Apparently, Albert Bouchard began playing drums when he was in the 7th Grade (so about 12-13 years old) at Clayton Central School.

Not long afterwards, he formed a band with his brother Joe and cousins, Teddy Streets, Eddie Bazinet and Steve Lalonde called The Regal Tones (named after a Michigan band who'd had a couple of instrumental hits at the time): "We loved The Royaltones, but that name was taken".

If you have anything to add to this page, please let me ...

Here's Albert's brief summary of the life-cycle of the Regal Tones:

Albert Bouchard

When I was a teen I had a band with my brother Joe, my cousin Teddy Streets, his cousin Eddie Bazinet and another cousin of a cousin, Steve Lalonde, called the Regal Tones. We played gigs almost every weekend and in the summer we would play almost every day.

At some point we decided that we could promote dances ourselves in our barn which was mostly unused, except for our burros, Nellie and Pedro, who just slept in a couple stalls at night and spent most of their days out in the field chasing flies.

We tore out all the inside walls except for the burro's stalls and made a little bandstand, strung up some lights and put a big sign out in front of the house that said "BARN DANCE TONIGHT." It was successful beyond our wildest imagination with kids coming from all over to party in our barn.

After a few years of this we all went our separate ways and the barn dances were no more."

I read a quote once that said by the time of his high school graduation, Albert had played over 500 shows. I've since seen a quote by Albert in which he says the figure was around 400 shows. Until I saw that, I had thought that one day I might be able to present some sort of gig list, but 400-500?

It's clearly a hopeless task - most of those gigs probably didn't have any printed advertising and nobody was keeping track of the gigs being played.

Having said that, I will endeavour to list the very few gigs I do know about, because that's what I do...

So here's the story as I have it so far...

So far as I can tell, if the band started when Albert was 12 or 13, that would place the start of the band's chronology at around 1960 or so.

Although Albert and Joe's dad played some guitar, it was actually their Uncle Bill (Streets) who would seem to have been a pivotal early figure in their musical development:

Albert Bouchard

Uncle Bill was a semi-professional musician who launched Joe and me in our musical careers by teaching us how to play guitar and lending us the equipment that made our first band, the Regal Tones, possible.

His son Ted was a key player in the Regal Tones and our development until we went to college and he went into the service during those Vietnam years, but all of the Streets are gifted.

Musically, the Regal Tones naturally covered a lot of the radio hits of the early 60s - they were quick to spot emerging musical trends as they listened mainly to the Canadian radio stations which were always some months ahead of their American counterparts (such as WOTT, their local Watertown station), so that by the time the next big thing came round, the Regal Tones were already covering it.

In Goldmine#414 (7 June 1996) Joe revealed that they actually started off as a Ventures tribute surf band, which then became a Ventures/Beach Boys copy band before they were swept up by the British invasion, and often found themselves playing gigs full of Beatles songs, complete with Beatles wigs...

Early photos show them all rehearsing inside the family farm, but apparently they were soon "banished" to the barn, and it is that barn, and the attendant barn dances mentioned by Albert above, that would seem to represent "ground zero" for the Regal Tones.

One of the interesting things about Facebook is that you sometimes see people who actually went to some of these barn gigs posting their memories on Joe or Albert's pages, which help provide a flavour of what they must have been like and meant to the youngsters of Clayton and nearby environs. For example:

Lee Crandall

Went to lots of shows at the Bouchard's "amphitheater" (aka, hay barn) in 1964 and 1965.

Jeffery Fults

Still remember Joe playing trumpet to my left and Albert playing timpani off to my right with that big shit eating grin on his face. AWESOME

Anybody willing to admit they remember Albert and Joe's dad running around behind the barn with a flashlight trying to catch kids practicing their "Night Moves"? Lolol

I think I might have a small scar or two left on my butt from mosquito bites from out there. Not in the habit of staring in a mirror at my butt so not positive about that. Lolol. Ah, behind the barn!!!!! If all those bushes could talk!!! Lolol

Ginny Humphrey Jones

I never went behind the barn! I was a goodie two shoe back then!

Louise Cantwell Kelsey

Great memories, got my heart broken at one of those dances at the barn.

Jeanette Thibault Hubbard

How well I remember those barn dances!

Susan Gifford Cencebaugh

I don't think I ever missed one !! One of my favorite things to do as a teenager was to go to the barn dances.

