#890: Cool Operator by Sandy Nelson
Peak Month: January 1961
6 weeks on Vancouver’s CKWX chart
Peak Position #4
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
Lloyd Sander Nelson was born in Santa Monica, California, in 1938. Jan Berry, Dean Torrence and Phil Spector were among the students in his school who also pursued careers in pop music. Sandy became a proficient drummer and joined his first group, Kip Tyler and the Flips. Another member of the group was future Beach Boy, Bruce Johnston, who played piano. Ki Tyler and the Flips recorded a few songs on local record labels in Los Angeles, introducing Sandy Nelson to the world of studio recording. In 1957, with three friends from high school, Marshall Leib, Sandy Nelson, and Annette Kleinbard, Phil Spector formed a group called the Teddy Bears. Nelson played drums on the Teddy Bears’ chart-topping 1958 hit, “To Know Him, Is To Love Him.” In 1959 Sandy Nelson played drums for Gene Vincent on “Crazy Times” before going solo.