4 With Big Noise Hope to Make It Big
By David Gilbert

It was a peaceful, quiet Friday when the front door at 619 W. North St., Hinsdale,  opened and a hard-driving sound interrupted the solitude of the residential scene.

The sound rocked out – “For your love, for your love, I’d to anything…”  ad infinitum.  It was just a regular practice session of a contemporary pop group that calls itself the Changing Tymes. 

The mod-looking group wants to make it big.  “We do not play rock ‘n roll,: said John Hora. The groups leader.  “Our sound is contemporary pop.  Rock ‘n roll went out when the Beatles came in.”

The group believes that the advent of different instruments for rock ‘n roll groups helped to get contemporary pop off the ground.  “The Beatles started the big change in using instruments that had a different sound.  It is a necessity now.  Right now we need experience.  We try to practice every day, either as a group or on our own,” said Hora. 

Hora is the drummer.  Resembling the much screamed about Ringo Star of the Beatles, the 16 year-old sets the hard-driving beat for his cohorts.  They are Marty Nicosia, 18 of 2231 Winnemac St., Chicago, Barry Kopecky, 17 of 434 N. Monroe St., and Scot Robinson, 16 of 115 S. Garfield Ave., both of Hinsdale.

The Changing Tymes have been gaining experience since the group was formed last August.  They have played for fraternity and sorority parties, youth center dances. U.S.O. clubs, and for anyone else who will listen to their sound.

 “We are trying to work strange instruments into our routine,” said Hora.  The group uses a recorder, a baroque wind instrument, a steel drum, and other instruments that have not been associated with the hard-rock sound.

The group believes they are somewhat handicapped when stacked up against some of the well established groups on the pop scene.  “We only have about $5,000 invested in our equipment.  Our objective is to get the biggest, hardest sound that is possible out of four people.”

However, the group’s main sound is delivered with the conventional rock ‘n roll instruments, two electric guitars, an electric bass, and a set of drums.

The group is critical of other groups that have made it big using gimmicks.  “Too many groups today have made it on the gimmick alone and not talent.  Other groups who have not made it big try to duplicate popular recordings sound for sound.”

The Changing Tymes repertoire includes popular tunes, but they make their own arrangements.  All of the members sight-read music. Most of the young members play more than one musical instrument.

Robinson is the most versatile member of the Tymes.  He plays trumpet, piano, recorder, and guitar. “I like to pick up a new instrument and learn to play it.”

Hora is an amateur photographer, collector of old radios, and a peat-time student.  He is studying American problems, public speaking, and journalism.

Robinson also is studying on his own.  He said that he is trying to lean all that he can about “music, comedy, parents, and human problems.  My parents say that they cannot understand me,” the mod-looking, long-haired singer said.  “How they let me make my own decisions and if I go wrong, they will be able to say, I told you so.”

The group believes that to make it big in the recording industry, “you need the br4eak.”  They said that on in every 500 groups in the country makes it with a hit recording.

“Every group has its bag (the thing that it does best).  But we do not rely on our musical ability for financial support,”  Nicosia said.  Each member of the group is preparing for other careers should the big break not come. 

The young musicians said that they would rather play jazz than contemporary pop.  “We al like jazz, but there is not much of a public demand for it,” Robinson said. 

The groups is not relying on commercially written songs to take them to the top.  They are writing their own music, including “She’s Mine,” “Don’t Bug Me,” “Sad Street Comedy,” and “Don’t Worry Baby, I’, Only Dying.”

Robinson has written many of the songs, including the lyrics to the “Gates of Heaven.”

“When you hear those bells above you, And you see those gates before you, Hush, listen closely, you’re about to die.  You are in the gates of Heaven.” 

“I was really depressed when I wrote that one,” he said.  The other members of the group laughed.

 Until their time comes, the Changing Tymes said, they will continue to rev up their amplifiers in Hora’s basement to perfect their sound.  “Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day.”

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