Sunday, February 28, 2021

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2110 (starts 3/1/21) 

    This time around we have three artists' sets, one of which includes the B side of the first Jefferson Airplane single. Also, for the first time, we have Don Fardon's original British hit version of Indian Reservation, released three years before the Raiders version topped the US charts. Plus a version of the Beatles' Across The Universe that predates even the "charity" version that first appeared on the Rarities album, and of course the usual mix of familiar and not so familiar tracks from the late 60s.

Artist:    Yardbirds
Title:    I'm A Man
Source:    45 RPM single (reissue)
Writer(s):    Elias McDaniel
Label:    Epic
Year:    1965
    It's pretty much a given that the Rolling Stones were the most influential band in the world when it came to inspiring American garage bands. The single song that had the most influence on those bands, however, was probably the Yardbirds high-energy cover of Bo Diddley's I'm A Man, which electrified the US charts in 1965. I spell M....A.....N....Yeah!

Artist:    Family Tree
Title:    Live Your Own Life
Source:    Mono CD: Love Is The Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965-70 (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Segarini/Dure
Label:    Rhino (original label: Mira)
Year:    1966
    The Family Tree was actually one of the first rock bands to play the Fillmore, but even then were seen as interlopers due to their propensity for dressing and sounding like the Beatles and other Mercybeat bands. Live Your Own Life was intended for release on San Francisco's premier local label, Autumn Records, but for some unknown reason ended up on Mira (the same label that released L.A. band the Leaves' first records). Live Your Own Life is sometimes known as The Airplane Song due to its perceived similarity to some early Jefferson Airplane recordings.

Artist:    Vanilla Fudge
Title:    You Keep Me Hangin' On
Source:    Mono CD: The Complete Atco Singles (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Holland/Dozier/Holland
Label:    Real Gone/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, that the Vanilla Fudge recording caught on with radio listeners, turning it into the band's only top 40 hit. Although progressive FM stations often played the longer LP version, it was the mono single edit heard here that was most familiar to listeners of top 40 radio.

Artist:    Don Fardon
Title:    Indian Reservation (The Lament Of The Cherokee)
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer(s):    J.D. Loudermilk
Label:    GNP Crescendo
Year:    1968
    For years I have been hearing about the controversy over whose version of Indian Reservation (The Lament Of The Cherokee Reservation Indian) is better: the 1971 US hit single by Paul Revere And The Raiders (who had shortened their name to the Raiders, temporarily as it turned out, at that point) or the "original" version heard here by British vocalist Don Fardon, which made the UK top 5 in 1968. What people fail to take into account, however, is the fact that both of these are actually cover versions of a song originally released in 1959 by country singer Marvin Rainwater, who claimed to be one quarter Cherokee and often performed wearing native American outfits, under the title The Pale Faced Indian. Rainwater's recording was mostly acoustic, and lacked the more sophisticated production values that characterized the two later versions, which are actually quite similar to each other.The song itself, however, contains several inaccuracies, the most glaring of which is the fact that Cherokee communities are not called "reservations" at all, nor do they live in teepees or call their young "papooses". J.D. Loudermilk, who wrote the song, once explained that it was written after he was picked up by a group of Cherokees when his car was stuck in a blizzard, who then asked him to write a song about the plight of the Cherokee people and even revealed that his great-great grandparents had been members of the tribe. Loudermilk, however, was a self-admitted spinner of tall tales, and the entire story was probably a fabrication.

Artist:    Love
Title:    And More
Source:    Mono German import CD: Love
Writer:    Lee/MacLean
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1966
    Although the Paul Butterfield Blues Band was already recording for Elektra, the first genuine rock band to be signed to the label was L.A.'s Love. Jac Holzman, owner of Elektra, was so high on Love that he created a whole new numbering series for their first album (the same series that later included the first few Doors LPs). The band had originally called itself the Grass Roots, but the songwriting team of Steve Barri and P.F. Sloan, reacting to a perceived slight from a couple of band members when they attempted to approach them at a gig, retaliated by putting out a single using the name before the band had a chance to copyright it. When the band found out about it, they asked the audience at a local club to choose a new name for them from a list of possibilities. The overwhelming choice of the crowd was Love, and that was what the band was known as from then on. Most of Love's songs were written by multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Arthur Lee, with a handful of tunes provided by rhythm guitarist/vocalist Bryan MacLean, who had formerly been a roadie for the Byrds. The two seldom collaborated however, despite the fact that they often hung out together, with MacLean often walking the few blocks to Lee's home in the Hollywood hills. One of the few songs they did collaborate on was And More, a tune from the first album that shows the two songwriters' interest in folk-rock as popularized by fellow L.A. band the Byrds.

Artist:    Eyes
Title:    When The Night Falls
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):    Terry Nolder
Label:    Rhino (original label: Mercury)
Year:    1966
    The Eyes formed in Whealing, West London in late 1962 as the Renegades, changing their name to Gerry Hart And The Hartbeats and finally The Eyes in 1964. The band was part of the Mod movement in mid-60s London, and was known as much for their visual image (they all wore rugby shirts and pink parkas with tire tracks across the back) as for the music they made. Like all Mod bands, the Eyes went for simply-structured tunes with repeated riffs, as can be heard on their 1966 debut single for the Mercury label, When The Night Falls. After three more singles and an EP failed to make them stars, the group decided to disband the following year.

Artist:    Kinks
Title:    Big Black Smoke
Source:    45 RPM single B side
Writer(s):    Ray Davies
Label:    Reprise
Year:    1967
    The Kinks had some of the best B sides of the 60s. Case in point: Big Black Smoke, which appeared as the flip of Dead End Street in early 1967. The song deals with a familiar phenomenon of the 20th century: the small town girl that gets a rude awakening after moving to the big city. In this case the city was London, known colloquially as "the Smoke".

Artist:    Lovin' Spoonful
Title:    Nashville Cats
Source:    LP: Homer (soundtrack) (originally released on LP: Hums Of The Lovin' Spoonful)
Writer(s):    John B. Sebastian
Label:    Cotillion (original label: Kama Sutra)
Year:    1966
    After the success of their debut LP, Do You Believe In Magic, The Lovin' Spoonful deliberately set out to make a followup album that sounded like it was recorded by several different bands, as a way of showcasing their versatility. With Hums Of The Lovin' Spoonful, released in 1966, they did just that. Songs on the album ranged from the folky Darlin' Be Home Soon to the rockin' psychedelic classic Summer In The City, with a liberal dose of what would come to be called country rock a few years later. The best example of the latter was Nashville Cats, a song that surprisingly went into the top 40 (but did not receive any airplay from country stations) and became a staple of progressive FM radio in the early 70s.

Artist:     Canned Heat
Title:     Catfish Blues
Source:     LP: Progressive Heavies (originally released on LP: Canned Heat)
Writer:     Robert Petway
Label:     United Artists (original label: Liberty)
Year     1967
     Like many other US cities in the 1960s, San Francisco had a small but enthusiastic community of blues record collectors. A group of them got together in 1966 to form Canned Heat, and made quite an impression when they played the Monterey International Pop Festival in June of 1967. This led to a contract with Liberty Records and an album consisting entirely of cover versions of blues standards. One standout track from that album is Robert Petway's Catfish Blues, expanded to over six minutes by the Heat.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    Runnin' Round This World
Source:    Mono LP: Early Flight (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Balin/Kantner
Label:    Grunt (original label: RCA Victor)
Year:    1966
    Almost without exception, a rock band's first released record in the 1960s was a 45 RPM single. How well that single was received by radio stations and the general public (there were virtually no influential rock critics before 1967 or so) determined whether that band would make any further recordings. In the case of Jefferson Airplane, that first single was Marty Balin's It's No Secret, released in February of 1966, with a Marty Balin/Paul Kantner collaboration called Runnin' Round This World on the B side. The band had already been signed to record an album, Jefferson Airplane Takes Off, which was completed the following month, but not released until August of 1966. Because the shirts at RCA felt that the line  "The nights I've spent with you have been fantastic trips" was an LSD reference, the album did not include Runnin' Round This World. In fact, the song did not appear on any LPs until 1974, when it was included on a collection of outtakes and non-album singles called Early Flight.

Artist:     Jefferson Airplane
Title:     Crown Of Creation
Source:     CD: Crown of Creation
Writer:     Paul Kantner
Label:     BMG/RCA
Year:     1968
     After the acid rock experimentation of 1967's After Bathing At Baxter's, the Airplane returned to a more conventional format for 1968's Crown Of Creation album. The songs themselves, however, had a harder edge than those on the early Jefferson Airplane albums, as the band itself was becoming more socio-politically radical. The song Crown of Creation draws a definite line between the mainstream and the counter-culture.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    In The Morning
Source:    LP: Early Flight
Writer(s):    Jorma Kaukonen
Label:    Grunt
Year:    Recorded 1966, released 1974
    One of the earliest and best collections of previously unreleased material from a major rock band was the Jefferson Airplane's Early Flight LP, released in 1974. Among the rarities on the LP is In The Morning, a blues jam recorded in late 1966 with Jorma Kaukonen on vocals and lead guitar, Jack Casady on bass, Spencer Dryden on drums, and guest musicians Jerry Garcia (guitar) and John Paul Hammond (harmonica). The track's long running time (nearly six and a half minutes) precluded it from being included on the Surrealistic Pillow album, despite the obvious quality of the performance.  In The Morning is now available as a bonus track on the CD version of Surrealistic Pillow.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    Brown Sugar
Source:    CD: Singles Collection-The London Years (originally released on LP: Sticky Fingers)
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    Abkco (original label: Rolling Stones)
Year:    1972
    The Rolling Stones had good reason to have bitter feelings toward Allen Klein. Just as they were finally able to release their albums without record company interference on their own label in the early 1970s, they discovered that they had unknowingly signed away all of their rights to their own 1960s recordings to Klein's company, Abkco. To add insult to injury, they were forced to share copyright ownership of two of the new songs, Wild Horses and Brown Sugar, with Klein as well. As a result the songs, which were both on the band's 1972 album Sticky Fingers, are to this day also available on any album or CD that Abkco chooses to put them on, including Singles Collection-The London Years, which contains every A and B side the band put out on the London label in the US and the Decca label in the UK. Of course, the Stones themselves don't get any royalties from recordings released by Abkco, which might explain why they have nothing good to say about Klein.

Artist:    Blues Image
Title:    La Bamba/Consuelate
Source:    CD: Open
Writer(s):    Traditional/Blues Image
Label:    Sundazed (original label: Atco)
Year:    1970
    The Blues Project evolved out of a Tampa, Florida band called Mike West And The Motions ("Mike West" being a stage name for guitarist Mike Pinera). Unlike other bands in the area, who tended to play covers of British Invasion bands, the Motions were into John Mayall, Muddy Waters, and especially the Blues Project. They also experimented with using two drummers, inspiring fellow Floridians Duane and Gregg Allman to do the same with their new band. After changing their name to Blues Image (inspired by Blues Project), the band opened their own club, Thee Image, hiring the Mothers Of Invention for opening night in 1968. It was Mothers leader Frank Zappa that told the members of Blues Image that their strength was in arranging rather than composing, an opinion given validity by such tracks as La Bamba, which leads directly into a track that is essentially an extension of La Bamba itself, although it bears the title Consuelate. A series of unrelated events saw the band move to L.A. by the end of the year, closing Thee Image in the process. After two LPs for Atco, Pinera left the band he helped found to join Iron Butterfly. After one more LP the group called it quits, with various members going on to become studio musicians and hooking up with people like Stephen Stills.

