30 April 2015

Archie-f*cking-MANIA: Part Three

In the year 2035, a film biography of The Archies will become a box-office smash! The million-selling soundtrack of Say Goodbye To Riverdale features musicians who will, in 2037, come together as The New Archies. Under the supervision of producer Bree Spellman (formerly known as Sabrina the Teenage Witch), Garcy Briseño, Donna Dante, Frankie Fujiyama, Mal Hypster, Toby Maxx and Rikki Ninja carry forward The Archies' musical legacy.

The group members will eventually take over production duties from Sabrina.  Garcy, a phenomenally talented vocalist, will leave for a stellar solo career and be replaced in 2047 by Punk rocker Lana Suzuki; Susu is one of the finest guitarists of her generation. Dee Dee and Fuji will quit to embark on successful acting careers; Frankie Fujiyama's replacement will be Donna Dante's husband, future Indian superstar Ramsay Khalid Sharma.

During their twenty year existence, The New Archies will help launch the Riverdale Rock Festival, star in a smash hit Broadway musical, headline four successful concert tours, cause a sensation at Nashville's Grand Ole Opry, and release ten Gold and Platinum albums. All the while, they'll be targeted for destruction by Carmen Serna, a vengeful singing witch that Sabrina will reject for membership in the group!

Yet it isn't Carmen's hexes that tear them apart; internal strife and individual ambitions bring about their demise. Long before that happens, though, The New Archies will have made substantial contributions to . . .


Archie's Musical Legacies
A Pop Art burlesque, staged and directed by
Donny Hampton Jacobs
for Cartoons + Castanets
Archie Andrews
The New Archies
Notorious Nelle Tattlesworth
The Evil Deacon Diamond
Big Mama Bundles
special guest star
Betty Cooper
and introducing
Mix Mistress Hepzibah
with cameo appearances by
Jeff Barry, Anderson Cooper, Ron Dante,
Jean-Emmanuel DuBois, El Vez (The Mexican Elvis),
Bruce Frey, Drake Jensen, PX Milstein,
Laura Pinto and Nero the Dog

Part Three:
Wiggle On Out!
For nearly seven years, Nelle Tattlesworth has been sharpening her poison pen with The New Archies in mind. Finally, in February of 2077, she releases her second scandalous tell-all: Wiggle On Out: Nasty Habits of The New Archies! The new book follows the formula of its predecessor: Wild allegations of sordid sexual misconduct, substance abuse and subliminal homosexual recruitment.  Compared to Pour A Little Sugar On It! the tone of Wiggle On Out is far more nasty and mean-spirited, though.

The self-proclaimed "Truth-Teller" is on safe ground detailing Mal Hypster's numerous indiscretions, but she pushes the envelope much too far! Book reviewers chide Nelle for making fun of Rikki Ninja's Transsexual gender; she sneeringly calls him a "mannish girl".  

She compares Donna Dante to 20th century Congressman Anthony Weiner: "The slutty Riot Grrl rocker is a depraved exhibitionist who obsessively posts anonymous 'beaver' snapshots to the Web."  Notorious Nelle alleges that Dee Dee and her husband, Ramsay Khalid Sharma, are partners in an Internet porn ring!

Lana Suzuki comes in for especially cruel treatment: She's accused of having an incestuous relationship with her late mother, Mama Shelly!  Susu is beside herself with rage; the Black Belt karate expert is bent on pounding her ex-bandmate into a bloody pulp, until Mal Hypster talks her down.


Instead, TV producer Chi arranges for Susu to appear on PBS cable network's'"Nightrider" program. Dee Dee and Ram fly back to the USA from India to support her, as well as defend themselves from Nelle's libelous pornography charges. The gossip queen herself declines to appear.

Flanked by her ex-bandmates, and by her predecessor in the band, Garcy Briseño, Lana Suzuki angrily denounces the incest allegations. "Is there no lie too disgusting for her to tell?" she demands, fighting back tears.  Garcy is livid as well: Wiggle On Out portrays her as a "Lesbian Dracula", stalking underage girls and turning them Gay" with steamy BDSM encounters! 

"Nelle Tattlesworth is a complete fraud," the superstar fumes, "with her Bible bigot talking points about 'deliverance from homosexuality'!" Donna Dante agrees: "Even her name is fake. Lana and I knew her as Penny Abortion, and that wasn't her real name, either! She needs to come out from behind all those false faces and live an authentic life. Once Penny comes clean, maybe she'll stop flinging mud at other people!"

