Blood, Sweat & Tears – Child Is Father To The Man (1968)

FrontCover1Child Is Father to the Man is the debut album by Blood, Sweat & Tears, released in February 1968. It reached number 47 on Billboard’s Pop Albums chart in the United States.

 

A teenaged Al Kooper went to a concert for jazz trumpeter Maynard Ferguson in 1960. Ferguson’s performance served as the catalyst to start a rock band with a horn section. Originally in a band called The Blues Project, Kooper left after the band leader rejected his idea of bringing in a horn section. He then left for the West Coast and found bassist Jim Fielder who believed in the songs that Kooper wrote. Though Kooper had big ideas for his next project, he didn’t have the money to bring his ideas to fruition. He then threw a benefit for himself and invited several musicians he previously worked with, such as Judy Collins, Simon & Garfunkel, David Blue, Eric Andersen and Richie Havens. All of the performances were sold out, which led Kooper to believe that the gigs helped him. Unfortunately, the owner of the Au Go Go added numerous expenses to the gross receipts that the net receipts after the performance wasn’t enough to get a plane ticket or a taxi to the airport.

He later called Fielder and convinced him to come to New York. He also asked Bobby Colomby, Anderson and Steve Katz, who was his bandmate in his former band The Blues Project. Colomby called Fred Lipsius and the band placed an ad in The Village Voice for more horn players. Within a month, the band assembled an eight piece which also contained Randy Brecker, Jerry Weiss and Dick Halligan. Kooper then asked John Simon to produce them, after being fresh off from producing Simon & Garfunkel’s album Bookends. The album was recorded in two weeks in December 1967. Simon asked all of the members to record their material in one take so he could study songs and make useful suggestions to the arrangements.

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After a brief promotional tour, Colomby and Katz ousted Kooper from the band, which led to Child is Father to the Man being the only BS&T album on which Kooper ever appeared. The band would later have a number one album and several Grammys, although Kooper felt they were playing music that he didn’t agree with. Despite being asked to leave Blood, Sweat & Tears, Kooper felt everything worked out well for him and the band.

In the United States Child Is Father to the Man peaked at #47 on Billboard’s Pop Albums chart. It failed to generate any Top 40 singles, although “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know” and “I Can’t Quit Her” found some play on progressive rock radio.

In 2003, the album was ranked number 264 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

The title is a quotation from a similarly titled poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins, slightly misquoting a poem by William Wordsworth called “My Heart Leaps Up”. (by wikipedia)

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Child Is Father to the Man is keyboard player/singer/arranger Al Kooper’s finest work, an album on which he moves the folk-blues-rock amalgamation of the Blues Project into even wider pastures, taking in classical and jazz elements (including strings and horns), all without losing the pop essence that makes the hybrid work. This is one of the great albums of the eclectic post-Sgt. Pepper era of the late ’60s, a time when you could borrow styles from Greenwich Village contemporary folk to San Francisco acid rock and mix them into what seemed to have the potential to become a new American musical form. It’s Kooper’s bluesy songs, such as “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know” and “I Can’t Quit Her,” and his singing that are the primary focus, but the album is an aural delight; listen to the way the bass guitar interacts with the horns on “My Days Are Numbered” or the charming arrangement and Steve Katz’s vocal on Tim Buckley’s “Morning Glory.” Then Kooper sings Harry Nilsson’s “Without Her” over a delicate, jazzy backing with flügelhorn/alto saxophone interplay by Randy Brecker and Fred Lipsius. This is the sound of a group of virtuosos enjoying itself in the newly open possibilities of pop music. Maybe it couldn’t have lasted; anyway, it didn’t. (by William Ruhlmann)

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Personnel:
Randy Brecker (trumpet, flugelhorn)
Bobby Colomby (drums, percussion, vocals)
Jim Fielder (bass)
Dick Halligan (trombone)
Steve Katz (guitar, lute, vocals)
Al Kooper (keyboards, ondioline, vocals)
Fred Lipsius (piano, saxophone)
Jerry Weiss (trumpet, flugelhorn, vocals)
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Anahid Ajemian (violin)
Fred Catero (sound effects)
Harold Coletta (viola)
Paul Gershman (violin)
Al Gorgoni (organ, guitar, vocals)
Manny Green (violin)
Julie Held (violin)
Doug James (shaker)
Harry Katzman (violin)
Leo Kruczek (violin)
Harry Lookofsky (violin)
Charles McCracken (cello)
Melba Moorman (background vocals)
Gene Orloff (violin)
Valerie Simpson (background vocals)
Alan Schulman (cello)
John Simon (keyboards, cowbell)
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The Manny Vardi Strings

