Saturday, April 2, 2011

Show # 1113 Playlist (4/2+/11)

I was recently looking over playlists from the past 3-4 months and noticed something odd. Whereas I used to do a lot of sets of a particular artist, I really hadn't done much of that lately. Anyway, I decided that Stuck in the Psychedelic Era would benefit from more artist sets, so this week we have three of them. Let me know if you think this is the right direction to go or whether I should try to fit in as many different artists each week as possible instead.

Artist: Who
Title: Happy Jack
Source: LP: Meaty, Beaty, Big and Bouncy (originally released as 45 RPM single and on US LP Happy Jack)
Writer: Pete Townshend
Label: MCA (original label: Decca)
Year: 1967
Happy Jack was originally released as a single in the UK in late 1966. It did not hit the US airwaves, however, until the early months of 1967. (I heard it for the first time on KLZ-FM, a Denver station whose format was a forerunner of progressive rock. KLZ-FM didn't call themselves a rock station. They instead marketed themselves as playing the top 100, as opposed to the top 60 played on KIMN, the dominant AM station in the city.) Although the song was not intended to be on an album, Decca Records quickly rearranged the track order of the Who's second album, A Quick One, to make room for the song, changing the name of the album itself to Happy Jack in the process. This rechanneled stereo mix of the song (using a much more realistic process than Capitol used with the Beach Boys' records) came out on the LP Meaty, Beaty, Big and Bouncy in the early 1970s, but when the album was reissued on CD the original mono master was used instead.

Artist: Doors
Title: You're Lost Little Girl
Source: Strange Days
Writer: CD: The Doors
Label: Elektra
Year: 1967
The Doors second LP, Strange Days, was stylistically similar to the first, and served notice to the world that this band was going to be around for awhile. Songwriting credit for You're Lost Little Girl (a personal favorite of mine) was given to the entire band, a practice that would continue until the release of The Soft Parade in 1969.

Artist: Electric Prunes
Title: Get Me To The World On Time
Source: CD: Nuggets-Original Artyfacts from the Psychedelic Era (originally released as 45 RPM single and on LP: I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)
Writer: Tucker/Jones
Label: Rhino (original label: Reprise)
Year: 1967
Probably the most psychedelic song with a Bo Diddly beat ever recorded, Get Me To The World On Time was the second single released from the I Had To Much To Dream album. Both were co-written by Annette Tucker, although for World her partner was Jill Jones rather than Nancie Mantz. This is another one of those songs that was on the KLZ-FM top 100 that didn't get any local AM airplay.

Artist: Love
Title: Softly To Me
Source: CD: Comes In Colours (originally released on LP: Love)
Writer: Bryan McLean
Label: Raven (original label: Elektra)
Year: 1966
Bryan McLean's role as a songwriter in Love was similar to George Harrison's as a Beatle. He didn't have many songs on any particular album, but those songs were universally among the best tracks on the album. The first of these was Softly To Me from the band's debut LP. Before the signing of Love in 1966, Elektra was a folk and ethnic music label whose closest thing to a rock band was the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, which was at that time very much into creating as authentic Chicago blues sound as possible for a band from New York. Love, on the other hand, was a bona-fide rock band that was packing the clubs on the Sunset Strip nightly. To underscore the significance of the signing, Elektra started a whole new numbering series for Love's debut album.

Artist: Vanilla Fudge
Title: You Keep Me Hangin' On
Source: LP: Nuggets Vol. 9-Acid Rock (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer: Holland/Dozier/Holland
Label: Rhino (original label: Atco)
Year: 1967
The Vanilla Fudge version of You Keep Me Hangin' On was originally recorded and released in 1967, not too long after the Supremes version of the song finished its own run on the charts. It wasn't until the following year, however, the the Vanilla Fudge recording caught on with radio listeners, turning it into the band's only top 40 hit.

Artist: Iron Butterfly
Title: Are You Happy
Source: CD: In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida
Writer: Doug Ingle
Label: Atco
Year: 1968
Speaking of catching on slowly, the In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida album seemed like a bottom feeder for the first year of its existence until progressive FM stations began playing the 17 minute title track. Sales of the album skyrocketed, and In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida ended up being to top selling LP of 1969. Of the remaining songs on the album Are You Happy probably got the most airplay, but not nearly as much as In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida.

