Sunday, February 5, 2023

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2306 (starts 2/6/23)

    Being in a rock band can be frustrating at times, even when that band is considered successful. In fact, sometimes that frustration is a direct result of a band's success. Take Peter Tork, for instance. He was a reasonably talented multi-instrumentalist that had moved from Greenwich Village to Los Angeles in search of success, only to find himself unable to accomplish it on his own terms. Then there are all those bands that spent years working toward the goal of recording something, only have have the song bomb out on the charts, or in some cases not even be released at all. Of course, there are also the true success stories, and this week we feature a mixture of both, starting with a guy who eventually quit a well-known band at the height of its popularity only to see his own new project go nowhere.

Artist:    Paul Revere And The Raiders
Title:    I'm Crying
Source:    LP: Just Like Us
Writer(s):    Price/Burdon
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1966
    In their early days, Paul Revere And The Raiders were a band of equals, with every member getting their share of the spotlight. This all began to change around 1965, when the band landed a gig as house band for Where The Action Is, a daily pop music oriented variety show created by Dick Clark for the ABC television network, and saxophonist Mark Lindsay began to move into the role of lead vocalist and primary songwriter for the band. But that was still in the future when the Raiders recorded their second album for Columbia (their fourth overall), and Just Like Us, released the first week of 1966, was very much the product of a band that was still in touch with its roots. Unlike later Raiders albums, Just Like Us did not feature any studio musicians, giving individual members like bassist Phil "Fang" Volk a chance to be front and center on an energetic cover version of I'm Crying, which had been a hit for the Animals in 1964. Volk and two other members of the Raiders would leave the band in 1967 to form their own group, but were unable to overcome the stigma of having been members of a band that dressed up like Revolutionary War characters.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    She Said She Said
Source:    CD: Revolver
Writer(s):    Lennon/McCartney
Label:    Parlophone (original US label: Capitol)
Year:    1966
    The last song to be recorded for the Beatles' Revolver album was She Said She Said, a John Lennon song inspired by an acid trip taken by members of the band (with the exception of Paul McCartney) during a break from touring in August of 1965. The band's manager, Brian Epstein, had rented a large house in Beverly Hills, but word had gotten out and the Beatles found it difficult to come and go at will. Instead, they invited several people, including the original Byrds and actor Peter Fonda, to come over and hang out with them. At some point, Fonda brought up the fact that he had nearly died as a child from an accidental gunshot wound, and used the phrase "I know what it's like to be dead." Lennon was creeped out by the things Fonda was saying and told him to "shut up about that stuff. You're making me feel like I've never been born." Both lines ended up being used in She Said She Said, which took nine hours to record and mix, and is one of the few Beatle tracks that does not have Paul McCartney on it (George Harrison played bass). Ironically, Fonda himself would star in a Roger Corman film called The Trip (written by Jack Nicholson and co-starring Dennis Hopper) the following year.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    Unhappy Girl
Source:    45 RPM single B side
Writer:    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    After the success of their first album and the single Light My Fire in early 1967, the Doors quickly returned to the studio, releasing a second LP, Strange Days, later the same year. The first single released from the new album was People Are Strange. The B side of that single was Unhappy Girl, from the same album. Both sides got played on the jukebox at a place called the Woog in the village of Meisenbach near Ramstein Air Force Base (which is where I was spending most of my evenings that autumn).

Artist:    Monkees
Title:    Poll/Long Title: Do I Have To Do This All Over Now
Source:    LP: Head
Writer(s):    Peter Tork
Label:    Rhino (original label: Colgems)
Year:    1968
    Perhaps the greatest tragedy of the Monkees was the fact that Peter Tork was never taken seriously as a musician, despite being, according to Mike Nesmith, the best instrumentalist in the band, and for that matter a much better vocalist than anyone realized. Born Peter Halsten Thorkelson on Feb 13, 1942, Tork was part of New York's Greenwich Village folk music community, where he became friends with Stephen Stills. By 1966, both Stills and Tork had relocated to Los Angeles, and after Stills auditioned unsuccessfully for the Monkees, he recommended Tork, who got the part. It was a mixed blessing, however, as Tork, more than any of the others, wanted the Monkees to be a real band, but was constantly frustrated in his efforts to make it happen. Tork was proficient on several instruments, including banjo, acoustic and electric bass, guitar and harpsichord. Tork had few opportunities to sing lead vocals with the Monkees, the most famous being the comical Your Auntie Grizelda on the album More Of The Monkees. He finally did get to show his true talent on Long Title: Do I Have To Do This All Over Now, a song that he wrote and sang lead on from the LP Head, the soundtrack album from the movie of the same name. The album itself, a major departure from the light pop the Monkees were known for, was a commercial failure, and Tork soon left the group for a solo career.

Artist:    Kaleidoscope (UK band)
Title:    If You So Wish
Source:    British import CD: Further Reflections: The Complete Recordings 1967-1969 (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Daltrey/Pumer
Label:    Grapefruit (original label: Fontana)
Year:    1969
    Formed in 1963 as the Sidekicks, the Key, consisting of guitarist Eddy Pumer, bassist/flautist Steve Clark, drummer Danny Bridgman and vocalist/keyboardist Peter Daltrey, changed their name to Kaleidoscope in 1967 when they signed with Fontana Records. After failing to achieve commercial success after releasing five singles and two LPs, they changed their name once again, this time to Fairfield Parlour, taking on a more progressive rock sound on From Home To Home, their only LP for the Vertigo label. Their final release as Kaleidoscope was a single called Balloon, which was backed with a mono mix of If You So Wish, a track from their second LP, Faintly Blowing. The band's last appearance was at a concert in Bremen, Germany, in 1972. The recordings of Kaleidoscope, long lost to obscurity, resurfaced in 2012 on a compilation album called Further Reflections: The Complete Recordings 1967-1969, which has led to band being more popular now than while it was still in existence.

Artist:    Canned Heat
Title:    Let's Work Together
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer(s):    Wilbert Harrison
Label:    Liberty
Year:    1970
    By a rather odd twist of fate Wilbert Harrison, known primarily for his 50s hit Kansas City, decided to reissue one of his lesser-known tunes, Let's Work Together, just a few weeks before a new Canned Heat version of the song was released in 1970. As it turns out, neither version became a major hit, although the Canned Heat version did get some airplay and managed to crack the Billboard Hot 100 that year.

Artist:    Luv'd Ones
Title:    I'm Leaving You
Source:    Mono CD: Truth Gotta Stand (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Gallagher/Vinnedge
Label:    Beatrocket (original label: Dunwich)
Year:    1966
    Although nearly all of the original material performed by the Luv'd Ones was written by lead guitarist/vocalist Char Vinnedge, rhythm guitarist Mary Gallagher got a co-writing credit on I'm Leaving You. The song was issued as the band's second single for the Dunwich label, and was reissued five months later as the B side of their third and final single, Dance Kid Dance.

Artist:    Little Boy Blues
Title:    You Dove Deep In My Soul
Source:    CD: Oh Yeah! The Best Of Dunwich Records
Writer(s):    Ray Levin
Label:    Sundazed
Year:    Recorded 1967, released 1991
    The Little Boy Blues, consisting of Ray Levin (bass), Paul Ostroff (lead guitar), Jim Boyce (drums), and a series of rhythm guitarists, originated in Skokie, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. The band released half a dozen records on three different labels from 1965 to 1968, none of which were Dunwich. They did, however, record Levin's You Dove Deep In My Soul for the legendary label in 1967, but the track remained unreleased for nearly 25 years.

Artist:    Dion
Title:    Abraham, Martin And John
Source:    CD: Songs Of Protest (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Dick Holler
Label:    Rhino (original label: Laurie)
Year:    1968
    Although sometimes characterized as a protest song, Dion DiMucci's 1968 hit Abraham, Martin And John is really a tribute to three famous Americans, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy (with a reference to the recently-assassinated Bobby Kennedy included in the final verse of the song). Most people in the business saw Dion, perhaps the most successful doo-wop artist of all time, as being near the end of his career by 1967, although he was one of only two rock musicians included on the cover collage of the Beatles' 1967 LP Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band beside the Beatles themselves (the other being Bob Dylan).  In April of 1968, however, Dion experienced what he later called "a powerful religious experience" which led to him approaching his old label, Laurie Records, for a new contract. The label agreed on the condition that he record Abraham, Martin And John. The song, written by Dick Holler (who also wrote, strangely enough, Snoopy vs. The Red Baron), ended up being one of Dion's biggest hits and led to the revitalization of his career.

Artist:    Seeds
Title:    The Wind Blows Your Hair
Source:    Mono LP: Nuggets Vol. 9-Acid Rock (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Saxon/Bigelow
Label:    Rhino (original label: GNP Crescendo)
Year:    1967
    The Wind Blows Your Hair is actually one of the Seeds' better tracks. Unfortunately, by the time it was released as a single in October of 1967 the whole idea of Flower Power (which the Seeds were intimately tied to) had become yesterday's news (at least in ultra-hip L.A.) and the single went nowhere.

Artist:    Count Five
Title:    Pretty Big Mouth
Source:    Mono LP: Psychotic Reaction
Writer(s):    Ellner/Chaney/Atkinson/Byrne/Michaelski
Label:    Bicycle (original label: Double Shot)
Year:    1966
    In the early to mid 1960s, when a band was lucky enough to score a hit single, they often were given the opportunity to record an entire album, usually made up of cover versions of other popular songs. San Jose's Count Five, however, recorded an album made up almost entirely of original tunes, written or co-written by bandleader John "Sean" Byrne (the two exceptions being covers of Who songs that the band members liked). Only two of the tracks on the album, however, were credited to the entire band. One was their hit single and album title track, Psychotic Reaction. The other was a song called Pretty Big Mouth that would probably be considered too politically incorrect to be recorded in this century.

