The Dartells and Their Only Hit “Hot Pastrami”



The Dartells were a short-lived 60s music era American rock and roll group formed in Oxnard, California in 1962. The members were bassist/vocalist Doug Phllips, guitarists Rick Burns and Galen Mills, organist Randy Ray, saxophonists Rich Piel and Corky Wilkie, and drummer Gary Peeler. At the time of the formation the group were still in their teens; they were eventually managed by Tom Ayers. Only one single was the Dartells’ only major hit “Hot Pastrami,” in 1963; an LP of the same name was released soon after. But the band split shortly after their two subsequent singles “Dance Everybody, Dance” and “Clap Your Hands” failed to make major dents on the charts. Now they’re in an endless sea of “one-hit wonders.”


Formation and early years

Best remembered with their lone hit “Hot Pastrami,” the American rock band The Dartells was comprised of Doug Phillips (bass/vocals), Dick Burns (guitar), Randy Ray (organ), Rich Piel (saxophone), Corky Wilkie (saxophone) and Gary Peeler (drums). The six-piece band was formed in Oxnard, California in 1962. All of the members were still in the age bracket of 18 to 20 years old.

“Hot Pastrami” — The Dartells’ lone hit

In 1962, The Dartells broke through with their debut single “Hot Pastrami” which was a remake of Nat Kendrick & the Swans’ “Mashed Potatoes.” “Hot Pastrami” was a local favorite and it was initially released in Los Angeles’ Arlen Records. It was later picked up by the big label Dot Records to distribute nationwide. The song registered both on the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts at #11 and #15 respectively. Eventually an LP also named Hot Pastrami shortly followed; it charted on the Billboard 200 at #95. They released several singles after the success of “Hot Pastrami” such as “Dance, Everybody Dance,” “Clap Your Hands” and “Sweet Pea” but all of them flopped. Shortly thereafter, The Dartells went on their separate ways.


Later careers after The Dartells

Phillip joined the bands New Concepts ad Cottonwood, unfortunately none of those bands gained attention.  A band called Rain was formed in the late 1960’s, comprising of most of the Dartells members but their appearance went unnoticed.


The Dartells’ discography (may be impartial)

Arlen Records [Los Angeles]

(Nov 1962)

  • A: Hot Pastrami
  • B: Dartell Stomp


Dot Records

(Feb 1963)

  • A: Hot Pastrami
  • B: Dartell Stomp

(June 1963)

  • A: Dance, Everybody, Dance
  • B: The Scoobie Song

(Oct 1963)

The Dartells Featuring Doug and Corky

  • A: Sweet Pea
  • B: Convicted


  • A: Hot Pastrami
  • B: Dartell Stomp


HBR Records

(Jan 1966)

  • A: Clap Your Hands
  • B: Where Do We Stand?


American Pie


Andy Kim

  • A: Baby I Love You

The Dartells

  • B: Hot Pastrami


Collectables / Back to Back Hits Series

 The Dartells

  • A: Hot Pastrami

Robin Ward

  • B: Wonderful Summer
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