Category Archives: Artist Profiles

What’s That Sound? Kaleidoscope – “Bernice” (1970)

The American band Kaleidoscope was formed in southern California in 1966 and quickly became a fan favorite in the psychedelic scene due to their unique instrumentation and wild studio techniques.  After three unique and acclaimed albums and a popular live career the band released their final album “Bernice” in 1970 on Epic Records.

Their fans didn’t particularly like the record, citing a lack of enthusiasm and creativity in comparison to the earlier albums.  The band had gone through several personnel changes leading up to “Bernice”, with a new rhythm section appearing on the record alongside new singer Jeff Kaplan.  With that much of a shakeup in members and the album’s straightforward ’70s rock vibe, many fans saw this as a completely different band from the Kaleidoscope they knew and loved.  Continue reading What’s That Sound? Kaleidoscope – “Bernice” (1970)

What’s That Sound? Tin House – “s/t” (1971)

The self-titled debut from Tin House (produced by Rick Derringer)  hit stores in 1971, and at first listen you could easily be fooled into thinking they were just another heavy blues band.  The first two tracks, though well played, are prime examples of the straightforward, bluesy cock rock that was so common in the early ’70s.  But there’s much more going on if you keep listening… Continue reading What’s That Sound? Tin House – “s/t” (1971)

What’s That Sound? Art – “Supernatural Fairy Tales” (1967)

In 1967, Island records quietly released this debut from British band Art (formerly known as The V.I.P.s) produced by influential rock producer Guy Stevens.

After this album the members of Art regrouped to form the more well-known Spooky Tooth, and the record is now considered Spooky Tooth’s unofficial debut.  But “Supernatural Fairy Tales” stands apart from the band’s later work.  While Spooky Tooth’s sound is more keyboard-based and blues focused, Art was based firmly in the realm of psychedelia. Continue reading What’s That Sound? Art – “Supernatural Fairy Tales” (1967)

Hawkwind: Time We Left This World Today

I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that Hawkwind, especially in their early days, exemplifies the art and excess of rock music.

Pictured: Awesome Incarnate
Pictured: Awesome Incarnate

Before I try to make my case, let’s just see some footage to set the mood:

If that doesn’t press any of your pleasure buttons, I don’t know what to say.

So, hard rock badassery checklist: Continue reading Hawkwind: Time We Left This World Today

Aphrodite’s Child: New Greek Heroes

AphroditesChild09BAphrodite’s Child was a band that I discovered as I do a lot of music.  Accidentally.

A group from Greece, they were a heavy dose of psychedelic with a hint of Greek traditional folk in the melodies.  Their international fame was limited, but they became a sensation in Paris with a handful of early singles in the late ’60s, and went on to sell around 20 million albums in about 4 years.  They’re most well known today for THIS guy

…but I want to say more about what really struck me about the band when I first heard them.  This was the song:

…and aside from the apropos apocalyptic vibe what got me was the voice.  That’s Demis Roussos, and in that song (more so in the studio version) the tension and release in his vocal technique really paints the picture.

Sure their songs were a little dramatic, but we’re talking about a much more passionate, European sensibility than was characteristic of most American music at the time. Continue reading Aphrodite’s Child: New Greek Heroes

Alexander “Skip” Spence: Never The Same

Alexander “Skip” Spence’s mercurial contributions to the musical treasure trove of the late ’60s easily rival those of other legends of the era such as Janis Joplin or Jim Morrison.  As with those artists his best creative efforts ended with the decade, but Spence survived the ’60s only to fade from the limelight.

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Spence first hit the scene filling in on drums for Jefferson Airplane’s (pre-Grace Slick) 1966 debut “Jefferson Airplane Takes Off“, but shortly after the album’s release he disappeared to Mexico with a girlfriend without notice. Continue reading Alexander “Skip” Spence: Never The Same

Six Degrees of Terry Manning

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Maybe you’ve heard of Terry Manning, but I hadn’t until the last couple of years. I picked up his 1969 album “Home Sweet Home” because I liked his raw cover versions of some Beatles songs.

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The album’s alright, but surprisingly it’s the least remarkable thing about him.  Manning is a producer, musician, engineer & photographer who had his hands in so many historical moments it’s almost unbelievable.  He’s connected significantly to the careers of: Jimmy Page, Booker T & the MGs, Isaac Hayes, the Box Tops, Leon Russell, James Taylor, Bob Moog, the Staples Singers, ZZ Top & a LOT more.

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I can’t say much else that the bio on his official website doesn’t cover.  Read it here and you’ll be amazed at how prolific Terry Manning has been, and how much of what’s reached your ears has his work someplace in it.

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Check out his cover of “Savoy Truffle” on the latest episode of OTRRH, on your mobile or computer…

BBOX Radio Archive:

Robert Fripp & Brian Eno: 40+ years without pussyfooting.

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It took me a long time to appreciate Brian Eno. As a punk-rock loving teen myself, his ambient work just didn’t initially connect with me and I was completely ignorant as to his amazing production resume. My narrow mind was finally blown watching Velvet Goldmine, as the opening credits blared the wild layered guitar of “Needle In A Camel’s Eye.” It was a start.

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Robert Fripp was a different story. “21st Century Schizoid Man” hooked me on King Crimson and Fripp’s white-magic guitar wizardry right away. When they were heavy they were SO heavy, but Fripp would always take you on a journey high and low and all points in between. I’m not exaggerating when I say, for my young self, it was a revelation.

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In 1972 the pair decided to cut a record together. Using two tape machines Eno alternately recorded and looped Fripp’s guitar playing, creating two aurally dense tracks that each took up one full side of the LP.

The album was released under the title “No Pussyfooting” on Island Records in late 1973, and everyone just HATED it. It didn’t chart in the U.S. or the U.K. and was dismissed by critics and even the label.

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After a successful solo career from Eno, several more awesome King Crimson records, and a re-release in the ’80s, “No Pussyfooting” built up a respectful following as an early entry in what became a collaboration that, 41 years later, is still going strong.

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Check out this week’s episode for an excerpt from Side A of “No Pussyfooting” in the OTRRH Archive at http://www.bboxradio.com/old-time-religion-radio-hour/1446-thingummyjig.html

Linda Lyndell, rocking that Dusty Springfield vibe…

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Linda Lyndell was a 22 year old Gainsville girl who’d cut her teeth singing soul on tour with a number of soul legends. Otis Redding got her in at STAX, and her 2nd single “What A Man” peaked at #50 on the Billboard chart in 1968.
Some groups, both black & white, didn’t like a white girl singing “black” music & after a wave of threatening letters Linda retired from the biz and went back to Florida. Though rumors say she’s planning a comeback…
Featured on the latest #OTRRH, in the Archive:
http://www.bboxradio.com/old-time-religion-radio-hour/1445-mad-about-the-girl.html

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R.I.P. Jack Bruce

Well, that’s a pretty big one.

The man cultivated a real thunderous bass sound, whether with Cream or any of his other heavy blues projects. Every group he was in was a “supergroup” before the term even existed in rock music.

Then he nurtured his psychedelic side throughout his solo albums, often adopting a folksy feel, keeping it tender.

Whether or not you like everything he did (I don’t, to be honest) you can’t deny Jack was a huge presence in a crazy and amazing time in rock history.

Much respect. Rest easy, Jack.

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