Artist:    James Gang
Title:    Bluebird
Source:    CD: Yer' Album
Writer(s):    Stephen Stills
Label:    MCA (original label: Bluesway)
Year:    1969
    One of the highlights of the first James Gang album was a six-minute-long cover version of Bluebird, a Stephen Stills song that had originally appeared on the second Buffalo Springfield album. The James Gang version of the tune opens with a new instrumental intro written by drummer Jim Fox (playing piano), which leads into a short second intro featuring Joe Walsh on backwards-masked guitar. This in turn segues directly into the body of the song itself, which is played at a considerably slower tempo than the Springfield original (sort of a Vanilla Fudge approach, you might say). Yer' Album (so named in response to friends of the band always asking "when is yer album gonna come out?") was the only album by a rock band ever released on ABC's Bluesway subsidiary. The next four James Gang LPs would all appear on the ABC label itself.

Artist:    Eric Burdon and the Animals
Title:    San Franciscan Nights
Source:    Simulated stereo LP: Golden Days Of British Rock (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:    Burdon/Briggs/Weider/Jenkins/McCulloch
Label:    Sire (original label: M-G-M)
Year:    1967
    In late 1966, after losing several original members over a period of about a year, the original Animals disbanded. Eric Burdon, after releasing one single as a solo artist (but using the Animals name), decided to form a "new" Animals. After releasing a moderately successful single, When I Was Young, the new band appeared at the Monterey International Pop Festival in June of 1967. While in the area, the band fell in love with the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, during what came to be called the Summer Of Love. The first single to be released from their debut album, Winds Of Change, was a tribute to the city by the bay called San Franciscan Nights. Because of the topicality of the song's subject matter, San Franciscan Nights was not released in the UK as a single. Instead, the song Good Times (which was the US B side of the record), became the new group's biggest UK hit to date (and one of the Animals' biggest UK hits overall). Eventually San Franciscan Nights was released as a single in the UK as well (with a different B side) and ended up doing quite well.

Artist:     Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:     The Wind Cries Mary
Source:     Simulated stereo British import LP: Smash Hits (originally released in UK as 45 RPM single)
Writer:     Jimi Hendrix
Label:     Polydor (original label: Track)
Year:     1967
     The US version of Are You Experienced was significantly different than its UK counterpart. For one thing, the original UK album was originally mixed and sold as a monoraul LP. For the US version, engineers at Reprise Records, working from the multi-track masters, created all-new stereo mixes of about two-thirds of the album, along with all three of the singles that the Jimi Hendrix Experience had released in the UK. The third of these singles was The Wind Cries Mary, which had hit the British charts in February of 1967. When a stereo version of Are You Experienced became available in the UK and Europe, however, they did not use the Reprise mixes, instead using electronic rechannelling to create a simulated stereo sound. When Polydor decided that the band was taking too long on their third album, Electric Ladyland, the label put together a late 1967 release called Smash Hits that collected the band's four European singles and B sides, along with selected album tracks from Are You Experienced. For reasons unknown, rather than use Reprise's true stereo mix of The Wind Cries Mary, Polydor elected to create a new simulated stereo version for use on Smash Hits.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    May This Be Love
Source:    CD: Are You Experienced?
Writer(s):    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    MCA (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    The original UK version of Are You Experienced featured May This Be Love as the opening track of side two of the album. In the US, the UK single The Wind Cries Mary was substituted for it, with May This Be Love buried deep on side one. It's obvious that Hendrix thought more highly of the song than the people at Reprise who picked the track order for the US album.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    Burning of the Midnight Lamp
Source:    Mono British import LP: Smash Hits (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Polydor (original label: Track)
Year:    1967
    For the first few months of their existence as a band, the Jimi Hendrix Experience were an entirely British and European phenomena, despite being led by an American guitarist/vocalist. By mid-1967 the group had released three singles that made the charts all over Europe and the UK, as well as an album that was only kept out of the # 1 spot by something called Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The band's next project was Burning Of The Midnight Lamp, the most complex piece of production yet attempted by the band, and their first using state of the art eight-track recording equipment. The song had two other notable firsts as well: it was the first song to feature Hendrix playing a keyboard instrument (a harpsichord) in addition to his usual guitar, and it was his first recording to use the new "wah-wah" effect. The original mono mix of the song heard here has never been released in the US, as Hendrix himself supervised a remix of the song for inclusion on his 1968 Electric Ladyland LP, which was only released in stereo.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    Light My Fire
Source:    LP: The Doors
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    Once in a while a song comes along that totally blows you away the very first time you hear it. The Doors' Light My Fire was one of those songs. I liked it so much that I immediately went out and bought the 45 RPM single. Not long after that I heard the full-length version of the song from the first Doors album and was blown away all over again.

Artist:    Strawberry Alarm Clock
Title:    Tomorrow
Source:    LP: The Best Of The Strawberry Alarm Clock
Writer(s):    Weitz/King
Label:    Sundazed/Uni
Year:    1967
    The story of the Strawberry Alarm Clock almost seems like a "best of" (or maybe "worst of") collection of things that could have happened to a band during the psychedelic era. Signed with a local label: check. Released single: check. Started getting airplay on local radio stations: check. Record picked up by major label for national distribution: check. Record becomes hit: check. Band gets to record an entire album: check. Album does reasonably well on charts, mostly due to popularity of single: check. Band gets to record second album, but with more creative freedom, thanks to previous successes: check. Single from second album does OK, but nowhere near as OK as first hit single: check. Second album fails to chart: check. Second single from second album charts lower than either previous single. Band soldiers on for a while longer, but never manages to duplicate success of first single: check. Band disbands: check. In the case of the Strawberry Alarm Clock, the hit single was huge. Incense And Peppermints is still one of the best known songs of 1967. The second single, Tomorrow, not so much, although it did indeed make the top 40, peaking at #23. Not that it's a bad song, by any means. But, to be honest, it's no Incense And Peppermints, either.

Artist:    Pink Floyd
Title:    See Emily Play
Source:    Mono CD: Relics (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Syd Barrett
Label:    Capitol (original label: Tower)
Year:    1967
    Following up on their first single, Arnold Layne, Pink Floyd found even greater chart success (at least in their native England) with See Emily Play. Released in June of 1967, the song went all the way to the #6 spot on the British charts. In the US the song failed to chart as a single, although it was included on the US version of Pink Floyd's debut LP, The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn. The "Emily" in question is reportedly the sculptor Emily Young, who in those days was known as the "psychedelic schoolgirl" at London's legendary UFO club.
Artist:     Turtles
Title:     She's My Girl
Source:     CD: The Turtles Present The Battle Of The Bands (bonus track originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:     Bonner/Gordon
Label:     Manifesto (original label: White Whale)
Year:     1967
     Until the 2018 CD reissue of the 1968 album The Turtles Present The Battle Of The Bands, I did not have the foggiest idea that a stereo mix of the 1967 hit single She's My Girl even existed. Every copy I had ever heard was a mono copy, as was the original 45 RPM pressing. Now I can truly appreciate why the members of the band itself considered it their favorite Turtles record. There's all sorts of cool stuff going on in the background that I was never able to focus on before. Enjoy!

Artist:    Simon and Garfunkel
Title:    Scarborough Fair/Canticle
Source:    Collected Works (originally released on LP: Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme)
Writer(s):    Paul Simon
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1966
    After the reunion of Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel following the surprise success of an electrified remix of The Sound Of Silence, the two quickly recorded an album to support the hit single. Sounds Of Silence was, for the most part, a reworking of material that Simon had recorded for 1965 UK LP the Paul Simon Songbook. The pressure for a new album thus (temporarily) relieved, the duo got to work on their first album of truly new material since their unsuccessful 1964 effort Wednesday Morning 3AM (which had in fact been re-released and was now doing well on the charts). In October the new album, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, hit the stands. The title track was a new arrangement of an old English folk ballad, Scarborough Fair, combined with a reworking of a 1963 Simon tune (The Side Of A Hill) with all-new lyrics. The two melodies and sets of lyrics are set in counterpoint to each other, creating one of the most sophisticated folk song arrangements ever recorded. After being featured in the film The Graduate, Scarborough Fair/Canticle was released as a single in early 1968, going on to become one of the duo's most instantly recognizable songs.

Artist:    Simon And Garfunkel
Title:    Overs
Source:    LP: Bookends
Writer(s):    Paul Simon
Label:    Sundazed/Columbia
Year:    1968
    Originally written for (but not used in) the film The Graduate, Overs is the middle part of a series of songs on side one of the Bookends album that follow the cycle of life from childhood to old age. The song deals with a long relationship that is coming to an end after years of slow stagnation. Musically the tune is quiet and contemplative, with a loose structure that has more in common with the cool jazz of Miles Davis than either folk or rock.

Artist:    Simon And Garfunkel
Title:    Wednesday Morning 3AM
Source:    CD: Collected Works (originally released on LP: Wednesday Morning 3AM)
Writer(s):    Paul Simon
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1964
    The first Simon And Garfunkel album, Wednesday Morning 3AM, was not an immediate success. In fact, the album did not sell many copies at all and was soon deleted from the Columbia Records catalog. Discouraged, Paul Simon moved to London to make a go of it as a solo artist, and Art Garfunkel stayed in college. The album's producer, Tom Wilson, was not entirely ready to give up on the duo, however. In early 1965, following the completion of sessions for Bob Dylan's groundbreaking Highway 61 Revisited album, Wilson talked some of the same studio musicians who had worked on that album to "electrify" one of the songs on Wednesday Morning 3AM: The Sound Of Silence. The new version retained the original vocal and acoustic guitar tracks, however, and became a huge hit, prompting Simon to return to the US and reunite with Garfunkel to quickly record a new album to capitalize on the success of the single. One of the tracks on the new album was also a remake of a song from Wednesday Morning 3AM. In fact, it was a reworking of the title track itself, retitled Somewhere They Can't Find Me. Lyrically it was virtually the same song, set to an entirely different musical background using an entirely different melody. The change somehow managed to shift the emphasis of the song as well. Whereas Wednesday Morning 3AM seems to be about the protagonist's regret at having to leave his lover in the middle of the night, Somewhere They Can't Find Me focuses more on the reason for leaving in the first place: the protagonist has just robbed a liquor store and is on the run from the law.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    Across The Universe (take two)
Source:    CD: Anthology 2
Writer:    Lennon/McCartney
Label:    Capitol/Apple
Year:    Recorded 1968, released 1996
    John Lennon, in a 1970 interview, said that Across The Universe had "one of the best lyrics I've written. In fact, it could be the best". Unfortunately, despite several attempts by the Beatles at recording the tune, Lennon always felt that the song was never done properly. The first two takes of Across The Universe were recorded on Feb 2, 1968, with four more attempts made on the following day. The second take, featuring Lennon on acoustic guitar, George Harrison on Tambura and Ringo Starr on percussion, was considered the best of these, and a sitar intro by George Harrison, as well as a lead vocal track from Lennon were added to the recording before it was shelved in favor of a new take made on February 8th. Take two, sometimes referred to as the "psychedelic" version, was finally released in 1996 on the Anthology 2 CD. Personally, I like it better than any of the previously released versions, despite Lennon's odd tendency to take a breath in the middle of a line throughout the song.

Artist:    Monkees
Title:    Supplicio/Can You Dig It
Source:    LP: Head
Writer(s):    Peter Tork
Label:    Rhino (original label: Colgems)
Year:    1968
    Peter Tork only received two solo writing credits for Monkees recordings. The first, and most familiar, was For Pete's Sake, which was released on the Headquarters album in 1967 and used as the closing theme for the second season of their TV series. The second Tork solo piece was the more experimental Can You Dig It used in the movie Head and included on the 1968 movie soundtrack album. Not long after Head was completed, Tork left the group, not to return until the 1980s, when MTV ran a Monkees TV series marathon, introducing the band to a whole new generation and prompting a reunion tour and album. Supplicio, which precedes Can You Dig It on the LP, is a short bit of uncredited electronics and vocal effects that lead into the Tork tune.