The New Archies' dignified push-back against shameless scandal-mongering turns the public against Notorious Nelle.  Shortly after the telecast, which pulls unusually high ratings, her popular satellite radio show gets cancelled. Jeering picketers greet her as she leaves her penthouse apartment! Wiggle On Out, which only ever flirts with the Top Ten, will fall off the best-selling book list after just three weeks.

Like a whipped dog with its tail between its legs, Nelle Tattlesworth beats a hasty retreat, relocating to France. There she will eventually reclaim her former stage name, record music in a French Goth Pop vein, and co-found a Lesbian porn studio!

Naturally, all the new controversy contributes to Archiemania. Salem Saberhagen's famous Blue Cat label benefits when it reissues 2057's Memphis Streets, the last studio album The New Archies recorded. Salem also licenses and repackages Runaway Love, the only album recorded by Donna Dante's Punk Rock trio Donna + The Motherf*ckers. It features Penny Abortion on drums, a fact that market-savvy Salem (whom Sabrina the Sorceress restored to human form in 2050) exploits to the hilt! When Runaway Love goes Top Five on the Catalog Album charts, and Memphis Streets lands in the Top Twenty, Vox executives can't help but take notice.


However, they have a chartbuster of their own ready to drop: An Archie Andrews solo record that never actually existed. The circumstances that lead to its marketing are even more complicated than those surrounding The New Archies' Sweet Nothin's album. The backstory on how Do It Yourself came to be is told in the memoirs of producer and sound engineer Alan Mayberry. Hepzibah Baumgartner will quote from them at length in her liner notes:

Archie and Veronica moved back to the USA from Italy in 2041, and they settled for awhile in Nashville. In the year 2042, they launched a new label:  Julep Records was intended as an outlet for artists putting a fresh spin on Americana music.  I was a co-owner of Archie Records, but not Julep; from time to time, though, I'd fly down there and help them produce the acts.

Archie was always on the lookout for promising young artists. At a church social in 2044, he heard a family act called Southern Exposure. Marie, Zachary, Raleigh, Nelson and Curtis Spangler (they all had different fathers; "Spangler" was just a stage name) were five talented siblings, very energetic on stage. They reminded him of The Hypsterz, his one-time background vocal group (which included future New Archies member Mal Hypster).

However, unlike The Hypsterz, who merely sang, Southern Exposure impressed him with both instrumental and singing prowess.  He offered them a contract with Julep Records on the spot. The band, which had been around the block a few times, referred him to their mother/manager, Augusta "Big Mama" Bundles. Negotiations with her were hella tough, but a deal was struck . . . or so Archie thought!


Archie and Veronica decided to launch Southern Exposure in a high-profile way: As featured vocalists on an Archie solo album. By then, Archie was 75 years old and could no longer sing, but he still played wicked good lead guitar; dude planned to sit in with the band. 

Southern Exposure brought some original songs written by their mother, but they sucked big-time, and Veronica rejected every one. Archie wouldn't have recorded them in any event; he already had a specific catalog of songs in mind.

Back in the 2010s, Reggie Mantle had raved to us about Don Felipe X. A red-hot Latin music producer, Don Felipe supervised Gino's infamous 2009 album Love 2 Love. Dude wrote Spanish lyrics to many English songs including "Sugar, Sugar en Español". That led to The Archies meeting and befriending the producer, whose real name was PX Milstein.

He dropped by Archie Sound Studios one day, and mentioned that he also composed in English; I asked him to play a few of those tunes for us. When we heard them, we were surprised: his English-language material differed radically from his work in Spanish.  Numbers like "Shack Of Hate", "I Love The Underground" and "Laryngectomy" were highly avant-garde, to say the least.

It wasn't The Archies' kind of material, but Archie himself was blown away by it. I remember him saying: "These tunes are f*cking brilliant!" (Not exactly a model of modesty, Don Felipe declared: "I'm an undiscovered musical genius. What can I say?") Arch especially loved a tune called "Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been (In Love With Me)?" and promised to record it for his next solo album.

Three decades later, he finally got around to cutting that album.  Don Felipe was plenty aggravated by then! Archie was the kind of guy nobody could hold a grudge against, though: He convinced the composer to fly down to Music City and co-write the rest of the album with him. PX Milstein wound up co-producing the sessions with us, too.

WHO IS BIG MAMA BUNDLESBookScanStation-2015-04-26-03-05-25-PM

We recorded at Clampett Studios, which was Veronica's favorite place to cut tracks in Nashville. Those were some of most turbulent dates I've ever been involved with! Roni and Don Felipe were both strong personalities, and they butted heads repeatedly; I got caught in the middle, which was no fun at all.

