Classic Singles #39: The Zakary Thaks – Bad Girl / I Need You (1966)

ZK_labelFrom Corpus Christi, Texas, The Zakary Thaks evolved from surf instrumental combo The Riptides and were together on and off from early 1966 until 1972. One of the city’s top acts they performed at The Carousel, Elks, and Dunes Clubs, and opened for the likes of The Yardbirds, Jefferson Airplane, and The 13th Floor Elevators.

Their first four singles appeared on the J-Beck label, also home to another legendary Corpus Christi band The Bad Seeds, and the label’s owner Carl Becker became their manager.

zk_band‘Bad Girl / I Need You’ was the group’s debut 45 and was released in July 1966. It was a regional hit and was picked up nationally by Mercury in the following October. The single was recorded at Jimmy Nicholls’ studio in McAllen, Texas. Jimmy also ran the Pharaoh label, recording such luminaries as The Headstones and Christopher and The Souls.

‘Bad Girl’ proceeds at a cracking pace with frantic drumming and strummed chords, and a ripping guitar break. The lyrics are sometimes a mystery but it’s not hard to get the gist of the song, which is surely one of the absolute high-points of the 60s garage scene!

‘Bad Girl’

The b-side is a strong reading of ‘I Need You’ by The Kinks, a great number in its own right of course.

‘I Need You’

I think it is fair to say that The Zakary Thaks were responsible for one of the strongest runs of singles of any garage band in the 60s and I am sure that we will hear from them again!

Reissues:  If you want to get up to speed on The Zakary Thaks, then a strong recommendation would be Sundazed’s Form The Habit CD. It collects together all their single sides. You can also find ‘Bad Girl’ on Pebbles Volume 2 and ‘I Need You’ on Acid Dreams Testament.

  • Bad Girl / I Need You (J-Beck / Mercury, 1966)
  • Face to Face / Weekday Blues (J-Beck, 1967)
  • Mirror of Yesterday / Can You Hear Your Daddy’s Footsteps (J-Beck, 1967)
  • Please / Won’t Come Back (J-Beck, 1967)
  • My Door / Green Crystal Ties (Thak, 1968)
  • Everybody Wants to Be Somebody / Outprint (Cee-Bee, 1969)

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