1967 Rose Garden – Next Plane To London
Several musicians formed a group named The Blokes in 1964. The group went through some lineup changes, the most noticeable of which was the addition of singer and acoustic guitar player Diana DeRose. The Byrds heavily influenced the group’s music with the sounds of the 12 string guitar played by John Noreen. Bruce Bowdin on drums, William Fleming on bass, and James Groshong on vocals and guitar rounded out the group.
The group changed their name to The Rose Garden when Diana joined the group in 1966, and in 1967 they signed with Atco Records, a division of Atlantic Records. Charlie Greene, Brian Stone, and Pat Pipolo produced their first album. Charlie and Brian were managers and/or producers for Sonny and Cher, Buffalo Springfield, and Bob Lind (Elusive Butterfly). The first release from the album was Next Plane To London. The single reached #17 on the Hot 100 in 1967. That was a great beginning, but it turned into the end as well: the group never charted on the Hot 100 again.
To make the band sound even more like The Byrds, The Rose Garden even included two songs written by Gene Clark of the Byrds, Long Time and Till Today.
They released an EP with four songs from the album (Long Time was one of them). They also released one new single in 1968. With little to show for those efforts, the group broke up. A reformed group with a different line-up surfaced in 1969, but they don’t appear to have left behind any recordings.
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