Artist:    Grand Funk Railroad
Title:    Heartbreaker
Source:    CD: Heavy Hitters (originally released on LP: On Time)
Writer(s):    Mark Farner
Label:    Capitol
Year:    1969
    The second single released from the first Grand Funk Railroad album, Heartbreaker was a concert staple for the band. Unlike most of Grand Funk's early material, Heartbreaker is a slow ballad that speeds up toward the end, building to a typical Spinal Tap, er, Grand Funk, finish.

Artist:    Fifty Foot Hose
Title:    Red The Sign Post
Source:    LP: Cauldron
Writer(s):    Roswicki/Blossom
Label:    Limelight
Year:    1968
    Although most of the more avant-garde bands of the psychedelic era were headquarted in New York, there were some exceptions, such as San Francisco's Fifty Foot Hose. The core members of the band were founder and bassist Louis "Cork" Marcheschi, guitarist David Blossom, and his wife, vocalist Nancy Blossom. The group used a lot of unusual instruments, such as theramin, Moog synthesizer and prepared guitar and piano. Probably their most commercial song was Red The Sign Post from the LP Cauldron. After that album the group called it quits, with most of the members joining the cast of Hair. In fact, Nancy Blossom played lead character Sheila in the San Francisco production of the musical.

Artist:     Third Rail
Title:     Run Run Run
Source:     CD: Even More Nuggets
Writer:     Resnick/Resnick/Levine
Label:     Rhino (original label: Epic)
Year:     1967
     Run Run Run is actually a studio creation issied in 1967 from husband and wife team Artie and Kris Resnick collaborating with Joey Levine, who sings lead vocals on the track. They only performed the song live once (in Cincinatti, of all places) as the Third Rail. All three would find a home as part of the Kasenetz-Katz bubble gum machine that would make Buddah Records a major player in 1968, with Levine himself singing lead for one of the label's most successful groups, the Ohio Express.

Artist:     Premiers
Title:     Get On This Plane
Source:     Mono CD: Where The Action Is: L.A. Nuggets 1965-68 (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:     Delgado/Uballez
Label:     Rhino (original label: Faro)
Year:     1966
     The Premiers were a band from East L.A. best known for their 1964 hit Farmer John. After that national success, the group continued to record, cranking out a series of local hits for local latino label Faro, run by Max Uballez. The last of these was Get On This Plane, a song that Uballez co-wrote for the band in 1966.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    The Spider And The Fly
Source:    Mono CD: Out Of Our Heads
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    Abkco
Year:    1965
    There were often differences in the track lineup between the US and UK versions of albums in the 1960s. There were two main reasons for this difference. The first was that British albums generally had a longer running time than their American counterparts. The second was that the British tradititionally did not include songs on albums that had been already issued on singles. Such was the case with The Spider And The Fly, which was first released as the B side of (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction. Both songs were included on the US version of Out Of Our Heads in July of 1965, but when the British version of the album was released two months later neither song was included.

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
    In late 1966, with two best-selling albums to their credit, The Lovin' Spoonful deliberately set out to make an album that sounded like it was recorded by several different bands, as a way of showcasing their versatility. With Hums Of The Lovin' Spoonful, 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 eventually come to be called country rock. 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 was (even more suprisingly) often heard on FM rock radio in the early 70s.

Artist:    Buffalo Springfield
Title:    Mr. Soul
Source:    CD: Retrospective (originally released on LP: Buffalo Springfield Again)
Writer(s):    Neil Young
Label:    Atco
Year:    1967
    Executives at Atco Records originally considered Neil Young's voice "too weird" to be recorded. As a result many of Young's early tunes (including the band's debut single Nowadays Clancy Can't Even Sing), were sung by Richie Furay. By the time the band's second album, Buffalo Springfield Again, was released, the band had enough clout to make sure Young was allowed to sing his own songs. In fact, the album starts with a Young vocal on the classic Mr. Soul.

Artist:    R.E.M.
Title:    Wendell Gee
Source:    LP: Fables Of The Reconstruction
Writer(s):    Berry/Buck/Mills/Stipe
Label:    I.R.S.
Year:    1985
    Wendell Gee is the last track on the 1985 R.E.M album Fables Of The Reconstruction, and it almost didn't make it onto the album at all. Composed mostly by bassist/keyboardist Mikel Mills, the song features a banjo solo by Peter Buck and lyrics by vocalist Michale Stipe. Wendell Gee was released as a single in Europe and the UK, but did not chart.

Artist:    Liquid Scene
Title:    The Mad Potter Of Biloxi
Source:    CD: Revolutions
Writer(s):    becki diGregorio
Label:    Ziglain
Year:    2014
            In March of 2015 I received an e-mail from Vincent Sanchez, who had been involved in the making of an album called Revolutions by a band called Liquid Scene that had been released in December of 2014. I invited him to send me a copy of the album and was highly impressed with the CD. I had already been toying with the idea of finding a way to occasionally work newer psychedelic/garage rock material into the show, and listening to Liquid Scene was just the push I needed to create a new segment called Advanced Psych. Like the rest of Liquid Scene's material, The Mad Potter of Biloxi was written by multi-instrumentalist bodhi (becki diGregorio), who also sings on the tune.

Artist:    Electric Prunes
Title:    Circus Freak
Source:    CD: California '66 (originally released on CD: Feedback)
Writer(s):    Lowe/Tulin
Label:    PruneTwang
Year:    2006
    James Lowe's lyrics and Mark Tulin's running bass line are the strength of Circus Freak, a track from the 2006 Electric Prunes album Feedback. The album was the last full disc from the band to be released before the death of Tulin in 2011.

Artist:    Cream
Title:    I Feel Free
Source:    CD: Fresh Cream
Writer(s):    Bruce/Brown
Label:    Polydor/Polygram (original label: Atco)
Year:    1966
    The first single released by Cream was I Feel Free. As was the case with nearly every British single at the time, the song was not included on Fresh Cream, the band's debut LP. In the US, however, singles were commonly given a prominent place on albums, and the US version of Fresh Cream actually opens with I Feel Free. To my knowledge the song, being basically a studio creation, was never performed live.

Artist:    Cream
Title:    Crossroads
Source:    CD: Best of 60s Psychedelic Rock (originally released on LP: Wheels Of Fire)
Writer:    Robert Johnson
Label:    Priority (original label: Atco)
Year:    1968
    Robert Johnson's Crossroads has come to be regarded as a signature song for Eric Clapton, who's live version (recorded at the Fillmore East) was first released on the Cream album Wheels Of Fire.

Artist:    Cream
Title:    N.S.U.
Source:    CD: Fresh Cream
Writer(s):    Jack Bruce
Label:    Polydor/Polygram (original US label: Atco)
Year:    1966
    Although most of Jack Bruce's Cream songs were co-written with lyricist Pete Brown, there were some exceptions. Among the most notable of these is N.S.U. from Cream's debut LP, which features Bruce's own lyrics. The song, also released as a B side, has proven popular enough to be included on several Cream retrospective collections and was part of the band's repertoire when they reunited for a three-day stint at the Royal Albert Hall in 2005. Before his death, Bruce revealed that N.S.U. actually stands for non-specific urethritis, which one of his bandmates was suffering from at the time the song was written.

Artist:    Association
Title:    Along Comes Mary
Source:    LP: And Then...Along Comes The Association
Writer:    Tandyn Almer
Label:    Valiant
Year:    1966
    The Association are best known for a series of love ballads and light pop songs such as Cherish, Never My Love and Windy. Many of these records were a product of the L.A. studio scene and featured several members of the Wrecking Crew, the studio musicians who played on dozens of records in the late 60s and early 70s. The first major Association hit, however, featured the band members playing all the instruments themselves. Produced, and possibly co-written, by Curt Boettcher, who would soon join Gary Usher's studio project Sagittarius, Along Comes Mary shows that the Association was quite capable of recording a classic without any help from studio musicians.

Artist:    Traffic
Title:    Pearly Queen
Source:    CD: Smiling Phases (originally released on LP: Traffic)
Writer(s):    Winwood/Capaldi
Label:    Island (original label: United Artists)
Year:    1968
    The second Traffic LP was less overtly psychedelic than the Mr. Fantasy album, with songs like Pearly Queen taking the band in a more funky direction. When the band reformed in 1970 without Dave Mason (who had provided the most psychedelic elements) the songwriting team of Steve Winwood and Jim Capaldi, who had written Pearly Queen, continued the trend.

Artist:    Jimi Hendrix Experience
Title:    1983…(A Merman I Should Turn To Be)
Source:    CD: Electric Ladyland
Writer:    Jimi Hendrix
Label:    Legacy (original label: Reprise)
Year:    1968
    1983…(A Merman I Should Turn To Be)/Moon Turn The Tides (Gently, Gently Away) from the Electric Ladyland album is the longest work created purely in the studio by Jimi Hendrix, with a running time of over 16 minutes. The piece starts with tape effects that lead into the song's main guitar rift. The vocals and drums join in to tell a science fiction story set in a future world where the human race has had to move underwater in order to survive some unspecified catastrophe. After a couple verses, the piece goes into a long unstructured section made up mostly of guitar effects before returning to the main theme and closing out with more effects that combine volume control and stereo panning to create a circular effect. As is the case with several tracks on Electric Ladyland, 1983…(A Merman I Should Turn To Be)/Moon Turn The Tides (Gently, Gently Away) features Hendrix on both guitar and bass, with Mitch Mitchell on drums and special guest Chris Wood (from Traffic) on flute.