As well as Joe and Albert, there were actually three other Bouchard brothers: Jim, Bill and Pat. Here are some of Jim Bouchard's memories of this heady time:

Jim Bouchard

From a very early age I had this ringing in my ears. I think it was "Wipeout" by the Ventures as played by The Regal Tones.

That was the name of my older brothers' (Albert and Joe) band, and out in the very rural countryside of Northern New York State on the Canadian border in the sixties there wasn't much to be done but do your own thing.

In my family that meant music.

We had a farm and the attendant barn that didn't get used much for barning, so in the summers we fixed it up and had dances where the whole of our little town would come out the barn to gyrate to my brothers' teen versions of the Beatles and the Beach Boys.

The little kids would sell popcorn and soda pop until it was time to go to bed, and hence I would hear the drum solo to "Wipeout" as a lullaby.

Much later on, after first Albert, and then Joe were packed off to College, there was at least one last attempt by one of the remaining brothers to carry on the great "barn dance tonight" tradition:

Bill Bouchard

The oldest memories of my brothers playing were when they were in high school playing in the Regal Tones especially at my dad's farm in our converted barn.

Albert and Joe frequently reminisce about those barn dances as being the start of their careers, but after they had gone off to college, my high school band played one dance at the barn, and so many kids showed up that my dad said no more.

I doubt that my high school band was better than the Regal Tones, but the kids in town had heard from their older siblings about going to the Bouchard dances, so we easily had a bigger crowd than they did. Neither my bandmates nor I made a career in music.

But it wasn't all barn dances - over the next five years, the Regal Tones played scout halls and school discos, proms and parades, gyms and block parties, battle of the bands - in fact, anywhere that would have them - although, their age probably ruled out a number of local venue possibilities - eg Gaslight, Gene's Inn etc...

Here are a couple of links to some photo galleries showing the Regal Tones in action:

Studying these photos, it would seem that maybe their first actual non-barn gig was at the local scout hall, with "Scoutmaster Bert Patterson at the record player" - their guitars seemed bigger than they were!

Their biggest show was at "The Elks Club" in front of a 1000 people!! The photos also document the various styles the band went through, from suits and ties, shiny waistcoats, full Beatles gear and striped Beach Boy shirts...

Possibly one of their most prestigious appearances was on the "Kiddie's Karnival Klub Kartoon Show" with Danny Burgess on WWNY-TV.

This show started in 1958 and actually ran all the way until 1990 under various guises.

Check out their outfits in the photo from the show - whoever suggested that weird get-up was clearly under the influence of some very powerful hallucinogens...

Also on those pages of interest was a Regal Tones business card, containing the following information:

Joe Bouchard - piano & vocal
Eddie Bazinet - lead & bass
Ted Streets - rhythm guitar
Steve LaLonde - sax
Al Bouchard - drums

This suggests that it was Eddie Bazinet who sang the main lead vocals, but Joe is clearly mis-labelled - maybe he started out on piano, but in nearly all photos, he's playing guitar... so far as I know, he also played trumpet...

The business card also helped clear up for me whether the official band name was "The Regal Tones" or "The Regaltones" - many times in adverts from the time you'd see them listed as "The Regaltones" - and that seemed logical as their name was based on "The Royaltones" - but nope... looks like "The Regal Tones" it is/was...

I also noticed a photo labelled "Guest Vocalist Judy Wrape" which was new information so far as I was concerned, so I asked for some further details:

Joe Bouchard

Judy Wrape was a student in Albert's class. She had a very fine voice.

I actually did a duet with her for some classical competition. The judge said she was great.

My comment was something like "he'll have a fine future." ;-)

Albert Bouchard

I met Judy in 9th grade. She sang with us maybe 6 times, usually at the prom gigs.

9th grade - so that'd make Albert about 14 maybe, making the year around 1961 - 1962 or so the start of when they started using Judy on certain gigs...

After around five years of regular gigging around the area, the time came - in September 1965 - "to put away childish things" (for Albert, at least) and he went off to College in Potsdam, leaving the band back at home without a drummer.

I wondered what did they do - did they recruit a new drummer?

Joe Bouchard

No the Regal Tones disbanded. Ted enlisted in the Navy, Steve went off to college.

Ed and I ended up playing in a Rolling Stones/blues cover band called The Clansmen.

I know - terrible name, but a blues band called The Clansmen? I think the humor in it was lost.

