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 The summer progressed, and we continued to play gigs at the Scene, Gallagher’s, and other sites too numerous to list here. Then all of a sudden, Rick Wolfe our lead singer, confronted the band. He said, “You need to talk to my parents.” “Fine,” we replied. At the time, Bill Wilson was our bass player, Fred Hadler was the drummer, and Rick Sorgel played keyboards. Fred, Bill Wilson, Rick Sorgel, and I went over to Rick Wolfe’s house to speak to his parents. To our surprise, they had no idea why we were there. I indicated that their son, Rick, wanted us to speak with them. At about the same moment, Rick walked out the door to go on a date, never intending to tell us he was going to college at Colorado State.






We were crushed. Without a lead singer, the band had temporarily broken down. In August of 1966 sitting at Rick Sorgel’s house, we were all wondering what we were going to do. Then Fred Hadler said, “Hell, Reed, why don’t you become the Destinations’ lead singer?” I replied, “I’ve never sung lead; I’m a background singer.” Fred responded, “You’ve got a great voice.” All the guys concurred with Fred. We went down to the basement, and I tried it out. Henceforth, I became the Destinations’ new lead singer.

The Destinations had become a very valuable commodity. We were making good money, averaging $800 a week per guy, playing all the hot spots. Plus, we had two equipment guys. One member of the group, my personal Judas Iscariot, sought to sell me for thirty pieces of silver. Yes, for his own personal gain, Judas convinced Fred, the band’s co-founder, and its other members that my presence in the band coupled with having my brother, Patrick, as the band’s manager constituted a conflict of interest. Judas caused the members of the group to question where all the money really was going. In reality, having Patrick as our manager was one of the best deals and biggest benefits the band had. Judas, on the other hand, had a two-fold personal agenda. First, he wanted to increase his own control over the band financially as its bookkeeper; and second, he wanted Con Merton to replace my brother as manger of the band.


At that time, Con Merton managed just about every band of any notoriety, including the Robbs, the Messengers, and the Next Five. And Con badly wanted to get a hold over the Destinations as well. Judas had been in contact with Con Merton, and tried to convince the other members of the band that Con should manage the Destinations. At one point, I confronted my friend Fred Hadler, since he and I had started the whole Destinations thing. I asked Fred why this other member, who we had invited to join us, would now be dictating our future. I came to realize that this was a mutiny, and I had been given an ultimatum. The damage ran so deep that my alternatives were either to accept a new manager or lose an entire band. One of the hardest things I ever had to do was tell my brother, Patrick--my former babysitter--that his services were no longer required as the Destinations’ manager. Henceforth, Con Merton became the manager, and the band took a new direction.

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