Artist: Simon and Garfunkel
Title: The Dangling Conversation
Source: Collected Works (originally released on LP: Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme)
Writer: Paul Simon
Label: Columbia
Year: 1966
The first Simon and Garfunkel album, Wednesday Morning 3AM, originally tanked on the charts, causing Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel to temporarily pursue solo careers. Simon went to England, where he wrote and recorded an album's worth of material. Meanwhile, producer Tom Wilson, fresh from producing Bob Dylan's Like A Rolling Stone, went into the studio with the original recording of the song Sound of Silence and added electric instruments to it. The result was a surprise hit that led Paul Simon to return to the US without issuing his solo album, reuniting with Art Garfunkel and re-recording several of the tunes he had recorded as a solo artist for a new album, Sounds of Silence. The success of that album prompted Columbia to re-release Wednesday Morning, 3AM, which in turn became a bestseller. Meanwhile, Simon and Garfunkel returned to the studio to record an album of all new material. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme was yet another success that spawned several hit songs, including The Dangling Conversation, released as a single in fall of 1966.

Artist: Jefferson Airplane
Title: And I Like It
Source: LP: Jefferson Airplane Takes Off (mono mix)
Writer: Balin/Kaukonen
Label: RCA Victor
Year: 1966
Jorma Kaukonen was giving guitar lessons when approached by Marty Balin to join a new band he was forming. Kaukonen said yes and became a founding member of Jefferson Airplane. The two seldom collaborated on songwriting, though. One of the few examples of a Balin/Kaukonen composition is And I Like It from the band's first album. The song sounds to me like what Hot Tuna would sound like but with Balin's vocals instead of Kaukonen's.

Artist: Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title: And The Gods Made Love/Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland)
Source: CD: Electric Ladyland
Writer: Jimi Hendrix
Label: Legacy/Experience Hendrix
Year: 1968
Our first artist set of the night is by someone I promised myself I would play more of this year: Jimi Hendrix. In this particular case, all three tracks are from the third and final Experience album, Electric Ladyland. Although listed as seperate tracks on the album cover, the first two songs on the album, And The Gods Made Love and Have You Ever Been (To Electric Ladyland), actually ran together without a break on the album itself. In fact, the entire first and third sides of Electric Ladyland were pressed without the traditional spaces between songs on the vinyl.

Artist: Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title: Burning of the Midnight Lamp
Source: CD: Ultimate Experience (originally released in UK as 45 RPM single and in US on LP: Electric Ladyland)
Writer: Jimi Hendrix
Label: MCA
Year: 1967
The fourth non-album single released in the UK was Burning of the Midnight Lamp, which came out while the band was working on their second album, Axis: Bold As Love. The three previous singles (but not their B sides) had all been included on the US version of the band's first LP, Are You Experienced? By mid-1967, however, the practice of releasing US albums with a different song lineup than their British counterparts was on the way out, as the artists themselves were becoming more involved in the process. As a result, Axis: Bold As Love had exactly the same song lineup on both sides of the Atlantic, leaving Burning of the Midnight Lamp unreleased in the US until Hendrix decided to do a stereo remix and include it on Electric Ladyland.

Artist: Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title: Come On (Pt. 1)
Source: CD: Electric Ladyland
Writer: Earl King
Label: Legacy
Year: 1968
Despite being rated by many as the number one rock guitarist of all time, Jimi Hendrix's roots were in the blues. One of his most performed songs was Red House (a track that was left off the US release of Are You Experienced?), and the Experience's debut US performance at Monterey featured a amped-up version of the B.B. King classic Rock Me Baby. For the Electric Ladyland album Hendrix chose a relatively obscure tune from Earl King, originally recorded in 1962. Come On (Pt. 1) was one of only two cover songs on Electric Ladyland (the other being Dylan's All Along the Watchtower).

Artist: Sly and the Family Stone
Title: Underdog
Source: CD: Love Is The Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965-70 (originally released on LP: A Whole New Thing)
Writer: Sylvester Stewart
Label: Rhino (original label: Epic)
Year: 1967
Sly and the Family Stone were a showstopper at the Woodstock festival in 1969, but their story starts years before that historic performance. Sylvester Stewart was a popular DJ and record producer in mid-60s San Francisco, responsible for the first recordings of the Warlocks (later the Grateful Dead) and the Great! Society, among others. During that time he became acquainted with a wealth of talent, including bassist Larry Graham. In 1967, with Autumn Records having been sold to and closed down by Warner Brothers, he decided to form his own band. Anchored by Graham, Sly and the Family Stone's first LP, A Whole New Thing, was possibly the first funk album.