The Spangler kids objected to some of the song lyrics and flat-out refused to sing them. For his part, Don Felipe felt Southern Exposure weren't skilled enough as musicians to play his music properly. There was a lot of bad feeling in that studio, but Archie was above it all; he stayed focused on his song arrangements. Dude sat behind a partition and played his guitar while everything around him was falling apart!

In the midst of all this turmoil, Big Mama Bundles crashed the session. She saw Don Felipe in the control booth and came totally unglued: B*tch started bellowing like a bull elephant! She dumped all over the songs, the arrangements, and the production values, too. She also complained that Archie's guitar-playing overshadowed the band (and she was right about that). Then Big Mama raised several contractual issues, but clearly, she was most p*ssed off about her songs not being used.

Archie tried to smooth things over, but Roni blew her top and called Big Mama "a buffalo heifer on the rag!"  That's when all work on the record ground to a halt.  Ms. Bundles engaged Tricky Randazzo, the famous entertainment lawyer, and the tracks Southern Exposure had cut got mired in litigation.

Big Mama even sued Don Felipe X:  She claimed to have co-written some of those same lyrics her kids balked at singing!  "PX Milstein and I were lovers," she insisted.  "We wrote those songs together, usually in the throes of passion.  Dude was eating my p*ssy when the lyrics for 'Shy Like Bunny/Bold As F*ck' came to him.  I'm his 'Bunny'!  That song was about me."

It got to be a steaming hot mess!  Archie and Veronica soon washed their hands of it. They turned the session tapes over to Tricky just to be rid of them, all except for Arch's lead guitar tracks. Roni wanted to use them on another record, but there were no more records on the Julep label. The company went under in late 2045, not having scored a single hit.

Fade out, and fade into the year 2076. Archie, Veronica, Don Felipe X and Big Mama Bundles are all deceased. The authorship lawsuit was settled in 2051, (mostly) in PX Milstein's favor.  Since Arch's 2073 death, Andrews estate administrator Marsha Lodge Katzenbaum has been selling off his properties. She offers Archie's 2044 guitar tracks and song arrangements to Vox Sound + Image, which buys them up for an undisclosed amount.

Listening to the tapes, Mix Mistress Hepzibah is beside herself with joy! "It's like finding a lost Jimi Hendrix performance," she tells Vox executives. "Archie discussed that Milstein project with me, and what he wanted to achieve with it musically. Using these tracks and arrangements, I think I can build an album from scratch!  And I know he'd want me to try." When asked who should record the new backing tracks, her answer elicits gasps: "Who better than The New Archies?"

The odds against such a project coming together are enormous, but Hepzi will accomplish the impossible: She secures her longtime icons' assistance in recreating Archie's lost album. While Garcy Briseño and Frankie Fujiyama decline her request, the rest of the band need little persuasion. Summing up their shared attitude, Mal Hypster tells the Mix Mistress: "Paying musical tribute to Archie's memory would be an honor."


The Rock press will report a New Archies studio reunion, but not so! Thousands of miles separate the five band members when they record their parts. Rikki Ninja will work from Grand Prix Studios in Milan, Italy, where he resides; Sharmante (Donna Dante and husband Ramsay Khalid Sharma) will make tracks at Rajah, their home studio in Mumbai, India; and Mal Hypster and Lana Suzuki will collaborate at the group's old stomping ground, Witch Queen Studios in Boston. The finished record is mixed in Salt Lake City by sound engineer Sonny Yin-Bao.

Released in early 2077, Do It Yourself is the only one of Archie's solo albums to feature original material (not counting his soundtrack music for the 2007 action flick Black Belt Smackdown).  Retro movement devotees object strongly to that aspect of it, as well as to the discordant sound of PX Milstein's songs. "Archie, doing Yoko Ono?", one Retro blogger scoffs. "WTF was dude smoking??!!" 

Reviews will be decidedly mixed, with some critics wondering aloud if the album reconstruction was worth it. However, nobody finds fault with the musicianship (Artrocker Magazine calls it "superb"), and avant-garde music lovers will hail Don Felipe X as the gifted composer he always knew he was.