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Tracklist:
01. Overture (Kooper) 1.32
02. I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know (Kooper) 5.57
03. Morning Glory (Beckett/Buckley) 4.16
04. My Days Are Numbered (Kooper) 3.19
05. Without Her (Nilsson) 2.41
06. Just One Smile (Newman) 4.38
07. I Can’t Quit Her (Kooper/Levine) 3.38
08. Meagan’s Gypsy Eyes (Katz) 3.24
09. Somethin’ Goin’ On (Kooper) 8.00
10. House In The Country (Kooper) 3.04
11. The Modern Adventures Of Plato, Diogenes And Freud (Kooper) 4.12
12. So Much Love/Underture (Goffin/King/Kooper) 4.47

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Grateful Dead – Anthem Of The Sun (1968)

FrontCover1Anthem of the Sun is the second album by the rock band the Grateful Dead. Released in 1968, it is the first album to feature second drummer Mickey Hart, who joined the band in September 1967. In 2003, the album was ranked number 287 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

The mix of the album combines multiple studio and live recordings of each song. The result is an experimental amalgam that is neither a studio album nor a live album, but both at the same time (though it is usually classified as a studio album).

Drummer Bill Kreutzmann’s description of the production process describes the listening experience of the album as well: “…Jerry [Garcia] and Phil [Lesh] went into the studio with [Dan] Healy and, like mad scientists, they started splicing all the versions together, creating hybrids that contained the studio tracks and various live parts, stitched together from different shows, all in the same song — one rendition would dissolve into another and sometimes they were even stacked on top of each other… It was easily our most experimental record, it was groundbreaking in its time, and it remains a psychedelic listening experience to this day.” (by wikipedia)

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As the second long-player by the Grateful Dead, Anthem of the Sun (1968) pushed the limits of both the music as well as the medium. General dissatisfaction with their self-titled debut necessitated the search for a methodology to seamlessly juxtapose the more inspired segments of their live performances with the necessary conventions of a single LP. Since issuing their first album, the Dead welcomed lyricist Robert Hunter into the fold — freeing the performing members to focus on the execution and taking the music to the next level. Another addition was second percussionist Mickey Hart, whose methodical timekeeping would become a staple in the Dead’s ability to stop on the proverbial rhythmic dime. Likewise, Tom Constanten (keyboards) added an avant-garde twist to the proceedings with various sonic enhancements that were more akin to John Cage and Karlheinz Stockhausen than anything else coming from the burgeoning Bay Area music scene.

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Their extended family also began to incorporate folks like Dan Healy — whose non-musical contributions and innovations ranged from concert PA amplification to meeting the technical challenges that the band presented off the road as well. On this record Healy’s involvement cannot be overstated, as the band were essentially given carte blanche and simultaneous on-the-job training with regards to the ins and outs of the still unfamiliar recording process. The idea to create an aural pastiche from numerous sources — often running simultaneously — was a radical concept that allowed consumers worldwide to experience a simulated Dead performance firsthand. One significant pattern which began developing saw the band continuing to re

fine the same material that they were concurrently playing live night after night prior to entering the studio.