Artist:    Spirit
Title:    The Great Canyon Fire In General
Source:    CD: Spirit
Writer(s):    Jay Ferguson
Label:    Ode/Epic/Legacy
Year:    1968
    Among other things, Southern California is known for its periodic wildfires, which, fueled by hot Santa Ana winds, destroy everything in their path before they can be brought under control. In the summer of 1967, while the members of Spirit were living in L.A.'s Topanga Canyon and working on their first album, one of these wildfires took out about half of the canyon. Although the house the band was living in was spared, the entire area was evacuated and the members of Spirit (and their family) had to spend a week camped out at the beach. Now that's what I call roughing it!

Artist:     Grateful Dead
Title:     Cosmic Charlie
Source:     CD: Aoxomoxoa
Writer:     Garcia/Hunter/Lesh
Label:     Warner Brothers
Year:     1969
     Cosmic Charlie is the last track on the third Grateful Dead album, Aoxomoxoa. The album is considered the most experimental LP the band ever released, and is the only album to feature avant-garde keyboardist Tom Constantin as an official member of the Grateful Dead (although he did contribute to the 1968 album Anthem Of The Sun as well). Aoxomoxoa is also the first Grateful Dead album to be recorded in the San Francisco Bay Area, at San Mateo's Pacific Recording Studio, using then-new 16-track technology. It was also the first Grateful Dead album to feature Robert Hunter as the band's full-time lyricist, and the only one with Jerry Garcia singing lead vocals on every song. The original album took eight months to record, thanks in large part to the band's wanting to explore the possibilities that had been opened up with the doubling of the number of available tracks to record on from eight to sixteen. As a result, the album, as originally released, had so much going on that it was virtually impossible for a listener to take it all in. Two years later, Garcia and Phil Lesh went back and remixed the album, removing what they considered extraneous audio and, in some cases, entire sections of songs. One track that remained relatively unchanged was Cosmic Charlie itself, which is presented here in its original 1969 form. The band ran up a huge bill in studio time making Aoxomoxoa, and to make up for it, their next album was the relatively inexpensive to make double LP Live Dead.

Rockin' in the Days of Confusion # 2110 (starts 3/1/21)

    This time around we have several tunes that were "borrowed" from our companion show, Stuck in the Psychedelic Era, including some rather tasty blues-rock from Savoy Brown and the Allman Brothers band. We also have a "new" acquisition from the hard-to-find first Stray Dog album. And of course, everything on the show is over 30 years old, and you know that, in the early 1970s, everything over 30 was considered ancient.

Artist:    Little Feat
Title:    Fat Man In The Bathtub
Source:    CD: Dixie Chicken
Writer(s):    Lowell George
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1973
    Lowell George, founder of Little Feat, came into his own as a songwriter with the 1973 album Dixie Chicken. Among the classic tunes on the LP was Fat Man In The Bathtub. There are many theories as to what the song is actually about, but most agree that somebody wasn't getting something he wanted.

Artist:    Wet Willie
Title:    Keep On Smilin'
Source:    Stereo 45 RPM single
Writer(s):    Hall/Hall/Hirsch/Anthony/Ross
Label:    Capricorn
Year:    1974
    Formed as Fox in Mobile, Alabama in 1969, Wet Willie was one of the first Southern Rock bands to score a top 10 single with Keep On Smilin' in 1974. The band, consisting of the Hall brothers Jimmy (vocals, saxophone, harmonica) and Jack (bass), John David Anthony (keyboards), Ricky Hirsch (guitar) and Lesis Ross (drums), relocated from Mobile to Macon, Georgia in 1971 where they signed with Phil Walden's Capricorn label, releasing several single and albums over the next few years. The group still performs occasionally as either Wet Willie or the Wet Willie Band, depending on whether Jimmy Hall is onstage.

Artist:    Stray Dog
Title:    Slave
Source:    LP: Stray Dog
Writer(s):    Alan Roberts
Label:    Manticore
Year:    1973
    Aphrodite was formed in Texas in 1968 by guitarist/lead vocalist Snuffy Walden, bassist Alan Roberts and drummer Randy Reeder, but soon relocated to Denver, where they built up a following in eastern Colorado and the plains states over the next few years. In 1973 Emerson, Lake & Palmer had just formed Manticore Records and were looking for artists to sign to the new label. An associate of ELP saw Aphrodite playing at a Denver club and recommended them to Greg Lake, who signed them on the condition that they would immediately relocate to London to record their first LP. Reeder decided to stay in the US, returning to Texas and replacing Rick Cobb in Bloodrock. His replacement was Leslie Sampson, who had previously been Noel Redding's bandmate in a group called Road. At the same time the band recruited Sampson they changed their name to Stray Dog and got to work recording their self-titled debut LP. As was to be expected in 1973, some of the tracks, such as Slave, rock out pretty hard, with Walden laying down some pretty solid leads and gritty vocals. Walden's role in the band was significantly diminished with the band's second LP, While Your're Down There, which was dominated by new lead vocalist Tim Dulaine, who wrote over half the songs on the album. After the group split up, Walden did a lot of support work for other bands, including filling in for Paul Kossoff on a couple of Free albums, before trying his hand at composing music for TV shows. After being nominated for several Emmy awards for such varied projects as the score for the 1994 miniseries adaption of Stephen King's The Stand and the theme from Thirtysomething, he at last won one for The West Wing in 2000. In 2018 a documentary film about Walden's career called Up To Snuff won the competition at the Pasadena International Film Festival.

Artist:    Deep Purple
Title:    Smoke On The Water (live version)
Source:    CD: Made In Japan
Writer(s):    Blackmore/Gillan/Glover/Lord/Paice
Label:    Rhino/Purple (original label: Warner Brothers)
Year:    1972
    Based on what is quite possibly the most recognizable riff in the history of hard rock, Smoke On The Water was released in December of 1972 on Deep Purple's Machine Head album. The song became a huge hit the following year when a live version of the tune appeared on the album Made In Japan, released in December of 1972.  

Artist:    Gypsy
Title:    Tomorrow Is The Last To Be Heard
Source:    LP: Gypsy
Writer(s):    Enrico Rosenbaum
Label:    Metromedia
Year:    1971
    Formed in Minneapolis by members of a band called the Underbeats, Gypsy came to national prominence when they became the house band at Los Angeles's famed Whisky-A-Go-Go club from September 1969 to April 1971. During that period they released their debut album, a two-LP set for the price of a single disc on the Metromedia label in 1970. The album did reasonably well on the charts, going to the #44 spot on the Billboard Pop Albums chart. Most of the songs on the album, including the final track, Tomorrow Is The Last To Be Heard, were written by guitarist Enrico Rosenbaum, who also provided lead vocals on the piece.

Artist:     Stephen Stills
Title:     Love the One You're With
Source:     Promo CD: Carry On sampler (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Stephen Stills
Label:    Rhino/Atlantic
Year:    1971
     Depending on your point of view Crosby, Stills and Nash (and sometimes Young) have either split up several times over the years or have never actually split up at all. It was during one of these maybe split-ups that Stills recorded Love the One You're With, one of his most popular tunes. Presumably he and singer Judy Collins were no longer an item at that point.

Artist:     Jimi Hendrix Experience (with Lee Michaels)
Title:     Electric Church Red House
Source:     CD: Blues
Writer:     Jimi Hendrix
Label:     Legacy
Year:     1968
     The "Electric Church" version of Jimi Hendrix's signature blues tune Red House features all the members of the Experience plus guest organist Lee Michaels. Unlike the version of Red House included on the Are You Experienced album, this track features Noel Redding playing an actual bass guitar and runs a full six minutes.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    I Don't Know Why aka Don't Know Why I Love You
Source:    CD: Singles Collection-The London Years (originally released on LP: Metamorphosis and as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Wonder/Riser/Hunter/Hardaway
Label:    Abkco
Year:    1969
    In 1969 Stevie Wonder released a single called Don't Know Why I Love You. Before the record could take off, however, several radio stations decided to instead play the B side of the record, a balled called My Cherie Amour. My Cherie Amour soon became the biggest hit of Wonder's career up to that point, and Don't Know Why I Love You quietly faded off into obscurity. Or rather it would have, if not for the fact that the Rolling Stones recorded their own version of the tune (retitling it I Don't Know Why) on the night they learned of the death of founding member Brian Jones, who had been fired from the band less than a month before. The Stones, however, did not release the recording immediately. In fact, by the time the song was released (in 1975, on the LP Metamorphosis), the band was no longer associated with either London Records, which issued the recording, or Allen Klein, who had managed to gain control of all of the Stones' 1960s recordings. The Stones themselves never authorized the recording to be released, which of course did not stop Klein from releasing it anyway, both as an album track and as a single on Klein's own Abkco label.

Artist:    Savoy Brown
Title:    Looking In
Source:    CD: Looking In
Writer(s):    Simmonds/Peverett
Label:    Deram (original US label: Parrot)
Year:    1970
    In mid-1970 lead vocalist Chris Youlden and the rest of Savoy Brown parted company, leaving Dave Peverett to double up as vocalist and guitarist for the band. The remaining four members (Peverett, bassist Tone Stevens, drummer Roger Earl and guitarist/founder Kim Simmonds) immediately went to work on what would be Savoy Brown's sixth LP. Looking In, when released, ended up being the most successful album in the band's entire run, and the only one to make the British charts (Savoy Brown had always done better with US audiences than in their native UK). Among the many listenable tunes on Looking In is the title track, written by Peverett and Simmonds. Unfortunately, this particular Savoy Brown lineup was not to last, as Simmonds summarily dismissed the rest of the group shortly after Looking In was released, citing musical differences. Simmonds set about putting together a new lineup, while the other three erstwhile members formed their own band, Foghat, a band that would ironically have far more commercial success than Savoy Brown ever achieved. 

Artist:    Cheech And Chong
Title:    Blind Melon Chitlin'
Source:    LP: Cheech & Chong
Writer(s):    Marin/Chong
Label:    Ode
Year:    1971
    Seriously, does anyone need to be told who Cheech and Chong are? Blind Melon Chitlin' is the first track from their first LP. It's also one of their most famous bits. 'Nuff said.

Artist:    Allman Brothers Band
Title:    Hoochie Coochie Man
Source:    CD: Beginnings (originally released on LP: Idlewild South)
Writer(s):    Willie Dixon
Label:    Polydor (original label: Atco)
Year:    1970
    The second Allman Brothers Band, Idlewild South, generally got better reviews than the group's debut LP, mostly because of shorter tracks and tighter arrangements, both of which appealed to the rock press. Their version of Willie Dixon's Hoochie Coochie Man, for instance, actually comes in at less than five minutes. The band's next album, Live At The Fillmore East, proved to be the Allman's commercial breakthrough, however; the fact that the album is made up almost entirely of extended versions of the same songs that were on their first two studio LPs only goes to show that sometimes what the public wants is not the same thing as what the critics think they should.

Artist:    Full Tilt Boogie Band
Title:    Buried Alive In The Blues
Source:    LP: Pearl (Janis Joplin album)
Writer(s):    Nick Gravenites
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1971
    The Full Tillt Boogie Band was formed in the late 60s as a side project by New York studio guitarist John Till. All the members, including Till, pianist Richard Bell, bassist Brad Campbell, drummer Clark Pierson, and organist Ken Pearson were Canadian citizens, mostly hailing from the province of Ontario. In 1969, Till, along with several other studio musicians, were tapped to become Janis Joplin's Kozmic Blues Band, backing up the vocalist on her solo debut album. Joplin, however, was not entirely comfortable with all the members of this new band, and after the album itself got mostly negative reviews from critics and fans alike, Joplin decided to disband the group, keeping only Till. Till then convinced her to use the Full Tilt Boogie Band (dropped the second "L" in Tillt) for her next album, Pearl. The new combo started touring in the spring of 1970, beginning work on the album itself that September. At the time of Joplin's sudden death on October 4, 1970, the band had completed all the basic tracks for the album; only one song, Buried Alive In The Blues, lacked a usable vocal track. Although Nick Gravenites, the Electric Flag veteran who had written the tune, offered to provide vocals for the track, the band decided to keep it an instrumental instead.