After a year I was off to college and playing in bands like The Flames, The Emeralds etc.

However, Albert muddied the water slightly when he said:

Albert Bouchard

When I went away to College, the Regal Tones kept going without me - I was the oldest one in the band - and so I don't know exactly what happened...

So that made me wonder - did they try and carry on for a while, or not?

As you'll see in my pitifully-small gig list, I do have evidence of at least three Regal Tones gigs - one at Halloween and two around Christmas.

It's doubtful whether or not he could have played the Halloween gig, (unless he popped over to Clayton for the evening), but could Albert have played the Christmas gigs with the Regal Tones when he came back for the Christmas holidays?

This begs the further question - was Ted in the Navy at that time and they played without him, or hadn't he gone yet? Presumably Steve was also available as it was the holidays.

The very small list which follows represents the only gigs for which I have dates and evidence they occurred.

If you can help add to this list, please let me know...

Quick Gig Facts
  • The band's first "out of town" gig
Joe Bouchard

Not likely that I can pinpoint this date. But it way before the battle of the bands in '65. More like '63 or '62.

It was upstairs one flight at some union hall, an older building with wooden walls and a rickety stage. One of the organizers said to us young kids "have you ever played a job before?" I said, with complete assurance "Sure, we've played lots of gigs. (Lying like a rug :-;)".

But we played okay, a few people danced, and we had a grand old time. Our first "road gig".

Quick Gig Facts
  • 78th Annual Firemen's Ball

78th Annual Firemen's Ball
Benefit Of Clayton Fire Department
K Of C Hall, Clayton, New York
Music By Tommy Oberton's Orchestra 9 To 1
And Clayton Regal Tones, Popular Teenage Band 8 to 10:30 P.M
Round And Square Dances
Sat., Jan. 19. 1963
Admission $1.00 A Person - Tax Included
Visiting Firemen In Uniform Admitted Free
Dancing from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. Grand March 11 p.m.
Lunches Served 11:00 P.M. To 1 A.M. In K Of C Dining Room

Thousand Islands Sun [Thu 10 Jan 1963]

Lunches served "11:00 P.M. To 1 A.M."??!! Weirdoes... :-)

Joe Bouchard

YEAH, I remember this gig. There were round and square dances... what a hoot! We had to be in bed shortly after 10:30...we'd never made it to 1 AM!!

Only one dollar admission for a night of entertainment. Holy cow!

Quick Gig Facts
  • Saint Patrick's Day dance

Redwood News by Laura Putnam

A successful Saint Patrick's day dance was staged in the Redwood High school gymnasium Saturday evening. The Regal Tones of Clayton supplied the music for the many dancers in the beautifully decorated gym. According to Kenneth Nelson, president of the Redwood P.T.A. who sponsored the affair, $108 was cleared.

Thousand Islands Sun [Thu 21 Mar 1963]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Mortgage Burning Dinner

Mortgage Burning Set For Clayton K of C

Clayton - Emmett Burke of Yonkers, a member of the Knights of Columbus Supreme Board of Directors, will be the featured speaker at Thousand Islands Council's Mortgage Burning Dinner.

Toastmaster for the occasion will be Lorenzo Marsall, chairman of the Northern New York Conference of the Knights of Columbus.

The dinner will take place on Saturday evening, June 8, at the Clayton K. of C. Clubrooms. There will be a social hour from 6 until 7 p. m. The dinner is at 7 and will be followed by dancing in the main hall for the remainder of the evening. Music will be provided by the Regal Tones.

Thousand Islands Sun [Thu 06 Jun 1963]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Block Dance

On Saturday, the Clayton championship outboard races will provide thrills and spills for an exciting July 4 afternoon.

Beginning at 1 p.m., off the village dock at Clayton, about 75 outboard drivers will compete in a closed course race for the coveted trophies to be awarded to the first three places in 10 classes. Many champions from Canada will join their neighbours from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New England in vying for top honors.

Starting at 4 p.m. on the same afternoon, the "Skiing Islanders" will put on their first ski show of the season at Alexandria Bay directly in front of the village waterfront. The show will feature jumping, barefoot skiing kite-flying act and other precision skiing acts.

On Saturday evening, there will be a block dance at Clayton with the Regaltones providing the music.