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The extended “That’s It for the Other One” suite is nothing short of a psychedelic roller coaster. The wild ride weaves what begins as a typical song into several divergent performances — taken from tapes of live shows — ultimately returning to the home base upon occasion, presumably as a built-in reality check. Lyrically, Bob Weir (guitar/vocals) includes references to their 1967 pot bust (“…the heat came ’round and busted me for smiling on a cloudy day”) as well as the band’s spiritual figurehead Neal Cassidy (“…there was Cowboy Neal at the wheel on a bus to never ever land”). Although this version smokes from tip to smouldering tail, the piece truly developed a persona all its own and became a rip-roaring monster in concert. The tracks “New Potato Caboose” and Weir’s admittedly autobiographically titled “Born Cross-Eyed” are fascinatingly intricate side trips that had developed organically during the extended work’s on-stage performance life. “Alligator” is a no-nonsense Ron “Pigpen” McKernan workout that motors the second extended sonic collage on Anthem of the Sun. His straight-ahead driving blues ethos careens headlong into the Dead’s innate improvisational psychedelia. The results are uniformly brilliant as the band thrash and churn behind his rock-solid lead vocals. Musically, the Dead’s instrumental excursions wind in and out of the primary theme, ultimately ending up in the equally frenetic “Caution (Do Not Stop on Tracks).” Although the uninitiated might find the album unnervingly difficult to follow, it obliterated the pretension of the post-Sgt. Pepper’s “concept album” while reinventing the musical parameters of the 12″ LP medium. (by Lindsay Planer)

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Personnel:
Tom Constanten (piano, electronic tape)
Jerry Garcia (guitar, kazoo, vibraslap, vocals)
Mickey Hart – drums, orchestra bells, gong, chimes, crotales, piano)
Bill Kreutzmann (drums, glockenspiel, percussion)
Phil Lesh (bass, trumpet, harpsichord, kazoo, piano, timpani, vocals)
Ron “Pigpen” McKernan (organs, celesta, claves, vocals)
Bob Weir (guitar, kazoo, vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. That’s It For The Other  7.57:
01.1. Cryptical Envelopment (Garcia)
01.2. Quadlibet for Tenderfeet (Garcia/Kreutzmann/Lesh/McKernan/Weir)
01.3. The Faster We Go, the Rounder We Get (Kreutzmann/Weir)
01.4. We Leave the Castle (Constanten)
02. New Potato Caboose (Lesh/Petersen) 8.26
03. Born Cross-Eyed (Weir) 2.04
04. Alligator (Lesh/McKernan/Hunter) 11.20
05. Caution (Do Not Stop On Tracks) (Garcia/Kreutzmann/Lesh/McKernan/Weir) 9.37
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06. Alligator (live) (Lesh/McKernan/Hunter) 18.43
07. Caution (Do Not Stop On Tracks) (live) (Garcia/Kreutzmann/Lesh/McKernan/Weir)  11.38
08. Feedback (live) (Constanten/Garcia/Hart/Kreutzmann/Lesh/McKernan/Weir) 6.58
09. Born Cross-Eyed (single version) (Weir) 2.55

06 – 08.: recorded August 23, 1968

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The Beatles – Yellow Submarine (1969)

FrontCover1And here´s the soundtrack to the comic book (*smile*)

Yellow Submarine is the tenth studio album by English rock band the Beatles, released on 13 January 1969 in the United States and on 17 January 1969 in the United Kingdom. It was issued as the soundtrack to the animated film of the same name, which premiered in London in July 1968. The album contains six songs by the Beatles, including four new songs and the previously released “Yellow Submarine” (1966) and “All You Need Is Love” (1967). The remainder of the album was a re-recording of the film’s orchestral soundtrack by the band’s producer, George Martin.

The project was regarded as a contractual obligation by the Beatles, who were asked to supply four new songs for the film. Some songs were written and recorded specifically for the soundtrack, while others were unreleased tracks from other projects. The album was issued two months after the band’s self-titled double LP (also known as the “White Album”) and was therefore not viewed by the band as a significant release. Yellow Submarine has since been afforded a mixed reception from music critics, some of whom consider that it falls short of the high standard generally associated with the Beatles’ work. It reached the top 5 in the UK and the US, and has been reissued on compact disc several times.

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The album arose from contractual obligations for the Beatles to supply new songs to the soundtrack to United Artists’ animated film Yellow Submarine.[1] Having recently completed their album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in April 1967,[2] the group showed minimal enthusiasm for the project.[3] Along with the music for their Magical Mystery Tour TV film, the Yellow Submarine soundtrack was part of a period that author Ian MacDonald later described as the band’s “regime of continuous low-intensity recording … it had a workaday quality about it – an intrinsic lack of tension which was bound to colour the resulting material.”

There was a commitment for The Beatles to do four songs for the film. Apparently, they would say, this is a lousy song, let’s give it to Brodax.

