The Regents
(Version II)
Tacoma, Washington
1965 - 1967

 

Sammy Carlson ~ Bass, Vocals*
Chuck Doten ~ Drums
Chris Isakson ~ Guitar, Vocals*
Larry Olsen ~ Keyboards, Vocals
Gary Udovich ~ Saxophone
 

This verions of The Regents recorded three songs Willey's studio in Tacoma.

The second version of the Regents came along around the Summer of '65 and played an important role in the history of the band, as well as did the early roots of the group going back to the pre-Regents bands of Rich Liebe and Richard Rossiter.  These early roots will be addressed in another page.  This page is dedicated to the later version of the Regents during the years 1965 to early 1967.

Any story about the later version of the band at this moment is rather incomplete.  So much information has been lost to time.  Almost everything Sammy Carlson had in his memorabilia boxes was lost between 1985 and 1995.  This included a copy of the recording contract the Regents had with Etiquette Records, rehearsal tapes, copies of gig contracts, news clippings, business cards, payroll and other business records, photographs, and band member biographical information.  Only memories, a few photographs and a business license survived.  Those images can be found below.

When the Regents broke up in July of 1965, it wasn't due to any decline in popularity or activity.  In fact, the original band was at its peak of popularity.  The band didn't break up because of any internal problems either.  They were all best of friends.  Why did the band break up?  When asked today, the original members have a variety of reasons, and each tends to blame himself for the breakup of a great band and good friends that had the potential to make successfully in the national music scene.  Probably the best way to describe the breakup is to say “it just happened”.  Dave went on to become the drummer for the Wailers.  Rich had already temporarily absented himself because of illness a couple of months earlier.  Billy enrolled in the University of Puget Sound.  Richard moved to California with his fiancée directly from the original band's last gig at the Red Carpet.   Dave set about to sell the entire band's jointly owned equipment, which by today's standards would seem rather primitive and light weight. He disposed of the 35-watt Bogen amplifier, two PA horns with 65-watt drivers, microphones, stands and the Leslie organ speaker.  The proceeds were divided up among the original members.  That left Sammy and Chris, Rich's replacement, standing around and saying “Well, what next?”

Sammy and Chris didn't stand around long.  The two of them represented 40% of the Regents so why not carry on the band and the name?  Sammy called Dave, Richard, and Billy and tried to contact Rich, asking if Sammy and Chris could carry on the name of the band.  When Dave, Billy and Richard answered with a “yes” Sammy and Chris set about to reform the band.  In the original band, Dave was the business manager and obtained most of the bookings and did all the contracting.  This task fell on Sammy with the new band but was still shared with other members.  Sammy and Chris brought two friends from The Intruders into the band, Chuck Doten on drums and Terry Bailey on rhythm guitar.

Sammy and Chris played together in the Regents.   Chris, Terry, and Chuck played together in the Intruders, so it was rather easy to merge the set lists of the two bands to start out with commonly known songs, then build on new material.  The new Regents took up the pace almost immediately where the old band left off.  In about early 1966 a fifth member was brought into the group, Larry Olsen, who brought keyboards to the band for the first time.  Some months later, a sixth member was added on saxophone, Gary Udovich.

The Red Carpet, a popular young adult nightclub, would periodically have an open Sunday jam session where old and new bands would get together and take turns on stage at the Red Carpet for four or five tunes. This was done for fun, to bring together friends from established bands, and to give new band an opportunity to strut their stuff in a public venue.  During one of these sessions, around the Summer of 1966, the Regents took the stage at one of these jam sessions.  In the audience were representatives from Etiquette Records, the record label owned by the Wailers.

After the jam session, the Regents were approached and asked to sign with and record for Etiquette Records.  Sammy later met with representative of Etiquette and was presented with a contract for all members of the band to sign.  There was excitement by some and reluctance by other members of the band to sign the contract.  Eventually everyone did sign.