Artist: Blues Magoos
Title: Pipe Dream
Source: LP: Electric Comic Book
Writer: Gilbert/Scala
Label: Mercury
Year: 1967
Pipe Dream, the Blues Magoos strong follow-up single to (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet was handicapped by having an equally strong track, There's A Chance We Can Make It, on the other side of the record. As it was not Mercury's policy to push one side of a single over the other, stations were confused about which song to play. The result was that each tune got about an equal amount of airplay. With each song getting airplay on only half the available stations, neither tune was able to make a strong showing in the charts. This had the ripple effect of slowing down album sales of Electric Comic Book, which in turn hurt the careers of the members of the Blues Magoos.

Artist: Left Banke
Title: Desiree
Source: CD: More Nuggets (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer: Brown/Feher
Label: Rhino (original label: Smash)
Year: 1967
For a while it looked as if the Left Banke would emerge as one of the most important bands of the late 60s. They certainly got off to a good start, with back-to-back top 10 singles Walk Away Renee and Pretty Ballerina. But then bandleader Michael Brown and Smash Records made a serious misstep, issuing a Brown solo effort called utilizing studio musicians and trying to pass it off as a Left Banke record. The other band members refused to go along with the charade and sent out letters to their fan club membership denouncing the single. The outraged fans, in turn, threatened to boycott any radio stations that played the single. Brown and the rest of the band, meanwhile, managed to patch things up enough to record a new single, Desiree, and released the song in late 1967. By then, however, radio stations were leary of playing anything with the words Left Banke on the label, and the song failed to chart, despite being an outstanding single. Brown left the Left Banke soon after.

Artist: Grateful Dead
Title: Truckin'
Source: single (reissue)
Writer: Hunter/Garcia/Lesh/Weir
Label: Warner Brothers
Year: 1971
The nearest thing the Grateful Dead had to a hit single before 1986 was Truckin', a feelgood tune sung by Bob Weir from the Workingman's Dead album. I actually have a video clip on DVD of the band doing the song live on some TV show.

Artist: Lovin' Spoonful
Title: Daydream
Source: single (reissue)
Writer: John Sebastian
Label: Buddah (original label: Kama Sutra)
Year: 1966
One of the most popular songs of 1966 was Daydream by the Lovin' Spoonful. Like many of the songs on the Hums of the Lovin' Spoonful album, Daydream is a departure from the style of the band's early singles such as Do You Believe In Magic. It's also one of the few songs with whistling in it to hit the number one spot on the charts.

Artist: Jethro Tull
Title: Round
Source: CD: This Was
Writer: Anderson/Abrahams/Cornish/Bunker
Label: Chrysalis/Capitol
Year: 1968
Fishing out the first hour we have a one-minute piece from the first Jethro Tull album. It was probably just a short warm-up jam (or possibly a break song) that the band decided to include at the end of the album.

Artist: Lemon Pipers
Title: Green Tambourine
Source: CD: Psychedelic Pop
Writer: Leka/Pinz
Label: BMG/RCA/Buddah (original label: Buddah)
Year: 1967
In 1967 the talk of the town in L.A. was the hip new record label, Buddah, which had evolved from Kama Sutra records, home of the Lovin' Spoonful. The label had issued the first LPs by Captain Beefheart and the Jimi Hendrix produced Eire Apparent, among others, giving it tremendous street credibility. Within a year, however, that street cred had been replaced with derision, as Buddah had become known as the "bubble gum" label. The first step in that incredible journey was the issuance of Green Tambourine, a single by an Ohio band, the Lemon Pipers, in late 1967. The song became Buddah's first number one hit and paved the way for other bands such as the 1910 Fruitgum Company and the Ohio Express, both of which had several bubble gum hits (with titles like Chewy Chewy and Indian Giver and 1,2,3 Red Light) for the label in 1968.

