Ventures founder Bob Bogle dies, 75

Bob Bogle – the co-founder of legendary Tacoma garage-rock band The Ventures and the architect behind the distinctive guitar sound of early hits Walk, Don’t Run and Perfidia – has died.

Bogle, a resident of Vancouver, Wash., was 75 when he died on Sunday. He suffered from non-Hodgkins lymphoma and became too frail to play with the Ventures in his waning years, but lived long enough to see his band inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in March 2008.

I last worked with Bob Bogle and Don Wilson of The Ventures at Expo 86. Both men began work as bricklayers and performed music part time until a record they made became a monster hit.  Walk Don’t Run was one of those definitive hits from Seattle’s garage bands.  To this day we can all recall their version of Hawaii 5-0, the theme from the TV series.  Their music in Asia is legend.  The Japanese in particular buy their instrumental albums by the millions.

The Ventures are featured prominently in the Northwest Passage exhibit at Seattle’s Experience Music Project.  The voice that carries through the careers of Northwest artists is Pat O’Day. Pat gave many of Seattle’s biggest musical names their big break — including the Ventures. He used parts of their music for production breaks on his KJR radio show to get listeners interested in their unique sound. Pat also put on dances and developed talent at Parker’s and The Spanish Castle. These were the weekend “clubs” for Seattle teenagers.  At one of these weekend gigs Pat let an unknown guitar player take to the stage. His name was Jimi Hendrix. Pat also exposed The Wailers, The Frantics, Merrilee Rush, Don and the Goodtimes, Paul Revere and the Raiders, The Fleetwoods and so many more.  Is it any wonder that Pat O’Day is revered in the Northwest?