Sunday, June 7, 2020

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2024 (starts 6/8/20)

    Hit singles>check. Album tracks>check. B sides>check. Yet another version of Hey Joe that wasn't featured on our countdown show a couple of weeks ago>check. An Advanced Psych segment featuring female vocalists>check. An artist's set from the Jimi Hendrix Experience>check. A long unreleased studio jam by the Spencer Davis Group featuring Steve Winwood on Hammond organ>yeah, we've got that too. 

Artist:    Seeds
Title:    Pushin' Too Hard
Source:    Simulated stereo LP: Nuggets Vol. 1-The Hits (originally released on LP: The Seeds and as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Sky Saxon
Label:    Rhino (original label: GNP Crescendo)
Year:    1965
    Pushin' Too Hard was originally released as a single in 1965 (under the title You're Pushin' Too Hard), but did not make an immediate impression. The following year, however, the tune started getting some local airplay on Los Angeles area stations. This in turn led to the band recording their first album, The Seeds, which was released in spring of 1966. A second Seeds LP, A Web Of Sound, hit L.A. record stores in the fall of the same year. Meanwhile, Pushin' Too Hard, which had been reissued with a different B side in mid-1966, started to get national airplay, hitting its peak position on the Billboard charts in February of 1967.

Artist:    Music Machine
Title:    Hey Joe
Source:    Mono CD: The Ultimate Turn On (originally released on LP: Turn On The Music Machine)
Writer(s):    Billy Roberts
Label:    Big Beat (original label: Original Sound)
Year:    1966
    There were actually three slow versions of Hey Joe released in 1966. The first was a summer single by folk singer Tim Rose, who reportedly brainstormed the idea of slowing down the popular garage-rock tune with his friend Sean Bonniwell, leader of the Music Machine. Although Rose's version was the first released, it did not appear on an LP until 1967. The first stereo version of the song was on the Music Machine's first LP, released in the fall. In December a third slow version of Hey Joe was released, but only in the UK and Europe. That version was by the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Like Rose's single, the Hendrix version of Hey Joe was originally released only in a mono version, which was remixed in stereo by engineers at Reprise Records for inclusion on the US version of the debut Hendrix LP in 1967. Like the Rose version, the Music Machine arrangement of Hey Joe focuses squarely on the vocals, with the instrumental track serving purely to set the mood for the piece. Unlike with other recordings of Hey Joe released in 1966, the label on the album Turn On The Music Machine correctly credited Billy Roberts as the song's writer.

Artist:    Rose Garden
Title:    Flower Town
Source:    LP: The Rose Garden
Writer(s):    DiRose/Boudin/Noreen/Groshong/Fleming/Fowley
Label:    Atco
Year:    1967
    A listener recently sent me a copy of the 1967 LP The Rose Garden, along with extensive documentation. Unfortunately, I have already managed to misplace all that documentation, so I'll just say that The Rose Garden was a Los Angeles based band that was heavily into the early Byrds; so much so that they based their entire sound on the first two Byrds albums, the main difference being the presence of Diana Di Rose on vocals and acoustic guitar. Most of their debut album was made up of cover songs. In fact, the only original tune on the LP was Flower Town, which was also issued as the B side of their minor hit single, Next Plane To London. And even that song lists the ubiquitous Kim Fowley as a co-writer.

Artist:    Pentangle
Title:    Waltz
Source:    LP: The Pentangle
Writer(s):    Cox/Jansch/McShea/Renbourne/Thompson
Label:    Reprise
Year:    1968
    Once in a while an album comes along that is so consistently good that it's impossible to single out one specific track for airplay. Such is the case with the debut Pentangle album from 1968. The group, consisting of guitarists John Renbourne and Bert Jansch, vocalist Jacqui McShea, bassist Terry Cox, and drummer Danny Thompson, had more talent than nearly any band in history from any genre, yet never succumbed to the clash of egos that characterize most supergroups. About half of the tracks on their first album were Pentangle originals, including Waltz, which closes out the second side of the LP.

