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Grand Rapids' Grandest Garage Band
The Kingtones History: 1968-Present
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In the summer of 2002, the Kingtones were contacted by WGVU TV. They were interested in making a documentary of the band, to be shown as a fund raiser on their PBS station.

On October 18, 2002, a sold out dance party with The Kingtones playing, was filmed for the TV special.

Many interviews, vintage photo shoots, old 8mm film footage, and the October 18 live dance filming was used in the making of this historic occasion.


More Dance Party Pictures

On March 8, 2003, at 9:00 p.m., WGVU Productions presented the documentary. It was called, “The Kingtones: A Retro-Spective.” The program was a huge success, making three times more money then what WGVU had predicted.

WGVU Studio Pictures 2003



On June 6, 2003, the lead singer on the last three Kingtone records, Dave Roberts, died.

On June 11, 2003, WGVU had another fund raiser for their station. The program was dedicated to the memory of Dave Roberts, a true pioneer in the vintage Rock 'n Roll era.

In 2004, the WGVU TV / Kingtones Documentary “The Kingtones: A Retro-Spective” won a national award.

Dave Roberts

"Wish for an Angel" Video (Courtesty of WGVU TV)

The Kingtones survived for 50 years and have now retired. Phil Roberts, lead guitarist, and Bruce Snoap, Keyboards, two of the original members were still with the group. The other remaining members were George Campbell on drums (Crazy George), and Jim Lewis, lead vocalist (Big Jim). Jay Fortier, one of the 5 sit in bass players the Kingtones used, is pictured below with the Kingtones.



“So congratulations, Kingtones, to 50 years of rockin' the rafters. Even The Rolling Stones would have to hang on for another half-dozen years to hit that mark.” 

John Sinkevics - Grand Rapids Press


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