googled06bb313055e587a.html Rock N Roll Rehab for the Control Of Rock and Roll Starring Greg Piper and The Tooners: The Story Of The Band That Died In Nam

The Story Of The Band That Died In Nam

 I heard a story back in the Sixties about an unknown rock and roll band that had traveled to Viet Nam as part of a USO show to entertain the troops. This band was packed into the back of a supply truck to be driven to their gig out in the country someplace. Along the way the Viet Cong ambushed the truck and sprayed the back with machine gun fire. At least some of the band members were killed.

I don’t remember the name of the band except as I recall they had the word “bubble” in the title such as The Bubble Machine or something like that. I can’t find any reference to them on the Internet either so if anyone out there remembers any details about this story please add them in the COMMENTS section below.

It’s possible that story was just a rumor but on this Memorial Day I thought I’d remember some noncombatants who were in a war zone on behalf of our armed services and died along with our fighting men.

There have been rock and rollers who actually served the country as soldiers. Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Cash and Jerry Garcia are some of the more famous ones. And let’s not forget ACDC were honorary members of the US Military when our troops used their music as psychological warfare against General Manuel Noriega of Panama.

Below is a follow up left as a comment by one of our readers for those of you too lazy to click on the COMMENTS.

I found this on the internet in German and used Google Translate to come up with this:

On July 5, 1968, the bus gets the band "Brandi Perry & The Bubble Machine", which is carelessly traveling without military protection, in South Vietnam on the way to Vung Tau in an ambush, either by troops of the Viet Cong or the South Vietnamese army. The drummer and keyboard player Phil Willis + Kurt Pill, both only 17 years old, are killed, the bassist and vocalist Jack Bone + Paula "Brandi Perry," Levine are injured more or less difficult.

"Brandi Perry & The Bubble Machine" are also the subject of the documentary "Entertaining Vietnam" by Mara Wallis about musicians who attended the American troops in Vietnam.


10 comments:

  1. I found this on the internet in German and used Google Translate to come up with this:

    On July 5, 1968, the bus gets the band "Brandi Perry & The Bubble Machine", which is carelessly traveling without military protection, in South Vietnam on the way to Vung Tau in an ambush, either by troops of the Viet Cong or the South Vietnamese army. The drummer and keyboard player Phil Willis + Kurt Pill, both only 17 years old, are killed, the bassist and vocalist Jack Bone + Paula "Brandi Perry," Levine are injured more or less difficult.

    "Brandi Perry & The Bubble Machine" are also the subject of the documentary "Entertaining Vietnam" by Mara Wallis about musicians who attended the American troops in Vietnam.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This was the URL link:
    http://www.highdive.de/deadpopstars/vietnam/index.htm

    Am 5.Juli 1968 gerät der Bus der Band "Brandi Perry And The Bubble Machine", die unvorsichtigerweise ohne militärischen Schutz unterwegs ist, in Südvietnam auf dem Weg nach Vung Tau in einen Hinterhalt, entweder von Truppen des Vietkong oder von der südvietnamesischen Armee. Der Schlagzeuger Kurt Willis und der Keyboarder Phil Pill, beide erst 17 Jahre alt, kommen dabei ums Leben, der Bassist Jack Bone und die Sängerin Paula "Brandi Perry" Levine werden mehr oder weniger schwer verletzt.

    "Brandi Perry And The Bubble Machine" sind auch Gegenstand des Dokumentarfilms "Entertaining Vietnam" von Mara Wallis über Musiker, die die amerikanischen Truppen in Vietnam betreuten.

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  3. The translation flipped names... actually Phil Pill and Kurt Willis

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    Replies
    1. True story has been posted SP4 David K.Hamilton U.S. Army saved Paula Levine during ambush and gave his own life in the process. Hamilton was a 19 year old resident of Malden Massachusetts.
      Paula Levine attended SP4 Hamilton's funeral in Malden MA and returned to his family some of his possessions that he had entrusted to her in while lying mortally wounded, he is credited with saving her life along with two other band members by ordering them to "play dead" while the Viet Cong were present.
      We remember him as a true American hero.

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  4. This is the true story about what happened to Brandi Perry and The Bubble Machine in VietNam July 1968.
    SP4 David K.Hamilton U.S.Army who was assigned to the HQ Company, 1St. Logistics Command volunteered to drive a pickup truck with the band and Brandi (Paula Levine) to a camp for a performance when they were ambushed by Viet Cong forces on Highway 15 in the middle of a combat zone, according to Miss Levine, Hamilton, a Malden MA. native was covered with wounds when he threw himself over the actress and ordered the rest of the troupe to "play dead". Two band members died and two survived, the survivors credited SP4 Hamilton with their survival by listening to his commands to stay still and play dead so the enemy wouldn't kill them. The actress Paula Levine flew from Hollywood to Malden MA to attend the funeral and bring Hamilton's belongings that he entrusted to her before he died. Hamilton was 19 years old, his name is etched on the VietNam Memorial Wall along with over 58,000 of our brave American heroes.

    Respectfully,
    Jack Marino, US Navy 1967
    Malden Veteran

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  5. I went to school and was a neighbor to one of the young men who was killed that day. The names were however mixed up.. His name was Phil Pill. He was a funny, smart and talented entertainer all through high school. We had just graduated high school when he took this trip to Viet Nam. I was deeply saddened when I had heard the news.

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  6. there was only 1 surviving member from the attack.. the bassist named jack bone.i heard the whole story from jack. how do i know this? because he is my neighbor here in los angeles.

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    Replies
    1. Actually Brandi survived as well...Jack Bone

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    2. Actually Brandi survived as well....Jack

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  7. Curt Willis grew up down the street from me, and tried to teach me drums. I never learned well, but watched him play. That was in Inglewood, California, a suburb of Los Angeles near LAX airport. I don't think his mother ever recovered from the loss. He had a younger brother also. Some of us asked the government to place his name on the Viet Nam memorial wall, but since he was a civilian entertainer, he did not qualify for inclusion.

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