Syracuse Post Standard [Sat 04 Jul 1964]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Block Party

Along the St Lawrence
ALEXANDRIA BAY - An art show, firemen's dance and band concert are all on the list of weekend activities in the Thousand Islands area.

Friday night a band concert by the Watertown Civic Band directed by "Pinky" Marlette will be in Cape Vincent.

Saturday night is firemen's night in Theresa, featuring a parade at 7 p.m. an auction, ice cream social and band concert.

Also planned for Saturday night is a block dance with music by the Regaltones in Clayton.

A sidewalk art show will be on display Saturday and Sunday at the picket fence on Howell Ave. in Alexandria Bay, off James and Market Sts., sponsored by the chamber of commerce.

Local and area artists works will be on exhibit from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Spectators will be given ballots to judge the paintings. Merchandise prizes will be given for the first three places.

Syracuse Post Standard [Sat 25 Jul 1964]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Wedding Party

I only know about this gig/date thanks to the following post on Joe Bouchard's Facebook page:

Mary Ellen Curtin:
You all played at my wedding September 19th, 1964 in Watertown, I think it was the old Elk's Club on Stone St.

Facebook [21 August 2015]

Quick Gig Facts
  • New Year's Eve Dance

The Morristown Scout Troop will hold a New Year's Eve dance at the Morristown Central School with dancing from 9 to 1 a.m.

Music will be furnished by the Regal Tones. Price of admission 75c. All are invited.

Ogdensburg Journal [Sun 27 Dec 1964]

Quick Gig Facts
  • "Battle Of The Bands" - Heat 1
  • My current best guess is this was The Regal Tones heat - see below...

Although I have dates and line-ups for these Battle of the Bands heats from The Watertown Times, none of them mention The Regal Tones which is problematical as we know they made it to the final on 2nd April!

With that in mind, I've had to try and use logic to try and work the sequence out for these heats and what must have happened.

Here is that logic - if you can help clarify any of these details, please let me know.

My understanding of the following is based on working backwards from the three known finalists, namely "The Titans" vs. "The Regal Tones" vs. "The Triumphs"

Fri 05 March 1965: "Battle Of The Bands" - Heat 1:
"The Playboys" vs. "R.K. & The Casuals" vs. "Reno and the Bismarks"

This heat was advertised in the 4th and 5th March issues of "The Watertown Daily Times" as "1st in a Series of 4 Rock and Roll Contests."

And there's the first problem - four heats were advertised yet we know only three heat winners were in the final, indicating that plans were subsequently changed at a later date.

And the second problem is that none of the above acts made it to the final. So, what happened to the winners of this heat? More on this later.

Fri 12 March 1965: "Battle Of The Bands" - Heat 2:
"The Triumphs" vs "Tommy and the Corvettes" vs "The Electrons"

This heat seems straightforward - the line-up was advertised in the 12th March issue of "The Watertown Daily Times", and we know "The Triumphs" made it through to the final, so that all seems to be in order.

NB: I'm not sure if Albert's future "New Life" bandmate - Terry Bourcy - was in The Triumphs at this stage...

Thu 18 March 1965: This was the date the well known photo of the Regal Tones having won their heat was first printed in the 18 Mar 1965 edition of Alexandria Bay's "Thousand Islands Sun":

PRIZE WINNING MUSIC COMBO - The Regal Tones of the Clayton Central school won first place in a music contest at the Olympic Theatre in Watertown. The group will compete at a later date for the final grand prize with the winners of the coming contest which will also be held at the Olympic Theatre.

Pictured left to right are Ed Bazinet, Joe Bouchard, Al Bouchard, Ted Streets and Steve LaLonde.

Because this was first printed before the 3rd heat, clearly the Regal Tones were in either heats one or two. But which one was it?

On the timing of the publication alone, you'd think it must have been heat 2, otherwise the "Thousand Islands Sun" would have printed it the previous week following the first heat.

However, I don't think that's right and I'll explain why a little later...

Fri 19 March 1965: "Battle Of The Bands" - Heat 3:
"R.K. & The Casuals" vs. "The Mustangs" vs. "The Titans"

This heat was advertised in the 19th March issue of "The Watertown Daily Times" as "3rd in a Series of Rock & Roll Contests".

Right away, you'll spot a problem in the printed line-up: "R.K. & The Casuals" again? Surely not. Didn't they just play in that first heat on 5th March?

There are two possibilites - either "R.K. & The Casuals" played the first heat or this one - not both.

