“Just Like Me” is a song which is instantly recognizable to me over four decades after its release. It was a part of my youth and I played the battered old 45 to death back in the day. And it still resides proudly in my record collection.
Paul Revere and singer Mark Lindsay met during the late fifties and formed the Downbeats. By the turn of the decade they had taken the name Paul Revere & The Raiders and later added "featuring Mark Lindsay." In 1961 they released “Like, Long Hair” on the small Gardena Label. This song, based on Rachmaninoff’s “Prelude In C-Sharp Minor,” rose to number 38 on the national charts in The United States and prompted the large Columbia label to sign the group to a contact.
Over the course of the next twelve years Paul Revere & The Raiders would release some of the best pop/rock singles of the era. They were catchy, well crafted, and slickly produced. They were a singles band as their albums did not have the same consistent quality. When you gather their singles output into one place, though, you have an outstanding album and a nice slice of mid-sixties to mid-seventies music.
Collector’s Choice has now assembled the group's sixty-two A and B-sides onto the three-disc set, The Complete Columbia Singles. Included as bonuses are the single they recorded for Chevrolet dealerships “SS396/Corvair Baby” plus a commercial for Pontiac and a special record which came with Mattel’s “Swingy Doll.”
Their memorable hits form the heart of the release. “Just Like Me,” “Kicks,” “Hungry,” “The Great Airplane Strike,” “I Had A Dream” and “Too Much Talk” are sixties pop music at its best.
During the early seventies the group shortened its name to The Raiders and tried to create more serious music. While these attempts were hit or miss, they did produce one of the best singles of the time period. “Indian Reservation (The Lament Of The Cherokee Reservation Indian)” would become their only number one hit, doing so in May of 1971.