Me and Dem Guys & Rock Island” in ’76-78
Posted with permissions from www.GrandRapidsRocks.com:
Between 1964-1972 Michigan enjoyed probably the most talented/entertaining band ever to come out of the state: Me and Dem Guys.
The group was born in Jackson during 1964 and comprised of 5 players: jan porter (keyboards-vocals), bobby stiles (bass-vocals), frank eimer (guitar-vocals), john jennings(horns-vocals), and lynn riggs (drums). as the band became popular playing club dates throughout michigan they decided they wanted to make records and in 1966 travelled to nashville to cut their first records: “black cloud” (their first hit ), “don’t bug me,” “little sweetheart” and “gone gone gone.”
In 1971 things changed drastically. lead singer keith lost his voice and returned to england, terry decided he’d had enough and returned to kalamazoo, and founding member jan felt he too wanted a break after 7 years on the road.
what now? the band continued! They hired keyboard/vocalist george voss and cut their last record as a five piece: “mr elevator/ seperation” (probably the best thing they ever recorded). but all good things come to an end and in 1972 me and dem guys hung up their well worn rock and roll shoes with keith (who had returned from england)booking their last gig (east grand rapids high school prom).
where are they now? jan lives in california and drives truck for a living. john continues to live and work in jackson as does bobby. frank continues to earn a living playing and singing and lives in manistee. terry lives in kalamazoo still. george the last we heard was playing cruise ships in japan. donny moved to florida to be close to his daughter and works in the automobile leasing business. keith still lives in grand rapids and has been in car sales for 30 years also doing photo, video and voice over work on the side. lynn is also living in g.r. having made his niche in the car business (after some scary health problems he’s okay now ). finally, doug lives in southfield and after a long career with amway now has his business but still keeps his chops up playing weekend gigs.