Artist: Animals
Title: Hey Gyp
Source: CD: Best of Eric Burdon and the Animals (originally released on US-only LP: Animalism)
Writer: Donovan Leitch
Label: Polydor (original label: M-G-M)
Year: 1966
Shortly before the original Animals disbanded in 1966, M-G-M Records collected several songs that had yet to be issued in the US and put out an album called Animalism (not to be confused with Animalisms, a UK album from earlier that year). One of the more outstanding tracks on that album was this cover of a Donovan tune that almost seems like it was written with Eric Burdon's voice in mind.

Artist: Eric Burdon and the Animals
Title: Hotel Hell
Source: CD: Winds Of Change
Writer: Burdon/Briggs/Weider/McCulloch/Jenkins
Label: Repertoire (original label: M-G-M)
Year: 1967
The first album by the New Animals (generally known as Eric Burdon and the Animals) was Winds of Change, issued in mid-1967. Although the album was not particularly well-received at the time, it has, in more recent years, come to be regarded as a classic. Hotel Hell is a moody piece that showcases Eric Burdon's darker side.

Artist: Eric Burdon and the Animals
Title: Monterey
Source: CD: Best of Eric Burdon and the Animals (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer: Burdon/Briggs/Weider/McCulloch/Jenkins
Label: Polydor (original label: M-G-M)
Year: 1968
One of the first appearances of the New Animals on stage was at the Monterey International Pop Festival. The experience (pun intended) so impressed the group that they wrote a song about it. The song was issued both as a single and on the LP: The Twain Shall Meet. The single used a mono mix; the LP version, while in stereo, was overlapped at both the beginning and end by adjoining tracks, and was missing the first few seconds of the single version. The version used here was created by splicing the mono intro onto the stereo main portion of the song, fading it a bit early to avoid the overlap from the LP. This process (called making a "cut down") was first done by a company called Drake-Chenault, which supplied tapes to radio stations using the most pristine stereo versions of songs available. Whether Polydor used the Drake-Chenault version or did the cut down itself, the version is the same.

Artist: Rascals
Title: My World
Source: LP: Once Upon A Dream
Writer: Cavaliere/Brigati
Label: Atlantic
Year: 1968
The Rascals are pretty much universally acknowledged as the most popular blue-eyed soul band ever. To avoid lawsuits from the owners of the Little Rascals film franchise, the group lengthened their name to the Young Rascals when they started making records in 1966. As of the Once Upon A Dream LP, they went back to their original name. At that time the band was concerned that they were starting to get stale and wanted to expand their musical horizons. The result was an album that was considered both their best (by critics) and worst (by fans). One of the songs that hearkened back to their original style was My World, which starts off side two of the LP.

Artist: Pleasure featuring Billy Elder
Title: Poor Old Organ Grinder
Source: CD: Where The Action Is: L.A. Nuggets 1965-68 (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer: Tandyn Almer
Label: Rhino (original label: Tower)
Year: 1969
Tandyn Almer had one of the most innovative minds in late 60s L.A., both in and out of the recording studio (he was the inventor of the dual-chamber bong, for instance). Poor Old Organ Grinder was a song originally intended for Tommy Flanders, the original lead vocalist for the Blues Project. Flanders, however, was not able to hit the high notes. As Almers was about to cancel the entire project one of the recording engineers, Billy Elder, convinced Almer to let him take a shot at the song, and the result is the recording heard here.

Artist: Graham Nash
Title: Man In The Mirror
Source: LP: Songs For Beginners
Writer: Graham Nash
Label: Atlantic
Year: 1971
I recently mistakenly identified Graham Nash's Prison Song as being from the Songs For Beginners album. This is probably because I had this LP with me at the studios at the time and got confused (my copy of Prison Song is on 45 RPM vinyl). Hey, it happens at my age, OK? Anyway, here is a song from the LP itself, which was one of a group of solo albums from Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young that were released after Deja Vu tore up the LP charts.

