The Stone Poneys — “The Train and the River”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — March 3, 2023


751) The Stone Poneys — “The Train and the River”

As Paul McCartney might say, “La la la la la the lovely Linda”. Here is a remarkable and remarkably gentle folk song off the Stone Poney’s first album. Nik says that “[Kenny] Edwards and [Linda] Ronstadt take a duet on the blue, drifting ‘The Train and the River’” ( and David Bowling says that Linda’s performance “makes you want to hear more which in many ways would become the impetus for her solo career and the resultant death of The Stone Poneys.” (

As Nik opines:

The Stone Poneys should be much more than a footnote. Forever eclipsed by Linda Ronstadt’s latter-day success, the band has found itself set down in history as little more than an early backing group for the singer – hardly a fair assessment, especially considering the strength of the material recorded by the band, of which Ronstadt was only one contributor. In fact, Poneys Ken Edwards and Bob Kimmel were remarkable singers in their own right . . . . The Poneys’ self-titled debut is perhaps their strongest statement as a band. . . . [T]he album typifies the slow and hazy L.A. sound . . . . [They were] recent Tucson immigrants with several other players on the local folk scene, most notably Tim Buckley, whose songs they would soon go on to record, and the band Hearts & Flowers, who Linda would sing with on their 1968 record Now Is the Time. . . .

Bowling gives us some more history:

Ronstadt met and performed with Bob Kimmel while in high school and after a semester of college moved to Los Angeles to form a band with him. Lead guitarist Kenny Edwards quickly joined and after playing the local club circuit, they adopted the name The Stone Poneys. They were quickly signed to the Capitol label and released their . . . debut album in January of 1967. At this point they were basically a folk group and their initial album reflected that style. While Ronstadt would quickly become the focal point of the band, this album is a group affair. Kimmel and Edwards wrote seven of the ten tracks [including “Train”] and the vocals are shared with a great deal of harmonizing. The album was a commercial failure upon its release . . . .

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