Here's a very cool pic of Keith Olsen, bass guitarist from the awesome Music Machine. It looks like this session meant smoking a lot of cigarettes aswell!
26 May, 2007
JIMMY CURTISS 'Psychedelic Situation' / 'Gone But Not Forgotten' (Laurie 3315) April 1967
Jimmy Curtiss was quite a well known singer songwriter in the mid to late 60s, even continuing his 'success' into the 70s with TV Commercials. It was 'Psychedelic Situation' that got this New Yorker noticed though, even securing an underground hit in Germany. And here's me thinking that Germans just grew strange mustaches and had 'mullet' hair styles. Oh well, they may have some taste after all.
If you have any passing interest in 'bubblegum' music you'll already dig this record. For those of you who haven't heard it before. It's got the required bouncy rhythm and catchy melodies that most good bubblegum had. This 'hit' even had the rather corny lyrics much loved by this genre.
'I'm in a kind of new dimension,
A kind of mind extension,
Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey
Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey,
Psychedelic, psychedelic situation.'
The flip 'Gone But Not Forgotten' is also a catchy song with less of a bubblegum backing and more of a folk rock feel. Very simple but very commercial sounding. For my particular taste though Jimmy's falsetto vocals are a bit too much for me. It remains uncompiled but who knows it may surface on a future Gear!
Curtiss would later become a member of studio psych pop outfit The Hobbits. The latter released three LPs in the late 60s and lovers of soft psychedelia are advised to check out these records. Perhaps their coolest song was 'Strawberry Children' which was written by Curtiss and 'Down To Middle Earth' a rather slow burning piece of psychedelia.
For the record 'Psychedelic Situation' was compiled on the vinyl only Pebbles Volume 16.
16 May, 2007
SUNDAY FUNNIES - 'A Pindaric Ode' / 'Whatcha Gonna Do (When The Dance Is Over)' (Valhalla 671) March 1967
This is one of the my favourite garage psych 45s I own. 'A Pindaric Ode' not only wins prizes for the cool song title it also basks in the glory of greatness for the way the singer delivers the song in a 'laid back I'm on acid' kind of way. It also features over the top organ and spirals into a frenzy of backwards tape effects at it's climax. A very cool song indeed.
The almost spoken lyrics are frankly incoherent mumblings and virtually impossible to decipher. But I think it's about tripping on a grass verge and watching the world go by (something I enjoyed doing in my formative years in the 80s, ha,ha ha).
One of the few lines I can sort of make out is...
'I was gonna take a trip to flower heaven,
Now I'm gonna stay here till about seven.'
By the way The Sunday Funnies came from Altadena, CA and only released this one fabulous record. Flip the 45 over and you've got 'Whatcha Gonna Do (When The Dance Is Over) and the chance to listen to a brilliant up tempo mod swinger complete with background female vocals.
This song really moves.
Both songs were written by Chick Carlton.
The first time I heard 'A Pindaric Ode' was on Pebbles Volume 7. It has since been compiled along with the flip on the CD East Side Sound Volume 1.
Here's a candid picture of Music Machine legend Sean Bonniwell writing down song lyrics. I've tried to decipher the words written down but can't make them out.
Anyway, you won't have failed to notice the extra long black glove!
10 May, 2007
THE BUCANEER'S - "You're Never Gonna Love Me Anymore" / "I'm A Fool" (Amigo RK-104) August 1966
Way back in the 80s I bought Pebbles Volume 9 and The Bucaneer's song 'You're Never Gonna Love Me Anymore' really stood out for me on that comp. (Pebbles Volume 9 was a very strong release with some ultra cool cuts by the way - pity about the sound quality)
The Bucaneer's were from Barrington, NJ and sadly only released this one 45. Both sides are classics but it's the top side that wins out with it's folk punk genius. Dig that clattering tambourine and jangle guitar!! It also wins big style with the singer bragging about cheating on his girl twice before. Makes a change from all of those whiney losers who always seem to get dumped by the girl!.. ha ha ha, this one rocks.
The flip 'I'm A Fool' is another great garage punker with a magical guitar break and I'm sure you'll dig it if you've not heard it before. This time round the singer's been dumped by the girl. Oh well, they always seem to win in the end. It has been compiled in the 80s on 'Return Of The Young Pennsylvanians'. I suspect that LP to be hard to track down now.
Song writing credits for both songs are R. Krause.
PLASTICLAND - 'Flower Scene' / 'In My Black And White' (Midnight Records MID 4510) 1985
Plasticland were one of those bands from the 80s that certainly struck a chord with me. It wasn't that common that neo bands from USA would be influenced by 60s Englishness. Most bands those days followed the garage punk tradition.
This Milwaukee band had been releasing 45s on various labels for five years before 'Flower Scene' came out on Midnight Records. What you get on this record are two excellent psychedelic tunes and over the top psychy lyrics.
'Flower sceptre explodes tonight
It showers the hall with liquid light
There's a bubble blowing in the air
There's a bubble blowing out down there
The flip 'In My Black And White' again favours 60s English psychedelia style. Not the twee examples but the paths The Creation or The Who created during 1966. According to Glenn Rehse this song was featured on the soundtrack to the film River Of Rags, an art piece produced and directed by 4TA.
THE DERBY HATVILLE - 'Turn Into Earth' / 'You'll Forget Me' (Sea Ell 102) 1967
Here's an interesting 45 from a band from Lubbock, Texas. They were discovered by C.L Milburn and he signed the band to his Sea Ell label out of Pasadena, Texas.
Other bands recording for Sea Ell included Knights Bridge, The Coachmen, Satyn's Children and The Intruders.
Fortunately their recorded output including an unissued song was compiled on the Collectables CD from 1994 called 'History Of Texas Garage Vol 1.
Anyway, I digress. Back to this 45 under the spotlight. As you're probably aware 'Turn Into Earth' is a cover of The Yardbirds classic. Derby-Hatville deliver a very sombre version of the song with mournful vocals and it's much more psychedelic than The Yardbirds cut.
I first heard this tune on Highs In The Mid Sixties Volume 12. When I started to collect garage 45s this one was high on my wants list because I loved it so much.
The flip 'You'll Forget Me' is classic garage band greatness with cool fuzztone guitar.
Song credits for 'You'll Forget Me' are Hicks-Boswell. Both sides of the record were produced by C. L Milburn.