Gary Usher

Genuine escapist joy rarely sounded purer than on the teenage surf-and-hotrod pop pouring out of the Hollywood Hills in the early 1960s, where kids' greatest worries revolved around waxing down the surfboards.

Gary Usher was a prolific producer, writer, singer and behind-the-scenes architect of the West Coast Sound. He melded Chuck Berry rhythms, street corner Doo-Wop and a Spector-esque studio approach on his cartoonish creations.