2012 Inductees

2012 Inductees


Bloodstone Burlington Express Max Carl Clocks
Cole Tuckey Finnigan & Wood Johnny Isom Krazy Kats
Morningstar Stanley Sheldon Tommy Stephenson Craig
White Clover Stephen Barncard Jack Wesley Routh

Directors Award:
Stephen Barncard

Bob Hapgood Award:
Jack Wesley Routh

Bloodstone, Kansas City

The sweet soul sounds of this r&b group took us on a “Natural High” to Billboard‘s Top 10 in 1973. The group was influential in the “black rock” and funk movements of the 1970s with their many hits, charting 13 songs between 1973 and 1984. Since leaving the charts, they have returned to make their base in KC, where they started out in 1962 as the Sinceres.

Burlington Express

Burlington Express, Topeka

The Burlington Express was one of Topeka’s top bands in the mid to late sixties. Members of the band were Greg Gucker, Blair Honeyman, Eric Larson and Mike West. They left behind some excellent recordings, but they sounded even better live. Lead guitarist Greg Gucker, now known as Greg Hartline, wrote most of their material, but they also covered other songs of the day.

Max Carl
Max Carl Gronenthal, Lawrence

Max Carl Gronenthal is an American rock singer, keyboardist, guitarist and songwriter. His is the current lead singer of the classic rock band Grand Funk Railroad. In addition, he spent several years as the keyboardist and lead singer with 38 Special, for whom he co-wrote and sang the the hit song “Second Chance.” Among his earlier bands was Lawrence’s Fabulous Flippers.

Clocks, Wichita

The Wichita based Clocks arrived on the pop rock scene in 1982, and they almost immediately made an impact on the local music scene. They left us one of the most identifiable songs from that era. The band flourished a bit with the launch of MTV, as their video for “She Looks a Lot Like You” received some decent airplay. It showcased the band’s signature keyboards with a hint of New Wave vibe. Their CBS/Boulevard single and self-titled album both charted nationally.

Cole Tuckey
Cole Tuckey, Lawrence

This band was put together to open Lawrence’s Off The Wall Hall in the fall of 1975. Led by guitarist Allen Weiss and featuring singer/violinist Janet Jameson, the band was soon known for its original songs and exciting live performances. There were a few personnel changes over the years, but whatever the lineup, they never disappointed the crowds that came to their shows. Eventually they broke up with Weiss relocating to California. Jameson, already a 2009 KMHOF inductee with Shooting Star, continues to play with that band, Rock Paper Scissors and Nation in Kansas City.

Finnigan & Wood
Finnigan & Wood, Wichita

Keyboardist Mike Finnigan and guitarist Jerry Wood teamed up in this band back in the 1970s. Their 1972 album, Crazed Hipsters, is considered a Midwest R&B/rock cult classic. In 1973-74, another album was recorded but was ultimately shelved when Blue Thumb Records was sold to Paramount. Wood has passed away, and Finnigan was touring during the induction ceremony; instead, Ray Bagby, the group’s drummer, gathered musicians for a tribute. Among them was Dennis LaPlant, who played with a Finnigan Wood reunion in Wichita and was part of the Jerry Wood Group. He played with them until 1973 and that next year he moved to Los Angeles and joined the Mark Almond Band. The core of the band was from London, England, and played soft rock and jazz. After a while Dennis decided to form another group called the Sass Band, an eleven piece band that played big-band blues music. With this band, in 1977, Dennis went on tour and became the musical director, bandleader, and lead guitarist for the legendary Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, who made such hit songs as “Dancing in the Street,” “Heatwave,” and “Jimmy Mack.” Martha Reeves herself introduced Dennis to her good friend Mary Wells, who was popular from her hit “My Guy.” From there, Dennis played numerous local Los Angeles gigs with the likes of the Coaster, the Drifters, and Mickey Gilley. With many accomplishments under his belt, he decided to tour and landed a job with the world famous Bob Hope’s USO shows. The group played the music for the legendary comic with the funnyman himself, Bob Hope, up front and Dennis, the little boy from Sedalia, on guitar. Together they played for our troops at many Air Force bases throughout the country, and from the Philippines to Guam. Once the tour ended, Dennis went to work on the Jerry Lewis telethons and provided the background music for the various acts. In 1981 Dennis thought he would move back home to Missouri, and settled down in Branson. He quickly became busy playing with a band called the Sliders, who played 1980s rock ’n’ roll covers, and the Ozark Country Jubilee, and Truman Lake Opry, where he played country music hits. Gigging six days and six nights a week, he felt he was pushing himself to the limit, so he came to Kansas City. In 1990 he performed with Hank Williams, Jr. Kansas City Chiefs football great Derrick Thomas (Ole No. 58) had a limousine contract with the PGA tour and wanted Hank to provide the musical entertainment. Derrick knew of Dennis’s agent and hooked him up with Hank. Dennis put together a band, and they all played at Bartle Hall. After the gig, Hank asked Dennis to stay on board and play with him for the next six months. Back in 2010, while in Little Rock, Arkansas, Dennis was at a local venue listening to Bob Marley’s band the Wailers and was asked to come up and play with them on their encore song. Dennis admitted he can’t remember the song as he was in awe of playing with such a fantastic group. These days Dennis owns a recording studio, Sky High Sound Lab, in Sedalia and still frequents Kansas City. He has signed with Sony to produce film soundtracks.

