Friday, April 21, 2006

Friday On my Mind

John Fred & His Playboy Band - Agnes English. This is an album I've loved for a few years now. Most people call these guys bubblegum based on their lone hit which is here on their 3rd LP originally titled Agnes English, but they are more than that. Blue eyed soul, garage rock, blues, ballads, its all here. The album title was changed to to the name of the hit and a different cover supplied. Contrary to most people I prefer the first cover but I have upped the reissue for you to check out. But look to the left, see the skinny guy sitting? That's John. Listen to voice, does it sound like it belongs to him? I don't think so, but I will his voice is great!! Blue-eyed soulish but able to adapt to several genres--from garage to bubblegum. There are even very lite touches of psych here and there. My favorite song is the final track AcHenall Riots. I think its a brilliant song. John Fred passed away 1 year and six days ago due to kidney failure.


Van Ronk was a folk singer. For this April, 1968 album he hooked up with a band called the Hudson Dusters. The Dusters keyboard player was called Pot. Pot is the freaked out looking guy on the far left on the cover. Not essential info, but fun info!!!
The music transcends folk quite a bit, but the best track (of course in my opinion) is a cover of Clouds (From Both Sides Now) the song made famous by Judy Collins. A real tear jerker, it's basically Dave and his guitar and probably the only song that could be called trad folk here. The other songs try to be hip philosophically and socially aware and often sound forced and dated, but many are fun, like Keep Off the Grass . But it's best to stay away from his cover of Alley Oop.

Dave is also gone now, he passed 2/10/2002.


By request, here is Hawkwind's 1984 LP Chronicle of the Black Sword. I hear the beginnings of the direction they would take later in the decade, but this still rocks. I guess I will always love the 1972-1977 versions of this band the best. Front cover is in the rar file.


Finally for tonight, also by request, we have Friar Tuck and His Psychedelic Guitar. Another exploito psych LP, but this one has a few twists that endear it to people more than the usual LPs from this genre. One, it was produced by Curt Boettcher, and two it features the guitars of Mike Deasy and Ben Benay. This is really some tripped out stuff here, but it doesn't start out that way. The first track is a cover of Tommy Roe's Sweet Pea and it is played pretty much straight except for the vocals, which are either horrible or hilarious depending on how they strike you, and a weird out of tune guitar plunks out of tune notes at all the wrong times. Next, a by the numbers cover of Louie Louie and then the weirdness begins, and it soon devolves into absolute madness, with background vocals that sound like they are from the Bob Crewe Generation begin chanting over tape loops, Deasy and Benay start playing Hendrixesque (in his primitive state)solos over mind numbing repetitive easy listening backgrounds. Voices appear and disappear, sounds clang and crash, blips fly through the speakers and it just all goes crazy. It's something you'll either love or hate, and if you liked the Unfolding album I posted awhile back, you'll like this.

Recorded from an old scratchy LP this isn't the best file I've ever posted, but I doubt this one is getting on a CD anytime soon.

Here is a list of the guilty parties:

Mike Deasy (g) with:
Ben Benay (g), Jim Healms (g), Butch Parker (p), Mike Henderson (org), Toxie French (vib), Jerry Shelff (b), Jim Troxel (ds),
Curt Boettcher (vo), Jim Bell (vo), Michelle O'Malley (vo), Sandy Salisbury (vo), Dottie Holmberg (vo), Sharon Oison (vo), Dyann King (vo), Alicia Vigil (vo), Bob Turner (vo).



Anonymous said...

Thanks for the DVR, I remember the LP for the same song and haven't seen it since the 70s!
Thanks & Cheers!

One Bite said...

Many thanks for Friar Tuck LP.
That weird out of key vocals could only be made by Curt Boettcher.He was such a genius!

JFisch said...

Man , your blog is a killer, some great music I've lookin for...

May I sugest "earth" from Vangelis ?

Thanks a lot

Raven said...

Thank you for hawkwind's black sword. I've never heard it except for little bits here and there and it sounds like a worthy adventure.

I agree with you on the earlier period of the band as it is luminous!

Tally on!

Anonymous said...

John Fred and the Playboys! I saw them open for Blood Sweat and Tears long long ago. They burned it down. John Fred was about 7 ft tall and angly and style rhythmic. They opened with Moby Grape's "Can't Be So Bad" and smoked it - with super tight horns. Their albums are good but don't don't capture what a seasoned and soulful rocking band they were.


chuckmyr said...

I agree that the early Hawkwind is the best, this is not to bad but i've heard the live version and it is much better.
Great music on this blog

Lex10 said...

John Fred - Yeah!

Lex10 said...

John Fred - Yeah!

Time Traveller said...

Lex 10 - It must have been 2 times good!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Friar Tuck!!! I've been after this FOREVER!!! and now my search is over!
Keep up the good blogging!

everyone said...

Thanks for the Friar Tuck!!! I've been after this FOREVER!!! and now my search is over!
Keep up the good blogging!

everyone said...

Thanks for the Friar Tuck!!! I've been after this FOREVER!!!
Keep up the good blogging!!!!

jonjim1952 said...

thanks for the john fred / playboy band. i never bothered with his albums...but always had an inkling that there might be something behind that "bublegum facade" Agnes English is really good stuff.

Vagabond Philosopher said...

Track listing for 'Dave Van Ronk and the Hudson Dusters':

#2 Head Inspector
#8 Dink's Song

Thanks for the download!

Juan said...

could you re-upload the John Fred & His Playboy Band - Agnes English record again? I have discovered you blog now and I am very intersted in it.



zamazuma said...

re-upload John Fred please. smashing blog by the way!!

bassmann said...

The Mike Deasy album called Friar Tuck is indeed available as an import. It has been remastered and can be found on various sites if searched for!