"Swing Train Twist"
Bobby Wayne's "Swing Train Twist" is a wild, primitive and action-packed rock and roll record. However, it achieved fame to a much lesser extent then similar songs would do in collector circles. Wayne is not to be confused with all the other singers of the same name, including Bobby Wayne who cut a slew of singles for California and Washington based labels. Virtually nothing is known about Wayne, only snippets of info are available.
"Swing Train Twist" was backed by "Twistin' Swing Train", presumably similar to the A side. The record was issued on Bonita Records (Bonita 45-1313) as by "Bobby Wayne and the Swing Trainers", a band that remains in obscurity. It was the year 1962 and rockabilly was dead - even rock'n'roll was vanishing. But Wayne didn't care, his "Swing Train Twist" is a wild rock'n'roll outing with a wild guitar break, a sax solo and outstanding vocals by Wayne. The rhythm section is working well, creating a stomping sound imitating a train very good. At the beginning of the song, Wayne is shouting several West Virginia cities like a conductor, including Charleston, WV.
According to a short Billboard mention in the "Country Music Corner" segment from 1964, the Bonita label just signed C&W artist Bill McDowell, who was the organizer of the "Coonskin Folk Music Festival" in Charleston and a former Rena recording artist. Probably Bonita Records was based in West Virginia, likely in Charleston. No other singles are known to be issued on the label but it seems that the company was active at least from 1962 to 1964.
|Advertising of Wayne's new record and a "Swing Train live show" (Charleston Daily Mail, April 6, 1962)|
Unfortunately, I have no info about his career after 1972. Bobby Wayne died in September 1990.
|Bobby Wayne at WSAI, ca. 1964-1965. Photo comes from cincinnatinews.net.|
|Bobby Wayne at WCBS-FM, ca. 1970. Photo comes from NY Radio Archive.|