Captain Beef Hart & The Shipwrecks

2014 - Band

Band Members:  Rod Chaffee, Rob Forrest, George "GT" Clinton, Lou Carroll

In 1956, Louie “Carroll” Cauterucci and Rod Chaffee were playing in an established band in Des Moines, called “The Monarchs,” along with Wally Ackerson and Bob Dailey. George “GT” Clinton approached Carroll at one of their gigs and said, “Man, I dig your backbeat, I want to join your band.” The group took a vote and in came Clinton on keyboards.

As the years passed by, musical influences changed and so did the group’s sound. Joe Hernandez joined the group when Wally Ackerson moved on. Eventually Bob Dailey and Joe Hernandez left the group which was still called “The Monarchs.” Rob Forrest then joined the band and Captain Beef-Hart and the Shipwrecks were born.

Members of the band were: Rod Chaffee-guitar, Rob Forrest-bass, George “GT” Clinton-hammond organ, and Lou Carroll-drums. Together this group rocked like no other of its time. The fans, musicians and bands would stand, listen and watch in awe every breath Captain Beef-Hart took, every move they made and every lick they played.

The band was polished with equipment and costuming (all Vox equipment provided by Hullings Music House of Des Moines), it was like a national act preparing to take the stage.

The evolution of the music they performed would include top 40 hits of the day. From Jimi Hendrix to Cream and tributes to the Doors and Motown. The quality of the vocals, sound and showmanship was pure and simple.

Over the years of 1965-1968, the band was called upon to open shows for Mitch Ryder and the Detroit Wheels, The Buckingham’s and The Shadows of the Night, to name a few. They were always in demand to play at high schools and on college campuses. The Ballroom circuit they played included the Dancemor (Swisher, IA), the Playmor (Fort Doge, IA), the Starline (Carroll, IA), the Surf (Clear Lake, IA), the Star (Dakota City), the Val Air (Des Moines), The Coliseum (Ottumwa) and The Coliseum (Marshalltown). They rocked the house at the Clique and the Place in Des Moines as well as at Teen Town at the Iowa State Fair.

In the early 1980s, George Thomas Clinton passes away. But the out of sight sounds of Captain Beef-Hart and the Shipwrecks will never be forgotten by those who followed the band in Central Iowa and beyond.

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