Donna Dante will be one of those singing his praises: "I wish I'd known about PX Milstein when I had my band.  Working on this project was a triple treat for me: I played the kind of cutting-edge music I really dig; I got out from under that damn 'Retro' label, which I never liked; and I recorded an album with Archie, something I'd always wanted to do.  As an artistic statement, Do It Yourself is f*cking awesome!  Archie and Don Felipe X would both be proud of how it turned out." The disc's healthy sales figures would doubtless be to their liking as well; Archie's posthumous solo LP will be his best-selling one.

Vox VSI-7709
Break The China Doll! (Andrews, Milstein)*
Instrumental: Breathless Suicide (Andrews, Milstein)**
October, October (PX Milstein)***
Chinaberry Crack Cocaine (Andrews, Milstein)**
Shack Of Hate (Jones, Milstein)*
I Love The Underground (PX Milstein)***
Yet Not About Us! (Andrews, Milstein)**
Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been In Love With Me? (PX Milstein)**
Yank My Twisted Glare! (Andrews, Milstein)*
Instrumental: Undertow Of Sheila (Andrews, Milstein)
Nothing For Granted (Arce, Hatch, Milstein)***
Sound Of Bitter Tea (Milstein, Stevens)**
Do It Yourself (PX Milstein)*
Instrumental: Laryngectomy (PX Milstein)
Shy Like Bunny/Bold As F*ck! (Andrews, Milstein, Stevens)****
Do It Yourself
with The New Archies
*Lead Vocals by Donna Dante
**Lead Vocals by Mal Hypster
***Lead Vocals by Rikki Ninja
***Trio Vocals by Donna Dante, Mal Hypster + Rikki Ninja
Music Supervision: 
Veronica Lodge-Andrews
A Money Bundles Production
Arranged by Archie The New Archies
Produced by 
Archie, PX Milstein, 
Alan Mayberry
Album Coordinator:
Hepzibah Baumgartner
Recorded @ Clampett Studios, Nashville, Grand Prix Studios, Milan,
Rajah Studios, Mumbai and Witch Queen Studios, Boston
Mixed @ Witch Queen West, Salt Lake City
Sound Engineers: 
Reed Tracy, Corky Clayton, Chan Tolliver + Guy Imbrazzo
Mixing Engineer:
Sonny Yin-Bao

SUGAR RUSHBookScanStation-2015-04-27-09-08-36-AM

It was inevitable that a band specializing in tribute albums would rate a tribute album of its own! That record finally appears in May of 2077: Junk Muzik's Sugar Rush: The Archies Re-Imagined features a mix of established and up-and-coming Pop acts.  Among the highlights are Top Z covering "Glitter And Gold", Riverdale Chainsaw Massacre tearing into "Jump Back, Honey!" and Babylonia with Fruity Greene offering up a languorous interpretation of "Together We Two". 

Kid Chicharrón's brilliant Punksta-Rap remake of "Seventeen Ain't Young" will win (and deserve) a Grammy award! Less appealing are Aqua Phoenix XV, putting an ill-conceived merenguetón spin on "Hip Shaker", Fryz Wit' Dat Shake mangling the lyrics of "Get On The Line," and Gentile Hussy warbling "Sugar, Sugar en Español" in French instead of Spanish! Despite X-rated music videos and an aggressive ad campaign, this CD-DVD will not set the charts on fire.

Junk CDVD-999654
Sugar, Sugar en Français (Barry, Chenault, Kim) - Gentile Hussy
Sunshine (Barry, Bloom) - Changorilla
Who's Your Baby? (Barry, Kim) - Delektables
Hip Shaker (Barry, Greenwich, Spector) - Aqua Phoenix XV
Glitter And Gold (Mann, Weil) - Top Z
Together We Two (Barry, Kim) - Babylonia with Fruity Greene
Jingle Jangle (Barry, Kim) - Klezmadelix
The Grass Will Sing For You (Bruno, Millrose) - Kandyass
Let's Get It On Today! (Adams, Dante) - Swordfish Trumpets
Jump Back, Honey! (Hadda Brooks) - Riverdale Chainsaw Massacre
Get On The Line (Jeff Barry) - Fryz wit' Dat Shake
Seventeen Ain't Young (Jeff Barry) - Kid Chicharrón
Sugar, Sugar (Barry, Kim) - Bratwoman
Sugar Rush
The Archies Re-Imagined
A Stank Junxion Production
Produced and Directed by 
Cecil Junk
Recorded @ The Junkyard, Athens, Georgia
Sound Engineer:
Jupiter Uzby

July of '77 sees the re-marketing of 2031's The Grass Will Sing For You, The Archies' final studio album. Garcy Briseño writes the embarrassingly florid liner notes: "Even though his singing voice was all but gone, Archie's performance of the title track is splendid! It's my all-time favorite of many fabulous recordings he made." 