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2109 (starts 2/22/21)

    This week we managed to outdo ourselves and fit 36 songs into a two-hour show. As you might expect, only one of these songs is over five minutes long. What you might not have expected, however, is that it is a song that's never been heard on Stuck in the Psychedelic Era before, from a group called The Raik's Promise, featuring a 17-year-old Steve Krikorian, later to be known as Tonio K. The show itself starts with an all-mono set from Jefferson Airplane, featuring three of their first five singles. We begin with the one that started it all...

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    It's No Secret
Source:    Mono LP: Jefferson Airplane Takes Off (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:    Marty Balin
Label:    RCA Victor
Year:    1966
    The first Jefferson Airplane song to get played on the radio was not Somebody To Love. Rather, it was It's No Secret, from the album Jefferson Airplane Takes Off, that got extensive airplay, albeit only in the San Francisco Bay area. Still, the song was featured on a 1966 Bell Telephone Hour special on Haight Ashbury that introduced a national TV audience to what was happening out on the coast and may have just touched off the exodus to San Francisco the following year.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    Somebody To Love
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer(s):    Darby Slick
Label:    RCA Victor
Year:    1967
    Over 40 years after the fact, it's hard to imagine just how big an impact Jefferson Airplane's fifth single had on the garage band scene. Whereas before Somebody To Love came out you could just dismiss hard-to-cover songs as being not worth learning, here was a tune that was undeniably cool, and yet virtually impossible for anyone but the Airplane to play well (and even they were unable to get it to sound quite the same when they performed it live). Ironically, the first recorded version of the song (by Great! Society in 1966) was itself more of a garage-rock performance.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    Bringing Me Down
Source:    Mono LP: Jefferson Airplane Takes Off (also released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:    Balin/Kantner
Label:    RCA Victor
Year:    1966
    Released mainly to San Francisco Bay area radio stations and record stores, Jefferson Airplane's third single, Bringing Me Down, from the LP Jefferson Airplane Takes Off, is an early collaboration between vocalist Marty Balin and guitarist/vocalist Paul Kantner. Balin had invited Kantner into the band without having heard him play a single note. It turned out to be one of many savvy decisions by the young bandleader.
Artist:    First Edition
Title:    Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)
Source:    LP: Nuggets Vol. 9-Acid Rock (originally released on LP: The First Edition and as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Mickey Newbury
Label:    Rhino (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1968
    In 1968, former New Christy Mistrels members Kenny Rogers and Mike Settle decided to form a psychedelic rock band, the First Edition. Although Settle was the official leader on the first album, it was Rogers who would emerge as the star of the band, even to the point of eventually changing the band's name to Kenny Rogers and the First Edition. That change reflected a shift from psychedelic folk-rock to country flavored pop that would eventually propel Rogers to superstar status.

Artist:    Music Machine
Title:    The Eagle Never Hunts The Fly
Source:    Mono British import CD: The Ultimate Turn On (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Sean Bonniwell
Label:    Big Beat (original label: Original Sound)
Year:    1967
    Someone should make a movie based on the life of Sean Bonniwell, the former member of the "clean-cut" folk group Wayfarers turned black-clad leader of one of the premier punk-rock bands of all time. Between being lied to by record companies and screwed over by his own manager, Bonniwell nonetheless managed to record two LPs worth of high-quality tracks with two entirely-different incarnations of the Music Machine before becoming disillusioned and leaving the music business entirely by the end of the decade. The Eagle Never Hunts the Fly, heard here in its original mono mix, was the last single released by the original lineup on Original Sound Records in early 1967. A new stereo mix of the song was issued later on in the year on the LP Bonniwell Music Machine on the Warner Brothers label.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    Fire
Source:    Dutch import LP: The Singles (originally released on LP: Are You Experienced?)
Writer(s):    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Experience Hendrix/Legacy (original US label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    Sometime in late 1966 Jimi Hendrix was visiting his girlfriend's mother's house in London for the first time. It was a cold rainy night and Jimi immediately noticed that there was a dog curled up in front of the fireplace. Jimi's first action was to scoot the dog out of the way so he himself could benefit from the fire's warmth, using the phrase "Move over Rover and let Jimi take over." The phrase got stuck in his head and eventually became the basis for one of his most popular songs. Fire was a highlight of the Jimi Hendrix Experience's live performances, often serving as a set opener. In 1969, two years after its original UK appearance on the mono LP Are You Experienced, the stereo remix of Fire from the US version of the album was issued in the UK, along with a handful of European countries and New Zealand, as a single called Let Me Light Your Fire.

Artist:    Small Faces
Title:    Itchycoo Park
Source:    CD: British Beat (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Marriott/Lane
Label:    K-Tel (original label: Immediate)
Year:    1967
    Led by Steve Marriott and Ronnie Lane, the Small Faces got their name from the fact that all the members of the band were somewhat vertically challenged. The group was quite popular with the London mod crowd, and was sometimes referred to as the East End's answer to the Who. Although quite successful in the UK, the group only managed to score one hit in the US, the iconic Itchycoo Park, which was released in late 1967. Following the departure of Marriott the group shortened their name to Faces, and recruited a new lead vocalist named Rod Stewart. Needless to say, the new version of the band did much better in the US than their previous incarnation.
Artist:    Kinks
Title:    Waterloo Sunset
Source:    CD: Something Else
Writer:    Ray Davies
Label:    Reprise
Year:    1967
    One of the most beautiful tunes ever recorded by the Kinks is Waterloo Sunset, a song that was a hit single in the UK, but was totally ignored by US radio stations. The reason for this neglect of such a stong song is a mystery, however it may have been due to the fear that American audiences would not be able to relate to all the references to places in and around London in the song's lyrics. The fact that the American Federation Of Musicians refused to issue permits for the Kinks to play concerts in the US between 1965 and 1969 (in all fairness due mainly to the band members' onstage behavior) probably had something to do with it as well.

Artist:    The Raik's Progress
Title:    All Night Long
Source:    Mono LP: Sewer Rat Love Chant
Writer(s):    Krikorian/Shapazian/van Maarth/Olson/Scott
Label:    Sundazed
Year:    Recorded 1966, released 2003
    "A bunch of 17-year-old quasi-intellectual proto-punks" was how Steve Krikorian, later to be known as Tonio K, described his first band. Krikorian, along with friends Alan Shapazian, Steve Olson, Nick van Maarth, and Duane Scott, formed The Raik's Progress in 1966 in Fresno, California. By the end of the year they had already cut a single for a major label (Liberty) and would soon find themselves opening for Buffalo Springfield at San Francisco's Fillmore Auditorium. Although the band did not release any more records, they did gain a reputation for their stage show, which included sitting down and playing a game of poker between songs and other strange antics. Their music was equally unusual, in that it combined influences from the more blues oriented British Invasion bands like the Animals and Them with an avant-garde sensibility more in line with what Frank Zappa's Mothers were doing at the time. Both of these elements can be heard on All Night Long, a track that also shows early traces of the outrageous vocal style that characterizes later Tonio K recordings.

Artist:    Bob Dylan
Title:    Pledging My Time
Source:    Mono LP: Blonde On Blonde
Writer(s):    Bob Dylan
Label:    Columbia/Sundazed
Year:    1966
    The second track from Bob Dylan's Blonde On Blonde album was Pledging My Time, a blues tune that features Robbie Robertson (who had been touring with Dylan) on guitar. The song was one of three tracks recorded in four takes in Nashville on March 8th of 1966. The song was also used as the B side of the album's first single, but was faded out about two-thirds of the way through.

Artist:    Shadows Of Knight
Title:    Bad Little Woman
Source:    Mono CD: Dark Sides (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Tinsley/Catling/Demick/Armstrong/Rosbotham
Label:    Rhino (original label: Dunwich)
Year:    1966
    Originally recorded by an Irish R&B band called the Wheels, Bad Little Woman was the third single from the Chicago area's premier garage/punk band, the Shadows Of Knight. The group had previously scored big with their cover of Van Morrison's Gloria, taking the song to the top of the Chicago charts and into the top 10 nationally. The group's second single, a cover of Bo Diddley's Oh Yeah, had managed to make the US top 40 charts, but Bad Little Woman ended up stalling out at #91. Nonetheless, the track stands as one of the loudest and raunchiest examples of garage rock ever recorded, especially on the choruses, which were mastered about five decibels louder than the verses.
Artist:    Standells
Title:    Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White
Source:    Mono LP: Nuggets Vol. 2-Punk (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Ed Cobb
Label:    Rhino (original label: Tower)
Year:    1966
     If ever a song could be considered a garage-punk anthem, it's Sometimes Good Guys Don't Wear White, the follow-up single to the classic Dirty Water. Both songs were written by Standells' manager/producer Ed Cobb, who might be considered the record industry's answer to Ed Wood.

Artist:    Cream
Title:    Sweet Wine
Source:    CD: Fresh Cream
Writer(s):    Baker/Godfrey
Label:    Polydor (original label: Atco)
Year:    1966
    When Cream was formed, both bassist Jack Bruce and drummer Ginger Baker had new music for the band to record (guitarist Eric Clapton having chosen to shut up and play his guitar for the most part). Most of these new songs, however, did not yet have words to go with the music. To remedy the situation, both musicians brought in outside lyricists. Baker chose poet Pete Brown, while Bruce chose to bring in his wife, Janet Godfrey. After a short time it became apparent that Bruce and Brown had a natural affinity for each other's material, and formed a partnership that would last years. Baker, meanwhile, tried working with Godfrey, but the two only came up with one song together, Sweet Wine, which was included on the band's debut LP, Fresh Cream.

Artist:    Mamas and the Papas
Title:    Somebody Groovy
Source:    Mono CD: Where The Action Is: L.A. Nuggets 1965-68 (originally released as 45 RPM B side)
Writer:    John Phillips
Label:    Rhino (original label: Dunhill)
Year:    1965
    The Mamas and the Papas were blessed with strong vocals and even stronger songwriting. Their debut single, California Dreamin', written by John & Michelle Phillips, is one of the defining songs of the mid-sixties. The B side of that single, released in 1965, was another John Phillips tune, Somebody Groovy.

Artist:    Simon And Garfunkel
Title:    Somewhere They Can't Find Me
Source:    LP: Sounds Of Silence
Writer(s):    Paul Simon
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1966
    The first Simon And Garfunkel album, Wednesday Morning 3AM, was a fairly traditional type of folk LP. The album was originally released in late 1964, but due to lackluster sales was soon deleted from the Columbia catalog. In 1965 Paul Simon relocated to London, releasing a solo LP called the Paul Simon Songbook there. Before leaving the country, however, he and Art Garfunkel recorded two new songs in a more upbeat style that remained unreleased until 1966, when the duo reunited for a new album, Sounds of Silence. One of those two new songs was Somewhere They Can't Find Me. The song was, lyrically, a reworking of the title track of Wednesday Morning 3AM, but with entirely new music inspired by a Bert Jansch tune called Anji. As a tribute Simon included his own recording of Anji on the album immediately following Somewhere They Can't Find Me.