It wasn't long after everyone signed the contract that we found ourselves in a studio in North Tacoma (the same studio where the Wailers and the Sonics recorded many of their hits), prepared to record what we presented at the jam session.  After discovering that the material we presented at the jam was all covers of obscure songs by other artists, Etiquette Records changed the game plan and gave us material to record.  They asked that we bring some original songs too.  The band recorded a few songs, and one written by Terry Bailey, along with two songs given us by Etiquette to record, “Turn and Run” and  “Bad Trip”.  After two or three different session in the studio, we were told the tapes were being taken to California for re-mixing (and to have additional instruments, possibly strings, added prior to release) which would probably be some months in the future.

Before those months “prior to release” came about, the band disintegrated around the beginning of 1967.  As with the original band, the second version was at its peak of popularity when they broke up.  There was an attempt by members to reform the band as the Regents, but without at least one original member of the band in the lineup, permission from the original members was not forthcoming.  Sammy was asked to come back.  When answering this request, his mind, body and soul was saying “yes”, but what came out of his mouth was “no”.  Had that one word been a “yes” instead of a “no”, the final history of the Regents of Tacoma might have had a significantly different outcome.

This story of the Regents of Tacoma continues to grow with new or corrected information.  If you, the reader, have any information or comments to share, please send them to The Regents.  Of the six members of the second version of The Regents, five of the six members, Sammy Carlson, Chris Isakson, and Terry Bailey, Chuck Doten and Gary Udovich, have been located to date.  We are still looking for any information on Larry Olsen.  If you have additional or contact information, please email The Regents.


CHRIS ISAKSON
Lead Guitar - Vocals

A graduate of Wilson H.S. in Tacoma, Chris joined the Regents in 1965 when Rich Liebe, original lead guitar, became temporarily ill.  Chris was an excellent lead guitarist and had an excellent voice for leads and backup vocals on many of the softer songs.  In the photo at the left he is belting out G-L-O-R-I-A to a packed house in late '65 or early '66.  Sammy last saw Chris in about the Summer of 1976 at Fort Lewis, Washington, when Sammy walked into a tent and Chris was sitting there, not in his band uniform, but an olive drab Army field uniform as a non-commissioned officer.  We recently heard from Chris and he sent us some updated information for a personal biographical page.  He attended the University of Washington and completed a successful career in the military as an officer.  He now works in Asia.  As with Sammy and AFKAD, being a linguist came in handy for Chris too.  Chris reports he never gave up playing.  He still has that Gretsch guitar pictured above, along with some new cool "toys".  We hope we can get Chris to join our annual fun jams some day.


TERRY BAILEY
Rhythm Guitar - Vocals
Terry Bailey, also a graduate from Wilson H.S., Tacoma, was among the first four members of the second version of the Regents.  He played a very cool rhythm guitar, later bringing in a 12 string to add new dimensions to the band and its sound.  After adding a keyboardist, Terry became a compelling front man, frequently putting down his instrument to be a front lead singer for his gutsy renditions of songs by the Rolling Stones, Kinks, Animals, ? and the Mysterians, and others.  In the 60's Terry did a stint in the U.S. Army Reserve and attended Tacoma Community College.  The last time Sammy saw Terry was in about 1973 in Olympia when Terry asked Sammy to sit in on bass (playing San-ho-zay) with Terry's band, Christian, which was performing that night.  Chris did some periodic gigs with Terry right up until about 1978.  We heard from Terry.  He is still in the state of Washington and doing quite well.  He recently took to the stage again to open for Starship.
Sammy, August 2001
 
 

In Memory of Our Friend

Terry Bailey (25 April 1947 - 20 April 2002)
Terry lost his battle with cancer just five days short of his 55th Birthday

