The Tages — “Halcyon Days”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 16, 2021

286) The Tages — “Halcyon Days” This ‘68 A-side by the Swedish band uses the same melody as the Herd’s ‘68 B-side “Our Fairy Tale” with largely different lyrics. Makes sense, as both were written by Andy Bown and the Herd’s Peter Frampton. See http://www.45cat.com/record/mgm1443. I guess the Swedes achieved Herd immunity! Both songs areContinue reading “The Tages — “Halcyon Days”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 16, 2021″

The Impressions — “ I Ain’t Supposed To”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 15, 2021

285) The Impressions — “ I Ain’t Supposed To” Another glorious, but lesser known, selection from Keep on Pushing, the Impressions’s 1st top 10 album (see #118): [T]he album featured all the hallmarks of an Impressions set: impeccably smooth harmonies, the dynamic horn charts of Johnny Pate, and many more of [Curtis] Mayfield’s irresistible songsContinue reading “The Impressions — “ I Ain’t Supposed To”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 15, 2021”

Jeff Monn — “Reality”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 14, 2021

284) Jeff Monn – “Reality” Former Third Bardo lead singer Jeff Monn released an incredible album in ’68 (see #98). Orchestration courtesy of Peter Schickele — the one and only P.D.Q. Bach. The title song is Monn’s vain fantasy of a girlfriend crawling back to him. Of course it’s called “Reality”!

Cher Up! It’s the Sonny, Cher, and Sonny & Cher Special Edition: Sonny Bono — “My Best Friend’s Girl Is Out of Sight”, Cher — “Masters of War”, Sonny & Cher — “Leave Me Be”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 13, 2021

281) Sonny Bono — “My Best Friend’s Girl Is Out of Sight.” Ah, Sonny. His sole solo album, his late ’67 psychedelic opus Inner Views, is not well known — Bruce Eder notes that it “disappeared without a trace of its passing.” (https://www.allmusic.com/artist/sonny-bono-mn0000036402/biography) However, those who have been turned on to it seem to haveContinue reading “Cher Up! It’s the Sonny, Cher, and Sonny & Cher Special Edition: Sonny Bono — “My Best Friend’s Girl Is Out of Sight”, Cher — “Masters of War”, Sonny & Cher — “Leave Me Be”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 13, 2021″

The Gentry — “Sing Me a Sad Song”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 12, 2021

280) The Gentry — “Sing Me a Sad Song” This gorgeous ’69 single was the first by the showband* from Ballymena, Northern Ireland, led by Cahir O’Doherty: By early December, 1968 . . . the band were “the only Northern group the young kids in Dublin really want to know about. . . . CahirContinue reading “The Gentry — “Sing Me a Sad Song”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 12, 2021″

The Squires — “Going All the Way”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 11, 2021

279) The Squires — “Going All the Way“ ‘66 A-side is a teenage wanderlust bucket list from the Bristol, Connecticut band. The song had the honor of being included on the 1st Pebbles LP compilation in ‘79. Richie Unterberger says in All Music Guide that it “was a tough but melodic garage-pop original.” Nuggets callsContinue reading “The Squires — “Going All the Way”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 11, 2021″

World of Oz — “Peter’s Birthday”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 10, 2021

278) World of Oz — “Peter’s Birthday” Oz may be a darling of critics and collectors, but I admit that this ‘68 carnival ride of a B-side to “Muffin Man” (Oz’s best-known song and 1st A-side) is the group’s only song I think is really cool. I guess you can chalk it up to theContinue reading “World of Oz — “Peter’s Birthday”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 10, 2021”

Christopher — “The Race”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 9, 2021

277) Christopher — “The Race” This is the B-side of Christopher’s only single (’70), a biting indictment of ultra-competitiveness in the “whoever dies with the most toys wins” vein. It appears that Christopher is actually Christopher Neil, who, according to Wikipedia, “is an Irish record producer, songwriter, singer, and actor” who “started in the mid-sixtiesContinue reading “Christopher — “The Race”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 9, 2021″

The Charles Kingsley Creation — “Summer Without Sun”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 8, 2021

276) The Charles Kingsley Creation — “Summer Without Sun” Joe Meek produced this wonderful Merseybeat ballad by Welsh brothers Charles and Kingsley Ward. If the November ’65 A-side were written and released a year or two earlier, I’m sure it would have been a big hit in the UK and the U.S. However, everything probablyContinue reading “The Charles Kingsley Creation — “Summer Without Sun”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 8, 2021″

Mojo — “Candle to Burn”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 7, 2021

275) Mojo — “Candle to Burn” San Francisco’s Mojo Men were certainly fluid. They were great when they were all men (see #140). They were even better when singer/drummer Jan Errico joined from the Vejtables (see #84), and they thus dropped the “Men” to become simply “Mojo.” “Candle to Burn” is the leadoff track ofContinue reading “Mojo — “Candle to Burn”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 7, 2021”

