The Litter

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The Litter
OriginMinneapolis, Minnesota, United States
Years active1966-1970 (reunions thereafter)
Associated actsThe Victors
The Tabs
Past membersDan Rinaldi
Bill Strandlof
Denny Waite
Jim Kane
Mark Gallagher
Ray Melina
Tom Caplan
Tom Murray
Lonnie Knight
Mike Rowe

The Litter was an American psychedelic and garage rock band, formed in 1966 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. They are best remembered for their 1967 debut single, "Action Woman". The group recorded three albums in the late 1960s before disbanding, but would re-unite in 1990, 1992, and again in 1998, when they recorded a new studio album consisting of both old and new material. All of their Minneapolis recorded material was produced by Warren Kendrick, who owned the Scotty and Warick and Hexagon labels.


Four members of the original lineup, Jim Kane, Bill Strandlof, Denny Waite, and Dan Rinaldi formed the band in 1966 from the remains of two popular Minneapolis bands: The Victors and The Tabs. Tom Murray joined as a result from a successful band audition. Their group name was presented by Jim Kane and accepted over other suggestions like "The Mustys".[1]

Heavily influenced by the bands of the British Invasion, the group recorded their debut single "Action Woman/"A Legal Matter"in late 1966. "Action Woman" proved to be their most impactful single and became a garage rock classic. Bill Strandlof, lead guitarist for the single, was replaced by Tom Caplan just before their debut album Distortions was released in the summer of 1967. Distortions leaned on cover songs, but became a classic that would be re-released when garage rock was revived.

By 1968, the band had shifted to the psychedelic rock scene. Their second album, $100 Fine, included original input from the band and British-influenced cover material. Although the album did not chart nationally, it did chart at number 10 on the Twin Cities chart. Their writer/producer, Warren Kendrick, had developed a method to precisely control the flanging effect (which would eventually become a staple of psychedelic recordings) and he applied it to a cover version of a Procol Harum song, "Kaleidoscope." A highlight for the band that year was their brief appearance in the movie, Medium Cool. Their scene in the movie however, was overdubbed by The Mothers of Invention's song, "Flower Punk". Further work on the soundtrack was also replaced by Frank Zappa tracks. The band, later in the year, turned down offers by Elektra Records and Columbia Records which slowed their progress to the national scene.[2]

In 1969, the band finally signed to a major label. Their third album, Emerge would be released on the ABC Records label and became their most successful to date. It would chart at number 175 on the Billboard 200. However, recording for the album did not include Chaplin or Waite. There were heavier rock tracks on the album. The group would later disband by 1970.

The group would continue to tour with several different lineups sporadically thereafter and released an album of new material in 1998.


  • Jim Kane - bass guitar and moog synthesizer, 1966-1970 & 1990
  • Tom Murray - drums, 1966-1972 & 1992 (born Cleveland, Ohio, 1948)[3]
  • Dan Rinaldi - guitar and vocals - 1966-1972 & 1992 (born Minneapolis, May 1, 1945[3] – June 5, 2015)
  • Bill Strandlof - lead guitar, 1966-1967 (born St Paul, Minnesota, 1946 – March 4, 1995)[3]
  • Denny Waite - organ, blues harmonica, and lead vocals, 1966-1968, 1990-1992, 1995-2012 (born St Paul, April 14, 1948)[3]
  • Tom 'Zippy' Caplan - lead guitar, 1967-1968 & 1990-1992 (born St Paul, August 18, 1946; left to form White Lightning with Woody Woodrich in 1968)[3]
  • Lonnie Knight - lead guitar and vocals, 1968
  • Mark Gallagher - vocals 1968-1970 & 1992 (Mark Patrick Gallagher; March 17, 1948 – February 24, 2009)
  • Ray Melina - lead guitar, 1968-1970
  • Sean Jones - lead guitar, 1970 (Sean Jones aka Jack Stanley Jones aka Sean C. Marshall born October 9, 1948 died February 13, 2011)
  • Jon Sutphen - bass, 1970
  • Casey Macpherson, vocals, 1971-1972
  • Mike Rowe - bass 1971-1972
  • John King - lead guitar 1971 - 1972
  • Woody Woodrich, bass, 1970
  • Mick Stanhope, vocals, 1992
  • Bob Hood - 1992
  • Rick Ottum - 1992
  • Joe Scanlan - drums, 1998-2005
  • Doug Hassman - rhythm and lead guitar, 2005-2007
  • Kenny Carson - rhythm guitar and bass, 2005 and 2012–present




  • Distortions (Warick WM-671-A) 1967
  • $100 Fine (Hexagon 681-S) 1968
  • Emerge (Probe 4504-S) 1968
  • Re-Emerge (Arf! Arf! AA-080) 1999

Compilation appearances[edit]

Live albums[edit]

  • Live at Mirage 1990 (Arf! Arf! AA-79) 1998


  1. ^ "The Litter".
  2. ^ "The Litter". Retrieved March 5, 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e "biomenu". Retrieved 2014-08-23.

External links[edit]