Artist: Shadows of Knight
Title: The Behemoth
Source: CD: Dark Sides (originally released on LP: Back Door Men)
Writer: Pye
Label: Rhino (original label: Dunwich)
Year: 1966
When it comes to garage punk bands of the sixties there are two that are generally considered to be at the top of the heap. Unlike the Standells, who started off as a bar band and only embraced the punk ethic when they hooked up with writer/producer Ed Cobb, the Shadows of Knight were the real deal. Coming from the Chicago suburbs, they literally got their start practicing in the garage, slowly graduating to parties and high school dances, getting banned from at least one high school campus in the process (something having to do with a student getting knocked up, rumor has it). The Shadows (as they were originally known) cited the British blues bands as their main influence, with a dose of Chicago blues thrown in for good measure. The Behemoth, a track from their second album, Back Door Men, was chosen for a 1967 B side as well.

Artist: Shadows of Knight
Title: I'm Gonna Make You Mine
Source: LP: Nuggets Vol. 2-Punk (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer: Bayer/Carr/D'Errico
Label: Rhino (original label: Dunwich)
Year: 1966
The follow-up single to the Shadows' hit single Gloria was I'm Gonna Make You Mine, possibly the loudest rocking song ever recorded at that point in time. By the way, the Knight part of their name came from the name of their high school sports teams, the Knights. They adopted it when they first started making records just in case there were any other bands out there called the Shadows.

Artist: Shadows of Knight
Title: Dark Side
Source: CD: Dark Sides
Writer: Rogers/Sohns
Label: Rhino (original label: Dunwich)
Year: 1966
Finishing out our set of tunes from the Shadows of Knight (bet ya didn't see that coming) we have the B side of their first hit, Gloria. Dark Side, written by guitarist Warren Rogers and singer Jim Sohns, is probably the quintessential Shadows of Knight song. It has all the classic elements of a garage rock song: three chords, a blues beat and lots of attitude. Oh, and the lyrics "I love you baby more than birds love the sky". What more can you ask for?

Artist: Five Americans
Title: I See The Light
Source: LP: Nuggets-Classics From the Psychedelic 60s
Writer: Durill/Ezell/Rabon
Label: Rhino (original label: Abnak)
Year: 1965
For years I was under the impression that the Five Americans were a Texas band, mainly due to Abnak Records having a Texas address. It turns out, though, that the band was actually from Durant, Oklahoma, although by the time they had their biggest hit, Western Union, they were playing most of their gigs in the Lone Star state. I See The Light is an earlier single built around a repeating Farfisa organ riff that leads into a song that can only be described as in your face.

Artist: Rolling Stones
Title: My Obsession
Source: LP: Between The Buttons
Writer: Jagger/Richards
Label: London
Year: 1966
My Obsession is the kind of song that garage bands loved: easy to learn, easy to sing, easy to dance to. The Rolling Stones, of course, were the kings of this type of song, which is why so many US garage bands sounded like the Stones.

Artist: Byrds
Title: Triad
Source: CD: The Notorius Byrd Brothers (bonus track)
Writer: David Crosby
Label: Columbia/Legacy
Year: 1967
By fall of 1967 David Crosby had pretty much pissed off Jim (now Roger) McGuinn about as much as he could without getting kicked out of the Byrds. In June he had made statements to the effect that the US government was covering up the truth about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and gone on stage and performed with a rival band, the Buffalo Springfield (filling in for Neil Young, who had just quit the band). And he did this all at the same time and place, the Monterey International Pop Festival. Nobody but the participants knows for sure what the final straw was that got Crosby booted from the band, but before it happened they had recorded this original version of song that would appear on the 1968 Jefferson Airplane album Crown of Creation. The Byrds version of Triad was naturally left off the album the group had been working on (the Notorious Byrd Brothers), only surfacing years later on a Byrds anthology album.

Artist: Steppenwolf
Title: Don't Step On The Grass, Sam
Source: CD: Steppenwolf the Second
Writer: John Kay
Label: MCA (original label: Dunhill)
Year: 1968
No hidden facts about this one. Just a great song.

Artist: Paul Revere and the Raiders
Title: The Great Airplane Strike
Source: LP: Spirit of '67
Writer: Revere/Melcher/Lindsay
Label: Columbia
Year: 1966
Often dismissed for their Revolutionary War costumes and frequent TV appearances, Paul Revere and the Raiders were actually one of the first great rock bands to emerge from the Pacific Northwest. Their accomplishments include recording Louie Louie BEFORE the Kingsmen did and being the first rock band signed to industry giant Columbia Records. The Great Airplane Strike is a good example of just how good a band they really were.

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