Sunday, December 15, 2013

Smokey and His Sister – Smokey and His Sister (1968)

Πολλές από τις δραστηριότητες της ζωή μας επηρεάζονται από την ψυχολογία. Προφανώς και το να ακούμε μουσική. Κάπως έτσι Κυριακή πρωί σκαλίζοντας στο πισι έπεσα σε αυτό το ξεχασμένο αρχείο και είπα να το ανεβάσω διότι κάνοντας μια βόλτα στο νετ είδα να μην υπάρχει πλέον διαθέσιμο.

Οι Smokey And His Sister μέχρι σχετικά πρόσφατα ήταν άγνωστα τα ονόματα τους. Πρόκειται για τα αδέλφια Larry και Vicki Mims όπου πριν πολλά χρόνια έβγαλαν αυτό το δίσκο και δύο 45αρια.  Ωστόσο υπήρχε ανέκδοτη δουλειά τους από τότε την οποία ανακάλυψε η Sundazed και την έβγαλε σε σιντι στο οποίο περιλαμβάνονται και τα τραγούδια από τα 45αρια, τρία εκ των οποίων δεν ήταν τότε στο ομώνυμο Lp τους.

Το τραγούδι τους μετά τόσα χρόνια που τους έκανε «γνωστούς» σους κύκλους όσων ακούνε τέτοια πράγματα ήταν το In a Dream of Silent Seas το οποίο πράγματι είναι εκπληκτικό και έβαλα παρακάτω. Στο αρχείο έβαλα ότι βρήκα στο νετ που τους αφορά μαζί με τρία τραγούδια τους από τα 45ρια πραγματικά διαμάντια μαζί βέβαια και το In a Dream of Silent Seas σε καλή ανάλυση. Ακούστε το παρακάτω. 

Το Lp τους αποτελεί ένα πανέμορφο δείγμα ψυχεδελικής φολκ αλλά και Sunshine Pop, με εξαιρετικές ενορχηστρώσεις και βελούδινα φωνητικά από τα δύο αδέλφια που γαληνεύουν την ψυχή.  Ανέβασα στο youtube ένα κομμάτι που δεν είχε ανέβει ως τώρα και ίσως αποτελεί κορυφαία στιγμή τους στο δίσκο. Ίσως αδικώ το Some People. Τουλάχιστον η ψυχολογία αυτό μου λέει αυτή τη στιγμή. Ακούστε το.

Smokey And His Sister  - Sheridan Square (1968)

1) Columbia put out a couple of singles with them in 1967, but wouldn't release an album as they didn't have a hit. The two singles along with nine unreleased tracks from the same period did get a release when Sundazed Records put it out forty years later, in 2007. Smokey and his Sister did however get an album out in 1968 on Warner Brothers, confusingly enough both the Warner and Sundazed albums are self-titled. Hopefully someone will re-release the Warner album too as the vinyl record is difficult to get a hold of.

2) In 1948 in Cincinnati, Smokey met Dylan after a local concert in 1965 and "it just opened up his brain" according to the long liner notes to his only album. Shortly after, as with millions of other US teenagers, he began writing songs and playing guitar. In 1966, he moved to Greenwich Village with his sister Viki, and their songs and harmonies scored them a contract with Columbia.

Smokey and His Sister  - In a Dream of Silent Seas

Their single got a good review in 'Crawdaddy' and they moved to Warner for an album which was produced, arranged (and ruined!) by Paul Harris, a busy session man (Tom Rush, Jim and Jean). If the songs are average folk rock with male and female vocals, they were all recorded with rich strings arrangements and the album, which is now rare, is far from being collectable.

3) Smokey And His Sister" consisted of brother-and-sister duo Larry and Vicki Mims from Cincinnatti Ohio, they moved to N.y. and began recording from '66 - '68, they left behind 2 singles and what is said to be a superb lp, disillusioned by the record industry Vicki got married and settled in New Jersey and worked at a convent for 25 yrs, Smokey left for the west coast eventually recording some music with GREG EVIGAN ( B.J. and the BEAR ), Vicki passed away in 2006, Smokey wrote a letter to Sundazed in '07 thanking them for releasing the lp. 

4) … I am his brother in law and still lives with my wife (smokeys sister also ) in Ky just across the river from cincinnati ohio. We have not heard from or about Smokey for over 25yrs . His sister Vickie married and moved to NJ had two children and became sick and just recently passed away.
Jim Downey  

Side 1:
1 Sausalito Bay
2 Some People
3 Morning Comes As Swiftly As The Rain
4 For All Intents And Purposes
5 Sheridan Square
6 Imagination (Strange As It May Be)

Side 2:
7 Welcome To The Mighty East
8 Lonely Together
9 The Time Is Now
10 Someday Morning
11 Dancing Lights
12 My Fondest Dream

+ 3 more songs
Smokey and His Sister  - In a Dream of Silent Seas (1966)
Smokey and His Sister - Creators of Rain (1966)
Smokey and His Sister - Would You Come Home (1966)


Anonymous said...

A superb choice of this forgotten duo!!!

Anonymous said...

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Zipper said...