BB vs KK

The Back Beats

FRONT-BACK: Allan Mason, Drums; Larry Davis, Rhythm; Lee Norman, Lead; Bob Orsell, Bass

It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of Vernon Lee Norman 1940-2021.
Lee played lead guitar and vocals in the Backbeats. Obituary

It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of Timothy Yaquinto 1949-2019.
Tim played rhythm guitar and vocals in the Krypt Kickers. Obituary

It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of Larry Davis 1946-2017
Larry played rhythm guitar and vocals in the Back Beats.

It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of Paul St. Pierre 1947-2015

The audio clip below was aired on WBZT iHeart Media on November 28, 2015. It was Allan Mason's last radio show for the Reach Radio franchise, and was dedicated to Paul St. Pierre. Obituary

It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of James Alan Smith 1948-2006.
Jimmy played lead guitar and vocals in the Krypt Kickers Obituary

Krypt Kickers

LEFT-RIGHT: Allan Mason, Drums; George Christensen, Keyboard; Jimmy Smith, Lead; Bob Orsell, Bass; Tim Yaquinto, Rhythm<

The Krypt Kickers reformed when Dave Bonavitch, a really great jazz drummer decided to leave the group. Since they were all friends the Kickere’s convinced Allan Mason, drummer in the Backbeats to join the group. This happen in 1966, and expanded the groups rock and roll range. According to Tim Yaquinto, “a rock group needs a solid rock drummer.”

One More Thing

When my Granddaughter was eight years old (2003) she was introduced to the Beatles.This is the song she loved the most. When she discovered it was my group… She fell in love with the Beatles forever. Nothing wrong with that. She never knew I sang the wrong words in the song. All I Gotta Do, by the Backbeats. Lee Norman, Lead; Larry Davis Rhythm; Paul St. Pierre, Bass and George Christensen on Keyboard; Allan Mason Drums and Vocal. Recorded in 1982.

Keep on loving the Beatles.

South Florida Rock Bands

It’s all Rock’n Roll to me. If you were in South Florida during the 60’s you’ve heard the Backbeats and the Krypt Kickers. Two prominent rock groups that dominated the club scene, appeared at places including the War Memorial Auditorium, Code 1, PAL, Winterhurst, the Deauville Resort, the Eden Rock, Castaways, Cloverleaf Lanes, Fontainebleau Miami Beach, Tigers Den, and heard on WQAM and WFUN radio. The Backbeats were voted Band of the Year in 1965 and went on to tour the nightclub circuit around the country. Advertisement

Backbeats Make Headlines
During the British Invasion in 1964 the infamous Beatle haircut was the rage. If you were in a Rock group, you had that hairstyle. Of course during schooldays your hair was combed back losing the popular bangs. As the newspaper article points out Paul St. Pierre and Allan Mason did just that. But that wasn't good enough for school officials... They wanted a buzz cut. According to Mason, "We were making a bundle of money, and the hairdo was part of the act." A haircut wasn't on the program, so the end result was suspension. St. Pierre remarked "Get a haircut and lose $480.00 a week? No thanks." That equates to $4,837.91 per week in today's money. Top brand Night Clubs were paying $80.00 a night, per player in 1964.

You Can't Do That: Larry Davis Rhythm guitar and vocal - Lee Norman Lead guitar backup vocal - Paul St. Pierre Bass - Allan Mason Drums and backup vocal.

Side Note: According to Lee Norman: In 1966 The BackBeats auditioned for a gig at the 4 O’clock Club in Miami Beach. Union contracts were signed. The group changed drummers but went on to play the gig anyway. The first night the club owner wasn’t happy with the different sound, and asked for each band members identification. Where’s Mason? It’s his name on the contract. They were released from the contract for obvious reasons. Dennis Potokar was an excellent drummer for the MoJo Men, but the Backbeats had a chemistry that could not be changed. The group broke up, and reformed a year later with a new drummer.
The Backbeats
1962Lee NormanLead GuitarBackBeats197212-7-2021
1962Bob OrsellBass GuitarBackBeats1964
1962Larry DavisRhythm GuitarBackBeats197210-27-2017
1962Allan MasonDrumsBackBeats1966
1963Paul St. PierreBass GuitarBackBeats19728-27-2015
1966Dennis PotokarDrumsBackBeats1966
1967George ChristensenKeyboardBackBeats1967
Krypt Kickers
1964Jimmy SmithLead GuitarKrypt Lickers19679-23-2006
1964Tim YaquintoRhythm GuitarKrypt Kickers19672-17-2019
1964Bob OrsellBass GuitarKrypt Kickers1967
1964George ChristensenKeyboardKrypt Kickers1967
1964Dave BonavitchDrumsKrypt Kickers1966
1966Allan MasonDrumsKrypt Kickers1967