Artist:    Grateful Dead
Title:    Mountains Of The Moon
Source:    CD: Aoxomoxoa
Writer(s):    Hunter/Garcia/Lesh
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1969
    Following the release of their second album, Anthem Of The Sun, the Grateful Dead got to work on their third LP, to be titled Earthquake Country. Like the previous album, Earthquake Country was recorded using 8-track technology, which by 1968 had become the standard in recording studios. Late that year, however, Ampex manufactured the first 16-track recorder, and the Dead managed to get the use of one. The original recordings were scrapped, and the band spent the next few months re-recording the entire album, experimenting with the new technology and running up a huge bill with their record label, Warner Brothers. The resulting album, now title Aoxomoxoa, was released in the summer of 1969 to generally positive reviews. Jerry Garcia and Phil Lesh, however, were not entirely happy with the final mix, feeling that maybe the band had tried to do too much in the studio, obscuring the music itself. In 1971 the two of them went back to the original multitrack tapes and remixed the entire album, removing a lot of the more experimental stuff, such as the choir on Mountains Of The Moon. This remix became the "official" version of Aoxomoxoa from 1972 on, and was used when the album was reissued on Compact Disc. In recent years, however, Warner Brothers has made the original mix available on 180 gram vinyl.

Artist:    Yardbirds
Title:    You're A Better Man Than I
Source:    Mono Canadian import LP: Shapes Of Things (originally released on LP: Having A Rave Up With The Yardbirds)
Writer(s):    Mike & Brian Hugg
Label:    Bomb (original label: Epic)
Year:    1965
    Perhaps more than any other British Invasion band, the Yardbirds' US and UK catalogs varied considerably. This is because the band only released a pair of LPs in the UK, one of which was a live album, with the bulk of their studio output appearing on 45 RPM singles and EPs. In the US, on the other hand, the group released four (mostly) studio LPs, compiled from the various UK releases. One song, You're A Better Man Than I, actually came out on a US album four months before it was issued as a single B side in February of 1966 in the UK.

Artist:    Animals
Title:    She'll Return It
Source:    Mono LP: Animalization
Writer(s):    Jenkins/Rowberry/Burdon/Chandler/Valentine
Label:    M-G-M
Year:    1966
    As a general rule the Animals, in their original incarnation, recorded two kinds of songs: hit singles from professional songwriters such as Gerry Goffin and Carole King, and covers of blues and R&B tunes, the more obscure the better. What they did not record a lot of was original tunes from the band members themselves. This began to change in 1966 when the band began to experience a series of personnel changes that would ultimately lead to what amounted to an entirely new group, Eric Burdon And The Animals, in 1967. One of the earliest songs to be credited to the entire band was She'll Return It, released as the B side of See See Rider in August of 1966 and included on the Animalization album. In retrospect, it is one of the strongest tracks on one of their strongest LPs.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    Ruby Tuesday
Source:    LP: Between The Buttons
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    London
Year:    1967
    One of the most durable songs in the Rolling Stones catalog, Ruby Tuesday was originally intended to be the B side of their 1967 single Let's Spend The Night Together. Many stations, however, balked at the subject matter of the A side and began playing Ruby Tuesday instead, which is somewhat ironic considering the subject matter of the song (a groupie of the band's acquaintance).

Artist:    Electric Prunes
Title:    Long Day's Flight
Source:    CD: Underground
Writer(s):    Weakley/Yorty
Label:    Collector's Choice (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    Originally from the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles, California, the Electric Prunes were often mislabeled as a Pacific Northwest band, due to their popularity in the Seattle area. Interestingly enough, the band also enjoyed greater popularity in the UK than many of their L.A. contemporaries (such as the Doors). Long Day's Flight, an anthemic track from the band's second LP, was released as a single in the UK, but not in the US. To my knowledge it is the only song in the Electric Prunes catalog penned by drummer "Quint" Weakley.