Artist:    Ultimate Spinach
Title:    Jazz Thing
Source:    LP: Behold And See
Writer(s):    Ian Bruce-Douglas
Label:    M-G-M
Year:    1968
    Although the second Ultimate Spinach album, Behold And See, is generally considered inferior to the group's debut effort, there are a few high points that are among the best tracks the band ever recorded. Perhaps the strongest track on the album is Jazz Thing, which almost sounds like a Bob Bruno Circus Maximus track.


Rockin' in the Days of Confusion # 2306 (starts 2/7/23) 

    This week, Rockin' in the Days of Confusion presents, in its entirety, Rick Wakeman's Journey To The Centre Of The Earth, along with a couple other tracks we've never played on the show. To start, though, we have a couple of more familiar pieces...

Artist:    Deep Purple
Title:    Smoke On The Water (edited live version)
Source:    British 45 RPM EP
Writer(s):    Blackmore/Gillan/Glover/Lord/Paice
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1972
    I'm not quite sure what prompted Deep Purple to release an EP in 1977 that included an edited version of a live performance of Smoke On The Water, the original studio version of My Woman From Tokyo and a live version of Child Of Time, especially when you consider that the band had split up the year before. Nonetheless, the EP was well-received, despite some jarring edit points in Smoke On The Water, and was one of many releases that eventually led to the reformation of the band in 1984.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    Love Me Two Times
Source:    CD: The Best Of The Doors (originally released on LP: Strange Days)
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    Although the second Doors album is sometimes dismissed as being full of tracks that didn't make the cut on the band's debut LP, the fact is that Strange Days contains some of the Doors best-known tunes. One of those is Love Me Two Times, which was the second single released from the album. The song continues to get heavy airplay on classic rock stations.

Artist:    Delaney & Bonnie And Friends featuring Eric Clapton
Title:    Groupie (Superstar)
Source:    European import CD: Pure...Psychedelic Rock (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Bramlett/Russell
Label:    Sony Music (original label: Atco)
Year:    1969
    Originally released as a B side in 1969 and included on the 1972 album D&B Together, Groupie (Superstar) was written by Bonnie Bramlett and Leon Russell. In addition to Bonnie Bramlett on lead vocals, the track features an all-star lineup, including Eric Clapton, Delaney Bramlett and Dave Mason on guitars, and most of what would become Derek And The Dominos on other instruments. Rita Coolidge, who came up with the original idea for a song based on the relationships between rock musicians and groupies, sings backup vocals on the track.

Artist:    Rick Wakeman
Title:    Journey To The Centre Of The Earth
Source:    LP: Journey To The Centre Of The Earth
Writer(s):    Rick Wakeman, with narration adapted from the novel by Jules Verne
Label:    A&M
Year:    1974
    Keyboardist Rick Wakeman began his career as a session musician, appearing on recordings by Davie Bowie (Space Oddity), Elton John and Cat Stevens, among others. In 1970 he became a member of Strawbs, but left the following year to replace Tony Kaye in Yes. His presence, along with guitarist Steve Howe's, revitalized a band that had been on the verge of losing its record contract, elevating Yes to the upper echelon of rock music in 1972. In 1973, while still a member of Yes, Wakeman released his first solo album, the all-instrumental Six Wives Of Henry VIII, which was a commercial success and led to the creation of his second solo work, a narrated adaptation of Jules Verne's Journey To The Centre Of The Earth. In spite of pressure from the shirts at A&M to use well-known musicians on the album, Wakeman chose to go with a group of unknowns to keep the focus of the audience on the music rather than the performers themselves. He also enlisted the services of the London Symphony Orchestra and English Chamber Choir for two live performances of the piece on January 18, 1974, with narration provided by English actor David Hemmings, best known for his lead role in the film Blowup. The second of these performances was recorded and released on May 3, 1974 as Wakeman's second solo LP. The album topped the British music charts and hit #3 on the Billboard albums chart in the US.

Artist:    Savoy Brown
Title:    Sitting An' Thinking
Source:    CD: Looking In
Writer(s):    Kim Simmonds
Label:    Deram (original label: Parrot)
Year:    1970
    After the charismatic Chris Youlden left Savoy Brown for an ill-dated solo career in 1970, the remaining band members went to work on the sixth Savoy Brown album, Looking In. The second single from the album was the instrumental Sitting An Thinking, but by 1971 singles were no longer considered necessary to an artist's being considered a success in the US. Just as well, since Sitting An' Thinking failed to make the top 100, despite having some tasty guitar work from founder Kim Simmonds. Not long after the single was released the other band members left the group to form Foghat, leaving Simmonds the task of forming a new Savoy Brown lineup for the band's next LP, Street Corner Talking.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2305 (starts 1/30/23)

    This week we shine the spotlight on The Twain Shall Meet, the second album by Eric Burdon And The Animals. Unlike the original Animals, this new group, formed in 1967, embraced psychedelia, and with its second album managed to fit in everything from electric violin to bagpipes. Also of note: a live track recorded for, but not included on Big Brother And The Holding Company's first album for Columbia Records, the last Golliwogs record (which was also the first Creedence Clearwater Revival record) and some early Lighthouse. Plus, as always, an assortment of singles, B sides and album tracks from the late 1960s.

Artist:    Traffic
Title:    Paper Sun
Source:    45 RPM single (reissue)
Writer(s):    Winwood/Capaldi
Label:    Silver Spotlight (original label: United Artists)
Year:    1967
    One of the first British acid-rock bands was a group called Deep Feeling, which included drummer Jim Capaldi and woodwind player Chris Wood. At the same time Deep Feeling was experimenting with psychedelia, another, more commercially oriented band, the Spencer Davis Group, was tearing up the British top 40 charts with hits like Keep On Running, Gimme Some Lovin' and I'm A Man. The undisputed star of the Spencer Davis Group was a teenaged guitarist/keyboardist/vocalist named Steve Winwood, who was also beginning to make his mark as a songwriter. Along with guitarist/vocalist Dave Mason, who had worked with Capaldi in earlier bands, they formed Traffic in the spring of 1967, releasing their first single, Paper Sun, in May of that year. Capaldi and Winwood had actually written the tune while Winwood was still in the Spencer Davis Group, and the song was an immediate hit in the UK. This was followed quickly by an album, Mr. Fantasy, that, as was the common practice at the time in the UK, did not include Paper Sun. When the album was picked up by United Artists Records for US release in early 1968, however, Paper Sun was included as the LP's opening track, albeit with an early fade. The US version of the album was originally titled Heaven Is In Your Mind, but was quickly retitled Mr. Fantasy to match the original British title (although the alterations in track listing remained). When the song was reissued as a single in the 1980s it was restored to its original four minute length.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    I Can't See Your Face In My Mind
Source:    LP: Strange Days
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    One of the most haunting Doors ever recorded is I Can't See Your Face In My Mind, from their second 1967 LP, Strange Days. It also ranks among the most sadness-evoking song titles I've ever run across. Such is the power of poetry, I guess. Frankly I'm surprised that the Alzheimer's Association hasn't purchased the rights to the song to use on one of their TV fundraising spots. 

Artist:    Music Machine
Title:    Discrepancy
Source:    CD: Beyond The Garage (originally released on LP: Bonniwell Music Machine)
Writer:    Sean Bonniwell
Label:    Sundazed (original label: Warner Brothers)
Year:    1967
    Discrepancy, one of Sean Bonniwell's most sophisticated recordings with his band the Music Machine, features two simultaneous vocal lines. The main one, sung by Bonniwell (in the left channel) as a single melody line, tells the story of a deteriorating relationship. In the opposite channel we hear a breathy multi-part vocal line that tells the same story from the perspective of the subconscious. The two come together lyrically from time to time to express key concepts such as the line "now I know I'm losing you", only to once again diverge onto their separate tracks. The bridge serves to further unite the two divergent lines with the repeating plea to "tell me what to do". Discrepancy is one of the tracks recorded by the original Music Machine lineup (Bonniwell on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Mark Landon on lead guitar, Ron Edgar on drums, Doug Rhodes on keyboards and Keith Olsen on bass) that was never released on Original Sound Records, either as an LP track or on a 45 RPM single. Instead, the song was included on the LP Bonniwell Music Machine, released by Warner Brothers in 1967.

Artist:    Procol Harum
Title:    Lime Street Blues
Source:    45 RPM single B side (reissue)
Writer(s):    Brooker/Reid
Label:    A&M (original label: Deram)
Year:    1967
    Anyone expecting more of the same when flipping over their new copy of A Whiter Shade Of Pale in 1967 got a big surprise when they heard Lime Street Blues. The song, reminiscent of an early Ray Charles track, was strong enough to be included on their first greatest hits collection, no mean feat for a B side.

Artist:    Paul Revere And The Raiders
Title:    Peace Of Mind
Source:    Mono CD: Greatest Hits (bonus track originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Lindsay/Melcher
Label:    Columbia/Legacy
Year:    1967
    Billy Altman, in his liner notes for the expanded 1999 version of Paul Revere And The Raiders' Greatest Hits CD, refers to Peace Of Mind as "psychedelic-souled". I've never run across that particular term before, so I thought I'd repeat it here. Peace Of Mind was one of the last songs to feature the participation of producer Terry Melcher, who had co-written many of the band's hit songs. With Melcher's departure, vocalist Mark Lindsay took more personal control of the band's direction, bringing in studio musicians for most of their subsequent recordings.