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Only one side of the album contains songs performed by the Beatles; of the six, four were previously unreleased. “Yellow Submarine” had been issued in August 1966 as a single, topping the UK chart for four weeks,[6] and had also been released on the album Revolver. Following the Beatles’ performance of the song on the Our World international television broadcast, “All You Need Is Love” had also been issued as a single, in July 1967.

Of the unreleased tracks, the first to be recorded was George Harrison’s “Only a Northern Song”, taped in February 1967 but rejected for inclusion on Sgt. Pepper. The group performed overdubs on this basic track in April, immediately after completing the stereo mixes for that album. Among the sounds added during what Beatles historian Mark Lewisohn describes as “a curious session”, were trumpet, glockenspiel and spoken voices. Harrison’s lyrics reflect his displeasure at being merely a contracted songwriter to the Beatles’ publishing company, Northern Songs.

“All Together Now” was recorded in a single session on 12 May 1967, specifically for the film project. The title came from a phrase Paul McCartney had heard as a child, to encourage everyone to sing music hall songs. He later described the song as “a throwaway”.

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The band recorded Harrison’s “It’s All Too Much” in late May 1967 at De Lane Lea Studios in central London.[18] Inspired by its author’s experimentation with the drug LSD, and originally running to over eight minutes in length, the song reflects the Summer of Love philosophy of 1967 and makes extensive use of guitar feedback.[20] As with the later recorded “All You Need Is Love”, the track includes musical and lyrical quotations from other works – in this case, a trumpet passage from Jeremiah Clarke’s “Prince of Denmark’s March” and a lyric from the Merseys’ 1966 hit “Sorrow”.

John Lennon’s “Hey Bulldog” was recorded on 11 February 1968 and evolved from an initial intent to shoot a promotional film for the single “Lady Madonna”. Like “All Together Now”, it was specifically recorded with the film soundtrack in mind. The track’s ending featured a jam session after the point where a fade-out was intended in the final mix, which was kept in the finished version. Lennon later described the song as “a good-sounding record that means nothing”.

Side two of the album contained George Martin’s orchestral score for the film, leading with “Pepperland”.

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Side two features a re-recording of the symphonic film score composed by the Beatles’ producer, George Martin, specifically for the album. The recording took place with a 41-piece orchestra over two three-hour sessions on 22 and 23 October 1968 in Abbey Road, and edited down to the length on the LP on 22 November.

In some of his arrangements, Martin referenced his past work with the Beatles; for example, “Sea of Time” includes what MacDonald terms “an affectionate quotation” from the Indian-styled “Within You Without You”, from Sgt. Pepper, and “Yellow Submarine in Pepperland” reprises the film’s title track. In “Sea of Monsters”, Martin adapted part of Bach’s Air on the G String, while in other selections he parodies works by Stravinsky. MacDonald also detects the influence of Mozart and Webern among the “classical allusions” in Martin’s score. (by wikipedia)

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The only Beatles album that could really be classified as inessential, mostly because it wasn’t really a proper album at all, but a soundtrack that only utilized four new Beatles songs. (The rest of the album was filled out with “Yellow Submarine,” “All You Need Is Love,” and a George Martin score.) What’s more, two of the four new tracks were little more than pleasant throwaways that had been recorded during 1967 and early 1968. These aren’t all that bad; “All Together Now” is a cute, kiddie-ish McCartney singalong, while “Hey Bulldog” has some mild Lennon nastiness and a great beat and central piano riff, with some fine playing all around — each is memorable in its way, and the inclusion of the Lennon song here was all the more important, as the sequence from the movie in which it was used was deleted from the original U.S. release of the movie (which had no success whatever in the U.K. and quickly disappeared, thus making the U.S. version the established cut of the film for decades. George Harrison’s two contributions were the more striking of the new entries — “Only a Northern Song” was a leftover from the Sgt. Pepper’s sessions, generated from a period in which the guitarist became increasingly fascinated with keyboards, especially the organ and the Mellotron (and, later, the synthesizer). It’s an odd piece of psychedelic ersatz, mixing trippiness and some personal comments. Its lyrics (and title) on the one hand express the guitarist/singer/composer’s displeasure at being tied in his publishing to Northern Songs, a company in which John Lennon and Paul McCartney were the majority shareholders; and, on the other, they present Harrison’s vision of how music and recording sounded, from the inside-out and the outside-in, during the psychedelic era — the song thus provided a rare glimpse inside the doors of perception of being a Beatle (or, at least, one aspect of being this particular Beatle) circa 1967. And then there was the jewel of the new songs, “It’s All Too Much.” Coming from the second half of 1967, the song — resplendent in swirling Mellotron, larger-than-life percussion, and tidal waves of feedback guitar — was a virtuoso excursion into otherwise hazy psychedelia, and was actually superior in some respects to “Blue Jay Way,” Harrison’s songwriting contribution to The Magical Mystery Tour; the song also later rated a dazzling cover by Steve Hillage in the middle of the following decade.

