In the late 1960’s, The Shoguns were one of Northern Kentucky’s top rock bands. After a brief interruption of 47 years, The Shoguns have reunited to record a new album, Highway of Dreams.
The new album is comprised of eight new songs, recorded over the last three years, and six songs recorded in the late sixties. Album release date April 19, 2015.
The Early Years
The history of the Shoguns began in the late Fifties when four guys from Latonia, Kentucky formed an instrumental group called the Capris. The members included Gary Arnsparger (lead guitar), Fred Dishon (rhythm guitar), Tom Dishon (drums), and Tim Frodge (bass). They played extensively at teen dances and in Battle of the Bands competitions. The Capris appeared on the Harris Rosedale Talent Show (WCPO TV).
In the early Sixties, the group reorganized with Gary, Fred (bass), Tom, Glenn Williamson (lead singer) and Pat Mayerchak (guitar). They soon built a following that created weekly jobs from wedding receptions to dances at Northern Kentucky Community College (later known as N.K.U.).
The Beginning of the Shoguns
In 1964, Gary, Fred, and Pat added Dan Herzog (lead singer) and Larry Ackerson (drums). These additions to the group created the Shoguns who played until the late Sixties. Their first recording, "In my Time", was backed by Big Jim Schworer (popular DJ at WKKY in Northern, Ky.), and his brother, Dr. Phil Schworer. The second release, "The Look in Her Eyes", was on Lemco Records and picked as a "Make It" hit by WUBE, a leading rock station in Cincinnati. The Shoguns recorded a number of unreleased songs in studios from Cincinnati, to Lexington, and Louisville. The group also appeared on The Bob Braun Dance Show with Nick Clooney.
The Shoguns were the regular house band at the Avenue Nightclub in Bellevue, KY. for three years and later performed on the Four Seasons river boat. They traveled throughout Ohio and Kentucky in the "Hearse-zog" (a 1951 Cadillac Hearse which was named in honor of Dan) to play for other venues: Captain Al's, The Downstairs Club, fraternities at U.K., private parties, weddings, and other night clubs.
Over the years, The Shoguns have shared the stage with a number of the great groups and talented musicians from this area. The names include: Bill Stith and the Corvairs, Danny Morgan and the Vibrations; Billy Hinds, Mike Connor, Mike Reilly (Pure Prairie League); Rick Schmidt, and many others.
The Shoguns Today
After 47 years, all five original members of the Shoguns have reunited and are currently involved in recording new music. Pat, retired from teaching at V.M.I., writes all the material for the band and still performs with other groups in Virginia. Larry is a retired distribution supervisor for a large food chain, but still teaches drums to students in the Northern Kentucky area. Dan is a former executive of a large company; he now sells superabrasives and cutting tools. Fred and Gary are former educators from Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.