Artist:    Lovechain
Title:    Step Out Of Your Window You Can Fly
Source:    Mono CD: A Lethal Dose Of Hard Psych (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    Thomas/Mallius
Label:    Arf! Arf! (original label: Westwood)
Year:    1969
    Canton, Ohio, was home to Westwood Records, which issued Step Out Of Your Window You Can Fly as a single in 1969. Not much is known about the band Lovechain, however, except that they were reportedly from the Dover-New Philadelphia, Ohio, area. I can't help but think that Art Linkletter did not put his stamp of approval on this one.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    While My Guitar Gently Weeps
Source:    CD: The Beatles
Writer(s):    George Harrison
Label:    Parlophone (original label: Apple)
Year:    1968
    George Harrison had already written several songs that had appeared on various Beatles albums (and an occasional B side) through 1968, but his first song to be universally acknowledged as a classic was While My Guitar Gently Weeps, which appeared on The Beatles (aka the White Album). The recording features Harrison's close friend, guitarist Eric Clapton, who at that time was enjoying superstar status as a member of Cream.

Artist:     Monkees
Title:     The Door Into Summer
Source:     CD: Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones, LTD.
Writer:     Douglas/Martin
Label:     Rhino (original label: Colgems)
Year:     1967
     After playing nearly all the instrumental tracks on their third album themselves, the Monkees came to the painful conclusion that they would not be able to repeat the effort and still have time to tape a weekly TV show. As a result, the fourth Monkees LP, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones LTD., used studio musicians extensively, albeit under the creative supervision of the Monkees themselves. The group also had the final say over what songs ended up on the album, including The door Into Summer, a tune by Bill Martin, a friend of band leader Michael Nesmith. For reasons that are too complicated to get into here (and probably wouldn't make much sense anyway), co-credit was given to the album's producer, Chip Douglas.

Artist:    Saturday's Children
Title:    Deck Five
Source:    Mono CD: If You're Ready! The Best Of Dunwich Records...Volume 2 (originally released as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    Bryan/Holder
Label:    Sundazed/Here 'Tis (original label: Dunwich)
Year:    1966
    Although Saturday's Children were never popular enough to warrant an entire album, they did get to record a Christmas single in 1966. The B side of that single was an innovative take on both Deck The Halls and We Three Kings, done in 5/4 time a la Dave Brubeck's Take Five. Expect to hear this one again on a future Yule show.

Artist:    Seeds
Title:    Can't Seem To Make You Mine
Source:    Mono European import CD: Singles As & Bs 1965-1970 (originally released as 45 RPM single and included on LP: The Seeds)
Writer:    Sky Saxon
Label:    GNP Crescendo/ Big Beat
Year:    1965
    One of the first psychedelic singles to hit the L.A. market in 1965 was Can't Seem To Make You Mine. The song was also chosen to lead off the first Seeds album. Indeed, it could be argued that this was the song that first defined the "flower power" sound, its local success predating that of the Seeds' biggest hit, Pushin' Too Hard, by several months.

Artist:    Yardbirds
Title:    Over Under Sideways Down
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer:    Dreja/Relf/Samwell-Smith/McCarty/Beck
Label:    Epic
Year:    1966
     The only Yardbirds album to feature primarily original material was released under different titles in different parts of the world. The original UK version was called simply The Yardbirds, while the US album bore the Over Under Sideways Down title. In addition, the UK album was unofficially known as Roger the Engineer because of band member Chris Dreja's drawing of the band's recording engineer on the cover. The title cut was the last single to feature Jeff Beck as the band's sole lead guitarist (the follow-up single, Happenings Ten Years Time Ago, featured both Beck and new member Jimmy Page).

Artist:    Creedence Clearwater Revival (originally released as by the Golliwogs)
Title:    Porterville
Source:    Canadian import LP: Creedence Clearwater Revival (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    John Fogerty
Label:    Fantasy (original label: Scorpio)
Year:    1967
    The last single recorded by San Francisco's Golliwogs was a song called Porterville, released on the Scorpio label in November of 1967. Four months later the same recording using the same catalog number was reissued, this time credited to Creedence Clearwater Revival. The song was included on CCR's debut LP later that same year.

Artist:    Big Brother And The Holding Company
Title:    Catch Me Baby
Source:    CD: Cheap Thrills (bonus track)
Writer(s):    Albin/Andrew/Gtez/Gurley/Joplin
Label:    Columbia/Legacy
Year:    Recorded 1968, released 1999
    After Columbia bought out Big Brother And The Holding Company's contract from Mainstream Records it was decided that the best way to record the band was during a live performance. On March 2, 1968 several songs were recorded at the Grande Ballroom in Detroit, but after reviewing the recordings, producer John Simon decided to re-record the band in the studio and overdub crowd noise to make the album appear to be a live performance. In 1999, two of the Detroit performances, including Catch Me Baby, were included as bonus tracks on the remastered CD version of Cheap Thrills.

Artist:    Blues Magoos
Title:    There's A Chance We Can Make It
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer:    Gilbert/Scala
Label:    Mercury
Year:    1967
     Following up on their biggest hit, (We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet, the Blues Magoos released a song called There's A Chance We Can Make It backed with Pipe Dream for their next single. Unfortunately for both songs, some stations elected to play There's A Chance We Can Make It while others preferred Pipe Dream. The result was that neither song charted as high as it could have had it been released with a weaker B side. This had the ripple effect of causing Electric Comic Book (the album both songs appeared on) to not chart as well as its predecessor Psychedelic Lollipop had. This in turn caused Mercury Records to lose faith in the Blues Magoos and not give them the kind of promotion that could have kept the band in the public eye beyond its 15 minutes of fame. The ultimate result was that for many years, there were an excessive number of busboys and cab drivers claiming to have once been members of the Blues Magoos and not many ways to disprove their claims, at least until the internet made information about the group's actual membership more accessible.

Artist:        West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band
Title:        Leiyla
Source:      CD: Part One
Writer(s):    Markley/Harris
Label:    Sundazed (original label: Reprise)
Year:        1967
     Despite its name, Part One is actually the second album recorded by the West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band. The first one was an early example of a practice that would become almost mandatory for a new band in the 1990s. An album called Volume One was recorded at a home studio and issued independently on the tiny Fifa label by the Harris brothers. After signing to Reprise they decided to pretend their earlier album didn't exist and titled their first LP for the label Part One. Unlike on Volume One, which was made up almost entirely of cover songs, Part One has several original compositions by band members, including Leiyla, a tune with a rather unusual bridge section.

Artist:    Chocolate Watch Band
Title:    Are You Gonna Be There (At The Love-In) (originally released on LP: No Way Out and as 45 RPM single)
Source:    LP: Nuggets Vol. 2-Punk
Writer:    McElroy/Bennett
Label:    Rhino (original label: Tower)
Year:    1967
    It took me several years to sort out the convoluted truth behind the recorded works of San Jose, California's most popular local band, the Chocolate Watch Band. While it's true that much of what was released under their name was in fact the work of studio musicians, there are a few tracks that are indeed the product of Dave Aguilar and company. Are You Gonna Be There (At The Love-In), a song used in the cheapie teenspliotation flick the Love-In and included on the Watch Band's first album, is one of those few. Ironically, the song was co-written by Don Bennett, the studio vocalist whose voice was substituted for Aguilar's on a couple of other songs from the same album. According to legend, the band actually showed up at the movie studio without any songs prepared for the film, and learned to play and sing Are You Gonna Be There (At The Love-In) right there on the set. This, combined with the story of their first visit to a recording studio the previous year (a story for another time) shows one of the Watch Band's greatest strengths: the ability to pick up and perfect new material faster than anyone else. It also shows their overall disinterest in the recording process. This was a band that wanted nothing more than to play live, often outperforming the big name bands they opened for.

Artist:    Country Joe And The Fish
Title:    Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine
Source:    LP: Electric Music For The Mind And Body
Writer(s):    Joe McDonald
Label:    Vanguard
Year:    1967
    While not as commercially successful as the Jefferson Airplane or as long-lived as the Grateful Dead (there's an oxymoron for ya), Country Joe and the Fish may well be the most accurate musical representation of what the whole Haight-Ashbury scene was about, which is itself ironic, since the band operated out of Berkeley on the other side of the bay. Of all the tracks on their first album, Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine probably got the most airplay on various underground radio stations that were popping up on the FM dial at the time (some of them even legally).

Artist:     Mojo Men
Title:     She's My Baby (remixed version)
Source:     Mono CD: Nuggets-Original Artyfacts From The First Psychedelic Era (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer:     Stewart/Alaimo/Curcio
Label:     Rhino (original label: Autumn; remixed version: Reprise)
Year:     1966
     Although generally considered to be one of the early San Francisco bands, the Mojo Men actually originated in Rochester, NY. After spending most of the early 60s in Florida playing to fraternities, the band moved out the West Coast in 1965, becoming mainstays on the San Francisco scene. Their strongest track was She's My Baby, a rockabilly tune originally recorded by Steve Alaimo and reworked by the Mojo Men and producer Sly Stone into a garage/punk classic.