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The very fact that George Harrison was afforded two song slots and a relatively uncompetitive canvas for his music shows how little the project meant to Lennon and McCartney — as did the cutting of the “Hey Bulldog” sequence from the movie, apparently with no resistance from Lennon, who had other, more important artistic fish to fry in 1968. What is here, however, is a good enough reason for owning the record, though nothing rates it as anything near a high-priority purchase. The album would have been far better value if it had been released as a four-song EP (an idea the Beatles even considered at one point, with the addition of a bonus track in “Across the Universe” but ultimately discarded). (by Richie Unterberger)

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Personnel:
George Harrison (vocals, guitar, organ, percussion, handclaps, violin)
John Lennon (vocals, guitars, piano, handclaps
Paul McCartney (vocals, bass, guitars, trumpet, handclaps, percussion)
Ringo Starr (drums, percussion, handclaps, background vocals, vocals on 01.)

George Martin (piano on 06.)
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Unknown orchestra conducted by George Martin

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Tracklist:
01. Yellow Submarine (Lennon/McCartney) 2.35
02. Only A Northern Song (Harrison) 3.20
03. All Together Now (Lennon/McCartney) 2.08
04. Hey Bulldog (Lennon/McCartney) 3.09
05. It’s All Too Much (Harrison) 6.17
06. All You Need Is Love (Lennon/McCartney) 3.42
07. Pepperland (Martin) 2.18
08. Sea Of Time (Martin) 2.59
09. Sea Of Holes (Martin) 2.15
10. Sea Of Monsters (Martin) 3.34
11. March Of The Meanies (Martin) 2.16
12. Pepperland Laid Waste (Martin) 2.08
13. Yellow Submarine In Pepperland (Lennon/McCartney) 2.09

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Jethro Tull – This Was (1968)

FrontCover1This Was is the debut album by the British progressive rock band Jethro Tull, released in 1968. Recorded at a cost of £1200, it is the only Jethro Tull album with guitarist Mick Abrahams, who was a major influence for the sound and music style of the band’s first songs. When the album was released the band was already performing at the Marquee Club in London, where other successful British groups, such as the Rolling Stones and The Who, had started their careers.

While vocalist Ian Anderson’s creative vision largely shaped Jethro Tull’s later albums, on This Was Anderson shared songwriting duties with Tull’s guitarist Mick Abrahams. In part due to Abrahams’ influence, the album incorporates more rhythm and blues and jazz influences than the progressive rock the band later became known for. In particular:

The music to “My Sunday Feeling”, “Some Day the Sun Won’t Shine for You”, “Beggar’s Farm” and “It’s Breaking Me Up” are based on blues progressions, with “Some Day the Sun Won’t Shine for You” arranged similarly to Big Bill Broonzy’s blues standard “Key to the Highway”.

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“Cat’s Squirrel” (included in the album “because people like it”, according to the liner notes) was written by Doctor Ross and covered as an instrumental by numerous 1960s British blues bands, including the supergroup Cream. Abrahams would later perform the song in his post-Jethro Tull blues band Blodwyn Pig.
The album includes a cover version of Roland Kirk’s jazz standard “Serenade to a Cuckoo”. According to the liner notes, “Cuckoo” was one of the first tunes Ian Anderson learned to play on the flute.
The coda of “My Sunday Feeling” incorporates quotes from two well-known jazz tunes, Henry Mancini’s “Pink Panther Theme” (specifically the song’s bass line, played as a short solo by Glenn Cornick) and Nat Adderley’s and Oscar Brown, Jr.’s “Work Song”.

