David Geddes – “Run, Joey, Run”

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Introduction to David Geddes

David Geddes is a singer and sometime drummer/vocalist of the band The Fredric (who were alternately known as Rock Garden). When “Run Joey Run” was climbing to the charts in 1975, Geddes discontinued his law studies (which were one semester left) and returned to music full-time. His second single “The Last Game Of The Season (A Blind Man In The Bleachers)” also charted well on the pop chart, as well as on the adult contemporary singles listing. “House On The Holly Road” was released under Geddes’ real name, and although it didn’t chart, it nevertheless received considerable airplay.

Geddes as a band drummer

Vocalist and drummer David Geddes was born David Cole Idema in Michigan on July 1, 1950. Using his real name, Geddes used to be the drummer and singer of a cult band called The Fredric (aka Rock Garden) who issued several very little-known records in the early 1970s.

Returning to school

He released solo singles which did not chart, then decided to return to studying law school at a state university in Detroit. Producer Paul Vance called him to record a song that Vance had just penned titled “Run Joey Run.” Geddes went to New York to record “Run Joey Run” and returned to university in Detroit.

Geddes signed up for several major labels and issued singles, none of them making a dent on the charts (according to Casey Kasem’s American Top 40). Because he felt that his music career was going nowhere, Geddes decided to quit the music business and return to continue his studies. He enrolled at Detroit’s Wayne State University, taking up law.

 

Geddes’ only Top 10 hit “Run, Joey, Run”

All was going normal in Geddes’ college days until producer Paul Vance persuaded him to record a song that the latter had written. Vance remembered hearing Geddes singing one time and decided that Geddes would be the perfect candidate for his new song, which was titled “Run, Joey, Run.” Geddes was willing and decided to do something different this time.

Vance had Geddes fly over to New York City to do the vocals for “Run, Joey, Run.” He gave the rebellious, “teenage death” song formula which pervaded in the 1950s-1960s and updated it with the current 1970s style — compared to “Tell Laura I Love Her,” “Run Joey Run” was definitely much more bizarre and sleazier in content.

Anyway, afterwards he flew back to Detroit to start his third year in law school before “Run, Joey, Run” was released on Atco label. It would take several months before “Run, Joey, Run” started to make a dent on the charts and was actually climbing up further on the Billboard Hot 100.

Eventually “Run, Joey, Run” reached its peak position at #4 on the Billboard pop charts in 1975. Because of the song’s amazing success, Geddes decided to quit school (when he was just one semester away from graduating) and return to music business.

Later recordings

However, Geddes would have his second and last charting single, another Top 20 hit with “The Last Game of the Season (A Blind Man in the Bleachers),” a salute to high-school football written by Sterling Whipple. Released on Big Tree imprint, it made an entrance to the Top 40 a month after “Run, Joey, Run” vanished from the charts, and peaked at #18 there. Geddes also released another single called “House on Holly Road” under his real name David Cole Idema. Although it failed to make a crack at the charts, it received a significant amount of airplay. He had other non-charting singles “Changing Colors” and “Wait for Me” in 1976. Afterwards, Geddes disappeared from the public eye.

Although Geddes had one other considerable hit during his short-lived career, he is still considered as a one-hit wonder.

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