Artist:     Eric Burdon and the Animals
Title:     Sky Pilot/We Love You Lil/All Is One
Source:     LP: The Twain Shall Meet
Writer(s):     Burdon/Briggs/Weider/McCulloch/Jenkins
Label:     M-G-M
Year:     1968
     The Twain Shall Meet was the second album from Eric Burdon and the Animals, the new group formed in early 1967 after Eric Burdon changed his mind about embarking on a solo career. Produced by Tom Wilson (who had also produced Bob Dylan's first electric recordings and the Blues Project's Projections album), The Twain Shall Meet was an ambitious work that shows a band often reaching beyond its grasp, despite having its heart in the right place. For the most part, though, side two of the album works fairly well, starting with the anti-war classic Sky Pilot and continuing into the instrumental We Love You Lil. The final section, All Is One, is a unique blend of standard rock instrumentation (guitar, bass, drums, keyboards) combined with strings, horns, sitar, bagpipes, oboe, flute, studio effects, and drone vocals that builds to a frenetic climax, followed by a spoken line by Burdon to end the album.

Artist:     Nazz
Title:     Open My Eyes
Source:     LP: Nuggets Vol. 1-The Hits (originally released as 45 RPM single and on LP: The Nazz)
Writer:     Todd Rundgren
Label:     Rhino (original label: SGC)
Year:     1968
     Nazz was a band from Philadelphia who were basically the victims of their own bad timing. 1968 was the year that progressive FM radio began to get recognition as a viable format while top 40 radio was being dominated by bubble gum pop bands such as the 1910 Fruitgum Company and the Ohio Express. Nazz, on the other hand, sounded more like British bands such as the Move and Brian Augur's Trinity that were performing well on the UK charts but were unable to buy a hit in the US. The band had plenty of talent, most notably guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Todd Rundgren, who would go on to establish a successful career, both as an artist (he played all the instruments on his Something/Anything LP and led the band Utopia) and a producer (Grand Funk's We're An American Band, among others). Open My Eyes was originally issued as the A side of a single, but ended up being eclipsed in popularity by its flip side, a song called Hello It's Me, that ended up getting airplay in Boston and other cities, eventually hitting the Canadian charts (a newly recorded version would become a solo hit for Rundgren five years later).

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 its 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 true 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:     Blues Project
Title:     Caress Me Baby
Source:     Mono CD: Projections
Writer:     Jimmy Reed
Label:     Sundazed (original label: Verve Folkways)
Year:     1966
     After deliberately truncating their extended jams for their first LP, Live At The Cafe Au-Go-Go, the Blues Project recorded a second album that was a much more accurate representation of what the band was all about. Mixed in with the group's original material was this outstanding cover of Caress Me Baby, an old Jimmy Reed tune sung by lead guitarist and Blues Project founder Danny Kalb that runs over seven minutes in length. Andy Kuhlberg's memorable walking bass line would be lifted a few year later by Blood, Sweat and Tears bassist Jim Fielder for the track Blues, Part II.

Artist:     Donovan
Title:     Sand And Foam
Source:     45 RPM single B side (originally released on LP: Mellow Yellow)
Writer:     Donovan Leitch
Label:     Epic
Year:     1967
     When Donovan Leitch, a young singer from Maryhill, Glasgow, Scotland, first came to prominence, he was hailed as Britain's answer to Bob Dylan. By 1966 he was recognized as the most popular folk singer in the UK. But Donovan was already starting to stretch beyond the boundaries of folk music, and in the fall of that year he released his first major US hit, Sunshine Superman. From that point on he was no longer Donovan the folk singer; he was now Donovan the singer-songwriter. Donovan continued to expand his musical horizons in 1967 with the release of the Mellow Yellow album and singles such as There Is A Mountain. The B side of There Is A Mountain was Sand And Foam, an acoustic number from the Mellow Yellow album.

Artist:    Quicksilver Messenger Service
Title:    Gold And Silver
Source:    CD: Quicksilver Messenger Service
Writer(s):    Duncan/Schuster
Label:    RockBeat
Year:    1968
    There are differing opinions on just how serious legendary San Francisco singer/songwriter and all-around iconoclast Dino Valenti was being when, at a jam session with guitarist John Cippolina one night, he suggested that the two of them form a band. Since Valenti was busted for marijuana posession the very next day (and ended up spending the next two years in jail), we'll never know for sure. Cippolina, however, was motivated enough to begin finding members for the new band, including bassist David Freiberg (later to join Starship) and drummer Skip Spence. When Marty Balin stole Spence away to join his own new band (Jefferson Airplane), he tried to make up for it by introducing Cippolina to vocalist/guitarist Gary Duncan and drummer Greg Elmore, whose own band, the Brogues, had recently disbanded. Taking the name Quicksilver Messenger Service (so named for all the member's astrological connections with the planet Mercury), the new band soon became a fixture on the San Francisco scene. Inspired by the Blues Project, Cippolina and Duncan quickly established a reputation for their dual guitar improvisational abilities on songs like Gold And Silver, an instrumental that utilizes the 5/4 beat popularized by Dave Brubeck. Unlike other San Francisco bands such as the Airplane, Moby Grape and the Grateful Dead, Quicksilver Messenger Service did not jump at their first offer from a major record label, preferring to hold out for the best deal. This meant their debut album did not come out until 1968, missing out on the initial buzz surrounding the summer of love and ultimately relegating them to secondary status among rock bands.

Artist:    Lighthouse
Title:    Presents of Presence
Source:    LP: Suite Feeling
Writer(s):    Prokop/Hoffert
Label:    RCA Victor
Year:    1969
    Lighthouse was formed in Toronto in 1968 by vocalist/drummer Skip Prokop (formerly of the Paupers) and keyboardist/arranger Paul Hoffert. The idea was to combine a rock rhythm section with R&B-style horns and classical-style strings. The first move they made was to recruit guitarist Ralph Cole, whom the Paupers had shared a bill with in New York. The three of them then went about recruiting an assortment of friends, studio musicians and members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, making a demo tape and submitting it to M-G-M records, who immediately offered Lighthouse a contract. The band's manager, however, was able to get a better contract from RCA, and the group set about recording their first album, making their stage debut in Toronto in May of 1969. Among the original 13 members of the band were lead vocalist Vic "Pinky" Davin and saxophonist Howard Shore (who would become the leader of the house band for NBC's Saturday Night Live when that TV show made its debut in 1975). The group managed to record two albums that year, their eponymous debut album and the follow-up Suite Feeling. Both albums were recorded at Toronto's Eastern Sound Studio and released on the RCA Victor label in 1969. Although the group scored a couple of minor hits in their native Canada, they were not able to achieve commercial success in the US, and, after a third LP for RCA, changed labels to GRT in Canada and Evolution in the US, where (after several personnel changes, including lead vocals) they managed to chart two top 40 singles in 1971 and 1972.

Rockin' in the Days of Confusion # 2305 (starts 1/30/23) 

    Another week of free-form rock, this time with the emphasis on rock, including a track from the first acknowledged Japanese heavy metal album.

Artist:    Steely Dan
Title:    Reeling In The Years
Source:    45 RPM single (stereo reissue)
Writer(s):    Becker/Fagen
Label:    MCA (original label: ABC)
Year:    1972
    My first radio gig (sort of), was volunteering at the Voice Of Holloman, a closed-circuit station that served a handful of locations on Holloman AFB, about 10 miles from Alamogordo, NM. I had been taking broadcasting courses through a community college program that was taught by Sgt. Tim Daniels, who was the NCO in charge of the base Information Office. As such he ran the station, as well as a free weekly newspaper that was distributed on base. After completing the classes, Tim gave me the opportunity to do a daily two-hour show on the VOH, using records that had been sent to the station by various record labels. We got excellent singles service from some labels (Warner Brothers and Capitol in particular), but virtually nothing from others, such as ABC. This was unfortunate, as one of the best songs out at the time was Steely Dan's Reeling In The Years, from their 1972 Can't Buy A Thrill album. Tim, whose previous gig was with the Armed Forces Vietnam Network, was a big rock fan, however, and went out and bought his own copy of the album, making a copy of Reeling In The Years on reel to reel tape, which we then played extensively until the song had run its course on the charts. Thus the Voice Of Holloman, with its audience consisting mostly of guys working out at the base gym, was playing the longer album version of a song that was also getting airplay on Alamogordo's daytime-only top 40 AM station, KINN, in its edited single form. It was just about the nearest the Voice Of Holloman ever got to being an underground rock station (although I did manage to sneak in some Procol Harum, Little Feat and once even Deep Purple from the aformentioned Warner Brothers singles).

Artist:    Allman Brothers Band
Title:    Hot 'Lanta
Source:    LP: At Fillmore East
Writer(s):    Allman/Allman/Betts/Trucks/Oakley/Johanson
Label:    Mercury (original label: Capricorn)
Year:    1971
    The only "new" song on the Allman Brothers' landmark album At Fillmore East was Hot 'Lanta, a piece that evolved out of a jam session and was only performed live. The melody line comes from guitarist Dickey Betts, who also contributes a solo, as do fellow guitarist Duane Allman and keyboardist Gregg Allman.

Artist:    Todd Rundgren's Utopia
Title:    Do Ya
Source:    LP: Another Live
Writer(s):    Jeff Lynne
Label:    Bearsville
Year:    1975
    Todd Rundgren has never been one to wear labels well, so when he began to get a reputation as a singer/songwriter in the early to mid 1970s he went out and formed a band. That band, originally known as Todd Rundgren's Utopia, released their first live album in 1975. Among the non-Rundgren penned pieces the band performed was Do Ya, a song that had originally been released as a B side by the Move. Meanwhile the Electric Light Orchestra, a band led by Jeff Lynne that had evolved from the Move, had also been performing the song live. After a rock journalist asked ELO members what they thought of Rundgren's "original version" of the song they decided to record a new studio version of the song to let everyone know that it was a Jeff Lynne song in the first place, releasing it on their 1976 LP A New World Record.

