Harry Chapin – Portrait Gallery (1975)

LPFrontCover1Harry Chapin was an American singer-songwriter famous for his folk rock songs like ‘Taxi’, ’W*O*L*D’, and ‘Sniper’. A highly talented and popular singer, he gained much fame for his self-described ”story song”, a narrative form that borrowed heavily from older talking blues primarily dealing with themes related to lost opportunities, cruel ironies and life’s hypocrisies. Born as one of the sons of Jim Chapin, a legendary percussionist, Harry was exposed to music at an early age. He played the trumpet as a child and soon switched over to the guitar. He performed with his brothers as a teenager and also played music occasionally with his father who had divorced his mother when Harry was young. He graduated from the Brooklyn Technical High School and studied at Cornell University before embarking on a career as a documentary filmmaker. He soon switched gear and ventured into a musical career and found success with his debut album ’Heads & Tales’. He soon gained a reputation as a classy folk rock singer and also became known for his work on Broadway productions. Along with being a singer par excellence, he was also a committed humanitarian who fought to end world hunger.

The life of this amazing human being was cut short by a fatal accident which claimed him at the age of 38.  (by thefamouspeople.com)

Portrait Gallery is the fifth studio album by the American singer-songwriter Harry Chapin, released in 1975.

An early version of “Someone Keeps Calling My Name”, done in a folk-rock vein reminiscent of The Byrds, appeared on the obscure 1966 album Chapin recorded with his brothers, Chapin Music!. The main guitar riff (and entire arrangement) in this version is strikingly similar to The Blue Things’ equally obscure 1966 track “Doll House.”

The album artwork was designed and illustrated by Milton Glaser. (by wikipedia)

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 Portrait Gallery failed to follow up the great success of “Cats in the Cradle,” and perhaps that was what Chapin had in mind. Much more in line with his first two releases, Portrait Gallery shouldn’t be written off just because it didn’t get that Top 40 hit. The songs have again become more personal, and the track “Bummer” depicts a medal-winning veteran who never quite fit into society. Chilling, to say the least, Portrait Gallery is well worth the effort. (by James Chrispell)

Musically, the album is a solid mix of approachable, mostly ballad oriented, material in the long, narrative “story song” mold of song writing Chapin was most famous for. “Dreams Go By”, despite it’s title one of his more upbeat songs emotionally (Chapin had a penchant for crafting songs with sad or disappointing endings, often dealing with characters based upon life’s losers and societies most disenfranchised) became a fan favorite at his live shows for many years. “Tangled Up Puppett” , also known as “A Song For Jaime” was inspired by Chapin’s relationship with his oldest daughter, as she was entering her teen years. A beautiful melody complete with some of the violin and string arrangements famous in his more acoustic oriented work, with lyrics ripe with metaphor that none the less do a terrific job of expressing the poignancy of growing up and how it changes parent-child dynamics, it’s one of the best stories and from strictly from a pop music perspective one of his most approachable works, amazing that it didn’t enjoy greater success as a single. (by Tom From Pghon)
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Personnel:
Murray Adler (violin)
Ron Bacchiocchi (synthesiser, percussion)
Ed Bednarski (clarinet)
Gene Bianco (harmonica)
George Bohanon (rombone)
Bud Brisbois (rumpet)
Harry Chapin (guitar, vocals)
Steve Chapin (piano, clavinet, vocals)
Tom Chapin (vocals)
Rita Coolidge (vocals)
Assa Drori (violin)
Jesse Ehrlich (cello)
Joan Fishman (vocals)
Joe Flood (vocals)
Ronald Folsom (violin)
James Getzoff (violin)
Jeff Gross (vocals)
Jim Horn (saxophone)
Paul Hubinon (trumpet)
Bill Hymanson (strings)
Armand Kaproff (Cello)
Jackie Kelso (saxophone)
Christopher von Koschembahr (vocals)
David Kondziela (vocals)
Kris Kristofferson (vocals)
Paul Leka (piano, celeste, harpsichord)
Jonathan B. Lindle (vocals)
Betty MacIver (vocals)
Pete MacIver (vocals)
Michael Masters (Cello)
Marti McCall (vocals)
Jay Migliori (saxophone, flute)
Tim Moore (keyboards, clavinet)
Todd Mulder (vocals)
Alexander Neiman (viola)
Gareth Nuttycombe (viola)
Ronald Palmer (guitar, vocals)
Geoff Parker (vocals, choir, Chorus)
Judi Parker (vocals)
Don Payne (bass)
Donald Peake (Synthesizer)
Stanley Plummer (violin)
Katherine Anne Porter (vocals)
Frank Porto (accordion)
Kathy Ramos (vocals)
Henry Roth (violin)
Allan Schwartzberg (drums)
Tim Scott (Cello)
Jack Shulman (violin)
Frank Simms (vocals)
George Simms (vocals)
Ken Smith (flute, mandolin)
Bob Springer (percussion)
Billy Swan (vocals)
John Tropea (guitar)
Sheila Turner (vocals)
John Wallace (bass, vocals)
Rob White (whistle)
Susan White (vocals)
Carolyn Willis (vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Dreams Go By (H.Chapin) 4.46
02. Tangled Up Puppet (H.Chapin/S.Chapin) 3.45
03. Star Tripper (H.Chapin) 4.19
04. Babysitter (H.Chapin)  4.36
05. Someone Keeps Calling My Name (H.Chapin) 6.30
06. Rock (H.Chapin) 4.16
07. Sandy (H.Chapin) 2.48
08. Dirt Gets Under the Fingernails (H.Chapin) 3.48
09. Bummer (H.Chapin) 9.55
10. Stop Singing These Sad Songs (H.Chapin) 2.59