Artist:    Circus Maximus
Title:    Bright Light Lover
Source:    LP: Circus Maximus
Writer(s):    Bob Bruno
Label:    Vanguard
Year:    1967
    Keyboardist Bob Bruno's contributions as a songwriter to Circus Maximus tended to favor jazz arrangements. On Bright Light Lover, however, from the band's first album, he proves that he could rock out with the raunchiest of the garage bands when the mood hit.

Artist:     Beacon Street Union
Title:     Sadie Said No
Source:     British import CD: The Eyes of the Beacon Street Union/The Clown Died In Marvin Gardens
Writer(s):     Ulaky/Wright
Label:     See For Miles (original label: M-G-M)
Year:     1967
     By the time The Eyes Of The Beacon Street Union LP was released the band had already relocated to New York. That didn't stop executives from M-G-M from including the Union as part of its ill-fated "Bosstown Sound" promotion. In the short term it may have generated some interest, but it was soon clear that the "Bosstown Sound" was empty hype, which in the long run hurt the band's credibility. This is a shame, since the music on The Eyes of the Beacon Street Union is actually quite listenable, as can be heard on the tongue-in-cheek Sadie Said No, which opens the LP's second side.

Artist:    Roger McGuinn
Title:    It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)
Source:    CD: Easy Rider (soundtrack)
Writer(s):    Bob Dylan
Label:    MCA (original label: Dunhill)
Year:    1968
    Actor/screenwriter Peter Fonda originally intended to use Bob Dylan's It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding) in his film Easy Rider, but due to the way Dylan's contract with Columbia Records was worded, was unable to do so. Instead, Fonda asked his friend Roger McGuinn of the Byrds to do a cover version of the tune. The resulting recording features McGuinn on guitar and vocals, accompanied by another friend of Fonda's, Gene Parsons, on harmonica. Parsons would go on to become a member of the Byrds, helping establish the band's new direction as country-rock pioneers.

Artist:    Coasters
Title:    Let's Go Get Stoned
Source:    LP: Smash Sounds (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Ashford/Simpson/Armstead
Label:    Atco
Year:    1965
    The Robins were one of the first doo-wop groups. Formed in San Francisco in 1948, they had a series of R&B hits for a variety of labels, starting in 1949. By the mid-1950s they were recording regularly with the writing/producing team of Jerry Lieber and Mike Stoller, turning out hits like Riot In Cell Block #9 and Smokey Joe's Cafe for the duo's Los Angeles based Spark label. In 1955, Ahmet Ertegun, co-owner of New York's Atlantic Records, offered Lieber and Stoller a contract to produce Robins records for the company's Atco label, including a reissue of Smokey Joe's Cafe. The new contract, however, required that Lieber, Stoller and the Robins relocate from the West Coast to the East Coast. Only two of the band members, Carl Gardner and Bobby Nunn, were willing to make the move, earning the name Coasters in the process. After recruiting two new members the Coasters quickly became one of the top R&B acts of the late 1950s, and had several hits, such as Yakety Yak, Along Came Jones and Poison Ivy, that crossed over onto the mainstream charts as well. By the mid-1960s, however, Lieber and Stoller had left Atlantic for other projects, although the Coasters continued to release singles on Atco through 1966. One of the last was a 1965 remake of the 1956 Drifters hit Money Honey, backed by a new song by the husband and wife team of Nicholas Ashford and Valerie Simpson, co-written by former Ikette Jo Armstead, called Let's Go Get Stoned. The following year Ray Charles, having heard Ronnie Milsap's recording of Let's Go Get Stoned, recorded his own version, which ended up topping the R&B charts at around the same time the Coasters left Atlantic.

Artist:    Strawberry Zots
Title:    Keep Me Hangin'
Source:    LP: Cars, Flowers, Telephones
Writer(s):    Mark Andrews
Label:    StreetSound
Year:    1989
    Albuquerque's Strawberry Zots were led by Mark Andrews, who either wrote or co-wrote all of the band's original material. Their only LP, Cars, Flowers, Telephones, was released locally on the StreetSound label and reissued on CD the following year by RCA records.

Artist:    Splinter Fish
Title:    Stories
Source:    LP: Splinter Fish
Writer(s):    Chuck Hawley
Label:    StreetSound
Year:    1989
    I make no secret of the fact that I am a huge fan of Albuquerque's late-1980s alternative rock band Splinter Fish, and of the songwriting skills of Chuck Hawley, who provided most of the band's material. Although songs like Stories don't come off immediately as psychedelic, a closer listen reveals a connection to the original San Francisco music scene of the late 1960s, particularly in Deb-O's vocals.
Artist:    Smithereens
Title:    Behind The Wall Of Sleep
Source:    CD: Blown To Smithereens (originally released on LP: Especially For You)
Writer(s):    Pat DiNizio
Label:    Capitol (original label: Enigma)
Year:    1986           
                In 1986 I was the host of a show called Rock Nouveaux on KUNM in Albuquerque, NM. Once a month we would feature an entire album from up and coming bands such as R.E.M., Killing Joke, Skinny Puppy and other groups that would come to be labeled "alternative rock", but at that time were part of a new musical underground. Among the albums that most impressed me was an LP called Especially For You from a band from New Jersey calling themselves the Smithereens. The album, produced by Don Dixon, had a decidedly 60s retro feel to it, especially on side two, which started off with Behind The Wall Of Sleep. The song eventually was released as the album's third single, doing particularly well in the UK.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    Break On Through (To The Other Side)
Source:    45 RPM Single
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    The first Doors song to be released as a single was not, as usually assumed, Light My Fire. Rather, it was Break On Through (To The Other Side), the opening track from the band's debut LP, that was chosen to do introduce the band to top 40 radio. Although the single was not an immediate hit, it did eventually catch on with progressive FM radio listeners and still is heard on classic rock stations from time to time.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    Cool, Calm And Collected
Source:    CD: Between The Buttons
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    Abkco (original label: London)
Year:    1967
    The Rolling Stones were beginning to experiment with psychedelia on their first album of 1967, Between The Buttons. Cool, Calm and Collected, which closes side one of the LP, features pianist Nicky Hopkins prominently. Hopkins, one of the most respected British session players (and the inspiration for the Kinks song Session Man) would soon start showing up on albums by American artists, and even became a member of one of them (Quicksilver Messenger Service) for a time. Probably the most memorable thing about Cool, Calm And Collected, however, is the fact that, about where you would expect a fadeout you instead get a slow increase in tempo which builds up to a truly manic train wreck of an ending. Fun stuff indeed.

Artist:    Tomorrow
Title:    Revolution (unissued original phased version)
Source:    British import CD: 50 Minute Technicolour Dream
Writer(s):    Keith Hopkins
Label:    RPM
Year:    Recorded 1967, released 1998
    Tomorrow only released one album during their existence, but it is considered one of the best British psychedelic albums ever made. Unfortunately, the release of the album was delayed almost a year, which in the late 1960s, with its quickly changing musical trends, was a fatal blow to the band. The first single released from that album was a song called Revolution that may have influenced John Lennon to write his own song with the same title after hearing it performed at London's UFO club in 1967. Tomorrow actually recorded two different versions of Revolution. The first one, recorded in 1967, included extensive stereo phasing effects, making it unsuitable to be folded down to a single track for AM radio broadcast. That version remained unreleased until 1998, when it was included on a retrospective CD called 50 Minute Technicolor Dream.

Artist:    Traffic
Title:    Heaven Is In Your Mind
Source:    CD: Heaven Is In Your Mind
Writer(s):    Winwood/Capaldi/Wood
Label:    Island (original label: United Artists)
Year:    1967
    For a time in the mid-1960s recording artists would actually make two mixes of each song on their albums, one in monoraul and one in stereo. Often the monoraul mix would have a brighter sound, as those mixes were usually made with AM radio's technical limitations in mind. In rare cases, the differences would be even more pronounced. Such is the case with Traffic's first LP, Mr. Fantasy. The two versions of Heaven Is In Your Mind differ not only in their mix but in the actual recording, as the mono mix features an entirely different guitar solo than the more familiar stereo mix heard here.

Artist:    Paul Revere and the Raiders
Title:    The Great Airplane Strike (originally released on LP: Spirit Of '67 and as 45 RPM single)
Source:    CD: Greatest Hits
Writer:    Revere/Melcher/Lindsay
Label:    Columbia/Legacy
Year:    1966
    In 1966 Paul Revere and the Raiders were at the peak of their popularity, scoring major hits that year with Hungry and Kicks. The last single the band released in 1966 was The Great Airplane Strike from the Spirit Of '67 album. Written by band members Revere and Mark Lindsay, along with producer Terry Melcher, The Great Airplane Strike stands out as a classic example of Pacific Northwest rock, a style which would eventually culminate in the grunge movement of the 1990s.

Artist:    Blues Magoos
Title:    Gotta Get Away
Source:    LP: Psychedelic Lollipop
Writer(s):    Gordon/Adams
Label:    Mercury
Year:    1966
    As was common with most 1966 LPs, the Blues Magoos debut album, Psychedelic Lollipop, included a handful of cover songs, not all of which had been hits for other groups. One of the non-hits was Gotta Get Away, a fairly typical piece of garage rock that opens side two of the LP. The song was also selected as the B side for the group's second (and by far most successful) single, (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet. As the usual practice was to bring in outside songwriters for a new band's early singles and let the band write their own B side, it is possible that Gotta Get Away, which was co-written by Alan Gordon (co-writer of the Turtles' Happy Together and several other tunes) may have been the intended A side of the single.

Artist:    Remains
Title:    Don't Look Back
Source:    Mono CD: Nuggets-Original Artyfacts From The First Psychedelic Era (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Billy Vera
Label:    Rhino (original label: Epic)
Year:    1966
    The Remains were a Boston area band that were seemingly on the verge of finally hitting the big time in 1966. They had just finished opening for the Beatles on their last US tour and had procured the rights to record a song written by Billy Vera, who would score a huge hit of his own 20 years later with At This Moment. Somehow, though, Don't Look Back didn't make the charts, despite its obvious potential. It was the last of a series of disappointments for a group that had been cutting records since 1964, and they soon packed up their instruments for the last time.

Artist:     Beatles
Title:     In My Life
Source:     CD: Rubber Soul
Writer:     Lennon/McCartney
Label:     Parlophone
Year:     1965
    Rubber Soul was the first Beatles album to be made up entirely of songs written by the band members themselves, mostly John Lennon and Paul McCartney. Lennon's contributions in particular were starting to move away from the typical "young love" songs the band had become famous for. One of the best examples is In My Life, which is a nostalgic look back at Lennon's own past (although put in such a way that it could be universally applied). Despite never being released as a single, In My Life remains one of the most popular songs in the Beatles catalog.

Artist:     Beatles
Title:     Fixing A Hole
Source:     LP: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Writer:     Lennon/McCartney
Label:     Parlophone/EMI (original US label: Capitol)
Year:     1967
     The first Beatles album to appear with the same tracks in the same order on both US and UK versions was Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The only differences between the two were a lack of spaces in the vinyl (called "banding") on the UK version and a bit of gobbledygook heard at the end of the record (but only if you did not have a turntable that automatically lifted the needle out of the groove after the last track). Among the many tracks from Sgt. Pepper's that got played on the radio (despite not being released as singles) was Paul McCartney's Fixing A Hole, a song that has psychedelic overtones without being overtly psychedelic.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    If I Needed Someone
Source:    CD: Rubber Soul (held back in US for release on LP: Yesterday...And Today)
Writer(s):    George Harrison
Label:    Parlophone (original US label: Capitol)
Year:    1965 (US 1966)
    Generally considered to be George Harrison's best song up to that point, If I Needed Someone is the earliest song to be included on the former Beatle's own Greatest Hits album. The song was covered by the Hollies, whose single version was actually released in the UK before Rubber Soul came out, leading some to believe that the Beatles were covering the Hollies. In the US the song was held back for release the following June on the Yesterday...And Today album, an LP that only appeared in North America.

