Lost in all of the Super Bowl hype today is the fact that Sonny Geraci of the Outsiders passed away at the age of 69.
If you have spent any time listening to Oldies radio, you undoubtedly know “Time Won’t Let Me,” the song the band is best known for. The tight playlists of Oldies stations have given many listeners the impression that the band was one of many “one-hit wonders” in the 1960s, since you only hear this one song by the band. Truth be told, they hit the charts four times in 1966 alone.
The story of the Outsiders is, in some ways, like the Oneders in That Thing You Do: local kids make hit record, get to tour with big acts, then go by the wayside. The main difference in the stories, though, is that the Outsiders kept playing. As recently as, oh, 2016, the band was still on the circuit celebrating with nostalgic Boomers. The band did without Geraci for a while, as he split from the group to do the singing for another Oldies radio staple (and a genuine one-hit wonder, although “Life and Breath” did make #52), Climax. Yes, that’s Sonny with the lead on “Precious and Few.”
The Outsiders were versed in the Cleveland R&B scene, which gave them a little musical edge. I think that comes through on this track.
To enjoy “Respectable,” click here. Your local classic hits station probably forgot about it.
3 thoughts on “RIP, Sonny Geraci: The Outsiders, “Respectable” (1966)”
I grew up in Mansfield, Ohio, just down the interstate from Cleveland, and “Time Won’t Let Me” was very popular on AM radio. Besides Sonny’s great singing, the horns really lift that song. R.I.P. Sonny.
WJMK (a/k/a Chicago’s late, great oldies powerhouse Magic 104) actually had this song in rotation, back in the 80s!
Hi James – By the time I got there in ’96, it was gone from the rotation. Shame.