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Klaus Voormann & Friends – A Sideman´s Journey (2009)

FrontCover1A Sideman’s Journey is the first solo album by German musician and artist Klaus Voormann, released in July 2009. Voormann is best known as the creator of the cover art for The Beatles’ album Revolver as well as for being a much-in-demand session musician during the 1970s. He played bass on a large number of well-known albums by ex-Beatles John Lennon, George Harrison and Ringo Starr − including All Things Must Pass, Imagine and The Concert for Bangladesh − and by artists such as Harry Nilsson, Doris Troy, Lou Reed, Gary Wright, Carly Simon and Randy Newman. Before then, Voormann had been a member of the 1960s pop group Manfred Mann. A Sideman’s Journey is notable for including performances by Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and Yusuf Islam (Cat Stevens), among others.
The album features cameos by musicians Voormann had worked with in the past, as well as remakes of songs that he contributed to back in the late ’60s and the ’70s. Three songs by his late friend George Harrison are included, as is a track Voormann co-wrote with soul singer Doris Troy for the latter’s 1970 album on The Beatles’ Apple label. Paul McCartney sings and plays piano on the opening track, “I’m in Love Again”. Yusuf Islam (formerly known as Cat Stevens) sings and plays guitar on “All Things Must Pass”. Bonnie Bramlett provides vocals on “My Sweet Lord” and “So Far”.

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Ringo Starr plays drums on many of the tracks, but he declined an offer to sing his trademark song, “You’re Sixteen”; Voormann instead selected a younger singer (Max Buskohl) to do the vocals, and to ensure that A Sideman’s Journey would include musicians from all age groups. Most of Voormann’s old band Manfred Mann now performing as The Manfreds, re-recorded their 1968 hit single “The Mighty Quinn”. (by wikipedia)

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“A Sideman’s Journey” is a nice record. I guess it was about time for Klaus to put together an album. It is certainly enjoyable as a straight ahead pop fest with some good players doing some good songs. It doesn’t break any new ground, and I’m sure it wasn’t meant to. It reflects Klaus’s journeyman work accompanying so many people. He plays bass on most of the songs, and the album includes one song he wrote with Doris Troy (“So Far” sung by Bonnie Bramlett, although Klaus doesn’t play on it for some reason).