Anyway, we know "The Titans" made it through to the finals.

And what about the 4th heat? The first three were on consecutive Fridays, so you'd expect "Heat 4" to be on Fri 26 Mar 1965. But apparently not.

The Friday 26 Mar 1965 edition of "The Watertown Daily Times" had this info for the Olympic Theatre:

TONITE! Doors Open at 6 P.M.
The W0TT Theatre Party ON STAGE, LIVE COUNTRY MUSIC,
"Bert Pitkins and the Countryaires"
PLUS "The W0TT Good Guys"

So no "Battle of the Bands" heat that Friday... Three heats in total would appear to be it...

Anyway, that represents all the actual info I have so far as the sequence of the heats goes.

You'll possibly have noticed that I currently have The Regal Tones listed as having played Heat 1. Here's why.

There seem to have been only three heats because:

  1. only three heats were advertised
  2. there were only three heat winners ("The Triumphs", "The Titans" and "The Regal Tones") in the Final

Therefore:

  1. "The Triumphs" were Heat 2 - so they must have won that
  2. "The Titans" were Heat 3 - so they must have won that.

That only leaves Heat 1 for The Regal Tones to be able to win, even though they weren't listed in the ads.

Presumably they played in place of "R.K. & The Casuals" who were bumped to Heat 3...?

Quick Gig Facts
  • Battle of Bands: Final [ Regal Tones vs The Triumphs vs The Titans ]

Here's the mention of this gig in the 2 April 1965 edition of "The Watertown Daily Times":

On Stage Tonite At 8:45 P.M. Only
"The Battle Of The Bands Finals" - $100.00 in Prizes
"The Titans" vs. "The Regal Tones" vs. "The Triumphs"
Come and Help Your Favorite Band Win

Joe Bouchard

We won the Battle of Bands. The Triumphs are still smarting about their loss to the small town combo.

Thanks to Bronco Brabant and all our Clayton friends who stood on their seats hootin' and hollerin' into the applause meter. ;-)

And the winning songs were... This Diamond Ring (Al Kooper via Gary Lewis), She Turns Me On (Orig. by Al and Joe) and the show stopper (drum roll, please.....) Johnny B. Goode!

This info regarding "She Turns Me On (Orig. by Al and Joe)" is especially interesting. I'd always assumed they played nothing but covers in The Regal Tones, but here's evidence that they were not only writing their own material at that time, they also had the guts - and self-belief - to include an original song in something so prestigious as The Battle of the Bands final!!

BTW: I'm not sure if this Triumphs line-up contained Terry Bourcy, who later became a band mate of Albert, Buck and Eric Bloom for a few months in The New Life in 1970.

Quick Gig Facts
  • Junior/Senior Prom

King And Queen Candidates

The queen and king candidates for the junior-senior prom, to be held May 14 in Belleville Central school gymnasium, are from left, front: Mary Lee, Wayne Cough, freshmen; second row, Carry Kavanaugh, John Reed, sophomores; third row, Sandra Cobb, Jack Hutchinson, juniors; and back, Carol Hicks, Ken Hast man, seniors.

The theme will be "Sentimental Journey Home" and music will be furnished by Regal Tones of Clayton.

Watertown Daily Times [Sat 08 May 1965]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Clayton Old Home Days Celebration

Old Home Days To Be Clayton Attraction

Clayton - The Clayton Chamber of Commerce has announced its tentative plans for the annual Old Home Days to be held in this village from August 18 to August 22. Registration will be held Wednesday for former residents who return each year to witness this celebration along with the summer visitors and year round inhabitants. The Clayton Central school band will start the festivities by presenting a band concert at 7 p.m.

Thursday will see the opening of the Art Show which will be held daily including Sunday at the Thousand Islands Museum under the direction of Miss Ethel Comins. A first to the north country will be an Antique Boat Show from 9 to 6 under the direction of its conceivers Mr. and Mrs. Allen Youngs. Mr. and Mrs. Youngs, chairman and co-chairman of the event, have lined up several boats and the display will be held at the new Municipal dock.

Mrs. E. C. Vroman is in charge of the Antique Show and Sale which will be held at the new Municipal Building Friday and Saturday. August 20 and 21. This is the first one to be held in the area and 40 dealers have purchased floor space for their displays. One booth will be outfitted as an old country store and Clayton homemakers will donate baked goods to be sold here for the benefit of th Museum, sponsors of the Show and Sale.

