Tag Archives: Hair

LP 288: The Jason Ryder Sound – Music from Hair (Music for Pleasure, 1969)

27 Aug

Side 1
01 Donna
02 Good Morning Starshine
03 I Got Life
04 Aquarius
05 Ain’t Got No
06 Be-In (Hare Krishna)

Side 2

07 Colored Spade
08 Manchester England
09 Hair
10 Walking In Space
11 Initials
12 Air

The MFP Hair LP credited to The Jason Ryder Sound is a strictly Division 4 affair.

Donna is a reasonably bright start with a shade of excessive brass before we get few pedestrian takes of Good Morning Starshine, I Got Life and a meek Aquarius.

The sunshine does come out at the start of side two with a cosmically funky version of Colored Spade and the chilled-out vibes of Initials.
This pair of goodies make the effort worthwhile for Hair completists.

Comments and feedback are welcome.

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LP 280: Don Kirshner – Cuts Hair (RCA, 1969)

16 Aug

Side 1
01 Let The Sun Shine In (The Flesh Failures)
02 Air / Walking In Space
03 Be In (Hare Krishna)
04 Ain’t Got No / I Got Life
05 Frank Mills

Side 2
06 Aquarius
07 What A Piece Of Work Is Man / Where Do I Go
08 Good Morning Starshine
09 Manchester England / Donna
10 Hair

This version of Hair was produced and arranged by Herb Bernstein. It’s a tidy and taut interpretation which glides by in just under half an hour. As noted elsewhere the LP contains a mixed breed of instrumental cuts, vocal tracks and hybrid ‘sparse lyrics’ tunes. Let The Sun Shine In (The Flesh Failures) is one of the latter, a rather gloomy beginning.

Drum breaks ahoy with a groovy Air and a flute-filled Hare Krishna. Ain’t Got No /  I Got Life is a real treat – chunky organ rhythms and critical beatdowns. A sweet Frank Mills done in a Bacharach style is a nice touch while Good Morning Starshine has a deadly bassline that reminds me of blaxploitation grooves. The final track is a bouyant Hair complete with solid percussion and super strings.

Comments and feedback are welcome.

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LP 272: Dennis Coffey – Hair and Thangs (Maverick, 1969)

4 Aug

Side 1
01 Let The Sunshine
02 Hair And Grits
03 Get Back
04 Aquarius
05 Sodomy

Side 2
06 Do Your Thing
07 Hey Jude
08 Iceberg’s Thang
09 It’s Your Thang
10 Electric Thang

Funk acid breaks are the order of the day on Hair and Thangs – Dennis Coffey’s first release.
A meandering and gritty Let The Sunshine gets the game off to an epic beginning. The other two Hair tracks – Aquarius and Sodomy are equally great; it’s a pity he didn’t do a full Hair LP.

Instead the remainder of the album is a mixture of originals and covers. Two Beatles classics – Get Back with a groovy organ and a fuzzed-up Hey Jude with a narcotic aroma. You want soul? Check out riffage-city and Dennis’s version of Do Your Thang. The Isleys’ It’s Your Thang comes across as a nifty break-filled diamond.

Hair And Grits is prime psychedelic funk, perfectly riding the chugging rock train of molten licks and banging drums while Iceberg’s Thang is a bluesy garage groove workout. The tantalising mini-nugget Electric Thang is a great way to sign off this fine album.

Comments and feedback are welcome.

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LP 264: Barney Kessel – Hair Is Beautiful (Atlantic, 1969)

24 Jul

Side 1
01 Aquarius
02 Frank Mills
03 Where Do I Go
04 I Got Life
05 Walking In Space

Side 2
06 Ain’t Got You
07 Easy To Be Hard
08 Be-In (Hare Krishna)
09 Good Morning Starshine
10 Donna

Space and spaciousness.
Kenny Salmon, Barry Morgan and Steve Gray.

I Got Life just drifts by with a blissful arrangement.
Walking In Space and Be-In (Hare Krishna) pick up most energy points.

Monster Donna.

Every morning you wake up, it’s a new day, isn’t it? Is there any reason why a human being shouldn’t be influenced by a new day?    (Duke Ellington)
 
Comments and feedback are welcome.

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LP 256: Sandy Brown and His Gentlemen! Friends – Hair At Its Hairiest (Fontana, 1969)

12 Jul

Side 1
01 Ain’t Got No
02 Aquarius
03 Black Boys
04 Easy To Be Hard
05 Hair
06 Underture: Where Do I Go

Side 2
07 Hare Krishna
08 Where Do I Go
09 Manchester, England
10 Air
11 Electric Blues
12 Overture: Where Do I Go (A Final Word From Mr G Chisholm)

Hair At Its Hairiest can be filed under groovy psychedelic jazz.

The dudes are:
Sandy Brown – clarinet
Kenny Wheeler – trumpet and flugel horn
George Chisholm – trombone
Lennie Bush – bass
Johnny McLaughlin – guitar
Bobby Orr – drums

The top tunes to watch out for are:
Hair – explodes into a lively blast of fine grooviness.
Manchester England – tripled in length and all the better for it.
Electric Blues – a free-jazz dirge.

This album suits the hazy summer evening mood. Hope you like it.

Comments and feedback are welcome.

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LP 248: London Theatre Ensemble and Chorus – Hair (Somerset, 1969)

30 Jun

Side 1
01 Manchester
02 Aquarius
03 Ain’t Got No
04 Air
05 What Piece Of Work Is Man?
06 Can I Tell You
07 Hare Krishna

Side 2
08 Flesh-Failures
09 Good Morning Starshine
10 Walking In Space
11 I Got Life
12 Love Is True
13 Soul House
14 3500

The accents on this version of Hair are German and so is the label. So is it really a London Theatre Ensemble and Chorus? Perhaps it’s Les Humphries and his troupe – a fact that’s frequently cited when the LP comes up in conversation.

Three tracks were not written by Ragni-Rado-MacDermott. Two appear towards the end of the second side. The catchy Love Is True is credited to Ralph Bonda (a pseudonym for Dr Andreas Beurmann) while Soul House is a Les Humphries concoction. Funky greatness. Can I Tell You also has a Bonda credit and is the weakest of the bunch.

There’s an unusual start with Manchester before the usual run through beefy versions of Aquarius, Ain’t Got No and Air. What A Piece Of Work Is Man has a sparse orchestral feel while Walking In Space is a dubbed-out masterpiece. An edgy version of 3500 has last word on this most interesting entry in the Hair canon.

Comments and feedback are welcome.

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