Veronica's nude sleeve photos were scandalous 45 years earlier. They still raise fundamentalist hackles, but outside Right Wing circles, the geriatric nudity barely generates comment.  One of the few objections appears on a teen website called Young Diva, whose Archies-loving editor laments the then-sixty-something group's decision to display "their sagging asses, elongated nut bags and droopy t*tties!  That's just nasty." 

Mix Mistress Hepzibah finds a wealth of alternate takes to program as bonus tracks, and she's gratified when her triple-disc package débuts in the Catalog Top Ten! Sales for Grass taper off rather quickly, though, and that makes Vox reconsider its next scheduled reissue: The complete studio sessions for Jughead's only vocal solo album.  Outtakes from Tout Ce Qu'Ils Dirent De Moi include Archies tracks like the popular rarity "Fire! Baby, I'm On Fire."  This elaborate package of mostly French-language masters and remixes gets shelved indefinitely; forty years later, it will win both critical acclaim and healthy sales.

Back in Europe, The New Archies Extended Play Collection will drop in time for Christmas 2077. Originally available as CD downloads, all three of the band's extended play albums are presented in vinyl format with downloadable artwork. 

A fourth EP included in the package generates much fan excitement: From the The New Archies' penultimate recording session in 2053, Vox Benelux will compile an EP of Bobby Sherman cover songs; they seem to have been intended for an aborted tribute album.  The group decides to break up shortly after these Reggae and Punk-styled remakes are cut.

Vox Benelux VBX-1112
Little Woman (Danny Janssen)*
The Drum (Alan O’Day)**
Easy Come, Easy Go (Hilderbrand, Keller)***
(La-La-La) If I Had You (Danny Janssen)*
Julie, Do Ya Love Me? (Tom Bahler)**
Hey, Mister Sun! (Danny Janssen)***
Hey, Mister Sun!
The New Archies Rock Bobby Sherman
*Lead Vocals by Mal Hypster
**Lead Vocals by Rikki Ninja
***Duet Vocals by Mal Hypster + Rikki Ninja
Arranged by The New Archies
Conducted by Ramsay Khalid Sharma
Produced by Lana Suzuki
Recorded @ The Mad Groovy Pad, Cambridge
Remix Engineer:
Sonny Yin-Bao
from The New Archies Extended Play Collection

North American Vox will have a Christmas present for Kevin Keller fans: A reissue of his first Heavy Metal album, All Fired Up! The track list includes "My Clone Sleeps Alone", the fastest-selling single of the year 2012. An enclosed picture book of the Archies' 2030-33 lead singer features many beefcake photos; it will arguably be as prized as Kevin's music!

Speaking of shirtless snapshots: Veronica Lodge-Andrews' Honeychild will hit retail bookshelves in October of 2077.  It's a collection of private candids of her photogenic husband, taken prior to her untimely death in 2054.  Although hella pricey @ $125 a copy, the folio-sized hardback makes it onto many a holiday gift list.


In January of 2078, production will begin in London on a remake of Say Goodbye To Riverdale. Unlike the original 2037 Archies biopic, this new version will star the cream of Hollywood acting talent: Heading the stellar cast are Cherokee Wayans, Libido St. Croix and Soon-Soon Baba Yates as Archie.  Academy Award-winner Bruce Frey will direct.  "Years ago, I worked with Donna Dante of The New Archies," he laughs, "so technically, this won't be my first Archies project!" 

The earlier film got a critical drubbing, but it cleaned up big-time at the box office!  Unfortunately, the opposite will be true of the remake. When released in September of 2078, the clever musical comedy will play to half-empty theatres; its soundtrack album tanks as well.  This public indifference will signal the beginning of Archiemania's end.

Vox's repackaging of The Archies' 2008 Éxitos en Español LP will fare better commercially although, just as was the case on its initial release, sales are strongest in Latin America. Salem Saberhagen will still be on a roll: His second New Archies reissue on Blue Cat Records nearly matches the success of his first! Brisk sales for 2057's Jamz On The Hatch Shell (a document of the group's farewell concert) will convince Vox executives to try again with one more domestic New Archies release.

They strike gold: The final North American New Archies reissue will outsell all the others combined. 2078's Bree Spellman Sessions focuses on the group's excellent output under the supervision of Witch Queen Studios' famous founder. 