There are 11 songs. Bonnie Bramlett, Yusef Islam, and Don Preston have two each. I would have limited them to one, and got other folks for three other numbers. The cover art is great, as you would expect from Klaus. I get the feeling this was a project Klaus (or someone close to him) wanted him to do now that he is in his 70s — a bit of a vanity project, not that there is anything wrong with that. I don’t expect him to rush right out and record volume 2. Highlights: Dr. John and the Manfreds. (by Dr. Mike)

What a wonderful old-fashioned album with a fascinating line-up … from Bonnie Bramlett to Joe Walsh and not to forget the wonderful Dr. John !

McCartneyVoormannPaul McCartney + Klaus Voormann


Personnel:
Bonnie Bramlett (vocals)
Max Buskohl (vocals, background vocals)
Carl Carlton (guitar,  slide-guitar, background vocals)
Mike D’Abo (organ, vocals)
Cassiano De Sa  (guitar)
Dr. John (piano, vocals)
John Fohl (guitar, vocals)
Grant Geissman (guitar)
Kelvin Holly (guitar)
David Hood (bass)
Mike Hugg (piano)
Yusuf Islam (guitar, vocals, background vocals)
Jackie Johnson (background vocals)
Paul Jones (harmonica, background vocals)
Jim Keltner (drums)
Trevor Lawrence (Saxophone)
Albert Lee (guitar)
Susan Marshall (background vocals)
Paul McCartney (keyboards, drums, guitar, vocals)
Tom McGuinness (guitar, background vocals)
Van Dyke Parks (keyboards)
Luke Potashnick (guitar, background vocals)
Steve Potts (drums)
Don Preston (guitar, vocals)
Kristoffer Sonne (drums, percussion, background vocals)
Ringo Starr (drums)
Rick Steff (keyboards, accordion)
Nikolaj Torp (keyboards, background vocals)
Rob Townsend (drums)
Klaus Voormann (bass, background vocals)
Ruscha Voormann (background vocals)
Joe Walsh (guitar)
Joel Williams (drums)

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Tracklist:
01. I’m In Love Again (feat. Paul McCartney) (Bartholomew/Domino) 1.57
02. Blue Suede Shoes (feat. Don Preston) (Perkins) 3.02
03. All Things Must Pass (feat. Yusuf Islam) (Harrison) 3.02
04. Have You Seen My Baby (feat. John Fohl) (Newman) 5.07
05. My Sweet Lord”(feat. Bonnie Bramlett) (Harrison) 3.26
06. The Mighty Quinn (feat. The Manfreds) (Bob Dylan) 3.08
07. Short People (feat. Don Preston) (Newman) 3.04
08. The Day The World Gets ‘Round” (feat. Yusuf Islam) (Harrison) 2.49
09. So Far (feat. Bonnie Bramlett) (Troy/Voormann) 3.33
10. You’re Sixteen (feat. Max Buskohl) (Sherman/Sherman) 2.35
11. Such A Night” (feat. Dr. John) (Rebennack) 5.51

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And here´s  a documentary film about Klauss Voormann (in German)

The Rolling Stones – Got To Be Worked Out (1966 – 1970) (2007)

FrontCover1These days aspiring bootleggers have many sources to choose from to compile a new release, as Rover Records has done with this brand new 2007 bootleg. Stones sessions can be found on Yellow Dog’s Black Box, Invasion Unlimited’s series of outtakes, Scorpio’s Time Trips, the numerous Japanese labels that specialise in repackaging. What’s needed then is a “concept”. Rover Records has come up with a nice idea of putting together tracks that “could have, should have” been released except some tracks “got to be worked on!” Sound quality on this boot is seriously fantastic.

Rover has focused on The Stones’ brilliant period from 1966 to 1970 when Brian Jones was still coherent, creative and committed, at least half the time. The sessions span from Their Satanic Majesties, Beggar’s Banquet, Let It Bleed to Sticky Fingers. Practically everything here has been released before say some reviewers but to these ears, if they have, I have not heard them in this quality. Perhaps the most bootlegged tracks here are the ones from the Beggar’s album – outtakes of Stray Cat Blues, Parachute Woman, Factory Girl, Dear Doctor and No Expectations. Coming a close second are the outtakes from Sticky Fingers.

