The Monterey Pop Festival 1967
If time travel was an option, I would love to be transported back in time to The Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. When I look back on what Monterey Pop accomplished, the rich set of artists that performed, there was a magic that weekend that formed peace, love and the power of music for generations to come. It’s the music festival I would most want to attend and experience.
I would love to attend that festival at the age I was in 1967, close to 16. I would also like to experience the event fully with no understanding of the events as I know them now. What I mean is that I would love to witness each act unfold, be surprised by The Who and Jimi Hendrix, boogaloo to Otis Redding. I would just love to have been there from beginning to end.
Imagine meeting his Majesty Prince Jones as he walked amongst the crowd. Monterey Pop celebrated its 45th anniversary this past June.
Five years ago I wrote a blog post about the 40th anniversary of Monterey Pop It serves as a fitting testament to the event.
There are so many rock stars that are no longer with us who performed at Monterey Pop. For that reason alone revisiting the Monterey Pop Festival would be worth it.
Imagine seeing The Who go insane smashing their instruments amidst the smoke bombs and fireworks Keith Moon planted under his drum set. Or witnessing Jimi Hendrix set his guitar on fire. Hendrix was in top form that night as he one upped Peter Townshend of The Who.
There is a fantastic official Monterey Pop International Festival Web Site. I visit it often. I urge you to go hear Eric Burdon sing Monterey and watch the images, view the vast information available. Then go rent or own the rock documentary, Monterey Pop, directed by D. A. Pennebaker. That’s what I plan to watch later today. I own the deluxe video set (no surprise there folks…).
If that’s not enough content for you, I wanted to point out that there is a new book available about Monterey Pop. Maybe Santa Claus will be good to me and put this under my Christmas tree, hint, hint 😉
A Perfect Haze, The Illustrated History of the Monterey International Pop Festival by Harvey Kubernik and Kenneth Kubernik ,Foreword by Lou Adler, Afterword by Michelle Phillips
I found this painting on the InterWeb by Grace Slick who appeared with Jefferson Airplane that weekend. She named it Monterey.
I leave you with this video clip of Janis Joplin with Big Brother & The Holding Company. This was THE breakout moment for Janis and her band. Of all the performances that happened that weekend, this one is truly special. Enjoy.
- Otis (fishandbicycles.com)
- New Jimi Hendrix exhibit at EMP not to be missed (seattletimes.com)
- Remembering Janis Joplin: Some Classic Live Performances and Previews of a New Joplin Musical (openculture.com)
- Jimi Hendrix – The Ultimate Lyric Book and more…. (musicofourheart.me)
Saying Goodbye to Scott McKenzie
I learned earlier that Scott McKenzie passed away this weekend. A statement on McKenzie’s website says the 73-year-old died on Saturday in Los Angeles. McKenzie battled Guillain-Barre Syndrome, a disease that affects the nervous system.
He sang the song that defined my generation and the Summer of Love in San Francisco, “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” which became a huge hit in 1967.
The song was written by John Phillips of The Mamas and The Papas. It was written and released in June 1967 to promote the Monterey Pop Festival. Scott McKenzie was good friends with John Phillips and was asked to join The Mamas and The Papas but he declined John’s offer.
I love his voice and the eternal feeling contained within this song. It always moves me every time I hear it. Truly sad today that he is gone. Truly happy for where his soul journeys.
- Singer Scott McKenzie Dead at 73 (rollingstone.com)
- San Francisco singer Scott McKenzie dies at 73 (guardian.co.uk)
Laura Nyro, 1967
Yesterday’s blog post rekindled my love and interest in Laura Nyro’s music. I decided to start at the beginning of her discography with the album entitled, More Than A New Discovery. This recording was released in January of 1967 on the Verve Folkways label.
The album included several songs that would become hits for other artists. Blood, Sweat & Tears scored with “And When I Die” (US #2),The 5th Dimension with “Wedding Bell Blues” (US #1) and “Blowin’ Away” (US #21), and Barbra Streisand with “Stoney End” (US #6).
The album was later reissued, with a revised track order and with the song “Hands Off the Man” retitled to “Flim Flam Man”, in 1973 by Columbia Records as The First Songs.
In the summer of 1967 Laura Nyro performed at the infamous Monterey Pop Festival; while Nyro felt her performance had been a failure, the D.A. Pennebaker documentary footage of the concert showed to the contrary that the crowd responded enthusiastically to her set.
After her performance at Monterey, record producer David Geffen signed her to a $4 million contract with Columbia Records.
- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2012 – Laura Nyro (musicofourheart.me)
Otis Redding – 70 Years On
Otis Redding is back in the limelight, deservedly so, due to the overnight Internet success of the new music collaboration by Jay-Z and Kayne West, “Otis”. They sample Otis Redding’s “Try A Little Tenderness” which empowers them both underneath to rap with great aplomb.
The renewed interest in Otis Redding, the King of Soul prompted me to purchase The Very Best of Otis Redding on Apple iTunes. I lacked an essential Otis Redding digital recording in my music collection. The soulful mastery Otis Redding possess’ is perfectly matched against the backdrop of the Memphis Stax/Volt sound.
I noticed that the city of Macon, Georgia will be honoring their former citizen Otis Redding with a three-day 70th Anniversary celebration September 9-11 of this year. September 9th will be Otis Redding Day. I’d like to attend this event, if possible…
My personal favorite live recording of Otis Redding’s is when he performed his stellar set at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. The electricity and energy of his performance for the love crowd brought down the house that night.
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