Artist:    Uriah Heep
Title:    Spider Woman
Source:    European import CD: The Magician's Birthday
Writer(s):    Box/Byron/Kerslake/Thain
Label:    Sanctuary (original US label: Mercury)
Year:    1972
    Although Uriah Heep was known as an album-oriented band in the US and their native UK, they did have some top 40 success in Scandanavia and Northern Europe, especially in Germany, where they scored three top 20 hits from 1970-72. The last of these was Spider Woman, from the Magician's Birthday album, which went to the #14 spot on the German charts.

Artist:    Black Sabbath
Title:    Children Of The Grave
Source:    CD: Greatest Hits 1970-1978 (originally released on LP: Master Of Reality)
Writer(s):    Iommi/Osbourne/Butler/Ward
Label:    Warner Brothers
Year:    1971
    One of the spookiest experiences in my life was crashing at a stranger's house after having my mind blown at a Grand Funk Railroad/Black Oak Arkansas concert in the fall of 1971. A bunch of us had ridden back to Weatherford, Oklahoma, from Norman (about an hour's drive) and somehow I ended up separated from my friends Mike and DeWayne, in whose college dorm room I had been crashing for a couple of days. So here I am in some total strangers house, lying on the couch in this room with black walls, a black light, a few posters and a cheap stereo playing a brand new album I had never heard before: Black Sabbath's Master Of Reality. Suddenly I notice this weird little tapping sound going back and forth from speaker to speaker. Such was my state of mind at the time that I really couldn't tell if it was a hallucination or not. The stereo was one of those late 60s models that you could stack albums on, and whoever had put the album on had left the stereo in repeat mode before heading off to bed, with no more albums stacked after the Sabbath LP. This meant that every twenty minutes or so I would hear Children Of The Grave, with that weird little tapping sound going back and forth from speaker to speaker. Trust me, it was creepy, as was the whispering at the end of track. No wonder Ozzy Ozbourne called Children Of The Grave "the most kick-ass song we'd ever recorded."

Artist:    Robin Trower
Title:    Bridge Of Sighs
Source:    CD: Bridge Of Sighs
Writer(s):    Robin Trower
Label:    Chrysalis
Year:    1974
    One of the most celebrated guitar albums of all time, Bridge Of Sighs was Robin Trower's second solo LP following his departure from Procol Harum. Released in 1974, the LP spent 31 weeks on the Billboard album charts, peaking at #7. Bridge of Sighs has served as a template for later guitar-oriented albums, especially those of Warren Haines and Gov't Mule.

Artist:    Bob Seger System
Title:    Black Eyed Girl
Source:    LP: Ramblin' Gamblin' Man
Writer(s):    Bob Seger
Label:    Capitol
Year:    1969
    The Bob Seger System was one of the top local bands on the Detroit rock scene in the late 60s. As was typical of that scene, the System played a hard-edged brand of rock that played well with the sons and daughters of the city's mostly blue-collar workforce. Following a series of regional hit singles, the System hit the big time after signing with Capitol Records in 1968. After releasing one of the most intense antiwar songs ever recorded (2+2=?), the band began work on their debut LP, tentatively entitled Tales Of Lucy Blue. Before the album was finished Capitol released a second single by the band, Ramblin' Gamblin' Man, which was such a huge hit they decided to rename the album after the song (although the original Lucy Blue cover art remained). The LP itself had some fine rockers, such as Black Eyed Girl, which at six and a half minutes was the longest cut on the album. The LP was not a major success, however, and for years it looked like Bob Seger would be remembered only as a one-hit wonder. Seger resurfaced in the late 1970s with a new group, the Silver Bullet Band, and went on to become a major rock star.

Artist:    Flower Travellin' Band
Title:    Satori-Part IV
Source:    CD: Satori
Writer(s):    Satori
Label:    Phoenix (original US label: GRT)
Year:    1971
    Possibly the first Japanese heavy metal band and almost certainly the first Japanese psychedelic group, the Flower Travelin' Band was created as a side project of Yuyu Yuchida, a friend of John Lennon's who, having heard Jimi Hendrix and Cream on a trip to England, wanted to introduce Japanese audiences to this new kind of music. After returning to Japan he gathered a group of musicians together and recorded the first Flowerin' Travellin' Band LP in 1969. The album was made up entirely of covers of bands like Cream and Led Zeppelin. It wasn't until 1971 (and several personnel changes) that the FTB recorded their first LP made up entirely of original material. The album was called Satori, as were all five tracks on the album. Satori is often cited as the first original Japanese heavy metal album. After listening to it I'd say it was one of the first heavy metal albums period.

Artist:    Deep Purple
Title:    Why Didn't Rosemary
Source:    LP: Deep Purple
Writer(s):    Lord/Blackmore/Evans/Paice/Simper
Label:    Tetragrammaton
Year:    1969
    Deep Purple's self-titled third LP was plagued with problems not of the band's own making. Most of these can be traced to the fact that their American label, Tetragrammaton, was in deep (no pun intended) financial trouble. This meant virtually no promotion budget for the album, and problems with distribution as well. Actually, the company went bankrupt not long after the album was released, making Deep Purple (the album) almost impossible to find on the record racks. There were internal problems brewing as well; this would be the last Deep Purple album to feature original lead vocalist Rod Evans and bassist Nicky Simper, who were dismissed to make room for Ian Gillan and and Roger Glover. The shame of it all is that Deep Purple was actually a pretty good album, covering a lot of musical ground. One of the tracks, Why Didn't Rosemary, is about as good as British blues-rock gets. Apparently the band's new label thought so as well, as Why Didn't Rosemary, as well as most of the rest of the tracks from Deep Purple, was included on a double-LP anthology album called Purple Passages that collected the best of the band's Tetragrammaton material.

Artist:    Fleetwood Mac
Title:    Oh Well
Source:    Mono LP: The Big Ball (originally released on LP: Then Play On)
Writer(s):    Peter Green
Label:    Warner Brothers (original label: Reprise)
Year:     1969
    Fleetwood Mac had already established themselves as one of Britain's top up-and-coming blues bands by the time Then Play On was released in 1969. The band had just landed a deal in the US with Reprise, and Then Play On was their American debut LP. At the same time the album was released in the UK, a new non-LP single, Oh Well, appeared as well. The song was a top pick on Radio Luxembourg, the only non-BBC English language top 40 station still operating in Europe in 1969 (not counting the American Forces Network, which was only a top 40 station for an hour or two a day), and Oh Well soon shot all the way to the # 2 spot on the British charts. Meanwhile the US version of Then Play On (which had originally been issued with pretty much the same song lineup as the British version) was recalled, and a new version with Oh Well added to it was issued in its place. The song itself has two distinct parts: a fast blues-rocker sung by lead guitarist Peter Green lasting about two minutes, and a slow moody instrumental that runs about seven minutes. The original UK single featured about a minute's worth of part two tacked on to the end of the A side (with a fadeout ending), while the B side had the entire part two on it. Both sides of the single were added to the US version of the LP, which resulted in the first minute of part two repeating itself on the album.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Stuck in the Psychedelic Era # 2304 (starts 1/23/23

    This week's show, recorded three days before the death of psychedelic era icon David Crosby, features a Crosby, Stills & Nash set that includes two tunes written by Crosby. If that isn't spooky enough for you, how about this: in early 1967 the duo of Jeff Blackburn (who passed away less than two weeks before Crosby did) and Crosby's ex-girlfriend Sherry Snow released their first single, a cover of a song written by Crosby but not released by his then-current band, the Byrds. That song, Stranger In A Strange Land, immediately precedes the two David Crosby penned songs from Crosby, Stills & Nash in our second hour. Also of note is a rare Yardbirds B side featuring Jeff Beck on lead vocals and a new Advanced Psych set that features three tracks never played on Stuck in the Psychedelic Era before, two of which have never been released in the US. Of course there are lots of other goodies on the show as well, including lots of old favorites and a couple more non-US releases making their debut this week.

Artist:    Monkees
Title:    Pleasant Valley Sunday
Source:    CD: Nuggets-Classics From the Psychedelic 60s (originally released on LP: Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones, LTD.)
Writer:    Goffin/King
Label:    Rhino
Year:    1967
    After making it a point to play their own instruments on their third LP, Headquarters, the Monkees decided to once again use studio musicians for their next album, Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones, LTD. The difference was that this time the studio musicians would be recording under the supervision of the Monkees themselves rather than Don Kirschner and the array of producers he had lined up for the first two Monkees LPs. The result was an album that many critics consider the group's best effort. The only single released from the album was Pleasant Valley Sunday, a song penned by the husband and wife team of Gerry Goffin and Carole King, and backed by the band's remake of the Tommy Boyce/Bobby Hart song Words, which had been recorded the previous year by the Leaves. Although both songs ended up making the charts, it was Pleasant Valley Sunday that got the most airplay and is considered by many to be Monkees' greatest achievement.

Artist:    Simon and Garfunkel
Title:    Fakin' It
Source:    CD: Collected Works (originally released as 45 RPM single and included on LP: Bookends)
Writer:    Paul Simon
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1967
    Fakin' It, originally released as a single in 1967, was a bit of a departure for Simon And Garfunkel, sounding more like British psychedelic music than American folk-rock. The track starts with an intro that is similar to the false ending to the Beatles Strawberry Fields Forever; midway through the record the tempo changes drastically for a short spoken word section  from British musician Beverley Martyn (name-dropping her friend Mr. [Donovan] Leitch), that is slightly reminiscent of the bridge in Traffic's Hole In My Shoe. The song was later remixed in stereo and included on the 1968 LP Bookends.