Johnny Isom
Johnny Isom, Kansas City

Johnny Isom, or Johnny I, as he’s known since the mid-eighties, is a true version of the Midwestern Music scene. Johnny did a couple of years in the KC Chiefs band. In the sixties, Johnny put together the Stoned Circus. His current band, the Receders, is a regional favorite.

Krazy Kats
Krazy Kats, Kansas City (Moberly, Mo)

The legendary Krazy Kats were formed on Valentine’s Day 1957, when guitarist Lee Dresser, piano man Willie Craig, and drummer Freddy Fletcher, three Moberly, Missouri high-schoolers, decided they wanted to rock and roll like Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, and the rest of their favorites. Now based in Kansas City, the trio has logged over four thousand gigs together. The group was voted the Best Band in Kansas City in 1991 and was inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame in 1999, and its original songs are included on many U.S. and European compilation albums, marking more than fifty years of rock ’n’ roll.

Morningstar, Kansas City

Morningstar first formed in 1969. The lineup went through many changes over the years. Its recording contract with Columbia/CBS in 1978 produced two albums. The band seemed willing to play for anyone, anywhere. It opened for other bands, and headlined at other venues. In the late 1970s disco was going strong, and punk rock had just started to change the musical landscape. Record companies were dropping acts, so after two albums Morningstar and Columbia/CBS parted ways and Morningstar subsequently disbanded.

Stanley Sheldon
Stanley Sheldon, Ottawa

Stan is a bass guitar player best known for his work with Peter Frampton. He played on Frampton Comes Alive, the biggest selling live album of all time. His most recent collaboration was contributing as co-writer and bass player on Frampton’s 2007 Grammy winning album Fingerprints. He’s also played with Tommy Bolin, Ronin, Warren Zevon and Delbert McClinton. Stan was a part of the 2011 Peter Frampton tour.

Tommy Stephenson
Tommy Stephenson, Ottawa

Tommy Stephenson, a veteran of versions of inducted bands the Blue Things and the Young Raiders, is a keyboardist with fifteen gold multiplatinum CDs to his credit. A part of Tommy Bolin’s Energy and Joe Walsh’s Barnstorm, he has also recorded or toured with such artists as the Eagles, Eric Clapton, Albert King, The Band, Albert Collins, John Lee Hooker, Paul Butterfield, Gary Wright, Poco, Chuck Berry, and many more.

Craig “Twister” Steward, Wichita

Harmonica player Steward played on a couple of Frank Zappa albums and performed live with Zappa’s band as well. Now living back in Wichita, he plays at local clubs and works as the arborist for the city. Hohner Harmonica Company says, “Twister is the Hendrix of the Harp!”

White Clover
White Clover, Topeka

When Phil Ehart’s father retired from the Air Force, the family settled in Topeka where Phil started playing in bands. In 1969 he moved to New Orleans for three months, and then he spent three months in England. After his visa expired he returned to Topeka and formed White Clover. Later Phil added Sarasota’s guitarist/songwriter Kerry Livren to the fold, and White Clover evolved into Kansas.

Stephen Barncard
Stephen Barncard, Kansas City

Stephen Quinn Barncard is an American record producer and sound engineer. He is best known for his work producing rock albums of the 1970s, including the Grateful Dead’s American Beauty and David Crosby’s If I Could Only Remember My Name.

Jack Wesley Routh
Jack Wesley Routh, Kingman

Jack learned to play the guitar at age 13 and soon began performing throughout the Midwest, recording his first record with the band “Robin’s Hoods” in Amarillo, Texas in 1965. At 23 he traveled to Nashville where he met Johnny Cash, who signed him to a songwriting contract. His songs have been recorded by such artist as Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt, Reba McEntire, Tanya Tucker, Karen Brooks, J.C. Crowley, Randy Sharp, Marty Stuart, Kathy Mattea to name a few.