Artist:    13th Floor Elevators
Title:    (It's All Over Now) Baby Blue
Source:    CD: Easter Everywhere
Writer:    Bob Dylan
Label:    Charly (original label: International Artists)
Year:    1967
    When the 13th Floor Elevators left their native Texas to do a series of gigs on the West Coast, the local media's reaction was basically "good riddance". After the band's successful California appearances (and a hit record with You're Gonna Miss Me), they returned to a hero's welcome by that same media that had derided the Elevators as a bunch of degenerate drug addicts just weeks before. Buoyed by this new celebrity, the band set out to record its masterpiece, Easter Everywhere. Although much of the album featured original material, there were a couple of cover tunes. Most notable was the inclusion of (It's All Over Now) Baby Blue, a Bob Dylan tune that had been recently recorded by both the Byrds and the Chocolate Watchband.

Artist:    Captain Beefheart And His Magic Band
Title:    Zig Zag Wanderer
Source:    Mono CD: Where The Action Is: L.A. Nuggets 1965-68 (originally released on LP: Safe As Milk)
Writer(s):    Don Van Vliet
Label:    Rhino (original label: Buddah)
Year:    1967
    Don Van Vliet made his first recordings as Captain Beefheart in 1965, covering artists like Bo Diddley in a style that could best be described as "punk blues." Upon hearing those recordings A&M Records, despite its growing reputation as a hot (fairly) new label, promptly cancelled the project. Flash forward a year or so. Another hot new label, Buddah Records, an offshoot of Kama Sutra Records that had somehow ended up being the parent rather than the subsidiary, was busy signing new acts like Johnny Winter, and ended up issuing Safe As Milk in 1967 as their very first LP. The good captain would eventually end up on his old high school acquaintance Frank Zappa's Bizarre Records, turning out classic albums like Trout Mask Replica, and the world would never be quite the same.

Artist:    Love
Title:    Hummingbirds
Source:    CD: Forever Changes (bonus track)
Writer(s):    Arthur Lee
Label:    Elektra/Rhino
Year:    Recorded 1966, released 2001
    Hummingbirds is actually the basic instrumental track for The Good Humor Man He Sees Everything Like This, a song heard on the third Love album, Forever Changes. The track was recorded in 1966, around the same time as Love's classic 7&7 Is.

Artist:    Joan Baez
Title:    Daddy You Been On My Mind
Source:    45 RPM single B side
Writer(s):    Bob Dylan
Label:    Vanguard
Year:    1965
    Although I had heard songs like Where Have All The Flowers Gone and Blowin' In The Wind on the radio and around campfires, I did not actually own a folk record until early 1966, when I picked up a brown paper "grab bag" of four singles at a discount price at the Post Exchange at Fitzsimmons Army Hospital in Aurora, Colorado. Among the records in the bag was a single by Joan Baez that featured a Phil Ochs song on one side and a Bob Dylan song on the other. Being a twelve-year-old kid, I had never heard of Baez or Ochs, although the name Bob Dylan was vaguely familiar to me. Still, I was intrigued by this new kind of music, that was a bit similar to songs I had heard on the radio like Where Have All The Flowers Gone, but yet had a kind of exotic strangeness that set it apart. I still have that record, although my old record player pretty much ruined it, but have since found a copy in fairly decent condition to share with you. Enjoy!

Artist:    John Hammond
Title:    Baby, Please Don't Go
Source:    LP: So Many Roads
Writer(s):    Joe Williams
Label:    Vanguard
Year:    1965
    A long time favorite song for garage bands to learn and play is Them's 1964 arrangement of Joe Williams's Baby, Please Don't Go, featuring Billy Harrison's distinctive guitar riff. Although officially credited to Williams, who first recorded it in 1935, the song itself probably dates back to the 19th century. In 1953, Muddy Waters recorded an electric version of the tune with Little Walter and Jimmy Rogers under the title Turn The Lamp Down Low. It was this version that became the basis for John Hammond's rendition of Baby, Please Don't Go with Charlie Musselwaite and various members of the Hawks (later known as The Band) for his 1965 LP So Many Roads.

