The Warner Brothers
The name “Warner Brothers” is rarely associated with the American Midwest. But in this case, brothers Larry and Al Warner recycled the iconic name for their own (presumably very local) plans to dominate the entertainment field; from their home base of Peoria, Illinois. As a group, Larry (on keyboards and lead vocals) and Al (guitar) were assisted mainly by Kenny Elam (bass) and Tommy Stovall (drums). Formed in the early ‘60s, the band lasted in one form or another until the mid-seventies.
It was their Alley Oop-style novelty song, “Please Mr. Sullivan”, released on the Chicago-based Destination label in ’65, that broke ‘em in the Windy City. The following year, the Warner Brothers landed briefly on Dunwich Records. One single was the result, a completely deranged raver from Larry Warner titled “Lonely I”, backed with a version of Goffin-King’s “I Won’t Be the Same Without Her” that frankly shreds competing versions.
The Warner Brothers kept busy playing Chicago clubs, hops with WLS deejay Art Roberts, as well as dates as far flung as Las Vegas, New York and Newfoundland. Like so many Dunwich acts, they appeared on the syndicated ‘Upbeat’ TV show out of Cleveland. The Warner Brothers had single releases on at least four other labels. In more recent years, two completely forgotten ’66 Dunwich outtakes, “Oleo Margarine” and the fabulously raunchy “Dirty Ernie”, were discovered in the vaults and finally issued.