Sabrina Spellman's mysterious disappearance in the year 2052 will give her a tragic mystique à la Amelia Earhart, but that's not the main reason collectors covet her production work. Bree will be one of, if not the most, successful female record producers of the 21st century! Her esteemed reputation stems not only from the popular recording studio franchise she'll own, but from the dozens of charting movie soundtracks she'll arrange and/or produce.  Bree will also be in demand as a Pop producer, scoring hits with mostly female vocalists like Ariana Grande, Dope Jingling Baby and Go Go Manischevitz. The New Archies will be the most commercial of a handful of Rock bands she works with.

Mix Mistress Hepzibah will spread 55 of Bree's productions over five vinyl LPs; among that number are rare solo singles by Mal Hypster, Garcy Briseño and Donna Dante, plus ten previously-unreleased group gems:

Gloria (Bigazzi, Tozzi, Veitch) featuring Garcy Briseño
Imagination (Boddicker, Hey, Ramone, Sembello) featuring Garcy Briseño
Garcy will remake these two Laura Branigan originals in 2036, prior to The New Archies' formation. Bree Spellman intends them as Sides A and B of a début single for her.

Sound Your Funky Horn (Casey, Finch) featuring Mal Hypster
This early Disco song was a longtime staple of New Archies live performances.  Mal Hypster sings the studio version much like Rikki Ninja sang it on stage, but it hasn't got the same spark. Taped in 2037 when The New Archies are still serving as house band for Witch Queen Studios, "Funky Horn" is one of their earliest recordings.

Right Back To Where We Started From (Edwards, Tubbs) 
featuring Donna Dante
Yes, it's the 1975 Maxine Nightingale oldie, from a recording session that takes place in the summer of 2038. Garcy Briseño and Donna Dante will compete for lead vocal duties; Bree gives Dee Dee the nod.

Doin' The Jerk (Scott Walker) featuring Mal Hypster
You're All Around Me (Duncan, Walker) featuring Mal Hypster
Here are a pair of Scott Walker compositions, graced by Garcy Briseño's flamenco-influenced lead guitar. In late 2039, The New Archies will cut these Walker Brothers songs for a British TV tribute that never gets off the ground.


Get Together (Chet Powers) 
featuring Donna Dante, Mal Hypster + Garcy Briseño
The quintessential Summer of Love song, much-recorded but best remembered in its hit version by The Youngbloods. With Spanish lyrics, "Get Together" will become "Como una Sonrisa" and appear on Garcy's 2045 album of the same title. It makes a lovely bolero, but this earlier trio version in English, an outtake from the 2039 Family Of Man sessions, is the keeper.

Neil Sedaka Medley:
(Greenfield, Sedaka)/(Grossman, Sedaka)
featuring Mal Hypster
Although they'll be recorded at the same late 2040 session, this pair of Neil Sedaka obscurities aren't cut as a medley. On a whim, Hepzibah Baumgarter will mix them circuit party-style and come up with something special.  Vox Benelux presses up promo copies, distributes them to club deejays in Europe and scores a surprise underground hit!  Hepzi's remix is a fabulous showcase for the renowned harmony singing of Garcy, Dee Dee and Chi (otherwise known as The Magic Circle).

The Only One For You (Carter, Harvey, Valentine) featuring Donna Dante
Co-written by Country star Carlene Carter, "Only One" first appeared on the Go Go's 1984 album Talk Show. Soon after cutting the lead vocal, Dee Dee will quit The New Archies for the first time. Consider this unreleased 2041 track a warm-up for the blazing Punk Rock sound of her band, Donna + The Motherf*ckers!

Everything's Wrong! (Alfred, Farrell) featuring Rikki Ninja
This Motown-ish Northern Soul stomper, one of Bree Spellman's favorites, was originally cut by Chubby Checker. With Dee Dee now gone, she allows Ninja a rare lead vocal; dude shares the spotlight with Toby Maxx, who lays down one of his finest sax solos. At this aborted singles session which takes place in early 2041, creative differences erupt between Bree and the band. The following month, Nero the Dog will take over as producer for The New Archies.

Nero's fondly remembered début LP, Paw-Prince, gets re-marketed in late fall of 2078. Long before the wonder poodle did A & R work with The New Archies, he pursued a solo career in dance music. His appropriately bawdy 2015 tribute to Funk/Rock icon Prince was his most successful; it featured The Bettys as his backing musicians. Nero's owner, guitarist Jonniemae Trouten, and his future boss Bree Spellman were both members of that band.