This Was also contains the only Jethro Tull lead vocal not performed by Ian Anderson on a studio album, in “Move on Alone”. Mick Abrahams, the song’s author, provided vocals on the track; David Palmer provided the horn arrangement.

Abrahams left Jethro Tull following the album’s completion in a dispute over “musical differences”. Thus, the album’s title probably refers to Abraham’s’ blues influence on the album and how blues weren’t the direction Anderson wanted the band to go. As said in the liner notes of the original record, “This was how we were playing then – but things change – don’t they?”

The song “Dharma for One”, a staple of Tull’s early concerts (usually incorporating an extended drum solo by Clive Bunker), was later covered by Ekseption, Pesky Gee! and The Ides of March. This song featured the “claghorn”, an instrument invented by Jeffrey Hammond. Anderson also claims to have invented the instrument.

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This Was received generally favourable reviews and sold well upon its release. Melody Maker review thoroughly recommended the album in 1968 for being “full of excitement and emotion” and described the band as a blues ensemble “influenced by jazz music” capable of setting “the audience on fire”. Allen Evans of New Musical Express wrote in his review that the album “sounds good and has a lot of humour about it” and that the band “play jazz really, in a soft, appealing way, and have a bit of fun on the side with tone patterns and singing”. American critic Robert Christgau, on the contrary, was appalled by the success of a band that combined “the worst of Roland Kirk, Arthur Brown, and your nearest G.O. blues band.”

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Recent reviews of the remastered edition underline the duality of Anderson and Abrahams’ songwriting and stage presence, as well as the strong ties of the band to blues in their early days. Sid Smith of BBC Music wrote that “what made Tull stand out from the great-coated crowd (of touring bands) was the high-visibility of frontman Ian Anderson’s on-stage Tourette’s-inspired hyper-gurning and Mick Abraham’s ferocious fretwork.”[10] An AllMusic reviewer remarked how Jethro Tull on their vinyl debut appeared “vaguely reminiscent of the Graham Bond Organization only more cohesive, and with greater commercial sense”. David Davies of Record Collector reminds how “This Was only hints at the depth and majesty of the ensuing seven albums”, but also wrote that “the direct, unfussy and predominantly blues-based” tracks of the original recordings and the extra tracks of the collector’s edition “could well come as something of a surprise” and “be of the greatest interest to Tull aficionados.” (by wikipedia)

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Personnel:
Ian Anderson (vocals, flute, harmonica, claghorn, piano)
Mick Abrahams (guitar, vocals)
Clive Bunker (drums, percussion)
Glenn Cornick (bass)
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David Palmer (french horn)

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Tracklist:
01. My Sunday Feeling (Anderson) 3.43
02. Some Day The Sun Won’t Shine For You (Anderson) 2.49
03. Beggar’s Farm (Abrahams/Anderson) 4.19
04. Move On Alone (Abrahams) 1.58
05. Serenade To A Cuckoo (Kirk) 6.07
06. Dharma For One (Anderson/Bunker) 4.15
07. It’s Breaking Me Up (Anderson) 5.04
08. Cat’s Squirrel (Traditional) 5.42
09. A Song For Jeffrey (Anderson) 3.22
10. Round (Anderson/Abrahams/Bunker/Cornick/Ellis) 1.03

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Tim Hart and Maddy Prior – Folk Songs Of Old England (Vol.1) (1968)

OriginalFrontCover1Before helping to form Folk Rock group Steeleye Span, Maddy Prior and Tim Hart recorded this album in a small recording studio set up in the owner’s front room. This album, Folk songs of olde England volume one was released on Tee Pee Records in 1968. It took three hours to record and although there are mistakes in some of the lyrical pronunciation it is a beautiful album.
The album features a very simplistic arrangement of the songs with Maddy on vocals and 5 string banjo. And Tim Hart on vocals, guitar, fiddle, and banjo.
This extraordinary album is raw in its performance and there is fine harmonisation and a great selection of songs.
The songs include The “Rambling Sailor”, “Adieu sweet Nancy”, “The stately southerner”, “Babes in the wood” and “Adam and Eve”. These songs are performed without instruments.
Other songs such as the beautiful “Maid that is deep in love”, and the jaunty “Bruton Town”, the lamenting “Farewell Nancy”, and the marvellous “who’s the fool now” are all fantastic illustrations of England’s colourful heritage.
This release does not have the original art work or front cover but the sound is good despite the fact that the recording was made in mono.
The performance is full of spirit and passion and it is a very special album indeed. (Marcia)