The Regaltones, an up and coming teenage combo, will provide music for the block dance to be held Friday at 8 p.m. on John St.

Concluding the old home days will be the Antique Auto show which will be marched by the Clayton Central school band to the New Municipal Building where they will hold the display. Antique auots from the United States and Canada will be participating in this Sunday event. The Clayton Central school band will give a concert during the show.

Thousand Islands Sun [Thu 12 Aug 1965]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Battle of the Bands
  • The Regal Tones and The Clansmen on the same bill!!

Lodge to Hold Battle of Bands As Scout Benefit

Henderson - Bayview Lodge F&AM will sponsor a Shindig - battle of the bands - dance for the benefit of the Henderson Boy Scouts at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Henderson School parking lot.

In case of inclement weather, the dance will be conducted in the school auditorium.

Jim Vickery, a disc jockey of Watertown's Radio Station WOTT will act as emcee. Ten area rock 'n roll bands will compete for cash prizes to be awarded for first, second and third place.

Rock 'n roll groups entered in the competition are Regaltones, Reflections, Clansmen, Majesties, Titans, Whirlpool, Cavaliers, Castaways and the Continentals. Winners will be determined by vote.

Syracuse Post Standard [Sat 28 Aug 1965]

As "F&AM" = Free and Accepted Masons, the "winners will be determined by vote" line can possibly be taken with a pinch of salt :-)

However, the most notable thing about this gig is that both The Regal Tones and The Clansmen were on the same bill!!

See also The Clansmen entry for this gig.

Quick Gig Facts
  • Halloween Dance

Plans Complete For Clayton Halloween Nite

Clayton - Ted Thomas, chief of the Clayton fire department, has announced that plans are complete for the annual Halloween Night in this village sponsored by the Department.

The program will get underway Saturday, Oct. 30, at 6:30 p.m. with a parade. It will form in front of the post office, march up John Street to the Municipal Building for judging and movies. Refreshments and prizes will be given.

Following from 9 to 12 at the Municipal Building a dance will be held for the junior and senior high students. Free admission and refreshments. Music will be the Regal Tones.

In case of inclement weather the program will start at 6:30 at the Municipal Building.

Thousand Islands Sun [Thu 28 Oct 1965]

Right - this is the first of three gigs that shouldn't exist, if the Regal Tones did indeed disband a month earlier when Albert went away to college.

Did Albert return for this gig or did they use a different drummer?

Quick Gig Facts
  • Holiday Dance

Holiday Dance:
Knights of Columbus Hall
Rosiere, N.Y WED., DEC. 29
8 'til 11:30
Music by The Regal Tones
Sponsored by C.Y.O. of Rosiere

Watertown Daily Times [Tue 28 Dec 1965]

Right - this is the second of the three gigs that shouldn't exist, if the Regal Tones did indeed break up three months earlier.

Until I am told to the contrary, I can only assume Albert and Steve were home for Christmas and they decided to "put the band back together" for a no doubt useful cash injection...

But if Ted had already joined up, did he take part - or did they play as a four-piece...?

Quick Gig Facts
  • New Year's Eve Dance

New Years Eve Dance
Rainbow Ranch Presents
"The Regal Tones"
$1.00 Per Person
Big! Round N Square Dance Sat., Jan. 8

Watertown Daily Times [Fri 31 Dec 1965]

The third of the "impossible" Regal Tones gigs - see the previous entry for a possible explanation...

The Rainbow Ranch gig is the last of the original Regal Tones gigs that I know about - if you know of any others, please get in touch.

However, of course, The Regal Tones reunited for three special one-offs in 2006, 2007 and 2009, but it didn't seem appropriate to list them here.

For more information on these reunion shows, visit this Regal Tones Reunion page.

I first heard of the Clansmen when I saw this mention in Goldmine:

During one of the summers, either before or after the Travesty was formed, Albert and Joe both played in another band called the Clansmen, which also included (coincidentally again) Pete Haviland on guitar. By that time, Haviland's regular band was the Lost and Found, with Bloom and Trivers.

"I played in The Clansmen" Joe said. "I was a guitar player in The Clansmen for a while. That was a summer type of thing. That was the bluesey Stones thing, a blues band called The Clansmen. We thought that was cool", he said with a laugh.