Artist:    Barry McGuire
Title:    Eve Of Destruction
Source:    45 RPM single (stereo reissue)
Writer(s):    P F Sloan
Label:    MCA (original label: Dunhill)
Year:    1965
    One of the top folk-rock hits of 1965, Eve of Destruction was actually written by professional songwriter P.F. Sloane, who also wrote tunes for the Turtles, among others, and later teamed up with Steve Barri to produce (and write songs for) the Grass Roots.

Artist:    "E" Types
Title:    Put The Clock Back On The Wall
Source:    CD: Even More Nuggets (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Bonner/Gordon
Label:    Rhino (original label: Tower)
Year:    1967
    The E-Types were originally from Salinas, California, which at the time was known for it's sulfiric smell by travelers along US 101. As many people from Salinas apparently went to "nearby" San Jose (about 60 miles to the north) as often as possible, the E-Types became regulars on the local scene, eventually landing a contract with Tower Records and Ed Cobb, who also produced the Standells and the Chocolate Watchband. The Bonner/Gordon songwriting team were just a couple months away from getting huge royalty checks from the Turtles' Happy Together when Put The Clock Back On The Wall was released in early 1967. The song takes its title from a popular phrase of the time. After a day or two of losing all awareness of time (and sometimes space) it was time to put the clock back on the wall, or get back to reality if you prefer.

Artist:    Eire Apparent
Title:    Here I Go Again
Source:    Mono Swedish import CD: Sunrise (bonus track originally released in UK as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Lutton/Graham/McCulloch/Stewart
Label:    Flawed Gems (original UK label: Track)
Year:    1968
    Eire Apparent was originally part of the same Northern Ireland music scene that produced Van Morrison and Them a few years earlier. The band was first signed to Track Records, where they released one UK-only single with Here I Go Again as the B side. This led to a spot opening for the Jimi Hendrix Experience and an album, Sunrise, that was produced by Hendrix himself. After the album failed to catch on, the group quietly disbanded.
Artist:    Ace Of Cups, featuring Buffy Sainte-Marie
Title:    Pepper In The Pot
Source:    CD: Ace Of Cups
Writer(s):    Kaufman/Sainte-Marie
Label:    High Moon
Year:    2018
    Buffy Sainte-Marie makes a guest appearance as lead vocalist on Pepper In The Pot, from the album Ace Of Cups. The song, which draws from such diverse sources as old jump-rope rhymes and the Bible, was co-written by Sainte-Marie and primary Ace songwriter Denise Kaufman.

Artist:    Liquid Scene
Title:    The Mystery Machine
Source:    Revolutions
Writer(s):    Becki diGregorio (bodhi)
Label:    Ziglain
Year:    2014
    Keeping the spirit of psychedelia alive we have Liquid Scene with a track from their 2014 debut CD Revolutions. The Mystery Machine, the third track on the CD, uses acoustic percussion instruments to set the tone for a piece that combines modern production techiques with bodhi's haunting vocals to create a memorable soundscape without in any way abandoning its late 60s roots. I like this one more every time I hear it.

Artist:    Splinter Fish
Title:    Mars
Source:    LP: Splinter Fish
Writer(s):    Chuck Hawley
Label:    StreetSound
Year:    1989
    One of my favorite bands on the late 80s Albuquerque music scene was Splinter Fish, a group that didn't quite fall naturally into any specific musical genre. They certainly had things in common with many new wave bands, but also touched on world music and even hard rock. One of their most popular tracks was Mars, which itself is hard to define, thanks to many sudden tempo and even stylistic changes, even though the entire track runs less than three minutes in length. Guitarist/vocalist Chuck Hawley now leads his own band, while fem vocalist Deb-O performs with a variety of Albuquerque musicians in several different combos.