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The first album by the trad folk duo of Tim Hart and Maddy Prior, Folk Songs of Olde England, Vol. 1, is as interesting for what came of it as for what it is. This album, recorded in 1968, led directly to the formation of Steeleye Span, whose early albums were an electrified variation on this album’s traditional acoustic British folk-rock. It could also be argued that Hart and Prior’s example was influential in Fairport Convention’s decision to move from a California-style folk-rock sound into something more uniquely British. In light of what came after, Folk Songs of Olde England, Vol. 1 sounds a bit tentative and at times slightly twee (Prior’s voice has not quite matured into the rich, expressive instrument it would soon become), but on their own merits, these sensitive renditions of traditional British folk favorites like “Maid That’s Deep in Love” or “A Wager a Wager” are respectful of tradition but not bound to it, performed with an infectious enthusiasm quite similar to what the Young Tradition were doing around the same period. (by Stewart Mason)

I guess this was one of the most important albums of the early British folk boom in the Sixties.

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Personnel:
Maddy Prior (vocals)
Tim Hart (guitar,banjo, vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Lish Young Buy-a-Broom 3.07
02. Adieu Sweet Lovely Nancy 2.40
03. Maid That’s Deep In Love 4.15
04. The Rambling Sailor 2.28
05. Bruton Town 4.16
06. Farewell Nancy 2.07
07. The Dalesman’s Litany 4.54
08. The Brisk Young Butcher 2.53
09. The Stately Southerner 2.26
10. Who’s The Fool Now 2.35
11. A Wager A Wager 2.42
12. Babes In The Woods 2.21
13. Adam And Eve 0.54

All songs: Traditional

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Don Cherry – Live In Frankfurt (1968)

FrontCover1Trumpeter Don Cherry might have honed his craft when he played with Ornette Coleman in the late ’50s and early ’60s but he did not hesitate to flex his musical muscles on his own.

To call Cherry a trumpet player is not only misleading but does a great injustice to the musician. While he played the trumpet and cornet and assorted flutes, he was adept at the piano and even experimented with electronics.

So it was not a great surprise to find Cherry performing a free jazz-ish set with Steve Lacy at the Deutsches Jazzfestival in Frankfurt in March 1968 and then record the world-fusion Eternal Sunshine in November (with Albert Mangelsdorff and Sonny Sharrock among others).

In an interview, Cherry said: “The form of jazz where you had the composition, then the sax solo, trumpet solo, piano solo, drum solo, then trade fours – that concept doesn’t open up for surprises. And surprise is, to me, one of the most important things in life, for inspiration. I would write compositions so I could change those compositions. Or I’d have one artist solo in one piece and out of that piece we’d go to another, maybe never going back to what we started with.”

Not only that, Cherry appeared to be a very fair leader, allowing every member here to shine and the intricate interaction among the players was not lost on the appreciative Frankfurt audience. Listening to this set, one can just picture Cherry with a twinkle in his eye and a smile on his face.

Don Cherry died in Spain in 1995 due to liver failure. He was 58. (by bigozine2)

Thanks to Jazzrita for sharing this show on the Dime site.

Recorded live at the Deutsches Jazzfestival 1968, Volksbildungsheim, Frankfurt, Germany, March 24, 1968. Very good German FM recording

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Personnel:
Karl Berger (vibraphone, piano)
Kent Carter (bass)
Don Cherry (cornet, bamboo flute)
Steve Lacy (saxophone)
Jacques Thollot (drums)

SpiegelArticle

Tracklist:
01. Tune In (Berger) 6.01
02. A New Folk (Cherry) 12.24
03. Bird Suite (Berger) 7.13
04. Going Home (Berger) (fade-out) 4.15

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Kensington Market – Avenue Road (1968)

LPFrontCover1Kensington Market (named after a street market in the city’s west side) was formed initially to promote the song writing talents of English-born Keith McKie (b. 20 November 1947, St Albans).

