The Noteables

2013 - Band

Band Members:  Mark Ritland, Dave Fincham, Mark Heggen, Jim Quam, John Quam, Lindy Buck,
Stewart Buck, Charlie Sivesind

The Noteables formed in 1965 in Ames, Iowa, with band members from Ames High School and Iowa State University. While most had their start in other bands, this was a new endeavor for a couple of the members. By 1968, the group had had the chance to meet and work with Paul Revere & the Raiders, Stevie Wonder, Andy Kim, Carol Burnett, and Tommy Roe.

Throughout The Noteables five years together, the band played a variety of music including rock & roll, rhythm & blues, and even a little jazz. The band always played Top 40 songs, as well as many long standing, crowd pleasing favorites. The group started out with five members, grew to eight during the “brass” era, and then eventually went back to five. The band members were extremely versatile and could switch between many different instruments, allowing the group to play a wide variety of music.

The first members of The Notables were Mark Heggen (organ and later also trumpet), Jim Quam (lead guitar and later also saxophone), Louie Stodden (bass guitar), Jim Sucher (drums), and Dave Fincham (lead singer). All the original band members were from Ames except for Louie, who was from Clinton. As members graduated from Iowa State University and began leaving the area, as well as losing a few to the ongoing Vietnam War, the band went through several transitions.

As the band replaced members who left the group, they were always successful in finding talented musicians. There were about 14 different people who played with the band at one time or another. The group’s several reorganizations eventually resulted in a core group of members including: Dave Fincham (vocalist), Mark Ritland (drummer), Mark Heggen (trumpet and keyboard), Jim Quam (saxophone), John Quam (trumpet), Lindy Buck (lead guitar), Stewart Buck (bass guitar), and Charlie Sivesind (trumpet and keyboard).

The Noteables were popular throughout Central Iowa, and especially in the Ames area where they played numerous dances and parties for ISU fraternities and sororities, as well as ISU dances at the Memorial Union. They also were regular performers at high school dances, proms, and city celebrations throughout Central Iowa. They were the first band to introduce “soul music” to the Iowa State campus, performing songs from such original artists as Jr. Walker, Wilson Pickett, and Spencer Davis.

In 1968 The Noteables were selected to perform on ABC’s nationally televised Happening ’68 in Los Angeles, California, a program hosted by Paul Revere and the Raiders. The group made three separate appearances on Happening ’68, which was a competition show similar to a battle of the bands. The Noteables took first place on the first two programs, and they were invited back for more. On the third program, The Noteables took second place, but they were always proud of what they accomplished by making those three appearances in front of a national television audience.

The band released a record in 1968 with the titles Get Ready and Funky Frog. The record received local airplay and was played by a faraway station in Texas. This helped the band be considered one of the more successful groups in Central Iowa.

The Noteables “retired” from playing as a group in 1970. Several surviving members live in California and most of the others are located around Ames and various other parts of Iowa.

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