Artist:    Jefferson Airplane
Title:    How Suite It Is
Source:    CD: After Bathing At Baxter's
Writer(s):    Kantner/Casady/Dryden/Kaukonen
Label:    RCA/BMG Heritage
Year:    1967
    The second side of After Bathing At Baxters starts off fairly conventionally (for the Airplane), with Paul Kantner's Watch Her Ride, the first third or so of something called How Suite It Is. This leads (without a break in the audio) into Spare Chaynge, one of the coolest studio jams ever recorded, featuring intricate interplay between Jack Casady's bass and Jorma Kaukonen's guitar, with Spencer Dryden using his drum kit as enhancement rather than as a beat-setter. In particular, Casady's virtuoso performance helped redefine what could be done with an electric bass.

Artist:    Rolling Stones
Title:    Something Happened To Me Yesterday
Source:    LP: Between The Buttons
Writer(s):    Jagger/Richards
Label:    London
Year:    1967
    The final track on the 1967 Rolling Stones album Between The Buttons is notable for several reasons. Most signficantly, it is the first officially-released Stones tune to feature Keith Richards on lead vocals (on the chorus; Mick Jagger sings lead on the verses). Second, at just a second under five minutes, Something Happened To Me Yesterday is the longest track on Between The Buttons. The third point is illustrated by a quote from Mick Jagger himself: "I leave it to the individual imagination as to what happened." According to one critic, that "something" was an acid trip, making this one of the band's more overt drug songs.

Artist:    Beach Boys
Title:    Good Vibrations
Source:    45 RPM single
Writer(s):    Wilson/Love
Label:    Capitol
Year:    1966
    Although I had originally discovered top 40 radio in 1963 (when I received a small Sony transistor radio for my birthday), it wasn't until 1966 that I really got into it in a big way. This was due to a combination of a couple of things: first, my dad bought a console stereo, and second, my junior high school went onto split sessions, meaning that I was home by one o'clock every day. This gave me unprecedented access to Denver's two big top 40 AM stations, as well as an FM station that was experimenting with a Top 100 format for a few hours each day. At first I was content to just listen to the music, but soon realized that the DJs were making a point of mentioning each song's chart position just about every time that song would play. Naturally I began writing all this stuff down in my notebook (when I was supposed to be doing my homework), until I realized that both KIMN and KBTR actually published weekly charts, which I began to diligently hunt down at various local stores. In addition to the songs occupying numbered positions on the charts, both stations included songs at the bottom of the list that they called "pick hits". These were new releases that had not been around long enough to achieve a chart position. The one that most stands out in my memory was the Beach Boys' Good Vibrations, a song I liked so much that I went out to the nearest Woolco and bought it the afternoon I heard it. Within a few weeks Good Vibrations had gone all the way to the top of the charts, and I always felt that some of the credit should go to me for buying the record when it first came out (hey I was 13, OK?). Over the next couple of years I bought plenty more singles, but to this day Good Vibrations stands out as the most significant 45 RPM record purchase I ever made.
Artist:    Sonics
Title:    Strychnine
Source:    Mono CD: Nuggets-Original Artyfacts from the Psychedelic Era (originally released on LP: Here Are The Sonics)
Writer(s):    Gerald Roslie
Label:    Rhino (original label: Etiquette)
Year:    1965
    From 1965 we have a band that maintains a cult following to this day: the legendary Sonics, generally considered one of the foundation stones of the Seattle music scene. Although the majority of songs on their albums were cover tunes, virtually all of their originals, such as Strychnine from their debut LP, are now considered punk classics; indeed, the Sonics, along with their labelmates the Wailers, are often cited as the first true punk rock bands.

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

Artist:     Cream
Title:     Take It Back
Source:     CD: Disraeli Gears
Writer:     Bruce/Brown
Label:     Polydor (original label: Atco)
Year:     1967
     After seven years of serving in the Air Force liason office at Fitzsimmons Army Hospital in Aurora, Colorado, my dad got transferred to Weisbaden Air Force Base in Germany. Standard practice at the time was for the married GI to go on ahead of the rest of the family and find a place to live "on the economy." My dad, already having quite a bit of time in the service, was able to instead get a spot in a place called Kastel, which was a group of WWII Panzer barracks that had been adapted for use by American military with families. When the rest of us arrived in August I was happily surprised to find that my dad, in addition to finding us a place to live, had bought a state-of-the-art Akai X-355 Tape Recorder using money he had won at Lotto, along with a pair of Koss headphones. I of course had to go to the Base Exchange to look for pre-recorded tapes. Already having experience with reel to reel machines, I knew that tapes recorded at 3 3/4 ips had more tape hiss than those recorded at 7 1/2 ips, so I was resolved to only buy tapes recorded at the faster speed. Unfortunately several albums I wanted were only available at the slower speed. The problem was resolved a year later when my dad finally got a Dual turntable to hook up to the tape recorder. I immediately went out and bought a reel of blank tape; the first album I made a copy of was Cream's Disraeli Gears. I would often fall asleep listening to that tape, which meant I ended up sleeping through the last songs on the album, including Take It Back. I must have done some kind of sleep learning, though, since to this day I can quote the lyrics of the entire song.

Artist:    Big Brother And The Holding Company
Title:    Combination Of The Two
Source:    LP: Cheap Thrills
Writer(s):    Sam Andrew
Label:    Columbia
Year:    1968
     Everything about Big Brother And The Holding Company can be summed up by the title of the opening track for their Cheap Thrills album (and their usual show opener as well): Combination Of The Two. A classic case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts, Big Brother, with Janis Joplin on lead vocals, had an energy that neither Joplin or the band itself was able to duplicate once they parted company. On the song itself, the actual lead vocals for the verses are the work of Combination Of The Two's writer, bassist Sam Houston Andrew III, but those vocals are eclipsed by the layered non-verbal chorus that starts with Joplin then repeats itself with Andrew providing a harmony line which leads to Joplin's promise to "rock you, sock you, gonna give it to you now". It was a promise that the group seldom failed to deliver on.

Artist:    Love Sculpture
Title:    In The Land Of The Few
Source:    CD: Nuggets II-Original Artyfacts From The British Empire And Beyond 1964-1969 (originally released on LP: Forms And Feelings)
Writer(s):    Edmunds/Findsilver/Ker
Label:    Rhino (original label: Parrot)
Year:    1969
    Dave Edmunds started off young. At age 10 the Cardiff, Wales native played in the Edmund Bros Duo (a piano duo) with his older brother Geoff. By the time Dave was 13 he and his brother had formed their own rock and roll band, with Dave on lead guitar and Geoff on rhythm. By the mid-1960s Dave Edmunds had switched to blues-rock, fronting a band called the Human Beans. It wasn't long before that group was pared down to a power trio consisting of Edmunds on guitar, John Williams on bass, and Congo Jones on drums calling itself Love Sculpture. The group released their first album, Blues Helping, in 1968, as well as a non-album single, Sabre Dance, that made the British top 10. The band's second, and final, album, Forms And Feelings, expanded beyond the electric blues of the first album to include harder to describe tracks like In The Land Of The Few. Not long after the album was released, Edmunds decided to go it as a solo artist, scoring a huge international hit with a remake of Smiley Lewis's I Hear You Knockin' in late 1970.

Artist:    Kevin Ayers And The Whole World
Title:    Clarence In Wonderland
Source:    British import CD: Acid Daze (originally released on LP: Shooting At The Moon)
Writer(s):    Kevin Ayers
Label:    Uncut (original label: Harvest)
Year:    1970
    According to rock journalist Nick Kent, who specialized in the British underground music scene,  "Kevin Ayers and Syd Barrett were the two most important people in British pop music. Everything that came after came from them." Of course everyone knows that Syd Barrett was the founder of Pink Floyd, but Kevin Ayers, despite having a longer and more productive career, is nowhere near as well known. Ayers was a founding member of the Soft Machine, the band most associated with the "Canterbury Scene" in the late 1960s, but left the group after an exhausting US tour with the Jimi Hendrix Experience, selling his bass guitar to Noel Redding. Ayers spent most of the next year composing new material that appeared on his solo debut LP, Joy Of A Toy in November of 1969. He assembled a band that he christened The Whole World to promote the album that included a young Mike Oldfield on bass and occasionally lead guitar, avant-garde composer David Bedford on keyboards and improvising saxophonist, Lol Coxhill, among others. He took The Whole World into the studio to record his next LP, Shooting At The Moon. The album included somewhat whimsical tunes such as Clarence In Wonderland, interspersed with more avant-garde pieces. Ayers would release more than a dozen more albums before his death in 2013.

Artist:    Yardbirds
Title:    Psycho Daisies
Source:    Mono CD: Roger The Engineer (bonus track originally released in UK as 45 RPM single B side)
Writer(s):    The Yardbirds
Label:    Great American Music (original British label: Columbia)
Year:    1966
    Happenings Ten Years Time Ago was the only single released by the Yardbirds to feature both Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page on lead guitar. The US version of the single featured a track from the band's 1966 LP Over Under Sideways Down (aka Roger The Engineer) on the B side, while the British single featured a unique recording of a song called Psycho Daisies that featured Beck on lead guitar, Page on bass and Jim McCarty on drums. Although credited to the entire band, Psycho Daisies was reportedly written about a woman that Beck was in love with at the time, and features a rare lead vocal performance by the guitarist.

