Raspberries – Should I Wait

The Raspberries formed in the early 1970s when Eric Carmen and Jim Bonfanti envisioned a band that would emulate bands such as The Beatles, The Who, and The Beach Boys.

This song came off of the Side 3 album released in 1973. This song…well the way I would describe it is country tinged power pop. It was an odd and cool album cover. It was a die-cut of a  basket of Raspberries, with the group’s name placed on top of the LP sleeve.

Side 3 (Raspberries album) logo.jpg

Three members wrote and sang songs. It wasn’t just Eric Carmen…This song was written and sung by Dave Smalley the bass player. This was their third album and they would end up releasing four studio albums.

The band consisted of Eric Carmen (vocalist/guitarist/bassist/pianist), Wally Bryson (guitarist), Jim Bonfanti (drummer), and Dave Smalley (guitarist/bassist).

Their last appearance as the original lineup was on The Mike Douglas Show in 1974. Shortly after… Bonfanti and Smalley both quit the band to pursue individual music careers. Michael McBride and Scott McCarl replaced them and shortly after Raspberries went on to produce their fourth and final album Starting Over…which yielded what could be their masterpiece… Overnight Sensation.

In 2004, the original four members of the group performed at Cleveland’s House of Blues. This resulted in a 2005 mini-tour. The Raspberries performed at other venues around the United States, with their final concert performance in Cleveland, Ohio at KeyBank State Theatre on December 14th, 2007.

Should I Wait

Don’t you know you’re gonna lose
If you love somebody that don’t love you?
You’ll believe him when he’s untrue
But I can’t bear seein’ him break your heart in two
I’ve let it happen much too long

Should I wait, hopin’ you’ll find out on your own?
It’s me who’s loved you for so long

If he hurts you with his lies
Don’t let it take too long to open your eyes
You’re gonna see through his disguise
But I can’t bear seein’ him break your heart in two
I’m tired of tryin’ to play it cool

Should I wait, hopin’ you’ll find out on your own?
The one you love is just a fool

If I had the chance I’d make you see
When you fall in love how it should be
A love that makes you sad can only turn out bad
So I’ll be hangin’ ’round until you’re free

Don’t you know you’re gonna lose
If you love somebody that don’t love you?
You’ll believe him when he’s untrue
But I can’t bear seein’ him break your heart in two
I’ve let it happen much too long

Should I wait, hopin’ you’ll find out on your own?
It’s me who’s loved you for so long

The Raspberries

A powerpop group from Cleveland Ohio in the early to mid-70s. They were influenced by the Beatles, Small Faces, The Who and The Beach Boys. They had some of the same problems as Badfinger, being too hard for pop and too soft for rock. Badfinger was overall more successful but the Raspberries had some top 40 hits.

“Go All The Way” (1972 #5),  I Wanna Be With You (1972 #16), Lets Pretend (1973 #35), and Overnight Sensation (1975 #18). They were too clean cut for rock fans to embrace. Matching suits and a teenybopper image. Unhip or uncool is what was many critics of that time wrote about them but their songs are melodic and fun.

Most bands have one song that is above the rest of their catalog. Many would probably say the Raspberries best song was Go All The Way but to me, it was Overnight Sensation. That song is their masterpiece. The song tells of the frustrations of trying to have a hit song on the radio with a heavy Who, Beach Boys, and Beatle sound.

After their album “Starting Over” in 1975 they broke up. If they could have stayed around a few more years they may have fit nicely with Cheap Trick, The Cars, The Knack, and Blondie.

Many artists list them as an influence and are fans such as KISS, Courtney Love, and oddly enough Bruce Springsteen and Axl Rose have mentioned them.

John Lennon was a fan of them and was in the studio when they made “Starting Over.”

Eric Carmen had a very successful solo career after the breakup but he stuck with pure pop in his music. He finally got the elusive hits he sang about in Overnight Sensation with All By My Myself, Never Gonna Fall in Love Again, and some songs off of the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. I never thought they were as good as his Raspberries songs.

The Raspberries reunited in 2004 and did a tour. I have watched some video of one of the shows and they were really tight.

If you want to get a cd that covers their career get “The Raspberries Greatest”

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The original members were

Eric Carmen (Volcalist, Guitar, Pianist, Bass)
Dave Smalley (Bass, Guitar)
Wally Bryon (Guitar)
Jim Bonfanti (Drummer)