RKO/Disney will pull out all the stops for their CD/DVD reissue: Nearly three hours of music, including studio outtakes, demo versions and club remixes, plus a third disc collecting all of Nero's early music videos! A huge media sensation when first released, Paw-Prince won't generate nearly as much excitement in the late 21st century; however, animal lovers will snap up enough copies to make it the year's top Catalog album.


Archiemania will extend into the early 2080s, but Vox's reissue campaign comes to an end in 2079. The label's final Archies release truly embodies the spirit of the Retro movement: Big Noise From Riverdale harkens all the way back to the 1940s, with a carrying case designed to look like a vintage portable radio. Retromaniacs will salivate over the contents: Twelve vinyl singles, all mixed to quad-stereo sound, that play 18 of the Archies' most popular single and album cuts. The remaining sides play 6 rare tracks, all previously unreleased in North America and all exceptionally good:

Let Yourself Go! (Joy Johnston) featuring Jughead
Recorded in 2001 @ The Capitol Records Tower, Hollywood, when The Archies were still searching for a producer to replace Carole King.  This Elvis Presley movie song was produced by none other than Robert López, The Mexican Elvis!  While the group was impressed with this track, El Vez rubbed Reggie Mantle entirely the wrong way.  Gino badly wanted to sing lead on "Let Yourself Go", but señor gave him a rude thumbs-down: "Your Elvis impersonations suck, dude!"  Fur started flying, and it soon became clear that the two could never work together.

Niki Hoeky (Ford, Vegas) featuring Betty Cooper
As Betty later confirmed, "Niki Hoeky" was recorded in 2002 in Puerto Rico, a few months before The Archies cut their first million-selling Country album. Produced by Ralfi Chingas, this is a different take from the one heard on Archie On The Bayou . . .

Fire! Baby, I’m On Fire (Andy Kim) featuring Archie Andrews
Recorded in 2010 @ Pathè/Grosvenor Studios, Marseilles, a month after Archie's solo recording sessions with Burt Bacharach. The record was produced by Jean-Emmanuel de Luxe specifically for the French market; however, Pathé Records' CEO Claude Canaille refused to release it! He later gave the song to Plastic Salopard, a Funk Punk band he'd just signed. They covered it, copying The Archies' arrangement note for note, and "Fire!" became a big hit for them. Veronica discovered that Le Canaille was shagging Simone Salopard, the group's lead singer, and had wanted the tune for her all along! Furious, she dialed a long-distance number from her late father's smartphone Rolodex. The following day, Monsieur Claude suddenly resigned from Pathé Records, and dude never worked in the music industry again . . .


Where Are We Going? (Lane, Linde) featuring Reggie Mantle
Recorded in 2012 @ Chapel Of Rock, Santa Barbara, just before Gino (that's Reggie) left the group to launch a solo career with Mexican singer/songwriter Olga San Quentín. Produced by Ralfi Chingas + Dilton Doiley Briseño . . .

Rock It! (Goetzman, Piccirillo) featuring Veronica
Recorded in 2013 @ Spanish Eddie's Bar + Grill during an aborted 

singles session. An earlier version, cut at The Archies' first studio 

session with Ralfi Chingas, was released in 2012 on a 

Christmas Fan Club single.

Produced by Ralfi Chingas + Johnniemae . . .

Go All The Way (Eric Carmen) featuring Kevin Keller
Recorded in 2033 @ Archie Sound Studios during The Archies' final recording session. It's one of four unreleased songs produced by the group with their sound engineer, Alan Mayberry.  

Big Noise From Riverdale is actually Hepzibah Baumgarter's first Archies compilation:  It will have originally appeared in India thirteen years earlier, formatted as a vinyl two-record set.  Hepzi and Archie produce the multi-disc version together, but Arch begs off any production credit.  Mal Hypster will pen liner notes for the box:

The Archies didn't have any political agendas in mind when they devoted themselves to reviving 20th century Rock 'n' Roll standards. They just wanted to record and perform oldies that they loved! They've been credited with founding the Retro movement, something that always confounded Archie Andrews.

'That was something that started years after we broke up,' he told me. 'We didn't anticipate Retro, and we were never a part of it.' Yet when you listen to sublime performances like Kevin Keller singing The Raspberries' 1972 smash "Go All The Way", Jughead rocking out to "Let Yourself Go" (one of Elvis Presley's finest movie songs), or Betty lighting a fire under PJ Proby's 1967 hit "Niki Hoeky", it's obvious that their voices and vintage Pop music were a match made in Heaven!