However, the following caused me some confusion. First of all, in the Martin Poppoff book, I read this:

Albert Bouchard

When I came home from college to Clayton (in the Summer of 1966), there was a band and I taught the drummer how to play, giving him lessons when I was in high school.

Then I went away to college and played in a college band with Don Roeser and some other things, and I came back during the summer and this drummer who I'd taught to play was moving out of town and his band had all these gigs for the summer so they asked me to join to replace my student - I said "OK" and we played all over Cape Vincent, Alex Bay the whole 1000 Islands area.

And the lead guitar and sometimes lead singer was Peter Haviland - and Peter Haviland said "I have this really good band back at school that I play with during the year - the Lost & Found...

I asked Albert for some more info:

Albert Bouchard

Here's the deal... the band was formed by my cousin George - another cousin - I was saying how everybody's related in my home-town...

They were called The Clansmen... and they were a blues band... and the irony of calling themselves The Clansmen was that they said 'we're like a clan, we're all related'...

When I remarked "Joe was in that too, wasn't he...", Albert replied "No, Joe wasn't in it".

I then told him about the Goldmine quote I mentioned earlier where Joe said he played with The Clansmen:

Albert Bouchard

[Incredulously] He was??!! See I didn't even know that he was in The Clansmen.. [Laughs] Well, he must have been in them at some other point... he might have joined The Clansmen briefly...

My cousin George got into an automobile accident, OK - and George had formed the band with this other cousin, Bill Bazinet...

When I was there (in the band), it was Eddie Bazinet, Bill Bazinet, Peter Haviland, and I was the drummer...

And Pete and Bill sang lead - Bill was an OK musician but nothing great whereas Pete had charisma, he got the girls and we had a great time - we all rode motorcycles...

Albert confirmed that this all took place during the Summer of 1966 and lasted about two months, and then he went back to start his second year at Clarkson where his experiences inspired him to start up a Blues Project tribute band, The Travesty, with Don Roeser.

This seems straightforward on the face of it, but the picture becomes a bit muddied when you factor in Joe's quote above about having a summer gig with The Clansmen. The only Summer time-slot available is this summer of 1966, and that seems to be filled up with the Albert line-up.

Joe can't have been talking about the previous year (1965) because in that summer, the Regal Tones were still a going concern.

Here's how I initially thought the timeline of events went:

  1. Sept 1965: Albert leaves for Clarkson and The Regal Tones disband
  2. The Clansmen are formed out of the remnants and gig until the end of Summer 1966
  3. Sept 1966: Joe leaves for Ithaca and The Clansmen disband

The problem is - as well as the Christmas 1965 Regal Tones gigs I mentioned previously (which wouldn't exist if my timeline was actually correct), I do also have one rogue gig from August 1965 which featured both the Regal Tones and the Clansmen - that one really does muddy the water, and at this moment in time, I can't really explain it...

My presumption must be that this August incarnation was the one Albert's cousin George (Bazinet?) started with the drummer that Albert had earlier taught, and didn't have any actual Bouchard involvement.

Sometime after Albert had left for College, Joe must have joined - but when? - and when did he leave? Because by the time Albert came home for the Summer, Joe seems to have left the Clansmen picture.

So what did Joe do during that Summer of 1966 before he left for Ithaca in September...?

It's all still a bit of a mystery...

The pathetically small list which follows represents the only Clansmen gigs I know about.

If you can help add any other gigs to this list, please let me know...

Quick Gig Facts
  • Battle of the Bands
  • The Regal Tones and The Clansmen on the same bill!!

Lodge to Hold Battle of Bands As Scout Benefit
HENDERSON - Bayview Lodge F&AM will sponsor a Shindig - battle of the bands - dance for the benefit of the Henderson Boy Scouts at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Henderson School parking lot.

In case of inclement weather, the dance will be conducted in the school auditorium.

Jim Vickery, a disc jockey of Watertown's Radio Station WOTT will act as emcee. Ten area rock 'n roll bands will compete for cash prizes to be awarded for first, second and third place.

Rock 'n roll groups entered in the competition are Regaltones, Reflections, Clansmen, Majesties, Titans, Whirlpool, Cavaliers, Castaways and the Continentals. Winners will be determined by vote.