Artist:    Small Faces
Title:    My Mind's Eye
Source:    Mono CD: Nuggets II-Original Artyfacts From The British Empire And Beyond 1964-1969 (originally released in UK as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Marriott/Lane
Label:    Rhino (original label: Decca)
Year:    1965
    One of the biggest British hits of 1965 was All Or Nothing, a tune by the Small Faces that topped the charts that fall. In an effort to keep the band's chart momentum going in time for the Christmas rush, the shirts at Decca decided to release a rough demo of a Steve Marriott/Ronnie Lane composition called My Mind's Eye as a follow up. It turns out the band's manager, Don Arden, had given the label to go-ahead to release the song without the band's knowledge or permission, leading to the band's decision to leave both Arden and the Decca label early in 1966 to sign with Rolling Stones' manager Andrew Loog Oldham's new Immediate label.

Artist:    Shadows Of Knight
Title:    Gloria
Source:    LP: Smash Sounds (originally released as 45 RPM single and included on LP: Gloria)
Writer(s):    Van Morrison
Label:    Atco (original label: Dunwich)
Year:    1966
    For some reason I don't quite understand, I never paid much attention to current trends in popular entertainment other than as an outside observer. For example, when everyone else in my generation was tuned into the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan show, I was happily watching Car 54 Where Are You on a rival network. The same applies to the radio stations I listened to. KIMN was, by far, Denver's most popular top 40 station, yet I always managed to find myself listening to their rivals: first KDAB (until a flood took them off the air permanently), and then KBTR. For a short time in late 1966, however, KIMN had no rivals (KBTR had switched to an all-news format and KLZ-FM was still spending most of its broadcast day simulcasting the programming of its middle-of-the-road AM station). As a result, I found myself following KIMN's New Year's countdown of the year's top songs, which included a handful of tunes that I had never heard before. The highest ranked of these unfamiliar songs was one that immediately grabbed me: Gloria, as recorded by a Chicago area band called the Shadows Of Knight. It would be years before I even knew that this was actually a cover version of a song that had been released by Van Morrison's band, Them, but that had been banned in most US markets the previous year. All I knew is that it was a cool tune that would be one of the first songs I learned to play when I switched from violin to guitar the following summer.

Artist:    Chambers Brothers
Title:    Time Has Come Today
Source:    LP: Nuggets Vol. 9-Acid Rock (originally released on LP: The Time Has Come)
Writer(s):    Joe and Willie Chambers
Label:    Rhino (original label: Columbia)
Year:    1967
    One of the quintessential songs of the psychedelic era is the Chambers Brothers' classic Time Has Come Today. The song was originally recorded and issued as a single in 1966. The more familiar version heard here, however, was recorded in 1967 for the album The Time Has Come. The LP version of the song runs about eleven minutes, way too long for a 45 RPM record, so before releasing the song as a single for the second time, engineers at Columbia cut the song down to around 3 minutes. The edits proved so jarring that the record was recalled and a re-edited version, clocking in at 4:57 became the third and final single version of the song, hitting the charts in 1968.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    Wintertime Love
Source:    CD: Waiting For The Sun
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1968
    It is generally accepted that most of the songs from the first two Doors albums were already in the band's repertoire when the group signed their first contract with Elektra Records. The third LP, Waiting For The Sun, on the other hand was made up of newer material. As a result, the album has a different overall feel from the earlier efforts. Among the more unusual tracks on the album is Wintertime Love, perhaps the closest the Doors ever got to country rock.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    EXP
Source:    LP: Axis: Bold As Love
Writer(s):    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Experience Hendrix/MCA (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    The second Jimi Hendrix Experience album, Axis: Bold As Love, is very much a studio creation. Hendrix had been taking a growing interest in what could be done with multiple tracks to work with, and came up with a masterpiece. What makes the achievement even more remarkable is the fact that he actually only had four tracks to work with (compared to the virtually unlimited number available with modern digital equipment). EXP, which opens the album, is an exercise in creative feedback moving from left to right and back again, fading in and out to create the illusion of circling the listener (this is particularly effective if you're wearing headphones). The intro to the piece is a faux interview of a slowed-down Hendrix (posing as his friend Paul Caruso) by bassist Noel Redding.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    Red House
Source:    LP: Smash Hits
Writer(s):    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Reprise
Year:    Recorded 1966, released 1969
    There were actually two different versions of Red House released by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, both of which came from the same December, 1966, sessions. The original version was included on the European pressing of the Are You Experienced album, which was issued in early 1967. The album was not originally available in stereo, and a true stereo mix of this version of Red House was never made, as the track was left off the remixed American version of the LP. In spring of 1967 the band attempted to get a better version of the song, but neither Hendrix or bassist Noel Redding (who had played the original bass part on a regular guitar with its tone controls set to mimic a bass guitar) were satisfied with the later versions. Only one portion of these new recordings was kept, and was combined with the original take to create a new stereo mix for the US version of the 1969 Smash Hits album. This newer mix was also used by MCA for both the 1993 CD reissue of Are You Experienced and the Ultimate Experience anthology. 

