June 15, 2012

Beauregard Ajax - Is Tomorrow Thursday? (1968)

When I attempted to locate information about this group to write up a biography, I couldn’t find much of anything. I was able to figure out that the group was from California, that they only made one album, and that they broke up before it was even released. Luckily for us (and you), I was able to contact the group’s drummer, Leo Hartshorn, and all of the missing gaps came together.

This song is the fifth track from the group’s only album, Deaf Priscilla, which was recorded in 1968. It was my original intention to post their song “Goodbye Again,” but after learning Leo had a penchant for “Is Tomorrow Thursday?,” it only made sense to feature it instead. And now for the exclusive story!

A Special Edition post with Leo Hartshorn from Beauregard Ajax!

Our lucky seventh story! We are proud to present a very entertaining story from the drummer of Beauregard Ajax, Leo Hartshorn! Leo, now a Reverend Doctor, was kind enough to share a great story at great length regarding his time in Beauregard Ajax. You'll all definitely enjoy this one!
A Bit Like You And Me and readers,

I appreciate the contact and that you have enjoyed the Beauregard Ajax album! It took Shaddoks Records in Germany to resurrect our music from some old copied tapes of an album that was recorded in 1968, but never released until some 35 years later! I'm glad another younger generation has gotten the chance to appreciate what we did as young people in the ‘60s.

Here's my story:

My ‘60s rock group, Beauregard Ajax, was originally named "The Dumplings" by our lead singer Charlie Hendrix. Everyone hated that name but him. The group was formed when I was a senior at Hueneme High School in Oxnard/Port Hueneme, California with David Ferguson (singer, guitarist, sonwriter), John Boutell (rhythm guitar, singer), Charlie Hendrix (lead singer, recorder player, songwriter), and myself, Leo Hartshorn (drums). We played local gigs in the Ventura County area with the help of Jim Salzer, a local promoter, with one major gig being with The Byrds at Earl Warren Showgrounds.

Our group moved to LA in 1968 to record the album now entitled Deaf Priscilla (unnamed in '68) at Del-Fi Records near Hollywood and Vine with producer Bob Keane (Richie Valens, Bobby Fuller Four, Frank Zappa, Barry White). We were desperate to play anywhere we could, as long as we got to play our music. We played at some of the traditional ‘60s clubs in LA like Gazzarri's, The Troubador, Whisky-a-Go-Go, and some local concerts. At the time I was only 19 years old and we had to "work around" playing in some of the clubs that served alcohol. Somehow we got set up to play at the Pink Pussycat on the Sunset Strip, which not only had alcohol but also strippers! Needless to say, when they found out that some in our band were underage, we got kicked out of the club. We weren't able to finish but a few songs from our set of music even though the strippers said they liked our music!

Another gig done out of this desperation to simply play our music before a live audience was playing in a shack out in the desert! I don't remember the details, but we were invited to play for a Hells Angels party! I was a bit nervous knowing that fights could break out at any moment. But again, desperation to play took precedence over where and for whom to play or consideration of our own safety. I was hoping to make it out alive and with instruments in one piece! This time we got to play our whole set of music and were graciously treated to barbecued chicken and cordial conversation afterward. One friendly Hells Angel we talked to had his jaw wired shut from a brawl he got into with a rival motorcycle club member! There were no fights during our performance....until later, that is, after we left. We heard there was a big all-out brawl with some rival club members which tore up the party! But we made it out alive!

That was a rather "interesting" part of my young life, particularly considering I have been a Christian minister for the past 40 years!


Rev. Dr. Leo Hartshorn
It certainly sounds like Leo and Beauregard Ajax were having a great time. Was that an entertaining story, or what? I'd like to give a huge thanks to Leo for taking the time to share his memories with A Bit Like You And Me. It was very kind of him!

To visit Leo's blog, check it out here.
To learn about Leo's Drumming for Peace endeavor, which teaches peace through drumming, rhythm, and storytelling, click here.
Lastly, to visit Leo's art page, which I highly recommend, click here.

And now that you've enjoyed this exclusive story, why not check out what other exclusive stories we've received?

album art

Beauregard Ajax - Is Tomorrow Thursday? (1968)

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Working for the Madam; she’s a lady
Thursdays, ahh the work is not too bad
Sundays, take her poodles for a walk
Is tomorrow Thursday at all?

Madam wants the windows cleaned on Friday
Tuesday morning, drive her into town
Coming to her beckon and her call
Is tomorrow Thursday at all?

Take a trip and get away
Laugh until my head begins to sway
Stop the work and start to play
Happens every Thursday

Madam wants the gardens done on Wednesday
Saturday is boring as can be
Take her to the bridge club or the mall
Is tomorrow Thursday at all?

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