Syracuse Post Standard [Sat 28 Aug 1965]

"Bayview Lodge F&AM" = Bayview Lodge Free and Accepted Masons, so the Battle of the Bands winner was possibly pre-determined :-)

Apart from being sponsored by Freemasons, this Battle of the Bands "shindig" represents a very interesting feature in that both The Regal Tones and The Clansmen were on the same bill!!

The presumption must be that this incarnation of The Clansmen must be the original line-up which included Albert's cousin George and Bill Bazinet.

Or... could there have been two bands playing in the area called "The Clansmen"...? See the final gig entry on this page, the so-called "Mystery gig"...

Joe Bouchard

Now this I do remember. We lost. We had been victorious at the Olympic Theater in Watertown [previously]. I guess we were getting a little cocky.

I figured this would be a snap, but someone beat us to first place. I think we came in third or something.

It was an easily forgettable night, but that's life and a good lesson in it.

But did the Clansmen play?

Joe Bouchard

No I don't think the Clansmen played. Or they did without a Bouchard.

This would possibly have been Albert's last gig before leaving for college. My impression has always been that the Clansmen were formed AFTER Albert left for Clarkson...

But maybe they already existed before that...?

Quick Gig Facts
  • Dance

DANCE
Fri., Nov. 12
8 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.
K. of C. Hall Clayton, NY
Music by "THE CLANSMEN" School Dress
Admission $1.00

Watertown Daily Times [Thu 11 Nov 1965]

See You At The Carleton Cape Vincent, N.Y.
Sunday
All Afternoon Dinner From "Tiny's Kitchen"
Rock with "Rockaday and The Clansmen" 9-1.

Watertown Daily Times [Fri 17 Jun 1966]

I'm really struggling to work out which gigs over the Summer of '66 were played by Albert and which by Joe?

Joe Bouchard

I don't remember this... it must have been an Albert gig.

Quick Gig Facts
  • Keg Party

SATURDAY, DANCE to the romantic styling of the BLUE NOTES from 8-12.
SUNDAY complete menu is served from 12:30 to 8:30.
MONDAY for the over 18's - another great keg party from 9-1. Music by the fabulous Clansmen.
Carleton Hotel
Cape Vincent. N.Y. OL 4-2311

Watertown Daily Times [Fri 05 Aug 1966]

I'll list these as "Albert gigs" for now until I can get more info...

Quick Gig Facts
  • Dance

Dance Tonight
9 to 1
Rockaday And The Clansmen
Sunday
Clambake
2 to 7
Sunset Harbor

Watertown Daily Times [Sat 20 Aug 1966]

Quick Gig Facts
  • Keg Party

Hotel Carleton Cape Vincent, N.Y.
For that good old time and flavor in dining and relaxing it's the Hotel Carleton that's first on The St. Lawrence.
Dancing Tonight to The Blue Notes
Sunday Dining Room Open All Day till 8.30
Monday Keg Party with The Clansmen 9 to 1

Watertown Daily Times [Sat 20 Aug 1966]

Sat 17 Sep 1966
Bands on the Bill
The Clansmen
No other bands on bill"
Send me on this gig
  ?  Dupuis Hotel Dundee New York  
Quick Gig Facts
  • Wedding Reception

Regarding the above, I came across the following report in the Fort Covington Sun:

Miss Glenna Arell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Amos Arell of Fort Covington, became the bride of Floyd Bingham, son of Mr. and Mrs. Wesley Richards of Fort Covington on September 17 at St. Mary's Church in Fort Covington.

Following the ceremony a wedding breakfast was served at Riverside Restaurant in Westville, for the bridal party and immediate families. Rev. Thomas Robillard was an honored guest.

A reception was held from 2 to 6 at Dupuis Hotel in Dundee with music furnished by the Clansmen from Malone.

Fort Covington Sun [Thu 29 Sep 1966]

Could this "Clansmen from Malone" be the same Clansmen as the Clansmen from Clayton?

Further up this page I did highlight a potential anomaly gig which had both the Regal Tones and the Clansmen sharing a 'Battle of the Bands' bill, which would make more sense if there had been a different Clansmen around at the time...

I looked it up - Malone is a little north of Watertown, so it's "in the general area", so that's not out of the question. Would there have been two Clansmen knocking round the same area at the same time?

The date of 17 Sep 1966 is potentially a problem. Was Albert available to play this gig, if it is the same Clansmen? I'm not sure what date in September he would have gone back to Clarkson - maybe he was already back up in Potsdam on this date?

If anyone can help, please let me know...