The Lazy Eggs “I’m a Clown” / “Poor Boys Always Weep” on Enterprise

Today a new contributor, R.D Francis, profiles the Lazy Eggs in the first in a series of articles on Michigan bands.

Fronted by Tom Carson, the Lazy Eggs began in 1960 as TC and the Good Guys, with Gary Praeg, Sam Moceri, Clem Riccobono, Tom Pointe, and Bob Krause. Impressed with their writing and live performances, Carson’s band signed a management contract with Bob Swartz. While they never shared a stage, Swartz also managed the earliest beginnings of Bob Seger’s career with his band, the Last Heard.

Lazy Eggs Enterprise 45 I'm Gonna Love YouAs the Beatlesque the Lazy Eggs, the band released their first single, “I’m Gonna Love You b/w As Long as I Have You” (E-5060; both composed by Riccobono) for Detroit’s Enterprise Records in 1967 (not in 1965 as mistakenly web-cataloged).

Lazy Eggs Enterprise 45 I'm a ClownTheir second single, “I’m a Clown b/w Poor Boys Always Weep,” (E-5085; Praeg composed the A-Side; Moceri the B-Side) appeared shortly after. After the release of their singles, and the departure of lead guitarist Tom Pointe, Ron Koss—noted for touring and recording with Wilson Pickett, Merv Johnson, and Hank Ballard, as well as his Motown session work—joined, remaining with the band until their early 1969 demise.

“I’m a Clown b/w Poor Boys Always Weep” debuted on Ontario’s CKLW-AM “The Big 8” on March 6, 1967. Achieving a minor placing on Detroit’s “Keener 13” WKNR-AM’s Top 40 chart, the single peaked at #28 on CKLW-AM, and at # 15 and #11 on Flint, Michigan’s smaller WTAC 600 AM and Ann Arbor’s WPAG 1050 AM, respectively. The chart success led to WKHM/WKNR’s Robin Seymour (later of CKLW-AM) hosting the band’s performances of both sides during a March 11, 1967, episode of Swingin’ Time airing on CKLW-TV’s Channel 9.

Tom Carson continued to work on stage with Bob “Catfish” Hodge in the Catfish Blues Band. Carson wrote the lyrics for “Catfish” on Get Down, the band’s 1970 debut on Epic.

Pacesetters Correc-Tone 45 The Monkey WhipGary Praeg also gigged on Detroit’s local stages as a member of the R&B flavored the Pacesetters (not to be confused with the West Coast soul group that cut “I’m Gonna Make It b/w What About Me, Baby” in 1968 on New Orleans’ Minit). Also featuring Ron Koss on lead guitar, along with drummer Vin Scalabrino, and future the Rockets’ bassist John Fraga, the Pacesetters – inspired by Major Lance’s chart-topping dance-craze hit, “The Monkey Time” – cut the one-off 45-rpm/7” “The Monkey Whip b/w Around the World” (CT-3476), released on the Detroit-based Correc-Tone on September 14, 1963. (Both sides were written by Motown writer-arranger, William Witherspoon.)

By 1970, Gary Praeg formed Katzenjammer with bassist Angelo Palazzolo and drummer Chris Birg; they became the houseband at Detroit’s Roosterail, the club once hosted Bob Seger’s The Last Heard as its houseband. Katzenjammer recorded no singles.

Tom Carson, along with former Lazy Eggs’ Clem Riccobono and Sam Moceri, founded Detroit’s Fiddlers Music in 1970. Dealing in instrument sales and rentals, as well as recording and releasing private press singles and albums, Fiddlers closed its doors in 1980. Gary Praeg founded Cloudborn Studios in the mid-’70s and recorded light-rock and jazz-influenced albums as Shivers and Dove Grey.

Clem Riccobono passed away in 2014; Sam Moceri and Tom Pointe in 2018.

TC and the Good Guys:
Tom Carson — lead guitar, vocals
Gary Praeg — rhythm guitar, vocals
Sam Moceri — keyboards
Clem Riccobono — bass, vocals
Tom Pointe — guitars (upon Praeg’s departure)
(The drummer is unknown)

The Pacesetters:
Ron Koss — lead guitar
Gary Praeg — rhythm guitar
John Fraga — bass guitar
Vin Scalabrino — drums

The Lazy Eggs:
Tom Carson — rhythm guitar, vocals
Tom Pointe — lead guitar
Sam Moceri — keyboards, vocals
Clem Riccobono — bass, vocals
Bob Krause — drums

Other members:
Ron Koss — lead guitar
Gary Praeg — rhythm guitar, vocals
Angelo Palazzolo — bass
Chris Birg — drums

Note: The single, “My Baby Don’t Care b/w The Hammer Song,” released in 1968 on the Sunspot label—that is oft-compilation and web-cataloged with the Detroit Eggs— is a different Lazy Eggs: one led by Sid Herring; he later formed Watchpocket, a Southern Rock concern with Steve Cropper.

Article written by R.D Francis, August 2022

Lazy Eggs Enterprise 45 Poor Boys Always Weep

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