O.V. Wright — “ Everybody Knows (The River Song)”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 6, 2021

274) O.V. Wright — “ Everybody Knows (The River Song)” “Overton Vertis Wright learned his trade on the gospel circuit with the Sunset Travelers before going secular in 1964.” (Bill Dahl, https://www.allmusic.com/artist/ov-wright-mn0000457807/biography) (see #71). In his hands, the levee doesn’t have to break for the Mississippi River to exert a tragic and inexorable force. BluesmanContinue reading “O.V. Wright — “ Everybody Knows (The River Song)”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 6, 2021”

John Wonderling — “Man of Straw”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 5, 2021

273) John Wonderling — “Man of Straw” Forget Dark Side of the Moon, this triumphant ‘68 B-side to “Midway Down” belongs on the Wizard of Oz soundtrack. Johnny Wonderling was of French ancestry, born and raised in Queens, New York. In 1968, he wrote “Midway Down” (recorded and released by The Creation in April 1968)Continue reading “John Wonderling — “Man of Straw”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 5, 2021”

The Strawberry Alarm Clock — “Birds in My Tree”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 4, 2021

https://www.discogs.com/master/93850-The-Strawberry-Alarm-Clock-Incense-And-Peppermints/image/SW1hZ2U6NzUxNjY3NQ== 272) The Strawberry Alarm Clock — “Birds in My Tree” As Bruce Eder says: [SAC’s] name is as well known to anyone who lived through the late-’60s psychedelic era as that of almost any group one would care to mention, mostly out of its sheer, silly trippiness as a name and their one majorContinue reading “The Strawberry Alarm Clock — “Birds in My Tree”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 4, 2021″

The Human Instinct — “A Day in My Mind’s Mind”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 3, 2021

271) The Human Instinct — “A Day in My Mind’s Mind” A popular Kiwi band known as the Four Fours went to the Big City (London), changed its name to “the significantly cooler” Human Instinct (Mark Deming in All Music Guide), and released some classic singles, most notably this killer psych track (not to beContinue reading “The Human Instinct — “A Day in My Mind’s Mind”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 3, 2021”

The Breakers — “Don’t Send Me No Flowers (I Ain’t Dead Yet)”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 2, 2021

270) The Breakers — “Don’t Send Me No Flowers (I Ain’t Dead Yet)” The Memphis, Tennessee, band released this crazy-cool garage classic about a somewhat conceited guy as a ’65 A-side. It was written by Donna Weiss, the writer of “Bette Davis Eyes”! According to Rob Grayson: While they didn’t chart nationally, The Breakers knockedContinue reading “The Breakers — “Don’t Send Me No Flowers (I Ain’t Dead Yet)”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 2, 2021″

Lee Hazlewood — “The Night Before”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 1, 2021

269) Lee Hazlewood — “The Night Before” I’ve never understood France’s love affair with Jerry Lewis. Sweden’s affair with Lee Hazlewood — that I understand. This is my second selection from my favorite album of Lee’s — his ‘70 soundtrack to his Swedish TV film Cowboy in Sweden (see #48). Light in the Attic rightlyContinue reading “Lee Hazlewood — “The Night Before”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — December 1, 2021″

The Mike Stuart Span — “Children of Tomorrow”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 30, 2021

268) The Mike Stuart Span — “Children of Tomorrow” “Children of Tomorrow was the Span’s magnum opus (see also #225). Richie Unterberger in All Music Guide describes it as “a classic British psychedelic single [with] driving power chords, squealing guitar leads, and haunting harmonies . . . [striking] a classic midpoint between hard mod-pop andContinue reading “The Mike Stuart Span — “Children of Tomorrow”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 30, 2021”

Barry Ryan Remembrance Special Edition: “Eloise”, “Why Do You Cry My Love”, “The Hunt”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 28, 2021

Barry Ryan passed away two months ago today, on September 28th, at the age of 72. The melodramatic, theatrical and grandly orchestrated — “poperatic” — songs he sang (written by his identical twin Paul, who died in 1992) represent the best of a side of 60’s popcraft that has often been unjustly maligned. I thinkContinue reading “Barry Ryan Remembrance Special Edition: “Eloise”, “Why Do You Cry My Love”, “The Hunt”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 28, 2021”

Pete Atkin — “Beware of the Beautiful Stranger”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 27, 2021

263) Pete Atkin — “Beware of the Beautiful Stranger” A gorgeous, like nothing else on the air (except for, maybe, Nick Garrie (who wasn’t actually on the air)) song by Pete Atkin with lyrics by Clive James. Christopher Evans says in All Music Guide that: Atkin’s music [drew] on every form of popular music fromContinue reading “Pete Atkin — “Beware of the Beautiful Stranger”: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — November 27, 2021”