The Rebels (surf band)

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The Rebels (also known as The Rockin' Rebels) were a band from Buffalo, New York, known for their instrumental "Wild Weekend". The original members were Jim and Mick Kipler, Tom Gorman and Paul Balon.

"Wild Weekend"[edit]

"Wild Weekend"
Single by The Rebels
Released 1961 (1961)
Songwriter(s) Tom Shannon, Phil Todaro

"Wild Weekend" was written by Tom Shannon and Phil Todaro and performed as a demo with vocals and music by the Russ Hallet trio. It was for Shannon's WKBW radio show, which needed a theme song for his weekend show at the time. The lyrics were: "Top tunes, news and weather, so glad we can get together . . . on the Tom Shannon show . . . KB radio . . . KB Radio". Now enter the Buffalo Rebels--or Rebels--who asked Shannon to play at a record hop and also asked if they could play his theme song. They did and Shannon and Todaro thought there was something to it. They moved the group to a recording studio in the same building where they had a production office. The record came out locally and was a hit, but since it wasn't on a major label, the song just stopped.

Two years later the track was re-issued on Swan Records (Swan 4125) and reached #8 on the national charts. To avoid confusion with Duane Eddy and his Rebels, the Rebels became the Rockin' Rebels. Swan pressings can be found with either name; the British Stateside pressings had "Rockin'". The band's 1963 LP uses the name "The Rockin' Rebels".

While the instrumental is the best-known version, the original lyrics were, as mentioned above, a promo for the Shannon radio show. Shannon would tweak the lyrics when he moved to WHTT many years later.

NRBQ version[edit]

In 1989, NRBQ recorded a cover version with Shannon-Todaro approved lyrics under the title "It's a Wild Weekend". It was released as the title track to the group's album Wild Weekend.[1]