The McCoys are a group from my high school days that produced a number of songs that are still very listenable and put a smile on my face even today. They were a typical Midwestern garage band that was able to develop some pop sensibilities that allowed them to add a little polish to their music and gain some widespread appeal. They also were led by vocalist and guitarist Rick Zehringer who would later change his name to Derringer and go on to have a stellar career both as a solo artist and as a cohort of Johnny and Edgar Winter.
In July of 1965 they served as the backing band for the Strangeloves who had a hit at the time with “I Want Candy.” The Strangeloves were supposed to record a version of the Vibrations hit, “My Girl Sloopy,” but through a series of events the McCoys recorded the song instead. Issued under the name “Hang On Sloopy,” it quickly sold a million copies and became a number one hit in the United States. It remains an enduring song with its drum introduction and harmonies that weave in and out. It is the official rock song of Ohio State University and is one of the great party songs from the mid-sixties.
The Best Of The McCoys gathers 22 tracks from their time on the Bang label. All the A sides from their single releases plus the better B sides, two unreleased songs, and a few rarities that have not seen the light of day in decades all add up to an album of excellent music that presents a nice slice of the sixties. The bonus is that 21 of the songs are in true stereo. This is the first time I had heard “Hang On Sloopy” given this treatment and it adds a dimension and crispness that improves the quality of the track and others as well.