Influential singing duo starting in the late 1950s
but mainly in the The Sixties
. Almost as important to the surf-pop scene as The Beach Boys
, Jan and Dean made countless songs, some of which are misattributed
to the Beach Boys. They were not rivals; in fact, Brian did backup and co-wrote "Surf City".
Their full names were William Jan Berry and Dean Ormsby
Torrence. They started with the moderately successful "Jennie Lee" in 1958, their first hit with "Baby Talk
" in 1959, and kept singing while going through college at UCLA (unlike the Beach Boys) until Jan was badly injured wrecking his Corvette in 1966, suffering brain damage but retaining his genius-level intelligence, but had a comeback in the early 1970s. Berry died in 2004, but Torrence continues to tour and give interviews. Note: Discography covers only the pre-accident years.
- Jan & Dean (1960)
- Jan & Dean's Golden Hits (1962)
- Jan & Dean Take Linda Surfin' (1963)
- Surf City and Other Swingin' Cities (1963)
- Drag City (1963)
- Dead Man's Curve (1964)
- Ride the Wild Surf (1964)
- Command Performance (1965)
- Pop Symphony (1965)
- Golden Hits (1965)
- Folk & Roll (1965)
- Jan & Dean Meet Batman (1966)
- Concept Album: Although, sadly, almost forgotten today, Jan & Dean Meet Batman was one of rock's earliest examples. Half the record is music inspired by the comic books and the TV show, including a cover of the latter's theme; some lyrics of the songs are taken directly from ""Detective Comics'' #27. The other half details the adventures of "Captain Jan & Dean the Boy Blunder," an Affectionate Parody both of The Silver Age of Comic Books and also of the just-passed Golden Age of Radio. The cuts alternate between type, and as an added bonus, the comedy is funny and the music is catchy.
- Cool Old Lady: They seemed to like this trope "The Little Old Lady from Pasadena" was possibly their most famous, and the apparent follow up "The Anaheim, Azusa & Cucamonga Sewing Circle, Book Review And Timing Association" with a shoutout to the former.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: In the choruses of "Bucket T", they can clearly be heard singing something else that rhymes with "bucket".
- In The Style Of: Frankie Valli And The Four Seasons ("Linda"), The Beach Boys (most of their other hits)
- New Sound Album: Carnival of Sound, a psychedelic Smile-esque album Jan Berry started work on shortly after his accident. Unfortunately, it wasn't released until 2010.
- Teenage Death Songs: "Dead Man's Curve", possibly.