Mariana, Florida

L-R: Terry Sirmans drums; George Boyer sax and guitar; Al taylor vocals and rhythem guitar; Carey Strickland lead guitar; and Jim Irwin Bass guitar and vocals.

The original Dynamics from Marianna, Florida, evolved from a band known simply as the Al Taylor Band, named such by the Social Director for the Chipola Junior College Student Government Association. The name came about as a last minute necessity to identify the group on a contract for a student dance at CJC in March of 1961. This first group had only two of the final five members - those two being Al Taylor (lead guitarist and vocalist) and Terry Sirmans (drummer). Completing the band’s roster in March, 1961, was a rhythm guitarist named Frank Kozel and a trumpet player named Jimmy Harley (who only played on a couple of tunes - one being the number 1 hit at the time, "Wonderland By Night“). 
Over the next three years, members came and went. Finding dedicated and skilled musicians in and around Marianna was not easy in these years. Al actually ended up having to teach chords to the rhythm guitar players and bass parts to the bass players. This turned out to be a great investment of Al's time because these members became much better on the instruments than Al ever was.
The final core four members in the band when the name the “Dynamics” was chosen was as follows: Al Taylor - vocalist and guitarist (sometimes still lead guitar, but usually rhythm), Terry Sirmans - drummer, Carey Strickland - lead guitarist, and Jim Irwin - bass guitarist. Later a fifth member was added - George Boyer (from Port St. Joe, Florida) who played sax on some tunes and rhythm guitar on songs that had no sax parts. As the skill level of the other guitarists increased, Al eventually focused strictly on vocals with only an occasional turn on guitar. The Dynamics played at high school dances and proms, college fraternities (such as University of Alabama, Florida State, etc.), student nurses dances as far away as in Atlanta, and to full houses at numerous popular nightclubs, the best known being The Old Dutch Inn at Panama City Beach and Chuck and Eddies outside of Chipley, Florida. One particular highlight for the band which illustrates the Dynamic‘s popularity at the time was they were chosen to headline a production at the Municipal Auditorium in Panama City, Florida. Opening the show, the Dynamics were billed as “The Group with the Beatle Sound” which lead to the audience being packed full  with awe-stricken, screaming teenage girls (note - likely a result of the fact that the show took place almost immediately after the Beatles had their first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show). The real noteworthy part of the evening was that the Dynamics actually stole the show from the a well-established Rockabilly recording star from Nashville - Bob Luman. The Dynamics were called back for two encores, whereas Luman kind of fizzled out on that particular night (not so much a reflection on Luman, but in large part because of the pick-up band the promoter found for him - some rather lousy local C&W musicians). Looking back now, it is ironic that Luman achieved much success before his untimely death at age 42, and is now a member of the Rockabilly Hall of Fame with numerous successful records to his credit; whereas the Dynamics who literally blew him away that night are basically unknowns in present music circles (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/

Bob_Luman for additional info on Bob) At the peak of the Dynamics popularity, they began to be noticed by many up and coming folks in the 1960’s music world. First and probably best known was a big-time recording artist out of Dothan, Alabama, Bobby Goldsboro.  Bobby and Al had grown up together in Marianna almost as brothers since their mothers were sisters and there was only 11 months difference in their ages. Actually when Bobby started playing his first musical instrument, a ukulele, Al had to have one - ditto a guitar - and then after Bobby moved from Marianna and started his first band (the Webbs) in Dothan, Al formed his first band in Marianna. Such is the competitive spirit found between brothers (well, almost brothers). Even after he had his first top ten hit “Funny Little Clown”, Bobby would come to the Dynamics band practices in Marianna and lend advice. Likewise, Bobby even went to Panama City with Al when the Dynamics auditioned for their summer gig at the Old Dutch. I am sure Bobby's presence at the audition played a large part in the band being awarded the job. Whether this should be considered an plus or a minus, while playing at the Dutch Al became friends and drinking buddies with the notorious party-animal Wilbur Walton, Jr. and his even more notorious drummer in the James Gang, Bruce White. Throughout the Dynamics tenure at the Old Dutch, Wilbur and Bruce would come to the beach on weekends, hang out, party with Al, and sit in with the band. Likewise, the two would leave after their gigs in Dothan on Saturday nights when the Alabama bars would close at midnight, and drive to Chuck and Eddies out from Chipley, Florida, which had no such early curfew. Again to hear the Dynamics, party with Al, and occasionally sit in. Now, why does a rock and roll band with such initial promise like the Dynamics fall from grace. All of the usual reasons that can be cited for the demise of so many rock bands - namely disagreements regarding which musical paths to take, general friction among members (usually over girlfriends, or wives), and hard feelings over missed opportunities for success. Here I will detail all of the above problems in one classic example of just much a bunch of young musicians can screw-up once they have a little taste of success and go on a huge ego trip. In 1964, a promoter and manager contacted the Dynamics and asked them to meet with him to discuss their future. All five of the band members went and rode around the Dothan Circle in his big old “Colonel Tom Parker look-alike” Cadillac, while he smoked a huge cigar. Looking just like he was from central casting,   the Promoter/Manager offered a contract to the band during the ride.  Al said definitely yes to the offer, but  the other four members in the Dynamics all said no. Democracy ruled and the opportunity was lost forever. The promoter/manager was Buddy Buie who later managed the Classis IV, the Atlanta Rhythm Section, and was the Road Manager for Roy Orbison at the height of Roy's career. Soon after, Al left the Dynamics and the remaining members faltered for a while under this name and later renamed the band, the Bangs.

L-R: Jim Irwin, bass guitar and vocals; Carey Strickland lead guitar; Al Taylor vocals and rhythm guitar; Terry Sirmans drums and sunglasses; and George Boyer sax and wannabe drummer.

Band member, Al Taylor, with his first really good guitar, a Gretsch solid body dual pickup. This guitar is now considered a clasic.

 (information courtesy of Jay Talent)

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