The Rondels

bought a race horse and got a hair transplant… according to Ray that is! He currently spends a lot of time in Florida but before he leaves he always throws a huge holiday party for his friends and family. "This year we got together and actually played a set of many of the songs we used to perform as The Rondels" Lenny fondly recalled. "Lenny Collins played drums once again and his brother Bobby played keyboards while Nicky played bass and I played guitar. We had a ball and we are determined to get together this summer to do a show at a charity fund raiser that one of our friends puts on every year."

Lennie Petze went on to enjoy major success in the record industry as he remembers here: "After the two years at Philips, Smash and Fontana I went to work with Apple Records as Northeast Regional Promotion Manager. After this I went back to a local promotion job handling Electra, Uni and many other labels. In 1970  I was hired by Epic Records and 1 stayed with them for 21 years in many capacities. In 1978 I became Vice President of Epic A&R. In 1980 I took over the Portrait label and in 1982 1 was promoted to Senior Vice-President of Epic/Portrait A&R and stayed there until 1991. During that time I worked with and signed many artists and I also produced many albums, some were big. I have had two of my own labels and currently have a deal with Fontana/Universal. Our first artist will be released in May 2009." Lennie is also currently working on a website for The Rondels (www.therondels.net) where he hopes to have that unreleased material by the band available for listening.

Ray Pizzi too has enjoyed major success in the music business. After he completed his studies at Boston Conservatory he migrated to Los Angeles in 1969 where he became an in-demand session player. By this time he had broadened his musical horizons, largely under the spell of celebrated jazz men such as John Coltrane and David "Fathead" Newman and was inspired by many of his teachers including Ivar Nelson, Irving Kams, Joe Viola, Simon Kovar and Herb Pomeroy. Once he had settled in LA he soon met Henry Mancini and worked for him for 25 years. He also became a specialist in jazz bassoon and Mancini composed Concerto For Jazz Bassoon And Orchestra especially for him in 1981. Among the people he has worked with are Frank Zappa, Dizzy Gillespie, Ravi Shankar, John Williams, Quincy Jones, Lalo Schifrin, Sarah Vaughan, Madonna, Stevie Wonder, Barbara Streisand, Burt Bacharach, Chaka Khan, Woody Herman, Lou Rawls, Nancy Wilson, Horace Silver etc, etc. In fact if you have watched any Hollywood films or TV programs during the past 30 years the chances are that you have heard quite a lot of Ray playing any number of reed instruments to the very highest standard.

Ray is also a witty raconteur, if you have computer access you should check out his You Tube page where he delivers several humorous narratives on a variety of different subjects. You should also visit Ray's own website at www.raypizzi.com where you can listen to both Madness and Oh, Oh, Honey by The Rhythm Rockers as well as most of The Rondels' 45s.

Article written by Dave Burke of Pipeline Magazine www.pipelinemag.co.uk

 

DISCOGRAPHY ~ 45s

THE RHYTHM ROCKERS    
Madness /Oh, Oh, Honey (v)
Square 505
1960
THE RONDELS
 
 
Back Beat No. 1 /Shades Of Green
Amy 825
1961
Satan's Theme / My Prayer
Amy 830
1961
Caldonia / 110 lbs Of Drums
Amy 839
1962
Red Peppers / Flute Salad
Amy 844
1962
Cover Charge / Meet Us At The Peppermint Lounge (v)
Amy 857
1962
Demo Derby (v) / Kathy
Pike (no #)
1964
C'mon Let's Go (v) /Sweetheart (v)
Nota 45-4001
1964
Cause I Love Her (v) / Hey Bo Diddley
Nota 45-4002
1964
THE NORTHERN LITES
 
 
It's A Very Funny Feeling (v) / Enjoy (v)
Philips 40467
1967

 

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