Artist:    Them
Title:    Baby, Please Don't Go
Source:    Mono 12" single (reissue)
Writer:    Joe Williams
Label:    A&M
Year:    1964
    Belfast, Northern Ireland was home to one of the first bands that could be legitimately described as punk rock. Led by Van Morrison, the band quickly got a reputation for being rude and obnoxious, particularly to members of the English press (although it was actually a fellow Irishman who first labeled them as "boorish"). Their first single was what has come to be considered the definitive rock and roll version of the 1923 Joe Williams tune Baby, Please Don't Go. Despite its UK success, the single did not chart in the US, although its B side, Gloria, did get some airplay before being banned on most US radio stations due to its suggestive lyrics. Them's recording of Baby, Please Don't Go gained renewed popularity in the 1980s when it was used in the film Good Morning Vietnam.

Artist:    Lyrics
Title:    So What!!
Source:    Mono CD: Nuggets-Original Artyfacts From The First Psychedelic Era (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Chris Gaylord
Label:    Rhino (original label: Era)
Year:    1965
    In some ways the story of the Lyrics is fairly typical for the mid-1960s. The Carlsbad, California group had already established itself as a competent if somewhat bland cover band when in 1964 they recruited the local cool kid, Chris Gaylord (who was so cool that he had his own beat up old limo, plastered on the inside with Rolling Stones memorabilia, of course), to be their frontman. Gaylord provided the band with a healthy dose of attitude, as demonstrated by their 1965 single So What!! The song was written by Gaylord after he had a brief fling with a local rich girl. Gaylord's tenure lasted until mid-1966. Although the band continued without him, they never again saw the inside of a recording studio.

Artist:    The Ariel
Title:    It Feels Like I'm Crying
Source:    Mono British import CD: With Love- A Pot Of Flowers (bonus track originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Jack Walters
Label:    Big Beat (original label: Brent)
Year:    1966
    San Francisco occupies the north end of a peninsula, with the Pacific Ocean to the west and San Francisco Bay to the north and east. At the south end of the bay is the city of San Jose. In between the two, about halfway down the peninsula itself, is the city of San Mateo. The city serves as the western terminus of the only bridge across the bay south of San Francisco itself. For much of 1966 it was also the home of a band called The Ariel. The band, originally called the Banshees, was formed in 1965 by a group of high school students from the San Mateo suburbs. The renamed themselves The Ariel in 1966 (Ariel being the name of a female fan from Hayward, the city on the eastern end of the bridge). In July they cut some demos at Golden State Recorders, which got them an audition with Bob Shad, owner of Mainstream Records, who was doing some talent scouting in the Bay Area that summer. They passed the audition and headed south to L.A. (at their own expense) to make a record. Unfortunately, when they arrived they learned that Shad was no longer interested in recording them. Nevertheless, they persisted (sorry, couldn't resist) and eventually got Shad to book them a couple hours in a local studio, where they a pair of songs written by the band's vocalist/lead guitarist, Jack Walters. It Feels Like I'm Crying was issued as the A side of the band's only single in late summer, but by then some of the band members were attending college and were not able to support the record with live appearances with any kind of regularity. By the end of the year The Ariel was history.

Artist:    Young Rascals
Title:    Lonely Too Long
Source:    Mono LP: Collections
Writer(s):    Cavaliere/Brigati
Label:    Atlantic
Year:    1967
    There seems to be a bit of confusion over the official title of the Young Rascals' first single from their 1967 album Collections. The album label and cover clearly show it as Lonely Too Long, but the single itself, released the same day as the album (January 9) just as clearly shows it as I've Been Lonely Too Long. Some sources, apparently trying to come up with a compromise, list it as (I've Been) Lonely Too Long. Since I'm playing this directly from an original mono vinyl copy of Collections, I'm going with the title listed on the album itself.


Rockin' in the Days of Confusion # 2109 (start 2/22/21)

    Sometimes things aren't quite what you thought they were. Ian Gillan was lead vocalist for Deep Purple, right? Then how do you explain Stormbringer, the track that starts this week's show? Or how about that guy Lou Graham, from Foreigner? Isn't that him on the Black Sheep track? And that certainly is not Jim Morrison singing on In The Eye Of The Sun, the Doors B side that finishes out the show. And what's the deal with July Morning?? As far as I know it's still February (and there's lots of snow on the ground to back me up on that). Regular listeners may also notice that there are no Led Zeppelin or Black Sabbath songs on this week's show, further proof that sometimes Everything You Know About Rockin' in the Days of Confusion Is Wrong.

Artist:    Deep Purple
Title:    Stormbringer
Source:    CD: The Very Best Of Deep Purple (originally released on LP: Stormbringer)
Writer(s):    Blackmore/Coverdale
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1974
    Deep Purple hit its commercial peak in the early 1970s, after vocalist Ian Gillan and bassist Roger Glover were brought in to replace Rod Evans and Nicky Simper. Glover had strong songwriting skills that were sorely missed when he and Gillan left the group following the release of the 1973 LP Who Do We Think We Are. Their replacements were bassist Glenn Hughes and vocalist David Coverdale, who would remain with the group until its breakup in 1976. The second album to feature this "Mark III" Deep Purple lineup was Stormbringer, which was released in November of 1974. It was also the last album to feature original lead guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, who did not like the "soulful" direction the band had been taking. The title track of Stormbringer was, in fact, a throwback to the group's earlier sound.

Artist:    Black Sheep
Title:    Payin' Yer Dues
Source:    LP: Black Sheep
Writer(s):    Grammatico/Mancuso/Crozier/Rocco
Label:    Capitol
Year:    1975
    Black Sheep was a Rochester, NY band that released a pair of albums on the Capitol label in the mid-1970s. The group was fronted by Louis Grammitico, who went on to greater fame after shortening his name to Lou Graham and joining Foreigner. Payin' Yer Dues, from the first Black Sheep album, is a good example of the band's sound. Guitarist Don Mancuso has more recently been performing as a member of the Lou Gramm Band.

Artist:    Coloured Balls
Title:    Metal Feathers
Source:    Australian import CD: Metal Feathers
Writer(s):    Millar/Loyde
Label:    Aztec (original label: EMI)
Year:    1974
    Lobby Loyde, although a guitar legend in Australia, is virtually unknown in the US. This is a shame, since he, in the words of former bandmate Angry Anderson, "helped create the Australian guitar sound, long before Angus [Young]. Lobby inspired Australian bands to step forward and play as loud and aggressively as they could." Born in 1941, Loyde had hit singles in Australia as a member of Purple Hearts and later Wild Cherries, and was a major force on the Australian pub rock scene in the 1970s. Loyde released two albums as a member of Coloured Balls, which also featured Andrew Fordham on guitar and vocals, Janis Miglans on bass guitar and Trevor Young on drums. Metal Feathers, from the band's second LP, Heavy Metal Kid, shows Loyde's quieter side.

Artist:    Elton John
Title:    Roy Rogers/Social Disease
Source:    LP: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
Writer(s):    John/Taupin
Label:    MCA
Year:    1973
    Since this is the first time I've ever played anything from Elton John's Goodbye Yellow Brick Road album, I figured I'd pull out the most obscure tracks I could find. Roy Rogers and Social Disease, to my knowledge, never get played on the radio, so here they are.

Artist:    Graham Nash/David Crosby
Title:    Where Will I Be?
Source:    British import LP: Graham Nash David Crosby
Writer(s):    David Crosby
Label:    Atlantic
Year:    1972
    Following the release of the 1970 LP deja vu, the members of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, whose backstage fights had already become legendary, decided to go their separate ways, with each member releasing their own albums over the next year. In the fall of 1971 David Crosby and Graham Nash decided to do a series of concerts as a duo. Those concerts were so succesful that the two decided to do a new album together, called simply Graham Nash David Crosby. As expected, Nash's songs were more pop-oriented, while Crosby's tended to be more philosophical and introspective. One of the most introspective pieces on the album was Where Will I Be? Besides sharing vocals with Nash, Crosby plays acoustic guitar on the piece, accompanied by Craig Doerge on electric piano, Leland Sklar on bass and Dana Africa on flute.

Artist:    Uriah Heep
Title:    July Morning
Source:    LP: Look At Yourself
Writer:    Hensley/Byron
Label:    Mercury
Year:    1971
    Fans of the British rock group Uriah Heep have an ongoing argument over which is the best Heep album; Demons And Wizards, featuring the band's biggest hit single, Easy Livin', or its immediate predecessor, Look At Yourself, which includes the 10 and a half minute long classic July Morning. Both albums feature strong vocals by David Byron and songwriting by keyboardist Ken Hensley, as well as tasty guitar licks from Mick Box. Rather than take sides on this one, I'm just going to keep on playing tracks from all six early Uriah Heep albums.

Artist:    Spirit
Title:    Nature's Way/Animal Zoo/Love Has Found A Way/Why Can't I Be Free
Source:    CD: Twelve Dreams Of Dr. Sardonicus
Writer(s):    California/Ferguson/Locke
Label:    Epic/Legacy
Year:    1970
    Spirit was one of those bands that consistently scored well with the critics, yet was never truly able to connect with a large segment of the record buying audience at any given time. Perhaps their best album was Twelve Dreams Of Dr. Sardonicus, released in 1970 to glowing reviews. Despite this, the album actually charted lower than any of their three previous efforts, and would be the last to feature the band's original lineup. In the long haul, however, Twelve Dreams has become the group's top selling album, thanks to steady catalog sales over a period of years. Unlike many more popular records of the time, Twelve Dreams sounds as fresh and original today as when it first appeared, as can be easily heard on the four-song medley that makes up the bulk of the LP's first side. Indeed, despite never having charted as a single, Nature's Way, a Randy California tune which starts the sequence, is one of the best-known songs in the entire Spirit catalog. Additionally, its ecological theme segues naturally into Animal Zoo, a Jay Ferguson tune with a more satirical point of view. Love Has Found A Way, written by vocalist Ferguson and keyboardist John Locke, can best described as psychedelic space jazz, while Why Can't I Be Free is a simple, yet lovely, short coda from guitarist California. Although Spirit, in various incarnations, would continue to record for many years, they would never put out another album as listenable as Twelve Dreams Of Dr. Sardonicus.

Artist:    Who
Title:    Amazing Journey
Source:    British Import CD: Spirit Of Joy (originally released on LP: Tommy)
Writer(s):    Pete Townshend
Label:    Polydor UK (original US label: Decca)
Year:    1969
    After achieving major success in their native England with a series of hit singles in 1965-67, the Who began to concentrate more on their albums from 1968 on. The first of these concept albums was The Who Sell Out, released in December of 1967. The Who Sell Out was a collection of songs connected by faux radio spots and actual jingles from England's last remaining pirate radio station, Radio London. After releasing a few more singles in 1968, the Who began work on their most ambitious project yet: the world's first rock opera. Tommy, released in 1969, was a double LP telling the story of a boy who, after being tramautized into becoming a blind deaf-mute, eventually emerges as a kind of messiah, only to have his followers ultimately abandon him. One of the early tracks on the album is Amazing Journey, describing Tommy's voyage into the recesses of his own mind in response to the traumatic event that results in his "deaf, dumb and blind" condition.

