Written by Ronald Davis
Released in 1963
Gino Washington – vocals
Jeff Williams – lead guitar
Jim Watkins – rhythm guitar
Rick White – Saxophone
Cliff Rosin – drums
Frank Bryant – bass (although a bass play named Chuck Berry was credited for the song)
There was actually an earlier 1963 version of this song recorded on the Correct-Tone Label with the title then “I’m A Coward”, with an entire horn section backing Washington.
But what we heard out of WKNR & CKLW in Detroit was the 64′ Version playing, recorded on the Ric-Tic Label.
Jeff and the Atlantic’s by the 80s certainly had a line up change (and they do now as well) obviously from the original. Jeff Williams has been a part of the Detroit Music scene since 1960. In the 80s he played at a bar in Dearborn Heights on Cherry Hill Rd. east of Inkster Rd.
The bar would become my favorite watering hole, Bodines. So for years at times nightly I watched and heard this band.
Gino Washington born in Detroit was drafted and served in Japan & Nam before returning to the Motor City to start his musical career.
Although he didn’t have a lot of hits the song went to number 4 on the national chart. And he was on top of the charts in Detroit.
And I never forgot the song “Gino Is a Coward” from the time I was a kid growing up in Detroit.
Gino & Jeff and the Atlantic’s have played Detroit’s Taste Fest in recent years.
A little Motown History.