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    Bold As Love
Source:    CD: Axis: Bold As Love
Writer(s):    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Experience Hendrix/MCA (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    When working on the song Bold As Love for the second Jimi Hendrix Experience album in 1967, Jimi reportedly asked engineer Eddie Kramer if he could make a guitar sound like it was under water. Kramer's answer was to use a techique called phasing, which is what happens when two identical sound sources are played simultaneously, but slightly (as in microseconds) out of synch with each other. The technique, first used in 1958 but seldom tried in stereo, somewhat resembles the sound of a jet plane flying by. This is not to be confused with chorusing (sometimes called reverse phasing), a technique used often by the Beatles which electronically splits a single signal into two identical signals then delays one to create the illusion of being separate tracks.

Artist:    Buffalo Springfield
Title:    Rock And Roll Woman
Source:    LP: Homer (soundtrack) (originally released on LP: Buffalo Springfield Again and as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Stephen Stills
Label:    Cotillion (original label: Atco)
Year:    1967
    Buffalo Springfield did not sell huge numbers of records (except for the single For What It's Worth) while they were together. Nor did they pack in the crowds. As a matter of fact, when they played the club across the street from where Love was playing, they barely had any audience at all. Artistically, though, it's a whole 'nother story. During their brief existence Buffalo Springfield launched the careers of no less than four major artists: Neil Young, Richie Furay, Jim Messina and Stephen Stills. They also recorded more than their share of tracks that have held up better than most of what else was being recorded at the time. Case in point: Rock And Roll Woman, a Stephen Stills tune that still sounds fresh well over 50 years after it was recorded.

Artist:    Spencer Davis Group
Title:    Waltz For Lumumba
Source:    Mono British import CD: The Best Of The Spencer Davis Group featuring Steve Winwood
Writer(s):    Steve Winwood
Label:    Island
Year:    Recorded 1967, released 2001
    As near as I can tell Waltz For Lumumba is a studio jam session recorded shortly before Steve and Muff Winwood left the Spencer Davis Group in 1967. The song appeared for the first time on an album released that year in the UK called The Best Of The Spencer Davis Group featuring Steve Winwood. It's first US release was in 2001, as a bonus track on the Sundazed CD reissue of the I'm A Man album.

