I enjoy lots of today's music, but I
remember yesterday's music, too. I'm planning on posting a track here
most days, if not exactly daily, for a while. We'll see how long this
What I will avoid are the tracks heard regularly on classic rock and oldies radio. I'll tend toward more or less obscure artists, occasionally throwing in less known tracks by well known artists or maybe sometimes live versions of well-known songs.
The Chambers Brothers--George, Joe, Willie and Lester Chambers and drummer Brian Keenan--had their roots in the brothers' gospel group in Mississippi in the early 1950's. Later they went to Los Angeles, where they drifted into the folk scene. They brought down the house at Newport in 1965. They toured with folk singer Barbara Dane, making an album with her in 1966.
In 1967 they were signed by Columbia and released an album with the only song they are really remembered for, "Time Has Come Today," with its heavy use of cowbell and the immortal line, "My soul's been psychedelized!" Like many another band with a sudden big hit, if success after 17 years or so could be called sudden, they seem to me to have been typecast by that hit. After the interest in psychedelia subsided (or came down, you might say), they seem to have nowhere to go and by the mid 1970's they had begun to break up. They did get together in 1980 to back up erstwhile folkie Maria Muldaur, who also knew something about being boxed in by a hit, on one of my favorite albums of the early 1980's, Gospel Night. I hope to find a copy of that album some day.
Their song, "Love, Peace And Happiness" was the title track of a 1969 album, Love, Peace & Happiness. Unfortunately for them, by 1969 talk of violent revolution had taken over and love and peace had become passé. As a long term philosophy, though, it has regained ground. This version, recorded live in New York in 1971, is 19 minutes of boundless energy. Or to be more accurate, it's 16 minutes of energy, with lots of cowbell, and a soaring 3 minute coda of gospel based harmony.