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Outcasts of San Antonio “I’m in Pittsburgh (and It’s Raining)” and “1523 Blair”

Outcasts Long Hair San Antonio Express Oct 13, 1966
Buddy Carson and Ricky Wright pressured to cut hair, October, 1966

The Outcasts were one of the top bands in San Antonio, and Texas in general. They cut several fine singles, including two absolute classics, “I’m in Pittsburgh (and It’s Raining)” and “1523 Blair”.

Two members of the band have sites on the band, which I’ve included below. I have found some interesting news clippings to add to their story.

The Outcasts were children of Air Force servicemen. By late 1964 they had become a quintet with:

Jim Carsten – guitar, vocals
Buddy Carson – keyboards, harmonica, vocals
Denny Turner – lead guitar
Jim Ryan – bass
Ricky Wright – drums

In June of 1965 they made their first record, “Nothing Ever Comes easy” / “Oriental Express” recorded at Texas Sound in San Antonio, produced and written by Mike Post, released as Outcast 6865.

The Outcasts with Baby Cakes and the Greenmen, Austin Daily Texan, July 9, 1965
Maj. John Carson was Buddy’s father and early manager of the group. San Antonio Express and News, April 2, 1966

In 1966 they had three singles on Askel. Jim Carsten was their main song-writer. Jim wrote both sides of their first Askel single, “I’m in Pittsburgh (and It’s Raining)” and “The Price of Victory”. It was their best-selling record, supposedly getting airplay on various stations around the country.

Jim Carsten wrote the top side of their next single, “Everyday”, while Carsten and Denny Turner wrote “I’ll Set You Free”, both good original songs. Askel reissued “Everyday” with a great version of “Route 66”. A 45 label I’ve seen has “Buddy is singing” written on the “Route 66” side.

All of their Askel 45s had Ron Newdoll producing, recorded at Accurate Sound Inc in San Antonio, publishing by Sangelo Music BMI.

During two summers when Jim Ryan returned to Oslo, Norway, where his father was stationed, he had two fill-ins, John (surname?) in 1965, and Kurt Linhoff in 1966.

Outcasts at The Casket in Kerrville, Sept. 14, 1967, from the Daily Times

Denny Turner left the band in late 1966, and the Outcasts found Galen Niles of the Pandas, to replace him. Jim Ryan wrote “[Galen] switched to a vintage Les Paul in late ’66 and recorded with us on our last single.”

“1523 Blair” / “Smokestack Lightning” came out in January 1967 on Gallant GT-101. Jim Ryan and Buddy Carson wrote “1523 Blair”, produced by H & H Productions at 243 Southill St in San Antonio.

1523 Blair was the address for Lelan Rogers’ studio in Houston, where the band did some other recordings that were not released at the time.

Outcasts “a smashing success at California’s Hi-Ho Clubs” (did the group actually play in California?) and the Chaynes at the Olmos Club, San Antonio Express Nov. 5, 1966
Outcasts now called the Proof, at New Orleans, October 20, 1967, from the Daily Texan
Outcasts now called the Proof, at The Casket in Kerrville, November 3, 1967, from the Daily Times

In October 1967 at the New Orleans club in Austin, and then in November at The Casket in Kerrville, ads bill the group as “The Proof” (formerly the Outcasts).

One member wrote: “sadly, the group dissolved in a psychedelic haze in 1968”.

Jim Ryan would play with the Swiss Movement, then move to Los Angeles in 1969 for a couple of years.

Galen Niles would join Homer.

The Outcasts story is told in some detail on various members sites, that are remarkably still active as of 2021. The photos unfortunately are mostly very small in size.

Denny Turner’s site has several pages on the Outcasts, try this one and this one.

Jim Ryan’s band page also has info on the Outcasts.

Mike Lowell’s site mikesbandarchive.com has been out of commission for about eight years now but is still partially available on the Internet Archive.

If anyone has better quality photos of the Outcasts, or more info on the members & group, please contact me.

Galen Niles Pandas San Antonio Light, Oct 16, 1966

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Weekly Gems 135

milk. – I Hate the Way You’re Looking at Me (Lately)

milk.

Hot on the heels of The 1975 is Dublin-born alt-pop quartet, milk.. Their bright new offering, ‘I Hate the Way You’re Looking at Me (Lately)’ is full of looping synths, catchy riffs and lulling vocals that immediately lure you in for more.

Sounds like: The 1975, The Japanese House, No Rome

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Benji Lewis – Stay Around

Benji Lewis

Benji Lewis has been busy songwriting during 2020. Written with his new friend Tom Eggert and bonding over their love of home-made smoothies, ‘Stay Around’ is about the progression of love in every subsequent relationship.

Sounds like: The 1975, The Kite String Tangle, Antony Hegarty, Active Child, Gallant, Sam Smith, Solomon Grey, James Blake, Yazz, Jack Garratt, Disclosure, Lauv, Boy In Space, Zachary Knowles

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Asha Gold – Oscar

Asha Gold

UK R&B artist Asha Gold shares new single ‘Oscar’. It’s written about award-winning liars and cheats who deserve to be called out for their deception and good-for-nothing behaviour.

Sounds like: Nakala, Frank Ocean, Rosalia

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Solå – B Mine

Solå

Norwegian songwriter Solå strongly encourages us to value ourselves in new single ‘B Mine’. It’s a hazy piece of electro-pop that perfectly showcases her talent as both a intricate songwriter and performer.

Sounds like: Shura, Dagny, Chvrches, Empress Of, MUNA

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whatshisface – Magic Disaster

whatshisface

Intriguing newcomer whatshisface is on the precipice of jumping into our hearts. His new single ‘Magic Disaster’ is a gloriously melancholic invitation, brimming with dense and warming aesthetics, creating an altogether sweeping atmosphere.

Sounds like: James Blake, George Gretton, Billie Eilish

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Mungbean – Slow Motion

Mungbean

Introducing eclectic Ohio-based outfit Mungbean. Performed as only seasoned performers would, new single ‘Slow Motion’ has layered and heavy synths to accelerate the track’s dreamy and kaleidoscopic intention.

Sounds like: Snarls, The Naked And Famous

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