The two tracks that make their debut appearance on bootleg are Version 3 of Get Yourself Together and perhaps Yesterday’s Papers. Here’s a review from the net by “Another”: “The first tracks are produced by Andrew Oldham: “Get Yourself Together” features Stu on piano and ends with Charlie still banging on the drums, while “Yesterday’s Papers” has Jagger almost cracking in laughs while singing. “Sometimes Happy, Sometimes Blue” is the early take of “Dandelion” with Keith Richards on vocals. “Old King Cole” is an instrumental early take of “We Love You”, produced by Glyn Johns. With “Child Of The Moon” that features Nicky Hopkins on this alternate mix version enters Jimmy Miller in the production seat.

“The version of “Jumping Jack Flash” comes from the first take recorded live in the studio, used for the promo film (without make up); on “Pays Your Dues” there is Rick Grech on electric violin while Roger Chapman is on background vocals. “Stray Cat Blues” is an alternate mix with ad lib vocals, louder bass and lead guitar. “No Expectations” feature Nicky Hopkins on piano and Stu on organ and starts with some studio dialogue, while you can hear Jagger mumbling the melody during the song. On “You Got The Silver” never have the acoustic guitars sound so wide open. “Wild Horses #1” is the 4th version which is a reworked take of the 3rd version without piano. Ry Cooder is on guitar on “Sister Morphine” while the alternate take of “Gimme Shelter” has no backing vocals. Nicky Hopkins’ piano introduces differently “Loving Cup”, the take of “Bitch” is the alternate mix, second version. No sax is featured on “Brown Sugar” and Jim Dickinson is featured on tack piano in the second version of “Wild Horses”.”
It reads like an “insider” doing the review. Thanks muchly.

All tracks were recorded at London’s Olympic Studios except the final two, Brown Sugar and Wild Horses, which were recorded at Muscle Shoals. By the way, it appears Rover Records is a European Label. (by wikipedia)

Thinking

While this lengthy (78-minute) collection of 1966-1970 studio outtakes boasts mostly excellent sound, it’s really for hardcore Rolling Stones collectors, for a couple of reasons. First, most of this material appeared on other bootlegs years prior to this 2007 release. Even if you’re hearing this stuff for the first time, however, you’ll likely find that quite a few of these differ from the official studio versions in very minor ways, whether it be a mix variation or a different vocal. A few of these are genuine outtakes or boast very different arrangements, but they’re hardly excellent performances on their own merits. Among these are the Between the Buttons-era outtake “Get Yourself Together,” a pretty rudimentary and unfinished-sounding blues-rock song that never found a place on any official Stones release, and very rough early versions of “Yesterday’s Papers” (with what sounds like the vaguest of guide vocals from Mick Jagger) and “Dandelion” (with almost half-mumbled vocals from Keith Richards). It’s interesting to hear “You Got the Silver” with a Jagger vocal rather than a Richards one, and “Gimme Shelter” with different lead vocals (and none of Merry Clayton’s singing). Also good is a very lively studio version of “Jumping Jack Flash,” recorded specifically for a promotional film, that’s notably more live-sounding than the official single, especially in Mick Jagger’s vocals, and an early version of “Street Fighting Man” with different lyrics, though that recording’s been around on bootlegs forever. Even the different mixes are great songs, of course, but there’s just not enough here to counterpoint the official Stones discography to make this CD feel like a major supplement to their standard body of work. (by Richie Unterberger)

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The Rolling Stones, live in Den Haag, 1967


Personnel:

Mick Jagge (vocals)
Brian Jones (guitar, star)
Keith Richards (guitar, vocals)
Mick Taylor (guitar)
Charlie Watts (drums)
Bill Wyman (bass)
+
many other musicians ….

