Gypsy Blood — Wasurekaketa Kotoba (Forgotten Words)
from Rokko Oroshi (1972)
If ニールヤング.. er.. Neil Young.. had been born in Japan instead of ol’ Canada… he might have sounded something like this! Rokko Oroshi is Gypsy Blood’s second and final album, and it’s a pity, because this is classic dust-under-the-wheels road music… roll the windows down, dude. (Or roll another number…) Other tracks are straight-up Deliverance-style hand-clappin’, fiddle-sawin’, mandolin-pickin’ jams—wild stuff.
I am only guessing, but they may have gotten their name from the raw solo guitar track of the same name, recorded by Jimi Hendrix in 1968.
Piano parts on this album performed by none other than Alan Merrill, frontman of the amazing Tokyo glam rockers Vodka Collins. Stay tuned for some of that too.
Grabbed this record at Japanese Old Prog.
Los York’s — Abrázame Baby (1967)
Demented garage from Peruvian psych-rockers Los Yorks. The lead singer, Pablo Luna, has a delightful meltdown on this tune, and the band just falls to pieces behind him.
This is actually a reworking of the Rolling Stones’ 1965 version of ‘Mercy Mercy,’ which was in turn a track originally written and performed in 1964 by soul/R&B singer Don Covay and the Goodtimers, with sublime guitar backing by a very young Jimi Hendrix.
To really bring things full circle, my favorite audio weirdos Lucky Dragons sampled the Don Covay version on their tooth-chattering 2002 track ‘Mercy.’ Oh, the journeys a song makes…
This and other Los York’s tracks at the definitive library of garage, Garage Hangover.
Black Merda — For You
from Long Burn the Fire (1972)
Nice slow soul track from the unfortunately named Black Merda, who consider themselves the first all-black rock band. The name, of course, wasn’t intended to mean “Black Shit” but rather Black MUR-der.
Lots of Hendrix-influenced stuff on this record, (in fact they did an awesome cover of ‘Foxy Lady’ with horns) but the original stuff is a lot more interesting to me. I can’t think of any Hendrix songs with strings off the top of my head… can you? I’ll also have to post something by Death, another forgotten Detroit band from this period… blazing kick-out-the-jams proto-punk. Stay tuned.
Angelo Spencer et L’Orchidee d’Hawaii — Money (Instrumental)
from L’Argent K Records 7” (2010)
Here’s the other K Records track I came across today. This one starts with rowdy hand claps, death drums and Saharan stratocasters dueling on Tuareg-esque distorted blues lines. Throw in some bagpipe synths and a manic Echoplex…and you’ve got beautiful, strange noise.
If you like this, check out Tinariwen, a band of Tuareg musicians from the southern Sahara in Mali. Like the Bedouin Hendrix.
Tim Rose — Hey Joe
from Tim Rose (1967)
I’ve gotta say this album has one of the most bad-ass covers I’ve ever seen. He looks like a longshoreman who just downed four pints and is looking for a fight! Aside from that, Tim Rose’s version of “Hey Joe” apparently inspired Jimi Hendrix to cover the song, according to Wikipedia:
Folk rock singer Tim Rose’s slower version of the song (recorded in 1966 and claimed to be Rose’s arrangement of a wholly traditional song) inspired the first single by The Jimi Hendrix Experience. The ex-bassist for The Animals, Chas Chandler, who was now focusing on managing other acts, had seen Rose performing the song at the Cafe Wha? in New York City and as a result, was looking for an artist to record a rock version of “Hey Joe”. Chandler discovered Jimi Hendrix, who had also been playing at the Cafe Wha? in 1966 and performing an arrangement of “Hey Joe” inspired by Rose’s rendition. Chandler decided to take Hendrix with him to England in September 1966, where he would subsequently turn the guitarist into a star.
Dream — Green Thing (From Outer Space)
from Get Dreamy (1967)
Norwegian psychedelic group from the late 60s. This album was among those from Jimi Hendrix’s collection recently put up for auction. A rare LP sent to Jimi from Dream guitarist Terje Rypdal, and the album has quite a few Hendrixian numbers on it (Hey Jimi, for one).
But this track is a nice little nugget of late 60s pop. The singer could have taken a spoonful of honey before launching into the track, but the music is top notch.