The Archies made the classic Rock songbook sound so damn good, and were so successful at interpreting it, other musicians couldn't help but want to follow in their footsteps. Retro bands became all but inevitable.


Legendary Rock chronicle Crawdaddy will declare: "Vox has saved its best Archies reissue for last!" Big Noise From Riverdale goes Top Twenty Catalog and becomes an instant collector's item; but the Vox reissues that follow it into the marketplace barely break even in sales. 2079's bumper crop includes Get It On Today! an outtake-laden repackaging of The Archies' 2006 psychedelic LP, entirely written by Ron Dante; Hot, Sweet And Live!, the group's first live-in-concert album from 2004; 2014's Toni Topaz Album, produced by Jeff Barry, with backing music by The Bettys; and Say Goodbye To Riverdale, The Bettys' début download from 2015, another Jeff Barry production. 

The latter two albums are treasure troves of 1960s-era Girlpop, but collectors will greet them with indifference.  By '79, the public's appetite for everything Archie is sated: The music press gleefully declares Archiemania dead!

Vox delays and then cancels its final Archies reissue, Like A Rolling Stone: The Archies Get Stoned! The group's 2003 tribute to the world's greatest Rock 'n' Roll band will remain their rarest and most collectible LP. Although bootlegs proliferate, the original album master will never be repackaged; an irate Rolling Stones fan will destroy it in 2091!  Later in that decade, the session tapes mysteriously vanish.

At a much-publicized Kansas City event that turns disastrous, the cadaver of Archiemania will be "cremated". Officiating at the cremation is Diamond Faws, the mysterious "Deacon" who attempts to picket Archie's funeral in 2053; six years later, he's become the latest in a long line of fire-and-brimstone celebrity evangelists.

Dude is the younger brother of Tara Nation Faws, a meth addict and kidnapper who, at one time, was The New Archies' remix producer! "Archiemania opened the door to sin on a massive scale," Deacon Diamond will declare, "to substance abuse, and abortion, and homosexuality! Join me on 31 August 2079 to close that door forever!"


A giant oven will be set up inside Kansas City's Sprint Center and fired up full blast! As hundreds of Bible fundamentalists and Retro-Rock-hating townies roar their approval, Deacon Diamond will feed the flame with bundles of Archies and New Archies records. "Burn, Archie, burn!" The Deacon screams, maybe one time too many: That oven is going to overheat and explode, forcing the assemblage to flee for their lives! Sprint Center burns to the ground, but miraculously, there'll be no serious injuries.  Diamond Faws will proclaim "a sign from God", but (much) later, it will emerge that he and his acolytes staged the fire to generate publicity for his ministry! 

Among the Deacon's cult-like entourage of celibates is none other than Frankie Fujiyama, a founding member of The New Archies.  When his ex-bandmates learn of their horndog drummer's conversion to fundie religion, they'll be shocked speechless!  All but Rikki Ninja, that is. "What cheese is to mice, that's what p*ssy was to Fuji", he'll quip. "Dude is celibate?  WTF?  Something is wrong with this picture!"


One solitary Archies-related release will appear in the year 2080: A Soundstage label reissue of Don't Touch My Guitar! It's the long-out-of-print cast album of a 2040 musical which starred The New Archies; they portrayed a multi-racial, 1950s version of their predecessors. So, just like the 2069 Archiemania album did, the last gasp of Archies nostalgia combines the new group's music with that of the original group.  It seems fitting.

Among the handful of showtune lovers who buy the reissue will be a young woman named Kymala Chesney Salazar. The cast album leaves a deep impression on her and has a major impact on her future career as a theatre director. Kymala will shepherd the 2110 revival of Don't Touch My Guitar! through all fifteen of its years on Broadway; the show will tie A Chorus Line on the list of longest-running Broadway productions.

Playing the role of Pop Tate from 2119-2121 will be Elijah Baumgartner, son of Hepzibah Baumgartner and Archie Andrews. "I know these Archies songs like the back of my hand," he admits to playbill.com. When asked if he ever tires of hearing them, he'll exclaim: "Oy gevalt! Never! Are you crazy? It's some of my dad's best music. When I hear it playing on stage every night, I actually feel his presence. I can sense that my father is proud of me, too . . . I hope he knows how damn proud I am of him."



Before there was Archie-f*cking-MANIA! there was 
"Say Goodbye To Riverdale", the secret history of Archie Records, and "Mama Can't Buy You Love", the fascinating saga of Sabrina + The New Archies! Take a mad groovy trip back to the future, and get the complete 411!