Tacoma News Tribune

Terry Bailey:  Born April 25, 1947 in Tacoma, Washington. Passed away April 20, 2002 in Kennewick, Washington, after a courageous battle with cancer. Terry graduated from Wilson High School, then went on to study at the University of Puget Sound. His true passion in life was music. He performed with several successful country rock bands. In 1978 he put together his own band, known as Missouri Freeze, that opened for many of the legendary groups such as BTO, Paul Revere and the Raiders, and even Sonny and Cher. Terry arrived in the Tri-Cities in 1989 and began his career in Radio at KEYW as an advertising executive, and immediately launched one of the most respected and triumphant professions known. A leader in the community, Terry will be well remembered for his abundance of contributions to the Tri-Cities. Among his many "pet" projects, first on the list was the Tri-City Cancer Center; he was passionate about raising money for them. To mention just a few would be the J&S Dreamland Express, where he was instrumental in raising $45,000 to make the dream a reality; there was also the annual 4th of July celebration with the Kennewick Chamber, United Way, Columbia Center Rotary, the Mid Columbia Education Alliance and, notably, the Kennewick School District who named Terry "Outstanding Partner". The first to be asked for help for fund raising to make the County Fair be victorious, he never turned his back; he was always the one to count on. With far too many awards to mention, he leaves us with memories most all could only hope for. Survived by his soul mate and partner, Susan Swenson; father Graydon Bailey and stepmother Irene; sister Debbie O'Malley, and husband and friend Jim, niece and nephew Wanda and Jimmy O'Malley; extended family Dick Shores, Evelyn Swenson and Gary Udovich. He is preceded in death by his mother Wanda Dissault and stepfather James Dissault. We wish to thank family and friends for their support throughout Terry's life. Donations may be made on behalf of Terry to the Tri-City Cancer Center Foundation, 7350 West Deschutes Ave., Building 8, Kennewick, WA 99336; or Hospice House, 2108 West Entiat Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336. Rosary will be recited Thursday, April 25th at 6:30 pm at Mueller's Funeral Home, and a Celebration of Terry's life will be at the Cathedral of Joy at 2:00 pm on Friday, April 26th. We love you!

More can be read about Terry's other bands at The Intruders, The Regents, The Galaxies, Christian, Rico Martino & Co., Rock-Ola, LocoMax, Panama Orange Tree, Jack Sanders Band, Back Alley and Missouri Freeze.


CHUCK DOTEN
Percussion
Chuck Doten, also a Wilson H.S. graduate (I sense a pattern here) joined Sammy, Chris and Terry as the drummer for the second version of the Regents.  Chuck was a friendly fellow and an excellent drummer with a unique sound. He could bang away at any song with great precision but I think he had great reason for telling us to not bother asking him to sing.  Wanting to respect his wishes and protect our hearing, we went along with what he wanted.  While still with the Regents, Chuck took a position with Boeing.  That was about the time of the big build up for the Boeing 747.  After the Regents, Chuck joined the Galaxies, who later moved to California and changed their name to Rock Collection, and several other bands, including Rock-Ola.  Chuck performed with a successful Elvis tribute group, Alan: A Tribute to Elvis.  Chuck retired from music in about 1980 and is now a computer programmer in California.

 

SAMMY CARLSON
Bass Guitar - Vocals

It seems rather redundant to say this but Sammy was another graduate of Wilson H.S. in Tacoma.  The original Regents were based in Lakewood, WA, with its members attending Clover Park or Lakes High School.  Sammy was the token representative of Wilson H.S. until the second version of the band became a North Tacoma band.  He came to the original Regents in November 1963 from the Invaders out of Hampton, Virginia.  While at Wilson H.S. Sammy took advantage of courses that would help him sharpen his musical talents.  Typing class helped him with finger dexterity (and to meet girls) and the Boys Glee, A Capella and Studio/Swing Choirs helped him with his voice.  Sammy loved to do backup vocals, but taking the lead on songs by Rufus Thomas, Paul Revere & the Raiders, or the Newbeats was a piece of cake for him.  His voice range was pretty good, but after singing Bread and Butter in the original key and style, he had to take a one or two song break before his voice returned.  Sammy stayed with the Regents until they disbanded in about 1967.  Once rated as one of the top bass players in Puget Sound, he completely gave up playing for about 29 years.  He took it up again while living in Wisconsin.  Sammy has a real job, but for fun, he rocks on with a classic rock group in the Atlanta, GA area once called "Sam I Am", and now known as "The Breaks".  Once per year he jams with the Regents and other old 60's band buddies in Washington.  After the Regents, Sammy went into the military in advance of a draft notice where he stayed, rising from Private to First Sergeant in the enlisted ranks, then went all the way down to Second Lieutenant.  He started out as an Infantryman then defected to Intelligence after a couple of years.  He retired in 1987 as a Captain.  A while after retirement from the Regular Army, he joined the Guard in Texas for three more years, and they put him out to pasture in 1995 as a Lieutenant Colonel.  Sammy goes back home to Washington once per year to jam with the original Regents and other old friends from other 60's NW bands.