Artist:     Blues Project
Title:     Fly Away
Source:     The Blues Project Anthology (originally released on LP: Projections)
Writer:     Al Kooper
Label:     Polydor (original label: Verve Folkways)
Year:     1966
     The Blues Project has a permanent place in rock history, both for pioneering the idea of touring coast to coast playing college venues and as the first jam band. Still, they were never able to break into top 40 radio at a time when a top 40 hit was considered essential to a band's commercial success. Keyboardist Al Kooper, on the other hand, was no stranger to hit records, having co-written This Diamond Ring, a song that became the first number one hit for Gary Lewis and the Playboys (although Kooper himself hated their arrangement of the song) in 1965. One of Kooper's attempts at writing a hit song for the Blues Project was Fly Away, included on their second LP, Projections.

Artist:    Crazy World Of Arthur Brown
Title:    Prelude-Nightmare/Fire Poem/Fire
Source:    British import CD: Spirit Of Joy (originally released on LP: The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown)
Writer(s):    Brown/Crane/Finesilver/Ker
Label:    Polydor (original US label: Atlantic)
Year:    1968
    The Crazy World of Arthur Brown was unusual for their time in that they were much more theatrical than most of their contemporaries, who were generally more into audio experimentation than visual. I have a video of Fire being performed (or maybe just lip-synched). In it, all the members are wearing some sort of mask, and Brown himself is wearing special headgear that was literally on fire. There is no doubt that The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown sowed the seeds of what was to become the glitter-rock movement in the early to mid 70s. This week we have the uncut stereo version of Fire along with Prelude-Nightmare and Fire Poem that precede it on the original album.

Artist:    Billy Cox's Nitro Function
Title:    Touch Me
Source:    German import CD: Billy Cox's Nitro Function
Writer(s):    Char Vinnedge
Label:    O Music (original label: Pye International)
Year:    1971
    Following the death of Jimi Hendrix, his longtime friend and current bass player Billy Cox got in touch with Char Vinnedge, the founder of the Luv'd Ones, one of the first all-female rock bands. After the Luv'd Ones had split up, Vinnedge had spent a considerable amount of time studying Hendrix's unique approach to playing the guitar and had developed her own similar style of playing, which can be heard on Touch Me, a song she wrote for the album Billy Cox's Nitro Function. In addition to Cox and Vinnedge, the album, which was never released in the US, features Robert Tarrant on drums.

Artist:    Stranglers
Title:    Crabs (live)
Source:    British import EP: Don't Bring Harry
Writer(s):    J.J. Burnell
Label:    United Artists
Year:    1979
    Formed in 1974, the Guildford Stranglers were registered as a business called The Stranglers in September of 1974. Although the cite the Doors and the Music Machine as early influences, the Stranglers have become one of the most influential bands to emerge from the late '70s British punk rock scene. They have also been one of the most commercially successful bands to come from that scene, with nearly two dozen singles and 20 LPs making the British top 40 charts. In the US, they have always been a cult band with a relatively small following (only one of their albums and none of their singles have appeared on American charts). In 1979 bassist Jean-Jacques Burnell released his first solo LP, Euroman Cometh, a concept album about the need for a United States Of Europe to counterract the influence of both the US and USSR. That same year the Stranglers themselves included a live version of Crabs on a four-song EP entitled Don't Bring Harry.

Artist:    Electric Prunes
Title:    Rewired
Source:    CD: California
Writer(s):    Lowe/Tulin
Label:    PruneTwang
Year:    2004
    In 2001 the recently reformed original lineup of the Electric Prunes released their first album of new material in over 30s. The album was called Artifact, and it was welcomed by a whole lot of people who had been hoping the band would get back together. For the next three years, in between live performances, band members Mark Tulin and James Lowe worked up a whole 'nother album's worth of tunes that were loosely based on the Summer of Love and the years beyond. Songs like Rewired were well-suited to the band's more mature 21st century sound, and led to even more live gigs in venues they never got to play in the 60s, including gigs in Europe and Japan.

Artist:    Doors
Title:    End Of The Night
Source:    CD: The Doors
Writer(s):    The Doors
Label:    Elektra
Year:    1967
    The Doors first big break came when they opened for Love at L.A.'s most famous club, the Whisky-A-Go-Go, and became friends with the members of the more established popular local band. Love was already recording for Elektra Records, and enthusiastically recommended that the label sign the Doors as well. Elektra did, and the Doors went on to become one of the most successful and influential bands in rock history. Although not as well-known as Light My Fire or The End, the dark and moody End Of The Night is a classic early Doors tune, from the opening bent chords from guitarist Robby Krieger to the spooky keyboard work of Ray Manzarek and of course Jim Morrison's distinctive vocals, all backed up by John Densmore's tastefully understated drumming.

Artist:    Beatles
Title:    Fixing A Hole
Source:    LP: Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
Writer(s):    Lennon/McCartney
Label:    Capitol/EMI
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). The main consequence of this is that disc jockeys in the US had an easier time cueing up tracks like Fixing A Hole in the days before the album came out on CD.

Artist:    Blackburn And Snow
Title:    Stranger In A Strange Land
Source:    Mono CD: Love Is The Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965-70 (originally released as 45 RPM single)
Writer(s):    David Crosby
Label:    Rhino (original label: Verve)
Year:    1967
    If Blackburn And Snow's version of David Crosby's Stranger In A Strange Land had been released at around the time it was recorded, it might have become, at the very least, a cult hit among the Hippy crowd just starting to colonize San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district. As it was, the song sat on the shelf for over a year; by the time it was released as a single in early 1967 the love crowd was almost exclusively into LPs and the record went virtually unnoticed. Crosby's song was inspired by the Robert Heinlein book that has sometimes been called the "Hippy Bible".

Artist:    Crosby, Stills And Nash
Title:    Long Time Gone
Source:    CD: Crosby, Stills And Nash
Writer(s):    David Crosby
Label:    Atlantic
Year:    1969
    In addition to showcasing some of the most popular bands of 1969, the Woodstock festival helped several relatively new acts attain stardom as well. Among these newer artists were Santana, Ten Years After and Creedence Clearwater Revival. The biggest Woodstock success story, however, was Crosby, Stills and Nash, whose appearance at the event was only their second live performance. In addition to the group's live set, the movie and soundtrack album of the event included the original studio recording of Long Time Gone from the debut Crosby, Stills and Nash LP.

Artist:    Crosby, Stills and Nash
Title:    Guinnevere
Source:    LP: So Far (originally released on LP: Crosby, Stills and Nash)
Writer(s):    David Crosby
Label:    Atlantic
Year:    1969
    By 1969 David Crosby had developed into a first-class songwriter. Nowhere is that more evident than on Guinnevere, from the first Crosby, Stills and Nash album. Instrumentally the song is essentially a solo guitar piece. It is the layered harmonies from Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash that make the song truly stand out as one of the best releases of 1969.
Artist:    Crosby, Stills And Nash
Title:    Pre-Road Downs
Source:    CD: Crosby, Stills And Nash
Writer(s):    Graham Nash
Label:    Atlantic
Year:    1969
    The 1969 LP Crosby, Stills And Nash is considered one of the strongest debut albums in rock history, as well as one of the most influential. Against a backdrop of guitar-dominated blues-based jam-oriented bands, CSN shifted the emphasis to vocal harmonies and highly personal lyrics, creating a template for the singer-songwriter movement of the early 70s as well as the so-called California Sound (as typified by the Eagles, Jackson Browne and others) in the latter part of the decade and beyond. One of the harder rocking tunes on that first album is Pre-Road Downs, a song about the various highs and lows associated with touring with a rock band.

Artist:    Sorrows
Title:    The Makers
Source:    British import CD: Love, Poetry And Revolution (originally released in Italy on LP: Old Songs, New Songs)
Writer(s):    Chuck Fryers
Label:    Grapefruit (original label: Miura)
Year:    1968
    The Sorrows were originally formed in 1963 as one of many British R&B-styled groups (think early Who and Kinks). They signed with Pye records the following year, releasing several singles and one album before disbanding relocating to Italy in 1967, where they went through several personnel changes. In 1968 that had a hit with their Italian language version of the Hollies' Listen To Me on the Miura label. This led to an album for the label called Old Songs, New Songs, which combined cover versions of current British hits and Sorrows originals. The best of the original tracks was The Makers, penned by new member Chuck Fryers.

Artist:    Donovan
Title:    Happiness Runs
Source:    LP: Barabajagal
Writer(s):    Donovan Leitch
Label:    Epic
Year:    1969
    Starting with his 1967 album A Gift From A Flower To A Garden, Scottish singer/songwriter Donovan Leitch devoted much of his time to writing and performing songs aimed specifically at children. Several of these appear on the 1969 album Barabajagal, including Happiness Runs. The second portion of the song is sung as a round, with Donovan being joined by Graham Nash, Mike McCartney (as Mike McGear) and Lesley Duncan.

Artist:    Idle Race
Title:    Days Of The Broken Arrows
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):    Jeff Lynne
Label:    Rhino (original label: Liberty)
Year:    1969
    The Idle Race had already released one LP and four singles when they came out with Days Of The Broken Arrows in early 1969. Lead vocalist Jeff Lynne, who wrote and produced the song, was disappointed with the single's performance, and after releasing a second album late in the year he announced that he was leaving the Idle Race to join his friend Roy Wood's band, the Move. Eventually Lynne came to dominate the Move and saw that band evolve into the Electric Light Orchestra. Meanwhile, the remaining members of the Idle Race stayed together, finally becoming the Steve Gibbons Band in the early 1970s.