During the height of the British invasion a band from Cleveland broke into the top 5 with“Time Won’t Let Me.” This 1966 hit sold over a million copies and was certified gold by the RIAA. Originally known as The Starfires, the band rebranded as The Outsiders when they signed with Capitol Records in 1965.
“Time Won’t Let Me” was written by band leader Tom King and his brother-in-law Chet Kelley. The sound appeared to be a cross-between the hits coming from Britain and and those from Detroit – a unique sound with its solid rock beat punctuated by a hot horn section. “Time Won’t Let Me” was the first and highest charting of The Outsiders’ four Top 40 hits.
Although Tom King had originally been the lead singer of The Starfires, a throat operation left his range somewhat limited. Therefore, Sonny Geraci was recruited as their lead singer in 1964. Geraci would sing lead on another Top Five hit, Climax’s “Precious and Few,” which was released during the winter of 1971-1972. Climax was originally known as the “☮utsiders featuring Sonny Geraci" until Tom King, who continued The Outsiders in Cleveland, threatened to sue. Geraci acquiesced and Climax was born.
Besides Geraci’s vocals on “Time Won’t Let Me,” the song is also notable for Mert Masden’s bass lines and the late Al Austin’s fantastic lead guitar. Nearly 50 years later, “Time Won’t Let Me” remains a classic song from the sixties.