Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Various Artists (1991) -San Francisco Nights

Artist: various
Album: San Francisco Nights
Released: 1991
Quality: mp3 CBR 320
Size: 115 MB

While San Francisco Nights is a great sampler and place to find a few very rare artifacts, the overall album tends to be a bit confusing. The first dozen tracks move very smoothly and accurately trace the early origins of San Francisco rock, pop, and primordial psychedelia. The flow from early hits by the Beau Brummels ("Laugh, Laugh") and the We Five ("You Were on My Mind") to such rarities as the original (and superior) version of Country Joe & the Fish's earliest recording ("Bass Strings") is virtually seamless. Along the way, obscure gems such as the Vejtables' classic "I Still Love You" and the Great Society's original version of "Someone to Love" (later retitled "Somebody to Love" by Jefferson Airplane), as well as rare tracks by Sons of Champlin and the Mystery Trend fill in the gaps and provide the listener with the key missing links that lead to what eventually became known as the San Francisco Sound, if there was in fact such an animal. However, following these indie gems (many from the Autumn Records vaults), the inclusion of tracks such as Sly & the Family Stone's "Dance to the Music" and the Youngbloods' (who weren't even from the Bay Area) "Get Together" tend to take things out of context. Edsel Records' The Autumn Records Story contains many of the same tracks and makes the point a bit stronger. However, you'd be missing out on the Sons of Champlin's "Sing Me a Rainbow," which may be one of the great lost singles of the era, so it's a bit of a toss up, but in the end, this collection is still quite worthwhile. ~ Matthew Greenwald,

1. Laugh, Laugh - The Beau Brummels
2. You Were On My Mind - We Five
3. Somebody To Love - Great Society
4. Just A Little - The Beau Brummels
5. I Still Love You - The Vejtables
6. Codine - The Charlatans
7. Bass Strings - Country Joe and The Fish
8. Hello, Hello - The Sopwith Camel
9. Sit Down, I Think I Love You - Mojo Men
10. Johnny Was A Good Boy - Mystery Trend
11. Sing Me A Rainbow - Sons Of Champlin
12. Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine - Country Joe and The Fish
13. Get Together - The Youngbloods
14. Dance To The Music - Sly and The Family Stone
15. Pride Of Man - Quicksilver Messenger Service
16. Summertime Blues - Blue Cheer

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