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Tracklist:

01, Get Yourself Together (version 3, apparently first time released anywhere) (Jagger/Richards)
02. Yesterday’s Papers (early rehearsal take, apparently first time released anywhere) (Jagger/Richards) 2.06
03. Sometimes Happy, Sometimes Blue (early version of Dandelion with Keith Richards on vocals) (Jagger/Richards) 2.06
04. Old King Cole (early version 1, instrumental take 4 of We Love You) (Jagger/Richards) 2.01
05. Child Of The Moon (version 4, alternate mix) (Jagger/Richards) 3.11
06. Jumping Jack Flash (live studio version from version 1 of the promotional film with no make up) (Jagger/Richards) 3.11
07. Pay Your Dues (early version of Street Fighting Man w/alternate lyrics) (Jagger/Richards) 3.04
08. Stray Cat Blues (early, alternate mix w/ad lib vocals, louder bass & lead guitar) (Jagger/Richards) 4.21
09. Parachute Woman (early mix) (Jagger/Richards) 2.18
10  Factory Girl (alternate fiddle mix) (Jagger/Richards)
11. Dear Doctor (early vocal take 1) (Jagger/Richards) 3.29
12  No Expectations (early take and mix) (Jagger/Richards) 4.21
13. Got The Silver (version 2 – early mix, Mick Vocal) (Jagger/Richards) 2.51
14. Wild Horses #1 (version 4, remix of version 3 without piano) (Jagger/Richards) 5.31
15. Sister Morphine (version 2) (Jagger/Richards/Faithful) 5.42
16.  GimmeShelter (Version 1, alternate lead vocals without backing vocals) (Jagger/Richards) 4.36
17. Loving Cup (version 1, with alternate piano intro) (Jagger/Richards) 6.40
18. Dead Flowers (version 2, alternate mix) (Jagger/Richards) 4.0
19. Bitch (version 2, alternate mix) (Jagger/Richards) 3.39
20. Brown Sugar (version 2 early vocal, no saxophone) (Jagger/Richards) 3.50
21. Wild Horses #2 (version 1) (Jagger/Richards) 5.42

MickTaylor

Mick Taylor
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Rob Hoeke Boogie Woogie Quartet – Robby´s Saloon (1968)

FrontCover1Rob Hoeke (9 January 1939 – 6 November 1999) was a Dutch singer, pianist, composer and songwriter most famous for his renditions in the field of Boogie-woogie releasing over 20 albums. Besides that he played and recorded in a musical variety of styles ranging from Blues, Soul, Rock and Rhythm & Blues.
Rob Hoeke’s most successful period was in the second half of the 1960s and early 1970s with his Rob Hoeke’s Rhythm & Blues Group. He scored hits with “Margio” (number 12 on the Dutch Top 40 in 1966), “Drinking on My Bed” (number 11 in 1966) and “Down South” which would become Hoeke’s signature tune and biggest hit reaching number 6 in 1970. His sole charting album was Four Hands Up, a collaboration with fellow Boogie-woogie artist Hein van der Gaag which charted at number 7 in 1971.

In 1974, Rob Hoeke lost two fingers in a gardening accident and his career all but seemed to be over. After a few years, he started playing and performing for audiences again but his heyday was over. He recorded many more albums, one with Alan Price from the Animals. Hoeke made a solo performance at the first Amsterdam Blues Festival in 1983 where his solo performance received a standing ovation from the audience of 1,100. Subsequently, he made his first solo album Jumpin’ on the “88” for the Oldie Blues label in 1983.

Rob Hoeke died in 1999 after a short illness.(by wikipedia)

And here´s a fine example of this great boogie woogie Player … it´s an instrumentla Album and the musicians celebrate the “Wild West” (including the Comic stars Rantanplant and Lucky Luke !)

Enjoy it as I did  … it´s boogie time !

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Personnel:
Rob Hoeke (keyboards, harmonica)
Will de Meijer (guitar)
Martin Rudelsheim (drums)
Willem Schoone (bass)

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Tracklist:

01. Calamity Jane (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.08
02. Robby’s Saloon (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.46
03. Marsupilami (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.13
04. For My Little Gringo (Hoeke/de Meijer) 2.08
05. A Bone For Rataplan (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.52
06. Deep In The Heart Of Texas (Swander/Hershey) 2.23
07. San Antonio Rose (Wills) 2.25
08. Coyote Will (Hoeke/de Meijer) 2.53
09. Lotus 268 (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.33
10. Swinging Clock Boogie (Hoeke/de Meijer) 3.09
11. Ode To Lucky Luke (Hoeke/de Meijer) 4.24
12. Red River Valley (Traditional) 2.04