Artist:    David Bowie
Title:    Changes
Source:    45 RPM single (reissue originally released on LP: Hunky Dory)
Writer(s):    David Bowie
Label:    RCA Victor
Year:    1971
    Sometimes a seemingly innocous little song will turn out to be something far more than it started out to be. Such is the case with Changes, one of the most recognizable songs of the 20th century. Originally appearing on the 1971 album Hunky Dory and released as a single in 1972, Changes, according to Bowie, started off as a parody of a nightclub song, "a kind of throwaway", that featured Bowie himself on saxophone, with strings provided by Mick Ronson. Rick Wakeman's keyboards also feature prominently in the recording. The song was Bowie's first North American release on the RCA Victor label (although Mercury had released The Man Who Sold The World two years previously, the record had gone nowhere at the time). Changes is often taken as a statement of artistic intent, as Bowie was constantly reinventing himself throughout his career. Oddly enough, the song did not make the British charts until its re-release following Bowie's death in 2016.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    In The Eye Of The Sun
Source:    45 RPM single B side
Writer(s):    Ray Manzarek
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1972
    When Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore began recording the instrumental tracks for what would become the 7th Doors studio album, Other Voices, they were expecting Jim Morrison to return from Paris to add vocals to the songs. Morrison's sudden death in July of 1971 forced a change of plans, and it fell to Manzarek and Krieger to provide the vocals themselves. The opening track of Other Voices was In The Eye Of The Sun, written and sung by Manzarek. The song was also chosen to be the B side of the second single released from the album.


Sunday, February 14, 2021

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2108 (starts 2/15/21)

    This time around we are going with a bit of just about everything, included two artists' sets, several album tracks and B sides, a touch of weirdness and even a Big Hit Single or two.

Artist:    Electric Prunes
Title:    I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night)
Source:    CD: Even More Nuggets (originally released as 45 RPM single and included on LP: The Electric Prunes)
Writer(s):    Tucker/Mantz
Label:    Rhino (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1967
    The Electric Prunes biggest hit was I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night), released in early 1967. The record, initially released without much promotion from the band's record label, was championed by Seattle DJ Pat O'Day of KJR radio, and was already popular in that area when it hit the national charts (thus explaining why so many people assumed the band was from Seattle). I Had Too Much To Dream (Last Night) has come to be one of the defining songs of the psychedelic era and was the opening track on the original Lenny Kaye Nuggets compilation.

Artist:        Doors
Title:        End Of The Night
Source:    CD: Weird Scenes Inside The Goldmine (originally released on LP: The Doors)
Writer:        The Doors
Label:        Elektra
Year:        1967
        Sometimes you run across a song that seems to encapsulate what a band is all about. End Of The Night, from the first Doors album, is one of those songs. Apparently the band members felt the same way, as it was included on the anthology album Weird Scenes Inside The Gold Mine, despite never being released as a single.

Artist:     Cream
Title:     Deserted Cities Of The Heart
Source:     CD: Wheels Of Fire
Writer:     Bruce/Brown
Label:     Polydor (original label: Atco)
Year:     1968
     The most psychedelic of Cream's songs were penned by Jack Bruce and his songwriting partner Pete Brown. One of the best of these was Deserted Cities Of The Heart, chosen to close out the last studio side of the last Cream album released while the band was still together.

Artist:    Grateful Dead
Title:    Turn On Your Love Light
Source:    LP: The Big Ball (excerpt of track that was originally released on LP: Live Dead)
Writer(s):    Scott/Malone
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1969
    After two years' (and three albums) worth of trying to capture their live sound in the studio, the Grateful Dead decided just to cut to the chase and release a live album. The result was the double LP Live Dead, one of the most successful releases in Grateful Dead history. The album itself is one continuous concert, with each side fading out at the end, with a bit of overlap at the beginning of the next side. Most of the material on Live Dead was written by the band itself, the sole exception being a fifteen-minute long rendition of Bobby Bland's 1961 hit Turn On Your Love Light, featuring vocals by organist Ron "Pigpen" McKernan. This six and a half minute long excerpt from the album first appeared on the Warner Brothers "Loss Leaders" album Big Ball, a two-disc sampler album that could only be bought directly from the record company. The same excerpt was later included on the 1972 Grateful Dead compilation album Skeletons From The Closet.

Artist:    B.B. King
Title:    Until I'm Dead And Cold
Source:    LP: Indianola Mississippi Seeds
Writer(s):    B.B. King
Label:    ABC
Year:    1970
    Following up on the success of the hit single The Thrill Is Gone, B.B. King and producer Bill Szymczyk gathered up an all-star cast of backup musicians for the album Indianola Mississippi Seeds. Besides King on vocals on guitar, Until I'm Dead And Cold features Carole King on piano, and studio stalwarts Bryan Garofalo and Russ Kunkel on bass and drums, respectively, with strings and horns arranged by Jimmie Haskell. The album title itself is a tribute to Indianola, Mississippi, which King, who was born on a plantation about 20 miles east of the city, always considered his home town. King himself considered Indianola Mississippi Seeds to be "the best album that I've done artistically."

Artist:     Buffalo Springfield
Title:     Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing
Source:     CD: Retrospective (originally released as 45 RPM single and on LP: Buffalo Springfield)
Writer(s):    Neil Young
Label:    Atco
Year:     1966
     One of the most influential folk-rock bands to come out of the L.A. scene was Buffalo Springfield. The band had several quality songwriters, including Neil Young, whose voice was deemed "too weird" by certain record company people. Thus we have Richie Furay singing a Young tune on the band's first single, Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing.
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:    Buffalo Springfield
Title:    For What It's Worth (Stop, Hey What's That Sound)
Source:    CD: Retrospective (originally released as 45 RPM single and included on LP: Buffalo Springfield (revised version))
Writer(s):    Stephen Stills
Label:    Atco
Year:    1967
    Most people associate the name Buffalo Springfield with the song For What It's Worth (Stop, Hey What's That Sound). And for good reason. The song is one of the greatest protest songs ever recorded, and to this day is in regular rotation on both oldies and classic rock radio stations. The song was written and recorded in November of 1966 and released in January of 1967. By then the first Buffalo Springfield LP was already on the racks, but until that point had not sold particularly well. When it became clear that For What It's Worth was turning into a major hit, Atco Records quickly recalled the album and added the song to it (as the opening track). All subsequent pressings of the LP (and later the CD) contain For What It's Worth (Stop, Hey What's That Sound), making earlier copies of the album somewhat of a rarity and quite collectable.

Artist:    Peanut Butter Conspiracy
Title:    Ecstacy
Source:    CD: Is Spreading/The Great Conspiracy (originally released on LP: The Great Conspiracy)
Writer(s):    John Merrill
Label:    Collectables (original label: Columbia)
Year:    1967
    The members of the Peanut Butter Conspiracy were not able to play the way they really wanted to on their two LPs for Columbia Records. Much of the reason for this was because of Columbia itself, which had a history of being against just about everything that made psychedelic rock what it was. Immediately after signing the band, the label assigned Gary Usher, whose background was mainly in vocal surf music, to produce the group. Usher urged the band, who had already built up a sizable following playing Los Angeles clubs, to soften their sound and become more hit oriented. To do this he brought in several studio musicians he had previously worked with, including members of the Wrecking Crew, to fill out the band's sound. At first, it seemed to be a successful strategy, as the band's first single, It's A Happening Thing, sold fairly well in local record stores, but when the next two singles failed to generate any interest the band began to assert its right to play on their own records. As a result, all the instruments on the band's second LP, The Great Conspiracy, were played by members of the Peanut Butter Conspiracy itself, including new member Bill Wolff, who had previously played guitar with the Sound Machine. For the most part however, they were still not able to fully recreate the extended jams that they were known for in their live performances, although a couple of tracks, such as Ecstacy, come pretty close. Written by lead guitarist John Merrill, the piece is a classic psychedelic jam, running over six minutes in length. Around the same time as the album was released, Merrill began losing interest in the group, and did not contribute any songs to the band's final album, For Children Of All Ages, released on the Challenge label in 1969.

Artist:    Uncalled For
Title:    Do Like Me
Source:    Mono LP: Pebbles Vol. 8 (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Welding/Lee
Label:    BFD (original labels Dollie, Laurie)
Year:    1967
    Virtually nothing is known about the Uncalled For other than that they came from Youngstown, Ohio (which was still a vital steel-making center with a thriving local music scene in the 1960s) and recorded one 1967 single, Do Like Me, for the local Dollie label. The song was apparently successful enough to be picked up by a national label, Laurie, and re-released later in the year. If anyone knows more about the Uncalled For, feel free to drop me a line.

Artist:    Eric Burdon And The Animals
Title:    Good Times
Source:    Mono British import CD: Winds Of Change
Writer(s):    Burdon/Briggs/Weider/Jenkins/McCulloch
Label:    Repertoire (original label: M-G-M)
Year:    1967
    By the end of the original Animals' run they were having greater chart success with their singles in the US than in their native UK. That trend continued with the formation of the "new" Animals in 1967 and their first single, When I Was Young. Shortly after the first LP by the band now known as Eric Burdon And The Animals came out, M-G-M decided to release the song San Franciscan Nights as a single to take advantage of the massive youth migration to the city that summer. Meanwhile the band's British label decided to instead issue Good Times, (an autobiographical song which was released in the US as the B side to San Franciscan Nights) as a single, and the band ended up with one of their biggest UK hits ever. Riding the wave of success of Good Times, San Franciscan Nights eventually did get released in the UK and ended up becoming a hit there as well.

Artist:            Moby Grape
Title:        Naked If I Want To
Source:    LP: Great Grape
Writer:    Jerry Miller
Label:    Columbia
Year:        1967
        Although guitarist Jerry Miller's name appears in the credits for nearly half the material on the first Moby Grape album, more than any other band member, there was only one song credited to Miller as the sole songwriter. Ironically, Naked If I Want To was also the shortest track on the album, with a running time of less than a minute. A longer version of the song appeared on Moby Grape's second LP, Wow.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
Source:    CD: Yellow Submarine Songtrack (originally released on LP: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band)
Writer(s):    Lennon/McCartney
Label:    Apple/Capitol
Year:    1967
    The top album of 1967 was the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. It was also the first US Beatles album to have a song lineup that was identical to the original UK LP. As such, it was also the first Beatles album released in the US to not include any songs that were also released as singles. Nonetheless, several tracks from the LP found their way onto the playlists of both top 40 AM and "underground" FM stations from coast to coast. Among the most popular of these tracks was John Lennon's Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, which shows up on just about everyone's list of classic psychedelic tunes.

Artist:    Bill Wyman (Rolling Stones)
Title:    In Another Land
Source:    LP: Their Satanic Majesties Request
Writer(s):    Bill Wyman
Label:    London
Year:    1967
    During recording sessions for the late 1967 Rolling Stones album Their Satanic Majesties Request bassist Bill Wyman made a forty-five minute drive to the studio one evening only to find out that the session had been cancelled. The band's manager and producer, Andrew Loog Oldham, managed to salvage the moment by asking Wyman if he had any song ideas he'd like to work on while he was there. As it turned out, Wyman had just come up with a song called In Another Land, about waking up from a dream only to discover you are actually still dreaming. Utilizing the talents of various people on hand, including Steve Marriott, Brian Jones, Charlie Watts and Nicky Hopkins, Wyman recorded a rough demo of his new tune. When Mick Jagger and Keith Richards heard the song they liked it so much that they added background vocals and insisted the track be used on the album and released as a single by Bill Wyman (with another track from the LP on the B side credited to the entire band). They even went so far as to give Wyman solo artist credit on the label of the LP itself (the label reads: Their Satanic Majesties Request by the Rolling Stones*, with the next line reading *by Bill Wyman), with an asterisk preceeding the song title in the track listing. Wyman reportedly hated the sound of his own voice on the song, and insisted that a tremelo effect be added to it in the final mix. The snoring at the end of the track is Wyman himself, as captured in the studio by Mick and Keith.
Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    Sympathy For The Devil
Source:    CD: Singles Collection-The London Years (originally released on LP: Beggars Banquet)
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    Abkco (original label: London)
Year:    1968
    Beggar's Banquet was a turning point for the Rolling Stones. They had just ended their association with Andrew Loog Oldham, who had produced all of their mid-60s records, and instead were working with Jimmy Miller, who was known for his association with Steve Winwood, both in his current band Traffic and the earlier Spencer Davis Group. Right from the opening bongo beats of Sympathy For The Devil, it was evident that this was the beginning of a new era for the bad boys of rock and roll. The song itself has gone on to be one of the defining tunes of album rock radio, and occupies the #32 spot on Rolling Stone magazine's "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list.

