Hangin' Out with the Mark Four
Special thanks to Jim Patton
A lot of bands during the 1950s and 1960s were called the Mark Four. Some achieved moderate success with their records, other remained obscure acts. Today's Mark Four were a group from California whose two singles for Pacific Challenger became two minor classics in Surf/Garage music.
Four young boys founded the Mark Four in the fall of 1963. The line-up consisted of Rick Whittington on lead guitar, Jerry Ainsworth on rhythm guitar, and David O'Brien on drums. Jim Patton on vocals and sax joined the group soon after. Their manager became Whittington's father, who possibly got them a recording contract later on. Since all of boys were 16 or 17 years old, the band didn't play any clubs but appeared at a lot of sock hops and dances all over southern California. They regularly played the Retail Clerks Union Hall, the Rolldrome, and of course many high schools.
|Mark Four promo picture, 1964. From left to right: Jerry Ainsworth, |
Dave O'Brien, Rick Whittington, Jim Patton
Mahoney had some business connection with Murray Wilson, manager of the Beach Boys (and father of three of them: Dennis, Carl, and Brian). Through Murray's help, the Mark Four opened a Beach Boys concert on February 7, 1964, at the Pavilon Ballroom in Huntington Beach.
The Mark Four lasted for abour one and a half years, disbanding around the end of 1964. Jim Patton went to college and remained friends with Dave O'Brien but lost track of Ainsworth and Whittington. Patton and O'Brien still make some music together and recently produced a demo CD with a selection of their songs.
Pacific Challenger P.C. 1002
Just My Dream (J. Patton Jr.) / Swingin' Hangout (J. Patton Jr.)
A / B
"Produced by: Bob Mahoney"
Pacific Challenger PC 1004
Go Away Now Little Girl () / Forget It Baby (J. Patton, Jr.)
A / B
"Produced by Bob Mahoney"