Sites 'n' Sounds

Band History
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Sites 'N' Sounds
Fall (1 9 6 7)

Even though no one could put an actual date on it, one could say "The Sites 'n' Sounds" actually began the day that Jimmy Ward taught Danny Blankenship, now known as Danny Reese, his first guitar chord.  First cousins, who were close in age, these two shared one major interest, The Beatles.  They would spend hours teaching themselves chords to all of the Beatles and British Invasion tunes of the day.

After a few months and many hours of practicing, Ward and Blankenship heard a rumor that Sherry Van Hart had gotten a set of drums.  So they grabbed their guitars and little amps and headed up Main Street.  They set up the drums and amps in the Van Hart's living room and started.  It was if the heavens had opened up.  They were playing rock 'n' roll.  They were starting a band.

Word began to spread through the Delta area teens and Randy Taylor bought a bass guitar.  He was in the band immediately.  Then a mail order tambourine showed up at the Blankenship house and the younger of the Blankenship boys, Dick, tagged along to rehearsal.  He could sing the high harmonies with his older brother and became the fifth member of the band.

There first appearance was at a birthday party.  They didn't get paid but they played their Rock 'n' Roll.  Next came a major goal.  It was a paying gig at the Delta carnival.  Six songs and $15.  They each walked away from the set with $3.  You would have thought they had just played on the Ed Sullivan TV Show.

At the carnival that evening, was another Delta teen.  Mike McFadden was bound and determined to become a part of the band.  He approached Danny Blankenship about joining.  Blankenship told him to get a combo organ and take some lessons, but he wouldn't make any promises.  McFadden bought the organ and proceeded to take lessons from Enid Lewis on Main Street in Delta.  Soon he was in.

The band started to jell and the jobs took them from Hershey, PA to Baltimore, MD.  Changes also occurred.  Leon Williams became the band's second drummer.  A record was recorded on the CEI label.  Then came an appearance on Baltimore's Kirby Scott TV Show.  Then Uncle Sam came calling for Williams to serve in Vietnam.

Enter, Tom Smeltzer, a young kid from Collinsville, Pennsylvania who played drums like they had never heard before.  Smeltzer became an immediate hit with the band and they continued on as that unit.  Jim Ward left the band.

The Sites 'n' Sounds continued until around June of '69' when Mike McFadden joined the Air Force.  It had been a wonderful time for a bunch of Delta boys.

They never played together again until April 2009 when they gathered for a reunion.  Some had not played an instrument in 40 years, but, somehow, they made music and they knew that back in the 60's they had formed a bond that had never been broken.

Now with the passing of founding member, Jim Ward, "The Sites 'n' Sounds" reunited for one night to honor their friend and bandmate on May 22, 2010.  The event was a sell-out and started something all over again.  The band now plays approximately twice a year to keep that bond in place.

Benefit Ticket

Information about the band during the 60's era !!
Danny Reese - Lead guitar and vocals
Randy Taylor - Bass
Tom Smeltzer - Drums and vocals
Mike McFadden - Keyboards
Dick Blankenship - Harp and vocals
Beatles, Stones, Animals, etc.
Setlist Sample:
We Gotta Get Out of This Place
For Your Love
Dear Mr. Fantasy
Hey Joe
1966 Fender Jazz Bass
1967 Fender Bassman
Farfisa Organ
1968 Tender Telecaster
1968 Fender Super Reverb
1959 Gibson Les Paul TV Model
Ludwig Drums
Rehearsal Space:
Reese's House
Band Vehicles:
Various Car Trunks
Fashion Statement:
Black silk cape, fur vest, well worn jeans,
Best Gig:
Railroad House, Marietta Pennsylvania
Dan Hartman who went on to The Edgar
Winter Group was there and loved the show.
Gig from Hell!:
WSBA Radio 25th Anniversary at
Hershey Park.  25,000 people and a terrible
PA system.
Last Gig:
Can't Remember