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L.A.'s Greatest

September 04, 1988

In response to Prof. Lee Cronbach's letter charging that Robert Hilburn's "L.A.'s Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Band--Who Is It?" (Aug. 21) was a "whitewash," the professor seems to be confusing "act" with "band."

Sure, T-Bone Walker, Richard Berry, Big Mama Thornton and Bobby Day were great and innovative but they weren't a "band."

Johnny Otis, Joe Liggins and Earth, Wind and Fire are great bands but not primarily rock 'n' roll.

As for Stevie Wonder, Lionel Ritchie and the Crusaders, these are great pop and jazz artists. Save them for some other best-of list.

That leaves Love, the only rock band from L.A. that included two black musicians, who incorporated their blues, soul and jazz influences into what was L.A.'s own version of the Rolling Stones.

As archivist of the band, I'm satisfied that Arthur Lee and Love finally got recognized by Hilburn and Calendar. But I believe pop history will verify the Beach Boys as L.A.'s biggest musical influence on the pop music world.

I hope this closes the Doors on the subject!



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