During Sammy's 1999 trip to Washington to jam with the band, he ran into Dick Foreman, the vocalist who substituted for Dave Roland's voice when Dave had an operation on his vocal chords in about 1965.  Dick also played with the Intruders, as did Chris, Chuck, Gary and Terry.  Besides still being a fantastic vocalist, he now plays a very cool guitar.  Dick was most recently with the Wayback Machine in the Tacoma/Seattle area.  In August of 1999,  Dick and his band dragged Sammy to the stage where he joined them for a few rocking tunes on bass.  Sammy can be contacted at The Web Slave's e-mail

Update:  In May 2005, the US Army decided they needed Sammy back into the Army.  He reported for duty on May 29th to help support the war on terrorism.

Another Update:  Sam finished two years back in the Army on 28 May 2007, working on an effort supporting our deployed forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.  He had a blast being back in the game and in the Army... so much so that he asked for a third year and reported for that year # 3 in early September 2007, this time for a trip to Afghanistan where he served for a year with the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions.

Okay... yet another update:  Sam finished his third year back in the Army in September 2008, then reported back for year four in March 2009 for a second trip back to Afghanistan. He should return with his unit, the 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), to Fort Drum, New York, in early 2010.

Still another update:  Sam completed his fourth year back playing "Army Man" in late March 2010 and returned to Georgia to his day job with Lockheed Martin.  He retired from Lockheed as well effective 1 July 2010.  While with the 3d Brigade "Spartans", 10th Mountain Division, Sam served in various capacities with the Brigade Headquarters at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Shank in Logar Province, FOB Airborne in Wardak Province, and at Camp Dubs/Darulaman south of the Kabul area.  Sam opined that the "Spartans" was one of the finest units he ever served with.
 
 


LARRY OLSEN
Keyboards - Vocals
Larry Olsen was the fifth member of Regents II joining in about early 1966.  A real pleasant guy, Larry broke the school mold as he was a graduate of Lincoln H.S., Tacoma.  Larry was good on the keys, bringing another new sound and dimension to the developing style of the Regents.  Unfortunately, no photographs are known to have survived of Larry with the Regents.  When Larry came onboard, the timing was great.  That was the time of song greats that Larry could handle perfectly as a vocalist such as Woolly Bully or Hanky Panky.  Did a great job in the studio when we recorded for Etiquette.  We wonder what he is up to these days as no word about him has come up since 1967.

GARY UDOVICH
Saxophone
Gary was the last member of The Regents.  Prior to joining the Regents, he played a short time with the Intruders.  It is sad to say that are there no known photographs surviving of the Regents II saxophonist.  Embarrassingly, it is not recalled if he even sang any songs.  Gary, also a trend breaker, attended Franklin Pierce High School outside of Tacoma.  He did some great saxophone solos and backups on the Etiquette recordings.  Gary, retired from music, is still living in Washington.  He was very successful in the semi-conductor business as a regional manager.  He has been happily married to his wife, Jackie, for over 20 years.  If anyone remembers anything more about Gary, or has any photos of him (especially band photos) please write to the band webmaster at The Web Slave


Only $1.00 for a business license?  Those were the days before government got greedy.
 

Last updated:  3 August 2012
Contributors:  Sam Carlson, Chris Isakson, Terry Bailey, Alan Meyer, Chuck Doten, Rudy Bachelor
Band # 0001a