McKie’s musical abilities first came to prominence after his family had emigrated to Sault Ste. Marie in northwest Ontario in 1953 when he began singing in local church choirs. Learning the guitar in his teens, he formed his first band, the Shades, with fellow guitarist Bobby Yukich.

When the Shades broke up, McKie and Yukich next pieced together the Vendettas with three members of rival group, Ronnie Lee and the Five Sharps – sax player John Derbyshire, drummer Bob Yeomans and bass player Alfred Johns, who soon made way for Alex Darou (b. 6 January 1943, Sault Ste. Marie), a former student at the Oscar Peterson School in Toronto.

Several years older than the others, Darou had recently come off the road with a jazz trio helmed by Geordie MacDonald, later drummer with Neil Young’s short-lived group Four To Go. Darou’s intellect and musical abilities had a profound influence on the rest of the band and Keith McKie in particular. “Alex taught us a lot about feels and jazz and kinda got us really aware of time,” says McKie about his future Kensington Market band mate.

In the summer of 1965, the Vendettas accepted an invitation to audition for singer Ronnie Hawkins, who’d been passed the group’s tapes by Mary Jane Punch, a female fan studying in Toronto. The promise of a deal with the singer’s Hawk Records never materialised but the band did get to play some dates on the local bar circuit. By this point, John Derbyshire had made way for Toronto University music graduate, Scott Cushnie. An accomplished pianist, Cushnie ended up playing with Aerosmith’s road band during the 1970s. Towards the end of the year, Bob Yeomans also moved on to join the A-Men, and was replaced by a 15-year-old drummer from Thunder Bay named Ted Sherrill.

Kensington Market

Returning to Toronto the following spring, the band gigged regularly at Boris’ Red Gas Room and during June 1966 recorded two McKie-Yukich songs – ‘Hurt’ c/w ‘You Don’t Care Now’ for a prospective single. For some reason, however, the single never materialised, prompting Alex Darou’s departure for New York to work with David Clayton-Thomas. The group never really recovered from losing its inspirational bass player, and although Wayne Cardinal from Satan and the D-Men came to the rescue, McKie’s thoughts turned towards forging a new musical path, one where he could promote his increasingly introspective and anecdotal songs.

Such an opportunity arose in the spring of 1967 when aspiring rock manager Bernie Finkelstein approached McKie and offered to build a group around him. Finkelstein was on the look out to launch a new, progressive band after selling his interests in the Paupers to Bob Dylan’s manager Albert Grossman. In fact, it had been Paupers’ guitarist and lead singer, Adam Mitchell, who’d first told him about Keith McKie and encouraged him to check out the talented singer/songwriter.

“At one point I was living with Steve Gervais, who was later a successful actor, in a station wagon and he wanted to be my manager,” says McKie. “But it seemed like Bernie was the better deal. In retrospect, and in spite of the fact that Bernie was really good, I probably should have stayed with the guy I was with at the time because it would have been more fun in the long run and more organic. Bernie had a lot of experience and that was probably a smart move to make if you were being a business person.”

First on the list for the new band was Gene Martynec (b. 28 March 1947, Coburg, Germany), a brilliant guitarist with a Polish/Ukrainian background, who’d recently quit local folk/rock band, Bobby Kris & the Imperials after two singles for Columbia Records.
(by Nick Warburton)

Although this is not a masterwork from the Sixities … it´s a niceitem from this period … produced by the one and only Felix Pappalardi … you know … from Mountain !

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Alternate frontcover

Personnel:
Alex Darou (bass)
Luke Gibson (vocals, guitar)
Keith McKie (guitar, vocals)
Gene Martynec (guitar, piano, vocals)
Jimmy Watson (drums, sitar)

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Tracklist:
01. I Would Be The One (McKie) 2.39
02. Speaking Of Dreams (Gibson) 2.29
03. Colour Her Sunshine (McKie) 3.02
04. Phoebe (Martynec) 3.41
05. Aunt Violet’s Knee (McKie) 4.19
06. Coming Home Soon (McKie) 2.47
07. Presenting Myself Lightly (Martynec) 2.18
08. Looking Glass (McKie) 3.23
09. Beatrice (Martynec) 2.22
10. Girl Is Young (McKie) 3.06

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