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Tantor – Same (1979)

FrontCover1This Argentinian Prog/Fusion act from Buenos Aires was sort of a supergroup, when it was formed back in late-70’s with Héctor Starc on guitars, Rodolfo García on drums and Carlos Alberto Machi Rufino on bass/vocals.Starc was an ex-member of Prog/Psych Rockers Aquelarre, Garcia played drums both in Almendra and Aquelarre, while Rufino was a former Invisible member.Tantor released their self-titled debut in 1979 on Phillips, helped by keyboardists Lito Vitale from M.I.A. (Músicos Independientes Asociados) and Leo Sujatovich of Spinetta Jade.
This is a perfect example of well-executed, tight and highly technical Prog/Fusion with some really georgeous interplays and fantastic grooves.Fast and furious rhythms led by incredible guitar work and delicate electric piano combine with jazzy pianos and distinct synths to present a number of consistent and well-arranged mostly instrumental tracks.The vocals are limited in just a couple of tracks, which come as a combination of light Jazz/Fusion and Soft Rock, but even these contain some good synth work and PromotionPostersmooth guitar playing.However the instrumental ones are the real winners here with top-notch performances by all the members, the sound is incredibly rich, the guitar and electric piano solos are stunning and the rhythm section is solid all the way.
One of the finest examples of fiery Prog/Fusion, only comparable to the consistency of CRUCIS.Both the original LP and the 2-CD reissue (along with the band’s second album) come highly recommended. (by apps79)

Consistently good to great fusion. Latin vibes are everywhere here, generating a warm melodic texture. The instrumentals with the outstanding electric pulses of piano, synthesizer and guitar levitate towards high jazzy peaks, while the frenetic drumming rains dynamic fills all over. Would’ve been four stars if some of these softer tracks had been replaced with something more progressive, but it’s an album worth checking out nonetheless. (by King Insano)

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Personnel:
Rodolfo García (drums)
Carlos Alberto Machi Rufino (bass, vocals)
Héctor Starc (guitar)
+
Leo Sujatovich (keyboards on 01., 02., 04.
Leo Vitale (keyboards on 03., 05., 07. + 08., strings on 04.)

Tracklist:
01. Guarreras Club (Starc) 4.29
02. Niedernwohren (Starc) 5.18
03. Llama Siempre (Starc/Spinetta) 3.11
04. Oreja Y Vuelta Al Ruedo (Starc) 6.34
05. Halitos (Starc) 7.03
06. El Sol de la Pobreza (Starc/Spinetta) 4.33
07. Carrera de Chanchos (Starc) 7.32

Tantor

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Alexander’s Timeless Bloozband – Same (1967)

FrontCover1The information about the band is rather scarce, various sources mention Charles Lamont, Carl Lockhart and Larry Marks as founders, although, when they recorded their self-titled debut LP (1967) for private label “Smack”, they were five.

Their debut album (rather raw, “home-made” sounding) featured classic “Killing Floor” and unusual instrumental version of “My Favourite Things” (from 1959 musical “The Sounds Of Music”) (by Golovanov Alexey)

I guess, this is one of the rarest psychedelic blues Album ever … and I will  dedicate this entry to all These unknown bands from this period of music …  it was not the worst period of music … really not !

Recorded Live At The Brother’s Gallery in Goleta – August 1967

Alexander's Timeless Bloozband

Personnel:
Spencer Conway (drums)
Dennis Geaney (guitar, bass)
Charles Lamont (Keyboards, bass, guitar, french horn, harmonica, vocals)
Reed Lockhart (saxphone, keyboards, vocals)
Larry Marks (harmonica, trombone, vocals)

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Tracklist: 
01. Help Me (Williamson/Bass) 5.27
02. Killing Floor (Burnett) 3.02
03. Guitar Song (Lamont) 2.46
04. Favorite Things (Rodgers/Hammerstein) 5.13
05. Sloopy Drunk (Rogers) 4.09
06. #1 (unknown) 4.57
07. Swannoa Tunnel (unkown) 4.19
08. Sweet Little Angel  (King/Taub) 2.37

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