Artist:    Bob Dylan
Title:    Tombstone Blues
Source:    CD: Highway 61 Revisited
Writer(s):    Bob Dylan
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1965
    One of the most influential albums in rock history was Bob Dylan's 1965 LP Highway 61 Revisited. Although he had experimented with adding electric guitar, bass and drums to some of the songs on his previous album, Bringing It All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited was his first LP to feature electric instruments on every track. Of these, the most notable was probably the guitar work of Michael Bloomfield, who would soon come to prominence as lead guitarist for the Butterfield Blues Band. Bloomfield's work is most prominent on blues-based tracks such as Tombstone Blues, which follows the classic Like A Rolling Stone on side one of the original LP.

Artist:    Blues Magoos
Title:    Let's Get Together
Source:    Mono LP: Electric Comic Book
Writer(s):    Jimmy Reed
Label:    Mercury
Year:    1967
    Although the Blues Magoos' second LP, Electric Comic Book, was made up mostly of original compositions by the band members themselves, there is one notable exception: a cover of Jimmy Reed's Let's Get Together. The Magoos' recording of the song was actually the second to be released in 1967, as the Leaves had included a fairly bland version of the tune on their second LP, All The Good That's Happening, early in the year. The Blues Magoos approach to the song was far less serious (and far more interesting), with an almost drunken quality to it. It's easy to imagine a bar crowd singing along with this version of the tune.

Artist:     Blues Magoos
Title:     (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet
Source:     LP: Nuggets Vol. 1-The Hits (originally released on LP: Psychedelic Lollipop)
Writer:     Esposito/Gilbert/Scala
Label:     Rhino (original label: Mercury)
Year:     1966
     The Blues Magoos (original spelling: Bloos, not surprising for a bunch of guys from the Bronx) were either the first or second band to use the word psychedelic in an album title. Both they and the 13th Floor Elevators released their debut albums in 1966 and it is unclear which one actually came out first. What's not in dispute is the fact that Psychedelic Lollipop far outsold The Psychedelic Sounds of the 13th Floor Elevators. One major reason for this was the fact that (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet was a huge national hit in early 1967, which helped album sales considerably. Despite having a unique sound and a look to match (including electric suits), the Magoos were unable to duplicate the success of Nothin' Yet on subsequent releases, partially due to Mercury's pairing of two equally marketable songs on the band's next single without indicating to stations which one they were supposed to be playing.

Artist:    Blues Magoos
Title:    Baby, I Want You
Source:    Mono LP: Electric Comic Book
Writer:    Gilbert/Theilhelm
Label:    Mercury
Year:    1967
    Although not as well-known as their debut LP, Psychedelic Lollipop, the Blues Magoos' Electric Comic Book is a worthy successor to that early psychedelic masterpiece. Handicapped by a lack of hit singles, the album floundered on the charts, despite the presence of songs like Baby, I Want You, one of many original tunes on the LP.

Artist:    Seeds
Title:    Pushin' Too Hard
Source:    Simulated stereo LP: The Seeds
Writer(s):    Sky Saxon
Label:    GNP Crescendo
Year:    1966
    The Seeds' Pushin' Too Hard is generally included on every collection of psychedelic hits ever compiled. And for good reason. The song is an undisputed classic.

Artist:      Donovan
Title:     Mellow Yellow
Source:      Mono CD: Sunshine On The Mountain (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:    Donovan Leitch
Label:    Sony Music (original label: Epic)
Year:     1966
     Although the Mellow Yellow album came out in early 1967, the title track had been released several months earlier as a followup to Donovan's breakthrough US hit Sunshine Superman. Ironically, due to a contract dispute with Pye Records during Donovan's period of greatest US success none of his recordings were being released in his native UK.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    Plastic Fantastic Lover
Source:    45 RPM single (stereo reissue)
Writer(s):    Marty Balin
Label:    RCA
Year:    1967
    Jefferson Airplane scored their first top 10 hit with Somebody To Love, the second single released from the Surrealistic Pillow album. Almost immediately, forward-thinking FM stations began playing other tracks from the album. One of those favored album tracks, Plastic Fantastic Lover, ended up being the B side of the band's follow-up single, White Rabbit. When the Airplane reunited in 1989 and issued their two-disc retrospective, 2400 Fulton Street, they issued a special stereo pressing of the single on white vinyl as a way of promoting the collection.

Artist:    Canned Heat
Title:    Boogie Music
Source:    LP: Progressive Heavies (originally released on LP: Living The Blues and as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    L.T.Tatman III
Label:    United Artists (original label: Liberty)
Year:    1968
    Canned Heat was formed in 1966 by a group of San Francisco Bay Area blues purists. Although a favorite on the rock scene, the band continued to remain true to the blues throughout their existence, even after relocating to the Laurel Canyon area near Los Angeles in 1968. The band's most popular single was Going Up the Country from the album Living the Blues. The B side of that single was another track from Living The Blues that actually had a longer running time on the single than on the album version. Although the single uses the same basic recording of Boogie Music as the album, it includes a short low-fidelity instrumental tacked onto the end of the song that sounds suspiciously like a 1920s recording of someone playing a melody similar to Going Up The Country on a fiddle. The only time this unique version of the song appeared in stereo was on a 1969 United Artists compilation called Progressive Heavies that also featured tracks from Johnny Winter, Traffic, the Spencer Davis Group and others.

Artist:    Janis Ian
Title:    Younger Generation Blues
Source:    LP: Janis Ian
Writer(s):    Janis Ian
Label:    Polydor (original label: Verve Forecast)
Year:    1967
    Janis Ian recorded her first album, made up entirely of original material, at the age of 15. The album had been commissioned by Atlantic Records, but the shirts at the label changed their mind about releasing it once they had heard some of the more controversial songs Ian had come up with. Unwilling to give up easily, Ian took the tapes to various New York based record labels, finally getting the folks at Verve's Forecast label to take a chance with the single Society's Child. The record got the attention of composer/donductor Leonard Bernstein, who featured it on a highly-rated CBS-TV special Inside Pop: The Rock Revolution. The exposure led Verve Forecast to release the entire album in early 1967 to overwhelmingly positive critical acclaim. Among the many outstanding tracks on the album is Younger Generation Blues, a tune with a garage-rock beat combined with a poetic recitation worthy of Bob Dylan. The song was also released as a followup single to Society's Child, but failed to equal the success of Ian's debut single. In fact, Janis Ian would not have another major hit until 1975, when At Seventeen became a top five single, remaining on the charts for twenty weeks.

Artist:    Velvet Underground
Title:    I'm Waiting For The Man
Source:    CD: The Velvet Underground And Nico
Writer(s):    Lou Reed
Label:    Polydor (original label: Verve)
Year:    1967
    The most celebrated of the avant-garde psychedelic bands from New York City, the Velvet Underground, did not sell a lot of records during their existence, despite being closely affiliated with Andy Warhol, at the time the hottest name in the art world. This is probably because their music was not (and still isn't) easily accessible for the masses. In fact, the VU may well be that band that your parents were talking about when they were yelling at you to "turn down that noise!".  A listen to Lou Reed's I'm Waiting For The Man from the group's debut LP provides a basis for that particular theory.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    Love Or Confusion
Source:    Mono LP: Are You Experienced?
Writer:    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Experience Hendrix/Legacy (original UK label: Track)
Year:    1967
    One of the first songs recorded for Are You Experienced, the debut LP of the Jimi Hendrix Experience, was Love Or Confusion, a piece that uses a single note sustained and augmented by feedback throughout each of the verses, supplemented by strong lead guitar fills thoughout the song's main section. Midway through the track, the tune abruptly changes both key and tempo for an instrumental break that flows seamlessly back to the main section for the song's final verse, which ends with a note combining fuzz, echo and reverb effect slowly fading away. The version presented here is a recreation of the song's original mono mix, which was the way the album was first released in the UK on May 12, 1967.

Artist:      Blue Cheer
Title:     Summertime Blues
Source:      Dutch import LP: Vincebus Eruptum
Writer(s):    Cochrane/Capehart
Label:    Philips
Year:     1968
     European electronics giant Philips had its own record label in the 1960s. In the US, the label was distributed by Mercury Records, and was known primarily for a long string of hits by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. In 1968 the label surprised everyone by signing the loudest band in San Francisco, Blue Cheer. Their cover of the 50s Eddie Cochrane hit Summertime Blues was all over both the AM and FM airwaves that summer.

Artist:    Monkees
Title:    Valleri
Source:    CD: Nuggets-Classics From The Psychedelic 60s (originally released on LP: The Birds, The Bees, And The Monkees)
Writer(s):    Boyce/Hart
Label:    Rhino (original label: Colgems)
Year:    1968
    The last Monkees top 10 single was also Michael Nesmith's least favorite Monkees song. Valleri was a Tommy Boyce/Bobby Hart composition that the group had first recorded for the first season of their TV show in 1966. Apparently nobody was happy with the recording, however, and the song was never issed on vinyl. Two years later the song was re-recorded for the album The Birds, The Bees And The Monkees and subsequently released as a single. The flamenco-style guitar on the intro (and repeated throughout the song) was played by studio guitarist Louie Shelton, after Nesmith refused to participate in the recording.

Artist:    Tommy James And The Shondells
Title:    Mony Mony
Source:    45 RPM single (promo copy)
Writer(s):    James/Cordell/Gentry/Bloom
Label:    Roulette
Year:    1968
    Sometime around 1964, a kid named Tommy James took his band, the Shondells, into a recording studio to record a simple song called Hanky Panky. The song was released on the Roulette label and went absolutely nowhere. Two years later a Pittsburgh DJ, looking for something different to make his show stand out from the crowd, decided to dig out a copy of the record and play it as a sort of on-air audition. The audience loved it, and the DJ soon contacted James, inviting him and the Shondells to make a personal appearance. Unfortunately by this time there were no Shondells, so James hastily put together a new band to promote the record. It wasn't long before the word spread and Hanky Panky was a national hit. James and his new Shondells then commenced to pretty much single-handedly keep Roulette Records afloat for the next three or four years with songs like their 1968 jukebox favorite Mony Mony, one of many top 10 singles for the band.

Artist:    Shadows Of Knight
Title:    I'll Make You Sorry
Source:    CD: Dark Sides (originally released as 45 RPM single B side and included on LP: Back Door Men)
Writer(s):    Joe Kelley
Label:    Rhino (original label: Dunwich)
Year:    1966
    Following the success of the Shadows Of Knight's debut single and LP (both titled Gloria), the band went back into the studio with a bit more experience under their belt and came up with their finest album, Back Door Men. Like Gloria, Back Door Men contained a mixture of Chicago blues and garage/punk, but overall had a greater diversity of style than its predecessor. Surprisingly, every song on the album worked, including the vindictive punk rocker I'll Make You Sorry, which was also released as a B side.

Artist:    Who
Title:    Cobwebs And Strange
Source:    CD: A Quick One (US title: Happy Jack)
Writer(s):    Keith Moon
Label:    MCA (original US label: Decca)
Year:    1966
         One of the features of the Who's second LP, A Quick One, was that every band member was given a chance to write at least one song on it. The instrumental Cobwebs And Strange is one of Keith Moon's two contributions to the album.