.
Looking back, being a rock musician in high school was in some ways like being a skilled athlete – it was our claim to fame and the source of many good memories. The big advantage is we can still do it after all these years. I have a good friend who was a very skilled basketball player who frequently relives his glory days on the court by talking about that time in the late 60’s when he and the Waterville Shockers played in the State B Championship Series.
We musicians have our own way of reminiscing about those days gone by – we get to live them all over again whenever we get up on the stage.
For more information on the Chargers and a schedule of upcoming appearances, please go to www.facebook.com/chargersrecharged.
For information on booking the Chargers, please call 509-421-2341.