Artist:    Collectors
Title:    Looking At A Baby
Source:    Mono British import CD: My Mind Goes High (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Vickberg/Henderson
Label:    Warner Strategic Marketing (original label: Valiant)
Year:    1967
    Formed as the Classics in 1961, the Collectors hailed from Vancouver, British Columbia. By 1966 they had managed to secure a contract with Valiant Records, releasing Looking At A Baby as a single in January of 1967. Although the record was not a hit in the US, it did get the attention of engineer/producer Dave Hassinger, who was having problems completing David Axelrod's Mass In F Minor using the Electric Prunes. As the Collectors were musically more adept than the Prunes, Hassinger hired them to provide the instrumental tracks for the album, which nonetheless came out under the Electric Prunes name (which Hassinger virtually owned at that time). Eventually the Collectors would change their name to Chilliwack and release a series of moderately successful records on the A&M label in the early to mid 1970s.

Artist:    Los Bravos
Title:    Black Is Black
Source:    45 RPM single (stereo reissue)
Writer(s):    Grainger/Hayes/Wadey
Label:    London
Year:    1966
    The first band from Spain to have a major pop hit was Los Bravos, who took Black Is Black to the top 10 in several countries, including the US, in late 1966. Interestingly, the band's lead vocalist, Michael Kogel, was actually a German national.

Artist:    101 Strings
Title:    Karma Sitar
Source:    LP: Sounds Of Today
Writer(s):    M. Kelly
Label:    Alshire
Year:    1967
    The only turntable in our house during my youngest years was an RCA Victor 45 RPM changer from the early 1950s. As a result we had no LPs in the house until I was about ten years old, when my parents bought me a small portable record player. Even though the record player was technically mine, my mother did buy one album for herself, an LP called Fire And Romance of South America (or something like that) by 101 Strings. As I recall, she got it at the local Woolworth's store, which had entire racks dedicated to discount-priced LPs, usually for under a dollar. It turns out the name 101 Strings (actually there were 124) had been in use since 1957, when record mogul David L. Miller came up with the idea of using German orchestras to cover popular songs (although not rock and roll) and would continue to be used until the early 1980s. Many 101 Strings LPs were genre-based, including albums featuring Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Asian and South American standards, as well as Broadway show tunes and orchestral covers of pop hits. In 1964 the franchise was sold to Al Sherman, who moved its base of operations to London, changing the name of the record label the group appeared on from Somerset to Alshire. Under Sherman the group attempted to shift its appeal to a younger audience, as evidenced by tracks like Karma Sitar, from the Sounds Of Today album. These efforts were ultimately unsuccessful, and the last 101 Strings album (a collection of early Beatles covers) was released in January of 1981.

Artist:    Max Frost And The Troopers
Title:    Shape Of Things To Come
Source:    CD: Shape Of Things To Come (originally released on LP: Wild In The Streets soundtrack)
Writer(s):    Mann/Weil
Label:    Captain High (original label: Tower)
Year:    1968
    Max Frost was a politically savvy rock star who rode the youth movement all the way to the White House, first through getting the support of a hip young Senator, then getting the age requirements for holding high political office lowered to 21, and finally lowering the voting age to 14. Everyone over 30 was locked away in internment camps, similar to those used during WWII by various governments to hold those of questionable loyalty to the current regime. What? You don't remember any of that? You say it sounds like the plot of a cheapie late 60s teen exploitation flick? Right on all counts except for the "cheapie" part. Wild in the Streets starred Christopher Jones as the rock star, Hal Holbrook as the hip young senator, and a Poseidon Adventure-sized Shelly Winter as the rock star's interred mom. Richard Pryor, in his film debut, played the band's drummer/political activist Stanley X. The most prominent song from the film was Shape Of Things To Come, writen by the Brill Building husband and wife team of Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil, who had written several hit songs over the years, including Kicks and Hungry for Paul Revere And The Raiders. Shape Of Things To Come ended up being a hit as well, leading to an entire album being released by the fictional Max Frost And The Troopers. Although who the musicians who actually played on the song is not known for sure, most people who know anything about it believe it to be the work of the 13th Power, who had recently signed with Tower Records, which issued both the movie soundtrack album and the Shape Of Things To Come LP.

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